Daily Archives: April 14, 2020

Joseph Nye: Do Morals Matter?



WGBHForum   Apr 15, 2020

Joseph Nye, leading scholar of international relations considers presidents and their foreign policy from FDR to Trump, who come up short in the morality polls. In “Do Morals Matter?” Nye provides a concise analysis of the role of ethics in U.S. foreign policy during the post-1945 era. Working through each presidency from Truman to Trump, Nye scores their foreign policy on three ethical dimensions: their intentions, the means they used, and the consequences of their decisions. Alongside this, he evaluates their leadership qualities, elaborating on which approaches work and which ones do not. WGBH Forum Network ~ Free online lectures: Explore a world of ideas

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Introduction to the Beinecke Digital Library

Beinecke Library at Yale

Apr 14, 2020

Access the digital collections from the Beinecke Library website: https://beinecke.library.yale.edu/dig… The Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library has digitized approximately one million images of collection material, with new images added regularly. We’ve made this video as a guide for new users about how to access and search the Beinecke digital library. We hope you’ll enjoy searching the Beinecke Library’s digital collections. While they are but a portion of the overall library collections, the million plus images available to you have a lot to offer. Like any large digital collection, searching our digital library can involve some trial and error, occasional frustration and frequent delight. We hope you’ll come back early and often and find great reward in engaging the past, in the present, for the future on the Beinecke Digital Library.

Will COVID-19 end globalization as we know it?


Apr 4, 2020

Reality Check with Wang Guan: Amid the #coronavirus pandemic, trade, travel and commerce have halted while geopolitical tensions and #xenophobia have increased. Will the pandemic eventually end globalization as we know it? CGTN anchor Wang Guan believes not.

Will COVID-19 End Globalization?

The Agenda with Steve Paikin

Apr 1, 2020

Will globalization pass the stress test of COVID-19? Will it strengthen nationalist forces that have long called for reinforced borders? The Agenda examines globalization in a post-pandemic world with Daniel Drezner, professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University; Janice Stein, Belzberg Professor of Conflict Management in the Department of Political Science at the Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy at the University of Toronto; and Sean Speer, public policy professor at the Munk School.

Donald Trump: ‘When somebody is president of the United States, the authority is total’

Guardian News

Apr 14, 2020

US president Donald Trump has claimed he has ‘total authority’ to supersede decisions made by state governors to ease social restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic. ‘When someone is president of the United States the authority is total’, Trump said during a White House press briefing. Reporters questioned the assertion, asking: ‘You said that when someone is the president of the United States their authority is total. That is not true. Who told you that?’ Trump replied ‘We are going to write up papers on this’. Although claiming he had the authority to ‘call the shots’ for each state’s lock-down regulations, Trump insisted he was ‘getting on very well with the governors’ and is ‘certain there won’t be a problem’

Mounting COVID-19 Clusters Reported at Meat Processing Plants

Apr 13, 2020

The coronavirus outbreak has hit workers in the food processing industry hard, with meatpacking plants reporting explosions in coronavirus cases. In Sioux Falls, South Dakota, a Smithfield Foods pork processing plant closed down after nearly 240 workers tested positive — representing over half the active COVID-19 cases in the state. One hundred thirty workers at a Cargill Meat Solutions plant in Pennsylvania tested positive for COVID-19, with many others calling in sick.

Elsewhere in Pennsylvania, a union steward at the JBS Beef slaughterhouse died last Friday of a coronavirus infection. Deaths of slaughterhouse workers have also been reported in Georgia and Colorado. Many meat processing facilities employ large numbers of immigrants, including undocumented workers. Smithfield’s CEO warned the pandemic is pushing U.S. meat supplies “perilously close to the edge”.

Almost 600 Sailors On Board USS Theodore Roosevelt Test Positive for COVID-19

Apr 13, 2020

In Guam, the U.S. Navy says nearly 600 sailors have tested positive for COVID-19 after evacuating the USS Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier. Former acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly was forced to resign last week, after he called the former captain of the nuclear-powered vessel, Brett Crozier, “too naive or too stupid” to run the ship. The insult came after Crozier sent a memo to naval commanders pleading for help as his crew started testing positive for the coronavirus.

