Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All
Thursday, December 14, 2017
6000 groups across the country, 5 million views of the original guide, and over 500,000 actions -- what a difference a year can make. Happy birthday, Indivisibles. #OneIndivisible pic.twitter.com/4qdn1BTWVB— Indivisible Guide (@IndivisibleTeam) December 14, 2017
Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Six months ago, I asked the smartest Dem Senate strategist where the three seats to win the majority back were: "Nevada, Arizona, and an act of God." Got the hardest one first.— Matthew Miller (@matthewamiller) December 13, 2017
54 years ago Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson & Carol Denise McNair killed by KKK in Birmingham Church Bombing— Ari Berman (@AriBerman) December 13, 2017
Today Alabama sent the man who prosecuted their killers to the Senate
The vote has power pic.twitter.com/aaZkge0hhO
Tuesday, December 12, 2017
In trying to find the right word for President Donald Trump, American voters are overwhelmingly negative, as 53 voters (not percent) say "idiot" is the first word that comes to mind when they think of the president, followed by 44 voters who say "liar" and 36 voters who say "incompetent," according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released today. In the same open-ended question, allowing for any answer, 35 voters say "leader," with 35 voters saying "strong," 26 voters saying "a**hole," 21 voters saying "great," 19 voters saying "moron," 18 voters saying "arrogant" and 17 voters saying "disgusting"... Of the 48 words used by five or more voters, 30 words are negative. Voters disapprove 57 - 37 percent of the job President Trump is doing, consistent with findings for the last four months. Trump has hit or topped the 40 percent approval mark four times since he was inaugurated. His highest approval, 42 percent, was in February.They're dismantling the ACA mandate, medicare, social security despite the flabbergasting unpopularity of this, they refuse to install gun regulations and invest in renewable energy despite the flabbergasting popularity of this. Trump lost the popular vote by millions, Roy Moore is likely to be elected this very day to a Senate seat while a majority (with whom I number myself) thinks he is straightforwardly unfit for office. Republicans think they are insulated from consequences -- and they just be right, and if they are right things may get bad enough before the next election that things won't get better again for any election in my lifetime. That said, disapproval like this would historically indicate a Democratic Wave in the upcoming mid-terms and a one-term humiliation of a failed presidency for Trump. Maybe that will be true again. It should be true. It needs to be true. It is worth working to make it true.
Monday, December 11, 2017
Saturday, December 09, 2017
I love Alabama. It's my father's home state. My sisters and brother live there today. I made a film about its beloved city, Selma. If you live there and love it too, please watch this. Then, vote for decency and justice. Vote #DougJones. pic.twitter.com/qhGniyp3qC— Ava DuVernay (@ava) December 9, 2017
Finally, it can be tried as an adult. https://t.co/I68f1bwBuD— Michael Brendan Dougherty (@michaelbd) December 9, 2017
Friday, December 08, 2017
Thursday, December 07, 2017
Tuesday, December 05, 2017
legalizing marijuana without pardoning everyone in the jurisdiction who's in prison for selling weed is a form of institutional racism.— trial error (@dreamaskew) December 4, 2017
taxing marijuana sales without allocating that revenue to rebuilding communities devastating by "drug war" policing is institutional racism.
just so folks realize, GOP embrace of Moore is a preview of GOP's embrace of firing Mueller and and GOP's embrace of idea Trump can't be prosecuted for obstruction of justice.— Eric Boehlert (@EricBoehlert) December 5, 2017
Get ready, they're going to push it to the edge, they're going to test the republic and there is every reason to think the republic will fail.
Monday, December 04, 2017
Sunday, December 03, 2017
Saturday, December 02, 2017
It has been a grueling year for people who care about human rights, climate change, and whatever remains of value in federal institutions from the judiciary to the diplomatic corps. This is a terrible, terrible era, one in which tremendous harm is being done to many people, to the planet and to the federal government. It is also a time in which, through the heroic work of people all over the country and the world, the regime has been exposed, thwarted and rebuked. That’s worth remembering as we face a horrific tax bill and the end of net neutrality. This year of conflicts demonstrates that sometimes when we fight we win, and we have enormous fights ahead of us. The Trump administration is unstable for many reasons, from the erratic behaviour of the president to the Mueller investigation. Civil society has tremendous influence over what becomes of it, and of us. It’s time to take stock of some of the encouraging phenomena that emerged from this grim year. So I made a list.
Friday, December 01, 2017
So, here is the News this morning. The Leader of the Free World is now completely unhinged, but we can't do anything at all about it because he has rock solid support from racists, and all the very rich Republicans who badly need another tax cut— John Cleese (@JohnCleese) December 1, 2017
And now, the weather...
