This Is the Morning After: Virginia Isn’t the Whole Story

[NB: As always, check the byline. /~Rayne]

Snap the fuck out of your funk and get over yourselves. You’ve fallen into the bloody trap the Trumpy GOP set for you; they even told you they were going to set it.

Take a deep breath and shake it off. Chew off your foot if needed to get out of the trap.

This is what they did — they made critical race theory toxic.

It’s SOP with the right-wing to poison terms aligned with liberal democracy. They even poisoned the word “liberal” throughout the 1980s, ramping up the toxicity once Fox News emerged.

Which is when the tables should have been turned on them, forcing the right-wing to acknowledge they were killing democracy itself OR embrace true liberal democracy by stepping away from authoritarianism.

Once the GOP revealed CRT was going to be poisoned, it was up to the Democratic Party high and low to flip the tables and develop a positive message which didn’t lead into that trap.

The trap was sprung every time CRT was explained.

Every single GOP candidate should instead have been asked on camera, “Are you a racist? Are you ashamed of being an American? Why won’t you allow our teachers to teach America’s history just as they have been, making this country great? Why are you bullying teachers? Don’t you want our children to learn and succeed?”

That’s what the GOP and its shadowy oligarch funders are doing — holding back the progress of America by damaging its education system, bullying anyone who gets in their way of destroying our commons to extract more wealth.

~ ~ ~

CRT wasn’t the only messaging failure. I hope to hell Democrats across the country take a deep breath and look at their reflexivity, the way they have been played repeatedly by both foreign and domestic influence operations to react at gut level in ways their opponents can predict.

Just like the GOP predicted CRT could be blown up into a massive mess because Democrats would reflexively fall back into explaining instead of focusing on delivering.

And after delivering, messaging strongly and loudly about delivering for the people.

Incumbents need to look to Rep. Ocasio Cortez’s end-of-term review of what she did during her first term in office as an example of both delivering and messaging.

Every incumbent needs to be able to tell their constituents what they did for them in clear, concise language, and they need to do this regularly.

Every candidate running for office needs to do similar messaging: what is it they want to do for their constituents which isn’t being done? This requires them to know their audience.

McAuliffe failed on this point; he ran what looked like a national campaign when he needed to be more focused on what the people of Virginia needed. His opponent seized this lack of focus to make it about CRT in VA schools.

Candidates whether incumbent or first-time opponents also need to reach constituents where they are. Turnout for Dems was weak compared to the opposition; was it because the media used didn’t reach target audiences? Don’t show up on public radio or stultifying policy-focused podcasts if the audience you need is watching TikTok clips in their Twitter timeline.

~ ~ ~

But Virginia wasn’t the only story of this election; as noted last night, there were a wave of firsts among winners who are both persons of color and more progressive than incumbents or opponents.

This is where the media failed us all: they blew so much energy on Virginia when there were big stories elsewhere.

And there’s no one news site to see all the election results in a comprehensive manner.

CNN did a crappy job with this site, imposing its editorial opinion at the top of the page: “Virginia’s race for governor is the main event of the 2021 election, acting as a temperature check on the national environment for the 2022 midterm election in a state that has moved strongly in Democrats’ favor for both statewide offices and in presidential contests over the last decade. …” and then posting the maps of election results with Virginia races first.

The rest of the country could give a flying fig about Virginia but CNN insists it’s super relevant because it matters to their long-established calculus.

In spite of the opportunity to obtain traffic, even Google failed to provide a comprehensive page for these elections. It’d be so much easier to see there’s some big shift brewing out there if the public could see it in one big easily scanned picture but it’s not possible.

Pulling together the biggest city mayor races, one can see a trend:

Incumbent Democrat Tim Keller will remain Albuquerque NM’s mayor.

Atlanta GA’s mayoral race will go to a run-off — the seat is non-partisan though all three candidates in the run-off are identified as Democrats.

No clear winner yet in the Buffalo NY mayor’s race which is big drama. A Democratic Socialist, India Walton won the Democratic primary earlier this year, but the Democratic incumbent ran as a write-in. Brown’s declared victory but not all votes will be counted until November 17. This seat will be either held by a Democratic Socialist or a Democrat.

Detroit MI’s incumbent Democratic mayor Mike Duggan won his third term.

Incumbent GOP mayor Francis Suarez won another term in Miami FL; he’s been critical of Gov. DeSantis and Trump, sucked up to Nikki Haley as a possible running mate in 2024.

GOP candidate Esteban Bovo won the mayor’s race in Hialeah FL.

Miami Beach FL mayor Dan Gelber won his third term; this will be the Democrat‘s final stint due to term limits.

Minneapolis MN incumbent Democratic mayor Jacob Frey won another term.

Democratic PA state Rep. Ed Gainey won the Pittsburgh mayor’s race to become its first Black mayor. A Democrat who’d lost in the primary to Gainey ran as a write-in GOP candidate, losing to Gainey.

Democratic candidate Bruce Harrell won his race in Seattle WA, becoming yet another mayor of color. Harrell is Black-Japanese American.

Elaine O’Neal won the mayor’s race in Durham NC, becoming the city’s first Black woman mayor. Though the seat is non-partisan, O’Neal is a Democrat.

Add last evening’s key mayoral races:

Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu won the mayor’s race in Boston. She’s the first Asian American mayor for the city; she’s also a progressive Democrat who is tight with Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

Hamilton County clerk of courts Aftab Pureval won the mayor’s race in Cincinnati, becoming the city’s first Asian American mayor. He defeated an older centrist Democrat David Mann to win.

Michigan state house representative (MI-15) Abdullah Hammoud won the Dearborn mayor’s race, becoming the first Lebanese American in the city with the largest Lebanese American population in the U.S.; Hammoud is Arab and Muslim.

Former Obama senate intern Justin Bibb won the Cleveland mayor’s race, replacing term-limited Frank Jackson. Both are Democrats; Bibb is the first new mayor since 2005 and at 34 the second youngest mayor ever.

Both Pureval in Cincinnati and Hammoud in Dearborn are Democrats.

Mayoral races saw quite a few firsts with more Black and Asian representation, and as a whole were far more Democratic. This is not what the Virginia governor’s race reflected — a nationally more diverse and more Democratic electorate in a wide range of urban centers, from Boston to Seattle.

Why is the media not looking at this from a national perspective, instead focusing on one governor’s race in what was once a Confederate state?

