Tag Archives: aren’t

Medicare-for-All Opponents Aren’t Murderers

Medicare-for-All Opponents Aren’t Murderers(Bloomberg Opinion) — Health care is a major point of contention in the Democratic primary campaign. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren favor a single-payer system, while Joe Biden and Pete Buttigieg support a federal insurance program to compete with private insurers, also known as the public option. Some fans of single-payer have begun to deploy a dire-sounding argument: failing to implement Medicare for All, they claim, would be tantamount to murder. For example, Libby Watson, a staff writer at the New Republic, tweeted:Roosevelt Institute researcher Mike Konczal went so far as to calculate the “expected murders” that would result from pushing for a public option rather than Medicare for All.QuicktakeMedicare for AllIt’s not clear to what extent these arguments are tongue-in-cheek. News outlets are fond of running articles declaring that the U.S. health-care system is “literally killing people”; the actual content of these articles is almost always only about the well-documented shortcomings of the present system, but the headlines suggest a flirtation with the idea that refusing to reform a flawed system amounts to murder.That idea has its roots in an old philosophical debate about responsibility. Few would dispute the notion that if you ignore a dying person that you could easily save, you’ve done something deeply immoral. But this principle is hard to put into practice because it hinges on the incredibly hard task of assessing how much danger someone would have to put themselves in to help someone else. And equating laziness with homicide seems mushy; few of us would judge a couch potato to be a murderer simply because she's not spending her free time saving lives as a paramedic.But this time single-payer advocates do more than just rehash this old argument about negligent bystanders. They also invoke statistics, which introduces even more problems.Assessments of the deaths attributable to various policy regimes rely on statistical calculations of mortality rates. One way to do this is to compare states that implement a policy — for example, Medicaid expansion — with those that don’t and observe differences in death rates before and after the policy. Because mortality depends on things besides Medicaid, making an accurate comparison requires that researchers control for various factors. Differences in the set of things that get controlled for, and how the comparisons are constructed, can produce changes in the mortality estimates.This isn’t such a big problem if we’re just using statistics to determine whether a policy is helpful. Over time, a body of evidence accumulates that leans toward the conclusion that Medicaid expansion is helpful or harmful. But relying on statistical estimates to determine the precise number of people that heartless politicians have murdered seems highly unreliable.It also leaves open the possibility that new findings will turn a murderer into a hero, or vice versa. For example, it was long believed, based on credible economic studies, that government-provided health insurance wasn’t very effective in improving people’s health. A politician who spent less on health insurance might thus be hailed as a hero if she directed the money to other, better uses. But recent evidence suggests that medical insurance has a substantial beneficial effect on health. Does that academic shift mean the hero is now a murderer? That question is a bit absurd.Assigning moral culpability for policy decisions is even harder when politics is taken into account. Sanders supporters generally acknowledge that passing Medicare for All will be difficult because of the partisan composition of the Senate. Instead, they see it as the opening gambit in a negotiation, an effort to shift the debate so that a public option seems mainstream instead of fringe. But their political calculations could be wrong: it’s possible that pushing for Medicare for All results in no major health reform getting passed at all. It wouldn’t be the first time that the failure of an ambitious health plan led to many years of inaction. Would that mean that pushing for Medicare for All literally killed people? Of course not.The idea of preventable-deaths-as-homicide runs into another big problem: Should we view any American as a murderer who refuses to reduce their living standard to a bare subsistence level and give all of their remaining income to children in Africa at high risk of dying of disease or starvation? There are people who think deeply and seriously about this sort of question — the effective altruism movement — but they have come up with few definitive answers.A quick scan of Twitter confirms that there is no shortage of policies — and lack of policies — that are “literally killing people.” Equating statistical estimates of mortality rates with homicide will lead society in directions that are absurd at best and ominous at worst.To contact the author of this story: Noah Smith at nsmith150@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: James Greiff at jgreiff@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Noah Smith is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist. He was an assistant professor of finance at Stony Brook University, and he blogs at Noahpinion.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.



