Welcome to WeeklyWilson.com, where author/film critic Connie (Corcoran) Wilson avoids totally losing her marbles in semi-retirement by writing about film (see the Chicago Film Festival reviews and SXSW), politics and books----her own books and those of other people. You'll also find her diverging frequently to share humorous (or not-so-humorous) anecdotes and concerns. Try it! You'll like it!
After telling seniors they should be willing to risk contracting COVID-19 to protect the economy (see previous WeeklyWilson article), Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick doesn’t seem to be willing to make a similar sacrifice to serve in the Texas Legislature next year.
Hereford cattle on LBJ Ranch.
Patrick, 70, who presides over the upper chamber, informed state senators Friday that people testifying before committees may need to register three days ahead and take a quick-turnaround coronavirus test 24 hours before they’re allowed into the Capitol building, the Texas Tribune reports.
During past sessions, people have been able to sign up and speak on the same day.
Patrick, a Republican, discussed the safeguards on conference call with the Senate Democrat Caucus, the Tribune reports. During those discussions, Patrick he wants the National Guard to conduct the tests, handling 10 to 12 people per hour. Such caution seems at odds with Patrick’s partisan pronouncements about COVID earlier this year during TV talk show appearances.
And, to top off the crazy from Texas, where I currently am, the Attorney General of Texas, who is under indictment for Securities fraud and under investigation for bribery, filed a lawsuit alleging that the states of Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Arizona shouldn’t be allowed to confirm their votes on today’s “safe harbor” date (Dec. 8th) which comes in advance of the Dec. 14th vote of the electoral college. Supposedly, the man is angling for a pardon from the departing DJT and is a huge Trump loyalist.
Grape Creek Winery
It is Texas officials like these that drive one to travel far into the countryside (Fredricksburg) and visit wine tastings in the middle of the day on a Tuesday. Time for a change, politically, perhaps?
It was 75 degrees out today and, from the highway (I-290) we could see people swimming in their pool! We also decided to take a leisurely drive through LBJ’s old ranch, something the spouse and I had done but the son and daughter had not done.
Tomorrow, it is supposed to be 82 degrees. Not sure if this is a record, but it certainly beats the Illinois temperatures on a December day.
Aside from the wine tasting, daughter Stacey has traveled to Austin to be with us and her brother took off half a day of work to join us on our wine-tasting adventure. Then, we watched Iowa (#3 nationally) beat North Carolina (#16 nationally) in basketball. Following that, the younger members of the family got in the hot tub, but—once the sun went down—the evening temperatures did not convince me that I’d be warm enough.
LBJ Ranch, with deer.
I re-started my subscription to the “Austin Statesman” newspaper (REAL newspaper) and it was to have started this morning.
It didn’t. (Sigh)
[Other observations above from Sanford Nowlin who writes for the digital edition of the San Antonio paper.]
According to James Q. Lynch of the Des Moines “Gazette” bureau, Iowa was Number One with a Bullet in receiving robo calls this election season. Transaction Network Services which analyzes over 1 billion calls a day determined that Iowa voters received more than 610,000 robocalls—most of them political in nature—during the presidential election. On November 2nd, the day before the election, Iowans received more than 270,000 robocalls.”
This works out to be about 19.5 per 100 Iowans, making Iowa Number One in the nation with calls per population.
Most of the calls were being made on behalf of candidates on the ballot. “Lucky, lucky you,” said Jim Tyrrell, a senior director at the firm, noting that most recipients were happy that this political period was over.
Every morning, as I sat down to read my morning paper, I took 4 things: 1) the morning paper (2) my land line phone (3) my cell phone and (4) my morning coffee.
I am not technically “in” the state of Iowa, but being on the border means that the Quad Cities television and radio stations and our newspapers are carrying political ads non-stop. I would have to get up at least 3 times during this time period, unless I had taken the phones with me.
