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
The Trump 2020 closing message: embrace death, own the libs

There’s nothing else left to say

The Trump 2020 closing message: embrace death, own the libs

Learn How This Project Was Made

There’s nothing else left to say

There’s nothing else left to say

The Trump 2020 closing message: embrace death, own the libs

There’s nothing else left to say

The Trump 2020 closing message: embrace death, own the libs

The Trump 2020 closing message: embrace death, own the libs

Lightroom’s new color grading tools let you easily make your own photo filters

Lightroom’s new color grading tools let you easily make your own photo filters

Lightroom’s new color grading tools let you easily make your own photo filters

Lightroom’s new color grading tools let you easily make your own photo filters
October 21, 2020
Technology

I’ve been messing around with Adobe Lightroom’s newest update for a few hours, and it’s quite impressive. The headline feature here is the new color grading tools, which brings selective color adjustments in an interface similar to the color correction tools already available in Adobe Premiere.

The new tool allows for changing the hues, saturation, and luminance of a photo’s highlights, mid-tones, shadows, and globally. This was previously possible using a combination of Lightroom’s color mix and split-toning tools, but that workflow was complicated and often quite finicky to use. Now, all of this control is accessible through a single panel, and presented in a familiar triple color wheel interface. I’m no Premiere color grading expert, but I was able to easily get going with the Color Grade panel even with my limited experience.

The end result is that I have significantly more control over the color of my photos than before. And since color grading presets can be saved (along with film grain and sharpening settings), it essentially gives you the ability to create your own photo filters. I really dig it.

On a final note, I’ve been testing the Color Grade tools on my iPad Pro. Adobe has done a really tremendous job keeping the iPad version of Lightroom in feature parity with the desktop version, something they unfortunately do not do with Photoshop.

Lightroom’s new color grading tools let you easily make your own photo filters

I’ve been messing around with Adobe Lightroom’s newest update for a few hours, and it’s quite impressive. The headline feature here is the new color grading tools, which brings selective color adjustments in an interface similar to the color correction tools already available in Adobe Premiere.

The new tool allows for changing the hues, saturation, and luminance of a photo’s highlights, mid-tones, shadows, and globally. This was previously possible using a combination of Lightroom’s color mix and split-toning tools, but that workflow was complicated and often quite finicky to use. Now, all of this control is accessible through a single panel, and presented in a familiar triple color wheel interface. I’m no Premiere color grading expert, but I was able to easily get going with the Color Grade panel even with my limited experience.

The end result is that I have significantly more control over the color of my photos than before. And since color grading presets can be saved (along with film grain and sharpening settings), it essentially gives you the ability to create your own photo filters. I really dig it.

On a final note, I’ve been testing the Color Grade tools on my iPad Pro. Adobe has done a really tremendous job keeping the iPad version of Lightroom in feature parity with the desktop version, something they unfortunately do not do with Photoshop.

Lightroom’s new color grading tools let you easily make your own photo filters

I’ve been messing around with Adobe Lightroom’s newest update for a few hours, and it’s quite impressive. The headline feature here is the new color grading tools, which brings selective color adjustments in an interface similar to the color correction tools already available in Adobe Premiere.

The new tool allows for changing the hues, saturation, and luminance of a photo’s highlights, mid-tones, shadows, and globally. This was previously possible using a combination of Lightroom’s color mix and split-toning tools, but that workflow was complicated and often quite finicky to use. Now, all of this control is accessible through a single panel, and presented in a familiar triple color wheel interface. I’m no Premiere color grading expert, but I was able to easily get going with the Color Grade panel even with my limited experience.

The end result is that I have significantly more control over the color of my photos than before. And since color grading presets can be saved (along with film grain and sharpening settings), it essentially gives you the ability to create your own photo filters. I really dig it.

On a final note, I’ve been testing the Color Grade tools on my iPad Pro. Adobe has done a really tremendous job keeping the iPad version of Lightroom in feature parity with the desktop version, something they unfortunately do not do with Photoshop.