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Why Aren’t Women’s Groups Talking About Katie Hill’s Resignation?

Why Aren’t Women’s Groups Talking About Katie Hill’s Resignation?Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call/GettyThe resignation of Rep. Katie Hill was the talk of Capitol Hill this weekend, but you wouldn’t know it from the glaring lack of public statements by women’s rights groups or Hill’s fellow Democrats. Even two years after the explosion of the MeToo movement, Hill’s unique case proved too complicated for many anti-harassment advocates to address.Hill—one of a record number of women elected to Congress in 2018, and the first openly bisexual representative in history—resigned her seat Sunday after the House Ethics Committee opened an investigation into allegations that she had an affair with a congressional staffer. Hill has denied that but admits to engaging in a three-person relationship with a campaign staffer and her then-husband. Hill claims the now-estranged husband was involved in the publication of nude photos of her in conservative news outlet RedState, complicating what could have been a straightforward story about an elected official’s alleged abuse of power. Some women’s rights advocates said the leak and publication of the photos amounted to revenge porn, the distribution of someone’s nude images without their consent.Swirling Scandal Forces Rep. Katie Hill to Resign From CongressHill also leaned in to this narrative on Sunday, vowing to pursue “all of our legal options” against those who had “weaponized” her personal images.“Those of you who know me personally know that I’m a fighter,” Hill wrote in a letter. “Now, my fight is going to be to defeat this type of exploitation that so many women are victims to and which will keep countless women and girls from running for office or entering public light.”A chorus of voices on social media protested Hill’s resignation, with many suggesting she was being held to an unfair standard because she is a woman or because she is bisexual. Some pointed to Rep. Duncan Hunter, who was indicted for misappropriation of campaign funds—allegedly to finance affairs with two Republican congressional staffers. Hunter has not resigned. Others pointed to President Donald Trump, who has been accused of sexual harassment or assault by more than 20 women.“Donald Trump has sexually harassed or assaulted dozens of women,” tweeted Jenna Lowenstein, deputy campaign manager for Cory Booker’s campaign. “Katie Hill had, as far as we know, some consensual relationships and an ex with an affinity for revenge porn. Don't let anyone tell you men and women are held to the same standards.”Others compared Hill’s resignation to that of Al Franken, the Democratic senator who resigned last year over allegations of sexual misconduct. Some said the allegations—groping in Franken’s case, and what appeared to be a consensual relationship in Hill’s—were insufficient to warrant resignation. (“The injustice here is so over the top,” tweeted Shaunna Thomas, founder of women’s rights group UltraViolet.)Even some Republicans jumped to Hill’s defense. Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz called the Ethics Committee’s investigation “absurd” and suggested that the only person with a complaint was the congresswoman’s “soon-to-be ex.” Heather Nauert, a former State Department spokesperson and current White House staffer, said that Hill would not have resigned if she were a man. “I appreciated her willingness to reach out to both parties to discuss/debate  policies,” Nauert added.Many of Hill’s fellow Democrats, however, were silent on the issue. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi released a short statement acknowledging Hill’s “great contribution to the Freshman Class” but adding that the congresswoman’s “errors in judgment” made her continued service “untenable.” None of the women in Hill’s notoriously Twitter-friendly freshman class spoke out publicly.One Democratic staffer attributed the silence to lawmakers’ indecision around the issue, telling The Daily Beast that the addition of the revenge porn angle “makes it, for lack of a better term, messy.” Carly Mee, a senior staff attorney for the victim’s rights organization SurvJustice, said women’s rights groups faced the same challenge. “The hesitation is that in my opinion, is the nuance that she both was wronged and did something wrong,” Mee told The Daily Beast. “It comes from an inability to say that someone can be hurt and can also hurt others. Someone can victimized and also be a victim.” “We like to think of that as really black and white—you're a victim or you’re a perpetrator,” she added. “And it’s uncomfortable to say you can be both.”Campus anti-rape group Know Your IX—one of the few organizations that commented publicly—emphasized this dichotomy, tweeting that allegations of Hill’s inappropriate relationships came “after a campaign of harassment and revenge porn from an abusive ex-husband.”“We need to talk about both pieces,” the organization tweeted.Jaslin Kaur, a student engagement organizer for Know Your IX, told The Daily Beast the group was troubled by the allegations against Hill, but that she should have been able to admit to them “on her own terms.” The leak of Hill's private information and photos, she added, was a “textbook case” of abuse and manipulation.“It just really shows that you can comply with investigations, you can still do everything to promote progressive cause, but you will still be vilified because your abuser has the power to turn world against you,” Kaur said.Hill’s husband did not reply to a request for comment.After publication, the National Organization for Women responded with a statement saying Hill had been “slut-shamed” and “run out of office based on rumor and innuendo.”Mee, meanwhile, compared the discussion about Hill to that around Asia Argento, the Weinstein accuser who was subsequently accused of sexually assaulting a teenager. She said many anti-rape advocates were silent about the later accusations at the time, because they simply “didn’t know what to do about it.” But in order for the MeToo movement to move forward, Mee said, advocates need to learn how to address these multifaceted issues. “We just have to be consistent and not remain silent, because part of changing the culture around this is acknowledging the complexity around it,” she said. “It’s a very common thing for there to be overlap, and we do a disservice to this work if we don't acknowledge that.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.



