Friday Morning Open Thread: Day of the Girl (Year of the Felons)


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Election 2020 Open Thread: Elizabeth Warren Celebrates *Every* Vote

From Vanity Fair, “GOP Strategists Fear Trump’s “Pocahontas” Thing Isn’t Working”:

Several strategists tell the Daily Beast that Trump was caught off guard by the resonance of Warren’s populist rhetoric—a skill set that in some ways mirrors his own, minus the mental effluvia and human rights violations—and said she might be “tougher” to compete against than he realized, repeatedly asking advisers whether they consider Warren to be a “fighter.” Others confessed that, despite their best efforts to comb her record for dirt and to workshop attacks, the GOP oppo machine has been struggling to land any blows. Sure, some of Warren’s proposals are pie-in-the-sky, and maybe the math is hazy, but have you listened to Donald Trump? One strategist suggested that conservative think tanks have been struggling to keep up with the sheer volume of white papers Warren has been generating.

It doesn’t help that anti-Warren stories haven’t gotten as much pickup in the media, mainstream or otherwise. “We all push out the bad Warren stories but they don’t go very far,” the source said—a point echoed by nearly a dozen others. “Sure the Republican base will ultimately loathe Warren, but she doesn’t inspire the same kind of historic vitriol that Hillary Clinton did,” one of the strategists told the Beast. “That, combined with fact that SCOTUS isn’t on the line as it was in ’16, and remembering that Trump needed the perfect inside straight to barely win last time, and any Democrat is going to be tough to beat, Warren included.”

Special note, for the Blogmaster:

(Holiday) Monday Morning Open Thread

Happy news: Someone who might or might not be Paul Broncks (note the twitter address) is back:

And a little practical inspiration, from the Washington Post“For Baltimore teachers heading back to school, the Book Thing is a treasure”:

A 6,955-square-foot warehouse in Baltimore’s Abell neighborhood holds something of a treasure trove for the city’s teachers.

As they prepare for Tuesday’s first day of school, educators are making last-minute trips to the Book Thing, carefully sorting through the thousands of novels and textbooks and dictionaries they can use to build up their classroom libraries — all free.

For years, people have dropped off unwanted books at the Book Thing’s doors and then gone inside to browse through others’ donated stories. Anyone is welcome to take home as many books as they want from the used book “store.” Some tuck a novel or two into their totes and head out. Others fill cardboard boxes to the brim…

It’s a uniquely important resource for city teachers, whose struggle to pay for the books they needed to fill their classrooms inspired the Book Thing’s creation two decades ago.

Dan Parsons, an English teacher at Frederick Douglass High, walked out of the Book Thing on Saturday with a loaded box in his hands and even more books stuffed into his canvas backpack.

At his West Baltimore school — where many students come from poverty and witness the city’s unrelenting gun violence up close — Parsons transformed his classroom into a literary oasis. Hundreds of books cover nearly every surface. He uses stocked bookshelves to cordon off reading nooks where students can escape into the kinds of stories that both reflect their own experiences and open their minds to new ones…

Yeah, in a better world, we wouldn’t need volunteers to help out teachers who are digging into their own sparse funds to support their students. But there are kids who need those books now — they can’t wait for perfection.

The 1619 Project

The New York Times magazine this week is completely The 1619 Project,

The 1619 Project is a major initiative from The New York Times observing the 400th anniversary of the beginning of American slavery. It aims to reframe the country’s history, understanding 1619 as our true founding, and placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of the story we tell ourselves about who we are.

It’s long and will take some time to read and digest. But it’s something we need to do. We have never, as a country, come to terms with slavery and how interwoven it is in our history. There have been moments when we almost woke up – the Civil War and then, 100 years later, the Civil Rights Movement – but we have quickly buried what understanding we had gained. We’ve got to do better this time.

And yes, it’s possible that the New York Times can do a brilliant job on this and still screw up on its political reporting.

A copy of the entire magazine here, outside the paywall. The Pulitzer Center also has study materials and curricula for teachers.

Open thread!

Thursday Morning Open Thread: Enjoying Summer to the Full

Looks like a photoshopped backdrop, doesn’t it? But from what I’ve seen of that area, it actually is that pretty, at least in the summer and fall. My favorite Senator has lived in New England long enough to know that she might as well do some campaigning outside of arenas and auditoriums while she can…

Four years ago, New Hampshire voters put Sanders on the national map and catapulted him into a heated primary contest against the establishment favorite, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Now the senator has to repeat his strong performance in the first-in-the-nation primary, eight days after the Iowa caucuses, if he has any chance of making it to the convention next summer.

Unlike in 2016, however, Sanders is facing several well-funded opponents who are battling with him for front-runner status in the early nominating states ― some of whom are running for president for the first time. (Former Vice President Joe Biden is currently leading the polls.) The progressive firebrand who took the left by storm several years ago still has his loyal supporters, of course, but he no longer has the “it” factor of four years ago. He’s still railing against the political establishment and the “corporate media,” but his radical ideas on job security, health care and education don’t seem so radical anymore, at least among a significant chunk of the Democratic Party ― something he acknowledged this week on the campaign trail…

Speaking of taking advantage of the summer recess, props to Nancy Smash…