Some of the media coverage is just plain bad, rancid, awful — like CBS’s article,

GOP victories in off-year election renews pressure on Washington Democrats to deliver ahead of the midterms
By Sarah Ewall-Wice, Jack Turman Updated on: November 3, 2021 / 7:01 PM / CBS NEWS

Victories, plural, when the article focused primarily on Virginia with New Jersey’s race treated like a throwaway? Plural altogether inappropriate now that the governor’s race is a projected win for the incumbent Democrat Phil Murphy.

That’s the second trap, laid this time by media: do NOT believe all the hype when the media can’t be bothered to tell the full story. You may need to look wider and deeper.

~ ~ ~

The third trap: white people, mostly men, yapping about the Virginia race.

(Don’t feel comfortable about this point? Ask yourself why.)

Ask people of color especially women what the hell happened. 40% of Virginia isn’t white but all we’re hearing from about that state is white men.

If you’re a candidate or a candidate-to-be you had better make sure you’re talking to a broader spectrum of people than folks who look like the talking heads on television and news feeds.

Look at those mayor’s races. Those people won by not listening to bloviating white male pundits who are stuck in old school horse race politics.

One thing we haven’t seen yet even in the excessive coverage of Virginia’s gubernatorial race is whether outreach to non-white groups helped, and whether Spanish and Asian language messaging make a difference. You’d think a race as tight as that one would see minority outreach as critical, but you’d never know it based on all the yapping by white male pundits.

You can bet your ass it will make an enormous difference in Florida and Texas in 2022, as well as other states with greater numbers of non-white ESL speakers. It already did in 2020.

Speaking of ESL, one of the sites with a decent lineup of election stories is Univision. No excuses in the age of Google Translate and other free translation applications not to check Spanish language sites since Spanish is the second most common language spoken and read in the U.S.

~ ~ ~

I could go on but I’m just plain damned tired of watching well-meaning people stuck in a rut of their own making, complaining that somebody needs to do something when the somebody is them.

Virginia’s Democrats need to do some serious soul searching about their choice for this gubernatorial election. That’s on them, not on the DNC, nor Democratic voters outside Virginia.

But each of us needs to do our own soul searching about this next year, what is likely the only one chance left to stop this descent into fascism. Who are the candidates we’ll support and what can we do to ensure they win and that everyone who wants to vote can do so?

Further, we and our candidates of choice must be able to make the case that the U.S. stands for common values:

Every citizen has the right to vote.
Every human has the same unalienable rights.
Racism and prejudice against LGBTQ+ and disabled persons is wrong and denies humans’ rights.
Every worker deserves a living wage for a fair day’s work.
Public education is a public good which benefits us all.
Our shared environment is critically important to our mutual survival and must be protected.
Domestic tranquility and the general welfare of the entire nation are more important than profits for a few.
Shared efforts and resources help us reach a more perfect union.

Welcome to the morning after. Dust yourselves off and grab your gear. We have a lot of goddamned work to do.

117 replies
  1. Rayne says:

    It’s this song by Ray Davies c. 2006 I was thinking of while writing this post.

    Things are gonna change
    This is the morning after
    When reality bites
    The morality kicks in
    To those damaged limitations

    This is the morning after
    All that went before
    All of the song and laughter
    The morning after, gets up from the floor
    To do it all again

    But things are gonna change
    This is the morning after
    My turn to get pushed in the face
    Feeling right down, resurrecting the clown
    Yeah I bloody well will
    You look around for which way to go
    But where you gonna turn?

    And when the morning after
    Pleads to take no more
    We patch up the last disaster
    Slower, faster, crawl out through the door
    And do it all again
    But things have gotta change
    This is the morning after
    You feel shite, the air bites
    Oh will I ever learn?
    Your ear’s deaf, your girl’s left
    Never to return
    But it’s the morning after
    All that went before
    And now you paid your debt
    Get up you wreck, and crawl out through the door
    Oh, love will return

    This is the morning after
    You will learn
    The barrier we cross
    Is somewhere between Heaven and Hell
    Ah, but the world will never change
    So we must dig inside, and crawl outside ourselves
    I will, I bloody well will
    Things are gonna change

    Things are gonna change
    This is the morning after

    I will, I bloody well will
    Things are gonna change

    • Rayne says:

      Nazaryan’s a libertarian/right-winger type but this tweet was funny. Chalk up another Democratic win.


      EDIT: Hey, n00bie Lorejay? Take your racist bullshit someplace else. I’m not putting up with that crap here. Buh-bye.


      EDIT: Racist trolls have arrived. It’s funny how calling them racist draws their ire but being actually racist is for them NBD.

      And it’s definitely the same term pulling them in. They’re totally ignoring all but that term. Literally a dogwhistle.

      • Eureka says:

        How ’bout them Mets?

        [Wait til Lenny Dykstra shows up on some ballot — if not disqualified by his, eh, resume.]

        • Frank Anon says:

          Bobby came out on local TV around 11pm, when he was ahead on the machines but they hadn’t counted the absentees which were VERY Democratic leaning. He looked mad, or drunk, or just in disbelief that he could have lost, but the first thing out of his mouth was that “they” were voting twice and the job of Mayor of Stamford was being stolen from him.

        • ralph white says:

          How ’bout those Braves!
          Whupped Milwaukee, LA, and Houston.
          Great to win in Houston and exorcise, to some extent, the historic Super Bowl loss in that city by the Falcons. Oh yeah, and my UGA Bulldogs are #1 in college football. Living large for a while anyway.

      • Rayne says:

        Really not certain. I know he was shot in 2004 and there was other work he released in 2005 before the album on which this cut appears.

        • holdingsteady says:

          Thanks for the encouragement, Rayne, and the Ray Davies especially! I’m putting his cd on right now. As I read the lyrics, I knew the tune so perfectly in my head but wouldn’t dare sing it aloud, even to myself :)

          When he was on fresh air years back he told about being shot – so heartfelt. I may try to dig that one up also.

          Thank you for your posts, much appreciated for their down-to-earth motivation and common sense intelligence.

        • holdingsteady says:

          Checking in with my millennials now… (they heard a lot of Kinks and Ray growing up, during dinner parties, haha!). I think they like it?! So it will live on.

          Apeman is super fun to listen to while running!

          You guys are the best:))

        • Lulymay says:

          Hey! I’m older than all of you, but I can still bop around the kitchen while making a fresh batch of spaghetti sauce to my fav “LOLA L o l a – LOLA!”
          Have a great day, everyone!

