The World and Everything in It - November 10, 2022
Why the Republican red wave didn’t happen; on World Tour, the latest international news; and savoring life on an Alabama tea plantation. Plus: commentary from Cal Thomas, and the Thursday morning news.
MARY REICHARD, HOST: Good morning!
Both parties can find something to be happy about after the midterms…but the red wave? Didn’t happen. We’ll talk about it.
MYRNA BROWN, HOST: Also ahead, WORLD Tour.
Plus a visit to a tea plantation.
And commentator Cal Thomas on lessons learned after the midterm election.
REICHARD: It’s Thursday, November 10th. This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Mary Reichard.
BROWN: And I’m Myrna Brown. Good morning!
REICHARD: Time now for the news with Kent Covington.
KENT COVINGTON, NEWS ANCHOR: Senate » Here we go again in Georgia. Another runoff election for a critical Senate seat that could once again tip the balance of power in the chamber.
Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger says he knows voters are already a little election weary.
RAFFENSPERGER: I’ll ask the voters to come out and vote one last time. We have no control over how many campaign ads our voters are going to see over the next 30 days, but we’ll make sure we have honest and fair elections.
Texas Senator Ted Cruz will be the first to campaign on behalf of Republican Herschel Walker ahead of the Dec. 6th runoff election.
For Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock, this will be his fourth election for the same Senate seat in just two years time.
Republicans need two more seats to reclaim the majority, and they have three chances to gain those seats.
Besides Georgia, there are two Senate races not yet decided. They’re still counting ballots in Arizona and Nevada.
The fate of governors races hangs in the balance in those states, as well. Democratic candidate for Arizona governor Katie Hobbs …
HOBBS: Let’s keep the faith. Let’s keep the faith as we wait for the final results to come in.
McCarthy launches speaker bid » Republicans appear to be closing in on a majority in the House.
But Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy isn’t waiting for the results to become final. He announced his bid for speaker of the House Wednesday in a letter to colleagues.
House Minority Whip Steve Scalise told reporters …
SCALISE: We’re going to have our elections next week. I’m supporting Kevin McCarthy for speaker and he’ll win that race. And ultimately, you’ve seen us pull together these last few months and focus on the attack against big government socialism.
Scalise is bidding to become the next House majority leader, assuming Republicans do take control of the chamber in January.
Hurricane Nicole »
Hurricane Nicole is lashing the east coast of Florida this morning.
Gov. Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency in advance of the storm. He told Floridians …
DESANTIS: Winds are the main concern with Nicole, but we also expect to see some heavy rains, the potential for flash flooding, and 3-5 feet storm surge in some areas.
The first hurricane to slam the state’s east coast in almost a century shut down theme parks and airports.
Nicole caused heavy damage and power outages in the Bahamas yesterday as the storm tracked west.
Daniel Brown with the National Hurricane Center said Nicole might not be a hurricane for long but it will wreak havoc in Florida and along the east coast for days.
BROWN: The system is forecast to weaken as it crosses Florida. And then it’s supposed to turn more northward, moving into parts of Georgia and then up into the Carolinas.
The storm is hitting some areas still recovering from Hurricane Ian.
Griner sent to Russian penal colony to serve sentence » In Russia, American basketball star Brittney Griner has been sent to a penal colony to serve her nine-year sentence for possessing cannibas oil vape cartridges.
In many penal colonies, prisoners are forced to work for minimal pay, effectively being forced into slave labor.
The Biden administration has called her detention unacceptable and unjust. And the White House has offered a prisoner swap to the Kremlin. But so far, no response.
UN to vote on resolution saying Russia must pay reparations »
The U.N. General Assembly scheduled a vote for Monday on a resolution that calls for Russia to pay reparations for invading Ukraine and violating international laws. WORLD’s Josh Schumacher has more.
JOSH SCHUMACHER, REPORTER: The draft resolution would recognize the need for a system to send Russia a bill for the damage it’s caused.
The measure would ask member nations to work with Ukraine to create “an international register” documenting loss or injury to Ukraine caused by Russia.
The General Assembly has already has adopted four resolutions criticizing Russia’s invasion.
