well howdy there internet people it’s bo
again so today
we’re going to uh talk about how trump
doesn’t know these people
it’s a common refrain
many of the people who criticize him
criticisms become public
he says he doesn’t know him
never knew her never met him coffee boy
right and his base buys this
the thing is
i feel like by this point they should
that this is just how he disavows people
and throws them under the bus and he did
it to them
what happened on the sixth
his base will call legitimate political
a tourist visit
what did trump call it
a heinous attack
because it could have came back on him
looked bad on him so he disavowed it
tried to move away from it
to uh the people who were there
you know the people wearing like all the
his supporters his movement what did he
you will pay
do not represent our movement
you do not represent our country
he’s pretending that he cares about
because it’s good for him politically
the day after
they weren’t his people he didn’t know
never met him right
certainly didn’t encourage them
to go to the capitol
didn’t say that he was going to walk up
there meet him there all of that stuff
they went under the bus just like
it’s what he does
this is how he disavows people it’s how
from his mistakes
and lets other people pay for them
so many people
going out of their way to try to show
to the former president
it will never
even those people
willing to put themselves at risk
those people willing to quite literally
stand on the front lines for him
willing to be in custody for him
they’re not part of his movement
and they became not part of his movement
as soon as he uh no longer had a use for
it’s just a thought
y’all have a good day
Trump was initially unpredictable because he didn’t act like a normal politician—or human being—but once you get that he doesn’t act like a normal human being, he’s surprisingly predictable.
How They Raise Premiums, Deny Claims, and Refuse Insurance to Those Who Need it Most
4. State Farm
10. Liberty Mutual
The U.S. insurance industry takes in over $1 trillion in premiums annually.3 It has $3.8 trillion in assets, more than the GDPs of all but two countries in the world (United States and Japan).
Over the last 10 years, the property/casualty insurance industry has enjoyed average profits of over $30 billion a year. The life and health side of the insurance industry has averaged another $30 billion.
The CEOs of the top 10 property/casualty firms earned an average $8.9 million in 2007. The CEOs of the top 10 life and health insurance companies earned even more—an average $9.1 million. And for the entire industry, the median insurance CEO’s cash compensation still leads all industries at $1.6 million per year.6
Profits Over Policyholders
But some companies have discovered that they can make more money by simply paying out less. As a senior executive at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the group representing those who are supposed to oversee the industry, said, “The bottom line is that insurance companies make money when they don’t pay claims.”7 One example is Ethel Adams, a 60-year-old woman left in a coma and seriously injured after a multi-vehicle crash in Washington State. Her insurance company, Farmers, decided the other driver had acted intentionally and denied her claim, contending that an intentional act is not an accident. Another example is Debra Potter, who for years sold Unum’s disability policies until she herself became disabled and had to stop working. All along, Potter thought she was helping people protect their future, but when her own time of need came, she was told her multiple sclerosis was “self reported” and her claim denied—by Unum, the very company whose policies she had sold. In cases like these, and countless others, the name of the game is deny, delay, defend—do anything, in fact, to avoid paying claims. For companies like Allstate, there are corporate training manuals explaining how to avoid payments, portable fridges awarded to adjusters who deny the most claims, and pizza for parties to shred documents.
The insurance industry is in dire need of reform. For too many insurance companies, profits have clearly trumped fair dealing with policyholders. The industry has done all it can to maximize its profits and rid itself of claims. Allstate CEO Thomas Wilson outlined the strategy when he said the company had “begun to think and act more like a consumer products company.”176 Allstate has enjoyed a return double that of the S&P 500, but its policyholders have suffered cancellations, nonrenewals, and punishing loss-prevention techniques.177 Wilson has been unrepentant: “Our obligation is to earn a return for our shareholders.”178 Wilson is one of many insurance leaders who have lost sight of their legal and ethical responsibility to policyholders. Now they answer only to Wall Street. The time is due for insurance reform that will level the playing field for consumers.
Allstate—The Worst Insurance Company in America
CEO: Thomas Wilson 2007 compensation $10.7 million (predecessor Edward Liddy made $18.8 million in compensation and an additional $25.4 million in retirement benefits)
One company stood out above all others. Allstate’s concerted efforts to put profits over policyholders has earned its place as the worst insurance company in America. According to CEO Thomas Wilson, Allstate’s mission is clear: “our obligation is to earn a return for our shareholders.” Unfortunately, that dedication to shareholders has come at the expense of policyholders. The company that publicly touts its “good hands” approach privately instructs agents to employ a “boxing gloves” strategy against its own policyholders.1 In the words of former Allstate adjuster Jo Ann Katzman, “We were told to lie by our supervisors—it’s tough to look at people and know you’re lying.