Thursday, November 30, 2017
I enjoyed your optimistic appraisal of the Trump investigation -- I assume Europeans are eager for ANY sign of a resumption of "regular " order here in America. I'm afraid it looks less like that here. For me the Mueller investigation is a bit chilling right now -- because it really does look like demonstrable wrongdoing has occurred (I wasn't sure even the Trump bunch was THAT clueless and venal). Unfortunately, that does NOT mean that impeachment is any more likely than it was a year ago (which was nill), it is a political not a legal process in a very significant way. That very probably means Republicans will soon violate yet another set of governing norms to maintain their hold on power even as this destroys the viability of the Republic over which they hold that power.
I personally believe Trump will serve his full term. He may quit at that point (before that it is possible, but the chances are very slim in my opinion), because he seems miserable, but I strongly suspect he will run again because his ego needs the affirmation. I believe he has exactly the same path to re-election as he had for election in the first place. He might lose, he is unprecedentedly unpopular, but if the GOP activates its bigot base and promises to punish the ones they hate and fear it may well work again to the ruin of us all. How can we deny this? IT HAS HAPPENED ALREADY.
Perhaps Republican dysfunction will screw up their efforts to demolish the tax base on which our devastated at best never more than notionally sustainable social democracy depends. (We'll know three weeks from now, tops, just how bad it's going to be -- I am steeling myself for the absolute worst, vast wealth transfer upward, fatal sabotage of health care, abortion rollback, guns everywhere, the "tax" bill is becoming a fascist christmas tree in a room nobody gets to see.) But perhaps they'll screw it up, the negotiations are delicate even if it is all unfolding recklessly in darkness too fast for accountability. Perhaps paralysis and fear will undermine next year's efforts to re-enact all these efforts yet again, when battered and exhausted from this years struggles, we begin them yet again (thank the Goddess the Virginia off-year election has been read by both sides as a referendum on Trump that he miserably failed), and then perhaps a blue wave could overcomes gerrymandering and disenfranchisement enough to give Democrats control of one or both chambers of Congress (odds are against this, I fear, but it is probably a necessary result if we are going to make it through this emergency intact any time soon, I also truly fear) and gum up Trumpmerican efforts still more. Democrats would have to tread carefully then, minimizing Trump damage while trying to ensure the country blames Trump and not them for the next two years of inevitable frustration leading to the next Presidential election. Such a strategy will likely antagonize the progressive base in ways that will make the next primary as contentious as the last one -- and with exactly the same result, division, demoralization, self-sabotage.
If Democrats managed to control all the layers of government in 2020 somehow in spite of all the reasons everything is likely to go wrong instead, America can get roughly to about where we were in 2010 by 2022. Who knows what kinds of economic, environmental, or military catastrophes could happen between now and then to derange all these fragile calculations? Signs of another dot.bomb and bursting debt bubbles are everywhere, tyrants with arsenals (not just our own) are barking at one another, planetary alliances are shifting disturbingly (American exceptionalism is over, come what may, which is a plus for the world). Who knows if I'll even still be alive in 2022?
And even if we manage to pull off those miracles, at what point does greater progress happen? America should be like a continent-scaled Sweden already if the world is to turn back and save itself from eco-tastrophe. And, never forget: eco-tastrophe also means world war and world depression and social violence and existential threat. It would take a quarter century of vast effort to get where we need to be already. Instead, if Democrats save the country again (among other things, from themselves) it is most likely that we will have set the stage for yet another inevitable bigot backlash that smashes everything to pieces again by 2024, 2028 at the latest. I mean, demographic tipping points will presumably get us off this see-saw eventually -- but in time?
I doubt such speculations are much help when it comes to your panic attacks! But you are like me -- you don't have the option of NOT thinking things through and so the only sane option is to think things through as clearly as you can and then seek the support of those you care about while supporting those you care about as best you can. This is my own strategy, I suppose. Please take care of yourself, too.
