As we previously reported, different world leaders gave very different responses to Biden’s win and Trump’s loss of the recent presidential election.
While Mexican President López Obrador is making headlines for refusing to acknowledge Biden’s victory “until all the legal matters have been resolved,” another Latin American president is grabbing the media’s attention for a recent remark he made.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro surprised everyone by recently telling a group of students that Trump “isn’t the most important person in the world.”
“I’m not the most important person in Brazil, just as Trump isn’t the most important person in the world,” he told a graduating class of police cadets. “No one is more important than God.” This statement raised eyebrows because up until this point, Bolsonaro acted like Trump was, indeed, the most important person in the world.
Throughout his presidency, Bolsonaro has made a public display of his respect and admiration for President trump. In fact he was so complimentary of Trump that the media dubbed him the “Trump of the Tropics”. He went so far as to tell Trump “I love you” at a meeting between the two world leaders in at a United Nations conference in 2019.
The similarities between the two blustering leaders are numerous.
They both practice populist, nationalistic, authoritarian tendencies. They both have placed their children in high-ranking government positions. They both love to use the term “fake news”.
Since Trump’s defeat, Bolsonaro’s son Eduardo has continued to publicly voice his support of Trump. He recently Tweeted out a statement implying that Americans are “naive” and “puppets” of social media conglomerates who are dictating to us what is “real or fake” based on their selfish desires. He also Tweeted out that “disinformation is the weapon of the left.”
But sources close to President Bolsonaro say that he has adopted a “more pragmatic tone” since his advisors told him that Trump wouldn’t be the next President of the United States.
Although Bolsonaro appears to have distanced himself from Trump he, still, reportedly has not congratulated Biden on his win. But nevertheless, he no longer seems to be as head-over-heels with Trump as he did when Trump was at the height of his power. Bolsonaro’s attitude reversal begs the question: if he can forsake his “friend” and role model Donald Trump, we wonder what other former sycophants are next in line to cut ties with the sitting duck president.
Something stinks in the White House and it’s not just Donald Trump and his inability to cope with being a loser.
Rudy Giuliani’s campaign effort to undermine the results of the 2020 presidential election continues to waft through hearing rooms like a rotten gaseous scent… which, according to video recordings, not unlike the one Guiliani is suspected of releasing during Wednesday night’s conspiracy-filled hearing in Lansing, Michigan.
Giuliana stirred up a rash of cackles this week when the audible sounds of his stomach were heard during the hearings.
Four hours into the lengthy event, two fart sounds could be heard while Giuliani delivered his speeches. During the Michigan hearing, Michigan state Rep. Darrin Camilleri asked Guiliani a question about the recent New York Times story which reported that Giuliani talked with President Donald Trump about seeking pardons for himself last week.
“The discussions between Mr. Trump and Mr. Giuliani occurred as the former New York mayor has become one of the loudest voices pushing baseless claims of widespread fraud in the 2020 election, which Mr. Trump still proclaims publicly that he won,” NYT reported. “Many of Mr. Trump’s longtime aides have refused to do his bidding to try to overturn an election that President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr. won by nearly seven million votes. But Mr. Giuliani has repeatedly thrust himself into the spotlight to cast doubt on the results, which has ingratiated him with the president.”
Guiliani objected to Rep. Camilleri’s questions and accused him of defamation.
“I will ask that he be disciplined for that,” Giuliani requested into the microphone which picked up the first pedo sound.
Not 90 seconds later, Camilleri asked Giuliani to address Attorney General Bill Barr’s statement that federal prosecutors had yet to come across evidence of election fraud.
“The answer that I gave you was that they didn’t bother to interview a single witness,” Giuliani replied as another louder even larger sounding pedo came in through the mic.
It didn’t take long for Giuliani’s loud fart to go viral on Twitter.
HuffPost reporter Ryan Reilly shared the clip on Twitter on Wednesday night. It has since been viewed more than 1.6 million times.
Users were quick to note that Jenna Ellis, another attorney taking part in Giuliani’s campaign of lies about a Trump 2020 victory. (Which did not happen) could be seen reacting to the noise by glancing at him over her shoulder.
Like the hot air Giuliani blew into the hearing, there were quite a few bizarre moments that came about.
Giuliani brought in a parade of alleged election fraud witnesses who all managed to make outrageously conspiratorial and racist statements during the hearing. Plus, according to Buzzfeed, “Giuliani was not sworn in at the hearing, so he was under no legal obligation to tell the truth.”