General Assembly resolutions are not legally binding, but they do reflect global opinion.
For WORLD, I’m Josh Schumacher.
Musk Twitter » Twitter’s new owner, Elon Musk, has a message for advertisers:
MUSK: Brands should rest assured that Twitter is a good place to advertise, and if we see things that are creating a problem in that regard, we will take action to address it.
Liberal activist groups have successfully pressured some advertisers to freeze their ad spending with Twitter while they wait to see what content moderation will look like under Musk.
The Tesla CEO bought Twitter to restore free speech to the platform saying the social media company made a habit of censoring conservative voices.
But Democrats cried foul after Musk recently encouraged Americans to vote Republican.
MUSK: Twitter must be as a platform as neutral as possible. That doesn’t mean I’m completely neutral. That would be untruthful. I’m not neutral. No person is.
Upon taking over Twitter Musk fired top executives and laid off nearly half of the company’s employees.
Meta cuts 11,000 jobs » Facebook parent company Meta is laying off 11,000 people. WORLD’s Josh Schumacher has more.
JOSH SCHUMACHER, REPORTER: The layoffs represent about about 13% of the company’s workforce. In a letter, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the layoffs are needed to contend with faltering revenue and broader tech industry woes.
Zuckerberg said he hired aggressively, anticipating rapid growth even after the pandemic ended, but unfortunately, it did not play out the way he expected.
He added, “I got this wrong, and I take responsibility for that.”
Meta is pouring over $10 billion a year into the virtual reality “metaverse” as it shifts its focus away from social media.
For WORLD, I’m Josh Schumacher.
I'm Kent Covington. And still ahead--the midterm red wave that wasn’t.
This is The World and Everything in It.
MYRNA BROWN, HOST: It’s Thursday the 10th of November, 2022.
Glad to have you along for today’s edition of The World and Everything in It. Good morning, I’m Mary Reichard.
And I’m Myrna Brown.
Up next, the red wave that wasn’t.
Republicans predicted a red wave that would easily sweep the GOP to a majority in the House and most likely deliver at least a narrow majority in the Senate. But when the sun rose the next day, neither of those things had yet occurred.
So, what happened? Joining us now to break down the midterm election results is Matt Klink. He is a political strategist of 30 years and President of Klink Campaigns.
REICHARD: Matt, good morning!
KLINK: Good morning.
REICHARD: Well, what’s your reaction to the results, and what surprised you?
KLINK: Well, it was the red wave that wasn't. You know, I think that the pollsters in many senses got it wrong. That they predicted that there was a lot more angst against the Democratic Party in general and Joe Biden in specific than really existed. Independents determine elections. And what it looks like to date is that the Republicans actually lost independence by two points 49 to 47.
REICHARD: You know, Democrats campaigned really heavily on abortion. And polls show that that issue really paled in comparison to inflation, though, in the minds of voters. Matt, do you think Democrats succeeded in turning out their based by emphasizing abortion?
KLINK: I certainly think that it did help that the Dobbs decision when it came out over the summer was a key pin in the map, so to speak, that the Democrats were able to say, look, unless we get engaged and get motivated, we're going to see a lot more of this type of decision. And so it really started to increase the enthusiasm among Democrats over the summer. Now, ultimately, that waned into the fall as the economy and gas prices and crime became more, you know, top priority issues. However, I don't think it was the factor, but it was certainly a factor for many of these races.
REICHARD: There's been a lot of talk today about Donald Trump. He played a significant role in boosting many candidates who didn't really come through in a big way. So some analysts are saying this was a really bad night for Trump. What's your take?
KLINK: Donald Trump did not come out of this strong at all. I mean, yes, he can claim some credit for JD Vance in Ohio. But look, that was a seat that the Republicans should have won easily. They had to pour big money into that race, which meant that they couldn't pour money into other races and other states that were likely turnovers for the Republicans. I mean, look, Donald Trump-backed the gubernatorial challenger in Pennsylvania, who got his clock cleaned by Shapiro, that certainly hurt. You know, Dr. Oz in Pennsylvania, and even look, even Dr. Oz, he just didn't excite people. And that was a Trump backed candidate there. I mean, that was a seat we needed to held if the Republicans were to gain the majority in the United States Senate, and we gave it away. So now, Donald Trump got his wings clipped significantly. He's hinted at a big announcement next week. Well, remember Georgia in 2020, he had the strategy of telling people not to vote because you couldn't trust that the votes would be counted. That's not a good strategy for a democracy. So if he were to make an announcement that you know, in mid November, it will certainly have a negative impact on the December 6 runoff in Georgia.
