8/27 A Begrudging Nod to Biden’s Firm Stance On The Afghanistan Withdrawal w/ Alex Pareene

August 27, 2021

It’s Casual Friday! Emma hosts Alex Pareene, contributing editor at The New Republic and author of The AP newsletter on Substack, to wrap up the events of the week. Emma starts off with some righteous indignation towards former Trump National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster saying to resident CNN Pentagon stenographer Jim Sciutto that the ISIS-K attacks in Kabul may have been a setup by the Taliban to make the Americans look bad. Anything to beat that war drum! Then, Emma and Alex get into how the media framing of the withdrawal most likely has a significant hand in Biden’s approval ratings dipping, while buttressing a narrative that the “way” that this withdrawal is transpiring could look any less chaotic and fraught. They both acknowledge the reality that the mainstream press is unwilling to and, surprisingly, that Biden and his national security team is: War is tragic and chaotic, losing a war is the same, and that’s what happened: the U.S. lost this war and needs to evacuate, the cost notwithstanding. They both reflect on their relief and general surprise that Biden has not bent to the narratives being constructed by the media and politicians on both sides of the aisle for the sake of maintaining the position of withdrawal at basically all costs. Alex partially attributes this to Biden’s stubbornness borne fully out of his “Senate brain”. They also remark on hypothetically what Trump would’ve done while he was president if push came to shove, and how it definitely doesn’t square with his public remarks. They then touch upon the Supreme Court striking down the CDC’s eviction moratorium, how to combat what’s essentially an unaccountable judicial legislature, and the right’s bizarre turn towards hawking ivermectin to their constituents as a COVID treatment. Pretty suspect that they’re casting aspersions on a free vaccine but are cool with recommending to their voters they pay for a Merck-produced horse dewormer! Emma ends the first half by watching Biden hang his head at his press conference, fully perturbed by Peter Doocy’s excessive nattering. Even Doocy can’t make Biden change his mind on the withdrawal!

And in the second half, Emma is joined by Lance of The Serfs TV to discuss the snap elections going on in Canada on September 20th. Lance provides a primer on Canada’s parliamentary electoral system, as well as what’s at stake for Trudeau, Trudeau’s party the Liberals, the Conservatives, and the more progressive NDP. He continues to explain Trudeau’s bristling at working with other parties, his desire to get back into a Liberal majority as a result, and how he has a strong tendency to maintain appearances and optics on thorny issues like public assistance and First Nations relations, while actively combatting them in less visible ways. Lance then continues to break down the election projections coming out of Canada’s own 538, 338, why to trust the seat projections by party over total vote projections, the more peripheral parties and their outlooks heading into September, Lance’s own work in assisting indigenous NDP candidates get elected to Parliament, and what is most likely in store for Canada as September 20th gets closer and closer.

And in the Fun Half, Emma, Matt and Bradley discuss what’s going on with the Line 3 pipeline protests in St. Paul, Minnesota, Jenna Ellis accusing Biden of treason for something her former boss Trump literally did (negotiate with the Taliban), Illinois Congressman Adam Kinzinger going on CNN’s airwaves to lay blame at the feet of both Trump and Biden for the failures of the withdrawal (think you’re missing a few presidents there Adam buddy!), and Trump himself calling into Hannity last night to rant about how stupid the people he literally hired, namely McMaster and John Bolton, are for how they handled Afghanistan while again, it can’t be stated clearly enough, they literally worked for him, when he was the literal President of the United States. Plus, your IM’s!

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