It is difficult to keep my head from exploding with each new day’s political developments. So now Rod Rosenstein is quitting or may be fired, leaving Mueller’s Russia investigation in grave jeopardy. Or maybe not. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh faces an increasing number of allegations of sexual misbehavior which may derail his nomination to the high court. Or maybe not. Trump addresses the United Nations and gravely blames all the world’s ills on Iran. Sounds like a recipe for a Trumped-up invasion/October surprise. Or maybe not. In any case the waves of breaking news wash over us with relentless ferocity, keeping us locked in hypnotic distraction.
Science answers many questions but not of morality or wisdom. Human judgment is responsible there.
There is a certain tyranny to the 24-hour news cycle, a certain grip on human awareness and attention. We have been rightly consumed by the Trump administration’s policy of separating migrant parents from their children, and the media have been filled with pictures and stories of anguished families, along with voices of critics from across the political spectrum. Yet though President Trump has retreated on the issue, he has still successfully used the powers of his office to dominate the media. He and his staff have been able to manipulate the 24-hour news cycle to frame ongoing debates about immigration, limiting the possibilities of what can and can’t be discussed, and what can and can’t be considered politically viable.
The Reagan Administration’s 1980s crazy talk of “winning” nuclear war with “only” 20 million US dead produced a lot of anti-nuclear activism — all over the world. In Europe, hundreds of thousands marched against the placement of US Cruise and Pershing II missiles in NATO countries.
Voting is an incredibly important duty as an American—but actual voting has to have taken place in order to effect change.
Seems like every day brings a report of some new atrocity resulting from U.S. wars somewhere in the world. It’s getting to the point it is a full-time job just to keep up on them. Doesn’t pay very well, and it’s depressing, it’s a dirty job, but somebody has to do it. Don’t they?
Over the last four months, I’ve been traveling the highways and byways of District 74, getting to know people and places, listening, knocking on doors, and making phone calls alone and with my team.
You wouldn’t think people would want the title of “America’s Meanest,” but it seems so many are vying for it.
Every so often, I jot down a list of the things that discourage me about our country. There’s the widespread disregard for our core values of tolerance and mutual respect, for instance. Our declining national optimism. Our relaxed attitude toward fixing our election machinery, overseeing financial institutions, and making sure that our key democratic institutions and processes are working effectively. There’s wage stagnation, income inequality, a high poverty rate, failing infrastructure, inadequate healthcare coverage, a dysfunctional Congress…. You get the idea.
If you cook for long enough sooner or later something will go wrong. The Hollandaise sauce will break or the famous “Nanna candy” will break and ooze butter. The list of what can happen is almost endless.