REICHARD: I guess the brightest spot for Republicans was in Florida, where they saw huge wins. Do you think they've turned the corner and is Florida no longer a purple state? What do you think?
KLINK: Well, if 2020 and 2022 are indications, Florida is a solid red state. The Republicans picked up four House seats, which is a big number. And Ron DeSantis absolutely crushed Charlie Crist. Ron DeSantis came out of this looking strong. On Wednesday morning, he's on the cover of The New York Post with his family, you know, a very attractive wife and young kids talking about the future of the Republican Party. I mean, things are being set up very nicely for him, should he decide to run for president to be the front runner, but there's someone named Donald Trump in the background that is not going to go quietly into the night.
REICHARD: So do you think we're seeing a primary battle taking shape between these two men?
KLINK: Oh, there will almost certainly be a primary battle between Donald Trump and Ron DeSantis. But there are others waiting in the wings. You know, Ambassador Nikki Haley, former governor of South Carolina, Tim Scott, senator from South Carolina. The other Senator Scott from Florida. Mike Pompeo, former Secretary of State. The line will be long and deep for Republicans who want the nomination. Although, you know, I, in flipping the script, I got to believe that, you know, the the doom and gloom that was predicted for the Biden administration, I got to believe that this has got to make him feel pretty good, which probably increases the likelihood that he will run for reelection, as President, you know, and I still go back to what I've been saying for months. We don't need any more 80 year old men running for president, we need some 50 year olds, male or female, just younger running for president, the 80 year olds have had their time. It's now time for the 50 year olds to step up and lead this country.
REICHARD: Okay, final question. Nuts and bolts. What do Republicans need to do going forward?
KLINK: Republicans going forward have tremendous opportunity, that they have to offer a reasonable and measured solution to what the Democrats are pushing. I think they'll have the advantage that the Republicans will likely control the House, but it's going to be a slim majority. So the reality is I think we're likely headed for gridlock over the next two years and two competing agendas, which means that the Republicans will need to offer a solution for the future because elections are not about the past; elections are about the future. And we have to express a compelling vision about why the American voter should vote red versus vote blue.
REICHARD:Matt clink has been a political strategist for 30 years and he's president of Klink Campaigns. Matt, thanks so much.
KLINK: My pleasure. Thank you.
REICHARD: All right, well, he makes a great point that elections are about the future. Question is, what kind of future is in the offing after this election? Tonight, our WORLD Opinions team will attempt to sketch out some answers. Our first-ever WORLD Opinions video livestream tonight: the Meaning of the Midterms.
BROWN: So join moderator Albert Mohler with panelists Andrew Walker, Allie Beth Stuckey, Erick Erickson, and Hunter Baker. They’ll consider the question: What do the 2022 elections mean? It’s a special WORLD Opinions video livestream at wng.org/live. 9pm Eastern / 6 Pacific.
MYRNA BROWN, HOST: Coming up next on The World and Everything in It: WORLD Tour with Onize Ohikere, our reporter in Abuja, Nigeria.
ONIZE OHIKERE, REPORTER: Kyiv blackouts — We start today in Ukraine’s capital, where residents are bracing for a rough winter.
KLITSCHKO: Speaking in Ukrainian.
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said residents might spend parts of the coming winter without heat, electricity, or water if Russia continues to target critical energy infrastructure.
KLITSCHKO: Speaking in Ukrainian.
He says here authorities are doing everything possible to prevent an energy blackout. But they can’t rule out the possibility.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said 4.5 million people are without electricity in the country.
Authorities have started rolling blackouts across different regions. Kyiv also plans to deploy about 1,000 heating stations .. but it’s unclear if that would be sufficient for the city’s three million residents.
