Escape Your Bubble · Read, Educate Yourself, Prepare

Escape Your Bubble By Joining Stand Up Republic

This OTYCD entry originally posted in July 2017.

 

Escape your bubble by joining Stand Up Republic, an organization founded by former CIA officer Evan McMullin and digital politics wizard Mindy Finn.

 

McMullin, you might recall, jumped into the 2016 presidential race late, after the Republicans chose Trump as their candidate. Finn was McMullin’s running mate. Despite not getting started until August and their status as a third-party ticket, McMullin and Finn won three-quarters of a million votes.

 

Since the election ended, McMullin has been an outspoken critic of Trump, so much so that he’s actually gotten under Trump’s skin a few times.

 

He and Finn have also co-founded Stand Up Republic, an organization devoted to “build[ing] and organiz[ing] a grassroots movement in defense of liberty, equality, and truth in America. Our priorities will be to uphold the Constitution and defend the democratic norms and institutions upon which the protection of our basic rights depend.”

 

Please check out Stand Up Republic, follow it on social media, and follow its co-founders as well.

 

Obligatory warning, with apologies for bonking you all on the head about this fact: McMullin and Finn hold at least some different political beliefs than you do. That means they’ll sometimes say things and do things that don’t match your beliefs, and might piss you off well and thoroughly. That’s ok. Really, it’s OK. You’re being asked to look at what they’re doing and support what you like, not endorse every last little everything they do. They understand the danger of Trump–that’s the key thing. One of the reasons this country is so borked right now is we’re fiercely polarized and, in avoiding jerks who disagree with us, we end up avoiding decent people who happen to disagree with us. That’s got to stop if we want to make things better.

 

 

See the Stand Up Republic site:

https://standuprepublic.com

 

 

Like it on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/standuprepublic

 

 

Follow it on Twitter:

@StandUpRepublic

 

 

Donate to Stand Up Republic:

https://standuprepublic.com/donate

 

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the blue button on the upper right or checking the About & Subscribe page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

Follow Evan McMullin on Twitter:

@Evan_McMullin

 

 

Follow Mindy Finn on Twitter:

@mindyfinn

 

 

Read an Op-Ed McMullin wrote for CNN calling for Republicans to stand up to Trump:

http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/28/opinions/conservatives-stop-caving-to-trump-on-liberty-mcmullin/

 

 

Read a New Yorker profile on McMullin:

http://www.newyorker.com/culture/persons-of-interest/evan-mcmullins-quest-to-save-democracy

 

 

Read a good Washington Post opinion piece on McMullin:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/wp/2017/02/17/evan-mcmullin-and-senate-republicans-go-where-chaffetz-wont/?utm_term=.cadeb68c4ef5

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Support The Guardian, the Newspaper That Ben Jacobs Works For

This OTYCD entry originally posted in May 2017.

Support The Guardian, the British paper that employs reporter Ben Jacobs. 

 

By now you’ve heard about how Greg Gianforte, Republican candidate for the open house seat representing all of Montana, snapped and attacked Ben Jacobs, a reporter for The Guardian. Jacobs is evidently OK and Gianforte has since been charged with a misdemeanor. (Gianforte also won the Congressional race.)

 

While we wish we had a more pleasant prompt, we’re taking it. The Guardian is a good newspaper, and has long been a good newspaper. It deserves your attention and your support.

 

Read the links below, and if you like it, become a supporter of The Guardian:

https://membership.theguardian.com/us/supporter?INTCMP=DOTCOM_HEADER_BECOMEMEMBER_US

 

Here’s Jacobs’s video report on his bizarre encounter with Gianforte:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/video/2017/may/25/guardian-ben-jacobs-body-slam-video-greg-gianforte

 

Here’s the story Jacobs filed with The Guardian shortly before the infamous meeting:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/may/25/montana-special-election-gianforte-assault-charge-guardian

 

Here’s the story that Jacobs wrote that probably played a role in pissing off Gianforte:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/apr/28/greg-gianforte-republican-candidate-congress-russia-companies

 

And here’s another story by others at The Guardian on the consequences that Gianforte suffered shortly after attacking Jacobs:

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/may/25/newspapers-ditch-us-republican-charged-with-assaulting-guardian-reporter-montana

 

 

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Read The Normal Person’s Guide to Internet Security

This OTYCD entry originally posted in May 2017.

Read The Normal Person’s Guide to Internet Security, a straightforward guide to some basic things you can do to safeguard yourself online. 

You will remember we squawked as loudly and as quickly as we could about HR Res. 86, which promised to let Internet Service Providers (ISPs) collect information on where you go online and sell it to marketers and other third parties. (You won’t be surprised to learn that it and its Senate counterpart bill were entirely and solely sponsored by Republicans.)

Unfortunately that bill passed Congress and Trump signed it into law. Many state legislators are at work on state-level solutions to protect you, but in the meantime, have a look at The Normal Person’s Guide to Internet Security and see what else you can do to defend yourself.

The guide is essentially Online Privacy 101 and does not pretend to be otherwise. If you’ve already implemented two-step authentication on all your devices and favorite web sites, and have already installed ad blockers, etc. etc., this is probably too elemental for you. But for the rest of us, it’s at least a good refresher-cum-checklist, if not a decent introduction to concepts we should all master.

