Open Thread and Link Farm, The Pants Have Eyes Edition

(Photo found on Bill Mudron’s twitter.)

  1. Open Enrollment for AFFORDABLE HEALTHCARE Started Yesterday | And Taking It Personally
  2. Rigged: How Voter Suppression Threw Wisconsin to Trump – Mother Jones
  3. Unsealed Documents Show That Kris Kobach Is Dead Set on Suppressing the Right to Vote | American Civil Liberties Union
    Also note that Kobach directly lied about the existence of these documents.
  4. Things That Are Hillary Clinton’s Fault, Starting With Harvey Weinstein | Literary Hub
  5. Is Washington bungling the Census?
    The statistics branches of the government – not only the Census, although the Census is crucial – are critically underfunded.
  6. EPA cancels talks by 3 agency scientists at Providence event – News – – Providence, RI
    Because Republican policy is to shut up scientists rather than permitting them to talk about climate change. They really are the anti-science party.
  7. Activists at Reed College are disrupting lectures to protest “white supremacy,” but many students are taking steps to stop them – The Atlantic
  8. Chattanooga man loses job after sitting during national anthem at weekend event | WTVC
    It’s perfectly legal for them to fire this dude, but imo it shouldn’t be. Private employers aren’t the government, of course – but in practice, most working people are not rich and cannot risk losing their job. Employers policing what employees say off the job is an enormous threat to people’s real freedom to speak out.
  9. Stop Calling Women Nags — How Emotional Labor is Dragging Down Gender Equality
    Thanks to Grace for the link.
  10. Inside Sammy’s Bowery Follies, the scuzziest, greatest dive bar of all time (circa 1940s).
  11. The Bump Stock Millionaire and the Las Vegas Massacre – Bloomberg
    But he needn’t worry about his invention being outlawed: Three Weeks After Las Vegas, Legislation to Ban Bump Stocks Has Stalled Out In Congress
  12. The Obamas Choose Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald to Paint Their Official Portraits for the Smithsonian
    Both artists produce works that are very skilled (as is always the case for the artists selected for these gigs) and very interesting (which is not always the case).
  13. Schrödinger’s Fat Girl – Medium
    “The replies come to no consensus but rather devolve into arguments about whether Blizzard’s art of Mei has depicted her as fat or not.”
  14. There’s No Fire Alarm for Artificial General Intelligence – Machine Intelligence Research Institute
    Linked for the intro, which argues that the main function of fire alarms isn’t to tell us that there’s a fire, but to make it socially acceptable for us to flee the building.
  15. Many of us know this famous picture of Tommie Smith and John Carlos. But few know the bravery and tragedy of the white guy, Peter Norman.
  16. Distinctions Between Natalism Positions | Thing of Things
  17. The Inequality Beneath the Sexual-Harassment Headlines – The Atlantic
    “The problem is worse in low-profile, low-accountability, and low-wage industries.”
  18. When I was nineteen years old, Elie Wiesel grabbed my ass.
    “While other men have done, technically, worse things to me, Wiesel’s actions were, in some ways, more sorrow-inducing. Perhaps bad people do bad things. Conversely, one might hope, good people don’t do bad things.”
  19. America’s affordable-housing stock dropped by 60 percent from 2010 to 2016 – The Washington Post
  20. A Catfishing With a Happy Ending – The Atlantic
    This story did not go where I initially expected it to go.
  21. The Giant Frog Farms of the 1930s Were a Giant Failure – Atlas Obscura
    And the most basic problems with the frog-eating industry continue today.
  22. Why Is Virginia Tech Silent About a White Supremacist Instructor Threatening and Harassing an Undergrad? 
    And why hasn’t he been fucking fired yet?
  23. Wolverine’s head legitimately looks like two Batmans kissing in front of a sunset.”
  24. Ryan Murphy’s new show ‘Pose’ will feature the largest transgender cast in TV history / LGBTQ Nation
    Very cool. I’m a bit disappointed not to see Jamie Clayton on the cast list, I thought she was amazing in Sense8.
  25. School shootings and the brutalisation of boys
    ” It seems to me that the feminist mainstream is eager to condemn the brutality of masculinity and the violent excesses of men, but surprisingly reluctant to concern itself with the violent brutalisation of boys that instils that brutality in the first place.”
  26. The Legion Lonely | HazlittA longer article asks, why are so many men lonely? (Men in particular seem more likely to be lonely as we age.) Lots of interesting material here, too much to sum up in this format.
  27. Democrats add to ‘Better Deal’ platform with a slew of pro-labor-union ideas – The Washington Post “The main problem facing this installment of the Better Deal is one that’s bedeviled every Democratic policy rollout: The difficulty of getting anyone to notice.” Also quotes some disenchanted union folks saying they’re going to try to advance the cause through referendums.
  28. Awaiting Trump’s coal comeback, miners reject retraining
    This is just depressing.
  29. The Civil War Was Not a Mistake – The Atlantic
  30. The Monster Eating Our State and City Budgets : Democracy Journal
    “The monster” is underfunded pension benefits, and rising Medicaid costs. This long article outlines the problems and suggests some solutions, focusing mainly on the pension issue.