The Gossip Behind the Gossip

The Gossip Behind the Gossip

Learn How This Project Was Made

The Gossip Behind the Gossip

The Gossip Behind the Gossip

The Gossip Behind the Gossip
Frank DiGiacomo/Vanity Fair
October 18, 2020
Media
From 2004: A look at the late-days of the NY Post’s gossip column.
The Gossip Behind the Gossip
The Gossip Behind the Gossip

A dubious New York Post article forces Big Platforms’ hand

An unprecedented act of moderation by the social platforms reveals their complete lack of strategy

A dubious New York Post article forces Big Platforms’ hand

Learn How This Project Was Made

An unprecedented act of moderation by the social platforms reveals their complete lack of strategy

An unprecedented act of moderation by the social platforms reveals their complete lack of strategy

A dubious New York Post article forces Big Platforms’ hand

An unprecedented act of moderation by the social platforms reveals their complete lack of strategy

A dubious New York Post article forces Big Platforms’ hand

A dubious New York Post article forces Big Platforms’ hand
A dubious New York Post article forces Big Platforms’ hand

What to do with a strung-out President?

What to do with a strung-out President?

Learn How This Project Was Made

What to do with a strung-out President?

What to do with a strung-out President?

What to do with a strung-out President?
October 8, 2020
Politics

President Trump is feeling great!

We know this because he is saying so—incessantly—on Twitter, along with a number of proclamations about California, technology regulation, whether or not Congress should pass a economic stimulus bill, his potential third term of office, and the personal qualities of former John McCain campaign manager Steve Schmidt*. It’s been a particularly chaotic few days of Trump Twitter, and a lot of activity for a 72-year old man with an acute respiratory condition.

The New York Times is reporting that Trump’s aides are concerned that the President’s behavior may be influenced by dexamethasone, a powerful steroid Trump was prescribed that can create manic energy and feelings of euphoria. That’s a thesis repeatedly raised by medical professionals since Trump checked himself out of Walter Reed hospital two days ago.

A President being yaked out is not completely unprecedented. John F. Kennedy’s chronic pain forced him to take a steady streams of painkillers and stimulants while President. Nixon was reportedly a recreational user of phenytoin, an anti-seizure medication with a number of mental side-effects.** Upon losing his party’s nomination, incumbent President Franklin Pierce joked that “there is nothing left but to get drunk,” something he did a lot while in office.

Like many Trump sins, his behavior is not completely unprecedented in American history. What is unique, however, is the openness with which Trump is displaying his possible symptoms and the complete lack of control his staff is maintaining over him during his illness.

Henry Kissinger had to talk a drunk and possibly high Nixon out of a nuclear strike against North Korea in 1969. The difference is that Nixon at least had a Kissinger. No one in the White House is able to talk Trump out of dooming thousands of furloughed Americans to permeant job losses.

Instead of telling the President that he should absolutely not return to work carrying an infectious disease that has killed over 200,000 Americans, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is spending his day today donning a PPE suit to accompany Trump in the Oval Office.

For the first time in the Trump presidency, all the guardrails are finally off.

*To be fair to Trump, Steve Schmidt is the guy who tried to get Howard Schwartz to run for President, so perhaps he is a bit of a dumb-dumb.

**Nixon had no diagnosed history of seizures.

What to do with a strung-out President?

President Trump is feeling great!

We know this because he is saying so—incessantly—on Twitter, along with a number of proclamations about California, technology regulation, whether or not Congress should pass a economic stimulus bill, his potential third term of office, and the personal qualities of former John McCain campaign manager Steve Schmidt*. It’s been a particularly chaotic few days of Trump Twitter, and a lot of activity for a 72-year old man with an acute respiratory condition.

The New York Times is reporting that Trump’s aides are concerned that the President’s behavior may be influenced by dexamethasone, a powerful steroid Trump was prescribed that can create manic energy and feelings of euphoria. That’s a thesis repeatedly raised by medical professionals since Trump checked himself out of Walter Reed hospital two days ago.

A President being yaked out is not completely unprecedented. John F. Kennedy’s chronic pain forced him to take a steady streams of painkillers and stimulants while President. Nixon was reportedly a recreational user of phenytoin, an anti-seizure medication with a number of mental side-effects.** Upon losing his party’s nomination, incumbent President Franklin Pierce joked that “there is nothing left but to get drunk,” something he did a lot while in office.

Like many Trump sins, his behavior is not completely unprecedented in American history. What is unique, however, is the openness with which Trump is displaying his possible symptoms and the complete lack of control his staff is maintaining over him during his illness.

Henry Kissinger had to talk a drunk and possibly high Nixon out of a nuclear strike against North Korea in 1969. The difference is that Nixon at least had a Kissinger. No one in the White House is able to talk Trump out of dooming thousands of furloughed Americans to permeant job losses.

Instead of telling the President that he should absolutely not return to work carrying an infectious disease that has killed over 200,000 Americans, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is spending his day today donning a PPE suit to accompany Trump in the Oval Office.

For the first time in the Trump presidency, all the guardrails are finally off.

*To be fair to Trump, Steve Schmidt is the guy who tried to get Howard Schwartz to run for President, so perhaps he is a bit of a dumb-dumb.

**Nixon had no diagnosed history of seizures.

What to do with a strung-out President?

President Trump is feeling great!

We know this because he is saying so—incessantly—on Twitter, along with a number of proclamations about California, technology regulation, whether or not Congress should pass a economic stimulus bill, his potential third term of office, and the personal qualities of former John McCain campaign manager Steve Schmidt*. It’s been a particularly chaotic few days of Trump Twitter, and a lot of activity for a 72-year old man with an acute respiratory condition.

The New York Times is reporting that Trump’s aides are concerned that the President’s behavior may be influenced by dexamethasone, a powerful steroid Trump was prescribed that can create manic energy and feelings of euphoria. That’s a thesis repeatedly raised by medical professionals since Trump checked himself out of Walter Reed hospital two days ago.

A President being yaked out is not completely unprecedented. John F. Kennedy’s chronic pain forced him to take a steady streams of painkillers and stimulants while President. Nixon was reportedly a recreational user of phenytoin, an anti-seizure medication with a number of mental side-effects.** Upon losing his party’s nomination, incumbent President Franklin Pierce joked that “there is nothing left but to get drunk,” something he did a lot while in office.

Like many Trump sins, his behavior is not completely unprecedented in American history. What is unique, however, is the openness with which Trump is displaying his possible symptoms and the complete lack of control his staff is maintaining over him during his illness.

Henry Kissinger had to talk a drunk and possibly high Nixon out of a nuclear strike against North Korea in 1969. The difference is that Nixon at least had a Kissinger. No one in the White House is able to talk Trump out of dooming thousands of furloughed Americans to permeant job losses.

Instead of telling the President that he should absolutely not return to work carrying an infectious disease that has killed over 200,000 Americans, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is spending his day today donning a PPE suit to accompany Trump in the Oval Office.

For the first time in the Trump presidency, all the guardrails are finally off.

*To be fair to Trump, Steve Schmidt is the guy who tried to get Howard Schwartz to run for President, so perhaps he is a bit of a dumb-dumb.

**Nixon had no diagnosed history of seizures.

The Trump reelection campaign finds a new low

Somehow, things got worse.

The Trump reelection campaign finds a new low

Learn How This Project Was Made

Somehow, things got worse.

Somehow, things got worse.

The Trump reelection campaign finds a new low

Somehow, things got worse.

The Trump reelection campaign finds a new low

The Trump reelection campaign finds a new low
October 3, 2020
Politics
The Trump reelection campaign finds a new low
The Trump reelection campaign finds a new low

Ilhan Omar shows Democrats how to respond to Trump’s positive COVID test

Ilhan Omar shows Democrats how to respond to Trump’s positive COVID test

Learn How This Project Was Made

Ilhan Omar shows Democrats how to respond to Trump’s positive COVID test

Ilhan Omar shows Democrats how to respond to Trump’s positive COVID test

As someone who lost my own father to this virus and seen the pain it causes, I do not wish it on anyone. Over 200,000 people have now died while this Administration actively ignores public health guidance and suppresses science. For months, we have been hoping for a simple acknowledgment from the President—to hear the words, ‘We will get through this together.’ And now we only hear those words when it is about him—not the hundreds of thousands of people who have lost their lives, and the millions whose families have been touched by it because of his malfeasance. “Their cruelty is a direct threat to my constituents. This week, the President held a rally and fundraiser in Minnesota, flouting the guidance of his own health agencies by failing to wear a mask. In doing so, he exposed hundreds in a state that is already suffering from an uptick in cases. Republican members of our Congressional delegation travelled with him on Air Force One and have not quarantined. In fact, they came to the Capitol today, risking the lives of additional elected leaders and staff. “The President of the United States and Republicans in Minnesota are actively spreading a deadly virus. They are a risk to the public health of my constituents and our country.”

Statement from Ilhan Omar

Stunningly powerful stuff.

Ilhan Omar shows Democrats how to respond to Trump’s positive COVID test
October 2, 2020
Politics
Ilhan Omar shows Democrats how to respond to Trump’s positive COVID test
Ilhan Omar shows Democrats how to respond to Trump’s positive COVID test

A cough that changed the world

A cough that changed the world

Learn How This Project Was Made

A cough that changed the world

A cough that changed the world

A cough that changed the world
October 2, 2020
Politics

The state of American politics:

1. THE PRESIDENT HAS CORONAVIRUS. Not only that, but the virus was perculating through Trump’s inner-circle at Tuesday’s debate, potentially exposing Joe Biden and his family and staff. Biden has tested negative as of this morning, but experts say a test may not be conclusive for another few days. Trump is already demonstrating mild symptoms. Every coronavirus case is different and it’s impossible to predict how Trump’s recovery will go. We do know Trump is in several risk categories for the virus. The WHO lists the average recovery time for mild coronavirus cases as two weeks, with 3–6 weeks for more severe cases. With the election in less than five weeks, there’s a real chance Trump will be absent for the rest of the campaign. Aides are preparing a slew of virtual events, but that’s all based on the assumption that Trump’s case will remain minor. Medical research from Europe indicates that a 74-year-old COVID patient has a 1 in 25 moltarity rate. Trump has not tweeted or made a public statement since he announced his diagnosis last night.

2. IN THE HOUSE, Democrats and Republicans are increasingly close to agreeing on an additional round of coronavirus relief. House Leader Nancy Pelosi has signaled a new willingness to provide relief to airline employees even through a standalone bill, a depature from her previous position. Acknowledging that Trump’s diagnosis “changes the dynamic” of negotiating a deal with Republicans, Pelosi told CNBC that she was optimistic a deal could still be made with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. Mnuchin has offered a $1.6 trillion package, while Democrats in the House passed a $2.2 trillion bill last night. That’s significantly less than the trillions of dollars apart the two parties were in the past few weeks. The always-essential Washington Post economics reporter Jeff Stein says that sources on the Hill are “most bullish I’ve heard” about reaching a deal. Specifics of what relief will be passed in the package is unclear, but it’s expected to include another round of $1,200 direct payments with similar elegability requirements as what passed in the Spring.

3. IN THE SENATE, Mitch McConnell’s dream of a fast confirmation for Supreme Court justice Barrett is hitting serious roadblocks. In his statement wishing the President a speedy recovery, McConnell reinstated his intention of waving in Barrett as quickly as possible. Hours later, Senator Mike Lee announced he tested positive for cornavirus. Lee has been an active and often unmasked presence on the Senate floor over the past week. He also attended the President’s nomination ceremony for Barrett last Saturday, where he appears to have gone on a big old hug spree with a bunch of fellow Republicans. The Senate Republican cacucus, which is very old, is reportedly getting skittish about remaining in session. McConnell’s timeline for nominating Barrett before the election is already incredibly tight; a delay of any kind would likely mean Barrett couldn’t be confirmed until the Senate’s lame-duck session, a move that would be more unpopular with the public and mean Barrett couldn’t weigh in on a hypothetical Supreme Court decision involving the election.

