The “Zero Sum” Edition

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S1: This ad free podcast is part of your Slate plus membership. Enjoy.

S2: Hello and welcome to the political gabfest for March 11th. Twenty twenty one, the zero sum edition. I’m David Plotz of Citi Cast. I am in Washington, D.C. I’m joined by Emily Bazelon, New York Times Magazine and Yale University Law School from New Haven. Hello, Emily. Hey, David. And by John Dickerson of CBS 60 Minutes from New York City.

S3: And wearing his extremely interesting sweater, which I hope we can post a photo of again. And I love talking about.

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S4: Hello, John. It’s second in your list of favorites behind Justice Stephen Breyer. Retirement, retirement.

S5: We’ll get to that. We will get to that, I assure you.

S1: You know what John Sweater is? It’s like a Mondrian, like created the American flag.

S6: I said to John, before you gang stops, stop fighting over my sweater. Sorry, Dave. All right.

S5: I didn’t mean on today’s on today’s show, we’re going to talk about AAFP, the American rescue plan, the most consequential domestic legislation since the Affordable Care Act, which passed Congress. And we will talk about why it is so consequential. Then we will be joined by Heather McGhee to talk about her incredible new book about race and about the American tendency to self-destruction. The book is called The Sum of US. It’s fantastic. And then, is the vaccine rollout going well or poorly? We will check in with Harvard epidemiologist Michael Mina about vaccines and also about our old friend testing, which we seem to have forgotten about. Plus, Emily, did you see those funny photos of the lifeguard in Hawaii rescuing Stephen Breyer on his first postretirement vacation when he got caught in the wild surf? You didn’t see those photos? Of course you didn’t, because he has not retired yet, amazingly.

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S7: Plus, we will have cocktail chatter, by the way, doesn’t he have he has like three and a half years to go to retire with so many things about the Senate job.

S3: Why are you throwing that meat in front of me?

S6: Stop it. Stop it. I’ve done enough.

S3: I know it’s sorry that it has got on and off. The American rescue plan passed the House. Yes, it already passed. The House passed the Senate, passed the House again. Now, when President Biden signs that it will become one of the most consequential pieces of domestic policy legislation in decades, that is because this bill, which was pitched at the covert rescue bill, has been expanded or I guess it was originally it wasn’t expanded because it was his original intent. But it was it was made broad to encompass a variety of largely progressive economic measures that collectively could have a huge impact on poor and middle class Americans, at least in the short term. The average household in the bottom 20 percent of America will see its annual income rise by more than 20 percent. Child poverty in the US will drop by half next year because of this. So, John, what are some of the other elements of this bill that are important but don’t necessarily have a lot to do with covid relief?

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S7: Well, I mean, it depends what you know. You can define that differently because you can you know, some people are arguing that the state and local money in the bill doesn’t, strictly speaking, have anything to do with covid relief.

S4: Of course, the states and and the cities would argue and make and it’s an easy case to make. And actually, the Major Garrett of CBS, who does a podcast called The De-brief, did a great bunch of interviews with mayors that included mayors talking about exactly where the cuts came when revenue went down and spending went up anyway, and just kind of addresses that piece of it nicely. Jason Furman, who worked at the in the Obama administration, who’s been on the show, actually argues that he thinks there was too much money in there for state and local. So it’s not just conservatives or Republicans who are making that case anyway.

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S7: There’s some pension money in the bill that’s basically not related to covid, but to me anyway. The most interesting thing is the child tax credit, which changes. It’s not just the amount that goes to people with children, but it changes the way in which the money is delivered. Under the current scheme, you get a child, you get a tax credit if you have some income against which you can use the credit. This is the new in the new bill. For at least one year, you will get guaranteed money regardless of how much income you have. And it isn’t. And this is something progressives have been pushing for for a long time. And it will be a fascinating experiment. And this is there was a debate with a lot of Republicans arguing that you needed to have some kind of a work requirement and they they didn’t win the day. And it’s going to be it’ll be a fascinating experiment. This is what this is what’s going to lift so many kids out of poverty or that’s what those estimations are based on. And it’s going to be fascinating to see if it works, because if it does, it will be one of the most major poverty ending things. That president has done since Lyndon Johnson, and if it seems as successful, it could become permanent, which I have, that’s what’s so interesting is in the next year, there’s going to be so I would think so much work and research. I mean, assuming every time I say one of these things, I feel like I need to say, assuming that people still believe in marshalling facts to make an argument in order to support public policy, assuming that still is the case in public life, then there will be a year’s worth of research on this money, how it’s used, how it affects work and going to get work, how it affects families and how it changes. I mean, it’s a major change in them. One of the most important well, if you see society a certain way, one of the most important things you can do, as FDR said, the measure of society is not whether we can increase for those who have abundance, but help those who don’t.

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S1: Then I guess the way I see this bill just sort of overarchingly is that it’s the opposite of cutting taxes for rich people. It’s the idea that you stimulate the economy by giving it to the people who have less, who will spend, and that you’re redistributing wealth and trying to make the American social compact stronger. There are also parts of it that are particularly addressing areas, really vital businesses that support families. Right. So you see almost 40 billion dollar investment in child care centers which suffered during the pandemic. There’s a lot of money for restaurants which hopefully will bring back downtown areas and other parts of towns all across the country that have suffered because people haven’t been going out to eat. And, you know, if we are recovering from the virus, the summer and fall, you could just imagine a really vibrant economy in which people are going out a ton and there’s money pumping toward the people who have really lost. I feel like sometimes it’s hard to remember how devastating this pandemic has been for people who have lost their jobs or just, you know, at obviously lost family members or loved ones, but that the costs have been so unequally distributed and this bill actually tries to go. It’s not that targeted at lots of people are going to get some money, but it really tries to address those losses.

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S3: I think what’s what’s astonishing, Emily, to your original point point you made at the beginning, there is just if you look at how the benefits of this bill are distributed versus the benefits of the big Trump tax cut bill, the benefits of the Trump tax cut bill went overwhelmingly to the richest Americans, like the hundreds and hundreds of billions of dollars that were essentially given to the richest Americans on this theory of that will then trickle down to the rest of the economy. And almost nothing went to the poorest. And this is exactly the opposite. The overwhelming majority of these benefits are going to people who are poor and middle income, lower middle income. And that is a it’s you know, if you a progressive, obviously, you’re going to support that. And it’s a it’s certainly a much better you know, it’s going to be an interesting test, like, does this stimulate the economy in the way that that we hope it will? And and I’m crossing my fingers. I guess my question about this is, how did such a progressive bill come out of such a moderate president? Joe Biden is not a progressive economist. He’s obviously surrounded himself with people who are somewhat progressive. Is it just that he figured, I’m going to get one shot here and I better make it count one shot?