Monday, November 27, 2017
Sunday, November 26, 2017
Speaking of kicking the bucket, according to Christopher Bates:
On Friday, George H. W. Bush became the longest-lived president in U.S. history, at 93 years, 166 days. He surpassed Gerald Ford on that day, having passed #3 Ronald Reagan (93 years, 120 days) about a month and a half ago. Close on Bush Sr.'s heels is Jimmy Carter, who trails him by 111 days, at 93 years, 56 days. That means, for those who are keeping track, that each of the four presidents who followed Richard Nixon lived to be at least 93 (and all four lived twice as long as shortest-lived president JFK, who was shot in year 46, on day 177). It will now be up to Bush Sr. and/or Carter to try to become the first ex-president to make it to 94. For those who are wondering, Donald Trump would reach George H. W. Bush's current age on November 28, 2039; George W. Bush would tie pops on December 19, 2039; Bill Clinton would catch up on February 2, 2040; while it would take Barack Obama until October 14, 2057.I myself arrive at the magic moment, if I am very lucky indeed and without any Presidential gravitas in tow, just a couple years after Obama does. At last! Something that doesn't make me feel superannuated this morning.
Saturday, November 25, 2017
Friday, November 24, 2017
Thursday, November 23, 2017
Wednesday, November 22, 2017
Three years ago today, 12-year-old Tamir Rice was shot and killed by a police officer while playing in a park. The lack of justice that followed has not been forgotten. We continue to fight for him & other victims of police violence. pic.twitter.com/nAD3pD7kVB— ColorOfChange.org (@ColorOfChange) November 22, 2017
Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Monday, November 20, 2017
Saturday, November 18, 2017
The Democratic Party is, to say the least, an imperfect instrument, but it is the only nationally viable available tool to fight Republicans in their now explicitly authoritarian formation... and even in more "normal" times it remains the best, if always inadequate, tool for progressive reform (pressed and made accountable from the left by activism not confined to partisan politics, of course, but still). As an anti-racist eco-feminist democratic socialist vegetarian secular-multicultural queer it is easy for me to sympathize with those who (presumably like you) find the glacially-paced inertially-incumbent continent-scaled politics of the Democratic Party coalition hopelessly inequitable and under-responsive as measured against my desired outcomes and critical positions. Oh, yes indeedy I do. But I am able to hold more than one thing in my head at the same time: And so, yes, partisan politics are inadequate but also necessary, and, yes, viable coalitions will always be much less radical in their politics than are the politics of the more radical and righteous members of their coalitions. But if you are fighting for prison abolition, universal income, environmental justice, sustainable accessible infrastructure, ending rape culture, and the queer subversion of patriarchy you will probably have to ally with Democrats for every substantial accomplishment and you will probably have to fight with many to most of those Democrats every inch of the way to make them see sense and conduct themselves with integrity. Just because Republicans are comic book villains now doesn't mean their opponents, the Democrats, are comic book heroes. Seeing the obvious differences between the parties hardly requires the pretense that Democrats are above suspicion or criticism. But at this point, false equivalency theses amount to fascist enablement. I don't think that sort of nonsense is the least bit intelligent, righteous, pragmatically useful, or provocative. So, yes, I will keep "harping" on the unqualified, bigoted, authoritarian incompetent asshole in the White House, thanks, and you can throw your bile darts at the first woman to be Speaker of the House, the most effective and one of the most progressive occupants of that position by any objective standard (which is hardly to pretend she is some paragon or to endorse her many incorrect and compromised positions), Nancy Pelosi, instead, and tell yourself that makes you the REAL sooper-revolutionary all the livelong day if you like. Thanks for the comment -- it is nice to see I still care enough about this sort of thing that you could actually get a rise out of me these days.
Thursday, November 16, 2017
I am literally tearing up right now in response to the news about Al Franken.— leah mcelrath (@leahmcelrath) November 16, 2017
It is NOT difficult NOT to assault women sexually.
Keep your hands, your mouths, your tongues, your penises, and your sexualized commentary to yourself.
THIS IS NOT DIFFICULT.
hand the keys to the women, we clearly have no idea wtf we're doing— Oliver Willis (@owillis) November 16, 2017
For every vile man, there are many talented women who've been reluctant to enter a sexist political arena.— Sarah Kendzior (@sarahkendzior) November 16, 2017
Men, you are not as precious and irreplaceable as you think you are. Clean house. And Senate.
And the presidency.
prediction: if the two unnamed members of Congress accused of sexual harassment/assault turn out to be one D, one R. the D will immediately resign and the R will be re-elected— Eric Boehlert (@EricBoehlert) November 16, 2017
Yes, Franken's statement and call for an investigation were the "right" thing to do after the wrong thing to do was done. Yes, his response is better to the wrong thing he did than Republican responses have been. Yes, Franken has been a useful Senator in a state that might eventually replace him with a Republican -- though the governor is a Democrat and the state has elected an outspoken progressive Democrat in Franken twice and hence Franken's replacement is likely to be a reliable Democrat, perhaps one less likely to abuse any women ever. Yes, the President is a documented and admitted serial sexual predator and harasser and should be held accountable along with Franken but likely won't be and this is utterly enraging. But Franken abused his power and should face consequences for that and making him face consequences helps build a world in which men who abuse and harass women are all more likely to face consequences for their immoral conduct and eventually that is a world in which people like Trump also face such consequences and hence a world in which life is more liveable for more women more of the time. That is what we want.
