Should House Democrats spend the next two years arguing with each other over a policy agenda? Photo: James Hager/Getty Images After a good election result, the conventions of American politics dictates that the winners boast of a popular mandate to do whatever it is they want to do. And if said election delivers less than total power, it’s customary to pledge a robust effort to reach across the aisle to the other party and get things done in the national interest. You can see both of these conventions reflected in a letter that 46 of the 66 newly elected House Democrats sent to their leadership this week. They claim “a responsibility and mandate for change in the U.S. Congress,” and profess “the importance of addressing concerns that cross party lines.” In reality, of course, bipartisan legislation has become an endangered species, and the remaining Republican minority in the House is more obdurately conservative and partisan than ever. And there … [Read more...] about Messaging or Investigating? How Should House Democrats Use Their Very Limited Power?
Bears packers week 1 2018
Photo: Rogelio V Solis/AP/REX/Shutterstock Here’s a recent addition to the long list of “stuff that happened in 2018 that mostly flew under the radar because of, you know [gestures vaguely around]”: Former Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre and the rapper Soulja Boy were tricked by a group of white nationalists into recording anti-Semitic videos. Wow! BuzzFeed reports: A group of white supremacist YouTubers are using a new app to pay celebrities to create videos where they make coded anti-Semitic statements — and then the YouTubers use those recordings to promote hatred on the internet. The videos were made using Cameo, where users can pay to have celebrities record a personalized message for them… [Favre’s] video is loaded with coded anti-Semitic language. It sounds nuts to say that Brett Favre was taken advantage of by white nationalists to spread anti-Semitic memes. But that’s only because you think of Brett Favre as a very famous … [Read more...] about Brett Favre Is a Social Network
Illustration: Nicolas Ortega Mark Zuckerberg isn’t the first person in human history to draw inspiration from Augustus Caesar, the founder of the Roman Empire, but he’s one of a very few for whom the lessons of Augustus’s reign have a concrete urgency. Both men, after all, built international empires before the age of 33. “Basically, through a really harsh approach, he established 200 years of world peace,” Zuckerberg explained to a New Yorker reporter earlier this year. “What are the trade-offs in that?” Augustus, Zuckerberg explained, “had to do certain things” to ensure the stability of his empire. So too, apparently, does Facebook. A 6,000-word report published in the New York Times last week disclosed in humiliating detail the lengths to which Facebook has gone to protect its dominance and attack its critics. As various interlocking crises concerning hate speech, misinformation, and data privacy widened, top executives … [Read more...] about The Decline and Fall of the Zuckerberg Empire
In recent weeks, gun owners have been given two prime examples of just how important strong firearms preemption laws are to the vibrant exercise of Second Amendment rights. On October 22, the Montana Supreme Court struck down a Missoula ordinance that purported to restrict city residents’ ability to transfer firearms. On October 29, Allegheny County Common Pleas Senior Judge Joseph M. James struck down a raft of Pittsburgh ordinances that purported to regulate the use of firearms in public places within the city and provide for the confiscation of firearms without due process. In both instances the tribunals pointed to the state firearms preemption statute as precluding the locality’s anti-gun efforts. Today, almost all states have a firearms preemption law that prohibits localities from regulating firearms in a manner more stringent than state law. These laws are vital as they prevent localities from enacting an incomprehensible patchwork of local ordinances. … [Read more...] about Strong Firearms Preemption Laws Are More Important Than Ever
FILE - The main entrance to the Dreamforce conference hosted by Salesforce is seen at 4th and Howard streets in downtown San Francisco, Calif. Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2018. Expect traffic as you near Moscone Center: Dreamforce has taken over SOMA and has shut down a part of Howard Street for the festivities. less FILE - The main entrance to the Dreamforce conference hosted by Salesforce is seen at 4th and Howard streets in downtown San Francisco, Calif. Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2018. Expect traffic as you near Moscone Center: ... more Photo: Jessica Christian / The Chronicle 2018 Buy photo Photo: Jessica Christian / The Chronicle 2018 Image 1 of / 24 Caption Close Image 1 of 24 FILE - The main entrance to the Dreamforce conference hosted by Salesforce is seen at 4th and Howard streets in downtown San … [Read more...] about Dreamforce is coming, and that means road closures in SF