Read The Normal Person’s Guide to Internet Security (Warning–the URL contains a NSFW word, so you may want to wait till you get home to look at it):

https://whatthefuckjusthappenedtoday.com/guide/internet-security/?utm_source=WTF+Just+Happened+Today%3F&utm_campaign=f3b55c952c-Day_80_Complicit_4_9_2017&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_9813b73b1a-f3b55c952c-158473581

 

Follow its author, Matt Kiser, on Twitter:

@Matt_Kiser

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Say You’re a Health Care Voter

Sick of the attacks on the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Medicare, and Medicaid? Step up and declare you are a Health Care Voter.

 

We at OTYCD spent a good chunk of 2017 rallying you to call your MoCs and urge them to fight Trumpcare, Trumpcare 2.0, Trumpcare 3.whatever, and the GOP tax bill, which contained provisions that weaken the ACA.

 

We also encouraged you to urge your MoCs to renew the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which the GOP-controlled Congress allowed to lapse for months.

 

And we have asked you to remain alert to attacks on Medicare and Medicaid, which might come this year at the behest of GOP ghouls who will demand cuts to social programs now that they voted to add $1.5 million to the deficit by giving the most wealthy people and corporations a huge, entirely unnecessary tax cut.

 

The Health Care Voter campaign is a project co-chaired by Alyssa Milano, Topher Spiro, and others. It is an effort to encourage more than 1 million people to take the Health Care Voter pledge and promote the idea to friends and family in person and on social media.

 

In general, Health Care Voters fight against attacks on the ACA, Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, and other government-funded programs and services that help the sick and help keep us all healthy.

 

Health Care Voters believe that health care is a right, not a privilege, and they pledge to vote their values by supporting candidates who defend these programs and voting out those who don’t.

 

 

See the Health Care Voter website and take the Health Care Voter pledge:

https://healthcarevoter.org

 

 

Read stories from committed Health Care Voters that explain why they took the pledge:

https://healthcarevoter.org/#health-care-voters-in-action

 

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

Follow the Health Care Voter project on Twitter:

@HealthCareVoter

 

 

Like it on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/healthcarevoter

 

 

Buy Health Care Voter merch:

Health Care Voter Shop

 

 

Follow expert Topher Spiro, Health Care Voter co-chair, on Twitter:

@TopherSpiro

 

 

Follow actress Alyssa Milano, Health Care Voter co-chair, on Twitter:

@Alyssa_Milano

 

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Learn from How Italians Ultimately Defeated Silvio Berlusconi

This OTYCD entry originally posted in January 2017.

 

Trump has been likened to Hitler, Mussolini, and other 20th-century autocrats, but his closest analog is Silvio Berlusconi, the blustering, womanizing media mogul who served as Italy’s prime minister from 1994 to 2001.

 

In this November 2016 New York Times op-ed, Luigi Zingales shows us how to avoid the mistakes of Berlusconi opponents, which had the effect of prolonging his grip on power.

The key point to remember:

 

Attack what Trump does, not who he is. Yes, he’s morally bankrupt. Yes, he’s an awful human being. Yes, he’s unbelievably ignorant. Yes, his view of women is horrific. Yes, his twitter-squawkings are insane. Yes, he looks goddamn ridiculous.

 

If you need to complain about things like that, vent in a private Facebook group, or some other protected space. Empty it from your mind, then go out and shine a light on what he is doing, and explain why what he’s doing is bad.

 

You need to do it in a way that spotlights the consequences of his actions as president, and not on why Trump, the man, is repugnant. The instant you start attacking his character, you make him sympathetic. It’s not fair, but it’s what it is. The anti-Berlusconi crowd made that mistake and got seven years of his rule. Do you want eight years of Trump? Then lay off.

 

Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the blue button on the upper right or checking the About & Subscribe page. And tell your friends about the blog!

 

 

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Read About the History (Yes, History) of Accusing Protestors of Being What Some Now Call “Crisis Actors”

This OTYCD post first appeared in May 2018.

 

Read a February 2018 New York Times piece on the history–yes, the history–of accusing protestors and activists of being what some people now call “crisis actors.”

 

A particularly gross, but damnably inevitable, aspect of the aftermath of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas (MSD) High School in Parkland, Florida, was the claim by some that the eloquent young survivors were “crisis actors.”

 

Their accusers weren’t talking about actual crisis actors, who are people hired to play victims and survivors during realistic disaster drills. They were implying that the MSD students, who emerged from their trauma as pissed-off gun safety activists, were paid by some shadowy cabal that’s bent on destroying the Second Amendment.

 

Here’s the thing–while the term has changed, the concept behind the “crisis actor” has not. In a February 2018 piece for the New York Times, writer Niraj Chokshi shows it goes as least as far back as the years following the Civil War. Back then, black “outside agitators” were blamed for allegedly exaggerating their testimonies of the violence and discrimination they suffered, both from the Ku Klux Klan and in general.

 

In the 20th century, the nine children who bravely volunteered to integrate the public schools in Little Rock, Arkansas, were accused of being paid for their trouble.

 

The piece does not discuss why some people are so determined to push the myth that people who step up and do and say difficult things have to be getting paid to do it. (That would be an interesting and worthy follow-up.) Regardless, it’s worth your time.

 

 

Read the New York Times piece on the history of the “crisis actor” accusation:

 

 

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