Mid-Day Digest

Mar. 17, 2020


“It is an unquestionable truth, that the body of the people in every country desire sincerely its prosperity. But it is equally unquestionable that they do not possess the discernment and stability necessary for systematic government. To deny that they are frequently led into the grossest of errors, by misinformation and passion, would be a flattery which their own good sense must despise.” —Alexander Hamilton (1788)

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Debating a COVID-19 Aid Package

Thomas Gallatin

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread, it has become evident that the virus holds the most danger for the elderly and those with underlying health conditions. In light of this, President Donald Trump’s COVID-19 task force yesterday called on Millennials in particular, those least likely to suffer significant negative health effects from the virus, to do their part in helping to stop its spreading. Speaking at a press conference, White House coronavirus task-force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx called Millennials the “core group that will stop the virus.” She added, “They are the group that communicates successfully independent of picking up a phone. They intuitively know how to contact each [other] without being in a large social gatherings.”

Millennials are the largest generation and the ones most likely to be out and about. Thus, Birx asserted, they are the ones most likely to spread COVID-19. Birx then admonished them: “We’re protecting the Greatest Generation right now, and the children of the Greatest Generation. And [Millennials] need to communicate with each other.”

Also on Monday, Trump released a set of new guidelines for Americans to follow titled “15 Days to Slow the Spread.” The guidelines encourage avoiding gatherings larger than 10 people, as well as staying away from “eating or drinking in restaurants, bars and food courts,” opting instead for “drive through, pickup and delivery options.” Trump noted, “If everyone makes … these critical changes and sacrifices now, we will rally together as one nation and we will defeat the virus.”

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) called for the government to give every American adult $1,000 in an effort to mitigate the growing financial squeeze brought about by the pandemic. He’s the first Republican to propose something akin to former Democrat presidential candidate Andrew Yang’s “Universal Basic Income.” If the goal is to ensure Americans have more money during the COVID-19 crisis, however, a better idea would be enacting what Trump has called for — a temporary payroll-tax cut. That’s not great either, but there are no good options before us.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Monday proposed a $750 billion plan that “would boost hospital capacity, expand unemployment insurance, increase Medicaid funding, provide aid to small businesses, and grant immediate forbearance on federal loan payments,” as reported by National Review. “We will need big, bold, urgent federal action to deal with this crisis,” Schumer argued. The White House, meanwhile, pitched an $850 billion “stimulus” package.

Unfortunately, it’s almost always the case that politicians use crisis to expand the government’s role in everyone’s lives. Still, Washington politicos aren’t wrong about COVID-19 exacting a serious economic toll across the country. Especially hard hit have been restaurant workers, as Americans have heeded warnings and stayed home. We won’t know for months what the real economic cost will be.

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Homebound? Now What?

Nate Jackson

So, thanks to coronavirus, you’re stuck at home, trying to work while also managing kids who are out of school. What do you do?

To help everyone stay calm and sane, as well as simply to offer some good perspective amidst the craziness, here are a few things to consider doing.

Perhaps most importantly, check up on friends and family. Use social media for good. Maybe even use that portable computer you’re holding to call loved ones (radical, we know). Make sure that neighbors have what they need. Offer help when you can, especially for seniors who may not be able to venture out to the store for needed supplies. During a period of “social distancing,” we humans are still geared to need community (yes, even you introverts). If you or someone you know is alone, pay special attention to them.

Go outside. Well, as long as it’s not pouring down rain, as it is this morning at our remote headquarters. Cabin fever is real and everyone needs some fresh air — especially kids. Eventually the skies will clear up, right?

Read books. Been too busy with kids’ sports or other public obligations to pick up that book you started on January 1? Settle back down and read it.

Further your education. There are all sorts of online learning opportunities that you can use to continue learning. Teach your kids basic life skills — like deep cleaning. Never stop learning or sharing knowledge.

If all else fails, there’s always Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, Disney+, etc. With theaters around the country shutting down, NBCUniversal just announced it will release its current theatrical features on demand at home. Other studios, including Disney, will follow suit.

