VIDEO LOSS

a blog, newsletter, and kaleidoscope notebook about politics, the media, and culture
by tom bunting, a Real Journalist

Crisis In Our Backyards

  • How Craigslist Killed The Newspaper
  • Local News Consolidation: Explained
  • A Brief History of How The Internet Changed Journalism
  • How The City Is Covering New York As a Nonprofit
  • Inside The Battle For Better Local News
Monmouth Poll shows Pennsylvania falling back into the margin of error

Monmouth Poll shows Pennsylvania falling back into the margin of error

Monmouth Poll shows Pennsylvania falling back into the margin of error

Among registered voters: Biden 49% (-4 since July) Trump 45% (+5 since July)

-Monmouth Polling

The race between Donald Trump and Joe Biden is tightening in Pennsylvania. Trump’s gains come as a result of young and male voters moving towards Trump. For Democrats already skittish about recent polls showing Trump gaining with Black and Latino voters, this is yet another worrying sign.

The bump is even starker in the “swing counties” that helped decide the 2016 election. The counties were 54%-35% for Biden six weeks ago, now it’s 46%-44% Trump.

There’s been a forced media narrative in the weeks following the conventions that the race is shifting towards Trump. That’s not exactly true, Trump still trails significantly behind Biden nationally and narrowly in swing states. But he is gaining, and his margins in these swing states are closer than this same period in 2016.

Some of this could’ve been expected. Biden was a particularly weak candidate with Latino and younger voters, and as the media narrative shifts away from Trump’s catastrophic handling of the pandemic it’s natural that his numbers are jumping a bit. Trump has always had the incumbency advantage, and anyone who believed this would be an easy win for Biden was deluding themselves, as is anyone saying this election is in the bag for Trump now.

Still…these are disquieting numbers for Biden with around sixty days to go until Election Day. Democrats spent a year in a ferocious primary battle for the party’s future and soul, they emerged from it in a moment of societal upheaval with a candidate who inspires little excitement absent a narrow grouping of white suburban moderates and older Black voters. Now they may be reaping the consequences. Get ready for a close race.

Monmouth Poll shows Pennsylvania falling back into the margin of error
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics
Monmouth Poll shows Pennsylvania falling back into the margin of error
Monmouth Poll shows Pennsylvania falling back into the margin of error

CDC Issues Sweeping Temporary Halt On Evictions Nationwide Amid Pandemic

CDC Issues Sweeping Temporary Halt On Evictions Nationwide Amid Pandemic

Learn How This Project Was Made

CDC Issues Sweeping Temporary Halt On Evictions Nationwide Amid Pandemic

CDC Issues Sweeping Temporary Halt On Evictions Nationwide Amid Pandemic

CDC Issues Sweeping Temporary Halt On Evictions Nationwide Amid Pandemic
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics
CDC Issues Sweeping Temporary Halt On Evictions Nationwide Amid Pandemic
CDC Issues Sweeping Temporary Halt On Evictions Nationwide Amid Pandemic

Embers in Massachusetts: Markey fends off a Kennedy primary challenge, Neal buries a progressive insurgency

Embers in Massachusetts: Markey fends off a Kennedy primary challenge, Neal buries a progressive insurgency

Embers in Massachusetts: Markey fends off a Kennedy primary challenge, Neal buries a progressive insurgency

Embers in Massachusetts: Markey fends off a Kennedy primary challenge, Neal buries a progressive insurgency
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics

For the first time in history, a Kennedy has lost in Massachusetts.

Despite a fundraising advantage, the endorsement of Nancy Pelosi, and his family’s legacy, Joe Kennedy III was unable to oust Ed Markey in tonight’s Senate primary. Kennedy vacated his seat in Massachusetts’ fourth Congressional district to run against Markey, the first-term Senator who took over for John Kerry in 2013.

The remarkable win marks a career capstone for Markey and yet another victory for the insurgent left in Democratic primaries. Despite serving in the House since 1976, Markey positioned himself as a establishment challenging progressive, leaning on his family’s union history and his authoring of the Green New Deal with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. His embrace of the burgeoning American left paid dividends in tonight’s race; progressive groups poured resources into the race on his behalf and polling suggests he dominated the youth vote. Markey now stands as the only politician in Massachusetts history to defeat a Kennedy, while the insurgent left can now offer a credible pathway to intellectual rebranding for incumbents seeking to fend off primary challenges.

Kennedy ultimately failed to make a coherent case for why he was challenging a well-respected incumbent. An initial pitch for generational change failed as it became clear Markey’s leftward embrace had shorn up the youth vote. Polls started to suddenly break for Markey last month, as the incumbent’s campaign crescendoed into a populist, energetic crusade. Kennedy was left to sputter, spending the last week of the campaign accusing Markey’s supporters of online abuse and leaning into familial nostalgia. His embrace of racial justice meant he carried the Black vote, but a damning Markey endorsement from the influential Boston Globe eroded his standing with the state’s urban elite.

Elsewhere, House Ways and Means Committee Richie Neal fended off Alex Morse, a robust left challenger who gained national attention after allegations of sexual misconduct against him dramatically unraveled. Morse, a 31-year old mayor and recent convert to the left, faced accusations of inappropriate behavior from College Democrats of Massachusetts. Reporting from The Intercept later revealed the allegations were manufactured by members of the group with the goal of landing internships in the Neal congressional office. While the blowup helped Morse nationally—he received a surge of donations and an endorsement from Alexandria Ocasio Cortez after being cleared—it likely hurt him in the district. Analysis from The Intercept suggests that local news in the district did not cover Morse’s exonerationnearly as intensely as the initial allegations. While Morse’s 60–40 loss is tighter than Neal’s previous primary in 2018, it’s still a disappointing setback in a race that often looked winnable and an ominous blueprint for political operatives looking to derail left insurgencies.

