S1: This ad free podcast is part of your Slate plus membership.
S2: Hello and welcome to the Slate political gabfest for January 14, 20 twenty. The Greatest Betrayal, Ed..
S3: I am David Plotz of City Cast in Washington, D.C. I’m joined from New York by John Dickerson of CBS 60 Minutes. Hello, John Dickerson. Hello, David. And from some point south by Emily Bazelon of The New York Times Magazine and Yale University Law School. Hello, Emily. Hey, David. Emily has sunshine. Sun is shining on Emily, unlike the rest of us. I don’t speak metaphorically, although that’s probably true on today’s gabfest. We will talk about the second impeachment of President Trump done in a single day. He’s still president, though, and will remain so through the end of his term in six days. Then can the violent and delusional and Trump idolising movement that has captured. Thirty, forty twenty five percent of America, can that be purged from American politics or are we stuck with it if we are stuck with it? How can America continue? And then we’ll talk about the vaccine crisis. We’ll be joined by Juliette Kayyem of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government to talk about what’s going on, whether the Biden administration is going to make the vaccine rollout better. Plus, we’ll have cocktail chatter. Liz Cheney, the third ranking House Republican, said there has never been a greater betrayal by a president of the United States of his office and his oath to the Constitution than what President Trump did to encourage the attack, the the insurrection to stop the electoral vote count at the Capitol the other day. He was impeached on Wednesday for a second time, with 10 Republicans joining all Democrats to call for his removal from office for inciting the attack, which left, I think, five or six people dead. I haven’t checked the latest number. So, John, I mean, just this is just been a terrible this is just a terrible, sad, tragic week. But let’s try to make sense of it. He was impeached in a day. Why did that happen so quickly? It does. It does it does it matter that 10 Republicans joined him, even though 95 percent of House Republicans did not?
S4: Right. It happened quickly because, you know, there’s footage and and and then just just to help the case a little bit more, the president said you shouldn’t impeach me because there might be violence, which was as if he was trying to help them by adding more evidence of how he was inciting violence. It was an attack by the leader of the executive branch on the legislative branch. It’s a pretty open and shut case. And if it wasn’t just the fact that he incited the insurrection, members of the first branch called him on the phone, including Kevin McCarthy, the Republican leader in the House, and said, please say something and stop this. He didn’t do it while there was an attack on America. He sat silent. So it’s a pretty quick, open and shut case. This is the largest number of of House members to vote for impeachment, that the largest number from the party of the president being impeached. However, I would quickly add that you never got to test the Nixon test case because Nixon resigned before the vote was taken. So having given that historical view, it’s not it doesn’t tell you quite as much as you would hope that 10 Republicans left. You know, you can look at it two different ways. You can say, given how locked in the partisanship is, it’s amazing that 10 did. But given what we saw that the US Capitol is a crime scene, that they attacked the the building and the people in it, you know, it should have been a great deal more. And as we as we’ve talked about before, the market that Donald Trump created that exists, separate from him still exists. It’s still quite powerful. And we saw that in all of the Republicans who, despite everything else, would not vote for his impeachment, some of whom said privately that they weren’t doing so because they feared violence in their own communities.
S3: So if they voted for impeachment, Emily Trump or maybe I think it was Trump or Trump lawyers, I can’t remember. It was like I could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and nothing would happen, literally. Yeah. The literally, you know, his effectively has shot someone. He’s beaten a Capitol Police officer to death in the Capitol and he’s bearing no consequence.
S1: He created the conditions for those. Yes.
S3: I just I understand that was rhetoric, but there is this element of which, you know, there are there are police, police person. The police officer is dead. As a result of actions he caused, five people are dead as a result of actions that he he caused to happen and he bears no consequence, apparently.
S1: Well, I think the big question for the country will be how much of a mark of disgrace and what are the political consequences? And I actually feel sort of optimistic about that in one sense, which is that there are lots of social and business signals that the country has been able to send since January 6th. And they have all been toward condemning and separating from Trump. It’s not the same political calculus that House members and gerrymandered heavily Republican districts are making, but it still matters. I mean, I think it matters that the Golf Association PGA canceled their tournament at Trump’s properties. All of these ideas of treating him as a pariah have some effect. And there has been a kind of cascade of companies that have moved away from him in the last week. And so for corporate America to take that stance, it’s different from all of Congress uniting. But I think it’s still significant. And then I have a question for John, which is just what is going to happen next. We know McConnell is not going to have this trial before, not going to start the trial before Biden’s inauguration. And then we’re just going to have this like trains colliding. There’s so much that the incoming Biden administration needs to do quickly in terms of confirmation, in terms of dealing with coronavirus. And we’re also going to be having an impeachment trial, which has to have more due process in it than the House vote did, right?
S4: Yeah, it’s a problem. And it’s and it’s it’s it’s a problem for the incoming Biden administration, as necessary as it may be. They’ve got they want to get started. I think one possible way that at least the Bush administration tries to stay away from this is what I’m calling the just the facts, ma’am. Presidency, which is basically one of the ways I think Biden can turn the page or try to, as much as is even humanly possible, is basically just bury the American people in facts about the administration of the vaccine and the efforts that they are taking to deal with the two biggest problems, which are the pandemic and the economic fallout, and just have like constant briefings, constant information flow, the exact opposite of what you had in the Trump administration, and just kind of stick to the stick to the knitting and and kind of always just say, look, that’s the Senate thing. We’ve got our thing. Whether that’ll work, I don’t know. But it seems like the fact that they have a right to crises teed up right away to deal with might might help with that. The Senate comes back on Tuesday, the day before the inauguration. So this is all going to happen afterwards. To your point, Emily, though, I think there is an enormous danger that has always been there with Donald Trump and enormous danger to thinking that Donald Trump sort of begins and ends with impeachment and all of those. The corporate pressure is quite real, but in a way accentuates what I think is a problem, which is throughout Trump’s presidency, people have sort of made, well, judgments about him and his behavior. And this is a moment where we can focus on all of enabling that allowed his behavior to go forward. And it goes all the way back to the twenty, fifteen, twenty sixteen presidential race. When you pick a person for a job that requires persuasion. When you pick a person who is excellent in offending people, that’s contrary to the job. When you pick a job that requires negotiation and you pick somebody who doesn’t want to negotiate, that’s antithetical to the job. When you pick somebody who cares about himself larger, more than a larger interest, it’s antithetical to the job. Well, that began a long process of basically allowing him to create an unreality in the presidency and do a number of other things that are totally antithetical to the job. And if if it’s basically, oh, well, we got rid of Donald Trump and that was that. It doesn’t address any of the underlying issues that were allowed that allowed him to exist. And so I I wonder if the right optimism that you put your finger on also has a potential downside, which is putting all of the things that need a hard look at at this moment into the kind of Donald Trump basket. Well, he’s gone. We don’t have to look at those things.
