Netflix vs. Straight Pride: Don’t troll the trolls

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Netflix and the organizers of the Boston “Straight Pride” parade are having a food fight. Netflix’s lawyers’ got snarky, which seems like fun, but is actually counterproductive. Let’s tell this story in context. The Boston “Straight Pride Parade” is, of course, a reaction to Boston’s Pride, a celebration of gay pride and other LGBTQ attitudes. … Continued

The Trump Twitter ruling affirms the right to troll public figures

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An appeals court affirmed a ruling that Donald Trump’s Twitter account can’t block people. Let’s take a look at what that means. First question: is Trump’s account a part of the public record of government or an activity undertaken by a private citizen? It’s clear from what he posts that it’s intended to public activity. … Continued

Race, flags, and “The Little Mermaid”

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Let’s review a few facts about race and its portrayal onscreen, okay? George Washington and Abe Lincoln are white. Donald Trump is white. Joe Biden is white. Mark Zuckerberg is white, too. Barack Obama is black. So is Kamala Harris. So is Nelson Mandela. So is Malcom X. If you wish to portray these people … Continued

What to look for in our next president

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This is a political post. If you don’t like politics, skip it. Briefly: I like smart presidents. Right now, 23 Democratic candidates are vying for the nomination. People are scrutinizing their specific positions, looking for disqualifying events in their past, wondering about their rhetorical skills, giving them points (or deducting them) for debate performance. I’m … Continued

Are rising wages really bad news?

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There’s no shortage of news these days that will make your blood boil. But what really got me going was an article in USA Today about the next big threat to the economy: rising wages. I am no economist, but I’ve been reading business and economic news and analyzing the future of whole industries for … Continued

On abortion, Rep. Stephen Lynch loudly proclaims his nonexistent position

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Massachusetts Congressman Stephen Lynch is that rarest of creatures, a pro-life Democrat. But the recent abortion bans passed in states like Alabama are too extreme even for many abortion opponents. Lynch has responded in the Boston Globe by emphatically saying . . . nothing. There are a number of positions a politician can take on … Continued

Game of Thrones as a metaphor for American politics

Umm, no. Game of Thrones is a narrative created solely to capture and manipulate the attention of the viewer, focusing on the shocking and unexpected violations of norms. That’s not American politics. That’s American media. Except the part where Samwell Tarly suggests a democracy and everyone laughs at the idea. That part was relevant.