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September 13, 2021

The Morning Rant

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Here is the text of Biden's employer-mandate announcement for vaccinations:

My job as president is to protect all Americans. So tonight I'm announcing that the Department of Labor is developing an emergency rule to require all employers with 100 or more employees, that together employ over 80 million workers, to ensure their workforces are fully vaccinated or show a negative test at least once a week. Some of the biggest companies are already requiring this: United Airlines, Disney, Tyson's Foods -- and even Fox News. The bottom line -- we're going to protect vaccinated workers from unvaccinated coworkers.

In the immortal words of Vinnie Gambini: "Everything that guy just said is bullshit."

Let's take this one piece at a time:

My job as president is to protect all Americans.

Well, yes. Then why did your administration basically open the gates wide on our southern border, permitting hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants to come pouring into our country. And why are you flying in tens of thousands of unvetted Afghani refugees and resettling them in swing states? Neither of these sound like protection to me. In fact, it sounds like you're just trying to make America a lot less protected.

So tonight I'm announcing that the Department of Labor is developing an emergency rule...

I always cringe when I hear you or any other politician use the word "emergency" like your chief concern is public safety. Which I don't think is true. What you're chiefly concerned with is maintaining and extending your power. Because when you use the word "emergency", it always comes with the hidden clause "...so we can get to do whatever we want." This doesn't pass the constitutional smell test, particularly not at the federal level. Also, who gets to decide what constitutes an "emergency"? Why, the very group who is using it to seize power, that's who.

...to require all employers with 100 or more employees, that together employ over 80 million workers, to ensure their workforces are fully vaccinated or show a negative test at least once a week.

All you're doing here is just outsourcing your tyranny to the private sector, which I guess has been all the rage the past few years. You know there's a name for this, don't you? The combination of state power connected with private corporate interests is called (let me spell it out for you) f a s c i s m. It's funny how the Democrats continually shrieked during Trump's term that he was a fascist despite his deferring to state governor on numerous occasions, and now when you have an example of straight-up fascism staring you right in the face, suddenly you're OK with it.

Oh wait, I forget, it's an "emergency". So the president gets to assume dictatorial powers. By the way, there's a danger here that if you let the government do whatever it wants in an "emergency", then it will create "emergencies" so it can do whatever it wants. Have you ever thought about that?

Some of the biggest companies are already requiring this: United Airlines, Disney, Tyson's Foods -- and even Fox News.

Well then, if everybody's doing it, then why do we need an "emergency" decree? And I can see your scriptwriters high-fiving each other and should out "SICK BURRRRRNNN!" when Fox News was included on the list, but do you know what group has the highest percentage of unvaxed members? African Americans. And most of them are Democrats. Last I heard, only 24% of African Americans had received the jab, so you're aiming your taunts the wrong group.

The bottom line -- we're going to protect vaccinated workers from unvaccinated coworkers.

So in other words, you're not going to protect *all* Americans as you originally said, you're just trying to divide Americans into two groups and set them against each other. Gin up even more hate and rage, because that's what this country needs right now.

But if you were actually interested in getting the unvaccinated to change their mind, perhaps scolding them, taunting them, bullying them, and shaming them is going to turn out to be counterproductive. With that in mins, this Atlantic article, Stop Death Shaming (mocking the unvaccinated dead does not save lives), suggests what might be a better way: persuasion.

...it’s worth considering what an honest persuasion effort aimed at the unvaccinated or vaccine-hesitant would look like, even if we may never see the population-level vaccine uptake that we’d like to. Good-faith persuasion is a matter of discipline and habit; it’s not something that comes naturally. It also happens to be a practice that maintains the premise that liberal democratic politics can change, that they can respond to the shifting will of the people without violence or civil unrest. Perhaps we’ve already come near that point through lopsided, bitter polarization. But inasmuch as democracy is a shared vision—a collaborative dream about the kind of governance we’re capable of and the sort of future we could build—it’s crucial to keep its practices alive even when its functions have broken down. The dream is the last thing to go.

And so: What would a genuine persuasion effort look like, with respect to vaccines?

It would begin by examining what the unvaccinated say about their hesitancy to get their shots—by inhabiting their point of view, in other words, honestly and seriously.

In other words: listen to them. Don't succumb to the temptation to think "oh, they're just listening to the disinformation broadcast by Fox News" and write them off. I know it's fun sport within the Beltway to make fun of the rubes, but tuning out half of America is probably not a good idea.




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A 9-11 Memorial:

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This. Is 2021:

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No Bias Here:

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Who Dis:

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Photo 3 (leggy!)
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Photo 5 (buncha horndogs)
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Photo 7 (busty!)



For the 'Ettes:

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Friday Who Dis: Whedon veterans Amy Acker and Sean Maher were also in his modern-day adaptation of Shakespeare's play Much Ado About Nothing.



Today's Edition Of The Morning Rant Is Brought To You By Vietnamese Bánh Mì Sandwiches:

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Bánh Mì recipe available here.

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posted by OregonMuse at 11:12 AM

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