Where Does Joe Go From Here? #103

Deepnews Digest #103

Where Does Joe Go From Here?

Editor: Christopher Brennan
Despite facing a pandemic, political violence, polarized information and economic precarity, the United States has officially transferred the presidency from Donald Trump to Joe Biden. While in the previous months much attention has focused on the man leaving office, the stage now belongs to the former senator from Delaware, who must confront all those challenges mentioned above. There was of course a flood of coverage of the inauguration from outlets around the world, though this week’s Digest, with the help of the Deepnews Scoring Model, covers some of the stories that you might have missed.

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Published every Friday


How President Biden Handles a Divided America Will Define His Legacy

Just before noon on Jan. 20, Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. put his hand on a Bible and vowed to uphold the Constitution as the 46th President of the United States.

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New York Times

Charlottesville Inspired Biden to Run. Now It Has a Message for Him.

The white supremacist rally in 2017 prefigured the rise of right-wing violence in President Trump’s name. Now, as President Biden calls for national unity, residents say it requires accountability first.

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The Daily Beast

‘Worse Than We Imagined’: Team Trump Left Biden a COVID Nightmare

Twelve minutes before noon on Wednesday, President Joe Biden was sworn into office as the nation’s 46th president. Seven hours later, the United States reported more than 4,409 new deaths from the novel coronavirus, according to data collected by the COVID-19 Tracking Project.

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Gen (Medium)

What Dining With Trump Supporters for 4 Years Has Taught Me About Polarization

Our conversations could be frustrating, but they also gave me hope. Was I a fool to think we were getting somewhere?

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The Intercept

Photo Essay: At Biden’s Inauguration, Empty Streets but Not a Void

It was an inauguration characterized not by vastness but by distance, because it took place beyond the view of the relatively few people who were trying to catch a glimpse of it. There will be no polemics about the size of the day’s crowd, whether it was the biggest ever or not; there is a pandemic still with us, and two weeks ago a mob stormed the Capitol. What the celebrators caught of the ceremony was enough, even if it was on a screen.

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Jordan looks to Biden for a warm embrace and lots of cash

Jordan needs a warm embrace with purse strings attached to ensure its stability. But when Trump was elected, he viewed it as a marginal country and saw no pressing need to accord it assistance or even respect. Washington ignored Jordan when it began its efforts to promote normalization between Israel and Arab countries, and Amman was not let in on the decision to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem.

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Editor’s Note:

Several of the articles this week deal with how other countries are looking at the new Biden presidency. Here our algorithm highlighted a piece from Haaretz looking at Israel’s neighbor Jordan. – Christopher Brennan, Editor

Financial Times ($)

Biden to use wartime powers to boost production of Covid supplies

Administration warns of shortage of vaccine syringes, N95 masks and testing components

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LA Times

Op-Ed: My grandmother was named Kamala. And now, so is my vice president. Why that matters

My grandmother’s name was Kamala. She was born in a small slice of western India at a time and a place where the gift of learning was not equally bestowed between genders. If my father’s memory serves correct, she was married in her early teens and hardly had the benefit of a fourth-grade education. Nevertheless, she raised six children who became college graduates, replete with advanced degrees.

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7 Ways President Biden Could Now Change Healthcare

Now the Democrats have control of all three levers of power — the Senate, the House, and the presidency — for the first time since the early years of the Obama administration. How will President Biden use this new concentration of power to shape healthcare policy?

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The Globe and Mail

Opinion: Biden’s inauguration was meant to signal U.S. renewal. The world isn’t ready to believe it

The ceremony sent the world a message. In its language of democratic renewal, in its parade of household-name stars, in its diversity of faces and voices, and in its absence of incident, the inauguration of President Joe Biden tried to show off a United States that had returned to normal.

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South China Morning Post

‘Ghosts of populism’ to continue haunting US-China trade under Biden

Chinese economists see ‘negative energy’ and continued US pressure under President Joe Biden, who was sworn in on Wednesday

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The Guardian

‘It’s the right thing to do’: Biden urged to cancel student loans in first 100 days

Thousands of student debtors have launched a campaign urging Joe Biden to enact full student loan cancellation within the first 100 days of his presidency.

