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SEPTEMBER 29,  2021

SHORT TAKES ON THE DRIFTING WRECKAGE – OVERNIGHT: 

MADNESS, SHEER MADNESS – FROM CNBC:  Google-owned YouTube banned prominent anti-vaccine accounts in an effort to strengthen its policies on misinformation around vaccines, the company said in a blog post on Wednesday. It will also ban misinformation on all vaccines that are confirmed to be safe by the World Health Organization and local health authorities.  Social media companies have said since the beginning of the pandemic that they're trying to stop the spread of coronavirus misinformation. But falsehoods have continued to run rampant as companies struggle to police the constant flood of posts and uploads to their platforms.  As part of the crackdown, a YouTube spokesperson confirmed it removed pages associated with high-profile misinformation spreaders like Joseph Mercola, Erin Elizabeth, Sherri Tenpenny and the Children's Health Defense Fund, which is associated with Robert F. Kennedy Jr.  Until now, YouTube banned videos that said the coronavirus vaccine was ineffective or dangerous. Under, the new policy, it will block videos that spread misinformation about all commonly used vaccines, like the MMR vaccine, which protects against measles, mumps and rubella.  "We've steadily seen false claims about the coronavirus vaccines spill over into misinformation about vaccines in general, and we're now at a point where it's more important than ever to expand the work we started with COVID-19 to other vaccines," the company said.  A dangerous move. Journalism long ago established protocols for giving readers a warning that assertions in a story have not been validated.  Warnings like that are common.  I oppose bans because, almost inevitably, a valuable piece of information will be banned from the marketplace of ideas, and people will be hurt.

September 29, 2021       Permalink

THE SINKING SHIP – OVERNIGHT:  It looks like the president's agenda in Congress is collapsing.  The once-great Democratic Party is at war with itself.  I'm so sad.  From Fox: 

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., said Wednesday that he would not support "spending trillions more" on social programs, highlighting an ongoing dispute between the moderate Democrat and party leaders that threatens to derail negotiations on President Biden’s $3.5 trillion spending bill.

In a lengthy statement on the negotiations, Manchin said he has "made clear to the President and Democratic leaders" that it would be the "definition of fiscal insanity" to greenlight more spending despite funding shortages for social security and Medicare. Manchin also cited concerns about the potential impact on inflation and the shaky U.S. economic recovery.

"While I am hopeful that common ground can be found that would result in another historic investment in our nation, I cannot – and will not - support trillions in spending or an all or nothing approach that ignores the brutal fiscal reality our nation faces," Manchin said. "There is a better way and I believe we can find it if we are willing to continue to negotiate in good faith."

The Left, which is demanding that Congress pass the full $3.5 trillion spending bill, was having none of it. "Progressives won’t back down on delivering paid leave, education, health care, child care, and climate action because of an arbitrary deadline," said Democratic Rep. Pramila Jayapal of Washington state. "We’re sticking to our deal and delivering for the people."

Manchin’s remarks followed days of intense dialogue between top Democrats regarding the spending bill, which consists of social programs that were left out of a separate $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill. Biden met separately with Manchin and fellow moderate Democrat Sen. Kyrsten Sinema on multiple occasions this week in a bid to find common ground.

COMMENT:  Once again we see the reckless influence of the far left of the Democratic Party.  They have the intellectual maturity of 12-year-olds.  They don't understand the impact of the nation spending money it doesn't have.  They really believe that "the rich" will be made to pay the bills.  And, of course, they know almost nothing about running a federal program and making it work for the American people.  Congresswoman Jayapal is a Washington-state socialist, and her meanderings demonstrate the hopelessness of government control. 

The left may think that blocking programs is the way to gain influence.  In reality, it probably will make moderate Democrats much more enthusiastic about purging the nutbags from the party, as was done in the mid-1940s.