Wednesday, November 15, 2017
The United Nations climate conference is taking place in Bonn, Germany, right now. It has been the occasion of much anti-Trump rhetoric... It has also seen a fair bit of bargaining, such as the forging of an agreement among Mexico, Canada, and the Pacific "blue wall" (California, Oregon, and Washington) to cooperate on carbon reduction. The big news on the deal-making front, however, is that Syria... has signed the Paris Accord. That means that the American cheese now stands alone -- it is the stated position of 195 governments that global warming is real and must be confronted, and the stated position of one government that it is not and should be ignored. As a practical matter, however, the U.S. is still a part of the Paris Accord. The withdrawal that Donald Trump triggered cannot be completed until November 2020... the occasion of the next presidential election. The next time a Democrat is sent to the White House, there is zero question that person will rejoin the pact. And whether it is two months after the U.S. officially "withdraws," or four years and two months, or eight years and two months, there is zero question that the other nations of the world will be happy to welcome the Americans back on board. So, like Obamacare, the Paris Accord is a dragon that Sir Donald is going to have real trouble slaying.Of course, the Paris accord is inadequate even if implemented and it's not like the planet has time to waste on more years of Republican obstruction even if they have a limit -- and even the optimism here about such a limit seems to draw on the analogy of a failure to repeal the ACA just as we find the Senate endorsing yet another stealth repeal of the ACA (its enabling mandate) as part of the corporate plutocratic money-grab of the GOP tax plan.
Tuesday, November 14, 2017
A new Quinnipiac poll finds President Trump’s approval rate at 35% to 58%, near his record low. Also interesting: Just 40% of voters say Trump is fit to serve as president, while 57% say he is not fit. By a 51% to 38% margin, Americans would like to see Democrats win control of the House of Representatives in 2018. By a 52% to 39% margin, they would like to see Democrats win control of the Senate.
Hurricane Maria came close to sinking Puerto Rico, and may also come close to sinking the Republican Party in Florida. Since the hurricane, 140,000 Puerto Ricans have left the island, and 130,000 of them have settled in the mother of all swing states: Florida. All Puerto Ricans are American citizens. Puerto Rico has no electoral votes, but as soon as a Puerto Rican moves to the mainland, he or she can register to vote. Furthermore, most Puerto Ricans are Democrats and after the way Donald Trump rushed to help Texas after it was hit by Hurricane Harvey but basically ignored Puerto Rico after it was hit by Maria, the few remaining Puerto Rican Republicans probably are going to switch parties... Trump won Florida by 120,000 votes. Consequently if a large fraction of the 130,000 new Florida residents register and vote in 2018 and 2020, it could mean a lot of trouble for the Republicans. By itself it probably wouldn't have changed the result, but it would have made the race a lot closer and will also matter for Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) in 2018 as well as for many House races next year.
Sunday, November 12, 2017
I need you now, we can make history.— Doug Jones (@GDouglasJones) November 12, 2017
New poll has us up 4.
30 days out.
158,328 on children’s healthcare.
1 million on Medicaid
968k on Medicare
30 days out for the next 30 years- help us:https://t.co/ssxxzm09JB
Friday, November 10, 2017
For the past year, the Democratic Party has been engaged in an angry internal debate over identity politics, which are often framed in opposition to a purely class-based appeal. At times, it feels like progressives are doomed to re-litigate the 2016 Democratic primary forever, tearing each other apart while Trump tears down the republic. But if you squint at Tuesday’s results, you can sort of see a synthesis emerging between Obama and Hillary Clinton’s theory of the emerging Democratic electorate -- in which Democrats win by appealing to a coalition of white professionals and minorities -- and Bernie Sanders’s focus on grass-roots organizing and economic populism.