Julian Sanchez of the Cato Institute warns that the crack-pot Dominion Voting Machine conspiracy theories are harming cyber-security:
BEE GONE: A POLITICAL PARABLE
Last week, Julian Sanchez wrote about a crackpot conspiracy theory making the rounds: The allegation that voting machines or tabulation software produced by Dominion Voting Systems had somehow been “hacked” or “rigged” to alter the outcome of the presidential election. At the time, I worried I might be giving undue attention to an outlandish claim that—given how thin and easily debunked was the “evidence” for it—would surely fade away on its own. Apparently, I need not have worried. Since then, the Dominion Theory has not only led to the firing of Chris Krebs, the well‐respected head of the Department of Homeland Security’s cybersecurity agency, but featured in a press conference held by Trump attorney Sidney Powell, who made it the centerpiece of a wildly implausible case that Donald Trump had won the presidency by a “landslide” and been deprived of victory by massive and systematic vote fraud. According to Powell’s increasingly byzantine version of the theory:
“The Dominion Voting Systems, the Smartmatic technology software, and the software that goes in other computerized voting systems here as well, not just Dominion, were created in Venezuela at the direction of Hugo Chavez to make sure he never lost an election after one constitutional referendum came out the way he did not want it to come out.”
None of this is true. Dominion and Smartmatic are separate companies, and indeed competitors; the tenuous connection between them is that Dominion once purchased assets from a firm that had been owned and sold off by Smartmatic years earlier. Smartmatic is an American company, though its founders are Venezuelan, and its software was not used in any of the swing states currently under scrutiny. (It has provided software used in Venezuelan elections, but the company itself has called out electoral fraud there.) Powell’s claim appears to be little more than an effort to insinuate guilt by (very indirect) association with an authoritarian regime.
The other supposed “evidence” for chicanery linked to Dominion is equally shoddy. Election‐night tabulation errors in Michigan—detected and corrected almost instantly—were speculatively attributed to Dominion software by online conspiracy theorists, but local election officials have since explained that they were the result of human errors, not computers misbehaving. Claims amplified by Trump that millions of votes had been “deleted” in Pennsylvania were unequivocally refuted by state officials. Trump appears to have picked up the notion from a report on the One America News Network, which got the idea from a blog post citing data from the polling firm Edison Research—though Edison itself had produced no such report.
Evidence against the theory is overwhelming, and has only become stronger in the week since my original post. Georgia recently completed a manual recount of paper ballots, supervised by the Republican secretary of state, and found no sign of any significant tabulation errors. (The states electronic voting machines generate voter‐verifiable paper records, and in most battleground states the in‐person votes that would have used such voting machines favored Trump, with Biden having the advantage in hand‐marked mail ballots.) In an open letter, 59 of the country’s most prominent election security experts said they’d found no evidence of systemic fraud—cyber or otherwise.
None of this, alas, was enough to save Chris Krebs, until recently director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency within the Department of Homeland Security. For the sin of issuing a statement that the agency had found no evidence of voting systems being compromised, Krebs was summarily terminated by tweet, with Trump declaring the agency’s expert analysis “highly inaccurate.”
“We have it totally under control.” (Jan. 2020)
Since the evidence‐free Dominion theory is unlikely to persuade any court, Krebs’ dismissal may be its most damaging consequence, at least in the short term. This is not merely because Krebs was widely respected and viewed as highly competent, but because the firing sends a clear signal to all government employees: if your own analysis contradicts the president’s claims about vote fraud, you shouldn’t expect to remain employed for long. This undermines CISA’s core mission, which includes assisting and coordinating with states which may lack the federal government’s capabilities when it comes to monitoring and detecting sophisticated cyber‐threats. Now the specter of political interference hangs over any warnings the agency may provide in the future. The agency may now hesitate to provide state officials—and the general public—with reassurances about the integrity of local elections, while warnings about actual threats may be viewed with suspicion given Trump’s clear desire to find evidence of fraud. Nor is the harm limited to CISA. The Intelligence Community at large is on notice: produce reporting at odds with the president’s public claims, and you place your career at risk.
This is particularly poisonous because it distorts what’s known as the “intelligence cycle”: the process by which agencies gather intelligence, analyze it, disseminate reporting, and then use that information to allocate resources and prioritize the next round of intelligence collection. Any distorting effect on what is reported—either because employees feel obliged to emphasize information that confirms what the president wants to hear or suppress information that contradicts his presuppositions—risks creating a feedback loop, infecting the next round of planning and intelligence collection, and diverting resources and energy away from genuine threats and toward spurious ones. We should hope the president‐elect has the wisdom to avoid such potentially toxic interference.
