Joe Biden talks about ‘new world order’ in Business Roundtable address
Speaking at a meeting of the Business Roundtable lobbying organisation, Mr Biden declared: “Now is a time when things are shifting. We’re going to — there’s going to be a new world order out there, and we’ve got to lead it. And we’ve got to unite the rest of the free world in doing it.”
The “new world order” conspiracy theory dates back decades, and holds that a nefarious elite led by the United Nations and other shadowy forces is planning to install a single transnational global government via the use of force – possibly with the involvement of US agencies including the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which some believe is preparing to put Americans in concentration camps.
Meanwhile, Mr Biden is planning a trip to Poland to shore up his administration’s commitment to it and other Nato allies in eastern Europe. The visit comes after the US rejected a proposal under which Poland would have supplied Ukraine with MiG-29 jets via a US airbase in Germany.
Jen Psaki tests positive for Covid-19
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki has tested positive for Covid-19 and will no longer be accompanying President Joe Biden to Europe.
She released the following statement:
Oliver O’Connell22 March 2022 17:43
Lindsey Graham mocked for storming off at Ketanji Brown Jackson hearing
Mr Graham appeared upset that a number of prominent liberal groups had supported Ms Jackson over a South Carolina judge, Michelle Childs, who was also considered for the Supreme Court seat Ms Jackson will fill if confirmed by the Senate.
Oliver O’Connell22 March 2022 17:30
White House warns of Covid funding trouble
The Biden administration has warned that thanks to Congress’s refusal to pass a $15bn Covid-19 aid package, the government has run out of funds to buy doses for a fourth round of vaccinations against the disease for the under-65s.
Worse still, according to White House coronavirus coordinator Jeff Zients, the administration currently lacks the funding for a future variant-specific vaccine if it’s needed.
The money planned to boost the national Covid response was removed from a $1.5trn spending package that funded the government through September and included aid for Ukraine.
Andrew Naughtie22 March 2022 17:06
Fox News’s critique of Biden administration only goes so far
The talking heads of Fox News have been relentlessly pummelling Joe Biden and his administration for their handling of the Ukraine crisis, mostly from the point of view that not enough is being done to help fight off the Russian invasion (though host Tucker Carlson has taken an unorthodox Kremlin-friendly line instead).
Yet the hosts of Fox & Friends are apparently not above extending at least some comity to the Biden team. This morning, they held a surprisingly amicable discussion with Defense Department Press Secretary John Kirby, whom they thanked for his department’s help in the case of Benjamin Hall, the Fox News reporter injured in a strike outside Kyiv that killed two other journalists.
You can watch the unusually civil exchange here.
Andrew Naughtie22 March 2022 16:37
Watch children learning an anti-Biden chant
The supposed politicisation of classrooms is a core Republican talking point these days, but parents at a Christian private school in California have voiced their outrage at a video of a teacher encouraging pre-school children in an anti-Biden chant.
Johanna Chisholm has the story:
Andrew Naughtie22 March 2022 16:15
New tales of Jill Biden’s umbrage at Kamala Harris
Further extracts from the latest upcoming book on the early Biden administration include a story that Jill Biden bristled at her husband’s choice of Kamala Harris as his running mate, so angry was she at a 2019 encounter the two candidates had on a debate stage where Ms Harris called Mr Biden out for his history of working with openly segregationist senators.
“There are millions of people in the United States,” they quote Ms Biden saying, according to an extract obtained by Politico. “Why do we have to choose the one who attacked Joe?”
Andrew Naughtie22 March 2022 15:45
Can Putin be prosecuted as a “war criminal”?
Joe Biden has explicitly referred to Vladimir Putin as a “war criminal” in light of the Russian military’s actions in Ukraine, raising the question of whether and how the Russian president could be held legally accountable for his actions at the international level.
As Reuters explains in this handy piece, getting a national leader in front of the International Criminal Court is no easy task.
Andrew Naughtie22 March 2022 15:05
Right wing fixation on Hunter Biden’s laptop persists
As the Russian war in Ukraine rages and a Supreme Court nomination process proceeds, much of the right-wing commentariat remains fixated on what could charitably be called a peripheral issue: the laptop belonging to Hunter Biden that was found in a Delaware repair shop towards the end of the 2020 election.
Here’s a sample of the coverage and commentary that’s circulating in the right-wing media ecosystem…
Andrew Naughtie22 March 2022 14:34
Biden knocks Indian government on Ukraine
While the Ukrainian war has driven attention to China’s relationship with Russia, the world’s largest democracy is also under increasing pressure to take a strong line against Moscow. But India has yet to come out strongly against Vladimir Putin’s invasion, leading Joe Biden to describe it as “somewhat shaky” in its response.
It is the only member of The Quad (India, the US, Australia and Japan) not to have fully condemned the Russian attack, and it also abstained from voting on a US-led United Nations Security Council resolution that deplored Russia’s aggression in the strongest terms.
Andrew Naughtie22 March 2022 14:04
What is the “new world order” conspiracy theory?
Joe Biden’s allusion yesterday to the “new world order” offered a shot of adrenaline to a tendency of veteran conspiracy theorists and self-proclaimed “patriots” who for decades have been convinced that the United Nations and other shadowy forces are planning to take over the US and install a transnational authoritarian global government.
Outside of the world of conspiracy theories, of course, the phrase is a perfectly mundane one. Here, Joe Sommerland explains why it nonetheless sets so many people on edge.
Andrew Naughtie22 March 2022 13:29