In some ways the election was the revenge of the Obama coalition. Educated white liberals joined people of color to elect an amazingly diverse group of candidates. A Latina single mother, Michelle De La Isla, was elected mayor of Topeka, Kan. Wilmot Collins, a refugee from Liberia, won the mayoral race in Helena, Mont. Seattle elected its first lesbian mayor, Jenny Durkan. After a year in which liberals have been bludgeoned by demands that they abandon identity politics and empathize with resentful Trump voters, the election was a reminder that white men needn’t be the center of the political universe.Yet class politics and identity politics aren’t really a binary, even if they’re sometimes presented that way. Murillo, for example, the first person in her family to graduate from either high school or college, told me that affordable housing was a central issue in her campaign. Overall, Tuesday was a great night for economic populists. Before this week, the Democratic Socialists of America had 20 elected officials among its membership. On Tuesday, 15 more won local office, including 30-year-old Marine veteran Lee Carter, who unseated the Republican majority whip in Virginia’s House of Delegates.
Ultimately, the main lessons from Tuesday are probably more strategic than ideological. Democrats need to contest every seat they can, no matter how red. (In the wake of the Washington Post’s revelations about Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore’s past sexual relationships with teenagers, it’s a good thing there’s already a strong Democrat in the race.) They should also recognize that young people are crucial to their fortunes, and make it easy for them to run. One person who played a key role in Democratic victories on Tuesday was Amanda Litman, a 27-year-old veteran of the Hillary Clinton campaign who co-founded Run For Something, which trains and supports progressive millennials seeking political office. (Her group backed both Bennett and Roem.) More millennial candidates, Litman told me, “means more millennial voters,” and millennials are largely left-leaning.
Tuesday, November 07, 2017
A new CNN poll finds just 36% say they approve of the way President Trump is handling his job, worse by one percentage point than his previous low of 37%, reached in October. Disapproval has also reached a new high at 58%, with 48% saying they strongly disapprove of the way he is handling his job. Also interesting: 59% say they think Trump himself knew that his campaign had contact with suspected Russian operatives.
Sunday, November 05, 2017
Saturday, November 04, 2017
Wednesday, November 01, 2017
It's on! 2018 ACA enrollment has begun.— Andy Slavitt (@ASlavitt) November 1, 2017
80% can find plans under $75/month. Go to https://t.co/nYl9YWdSHm.
Spread the word.
Tuesday, October 31, 2017
Near Majority Favors Impeaching Trump -- A new Public Policy Polling survey finds 49% of voters support impeaching President Trump, as compared to 41% who are opposed to doing so. Also interesting: Trump’s approval rating has declined by a net 7 points in the last month.
Monday, October 30, 2017
A new NBC/WSJ poll puts Donald Trump's approval at 38%, the worst yet for that poll. Individual polls on Trump's approval rating go up and down, but the long-term trend is almost linearly down. Real Clear Politics has a table of all 223 public polls of Trump's approval/disapproval since he took office. We plotted them with least-squares regression lines and got the following graph:
Saturday, October 28, 2017
Thursday, October 26, 2017
A couple of weekly pollsters released their latest on Wednesday, and the numbers definitely won't be finding their way to Donald Trump's Twitter feed. First up is Fox News, which certainly tries to tote the President's water, but the numbers say what they say. They have him with the lowest approval rating ever for their poll, 38%. He's losing ground among key constituencies, including men without a college degree, working-class white men, and evangelicals. Politico/Morning Consult, meanwhile, has Trump with a slightly better overall approval rating, at 42%. But the rest of the numbers are pretty grim, as a majority of respondents find him untrustworthy (53%), dishonest (51%), reckless (56%), thin-skinned (52%), lacking in compassion (54%), unstable (54%), and sexist (50%)... These numbers represent a dip from last week; the obvious explanation is Trump's (mis-)handling of the La David Johnson phone call. Puerto Rico surely didn't help, either. While Trump's approval rating ebbs and flows depending on whatever the drama of the week is, it is clear that the overall trendline is downward, and pretty sharply so. Over the past nine months, he's bled about 6.5 points; from pulling numbers regularly in the mid-40s to numbers regularly in the high-30s. For a president who won office by the skin of his teeth, that's very concerning. It's also the case that no president has had such a bad first year on the approval-ratings front since the numbers were first tabulated during the Truman years. The only presidents who were even in the ballpark (see the data at the link) were Bill Clinton and Gerald Ford. Those two men saw their parties lose 54 and 49 seats in the House, and 8 and 4 seats in the Senate, respectively, in the midterm elections. So, to the extent that the numbers have predictive value, the conditions certainly appear to be building for the wave election of all wave elections.