Trump exhorted his far-right army to mobilize for a sustained conflict over the election results. He refused to say whether he’d accept a legitimate loss. And he confirmed he’s expecting the Supreme Court to help invalidate countless legally cast ballots.
Can Trump can pull off one of his most-discussed means for rigging the election: getting a GOP state legislature to appoint substitute pro-Trump electors to the electoral college, regardless of the popular vote in that state? That’s what is going on right now.
Trump is telegraphing his scheme.
At the debate, Trump said he “can’t go along” with a result tallied up from millions of mail-in ballots, which will mean “fraud like you’ve never seen.” He urged supporters to “watch” the voting “very carefully,” i.e., to engage in voter intimidation. When his own GOP appointed cyber-security official, Christopher Krebs, who had done a good and honest job, testified that it was the fairest election in history, DJT fired him.“We did it right. Defend Today, Secure Tomorrow,” wrote Krebs, a former policy director at Microsoft whom Trump appointed to his role in 2017 after Russia’s 2016 election Interference campaign.
It is unconscionable that the man in charge of keeping foreign countries from interfering in our elections, who has, by all accounts, done an admirable job, is being punished for doing his job well. Trump is also playing with fire in replacing the Secretary of Defense and other high ranking officials, just as is done in tin-pot dictator countries before a coup d’etat. The Republicans in the House and Senate, so far, are simply going along with these anti-democratic acts and making excuses for the man-child orchestrating them.
Asked what he expects of the high court and his most recently appointed Supreme Court Justice Amy Conan Barrett, Trump said: “I’m counting on them to look at the ballots.” He is dragging his feet as long as he can, demanding recount after recount, even though none has changed the results. He is seeking to sow dissension in the ranks of his loyal-to-the-bitter-end followers and to get their public outcry to the point where red state officials will feel confident in saying that they are sending in their own electors for the Dec. 14th Electoral College vote. So far, only a few GOP Senators have had the cojones to even congratulate the rightful winner and I know of only two who have spoken out at all about any portion of this travesty.
We are in deep water, here, folks, and there doesn’t appear to be anyone throwing us a life line. The Senate won’t, as they demonstrated during the impeachment opportunity. Bill Barr won’t, as he’s the guy who helped Reagan out during Iran/Contra and has already demonstrated how he will work to undercut the Mueller Report by releasing his own Cliff’s Notes version early and supporting Trump in many other unethical ways.
“We have it totally under control.” (Jan. 2020)
Trump did also say he might not “need” the court to settle “the election itself.” But that only inadvertently confirms that he believes the court is at his beck and call to hand him the presidency, despite the fact that he lost the election by over 5 million votes. His supporters in Michigan have already tried to refuse to certify that their state vote went to the Democrat.
As far-fetched as it seems that a state legislature might appoint pro-Trump electors, it’s important to note that some Republicans are already claiming that the fictional mass fraud in large-scale mail balloting could serve as the justification for doing just this.
As one Trump legal adviser said, they might say: “We don’t think the results of our own state are accurate, so here’s our slate of electors that we think properly reflect the results of our state.”
And so, when Trump casts doubt on the legitimacy of a prolonged count after Election Day — as he did at the debate — he’s opening the possibility of using exactly this justification for precisely this endgame.
The editorial below appeared in the Nov. 12thQuad City Times and was written by Michael Gerson (WaPo). When you’re right, you’re right and I’m sure Gerson has said this better than I could:
BEE GONE: A POLITICAL PARABLE
President Donald Trump will be remembered for many things. For the audacity of his mendacity. (* Hejust fired the head of the cyber security team). For his ready recourse to prejudice. For his savant’s ability to rile and ride social resentment. For his welcoming of right-wing crackpots (QAnon?) into the Republican coalition. For his elevation of self-love into a populist cause.
For his brutal but bumbling use of force against protesters. For his routinization of self-dealing and political corruption. For his utter lack of public spirit and graciousness even to the very end.