  2. Eureka says:

    Apologies for the OT*, can’t find a written story for this so if any further info turns up please link:

    World News Tonight: “DHS: DRONE THREAT TO ELECTRIC GRID: A newly released intelligence bulletin obtained by @ABC News reveals a potential plot to disrupt the U.S. electrical grid. @GioBenitez has more on the alleged plot involving a drone. [embedded clip of segment]”
    10:00 PM · Nov 3, 2021

    ABC News teased this as a threat to the American electrical grid, then placed the event in the Northeast … narrowed to some unstated place in Pennsylvania (though with the overhead view, someone could bellingcat this loc.). They obtained a DHS Bulletin (Dated October 28, 2021, Unclassified // Law Enforcement Sensitive) about a modified drone found July 16, 2020 (so why the Bulletin *now*) on a rooftop near an electrical substation. There’s a thick copper loop dangling from it via ropes attached to the rotor arms.

    They say this is the first known instance in the US of a modified drone (UAS) “likely” used to “specifically target energy infrastructure”, so I infer some similar tactic has since been (newly understood to have been) used elsewhere in the world — as to why the warning now. Or maybe they picked up some chatter…

    * but I bet less OT than the racist trolls Rayne’s flushing!

    • Lawnboy says:

      I dont want to amp this up too much, but one drone seems like a stretch to do much damage.
      Me thinks it might take clusters of them with a lot of copper. (and its very heavy, so beyond their lift capability); however, this news is “shocking”.

      I yield my remains time to Punaise, and return to the night shift tasks at hand.


      • Raven Eye says:

        If I was of a mind to mess with electrical transmission, dangling copper wires would not have made it to my short list.

        To some poor sod this might have seemed like a flash of genius, but it does not align with current understanding (and concerns) regarding the nation’s electrical infrastructure and supply chain situation.

        Also, the “planners” of this gambit may be a little insulated from recent events: I you want to mess with an electrical grid, the one in Texas would more likely generate the opportunity for a failed state.

        • P J Evans says:

          My understanding is that many [long distance] electrical transmission lines are aluminum wire – not as conductive, but lighter weight than copper. (And less expensive, I suspect).
          Also one drone would have to hit the exact right spot to do much damage – and that requires an insider to plan where to hit.

        • Joe Raycraft says:

          The dangling wires may be a mitigation against whatever the drone was carrying. An EMP (Electro magnetic Pulse) weapon could be fitted on a drone (The depth of capability of these weapons is way beond my knowing), but it would seem that if used at a weak point in the grid some extent of disturbance could be expected. This would explain why the camera was not used, an EMP moves through the air like a wave and would be able to travel along anything conductive. There was an article in Scientific American in the 90s, I think, about this. The drone most likely could not fly with the wires attached to the rotors, so there is the possibility that whoever found the drone put the copper wire on it for the sake of immobilizing it. Wiki mentions this:

      • HenryR says:

        A single thin copper wire dangling from a drone can indeed short out a high voltage transmission line and disrupt whatever that line was supplying. It might only trip a breaker and cause a brief disruption as the network re-routes power or it might cause an old line to fail and separate, which can take several hours to get repaired and cut service to hundreds, or to a factory.

        In Operation Outward during WWII the British sent thousands of weather balloons carrying a small time fised cannister with a thin steel cable toward Germany for several years causing constant disruptions to the German grid, and an occasional complaint from Sweden and Switzerland when they floated too far.

    • Raven Eye says:

      But seriously…

      It was reported that the camera was removed from the drone. That would indicate that the flight was not FPV (first person view), which hugely impacts the targeting accuracy, especially with a smallish consumer-grade drone. Consider the accuracy of GPS positioning and you get an idea of the difficulty using that vehicle for a precision attack.

      To get an idea of the precision of an FPV flight, take a look at this video — but note that even here, the operator was relatively close to the flight area:

      On the other hand, if I had a drone to waste, and I just wanted to make some sparks and get people spun up, the setup illustrated would do the trick.

      • harpie says:

        On the other hand, if I had a drone to waste, and I just wanted to make some sparks and get people spun up, the setup illustrated would do the trick.

        Then the next question would maybe be:
        “Who might benefit from a ploy like this?”

        • Raven Eye says:

          Why do people: Shoot at traffic signs, drive-by and hit mailboxes with baseball bats, flush cherry bombs down public toilets, drop large rocks off highway overpasses, etc.?

          On the other hand, they could be aspirational terrorists, or just people with a political or social “bent” and wanted see what the authorities would do.

          The term “Ploy” implies some level of integration with a tactical or strategic goal.

        • Eureka says:

          Why is DHS sharing a Bulletin to LE (nationwide, I took it to be) one-and-a-third years later?*

          Doesn’t rule out a local yokel, obviously, but it suggests some decision-based weight was tipped.

          [And sure, that weight could have been from something like a file review of Why Dronze Bad. One supposes.]

          *from the date the device was found; ? when it got there

        • Raven Eye says:

          It is interesting. And brings into play the time of day and local concealment, as well as the situational awareness of the site operators. Someone will eventually recognize the site from the photos and ID it for us.

          But one thing I couldn’t gather from the reporting, or what little of the bulletin I managed to read, was the type of camera. Though FPV drones are the norm now, at one time you flew them visually from the ground (like a traditional R/C model airplane) and the camera merely recorded the flight. Sharper and more knowledgeable eyes could possibly identify the model and vintage of the drone shown in the pictures.

          And the wire that was suspended from the drone was pretty puny stuff.

        • Raven Eye says:

          Update from Wired is that the drone was a DJI Mavic 2 (2018 vintage) that is normally capable of FPV operation. DJI’s spec for the maximum remote control operating distance is 5 miles, but that’s a laboratory calculation (or the operator standing on an aluminum boat in the middle of the Dead Sea).

          So the perps discarded the FPV capability and resorted to local line-of-sight. (To give you an idea of FPV drone capability, in an earlier post here I included a link to an FPV video pacing a moving UP train outside of Reno. It included pacing, landing on moving cars, flying under moving cars, and flying into and out of a moving box car, etc.) And you couldn’t deliver a precision attack just using GPS.

          I’m still not sure of the motives — that drone is unlikely able to lift enough wire to disable transmission lines, despite what some people have speculated. Distribution lines are also unlikely, given the short length of the wire, although it could have fouled wires in a switching station, but that would mean the operators would have needed to be almost at the fence line.