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25 Responses to Open Thread and Link Farm, The Pants Have Eyes Edition

  1. 1
    chuckles says:

    #7 is an engaging and well-paced read – or should I say Reed. :) It lays out how campus politics is different from electoral politics and why left activists have had so much success with one and not the other.

    Reedies Against Racism, which was protesting classes – not trollish outside speakers brought in to bait them, but classes – operated largely unopposed because they utilized verbal abuse and intimidation. So widespread was the climate of fear that the student newspaper would not even run anti-RAR quotes, let alone op-eds. One particularly memorable Facebook group exchange between a leader of the group and a student who didn’t want to attend a protest is excerpted in the article and it reads like a cross between Mean Girls and a Maoist struggle session.

    Only when POC students with sufficient identity “cover” called them out in public did the dam burst and the campus start calling out RAR. They shattered the illusion that they spoke for all POC and the organization was revealed to be a small clique that felt entitled to impose their will on an institution they openly loathed.

    College administrators are terrified of bad PR and will do anything to create an illusion of calm, especially if it can be done by hiring a bunch more administrators and setting up some more panels. Students are susceptible to peer pressure and social ostracism. You can bully your way into controlling the campus debate for some time, until the wider student body learns that volume and popular support are not the same thing.

    Outside the campus, these tactics are useful. Call someone a “laughin at a lynchin kinda white” for not protesting on demand (quote from the article) – a vanishingly small number of sycophants and masochists will sign up for that kind of abuse and everyone else will drop you like a hot potato. Try to occupy a Senator’s office and nobody there will hesitate to call the cops and get that cleared up in a matter of minutes with nothing achieved.

    Protest tactics honed on campuses are a dead end. Protestors who cut their teeth on these shenanigans are setting themselves up for breathtaking amounts of failure unless set straight.

  2. 2
    RonF says:

    In a way, #7 and #22 tie together. For some reason that I frankly can’t account for, there are a lot of schools whose administrators will simply not take action against either students or faculty who harass or otherwise interfere with other students’s or faculty members’ right to speak or simply conduct ordinary educational business. Speakers’ and faculty members’ presentations are interrupted or blocked entirely. Faculty members harass students; the fact that there’s plenty of left-wing faculty members who have done it to conservative students doesn’t justify what this guy is doing.

    The perception of the focus of the academic environment has been slowly degrading in the public’s eye. More and more they are being viewed as indoctrination centers run by administrations who are either openly complicit or who seem to be incompetent or unconcerned as long as they keep their jobs and keep securing funding. Opposition to funding universities is held to be anti-intellectual, but what a lot of people I talk to think is that the universities themselves are anti-intellectual.

  3. 3
    nobody.really says:

    From, the publishing arm of the National Institutes of Health: Differences in negativity bias underlie variations in political ideology.

    [L]iberals and conservatives differ from each other in purviews of life with little direct connection to politics—from tastes in art, to desire for closure … from disgust sensitivity, to the tendency to pursue new information…. Compared with liberals, conservatives tend to register greater physiological responses to [negative] stimuli and also to devote more psychological resources to them. ….We … stress[] that identifying differences across ideological groups is not tantamount to declaring one ideology superior to another.

  4. 4
    nobody.really says:

    Will Rahn, CBS News Digital:

    In 2016, … Donald Trump … ran on a distinctly unlibertarian message of less trade, less immigration, more cops, and more government. [But t]he first year of Trump’s presidency is the closest we’ll probably ever get to a real libertarian moment….

    While in office, Trump hasn’t done anything, aside from some regulatory relief and a travel ban currently surviving by the skin of its teeth in the courts. Congress hasn’t been able to pass any major legislation….