DRC Reports New Ebola Cases as Health Authorities Tackle Triple Public Health Crisis + Liberia

Apr 13, 2020

The Democratic Republic of the Congo reported two new cases of Ebola over the weekend, just days before officials were set to declare an end to the latest outbreak of the deadly disease. The DRC is also struggling to contain a measles outbreak, and fears are growing that the novel coronavirus has spread far beyond the 235 cases and 20 deaths reported so far.

Liberians Say They Fear Hunger More Than COVID-19 as Police Violently Enforce Lockdown

Apr 13, 2020

In Liberia, police in riot gear used truncheons and sticks to beat people who remained in the streets of the capital Monrovia Saturday as a lockdown for the city of 1 million people went into effect. Many residents said the threat of hunger far outstripped the threat of the coronavirus.

Jettroy Kolleh: “If today you tell them that tomorrow will be a state of emergency, that everyone should stay in and quarantine themselves, then how do you expect them to be fed? You know what’s going to kill many people? Corona is not going to kill many people. It’s the hunger that will kill many Liberians.”

U.S. Leads in Coronavirus Death Toll, as Trump Eyes Easing Restrictions in Weeks

Apr 13, 2020

The United States has the highest recorded COVID-19 death toll in the world, topping 22,000, after it surpassed Italy’s death toll on Saturday. All 50 states now have a disaster declaration in place for the first time in history. Over half a million cases have been identified nationwide, but testing remains limited, making the true number of cases unknown. Worldwide, there are over 1.8 million confirmed cases and over 115,000 deaths.

Over Easter weekend in the U.S., many churches and families held virtual celebrations, though some pastors defied social distancing guidelines to hold in-person gatherings.

President Trump appeared to boast about the nationwide disaster declaration Sunday, tweeting, “For the first time in history there is a fully signed Presidential Disaster Declaration for all 50 States. We are winning, and will win, the war on the Invisible Enemy!”

Meanwhile, a grim picture is emerging of the coronavirus’s impact on nursing homes, where over 2,200 deaths have been reported, though the true number is also expected to be much higher since many states either do not report this data or in some cases do not even track it.

Here in New York City, nearly 6,000 new cases over the past day has put the city’s total number of coronavirus infections at over 104,000, with over 9,300 deaths. Sunday was the sixth straight day in which more than 700 deaths were reported, though Governor Andrew Cuomo noted hospitalizations were down.
On Sunday, Trump reposted a tweet calling for the firing of White House coronavirus task force scientist Dr. Anthony Fauci after he acknowledged in an interview on CNN that adopting lockdown measures earlier on could have saved lives.

Dr. Anthony Fauci: “Obviously, you could logically say that if you had a process that was ongoing and you started mitigation earlier, you could have saved lives. Obviously no one is going to deny that. But what goes into those kinds of decisions is complicated. But you’re right. I mean, obviously, if we had, right from the very beginning, shut everything down, it may have been a little bit different. But there was a lot of pushback about shutting things down back then.”

On Friday, President Trump suggested he could order the reopening of the country as early as May 1.

President Donald Trump: “I will say this: I want to get it open as soon as we can. We have to get our country open, Jeff.”

Jeff Mason: “Will you say, sir, what metrics you will use to make that decision?”

President Donald Trump: “The metrics right here.”

He pointed to his head. The World Health Organization has warned against prematurely easing restrictions.

Meanwhile, dozens of tornadoes and severe storms have left a trail of damage in states including Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Georgia, as the southern United States grapples with the coronavirus outbreak. At least 14 people have been killed by the extreme weather.


Trump Moves to Slash Pay for Essential Migrant Farmworkers

Apr 13, 2020

The Trump administration is working to slash the wages of migrant farmworkers, even as it works to send direct aid to farmers and ranchers hurt by the coronavirus pandemic. The plan, led by White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, would lower pay for some 250,000 foreign guest laborers, even though they’ve been declared “essential workers.” The immigrant rights group Movimiento Cosecha tweeted in response, “The lives of essential workers feeding the country during this pandemic simply do not matter to the agriculture industry or to the government.”