4. IN THE SUPREME COURT, we probably don’t have to worry about Barrett getting coronavirus. That’s because she apparently already had coronavirus over the summer. Good news for Republicans! Less good news is that the Supreme Court remains engulfed in an ongoing legitmacy crisis over McConnell’s brazen political tactics. Biden continues to punt on the question of court packing, while Trump’s illness raises a number of troubling questions about what comes next in a` worst-case scenerio. A number of these nightmare scenerios would involve a judgement from the currently 4–4 split Court. In modern political history, the future of the Court has never been more in doubt.

A cough that changed the world

The state of American politics:

1. THE PRESIDENT HAS CORONAVIRUS. Not only that, but the virus was perculating through Trump’s inner-circle at Tuesday’s debate, potentially exposing Joe Biden and his family and staff. Biden has tested negative as of this morning, but experts say a test may not be conclusive for another few days. Trump is already demonstrating mild symptoms. Every coronavirus case is different and it’s impossible to predict how Trump’s recovery will go. We do know Trump is in several risk categories for the virus. The WHO lists the average recovery time for mild coronavirus cases as two weeks, with 3–6 weeks for more severe cases. With the election in less than five weeks, there’s a real chance Trump will be absent for the rest of the campaign. Aides are preparing a slew of virtual events, but that’s all based on the assumption that Trump’s case will remain minor. Medical research from Europe indicates that a 74-year-old COVID patient has a 1 in 25 moltarity rate. Trump has not tweeted or made a public statement since he announced his diagnosis last night.

2. IN THE HOUSE, Democrats and Republicans are increasingly close to agreeing on an additional round of coronavirus relief. House Leader Nancy Pelosi has signaled a new willingness to provide relief to airline employees even through a standalone bill, a depature from her previous position. Acknowledging that Trump’s diagnosis “changes the dynamic” of negotiating a deal with Republicans, Pelosi told CNBC that she was optimistic a deal could still be made with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. Mnuchin has offered a $1.6 trillion package, while Democrats in the House passed a $2.2 trillion bill last night. That’s significantly less than the trillions of dollars apart the two parties were in the past few weeks. The always-essential Washington Post economics reporter Jeff Stein says that sources on the Hill are “most bullish I’ve heard” about reaching a deal. Specifics of what relief will be passed in the package is unclear, but it’s expected to include another round of $1,200 direct payments with similar elegability requirements as what passed in the Spring.

3. IN THE SENATE, Mitch McConnell’s dream of a fast confirmation for Supreme Court justice Barrett is hitting serious roadblocks. In his statement wishing the President a speedy recovery, McConnell reinstated his intention of waving in Barrett as quickly as possible. Hours later, Senator Mike Lee announced he tested positive for cornavirus. Lee has been an active and often unmasked presence on the Senate floor over the past week. He also attended the President’s nomination ceremony for Barrett last Saturday, where he appears to have gone on a big old hug spree with a bunch of fellow Republicans. The Senate Republican cacucus, which is very old, is reportedly getting skittish about remaining in session. McConnell’s timeline for nominating Barrett before the election is already incredibly tight; a delay of any kind would likely mean Barrett couldn’t be confirmed until the Senate’s lame-duck session, a move that would be more unpopular with the public and mean Barrett couldn’t weigh in on a hypothetical Supreme Court decision involving the election.

4. IN THE SUPREME COURT, we probably don’t have to worry about Barrett getting coronavirus. That’s because she apparently already had coronavirus over the summer. Good news for Republicans! Less good news is that the Supreme Court remains engulfed in an ongoing legitmacy crisis over McConnell’s brazen political tactics. Biden continues to punt on the question of court packing, while Trump’s illness raises a number of troubling questions about what comes next in a` worst-case scenerio. A number of these nightmare scenerios would involve a judgement from the currently 4–4 split Court. In modern political history, the future of the Court has never been more in doubt.