      • Raven Eye says:

        BTW…The Joint Intelligence Bulletin specifically called out distribution lines (“…was likely intended to disrupt operations by creating a short circuit to cause damage to transformers or distribution lines.”).

        Discussion of transmission lines might be included somewhere else in the bulletin. Transmission lines were the only ones shown in the ABC story.

    • rosalind says:

      listening to CBC radio Nov. 1st discovered that people in Eastern Canada had woken up to discover their cell phone clocks had been set back an hour. Bell claims: “a glitch in its network last night that caused people’s location detection feature to think that they were somewhere else.”

      i hope there is follow-up reporting to confirm this was an actual glitch on Bell’s part, and not a hack.

      • Eureka says:

        Hadn’t heard of that one — yeah, begs follow-up reporting, too. [As an aside, it’s a good reminder that we still have no idea the fullstream effects of e.g. Solar Winds.]

  3. Sandy says:

    Maddow had an interesting historical snapshot last night- going back to Bush 41, every newly elected President, regardless of party, lost both VA and NJ governorships to the other party, until Biden. Biden only lost VA. Historically speaking, he’s doing better than any President since Reagan on these 2 races.

    • Mojo Risin' says:

      If the GOP can get 75% of non-college women in a fairly blue state, they can motivate GED Karen elsewhere, too.

      The reality is dems just can’t compete with the power of white resentment, especially from prole womenfolk.

    • P J Evans says:

      Too much of the media is “OMG! Dems in Disarray!” and the establishment Dems believe it. Or are still thinking like it’s the 60s and 70s.

      • Theodora30 says:

        I disagree with Marcy that it’s the Democrats’ messaging that’s the problem — it’s the mainstream “liberal” media’s terrible framing that drowns out Democrats’ messages. There is strong evidence that just repeating a lie strengthens it but the media kept repeating Republican voters concerns about CRT without making it clear every time they repeated that claim that it was bogus.

        The media also kept talking about the costs of the BBB bill — a right wing talking point — without pointing out that there a solid provisions in the bill to pay for those costs. The bill includes provisions for increasing the IRS’s ability to collect taxes, a corporate minimum tax, a surtax on income over $10 million, and bringing down the cost of prescription drugs. The Treasury estimates that the bill would raise $2 trillion which is more than the cost of all the proposals combined. If this bill is passed it will DECREASE the deficit! Since that analysis came out I have not heard anyone in the media point that out but poling shows that phony Republican concerns about cost has weakened support for the bill. Every time a Republican talks about the dangers of increasing the debt reporters should ask why they aren’t trying to repeal Trump’s budget-busting tax cuts for the rich that added an eye-popping $2 trillion to our debt with little added growth.

        ABC’s Terry Moran blamed Biden for the fact that ABC’s polling showed that while the public was paying fairly close attention to the BBB bill debate most had no idea what was actually in the bill. Apparently Terry doesn’t realize that that poll shows a colossal media failure to give the voters the information we need to make reasonable choices. Moran seems to think that the special constitutional protection our founders gave to journalists was to allow them to entertain themselves rather than to ensure a well-informed citizenry.

        Biden publicly spoke about the bill multiple times but the media — the same media that covered Trump’s every public utterance, usually live — largely ignored his statements. No amount of messaging can overcome the media’s blatant distortion of facts.

        Steve Bannon was right when he said that it’s the mainstream media that does the real damage to Democrats.

  4. blueridgebill says:

    (long time lurker, serial sharer)
    Thank you for this! Too much doom on the left is self defeating.
    I’m so far west in North Carolina I’m in the Atlanta media market.
    (Madison Cawthorn, dang…)
    I’ve watched the GOP in GA and NC ride a series of moral panics about Culture War issues to electoral success. Fear of Gay Marriage completed the Republican takeover in both states, snookering a disquietingly large number of Black voters. In 2019, several GOP county operations where headed by anti-trans activists, mostly pitched “evil transexuals in the gym showers”. The pandemic sort of killed this for 2020: but I’m seeing the usual suspects in Pickens and Fannin Co GA (where I raised my kids as a gay single parent, and, look it up, is called “gay friendly”.)
    The metanarritive of threat is “you Real Americans are under attack from Them”.
    I’ve watched in dismay since the 80s as the old racist narratives are joined with increasing insane Evangelicals demonic and apocalypse frauds, the ever expanding 2nd Amendment claims of the NRA, Fox and it’s clones keep getting shriller. CRT panic is the equivalent of the Satanic panic, magnified by social media to the brightness of a thousand suns…
    These panics are packaged: written by conservative outfits: Dems don’t seem to want to indulge in this crassness..I’m not sure what the opposite of these frenzies is.
    We need good narratives that tell the truth. “We have to be in it together: we need everyone.”

    Maybe some of the Media focus is that Virginia is, to some extent it’s the Washington media’s local market.
    It’s where the MSM lives…

  5. MKZB says:

    Thank you, Rayne! I agree wholeheartedly. The news cycles after elections always seem to spell doom for Democrats and then slowly the other stories trickle in.

    I am a long time lurker and commented once several years ago. I apologize if it was under a different login, but cannot recall what it was.

  6. joel fisher says:

    One wonders if the wisdom in this piece will ever penetrate the thick heads of the Democratic Party leaders. Messaging is everything.
    5 things:
    The education party;
    The healthcare party;
    The America first party;
    The law and order party;
    The economy party.
    Do these things mean anything? No, but they are what the independents who decide elections want to think they’re voting for.
    The GOP never goes off message and that, I think, is why a minority party of evil scum won earlier this week and looks to be in the driver’s seat going forward.

    • Bobby Gladd says:

      Read the book “The Power Worshippers.”

      Time is running very short. My (overlapping) tally.

      Anthropocene Global Warming
      Pathogenic Pandemic(s)
      Economic Disruptions
      Academic Adversities
      Social/Gender/Racial Inequities
      Pervasive Corruption
      Threats to Democracies
      Armed State Conflicts
      Civilian Firearms Violence
      Degradation of Human Health
      Pervasive Global Pollution
      Species Extinctions
      Refugee/Migration Crises
      Food Insecurity, Starvation
      Cybercrimes & Online “Disinfo”
      Malign Technologies

      No one can plausibly claim to be “bored.”