Here’s one you probably didn’t think of, courtesy of Ben Shapiro: “Buy a gift card. Small businesses are getting crushed right now. Many have been shut by local governments, and even the ones that haven’t are being destroyed by Americans following protocol and staying away from crowds. This means that if you have disposable income, you should seriously consider buying a gift card from a local business and using it later — or shopping online from them. It’s essentially an advance for businesses that could certainly use the hand right now.”

As a final and more personal note, if you’re like the staff here in our humble shop, life is incredibly busy even outside our hectic deadlines. Our jobs and deadlines don’t change even if we are working remotely. But as other parts of life slow down, we’re taking time to give thanks to our Creator for the blessings we may have been too busy to notice. We hope you’ll do the same and that you’ll fill the time wisely.

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Biden Won’t Bring Decency or Unity

Harold Hutchison

One of the things Joe Biden is running on is a return to “decency.” For many Americans seemingly exhausted by the state of constant political fighting (or nonviolent civil war, if you believe Dennis Prager), it seems to be nice to get back to a place of decency and national unity. There is just one problem.

Joe Biden is not the man who can bring unity. That’s largely because, when it comes to decency, he is very deficient. The media might tell you one thing, but there is plenty of evidence that Biden’s lack of decency not only exists but will make unity impossible.

For one thing, the deep divisions on multiple issues that drive the present state of contentious disunity have existed for a long time and have been growing toxic for a long time.

For instance, take gun control.

The fact is, far too many of the solutions proposed by the Democrats running for president involved punishing millions of law-abiding Americans for crimes and acts of madness they did not commit. Parkland, Sandy Hook, Aurora, Sutherland Springs, Las Vegas — all were cited as the justification for massive infringements on the Second Amendment.

On their own, and in conjunction with pro-Second Amendment groups like the National Rifle Association, millions of Patriots objected to that injustice. They made those objections stick through successful grassroots action. Yet that grassroots action against injustice (writing lawmakers, educating their fellow Americans, and even working to defeat anti-Second Amendment officials through the electoral process) has been labeled “domestic terrorism” by none other than New York’s attorney general.

Beto O'Rourke once promised, “Hell yes, we’re going to take your AR-15.” Joe Biden just hired Beto’s campaign manager as his own, and he plans to hire Beto as his “gun-control czar.”

It’s kind of hard to unify a country after stuff like that. It becomes doubly hard when, after that rhetoric, abusive investigations are launched with the intent of silencing certain voices. But yeah, media pundits, tell us again how it’s Second Amendment supporters who are the problem.

Biden is no stranger to vilification of opponents. There is, of course, the moment he falsely claimed Mitt Romney would put African Americans “back in chains.” It was a vicious slander — saying slavery would come back. But at the time, it looked as if Romney had a chance to beat Barack Obama — and he did come within a few hundred thousand votes of flipping that election into an Electoral College win like Donald Trump pulled off four years later.

Biden also was proud of the grotesque defeat of Robert Bork’s Supreme Court nomination in 1987 and sought to use it to launch his 1988 presidential campaign. Bork’s reputation over a long career of public service? Small price to pay for Biden’s ambition. Karma struck when Biden was caught plagiarizing speeches the next year, but that karma didn’t put Bork on the Supreme Court. Nor did that karma halt the vitriolic path we are on today. Biden’s horrific treatment of Bork became the template for how Democrats treat Republican judicial nominees. Ask Brett Kavanaugh.

But the lack of decency also extends to inaction. Remember when John Lewis smeared John McCain as a racist in 2008? Biden was silent … and even seemed like he had discarded the friendship. While maybe that smear wasn’t decisive, Biden said nothing — and even today proclaims his friendship with McCain as he runs for president for the third time.

We’ll leave it to you to judge if his treatment of McCain is that of a true friend. But the actions and inactions in politics probably aren’t the most relevant or dispositive when it comes to Biden’s lack of decency. Let’s look at how he mistreated someone who was utterly powerless to resist him: Curtis C. Dunn.

In 1972, Biden’s first wife and daughter were killed in an accident involving a tractor trailer. Anyone who has lost a family member to such an accident can comprehend the pain involved. But Biden proceeded to falsely paint Dunn as a drunk driver. He reportedly apologized, but what kind of person — in a position of power and influence, no less — would unleash such a dishonest smear in the first place?