It’s notable that both of these races played out without the involvement of the progressive left’s most influential voice, Bernie Sanders. Sanders demurred on endorsements of both Markey and Morse, possibly due to the fact both men chose not to endorse Sanders in this year’s Presidential primary. Regardless, progressive groups affiliated with Sanders flocked to both candidates, showing the strength of a movement that is now increasingly looking forward.

The race for Kennedy’s old seat remains too close to call, with a close four way pile up that will likely not be resolved until all the ballots are counted

Embers in Massachusetts: Markey fends off a Kennedy primary challenge, Neal buries a progressive insurgency

For the first time in history, a Kennedy has lost in Massachusetts.

Despite a fundraising advantage, the endorsement of Nancy Pelosi, and his family’s legacy, Joe Kennedy III was unable to oust Ed Markey in tonight’s Senate primary. Kennedy vacated his seat in Massachusetts’ fourth Congressional district to run against Markey, the first-term Senator who took over for John Kerry in 2013.

The remarkable win marks a career capstone for Markey and yet another victory for the insurgent left in Democratic primaries. Despite serving in the House since 1976, Markey positioned himself as a establishment challenging progressive, leaning on his family’s union history and his authoring of the Green New Deal with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. His embrace of the burgeoning American left paid dividends in tonight’s race; progressive groups poured resources into the race on his behalf and polling suggests he dominated the youth vote. Markey now stands as the only politician in Massachusetts history to defeat a Kennedy, while the insurgent left can now offer a credible pathway to intellectual rebranding for incumbents seeking to fend off primary challenges.

Kennedy ultimately failed to make a coherent case for why he was challenging a well-respected incumbent. An initial pitch for generational change failed as it became clear Markey’s leftward embrace had shorn up the youth vote. Polls started to suddenly break for Markey last month, as the incumbent’s campaign crescendoed into a populist, energetic crusade. Kennedy was left to sputter, spending the last week of the campaign accusing Markey’s supporters of online abuse and leaning into familial nostalgia. His embrace of racial justice meant he carried the Black vote, but a damning Markey endorsement from the influential Boston Globe eroded his standing with the state’s urban elite.

Elsewhere, House Ways and Means Committee Richie Neal fended off Alex Morse, a robust left challenger who gained national attention after allegations of sexual misconduct against him dramatically unraveled. Morse, a 31-year old mayor and recent convert to the left, faced accusations of inappropriate behavior from College Democrats of Massachusetts. Reporting from The Intercept later revealed the allegations were manufactured by members of the group with the goal of landing internships in the Neal congressional office. While the blowup helped Morse nationally—he received a surge of donations and an endorsement from Alexandria Ocasio Cortez after being cleared—it likely hurt him in the district. Analysis from The Intercept suggests that local news in the district did not cover Morse’s exonerationnearly as intensely as the initial allegations. While Morse’s 60–40 loss is tighter than Neal’s previous primary in 2018, it’s still a disappointing setback in a race that often looked winnable and an ominous blueprint for political operatives looking to derail left insurgencies.

It’s notable that both of these races played out without the involvement of the progressive left’s most influential voice, Bernie Sanders. Sanders demurred on endorsements of both Markey and Morse, possibly due to the fact both men chose not to endorse Sanders in this year’s Presidential primary. Regardless, progressive groups affiliated with Sanders flocked to both candidates, showing the strength of a movement that is now increasingly looking forward.

The race for Kennedy’s old seat remains too close to call, with a close four way pile up that will likely not be resolved until all the ballots are counted

Embers in Massachusetts: Markey fends off a Kennedy primary challenge, Neal buries a progressive insurgency

For the first time in history, a Kennedy has lost in Massachusetts.

Despite a fundraising advantage, the endorsement of Nancy Pelosi, and his family’s legacy, Joe Kennedy III was unable to oust Ed Markey in tonight’s Senate primary. Kennedy vacated his seat in Massachusetts’ fourth Congressional district to run against Markey, the first-term Senator who took over for John Kerry in 2013.

The remarkable win marks a career capstone for Markey and yet another victory for the insurgent left in Democratic primaries. Despite serving in the House since 1976, Markey positioned himself as a establishment challenging progressive, leaning on his family’s union history and his authoring of the Green New Deal with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. His embrace of the burgeoning American left paid dividends in tonight’s race; progressive groups poured resources into the race on his behalf and polling suggests he dominated the youth vote. Markey now stands as the only politician in Massachusetts history to defeat a Kennedy, while the insurgent left can now offer a credible pathway to intellectual rebranding for incumbents seeking to fend off primary challenges.

Kennedy ultimately failed to make a coherent case for why he was challenging a well-respected incumbent. An initial pitch for generational change failed as it became clear Markey’s leftward embrace had shorn up the youth vote. Polls started to suddenly break for Markey last month, as the incumbent’s campaign crescendoed into a populist, energetic crusade. Kennedy was left to sputter, spending the last week of the campaign accusing Markey’s supporters of online abuse and leaning into familial nostalgia. His embrace of racial justice meant he carried the Black vote, but a damning Markey endorsement from the influential Boston Globe eroded his standing with the state’s urban elite.