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Lifestyle Changes Aren’t Enough to Save the Planet. Here’s What Could

Lifestyle Changes Aren’t Enough to Save the Planet. Here’s What CouldWhen it comes to climate change, we can't just focus on individual choices. We need to give people better options. Michael E. Mann explains why.



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Republicans Aren’t Happy: Mueller Makes Last-Minute Request Ahead Of Testimony

Republicans Aren’t Happy: Mueller Makes Last-Minute Request Ahead Of TestimonyFormer special counsel Robert Mueller asked Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee to swear in his longtime deputy as a witness at a congressional hearing Wednesday, according to multiple reports.Mueller asked that Aaron Zebley, who served as deputy on the special counsel’s probe, be sworn in as a witness in order to address any questions that he is not able to answer, according to sources familiar with the matter, The New York Times and CNN reported.Mueller is scheduled to testify before the House Judiciary Committee for three hours and before the House Intelligence Committee for two hours Wednesday. He will be pressed for details of his 22-month investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Russia and whether President Donald Trump attempted to obstruct the probe.In a report of the investigation, Mueller said that his team was unable to establish that any Trump associates conspired with the Russian government to influence the election. But the report was vague on obstruction. Mueller declined to charge Trump on obstruction, but also said that the Republican was not exonerated by the investigation.



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90% of Border Crossers Aren’t Referred for Asylum Interviews

90% of Border Crossers Aren’t Referred for Asylum InterviewsThe government is implementing a new proposal that would ban asylum for immigrants coming to the United States through Mexico. It pins the uptick in border crossers on the asylum process, but the government’s statistics reveal that 90 percent of crossers in 2019 were not referred for an asylum interview at the border, and the highest share ever referred was just 19 percent in 2018.In fact, the rate of referral was just 7 percent in March 2019. This strongly indicates that the asylum ban will not have its intended effects. Figure 1 compares the rate at which undocumented immigrants at the southwest border were referred for asylum interviews at the border—called credible fear interviews—for each year from 2010 and 2019 as well as March 2019—the most recent month available. In no year has more than one in five immigrants stopped either at or between ports of entry entered the asylum process from the border.The pattern is not significantly different for immigrants from Central America’s Northern Triangle—Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador. The highest percentage of credible fear claims was just 30 percent in 2016, and the rate for 2019 is 9 percent. March 2019 was actually just 6 percent. In other words, at the border at least, the asylum ban will have very little effect on most Central American crossers.



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Nancy Pelosi’s renewed attacks on AOC aren’t just disrespectful, they’re dangerous

Nancy Pelosi’s renewed attacks on AOC aren’t just disrespectful, they’re dangerousAs America grows increasingly brazen in its bigotry, Pelosi should be standing up for her new colleagues – so why isn’t she?Nancy Pelosi on Capitol Hill in Washington on Thursday. Photograph: Andrew Harnik/APCan progressives please shut up and listen to Nancy Pelosi? The speaker of the House, I would like to remind everyone, is a master strategist, a savvy tactician, and an experienced politician. She knows what’s best for America. And what’s best for America, apparently, isn’t standing up to Donald Trump; no, it’s ensuring four freshman congresswomen don’t get ideas above their station. It’s ensuring Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, in particular, knows her place.There have been long-running tensions between Pelosi and the so-called “Squad” of new progressive congresswomen, which consists of Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley. Things escalated sharply over the weekend, when Pelosi decided it would be a good idea to demean her colleagues in the New York Times. “All these people have their public whatever and their Twitter world, but they didn’t have any following,” Pelosi told the Times, referring to a border funding bill the Squad opposed. “They’re four people, and that’s how many votes they got.”To begin with, Pelosi’s disparaging remarks about the Squad seemed like they were probably strategic. Now, however, the sustained attacks feel increasingly personal. “When these comments first started, I kind of thought that she was keeping the progressive flank at more of an arm’s distance in order to protect more moderate members, which I understood,” Ocasio-Cortez told the Washington Post on Wednesday. “But the persistent singling out … it got to a point where it was just outright disrespectful … the explicit singling out of newly elected women of color.”AOC expanded on her comments on Thursday, telling CNN she “absolutely” doesn’t think Pelosi is racist. “It’s really just pointing out the pattern, right? We’re not talking about just progressives, it’s signaling out four individuals. And knowing the media environment that we’re operating in, knowing the amount of death threats that we get … I think it’s just worth asking why.”As Ocasio-Cortez notes, Pelosi’s attacks aren’t taking place in a bubble; they’re taking place in a media environment where the rightwing have put a target on the Squad’s back. On Tuesday night, for example, Fox host Tucker Carlson launched a racist attack against Omar that could arguably be seen as an incitement to violence against the congresswoman. “[Omar] has undisguised contempt for the United States and for its people,” Carlson told his 3 million viewers. “That should worry you, and not just because Omar is now a sitting member of Congress. Ilhan Omar is living proof that the way we practice immigration has become dangerous to this country. A system designed to strengthen America is instead undermining it.”America is becoming an increasingly hostile place for women and for people of color. Pelosi’s constant public attacks against the four newly elected women of color aren’t just disrespectful, they’re dangerous. Whether she means to or not, her repeated insinuations that the Squad are rabble-rousing upstarts who are undermining the Democratic party helps bolster the right’s vitriolic narratives about the congresswomen. As America grows increasingly brazen in its bigotry, Pelosi should be aggressively standing up for her freshman colleagues, not trying to tear them down. So why isn’t she?Well, to put it bluntly, I think it’s because she’s terrified of what her progressive colleagues represent. The Squad doesn’t just consist of four people, as Pelosi condescendingly told the Times; it represents the face of a new America. It represents a challenge to the traditional power structure. That doesn’t just scare bigots like Tucker Carlson, it scares the neoliberal establishment. It scares people who would never call themselves racist (they’d have voted for Obama for a third time if they could have!) but who clearly have a problem with young women of color speaking their mind. It scares people who champion more “diversity” – as long as that diversity keeps its mouth shut or sticks to the party line.Proud racism advocates for walls to keep brown people out of America. Polite racism builds different sorts of walls; it leverage concepts like “civility” and “unity” to make sure certain voices are kept out of power, or are dismissed as trouble-making and divisive when they try and critique power. What “civility” really means, in all of these discussions, of course, is servility. What unity really means is uniform acceptance of the status quo. Progressives keep being told we shouldn’t criticize centrist Democrats if we want any chance at beating Trump in 2020; and yet establishment figures like Pelosi seem to have no problem criticizing progressive Democrats and the millions of people they represent.In a press conference on Thursday, Pelosi brushed away questions about her feud with the squad, grandly stating that “Diversity is our strength. Unity is our power.” Is it really? Because I don’t see any diversity or unity from where I’m looking. I just see a lot of old-fashioned hubris.