      • joel fisher says:

        Be a lot of things, including working class party, the environment party, the racial justice party, etc. Just don’t talk about it if good election results are the object.

  7. harpie says:

    IF Murphy’s projected win holds for NJ Governor, it will be the first time a Democrat
    has won RE-election for Governor in NJ, since Brendan Byrne did it [for 1978-82 term].

    Since 1982, Kean, Whitman and Christie ALL managed that for the GOP.

  8. Zirc says:

    I get that we had a lot of good news locally, but those local wins don’t translate to a way to win in gerrymandered districts. The House and many statehouses are hard slogs for us because of that gerrymandering — witness Wisconsin and North Carolina for especially egregious examples. Granted, statewide offices aren’t gerrymandered, and that’s where your point on messaging is well taken. Those eight common values should be hammered home by every candidate everywhere. While states aren’t gerrymandered, the country has blundered into a constitutional gerrymander in the senate, and those eight values, when spoken out and acted on, may garner us a seat in a purplish state. We can’t take Virginia for granted, nor Minnesota, nor Wisconsin, nor Michigan, nor Pennsylvania, nor Nevada. We certainly can’t count on Arizona and Georgia staying blue. Those common values, if stated, and re-stated, may get us over more than one line and save the country from a long period of proto-fascism, by which I mean a “democracy” along the lines of Duda, Orban, and Erdogan.


    • Mojo Risin' says:

      Orbán and Erdogan are much better options than Hawley, Cruz, Cotton, etc. They’re evil dictators, but at least nominally working for their own countries.

      • Neil says:

        Nope – Orban and Erdogan only work for their own faction, not for the good of their country overall. No apologies for them, please. Have a look into the laws in Turkey banning insults to the state, the flag, or the office of the president.
        Orban and Erdogan have not only had the ambition, they’ve executed on it.
        Can anyone imagine Cruz doing the same ? No.
        That doesn’t mean they’re not a big problem, however.

  9. CoolDogFalstaff says:

    Relatively small-ish potatoes, but in Knoxville, Tennessee, all five progressive city council members were re-elected. It’s supposed to be a non-partisan election, but this year the local GQP created a PAC to funnel a lot of money to the five so-called “common sense” candidates, one of whom endorsed drinking urine for all sorts of bodily ailments, and another who was mad because city council wouldn’t approve his zoning request so he ran for a seat.

    One of the losers complained that the winners had bussed in a bunch of voters from outside the city. Knoxville is a blue dot in a sea of red, so… um… that didn’t happen.

    • Rayne says:

      That’s good news! It’s nice to know Knoxville wasn’t pressured by the anti-vaxx/anti-mask/anti-science crowd. I’ve been trying to think of a place halfway between Michigan and Florida suitable for my elderly parents; I guess I may have to look at Knoxville’s blue dot. Thanks for sharing that!

      • CoolDogFalstaff says:

        There are four blue islands in this very long state. Knoxville has separate city and county government, and as you might expect, the Knox county gub’ment is anti-everything. Unfortunately, they control the schools. We’ve had progressive city government for a while, but there’s only so much they can do when the county mayor (former WWE wrestler Kane) encourages his constituents/fans to show up at city council meetings to protest.

        Yes, our county mayor is WWE wrestler Kane.

        • Rayne says:

          I’ve debated about Memphis but I think it might be too far west for my folks. Local health care facilities would also make a big difference to them which is why I’ve looked at NC’s Research Triangle area, but my folks haven’t liked NC.

          Wrestler as mayor? Hmm.

        • harold hecuba says:

          “…haven’t liked NC.”

          We have our issues, but there’s a lot here to like. RTP (or Raleigh-Durham – Chapel Hill) is three hours from the mountains and three hours to the coast. For the most part, Wake/Durham/Orange counties are fairly liberal, and we’ve got a couple of great museums. Plus, most of the people who live in those three counties weren’t actually born here so the flying of Confederate flags is limited (but not entirely gone; hey, it’s still NC).

        • Rayne says:

          Oh I have a lovely small town picked out in NC which is a reasonable driving distance from great hospitals and golf courses within walking distance. I’d certainly be okay with a winter home there myself. But I think the folks look at NC as a place to tour, not a place to call home. No idea why since I never expected them to settle for winters in Florida.

        • RWood says:

          Ashville real estate is through the roof right now, but if you look just outside you can find some nice places. Try Brevard or Hendersonville. I believe AA, Delta, and United all fly directly out of GR.

  10. Placeholder_for_Name says:

    Agreed, to dust ourselves off and get to work (longitime lurker: we either do something or give up). This analysis is exactly what I thought yesterday, wrt mayors knowing their constituencies’ concerns. What I am looking for now is analysis of a “Clinton” Democrat losing, but “Obama” Democrats are showing up AND winning (buried in this analysis). Really really everyone, thank you !

    [Welcome to emptywheel. If you reply to this comment with the username you’d prefer I will change it on this comment to match. Thanks! /~Rayne]

  11. Duke says:

    Rayne, Thank You!

    Shine the light on the blight of the Right and engage in the fight against eternal night.

    The scourge is upon us all for not speaking up. Fear is the wedge and civil society is the log.

  12. Thomas M. Conroy says:

    Since CRT isn’t taught in the public schools it would have been the Bill Clinton move to come out strongly against CRT being taught in the public schools. End of issue

    • Rayne says:

      I don’t know if the average Democrat could manage that backflip and stick the landing. It would take a level of talent most don’t have and training for which we don’t have the time or resources.

      George Lakoff’s work on framing says in negating the frame the frame is activated. If the GOP uses [Wedge Issue X], don’t explain, don’t negate, don’t even mention [X]. Establish a different frame and express Democratic values in doing so.

      • Mojo Risin' says:

        That isn’t the problem – the problem is that the average white american is a much better and willing audience for historical narratives that absolve them.

        No one buys a can of “I fucked up in history”, except Germans.

        Dems message is this: cheap burgers and gas are killing the planet, and white entitlement is intellectually stunting our society and helping old unfairnesses stay entrenched.

        No one wants to buy that!

      • Troutwaxer says:

        In the case of the West Virginia advertisement about CRT I’m not sure that’s correct, mainly because the ad went too far: The “child” was a high-school senior, the book won the Pulitzer Prize, the author was a Nobel Prize winner, and the ad made obvious exactly how the GQP is manipulating fear and inaccuracy.