    [A]n ineffective Congress isn’t the worst thing by libertarian standards. Yes, they haven’t repealed Obamacare or Dodd-Frank, and they may not even be able to lower taxes all that much. But they’re not passing new regulations. They’re not raising taxes. The pre-Trump status quo, while deeply imperfect, is being more or less in place. And it can be said with some confidence that Ryan, who gobbled up Ayn Rand novels in his youth, maintains an essentially libertarian outlook despite the compromises he feels forced to make.

    [T]he executive branch … remains understaffed and overburdened. The government is already smaller in the sense that it has fewer people running around than it did during the Obama years, and it’s hard to regulate if you’re not hiring regulators. No wonder the stock market, which initially fell when news broke that Trump had been elected, keeps soaring to new heights.

    With a few notable exceptions, Trump has also been appointing a raft of libertarian-leaning jurists to the bench, including Neil Gorsuch….

    Trump’s government is not the night-watchman state many libertarians would prefer. But it is incompetent enough to not get much of anything done, which might be the next best thing. Call it the drunk-watchman state….

    Murray Rothbard may have been on to something when he argued that the only way forward for libertarianism is right-wing populism.

  5. 5
    nobody.really says:

    Remember Amp’s cartoon “Time Traveler“? It depicts Amp at various ages, time-traveling back to report that the new president is even worse than anything we could have possibly imagined, culminating with the report that by 2024 we’ll be ruled by giant alien roaches (“So it gets better!” we sigh with relief.)

    The Daily Show is finally catching up.

  6. 6
    Ampersand says:

    Nobody Really, thanks for that link! That’s amazing!

  7. 8
    nobody.really says:

    “Ioana Marinescu, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice, who researches basic income, says that research on the Alaska fund is enlightening, but not dispositive. ‘We know $2,000 a year makes a real difference to many people,’ Marinescu says. ‘But would something lower still make a difference? We don’t know.’

  8. 9
    nobody.really says:

    In a blatant attempt to distract Amp from doing productive things, the NYT reports that DC Comics has fired Eddie Berganza–editor of the best-selling Dark Knight: Metal and Superman series–after BuzzFeed News reported that he had forcibly kissed or groped co-workers in the 2000s.

  9. 10
    Jake Squid says:

    After being hit with a 38% increase in the renewal rate for our company’s health insurance – and switching to another insurer at only a 12% increase – I was looking through our premium history. That 38% increase would have been about $10 more per month than we paid in 2013. Our 2017 rate was 22% less than our 2013 rate. It’s hard to say exactly why our rate spiked so much this year but I have my suspicions.

  10. 11
    Harlequin says:

    Since this is getting a bit off topic–after I liked to a piece by Victoria Coren on this thread, Amp said:

    Odd trivia: Victoria is married to the brilliant comedian David Mitchell (of Mitchell & Webb).

    I haven’t read Mitchell’s autobiography, but a while back somebody linked me to this clip of him reading the part about Victoria Coren. It’s very sweet, and also has an interesting bit about what it’s like dating when you’re famous.

    (I’ve also just realized that my stance on SciHub is not particularly consistent with my stance on watching British panel show content on YouTube in the US…)

  11. 12
    nobody.really says:

    [W]hy should the Palatine Boors be suffered to swarm into our Settlements, and by herding together establish their Language and Manners to the Exclusion of ours? Why should Pennsylvania, founded by the English, become a Colony of Aliens, who will shortly be so numerous as to Germanize us instead of our Anglifying them, and will never adopt our Language or Customs, any more than they can acquire our Complexion.

    [T]he Number of purely white People in the World is proportionably very small. All Africa is black or tawny. Asia chiefly tawny. America (exclusive of the new Comers) wholly so. And in Europe, the Spaniards, Italians, French, Russians and Swedes, are generally of what we call a swarthy Complexion; as are the Germans also, the Saxons only excepted, who with the English, make the principal Body of White People on the Face of the Earth. I could wish their Numbers were increased. And while we are, as I may call it, Scouring our Planet, by clearing America of Woods, and so making this Side of our Globe reflect a brighter Light to the Eyes of Inhabitants in Mars or Venus, why should we in the Sight of Superior Beings, darken its People? why increase the Sons of Africa, by Planting them in America, where we have so fair an Opportunity, by excluding all Blacks and Tawneys, of increasing the lovely White and Red? But perhaps I am partial to the Complexion of my Country, for such Kind of Partiality is natural to Mankind.

    Benjamin Franklin, “Observations Concerning the Increase of Mankind” (1751)

  12. 13
    nobody.really says:

    From @12, who were the “Palatine Boors”?

