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CSotD: The fragility of commentary

I would likely have placed this Jimmy Margulies (KFS) cartoon lower in the blog today, had events not likely had him tearing out his hair.

I’m playing with timing myself.

It’s a very good piece, because, while the infrastructure bill matters, the eviction issue was more pressing, and it would have led to a whole discussion of prioritizing and multitasking and pragmatism.

Except that Biden suddenly yielded to pressure from the progressive wing and had the CDC extend its ban on evictions, rendering Margulies’ cartoon instantly obsolete.

A piece of good news for a lot of families though bad news for him.

Even in the non-print world, these things happen, and, while I’ll be filing today’s post before anyone will be holding any press conferences, it’s quite possible that the Andrew Cuomo cartoons and discussion I’ll be featuring will be likewise obsolete by the time you get here.

But let’s talk about the extension first, because yesterday I noted that the progressives seemed to realize that the ball was in their court, not Biden’s, and yet AOC and her crew then insisted that he had the power to order an extension.

Meanwhile, Rep. Cory Bush mounted a nonviolent demonstration, camping out on the steps of the Capitol to challenge the consciences of her vacationing colleagues.

An excellent way to be confrontational on a moral, rather than physical, level.

It took me back to a demonstration in my college days, when somehow Dow Chemical (maker of napalm) and the CIA (maker of mischief) scheduled interviews at the campus career office for the same day. Perhaps the plan was to get the predictable demonstrations over at once.

The debate among demonstrators became known as “worms v sardines,” and centered on whether we should simply force applicants to walk through and past us, or pack the doorway to make it impossible to get in. Constant Readers will easily guess that I was a worm.

Last night, Cory Bush scored with her worm approach, and, while this kind of steady insistence may not have been the only cause, it certainly factored into Biden’s last-minute, reluctant order that the CDC extend the moratorium.

This doesn’t remove Congress’s responsibility to act, and Biden has conceded that the extension is unlikely to survive a court challenge.

But, IMHO and apparently his, it’s better for people to be in their homes pending that challenge, than out on the street while a solution is debated.

Good on ya, Cory.

And sorry about your cartoon, Jimmy, but only a little.

 

So now onto the main event, and Ann Telnaes points out the issue, which is that rumors and more-than-whispers about NY Gov Andrew Cuomo’s inability to keep his hands to himself are now out in a formal report that he ordered himself and goes so far beyond he-said-she-said as to constitute, yes, a collection of multiple spotlights.

As of yesterday afternoon, Andrew, or, to use his formal title, the Damn Fool, was continuing to deny it, and to chalk it up to his delightful Italian hugginess.

Which prompts this question: Have you ever been in one of those hole-in-the-wall Italian pizzerias where the owner’s cute daughter waits on tables? Did you notice her father and brother behind the counter, tossing pies and watching over things?

Go ahead, Paisan’: Reach under her blouse and fondle her tits, the way you did with more than one of the women in your office.

They’re Italian. They’ll understand.

 

RJ Matson offers a prediction that will also work as a summary, as calls pile up for Cuomo’s resignation, not just from his opponents but from inside his party and from the White House, and, just as Telnaes drew multiple spotlights, Matson draws a thick sheaf of documents.

This isn’t about George W. rubbing Angela Merkel’s shoulders or Joe Biden putting his face to someone’s hair. The accusations are serious and the number of women claiming pretty much the same things mount up to an insurmountable tide.

It’s not innocent and it’s not an issue of what used to be accepted.

It was never okay, and, if people covered for it in the past, they were ashamed of themselves as they did so.

Never mind the retrospective judgments of “Mad Men.” Watch “The Apartment” and see how it was laid out in the days when “everyone thought it was okay.”

Here’s how people felt about sexual exploitation in the workplace back then:

It was never okay. We’re just more upfront about it now.

 

As Matt Davies indicates, Andrew Cuomo has discovered a shift in the concept of a “hostile workplace,” to which I would add that he’s not the only child of privilege that Tish James is determined to hold accountable.

Tish James and Cory Bush are just two of a throng who are changing the way the game is played, and it’s a better world, not just for women and not just for minorities but for decent people across the board.

 

I’m not sure what specifically prompted Joel Pett to comment on civics education, because a trip to Google News reveals a variety of stories on the topic, and shows several states addressing the issue.

Ramping up Civics class is a good idea, and here in New Hampshire, they’ve just passed a law not dictating what should be taught but, rather, what should be learned.

However, if requiring civics is a good idea, letting legislators meddle in curriculum is almost always a bad idea, as demonstrated by the text of the new law.

They require that students get 70% or better on the test given to immigrants applying for citizenship, which sounds good, even though the immigrants only have to score 60%. That’s nitpicking, and we all appreciate high standards.

But the text specifies “a grade of 70 percent or better on the 128 question civics (history and government) naturalization examination developed by the 2020 United States Citizen and Immigration Services.”

They may have missed the first paragraph on the first page of that exam:

Citizens don’t have to answer all 128. Just 20.

One hundred and twenty eight questions isn’t an exam. It’s a freakin’ term paper.

It’s enough to make good teachers like Ms. Beecher resign.

 

Community Comments

#1 Nicholas Merritt
August/4/2021
@ 8:07 am

Would it be a feasible interpretation of the text to say that they still only need to answer a 20-question subset of the lost of 128? That is, could that be taken as an inherent aspect of the “examination developed by the 2020 United States Citizen and Immigration Services.”

#2 Janet Ober
August/4/2021
@ 8:14 am

The Mario Cuomo cartoons are likely to be obsolete, replaced by Andrew Cuomo cartoons. ;)

#3 Mike Peterson
August/4/2021
@ 8:32 am

Fixed thanks. Told you it was early in the morning.

#4 George Walter
August/4/2021
@ 10:40 am

Nice detail by Ann Telnaes on the spotlight cords, (assuming the female symbol was intentional).

#5 Mike Peterson
August/4/2021
@ 11:30 am

Never known her to do anything unintentional, but I hadn’t noticed that until you pointed it out. Bonus!!!

#6 Tara Gallagher
August/4/2021
@ 11:42 am

Hope the NH legislators have to pass the same test to serve.

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