Quick hits: Biden's threat priorities. Summit coverage. Mixed vaccine messages. Tiger King.
By Gary Abernathy
Some quick hits today…
Softer southern border, crackdown on domestic threats
The New York Times reports: “The Biden administration is aiming to bolster information sharing with technology companies, potentially expand hiring of intelligence analysts and improve screening of government employees for ties to domestic terrorism as part of a much-anticipated plan expected to be released on Tuesday detailing how the federal government should combat extremism.”
It’s interesting that while President Biden rolled back Trump-era policies on our southern border, leading to thousands more unvetted people entering our country every week (to be clear, we all love legal immigration, but not illegal immigration — we need to vet everyone), his administration is doubling down on domestic terrorism. We need to fight terrorism at home and abroad, but screening government employees for “ties to domestic terrorism” risks lumping perfectly benign political affiliations into the terrorist camp.
Biden-Putin painted as historic before anything happens
There are a lot of stories in the last 24 hours anticipating the Biden-Putin summit and painting it as part of a series of historic encounters. Here’s an example from USA Today. The pre-meeting coverage is in stark contrast to how Donald Trump was covered when he met with Putin.
Too many still acting like the vaccine doesn’t work
I was at a routine doctor’s visit recently, and everyone was required to wear masks. When I’m asked to wear a mask, I do so, even when I think it’s ludicrous. But I’ll respectfully ask questions sometimes.
When I was alone with my doctor, I said, “I assume you’ve been fully vaccinated. I’ve been fully vaccinated. Why are we both wearing masks?” He had no answer beyond “policy” and an “abundance of caution.” An abundance of caution can be taken to whatever extreme you choose. If the vaccine works, act like you believe it works. Otherwise, people who have their doubts aren’t being given much reason to abandon them.
Even the president of the United States, the first lady and the queen of England went mask-free when they met recently. Why? Because “the Bidens and the queen have been vaccinated against the virus,” USA Today explained. The vaccine offers protection good enough for the president and the queen, but not for my doctor and me?
‘Tiger King’ launching his own cannabis line. Of course.
Finally, anyone who binge-watched “Tiger King” — and wasn’t that everyone? — will have to enjoy this item from TMZ:
Joe Exotic has a new venture that could put him in high spirits -- he's launching his own cannabis line all while doing hard time in federal prison. The 'Tiger King' star cooked up the idea last July and the wheels have been in motion ever since. His attorney, Brad Small, tells TMZ ... they have a deal locked for Joe to partner with Tango Hotel Charlie Group, LLC and Cannaxxs LTD to launch Joe Exotic Cannabis. We're told Joe's been directly involved in the biz through calls and emails with his attorney. The deal includes the various companies ponying up the dough with Joe's name attached to the products.
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