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S4: And there’s been a lot of reporting that the lessons of the stimulus package under the beginning of the Obama administration affected his thinking and his staff and even a lot of Democratic senators that in that if you really want to try and solve the problem, you have to go as big as possible. And big doesn’t just mean dollars. It means I mean, I think the child tax credit fits in the category of build back better, which is we’re not just going to try and solve things to where they were. We’re going to try to institute social policy we believe in. That’s going to make things better. And he was and he’s been saying this during the campaign. I mean, he was the child tax credit was something he talked about during the campaign. So he’s basically doing what he campaigned on. The Tax Policy Center looked at this and is the place that did that ran the numbers behind. What what you’re saying, David, and the FDR quote that I couldn’t remember was from his nineteen thirty seven inauguration in which he said, The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much. It is whether we provide enough for those who have too little. And what strikes me is interesting here is as the president goes out and tries to sell this, which he will now do, Pew Research Center found that about 70 percent of Americans support the bill. When President Trump passed his tax cut in at the end of twenty seventeen polling in early January by Pew showed that thirty seven percent of the country approved of it. It was, and it never got better. So. But you know what I mean?

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S5: Like, what does it matter? He got his bill. The people the rich people got what they wanted. I mean, no.

S1: And then the Democrats lost the next election.

S4: So to the extent that political parties try to do things that are popular to bring people into their coalition, particularly when they have Senate races up in twenty, twenty two, you want to see things that you do that are popular, bring people into your party. And also when you’re fighting over a certain portion of the electorate, if you look at the polling, again, that Pew polling. Sixty three percent of those who make less than sixty thousand dollars approve of the AARP in the Republican Party. For a president who basically took a partisan approach. Right. Did it all with Democratic votes. Doesn’t seem to have paid any price for that. I think that’s in part because people priced in, nobody cares about bipartisanship anymore. And I also think there’s a big difference between being a partisan and being a partisan and not being a jerk about it, which I think is the route that Biden took. But I think you generally want to do things that have broad public popularity. What’s interesting here is unlike the ACA and the Trump tax bill you have, it’s a much, much more popular piece of legislation that Biden is going out to sell, which may change the political dynamic for its passage.

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S5: So, Emily, there has been essentially no cogent Republican opposition to this bill. They’ve been talking about Pepy Lupu, Dr. Seuss apparently here. We’re not even hearing the kind of classic Paul Ryan fiscal responsibility drumbeat that usually defined the Republican Party in opposition to a Democratic president. Yeah, you are.

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S6: Well, I don’t know. Yeah, but I feel like they’ve been perfectly cogent. They don’t like it. They call it a Christmas tree. It’s like the poverty relief bill. It’s got a ton. I don’t know if you’re Bailie don’t Kenyan’s you’re bailing out the cities where they’re not. Don’t confuse don’t confuse whether you agree with what they say with whether they’re there. So it doesn’t.

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S2: It doesn’t. Well, I don’t know. It just feels it feels it feels warm. It feels like there is one.

S6: I mean, they’re saying it, I think, very excited about. It’s not that they’re not saying they’re they’re saying they don’t agree with it. Well, no, it’s not even that. It’s like actually kind of do agree with it. I kind of type here. But do I look, it’s true that they’re saying it, but I don’t I guess I I’m not sure that we’re paying attention to different things in the world.

S3: It doesn’t appear to me that there is usually when there’s any Democratic bill, but that cost more than a billion dollars, it’s, oh, we’re bankrupting our children. We’re with this reckless borrowing. And it just like after the Trump years, it’s such a hard argument to make. And it’s not being made with the it just doesn’t appear to me that’s made with the kind of venom or effectiveness that has been made in the past.

S1: Maybe they definitely I have an idea that might might break this impasse or maybe it’s totally wrong. I wonder if it’s the speed with which this has happened. So it seems to me that one of the most important lessons from what year was that? Two thousand nine, ten, whenever that was, you know, me and dates, was that it took forever, like it went on and on and on and on. And everyone got more and more grumpy about the Affordable Care Act. The longer it took and this time it just like happened fast. And so maybe, David, it’s not that those arguments aren’t out there or even that they’re one. They’re just not like having time to really, like, take hold.

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S4: I think that there is something to that. You don’t you also don’t have conservative Democrats supporting that argument. I mean, what hamstrung either actually hamstrung him or in anticipation of it? President Obama and his team knew they couldn’t pass something that was was too big, was conservative Democrats who wouldn’t vote for for too much spending on the argument that it would blow up the deficit. You don’t have that anymore. Really. You that that made it go by faster, too. There’s no question that that Republicans are talking about the debt in a way that’s kind of amusing, given how little they talked about it over the last four years. But it’s more important than that. It’s not that they just didn’t talk about it over the last four years. It’s that Republicans embraced either implicitly or explicitly cockamamie arguments from the economists or the economic team inside the Trump White House about how the tax cuts we’re going to pay for themselves and how they were going to pay for all this other extra spending.

S7: So it wasn’t just that the temperance leaders allowed drinking. I mean, they rolled in the cash, the kegs. They pretended that what was what was in that red cup was water and not beefeater gin. It’s more than just kind of having been silent. They allowed a total disregard for for deficits over the last four years in a way that makes these current arguments particularly hollow. But it’s not that they’re not making them.

S5: I’m the the provision I’m most interested in. I’m curious whether this is going to. Take flight is that I think it is that Texas will under this, the AAFP will get more money for Medicaid than is actually being spent on Medicaid. So if they end if there end up being ends up being three billion dollars that the state needs to spend on Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, they were going to would have gotten back, I think, three billion and then 90 percent of three billion. Now they are going to get five billion. So actually going get extra money if they just adopt this Medicaid expansion. And it’s going to be such an interesting test. Will they bother to do this Medicaid expansion, which is not having this Medicaid expansion, killing thousands and thousands of Texans every year? And here’s this chance to do the Medicaid expansion and actually get billions of dollars extra for doing it. And they probably won’t do it.

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S1: That is a great point. Wow.