Moldova energy crisis — We head over to neighboring Moldova, where a severe energy crisis is also worsening ahead of winter.
Gas prices in the small republic squeezed between Romania and Ukraine have already increased by sixfold.
Ukraine provided 30 percent of the country’s gas supply, but Russian attacks halted all exports. Moldova relied on the pro-Russia breakaway region of Transnistria for the remaining 70 percent, but that has also stopped.
NATS: Bottles in a brewery
The Moldovan government has urged businesses to change their hours to off-peak times.
One brewery owner says his company now works in two shifts.
SOT: Speaking Romanian
He says his monthly electricity bill is now three times more than what it was.
The government has also asked towns to switch off street lights and encouraged households to limit their consumption.
Syria camp strike — Next, to Syria, where a government rocket strike on rebel-held territory has killed at least 10 civilians.
NATS: Emergency teams
More than 30 rockets exploded across the rebel-controlled northwestern province of Idlib.
The strikes hit makeshift camps for displaced people. The dead include three children. About 75 other people also sustained injuries.
Abu Hamid is a displaced Syrian who was staying at one of the affected camps.
He said they first heard the explosions before children started yelling “rockets.”
HAMID: Speaking Arabic
He says here that shrapnel flew over their heads and left people with nowhere to take cover.
Idlib is the last major rebel-held region in Syria. About 3 million people reside there, half of them displaced residents.
Ghana protests— We wrap up today in Ghana.
NATS: Protesters chanting
Hundreds of protesters dressed in red marched through the capital city of Accra over the weekend.
Some held up placards calling for President Nana Akufo-Addo to step down. Others chanted “IMF no” - a reference to the government’s ongoing talks with the International Monetary Fund for a bailout.
Ghana’s currency has lost more than 40 percent of its value against the dollar this year. Consumer inflation also rose above 37 percent back in September.
Last month, some shop owners closed down their stores to protest the rising cost of living.
Carlos Adams showed up in a red t-shirt for the protests.
ADAMS: Our economy is in a ditch. You cannot buy a gallon of petrol. A bag of maize cannot be bought so three square meals now is a problem.
Akufo-Addo has vowed to work to get the country’s finances back on track.
That’s it for this week’s World Tour. Reporting for WORLD, I’m Onize Ohikere in Abuja, Nigeria.
MARY REICHARD, HOST: If you’d like to own a small piece of history — correction, a large piece of history — here’s your chance!
Sotheby’s is about to auction off something found buried in South Dakota.
Speaking with TV station WABC, Cassandra Hatton with Sotheby’s called it …
HATTON: The ultimate trophy to place in one’s home.
Guess what it is? The skull of a Tyrannosaurus rex!
You can bid on it, but brace yourself: it’s expected to fetch at least $15 million dollars.
The rest of its skeleton was lost to time and the elements, but …
HATTON: More people can fit a skull in their home than people who could fit a full dinosaur. So this actually has a wider range of uses.
Yea, I think I’ll pass. My husband hangs animals on the wall already.
It’s The World and Everything in It.
MYRNA BROWN, HOST: Today is Thursday, November 10th. Thank you for turning to WORLD Radio to help start your day.
Good morning. I’m Myrna Brown.
MARY REICHARD, HOST: And I’m Mary Reichard.
Coming next on The World and Everything in It: Making tea!
Depending on where you live, people drinking cups of java tend to outnumber those sipping cups of tea. I had a fresh cup of mushroom coffee this morning and I plan on herbal tea this afternoon! What about you Myrna, are you a coffee drinker or a tea sipper?
A spot of tea always hits the spot for me. (MR: Hey, that rhymes!) That’s probably why I jumped at the chance to visit a real tea farm and meet a man who turned a hobby into a 40-year-quest. (MR: Cool!)
AMBI: Your destination is on the right. [TIRES ON GRAVEL]
MYRNA BROWN CORRESPONDENT: Even before the GPS announces my arrival, the transition from smooth asphalt to bumpy gravel makes it clear: I am no longer in the city or on the clock. I’m on Donnie Barrett’s time.
BROWN: I’m early. Oh, ok. Early’s good.
