Welcome to onfocus—a weblog by Paul Bausch where I post recommended links, my photos, and occasional thoughts. Subscribe here if you like RSS.
Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has endorsed President Joe Biden’s reelection campaign, a sign of the president’s strength in uniting his party to have the backing of one of its most liberal members.
This is the way.
Heartland Signal
Some journalists are so caught up in the debate furor that one of the most dangerous and consequential Supreme Court terms in memory was pushed off the front pages. When the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on immunity found that president’s might actually be kings, that’s a game changer that deserves more attention than it got. Instead, news outlets have dedicated most of their resources to covering every blip on the Biden debate follow up instead.
Wake up, journalists! Our democracy depends on an informed electorate and this horse race BS is a sideshow compared with the real story of a massive judicial power grab by a corrupt court.
Anyway, my point is just: none of this will change if Harris replaces Biden at the top of the ticket. The idea that the media -- with these soulless careerist court gossips in charge -- will allow it is just fantasy. They need Dems in disarray & so they will engineer it.
I don’t like to link to stuff on new Twitter but this is a nice summary of the media mode of operation. There is no move that Democrats can make that will change how the media covers them. You have to factor that into your decision making.
“Trump does not want people to know about the entire vanguard of extremist weirdos around him—and what their plans are when he governs,” says Chris Hayes on voters finding out about the far-right agenda that is Project 2025.
The real Republican agenda is this over-the-top Project 2025. The party isn’t putting out policy positions anymore—this is it. It’s extremism all the way down.
The Nation
There is no way to change that outcome in the short term. In the long term, the only way to undo the authoritarianism the court has just ushered in is to expand the Supreme Court. Democrats would have to win the upcoming presidential election and the House and the Senate. Then Congress would have to pass a law expanding the number of justices on the Supreme Court; then the Senate would have to pass that law as well, which, at a minimum, would likely have to include getting rid of the filibuster. Then the president would have to sign such a bill, and appoint additional Supreme Court justices who do not think that presidents should be kings—and then those justices would have to be confirmed.
The minority rule coup seems pretty complete with this ruling. Definitely an uphill climb for we the people.
Media Matters
We found 144 articles focused on either or both Biden’s and Trump’s ages or mental acuities in the period studied, with 67% focused just on Biden’s age or mental acuity and only 7% on just Trump’s.
Look how not biased against Republicans they are! They are public opinion makers, not public opinion reporters.
404 Media
Generative AI could “distort collective understanding of socio-political reality or scientific consensus,” and in many cases is already doing that, according to a new research paper from Google, one of the biggest companies in the world building, deploying, and promoting generative AI.
Thanks for the warning while you keep destroying reality, I guess?
The Frame Lab
If the entire press establishment sees fit to call on Biden to drop out of the race because of a bad debate, why haven't they applied this same logic to the convicted criminal who promises to destroy American democracy and rule as an authoritarian dictator?
My hunch is media owners think a Trump dictatorship would be better for their bottom line. Or maybe they’re true believers? The results are the same.
Biden had a horrible night Thursday. But the debate about the debate is misplaced. The only person who should withdraw from the race is Trump.
I’ll take an ethical guy who cares about people over a destructive sociopath every time.
Dan Gillmor
The odds grow stronger every day that everything won’t be OK. A radical right-wing faction now fully controls one of our two major political parties and a super-majority in the Supreme Court. Its presidential candidate, a convicted criminal without an ounce of honor or conscience, has made clear his intention to be a dictator if elected. Supporting them is an army of activists who see the finish line in their long march to create an authoritarian — or outright fascist — regime that mocks the will of the majority with increasingly harsh minority rule.
Dan Gillmor is asking journalists to meet the moment.
Juneteenth’s history prevailed through sheer will and a fight for representation. Black activists have been fighting for Juneteenth to become a paid federal holiday for decades. It was only on July 17, 2021 that US President Joe Biden finally signed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act, declaring Juneteenth an official federal holiday.
A brief, shocking (to me) history of Juneteenth. Shocked to learn people continued to be illegally enslaved into the 1960s.
The present wave of generative AI tools has done a lot to help us generate lots of code, very fast. The easy parts are becoming even easier, at a truly remarkable pace. But it has not done a thing to aid in the work of managing, understanding, or operating that code. If anything, it has only made the hard jobs harder.
If AI starts doing the work of junior developers how will you get senior developers in the future?
« Older posts