ChrisWeigant.com

D-Day Times Two

[ Posted Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 – 17:00 UTC ]

One particularly apt metaphor was making the rounds yesterday, to describe two very different events. It was, we were told, "D-Day." The significance of this is that D-Day wasn't the actual end of World War II -- not by a long shot. What it was, however, was just as important: it marked the real beginning of the end.

This is why it was entirely appropriate for this metaphor to be used for two separate and unrelated events: the first COVID-19 vaccination shots given to nurses and other healthcare workers, and the Electoral College officially confirming that Joe Biden will be our next president. In both cases, this represents the beginning of an ending.

It was a grim day, too, because by the accounting that most media organizations use, America passed the grievous milestone of 300,000 dead from the pandemic. This virus has left a lot of chairs empty at family tables all over the country, and the end is still pretty far off. Some are now estimating that we'll hit 500,000 dead by spring -- even with the new vaccines. That is simply staggering to even contemplate. If true, then we've still got 200,000 more deaths to get through. So we're nowhere near the end, yet.

But we now do have the weapon that can win this medical war. It is no longer experimental or in trials or under development -- it is beginning too be injected into the arms of the Americans who need it the most. Eventually, it will be available to all Americans. But it's going to take longer than anyone really realizes now, that's my guess. I'm betting that there will eventually be impatience and resentment (towards those who have already been vaccinated) as more and more weeks go by. The vaccine will be distributed on a priority system, as it should be. Nobody can just wave a magic wand and have enough vaccine tomorrow for over 300 million people. It's going to take some time.

And people who have already been stressed out for many long months are going to get tired of waiting for their place in line, most likely. The one issue that will almost certainly bring this to the fore is when prisoners get vaccinated. People in prisons are at very high risk, by the very nature of prisons -- a lot of people crammed into a very small amount of indoor space, with a lot of close contact between everyone. It's unavoidable. And the virus has already raged through prisons across the country. But no matter how logically the case is made, some average Americans are going to be absolutely outraged that prisoners -- criminals, all of them -- will get vaccinated before they do.

We'll eventually get through it all, though. Right now, it's no more than a light at the end of the tunnel, and we've still got plenty of tunnel to get through before we all can step into that light and out of the darkness. But the promise of doing so will keep us all going, just like the promise of invading Normandy ended up being a launchpad for the end of the war against the Axis countries. Just the promise of a vaccine, and the promise of a worry-free future where we can all get back to normal, is enough for now. It provides everyone with something we haven't really had since last February -- hope.

Which brings me to the other D-Day that happened yesterday. The Electoral College fulfilled its constitutional duty and elected Joe Biden to be our next president, by a vote of 306 to 232. This is what Trump called, four years ago, a "landslide." Biden even got two more Electoral College votes than Trump did, because there were no faithless electors this time. Trump earned 306, but wound up with only 304, meaning Biden actually bested Trump's record.

Of course, neither election was a landslide in the Electoral College. In fact, by percentage both Trump's win and Biden's win rank pretty close to the bottom, when you compare every U.S. presidential election in history. Only 12 presidential elections were closer (by percentage) in the Electoral College than either Trump's or Biden's win. It's debatable whether Biden's popular vote margin of victory (an impressive 7-million-plus votes) could be called a landslide, but it's pretty clear that in the only vote that really counts, it wasn't.

Most election years, the Electoral College meeting is a rather anachronistic footnote to just about everyone (with the exception of the actual electors, for whom casting an official ballot must be a real thrill). Few even pay attention when it happens. It's worth about 10 or 15 seconds on the evening news, if that. This year, however, it was decisive in a way it usually isn't.

This was due to Donald Trump becoming the biggest sore loser in American presidential history. Trump simply could not believe that he lost -- and by a lot. For the entire campaign, Trump was surrounded by sycophants who endlessly told him that it was absolutely impossible for Joe Biden to win the election, and that Trump had it in the bag. And Trump believed them, because that was exactly what he wanted to hear, and exactly what he already thought anyway. But it simply wasn't true.

So Trump put on the longest tantrum ever seen from the White House. Seriously, it's been six weeks to the day since the election was held, and Trump shows no signs of ending his hissy fit any time soon. "I was robbed!" he screams, over and over again. But there's a big difference now.

Up until yesterday, almost every Republican in Congress simply could not admit the reality that Biden won. They knew that Trump would become enraged if they did so, so they took the coward's way out and either stayed silent or echoed some sort of doubts about the outcome. "Let's let the legal process play out," they said. "Donald Trump deserves his day in court." But it now has played out. Trump has had not only his "day" in court, but he's done so over 50 times now. And he lost. Over and over and over again. From local elections boards all the way up to the Supreme Court. It's over, in other words. And yesterday, the fat lady sang (so to speak).