S3: I think that’s what we’re going to talk about in our next segment insofar as it’s possible to segment the entire catastrophe into two things. The second one, our second segment, I see as being how can this larger poison be leached out of the system, not just simply what has happened politically to Donald Trump, but let’s let’s linger for a second on Donald Trump, if we can, which is, Emily, as a legal question. In the unlikely event there’s a Senate trial and Donald Trump is convicted in the Senate trial, is it the case, in fact, that that he certainly could not run for office again?
S5: So remove. Bill is after a trial in the Senate and a conviction, and it’s by two thirds vote, but then according to its precedents, the Senate can take a separate vote by a simple majority to disqualify someone from holding an office in the future, if that in the courts.
S3: I didn’t know that. Is that in the Constitution?
S1: I don’t think the second parts in the Constitution, but I think it’s in federal law or there’s precedent for it, not with the president, but in other cases. I didn’t know that. Yeah. Huh. I guess I am still hung up on how this trial is actually going to unfold. I mean, at one point, Biden talked about having the Senate split its days and spend half the day doing the trial and half the day other business. I mean, I don’t know, John. Is that possible? Is there can they just be open for business for 18 hours a day or something like how is it going to work?
S4: I guess they can they can agree to set their schedule however they want. As you may remember, when the impeachment trial is going on, they can’t bring their cell phones in. They can only communicate by paper. They have to stay quiet. It’s there all kinds of constraints to the trial to the extent that the trial gets in the way of kind of moving on, which everybody wants to do, if you only do it half a day, that means the trial is going to take longer. But they could do it. You know, they could have their hearings in the morning for the various officials and then and do the business in the afternoon. I mean, this is a the first test and it’s a pretty high test basically between the relationship between essentially McConnell and Biden, who have talked. Joe Biden has interests, a lot of interests which are separate from Donald Trump and his trial. And you could imagine them trying to work something out behind the scenes that also, by the way, Schumer and McConnell have to work out a power sharing arrangement of the kind that Daschle and Lott worked out, which is its own set of complexities. So I don’t know how this really works out, but but definitely dragging it out is not something that Biden wants. So what’s the question is, what does he trade for that? And again, since this market exists for the constituency Donald Trump has awakened, they’re going to be lots of senators. Huli and Cruz are not going to be quiet. I mean, there will be lots of acting out that will delay this and and cause distraction as well.
S1: I mean, to me, it just seems like a huge hangover, I have to say. And it is significant to me that the impeachment clause in the Constitution says that the president, vice president and all civil officers of the United States shall be removed from office on impeachment for and conviction of treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors like the point is to remove them from office and Donald Trump will already be gone. And I am fine with Congress interpreting this to do this after the fact if it wants. I’m not really raising a constitutional objection, though. I think a strict textualist like really would and Trump maybe will sue over it. I guess I mostly just am back to the idea of, like, do we want this lingering obsession, fixation on Donald Trump to be how the first few weeks of the Biden presidency unfold? And I will say that I care deeply about a full, huge commission like investigation of the Capitol insurrection. I feel like there’s so many unanswered questions. The whole thing was so much scarier than I realized at first. And I think, like really terrible disaster, like mass death was a much closer call that I understood initially. So I’m not saying at all that we should brush by what happened. I just am worried about these the procedural realities of how this is going to take place.
S3: Right. Right. I think I mean, that’s a great point, Emelina. And again, I think we’ll get to this more in the next election. But I think there’s a question about whether full accountability is something best pursued with a focus on Donald Trump in in what is a intrinsically important Senate trial. Since he will no longer be president, he can’t be removed from office or whether full accountability is better pursued in some larger forum with a larger commission. What I worry is that there isn’t. That the benighted ness and and traitorous ness of that that Republican group that still supports Trump is such that it’s going to be really impossible to have any full accountability. And so maybe the only accountability can be done in the form of this trial because there can’t be a larger investigation or purging that this Republicans will allow to happen in any congressional forum.
S1: How do they stop it? They don’t control the Senate and the House.
S3: You think that you think that the that the Senate and House. Maybe that’s right. You think they can they can have in a big investigation if they want, I guess then they they have subpoena power they can enforce, which they didn’t used to have. Maybe you think that would be a better mechanism, but they’re not going to if I offered you a bet today, do you think that Ted Cruz and Josh Holli’s career. Careers have been enhanced or damaged by what happened this week and will they be in a stronger place in three years than they are today?
S1: I mean, that is a great question. I desperately want to hope that the answer is damaged. I think that they have increased their hold on the base. Whether Trump really wants an error or not at this point and whether that base can be handed off, I think is a really open question. And I also think there is a serious backlash going on. So we’ll see.
S3: John, do you think there’s a serious backlash going on?
S4: I think well, we’ve seen some in the in the survey data, so the president’s approval rating is down to 33 percent. Now, whether that constitutes serious or not, I think there is there’s certainly a corporate backlash. You see McConnell trying to find the shape of the backlash. But within the within the heart of the party, it seems actually quite minimal.
S3: Slate plus members get bonus segment on the Gabfest and other Slate podcasts. And they also support the journalism that Slate has been doing. It’s been doing throughout the campaign, throughout the Black Lives Matter protests of the summer in the post campaign period, especially great coverage around some of the legal issues that have arisen in all of this time. And today, if you’re a slate plus member, you would get a bonus segment of us talking about a much lighter subject and talk about what kind of music we listen to to clear our heads and why. Now we’re going to turn to what I see as maybe the the topic, the entire subject, the the text of the last five years and maybe the text for the rest of our lives. Oh, God, please. No. Well, the fact is that a significant minority of Americans, probably more than 25 percent of Americans, maybe less than 40 percent, has been pickled in lies and now occupies a realm of dark fantasy, a realm where the election was stolen, where Democrats support a child molestation ring, where the attack on the Capitol was patriotism of the highest order. Trump is at the top of this and he would ruin the nation for his own ego. He would tell any lie. And so he told all these lies. But there is a right wing media that feeds and fertilizes these lies, a set of conservative funders who bankroll it to advance some kind of economic interest, and a Republican Party that depends on the voters who are animated by those lies and or party that, as we see, with almost no exceptions, will not renounce the craziness and violence that has resulted and will not perform any act of introspection to hold themselves responsible for the fact that there’s now a huge number of people who basically don’t believe in America and would destroy it and have a moral certainty about it. Get none of these actors will accept any culpability for the violence, for the destruction of our trust in institutions. Given that, are we fucked? Is there any way back? I mean, I have a couple of things about start I want to hear. I mean, well, I mean, I here are the things that give me hope. I do think that the prosecution, the significant if the if the legal institutions. Emily, you know, I hate relying on legal institutions, but if the legal institutions, if law enforcement courts, prosecutors can hold and can significantly investigate, prosecute and hold accountable the people who are committing the the acts of violence, including not just the ones at the capital, but the things that have been planned, the things that the schemes, the conspiracies, the white nationalist militia, acts of terror that are that happened seem to be happening with increasing frequency. I think that will make a difference. That will break some of the power of these organizations to act in everyday life. I think that’s one big thing. And then I think I actually think this de platforming is a huge issue. I think if if people can be driven underground into forms of communication, which are private and those are very dangerous because they can communicate privately on on telegram or signal, but are basically not great for recruiting because they’re not public, because they are not they can’t be publicized. I think that will it will mean the people who are drawn in are more violent and more aggressive and and can can plan things that can be more dire. But the ability to infect so many people in the population will be diminished. Now, if people are off Twitter, if they’re off parler, if they’re if Facebook takes real action to to control this, the main problem is that there still is a right wing media ecosystem which just says outrageous things and distributes these lies and and and multiplies them. And that is not controllable in the way that the Twitter is controlled.
