Impending bill would let big tech corporations essentially create local governments in Nevada -- and the idea has the support of Nevada's Governor, nominal Democrat Steve Sisolak. All because the local government supposedly is "inadequate alone to provide the flexibility and resources conducive to making the State a leader in attracting and retaining new forms and types of businesses and fostering" blah blah blah. Seriously, what a terrible idea: corporations only account to shareholders; governments account to people. When it doesn't work as well as it should, we must hold them accountable -- and holding a private corporation accountable is a lot harder when you're not a shareholder.
Rachel Kraus at Mashable gives us "9 Scary Revelations From 40 years of Facial Recognition Research." Didn't know it'd been going on that long, did you? Well, it has, and it was a Department of Defense idea, of course, and facial recognition works a lot better in studies than it does in the real world -- a truism you'll grasp more easily once you learn that facial recognition researchers started by having (mostly white) people sit for portraits. That's three of the nine revelations; the other six probably won't surprise you, but the article contains a lot of good data and argument in one place.
As you may know, Parler's former CEO got fired last month, and now he's taking to the airwaves to talk about how "betrayed" he feels by Parler investor Rebekah Mercer: "I thought I knew her. She invited my family on trips with them and everything. I thought that she was, generally speaking, I thought she was being real. And then she just abruptly has her people fire me and doesn't even talk to me about it." So how on Earth did he not know what he was getting into? Oh, because "I don't judge anybody by the press that I see," to which Carl Sagan might have responded have an open mind, but not so open your brains fall out. Again, this is why we shouldn't worship CEOs -- too many of them are either awfully stupid or just pretending to be.
Donald Trump's impeachment lawyers call his upcoming Senate trial "political theater." Well, they would know! I mean, the defendant acts out this big drama all the damn time. As an aside, NPR's summary of the incident leaves more than a few things out, things that would make you more likely to want Mr. Trump convicted. I would never have thought that an op-ed coming from Barbara Comstock and Charles Boustany would enlighten on this matter better than an NPR news report, but here we are.
Upon hearing that the Biden Administration plans to "punish" Congressional Republicans who vote against his American Rescue Plan with (among other things) "midterm attack ads and "a giant outreach effort," all I can say is: we can only hope! A man does get tired of Democrat weakness, after all. As nice as it would be for Democrats to do works that are obviously good, like Medicare-for-All or a massive renewable energy infrastructure build, Democrats' complete unwillingness to run on the Affordable Care Act in 2010 was cowardly. It couldn't have been that hard, if all those Democrats running on it in 2018 took our House back from Republicans.
Finally, the New York Times wrings its hands that all these defamation lawsuits that seem to be stemming the tide of right-wing noise in the news have "raised uneasy questions about how to police a news media that counts on First Amendment protections," but I find that an easy knot to split: if a media organ tells lies that hurt people, people can hurt them back. That's why defamation lawsuits exist. And if you're worried about rich people suing or countersuing the aggrieved into silence, you pass an anti-SLAPP law. C'mon, I'm an hourly-paid schmuck and I know this stuff.