The electors were duly and properly chosen, they met, and Biden won the Electoral College vote. And suddenly, the dam cracked, in a big way. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell stood up and graciously congratulated Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on their victory, both of whom he has worked with in the Senate. This speech was very gracious, and it was only given five or six weeks late, but whatever. Once McConnell signalled it was acceptable to start calling Biden "president-elect," a whole lot of other Republicans in Congress began to do so as well. Not all of them, but most of them. They have been given a green light to admit the reality that the rest of us realized over a month ago.

Or, to put it another way, it was the beginning of the end of Trump's whiny tantrum. The Electoral College troops overcame the enemies of democracy, took the beachhead, and planted a proud American flag for all to see. All in all, it was a great day for America all around.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

54 Comments on “D-Day Times Two”

  1. [1] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Some are now estimating that we'll hit 500,000 dead by spring -- even with the new vaccines. That is simply staggering to even contemplate. If true, then we've still got 200,000 more deaths to get through. So we're nowhere near the end, yet.

    That last bit sent shivers up my spine. Literally!

    Nothing is inevitable about how many more Americans will die before the end. Everything about how many Americans will die before the end is in the hands of all Americans.

    I agree we are now at the beginning of the end. But, that is all the more reason for individual Americans to double down on doing all that they can do - and for governments to support that effort and to do all that they can do - to help slow and prevent transmission of this virus in order to get it under control an be ready for the day when the vaccines will be broadly available to the public.

    This is how to get through the tunnel and keep as many Americans alive as is humanly possible.

  2. [2] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    But we now do have the weapon that can win this medical war.

    I think we now do have the weapon that can help win this medical war.

    But, if we want to save hundreds of thousands of lives NOW, then we cannot just rely on vaccines. If we don't do our part to fight this medical war, then there will be hundreds of thousands of people who will needlessly lose their lives.

  3. [3] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Speaking of getting through the tunnel, I think the US may be the only country on earth that has to debate whether to help its citizens survive a pandemic through COVID-19 relief legislation for seven months and Congress still may not get it done.

    Mind-numbing.

  4. [4] 
    ericksor wrote:

    And now comes the story that in a conference call, Moscow Mitch begs his Republican senate colleagues NOT to object when they officially count the Electoral College votes in January.

    Not because he finally has developed a backbone, but because if one senator and one rep object, the two houses must eventually vote on that objection--publically.

    It will, of course, come to nothing, but that will put all of those Republican senators on the record as acknowledging Donald Trump was legitimately and totally defeated in an honest election.

    "The final stab in the back," the Trumpies will scream, "they were never with us!" and their wrath will shift to their own kind. And the mob would turn and begin to feast on its own enablers.

    I almost wish it would happen. It would be fitting. The GOP hypocrisy would be amply rewarded.

  5. [5] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I wish I had the know-how to put together and share a video montage of various clips from the many World Health Organization virtual press conferences on COVID-19 that have been held daily, during the first months of the Pandemic, and now two or three times weekly, from WHO headquarters in Geneva.

    This video would focus on the comprehensive and critically important answers to questions and other interventions by Drs Tedros (WHO Director General), Ryan (Executive Director of WHO Health Emergenices Programme, and Van Kerkhove (WHO Technical Lead for COVID-19).

    I have come to love these three WHO officials and appreciate all of their wonderful colleagues and global partners because they have taught me so much about this pandemic and what needs to be done to end it, what we as global citizens can do individually and what our governments need to do.

    The information they give and the work they do everyday saves lives, plain and simple. More lives (and livelihoods) will be saved if more of us would listen to them and take more seriously the sage advice they give us.

  6. [6] 
    John M wrote:

    Hey Michale....

    Still waiting for you to honor our bet...

    Since Democrats officially now won both the House and the White House....

    Or are you going to wait till Jan. 5 when Democrats win control of the Senate too....

    Where's your post of you holding the sign saying you are always wrong and I am always right?

    Oh, and by the way, Texas might not have turned blue. but both Arizona and Georgia did!!

    so... BWAAAAAHAHAHAHA

  7. [7] 
    Speak2 wrote:

    Yesterday, you wrote, "If one GOP representative and one GOP senator object to any state, then we'll see some Kabuki theater play out, as the House and Senate retreat to their own chambers and hold a vote on that state."

    The rules don't require the members to be GOP people. If Brooks objects in the House and a Dem objects in the Senate to force a humiliating roll call vote, then the theater plays out as well, just more amusingly. The objecting Senator can still vote in favor of Biden-Harris and it doesn't matter b/c the House will not go against Biden-Harris.

    Just saying.

    Oh, and I agree with those who disagreed with you on the hypocrisy charge. They couldn't care less because their supporters actually cheer them on for such hypocrisy.

  8. [8] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    ...just like the promise of invading Normandy ended up being a launchpad for the end of the war against the Axis countries.

    Not to quibble, says the former History major MtnCaddy, but the war against the Nazis in Europe was already a done deal when we landed in Normandy. You see, the Rookies won this famous "Stalingrad" battle back in late 1942 and by D-Day had almost completely cleared the Germans out of Soviet territory. Had we not invaded France when we did the Germans were still toast, only maybe they'd be speaking Russian in Paris to this day. The facts do not support the 'Murican belief that we/our invasion defeated Hitler.

  9. [9] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    Last I heard, the record shows

    The Constitution/Rule of Law: 59

    The wannabe Dictator Trump: 1

  10. [10] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    [6]

    John M wrote:


    Hey Michale....

    Still waiting for you to honor our bet...

    Since Democrats officially now won both the House and the White House....

    Or are you going to wait till Jan. 5 when Democrats win control of the Senate too....

    Where's your post of you holding the sign saying you are always wrong and I am always right?

    Oh, and by the way, Texas might not have turned blue. but both Arizona and Georgia did!!

    so... BWAAAAAHAHAHAHA

    No way Trumpanzie former troll known as Michale will honor his bet. Not in a million effing years.

    All I care about is if he pays CW the $150 he owes, per the terms of my bet with him about his "Trump will win 40% of the black vote" wager with me.

    Nevermind the loss of face, this butthurt Rube ain't going to show his face in these pages again. He'll die in his fever swamp double wide convinced that the election was rigged.

    I say, "Fuck him." He was way the hell too toxic for the grownups table here in Weigantia.

  11. [11] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    "The Electoral College troops overcame the enemies of democracy."

    Not unless the "D" in D-Day stands for deception.

    They did not take the beachhead and plant a proud American flag for all to see.

    What you see as the iconic photo of the marines planting the flag on a hill is actually just planting a false flag on a mountain of bullshit.

    The beginning of the end of democracy was decades ago when the Deathocrats decided to seek financial support from the big money interests.

    2016 and 2020 are not D-Day at all.

    They are instead the two bombs dropped on Japan.

    But go ahead and keep talking about the pretty light and what looks like snow falling from the sky.

    Wake up. Wise up. Rise up.
    Get Real.

  12. [12] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    @john/caddy,

    not to burst anyone's bubble, but you really don't understand what michale is about. he's got an actual sense of humor and (except for having a sensitive spot where his family is concerned - and really who doesn't), he can take it just as well as he can dish it out. if he's not here now there's a good reason and CW knows it, not because of the election or some bet you guys had.

    JL

  13. [13] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    John M & MtnCaddy,

    It's a dim-witted (re-visit its brief reappearance on election night), lying (easily documented), malignant (easily documented) troll. Any alleged sense of humor is irrelevant. Dennis Miller and Victoria Jackson were on SNL and now they're just Fox bobbleheads.

    It'll be back. Be careful what you wish for.

  14. [14] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Death Harris,

    Rather than endlessly trolling Chris and accusing him of being a tool of Big Money, it's high time that you do something. Prove to the deluded fools here at CW.com that you know what you're talking about. Give Chris one of those corrosive Big Money $201 donations and watch him write that advertisement for your grift.

    Step up. Pony up. Ante up.

    Get real.

  15. [15] 
    Alin wrote:

    I believe MtnCaddy [8] is correct, and this particular myth (we saved the world in WWII) has been extremely damaging to us in the decades since. This belief that we are mighty, world-saving victors has tempted us into many escapades since (everything from Korea on), none of which have ended well for us or anyone else.
    It's possible that Trump has long-term done us a favor in that having our super-hero cloak a little frayed on the world stage might give us a slightly more realistic view of ourselves, and thus make us less likely to repeat past mistakes - maybe even grow up a little? Wishing everyone here best wishes of the season and a more positive 2021. Alin

  16. [16] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Speak2,

    If Brooks objects in the House and a Dem objects in the Senate to force a humiliating roll call vote, then the theater plays out as well, just more amusingly.

    That would be fun. If only the Dems would play hardball.