There is no greater poster child for insurance industry greed than Allstate. According to CEO Thomas Wilson, Allstate’s mission is clear: “our obligation is to earn a return for our shareholders.”9 Unfortunately, that dedication to shareholders has come at a price. According to investigations and documents Allstate was forced to make public, the company systematically placed profits over its own policyholders. The company that publicly touts its “good hands” approach privately instructs agents to employ a hardball “boxing gloves” strategy against its own policyholders.10 Allstate’s confrontational attitude towards its own policyholders was the brain child of consulting giant McKinsey & Co. in the mid-1990s. McKinsey was tasked with developing a way to boost Allstate’s bottom line.11 McKinsey recommended Allstate focus on reducing the amount of money it paid in claims, whether or not they were valid. When it adopted these recommendations, Allstate made a deliberate decision to start putting profits over policyholders. The company essentially uses a combination of lowball offers and hardball litigation. When policyholders file a claim, they are often offered an unjustifiably low payment for their injuries, generated by Allstate using secretive claim-evaluation software called Colossus. Those that accept the lowballed settlements are treated with “good hands” but may be left with less money than they need to cover medical bills and lost wages. Those that do not settle frequently get the “boxing gloves”: an aggressive litigation strategy that aims to deny the claim at any cost. Former Allstate employees call it the “three Ds”: deny, delay, and defend. One particular powerpoint slide McKinsey prepared for Allstate featured an alligator and the caption “sit and wait”—emphasizing that delaying claims will increase the likelihood that the claimant gives up.12 According to former Allstate agent Shannon Kmatz, this would make claims “so expensive and so timeconsuming that lawyers would start refusing to help clients.”13 Former Allstate adjusters say they were rewarded for keeping claims payments low, even if they had to deceive their customers. Adjusters who tried to deny fire claims by blaming arson were rewarded with portable fridges, according to former Allstate adjuster Jo Ann Katzman. “We were told to lie by our supervisors. It’s tough to look at people and know you’re lying.”14 Complaints filed against Allstate are greater than almost all of its major competitors, according to data collected by the NAIC.15 In Maryland, regulators imposed the largest fine in state history on Allstate for raising premiums and changing policies without notifying policyholders. Allstate ultimately paid $18.6 million to Maryland consumers for the violations.16 In Texas earlier this year, Allstate agreed to pay more than $70 million after insurance regulators found the company had been overcharging homeowners throughout the state.17 After Hurricane Katrina, the Louisiana Department of Insurance received more complaints against Allstate— 1,200—than any other insurance company, and nearly twice as many as the approximately 700 it received about State Farm—despite the fact that its rival had a bigger share of the homeowners market.18 Similarly, in 2003, a series of wildfires devastated Southern California, destroying over 2,000 homes near San Diego alone and killing 15 people. State insurance regulators received over 600 complaints about Allstate and other companies’ handling of claims.19 Allstate says the changes in claims resolution tactics were only about efficiency.20 However, the company’s former CEO, Jerry Choate, admitted in 1997 that the company had reduced payments and increased profit, and said, “the leverage is really on the claims side. If you don’t win there, I don’t care what you do on the front end. You’re not going to win.”21 For four years, Allstate refused to give up copies of the McKinsey documents, even when ordered to do so repeatedly by courts and state regulators. In court filings, the company described its refusal as “respectful civil disobedience.”22 In Florida, regulators finally lost their patience after Allstate executives arrived at a hearing without documents they had been subpoenaed to bring. Only after Allstate was suspended from writing new business did the company, in April 2008, finally agree to produce some 150,000 documents relating to its claim review practices.23 Still, some commentators believe many critical document were missing.