    The Palatine Hill is the centermost of the Seven Hills of Rome, overlooking both the Roman Forum and the Circus Maximus. By lore the location of the city’s founding, it is in fact one of the city’s earliest settlements and, starting with Augustus, a favored location for Roman Emperors to build their palaces. Indeed, “Palatine” became the root of words such as palace (Italian: palazzo, French: palais, German: Palast, Czech palác, etc.), paladin (chivalric knight in public service), and comes palatinus or count palatine (Roman title for government official and, later, a feudal title comparable to a marquis.)

    A region administered by a count palatine around the Rhine (today, on the French/German border) became known as the Palatinate. Following a series of raids by French troops and counter-strikes by German troops, 13,000 German peasants who lived along the border—a minority of whom actually lived in the Palatinate—fled to England in 1709. The conspicuous nature of this sizable group, and their failure to immediately integrate into English society, prompted politicized debates about the merits of immigration. English authorities eventually tried to settle them in England, Ireland, and the Colonies. In the New World, “palatines” became a term form any German-speaking immigrant.

    This created the Palatine regions of New York, and the Pennsylvania Dutch (from “Deutsch,” or German). And the Pennsylvania Dutch prompted Franklin’s objections. Ironically for him, one of those Pennsylvania Dutch was Nicholas Herkimer, later a commanding general in the Revolutionary War.

    In case you were curious….

  13. 14
    RonF says:

    nobody.really @ 4: “[T]he executive branch … remains understaffed and overburdened.”

    Well, according to the Washington post, there’s blame to spread around on that. On the one hand, to this point in their first terms Pres. Trump has nominated fewer people than his 3 immediate predecessors. OTOH, the Senate has confirmed fewer of those nominations than his 3 immediate predecessors. He has more nominated but unconfirmed nominees than his 3 immediate predecessors and the amount of time the Senate is taking to confirm them is anywhere from 33% to about 80% longer than his 4 immediate predecessors. It is alleged that the Senate Democrats are slow-walking his nominees so as to keep their Obama Administration predecessors in office.

  14. 16
    nobody.really says:

    On March 10, 2008, the New York Times broke the news that … Eliot Sptizer … had been a client of a high-end escort service, spending thousands of dollars on prostitutes while serving as New York’s attorney general and in his current position as chief executive of the Empire State….

    I was shocked. And more than a little bummed out. I had really admired Spitzer, who had been a crusader for progressive reforms, taking on Wall Street banks and powerful corporations with an incomparable fearlessness, almost a swagger. I had even thought of him as a potential vice presidential candidate in 2008, or maybe even the first Jewish president. Now all that was out the window.

    The more I thought about it, the more depressed I got. I thought about how hard he must have worked to win his first election, and how many people had helped, and how important it must have been to all of them that he get the chance to make a difference. I thought about all the important work he had done as attorney general and was now doing as governor, and what would happen to his mission of reining in corporate abuse. I thought about other politicians who had made similar mistakes, like Gary Hart…. How could these guys risk everything that they’d worked for like that? How could they live with themselves after letting so many people down?

    * * *

    I was now the presumptive [Democratic] nominee [for Senate].

    But I was still stuck in my funk, distracted by the tragic fall of Eliot Spitzer. And I couldn’t help but feel a strange sense of foreboding.

    Al Franken, Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, Chap. 15.

  15. 17
    nobody.really says:

    EARTH-SHATTERING DISCUSSION (regardless of the temperature, or changes therein, of said Earth): Why do we say “his or her,” but not “her or his”? Neither chivalry nor alphabetical order supports our standard usage.


  16. 18
    Grace Annam says:


    Why do we say “his or her,” but not “her or his”? Neither chivalry nor alphabetical order supports our standard usage.

    My guess: because it used to be “his”, because the male default used to be standard across the board (“In 2039, Man reached the stars…”) and when adding “her” to make things more inclusive, it wouldn’t sound right to say “hers and his”, and would also be falsely chivalric and/or giving too much of a concession. (Also, to my ear, it doesn’t sound quite as fluid, but I suspect strongly that that is a result of a lifetime of hearing it one way, rather than actual ease of pronunciation.)


  17. 19
    Jeff says:

    nobody.really @17

    English has a lot of weird rules, and it’s surprising how many of them we obey without realizing it… For instance, descriptive words always appear in a certain order: opinion, size, age, shape, colour, origin, material and purpose. As an example, “I have a really cool, little, new, rectangular, black, Japanese, carbon fibre iPad.” And if you switched any of those descriptors, it would come off as awkward as hell.

