On Republicans and iPhones

Conor Finnegan, reporting for CNN:

In a call for free markets and open platforms, Alexander argued that government should be more like Apple, Inc. – working to give private citizens the means "to create a happier, safer, more prosperous life."

[...]

"Republicans want to enable and empower you. We want to be the iPhone party."

Methinks Senator Alexander knows not what he speaks.

(via @reckless)

‘The Right Can’t Admit That Obamacare Is Working’

Ezra Klein, writing for Vox:

Today, the right struggles with Obamacare Derangement Syndrome: the acute inability to see Obamacare as anything but a catastrophic failure that the American people will soon reject. For those suffering from ODS, all bad Obamacare news is good news, and all good Obamacare news is spin. In this world, delays of minor provisions in the law prove that the entire structure is collapsing, while surges of millions of people enrolling in insurance don’t prove anything at all.

Read more...

On iOS Emojis and Diversity

Joey Parker for MTV, on how he called for greater diversity in iOS’s emoji:

I decided to go straight to the top of Apple to find out if they were planning to issue a new, more diverse, set of emojis. So who better to reach out to than Apple CEO Tim Cook? Within a day we got a response!

Good for Apple to be working on this. This reminds me of the push in preschools to incorporate more multicultural dolls like this into the classroom.

‘The Politics Around Welfare’

Michelle Chen, writing for The Nation:

Whatever setback they’ve encountered, poor people don’t need more “incentives” to lift themselves out of poverty, they need an opportunity to not be poor.

Bingo.

On the Benefits of Public Transportation

Katrina vanden Heuvel for The Nation, on how public transit improves lives:

According to the American Public Transportation Association, Americans are using public transportation more today than at any other time since 1956. Public transit provided 10.7 billion individual rides last year, a 1.1 percent increase over 2012 and the latest uptick for an industry that has seen a 37.2 percent increase in ridership since 1995. This is something to crow about.

[…]

Read more...

On Broadband in America and Corporate Cronyism

David Cay Johnston for Newsweek, on the sad state of affairs that is US broadband:

After making a big, bold promise to wire every corner of America, the telecom giants are running away from their vow to provide nationwide broadband service by 2020. For almost 20 years, AT&T, Verizon and the other big players have collected hundreds of billions of dollars through rate increases and surcharges to finance that ambitious plan, but after wiring the high-density big cities, they now say it’s too expensive to connect the rest of the country. But they’d like to keep all that money they banked for the project.

Read more...

‘Let’s Call Sex Work What It Is: Work’

The Nation ran an excerpt of Melissa Gira Grant’s new book on the rights of sex workers:

Read more...

‘What’s Not to Love About Pre-K’

Peter A. Greene, writing for Curmudgucation:

[W]e have politicians deciding that since Kindergartner’s are having trouble meeting the developmentally inappropriate standards of CCSS, the problem must be that they aren’t "ready" for kindergarten. So we have the spectacle of people seriously suggesting that what four-year-olds need is some rigorous instruction, and of course THAT means that we’ll need to give those four-year-olds standardized tests in order to evaluate how well the program is going.

Read more...

‘The First Picture of My Daughter I Ever Hated’

Kelly Poynter, writing for the Education Action Group:

My daughter is incredibly strong. My daughter is a 4-year cancer survivor. She is a fighter with a resilient spirit. It crushes me to see her cry; to see her struggle. My daughter deserves a happy childhood.

Read more...

‘Why Politics Doesn’t Matter Anymore’

Sam Smith for Progressive Review, in a great piece espousing why politics don’t matter:

Where politics once favored the socially intelligent, it now is overwhelmed by the influence of business management, legal doctrine and academic (rather than pragmatic) economics.

The effects of this change are much underrated. For example, government is not a corporation, but if a corporate model is used for it, then voters become treated like consumers or employees rather than citizens, power is increasingly restricted to the upper levels, and success is defined by those who have the most financial effect on the system and on the livelihood of those on the top.

Read more...