Allstate’s “boxing gloves” strategy boosted its bottom line. The amount Allstate paid out in claims dropped from 79 percent of its premium income in 1996 to just 58 percent ten years later.25 In auto claims, the payouts dropped from 63 percent to just 47 percent.26 Allstate saw $4.6 billion in profits in 2007, more than double the level of profits it experienced in the 1990s. In fact, the company is so awash in cash that it began buying back $15 billion worth of its own stock, despite the fact that the company was simultaneously threatening to reduce coverage of homeowners because of risk of weather-related losses.27 Despite its treatment of policyholders, Allstate’s recent corporate strategy has focused on identifying and retaining loyal customers, those who are more likely to stay with the company and not shop around. The target demographic, as former Allstate CEO Edward Liddy said, is “lifetime value customers who buy more products and stay with us for a longer period of time. That’s Nirvana for an insurance company.”28
Loyalty only runs one way, however. While Allstate focuses on customers who will stick with it for the long haul, the company is systematically withdrawing from entire markets. Allstate or its affiliates have stopped writing home insurance in Delaware, Connecticut, and California, as well as along the coasts of many states, including Maryland and Virginia.29 In Louisiana, Allstate has repeatedly tried to dump its policyholders. In 2007, the company tried to drop 5,000 customers just days after the expiration of an emergency rule preventing insurance companies from canceling customers hit by Katrina. Allstate dropped them for allegedly not showing intent to repair their properties. After an investigation by the Louisiana Insurance Department, Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon said, “[A]t best, it was a very ill-conceived and sloppy inspection program. At worst, they wanted off of those properties.”30 Allstate also used an apparent loophole in the law by offering its policyholders a “coverage enhancement” which the company would later argue was a new policy, and thus exempt from non-renewal protection.31 In Florida, Allstate has dropped over 400,000 homeowners since 2004.32 The move has landed Allstate in trouble with regulators because the company appears to be keeping customers if they also have an auto insurance policy with Allstate. Florida law prohibits the sale of one type of insurance to a customer based on their purchase of another line of coverage.33 Allstate officials have acknowledged that most of the 95,000 customers nonrenewed in 2005 and 2006 were homeowners-only customers. The company ran afoul of regulators in New York for the same reason, and was forced to discontinue the practice.34 In California, while other major homeowner insurers, including State Farm and Farmers, agreed to cut rates, Allstate demanded double-digit rate increases in what the former insurance commissioner described as an “exit strategy.” John Garamendi, now the Lieutenant Governor, said, “[T]hey’ve said they want to get out of the homeowners business in a market that is competitive, healthy and profitable.”35 Consumer advocates have also complained that Allstate put an ambiguous provision in homeowners’ policies that may have deceived some policyholders into thinking they had coverage for wind damage when they did not. Socalled “anti-concurrent-causation” clauses state that wind
and rain damage—damage covered under the policy— is excluded if significant flood damage occurs as well. Therefore, those with policies covering wind and rain damage and “hurricane deductibles” still faced the prospect of learning, only after a catastrophic loss, that they had no coverage.36 In 2007, then U.S. Senator Trent Lott sponsored legislation requiring insurers provide “plain English” summaries of what was and what was not covered in order to stop this kind of abuse. “They don’t want you to know what you really have covered,” said Lott.37
10. Liberty Mutual
CEO: Edmund F. (Ted) Kelly 2005 compensation $27 million
Like Allstate and State Farm before it, Liberty Mutual hired consulting giant McKinsey & Co. to boost its bottom line. The McKinsey strategy relies on lowering the amounts paid in claims, no matter whether the claims were valid or not. By all accounts, Liberty Mutual has not become as notorious as its rivals for the deny, delay, and defend tactics that McKinsey encouraged. However, that has not stopped the company from leading the way in complaint rankings and stories of short-changed victims.171 In fact, Liberty Mutual is facing a glut of litigation from its own vendors who say the company’s cost-cutting has resulted in poor claims processing and a spike in lawsuits.172 Like several other big property casualty insurers, Liberty Mutual has also begun abandoning policyholders across the country. The company has pulled out of many states—not only hurricane susceptible states such as Florida and Louisiana, but also northern states such as Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maryland, Massachusetts, and much of New York. A 2007 New York Times article highlighted Liberty Mutual policyholders James and Ann Gray of Long Island. The Grays were “nonrenewed” by Liberty Mutual despite the fact that they lived 12 miles from the coast and had “been touched by rampaging waters only once, when the upstairs bathroom overflowed.” In fact, Liberty Mutual and its big name competitors have left more than 3 million homeowners stranded over the last few years.173 New York regulators chastised Liberty Mutual for tying nonrenewals to whether a policyholder had an auto policy or other coverage, against state law.174 Liberty Mutual has also gone where even its big property casualty rivals Allstate and State Farm have feared to tread by trying its hand at massive corporate fraud. While the likes of AIG, Zurich, and ACE settled charges that they colluded with broker Marsh & McLennan in a huge bidrigging fraud, Liberty Mutual remains the only insurance company that refuses to concede guilt. The fraud centered around fake bids that companies submitted to Marsh in order to garner artificially inflated rates. Liberty Mutual claims its business practices were lawful and that regulators’ settlement demands are “excessive.”175
By nature, INTJs are quick with their thoughts, yet deliberate in their decisions. This is especially true when emotions are concerned.