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Nancy Pelosi’s renewed attacks on AOC aren’t just disrespectful, they’re dangerous

Nancy Pelosi’s renewed attacks on AOC aren’t just disrespectful, they’re dangerousAs America grows increasingly brazen in its bigotry, Pelosi should be standing up for her new colleagues – so why isn’t she?Nancy Pelosi on Capitol Hill in Washington on Thursday. Photograph: Andrew Harnik/APCan progressives please shut up and listen to Nancy Pelosi? The speaker of the House, I would like to remind everyone, is a master strategist, a savvy tactician, and an experienced politician. She knows what’s best for America. And what’s best for America, apparently, isn’t standing up to Donald Trump; no, it’s ensuring four freshman congresswomen don’t get ideas above their station. It’s ensuring Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, in particular, knows her place.There have been long-running tensions between Pelosi and the so-called “Squad” of new progressive congresswomen, which consists of Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley. Things escalated sharply over the weekend, when Pelosi decided it would be a good idea to demean her colleagues in the New York Times. “All these people have their public whatever and their Twitter world, but they didn’t have any following,” Pelosi told the Times, referring to a border funding bill the Squad opposed. “They’re four people, and that’s how many votes they got.”To begin with, Pelosi’s disparaging remarks about the Squad seemed like they were probably strategic. Now, however, the sustained attacks feel increasingly personal. “When these comments first started, I kind of thought that she was keeping the progressive flank at more of an arm’s distance in order to protect more moderate members, which I understood,” Ocasio-Cortez told the Washington Post on Wednesday. “But the persistent singling out … it got to a point where it was just outright disrespectful … the explicit singling out of newly elected women of color.”AOC expanded on her comments on Thursday, telling CNN she “absolutely” doesn’t think Pelosi is racist. “It’s really just pointing out the pattern, right? We’re not talking about just progressives, it’s signaling out four individuals. And knowing the media environment that we’re operating in, knowing the amount of death threats that we get … I think it’s just worth asking why.”As Ocasio-Cortez notes, Pelosi’s attacks aren’t taking place in a bubble; they’re taking place in a media environment where the rightwing have put a target on the Squad’s back. On Tuesday night, for example, Fox host Tucker Carlson launched a racist attack against Omar that could arguably be seen as an incitement to violence against the congresswoman. “[Omar] has undisguised contempt for the United States and for its people,” Carlson told his 3 million viewers. “That should worry you, and not just because Omar is now a sitting member of Congress. Ilhan Omar is living proof that the way we practice immigration has become dangerous to this country. A system designed to strengthen America is instead undermining it.”America is becoming an increasingly hostile place for women and for people of color. Pelosi’s constant public attacks against the four newly elected women of color aren’t just disrespectful, they’re dangerous. Whether she means to or not, her repeated insinuations that the Squad are rabble-rousing upstarts who are undermining the Democratic party helps bolster the right’s vitriolic narratives about the congresswomen. As America grows increasingly brazen in its bigotry, Pelosi should be aggressively standing up for her freshman colleagues, not trying to tear them down. So why isn’t she?Well, to put it bluntly, I think it’s because she’s terrified of what her progressive colleagues represent. The Squad doesn’t just consist of four people, as Pelosi condescendingly told the Times; it represents the face of a new America. It represents a challenge to the traditional power structure. That doesn’t just scare bigots like Tucker Carlson, it scares the neoliberal establishment. It scares people who would never call themselves racist (they’d have voted for Obama for a third time if they could have!) but who clearly have a problem with young women of color speaking their mind. It scares people who champion more “diversity” – as long as that diversity keeps its mouth shut or sticks to the party line.Proud racism advocates for walls to keep brown people out of America. Polite racism builds different sorts of walls; it leverage concepts like “civility” and “unity” to make sure certain voices are kept out of power, or are dismissed as trouble-making and divisive when they try and critique power. What “civility” really means, in all of these discussions, of course, is servility. What unity really means is uniform acceptance of the status quo. Progressives keep being told we shouldn’t criticize centrist Democrats if we want any chance at beating Trump in 2020; and yet establishment figures like Pelosi seem to have no problem criticizing progressive Democrats and the millions of people they represent.In a press conference on Thursday, Pelosi brushed away questions about her feud with the squad, grandly stating that “Diversity is our strength. Unity is our power.” Is it really? Because I don’t see any diversity or unity from where I’m looking. I just see a lot of old-fashioned hubris.