Elsewhere, House Ways and Means Committee Richie Neal fended off Alex Morse, a robust left challenger who gained national attention after allegations of sexual misconduct against him dramatically unraveled. Morse, a 31-year old mayor and recent convert to the left, faced accusations of inappropriate behavior from College Democrats of Massachusetts. Reporting from The Intercept later revealed the allegations were manufactured by members of the group with the goal of landing internships in the Neal congressional office. While the blowup helped Morse nationally—he received a surge of donations and an endorsement from Alexandria Ocasio Cortez after being cleared—it likely hurt him in the district. Analysis from The Intercept suggests that local news in the district did not cover Morse’s exonerationnearly as intensely as the initial allegations. While Morse’s 60–40 loss is tighter than Neal’s previous primary in 2018, it’s still a disappointing setback in a race that often looked winnable and an ominous blueprint for political operatives looking to derail left insurgencies.

It’s notable that both of these races played out without the involvement of the progressive left’s most influential voice, Bernie Sanders. Sanders demurred on endorsements of both Markey and Morse, possibly due to the fact both men chose not to endorse Sanders in this year’s Presidential primary. Regardless, progressive groups affiliated with Sanders flocked to both candidates, showing the strength of a movement that is now increasingly looking forward.

The race for Kennedy’s old seat remains too close to call, with a close four way pile up that will likely not be resolved until all the ballots are counted

I’m Still Reading Andrew Sullivan. But I Can’t Defend Him.

I’m Still Reading Andrew Sullivan. But I Can’t Defend Him.

I’m Still Reading Andrew Sullivan. But I Can’t Defend Him.

I’m Still Reading Andrew Sullivan. But I Can’t Defend Him.
Ben Smith/New York Times
March 14, 2019 7:13 PM
Media
A searing and timely takedown of former New Republic editor Andrew Sullivan, who has remodeled himself as the Sensible Moderate Who Hates Black People Protesting.
I’m Still Reading Andrew Sullivan. But I Can’t Defend Him.
I’m Still Reading Andrew Sullivan. But I Can’t Defend Him.

DNC Night One: Searching for Joe Biden

The first night of the Democratic National Convention presents a shapeless candidate

DNC Night One: Searching for Joe Biden

Learn How This Project Was Made

The first night of the Democratic National Convention presents a shapeless candidate

The first night of the Democratic National Convention presents a shapeless candidate

DNC Night One: Searching for Joe Biden

The first night of the Democratic National Convention presents a shapeless candidate

DNC Night One: Searching for Joe Biden

DNC Night One: Searching for Joe Biden
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics
DNC Night One: Searching for Joe Biden
DNC Night One: Searching for Joe Biden

Michelle Obama wants you to know Joe Biden is the bare minimum (and that’s enough!)

Michelle Obama wants you to know Joe Biden is the bare minimum (and that’s enough!)

Learn How This Project Was Made

Michelle Obama wants you to know Joe Biden is the bare minimum (and that’s enough!)

Michelle Obama wants you to know Joe Biden is the bare minimum (and that’s enough!)

“I know Joe. He is a profoundly decent man, guided by faith. He will make smart plans and manage a good team. And he will govern as someone who’s lived a life that the rest of us can recognize. He was a terrific vice president. He knows what it takes to rescue an economy, beat back a pandemic and lead our country. He listens. He will tell the truth and trust science”

- Michelle Obama, in released remarks previewing her speech at tonight’s convention program

I’ve spent a lot of time today thinking about how Democrats position Joe Biden, a man deeply out of step with the times, at this week’s convention. If this speech is any indication, the answer is “he is not Trump.”

Which, hey, reflects polling on why people like Joe. But I’m deeply skeptical that it’s a compelling enough message, especially in states where voting will be confusing and difficult.

Michelle Obama wants you to know Joe Biden is the bare minimum (and that’s enough!)
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics
Michelle Obama wants you to know Joe Biden is the bare minimum (and that’s enough!)
Michelle Obama wants you to know Joe Biden is the bare minimum (and that’s enough!)

Democrats wait until the last minute to announce more Republican speakers for convention

Democrats wait until the last minute to announce more Republican speakers for convention

Democrats wait until the last minute to announce more Republican speakers for convention

Democrats wait until the last minute to announce more Republican speakers for convention
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics

Per CBS News:

The Democratic National Convention Committee announced that former New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman and former Congresswoman Susan Molinari of New York, all Republicans, will also speak Monday.

They will be speaking tonight alongside John Kasich, the former GOP governor.

I just…don’t see what the strategy here is. The party seems to be making the following assumptions, all of which need to prove accurate to have any effect at all:

- That there are a sizable number of moderate conservatives who are looking for “permission” to break with the party for Joe Biden

- That these moderate conservatives will be watching the DNC live stream tonight, or are engaged enough in politics to see the replays online.

- That these moderate conservatives value the opinion of a bunch of former elected Republicans and the CEO of Quibi enough to be swayed.

I don’t know how that possibly happens. You can say this is just Democrats coalition-building against Trump, but when there are more Republicans speaking than progressives…something is amiss.

Democrats wait until the last minute to announce more Republican speakers for convention

Per CBS News:

The Democratic National Convention Committee announced that former New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman and former Congresswoman Susan Molinari of New York, all Republicans, will also speak Monday.

They will be speaking tonight alongside John Kasich, the former GOP governor.

I just…don’t see what the strategy here is. The party seems to be making the following assumptions, all of which need to prove accurate to have any effect at all:

- That there are a sizable number of moderate conservatives who are looking for “permission” to break with the party for Joe Biden

- That these moderate conservatives will be watching the DNC live stream tonight, or are engaged enough in politics to see the replays online.

