A few states have recently opted to change their elections process to Ranked-Choice voting, a method which, its proponents say, is designed to give third-party candidates a better chance of winning, or, failing that, at least an honest share of the vote.
Opponents have raised objections ranging from the process becoming too complicated to the contention that it’s no longer “one person, one vote”.
The F.B.I. just raided Mar-A-Lago, opened former president Donald Trump’s personal safe, apparently looking for documents relating to… oh, I don’t know; probably something or other, maybe classified maybe not. I’d tell you more except, just between you and me, I really don’t care.
Seriously: I don’t know about you, but I reached my limit of daily Donald Trump in late 2020, and my level of apathy toward him has just kept growing since then. At this point, arrest the man or don’t, and the amount of time I’ll spend paying attention to the proceedings will be zero either way. Why? Because I very much don’t care.
Don’t worry, Republicans: I’ll get to you in a second, but you lost in 2020. Sucks to be you.
When Joe Biden was anointed by the moneyed wings of the D.N.C. to become the approved candidate for the Presidency in 2020, it was an impressive gamble on the premise that we vote for the people with whom we most identify. It was a field that contained two highly capable, brilliant, and charismatic women, a massive populist machine that backed an unapologetic socialist, a Rhodes Scholar who nevertheless somehow wasn’t the smartest man in the room… Any of these people would have done the office proud. Instead, we managed to elect the only candidate who was worse at completing sentences than Donald Trump.
It is not entirely unreasonable to blame the high price of gas on the election of Joe Biden as President.
What’s not true, however, is the contention that his administration in any way is working to slow oil drilling or pipelines. The cancellation of Keystone XL, widely (and falsely) trumpeted as a win for the environment, didn’t change prices at the pump even a little.
The president flew out today, on his way to Europe to talk up his new spending plan. Which, at present, is half what his first spending plan was and does nothing to reduce our spending deficit, not to mention our debt.
Which is fine. Keynes explained it to us: Why it is that, in tough times, we need to borrow and spend so that the good times return sooner. He used many pages of complicated mathematical formulae to back up his premise, and the number of people who can even understand them much less comprehensibly explain them is tiny, so let’s just take his word on it, shall we? The government is right to borrow and spend. We may disagree on how it spends what it gets—
Ah, but that’s the point, isn’t it? We do disagree. We pretty much all disagree, and volubly, at great length.
No headlines say this. A few lines in some of the financial papers hint at it, explaining why every rideshare and gig delivery company just took a massive stock hit. Frankly, when it comes to hard news, it’s tough to go wrong with the financials.
On Wednesday the 5th, President Biden’s Department of Labor issued a reversal for the Trump-era “final rule” that defined most gig workers as non-employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act. In an interview, Labor Secretary Marty Walsh explained that this was designed to make gig workers eligible for the benefits everyone else gets. In reality, what it’ll do is force the contracting companies to limit worker hours, particularly during slow periods, so they aren’t suddenly required to pay overtime for someone who’s just sitting around doing nothing. For customers, it’s going to be just that much harder to get a ride at odd hours or to get food delivered.
It’s highly unusual for a new president to address Congress within his first year, much less his first hundred days. With a near-deserted hall (thanks to COVID) in a fortified building surrounded by heavily armed riot police and not a few National Guardsmen, tonight’s address made history in several ways.
What wasn’t unusual was the content. Although it was delivered in an almost informal, folksy style, we heard exactly what we expected to. The tone was optimistic, and the message was clear: Biden laid out his agenda for the coming months, and he expects to make it happen. How, exactly, is another question entirely.
On Monday, the second Trump impeachment trial in the Senate is scheduled to begin.
(I know; just when you thought he was finally gone, right? Wrong. Trump is back in the headlines for another few weeks — and it’s a good thing for everyone. But more on that later. -Editor)
In order to prepare for the upcoming outcomes of these events, there are a few aspects of the proceedings that you should be aware of going into this so you can adjust your expectations. That way, there are few surprises and there will be little room for disinformation going forward. The proper correction for fake news is, after all, a strong infusion of the truth.
Congress has been fighting for months over the size of the next stimulus package. Now that the election has been more or less decided, there remains a chance that the lame-duck session might pass something in time for Christmas. But should they, and if so how much?