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Biden’s Big 2020 Bet: Democrats Aren’t as Far-Left as Everyone Thinks

Biden’s Big 2020 Bet: Democrats Aren’t as Far-Left as Everyone ThinksYuri Gripas/ReutersWell, it wasn’t the smoothest launch from Joe Biden, was it? First it was Wednesday, and three speeches. Then it was Thursday. But still a speech, or so I thought. Then it was just a video. Although, inevitably, he’s doing a fundraiser, too. And now it’s Pittsburgh next Monday, with the official unveiling apparently put off until May 18, in Philadelphia. Kinda weird, like Sly Stone’s concert schedule in the ’70s. But, we do have this video……and it’s actually pretty good.He could have started this video in a thousand different ways. The obvious thing, of course, would have been Scranton. His hometown, which codes Pennsylvania working class like few other places, has the benefit of making some people smile as they think of the Dunder-Mifflin gang. Plenty of upsides there.So it was interesting that he chose Charlottesville. He started with Thomas Jefferson and the Declaration of Independence. Then the music changed to a minor key, and he upshifted to what happened in Charlottesville in 2017. Stark images of Nazi flags and marching thugs carrying torches. Reference to “Europe in the 1930s.” Reference to Donald Trump’s “very fine people”—words, he said, that “stunned the world.”“With those words, the president of the United States assigned a moral equivalence between those spreading hate and those with the courage to stand against it,” Biden said. “And in that moment, I knew the threat to this nation was unlike any I’d seen in my lifetime.”With four more years in the White House, he continues, Trump “will forever and fundamentally alter the character of this nation.” Then, some old black-and-white footage: the Statue of Liberty, suffragists, D-Day, Iwo Jima, civil rights marchers. Finally, a long-ish paean to America and “who we are.”Well written, well delivered. Charlottesville is Biden’s bid to get the attention of some younger voters, while the video’s second half is aimed squarely at his base, the kinds of Democrats whose blood still stirs at the sight of men storming Utah Beach.By the way, those Democrats still exist, in very large numbers. This is one proposition Biden’s candidacy will put to the test—whether the center of gravity in the Democratic Party today has shifted irrevocably to the younger and leftier crowd one encounters on social media.In December, Gallup asked Democrats whether on the whole they’d rather see their party become more liberal or more moderate. More moderate won, and pretty convincingly: 54 to 41 percent. By the way, Gallup asked Republicans that question too, about their party, except of course “more conservative” instead of “more liberal.” Shockingly (not), Republicans said more conservative by 57-37 (can you imagine? More conservative than this!).Also according to Gallup, about half of Democrats say they’re liberal. On the one hand, that’s a recent historic high. But on the other, it means that about half don’t. About a third say moderate, which leaves around 15 percent who actually call themselves conservative.That’s the Democratic Party. You’d never know it from the media, which is drawn to the left-wing storyline like cocaine. But most Democrats are middle-age—and older—people, most of them women, of all races, who’d call themselves liberal to moderate. Those are the people who usually decide who the Democratic nominee will be. This is Biden’s theoretical crowd, but I think he has trouble even with them. Since they are predominantly women, and on the older side, they’ll remember the Anita Hill hearings, along with his two previous and spectacularly bad presidential runs and his penchant for awkward malapropisms and all the rest. In my anecdotal experience, this group doesn’t love Biden. White union men do, and as nominee he would win enough them back in the key states, I think there’s not much doubt about that. But they make up a smaller portion of the party’s base with each election. As for other older Democrats, there’s a lot about Biden they don’t especially like. But they probably are open to being persuaded that he can win. And that he can stop Bernie Sanders, whom they don’t like as a general rule, and that he can beat Trump. So that’s the first sale Biden will have to make: I can win.The second sale he needs to make is to those younger and leftier voters. There are enough of them that he can’t ignore them. They’re never going to love him. They’re with Sanders, Pete Buttigieg, Beto O’Rourke. But Biden can make himself vaguely acceptable to them.He could do this in two ways. First, some blunt apologies about some of his past positions. He can’t just excuse himself away by saying it was a different time. He has to explain his old thinking and explain his current thinking in a way that convinces people that maybe this old dog has learned some new tricks.The other way is to talk about class in a much sharper manner than he’s ever done. He should not come out for Medicare for All and free college and the current version of the Green New Deal. That will look phony.But he absolutely should say that today’s capitalism is not the capitalism he grew up with. In other words, it’s not enough today to talk in the usual chicken-soup way about restoring the American dream. For a lot of people, especially young people, the American dream is a nightmare. He needs to show that he understands that this isn’t just a temporary bad turn, but that we’re entering the fourth decade of a political-economic epoch that has stolen trillions of dollars from working people and given it to the rich. And he ought to name a few names. Identify some bad guys. Not easy for an establishment guy to do, especially one who represented the corporate headquarters state for umpty-ump years.Democratic voters want electability. If Biden can make those two sales, he’ll have a shot. There’s not a lot in his track record that suggests that he can, but maybe the extraordinary nature of the historical moment will make him reach deeper into himself than he ever has. He’ll need to.Read more at The Daily Beast.