Walking towards me in a pink golf shirt, cargo pants, and a pair of crocs, Barrett carries a tray with two tea cups filled to the brim. It’s how the white-haired grandfather starts each day.
BARRETT: People will come in and sit down and the first thing I do is I give them a cup of tea. I want them to know what we’re talking about.
73-year-old Barrett knows tea. His father was a research agriculture scientist. In the 1970’s he supervised a short-lived experiment by the Lipton Tea company. Worried about the instability of third-world tea production, Lipton operated experimental tea farms throughout the southeast. A then twenty-something-year-old Barrett remembers the day the study abruptly ended and the company abandoned the site.
BARRETT: I was in my pick up truck and my father said come look at what they did to the tea experiment. And we said, that’s just a shame they destroyed it like that. And he said, well you want to get you up some?
Barrett scooped up three badly damaged tea root balls and planted them in two empty lots his family owned. While he worked as a graphic artist, tea farming became a hobby. But Barrett struggled to crack what he calls the tea-making code.
BARRETT: That’s when I found out that tea all comes from the same plant, that if you dry the leaves out, that doesn't make tea, it makes dirty water that kind of smells like tea and that how you make tea is called family and industrial secrets.
So, in 1984 Barrett traveled to China to unlock those secrets.
BARRETT: I went through factories and I looked like a mindless tourist, keeping in mind I had hundreds of plants back home, and I said, well how hot do you get that anyway. But I knew what I was looking at. And I really stole technical secrets from the Chinese.
That information is now part of his daily tea tours--hour-long, outdoor-classroom sessions.
AMBI: We’re moving… so where are we going? We’re going out in the fields where the tea grows.
Barrett shares the tricks of the trade with anyone willing to hop on his golf cart. As we make our way across his 5 ½ acre farm, we share the gravel road with a family of 20-year-old peacocks. Barrett and his wife Dottie also have chickens, roosters, parakeets, two dogs and a scarecrow.
AMBI: PICKING TEA LEAVES
But the main attraction: 61,000 tea bushes.
BARRETT: Green tea and black tea is made totally different. It’s different processes, but you make it from the same leaves. You can make green tea, black tea, yellow tea, you can make breakfast tea and it’s the slight subtle things you do with the processing that makes those different teas.
For instance, Barrett prefers to grow tea in the sunlight, rather than in the shade. He says sunlight affects the cell structure in the leaf.
BARRETT: And what happens is when those cells stand on in, the chlorophyll is on the top and the bottom of the cell fills up with lipid, that’s fat, that’s flavor.
Strategic pruning also distinguishes green tea from black tea, which again comes from the same leaf.
BARRETT INTERVIEW: If I let it grow, it’ll grow 35 feet tall, but I keep it cut off in this shape right here. This round-top row. But over here on my right there’s a flat row, that’s cut off real flat...pancake flat.
Barrett says tea bushes pruned in the shape of a pancake are most productive.
BARRETT INTERVIEW: They look like asparagus, only just ½ inch each from each other and they just all stick up uniformly and I just rip them right off and I make the green tea out of that. And over here on this rounder row, the more traditional cup-cake shape, this is what I tend to make my black teas out of.
Barrett sells both teas to his customers. But as he stoops down and pulls up a root from the earth, he says he’d rather teach them how to be producers.
BARRETT: See, that’s a tea plant. That’s about a two year old plant and that’s what I sell to people for a dollar.
BROWN: And why do people want that?
BARRETT: Because they want to start making their own tea.
BROWN: And you don’t mind sharing your expertise?
BARRETT: No, I enjoy it and I enjoy telling people about it.
After four decades of tea-farming, Barrett says there are a few things he wishes didn’t come with the territory. Sandwiched between two large bodies of water, his farm has survived 13 hurricanes.
BARRETT: I lost 430 trees in Sally.
He also says the name he chose for his farm has been a point of contention for some.
BARRETT: They think plantation has a negative connotation. And a plantation is called a planned planting and I came here with the intention of planting tea and I bought it as a plantation. And I called it Fairhope Tea Company, but that means I’m buying someone else’s tea and selling it. And so I changed my name to Fairhope Tea Plantation to let them know I’m growing that tea.
