Skip to main content

Why are the billionaires always laughing?

Because they know the corporate media will never call bullshit on their bullshit.

Why are the billionaires laughing?

It’s easy to laugh when the corporate press treats you as a glorious success instead of the epitome of a broken social order. Billionaires laugh because they know the corporate media prefers to fawn over them rather than hold them to account.

Today, we ask you to support our nonprofit, independent journalism because we are not impressed by billionaires flying into space, their corporations despoiling our health and planet, or their vast fortunes safely concealed in tax havens across the globe. We are not laughing.

We are hard at work producing journalism for the common good. With our Fall Campaign underway, please support this mission today. We cannot do it without you.

Support Our Work -- Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Every donation—large or small—helps us bring you the news that matters.

Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett looks over to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) as they meet on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. on September 29, 2020. (Photo: Susan Walsh/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)

'Willing to Put Lives at Risk to Fill RBG's Seat': Despite Covid-19 Outbreak, McConnell Says 'Full Steam Ahead' for Confirmation

"Scheduling a hearing for 10 days from now is reckless and stupid," said one critic.

Jake Johnson

Hours after President Donald Trump tested positive for the coronavirus and shortly before Sen. Mike Lee announced his Covid-19 diagnosis, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made clear Friday that a potentially large outbreak in the White House and on Capitol Hill will not stop him from plowing ahead with his attempt to get right-wing Judge Amy Coney Barrett confirmed to the Supreme Court.

"Just finished a great phone call with POTUS," tweeted the Kentucky Republican. "He's in good spirits and we talked business—especially how impressed senators are with the qualifications of Judge Barrett. Full steam ahead with the fair, thorough, timely process that the nominee, the court, and the country deserve."

"McConnell declaring 'full steam ahead' without knowing the scope of the risk to those involved, including the nominee herself, is not just reckless and heartless, it has a slight undertone of panic."
—Adam Jentleson, Democracy Forward

Adam Jentleson, public affairs director at Democracy Forward and a former Senate staffer, said McConnell's comments show he is "literally willing to put lives at risk to fill RBG's seat" ahead of the November election, which is just a month away.

"McConnell declaring 'full steam ahead' without knowing the scope of the risk to those involved, including the nominee herself, is not just reckless and heartless, it has a slight undertone of panic," Jentleson added. "He is rushing to assert that everything is fine without knowing whether it is."

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, echoed McConnell in a CNN interview Friday morning after speaking to the president, who is reportedly experiencing "mild" coronavirus symptoms.

"First thing he asked me about was the hearing," Graham said. "He asked me about the hearings, I said, 'We're on track, we're in a good spot. She's going to get confirmed.' He was in a good mood, very focused on getting Amy Barrett through the Senate."

After Graham reaffirmed his commitment to beginning Barrett's Judiciary Committee hearings on October 12, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.)—the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee—said in a statement that Senate Republicans' rush to start the confirmation process in just ten days "when we do not know the full extent of potential exposure stemming from the president's infection" risks turning an "already illegitimate process" into "a dangerous one."

On Friday, as Common Dreams reported, Barrett tested negative for the coronavirus three days after meeting with Lee—a member of the Judiciary Committee—at the U.S. Capitol. The two met indoors and neither wore face coverings nor adhered to social distancing guidelines.

"The unfortunate news about the infection of our colleague Senator Mike Lee makes even more clear that health and safety must guide the schedule for all Senate activities, including hearings," Schumer and Feinstein said. "There is bipartisan agreement that a virtual confirmation hearing for a lifetime appointment to the federal bench is not an acceptable substitute."

"It's critical that Chairman Graham put the health of senators, the nominee, and staff first—and ensure a full and fair hearing that is not rushed, not truncated, and not virtual," added the Democratic senators, who are facing pressure from progressive advocacy groups to do everything in their power to slow or stop Barrett's confirmation, which could imperil reproductive rights and healthcare coverage for millions.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

Fatal Film Set Shooting Followed Outcry by Union Crew Members Over Safety Protocols

"When union members walk off a set about safety concerns, maybe 'hiring scabs' isn’t the solution you think it is."

Julia Conley ·


New Whistleblower Sparks Calls to 'Crack Down on Facebook and All Big Tech Companies'

Hours after another ex-employee filed a formal complaint, reporting broke on internal documents that show the tech giant's failure to address concerns about content related to the 2020 U.S. election.

Jessica Corbett ·


'Catastrophic and Irreparable Harm' to Wolves Averted as Wisconsin Judge Cancels Hunt

"We are heartened by this rare instance of reason and democracy prevailing in state wolf policy," said one conservation expert.

Brett Wilkins ·


West Virginia Constituents Decry 'Immorality' of Joe Manchin

"West Virginia has been locked into an economy that forces workers into low-wage jobs with no hope for advancement, and after decades of this our hope is dwindling," said one West Virginian. "The cuts that Sen. Manchin has negotiated into the agenda hurt our state."

Julia Conley ·


'Texans Deserved Better Than This': Supreme Court Leaves Abortion Ban in Place

The nation's high court set a date to hear a pair of legal challenges to the "horrific" restrictions.

Jessica Corbett ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo