The Case For A Warren Presidency

Unlike in 2016, where only one progressive choice mounted a serious challenge to the party establishment, this upcoming primary will also see plenty of leftwing mavericks. Tulsi Gabbard, an Iraq War veteran who supports a non-interventionist foreign policy; Andrew Yang, the Venture for America entrepreneur running on a platform of universal basic income; and Bernie Sanders, 2016’s one progressive, who ignited a movement of young people across the country around the issues of free college, raising the minimum wage to a living wage, and Medicare For All. Yet if you want a real reformer who is also the most likely among the progressive bunch to become president, I would argue to look no further than Elizabeth Warren.

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Bottom Lines Matter (Dispatches from a Dying Democracy, Part III)

It is not a surprise that tellings of stories— and even tellings of true stories— about slavery before and during the Civil War diverge on the question of whether racism is an evolved aspect of human nature which we need to be constantly vigilant against, or if racism is powered by more recent economic drivers. But regardless of how one feels about the origins of race and racism themselves, it’s hard to ignore how the economic engine which for so long drove literal slavery continues today to drive slavery of a more subtle nature. This “subtle slavery” impacts all of the working class now and not just African-Americans.

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Democratize Social Media (Dispatches from a Dying Democracy, Part II)

If the impact of social media advertising and censorship are a concern, then—the thinking goes— why not turn major platforms into public utilities like PBS and NPR, where the government can’t have a relationship with advertisers and where speech is protected by the First Amendment? But while this idea on the surface sounds incredibly appealing, I can’t help but shake the suspicion of “good in theory/monstrous in practice.” In light of the fact that the United States has become a post-9/11 surveillance state, both by means of the Patriot Act and through NSA spying, it seems a tad naive to entrust this same state to somehow be the protector of our dignity and privacy online. Far better, I submit—and far more ambitious, perhaps— to turn major platforms like Facebook and Twitter into the world’s largest cooperatives.

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