Chances are, for somebody to even earn a spot on the INTJs naughty list, they had to first pay a hefty toll to earn their trust. This takes time. INTJs value their time.
If the INTJ is not invested, they are difficult to anger to point that tormenting anybody is even worth their time. The INTJ will shrug with calm indifference at the feeble attempt to bait them with senseless drama and extricate themselves from the presence of the percieved idiot.
However, if it is somebody they let their guard down for, it likely took quite a bit of effort to anger them to the point that an emotional response becomes an option. The INTJ will seek compromise and try to be understanding. They will communicate what they believe to be the best course of action. They will outline their expectation. They will have a goal in mind for the intended end result.
INTJs are forward thinkers that are very calculated in their assessments.
There is only one way out. In that extended moment of uncomfortable contemplative silence that follows the realization that the plan is taking a detour, the INTJ is searching for opposing perspectives that will provide some enlightenment to explain where things did not go as expected.
If you can rationally detail how the INTJ is being selfish, ignorant, or short-sighted.. you will earn their respect. Maybe even a super rare sincere apology.
If the INTJ can’t summon the perspective needed to understand the motivation or intent of the person who is deemed to be betraying them? It’s probably best to hide for the next half century. Yup. Just fall off the face of the planet and disappear.
The thought of regaining the trust of an INTJ after they have been angered to the point that vengeance reigns? You’d have better luck squeezing blood from a stone.
The unwritten code of INTJ conduct states that everybody gets one honest chance to prove their worth. Use it or lose it. For the most part, they don’t care either way.. and just let the superficial squabbles fade to irrelevant nothingness.
Once the emotions get unlocked, the rules change. They will become your greatest asset or most formidable liability. And, because the INTJ is so open minded, they will let the other person determine their own fate.
If you managed to anger an INTJ to the point that you would legitimately fear any negative consequence, I would be curious to know what provoked such a reaction. What hints were missed? Who changed the plan? Who failed to communicate intentions? Who took advantage of the situation? Who failed to adapt?
INTJs don’t like surprises. It overwhelms their inferior Se function.
And, even worse, INTJs don’t like it when they fail to accurately anticipate how any situation might play out. They pride themselves on the strength of their intuition. Anger becomes self betrayal. Not only did they get surprised, they failed to see it coming. INTJs don’t like being wrong, and they dont like to set themselves up for future disappointment by offering forgiveness.
INTJs are dismissive of the petty stuff. They will just walk away and forget you exist on the planet. Problem solved.
Lie in court and steal their kids? Tarnish their professional reputation? Disregard all the sacrifices they have made for your opportunistic benefit while mocking them for the generosity? Abuse the power of your position to discredit them? Well, congratulations.. you just fueled the jaded passion of the next Ted Kaczynski. And, INTJs have no problem rationalizing and justifying that wrath. After all, they offered countless fair compromises, right?
INTJs are often the quiet and observant ones. Meek and unassuming. More demanding of themselves than of those areond them. Autonomous. Unimposing. They secretly have huge hearts and give far too much to those they deem worthy of acceptance.
Under the surface, a fire burns.. it would be wise to avoid getting caught up in the negative power of the dormant inferno. Best not to provoke that dragon.
And, if you have.. the only way out is to be honest, explain your motivations, and hope they have the maturity and vision required to see your perspective.
If that can’t happen, life becomes merely a consequence of poor reactions and decisions. Own them and move on.
If your family is willing to marry your dog, to be with them every day, and night, a Dobe is perfect…because she’s bred to be a body guard, she will love you like no other can…but if you treat her like a breed that is to be separated from your family even by a door, your Dobe will first ignore you, then resent you, and then divorce you. One night you’ll wander in and be the intruder in her home. Bad bad scenario. If bonded however, they are real practical jokers and extremely loving with family, they also may not let anyone near your kids ‘just because…There is a reason this breed is called the Velcro dog. They stick to you. I’ve owned them for three decades. I don’t mind the devotion required. The reward is a love so strong, it breaks your heart.
