Originally from Kottke.org worth reading the post there.
This video reminds me of the days of the Kuwait/Iraq/Afghanistan Wars when news programs were prevented from showing the coffins of dead soldiers returning to the US. It was a way to manipulate the public into not understanding the huge cost of the war on the soldiers lives. Had those images been seen nightly, would the public have supported the war as much as they did? Sure, businesses got behind the war effort and made commercials celebrating when soldiers returned alive and people clapping and thanking them for their service…here’s a Bud Light.
This is not to disparage soldiers, but much in the same way we didn’t see the coffins, nor did we see the truly depressing jobs our healthcare workers do in the COVID wards of hospitals across the US and around the world. While the death toll in the US is above half a million people and climbing, the human effect of the virus is still distant for a vast majority of people. I’m lucky in that I don’t know anyone close who has died from it, I know a couple of people who tested positive for it, but nobody who had to spend time in the ICU. That does not stop me from wearing a mask when I go out or making sure I socially distance as best I can, both my parents and in-laws are in high risk categories, so we do everything to protect ourselves in that we can protect them as well.
And yet, had you happen to turn on C-SPAN on March 4th in the afternoon, eastern time, you would have seen an empty Senate Chamber with only 3 clerks, a stenographer, sitting president of the Senate and perhaps a single Democrat and a single Republican. And for about 10 hours (until 3 am the next day), a clerk read the 628 page Recovery Act. Normally, the reading of bills is waived, but Senate Republicans want to delay voting on this bill, delay getting needed help to people, schools, state and local governments and yes, ICU workers.
In the House of Representatives, NOT A SINGLE REPUBLICAN CONGRESSMAN voted for the relief bill. Barely a month into the Biden administration, the Republicans are back to their old game of delay and avoidance of doing anything. Doing anything. The Republicans believe that in order to win the next election, they have to make the current administration look bad by not accomplishing anything.
They’ll sit there and claim that any bill is just a bunch of Democrat pork belly projects, but if they even come up with an alternative offer, it’s always significantly less (Because Republicans don’t like to spend money under a Democrat President, but will spend like crazy under a Republican president) and focus on benefits to businesses and the rich. If you need an example of this, look at the Affordable Care Act, which almost from the minute it was passed, the Republicans started fighting it in court case after court case. All the time, Republicans claim they’re preparing their counter proposal for Health Care. And yet, 10 years later there has never been a proposal put forward by ANY Republican. Even for the four years under Donald Trump, his Health Care plan was always going to released “in two weeks.” We still haven’t seen even a draft of a proposal.
The Republican actions are the great shame of America.