America’s Been in Decline for Half a Century. Is This the Turning Point, or Will the Cycle Continue?

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Source: Center for American Progress

If you’re American, take a moment to congratulate yourself. You’ve just survived the tenure of the worst President in American history. Trump’s given the green light for the transfer of power to proceed, which means that his coup has failed. That’s as close as he’s ever going to get to conceding. Yes, really. Probably, you did your own part — small or large — to help that along. So breathe a sigh of relief.

All of which raises the question: were the Trump years America’s rock bottom? As in, the worst things are going to get? Is it all uphill, maybe, from here — which, admittedly, is a low, low point, America standing at the bottom of the abyss? …

What Americans Don’t Understand About Freedom — That Europeans and Canadians Do

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Image Credit: Lindsey Wasson

By now, you might have heard North Dakota is the world’s worst Covid hotspot. The world’s worst, with South Dakota not far behind. Things aren’t just desperate there — they’re bizarre, at least to the rest of the world. Nurses talk about patients in the Covid ICU lashing out at them because…they don’t believe Covid exists…while they’re dying of it. Meanwhile, the governor refuses to make mask-wearing mandatory, because she thinks that masks and lockdowns don’t work. …

Millions of Americans Are Traveling For The Holidays — During a Pandemic. How Much Worse Can Covid Get?

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Source: Our World in Data

Covid in America is so bad that more than 250,000 people are dead. So bad that 9 of the world’s top 10 hotspots are all American states. You’d think that given all that, Americans might have chosen to stay home for Thanksgiving — but that doesn’t appear to be the case. Millions of Americans are already travelling to see their families, stay inside with them, mix with friends — which is literally the worst thing you could do during a pandemic that’s spun badly out of control. …

These May the Most Destructive Months of Donald Trump’s Presidency Yet

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Image Credit: Carlos Barria

Nero fiddled while Rome burned. Caligula, reclining and being fed grapes, installed his horse in the Senate. Donald Trump is golfing while America collapses.

Like so many tyrants before him — would-be and true — Trump, in the throes of inevitable defeat, has become a mad king. He’s lost the plot. He’s lashing out in impotent rage, when he’s not sulking in infantile resentment. All that while a desperate America thrashes in the throes of crisis after crisis. He’s every bit the equivalent of a modern day Caligula or Nero. …

One Simple Fact Everyone Should Know About 21st-Century Economics

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Image Credit: Jessica Christian

There’s a simple fact about this century’s economics everyone should know. Or, if you like, what it will take to really exit these strange and troubled times we live in.

Most sensible people these days would agree that this century presents us with a new set of epic challenges, existential threats. I call them the Big Five. Climate change, mass extinction, inequality, stagnation,
What do all these problems have in common? They can only — only — be solved with higher levels of investment. …

This Wasn’t Just an Election. It was a Census of American Idiots.

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Source: Chris Sweda

This was no ordinary election. By now, you know that. But I mean it in a slightly different way. Not just that Trump’s still trying to steal it, and the GOP’s in cahoots. No, I mean that this election was something like a census of American Idiots.

If you’ve been keeping up with the news, you’ve been hearing stories like this. A nurse talks, bewildered, desperate, about people in the Covid ICU. Who are gasping for breath. Plenty of whom go on to die. …

Americans Don’t Seem to Grasp How Catastrophically the US Has Failed On Covid

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Image Credit: Our Analysis Based on Public Data

America just passed a grim, shocking milestone. A quarter of a million people are now dead from Covid. And while Americans — at least the sane ones — have some inkling that this is a tragedy, they don’t quite seem to grasp just what a catastrophe it really is. The unthinkable horror of it. How badly their country has failed at this challenge. That’s because they don’t know what it means to really be successful at handling Covid — in hard, concrete, factual terms.

How could they? Their pundits and intellectuals don’t really explain — they lament, perhaps, but that’s about all. They don’t provide context, hard facts and figures, that really place America’s Covid catatrasophe in perspective, so that Americans can truly understand how shocking it is., …

Trump’s Coup is Leaving American Democracy Scorched Earth — So Nothing Can Grow There

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Source: Twitter

The last few weeks of the Trump Presidency may prove to be the most dangerous of all. Instead of conceding, or throwing in the towel, or giving up, he’s doubling down. On a coup. All that’s exactly as we predicted, by the way. So what comes next?

Trump is going to go as far as he can possibly go, take things right to the edge. He is going to push American democracy as far as it can be pushed. He is not interested in conceding or giving up — because his movement was never about democracy in the first place.

What’s happening now is that Trump’s judicial strategy is failing. He’s 25 for 1 in the courts, at last count. His legal challenges have failed in state after state. They’ve been thrown out as absurd, unsupported, and flatly false. So far, so good, you might think. …

The Paradox of Consciousness, or Why We’re Tearing the World Apart Because We Hate Ourselves

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Image Credit: Bethany Masterson

Covid. Trumpism. Brexit. American Collapse. Climate Change. Mass extinction. How did so much end up going wrong so fast? What is the lesson that we’re not learning yet?

Here’s a tiny question. How would a mature species behave? Imagine for a moment that aliens of a more advanced kind glimpsed at earth. What do you think they’d make of us? I think they — just a little mental device to imagine something like an objective, impartial observer — see something like this.

A species that had come to dominate the planet — but was unable to even take care of its own. It had chewed up the planet, torn through its resources, to the point that the climate was warming rapidly, perhaps catastrophically. …

The World is Baffled by America’s Archaic, Obsolete, and Backwards Ideas. Will It Ever Outgrow Them?

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Image Credit: Twitter

Today, Joe Biden floated the idea of canceling student debt — and was immediately met with a storm of protest from American “economists.” I put it in quotes because, well, these are the same guys — mostly white dudes with grandiose titles — who’ve been catastrophically wrong about everything our whole adult lives.

You might imagine I exaggerate, but I’m not kidding. …


umair haque


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