Yesterday President Trump made his primetime case for a border wall in an Oval Office address on all major networks.

It was full of falsehoods, but that was hardly a surprise. This week in OtherWords, I argue that major networks shouldn’t give one second of airtime to political speech that’s obviously false and obviously geared to toward ginning up hate — no matter how many fact checks they run.

The backdrop for all this is, of course, a government shutdown of the president’s own making. Mitchell Zimmerman argues that shutting down the government to pursue an unpopular policy goal is obviously undemocratic.

Meanwhile, on the environmental front, Olivia Alperstein reports on the deadly consequence’s of the EPA’s proposal to stop regulating dangerous pollutants like mercury. And Basav Sen argues that since leading Democrats in Congress aren’t inspiring much confidence on the environment either, a big grassroots effort is needed.

Also this week, Jill Richardson looks at the “controversy” over Rep. Rashida Tlaib calling the president a bad word. Jim Hightower shudders at the cost of a military “space force.” And cartoonist Khalil Bendib shows Trump sweating in America’s melting pot.

Happy New Year from all of us at OtherWords. We’re now back to regular publication.

New This Week…

Not One Network Should Have Aired Trump’s Immigration Speech | Peter Certo
The president is going to demonize the media no matter what they do. So why not do the right thing?

Government by Extortion | Mitchell Zimmerman
The White House’s “rule or ruin” strategy — wall or shutdown! — is anti-democratic.

Democrats Failed Their First Big Test on Climate | Basav Sen
Kicking the can down the road appears to be a bipartisan sport in Washington.

This EPA Rule Change Could Kill Thousands | Olivia Alperstein
Mercury regulations save 11,000 lives each year. Now, the EPA wants to get rid of them.

Is Anyone Really Offended by That F Word? | Jill Richardson
Republicans stood by a president who bragged about assaulting women. Now they have thoughts about propriety.

Extraplanetary Extravagance | Jim Hightower
Maintaining our bloated machine on earth costs over $700 billion a year. Trump wants to blast those costs into space.

Melting Pot | Khalil Bendib
If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

In Case You Missed It…

We’re Learning the Truth About ‘Voter Fraud’ | Leslie Watson Malachi
There’s no moral difference between suppressing the vote through the law and literally stealing ballots. Both may have happened in North Carolina.

The Green New Deal: Let’s Get Visionary | Norah Vawter
We need a plan to save the planet while creating great jobs. Actually, there is one.

Get the Federal Government Out of Washington | Brian Wakamo
Relocating federal agencies to the heartland would create jobs, revitalize cities, and put government more in touch with the people.

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Peter Certo

Peter Certo is the editorial manager of the Institute for Policy Studies and the editor of

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