The slow crisis is America’s weak spot

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America is terrific at dealing with short-term disasters. But our attention span isn’t attuned to the crisis that takes time to develop and sticks around for a while. I worry that COVID-19, also known as Coronavirus, is the kind of slow crisis that we tend to bungle. A hurricane. An epic blizzard. A mass shooting. … Continued

On Coronavirus, we need the correct amount of fear

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Fear is useful. Panic is not. COVID-19, popularly known as the Coronavirus, is coming. If we’re honest, we should recognize a few facts. At least 83,000 people are infected. Most are in China, but there are also outbreaks in South Korea, Iran, Japan, and Italy. There are cases in America, too. More than 2,800 people … Continued

When it comes to screenshots of tweets, don’t be a credulous idiot

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The Dow dropped 1,000 points yesterday, crashed by fears about the Coronavirus. And two screenshots of past Trump tweets spread like wildfire. This is a situation where the urge to share led many astray — and it’s pernicious, regardless of what side of the political divide you land on. Here are the two screenshots that … Continued

Elizabeth Warren for President

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I don’t normally take partisan positions. And this space will continue to analyze — and criticize — political speakers of all types. But much as newspaper editorial pages endorse candidates, I will do so now, on the eve of the New Hampshire Primary. I am endorsing Elizabeth Warren. I want our next president to be … Continued

Matt Gaetz throws a tantrum

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After the State of the Union speech Tuesday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ripped up her copy — on camera. This has incensed Republican Representative Matt Gaetz, who wants her investigated for destroying documents. His letter is one of the dumbest things ever to come from a federal election official. Analyzing the Gaetz letter Here’s what … Continued

About that Iowa caucus . . .

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You: Can you believe what happened in Iowa? Me: A bunch of people voted in the Democratic caucus. That’s what was supposed to happen. You: No. I mean that epic screwup with the app so we still don’t know who won. Me: Doesn’t matter. You: Doesn’t matter? Be serious. This is a total disaster. Me: … Continued

Cheering for laundry and other reflections on loyalty

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Our team loyalties are unshakable. That’s what makes events like the Super Bowl enjoyable — we know who love, and we know who we hate. But loyalty ought to have limits. As Jerry Seinfeld memorably explained, we’re just rooting for laundry. The players change, the teams move, but we know who we like. Why are … Continued

Shameless

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Yes, this is a political post. If you don’t like those, don’t read it. In fact, it could very well offend every single one of my readers. Based on news reports, it now seems likely that the Senate will call no witnesses in the impeachment trial of President Trump. The Senate could vote not to … Continued