Left watch: Dems’ Battles Have Just Begun
With President-elect Joe Biden’s “centrist outlook” and similarly minded Cabinet nominees, the Democratic left knows that “it will have a tough battle to get action on its priorities” over the next four years, notes The Hill’s Niall Stanage. It’s a “tug of war,” in which Biden must try to balance his own instincts against those of energized progressives convinced that “ideas that were confined to the margins of the party” have now become “part of the Democratic mainstream.” With control of the Senate still up for grabs and a titanic struggle for economic recovery just ahead, “Democrats are united in relief that Trump’s White House tenure is coming to an end.” “But once Biden gets into the White House, fresh battles beckon.”
Media desk: Kicking America When She’s Down
As “COVID-19 ravaged communities and government-imposed lockdowns decimated the American economy, The New York Times took aim at American morale and fired,” seethes The Post Millennial’s Libby Emmons. One columnist “wrote with glee that” the pandemic “is killing off the myth that we are the greatest country on earth” and declared white writers who “retreat back to the politics of the apolitical” after “the hated orange menace is out of office” racist. Isabel Wilkerson wrote about “America’s enduring caste system,” while a food-section story stated Thanksgiving is “a myth created to make white people feel comfortable.” An op-ed by Sen. Tom Cotton “upended” the opinion section and now carries a disclaimer; a piece by the deputy leader of the terrorist Taliban doesn’t. For shame.
Urban beat: SF’s Cruel Trick on Small Biz
When San Francisco allowed restaurants and gyms to build and operate outdoor structures, called “parklets,” their owners finally had some revenue streaming in during the lockdowns, reports Erica Sandberg at City Journal. But then the city shut even outdoor dining and fitness centers on Dec. 6, and “almost overnight, activity in the now-abandoned spaces changed dramatically.” One owner fumes that his parklets “are now being used as bathrooms,” that “some guy is camping in one” and that he is finding “empty cans of beer” and needles in the area. Meanwhile, homeless shelters “the city opened with great fanfare” remain shut. Owners “could be forgiven for feeling hoodwinked: shelling out their own money to keep their businesses going, they have unwittingly created homeless accommodation apparently more desirable than anything the city offers.”
Iconoclast: Larry Summers’ Hypocrisy
Want to know why bipartisan elites lost to President Trump four years ago? Witness “neoliberal” economic guru Larry Summers’ “classic” op-ed arguing that lockdown-hit American workers don’t need more cash assistance, snarks Matt Taibbi at his blog. “The whole piece reads like an extended New Yorker cartoon, in which an evictee with empty pockets is about to dive after a rotten apple core in a dumpster, only to be blocked by a cauldron-bellied Harvard economist in a $3,000 Zegna suit. Caption: ‘Actually, total household income relative to the economy’s potential sits at abnormally high levels.’ ” Yes, reasonable people can disagree about the COVID-19 rescue packages. The problem is that the likes of Summers “often believe in jaw-droppingly enormous levels of public aid” — when it comes to rescuing distressed corporations and financiers. But when it comes to helping ordinary people, “suddenly we learn that resources are scarce, and the commitment of public money to rescue mere People With Problems risks ‘moral hazard.’ ”
Culture critic: Happy 80th, Bugs!
“It was July 27, 1940, when a bunny named Bugs had the audacity — one might say, the insouciant foolhardiness — to go and ask what’s up of the world’s more doctoral minds,” writes James Panero at The Spectator. “There are few American creations more endearing or enduring than Bugs Bunny,” who appeared in 150 Warner Bros. cartoons during the golden age of TV animation. “As voiced in the Noo Yawk accent of Mel Blanc, Bugs embodies a national character that combines street smarts with whimsy, reserve with reluctant but ultimately total engagement.” Happy birthday!
— Compiled by The Post Editorial Board
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