S5: Slate plus members. You get benefits, zero ads on any Slate podcast, bonus segments on our show, you get to support the work that Slate is doing. It’s only a dollar for the first month. You can sign up by going to slate dotcom slash gabfests. Plus our topic on Slate. Plus, this week comes from a listener. And it’s about what do you do when you’re doing something, a project work and you know what’s gone terribly wrong? How do you solve that? Do you solve it by starting over? To solve it? By powering through? Is there some other way to solve it? So we are going to explore that very interesting question that all of us face in our lives. Go to Slate Dotcom Slugfests Plus to become a member today, Heather McGhee has written to some of us what racism costs everyone and how we can prosper together. It’s a superb new book about race and self-interest and a poisonous, self-destructive tendency in American life in which white people will destroy nice things rather than let black and brown people share them. And this is a book that will that will change the way you look at a lot of issues. So, Heather. Welcome to the Gabfest, I am sorry to make you do this, but when you come up with a great metaphor, you are stuck having to explain it to every new audience that you meet. I know you have done this a million times. Bob Dylan had a Rolling Stone. You have an empty swimming pool. Please explain.

S8: I am so excited for the song about the pool. I’m so excited for the song about the pool. So this country used to have nearly 2000 public swimming pools and they were built in the 30s and 40s as part of this building boom and the New Deal era of public amenities, parks, libraries, schools. And these were not just any pools. These were grand resort style pools that held like thousands of swimmers. And yet, like much of the New Deal government expenditures and policies, many of the pools across the country were segregated and for whites only. And so when in the 50s and 60s, black families were empowered to sue and advocate and say, hey, those are our tax dollars, we want our kids to swim to. And cities and towns were threatened with desegregation of their public pools. Many of them opted to drain their public pools rather than integrate them. And the reason why that’s the central metaphor in my book is that it meant that a public good was lost. It was made life worse for white families, for the entire community. It sort of gutted this core piece of public infrastructure that was, in many cases, the heart of the community. It meant that wealthier families were able to just sort of build a backyard pool, which is what we began to see all over the country. And private swim clubs cropped up everywhere. So what was once a public amenity became a private luxury. Black families lost out completely, and they never got to enjoy that kind of government largesse and commitment to a decent standard of living. There was a cost for everyone. And that, to me was a very helpful articulation of what happened when we moved radically and drastically from a New Deal era of social democracy with an asterisk, a race based asterisk to the neoliberal inequality era that followed right on the heels of the civil rights movement.

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S1: So one of the points I think that you make following from what you just said is that the right in this country has used race as a wedge issue, not that the left has been by any means perfect, but that that’s been politically very powerful weapon. And I think and tell me if I have this right, that you are then arguing that the left cannot afford to pretend that’s not happening. Yes, the Democrats have to address race head on because Republicans are using it as a wedge issue. It’s going to be in all of their political messaging and advertising. And so Democrats, liberals have to respond. I wonder what you think about some polling that suggests that Democrats are better off talking about popular stuff, framing things more universally, even if they really do have more benefits for that, that address racial justice? I’m sure, because that’s like a big thread right now in the Democratic Party. How do we message should we be sort of elevating these issues that can unite even and then sort of quietly benefiting people who have lost out in the past? I just wonder what you think about that issue of how we talk about this.

S8: So I think this is really important. What effective communication both means that the communicator tells their story and that the communicator knows how the audience is going to receive it. Right. What are the frames and filters that the audience has? And so in the some of us identify this zero sum world view, this idea that progress for people of color has to come at white folks expense. A dollar in my pocket means a dollar less than yours. And if that is the world view, then yes, when you talk about racial justice in a way that emphasizes white privilege and talks about what is needed to equalize things for black and brown communities, you do activate that zero sum mindset. And the right wing makes that zero sum story, the breakfast, lunch and dinner of their political messaging. And so you’ve got to recognize that the zero sum is there. But what that doesn’t mean is that the left can afford to skip over race because that worldview is already there. So even when you talk about things like raising the minimum wage and, you know, supporting families and cancelling student debt, those government programs activate a racialized framework in the white imagination anyway. And so what you have to do is speak to it head on. You have to actually name that zero sum framework, say that it’s wrong, actually say that the right wing is using racial division to divide us and the result is to line the pockets of the wealthy. That’s the political messaging research that we did at Dmoz five years ago that continues to to be relevant today. But the idea is that you can’t skip over race, but you have to talk about the way that racism has a cost for everyone and you have to call it out as a political tool of the plutocrats. And that’s how you marry the sort of class left with the race left. That’s how you do a multiracial populism that leaves particularly white and also, frankly, Latino voters better armed to listen to the right wing and and dispense with their messages even after you’re done talking with them.

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S7: Heather, what happens if they’re not even necessarily listening to the right wing? They just have this view wherever they happen to have gotten it from? What did you learn? I mean, is this through the race class narrative project that you came up with the narratives for how to solve this problem? Because I think what Emily’s talking about is the polling that shows some of those those issues that you talked about have big support. And then when you sell them as race based or race identified, the support diminishes. Yeah. How do you construct the narrative in a way that takes care of that?

S8: Well, I think that the there’s there’s nobody who’s not listening to the right wing, right. I mean, you know, we have to recognize that they are eight times louder at all times than a progressive message, than a truly progressive message. So that zero sum story is absolutely amplified today through right wing media, but is very old. Right. And in the book, I trace where it even came from. Right. It was the core justification for the creation of a racial hierarchy to excuse and justify slavery and stolen land and stolen labor. And so it’s very old. And it also means that today we both can’t ignore the race elements that are always underneath any conversation about government. Right. There’s a 60 percentage point difference between white Americans support for increased government spending if they have low levels of racial racial resentment versus if they have high levels of racial resentment like. When you talk about government and the economy, you are activating racial tropes, however. That’s why I think it’s important to talk about race and racism as a tool that is being used in order to make everybody poorer, and so it’s both always saying, of course, that racism hurts people of color first and worst. And it’s also saying that racism, as used by a right wing elite, is, in fact taking money out of your pocket. It’s not your brown and black neighbors that are taking money out of your pocket, because if they were doing it, where did it go? Because they don’t have it right. It’s actually the folks that are winning from a divided and from a divided people, from a divided working and middle class.