And all of this is to say nothing about Biden’s angry outbursts against voters on the campaign trail. Among other episodes, he’s called a woman a “lying, dog-faced pony soldier” (whatever that means) and nearly picked a fistfight with a guy over banning the “AR-14.”

If America is to somehow bridge the Red-Blue divide that seems likely to tear it apart, it will need leaders who are, when it comes down to it, decent people. Joe Biden’s actions over the years show he is lacking in that department — and he’s getting worse. To think he can bring about unity with a proven lack of decency is blind partisan foolishness.

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New York Times Admits 1619 Error

Lewis Morris

Reading a meaningful editorial correction from The New York Times seems a bit like seeing Halley’s Comet; it happens once in a lifetime. Yet, last week, the stalwart Leftmedia rag stepped up and admitted it may have gone too far regarding the premise of its controversial 1619 Project.

You may recall our earlier reporting on this destructive rewriting of American history. The 1619 Project was an attempt to recast the American Revolution and the founding of our nation as based on the desire to protect and perpetuate the institution of slavery. It was written mostly by leftist journalists, with a few (anti-)American historians sprinkled in for good measure.

After it was released in August 2019 to coincide with the 400th anniversary of the first arrival of slaves in the New World, the 1619 Project was torn apart by legitimate historians for its complete lack of factual reporting and its blatantly agenda-driven view of American history. But respected scholars like Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists James McPherson and Gordon Wood, who were not even consulted on this project, didn’t make a dent with the “righteous” New York Times.

In true leftist fashion, the Times doubled down, insisting that this was a new attempt at historical understanding — that history was not fixed. Comrade Lenin would be proud.

The major issue of concern was that the 1619 Project had bigger plans that included pushing this dreck into our public schools to indoctrinate our children into believing that America was founded on, and still believes in, slavery. Thousands of schools across the country have accepted the 1619 Project as real history, teaching an entire generation of Americans that their country is racist.

The good news is that the continued pushback against the 1619 Project has made an impact, however small. The New York Times issued a correction of the leading article of this farce, written by Nikole Hannah-Jones. Her screed assumed that “all” of the American colonists were drawn to the revolution to protect slavery. The Times now says that only “some” of the colonists were motivated by it.

Not exactly a mea culpa or a complete retraction, but that will never happen. The Times has too much invested in this multimedia project to give up now. But this is an incremental fight. And the truth has just recorded a victory.

This correction demonstrates that the revisionists know their work is complete manure meant to feed an agenda that denigrates the United States. If they admit the premise of their so-called project is not genuine, then what else within that project can still be trusted to be true?

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More Regulation Yields Worse Products

Thomas Gallatin

What happened to the gas can? In a recent interview with American Institute researcher Jeffrey Tucker, journalist Sharyl Attkisson explores the topic of how government regulation has made things that used to work well now fail to meet muster. After relaying his experience with changes to the gas can and how poorly it pours out its contents, Tucker noted that government regulations are to blame. But it’s not only the gas can that has been regulated into a state worse than before; it’s a litany of devices and appliances that have been made worse by the government.

“These are the sorts of things that affect the quality of our life on a daily basis,” Tucker observes. “Does your ice maker actually make ice? Does your iron work? And this is all because of these regulations. Isn’t it strange how much regulations sort of secretly control all the things we use in our life? We don’t even know it. And they’ll never roll it back, so they never face any real pressure. So there’s no way to revert it. Whereas normally, in private enterprise, if you design something that doesn’t quite work right, people stop buying it and that’s the end, so there’s a mechanism that corrects for errors. But when government’s doing it, they don’t seem to have any way to fix it.”

Tucker’s discovery is not limited to a few inconsequential items. In fact, it’s the all-too-common experience of every American. While he grants that these bureaucrats’ regulations may be well intentioned, he argues, “The problem is that the bureaucrats have inordinate power and if they make a mistake, there’s really nothing that can be done about it. We ended up having to spend the rest of our lives working around them and I don’t think that’s a good way to live. We used to have gasoline cans that worked well. And then we created this innovation that just didn’t work nearly as well.”

