ChrisWeigant.com

Archive of Articles in the "Television" Category

Americans Rediscover Shared Sacrifice

[ Posted Thursday, April 2nd, 2020 – 17:16 UTC ]

Americans are newly discovering their ability for shared sacrifice in the name of the good of all. Now, this isn't universal -- disasters tend to bring out both the best and the worst in us, it seems -- but it is pretty close to universal in the areas hardest hit. Life has changed, in major ways. Daily routines have been obliterated. We all have to protect ourselves and in doing so protect each other as well. This has meant radical changes in the way we interact with each other which will likely be with us for months, if not years. What I find interesting is that we're shouldering the burdens -- so far -- about as well as can be expected.

I'm not talking about the politicians and the other people in charge of the response -- for once, this isn't a political column. I'm talking instead about average people and how they've been reacting and changing as a result of the pandemic. Because America just hasn't seen this sort of widespread change in attitude for a very long time -- perhaps since World War II.

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Can Democrats Flip The Senate?

[ Posted Tuesday, March 31st, 2020 – 16:54 UTC ]

It's tough to focus on politics right now, in the middle of a viral pandemic that is sweeping the country. But it's also necessary to step away from the coronavirus news from time to time, so I thought it might be useful to take a look today at where the race for control of the Senate stands.

The current makeup of the Senate is 53 Republicans, 45 Democrats, and two Independents who caucus with the Democrats. This means to wrest control away from the GOP, Democrats will have to pick up at least three seats if Democrats win the White House, or four if Trump wins a second term. Luckily for them, the map is a lot more friendly to Democratic chances than it was in the last cycle. Only a third of the Senate is up for re-election in any one election, but the makeup of that third is crucial -- and this time it will mostly be Republicans playing defense, not Democrats.

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Why Is California Doing So Well?

[ Posted Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 16:53 UTC ]

It might sound like a strange question, coming from a Californian, but I do have to wonder why California seems to be doing so well in fighting off the coronavirus pandemic, compared to other states. If this is a real difference, it would behoove others to study why we've been so successful, but there is another possibility -- that we just haven't realized how hard we've been hit yet. Either way, the question of why we're doing so well would seem to be an important one to answer.

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Friday Talking Points -- We're Number One (Hundred Thousand)!

[ Posted Friday, March 27th, 2020 – 18:12 UTC ]

We're number one! Well... number one hundred thousand and climbing, at any rate....

Yesterday, the United States of America took the lead on the world stage, but not in a good way. We're now the most-infected nation on the planet, and are now the number one epicenter of the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak. Today, the number of cases in this country surpassed 100,000 -- a grim milestone indeed. We still have a ways to go before we are the country with the most deaths from the disease, but at the rate we're going that won't be long either.

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Don't Forget The Lag Time

[ Posted Wednesday, March 25th, 2020 – 16:32 UTC ]

Tracking the spread of the coronavirus is tough to do on a real-time basis because of several inherent instabilities in the data, and also because of the built-in lag time. We'd all do well to remember this in the next few weeks, when considering when lifting all the social distancing restrictions. President Trump is already leading the charge to get the country back to normal, so this pressure is obviously only going to grow.

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Five Million Tests? Where Are They, Mister Vice President?

[ Posted Tuesday, March 24th, 2020 – 17:10 UTC ]

President Donald Trump is well known for flat-out lying to the American public. Indeed, he does it so often it has become a defining trait. But what hasn't gotten a lot of attention in the whole White House coronavirus crisis response fiasco is how much Mike Pence is also lying to us all, on the specific issue of the availability of coronavirus tests. We haven't even gotten close to the point where Pence promised us all we'd be at eleven days ago, in fact -- which shows the true magnitude of his lies. In fact, we're only a little over five percent of the way there (from numbers provided by Mike Pence himself, mind you).

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Friday Talking Points -- 19,382 And Counting

[ Posted Friday, March 20th, 2020 – 17:17 UTC ]

We're kidding, of course. Neither of these stories -- which, in normal times would have been covered extensively by the media -- even caused a blip on the radar this week. Because the nation is gripped in the midst of a viral pandemic and we've got the Keystone Kops running the response. Which, admittedly, is a much bigger story to focus on.

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It's Time For Bernie To Drop Out

[ Posted Thursday, March 19th, 2020 – 16:26 UTC ]

It's time for Bernie to make an exit from the Democratic presidential nomination race. I don't say this lightly, as I'm actually a Bernie supporter myself. I voted for him this year and back in 2016 as well. I feel free to now say this because I never admit to my own preferences while I think the race is still up in the air -- my own way of attempting to limit my bias in my writing. But I do feel free to say it now, because the race is now essentially over.

Joe Biden is going to be the Democratic nominee this time around. At this point, barring any completely unexpected and drastic changes in circumstance, it is realistically impossible for Bernie Sanders to catch him in the delegate race. This was not true until the final weeks of the 2016 campaign, but it is true now. Which is why Bernie needs to concede this reality.

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Final Tuesday Predictions?

[ Posted Tuesday, March 17th, 2020 – 14:54 UTC ]

Conventional wisdom, when it comes to politics, is usually proven wrong. If you don't believe me, go look at anything anyone was saying about the Democratic primaries about a month or two ago. The primary season was going to be endless. It was going to go right down to the wire. A brokered convention was a real possibility, or perhaps even inevitable. There were so many candidates in the field that the vote would be impossibly split. The candidates were all so well-funded that they'd stay in the race for a very long time. Bernie was too strong and would sweep everything. Amy was surging. Pete was surging. The nomination would surely come down to the last primaries in June.

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Friday Talking Points -- The Weird Turn Pro

[ Posted Friday, March 13th, 2020 – 16:54 UTC ]

In a surreal bit of coincidence this week, America saw a simultaneous broadcast of President Trump stumbling and lying his way through a primetime Oval Office address, while on another channel former Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin danced around in a frilly pink bear costume while rapping "Baby Got Back," which contains the memorable line: "I like big butts and I cannot lie...." Signs of the impending apocalypse? You be the judge. What flashed through our mind was the old quote from Hunter S. Thompson: "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." Or, as we might put it (with a fake Sarah Palin accent): "How's that 'stable genius' stuff workin' out for ya now?"

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