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S3: So, Heather, when you have your framework in your head, which I now do, of the zero sum nature of so many of the issues that we’re facing are the framing of a Zero-Sum. You start to see it everywhere. You see it in in transportation funding, you see it in higher education, public higher education funding. You see it in debates around affirmative action, around everything. I want to put it in the other direction, which is are there successful examples that you can point to where this country in the last couple of decades has looked beyond this or has escaped this Zero-Sum racial contest mentality that the right has imposed and actually done something that is universally beneficial? And it doesn’t it could be in something unlikely. It could be a defense spending for all I know.

S8: But can you think of examples that might be models for for progress in the future? I would say that a place where we can see this working is health care, for example. White people are the largest share of the uninsured, and yet white Americans have been opposed to the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare since it was passed right. Still underwater with white Americans. It was passed despite and sort of over the resistance of the Republican Party, over the resistance of the majority of white Americans. And yet the piece of it today that is still contested is Medicaid expansion, which, first of all, is optional for states because of a state’s rights theory that was imposed from the Roberts court. Right. So we’ve already got like the racial thread there. And of course, once it was optional, you saw that new Mason-Dixon line of health care, right. Where you had most of the Confederate states not expanding Medicaid, even though it was free money, 100 percent of the cost was paid for by the federal government. And in my book, I go to Texas and I talk to advocates who are still fighting there for Medicaid expansion. It’s the state with the highest number of uninsured and where they’re really experiencing it all over the state is in the closure of rural hospitals in these predominantly white, conservative rural areas that are being starved because of the high uninsured rate and would be saved if Medicaid expansion happened in Arkansas. In nearby Arkansas, the rural hospitals are sort of booming because of these Medicaid dollars. And so that’s a place where you both see the choice to adopt a highly racialized policy, Medicaid in some states, creating this boom, what I call these solidarity dividends, basically where you get over the zero sum and you actually create something that is a government benefit, that is for the good of all, a new kind of public good that disproportionately aids black and brown people because of the way that racism has has made these racial disparities. But the majority of the people ated are white. It creates a new public good for the entire community. And yet it’s still contested. Right. So there are some states like Maine where they finally got Medicaid expansion over a five time veto by a Trump like little governor. And that was an incredible solidarity dividend for the state. But then there are states that are still refusing to do it. And so that to me, is one of those things where you can see in real time whether or not a state chooses to to buck the zero sum and the racialized narrative that rejects government help for its people or whether it can overcome that unlock that solidarity dividend.

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S1: Is the American rescue plan a version of this in the sense that it’s refilling the pools so much?

S6: So you stole my follow up. Yeah. Yeah. Too bad. Either go ahead and explain how it is or if it’s so much.

S8: Right. I mean, first of all, you see the zero sum politics and the drained pool politics in the debate about it. Right. This is something that the country desperately needs. And yet the white elites in the Republican Party are feel very confident, completely rejecting it in favor of talking about this dog whistle race story about Dr. Seuss. Write this narrative. They feel very confident that their base will continue to reward them because they’re fighting the existential culture war. Right. And their narrative is these. The WOAK police write these black people in the streets and they’re dumb white liberal allies are going to come for everything you hold dear. And we’re going to fight for you on that. So it doesn’t really matter that we are not going to support this thing that might keep the lights on in your house, that might keep your kids having enough to eat, and they just assume that those racial politics will be enough to re-elect them. So there you see the zero sum. And yet because of a multiracial, anti-racist coalition in Georgia, for Pete’s sake, you know, driven by black organizing, but bringing in just enough white folks to get Democrats over the top, this country was able to do an historic refilling of the public pool that is cutting child poverty in half. That is targeted universalism. Right. It is recognizing that when you refill the pool, we’re not all standing at the same depths. Right. Because racism has shaped the way that communities, you know, build wealth and experience life. And so there are some communities that are totally underwater, some communities that are, you know, just treading water. And so, yes, there is a massive package in there for indigenous communities, the biggest grant ever to indigenous communities. There’s something that’s specifically going to black farmers, disproportionately black farmers. The child poverty grant will help black families more. It’s the same amount of money, but obviously there are more black families in. Because we’re more likely to be paid very little for our work, and so this is an historic refilling of the pool. I hate that it was done over the opposition of the entire Republican Party because they feel like they can bank on racial resentment to keep their coalition together, even when and this is a cost of racism to white people. Majority of white people support this bill, less so than black and brown people do. But the majority of white people support it. But they’re still voting in the majority for a Republican Party that delivers them nothing but threats about Dr. Seuss.

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S7: There are two questions. One is on that, whether you saw it as a possible sign of progress, that there was so much time wasted on Dr. Seuss instead of and you saw some of this, but it wasn’t it didn’t get as much energy or maybe it. Well, I want your thoughts on this. The work requirement that was argued about in terms of the child tax credit seemed to have a lot of the resonances that you talk about, the idea that people are getting free money. So I wanted your thoughts on why just sort of how that played out and why it seemed and this is I may be wrong about this, but Dr. Seuss was getting more energy than what you might have expected 20 years ago, which would have been an entire party spending its time on the work requirement. And then secondly, President Biden’s going to go out and try to post hoc explain what the American rescue plan is in his doing that. One thing that interests me in the polling is if you look at the support for the plan, which is widespread among Republicans, those Republicans who support it the most, I think it’s at like 60 percent in the Pew poll are those who make less than 60 thousand dollars. And I wonder if there’s an opportunity here for the president to make inroads with those voters along policy lines or whether that’s impossible because of the culture values stuff that you’re talking about?