Tuesday, October 24, 2017
Sunday, October 22, 2017
Saturday, October 21, 2017
Tuesday, October 17, 2017
Monday, October 16, 2017
Thursday, October 12, 2017
Wednesday, October 11, 2017
Tuesday, October 10, 2017
Monday, October 09, 2017
Sunday, October 08, 2017
Saturday, October 07, 2017
Donald Trump's approval rating... has cratered again, to its lowest point since he took office. The AP, which does its measurements on a weekly basis, now has him at 32%. The 20s are uncomfortably close, and with them Richard Nixon's record-low Watergate-level approval ratings (around 25%). That is not good for any president, particularly one who is in his first term and is overseeing a generally solid economy (the September jobs report notwithstanding...)... [I]s he being punished for his ham-fisted handling of Puerto Rico? For his cabinet dysfunction? His handling of North Korea and/or Iran? Something else? Could be because Saturday Night Live is back, with Alec Baldwin's devastating impersonation. Maybe it's because of Las Vegas... Whatever the case may be, it is pretty clear that Trump's ceiling is somewhere around 40%, and that he's only going to achieve that under the best of circumstances. This means that we're presumably headed into brand new territory—since approval ratings have been compiled (the Truman years), no president has gone into the midterms (or a possible re-election campaign) with so many Americans unhappy with their performance.More signs of a Democratic wave to come, perhaps, if enough of us can make it through these months of GOP-domination to vote them out in the mid-terms, though it is hard to know if things like polling approval which have always mattered in the past still matter quite the same way in Trumpmerica with its GOP-safe gerrymandered districts and voter disenfranchisement and ubiquitous algorithmically-mediated deceptions and frauds afoot.
Friday, October 06, 2017
MundiMuster! SwingLeft Is Ready To Boot Doll-Eyed Dolt Paul Ryan From His District and His Speaker's Perch
pleasepleasepleaseplease Make. It. So.
Wednesday, October 04, 2017
Tuesday, October 03, 2017
Calling a device "artificially intelligent" has never once made it so.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) October 2, 2017
Every time we call devices intelligent it becomes less meaningful to call people intelligent.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) October 2, 2017
Calling nonliving nonconscious nonintelligent devices AI makes it easier for living conscious intelligent owners and users of those devices…— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) October 2, 2017
…to refuse responsibility for the reckless harmful unjust uses to which we put them. This is the primary substance and end of AI discourse.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) October 2, 2017
Monday, October 02, 2017
If you follow the tech business, you may have heard the formulation, “It’s Uber, but for ...” The idea is that there’s no human endeavor that can’t be transformed by a little coding, as Uber did for taxis... This philosophy now describes an entire genre of TV... It’s Uber, but for formulaic drama. The formula, roughly: Rich jerk invents technology. Rich jerk suffers personal tragedy. Rich jerk suddenly has a reason to care about the outside world. Rich jerk applies his technology to solve a problem related to aforementioned tragedy. Rich jerk gets pushback from the establishment. But rich jerk’s technology works! Thanks, rich jerk! ...--h/t Jim Fehlinger
Don’t let anyone tell you it’s too soon to talk about our gun violence crisis. For hundreds in Las Vegas, it’s too late. Text JOIN to 64433. pic.twitter.com/XiBJEykWeI— Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) October 2, 2017
Saturday, September 30, 2017
Many Democrats think that the chance of a Democrat winning a special election for the Senate in Alabama is about as big as the chance of a Republican winning one in Massachusetts. Except that in 2010, Republican Scott Brown did exactly that. An Opinion Savvy poll just out shows Roy Moore (R) ahead of Doug Jones (D) by just 5 points, 50% to 45%. With more than 2 months to go and Moore a constant source of outrageous comments, Jones could possibly win this one, at least if the DNC decides to put some real money into the race. Of course, Republicans who supported primary loser Sen. Luther Strange may be angry now and say they will vote for Jones, but come December they may come and support Moore while holding their noses. On the other hand, it's not impossible that a Moore was a "lesser of two evils" vote, given the shady way in which Strange acquired his office (an apparent quid pro quo for helping quash the prosecution of then-governor Robert Bentley). There could be a segment of voters who were just waiting for the chance to vote for someone who is not Moore or Strange.