        My suspicion is that Lakoff is right about frames, except – and this is crucial – when the opposition goes to far.

        • Rayne says:

          The persons who will be triggered by that advert about Morrison’s Beloved won’t know it went too far. They’ll only hear some poor little white boy’s fee-fees were hurt and his mommy was sad.

          The question to ask is whether that poor little white boy suffered permanent damage — uh, not if he’s managed to get through university, law school, and gotten a job as an attorney with the GOP, so no. Hell, he probably succeeded as he did because he was forced to confront an uncomfortable learning experience.

          Again, most Dems can’t step into the opposition’s frames without talent and a lot of training. I certainly wouldn’t put McAuliffe up against a bitter mother stoking up pity from other mothers; at best he needed a Psaki-like spokesperson to shoot that bullshit in the ass.

        • Troutwaxer says:

          Unfortunately, it’s a nasty dilemma. Challenging the lies can embed them more deeply into the minds of believers. Letting the lie go unchallenged costs you allies and is bad for morale on your side, and the big problem in the Virginia election was the lack of Democratic turnout. And your counter-attack may not convince the hardcore believers, but people wavering on the edge can still have their minds changed via argument.

          The problem for Democrats starts 40-50 years back somewhere in the neighborhood of Nixon or Reagan – the Republicans attack and the Democrats neither defend themselves nor counter-attack. As a progressive, this is endlessly disappointing.

  13. SVFranklinS says:

    Snap out of the funk is right.
    From what bits I’ve read, VA isn’t so much switching from blue to red, but the blue didn’t bother to turn out with as much energy as the reds. McAuliffe got 67% of the Biden vote; but Youngkin retained 90% of Trump’s. Very little switching. Those Trumpys don’t know what CRT is, but they don’t like it, and Dems saying it doesn’t exist isn’t an answer. It got the red voters to come out and vote.

    Turnout, turnout, turnout.

    What’s needed is 50 Stacy Abrams -like efforts in 50 states, each with local knowledge and connections, to get the turnout. Something to counter the Red press messaging.

    As an aside, I also find it a bit curious to read that the whole CRT thing was driven not by the Youngkin campaign, but by right wing media. Someone else is in the driver’s seat, not Youngkin – and now he owes them.

    • Zirc says:

      “What’s needed is 50 Stacy Abrams -like efforts in 50 states, each with local knowledge and connections, to get the turnout.”

      Exactly. My oldest has worked on numerous campaigns over the last ten or so years: Missouri, Ohio, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Maryland, and Virginia more than once. She is currently cleaning up after the last VA campaign. But it’s gig work. Obviously this father would like to see her get something more permanent, but beyond the personal concern, I believe the DNC or some progressive organization needs to implement precisely the 50-state all-the-time organizing Stacy Abrams does and which Howard Dean advocated years ago. Individual candidates have discovered that there is a lot of cash out there from small donors that can power campaigns. Surely, those donors can be mobilized to support and full-time, permanent organizers everywhere.


      • Eureka says:

        And remember Jane Kleeb in Nebraska — not only great at grass-roots coalition-aligning work, but rural engagement is key to heading off the GOP’s follow-the-Orban plan [where they lock down authoritarianism moving rurally —> into (sub)urban areas].

        I’m of the mind, too, that many so-called “rural” issues apply much more broadly or otherwise symbolize lots of social ills that need fixing (cf. broadband/internet access period in poor city sectors; living wage and job access; oligarchic/corp. natural resource exploitation; etc.), so her activism portfolio remains worth deeper attention for a variety of reasons.

        The specifics of what any cluster of local folks care about will always speak to national problems/solutions in some way.

        Glad to hear your eldest has that energy, Zirc!

        • Eureka says:

          That’s Primetime Wentz After Dark! But we don’t want him to be _too good_ in the daylight — no need to ruin our draft positioning from that pick-in-trade. Colts can win it all next year AFAIC (OK, maybe that’s taking things too far…) after the Relationship is Really Over.

        • Eureka says:

          And I don’t even understand what’s going on with the J-J-Jets and their five hundred quarterbacks. Iggs just traded Flacco ~back to them, I was half expecting to see him out there.

  14. Silly but True says:

    Not sure what to make of this morning’s Durham arrest of Danchenko.

    Apparently, FBI has long suspected Danchenko of being Russian agent since a 2009 multi year counterintelligence investigation based on his Russian intel connections.

  15. Pete T says:

    Perhaps “defund the police” falls into the same category. Except “defund the police” was a terrible message that didn’t need much help to become toxic.

    To be sure, policing needs to be reformed. I have a police lieutenant as a neighbor – young – and he doesn’t think most domestic, homeless, or psych related incidents should be first call police dispatches – perhaps as close backup. Now it’s hard to discern on a 911 whether that’s the case or not so I digress into not being an expert on this.

    But the toxicity may have also lead to the defeat of a Minneapolis bill to redo the Police Department into a Public Safety Department though there may be much more to that than meets my eye:

    Traditionally Dems are terrible messengers. I forget who said it…but Dems need to dedicate some effort in rural America where the Rs seem to have a lock.

    • Rayne says:

      Reform the police doesn’t work either as a slogan or in reality. This topic still needs work but at the same time the public has become aware of the problem when they begin to change emphasis in municipal funding.

      Dems are challenged by messaging for two reasons: they believe in facts and tend to explain them to provide them, and they represent a much more diverse spectrum of people than the much more homogenous GOP. How does a party with such a rich constituency settle on a single message to represent their points? Not at all easy especially when we insist any one message is fact-based?

      • Sonso says:

        And the deeply embedded power structure(s) that are especially visible in urban police departments will take decades to fix, whereas the ‘law & order’ crowd can get instant repression from the ‘heroes’ in blue. The adolescent petulance of the GQP aids and abets the essentially toxic masculinity that pervades urban police departments. Until America ‘grows up’, we’re stuck with the juvenile game of name-calling that came out of ‘defund the police’.

    • bg says:

      Thanks for the uplift, Rayne. It always feels bad when the day after media pile-on is paramount.

      Tim Keller, as Rayne noted, reelected Mayor of ABQ has tried to create a distinction with the 911 calls for police vs social services needs. We are still under a DOJ consent decree because the police union does not respect any chief or the demand under the consent decree to follow proper use of force policies, which got us here in the first place 7 going on 8 years ago. The Rs have a chance to increase their power on the City Council because they picked up a seat from a D who often voted against Tim. (We had a 6-3 D to R council, but often still could not reliably get 5 votes for Tim’s priorities. We have a 4-1 margin on the County Commission and can’t get Ds to vote together there, which is even worse.)

