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While You Were Offline: Um, Steve, Your Whiteboard Is Showing – ANITH
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While You Were Offline: Um, Steve, Your Whiteboard Is Showing

While You Were Offline: Um, Steve, Your Whiteboard Is Showing


Was it only just last week that folks were debating the quality of the first 100 days of the Trump administration? It seems so long ago. Remember those days when everyone wasn’t talking about health care? Good times, people. Good times. Is it our age or the state of current events that makes it feel as if time is speeding up? Perhaps it’s the internet. It moves so fast that it’s impossible to keep pace. That’s why we’re here; we want to help you catch (online) life before it passes you by. Let’s dive right in, shall we?

Heath Care Havoc, Part 2

What Happened: House Republicans managed to get the American Health Care Act back on its feet, which is more than can be said for sick people if the AHCA becomes law.
What Really Happened: If the initial failure of the American Health Care Act in March was a defeat for House Republicans and President Trump, then the return of the bill to full strength (such as it is) over the last couple of weeks was likely a sign that revenge would, indeed, be sweet. Then, this Thursday, it turned out that revenge was, indeed, happening:

Yes, on its second attempt, the AHCA was passed by the House by the slightest of margins. Now it has to go to the Senate, which just might scrap it and start over.

The bill remains controversial, largely because it could reportedly cause up to 26 million Americans to lose coverage and contains some amazing definitions of preexisting conditions (most of which aren’t covered under the new bill). So, surely the immediate aftermath of the bill passing saw House Republicans try to soberly make their case to the American people, right?

OK, maybe that’s not going so well. But a press op at the White House, how badly could that go?

OK, fine. That’s not going so well, either. But what about the passing of the bill itself? Surely some people are excited about that?

See? There you go! It’s not as bad as it seemed! People are definitely excited about what’s to come!

No, we said what’s to come

Isn’t anyone thinking about the future?

The Takeaway: If only there was a way to underscore how bad this seems for people. You know, some kind of mea culpa on behalf of the Republican party…

…Yeah, that’ll do.

The Writing on the Wall

What Happened: It turns out, those who wanted to see the master plan of White House majordomo Steve Bannon just had to ask for a selfie.
What Really Happened: Face it: If you got to meet Trump strategist Steve Bannon in his office, you’d want to take a pic, right? How else could you prove to your friends that you’d hung out with the power behind the throne?

Nice photo. But wait. Look at that white board behind them.

Bannon’s whiteboard was already infamous even before this photo went out, but no one had ever really seen it. Once they had, however…

The media went wild over the opportunity to peek behind the curtain. The Daily Show, naturally, got in on the action too.

The Takeaway: The internet had a lot of fun dissecting Bannon’s whiteboard, but eventually someone had to tell him what was really going on.

Prince Alarming

What Happened: Buckingham Palace called a very mysterious meeting. Twitter immediately hoped for the best while expecting the worst. Neither happened.
What Really Happened: It all began last Wednesday as rumblings started coming out of Buckingham Palace that something was going down. News wasn’t immediately forthcoming, but soon word came out that Prince Philip, husband of Queen Elizabeth II, was retiring from public service. But before the news actually broke, the speculation had a … morbid tone:

If it turned out that the royals were fine, then what could the announcement be about? People had a lot of theories about that as well.

The actual news suddenly seems like a disappointment now, doesn’t it?
The Takeaway: Let’s take some time to remember perhaps one of the (ahem) crowning moments of British royalty:

#TrumpTeachesHistory

What Happened: President Trump’s seeming lack of knowledge of American history makes some people wonder what else he might know that we don’t.
What Really Happened: Of all the amazing things Trump said in the barrage of interviews he did to mark the 100th day of his administration, one of the strangest was his assertion that no one had wondered about the origins of the Civil War. People were confused about just why he seemed to think Andrew Jackson could have prevented it, despite having been dead 16 years when it started, but they were also, well, amused.

No surprise, then, that this happened:

Nor that people really, really embraced the idea:

Sadly, fewer people were able to make light of Trump ending another interview early when asked to defend his claims that President Obama wiretapped him.
The Takeaway: Conan, you want to handle this one?

Pearl-Clutching and Other Fun Pastimes

What Happened: The right wing gets very upset at what is, admittedly, a crappy joke from Late Show host Stephen Colbert.
What Really Happened: So, who’s a fan of The Late Show With Stephen Colbert? If so, then you probably caught this monologue from Monday’s show:

Huh. That Putin line might have been a little ill-chosen, huh? Not to mention a little homophob—oh, wait. Hang on. Twitter would like to weigh in.

The response to Colbert’s monologue certainly garnered a lot of media attention. But not everyone was on the #FireColbert train, though.

The Late Show host addressed the controversy later in the week, admitting that while he doesn’t regret the bit, he “would change a few words that were cruder than they needed to be.”

The Takeaway: Amidst all the controversy, Colbert did have one very prominent supporter. Sort of.

Welcome to the Upside Down, everyone.

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Anith Gopal
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