And, to be fair, for the remarkable achievement of winning more than 73 million votes with an appealing message, without significant achievements, without a discernible agenda for the future (and after 240,000 U.S. citizens lay dead because of his inattention to duty.)
But although Trump will be remembered for all these things, he will be judged for one thing above all: When the pandemic came and hundreds of thousands of Americans died, he didn’t give a damn.
How do we know this? It is not easy to read a man’s heart, but it is easy to detect that organ’s absence. Trump is not only refusing to provide leadership during a rapidly mounting health crisis, he is also sabotaging the ability of the incoming Biden administration to cooperate with leaders at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health and other government agencies. By disrupting the presidential transition during an unfolding Covid-19 disaster, Trump is engaging in history’s most dangerous sulk.
Even before his re-election loss, Trump had trouble expressing empathy for victims of the virus and their families. Even after his own bout with Covid-19, Trump did not seem capable of feeling or imagining the suffering of others. (*We saw this in Puerto Rico when his sole presidential act was to throw paper towels to the suffering populace.)
This may reflect some psychological incapacity. But it also indicates a certain view of pandemic politics.
From the start, Trump did not believe the disaster itself was a true enemy. Rather, he viewed the public perception of widespread disease as the real threat—the threat to his political future. So, the fewer Americans who believed in the disease’s spread, the better. And the less attention the victims of the disease received, the better.
This helps explain Trump’s own explanation given to the Washington Post’s Bob Woodward at the start of the pandemic. “I wanted to always play it down,” the president said. “I still like playing it down, because I don’t want to create a panic.” A panic, after all, might spook the stock market, or make him appear responsible.
This is a distorted way to view both illness and politics. Interpreted as an attack on him, Covid-19 should be minimized. In reality, the disease was—and is—an attack on the American public, which can be fought only by elevating attention to the disease and warning against indifference. It was Trump’s monomania that dictated the path of denial and inaction.
At one point early in the unfolding crisis, a senior official urged Trump to take leadership and “own the problem.” But that is exactly what the president wanted most to avoid. As the danger became undeniable, the president doggedly denied it. “It’s going to disappear,” said Trump.
The goal was not to calm the public, but to anesthetize it.
In this cramped and selfish view of the world, every Covid-19 victim who is highlighted by the media is perceived by the president as an attack on himself. And the public expression of sympathy on his part would be self-sabotage, an admission of his failure.
So when Trump recovered from the disease, he did not say, as former Governor of New Jersey Chris Christie did, “I should have won a mask.” Instead, Trump pronounced himself “immune,” held dangerous largely mask-free rallies, and used his own recovery to play down the seriousness of the disease.
Covid-19 Test Site.
Recovery from Covid-19 did not change Trump’s perspective, and neither has electoral loss. The president is apparently too busy moping, golfing, fuming and lying to assume leadership during a spiraling health crisis. (*Today, however, he took time to fire the head of cyber-security for the election and to make an attempt to disenfranchise all of Detroit.).
He has roused only enough interest to take personal credit for a prospective vaccine. Once again, Trump does not seem to regard Covid-19 as a threat to the country requiring responsible action He sees the pandemic as an attack on his person to be downplayed or denied.
This is egotism, turned cruel and deadly. (*The nation’s Top Psychiatrists say that Trump is, indeed, a malignant narcissist. This means narcissism, anti-social personality disorder, paranoia and sadistic tendencies rolled into one and created to describe Hitler.)
The country will not be delivered by appealing to Trump’s better angels, who fled in disgust long ago. It might help if elected Republicans stopped ignoring and enabling Trump’s lethal tantrum. But the hours until noon, January 20th, still move too slowly.
I have purposely refrained from writing anything “post election,” hoping that I could post something very hopeful and positive.
Instead, although former Vice President Joe Biden prevailed and has won enough votes to be declared the winner of the presidential race by everyone except hard-core Trump supporters, the news from the front was not as rosy as Democrats might have hoped. Cheri Bustos, who was Chairperson of the DNC, has stepped down amidst the news that the “blue tsunami” that many thought was going to happen did not materialize.
I never felt that there was going to be a “blue tsunami.” I was still coping with the debilitating news that Trump was going to be our president, rather than Hillary Clinton. Mind you, I was not an avid Hillary supporter, but I did think she would be competent, which was not at all clear with the mercurial temperament of DJT.
I felt the way I did when Stephen Colbert had set aside his entire late night talk show to revel in Hillary Clinton’s victory and, instead, had to consume the champagne in a much-less festive fashion.
Since the polls closed on November 3rd I’ve waited for a sign that a smooth transition of power was taking place and our long national nightmare with DJT might be over. It will be two full weeks tomorrow and Biden’s popular vote continues to rise. However, the Trumpers are in the position that those of us who backed Al Gore in 2000 were placed in after the hanging chad election in Florida. Only worse.
There is far more evidence, this time, that the citizens of the United States wanted to be rid of Donald J. Trump. That enthusiasm for change did not, however, extend down the ballot, and the mere fact that 170 million people could still bring themselves to vote for Donald J. Trump is disconcerting.
After reading many “post election post scripts” in these 2 weeks, I have settled on tapping the thoughts articulated by Leonard Pitts of the Miami “Herald” and here are this Black American’s thoughts, published on November 9th:
Recognizing Who We Are: Faced with a clear choice between good and evil, America did the right thing, barely. That is sobering and profoundly disappointing.
“Forgive me for being the ant at the picnic.
Certainly this is a glad moment, an ecstatic and delirious moment. The election of 2020 has ended at last. Joe Biden is finally the president-elect and Donald Trump is finally consigned to the dank well of ignominy he so richly deserves.
As Gerald Ford once said in the aftermath of a less dire threat, “Our long national nightmare is over.” As the Munchkins of Oz once sang, “Ding dong! The wicked witch is dead.”
But if gladness is mandated, caveats are required. America needed an emphatic rejection that left no doubt that the chaos, lies, lawlessness, bigotry and ignorance Trump represented were not, as some of us are overly fond of claiming ‘who we are as a people.’ We needed to deliver him a thundering, emphatic rejection.
And we did not.
To the contrary, a victory that should have been an overwhelming landslide had to be eked into existence. Indeed, even in defeat, Trump actually improved on his 2016 popular vote count by, at this writing, roughly 7 million votes.
Think about that. After he bungled a pandemic (240,000 Americans dead; 420,000 by March 1st), after he botched the economy (nearly 5 million jobs lost—more than any president since WWII), after he alienated our allies and emboldened our enemies, after he undermined every institution, down to and including the National Weather Service, after he extorted Ukraine, occupied Portland and declared war on Lafayette Square, and, after he embraced an agenda of brazen white supremacy, after, in other words, they lost the excuse of ignorance, because they knew exactly what Trump was, 7 million more people cast their ballots for Trump.
Joe Biden in Independence, Iowa, on the Fourth of July, 2019.
Yes, he lost.
Yes, Biden tallied more votes than any candidate in history (78,789,001, 50.9% for Biden to 73,167,876votes, 47.3% for Trump) and, of course, won the Electoral College. But the caveat looms large.
Faced with a clear choice between good and evil, America did the right thing, barely. That is sobering and profoundly disappointing.
And it strips bare all the glossy claims about who we are as a country, underscoring the fact that in a meaningful sense, we are not one country at all anymore, but two sharing the same borders. The last time that happened, it took four years and 750,000 lives to force us back into some semblance of oneness. Even then, the seams of the fracture were always visible.
Unlike that break, this one is not starkly geographic: South versus North. No, this one is city versus country, college educated versus high school educated, and, most significantly, future versus past. Meaning that yesterday, this was a nation where white people were the majority, and tomorrow it will be one where they are not.
The fear and resentment that inspires in many white people cannot be overstated. It has warped our politics for years, culminating in the disaster of Trump.
Now, Biden is elected on a promise to heal those breaks, but that will require more than a good man’s good intentions. It will require white Americans to divest a system of white supremacy that, let’s face it, has been very, very good to them.
Unfortunately, it has been less good for the country. So a moral reckoning is required here. It is time more white Americans finally recognize that white supremacy is not something you compromise with or rationalize. It must be a deal breaker, always. And it isn’t, as evidenced by the fact that the man who called Mexicans rapists and Haiti, El Salvador and the nations of Africa “shithole countries,” who described neo-Nazis as “very fine people” and told four Congresswomen of color born in this country to “go back where they came from” just won 7 million more votes than he garnered in 2016.
