快乐飞艇开奖appLong ago, Adam Serwer defined this administration*’s approach to governing perfectly. "The cruelty," , "is the point." Last week, Jay Rosen added to Serwer’s observation a codicil appropriate to our present moment. The plan, , is to have no plan. If cruelty is the point, then to have no plan during a public-health crisis is very much to the point. And this astounding lack of humanity has deep roots in modern conservatism. If your political success is based on Othering one slice of the population to energize another, your basic moral ballast drains away by degrees. It is not that much of a stretch from the current administration’s lack of a plan to the Reagan administration’s unforgivably dilatory response to the AIDS epidemic. The through-line is that diseases are killing all the right people.
You saw it this week in the Wisconsin Supreme Court, when Chief Justice Patience Roggensack observed that a hot spot in Brown County was due to employees at a meat-packing plant and not “regular folks.” You saw it in the U.S. Senate on Friday, when John Kennedy, Republican of Louisiana, whose reputation as a wit is only half-true, waved off the appeals of people for more economic relief funding as unemployment headed in the general direction of Soup Kitchen. He said, according to :
“Well, people in hell want ice water too,” said Sen. (R-La.), asked about another round of checks. “I mean, everybody has an idea and a bill, usually to spend more money. It’s like a Labor Day mattress sale around here.”
What a card. Nearly 2,500 of Kennedy’s constituents have died so far.
How did an entire political philosophy become utterly heartless and cruel? Well, it helps if the raw material is there. From the :
When I knew him, he seemed constitutionally incapable of considering the humanity of other people as a starting point. Relationships were primarily transactional, and this failure of empathy permeated everything he did. He could not register the grief of the people in the room that day for the same reason that he apparently can’t register the grief millions of Americans are experiencing now as their lives are upended by covid-19 and people they love become sick and die.
The White House dauphin is a perfect product of the business and corporate elite that allied itself with modern conservatism in what turned out to be a mutually beneficial arrangement—for them, if not for the republic. We are now at the dead end that always was that philosophy’s natural conclusion.
As for the politicians produced in this great, fouled nest, you’re seeing it most vividly in places like Iowa and Nebraska. Those companies—and the politicians they financed—have benefitted from deregulation as part of those “business-friendly” environments so beloved of Republican governors, while the workers toiled in of any aboveground industry. Now that the plants, along with the equally deregulated nursing home industry, are central to the spread of the pandemic, the reaction of Republican governors has been sadly predictable. Here’s Kim Reynolds in Iowa, via :
Although the state reported 655 new positive cases and 12 additional deaths, Reynolds didn’t open her daily news briefing Thursday with the updated numbers. She said the state’s focus is managing the virus. “I do think we’re shifting in the way that we’re talking about the virus and how we maintain it,” she said. “Since we kind of really accomplished what we were trying to do to make sure that we had the health care resources available, we now have shifted our focus from mitigation of resources to managing and containing virus activity as we begin to open Iowa back up.”
Here’s Pete Ricketts in Nebraska:
Asked whether he should have done more to prevent the spread of the virus in the plants, Ricketts said critics were trying to “Monday morning quarter back" on a disaster that the state hasn't faced since the 1918 Spanish flu outbreak. “Hindsight's always going to be 20/20,” he said at a news conference. “It's called, yes, if I had known things two months ago that I know today, I would have done things differently. But that's called experience. Of course you hope you'd learn from your experience to do a better job going forward in the future, and that's what we've done.” Critics said state and local officials and many of the meatpacking plants didn't act soon enough and still haven't taken all the steps necessary to protect workers, many of whom are non-English-speaking immigrants.
Not “regular people,” after all. In addition, Ricketts has left the testing of employees in these obvious loci for the disease up to the companies themselves, which in turn decline to inform the public. This is another part of a “business-friendly” environment. The managed to pry the numbers loose for the benefit of Ricketts’s constituents in that area.
The disclosure came as Tyson prepared to for four days, starting Friday. The company on Wednesday announced the temporary halt to deep clean the facility, which is easily metro Sioux City's largest employer with over 4,300 workers. Tyson said Wednesday it started screening Dakota City workers for COVID-19 this week, with assistance from the Nebraska National Guard. The Springdale, Arkansas-based company has acknowledged some Dakota City workers testing positive for the virus, but has a number of cases. State and county health officials also have repeatedly side stepped questions about whether the plant is linked to a recent spike in novel coronavirus cases in the metro area.
快乐飞艇开奖appAnd Ricketts is completely with the program. From :
"The employer is not entitled to get around HIPAA laws," said Gov. Pete Ricketts, (R) Nebraska. "So, unless the person who works for the employer specifically tells the employer they have coronavirus, and gives them permission to release that, the employer can't do anything about that. So, it's not like we can go to the employer and ask.” So, Ricketts says, the state will stick with reporting aggregate data provided to the state by public health departments and testing companies.
This also covers Ricketts’s ass, too. From :
The town’s medical clinics were also reporting a rapid increase in cases among JBS workers. The next day, Dr. Rebecca Steinke, a family medicine doctor at one of the clinics, wrote to the department’s director: “Our message is really that JBS should shut down for 2 weeks and have a solid screening plan before re-opening.” Teresa Anderson, the regional health director, immediately drafted a letter to the governor. But during a conference call that Sunday, Gov. Pete Ricketts made it clear that the plant, which produces nearly 1 billion pounds of beef a year and is the town’s largest employer, would not be shut down.
The pandemic has laid bare the moral chaos at the heart of modern conservative politics. They depend, always, on the existence and/or the creation of what epidemiologists call “subject populations.” Except, in this case, the subject populations always are considered in many ways expendable. It’s about ignoring all the right people. Immiserating all the right people. And now, again, as was the case in the 1980s, when AIDS was burning through the subject populations, killing all the right people.
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