This is good reporting by @nick_sobczyk but the framing bugs me a little. As to whether Dems will *actually change or implement climate policy* if they win the House: No, they won't. They can't! They don't control agencies & don't have votes for leg. eenews.net/stories/106009…
So the question is really whether they will do a bunch of symbolic stuff -- "messaging" bills that go nowhere, riders that get voted down, nonbinding resolutions, etc. Fine to fight over that stuff, but don't mistake it for a fight over policy.
What they can do, and what activists should hold them accountable for, is investigating the F out of the administration, including the swamps at EPA & DOI. That is actually within their power.
In his book, @newtgingrich writes that Trump is “redefining the very structure of American political and governmental dialogue by insisting on fact-based conversations.” 🤣
Honestly, I'm glad that this is the denouement of @newtgingrich's utterly repugnant career. Every bit of degradation he visited on American politics has found its culmination in Trump. It's fitting that Gingrich is going out with his lips affixed to Trump's ass.
This would be possible if the GOP were a normal political party, responding rationally to its best interests and the interests of the business community. It is not. It is unmoored from reality, incapable of long-term planning & coordination, & utterly dominated by extremists.
So many people simply cannot fathom what the GOP has become. They believe on some deep level, almost beyond rational examination, that there *must* be somebody at the switch over there. This heartbreakingly stupid circus we see in the news *can't* be all there is.
But it is. That's all there is. It's grifters and deranged white nationalists all the way down. Normal, fact-based incentives simply don't apply.
1. Hi there! I'm back from vacation. And as you may have noticed, I have wiped out my entire archive. (This is my First Tweet!) Here's a short thread on why -- and on the general subject of Twitter.
2. To me, the best thing about Twitter has always been that it's of-the-moment, an ongoing conversation, off-the-cuff reactions to news, current memes, inside jokes, etc. Timing matters. It is, or ought to be, *ephemeral*. It shouldn't be permanent.
3. But it is permanent. It all goes into a searchable archive. It's as though all your conversations w/ friends were transcribed & recorded into a database, so that every passing joke & comment was tied to you, something you had to account for & defend, forever.
2. So much talk about Democrats' "message" to rural & suburban whites, and the way they treat rural & suburban whites -- 99% of which proceeds in total, willful ignorance of the current media environment.
3. To put it bluntly: Democrats have virtually no control whatsoever over what rural & suburban whites (R&SW) hear. None. It doesn't *matter* what they say, what attitude they take, the tone they use, the message they craft. They have no way of reaching those R&SW directly.
1. OK, while I'm taking a break from Deep Thinking about the Avengers, here's a response to @jonathanchait's piece, itself a response to @brianbeutler and I. Just a few not-totally-coherent thoughts about the media's relationship to conservatives. nymag.com/daily/intellig…
2. So, what is the point of intellectual/ideological diversity for, say, the NYT editorial page? I can think of 2 justifications. The first is to challenge & refine the thinking of NYT's largely liberal readership. That's fine & great (more on that in a second).
3. The 2nd is to give NYT readership a clear view into what's happening in the country -- what people are talking about, what are the currents & trends in politics today. Awareness of the various strains of thought shaping the country, basically.
Hot dogs are pretty good but hamburgers are bland and boring and wildly overrated.
OK, before my First Amendment privileges are revoked, let me clarify.
Cheap hot dogs are gross. Good hot dogs are basically sausages, and sausages are the finest form of meat.
A hamburger is a big lump of ground beef: bland. Lettuce: bland. Ketchup: bland. White bread: bland.
Yes, you can make a hamburger not bland -- enough seasoning, pickles, BBQ sauce, whatever, you can give it some taste. Which is to say, you can disguise the fact that you're eating a big lump of bland ground beef. But then, why not keep all the tasty stuff & ditch the patty?
1. Short thread for energy nerds, trying to get at my reservations about capacity markets. I haven't fully worked through this analogy, so consider this a bit of public puzzling-through. Reactions welcome.
2. Somewhat legendarily, the retail biz has shifted its supply chain model in recent years. It used to be that "security" (i.e., always having items available) meant keeping big surplus piles in warehouses.
3. The thinking was, have enough around to satisfy even peak foreseeable demand. Of course, having stock in warehouses is also a cost, not only operational but the costs of having too much, i.e., overstocking. Guarding against peak demand means almost always having too much.
1. A tweet thread about who is and isn't "emotional" and what role that accusation plays in politics. Been meaning to do this for a while, but it's come up again in the news, so no time like the present.
2. The notion that men are "rational" and women "emotional" goes way, way back. It's certainly something I've heard all my life and something that, as an emotionally illiterate young person, I was willing and eager to believe. It explained away my social failures!
3. The same dynamic is echoed in politics -- I cannot tell you how many conservatives sincerely seem to believe this kind of nonsense:
1. One way the "debate" over climate change is misleading is that almost everyone pretends it's about facts -- actual states of affairs out there in objective reality. It's really not!
2. Only a tiny number of people have *direct* knowledge of those facts (i.e., have seen, empirically tested, experimented, done the science). Even climate scientists with direct knowledge in one area of climate science do not have direct knowledge in all the others.
3. When it comes to climate science, virtually everyone who knows it knows it via *trust*, not direct experience. And climate science is not at all unique in this respect. (Have you personally verified the existence of subatomic particles?)
1. In honor of 4/20, I'm gonna write a short little thing about weed. This is just a "personal essay" I'll never actually formally write up, not any deep policy analysis. Policy-wise, this is what matters: vox.com/identities/201…
2. I live in a state (WA) where weed is legal now, so I'm kind of living in the future that all Americans will eventually live in. And while it's great overall, there is something abidingly weird about it.
3. By way of explaining that weirdness, let me confess that I've been smoking pot since I was 14yo, pretty steadily & regularly, with a few short breaks for ... [thinks] ... ok, with basically no breaks. It's been a significant part of my life for 30 years.
Y'know, we have tentatively started nibbling away at some of the more glaring surface symptoms of toxic masculinity -- but the US elite's priapic reaction to military intervention shows that it remains rooted deep in our collective psych, fundamentally shaping our reactions.
Imagine if efforts to, say, reduce air pollution were, almost without exception, wildly expensive, deadly, and counter-productive. Would we keep trying again & again & again? Would cable TV commentators greet each new attempt with childlike credulity & enthusiasm?
Of course not. In reality, air-pollution reductions have been some of the most successful gov't policies in history, producing benefits that dwarf costs -- and yet each new attempt faces intense resistance, the same bad arguments that we "can't afford it."