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Things That Are Working, and Things That Aren’t: Weekend Reads

Things That Are Working, and Things That Aren’t: Weekend ReadsFrom themes like Brexit to the Mueller report and Medicare, and places like Japan, Kosovo and Gaza, our reporters looked deep into successes, failures and cases that still have a long way to go to be figured out. Joe Mayes, Irene Garcia Perez, and Aine Quinn tell the story of businesses that are now spending millions for naught. There’s also this piece from Alan Crawford that explains how Britain’s tortured relationship with Europe just got worse.One Week Into the Mueller Report Fight, Battle Lines Are DrawnWhile Attorney General William Barr determined that the findings in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report into the 2016 election didn’t warrant an obstruction charge, there may still be plenty that the White House wants to keep secret and that Democrats want to see.



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Journalist Sues Twitter for Banning Her over ‘Women Aren’t Men’ Tweets

Journalist Sues Twitter for Banning Her over ‘Women Aren’t Men’ TweetsAfter a number of temporary suspensions, Twitter in November permanently locked the verified account of Murphy, a Canadian writer and self-described feminist, informing her that she had violated the platform’s hateful-conduct rules. In late October, Twitter added “targeted misgendering or deadnaming of transgender individuals” to its list of prohibited behavior and applied the policy retroactively to Murphy’s earlier tweets. “Women aren’t men,” read an October tweet from Murphy.



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