In this light, we should be crying foul when politicians like New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio call for the federal government to take over private enterprise, as he did recently over coronavirus fears. “People can get tested according to a priority structure, and it’s not enough testing. It’s just as simple as that,” de Blasio argued after he called on the fed to take control of U.S. businesses in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. He continued, “Here’s the reality. This is a war-like situation. We’re in a war-time scenario with a ‘Mar-a-Lago attitude’ being used by the federal government, right? … This is a case for a nationalization, literally a nationalization, of crucial factories and industries that could produce the medical supplies to prepare this country for what we need.”

Calling for a fascist takeover of America’s private industry is a textbook recipe for ushering in tyranny. And “helping people” is always how tyrants justify their demand for greater power. Somehow, it never works out the way they claim.

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Jordan Candler

  • “15 DAYS TO SLOW THE SPREAD”: Trump rolls out tougher guidelines for Americans to follow over the next few weeks (The Daily Wire)

  • NOT A SPENDING STIMULUS: Trump administration to propose $850 billion tax-relief-focused stimulus (The Hill)

  • DISINFORMATION: Chinese bots flood Twitter to spread anti-Trump conspiracy theories (The National Pulse)

  • BIRDS OF A FEATHER: NBC News spreads Chinese Communist propaganda amid coronavirus outbreak (Washington Examiner)

  • REDEMPTION: Tennessee brothers who stockpiled nearly 18,000 bottles of hand sanitizer donate stash (Fox News)

  • LEGAL CHALLENGE DENIED: Ohio Supreme Court allows delay to primary election (The Columbus Dispatch)

  • EXTRAORDINARY HEALTH-RELATED DELAY: Supreme Court postpones March oral arguments (Fox News)

  • “DELIVERY PROMISES ARE LONGER THAN USUAL”: Amazon to hire 100,000 more workers and give raises to current staff to deal with coronavirus demands (CNBC)

  • POLITICS BY OTHER MEANS: International Criminal Court prepares legal war on the U.S. (Washington Examiner)

  • POLICY: Mitt Romney’s foolish stimulus proposal (Washington Examiner)

  • POLICY: Coronavirus shows why America must get resources from our own backyard, not China (Issues & Insights)

  • POLICY: COVID-19 response shows that federalism is working (National Review)

  • HUMOR: Joe Biden: “My running mate will be a woman whether he knows it or not” (Genesius Times)

For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit In Our Sights.

The Patriot Post is a certified ad-free news service, unlike third-party commercial news sites linked on this page, which may also require a paid subscription.

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Video: The Intolerance of Tolerance — The dictionary definition of tolerance means something else in our polarized cultural climate.

Video: Grifters, Slackers, Dictators, and Democrats — But we repeat ourselves!

Video: Media Says ‘Chinese Coronavirus’ Term Is Xenophobic — Is that why they’ve used it?


For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.


Insight: “No passion so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear.” —Edmund Burke (1729-1797)

No good options: “Yes these lockdowns could destroy our economic system. But the problem is that an uncontrolled spread of the disease could destroy our health care system. It’s not just about mortality rates. It’s about the hospitals and their capacities. What’s the right answer? I don’t know.” —The Daily Wire’s Matt Walsh

Never let a crisis go to waste: “We need to update our voting systems to keep up with the times. We need to modernize them. And it’s not radical. We can look at things like expanding vote by mail, for example, as a way to do that. And this crisis — voting from the comfort and safety of your own home would give a lot of people access to the vote that may be worried to come out and vote on Election Day [today].” —Florida Democratic Party Executive Director Juan Peñalosa

Double standards: “I did not for a moment think there was anything problematic [about hitting the gym] because I knew the dynamics. And again, I have to stay healthy so I can make the decisions for the people of this city.” —New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio

The BIG Lie: “We are, you know, weeks and weeks behind because the president said it was a hoax and we were in denial, so, of course, we’re going to be behind on these things.” —Rep. Tim Ryan

Nope: “So the idea was, how can you organize a militia quickly to defend your area or defend the country? And we said that, in order to maintain a well-run militia, that people could have a weapon, a musket.” —Joe Biden

And last… “These same voices who regard President Trump as being ‘literally Hitler,’ are upset because … he’s not acting like a fascist dictator? How does that make sense?” —Peter Heck

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