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March 14, 2023 08:08 AM UTC

Tuesday Open Thread

  • by: Colorado Pols

“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it.”

–Warren Buffett


16 thoughts on “Tuesday Open Thread

  1. Woody Guthrie’s family tells Josh Hawley to stop using his song “This Land is Your Land”. 

    “In this particular case, the co-opting or parodying of the lyric by those not aligned with Woody’s lyrics – i.e. misrepresentation by autocrats, racists, white nationalists, anti-labor, insurrectionists, etc. – is not condoned….

        1. At least as of 2020, rights were privately held by "copyright owners the Richmond Organization and its Ludlow Music subsidiary," per the NYT. I was curious before today whether it was public domain, which would actually sort of make sense to me because it's such a standard, but it doesn't seem to be. 

          Asking for forgiveness in advance if the status has changed since 2020.

    1. Nice picture.

      It should be called first three digits of pi day.

      Because pi is infinite, every day is pi day (and every minute is pi minute).

  2. Matthew Yglesias: Don't overthink poverty in the United States: ‘Most things in life require a degree of nuance, but the truth about comparative poverty in the U.S. is genuinely very simple: the absolute poverty rate in the United States is unusually high for a rich country because our welfare state is stingy…. Poverty persists because straightforward, highly effective solutions are politically untenable…

    1. Case in point …

      In 2021, Bennet's expanded Child Tax Credit cut child poverty nearly in half— from 9.7 percent to 5.2 percent, a record low. Specifically, the expanded Child Tax Credit lifted 5.3 million people, including 2.9 million children, out of poverty.

  3. John GanzThe ‘Enigma’ of Peter Thiel: ‘Max Chafkin writes, “The Thiel ideology is complicated and, in parts, self-contradictory, and will take many of the pages that follow to explore, but it combines an obsession with technological progress with nationalist politics—a politics that at times has seemingly flirted with white supremacy.” Let’s see, we’ve go some futurism, nationalism, maybe a little bit of racism here and there…hmm, what does that all add up to? What a mystery this guy is!… Thiel’s libertarianism is about freedom—freedom for him and people like him, the entrepreneurial elite of the capitalist class. He’s openly antidemocratic. In an essay for the Cato Institute, Thiel once wrote, “I no longer believe that freedom and democracy are compatible…” Why? Because if you empower the demos, they will eventually vote for restrictions on the power of capitalists. and therefore, restrictions on their “freedom.” He continues, “Since 1920, the vast increase in welfare beneficiaries and the extension of the franchise to women — two constituencies that are notoriously tough for libertarians — have rendered the notion of ‘capitalist democracy‘ into an oxymoron.” In that 2009 essay, Thiel imagines a kind of futurist program of utopian projects “beyond politics” in cyberspace or “seasteading,” but it’s clear now he’s returned to believing in politics, or at least an anti-political form of politics. The brand of radical libertarianism favored by Thiel and his crony Curtis Yarvin has long preferred crackpot authoritarian solutions that would enhance capitalist domination…. Thiel is a throwback to the era of the fascist industrialist. 

    1. Since 1920 … the vast increase in the share of wealth grabbed [and sometimes even "earned"] by the upper class (however defined) is a threat to democracy. 

      If we let the rich dominate political contests by their own runs for elected office, their campaign donations, their virtually unlimited PAC and super-PAC spending, and their ability to creative re-employment avenues cycling people between office, lobbying, think tanks, foundations and other nonprofit organizations, and sinecures on corporate boards, there will be major barriers to political advocacy, development of a common good in a wide variety of policy areas, and adequate care given to "the least of these" in our society.

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