Friday, September 29, 2017
The enthusiasm on the Democratic side for congressional races is enormous, but it is not uniform across the map. For example, eight Democrats are already running against Rep. John Faso (R-NY) in NY-19, which is in the Hudson Valley, mostly south of Albany. Another district in which eight Democrats have already announced is VA-10, currently represented in the House by Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-VA). Her district includes all of Clarke, Frederick, and Loudoun Counties, plus parts of Fairfax and Prince William Counties. It is a highly educated district and could easily flip, hence all the interest from Democrats. However, there are also holes in the map. For example, Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ) in NJ-02 doesn't have a credible Democratic opponent yet. NY-24 looks like a dream pick-up opportunity for the Democrats. Hillary Clinton won it by 4 points and Barack Obama won it twice by double digits. But so far, no serious Democrat has stepped up to take on Rep. John Katko (R-NY). Likewise, FL-18 is devoid of a strong Democrat despite its being a district that Trump carried by less than 2 points and the incumbent, Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL), having a 100% voting record in support of Donald Trump. Part of the reason is clear, though. FL-27, just south of FL-18, is going to be an open seat because Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) is retiring, so local Democrats see that as an easier race than going after an eight-term congressman. The Democrats' problem is that candidates who might run for Congress, such as state senators and representatives, often look at a district and say it is too tough, so they decide to stay put. What they don't realize is that if 2018 is a wave election -- and it might be given what has happened in the special elections already this year -- a plausible but unknown state senator could be swept in on the tide. But that can happen only if the potential candidate becomes an actual candidate. It is an old saying, but it is still true: "You can't beat somebody with nobody." (V)
Wednesday, September 27, 2017
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Sunday, September 24, 2017
Tuesday, September 19, 2017
Everybody is already talking about Star Trek Discovery's upcoming captain Jason Isaac's righteous repudiation of the normalizing of Trump spokesliar Spicer at last night's Emmy awards...
Hoping to forget politics for one night and bask in other people’s glory at the #Netflix#Emmys party and who do I spot at the bar late at night but the poisonous purveyor of lies #SeanSpicer. What were the Emmys thinking celebrating this modern day Goebbels, who was the thuggish face of Orwellian doublespeak just moments ago?
Monday, September 18, 2017
Sunday, September 17, 2017
Saturday, September 16, 2017
California lawmakers on Friday sent Gov. Jerry Brown a bill setting a new requirement for people wanting to run for president in California: Hand over five years of tax returns.
Inspired by President Donald Trump’s refusal to provide tax returns before the 2016 election, Democratic Sens. Mike McGuire of Healdsburg and Scott Wiener of San Francisco drafted Senate Bill 149, which declares that tax returns provide “voters with essential information regarding the candidate’s potential conflicts of interest, business dealings, financial status, and charitable donations.
It prohibits the secretary of state from putting a candidate’s name on the ballot in California if he or she has not complied with the tax return requirement. The Legislature’s own lawyers have said the bill is legally questionable, issuing an opinion suggesting it would likely violate the qualifications clause of the U.S. Constitution. According the Assembly analysis of the bill, nearly half the states are considering similar legislation....
Friday, September 15, 2017
The lie of the tech sector is that it is up to much of anything new at all.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) September 14, 2017
"Technology" discourse has always mostly been the repackaging stale products and reactionary politics.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) September 14, 2017
The truth of the tech sector is the same old story of assholes wanting all the money and power but no responsibility or accountability.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) September 14, 2017
Tech disruption is mostly deregulation.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) September 14, 2017
Tech "sharing" is mostly wealth concentration.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) September 14, 2017
Tech innovation is mostly PR for the rich.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) September 14, 2017
Digitization is mostly precarization.— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) September 14, 2017
Thursday, September 14, 2017
Tuesday, September 12, 2017
Monday, September 11, 2017
Saturday, September 09, 2017
Friday, September 08, 2017
Happy #StarTrekDay from the cast of #StarTrekDiscovery! Live long and prosper. 🖖 pic.twitter.com/SwvfvahvgJ— Star Trek: Discovery (@startrekcbs) September 8, 2017
Thursday, September 07, 2017
Robot Gods, genetic enhancement and longevity, artificial meat, immersive virtuality, techno-abundance nano robo digi bio blah blah blah blah, the terms never changing, the greedhead promises and skeery sfnal threats never happening, but always oh so very important to talk about, year after year after year after year, as privileged mediocrities game the economy and political system in the most boring serially failed utterly predictably idiotic ways (the very real threats being the social ones mediated by and distracted from via tech, natch). You know, I could re-run the first ten years of this blog, just changing the names of the latest tech soopergeniuses as they make exactly identically stupid claims I railed against before and I would presumably resume my place as go-to incendiary tech critic. I definitely hear you when you say you'll choke the latest Very Serious AI-qua-existential-threat drivel down. My righteous rage, and the pleasure I once took in ridiculing tech hucksters, has long since been eclipsed by demoralization. Trump's America is the futurological future we've been waiting for, a shriveled white dick with a megaphone peddling late-nite infomercials promising easy cash and sexy youth to ignorant rubes over a stinking landfill under a gray snowfall of cremated ashes.