A cough that changed the world

The state of American politics:

1. THE PRESIDENT HAS CORONAVIRUS. Not only that, but the virus was perculating through Trump’s inner-circle at Tuesday’s debate, potentially exposing Joe Biden and his family and staff. Biden has tested negative as of this morning, but experts say a test may not be conclusive for another few days. Trump is already demonstrating mild symptoms. Every coronavirus case is different and it’s impossible to predict how Trump’s recovery will go. We do know Trump is in several risk categories for the virus. The WHO lists the average recovery time for mild coronavirus cases as two weeks, with 3–6 weeks for more severe cases. With the election in less than five weeks, there’s a real chance Trump will be absent for the rest of the campaign. Aides are preparing a slew of virtual events, but that’s all based on the assumption that Trump’s case will remain minor. Medical research from Europe indicates that a 74-year-old COVID patient has a 1 in 25 moltarity rate. Trump has not tweeted or made a public statement since he announced his diagnosis last night.

2. IN THE HOUSE, Democrats and Republicans are increasingly close to agreeing on an additional round of coronavirus relief. House Leader Nancy Pelosi has signaled a new willingness to provide relief to airline employees even through a standalone bill, a depature from her previous position. Acknowledging that Trump’s diagnosis “changes the dynamic” of negotiating a deal with Republicans, Pelosi told CNBC that she was optimistic a deal could still be made with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. Mnuchin has offered a $1.6 trillion package, while Democrats in the House passed a $2.2 trillion bill last night. That’s significantly less than the trillions of dollars apart the two parties were in the past few weeks. The always-essential Washington Post economics reporter Jeff Stein says that sources on the Hill are “most bullish I’ve heard” about reaching a deal. Specifics of what relief will be passed in the package is unclear, but it’s expected to include another round of $1,200 direct payments with similar elegability requirements as what passed in the Spring.

3. IN THE SENATE, Mitch McConnell’s dream of a fast confirmation for Supreme Court justice Barrett is hitting serious roadblocks. In his statement wishing the President a speedy recovery, McConnell reinstated his intention of waving in Barrett as quickly as possible. Hours later, Senator Mike Lee announced he tested positive for cornavirus. Lee has been an active and often unmasked presence on the Senate floor over the past week. He also attended the President’s nomination ceremony for Barrett last Saturday, where he appears to have gone on a big old hug spree with a bunch of fellow Republicans. The Senate Republican cacucus, which is very old, is reportedly getting skittish about remaining in session. McConnell’s timeline for nominating Barrett before the election is already incredibly tight; a delay of any kind would likely mean Barrett couldn’t be confirmed until the Senate’s lame-duck session, a move that would be more unpopular with the public and mean Barrett couldn’t weigh in on a hypothetical Supreme Court decision involving the election.

4. IN THE SUPREME COURT, we probably don’t have to worry about Barrett getting coronavirus. That’s because she apparently already had coronavirus over the summer. Good news for Republicans! Less good news is that the Supreme Court remains engulfed in an ongoing legitmacy crisis over McConnell’s brazen political tactics. Biden continues to punt on the question of court packing, while Trump’s illness raises a number of troubling questions about what comes next in a` worst-case scenerio. A number of these nightmare scenerios would involve a judgement from the currently 4–4 split Court. In modern political history, the future of the Court has never been more in doubt.

America’s decline: at an Ohio street fight, Trump unloads and Biden tries to endure

Sometimes countries go up in flames, and sometimes it’s a long and painful decline. America is doing both.

America’s decline: at an Ohio street fight, Trump unloads and Biden tries to endure

Learn How This Project Was Made

Sometimes countries go up in flames, and sometimes it’s a long and painful decline. America is doing both.

Sometimes countries go up in flames, and sometimes it’s a long and painful decline. America is doing both.

America’s decline: at an Ohio street fight, Trump unloads and Biden tries to endure

Sometimes countries go up in flames, and sometimes it’s a long and painful decline. America is doing both.

America’s decline: at an Ohio street fight, Trump unloads and Biden tries to endure

America’s decline: at an Ohio street fight, Trump unloads and Biden tries to endure
America’s decline: at an Ohio street fight, Trump unloads and Biden tries to endure

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
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
September 1, 2020
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
September 1, 2020
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
August 31, 2020
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
August 18, 2020
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!)
August 17, 2020
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
August 17, 2020
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
August 17, 2020
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
August 13, 2020
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
May 14, 2020
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
May 13, 2020
Politics
Pelosi’s relief bill angers the left and right
Pelosi’s relief bill angers the left and right