S5: Well, just to back up what you are saying about changing the dynamic, at least on the social media platforms, I was reading some of the work of professor in Canada named Amara Singham this week, and he was pointing out that what we know from ISIS, from the efforts to diminish the reach and the traction of ISIS is that you move them to a platform where there’s little potential for new recruits, unlikelihood of random people stumbling on propaganda, of random people being able to drop people in the movement and getting roped in. So you’re right about pushing people underground. I mean, it also means that it’s harder for law enforcement to see what’s going on. But that’s like, I think, a price we pay for trying to make this new medium less toxic.
S3: But, Emily, just to to then take the second part of my point there was that, yes, you push them underground in the social media and the social media is is less accessible and less a recruiting tool. But how do we deal with the fact that there is with Fox News and more importantly, with like Newsmax and and a right wing media ecosystem, which, even absent the social media organizing function, is fueling the lies, fueling the deception, fueling the the delusion?
S5: Yeah, I mean, I agree with you. I think that’s like the huge central challenge that and the algorithms and the social media platforms which have been tuned for profit driven reasons to deliver this hot, insightful content and the relationship between those two dynamics. So I guess I would say two things. One is that when you think of some of this as domestic terrorism, you want the federal government in particular and also state and local law enforcement to be on it. You want them to be investigating, to be taking this seriously as a threat. And we saw the Trump administration really move away from that kind of way of thinking about white supremacist violence and threats. And so that really needs to change in a Biden administration. We need to see that for the danger that it is in terms of the media and social media. I guess the only thing I can imagine right now is a kind of ebbing, not like a dramatic turn. I don’t think we’re going to see Rupert Murdoch and Fox News like renounce their previous stances. But you could imagine a way in which, like, we just like went right up to the edge of the canyon. Right. Like, we almost fell in the we had a president lie about the election being stolen, try to subvert the results. We had an attack on our capitol. Like most Americans do not want the democracy to collapse. They may not care enough to, like, go out and protect it. And there’s a lot of inertia, which is a huge problem along with the hysteria. But that’s not like a popular view. It’s still fringe. And so without Trump’s Twitter megaphone, which Twitter has taken away and without an obvious way for him to inject straight into the bloodstream of his supporters, his incendiary lies, that may shift and it may really matter. I mean, it’s going to be harder for Trump to launder his statements and his bellicose language going. Forward through the media, but he’s not going to be president anymore and there’s going to be pressure on the mainstream media not to cover him very much, I don’t know, maybe FOX will keep pounding away. But I mean, I wonder if they’re you did see a little bit of skepticism in pulling back from him, at least on FOX. I don’t know what to say about that and Newsmax, except that they’re still pretty small. John, what do you think?
S4: I don’t think it has anything to do with Trump. I think there is a there’s been an increasing fever of apocalyptic rhetoric from this is forget anybody who is on the capital, forget anybody who is on parler. And there has been an apocalyptic way of thinking in the Republican Party that you can trace back to Newt Gingrich, who would who define Democrats as evil as an entire party. That was that wasn’t just wrong but was morally wrong. And that has escalated. And Donald Trump say it know that man did it perfectly, but he is not the only one doing it. And you just read any fundraising letter, read any communication. You you see look at any of the tweets from people who want to be president in twenty twenty four. So the idea that that that this is Flight 93, that basically if if we don’t win, it’s not just that bad, people will will have power, it’s that the fundamental American experiment will be destroyed. And that’s all that is pervasive and deep. And Donald Trump can go away and that’s all still going to exist. And what that gets extra energy from is something that John sides, Lynn Vavrek and Michael Tessler wrote about an identity crisis. Francis Fukuyama wrote about it in his book Identity The idea that in a shifting and multicultural society, people who feel status threatened feel it deeply and that a deep identity identity level. So you match that deep emotional response to the changes in American life, plus this apocalyptic way of viewing things. And these are the trends, the currents that were contributory on the 6th, but that that are separate from Donald Trump and that are very hard but need real examination, because that’s the market in which a lot of Republicans are going to continue to participate.
S3: Yeah, I mean that. I mean, I just want to sign on to everything, you know, both of you have said. But, John, especially this point about the this I think there’s this notion that, oh, the people attacking the capital recognize themselves as villains in a in an active theater. And it’s, of course, not a course not. It’s that they believe themselves to be heroes and they act with moral certainty and that there is a world which depicts them as heroes and where they are hailed as heroes because people don’t commit acts of violence, for the most part because they feel themselves to be villainous. They commit acts of violence because they feel themselves to be driven to it by a by force of absolute righteousness. When that is reinforced and you’re told by those around you and by a media around you that you are acting righteously, it makes you feel good and better and feel you engage in something greater than yourself. And that is that is something that’s going to be incredibly hard to to address.
S4: I don’t know that it’s addressable well one way and we don’t know how big this portion of the population that I just described, how big this group is and that exists. But we know from the political science of looking at this that the feelings of alienation are in are largely centered around the feeling of being basically disrespected and not heard and not seen. We don’t know yet what it will look like if you have a president who and Joe Biden does recognizes that that is a problem. I don’t know how he goes about fixing that if it is fixable. But the idea and this comes straight out of Michael Gerson’s mouth, who I interviewed for a piece I’m working on, you know, when George Bush came in in 2000, they tried in their inauguration basically to say there are a lot of people who are incredibly angry that he’s president and we have to try to find a way to speak to them and to kind of find some bridging based on the really basic American values. And Kirsten’s point is that’s a whole lot harder to do now and may not even be possible. But Biden is going to try to speak to that portion of the electorate that is that is nervous about his presidency and that doesn’t feel heard. Who knows how much of how many people he can reach as he tries to tell them you have a place, even though you’re in the minority, which is in the best tradition of America, you know that the minority shouldn’t be disrespected. So that’s that’s a possible first step towards getting at what we all agree is a quite a difficult problem.
