🇺🇸 A Quick Preview
January 4, 2022

Good morning and happy Tuesday. It helps to know others are always looking out for you, even those you’d never expect. In one such example, a hockey fan is receiving a $10,000 medical school scholarship after spotting a coach’s mole from the stands and alerting him that it could be cancerous.

Plus, a group of golfers in Australia encountered a massive crab that sliced through one of their clubs and made off with some of their gear. The coconut crab is the world’s largest terrestrial arthropod and also known as “the robber crab,” given its penchant for stealing.

Flag Polls

ab521640-e2ad-6400-4ea0-8848d603c575.png 1/3: Biden Job Approval, Rasmussen Reports Approve 40, Disapprove 59
ab521640-e2ad-6400-4ea0-8848d603c575.png 12/27: Direction of Country, Rasmussen Reports     Right Direction 27, Wrong Track 67
ab521640-e2ad-6400-4ea0-8848d603c575.png 12/23: Biden Job Approval, Trafalgar Group (R) Approve 40, Disapprove 56
D 12/22: Gen. Congress Vote, Politico/Morning Con. Republicans 36,
Democrats 43

Trending On The Left

CNN: A Covid-19 survivor came out of a coma after 65 days. Now she supports vaccinations

NY Times: Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene says Facebook blocked her account for 24 hours

Mother Jones: A Key Reason Jan. 6 Rioters Aren’t Facing Sedition Charges: They’re White

Trending On The Right

New York PostChicago crimewave hits the Blackhawks as players' luxury cars stolen

Fox News: Howard Stern slams Oprah Winfrey for hosting dinner parties amid COVID surge

The BlazeGOP image has recovered — but Democratic Party quickly losing ground

Washington Examiner: DeSantis blasts 'lockdown politicians' for vacationing in Florida


A Quick Preview

Yesterday, we provided a quick review of reactions to 2021, officially putting a wrap on last year. Today, our attention turns towards 2022.

Reporting From The Left: "The year ahead brings a daunting set of hurdles for the country with everything from the coronavirus pandemic to pervasive misinformation challenging our institutions. The stakes are particularly high for President Joe Biden and Democrats in Congress, who are looking to deliver some big wins for Americans ahead of this year's midterm elections. (CNN)

Reporting From The Right: "With the Democrats defending their razor-thin majorities in the House of Representatives and Senate in the midterm elections and 36 states holding contests for governor, campaign politics will once again return to center stage after taking a brief respite from the spotlight in 2021." (Fox News)

From The Flag: Here’s what both sides are saying about the year ahead.


COVID, Courts, and Holding The Line Against Pelosi

The ongoing pandemic and subsequent ability of the Biden administration to move America forward is a key factor heading into 2022 midterms, but right-leaning commentators also identify several other areas of focus. These include a number of highly divisive Supreme Court cases along with questions concerning how well the GOP can hamstring legislative efforts of Congressional Democrats.

“Biden's 2022 To-Do List - If He Wants to Avoid a Red Wave” Adriana Cohen, NY Post op-ed: “If Democrats want to stave off the red wave that cometh their way in the midterms next year, they need a hard pivot to the political middle. Otherwise, President Joe Biden will become a lame duck in Year 2 of his presidency and tee up a 2024 GOP tsunami. … No. 1: Pink slip Anthony Fauci and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention head Rochelle Walensky and replace them with infectious-disease ‘experts’ who can put the pandemic behind us as quickly as possible… every day we’re still forced to wear masks and obey other endless COVID-19 restrictions is a reminder that oh-so-smart Democrats are no better at managing the pandemic than the former Republican administration. The inconvenient fact is more Americans have died from COVID-19 on Biden’s watch than on former President Donald Trump’s.”

“Buckle Up! 2022 Is Going to Be a Big One for SCOTUS” Jonathan Turley, The Hill: "The court has accepted a series of transformative cases with few available exit ramps... it is likely to issue historic rulings on abortion, gun rights, and an assortment of other issues. … The court tends to be more conservative in the selection of cases before major elections, but 2022 will put the court at ground zero in one of the most heated elections in history. ... With some of the most important decisions coming by June 2022, there will be plenty of time to weaponize the opinions for the midterm elections. Former President and Chief Justice William Howard Taft once observed that 'presidents come and go, but the Supreme Court goes on forever.' That may be reassuring to some justices as the Supreme Court enters one of the most existential years of its history."

"Republicans can win big in 2022. Cheney, Kinzinger must not be allowed to help Pelosi defeat the GOP" David N. Bossie, Fox News: "In 2022, Republicans have the monumental task of designing the strategy that will stop Biden’s radical agenda, retire Pelosi as House speaker, and set the stage for a historic Republican takeover of Congress in January 2023." Keep reading.


Beat Back COVID And Defeat Trump To Save Democracy

Left-leaning commentators express a heightened sense of urgency concerning the 2022 midterm elections and ongoing legislative efforts to protect voting rights. Many argue that former President Trump’s repeated claims of voter fraud are a direct threat to democracy, while insisting new laws are needed to combat this accordingly. COVID-19’s enduring impact and a pandemic-weary public are also discussed below.