Wednesday, September 06, 2017
Pro-tip: Don't let the toxic mixture of fear and laziness fuck with your goals, ambition and productivity— Katya (@katya_zamo) July 14, 2015
@katya_zamo What if your goals, ambition, and productivity depend on a toxic mixture of fear and laziness?— Dale Carrico (@dalecarrico) July 14, 2015
Then YOU GO GIRL! You got this girl!— Katya (@katya_zamo) September 6, 2017
Tuesday, September 05, 2017
Monday, September 04, 2017
Sunday, September 03, 2017
“In a potential death knell for efforts to repeal Obamacare -- at least this year -- the Senate parliamentarian has ruled that Republicans face a Sept. 30 deadline to kill or overhaul the law with only 50 votes... In search of a badly needed legislative victory, McConnell and other Senate Republicans have shifted their focus instead to tax reform. Yet President Donald Trump -- who has repeatedly predicted Obamacare is about to implode -- has called for another repeal vote in the Senate, as have GOP conservative hard-liners in both the House and Senate.”There is no respect for norms to keep McConnell from replacing this parliamentarian with a more congenial one (sure, it would be "shocking" and scarcely precedented, but McConnell is a flagrant serial disruptor of such norms -- Gorsuch, anyone?), so I cannot draw much comfort from this deadline, though we must all take our minor and provisional victories where we can in the face of Trump/Republican bigot idiot greedhead authoritarianism. If McConnell abides by this recommendation I can only assume it is because he wants an excuse to take the healthcare repeal debacle off the board for now.
Thursday, August 31, 2017
Howard Dean is 68.
Bernie Sanders is 75.
Joe Biden is 74.
Hillary Clinton is 69.
Elizabeth Warren is 68.
Al Franken is 65.
Sherrod Brown and Claire McCaskill are both 64.
One is reminded of Harry Reid's infamous recent comment that Democratic hopefuls for 2020 look like an "old folks home." I fully expect Sanders to run again, catastrophic though that would be. I wonder if he would run as a Democrat again. That would be hilarious. (I truly hope I am wrong and can return grudgingly to the respect I had for Sanders prior to 2016.) Biden seems nearly as vain as Sanders and so might try a run for 2020, though I somewhat doubt it. Of course, Hillary Clinton will not run again (nor should she) -- though once again she would be better qualified than Sanders, among other reasons because she is too responsible to run again given the debacle of her last run -- and also she would be more progressive than Biden, not that you would think so listening to brogressives who act as if a white penis is the key that unlocks true progress, all recorded history to the contrary notwithstanding. Franken and Brown look to me to be mulling runs, probably with their eyes on the vice-presidency. I rather doubt that either Warren or McCaskill will do the same.
It is worth noting that Senator Kamala Harris is 52, Cory Booker is 48, Mayor Eric Garcetti is 46, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is 50, and Senator Amy Klobuchar is 57. I guess I should add that Andrew Cuomo is 59 (please, God, if you listen to atheists, no). If Klobuchar goes, I think Franken will not -- and vice versa. Gillibrand has ruled out a 2020 bid, for what that is worth. Booker is being coy on the subject, which is worth even less. But all the rest are clearly mulling serious bids and even seem to be running scarcely stealthed early campaigns already. Cory Booker is a rhetorician's dream but I cannot say I am thrilled with some of the company he keeps. Kamala Harris is making all the right moves but the way brogressives already have their knives out for her worries me about another divisive dishonest demoralizing primary contest depressing turnout enough to bring authoritarian bigot Republicans back to their sweet spot of "close enough" to game the result in their favor -- with consequences too hideous to contemplate (that is to say, a continuation and even amplification of the hideousness with which we are presently grappling). Harris' co-sponsorship with Sanders of medicare-for-all demonstrates her awareness of the political problem at hand (and, oh yes, it would also be an incomparable healthcare policy improvement, for what that is worth), but it carries political risks and one wonders if the fauxvolutionaries who like to treat presidential primary contests as opportunities for purity cabaret rather than building organizational capacity will be assuaged by such efforts. Harris and Brown would be an interesting ticket, as would Booker and Klobuchar.
It's too early to tell in any case, and probably worse than foolish to try to foretell this early -- but such tale-telling is rather more edifying than contemplating the gross spectacle of the present, or even the more proximate (and I fear perilous) prospect of the mid-terms, which will probably be bad news in the Senate given the math and disappointing in the House given the gerrymandering. Terrible tho' things are, I fully expect things to get much worse before they get any better. I hope I am wrong. Stay focused, keep resisting, help out, don't give up.