Politics Monday: How vaccinations might restore America’s place in the world

American Leadership

He is the kind of liberal that emerged after World War II: confident in America’s greatness, confident in the state, having little interest in the culture wars that emerged since the 1960s, fierce about civil rights, deeply rooted in the working and middle classes.

David Brooks, The New York Times

David Brooks recently interviewed President Joe Biden to look at the direction he is promoting in his very big pieces of legislation. He could have been describing my parents, too. They devoted their working years to advocating for America’s ideals abroad during the Cold War, when our country was the undisputed leader of the free world.

China’s Challenge

Today, it’s not Russia but China who threatens. How ironic that the country which birthed the COVID pandemic is poised to reap the rewards of America’s leadership failures under Trump.

We’re kind of at a place where the rest of the world is beginning to look to China. We’re at a genuine inflection point in history.

President Joe Biden

Shoulder-to-shoulder solidarity

The president who is leading our nation out of the pandemic is positioned to deliver the world as well. In the next month, the U.S. could start a process of global COVID-19 vaccine distribution that saves millions of lives, asserts its stature as a beacon for the world and makes the nation itself safer, write USA Today reporters Elizabeth Weise and Karen Weintraub whose article includes these inspiring quotes.

It’s an important moment for the world when the U.S. leans back in.

Orin Levine, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

U.S. involvement could be the tipping point.

Dr. Tom Kenyon, Project HOPE

It’s the right thing to do. It’s the smart thing to do. It’s the strong thing to do.

President Joe Biden

The Bombas Strategy

I would love to see a U.S. government proposal that they’re going to donate a dose of a vaccine for every person under 18 vaccinated in the United States. You could pitch that to adolescents – that if they get vaccinated they can help another person.

William Moss, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Moss calls this a Bombas approach. The sock company Bombas has a nifty sales gimmick.

For every item you purchase for yourself, we donate an item to someone affected by homelessness.


The background is compelling.

We heard that the number one most-requested item at homeless shelters was socks. It may seem like a small thing, but having clean, dry socks provides a very basic level of comfort to an underserved community that deserves to have a little more comfort in their lives.


And it’s good business.

We’ve donated more than 40 million items that specifically meet the needs of the homeless community, including entire bundles of new clothes. That’s 40 million acts of kindness, all thanks to you.


So, how about engaging Americans in vaccinating arms around the world? In my parents’ post-WWII time, internationalists called it “hands across the water.” Maybe it’s time for shoulders across the water.

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