Joe Manchin's Not a Reason to Not Vote
Double negatives + Snooki and McFlurries
Happy Friday and welcome back to The Crunchwrap.
I had something else written for this week, but I’m doing some improv. Thank you for reading my livejournal.
In the past few weeks—with rulings like Dobbs or Bruen and legislative inaction on gun control or just the escalating persecution of teachers, librarians, the LGBTQ community, and women seeking healthcare—there’s been a public, nihilistic airing about the pointlessness of voting happening in THE DISCOURSE.
This morning, we got a fresh bout of it once it was reported that Senator Joe Manchin more or less erased the possibility of action on climate change or tax hikes on the wealthy from the Democrat agenda. Here was one iteration:
That’s certainly one way to look at it. And I get it. There’s a whole list of mind-numbing inequities that make it hard to believe that dire and meaningful change is possible. (There’s a 50/50(ish) split in the Senate, but Democrats represent 40 million more people &c.) Also, this is what’s been cut out of Build Back Better:
STILL, and this feels like the most obvious TV pundit thing in the world to say, but another way to look at this is that the Democrats were one Senate seat short of passing some, most, or all of this. And the same nihilism that led voters to fringe candidates in 2016 or to simply stay home is how Trump appointed three SCOTUS judges that just did some of this enormous damage. I’m not sure throwing up hands is a winning strategy.
Another theme I’ve been a total scold about lately is how tech is remaking labor and NOT in a good way. In the spring, I wrote a story for WIRED about how Uber (the upstart) decimated taxi fleets (the incumbent) around the world only to later to join forces with taxi companies after Uber’s own beleaguered drivers didn’t want to work for them anymore. Last month, I covered the serious silliness of 15-minute groceries and the generally tragic history of fast delivery. And last year, I wrote about the rise of ghost kitchens, which have leveraged data to transform struggling chains and mom-and-pop restaurants into soulless commissaries.
Fortunately for me, the good folks at Boston Public Radio noticed this thread and invited me on to talk about the good, bad, and weird of all of this. BUT I SWEAR, it was a fun, light-heartened conversation. Check it out here.
John Fetterman has been having a good time running for the Senate in Pennsylvania against Dr. Oz. Yesterday, his campaign used the celeb manipulation app Cameo to make a video pointing out that Oz only VERY recently became a resident of the Keystone State. The video (h/t Jorge Hernandez) stars mid-aughts “Jersey Shore” icon Snooki.
Snack of the Week: Chocolate Pretzel McFlurry
Many moons ago, you could get a lot of mix-ins in your McFlurry, but some snowflakes out there couldn’t handle having hunks of Butterfinger embedded in their teeth for weeks at a time so now we have two choice: M&M minis and Oreo.
The M&M McFlurry is the better of the two, but occasionally, the folks at corporate throw a bone to unreasonable consumers like me and bring on a compelling new variation on the theme. The new-ish Chocolate Pretzel McFlurry, which comes with a gobby pump (sorry) of caramel, brings together salty, sweet, crunchy, and messy in a way that summer demands. Is it actually good? Eh, don’t overthink it. This is prime McFlurry season.
Nu, what else?
How I Became a Pathological Liar: This piece by Joshua Hunt about how poverty set the groundwork for a life of constant lying is outstanding and will stick with you. (Gift article from me, so no sub required. 😉 )
This short and sweet entry by Friend of The Crunch Sophie Gilbert on Sylvia Plath includes Plath’s annoyance at the success of her rivals and her annoyance at being paid late by The Atlantic.
I revisited this Hanif Abdurraqib joint about life and the movie White Men Can’t Jump and was happy that I did.
That’s it for this week! How are you feeling? Please tell me.
And thanks as always for reading along.