      I will say the two opposing candidates to Tim, our Sheriff who refused to get body cams for his crew and who is a registered D but a big supporter of TFG (and a crook, but that is a long story), and a right wing radio host (R) also a big supporter of TFG, were fairly easily dispatched by the voters. Hilariously in polling, second choice of voters for these clowns was the other, and voters for Tim said they had no second choice.

      We had NAIOP (Industrial Property Owners) bankroll non-union members of the school board to the tune of $40K per race, unheard of, and of course they won. We did not elect anti-maskers/CRT members, but it is unclear what the NAIOP’s agenda is. I tried to get info from my best resource yesterday, and pretty much came up empty. Maybe it is all about education/change the game as our public schools have been failing, but the problem is more about poverty than anything I think.

      Again, thanks for the uplift. It was a rough day yesterday for other reasons as well.

      • bmaz says:

        Yes. For reasons I won’t go into (but they are good and friendly reasons), I once knew James and Kari Brandenburg. The ABQ police have been a problem for a very long time.

  16. Bill Crowder says:

    Curious how one individual is able to comprehensively report on the elections compared to the national media preordained plotline. Much less chicken little.

    Not sure when you sleep, but thank you.

  17. Rugger9 says:

    Pete T.:

    That lock has a principal cause: Sinclair Media, Rupert Murdoch’s shop of horrors and their fellow RWNM purveyors own the large majority of the media outlets in rural areas. They have no scruples about flexing that power, either and one ends up with voters that have the basic mindset of someone in North Korea (DPRK). There are studies that have shown the Faux News customer knows less about the world than someone living under a rock.

    • blueridgebill says:

      Can confirm: or perhaps they know plenty, that ain’t so.
      My cousin who’s the NRA Life Member (and, I suspect, a sixty three year old virgin, not that there’s anything wrong with that…) was solemnly telling me the 1/6 wasn’t an insurrection, just the boys “incited” by Antifa and the Deep State.
      He thinks DC’s various gun restrictions “unconstitutional”.
      Some of the Supremes seem to agree.

  18. Disraeli56 says:

    Creating a existential threat from the oh so scary CRT was so successful can the demonization of Quantum Mechanics be far behind? It is so uncertain after all. Only the elites (progressives all doncha know) claim to understand it. And the math, don’t even get me started on the math.

    I continue to be amazed and appalled by turns as to the effectiveness of propaganda.

    • Rayne says:

      If quantum mechanics or string theory or any other framework could be manipulated into a racist dogwhistle, they’d use it.

      They’ve been manipulating history to that end, and not just with CRT; they’ve appropriated classics to justify their racist philosophy.

  19. Alan K says:

    Perhaps the MSM and their sponsors and the high figure lobbyists who get quoted by the same are likely not too sure they want the Progressives to have the kind of leverage they are winning. If so maybe they are floating a push-back message like “see what the progressives did to VA”. Fact is: someone on AOC staff should be running the Dems media strategy (which likely shows just why the elite Dem messaging machine is freaking).

    As Rayne points out the Dems squeaked in NJ, which surely shows that Trump is casting a long shadow in the suburbs. And let’s celebrate the amazing wins in the cities!

  20. Alan K says:

    OT – but is the latest news from Durham investigation a surprise to EmptyWheel? I didn’t see anything like that coming, but I’m not paying that much attention.

    • Rugger9 says:

      We’d have to see what the charges are. Durham doesn’t have a good track record on his filing competency.

      • Silly but True says:

        Apparently Obama administration FBI carried out a counterintelligence investigation 2009-2011 on Danchenko because of his connection to Russia intelligence agents.

        Like Sussman, Danchenko has also been charged with five separate counts of lying to FBI:

        The FBI states they had his lies on tape (transcript is in indictment).

  21. dimmsdale says:

    Thank you, Rayne, particularly for your citing George Lakoff, whose work could help Dem messaging enormously. To me, the thing that stands out about Virginia is the nincompoop who was interviewed about CRT. He was against it, dammit, and that was the #1 issue for him. Commentator asked him what CRT was; he hadn’t the faintest idea, and the more he talked the more obvious it was. But he was engaged, and enraged, and Youngkin got his vote. Republican messaging is always emotionally engaging, even emotionally manipulative. It gets people to the polls. Democratic messaging is, if anything, too respectful of voters’ emotional boundaries–a trait I find admirable on a personal level, but I no longer think it works in getting people to the polls.

    Another thing, the R-Fascist message is always about ‘taking’–the libs are taking away your rights with that there CRT, taking away your tax money, taking away the white-supremacy power structure you think gives you an edge. Democratic messaging, I think, could be more about what the R-fascisti are taking from you–your literal right to have your vote count, the impartiality of your Supreme Court, your kids’ future as well informed citizens, et cetera. It’s very possible (and I think absolutely necessary) for Dems to rile people up in something like that fashion, really hammer it home, and unlike confected BS like “CRT,” it’ll be REAL issues–i.e., the truth.

    Democrats still, somehow, think ‘the truth will out.’ Not without a lot of (possibly emotionally manipulative, but hey–that’s what advertising IS) help.Our country won’t survive Dems’ hands-off messaging assumptions.

    • RWood says:

      Agree that the messaging is way off, but I also feel the dems are unwilling to admit that their voters are not much different than the trump voters. Reminds me of Cipolla and his piece about the Five Basic Laws of Stupidity.

      ” Essentially stupid people are dangerous and damaging because reasonable people find it difficult to imagine and understand unreasonable behavior. An intelligent person may understand the logic of a bandit. The bandit’s actions follow a pattern of rationality: nasty rationality, if you like, but still rationality. The bandit wants a plus on his account. Since he is not intelligent enough to devise ways of obtaining the plus as well as providing you with a plus, he will produce his plus by causing a minus to appear on your account. All this is bad, but it is rational and if you are rational you can predict it. You can foresee a bandit’s actions, his nasty maneuvres and ugly aspirations and often can build up your defenses.

      With a stupid person all this is absolutely impossible as explained by the Third Basic Law. A stupid creature will harass you for no reason, for no advantage, without any plan or scheme and at the most improbable times and places. You have no rational way of telling if and when and how and why the stupid creature attacks. When confronted with a stupid individual you are completely at his mercy.”