That’s “who we are as a people.” Let’s stop kidding ourselves about that. And start figuring out how to become what we said we were all along.”
Joe Biden in Independence, Iowa, on the Fourth of July, 2019.
My apologies to all who tuned in to hear me speak with Dan Partland, Writer/Director/Producer of “Unfit,” the #1 Amazon documentary that answers the question, “What the hell is wrong with Donald J. Trump?”
Due to technical difficulties beyond my control, my show was not on the air on 10/15, but Dan Partland has agreed to be with me “live” on 10/22. Trust me: you want to hear this man talk about the truths revealed in his excellent documentary. You can tape the presidential debate, since we already know, based on tonight’s town halls, that DJT will do his best to interrupt and ruin it, anyway. It’s a “live” call-in format so you can call in with questions at 866-451-1451.
Here’s my other thought for today, before I begin comparing the two town halls in a separate piece (to run later). It is page 705 of Jeffrey Toobin’s book “True Crimes and Misdemeanors: The Investigation of Donald Trump.”
“He has betrayed our national security, and he will do so again. He has compromised our elections, and he will do so again. You will not change him. You cannot constrain him. He is who he is. Truth matters little to him. What is right matters even less. And decency matters not at all. I do not ask you to convict him because truth or right or decency matters nothing to him, but because we have proven our case and it matters to you. Truth matters to you. Right matters to you. You are decent. He is not who you are.” (Adam Schiff’s adjuration to the Senate during the impeachment of DJT).
The documentary “Unfit,” (now available for rental on Amazon Prime) is the perfect companion piece for Mary Trump’s book “Too Much and Never Enough.” Both informative works feature trained professional psychiatrists or psychologists speculating on the line that the documentary mentions early on, articulated by George Conway (husband of Kellyanne Conway), “What is wrong with him?”
Of course, right now, what is wrong with him is that his stubborn denial of the science and refusal to wear a mask routinely in public has landed our chief executive in Walter Reed Hospital with Covid-19. This just three days after making fun of former Vice President Biden for wearing a mask in public.
But Dan Partland’s documentary, inspired by an article in “Rolling Stone” wants to know what causes Donald Trump to “go off the rails.” We all saw this behavior in real time during the September 29th presidential debate—which wasn’t very presidential at all and certainly put the “off the rails” behavior on full display for the nation and the world.
After a discussion of the Goldwater Rule, which came after the 1964 election when Barry Goldwater’s reputation for wanting to use nuclear weapons caused some mental health professionals to use terms that were libelous and slanderous. Goldwater sued and won. The slogans like “In your heart you know he’s right—-far right” were discredited and an unwritten rule arose that the professional psychiatrists and psychologists should refrain from diagnosing those who were not in their care. However, as the film attests, “We never intended it to be a gag rule.” Yet it did become a gag rule.
However, the truly unique nature of this year’s issues caused the formation of a group of professional psychiatrist and psychologists who formed a group called “Duty to warn.” Like the Lincoln Project, this group of mental health professionals set out to warn about the clear signs of a malignant personality disorder in Donald J. Trump.
What are the signs of a malignant personality disorder?
They are: 1) Narcissism
3) Anti-social personality disorder
The narcissism is pretty clear. Trump constantly tells us he is “a very stable genius” and nobody can do whatever it is like he can.
Donald J. Trump’s devotion to conspiracy theories formulated by groups like QAnon and his constant whining about how unfairly he is treated contributes to his sense of paranoia. Even today, there has been some talk that Trump was quite concerned about his recent diagnosis of Covid-19 and that that is why he was helicoptered to the hospital.
Anti-social personality disorder
Trump does not seem like “a people person.” He has been far more astute at mocking and making fun of his enemies than in demonstrating any compassion or empathy for those who are suffering. This tendency helps explain why he doesn’t seem to radiate the emotional depth of someone who really cares. His lack of remorse and refusal to accept responsibility for missteps or misstatements is correlated with this disorder. Trump seems to have few friends and he has racked up three wives in his 72 years. One analyst used a line from Macbeth: “Those he commands move only in command, nothing in love. Now does he feel his title hang loose about him, like a giant’s robe upon a dwarfish thief.”