USPS Says It Will Become Insolvent Without Gov’t Help, But Trump Refuses to Bail It Out

Apr 13, 2020

Image Credit: usps.com

The United States Postal Service is appealing to Congress for $89 billion in federal grants, warning that without assistance, the coronavirus pandemic will leave the agency insolvent by September. The appeal came after the Trump administration successfully blocked a $13 billion direct grant to the Postal Service in the $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief bill, instead offering the agency a $10 billion loan. Postmaster General Megan Brennan says that’s not enough to prevent disruption of regular mail delivery by the fall. The looming crisis comes as many states are looking to expand voting by mail ahead of the November election. In a tweet, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders urged Congress to act to save the USPS.

The President and the Plague: Tracking the Toll of Trump’s Failure – Rolling Stone


How Donald Trump failed at the single most important task of the Oval Office: keeping the American people safe from harm

While Americans died of the modern plague, President Trump sang happy birthday to a fading Fox News personality. On March 7th, a who’s who of the Republican establishment gathered at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s lavish retreat in Florida, for the 51st-birthday party of Kimberly Guilfoyle, one of the former co-hosts of The Five, and now the girlfriend of Donald J. Trump Jr. All the usual suspects were there, including Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani and Sen. Lindsey Graham; Tiffany Trump; Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner; and Trump’s younger son Eric and his wife, Lara. They sang happy birthday to Guilfoyle and lit a big sparkler. At the end, she pumped her fist and shouted “Four more years!” This is what passes for a cozy family celebration in Trumpland. But out in the real world, darkness was falling fast.

There were already 100,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, around the world, and 3,600 people had died. In the U.S., more than 100 new cases had been reported that day, a rate that was doubling every three days. Other nations knew how serious this was: By that time, China had shut down major cities, all but quarantining 760 million people. Singapore and Hong Kong and South Korea had put in aggressive travel restrictions and testing procedures. In the U.S., fear was rising. South By Southwest, the giant music/tech conference in Austin had just been canceled. Grocery stores were stripped in panic buying. On Wall Street, stocks were in free fall.

Trump knew all this. In fact, he knew a lot more. He had been getting daily intelligence reports for two months, warning him about the risk of a pandemic. It’s impossible to believe he had not been told that COVID-19 was at least 10 times more deadly than the flu, or that it was passed human to human with a just touch or a cough. A top White House adviser had already warned that a full-blown pandemic could imperil the lives of millions of Americans. Virtually every public-health expert in the world was speaking out, warning politicians and community leaders what was about to hit us.

Nevertheless, since the moment the outbreak was first publicized in January, Trump had been doing nothing but downplaying it. To him, the pandemic was merely another plot to sabotage him. “They’re trying to scare everybody . . . cancel the meetings, close the schools — you know, destroy the country,” he told his guests that weekend. “And that’s OK, as long as we can win the election.”

Before the party, Trump played a round of golf. Then he had dinner at Mar-a-Lago with populist, right-wing Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro, one of the few people in the world who can challenge Trump as the king of coronavirus denial. (Bolsonaro dismissed the illness as “a little flu.”) In what you might call God’s cruel little joke, three of Bolsonaro’s aides who attended the dinner would later test positive for the coronavirus. At least one other person who was at Mar-a-Lago also tested positive, as did Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who met with Bolsonaro at a different event in Miami.

It was a Trump-branded petri dish that night. Guests danced in a “Trump Train” conga line to Gloria Estefan’s “Rhythm Is Gonna Get You.” They mingled and shook hands and hugged. There was no social distancing — according to one guest, there was not even any hand sanitizer around. So the coronavirus was there all night too, lingering on doorknobs, glasses, silverware, and seeking a meaty new host to infect with every hug and handshake. Epidemiologists may never know how many people got sick as a result of spending those few hours at Mar-a-Lago, or how many of them took the virus home to their friends and families, or passed it on to strangers they bumped into at airports.

….(read more).