“Must Democrats get crushed in 2022?” E.J. Dionne Jr, The Washington Post op-ed: "Democrats have been ineffective in selling their accomplishments, which include the soaring economy, their economic rescue plan, and a historic infrastructure bill, partly because their achievements have been overshadowed by the protracted struggle over Build Back Better. The wrangling has made the whole party, including Biden, look ineffectual — and exhaustion with what seems like a forever pandemic hasn’t helped. … A media ecosystem divided between a mainstream that takes pride in nonpartisan toughness on incumbents and a powerful right-wing communications network makes life harder for Democrats. But there is little chance of changing the media narrative unless Democrats themselves shift the broader conversation. … Attacking Trump is not enough. Biden and his party need to make democracy itself a central issue. ... This requires vigorous advocacy for the democracy bills, legal and executive action against the GOP assault on free elections, and proving democratic government’s day-to-day effectiveness."

“Watch out for 2022 — Trump isn't finished just yet” Michael D'Antonio, CNN: "As a president who survived two impeachment trials, Trump is following his uniquely disruptive and chaotic term in office with a determined effort to tighten his grip on the GOP and keep his supporters riled up... with what looks like an eye on the White House in 2024. ... Trump lost the 2020 election by a resounding margin of 7 million votes. But unlike defeated presidents before him, who graciously accepted the will of the American people and ensured a smooth and peaceful transition of power, he created and continues to feed a movement devoted to himself by eroding public trust in our democracy. ... The numbers say at least within his party, Trump's playbook is still working. It suggests no matter what he decides to do in 2024, the country is in for more lies that attack voting and the very foundation of our civic life."

“What We Want in 2022: COVID's End and Saving Democracy” Mike Thompson, USA Today: "Election years have always been ugly, but 2022 will be in a league of its own. ... We’ll be deciding which political party will control Congress and state legislatures, but we’ll also continue to see a host of changes to state voting laws that will restrict voting rights and test the fitness of our political system." Keep reading.


Expressing Fear And Searching For Hope As COVID Persists

In a poll conducted midway through December 2021, just over half of all respondents indicated “fear” at what’s to come in 2022 while also expressing “COVID fatigue” and anxiety concerning inflation. (AXIOS-Momentive Poll)

Conversely, in a separate poll inviting respondents to best describe their mood entering 2022, nearly 50% chose “hopeful.” Still, that same survey asked people to sum up 2021 in one word, and the top result from nearly a quarter of respondents was “awful/terrible/bad/sucked.” (USA TODAY/Suffolk Poll)

Flag Polls: How would you describe your outlook entering 2022? Click here to share your thoughts.


It's Electric

During the pandemic, E-bike sales skyrocketed. Specifically, from 2019 to 2022, sales jumped 145 percent. This trend doesn’t appear to be slowing down, as more people eye bikes they can ride but also get a little help from when their legs get tired. If you're in the market for an E-bike, be sure to check out this Hurley Hybrid. Not only does this new single-speed bring the stoke, it also brings the speed (up to 20 mph), distance (20-mile range), and E-bike ease (powered with 250-watt/36-Volt ride assist and throttle). This means you can explore new spots, ride longer, and have more fun. Crafted in Hurley’s “blue sea” hue and accented with comfortable brown leather grips and saddle, the Amped offers lightweight, electric transport—simplified—in signature Hurley style. Click here to go electric in 2022.


Pandemic Endgame, Adolescent Boosters, COVID in Congress

AP: Pandemics do eventually end, even if Omicron is complicating the question of when this one will. But it won’t be like flipping a light switch: The world will have to learn to coexist with a virus that’s not going away. 

ABC News: Former President Trump’s eldest son and daughter have refused to comply with subpoenas issued by the New York State attorney general’s office as it conducts a civil investigation into the way the family real estate business valued its holdings. 

Axios: The Capitol's attending physician on Monday urged congressional offices to shift towards remote work due to a skyrocketing coronavirus positivity rate among staff.

NPR: The Food and Drug Administration has authorized the use of a Pfizer-BioNTech booster in adolescents 12 to 15 years old.

Fox Business: The California jury in the criminal fraud case against Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes says it is deadlocked on 3 of the 11 charges she faces.

CNN: A 2009 settlement agreement between sex offender Jeffrey Epstein and Virginia Roberts Giuffre — the woman who accused him of sexual abuse and of trafficking her to Prince Andrew and other men — was unsealed Monday.

Fox: Another independent Hong Kong news site will no longer operate because of the dangerous conditions of free speech in China.

NBC News: The biggest snowstorm for the mid-Atlantic since 2019 kicked off the first full week of the new year: Up to a foot of snow was possible across portions of Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, and southern New Jersey.


LBJ's Great Society, Digital Distractions, Newman's Philanthropy

On January 4, 1965, in his State of the Union address, President Lyndon Baines Johnson lays out for Congress a laundry list of legislation needed to achieve his plan for a Great Society. Above is a photograph of Johnson signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a key piece of legislation of the Great Society.

Aeon: How to Reduce Digital Distractions: Advice From Medieval Monks

The Ringer: It’s Time to Accept That Millennials and Gen Z Are the Same Generation

USA Today: World’s oldest person celebrates 119th birthday in Japan nursing home

Today I Learned as a philanthropist, actor Paul Newman was counted as the person who had distributed more money - in relation to his own wealth - than any other American during the 20th century.

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