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Detroit Free Press

‘Agony’ ends as Michigan Muslims cheer end of travel ban

Muslims and Arab Americans in metro Detroit cheered the repeal of the Muslim travel ban Wednesday by the administration of President Joe Biden, a move they hope will signal a change in how the U.S. government deals with their communities.

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Editor’s Note:

One of the aspects of Deepnews that I continue to appreciate is its ability to find in-depth local reporting where outlets bring home national issues to their communities. Here our algorithm highlighted a piece from Michigan, with one of the U.S.’s largest Middle Eastern communities, on the end of Trump’s travel ban. – Christopher Brennan, Editor


Joe Biden’s presidential inauguration, fact-checked

As is often the case with inaugural addresses, Biden focused on broad themes and stuck to claims that were factually defensible.

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Washington Post

The media can be glad for the Biden White House’s return to normalcy. But let’s not be lulled.

The national press — battered by four years of abuse by the president, and by the incompetence and falsehoods of his spokespeople — is in a precarious position. We run the risk of being seduced by an administration that, in many cases, closely reflects our values: multiculturalism, a belief in the principles of liberal democracy, and a kind of wonky idealism. (Cue the “West Wing” theme.)

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Stanford University

President Biden’s first day in office signaled a new era in American politics, Stanford scholars say

Stanford scholars reflect on the sweeping number of executive actions President Biden ordered on his first day in office, including pledges to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, immigration, the climate crisis and racial injustice.

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The Nation

Forget About ‘100 Days.’ These Are the 10 Days That Will Define Biden’s Presidency.

Biden should bury obstruction in a blizzard of executive orders.

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The Diplomat

Biden Administration to Probe Rohingya Genocide Claim

What would it mean for the U.S. government to official declare the Myanmar atrocities “genocide”?

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Voice of America

With Control of White House and Congress, Democrats Have 2 Years to Make Big Changes

U.S. Democrats secured unified control of the White House and Congress on Wednesday with the inauguration of President Joe Biden followed by Vice President Kamala Harris swearing in three new Democratic senators.

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Biden’s new national plan to fight Covid-19, explained

President Joe Biden already announced a $400 billion Covid-19 plan as part of his $1.9 trillion economic relief proposal. But while he waits for Congress to act on those proposals, Biden is taking a dozen executive actions to tackle the US’s most pressing public health crisis.

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NBC News

Opinion | Kamala Harris is the subject of a revealing generational custody battle

A generational custody battle is raging over Vice President Kamala Harris. Right now, it’s a throwdown between the bold baby boomers and the laid-back Gen Xers, both hoping to claim her as their own.

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Editor’s Note:

Kamala Harris’s swearing in as vice president was a first in many regards, though a less discussed facet is generation. Here our algorithm highlighted a piece by Professor Megan Gerhardt about Harris as both Gen X and Baby Boomer. – Christopher Brennan, Editor

Associated Press

Analysis: Biden faces a more confident China after US chaos

The disarray in America, from the rampant COVID-19 pandemic to the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol, gives China’s ruling Communist Party a boost as it pursues its long-running quest for national “rejuvenation” — a bid to return the country to what it sees as its rightful place as a major nation.

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New Times Rwanda

Americans in Rwanda welcome Biden presidency with optimism

Americans living in Rwanda say they are optimistic that the new administration of President Joe Biden will ensure good relations with Africa and the rest of the world.

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Wanted: Communist Party leadership to keep Vietnam in sweet spot amid U.S.-China tensions

She and her husband, Rob, recently spent “well over” $100,000 on a complete remodel of their Encino house that added a backyard gazebo, custom kitchen countertops, new roof and imported bathroom tiles from Spain.

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Washington Post

American democracy finally passes the Bechdel test

Several years ago, a term arose in cinema and literature: The Bechdel test, named after cartoonist Alison Bechdel, judged artistic works based on whether there were any scenes in which two or more women had a conversation about something other than a man. Vice President Harris’s swearing in was a Bechdel test of American democracy, and after nearly 250 years, we finally passed it.

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