Folks feel all kinds of ways about the spread of lies on social media, but Corynne McSherry's primer at the Electronic Frontier Foundation website sets out the issues behind fairly plainly. Long story short: big social media corporations are pretty bad at moderating content, not that it's entirely their fault, the old saw about a lie getting halfway around the world while the truth's still getting its pants on dating at least as far back as Winston Churchill. But "Does It Empower Users?", "Is It Transparent?", and "Is It Consistent With Human Rights Principles?" are all good questions to ask about content moderation policies.
Though we tend to think future Presidents couldn't possibly be any worse than this one, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) rightly warns about the "many" carbon copies of our President "in waiting" once he leaves office, whenever that is. You know what the worst part of the future will be, though? Not the even-worse-than-this-guy Presidential aspirant, but the establishment Republican who pretends it's a chore to try to attract his votaries. Of course, that "establishment" has been getting incrementally crazier over the years anyway, such that conventional wisdom now calls a complete asshole like Tom Cotton "establishment."
We keep hearing that Wall Street favors Mr. Biden like that's a good thing, but Raul Elizalde at Fortune reminds us that "The Stock Market Does Not Care Who Wins the Election." I might have cut that headline off at "The Stock Market Does Not Care," but this article, like a lot of Fortune articles, really sneaks up on you -- if you're not impressed that the stock market "doesn't care" about economic policy between 1990 and now, as differences between the two parties' economic policies have been negligible, get a load of how the stock market didn't care when the top income tax rate was 91% (or took a dive when it went down to 70%). Now's a good time to remind you that our stock market isn't (and shouldn't be) the be-all-end-all of our economy.
Our Department of Education killed development of a website that would have "made the process too easy" for students to get relief from fraudulent student loans. That's fraudulent loans, folks, not "allegedly" fraudulent or merely suspicious loans; if a court already said it was fraudulent, why does it have to be so hard to get relief? And all these people who still whine about the line at the DMV should read "it made the process too easy" and understand that this Administration is objectively pro-bureaucracy, right? I kid, of course.
Uh oh: Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), not a certainty for re-election in three days, apparently said he'd graduated from an Oxford University "Judicial Studies" program, when actually he'd completed a two-week seminar that happened to be held at Oxford. Right-wingers will call that "hair-splitting," but it isn't -- in fact, it's the kind of dishonesty people don't want from their elected leaders. Also, Oxford's statement that "(t)he Faculty of Law is unable to confirm the existence of a Judicial Studies programme" is kind of British for "fuck you."
Finally, as the Dakotas are getting absolutely swamped, so to speak, with COVID-19 cases, South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem says in a Rapid City Journal op-ed, among other absurdities, that "those who don’t want to wear a mask shouldn’t be shamed into wearing one." Yes, they should! They're acting like a bunch of whiny brats about something that doesn't curtail their "freedom" and more likely enhance their freedom, since dead people aren't free. What on Earth is shaming for, if not that?