S8: I don’t think it’s impossible, John. You know that it is the only way, right? We do need a cross racial working class coalition. And I heard that first out of the mouths of white and black fast food workers in Kansas City. These are people who are making seven twenty five an hour. They’re the most derided folks in our economy. Right. The burger flippers. And yet they had joined in this cross racial organizing in a very segregated city in Kansas City and explicitly said, you know, it’s about black, white and white and brown coming together. Right. A young woman named Bridget who is white and had kind of grown up and been steeped in the anti-immigrant, kind of racist urban dog whistle narrative. And she said, you know, I realized for the first time that it’s not just us and them. We we have to come up together. As long as we’re divided, we’re conquered. Racism hurts white workers, too, because it keeps us divided from our black and brown sisters. Right. This is rhetoric coming from her, not from me. So I absolutely think it’s possible and it’s necessary. And in fact, organizing. That’s the thing that was really clear to me in this journey that I took to write that some of us was that actual organizing people really spending time rolling up their sleeves, linking arms with people across lines of race to get something done for themselves and their own lives was what could break through that Zero-Sum narrative. Now to your question about what was the first part of the work requirement of the requirement. Yes. So I think something interesting that has happened, right. Most most Americans and this was our race class narrative messaging research that that really revealed that most Americans actually of all races can access the zero sum story and can access a much fairer, inclusive story. And it’s not about people who are sort of in the middle of those two things have an idea that somewhere in the middle of them, it’s just that they toggle from one worldview to the next the pandemic. And it’s like flattening of the economy has done something, I think, which is that the excuses, the other rising racialized excuses. Right. The idea that a middle class white person could have, that’s like, well, I’ve never been handed anything. And in that poor person’s shoes, I would do something different. Right. Like there’s just something different about them. And what is the different about them? It’s this racialized narrative, right? The opposite of solidarity. It’s the idea that they’re sort of different kinds of people, some groups of people who are just better than others. And those different kind of people are responsible for their own lot. And, of course, the pandemic where we literally unplugged the economy has made more people activate the idea of there. But for the grace of God, go I. So stuff like work requirement, like the government needs to push you to work. I always work. I love to work, but those other people don’t love to work. Right. That kind of logic is not as resonant. And I think that was the wisdom and the brilliance in in this administration to. Just shove through these really important policies to refill the pool of public goods for everyone at a time when the zero sum framework would be a little less easily activated.

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S5: Heather McGhee is the author of the Some of US What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together. It is a truly important, interesting book. Go get it. Heather, thanks for coming.

S8: David, John, Emily, thank you so much for gabbin with me this morning.

S1: Can I say one more thing about this book? It’s really easy to access like you turned the pages, which is not always true about big important.

S8: That is the thing that I really makes me the happiest that people who don’t who aren’t wonk’s, who don’t just like love to, you know, curl up with a big book about racism, are saying, like, I couldn’t put it down. And that’s just like it’s just my highest, like, highest joy. But it’s actually like a page turner about racism. So very happy. Thank you for that.

S5: Michael Mina is an assistant professor of epidemiology at Harvard School of Public Health, and you may remember he joined us on the gabfests many moons ago to talk about the promise of rapid at home covid testing promise, infuriatingly unrealized is here. Salaf is here to talk about the vaccine, the future of the pandemic, whatever happened with testing. So, Michael, welcome back. Let me take the first question. We’re going to get to the vaccine in the future of the vaccine. But you came to us with, you know, this wonderful sort of theory, this idea, not theory. I guess it was it was realisable that cheap rapid testing could could help get us out of the pandemic a lot faster. It feels like the shiny object of vaccines have distracted us and we have missed a huge opportunity with rapid tests. Have we missed it? What can we still do about it? Why do we miss it? Is it still something that we should invest in and do more of?

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S9: We certainly missed many opportunities and I think a lot of that is I don’t want to pin it on the vaccines per say, but what I would pin it on is related to the vaccines, and that is this infatuation with dealing with a public health problem with with something that can either be injected into you or dealing with anything that pulls a biological specimen out of you as a medical tool. We have so many tools at our disposal that our public health tools that can be inexpensive, that can be scaled up in many ways that are very, very different than what we did. I think rapid tests are probably the one of the best examples of this, that we totally missed the forest for the trees here and still to this day have yet to treat this pandemic like the public health problem that it is clawing our way back one by one with medical type of interventions. Of course, the vaccine is and always has been the thing that will be the lasting sort of nail in the coffin to a certain extent on this pandemic. So it was right to focus on it. But we could have had these tests out in August of twenty twenty and potentially stop the surges of the fall and winter and hundreds of thousands of deaths. And, you know, our failure to do that will only become more apparent as time goes on.

S1: I’m going to continue down this somewhat doleful road and ask you about what I think is a failure and is one that is driving me crazy, which is why we still don’t have really clear evidence about how much the vaccine prevents transmission from people who’ve been vaccinated to other people.

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S6: It is infuriating. I don’t get it.

S1: It’s like so crucial for people’s behavior and it just seems like it’s so easy. Like, don’t you just test everybody who got vaccinated and figure out what do they have it in their nose? They’re not like what? How could we not be doing this?

S9: I don’t I have I have tried to say this for so long. The transmission question is just an astounding one. There are so many simple ways to quickly get the transmission piece figured out. And but but instead of doing it efficiently and quickly, there started to be requests for proposals for hundreds of millions of dollars for new for whole new trials to explore that, I said, look, we already have we already have thousands of people who have been vaccinated months ago, thousands of people who haven’t. Let’s just go swab them all on a routine basis. They are like, let’s keep those arms of the vaccine the same people. We don’t have to start a whole new study for all this money, hundreds of millions of dollars. We can just do it efficiently and have the results in weeks and that type of thinking. This like efficient, fast moving, doing the research that lives up to the pace of this pandemic just has been completely absent. All we have done every step of the way is just done what is safe done what we have known, and the only changes we’ve made from the normal status quo is to maybe take everything and miniaturize it or make it just a little bit shorter. We have to think in whole new ways during a pandemic like this. And we have I have yet to see really an example of it, unfortunately.

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S4: Michael, what is there a global theory you have for why these the risk aversion basically that you’re talking about? I mean, don’t public health officials at the ground ground level in the counties, don’t they have to make decisions all the time on bad, limited information from sketchy sources, but that if they don’t make the call, lots of lives are going to be lost? And if that’s the. Is it just that once you make it bigger, once you get the federal government or the state government involved, everybody gets super risk averse and politics gets into play and so nobody does anything? Or is it there is there another is there a problem setting problem that has nothing to do with politics? What are the habits of mind that we can try and fix since we’re going to be faced with this again soon enough?

