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CSotD: Herd Impunity and other toxins

Prickly City (AMS) offers an intelligent view of our current dilemma, and offers a hope that there are more than a handful of intelligent conservatives out there observing this mess.

But Winslow is right in that, while elections are the traditional and obvious correction in a democracy, the Treason Caucus encourages its Deplorable Army to distrust elections.

 

Rick McKee (Cagle) offers something of an explanation: The GOP is scared of its own shadow, having promoted Trumpism to such a degree that, even with Trump ostensibly out of the picture, the malady lingers on.

I tend to cringe at the Stages-of-Man cliche, but even an overdone image can be properly deployed, and Marc Murphy (Courier-Journal) dredges this up at the right moment.

I saw something flash by on social media about numbers of people fleeing the Republican Party, and I’m not going to go back and find it because the important thing right now is that 45 Senators once critical of fringe elements in the Black Lives Matter movement have gone on the record declaring that it’s perfectly okay to lead a mob that beats and even kills police officers.

How many civilians leave the party doesn’t matter if those 45 power brokers remain.

Not that we shouldn’t have all seen it coming.

On his Twitter page, Murphy wishes he’d had room for an evangelical preacher, but I’d go farther and wish he could show Newt Gingrich and the Contract for America, which drove out so many good, moderate Republicans who hadn’t left in the Nixon debacle and were willing to wait out the Reaganites.

It’s hard to believe that George Romney and Nelson Rockefeller were Republicans, but, then, it’s hard to believe George Wallace wasn’t.

As others have said, Trump is the symptom, not the disease.

 

Speaking of Diseases

Graeme MacKay (Hamilton Spectator) is hardly the only cartoonist decrying the uneven distribution of covid vaccines, but I like the ways he moderates the added unfairness for the Third World by noting that, even in First World nations, it’s not going all that well.

At the World Economic Forum in Davos, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who currently heads the African Union, accused rich countries of hoarding vaccines and pleaded with them to release their excess doses to other nations.

There’s just no need for a country, which perhaps has 40 million people, to acquire 120 million doses or even 160 million.

It’s an issue that we should care about, if not out of common human decency, for reasons of our own security.

Some 40 years ago, my grandfather, who, in his working days a decade and a half earlier had traveled to Africa and South America in search of chromium and molybdenum for the steel industry, decried our attitude towards resource acquisition.

One of these days, he remarked, “all those little brown people are going to ask ‘Where’s mine?'” and we’d better have an answer.

Of course, in the same conversation, he observed that the steel industry could have saved money by simply cleaning up their act instead of lobbying against the EPA, so the fact that he was right didn’t change how the world worked then or how it works now.

Except that he was right, and those little people have stopped being so little.

So consider this chart from Bloomberg that ranks nations by how well they are handling the pandemic. (h/t to Rod Emmerson)

There’s some positive news in that we’ve just moved up a couple of spots thanks to our new president having removed our national head from our national hindquarters, but I don’t hear the America Firsters proudly chanting “We’re Number 35!”

And for all the unfairness of vaccine distribution, I’d note that there are a number of “little brown people” whose nations outrank our own, which I guess is part of that thing of being judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character and the wisdom of their leadership.

You should go to the Bloomberg page itself, because not only do they explain their methodology, but the chart there is interactive so that you can change the order by clicking on the headings.

 

For instance, if you click on “Deaths per Million,” the bottom of that chart of 53 countries looks like this. Now we’re not #35 anymore. We’re #49!

Maybe being white and rich isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

 

Juxtaposition of the Day

(Ann Telnaes — WashPo)

(RJ Matson — Roll Call)

I guess we’ll see how things go. There remains a coterie of Deplorables and science deniers who will resist the vaccine, which slows things down and, no, we can’t make them all go quarantine together and let Charles Darwin solve the problem.

But I think Telnaes is right that the bulk of Americans, even the most conservative, are going to accept the government’s stock of vaccines, even if it does mean that poor people will also get some.

And Matson goes further, observing that Biden is working to inoculate us against all sorts of malignant infections we seem to have picked up recently.

From his pen to God’s ear, but, while I accept Telnaes’ prediction about vaccines, I suspect there will remain a lot of big money and power resisting those other reforms.

Leading to

Juxtaposition of the Day #2

(John Darkow – Columbia Missourian)

 

(Steve Kelley – Creators) 

Darkow asks a question of the junior senator from his state, “If the Cancel Culture is such an impediment, how come we can still hear you so loud, so often, so ceaselessly?”

Again, it’s nothing new: Fox News has been calling everyone else “mainstream media” while bragging that they’ve got bigger ratings. Logic and consistency have no place in modern politics.

Kelley complains about Democrats wanting all sorts of things for free, but will likely be back later to complain that they want to raise taxes, and he declares free speech an absolute, while working in a city where some cartoonists have reportedly had jobs “canceled” for not voicing politically acceptable opinions.

Well, this whole mess didn’t start four years ago and it won’t be gone tomorrow.

Or ever, without effort.

 

Community Comments

#1 Mary Ella
January/28/2021
@ 8:50 am

Not even just working in a city where a cartoonist was fired for his views, but didn’t Kelley straight-up take Rob Rogers’ old job? Irony really is dead.

After getting an earful from a relative who was upset about the control Facebook and Google exert over what she could read, and now losing her access to Parler, I was left thinking—isn’t the main issue the fact that these giant corporations have such outsized control over everything? And if that’s the case, wouldn’t monopoly-busting to encourage more competition be the answer?If so, it seems to me that a solution would be to reach out to Elizabeth Warren—I’m sure she’d already have a plan for busting up some monopolies. Too bad some of these nimrods will be too busy crying and making the same Pocahontas joke to realize it.

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