S1: I mean, if the deeper problem is a country in which the white majority is being asked to give up domination and truly share power with its changing demographic, multiethnic and racial reality, it’s tough for one guy. Even if he’s the president, like, really, right, I mean, that’s the challenge. I mean, I think Biden like better position than anyone else, right? He’s a white guy from, like, everyman, kind of working class roots, at least going back further in his family. But it still seems like a lot to put on one person.
S4: Well, sure, as I said. But I think you you know, there’s a continuum there that there are the white supremacists who were storming the Capitol and then they’re the people who, you know, are nevertheless are Republicans are voting for Donald Trump, but who are gettable. I mean, a lot of them voted for Biden because they left the Republican Party to vote for him. So, you know, it’s the question is, where is that on the continuum that people are gettable by the behavior of a president and his party. And obviously, it doesn’t just happen with one speech.
S1: Right. And I also I never know whether this is comforting or the opposite, but over American history, we have had factions and large groups of Americans like this with us always. It’s not like this is some new phenomenon. Now, of course, we also had a civil war. Nobody wants that. And there are other really terrible events in the 20th century that took place, particularly in the 1920s were later to I mean, the, you know, suppression of voting rights of African-Americans and other people of color.
S3: There’s a lot I mean, Emily, just to argue with you for a second. Yes, we had those, but I see those as essentially occupying two places. One is that there was the the tension that built up before the Civil War where we ended up with these two literally warring parts of the country. That’s one. And it ended in a civil war. The other is we suppressed that effectively for a century after the civil war by. Placing blacks in a second class citizen by creating a racial caste system where blacks were not did not have full participation in American life, and that was terrible.
S1: And I really desperately don’t want that to happen again. But we did then have, you know, what professors like Bruce Ackerman call like a constitutional moment in the 1960s in which we address that. I mean, we passed really important civil rights legislation. And I would much rather analogize this to the 1960s, which were super disruptive, but kind of ended OK and had an era of prosperity and relative stability and relative like consensus about just actual facts in America.
S3: Well, but I would just I mean, and it was obviously right and correct and and necessary. What happened with the civil rights movement, with the women’s rights movement, the gay rights movement with disability rights movement, the indigenous people’s rights movement. And yet you can see, I think, that American conservatism, which this this this poisonous A. is a manifestation of American conservative ism. Even if it’s even if it’s not doesn’t you know, it’s not all about like lower my taxes. If it’s if it’s basically white racist nationalism, the American conservative movement is or is it that has brought us to where we are today is a reaction to all these things which were the right thing for the country to do. Like is it possible to sustain a multi-ethnic democracy where there where everyone can fully participate? Or white people just going to ruin it.
S4: Well, it’s not all the way there has to be an argument in the Republican Party that doesn’t seem to be really happening, and if it’s not going to happen now, it’s not clear when it’s going to happen because we are speaking from a values standpoint. But there’s a political imperative here, too, and that maybe Mitch McConnell was reacting to it with the encouragement of corporate donors who were angry with Donald Trump. But I mean, Donald Trump lost the presidency, the House, the Senate, and was impeached twice. That can’t be a recipe for a long term political success. What’s breathtaking is that after the 2012 loss, the Republican Party created an autopsy to look at what it did wrong and had all these reform ideas and that nothing like that is being even mildly suggested after losing all three of those institutions and double impeachment. That argument has to happen, though. Some group of Republicans needs to say to be a surviving long term party. We can’t be identified or whipsawed by this. Thirty three percent of our party or forty two percent or whatever percentage you want to claim that is that that would like to see an insurrection of the kind we saw on or I should say this, a portion that looks at the insurrection on the 6th and says, well, maybe went a little too far, but, you know, doesn’t make me revolted. And until that argument happens, I think, oh, well, I guess I should say that that argument needs to happen for significant change to happen.
S1: But now I’m going to be the super pessimist, because one of the reasons, obviously, that that’s not happening is structural. Like we have a Senate that doesn’t reflect the national electorate because of the overrepresentation of people from small rural states. We have a Congress that, because of where people live and because of gerrymandering, does not yield up competitive races. And we have, you know, pretty crappy protections for voting rights. We have the Bananas Electoral College, which reinforces the problems with the not representative Senate. Like we just we have really sclerotic like this is where the Constitution and our basic our our peculiar American institutions of democracy are really showing their age. And there’s not any obvious way to fix them. I mean, the ideas are so clear, but the political will has been lacking. And I, I couldn’t agree more that I feel like that’s what this moment of urgency should produce.
S4: And I’m really worried about whether it will or I’m I couldn’t agree more. Is that the the passion and freak out that people feel should be, you know, husbanded, put it into the tiny little cubes of an ice tray and put it in the freezer and then every week take a dose of that outrage because it’s going to need to be sustained over a long period of time to think through some of the reforms that are really at the heart of these these structural issues that we’re talking.
S1: And instead, we’re going to have Joe Manchin being like D.C. statehood. I don’t see it eliminate the filibuster. I’m not up for it. And it’s all going to sort of like come down to that again. I just it’s going to be very frustrating.
S3: I fear politics is this act of of sort of miserable compromise and giving a little here and getting a little here. And and when you have a political party that. In large part has abandoned that it becomes really hard to get anything done. Because compromise, compromise has moral stakes attached when it shouldn’t compromise is just like, OK, we all have to live together, so let’s find the least bad way for us to live together.
S4: That’s what politics is. That’s right. Politics has give and take, but it’s taken on the aspects of religion, which is basically the brittleness of heretics and believers. Yeah.
S3: We are joined by Juliette Kayyem, who is professor and faculty chair of the Homeland Security Program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Juliette, of course, is a gabfest veteran. She has joined us before to talk about lots of things, but notably the pandemic in the pandemic response. And today with you, Juliette, we want to dig in on vaccination. The US has used about a third of the 30 million doses it has distributed. 10 million doses have been put into people’s arms even as death and infections are rising at horrifying rates from the virus and the threat of the new, more infectious strain rises. As I say on every episode, vaccines don’t work. As the adage goes, vaccination works because vaccination is an entire program, a system by in agreement, people doing it enough distribution operations that work. And it feels like it may be. Correct me if I’m wrong. It feels like we had months to prepare, but we don’t have enough people trained to give vaccines. Not a clear process for registering for vaccines, not enough urgency about the number of vaccines that we need to deliver and what time and no guidance from the federal government that is worth a darn. Is that where we are?