S10: I think it’s I think it’s twofold. On the one hand, there are laws and regulations that need to be more malleable. I would say one of the major common threads that has happened is there’s just been confusion. We continue to fail to ask the right people the right questions. We ask the wrong people, the right the questions that maybe should be best directed to somebody else. Just, you know, for any listeners, an epidemiologist is not necessarily an immunologist and an immunologist is not necessarily a virologist. And a doctor doesn’t necessarily have any idea what to do in public health. These are really different things. But unfortunately, I think putting MDs in charge of public health over and over and over has been a mistake. And that happens at almost every level of governance. MDs are in charge of public health now. We’re lucky now at the CDC. We have somebody, an M.D., who I think is equipped to deal with public health, but that’s not always the case. But the other the real issue, I think, is on this risk aversion, that it’s politics, it’s nobody wants to stick their neck out there, even amongst the scientists. This group think that happens among scientists, that very few scientists are willing to have either the courage or the or feel the like they have enough of a background to to sort of go against the tides, even if those tides don’t make sense. And we saw this very early on, scientist after scientist said we don’t know if masks work and you just go back to first principles and you say, of course, we this is a respiratory virus. Of course, we know masks work. You’re allowed to use your brain and and say masks will probably work. Like, that’s OK. And so then you bring that that’s just scientists. But then you put that on public health officials and, you know, it’s so easy you’d rather fail. And frankly, in this pandemic, you’d rather have people die as long as it’s doing what is recommended than to save people, you know, have a 90 percent chance of saving a lot of people doing something that’s not recommended because of that 10 percent or that one percent chance that it might go awry. And then everything falls on you. And that’s we have we have a system set up to push us entirely in the wrong directions and to stay with status quo.

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S5: Do you see any sign that the Biden administration will be different on some of these more strategic questions and not make some of the same mistakes or will discourage the scientific establishment from making the same mistakes?

S6: That was a long silence.

S10: Well, thinking about my experience, you know, I don’t think I have disliked a human being more than I disliked our previous president, but. What I would say is working with his administration. Was in many ways transparent and, you know, I would say it wasn’t organized and there was very there was essentially no strategy, but at the very least, they were willing to try things. They were willing to be a little bit polished, that they had people like Breacher who were really willing to just go for it. And I think there could have been a lot of successes there had they had some strategy, which they didn’t. But working with the Biden administration, they’re organized again. But it does mean that there is an immense force field around their decision making. And and I worry that, you know, they have a few very strong voices and good scientists, but all efforts have gone towards vaccine. And maybe this is just a reflection of when Biden became president. You know, the vaccines actually started to exist and so and be available. So they’ve put all effort on vaccines. You know, I was really hoping that they’d come out very strong with new policy around rapid tests. And we’re thinking out of the box. And instead, it’s been a lot more of let’s build a PCR labs. And, you know, I’ve shown very clearly in publication for publication that just like the moment you have PCR laboratory testing, which is, again, the conservative approach, it’s you’re not going to go wrong. But I’ve tried to show very many times that if your test results are taking days to return, then you’re not stopping transmission. You know, that’s been a little bit frustrating, I would say.

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S1: Yeah. I mean, I think it’s easy to hear the frustration in your voice. It must be hard to feel like your scientists kind of howling into the world wilderness. And these bureaucracies are really entrenched and speeding things up a little. But keeping their existing process is really different from saying let’s blow up the whole process. So here’s a frustration of mine is like just a member of the public. I feel like there has been a level of paternalism to the point of a set of falsehoods in the public health messaging from the CDC, from other government entities, and that it continues. And I understand that they are looking at a country in which there has been a deep divide over masks and other interventions and that they are concerned about letting people do too much too quickly. And that is real. But I feel like we they have and the country has lost the sense of the price of overcaution and and that it’s so it goes so far. So what’s bothering me right now is this willingness to say only that vaccinated people can very cautiously gather with other vaccinated people in small groups, which I think a lot of people continue to translate into, like, really, I’m vaccinated, but I should only see a few people outside. And I’m hearing this like among my own friends and family in this way that I find really puzzling. And it’s dispiriting because I think, like the people who have been isolated so long should need to be able to come out now. You know, they have been vaccinated. They should feel safer than they do. And it seems like the overcaution in the CDC’s messaging is having the opposite effect. It’s not really a question. Sorry.

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S6: Yeah, well, the strain is the paternalism issue, I think is real.

S11: I would say. I mean, I think some of the recommendations of the last couple of days from the CDC have started to go in a slightly different direction. To be honest, I think that we do have to continue being careful, which I understand from the CDC’s perspective. They’re always thinking about what is the most clear message we can give to Americans. This very black and white on off. There is this continued persistence to to always edge on the side of saying that, you know, Americans don’t know anything. And, you know, maybe on average that’s true. But we can teach Americans things. You know, there’s there’s another tool that we haven’t used during this pandemic, and that’s the power of educating people in a formal way. Why this far into the pandemic? Hasn’t the US government ever gotten the country’s largest and most effective media agencies involved to to give public health messages like, you know, to socialize the country, to understand complex themes through marketing and advertising and media agencies that literally are billion dollar industries that because they know how to get people to think certain ways where it comes back to what you’re saying, I think that if we ever leverage that tool, all of a sudden the federal government would find itself in a better position, maybe to give better scientific based public health advice to the public that would be able to give them more latitude to deal with the kind of questions that you’re raising.

S1: Yeah, I mean, I look, I could be wrong about this, but what strikes me is that instead of the paternalism, if the CDC would say, look like we need everyone to hang together for the next. Two months, yes, you’re vaccinated, but we still need you to wear a mask and social distance when you’re in public because people need to see those norms being upheld, like, please do it for all of us. To me, that kind of uplifting, communal message would be much more satisfying than like, oh, you know, there could be some great risks that the vaccines don’t prevent transmission when it seems like they significantly do anyway.

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S11: Yeah, no, I totally agree, though I would say I’m personally concerned that not so much that people are going to get severely ill in the near future. But it is a it’s a different it’s a different issue than what you’re describing. But in the near term or in the next six months or seven months, we’ve only measured these vaccines so far during their peak effectiveness, if you will, in many ways during during the first three to four months of after they’re given. And so all of this information that we have a ninety five percent efficacy, we actually haven’t asked the question yet. How effective is it after the major antibody secreting cell population dies off, which happens at about four, three, three months or so, four months. And it’s going to be very, very important for us to keep that in mind. You know, and I actually think that we should be instead of just kind of always flip flopping to like black and white and positive negative, we should probably be saying, hey, look, you know, you’ve been vaccinated. Let’s be honest with the American public. We’re giving this guidance now. There’s a chance that six months from now or in the fall, we’re going to have to retract our guidance. But they’re usually just we have such a reactive government that they’re unwilling to say things proactively based on uncertainties and based on certain aspects. But I do think now maybe that type of thinking and looking at the unknowns maybe is going into some of their their decision making and how they are messaging it right now in the context of what you’re asking about. But CDC aside, that is a major concern that I have in the most vulnerable people are older and older people are less able to retain good immunological memory for long periods of time. And then we have mutant strains that are that are able to already start invading a little bit of immunity. We could find ourselves in a pretty tricky position in the fall again. And I think we should be being proactive to let Americans know very clearly what they might have to expect in the fall and deal with it in a in a much more robust way, rather than just saying just the uplifting message or just the writing message, I suppose.