  22. skua says:

    That’s a great article you’ve written Rayne. Thank you.

    You blew the “Virginia horror” narrative out of the water and provided an accurate and reasonable perpective from which important and real progress towards a more equitable, democratic and viable future can be seen.
    Feels good to have some sunshine.

  23. Stew says:

    Hi Rayne
    There is no way to keep score in this game
    Noam Chomsky says the Republican Party is the most dangerous political entity in all of humankind
    Chris Hedges characterizes Republicans as sociopaths
    Now we are seeing this rapid disintegration of empire at breakneck speed
    Maybe I’ve been listening to Ben Norton and Max Blumenthal a bit too much
    But they do their homework

  24. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Happy Guy Fawkes’s Day – but not to those who intend to do the same in this country. They’re objective is not freedom, but the tyranny they claim to oppose, carrying a cross and dressed in a flag.

  25. Neil says:

    There is a basic problem that is exploited every day by politicians of all stripes, all over the world, that I think relates to the Framing point being made: the skipping over the part where people agree what the big problems really are.

    When this step is bypassed, it allows whataboutism, diversions, distractions, accusations etc to dominate the brainspace and take all the oxygen out of the room. This is the main reason why groups/societies pull together in the face of immediate, existential threats – there is no doubt about what the big (immediate) problem is.

    The fact that the West, in general, has not had any immediate existential threats for quite a while now, has allowed politics to devolve so far away from a discussion of what the problems really are that nobody seems to be able to do it any more. Politicians and parties seem to jump directly to policy choices without working through what really needs to be addressed by policy choices, first.

    Observers (including voters) either connect with these proposed policy choices, or they don’t, based on their life experiences and upbringing. But because the step of problem definition has been bypassed, there’s little chance of changing observers’ (voters’) minds -> because they’re not having their viewpoints changed about what the big problems are.

    Instead, cherry-picked points of attack end up being presented as “the big problems”, and the result is dysfunctional politics that accomplishes absolutely nothing. Observers follow the cues and figure that, yup, these must be the big problems.

    Consistent framing of values would for sure help break out of the cycle, and should be done, but needs to be accompanied by enough messaging about what the underlying problems are and why they’re the big problems. Meaning that to get people onboard for, say, a social benefits spending program, to get past the reactions of “why are we giving these people something for nothing when I had to do it myself”, one has to first do enough messaging about what the specific problem is that needs to be fixed, and why it’s a big problem. This isn’t the same as explaining why the policy choice is well designed, or would be effective, or why we should like it. It’s like a speech about a proposed policy to address “youth unemployment”, that skips over the details of what it is and why it is a problem.

    And trying to address “everything” is a great way to avoid agreement on what the biggest problems are. IMHO the D party suffers from this to some degree. Just my 2 cents.

    • Neil says:

      One other point: By definition, progressives want to change the status quo, compared to conservatives, who in principle want to preserve the status quo. Which means that, by definition, progressives will always have the burden to get people to agree that something is a big problem that needs to be addressed. Conservatives, by definition, have the inherent advantage of not having to do this. There’s no way around this. In a certain sense, the way out is a multi-party system.

      • P J Evans says:

        What about conservatives who want to preserve the status quo of their parents’ childhood? These are people who don’t like anything much since about 1970, and some seem to prefer before 1950.

      • Epicurus says:


        I just read an article that theorized we are transformed into a parliamentary system and not the traditional two party, republican format under which the nation developed. In that article, in effect the Republican Party is now really two factions, the older 1950s Republican Party and the newer Trumpian Tea party reactionaries. The Dems are now the two faction John Kennedyesque/Clintonian bond supporting Dems and the ascending Bernie Sanders progressives. I would have added in the Independents drawing from their constantly shifting selections from the aforementioned four factions. Finally there are the Greens, for want of another term, for the powerful climate faction. Congresspeople need to get elected so they gravitate to one of these factions, maybe two, for their core support. They don’t get re-elected if they aren’t true to their faction’s cause. Presidents, and I don’t know when this would have happened, are no longer Presidents of all the people but rather Presidents of the parliamentary faction in power or combination of factions necessary to get the Presidency. As importantly because of the polarization created by the factional tension, candidates are elected not only for perceived allegiance to same but just as importantly because they aren’t the other, the core of gerrymandering. Trump wasn’t Hillary; Biden wasn’t Trump.

        To your point we already are a multi-party, factional system. Conventionally we don’t see ourselves this way, but effectively that is what we are. I don’t think it is recognition of the “major” problems by factions that is the major issue. I think it is the proposed (and intended) solution by each faction, to be imposed on all the other factions and which others understand is going to be imposed on them and which they resist, which serves to increase polarization and the inability to govern effectively.

        As an observation school boards and parents, even principals, have relatively little say in what the public school curricula are. The state departments of education typically codify what the learning goals are by subject and by grade. Teachers and principals must adhere to this codification in order to get their licenses and certification. States frequently test according to these goals to insure that teachers are aware and are teaching what the department wants and that children are learning the same. Massachusetts has the MCAS as a requirement to graduate high school as one example. In VA the Dems were purely stupid re: the CRT issue. All they had to do was to repeat ad nauseum that CRT (whatever people think it may be) is not part of the VA’s educational teaching requirements or process and therefore not part of the governing curriculum. Please see the following for inability to control the messaging away from basic facts.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          What “older 1950s Republican Party” would that be? The one that’s been lying unclaimed in the morgue for some years?

  26. gmoke says:

    Too bad nobody remembers the track record of Socialist mayors like Dan Hoan who was Mayor of Milwaukee, Wisconsin from 1916 to 1940 or Jasper McLevy, Mayor of Bridgeport, Connecticut from 1933 until 1957. Not even Bernie Sanders tends to mention his time as Mayor of Burlington, Vermont from 1981 to 1989. Sewer Socialists all three, a pejorative term coined by Morris Hillquit in 1932, but a track record of serving the citizenry honestly which should be remembered and built upon.

    • skua says:

      The effects of presenting news in a way that increases fear can be seen in the over-emotionalty of Fox News devotees.

      The way that everything else that happened, except “Virginia Govenor is GOP”, is being positioned by the MSM is going to be increasing fear in Democrat voters. Which will inevitably have emotional and cognitive biases over-riding clear thinking more often.

      The news organisations doing this are poisoning the nation’s future.

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