Even though Democrats are unlikely to get any major policy reforms past Trump and the Senate, they should introduce major bills - as a way of inspiring voters and raising expectations, and also to help plan for if and when they do get unified control.
Met a Brazilian-American Lyft driver from San Diego who passionately attacked the racism of Republicans, then switched to passionately defending Bolsonaro.
If I were Thomas Friedman, I could tell you what this means.
Met a Haitian-American in a restaurant who said he'd always vote for Democrats because of the immigration issue, but that he has conservative beliefs too. "I don't want to pay for someone's abortion!", he declared.
Met a Latino Lyft driver from San Jose who said that while he was liberal, California was getting too liberal for him and he was considering moving to San Antonio.
The debate over whether the Holocaust is a singular, inexplicable event that stands outside of history, or whether it's a slightly more extreme instance of a relatively common phenomenon, has got to be the most headass debate I've ever read.
(note: it's the latter)
In other news, "headass" is my new favorite word. I've decided that it means "arcane and esoteric, yet arousing passions equivalent to things that are far more relevant and accessible".
Other extremely headass debates include:
*NGDP targeting vs. Taylor-type rules
*the proper meaning of the word "appropriation"
*whether it makes sense to say that a model is "wrong"
You'd THINK housing the homeless was an issue that liberals and conservatives could agree on, because liberals want to treat the homeless like human beings, and conservatives want to get the homeless off of their nice clean streets.
I feel like the intellectuals writing books in favor of economic growth should try more fear and less idealism. Instead of enticing us with the opportunities of far-future growth, scare us with a picture of what a poorer society would look like.
Like...if I were going to give a friend a book to make him less of a warmonger, I wouldn't give him some happy hippie book about how great peace is.
The report comes as confirmation that socialism is back, in a big way.
This report is good, because it will help get economists talking about the Big Ideas of political-economic organization again, instead of only focusing on small-bore topics (though small-bore topics are also good).
There's a sort of soft consensus that Europe and America's slight turn toward fascism is due to a backlash against demographic change. But Brazil seems to be having a much bigger fascist turn, and I don't think it has experienced any major demographic change...has it?
1/People I know on the Right tend to be obsessed with the idea of "crimethink", taboos, and the (supposedly) oppressive, omnipresent enforcement of liberal cultural norms.
My new theory: A lot of it is guilt.
2/It's true that in some circles - the media, universities, many big corporations - liberal norms *are* enforced to some degree, and the enforcement has probably gotten stronger in recent years.
But I don't think this explains all of the Right's obsession.
3/The stereotype is that people on the Right tend to be more threat-sensitive. That would help explain the perception that liberal norm-enforcers are lurking everywhere, ready to pounce and anathematize anyone who makes a misstep.
"Oh no, there are 7000 - wait, scratch that, 4000 Hondurans trying to get to America to ask for asylum, we better get rid of the 14th Amendment", said the Right this week
Next week: "We have received reports that a woman in Virginia has named her cat Isis. Our only option is to declare martial law and restrict the franchise to men named Steve."
The week after that: "We have credible intelligence that a black person is reading a Paul Krugman blog post in a Peet's coffee. Henceforth, all subjects...er, citizens will be required to wear ankle monitors, and Trump's direct male line will be President in perpetuity."