THE BIG STORY
House Approves Final Passage of Annual Defense-Policy Bill, 335-78
The passage far exceeds two-thirds majority needed to override a veto threatened by President Trump
Dozens of Republican lawmakers had earlier in the day lined up behind Mr. Trump to vote against The National Defense Authorization Act, which secures hazard-pay raises for troops and other crucial military spending items. But their opposition wasn’t enough to thwart the passage of an annual bill that Congress has approved on a bipartisan basis for 59 years in a row.
Kurt Bardella/USA Today:
Get ready to change the channel and stop giving Donald Trump the attention he craves
I am a part of this problem. But my point is we have an opportunity to do better. To learn from the past. To ignore Trump and get back to reality.
For Trump, everything is learned behavior. If he does something and gets a reaction, he will continue to do that. Trump is the living embodiment of positive reinforcement. You just have to understand that his measure for what constitutes “positive” is simply and exclusively attention.
What If Trump Is Trying To Break the GOP?
The future of the Republican party is an endless series of loyalty tests and Trump family vendettas. Good luck.
It’s hard for Republicans to think straight these days. Stop the count, no, wait—do a recount. Elections are rigged and fraudulent. But the January 5 Georgia runoff will be legit, so GOP voters need to psyche up and turn out.
It’s all so confusing.
And in their confusion, Republicans seem not to have noticed the new dynamic which is emerging. The combination of the “Stop-the-Steal” ragers and the fear of the silent Republican establishment types are mothers milk to Trump.
Angry and afraid people fighting—over him—is the very top of his hierarchy of needs. It’s his version of self-actualization. And while he may be forced to give up the office of the presidency, he will not give up being at the center of this storm. Republicans don’t seem capable of understanding where this eventually leads. So let me spell it out for them:
Donald Trump is going to destroy their party.
The hidden upside to the Trump White House’s incompetence
Impostor syndrome is not as serious as covid-19, but at least Trump can cure the former
Most academics, myself included, suffer from varying degrees of “impostor syndrome” — the anxiety that one has achieved success merely because of luck or happenstance and will soon be exposed as a fraud. My nightmare is not showing up to school naked, it’s showing up at an academic conference in which everyone in the audience knows more about my paper topic than I do (and that I’m naked).
President-elect Joe Biden’s hires are all experienced in government, but they are taking new rungs of responsibility that might induce feelings of impostor syndrome. A few months from now, new appointees at lower rungs might feel it even more.
To a degree, impostor syndrome can be a productive anxiety, propelling one to be more prepared than would otherwise be the case. Too much of it is crippling, however. And, thankfully, on its way out the door, the Trump team’s manifest incompetence should make things easier. There is nothing that alleviates impostor syndrome quicker than seeing actual impostors get exposed.
Dr. Joshua Barocas and Gregg Gonsalves/USA Today:
Make it easier to stay safe from COVID-19, instead of shaming and punishing people
Telling people to ‘just say no’ to human interaction won’t work. Cities, states and colleges should get creative and invest in safe socializing.
Give out masks, prizes and discounts
What might incentives look like? They should be tailored to particular places and for particular people, so they will be different in different communities. Some states have already laid the groundwork for this.
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, for example, announced that it would provide riders with masks, in a program backed by New Balance. This type of program lowers the barrier to mask wearing and makes it easier to follow guidance. Other businesses along with the state and/or cities should support free mask distribution at grocery stores, gas stations and retail stores — especially because doing so will keep everyone safe while keeping the economy going during the holiday season.
The Suburbs Helped Elect Biden. Can They Give Democrats the Senate, Too?
Some Atlanta suburbs that used to be “blood red” went blue in November. But Democrats need strong turnout in January, not just disaffected Republicans seeking to give Trump one final defeat.
From the inner suburbs surrounding Atlanta and extending to the traditionally conservative exurbs, Democrats benefited from two big changes: Black, Latino and Asian residents moving into formerly white communities and an increase in the number of white, college-educated moderates and conservatives who have soured on Mr. Trump.
Those factors helped President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. become the first Democrat to win Georgia since 1992. And Senate runoff elections in January will test whether those Biden voters backed his agenda or simply sought to remove a uniquely divisive incumbent.