Political Bullsh!t

Abbreviated Pundit Roundup: 2021? Good riddance.

TIME:

Biden’s Been Counted Out Before—And Loves To Prove the Haters Wrong

It’s been an easy idea to hold over the years, a tempting one at times, really: Joe Biden is dunzo and isn’t coming back from this setback. The 1972 death of his wife and daughter, before he even got sworn into office. The plagiarism scandal that ushered him from the 1988 presidential race. A less-than-1% showing in Iowa 20 years later. The death of Beau Biden. A “gut punch” of a fourth-place finish in Iowa in 2020. And yet Biden got up off the mat every time. Joe Biden doesn’t always win, but he certainly doesn’t quit.

I hate you, 2021. Go. https://t.co/NAhX45z9lA

— Alice Dreger, Ph.D. (@AliceDreger) December 31, 2021

Dana Milbank/WaPo:

This is the worst economy we never had

Fox News told viewers that “Christmas presents for your kids may not arrive on time or even at all” (Sean Hannity), that the president is “the Biden Who Stole Christmas” (Laura Ingraham) and that Biden is “facing a nightmare come Christmastime,” when “gifts are going to cost a fortune, and that’s even if you’re lucky enough to snag anything” (Jesse Watters).

Breitbart News trumpeted a Trump campaign adviser’s forecast for “a frankly miserable Christmas … the Biden Blue Christmas.” Newsmax foresaw “Biden’s Blue Christmas: Shortages, Frustration, Economic Malaise.”

And then — a Christmas miracle!

Holiday retail sales were the highest ever, jumping 8.5 percent from last year and nearly 11 percent from pre-pandemic 2019, as “consumers splurged throughout the season,” Mastercard reported Sunday.

Hard same. https://t.co/ZIN3wf204g

— Sarah Longwell (@SarahLongwell25) December 31, 2021

NPR:

Retired general warns the U.S. military could lead a coup after the 2024 election

How worried is he on a scale of 1 to 10?

I see it as low probability, high impact. I hesitate to put a number on it, but it’s an eventuality that we need to prepare for. In the military, we do a lot of war-gaming to ferret out what might happen. You may have heard of the Transition Integrity Project that occurred about six months before the last election. We played four scenarios. And what we did not play is a U.S. military compromised – not to the degree that the United States is compromised today, as far as 39% of the Republican Party refusing to accept President Biden as president – but a compromise nonetheless. So, we advocate that that particular scenario needs to be addressed in a future war game held well in advance of 2024.

I can never thank you enough. You gave me enough time to escape safely. https://t.co/S4xWrBg5D2

— Patricia Zengerle 🌲 (@ReutersZengerle) December 31, 2021

Reuters:

Anatomy of a death threat

Trump supporters have waged a campaign of intimidation against the state and local officials who administer U.S. elections. This visual analysis explores hundreds of menacing messages – and explains why they’re difficult to counter.

About 110 of the 850 messages Reuters collected appear to meet what law professors and attorneys say is the federal threshold for prosecution. That would make them so-called true threats, generally defined as those intended to put a person in fear of death or bodily harm or to inflict severe emotional distress. In many other messages, harassers call for violence without threatening to act themselves. Arrests for threatening election workers have been rare, even in cases of true threats.

If the booster shots don’t work, why don’t you come down to my ED and watch me intubate some unvaccinated patients coughing pink sputum with sats in the 50’s begging us to not let them die? You can tell their relatives it’s OK they suffocated to death something something Brandon. https://t.co/rASUJTYmzf

— Dan Barkhuff VFRL.org (@DBarkhuff) December 31, 2021

WaPo:

‘Crazy’ omicron surge could peak soon, but the virus is unpredictable as the pandemic enters its third year

Columbia University researchers estimate infections could top out during the week of Jan. 9

But this has always been an unpredictable virus, going back to when it first appeared two years ago, on Dec. 31, 2019. The virus had probably been spreading for a month or more, but that was the day infectious-disease experts around the world began hearing by email and text about an outbreak of a mysterious pathogen causing pneumonia-like respiratory infections in Wuhan, China.

No one on that day could have known that this pathogen, initially called the “novel coronavirus” and later named SARS-CoV-2, would trigger the most brutal pandemic in a century. And no one today knows when it will be over.

Forecasts of how the pandemic will play out have repeatedly been incorrect, to the point that some modelers have stopped trying to make caseload projections four weeks out, instead limiting their forecasts to one week ahead.

Because beyond a week, who knows?

I got paid today with a massive COLA increase for all disabled veterans thanks to Biden. Liberals think I’ve earned it because I served and sacrificed. Conservatives think I’m a lazy moocher. Either way, thank you everyone.

— Mac (@MonsterVetArt) December 30, 2021

James Hohmann/WaPo:

Biden should stop pretending his resistance to a vax-to-fly rule is about public health

The same authority that allows Biden to require passengers to wear masks on domestic flights, which he has extended through March 18, also allows him to require vaccinations. He told ABC News last Wednesday that he has considered doing so but has been told by staff that it’s not necessary. “Even with omicron,” Biden said. “That’s the recommendation I got so far from the team.”

This is disingenuous at best, dishonest at worst. Public health experts inside and outside government have favored requiring vaccinations to fly since the summer. In September, White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain said that a vaccine mandate for flying might be unnecessary because the administration’s mandates for employers to require vaccination would be a more effective way to achieve the same result. But that rule has been put on hold pending Supreme Court review.

One of the country’s most gerrymandered political maps has suddenly been replaced by one of the fairest. How Michigan did it with a citizen-driven ballot measure: https://t.co/xaEcbNZsbG

— Nick Knudsen 🇺🇸 (@NickKnudsenUS) December 30, 2021



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