    Grace @ 18

    My guess: because it used to be “his”, because the male default used to be standard across the board (“In 2039, Man reached the stars…”)

    That’s not quite right…. “Man”, as in “Mankind” is actually gender neutral in origin. If you rolled back about 800 years, you probably wouldn’t be able to hold a conversation with the inhabitants of England at the time, lots of Old English words and terms are simply unrecognizable now. One of the things that’s changed are gender identifiers.

    What we now think of as Man (the species), Man (the gender) and Woman (the gender) used to be “Mann”, “Wermann”, and “Wifmann”, respectively, and somewhere along the way Wermenn lost their unique identifier. Even then, it was fairly understood than “Man” was still a stand in for the shared experience of mankind.

    I think that changed around the time of second wave feminism. There was a serious push to make language inclusive, and I think that people who didn’t really know the origin of the word, but saw something they thought was noninclusive, wanted to push for inclusivity.

  18. 20
    Charles says:

    I agree with Grace, the “or hers” is added as an afterthought to the generic male, “his (or hers)”. I wonder if people using that construction in cases where the generic is assumed female use “hers (or his)”, say “her (or his) makeup”…. a quick google search confirms that all the hits for “her or his makeup” are about makeup, and all but one of the top hits for “his or her makeup” are about genetic makeup or makeup schedules or such not.

    Hisorers did sound more euphonic to me than Herseris when I started saying them, but I think pretty quickly becomes similarly smooth, although maybe the emphasis in Herseris wants to be on ‘Ser’ rather than ‘Her’ or ‘is’ more than the emphasis wants to be on ”or’ in Hisorers. Also, the consonant pair ‘rs’ seems like it wants to split in Herseris, which makes it harder to understand.

  19. 21
    Harlequin says:

    Amusingly, I just yesterday watched the comedian James Acaster take on the his or hers issue.

  20. 22
    Harlequin says:


    There was a serious push to make language inclusive, and I think that people who didn’t really know the origin of the word, but saw something they thought was noninclusive, wanted to push for inclusivity.

    This framing is kind of interesting to me, in that it seems to imply that if second-wave feminists had understood the historical meaning they would not have wanted to change “man” for “human.” But I don’t think that’s true. After all, what makes the historical derivation of the word more relevant than a modern ear’s understanding? When kids in high school called me “weird”, if I’d said “but I can’t control your destiny,” I’m sure they would have said, “See? Weird.”

    (My intellect wants me to be descriptivist, and yet you will pry “whoa” from my cold dead hands. It is not “woah” and it is definitely not “whoah”. Among many other snobberies. :) )

  21. 23
    Grace Annam says:


    English has a lot of weird rules, and it’s surprising how many of them we obey without realizing it… For instance, descriptive words always appear in a certain order: opinion, size, age, shape, colour, origin, material and purpose. As an example, “I have a really cool, little, new, rectangular, black, Japanese, carbon fibre iPad.” And if you switched any of those descriptors, it would come off as awkward as hell.

    Every language I have studied has adjective hierarchy, and while there is some cross-linguistic continuity, the patterns are not universal. They’re not universal in English, either. You’ve probably heard of the “big, bad wolf”, and to use your example, I am a native speaker of American English, and to my ear this sounds perfectly cromulent: “I have a really cool, little, new, rectangular, black, carbon fiber, Japanese iPad.” The ordering can be influenced to some extent by which modifier the speaker regards as most intrinsic, or most important to their point, and by other things, for instance, euphony and intonation.

    That’s not quite right…. “Man”, as in “Mankind” is actually gender neutral in origin. If you rolled back about 800 years, you probably wouldn’t be able to hold a conversation with the inhabitants of England at the time, lots of Old English words and terms are simply unrecognizable now. One of the things that’s changed are gender identifiers.

    Sure. And “gyrle” meant any child or young person, up until the 14th Century or so.

    But none of that speaks to how we changed from a universal use of “he” to a common use of “he or she” to mean “the generic unspecified human being referenced in this sentence”. I’m old enough to have been taught originally that “he” was correct, and that “he or she” was unnecessary and clumsy. I watched part of the process of the academic world conceding that “he or she” was the preferred use (and now we’re watching the probable start of general acceptance of “they”, which has been in play for centuries, but never, to my knowledge, ascendant until now). So, while I cannot say it with complete certainty, I’ve seen a shift from “he” to “he or she”, and therefore I’m reasonably confident in saying that it’s because “or she” was a concession to social pressure in the mid-to-late 20th Century.