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S5: Michael Mina is a professor at Harvard School of Public Health. Michael, thanks for joining us. And may the happier scenarios come to pass and the less happy ones not so well.

S10: Thanks so much for having me on.

S3: Now, let’s go to cocktail chatter. When you add all your vaccin friends, we’ll be hanging out on a porch somewhere soon, maybe not even on a porch in a very claustrophobic room with poor air circulation soon. What will you be chattering about then? And that that future some months away.

S7: John Dickerson, two little chatter’s. I don’t know why I’m putting together. Maybe they just I don’t know. Whatever. Anyway, there’s a story in the Philadelphia Inquirer about a guy who lived or says he lived. Tom Garvey, who says he lived for a couple of years at Veterans Stadium. He wrote a book self published, I believe, The Secret Apartment Vent Stadium, a surreal memoir that details how from nineteen seventy nine to nineteen eighty one, he lived in an empty concession stand inside the VAT, which he basically turned into an apartment for himself. And it’s a it’s the Philadelphia Inquirer pieces is quite amusing and it’s the players knew about it or they sort of knew about it anyway.

S5: And then the second thing is of that is I thought you might since you there’s a great ninety nine percent invisible episode about a guy. Next, a group of people who lived inside a mall in Rhode Island, which is in that vein.

S7: Oh, yeah. And then there’s always occasions like feels like every couple of years somebody discovered living inside of an airport. And then the second is Jeremy Irons reading the Psalms, Jeremy Irons dot net. He’s got the voice for it. So if you like the Psalms, go listen to him, read them because it’s it’s good.

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S5: Emily, lots of chatter.

S1: I am chattering this week about two bucks. So the first one is kind of like a companion to Heather McGee’s book. It’s called The Whiteness of Wealth. It’s by Dorothy Brown, who is a law professor at Emory whose work I have followed with interest for a long time now. And she is similarly kind of taking an issue, the tax system, which we thought was like kind of generic and we understood and looking at how it actually disproportionately benefits white people just. Based on the very assumptions with which it was drawn, she points out in the introduction that our modern tax system really comes from this 1913 law, which, of course was passed at a time before black people fully gained the right to vote in the 1960s. And she points out this one thing that I had never thought about before, and that’s sort of what I love about reading this book, which is that the tax code benefits you as a married couple more. If you have one person who makes lots of money and the other person who makes much less money or no money. And that arrangement is much more prevalent among white families than it is among black and Latino families. And I don’t know that like it was one of those things where like, oh, my God, I never thought about that before. And it really makes a difference in people’s lives. So I really recommend this book, The Whiteness of Wealth. And then I have to also recommend this really intense, gripping piece of fiction I read last week by Jessica Winter, who used to. No, no, that’s much. Oh, that’s your chatter. Chatter. You have stolen my second book.

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S5: I would like to absolutely dispute the idea of stealing your second book. I have I sit in this here. I have to go last for chatter all the time.

S6: I have to go last. You can call in yourself first.

S5: Oh, you would seem it would that would that would seem extremely ungracious. What kind of host like like calls on themselves to start being gracious.

S6: Now you have to get to the book because it’s such an interesting book and I’m honestly like a me.

S1: I’m so interested that you read it. So go.

S5: So the the book I want to recommend the chapter I want to talk about is a book by Jessica Winter, who’s a former Slate colleague of all of ours. She was an editor at Slate when we were all there. And she’s now, I think, editor at The New Yorker, and she’s written a novel. It’s her second novel called The Fourth Child. And it’s a really intense book. It’s in it. It’s a it’s the story of a family that adopts a with three children, a very Catholic family in Buffalo in the early 90s, and they adopt a young child from Romania when a Romanian orphan. And it’s told from the point of view of the mother and then a teenage daughter to a small domestic story in some ways. But it’s like a thriller. It is very unsettling. It’s psychologically intense. I just don’t know what is about to happen. It is it is really hard to put down. It has all this sort of insight into religious faith and religious zealotry and into family dynamics. And it’s it’s it’s amazing. It’s an amazing book.

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S1: It’s kind of unusual. That was what I decided when I finished it, that the point of view, especially of Jane, who is the mother and the main character, it’s her voice and her thoughts are not the usual vantage point that I think we get in a lot of American fiction. That was one of the many things that struck me about it.

S5: Check it out. The Fourth Child by Jessica Winter. Listeners, you bedazzle with your chatter’s every week. You have been tweeting them to us at at Slate Gabfests. You can also email them to us at gabfests, at Slate Dotcom, if you would like to do that. And we have been hearing your voice as we do it. And the listener chatter this week comes from Seth McGlowan. Take it away.

S12: Hey, guys, this is Seth from Cincinnati. And my listener chatter is about a guy I know named Dell Hall. And every year Dell does a beer fast during Lent, where during that forty six day period, Dell only drinks beer. Now, this is something he has done for the last couple of years. But the twist on it this year is that he is raising money for people who work in the service industry.

S3: What is amazing about this, I read about this, an article that Seth pointed us to in the Cincinnati Enquirer is not simply that that Dell drinks only beer. Dell eats only beer, too, and is the only thing he consumes for Lent is beer. What?

S7: Which is amazing. Well, that is a myth. I mean, yeah, because wouldn’t I mean, I guess at some point you at the beginning you’d get tipsy and then your body would acclimate.

S4: Can you get scurvy by doing that? The team’s not healthy. Probably not long enough for scurvy to kick. No, no, no. I always worry about scurvy. Do you worry about scurvy, monochrome diets?

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S1: Yeah, because the thing about scurvy is you don’t have any fruits and vegetables. You’re just eating hardtack in the sea.

S5: Has that. But is that a problem that you or any of your friends have ever faced?

S6: Scurvy, I feel. But it could be upon me. I don’t know anyone who’s ever had heart attack, anyone who’s ever had any heart attack. Well, I remember like eating in a kindergarten when we were learning about. When you were learning about the TSA, it was not good. Did not seem like something you’d want to subsist on, especially if it was moldy weevils.

S5: Did you have any weevils and were there any way?

S1: We did not import the weevils with the heart that I’ve always.

S5: What is it, Weevil?