S6: It is pretty much. I mean, I’m having been in large logistical nightmares. I get my back up when people say it’s a disaster, but it’s not I’m not a disaster yet. And and all the challenges that you mentioned are both knowable and and you’re seeing course corrections already, except for a few major ones, which Biden is going to have to deal with. And we can’t go back and and complain about why we weren’t ready. But I will say a couple good things before we get to the bad things. One is you I’m sure you’re all feeling a feeling it in the different places that you are. You are seeing more vaccine distribution channels open up, whether the large facilities, the smaller facilities, data management is much better. So things aren’t crashing. All the stuff that happens when you build something up. Hesitancy is a problem, but it’s not it’s not an existential one and it’s likely going to shrink as the system begins to move. So surprisingly or not surprisingly, the big issue is supply. While we like the anecdotes of supply going bad on the shelves, those are truly anecdotes. They are some stupid hospital. Let five doses go to waste or fifty doses go to waste. No one’s doing that anymore. Our challenge is going to be supply for Q1, that Pfizer Moderne, a project enough vaccine for just about one hundred million by April.
S3: And then of course, we had one million doses over a hundred million times. Two doses.
S6: Two hundred million total, not total. So that would cover one hundred million people. So that includes the two because that’s how they’re delivering it. So when they say dose, they mean both. We’ll get into the one dose to dose debate. But so that’s sort of where we are. And then we are anticipating Biden’s proposal to be a money and resources, as you say. But no, when you talk about fixing a logistical problem, there’s two options. One is more gas, more immediacy, more steroids. Just make this thing move. The other is a massive course correction, right. That that the entire infrastructure is off. The good news is I don’t think it’s the latter. I think it’s the former.
S5: So when you say we’re going to hit a supply problem and one hundred million doses, complete doses, complete vaccines by April, do you mean we are going to run out and before more comes? And can you tell us about the news from Johnson and Johnson?
S7: So I’m normally pretty optimistic, but and I’ve been well, Emily knows this from our conversation for The New York Times magazine. I’m bullish on Johnson and Johnson from a logistical perspective. It’s one shot, no cold storage. This is makes me happy. It’s old school vaccine, which also means from a distribution perspective, lots more people can give it because you don’t need the storage facility. So this is where we begin to think about the CVS and the Walgreens and all of those places, because you don’t need an infrastructure. It’s just basically your good old fashioned vaccine. So Johnson Johnson announced yesterday that they are delayed in production. So I want to separate these. We expect next week Johnson and Johnson will present their data. You know what the efficacy is? All rumor mills and that’s all it is suggests it’s pretty high. It’s like the other vaccines. They were in parallel manufacturing. This is the interesting thing about operation warp speed and really a testament to what they were focused on, which is they were manufacturing before approval just under an assumption that they would get it was a cost that that the government was willing to take. That manufacturing, assuming you get the approval by the FDA in early February, is now delayed, pushing us about a month to a month to six weeks to get a new vaccine into the market.
S6: So what we want to do is we just want to saturate the market with supply because we don’t have a demand problem, we thought we weren’t going to have a demand problem. We don’t seem to have a demand problem. Everyone wants this thing.
S4: And you buy demand problem. You mean because you thought people would be hesitant to take the vaccine?
S7: Yes. I mean, I think, you know, the data was pretty bad early on and the data is still funky or the polling is still funky, depending on the community. But what we saw after Biden won, it was purely tied to people who are wary of Donald Trump, also being wary of his promises of vaccine. Those numbers shifted. And I’m really happy what they look like. About 40 percent of the country would knock off their mother to go get the vaccine first. I mean, that is probably the four of us just would get to the front of the line if we could. The other 40 percent is not at. No, they’re at not first. So that’s something you can work with that they just want to see how the process works. And that tends to be minority communities or communities that have been challenged by public health, Native American communities and things like that. So that’s something you can work with, with, you know, Instagram and others that can get out to these communities and say get into line. So the 80 percent is unbelievable. And then you’re going have a 20 percent problem, but you herd immunity. I mean, let’s be honest here. And it’s so gross to say you’ve got 10 percent now of the population, but that’s 10 percent documented. Right? I mean, I’ve heard people in the public health weren’t thinking that it might be double that. So we might already be in 20 percent.
S5: And in terms of people who already have been infected, yeah, I haven’t been tested.
S7: And I was traveling all around January through March, and I didn’t feel well at one stage. And I don’t know what that was, you know, I mean, I don’t I’m sure you have lots of friends that it’s sort of like I might have had it.
S3: Juliette, the Biden administration starts a week from yesterday. What is likely to change and not to change in a Biden administration in terms of vaccine policy distribution and and the operational effectiveness of it all?
S7: So there will not be a massive course correction. In other words, this notion that the military is going to take it over or the feds will take it off as the last thing you want, I know it’s hard for people to to get that the federal government can support the efforts of localities and states on a distribution network like this. The last thing you want is the feds taking over, because what we’re seeing is localities addressing problems tactically, which is what you want. It was the localities that are screaming to the states. The allocation one versus one B is too strict and I need to get to one B faster. That’s where the states need to let loose and the federal government needs to let them let loose. So I think where it will change is the president elect has already said more money, which is absolutely true. We’ve got about nine billion going to state and localities in the in the one that was just passed. You’re going to need a lot more for personnel and resources. Not all of this can be done on a voluntary basis. And managing volunteers costs money. And you’re you’re going to need to just support an infrastructure that is solely focused on this, including opening up private facilities. What we hear is you’re going to see the Defense Production Act used for vaccine manufacturing. I’ll be honest with you. I don’t know what that means. This is what they’re saying. It’s probably just means they’re going to purchase more vaccines. I don’t know if the companies have capacity to do that. And that’s what we’re going to have to see, that this has been all done by outside of any force requirements. So we’ll see how strict the Biden team gets. And then the third area where I would suspect a big difference is and the Trump people have already said this can be done, is this can you release the first dose before guarantee of the second? And I think they’re going to push that. I can explain that. But yeah, that’s sort of I think where we’ll see the changes.
S6: Go ahead and explain. Yeah. Why don’t you. Yeah.
S8: So I think the public health community is using the terminology single dosage to mean two different things. There is one proposal which is very aggressive, which is if I have fifty doses of one hundred shots. Right. Because you need two shots that will cover fifty people instead. Let’s release those 100. Give us a lot of immunity because first shot gets has seventy or seventy five percent efficacy and we’ll worry about the second shot later. This is just get the stuff flowing, get as many people as possible. More immune than not, the FDA has responded to that proposal that if the data is there, they’ll approve it. But there have not there have not been serious. Studies to support that, although this is where Britain is, this is where Great Britain is the U.K., the second proposal is promoted by Scott Gottlieb and formerly of the FDA, which I think is creative and good, which is the supply chain is knowable. We know how much is coming from Moderna. We know how much is coming from Pfizer. We’ll get a sense of Johnson and Johnson and the other fixin’s if we know it to be reliable. And that’s a big if. But I think we can have some confidence. Then you can release those hundred shots to one hundred people. You know that the other hundred is coming in 30 days. So it’s just a basically administrative shift that you’re going to get that stuff off the shelf before the second dose arrives. That’s a lot of confidence in the supply chain. But I think we’re starting I think I think we should have that. And I think it’s a good proposal. So that’s what people are confused by. The one dose discussion is because the first one is is is changing the science, which just I’m not a scientist, but it just makes me nervous because that’s what we’ve done. Right. Right. We did. That’s the part we actually got really, really good. The second one is just changing the distribution schedule.
