How to build a stronger middle class: With respect.


Of course, money matters here—money to buy a home, pay for college, and have the resources to care for the elderly parent. But money is not the essence of middle-class status. Being middle class is as much a mindset as a bank balance. It is about how you look at yourself, how you perceive our future, and how you are treated by others.

The critical currency here is not economic resources, but respect. Respect for oneself, and mutual respect for each other. Class is then about respect and relationships, not just earnings and certificates. This is what the philosopher Philip Pettit means when he channels John Milton to argue that a truly equal society is one where everyone “can look each other squarely in the eye.”

This idea of class as respect comes with its own problems of course.

Source: How to build a stronger middle class: With respect.

Racing to Secure Our Future

The Great Powers are in an Artificial Intelligence (AI) arms race. China publicly set a goal of becoming “the world’s primary AI innovation center” by 2030. Vladimir Putin said of AI that whoever “becomes the leader in this sphere will be the ruler of the world.”

More so than any time in human history, technology is revolutionizing how we live – and how we work. Cars park themselves… and are on the verge of driving themselves. Those same cars, along with drones, planes, small satellites – and even light posts – are sensing, collecting, processing, and sharing data at a prolific rate.

Some see automation as a choice that diminishes the importance of human expertise.

Source: Racing to Secure Our Future

Obamas ink multiyear deal with Netflix | TheHill


“President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama have entered into a multi-year agreement to produce films and series for Netflix, potentially including scripted series, unscripted series, docu-series, documentaries, and features,” the company said.

Source: Obamas ink multiyear deal with Netflix | TheHill

Supreme Court upholds agreements that prevent employee class-action suits | TheHill


The Supreme Court’s decision Monday allowing employers to keep employees from joining together in wage and hour disputes could have a dramatic and lasting impact on the American workforce.

In a 5-4 ruling, the justices said arbitration agreements that bar employees from joining together in arbitration or a class-action lawsuit to settle labor disputes are enforceable under the Federal Arbitration Act.

Source: Supreme Court upholds agreements that prevent employee class-action suits | TheHill

Wall Street hopes we’ve forgotten about the financial crisis; we haven’t | TheHill


One September day in 2008, the industry’s lobbyists and friends in Congress argued that subprime mortgages were a triumph of unfettered capitalism and made the dream of homeownership possible for millions.

The next day, the same people, with no apparent embarrassment, said that liberals bullied innocent lenders to give foolish mortgages to low-income and minority borrowers.

The Wall Street plutocrats behind the argument went to all the right schools and belong to all the right clubs.

Source: Wall Street hopes we’ve forgotten about the financial crisis; we haven’t | TheHill

Does Donald Trump write his own tweets? Sometimes | The Boston Globe


.. it’s not always Trump tapping out a Tweet, even when it sounds like his voice. West Wing employees who draft proposed tweets intentionally employ suspect grammar and staccato syntax in order to mimic the president’s style, according to two people familiar with the process.

Staff-written tweets do go through a West Wing process of sorts. When a White House employee wants the president to tweet about a topic, the official writes a memo to the president that includes three or four sample tweets.

Source: Does Donald Trump write his own tweets? Sometimes – The Boston Globe

Democrats may suffer from California’s top-two system | TheHill


Democratic strategists fear a pending catastrophe in California, where so many Democrats are running for Republican-held House seats that they’re threatening to box the party out of general election races.

Now Democrats are spending precious resources to boost turnout, hoping that their embarrassment of candidates does not turn out to be a straight-up embarrassment. Party leaders have dropped millions of dollars into key GOP-held districts in Southern California.

Source: Democrats may suffer from California’s top-two system | TheHill

House Republicans to call for second special counsel to investigate alleged FISA abuse, Hillary Clinton probe | Fox News


A group of congressional Republicans plans to introduce a resolution Tuesday calling for the appointment of a second special counsel to investigate alleged misconduct at the FBI and Justice Department.

The resolution is backed by Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., the chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus as well as two of the group’s co-founders — Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, and Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla.

Source: House Republicans to call for second special counsel to investigate alleged FISA abuse, Hillary Clinton probe | Fox News

Pressure rising on GOP after Trump–DOJ fight’s latest turn | TheHill

Republican senators believe that if Trump fired Mueller or obviously interfered in his investigation, it would backfire politically and potentially hurt their chances of keeping control of Congress.

They want to avoid an all-out war between Trump and Justice that might draw parallels to the Nixon-era “Saturday Night Massacre,” when senior department officials resigned instead of complying with orders to fire a special counsel.

Source: Pressure rising on GOP after Trump–DOJ fight’s latest turn | TheHill

DOJ, Trump reach deal on expanded Russia review | TheHill


After summoning top DOJ, FBI and intelligence officials to the White House, Trump agreed the DOJ’s inspector general should “expand its current investigation to include any irregularities with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s or the Department of Justice’s tactics concerning the Trump Campaign,” White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement.

The Justice Department already referred the matter to Inspector General Michael Horowitz on Sunday after Trump demanded that the department probe the FBI’s use of a confidential source in its investigation of the Trump campaign’s ties to Russia in 2016.

Source: DOJ, Trump reach deal on expanded Russia review | TheHill