Belgians are being bred more and more to be hyper watchers. They have never been known as pets as much as workers. They require intense training to level them out and more exercise than the Dobe or Rottie (who need it but not excessively) just to blow off steam. The barking may in itself get you in trouble if you live in a trafficked area. They won’t be as physically affectionate as the other breeds. They are often animal aggressive to new pets. I returned a puppy with aggression issues the same day to the breeder and recommended police academy. He was accepted.
Rotties are excellent watchers…but require heavy family time too….think only somewhat more forgiving than a Dobe. Drooly, sweet but with intimidating size needs socializing and intense monitoring with small kids simply because of their size.. They will follow you, waiting to do some job, any job. They are guardians, drovers, haulers and companions. They eat …a lot and love wrestling with family. When not on duty, they are goofballs. In the best sense of the word. The neighbors Zeus is a serious baby sitter. He would die for family.
None of those guarders you mentioned is a first time owner dog. But I would suggest a very noble breed instead. For a first timer, a smaller female German Shepherd rescue. Calmer, gentler tho slightly larger than the Belgian, more emotionally forgiving than the Doberman and physically more manageable with kids than the Rottweiler powerhouse. But intimidating as all heck.
German Shepherds look intimidating enough to deter intruders, their bark is thunder and like the other three breeds, can and will defend to the death. My parents loved them the best.
For the first timer, A true rescue GSD will normally be temperament rated, and housetrained. She will be spayed, and calmer than a puppy. Lots of toys will suffice instead of the furniture. A female is physically easier, and a little less stubborn. All these dogs require inside residency in the same room with family to remain reliable with family. After owning a pedigree GSD rescue, you’ll be ready for the challenge of a GSD puppy, or other protection breeds…but as it is with most guardian breeds, once you feel their powerful commitment, it becomes a ‘breed’ thing. If you become. GSD person, you’ll be in great company. Strong leaders manage strong breeds.
See the best watchers ‘look’ below.
2 German Shepherd pics32K views127 upvotes11 shares8 comments
How Democrats betrayed the working class by pursuing campaign finance parity with Republicans in the 1980s and 1990s.
Today’s Democratic elites see the professional/creative class as a “meritocracy”. They were unwilling to reign in Wall Street in 2008 and now because Wall Street is populated with their fellow Ivy League alumni and they identify with corporate leadership.
The day after Donald Trump was elected president, The New York Times recommended six books “for those trying to understand the political, economic, regional and social shifts that drove one of the most stunning political upsets in the nation’s history.” Among them: Thomas Frank’s Listen, Liberal: Or What Ever Happened to the Party of the People?
Frank, a Kansas City native, has followed up, embarking on a 13-city barnstorming tour to talk to Trump voters, union leaders, and progressive activists across the Midwest in conjunction with Listen Liberal’s release in paperback. On his last stop¬in Kansas City¬he discusses what he has learned.
This event is co-presented by Rainy Day Books. Frank discussed Listen Liberal at the Library in March 2016; you can view the video on YouTube, and you can find the book in the Library Catalog.
President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team is full of war hawks and weapons industry shills. Max Blumenthal and Ben Norton speak with US Army veteran Danny Sjursen, who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan before becoming an anti-imperialist activist and journalist, about what a Biden-Harris administration foreign policy would look like. Sjursen, who previously taught at the United States Military Academy, also discusses how warmongering members of the West Point Mafia dominate the US government and military-industrial complex.
Anthony Fauci’s at the pool, but Donald Trump’s in deep.
Never mind Johnny Depp and Amber Heard.
You want to see a real can’t-look-away train wreck of a relationship? Look to the nation’s capital, where a messy falling out is chronicled everywhere from the tabloids to a glossy fashion magazine, replete with a photo shoot by a swimming pool.
The saga has enough betrayal, backstabbing, recrimination, indignation and ostracization to impress Edith Wharton.
The press breathlessly covers how much time has passed since the pair last spoke, whether they’re headed for splitsville, and if they can ever agree on what’s best for the children.
It was always bound to be tempestuous because they are the ultimate odd couple, the doctor and the president.
- One is a champion of truth and facts. The other is a master of deceit and denial.
- One is highly disciplined, working 18-hour days. The other can’t be bothered to do his homework and golfs instead.
- One is driven by science and the public good. The other is a public menace, driven by greed and ego.
- One is a Washington institution. The other was sent here to destroy Washington institutions.
- One is incorruptible. The other corrupts.
- One is apolitical. The other politicizes everything he touches — toilets, windows, beans and, most fatally, masks.