Barrett believes the hardest part of growing tea is growing older.
BARRETT: I like to pick tea around 4 and 5 in the afternoon. About 3:30 or 4 I’m laying on the couch and going I don’t want to go out there and pick that day, but as soon as I come out here I’m in my element. I’m as happy as I can be. I do it because tea is fun and I enjoy doing it.
Reporting for WORLD, I’m Myrna Brown in Fairhope, Alabama.
REICHARD: If you want to see the tea farm, Myrna produced a companion piece that also airs today on WORLD Watch. That’s our video news program for students. We’ll post a link to that story in today’s transcript: https://app.worldwatch.news/programs/steeped-in-tradition
MARY REICHARD, HOST: Today is Thursday, November 10th. Good morning! This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Mary Reichard.
MYRNA BROWN, HOST: And I’m Myrna Brown. Coming up next, commentator Cal Thomas with lessons from Tuesday’s election.
CAL THOMAS, COMMENTATOR: If Republicans could not score their "red wave" victories predicted by many pundits - including some Democrats - in these midterm elections, what's next for them? While there are still seats in play, the red wave is more like a small rise in the tide. All the issues were on their side - inflation, high gas and food prices, an open border, underperforming schools. If they couldn't win in a landslide with this gale wind at their backs, on what issues can they prevail?
Voters in Pennsylvania elected John Fetterman, a hard-core leftist who believes, in the middle of a crime wave, that a lot of violent criminals should be released from prison, or not be incarcerated at all. They apparently didn't care about his inability to speak clearly due to a stroke.
One bright spot for Republicans came in Florida. Gov. Ron DeSantis and Sen. Marco Rubio had impressive nights. Both beat their opponents by nearly 20 points. DeSantis likely boosted his presidential prospects for 2024, despite what former President Donald Trump decides. (Trump is likely to announce next week that he's running again.)
Credit for such powerful victories goes mainly to the massive migration of voters from other states to Florida, and its exploding Hispanic communities. Democrats had hoped that Hispanics might vote for their candidates. It was the opposite. Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties, which had been reliably Democratic for decades, flipped. DeSantis is the first Republican to win Miami-Dade in 20 years.
In his victory speech Tuesday night, DeSantis electrified the crowd at his headquarters when he declared "Florida is where the woke agenda goes to die." He blamed that agenda for people leaving liberal states and coming to what he called "the promised land."
He said he kept his promises to voters when it came to COVID-19 and reopening schools and businesses. "Freedom's here to stay," he shouted to wild applause.
It could have been a speech launching a presidential campaign, which is likely to come later, depending on whether Trump's legal troubles affect his presidential prospects. DeSantis slammed "failed leadership in Washington."
Florida also demonstrated how to run an election. Florida has a "find my ballot" app that allows voters to track their ballots, like one can track a letter or package, or a checked bag on an airplane. The software tells voters when their ballot arrives at the counting station, when it is opened, and when it is counted. This process greatly enhances election integrity and faith that the outcome is legitimate, protecting against conspiracy theories. Florida should be the model for the nation. They've come a long way from "hanging chads" in the 2000 presidential election.
The media, which is always there to support Democrats in defeat and cheer them in victory, is unlikely to change. Failure to lock up violent criminals is also likely to continue. That's because politicians whose policies have contributed to crime - such as winning Gov. Kathy Hochul of New York - are unlikely to do much to contain it since she is in denial about the problem.
People who are happy or breathing easier because of the outcome of this election now own its consequences. Inflation, high gas and food prices, and an open border are likely to continue. Republicans have a lot of work to do to change voter attitudes even if they win a majority in one or both houses. Maybe another two years of suffering will do it, assuming the country survives.
I’m Cal Thomas.
MARY REICHARD, HOST: Tomorrow: Culture Friday with John Stonestreet about the aftermath of the election.
Plus, we review one of the most anticipated superhero movies of the year.
And we’ll meet a duo who mix music, literature and theology.
That and more tomorrow.
I’m Mary Reichard.
MYRNA BROWN, HOST: And I’m Myrna Brown.
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