- That these moderate conservatives value the opinion of a bunch of former elected Republicans and the CEO of Quibi enough to be swayed.

I don’t know how that possibly happens. You can say this is just Democrats coalition-building against Trump, but when there are more Republicans speaking than progressives…something is amiss.

Democrats wait until the last minute to announce more Republican speakers for convention

Per CBS News:

The Democratic National Convention Committee announced that former New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman and former Congresswoman Susan Molinari of New York, all Republicans, will also speak Monday.

They will be speaking tonight alongside John Kasich, the former GOP governor.

I just…don’t see what the strategy here is. The party seems to be making the following assumptions, all of which need to prove accurate to have any effect at all:

- That there are a sizable number of moderate conservatives who are looking for “permission” to break with the party for Joe Biden

- That these moderate conservatives will be watching the DNC live stream tonight, or are engaged enough in politics to see the replays online.

- That these moderate conservatives value the opinion of a bunch of former elected Republicans and the CEO of Quibi enough to be swayed.

I don’t know how that possibly happens. You can say this is just Democrats coalition-building against Trump, but when there are more Republicans speaking than progressives…something is amiss.

DNC Preview: The road to Joe Biden somehow blowing this begins tonight

Surely this will go fine!

DNC Preview: The road to Joe Biden somehow blowing this begins tonight

Learn How This Project Was Made

Surely this will go fine!

Surely this will go fine!

DNC Preview: The road to Joe Biden somehow blowing this begins tonight

Surely this will go fine!

DNC Preview: The road to Joe Biden somehow blowing this begins tonight

DNC Preview: The road to Joe Biden somehow blowing this begins tonight
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics
DNC Preview: The road to Joe Biden somehow blowing this begins tonight
DNC Preview: The road to Joe Biden somehow blowing this begins tonight

The ever-expanding DNC speaking list now includes Andrew Yang and...Michael Bloomberg

The ever-expanding DNC speaking list now includes Andrew Yang and...Michael Bloomberg

The ever-expanding DNC speaking list now includes Andrew Yang and...Michael Bloomberg

The ever-expanding DNC speaking list now includes Andrew Yang and...Michael Bloomberg
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics

Next week’s DNC Direct is expanding yet again: after some complaining on Twitter, UBI-advocate Andrew Yang will be speaking around 9pm on Thursday. Yang is kooky, but still harbors a passionate fanbase and will likely be a player in Democratic policymaking and electoral politics for years to come. Sure! Billionaire Michael Bloomberg will be speaking, according to Politico.

Bloomberg, who also had a prominent speaking slot at Hillary Clinton’s 2016 convention, is a former Republican mayor of New York best known for popularizing stop-and-frisk, harassing women at his synomonous company, and inventing an incredibly unintuitive way for weirdo finance guys to look at stock listings. He most recently wasted a billion dollars on a Presidential campaign that didn’t win a single state. A lawsuit filed against him by former campaign staffers who say he promised to pay them through November before suddenly laying them off is still pending.  

He is also the single biggest donor to the DNC, which is the only reason he is speaking.

The ever-expanding DNC speaking list now includes Andrew Yang and...Michael Bloomberg

Next week’s DNC Direct is expanding yet again: after some complaining on Twitter, UBI-advocate Andrew Yang will be speaking around 9pm on Thursday. Yang is kooky, but still harbors a passionate fanbase and will likely be a player in Democratic policymaking and electoral politics for years to come. Sure! Billionaire Michael Bloomberg will be speaking, according to Politico.

Bloomberg, who also had a prominent speaking slot at Hillary Clinton’s 2016 convention, is a former Republican mayor of New York best known for popularizing stop-and-frisk, harassing women at his synomonous company, and inventing an incredibly unintuitive way for weirdo finance guys to look at stock listings. He most recently wasted a billion dollars on a Presidential campaign that didn’t win a single state. A lawsuit filed against him by former campaign staffers who say he promised to pay them through November before suddenly laying them off is still pending.  

He is also the single biggest donor to the DNC, which is the only reason he is speaking.

The ever-expanding DNC speaking list now includes Andrew Yang and...Michael Bloomberg

Next week’s DNC Direct is expanding yet again: after some complaining on Twitter, UBI-advocate Andrew Yang will be speaking around 9pm on Thursday. Yang is kooky, but still harbors a passionate fanbase and will likely be a player in Democratic policymaking and electoral politics for years to come. Sure! Billionaire Michael Bloomberg will be speaking, according to Politico.

Bloomberg, who also had a prominent speaking slot at Hillary Clinton’s 2016 convention, is a former Republican mayor of New York best known for popularizing stop-and-frisk, harassing women at his synomonous company, and inventing an incredibly unintuitive way for weirdo finance guys to look at stock listings. He most recently wasted a billion dollars on a Presidential campaign that didn’t win a single state. A lawsuit filed against him by former campaign staffers who say he promised to pay them through November before suddenly laying them off is still pending.  

He is also the single biggest donor to the DNC, which is the only reason he is speaking.

A day of media bloodletting

A day of media bloodletting

Learn How This Project Was Made

A day of media bloodletting

A day of media bloodletting

A day of media bloodletting
March 14, 2019 7:13 PM
Media

In the last twenty-four hours:

Quartz announced that 80 journalists would be laid off.

Condé Nast instituted around a hundred layoffs and a hundred furloughs, affecting employees across WIRED, Vogue, and GQ.

Buzzfeed News announced the closure of their offices in the United Kingdom and Australia, shuttering two celebrated local news teams and furloughing fourteen journalists to uncertain futures.