After a fractious week, when the former reality-show star in the White House retweeted a former game-show host saying that we shouldn’t trust doctors about Covid-19, Donald Trump and Anthony Fauci are gritting their teeth.
What’s so scary is that the bumpy course of their relationship has life-or-death consequences for Americans.
Who could even dream up a scenario where a president and a White House drop oppo research on the esteemed scientist charged with keeping us safe in a worsening pandemic?
The administration acted like Peter Navarro, Trump’s wacko-bird trade adviser, had gone rogue when he assailed Dr. Fauci for being Dr. Wrong, in a USA Today op-ed. But does anyone believe that? And if he did, would he still have his job?
No doubt it was a case of Trump murmuring: Will no one rid me of this meddlesome infectious disease specialist?
Republicans on Capitol Hill privately confessed they were baffled by the whole thing, saying they couldn’t understand why Trump would undermine Fauci, especially now with the virus resurgent. They think it’s not only hurting Trump’s re-election chances, but theirs, too.
As though it couldn’t get more absurd, Kellyanne Conway told Fox News on Friday that she thinks it would help Trump’s poll numbers for him to start giving public briefings on the virus again — even though that exercise went off the rails when the president began suggesting people inject themselves with bleach.
“How did we get to a situation in our country where the public health official most known for honesty and hard work is most vilified for it?” marvels Michael Specter, a science writer for The New Yorker who began covering Fauci during the AIDs crisis. “And as Team Trump trashes him, the numbers keep horrifyingly proving him right.”
When Dr. Fauci began treating AIDs patients, nearly every one of them died. “It was the darkest time of my life,” he told Specter. In an open letter, Larry Kramer called Fauci a “murderer.”
Then, as Specter writes, he started listening to activists and made a rare admission: His approach wasn’t working. He threw his caution to the winds and became a public-health activist. Through rigorous research and commitment to clinical studies, the death rate from AIDs has plummeted over the years.
Now Fauci struggles to drive the data bus as the White House throws nails under his tires. It seems emblematic of a deeper, existential problem: America has lost its can-do spirit. We were always Bugs Bunny, faster, smarter, more wily than everybody else. Now we’re Slugs Bunny.
Can our country be any more pathetic than this: The Georgia governor suing the Atlanta mayor and City Council to block their mandate for city residents to wear masks?
Trump promised the A team, but he has surrounded himself with losers and kiss-ups and second-raters. Just your basic Ayn Rand nightmare.
Certainly, Dr. Fauci has had to adjust some of his early positions as he learned about this confounding virus. (“When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?” John Maynard Keynes wisely observed.)
“Medicine is not an exact art,” Jerome Groopman, the best-selling author and professor at Harvard Medical School, put it. “There’s lots of uncertainty, always evolving information, much room for doubt. The most dangerous people are the ones who speak with total authority and no room for error.”
Sound like someone you know?
“Medical schools,” Dr. Groopman continued, “have curricula now to teach students the imperative of admitting when something went wrong, taking responsibility, and committing to righting it.”
Some are saying the 79-year-old Dr. Fauci should say to hell with it and quit. But we need his voice of reason in this nuthouse of a White House.
Despite Dr. Fauci’s best efforts to stay apolitical, he has been sucked into the demented political kaleidoscope through which we view everything now. Consider the shoot by his pool, photographed by Frankie Alduino, for a digital cover story by Norah O’Donnell for InStyle magazine.
From the left, the picture represented an unflappable hero, exhausted and desperately in need of some R & R, chilling poolside, not letting the White House’s slime campaign get him down or silence him. And on the right, some saw a liberal media darling, high on his own supply in the midst of a deadly pandemic. “While America burns, Fauci does fashion mag photo shoots,” tweeted Sean Davis, co-founder of the right-wing website The Federalist.
It’s no coincidence that the QAnon-adjacent cultists on the right began circulating a new conspiracy theory in the fever swamps of Facebook that Dr. Fauci’s wife of three and a half decades, a bioethicist, is Ghislane Maxwell’s sister. (Do I need to tell you she isn’t?)
Worryingly, new polls show that the smear from Trumpworld may be starting to stick; fewer Republicans trust the doctor now than in the spring.
Forget Mueller, Sessions, Comey, Canada, his niece, Mika Brzezinski. Of the many quarrels, scrapes and scraps Trump has instigated in his time in office, surely this will be remembered not only as the most needless and perverse, but as the most dangerous.
As Dr. Fauci told The Atlantic, it’s “a bit bizarre.”
More than a bit, actually.