    Amusingly, I just yesterday watched the comedian James Acaster…

    I love that punchline. Also, “…and I hope I’m pronouncing this right…” Thanks, Harlequin.


  22. 24
    nobody.really says:

    I am a native speaker of American English, and to my ear this sounds perfectly cromulent….

    Funny you’d say that. Though I’m a native Klingon speaker, to my ears this sounds perfectly Romulant.

    Happy Thanksgiving–her and him alike.

  23. 25
    nobody.really says:

    Too late to aid my Thanksgiving conversation with a certain uncle, I’ve just read Duncan Kennedy’s “A Left of Liberal Interpretation of Trump’s ‘Big Win.’” Kennedy acknowledges that, due to the razor thin margin of Trump’s victory, we are justified in identifying pretty much anything as a potential cause. That said, he uses this essay to focus on free-market neoliberalism:

    “[M]any non-college white voters who had voted for Obama did not turn out for Clinton or voted for third party candidates…. [M]any non-college whites who had not voted in 2012 turned out to vote for Trump….

    Why would non-college whites vote for Trump instead of for Hillary? [T]hey were voting against Hillary for the same reason they voted against Bush and Kasich in the primary[:] because [Trump] was trashing the dominant policies of the Democratic-Republican, neoliberal consensus.

    * * *

    Robert Putnam, Our Kids from the left, and Coming Apart by Charles Murray (yes, him), from the right, [agree] that there is a white, ex-working class increasingly isolated from what is happening to everyone else and trapped … at the bottom. [T]he biggest change from the 1950s for non-college whites is the virtual disappearance of upward social mobility. A high school diploma was once an indicator of promise; now, without more it indicates “no prospects.”

    [F]or this group, even Trump’s much mocked evocation of a golden American past is right on point….

    The victims certainly deserve part of the blame for their fate. A “traditional values” response to the crisis—say by banning sex education and abortion—seems wildly counterproductive; locating the problem in big government or affirmative action or immigration likewise.

    But I don’t think the white, ex-working class deserves what has happened to them, even if racist and sexist attitudes and utterances and practices are more common (o.k., much more) there than among their college-educated counterparts. [I]t was logical—if not justifiable—for non-college, white voters in these particular deindustrialized or declining agricultural locales to vote for Trump.

    * * *

    [T]he single most important cause of devastation [among white non-college communities] has been the adoption of “neoliberal” policies, equally by Democrats and Republicans, … since approximately the Carter Administration. Nixon was the last president with a strong, affirmative model of state intervention to stabilize the system and inflect its growth….

    [N]eoliberalism is …. a set of policies that collectively eliminated particular regulatory structures that had produced relatively evenly distributed growth…. [T]he drivers of policy change acted from a correct estimate that there would be many gainers, above all, and enormously the one percent….

    * * *

    [Neoliberalism led to] a dramatic, long-term rise both in GDP per capita and in household wealth. The losses [among white non-college communities] have been no more than a small fraction, in dollar terms, of the gains in dollars to the people living in the centers of development. Those people include migrants from the internal American periphery who escaped to a better life in the cities, and a large, post-civil-rights, black, middle class. Moreover, the gains to perhaps a billion very poor people living in the countries that now export to the US have been life-transforming….

    So what’s the problem? The neoliberal policies caused the good development and they caused its bad effects. [But] the bad effects go far beyond national trends of increased income and wealth inequality, wage stagnation, and differential red/blue state growth rates. They were concentrated on a subsector of non-college whites and the black, urban poor….

    The bad effects were not a necessary cost of the gains…. The gains were so large that it would have been possible, without changing any neoliberal policy, to tax enough of them away from the gainers to fund large-scale attempts to halt or reverse peripheral downward spirals. Alternatively, it would have been possible to alter many neoliberal policies at the micro level, selectively departing from free trade and domestic uncompensated factor mobility (capital can’t just up and leave), to tilt toward losers. Or some combination.

    Nothing like that happened.

    * * *

    Trump’s switching non-college, white votes, and of Hillary’s lost, no-show, white, non-college votes, were in rebellion against the Republican/Democrat … consensus…. [Yet] nothing will come of it. The Inaugural was a farewell. These voters are obviously powerless in relation to the consensus. Only 40 percent of the electorate is white and non-college educated; the putative rebels are a minority of the minority with no consensus about what’s wrong or what to do about it.”

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