Forbes eliminated pay-guarantees to contributors, and reduced freelance bonuses.

The coronavirus depression has only accelerated what was inevitable: the collapse of advertising-based online media. The storm is here much earlier than publishers expected.

A day of media bloodletting

In the last twenty-four hours:

Quartz announced that 80 journalists would be laid off.

Condé Nast instituted around a hundred layoffs and a hundred furloughs, affecting employees across WIRED, Vogue, and GQ.

Buzzfeed News announced the closure of their offices in the United Kingdom and Australia, shuttering two celebrated local news teams and furloughing fourteen journalists to uncertain futures.

Forbes eliminated pay-guarantees to contributors, and reduced freelance bonuses.

The coronavirus depression has only accelerated what was inevitable: the collapse of advertising-based online media. The storm is here much earlier than publishers expected.

A day of media bloodletting

In the last twenty-four hours:

Quartz announced that 80 journalists would be laid off.

Condé Nast instituted around a hundred layoffs and a hundred furloughs, affecting employees across WIRED, Vogue, and GQ.

Buzzfeed News announced the closure of their offices in the United Kingdom and Australia, shuttering two celebrated local news teams and furloughing fourteen journalists to uncertain futures.

Forbes eliminated pay-guarantees to contributors, and reduced freelance bonuses.

The coronavirus depression has only accelerated what was inevitable: the collapse of advertising-based online media. The storm is here much earlier than publishers expected.

Pelosi’s relief bill angers the left and right

The $3 trillion HEROES Act is staggeringly large and littered with holes

Pelosi’s relief bill angers the left and right

Learn How This Project Was Made

The $3 trillion HEROES Act is staggeringly large and littered with holes

The $3 trillion HEROES Act is staggeringly large and littered with holes

Pelosi’s relief bill angers the left and right

The $3 trillion HEROES Act is staggeringly large and littered with holes

Pelosi’s relief bill angers the left and right

Pelosi’s relief bill angers the left and right
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics
Pelosi’s relief bill angers the left and right
Pelosi’s relief bill angers the left and right

The south is reopening, but people aren’t going out

The south is reopening, but people aren’t going out

Learn How This Project Was Made

The south is reopening, but people aren’t going out

The south is reopening, but people aren’t going out

The south is reopening, but people aren’t going out
March 14, 2019 7:13 PM
Culture

Over at Slate, Jordan Weissmann has some interesting data on restaurant attendance and how its changing in states that are reopening. Per Weissmann:

At restaurants that use OpenTable’s booking software, the number of diners in every state where the company tracks data was still down by 82 percent or more through Sunday, compared with a year before. That includes early reopeners like Georgia (down 92 percent), Utah (down 91 percent), Nebraska (down 90 percent), South Carolina (down 89 percent), Tennessee (down 87 percent), Texas (down 83 percent), and Oklahoma (down 82 percent).

And then here’s a chart:

img

We shall see if these attendance figures spike as reopening becomes more normalized, but I think this hits at a really important point: people aren’t going to feel safe just because the government is pushing for reopening. As Matt Yglesias astutely pointed out at Vox a few weeks ago, “opening up the economy won’t save the economy.” We’ve seen a growing partisan divide between support for lockdown measures, yet most Americans are still worried about coronavirus and support stricter social distancing measures. And this matter because restaurants are going to start running out of PPP cash to make payroll, and are going to have a harder time delaying rent payments when landlords are able to see they are, technically, reopened.

Unless customers suddenly get comfy with risking their lives for a cheeseburger—or unless Congress approves another wave of relief spending—this is going to be an immensely difficult period of time for restaurants and bars.

The south is reopening, but people aren’t going out

Over at Slate, Jordan Weissmann has some interesting data on restaurant attendance and how its changing in states that are reopening. Per Weissmann:

At restaurants that use OpenTable’s booking software, the number of diners in every state where the company tracks data was still down by 82 percent or more through Sunday, compared with a year before. That includes early reopeners like Georgia (down 92 percent), Utah (down 91 percent), Nebraska (down 90 percent), South Carolina (down 89 percent), Tennessee (down 87 percent), Texas (down 83 percent), and Oklahoma (down 82 percent).

And then here’s a chart:

img

We shall see if these attendance figures spike as reopening becomes more normalized, but I think this hits at a really important point: people aren’t going to feel safe just because the government is pushing for reopening. As Matt Yglesias astutely pointed out at Vox a few weeks ago, “opening up the economy won’t save the economy.” We’ve seen a growing partisan divide between support for lockdown measures, yet most Americans are still worried about coronavirus and support stricter social distancing measures. And this matter because restaurants are going to start running out of PPP cash to make payroll, and are going to have a harder time delaying rent payments when landlords are able to see they are, technically, reopened.

Unless customers suddenly get comfy with risking their lives for a cheeseburger—or unless Congress approves another wave of relief spending—this is going to be an immensely difficult period of time for restaurants and bars.

The south is reopening, but people aren’t going out

Over at Slate, Jordan Weissmann has some interesting data on restaurant attendance and how its changing in states that are reopening. Per Weissmann:

At restaurants that use OpenTable’s booking software, the number of diners in every state where the company tracks data was still down by 82 percent or more through Sunday, compared with a year before. That includes early reopeners like Georgia (down 92 percent), Utah (down 91 percent), Nebraska (down 90 percent), South Carolina (down 89 percent), Tennessee (down 87 percent), Texas (down 83 percent), and Oklahoma (down 82 percent).