September 29,  2021     Permalink

 

 

 

SEPTEMBER 28,  2021

SHORT TAKES ON THE DRIFTING WRECKAGE – OVERNIGHT:

BIDEN HURTING IN ANOTHER SWING STATE – FROM THE HILL:   President Biden’s approval rating is at 38 percent in the battleground state of North Carolina, while about a quarter of respondents think the country is on the right track, according to a new poll.  The survey, conducted by High Point University, found that 38 percent of North Carolinians polled approve of the way Biden is handling his job as president, compared to 48 percent who disapprove. Fourteen percent of respondents said they do not know or refused to respond.  A majority of North Carolinians also said they believe things in the country have gotten off track: 60 percent of respondents said the U.S. is on the wrong track, with only 28 percent saying the country is headed in the right direction.  The low polling numbers come as Biden is grappling with a series of crises: fallout from the U.S.’s messy withdrawal from Afghanistan, the rapid spread of the highly infectious delta variant, legislative headaches on Capitol Hill as lawmakers work to pass key parts of his agenda, and a surge of Haitian migrants seeking entry into the U.S. in Texas.  North Carolina voters were nearly split in the 2020 presidential election. Then-President Trump won by just 1.3 percent, which was equivalent to nearly 75,000 votes, according to The New York Times.  Fifty-seven percent of respondents in the new poll said they disapproved of Biden’s handling of the situation in Afghanistan, with only 25 percent approving.  It's only a poll, a snapshot in time, but it reflects the dramatic decline in Biden's approval that we're seeing throughout the country.  If the president's approval falls into the thirties, he's in grim trouble, with the political obituary writers sharpening their pencils, or whatever they use. 

September 28, 2021      Permalink

 

BORDER TRUTHS – OVERNIGHT:  As readers know, I rate Salena Zito as  one of the best reporters in the United States.  She actually talks with people below the Cabinet level.  I doubt if she's invited to cocktail parties in Georgetown.  And she doesn't think the world will end in two weeks if we continue to drive cars. 

She has observed the southern border, and her observations are choice.  From Creators: 

Take all of the imagery you have seen of the over 14,000 Haitian migrants camped under an international bridge in the small Texas border town of Del Rio and add the complications of disease, public excrement, unbearable heat and heightened frustrations. It has led to violence that has injured Border Patrol officers.

Now close your eyes and imagine it is 100 times worse.

Because that's what it is, said Texas Rep. Tony Gonzales, the freshman Republican who represents 42% of the border. The overwhelmed city of Del Rio had been in a rapidly deteriorating crisis situation when illegal immigrants first began surging into the community in January, but Gonzales now says the situation here is a "Category 5" and that the environment is unlike anything he has ever seen before.

"I arrived here today to pure chaos," he said. "I've never seen it in this environment. There literally is no border left."

Gonzales said Del Rio is in dire straits. "There's no doubt there's COVID here, there's measles, tuberculosis, all kinds of diseases," he said. "You've got kids running around in nothing but diapers. A handful of port-a-potties — my God, the stench is terrible. This is not good for the migrants. It is not good for the residents. It's not good for wherever our government is sending them in the interior of the country."

Despite the Department of Homeland Security insisting repeatedly the Haitians would be deported, as of Tuesday, it had only removed 1,000 of the estimated 15,000 under the bridge. Multiple news organizations including CNN reported that buses have been escorting them to a nonprofit organization in town where they purchase bus or plane tickets. They are then moved to a gas station where buses pick them up and take them to other parts of the country.

The Washington Post reported that the number is in the thousands of those released to parts unknown in the interior of the country.

"My takeaway after I walked through it all, I look over at the sector chief, and I go, 'Man, I just feel sad.' He goes, 'I know. Everyone just feels beaten here,'" Gonzales said.

Del Rio residents have seen their lives turned upside down. The international bridge has been closed — a lifeline bringing tens of millions of dollars to the local economy. If you're a small-business owner and your business has somehow survived COVID-19, something like this could easily wipe you out.

Everybody has been sucked into this chaos.

"The worst thing is that we are not even talking about the other places where this is happening," Gonzales said. "Today, we're talking about Del Rio, but tomorrow, it'll be Laredo or Brownsville or Eagle Pass or El Paso. This problem is not going away."

COMMENT:  Please read the rest.  This is the kind of reporting we rarely get today.   The border crisis is vastly larger than the "insurrection" of January 6th, yet it was the latter that has gotten more attention.  There are times I think we'd be better off switching to a parliamentary system, where the first officer of the government could be replaced by a single vote of no confidence.  The glory of our current system is that it reinforces stability, but that only works when the candidates are carefully chosen by their parties.   How careful were the Dems in choosing Punchy Joe and Nowhere Kamala?

Boy, do we have problems.  Sorry for saying "boy."  I'm just not woke.

September 28,  2021     Permalink

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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