Are We a Shithole Country?
On this episode of democracy-ish, Danielle and Toure discuss Bob Woodward’s bombshell interview with Trump, voter apathy and the decline of American leadership in the world.
This week, Bob Woodward dropped audio of an interview he conducted with Trump for his new book, “Rage.” It was, well, enraging –– for several reasons.
About 100 million eligible voters didn’t show up to polls in 2016. WTF?
In the absence of meaningful leadership on the world stage, is America regressing to third-world country status?
As if 2020 couldn’t get more absurd, on Wednesday Donald Trump was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.
To be clear, the Nobel committee accepts nominations from any Norwegian head of state, national politicians, university professors, and directors of foreign policy institutes as well as past award winners. Trump’s nominator was, unsurprisingly, a far-right politician.
“The hatred, the divide, the racism, the xenophobia –– this man stands for everything that’s the opposite of the Nobel Peace Prize. To even think of him being nominated for this award, which has meant something throughout history––”
Danielle cuts in: “So did the presidency, until fucking recently.”
What happens when America loses its status in the world? As COVID-19 continues to spread across the country and the rest of the world moves on, we’re looking at it. And it’s terrifying.
Episode Highlights –– Vote or Die
Lordy, there were tapes
If the depth of Trump’s depravity wasn’t already apparent, it was thrown into stark relief this week with the release of audio recordings Bob Woodward made of interviews with the president for his new book, “Rage.”
“Aptly titled after me,” Danielle says.
“On tape, Trump explicitly says that he knew just how dangerous the coronavirus was, he knew it can kill old people as well as young people, that it’s fucking airborne ... and a national security threat paramount to the 1918 Spanish fucking flu. But Woodward decided to hold on to that fucking information, so he could sell a book.”
She points out that when Woodward interviewed Trump in February, a few thousand Americans had died. Now, the death toll is nearly 200,000.
Toure wonders why Danielle is critiquing a journalist and not Trump.
“Because the media is the reason we are here in the first fucking place,” she replies. “Had they done their job in 2015 and not cared about ratings and saw that Hitler was on his way, we wouldn't be.”
The unmasked and uninformed 40%
Toure thinks that if Bob Woodward had released his tapes in March or April, it wouldn’t have changed the trajectory of how the government responded to COVID.
“Are you insane?” asks Danielle. “Trump had told us during that time to inject bleach, to take hydroxychloroquine, to not wear a mask.”
“And we knew better,” Toure responds.
“Democrats knew,” Danielle clarifies, pointing out that the rest of the country was colossally misinformed, if they were paying attention at all.
That’s what happens when 40% of the country is in a right-wing bubble, trained to disregard or disbelieve anything that doesn’t come from Fox News or One America News Network, Toure points out.
“All these Karen's we see arguing in stores about their right to not wear masks –– they cannot be saved. They don't want to listen to facts, science, media. Fuck them. The problem is, they vote.”
That’s not the only problem, though.
“I'd rather pretend that they don't exist,” says Danielle. “But that's not how a virus works.”
Could we get down (under) with compulsory voting?
Another problem, as our hosts see it: the 100 million eligible voters who didn't cast a ballot in 2016. That’s about 55 to 60% participation.
“I find their inaction to be fairly disgusting,” says Toure. “Unpatriotic and Un-American.”