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Free Money for Me But Not for Thee
Plus, Jean-Luc Godard, 1930-2022.
Recently at The Bulwark:
CHARLIE SYKES: Will the U.S. Abandon Ukraine? It Could Happen.
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BILL LUEDERS: Free Money for Me But Not for Thee.
Clearly ready in advance, the White House also dinged other Republican members of Congress for their duplicity on the question of loan forgiveness. “This is the best White House trolling ever!” declared one satisfied Twitter commentator.
The Paycheck Protection Program, created during the Trump administration in response to the pandemic, offered low-interest private loans to help businesses and nonprofits retain staff and continue paying them through COVID-related closures. Employers who kept their worker counts and wages stable could have these loans forgiven, interest included. They were literally being paid extra for doing what they might have done anyway.
Now that the heat of the initial debate has dissipated, it’s worth having a look at the arguments Republicans have levied against the program—as well as their own acceptance of government money through PPP. Is their debt relief any more or less justified than that which is now going to relieve student loan debt? And, as we head into the midterms, what is the political message they want to convey to the people who stand to benefit from student loan debt forgiveness?
Establishment Republicans let the kooks out of the basement, and now they’re dominant. But this didn’t start with Trump. David Corn argues it started 70 years ago when Dwight D. Eisenhower surrendered to Joseph McCarthy on a train on today’s podcast with Charlie Sykes.
Eric and Eliot discuss what they have been writing lately, the situation in Ukraine, the reasons for why Russia analysts got things wrong while military historians got them right, prospects for a renewed Iran nuclear agreement, and whether or not the the United States can handle two near peer adversaries at the same time.
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GREG FERRARA: Jean-Luc Godard, 1930-2022.
Jean-Luc Godard has died at the age of 91. He was the last of the French New Wave, a group of critics turned filmmakers who, under the guidance of André Bazin, cofounder of the French film magazine Cahiers du Cinéma, challenged the staid cinema they saw in France. They argued for cinema as art which, counterintuitive to most moviegoers’ idea of art, meant not the bloated, award-winning “respectable” movies but the genre movie, the low-budget B movie, or the Hollywood factory product given new vitality by directors like Howard Hawks, working within a studio system but creating a new language of cinema in the process. Manny Farber would later define these two opposing ideas as White Elephant Art vs. Termite Art but the idea sprang from critics like Godard. Perhaps most importantly, Godard, in every possible way, practiced what he preached.
His first feature, Breathless (À Bout de Souffle), began as a script treatment by his friends and colleagues François Truffaut and Claude Chabrol, who based it on real events they had read about. When they became frustrated with the story structure, they gave up and Godard took over. The result was a film that felt so fresh, so new, so at odds with the accepted way to shoot and edit a film, that it became the face of the French New Wave despite debuting a year after Truffaut and Chabrol’s early efforts.
Happy Tuesday! The “NatCons” are meeting in Miami. Tom Lo Bianco has this dispatch.
Motorola’s secret EV. They made a Corvette.
Lindsay Graham stuns the GOP… By making abortion a federal campaign issue with a newly proposed ban.
Dennis Prager goes there… And wants to know if people who voted for Nazis are really that bad.
Are Trump’s lawyers getting desperate? A new filing makes it appear so.
An alleged chess cheating scandal for the ages. This is, indeed, wild.
Knifing the nuts. The establishment is trying to stop the kooks but keep their fingerprints off the murder weapon until after the primary. Is it working?
The Authoritarianism convergence… At Reason, Stephanie Slade argues: “the problem with American politics isn't polarization—it's rising illiberalism.”
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