S7: It’s gross. It wobbles, David, but it doesn’t fall down. That’s that’s a weeble.

S5: That is our show for today. The gabfests produced by Jocelyn Frank, our researchers, Brigitte Dunlap. Gabriel Roth is the editorial director of Slate Audio.

S13: June Thomas is the managing producer and Alicia Montgomery is the executive producer of Slate podcasts. Follow us on Twitter at Gabfests to reach out or to us there for Emily Bazelon and John Dickerson and David Plotz, thank you for listening. We will talk to you next week at.

S5: Hello, Slate, plus, we have listener Ryan Cummings throws a slate plus question at us. When you have a project, career oriented or personal interest related that is headed in the wrong direction or you feel won’t reach the goal you had in mind, what do you do? Do you throw it out immediately and start from scratch, decide to power through and make it work, table it for another time? Do you have a system, routine or habit that you return to in these situations? I have so many thoughts on this. I imagine John has a billion thoughts on this. And Emily, I expect you have thoughts on this as well. So let’s start with you.

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S1: Well, I’m and I might have so guess here’s my thought about this. I mean, this is the sunk cost problem, right? That once you start on something, even if it seems ill fated or doomed, it’s really hard to let go of it. And I have a lot of that in me. I, I think too much. I grew up with the idea that there was something shameful about quitting, whereas in fact sometimes quitting is like, great, it’s liberating. It’s a wise use of one’s time. It’s good for everyone, but I do have a hard time with it. And so I think the way I have increasingly dealt with this is that I don’t succeed at this, but I try more to think in the beginning. Do I really want to do this to try to head off what you’re describing? And then I also try to just let myself off the hook of things more and to realize that, like, if you plant a bunch of flowers, then you can just decide that some of them are going to come up and that you’re going to stop watering them when they don’t come up instead of continuing to press on them.

S7: If you’re pressing on your flowers, that might be the reason they’re dying.

S1: That’s true. That was very poorly stated gardening metaphor revealing since I am a terrible gardener who is surprised by that. Nobody.

S7: This reminded me first of all, it’s a great question. I hope we get more questions like this. And testifying to its universal nature is that Adam Grant, the great writer and analyst of business and Management Leadership Behavior, has a book out called Think Again, which is the power of knowing what you don’t know, which is a part of what this is about. But I was reminded as Emily was talking about something a mountain climber said to me when I was interviewing him for a Slate series on risk, he was telling the story of a particularly hairy climb in the middle of the night, horrible conditions in Patagonia, just the two of them. And they went they put up new routes. So there weren’t routes that they were following. They were creating their own routes and they climbed about one hundred feet and realized it’s not going to happen. And just in passing, he said, you know, and down climbing is a part of climbing. So we climb, we down climbed and then took another route. And he said it both in a way that suggested that’s what climbers tell themselves, just kind of like, yeah, that’s part of the deal you down climb and which is you’re not making progress. It’s awful. It’s middle of the night and big chunks of snow are falling. So it was much more hairy than that suggests, but it suggested a pre normalization of retreat and that because if you didn’t pre normalize it, then you’re the obstacle of retreat could get you killed. So that was the first time I came into contact with this. And then the other thing I would add is James Clear, the WHO wrote Atomic Habits has something I used when I was writing the book about assessing the sort of three stages of failure. Is it a failure of tactics? Is it a failure of strategy or is it a failure of vision? And it’s basically deciding which level of your project has gone awry. Tactics you can fix, strategy and vision are a little harder. And this, of course, is true when we’re assessing presidents. A lot of times we we mistake how mistakes, which are you say tactical mistakes for visionary mistakes and vice versa in a way. So those are my thoughts.

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S3: I rarely face situations that are life and death, and I think if I faced situations that were life or death, I would probably have a different vision. I, I or you’d be dead. I’d be dead. No, I’m not I’m not a real serious risk taker, so I probably wouldn’t be dead. I was thinking about this in the context of two things where I have generally faced the projects going awry. One is in writing and one is in kind of work projects that I’ve been supervising. And and I actually think there are two different answers. So in writing, my view has always been you you power through that. You just don’t know whether this is going to be any good. And the best thing you could do is you get your draft down on the page. So I am an absolute believer and write a terrible first draft and the kind of giving giving up on something that I have a few regrets in my journalistic career with pieces I never wrote and they were pieces I never wrote them because I just never got that first draft down on the page. And had I gotten the first draft on the page, I could have been gone back and done the work to fix it. But once if you don’t bother to get that first draft down on the page, you just can’t face it to fix it. If you’re like, oh, it can’t be done. It can’t be done. And I’m absolutely of the like. Just spew all your notes down, write it out, don’t even care. Just have make sure the subjects and verbs agree but worry not be on that and then you will, you’ll fix it in post as they say. Then I was thinking about this in the context of work where I’m supervising projects and there was a there’s a particular project that I was supervising at Atlas Obscura where we had one version of something we did and we we actually went got into a big contract with someone we were working with and arranged a long relationship with them. And it was it was expensive and complicated. And I realized very early on that project that this was the wrong person to be working with and that there was a different approach. But I just didn’t have I was like, oh, we’re already down the road here. Let’s just keep going. And so we kept going with that project, with this wrong person for months and months and months and up and extricating ourselves from that was really painful and expensive and costly for the organization. And it would have been much better had we. And it was also really painful for them. It was like it was kind of humiliating for them. When we did cancel it, it would have been much better to have sort of made the decision early on, like, oh, this is the wrong route to go on. And so that’s the case when when your work is affecting other people’s well-being and when you are when your bad early bad decision is going to cost them later on, then I think you have an obligation to kind of cut it and do something else. But when it’s just affecting, like in the case of writing, when it’s just you and then you’ve got to fix your own problem. I’m of the power through variety. So those are my two different scenarios.

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S4: As Ty Greenstein said, another person I interviewed for the Risk series about writing songs, let yourself suck in the first draft and you couldn’t be more right, David.

S7: And as Emily as you were saying, you don’t you start projects that you are sort of more certain might make it all the way through where you won’t have to abandon it. That’s what I learned from writing my first book, which is basically, if you’re going to do this big thing, make sure you can live with it for its full duration. Think about it in its end state two years later when you’ve had it in your head for the whole time.

S4: And if you can endure that, then do it in the start. So it begin with the end in mind, which seems like kind of like what you were saying.

S5: All right. Slate plus.