One “witness,” Melissa Carone drew audible laughter during the hearing for her clown-like performance.
According to The Guardian, Carone is a contract worker for Dominion Voting Systems and “appeared before a Michigan house panel on Wednesday and insisted, without providing evidence, that tens of thousands of votes had been counted twice.” Her aggressive approach to her claims quickly drew viral attention on Twitter from users who were quick to compare her to a Saturday Night Live character.
We still have over two months until President-Elect Joe Biden takes office on January 20, 2021. However, that hasn’t prevented people and pundits from discussing what needs to change (and how quickly) once he’s sworn in.
Obviously, the new president will have a lot on his plate. Thanks to an unprecedented four years under a Trump Administration which has largely gutted several government agencies and enacted dangerous policies for Americans, Biden will have to act quickly and decisively.
One possible agenda item for Biden’s first days in office involves the student loan debt crisis. Currently, our collective student loan debt stands at $1.7 trillion (the second largest debt behind mortgages), so it’s no surprise that the Biden team are looking to address the crisis.
Biden signals he’s open to student loan debt relief but is it enough?
During a Monday press conference, President-Elect Biden confirmed his support for forgiving some student debt “immediately.”
He repeated his support for a provision passed as part of the HEROES Act, which the Democratic-controlled House updated on Oct. 1. The provision calls for the federal government to pay off up to $10,000 in private, nonfederal student loans for “economically distressed” borrowers. Biden specifically highlighted “people … having to make choices between paying their student loan and paying the rent,” and said the debt relief “should be done immediately.”
Student debt forgiveness was a major campaign plank of some of his more progressiverivals for the Democratic nomination, but it remains controversial even among some Democrats.
However, many point to it as a plan he can execute quickly and on his own. Attorneys at a Harvard legal clinic argue that the power to cancel federal student loan debt rests with the president and his or her education secretary, since it’s the Education Department that actually originates these loans. That means it can be done regardless of who controls the Senate without passing any new laws.
According to many experts, canceling student debt could have a major positive impact on the economy.
Although it sounds like forgiving student load debt would be an easy move, some are asking should it be done? Most economists agree that canceling student debt will boost the economy, freeing up younger people to start businesses, buy homes and even start families.
In fact, Elizabeth Warren, in her presidential campaign proposal, cited arguments that debt forgiveness would reduce the racial wealth gap, reverse rural brain drain and allow more people to complete their educations.
Activist groups such as the Debt Collective go further, arguing that student debt is wrong in principle. “We must return education to the status of a public good,” the organization says on its website.
Progressives like AOC and ‘The Squad’ are pressuring Biden to expand his plan.
The Squad (the nickname given to Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan) have strongly supported wiping $30,000 off student loan debts, which they outlined in their Student Debt Emergency Relief Act in March.
The bill aims to provide immediate monthly payment relief to those who have taken out federal student loans and crucially prevent those with student debts from having to make involuntary payments during the coronavirus pandemic.
And in response to many who are against the idea, AOC had the perfect clap back. In a tweet on Tuesday, she dismissed arguments against canceling hefty debts accrued in further education.
“‘Things were bad for me, so they should stay bad for everyone else’ is not a good argument against debt cancellation – student, medical, or otherwise. #CancelStudentDebt,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote.
Rep. Ayanna Pressley further contributed to the debate, adding: “Student debt cancelation will ensure an equitable economic recovery from COVID-19, jumpstart our economy & close the racial wealth gap. One more thing,” she said.
But why are so many others so upset about canceling student debt?
Many opposed to canceling student debt claim that it would create resentment in those who spent a long time paying off their own college debts. The argument goes that they had to sacrifice and suffer and it wouldn’t be fair that current and future college grads might not have to sacrifice and suffer in the same way.
Other critics of debt forgiveness state that a bailout will simply redistribute the debt to other Americans, and will largely benefit those who can afford to go to college, disproportionately helping a well-off segment of society at the expense of the taxpayer.
Something those people should keep in mind, though, is that their experience of massive student loan debt is not one shared by every generation of students. From 1988 to 2018, the cost of college increased by 213%. Wages, unsurprisingly, did not increase by 213% in that period — in fact, they’ve pretty much remained stagnant since the 1970s.
Perhaps most importantly, canceling student debt doesn’t negatively affect those who’ve already paid off their student loans. Insisting that other people pay off their loans in full, no matter how much of a hardship, is demanding suffering for the sake of suffering.