Tony Schwartz, who really wrote “The Art of the Deal,” described Trump as a sociopath and said, “He doesn’t feel anything.” This is in keeping with his actions when his older brother, Fred, lay dying and Donald went off to the movies instead of spending time with his dying brother. DJT seems to take a perverse glee in taking petty revenge against those he thinks have wronged him.
Director Dan Partland has assembled a stellar cast of mental health professionals, including John Gartner, PhD, the founder of Duty to Warn; Lance Dodes, M.D., a Harvard graduate from Boston; Justin Frank, a Harvard grad in charge at George Washington University; and some better-known faces like Anthony Scaramucci, who noted that DJT is “a reflection of the cultural zeitgeist.” Bill Kristol, a Harvard PhD who served as Chief-of-Staff to former Vice President Dan Quayle, Richard Painter, who worked under Bush, and Malcolm Nance (author of “Defeating Isis”) are also featured, commenting on the president’s bullish, obnoxious, arrogant, narcissistic behavior, visible to the world at large.
Dan Partland, who is the Writer/Director/Producer of “Unfit,” has been a much-decorated documentary filmmaker for over twenty years. In the 15 years that the Emmys have recognized primetime nonfiction series, Partland’s shows have been nominated for best in class 5 times, and in 3 different sub-genres; Reality, Nonfiction format, and Documentary. Partland has twice won nonfiction series Emmys and in 2011 and 2012 was nominated by the Producers Guild of America for Nonfiction Producer of the Year. In 2001, Partland won an Emmy (Best Non-Fiction Program) for his work on the ground-breaking 13-part doc series American High on Fox. Partland served as the Supervising Producer and a Director of the critically acclaimed show that is widely regarded as one of the progenitors of the current doc series genre.
Partland’s work has spanned several nonfiction genres. He produced and directed How To Raise An Olympian, a winter Olympics special for NBC and was Showrunner for the multi-award-winning CNN archival series The Sixties. Partland was the Executive Producer and Showrunner of A&E’s Intervention for over 150 episodes, garnering countless awards and accolades including the Emmy for best reality series.
Partland will be joining me to discuss “Unfit” on Thursday, October 15th on my Weekly Wilson podcast (7 to 8 p.m.) on the Bold Brave Media Global Network. It’s a live format, so call in at 866-451-1451.
He was scheduled for a pair of rallies in Wisconsin tomorrow, October 2nd. What now?
Supposedly Trump and Melania will quarantine at the White House, according to the First Lady’s tweet.
In coming back from Cleveland, Trump was surrounded by a large number of advisors and family members.
The announcement comes only a few hours after he said, “the end of the pandemic is in sight.”
“I think it’s safe to say this president is going nowhere for a while,” said Brian Williams on NBC News.
Hope Hicks began feeling ill while traveling on Air Force One and was quarantined on the airliner.
Ms. Hicks was subsequently diagnosed as having the virus.
“We will begin our quarantine and recovery process immediately. We will get through this TOGETHER!” (from a Trump tweet).
As a 74-year-old overweight man, Trump is at high risk.
[This developing story came in at 1:00 a.m. on the East coast.]
“We have it totally under control.” (Jan. 2020)
Upon hearing that DJT had tested positive the speculation then began to extend to VP Pence and whether he and his team had been exposed. If both men were to be felled, Nancy Pelosi would be next in line. The list of people on Air Force One extended to about 24 individuals, which included the president’s family and close staffers.
Some speculated that the president is attempting to avoid taking part in future debates which, to be honest, the Washington Post, the Atlantic and other leading newspapers have said should be discontinued anyway after September 29th’s fiasco, largely because of Trump’s interrupting opponent Joe Biden 73 times in 90 minutes.
On Tuesday night both men spoke for 90 minutes from podiums that were distanced. Could this expose Joe Biden? The mask that Joe Biden usually wears was not being worn and, of course, Trump rarely has worn one and did not wear one for the first time until July 11th, 7 months into the pandemic.