S5: So for the second option, is that separate from the problem, the Johnson and Johnson, because you’re only giving out Moderna second doses to people who got the first dose, right. Like you’re not the vaccines aren’t interchangeable. So even if there is a supply problem where the Johnson and Johnson vaccine doesn’t reach an additional pool of people, shouldn’t you still be able to rely on the Internet and Pfizer?
S6: OK, yeah, I think that’s right. Yeah, that is exactly right. And then Johnson would cover a new pool. Johnson and Johnson. What I loved about it is then you don’t have the problem of sort of rural tribal areas.
S9: You just don’t you don’t want an infrastructure. And and that’s what we’ve needed right now, is that infrastructure, most hospitals and major medical facilities can handle it, but more rural areas, tribal and others can’t. So so the way I thought about it was you’d have the urban two shot, you know, cold storage and then you’d have the more nimble Johnson and Johnson, assuming all the effort that they’re equally effective in the harder to reach or more reluctant populations who may not you may not have reliance that they would come back a second time.
S1: So if Johnson and Johnson takes longer to come online in terms of actual manufacturing, what’s the best hope for filling that vacuum? Essentially so on the Durnan Pfizer, is there a fourth option?
S7: I think there’s other well, there are other that I’m not following as closely, but there are, I think, still six or seven trials going on. So any of these companies at any moment could announce their data because these are all blind testing.
S9: So they they have third parties assessing it. And then the third party say we’re at ninety seven percent efficacy. That’s what happened with Moderna. They didn’t know what their data was going to show until literally the night before. And then the board got told. So so that could happen any day and then you adjust their manufacturing as well. So you’re just going to saturate the market. The benefit of Johnson and Johnson, of course, was you have one hundred thousand doses. That’s one hundred thousand people without much complication. So or however many there, they’re manufacturing. So the delay, though, they’re saying, is just four to six weeks. That’s what they say now. And my guess is Johnson Johnson is sophisticated enough that they wouldn’t have come up with a solution unless they were pretty confident in it, because nothing’s going to piss people off more than to be told in six weeks that it’s another six weeks. I still think we get to aspects of the general population. This is for a variety of reasons in early Q2. And the reason why is because I do think the Biden folks will probably purchase more of the of the first two vaccines. The second is the allocations are are troublesome, not in a bad way. I mean, I think I think we legitimately prioritize populations. They’re just too tight. And we need to give states and localities a lot more flexibility in getting to different pools so that by the time you get to the general population, we’re sort of just, OK, show up, sign up. And the third reason this is the macabre one is, as I said, is, you know, and I’m I’m just a consumer of health intelligence. We might have 20 percent already in this country. I mean, just given what David said at the opening, it’s pretty shitty. I’m sorry. It’s pretty bad out there. So we’re we’re going to we’re going to hit hard with less necessity of action on the vaccination part, more death or death. And because of death, I mean, guys, what were we we had over 5000 years, were we over 4000 yesterday? Yeah. So we’re going to get a I mean, I’d say this not I say things and then people think I’m. On average, I just say it because it is so outrageous, you don’t there’s nothing else to do but just say it, which is I mean, we could be at eight thousand bucks a day by early February. The trajectory we’re on, the Biden’s first two months are anywhere between eight to twelve thousand a day if we don’t get this damn thing under control.
S4: Julia, do you have a sense you were talking about the second quarter? Is there a is there a way to think about if you combine his herd immunity, the number of vaccines that have been put into people’s arms and hopefully the continuation of social distancing that we don’t get to full happiness, but there are stages of return to normalcy. And what does that mean?
S7: So that’s a great question, because, you know, the on off switch, it’s not an on off switch, it’s the Demre. But this time it’s the Demre up. So so it’s not the dimmer down. It’s the the abrupt down. It’s a Demre up.
S8: And so I. So twenty, twenty one and I it’s the entire runway of twenty, twenty one will begin to feel normal ish for a variety of reasons, including the weather and the just natural trajectory of a virus, including new leadership. That’s going to push a lot of these the public health necessity out, including controlling things that a federal government can control interstate travel, aviation, travel, stop with the Kruse’s, all the things that matter, and support for states that are willing to close restaurants and things like that. So I I’m looking at it like March. April will begin to feel begin to feel more normal if the numbers knock on wood. Right. Lots can go bad, but I haven’t strayed from this yet. March. So that’s Q2 March, April, May. Things start to look more normal this summer depending on your risk tolerance and whether you have had it or not. You’ll most people will be able to shake off the cobwebs. I guess I would say I personally. But with insurance and planning a family trip in late August with a flight which is new, I haven’t been on an airplane since late February. We’ll see. We’ll see. That’s, I think might be a little bit risky, just whatever.
S9: But I think I think we’ll get to it by then. Everyone’s back in school in September for sure. There’s no reason not to be the numbers. We should be in school for the most part now, but any school district that’s not open in September just hasn’t done it right.
S3: Juliette, thank you for joining us. Come back anytime. Juliette Kayyem is a tenured professor at Harvard, faculty chair of the Homeland Security Program. Thanks, Juliette.
S8: You guys are great. Thank you.
S3: Let’s go to cocktail chatter while you are waiting for your vaccine, sitting on your porch, waiting, waiting for your pharmacy to have your vaccine. What will you be chattering about, John?
S4: I will be chattering about a story that my colleague Clare sent to me, which I have not actually completed, but it has the best lead of a piece. And so that’s all you need to get enthralled with this. It was in the Times. I don’t know if you all are familiar with The New York Times East Coast. Never heard of it. What is it? Yeah. Stephan Thomas, a German born programmer living in San Francisco, has two guesses left to figure out a password. That is as of this week, like this story, about two hundred and twenty million. The password will allow him to unlock a small, hard drive known as an iron key, which contains the private keys to a digital wallet that holds seven thousand Bitcoin. And the piece goes on. But anyway, I just thought that lead was so enthralling and it seems like it’s going to be great.
S1: I actually found it too stressful to read that story and totally he’s like, I wake up in the middle of the night. I’m like, what passwords have I ever used that I haven’t tried? And like, there’s no help desk at Bitcoin to call.
S4: I must admit that’s exactly why I didn’t keep reading it. I thought, I need to put this aside for a moment when I have the space to read this and and process this incredibly jittery feeling that it’s giving me just reading the lead, I, I knew that that stuff is not for me because I had a security deposit box.
