Ho hum, the Washington Post is miffed that the debt ceiling “deal” didn’t do slash Social Security and Medicare benefits like they’ve wanted to do since time immemorial, and all I can say is oh STFU already. The real driver of debt is our continuing failure to tax the rich and corporations as hard as we did in the 1950s; we taxed millionaire income at 91% and corporations at 55% then, but now we do that at 37% and 21%, respectively, and with a lot more loopholes now than then. The Post didn’t go as hard after Medicare, which I suppose is progress, but also didn’t mention that Medicare-for-All would save us about $1.6 trillion annually in health care costs – and that figure comes from the right-wing Mercatus Center, not that they exactly foregrounded it. The one letter-to-the-editor FAIR quotes in its article is worth the price of admission.
Wondering exactly what to say to your right-wing uncle who says the Trump indictment is no big deal? You know, besides I don’t do Flat Earth Society crap? Judd Legum at Popular Information refutes the four main counterarguments of the right, including “Hillary did the same thing” and “Biden did the same thing” (each individual cooperated with our Justice Department, while Mr. Trump, per the indictment, did not, and anyway Mike Pence “did the same thing,” too, except he also cooperated and won’t be charged for what he did). The worst, of course, is “this all sets a dangerous precedent where the party that comes into power just goes after its enemies,” an utterance not merely of cowardice but hubris. After all, if Republicans hadn't acted with such restraint after Bill Clinton’s 1992 election, they might have set a precedent.
Maxwell Strachan at Motherboard writes about a Texas couple who bought a house planning to rent it out via Airbnb, only to be banned by Airbnb for being “closely associated with a person who isn’t allowed to use Airbnb," in this case a homeowner’s parent’s partner, who had two non-violent offenses (one drug-related) in his background. In the couple’s account, Airbnb did a terrible enough job handling (and ultimately denying) their appeal that they suspected that algorithms handled it more than people did. They got Airbnb to reverse their decision after going to the media about it, but in the meantime we witness what happens when we a) don’t strangle monopolies in their crib, b) act like putting people in jail is the only duty a civilization has to perform, and c) let bosses fire all their employees because algorithms don’t call out sick.