  17. [17] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Mth C [8]

    As I recall my WWII history (mainly gleaned from Wm Shirer's famous "Rise And Fall . . .), on the very day the Japs attacked Pearl Harbor, The Russians loosed an army Hitler never knew existed in a counterattack on the Germans, who were "in sight of the spires of the Kremlin", dealing the Germans a blow from which they never recovered. Our entry into the war hastened the end, but probably wasn't decisive.

  18. [18] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I can attest to Joshua's [12] to john/caddy and agree wholeheartedly with it and also know that Michale would be here if he could be here.

  19. [19] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    If by "if he could be here", you mean if it could get away with blatantly ignoring that Chris told it to stop spamming his blog with mountains of repetitive cut and paste death cult garbage, then I wholeheartedly agree with you.

  20. [20] 
    TheStig wrote:

    "Some are now estimating that we'll hit 500,000 dead by spring -- even with the new vaccines. That is simply staggering to even contemplate." - CW

    Staggering to contemplate, but a solid expectation. You don't need any complicated models to convince yourself. As of 12/16 there are roughly 7 million unresolved cases of COVID19 in the US pipeline. The case related death rate has remained at 3% for quite some time. That projects to 210,00 additional deaths. That gives an expectation of at least 500,000 deaths....even if no additional people get sick....which doesn't seem likely as the number of new cases continues to climb.

  21. [21] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    It doesn't have to be that way, TS.

  22. [22] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I'm waiting for the president-elect's office to put out a simple strategy, course of action, package of health measures that all Americans can easiy comply with if they wish to ensure that more Americans don't die before the vaccines are widely available to all.

  23. [23] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Stig [20]

    People often forget that 8000 people die every single day in the US, pandemic or no dempanic. A high percentage of those who were destined to die anyway, now die of COVID, but it remains to be seen whether or not that fact seriously distorts the 'normal' totals for the year.

  24. [24] 
    Alin wrote:

    CRS [23] - from the CDC
    Overall, an estimated 299,028 excess deaths occurred from late January through October 3, 2020, with 198,081 (66%) excess deaths attributed to COVID-19. The largest percentage increases were seen among adults aged 25–44 years and among Hispanic or Latino persons.
    If your point is that this is all a hoax - it isn't. People are dying - lots of people - and more people here than other places because of gross incompetence bolstered by folks pretending it isn't happening. It isn't a "dempanic"

  25. [25] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Stucki,

    We're all "destined to die anyway" and the only question is when. The when for an awful lot of people this year was when they contracted COVID19. Most of them would still be alive otherwise.

  26. [26] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Indeed.

    The question is what are we all prepared to do to prevent more COVID-19 deaths ...

  27. [27] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    The answer to your question is: not enough.

    Look at Stucki. He's not even a member of the orange one's death cult and he still sees it as some sort of partisan panic as if the rest of the world doesn't exist. All those dead non-Americans? They were destined to die anyway. Socialists.

  28. [28] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Yeah, well, I can only hope that CRS will soon be in a small minority of people who refuse to take this pandemic seriously.

  29. [29] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Alin (and anybody else)
    I dispute the legitimacy of pretty much all those mortality stats you quote, and especially the part about "the largest percentage being among adults 25 -44". Maybe figures don't lie, but liars often figure. One of our local TV stations broadcasts covid stats for SE Idaho every nite, and there has RARELY been a single fatality under age 60, and the VAST majority (of the very small total) are over 80.

    I do not personally know of a single person that has contracted the disease, much less died from it.

  30. [30] 
    Alin wrote:

    CRS [29] A lot to unpack there. Here's my take aways:
    1) Over sixties can just die - it's all right by you.
    2) If you don't personally know them - oh well.
    3) The CDC and every state public health department are all actively conspiring to try to fool us for some undisclosed reason.
    4) Luckily you have penetrated their cunning plan.
    "We'd have gotten away with it too if it hadn't been for those meddling kids"

  31. [31] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Alin

    Extrapolating from recent years (near as I can tell, total annual mortality figures appear to be 2 - 3 yrs behind, I suppose it takes a while to compile the numbers) I'm guessing we'd be looking at about an even 3 million for the current year, without any pandemic. So, if the total spikes way up beyond 3 million, we'll know I was wrong.

  32. [32] 
    John M wrote:

    [29] C. R. Stucki wrote:

    "I do not personally know of a single person that has contracted the disease, much less died from it."

    Mmmmm... total lack of self awareness???

    I do not personally know of a single person who has fallen off a building, much less died from it. What can we conclude from this? A) High rise building safety is not a problem. AND B) Gravity does not exist. Since I personally have not experienced either, nor has my isolated little safe corner... it then logically follows that it must not bother all the other people in the world much either.