S3: Remember, a security deposit box. Yeah. You got still have them. And there was a period of about eight years where I didn’t have the key. And then ultimately I was like, oh, I found it, but where was it. I don’t even remember somewhere like that or something. Yeah. On his keychain. But it’s one. Emily, what’s your slightly less stressful chatter.
S1: OK, so I really needed a distraction in the last week or so and maybe some of you out there can identify that. And I’m having trouble concentrating on books, but I found one that I really got immersed in and it was such a great relief. It is a twenty twenty novel called Hamet by Maggie O’Farrill. David, have you read this?
S3: I feel like John. No, it’s about it’s Hamlet, right? It’s like a retelling of Hamlet.
S1: Yes. So it’s it falls into one of my very favorite novel categories, which is like little slivers of history that allow the author to reimagine something we all are familiar with, in this case, the creation of the play Hamlet from a different perspective. And so this is a period of William Shakespeare’s life told from the point of view of his wife and his children. It’s really enchanting and lovely and full of these lush descriptions of the natural world, because his wife is a kind of healer, an herbalist, and able to make plants and herbs, do all this interesting work for her in the novel. And she is a kind of curious, unlikely character and so are her children. And you don’t really hear very much from William Shakespeare’s point of view, but that was actually a strength of the book and was always in the other room just yelling, forsooth. Exactly. Anyway, I really recommend it. It’s not long. It pulled me right in Hamlet.
S3: BINAGGIO For Emily, are you going to become an herbalist or something like that a second week in a row?
S1: I think about that. It’s true. I know I am like literally the last person I have, like a black thumb. I never succeed. And remember remembering to water things really. And also, I know nothing about plants. Actually, the class I got the lowest grade and in college was called local flora. It was all about identifying trees, shrubs and plants in Connecticut. And I did terribly in it. I’m really bad at all that, but I think it’s totally great and fascinating and I have such appreciation for people who are good at it.
S3: Speaking of which, we basically had no no one sent us a poultice that was we talked about on the Slate plus segment and I asked for people for a poultice recipe. Gabfest listeners, if you know how to make a poultice like an old 19th century style poultice, please send us the recipe or you can read it in which there are many poultices put together by and yes, with a recipe. They don’t have a recipe.
S1: They kind of almost do in this book. I mean, not quantity. Here’s the ingredients.
S4: Here’s the thing about a poultice as far as I’m concerned, which is you don’t need a recipe. A poultice is just a bunch of goo. I mean, the difference between a poultice and a roux in cooking, I think is basically nothing. Well, I think it’s a Roux has very specific instructions, John. So that’s a really understand that point. I’m just I’m just saying you could you could make a roux and just go poultice. No. And that would make it a political put it in. Can I just also or a little can I say whatever one other thing about Emily’s feeling about fiction, just kind of glancing off of you, which I have felt as well. I’ve started doing something which is, I know, ridiculous, but it actually sort of works, which is reading and then listening to the audio book of the same book, like in the background while you’re doing other things. So you read like two chapters and then you read listen to those chapters while you’re like doing the dishes. And it has caused books that I’ve wanted to sink in to sink in.
S5: That is a great idea.
S3: Interesting. OK, my chatter, I had two and a half minutes of just delight this week, actually it’s more than two and half minutes because I keep repeating it and I think I’m late to this. But if you have not seen our planet, it’s a wonderful nature series. I think it’s on Netflix now, which is towards the the grasslands of the world, the jungles of the world, the oceans of the world, and has just nature footage that is beyond stunning. It’s incredible. But there is a two and a half minute segment and the jungles episode. It’s about 12 minutes in where we are in New Guinea and we are visiting with a bird of paradise, this very black, iridescent black bird, which is doing a mating dance for the female of the species. It’s hysterical. It is the greatest dance that anyone has ever done. And this bird, it’s so beautiful and so funny. It’s. I can’t do it just as I saw it when I searched for it, there is a little YouTube pull out of it so you can just see it on YouTube, just these two and a half minutes. All right. We got to put this because I don’t think I’ve seen it. Oh, it’s a bird is a whirling dervish, isn’t he’s? He’s like a river dancer. He’s battling his throat, flashes. He changes the color of his eyes. It’s. Yeah. You know what I’m talking about, John?
S4: Oh, it’s yeah. Now he’s popping breaking the whole damn thing.
S3: It’s glorious listeners. You have also continued to send us chatter’s of of almost bird of paradise level quality. And you tweet them to us at at Slate Gabfest and I want to call it one that was sent to us by Richard Melkert and Richard Nethercott sends us an article in Wired, a 25 year old bet comes do has tech destroyed society? And it’s an incredible story in Wired magazine, which, Emily, I thought you would like because your husband wrote a book that’s kind of analogous to this, but it was about it. This story is about a 1995 bet made by the editor of Wired named Kevin Kelly with a Luddite author named Kirkpatrick Sale about whether whether the world would be ruined by the year 2020. And this 1000 dollar bet just came due. And the judge just issued their ruling in this bet. And it’s just a great story about these two totally different worldviews and kind of the ambiguity about who won this bet. Like did has the world been ruined or has technology, in fact, saved us? And it’s it’s a fascinating story. So check it out. That is our show for today, The Gap. This is produced by Gelson Franka. Researcher is Bridget Dunlap. Gabriel Roth is editorial director of Slate Audio, June Thomas as managing producer of Slate Audio. And Alicia Montgomery is executive producer of Slate podcasts. Please follow us on Twitter at at Slate Gabfest and tweet your chatterer to us there for Emily Bazelon and John Dickerson and David Plotz.
S10: Thanks for listening. We will talk to you next week.
S3: Hello, Slate, plus, how are you? Actually, you know, we have a great slate plus topic for you today, but I want to give a little update, Thad update before we get to it, which is a few months ago, I did a slate plus topic about. Whether I should move my cats into my new apartment, cats, which had lived in in the house that that I shared with my ex-wife, and as we separated, I was moving into an apartment and whether I should bring the cats, which were more my cats than hers, two to 14 year old cats named Timmy and Tulip, both girls and I did end up bringing them. Thanks for your suggestions. Almost everyone suggested I should bring them, and they’ve been a wonderful presence in the apartment that made me very happy. They seem to have lived very well, but I have a sad update, which is that Timmy died this week and it was really it was really sad. She had gotten sick and died in November and kind of wasted away. And and finally, I decided this week that to euthanize her, that she was just sort of like there was nothing. She was really in poorly shape. But I’m staring at a tulip who is very sleek and fat, and my son is petting her right now. And she is she seems she seems OK, although she’d never in her entire life, 14 plus years had never spent one minute, not in the same building as Timmy. And now I don’t know what she makes of it anyway. All right. But let’s go. That’s that’s just a bummer. Sorry, but I thought because you guys were so helpful with my cats months ago, I was just going to give a little update. We have a request from who is it from somebody maybe from Jocelin. What music do we listen to to clear our head? Emily, what music do you listen to to clear your head?