Perhaps the realization that this disease is real and does not play favorites may sink in for the man who has persisted in hosting dangerous Super Spreader events at places like Tulsa or Mt. Rushmore.
I wish no one the bad luck to suffer having this virus, especially if they are of an age to make it very dangerous.
Thirty-two days away from the election, the president’s doctor Sean Connolly announced that Donald and Melania have both tested positive for Covid-19. He said, “They are both well at this time. They plan to maintain their quarantine at the White House. I expect the president to continue carrying out his duties without interruption.”
The debates are going to probably be scrapped, which will be a very small loss, based on what went down on September 29th. I will continue to discuss politics (and other topics) on my Thursday night Weekly Wilson programs,. But the talk will not be about the debates, because they (probably) won’t be held. That does not change my announced intent to give away BEE GONE e-book copies FREE on the scheduled debate nights and October 23rd (RBG Day).
Dr. Vin Gupta – MSNBC Medical Director (Remarks from him interrupting Seth Meyer’s late night show):
“This raises the specter of when did Hope Hicks display symptoms?”
This is bigger than just the President and the First Lady as the circle that traveled with them has been exposed.
Did the Vice President’s team become exposed at Case Western on debate nig
There is a pre-symptomatic period up to 48 hours, during which the person can give it to others, although asymptomatic.
Why did the President go to an event today if he knew he was positive and expose other individuals at a fund-raiser today? “That should have raised alarm bells.” Gupta asks, “Who is giving him this medical advice?” (Dr. Scott Atlas?)
Brian Williams raises the point that it may not be Hope Hicks who has exposed the president at all, since he has traveled extensively and has not worn a mask. A massive contact-tracing effort has to be made. “There should be no in-person gatherings for the rest of the campaign. This was preventable. The fact that this even occurred is a damning indictment. This was avoidable if they were practicing the proper procedures and not going to these rallies and attending these events.”
Trump was supposed to have had a conference call about the impact of Covid-19 on the senior citizens. Ironic that this will not now occur.
The Weekly Wilson program of 9/24 was a pot-pourri of my favorite topics: politics, movies, books and random facts.
I did announce the FREE give-away that will coincide with the debate dates. Consider it your reward for being a good citizen and sitting through the 4 debate nights: 9/29; 10/7; 10/15; 10/22 and 10/23.
What is being given away?
The book BEE GONE: A POLITICAL PARABLE, via Amazon, will be totally FREE as an e-book on the debate nights, but only on those 5 days.
We are allowed 5 more “free” nights with BEE GONE in e-book format, so we added one additional free night following the final debate. That will be October 23rd, in honor of Ruth Bader Ginsberg.
So, the debate nights, again are: September 29, Tuesday (FREE E-BOOK NIGHTS)
October 7, Wednesday (VP debate)
October 15, Thursday
October 22, Thursday
October 23, Friday (RBG Night)
If you have interest in owning a comic-book like award-winning e-book that is a stroll down memory lane regarding the events of 2016, you can order BEE GONE: A POLITICAL PARABLE free of charge on those nights. We also put the paperback price down 50% and have reduced the e-book price during this run-up to the election.
“UNFIT” DIRECTOR on OCTOBER 15th
On October 15th, I will speak with Dan Partland, director of the Netflix documentary “Unfit” as my guest on Weekly Wilson, the podcast (Thursdays at 7 p.m.). This was the #1 rental on Netflix this month and I highly recommend it.
DISCUSSIONS WITH MICHAEL SERRAPICA on Weekly Wilson Podcast
Those of you who have listened in to discussions with Michael Serrapica, author of “Conned Conservatives and Led-On Liberals” will be happy to learn that he is probably going to be discussing each of the debates with me, as they occur.
The discussion dates to talk about the debate(s) just past will be:
October 1st, Thursday – Discussion of Debate #1
October 8, Thursday – Discussion of the VP debate
October 15, Thursday – DAN PARTLAND of “Unfit”
October 22, Thursday – Discussion of the 2nd presidential debate of October 15
October 29th, Thursday – Discussion of the final (3rd) presidential debate of October 22nd