  33. [33] 
    TheStig wrote:

    EM-21

    I would say "it didn't have to be." Vaccines won't help the 7 million people who are already actively infected. Most of them will recover without hospitalization, but unless there is a breakthrough in therapy within 30 days, than 3% can be expected to die, give or take a bit. We don't have to like the projection, but the virus doesn't care what we like.

    The correct strategy to control the disease was to rigorously minimize infection by means of social distancing. Where practiced it worked...but it had an impact the economy. People listened to charlatans, or just accepted the casualty rate as the price of doing business. It's history. Was it wise?

  34. [34] 
    TheStig wrote:

    Stucki-23

    COVID is currently the leading cause of death in the USA. That said, there are many ways to die. One way of looking at the COVID outbreak is that it advances everybody about five years on the Social Security death tables. Your chances of dying each year don't change much at all and if you are under forty, but are quite noticeable as you hit middle 60s. Postively alarming at 80 and above.

    Just because you "recover" from COVID doesn't mean all turns out well. You miss work for a week or ten days. You are likely to be tired for weeks or even months, lose your sense of smell and taste, have impaird pulmonary and cardiac functions. In some cases these impairments are permanent. All these things impact the economy.

    If you are going to split hairs, try and split more of them.

  35. [35] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    TS,

    Yeah, the economy was going to be impacted one way or another. By not taking the virus seriously, the economy was impacted very negatively. Or should I say, peoples' livelihoods were impacted very negatively.

    However, countries that took the virus very seriously and implemented a comprehensive public health strategy (which, by the way, the US was and remains ill-equipped to do) did not have the kind of negative impact on citizens' lives or livelihoods. And, some countries, as you know, did not have to lockdown their societies.

    So, yes, it didnt' have to play out the way it did in the US. Nor does it have to continue on this deadly trend. It is never too late to work to get this virus under control.

    It's not enough to just say 'physical distance'. Individuals can and should do more than that. We need to do it all. I won't run through the well known list again.

    Vaccines, despite the rapid deployment and incredible efficacy, won't be enough over the course of the next six months to prevent more needless death. But, we know what will!

    Of course, we don't have to like the projection. But, that projection is NOT inevitable. My simple point is that it is within our hands. We have the tools to bring this virus under control, even if it takes more of the blunt lockdowns to do it. We don't have to accept the projections!

  36. [36] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Stig

    You really know how to make an old-timer (85th b'day last week)feel bad. Up till I read that "positively alarming" part, I thought I was good for another 85yrs!

  37. [37] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    John M [32]

    The question you raise with that seriously bad co0mparison is, would you still feel the same way (about the danger of falling off a tall building), if you had heard of tens of thousands of people who HAD fallen off a tall building ,with absolutely no adverse effects?

  38. [38] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Good God.

  39. [39] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    We are fortunate that this pandemic is caused by a virus that is not equally deadly across all age groups.

    Next time we may not be so lucky.

    In any event, why would we not do all that we can to prevent as many deaths as we can, especially when what we should do is really not all that hard to do?

  40. [40] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Apparently, the GOP has been too subtle for you. Old people are forty-seven percenters - takers, not makers.

  41. [41] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Are you talking to me?

  42. [42] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    BTW, you might want to stop using 'GOP'.

  43. [43] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Unless, of course, you have a new meaning for it.

  44. [44] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Yes. I was answering your question. It does stand for Greedy Obese Pussygrabberfans.

  45. [45] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Oh, well ... that's alright then.

  46. [46] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I still think you have to come up with a new acronym, though ...

  47. [47] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    ANd, you didn't really answer my question.

  48. [48] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    I believe that I did, but it is true that your question is a little vague and open to interpretation. Who is "we"? I was assuming that "we" included Republicans when I responded.

  49. [49] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    We included Republicans and everyone else. That was the point.

  50. [50] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Then I did answer it. That's exactly why. Deaths are disproportionately old, black, and/or latinx. Don't kid yourself. They're good with that outcome.

  51. [51] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    We are like two ships, passing in the night.

  52. [52] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    They may be good with that outcome but the rest of us are not.

  53. [53] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Well, there are an awful lot of them (of course not just Republicans) and they clearly are not on board for doing whatever it is that you have in mind. They don't care about preventing as many deaths as we can. They don't even believe the virus is deadly until they are personally at death's door. As long as a huge percentage of the population is unwilling to cooperate with virus control, it won't be controlled.

    Instead of just asking questions, you should also answer them if you're just going to reject the answers you get.

    So, why wouldn't we?

  54. [54] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Looks like Tuberville is going to challenge the electoral college vote in the senate. He not skeered of McConnell.

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