S5: Well, I was thinking about this question in terms of the music I listen to when I need to work, but I need something in my ears, like if there’s noise around me or I just feel like I need music. So I’m going to reveal myself as such. Well, anyway, I won’t even use a word. But so one album that I often put on is Tusk by Fleetwood Mac, which is like a little bit eerie, but. Right. So I always look for music that I can have in the background that sets a mood, but I can also kind of ignore that one does it for me. And then I listen to a lot of Joan Armatrading in these moments, which is like leftover from college when all I listened to was various female solo artists. Joan Armatrading, I’d like you to like I dated you in college. I know I like you. I am a cliché. It’s like walking like there’s really nothing surprising about my music tastes. So, yeah.
S3: So why is Joan Armatrading, despite having multiple dated women who listen to you and I’m trying I don’t know that I could name a song myself I.
S11: You don’t know that song, I probably if I played it by the investigating the works of Joan Armatrading, I feel like you should go and make yourself a Joan Armatrading Pandora or Spotify channel. She like Joni Mitchell. I love Joni Mitchell. No, not really. I mean, I guess a little she’s like a little bit of Nina Simone going for her, a little bit of Tracy Chapman, maybe a tiny bit. I like Joni Mitchell too. That’s another album, Blue, that I could listen to pretty incessantly. Someone else take this away.
S4: We had a version of this conversation with Jamal and after that, some wonderful gabfest listener who I couldn’t be more grateful to, but whose name I’ve forgotten or who I can’t remember who it was who suggested this, but suggested a pianist whose name roughly is Ludovico. I’m sure I’m butchering that. He reminds me of Philip Wesley, who’s another piano player I listen to, but it’s just beautiful piano music to listen to in the background. Sometimes when it comes on the shuffle, when I’m running, it makes me feel like I’m either in the penultimate in well, I guess maybe the ultimate scene of a movie. It’s got a very strong soundtrack vibe, either to a movie of the hero walking through the dusty remnants of the post apocalyptic world he’s just saved or the guy at the side of the lake reflecting on his family that he’s just lost in some tragedy. I mean, it’s not universally uplifting, but it’s it’s it’s great and perfect background music because I can’t listen to music with lyrics because I stop and then I listen to the to the lyrics. But if it’s uplift that I’m looking for, John Prine usually does that. And the other day I was in an incredibly foul mood while I was running and the Grateful Dead playing Iko Iko came on and it completely removed that mood. So that was good.
S3: I’m 100 percent with you, John, about the impossibility of listening to music with words while working. I it’s it’s a total non-starter. I have to. I have to. If I listen to music, it has to be completely. Background, no lyrics, no words. In fact, I basically can’t listen to music while I’m working now that I think about it, I because I’ve had I had back surgery recently, the only form of activity I can do is walk. And I’ve been going for these massive long walks. And so I spend a lot of time walking and listening to podcasts and listening to music. And I thought about this question a lot because I go through different moods as I am walking when I want music that will fire me up. I tend to listen to like women rockers. I listen to a lot of Smeet, I listen to Joan Jett. I listen to a lot of Joan Jett recently, The Clash, the jam too.
S11: So those are roots they ran as.
S3: And then group singing also fires me up so often whenever we would do a live show, actually, just to kind of get myself in a mood for a live show, I would always listen to a some some version of You’ll Never Walk Alone, sung by a crowd at Liverpool soccer game.
S11: Oh, my God. You make us sound like we’re out there, like about to score all the goals.
S3: No, it’s just I’m not trying to analogized anything like that. I just more like, how can I make myself feel engaged? Then there’s when I’m wallowing because often I wallow if I’m out for a walk or the wallowing portion of a walk. I listen to like sad women of country, to Brandi Carlile and Ashley Monroe, Emmylou Harris, some Otis Redding, Otis Redding, Karen Morris. Yeah, I love Maren Morris. Love Maren Morris. Yeah, she’s great.
S5: I have guitar music to add to this, so I don’t know if this is actually a music that is available. But Nick Thompson, when he was a colleague of mine years ago, made this wonderful CD back in CD years of himself playing the guitar. And I can’t remember if it was music he wrote. I think maybe it was it’s lovely. I really recommend it deeply, but I don’t know if you can get it. And Nick, of course, has been the editor of Wired and now is like the CEO or something at the Atlantic. So the only thing that’s I don’t I love Nick, but he’s so talented. It’s so many things. Like he’s an amazing marathoner. The idea that he’s so good at the guitar and also such an excellent writer, etc. but I don’t have that relationship with him in my head. I only celebrate him.
S4: So, no, you’re right. He he really between the guitar, the marathon, the writing, the editing, and then also he’s quite good on TV. So it’s a little bit it’s a little bit much all of that competence. Wow.
S3: And you two are like the among the most incompetent people I know.
S4: You feel with certain music that it has a time traveling aspect. I’m sure I’ve talked about this before, but I was listening. The kids were asking me. I was wearing that insane sweater I have. That’s the that’s the replica of the one Bob Dylan was wearing during the photo shoot for desire. And one of the kids said, you know, we don’t listen to desire very much. And so on my last run, I listened to it and the overwhelming memory excavation that it created of all different of. Yeah, really was powerful. I mean, that’s always true with music, but it was it was like ping ponging all over the place, always in college for me and.
S3: Oh yeah. Oh my God. There’s so much of that. A lot of Husker Du has that quality for me and Bob Mould because I went through a really bad breakup where I listen to only Bob Mould after. I don’t know Bob Mould is Bob Mould was the lead singer of this Minnesota punk band Husker Du, and then he had a solo career. And it’s a really dark, powerful music, but it’s no reason why you listen to it. It just I happen to listen to it. And when I had a breakup in the early 1990s. Yeah, there’s all sorts of stuff I just cannot listen to because of that. It’s too it’s too emotionally. I’m like not very musical person. That’s what I don’t understand. And yet music is overwhelmingly like affects me emotionally in a way that other media don’t, that certainly print doesn’t and even TV and film doesn’t. You’re Madeline. Maybe that’s not true for all of us.
S5: Well, and sound, I think, has that evocative and I am now talking about Proost and.
S3: Oh, I thought you meant I thought you meant that kids book, Madeleine.
S5: No, I was talking about Madeleine in search of lost time, like the smallest one was Madeline. I love that. That could be actually do I love Madeleine. But no, I was talking about the crumbly cookie.
S3: Yeah, that makes more sense. I mean, that makes more sense. OK, all right. OK. All right. Bye, Sleepless.