And then here’s a chart:

img

We shall see if these attendance figures spike as reopening becomes more normalized, but I think this hits at a really important point: people aren’t going to feel safe just because the government is pushing for reopening. As Matt Yglesias astutely pointed out at Vox a few weeks ago, “opening up the economy won’t save the economy.” We’ve seen a growing partisan divide between support for lockdown measures, yet most Americans are still worried about coronavirus and support stricter social distancing measures. And this matter because restaurants are going to start running out of PPP cash to make payroll, and are going to have a harder time delaying rent payments when landlords are able to see they are, technically, reopened.

Unless customers suddenly get comfy with risking their lives for a cheeseburger—or unless Congress approves another wave of relief spending—this is going to be an immensely difficult period of time for restaurants and bars.

Under siege, Joe Biden seeks comfortable ground to discuss sexual assault allegations

Under siege, Joe Biden seeks comfortable ground to discuss sexual assault allegations

Under siege, Joe Biden seeks comfortable ground to discuss sexual assault allegations

Under siege, Joe Biden seeks comfortable ground to discuss sexual assault allegations
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics

Joe Biden has gotten this far by surviving. He ran an uninspired, dreary campaign, yet his longstanding connections to the Democratic mainstream and African-American voters ultimately propelled him to victory. Now, facing an allegation of sexual misconduct, Biden is weathering a new kind of crisis: one that requires a bold, concrete response. Tara Reade’s allegation—that Biden sexually assaulted her in the capital in the mid 1990s—isn’t going away; if anything, the story is only getting more and more concrete. Can he somehow quell skittish Democrats and incensed activists? And if he can’t, what does a path forward even look like?

We will begin to see the Biden campaign’s answer to these questions tomorrow morning, when Biden makes an appearance on MSNBC’s early-hours gabfest, Morning Joe. MSNBC PR is hyping the interview as Biden’s chance to “respond for the first time to the recent allegation of sexual assault.”

Expect some softballs. Morning Joe’s hosts, Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough, are documented uncomfortable bedfellows to the MeToo movement. From attempting to professionally rehabilitate their friend Mark Halperin, to excusing Tom Brokaw’s accused misconduct, to gesturing incoherently at a “better way” to atonement for men accused of sexual misbehavior, the two have made their priorities known. It’s probably the coziest place for Biden to address this controversy.

But will it be enough? It’s impossible to say, but Biden’s professional future (to say nothing of his legacy) depends on his ability to address these allegations and somehow exonerate himself. His campaign’s current strategy—ignore and lie—has proven inadequate. We’ll see if the man himself can do any better.

Under siege, Joe Biden seeks comfortable ground to discuss sexual assault allegations

Joe Biden has gotten this far by surviving. He ran an uninspired, dreary campaign, yet his longstanding connections to the Democratic mainstream and African-American voters ultimately propelled him to victory. Now, facing an allegation of sexual misconduct, Biden is weathering a new kind of crisis: one that requires a bold, concrete response. Tara Reade’s allegation—that Biden sexually assaulted her in the capital in the mid 1990s—isn’t going away; if anything, the story is only getting more and more concrete. Can he somehow quell skittish Democrats and incensed activists? And if he can’t, what does a path forward even look like?

We will begin to see the Biden campaign’s answer to these questions tomorrow morning, when Biden makes an appearance on MSNBC’s early-hours gabfest, Morning Joe. MSNBC PR is hyping the interview as Biden’s chance to “respond for the first time to the recent allegation of sexual assault.”

Expect some softballs. Morning Joe’s hosts, Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough, are documented uncomfortable bedfellows to the MeToo movement. From attempting to professionally rehabilitate their friend Mark Halperin, to excusing Tom Brokaw’s accused misconduct, to gesturing incoherently at a “better way” to atonement for men accused of sexual misbehavior, the two have made their priorities known. It’s probably the coziest place for Biden to address this controversy.

But will it be enough? It’s impossible to say, but Biden’s professional future (to say nothing of his legacy) depends on his ability to address these allegations and somehow exonerate himself. His campaign’s current strategy—ignore and lie—has proven inadequate. We’ll see if the man himself can do any better.

Under siege, Joe Biden seeks comfortable ground to discuss sexual assault allegations

Joe Biden has gotten this far by surviving. He ran an uninspired, dreary campaign, yet his longstanding connections to the Democratic mainstream and African-American voters ultimately propelled him to victory. Now, facing an allegation of sexual misconduct, Biden is weathering a new kind of crisis: one that requires a bold, concrete response. Tara Reade’s allegation—that Biden sexually assaulted her in the capital in the mid 1990s—isn’t going away; if anything, the story is only getting more and more concrete. Can he somehow quell skittish Democrats and incensed activists? And if he can’t, what does a path forward even look like?

We will begin to see the Biden campaign’s answer to these questions tomorrow morning, when Biden makes an appearance on MSNBC’s early-hours gabfest, Morning Joe. MSNBC PR is hyping the interview as Biden’s chance to “respond for the first time to the recent allegation of sexual assault.”

Expect some softballs. Morning Joe’s hosts, Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough, are documented uncomfortable bedfellows to the MeToo movement. From attempting to professionally rehabilitate their friend Mark Halperin, to excusing Tom Brokaw’s accused misconduct, to gesturing incoherently at a “better way” to atonement for men accused of sexual misbehavior, the two have made their priorities known. It’s probably the coziest place for Biden to address this controversy.

But will it be enough? It’s impossible to say, but Biden’s professional future (to say nothing of his legacy) depends on his ability to address these allegations and somehow exonerate himself. His campaign’s current strategy—ignore and lie—has proven inadequate. We’ll see if the man himself can do any better.

Hey, weird, Bustle’s getting a PPP loan right after laying off two dozen staffers

Everyone’s favorite media jerk strikes again

Hey, weird, Bustle’s getting a PPP loan right after laying off two dozen staffers

Learn How This Project Was Made

Everyone’s favorite media jerk strikes again

Everyone’s favorite media jerk strikes again

Hey, weird, Bustle’s getting a PPP loan right after laying off two dozen staffers

Everyone’s favorite media jerk strikes again

Hey, weird, Bustle’s getting a PPP loan right after laying off two dozen staffers

Why is the Bernie Sanders campaign still raising money?

Why is the Bernie Sanders campaign still raising money?

Learn How This Project Was Made

Why is the Bernie Sanders campaign still raising money?

Why is the Bernie Sanders campaign still raising money?

Why is the Bernie Sanders campaign still raising money?
March 14, 2019 12:55 PM
Politics

Yesterday, the Bernie Sanders campaign sent an email out to their supporters asking them to split a donation between Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, Ilahn Omar, Rashida Talib, and...Bernie Sanders. Per the email:

Split a $5 contribution between Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and our campaign today. We must elect a Congress that stands with working people, not the corporate elite.

A text with similar language was sent to supporters this morning:

Bernie 2020: Your $5 contribution split between AOC, Ilhan, Rasihda and Bernie will help elect a Congress that stands with working people, not the corporate elite.

Hm?

You may remember that Bernie Sanders is no longer running for President. He is not up for reelection in the Senate until 2024, a date where many aides suspect he’ll be retiring. The campaign ended March with around $14 million on hand per FCC filings, so this probably isn’t a debt thing either. Even weirder, the campaign spent much of March and April actively not soliciting donations, instead using his email list to direct supporters to Coronavirus-related charities.

This is probably obvious, but suspended campaigns generally don’t raise new money.

Now that Sanders has officially suspended his campaign, it’s unclear where this money will be going. Is this some weird mistake? Funds for some kind of ongoing political advocacy group? A barebones GOTV staff for upcoming primaries? A shadow campaign ready to rise up if Biden’s sexual misconduct allegations get too unbearable?

Who knows. But it’s probably not the last one. I’ve put in requests for clarification to various Sanders operations, and will update this post if I hear back.

Why is the Bernie Sanders campaign still raising money?

Yesterday, the Bernie Sanders campaign sent an email out to their supporters asking them to split a donation between Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, Ilahn Omar, Rashida Talib, and...Bernie Sanders. Per the email:

Split a $5 contribution between Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and our campaign today. We must elect a Congress that stands with working people, not the corporate elite.

A text with similar language was sent to supporters this morning:

Bernie 2020: Your $5 contribution split between AOC, Ilhan, Rasihda and Bernie will help elect a Congress that stands with working people, not the corporate elite.

Hm?

You may remember that Bernie Sanders is no longer running for President. He is not up for reelection in the Senate until 2024, a date where many aides suspect he’ll be retiring. The campaign ended March with around $14 million on hand per FCC filings, so this probably isn’t a debt thing either. Even weirder, the campaign spent much of March and April actively not soliciting donations, instead using his email list to direct supporters to Coronavirus-related charities.

This is probably obvious, but suspended campaigns generally don’t raise new money.

Now that Sanders has officially suspended his campaign, it’s unclear where this money will be going. Is this some weird mistake? Funds for some kind of ongoing political advocacy group? A barebones GOTV staff for upcoming primaries? A shadow campaign ready to rise up if Biden’s sexual misconduct allegations get too unbearable?

Who knows. But it’s probably not the last one. I’ve put in requests for clarification to various Sanders operations, and will update this post if I hear back.

Why is the Bernie Sanders campaign still raising money?

Yesterday, the Bernie Sanders campaign sent an email out to their supporters asking them to split a donation between Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, Ilahn Omar, Rashida Talib, and...Bernie Sanders. Per the email:

Split a $5 contribution between Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and our campaign today. We must elect a Congress that stands with working people, not the corporate elite.

A text with similar language was sent to supporters this morning:

Bernie 2020: Your $5 contribution split between AOC, Ilhan, Rasihda and Bernie will help elect a Congress that stands with working people, not the corporate elite.

Hm?

You may remember that Bernie Sanders is no longer running for President. He is not up for reelection in the Senate until 2024, a date where many aides suspect he’ll be retiring. The campaign ended March with around $14 million on hand per FCC filings, so this probably isn’t a debt thing either. Even weirder, the campaign spent much of March and April actively not soliciting donations, instead using his email list to direct supporters to Coronavirus-related charities.

This is probably obvious, but suspended campaigns generally don’t raise new money.

Now that Sanders has officially suspended his campaign, it’s unclear where this money will be going. Is this some weird mistake? Funds for some kind of ongoing political advocacy group? A barebones GOTV staff for upcoming primaries? A shadow campaign ready to rise up if Biden’s sexual misconduct allegations get too unbearable?

Who knows. But it’s probably not the last one. I’ve put in requests for clarification to various Sanders operations, and will update this post if I hear back.

Vote shaming is a scam

Vote shaming is a scam

Learn How This Project Was Made

Vote shaming is a scam

Vote shaming is a scam

Vote shaming is a scam
March 14, 2019 7:13 PM
Culture

The departure of Bernie Sanders from the Presidential primary has triggered a new wave of something I call Trump-era vote shaming. Embodied by moderate Democrats and some further left media figures, the phenomenon consists of scolding people on Twitter who are planning on not voting. The progressive commentator Mehdi Hasan has been in the midst of a multi-day Twitter meltdown over the nessecity of leftists voting for Joe Biden specifically and every Democratic candidate more broadly. In a protracted debate with leftist podcaster Kyle Kulinski, Mehdi repeatedly denounced Biden while maintaining “if you’re ok with a white nationalist winning a second term [by not voting], I question your “left-wing” credentials”.

Kulinski—who is in the middle of his own multi day meltdown about not voting—responded, “If you support a corrupt war criminal rapist for president (Biden) then I question your left wing credentials as well.”

According to Mehdi’s Twitter bio, he lives in Washington DC, one of the more comfortably blue voting areas in the country. It’s actually right up there with New York in terms of a safe Biden state, which is where Kulinski lives.

I point this out to underline that it doesn’t fucking matter who Mehdi Hasan or Kyle Kulinski votes for. Nor does it matter for the vast, vast, VAST, majority of people fighting the pro-or-anti-vote fight online, who generally live in blue districts.

The people who don’t vote are low information voters. They are not reading your political Twitter account. You are not making a difference by scolding the New York leftie who is proudly not voting on Twitter, who is also being a dumb-dumb by acting like his lack of a vote in some district in Brooklyn matters.

This is all empty posturing and it’s exhausting and no one should care.

Vote shaming is a scam

The departure of Bernie Sanders from the Presidential primary has triggered a new wave of something I call Trump-era vote shaming. Embodied by moderate Democrats and some further left media figures, the phenomenon consists of scolding people on Twitter who are planning on not voting. The progressive commentator Mehdi Hasan has been in the midst of a multi-day Twitter meltdown over the nessecity of leftists voting for Joe Biden specifically and every Democratic candidate more broadly. In a protracted debate with leftist podcaster Kyle Kulinski, Mehdi repeatedly denounced Biden while maintaining “if you’re ok with a white nationalist winning a second term [by not voting], I question your “left-wing” credentials”.

Kulinski—who is in the middle of his own multi day meltdown about not voting—responded, “If you support a corrupt war criminal rapist for president (Biden) then I question your left wing credentials as well.”

According to Mehdi’s Twitter bio, he lives in Washington DC, one of the more comfortably blue voting areas in the country. It’s actually right up there with New York in terms of a safe Biden state, which is where Kulinski lives.

I point this out to underline that it doesn’t fucking matter who Mehdi Hasan or Kyle Kulinski votes for. Nor does it matter for the vast, vast, VAST, majority of people fighting the pro-or-anti-vote fight online, who generally live in blue districts.

The people who don’t vote are low information voters. They are not reading your political Twitter account. You are not making a difference by scolding the New York leftie who is proudly not voting on Twitter, who is also being a dumb-dumb by acting like his lack of a vote in some district in Brooklyn matters.

This is all empty posturing and it’s exhausting and no one should care.

Vote shaming is a scam

The departure of Bernie Sanders from the Presidential primary has triggered a new wave of something I call Trump-era vote shaming. Embodied by moderate Democrats and some further left media figures, the phenomenon consists of scolding people on Twitter who are planning on not voting. The progressive commentator Mehdi Hasan has been in the midst of a multi-day Twitter meltdown over the nessecity of leftists voting for Joe Biden specifically and every Democratic candidate more broadly. In a protracted debate with leftist podcaster Kyle Kulinski, Mehdi repeatedly denounced Biden while maintaining “if you’re ok with a white nationalist winning a second term [by not voting], I question your “left-wing” credentials”.

Kulinski—who is in the middle of his own multi day meltdown about not voting—responded, “If you support a corrupt war criminal rapist for president (Biden) then I question your left wing credentials as well.”

According to Mehdi’s Twitter bio, he lives in Washington DC, one of the more comfortably blue voting areas in the country. It’s actually right up there with New York in terms of a safe Biden state, which is where Kulinski lives.

I point this out to underline that it doesn’t fucking matter who Mehdi Hasan or Kyle Kulinski votes for. Nor does it matter for the vast, vast, VAST, majority of people fighting the pro-or-anti-vote fight online, who generally live in blue districts.

The people who don’t vote are low information voters. They are not reading your political Twitter account. You are not making a difference by scolding the New York leftie who is proudly not voting on Twitter, who is also being a dumb-dumb by acting like his lack of a vote in some district in Brooklyn matters.

This is all empty posturing and it’s exhausting and no one should care.

Vox Media and New York Magazine Slashing Pay, Furloughing Staff Amid Coronavirus

Vox Media and New York Magazine Slashing Pay, Furloughing Staff Amid Coronavirus

Vox Media and New York Magazine Slashing Pay, Furloughing Staff Amid Coronavirus

Vox Media and New York Magazine Slashing Pay, Furloughing Staff Amid Coronavirus
/The Daily Beast
March 14, 2019 7:13 PM
Media
No layoffs yet at Vox, but a stunning amount of affected employees for a company of its size.
The breakdown begins

People are getting angry, and they should be.

The breakdown begins

Learn How This Project Was Made

People are getting angry, and they should be.

People are getting angry, and they should be.

The breakdown begins

People are getting angry, and they should be.

The breakdown begins

The breakdown begins
March 14, 2019 7:13 PM
Culture
The breakdown begins
The breakdown begins

Amazon reportedly planning drastic cuts to affiliate commission rates starting next week

Amazon reportedly planning drastic cuts to affiliate commission rates starting next week

Amazon reportedly planning drastic cuts to affiliate commission rates starting next week