Ordinary World: Missing President’s Day Edition

Andrew Donaldson

Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire and his writing website Yonder and Home. Andrew is the host of Heard Tell podcast.

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50 Responses

  1. Philip H says:

    OW3 – I’d make the scientific paper look like PLOS One.

    OW4 – File this under yes and? Daily Kos had an essay over the weekend about how the GOP, ever the party of personal responsibility, seems to be led by people who never want to take any for their actions (Greg Abbott I’m lookin at you). Carano took actions she won’t take responsibility for. That’s on her, not cancel culture.

    OW8 – This sound eerily like the dead horse I keep beating about Democrats no longer being the Party that Fights ™. And it’s a true assessment, and further indication of how far right the DEmocratic Party has moved in search of campaign cash.Report

  2. Michael Cain says:

    [OW5]: As I got older, and flying unsettled me more and more, I got to where I could recall all of the stories about pilots pulling off seemingly miraculous results when the equipment failed. And took some comfort from the fact that they got psychiatric evaluations every six months to catch problems before they became suicidal. I’m not sure you could get me on a plane today. I’m to the “I’m simply too old to go bouncing around the sky in an aluminum tube” stage.

    This may turn out to not be Boeing’s fault, but they’ve got to be quaking over problems in yet another of their products. Based on recent history, it seems the way to bet on this one is “Flaws in Boeing software pushed the engines into out-of-spec operation and eventually one of them blew up.”Report

    • Philip H in reply to Michael Cain says:

      I rather suspect Pratt & WHitney’s design and construction specs, in as much as a smaller version of the same engine apparently suffered a similar failure on a 747 over Holland this weekend.Report

    • Oscar Gordon in reply to Michael Cain says:

      Given all my experience with turbines and just how truly horrible a turbine failure can be for anyone nearby, the fact that very few turbines come apart like that, and when they do, the fact that such events rarely result in injury or death, should tell you something.

      When we would do turbine failure analysis, the working assumption was that if any of the spinning parts came loose (a rotor burst), the shrapnel would leave the nacelle with infinite energy, That means each and every piece would travel in a straight line and pass through the aircraft like it was made of water vapor, and not aluminum. The reason rotor bursts don’t make airframes and passengers look like the victim of a nasty claymore detonation is because engineers know that rotors occasionally burst, and thus there is some very clever armor that doesn’t stop the shrapnel, but deflects aft, so it destroys the engine and exists out the back, rather than towards the wing or fuselage.

      As for the video, I kinda like the flames pouring out of the cascades.Report

  3. Jaybird says:

    OW8: Saw this, dropped jaw.


    • Jesse in reply to Jaybird says:

      Of course, the whole problem with that argument is there was never actually this mythical working class labor solidarity, especially in the US. During the New Deal Era (1933-1965), there was an inherent heiarchial deal – the white (mostly male) working class would be OK w/ some distribution to the non-white working class, as long as they stay on top.

      Once the non-white (and non-male) working class asked for actual economic and civil equality. despite a massive expansion in the welfare state at the same time, is when the Democrat’s started passing laws that began to make non-white people legally equal in this nation. After all, it’s not as if Hubert Humphrey or George McGovern was talking about neoliberal policies.

      Also, it’s absolutely hilarious to watch a bunch of elitists like Andrews & Yang trying to tell their just-so stories about how the left “lost” the working class.

      Plus, the most successful candidates in the past forty years for the Democrats when it comes to getting the white working class has been unsurprisingly, the ones with the most right-leaning social policies, aka Bill Clinton, despite the fact Bill was also the most right-leaning economically.Report

      • Jaybird in reply to Jesse says:

        There’s always a lot of weird “wait, what are we talking about?” as we pivot from talking about “the left” or “the Democrats” or whatever.

        It’s like “do the Democrats support school segregation?” and the answer comes “THE LEFT OPPOSES SEGREGATION AND THE RIGHT SUPPORTS IT!” and, magically, someone like Bill Clinton can be representative of “The Left” when he does something good and representative of “The Democrats” when he does something economically right-leaning (is “neoliberal” still a thought-terminating cliché? Are we supposed to avoid that term now?).

        Wait, where’s the ball? It used to be there. It’s been hidden!Report

        • Philip H in reply to Jaybird says:

          One of my friends in Seattle – who still participates in the daily social justice protests – likes to remind us that Democrats and liberal sin the US are not leftists. I have given up trying to get her to be more nuanced about the distinction.Report

          • Jaybird in reply to Philip H says:

            I wouldn’t mind so much if the ball didn’t keep disappearing.

            Is Biden a right-winger? A representative Democrat? Are his policies “leftist”?

            Yes, yes, and yes! Depending. Or No, no, and no. Depending.

            Who are you arguing about him with? That’s how you answer. He isn’t absolutely anything.

            He is only something relationally.Report

            • Philip H in reply to Jaybird says:

              not buying it. Joe BIden is a centerist democrat who is also thoroughly neoliberal in his economics. His record is consistent on those two points.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Philip H says:

                So… when it comes to the proposition that the New Left has abandoned Working Class Labor Solidarity for the Educated Elite, is this an accurate proposition?

                Jesse seems to be arguing that, hey, the New Left hasn’t abandoned the Working Class! The Working Class was *NEVER* on the left!

                (Personally, I think that that might be wrong, given what I remember from my “Buy American, Buy Union, Vote Democrat” New Deal Grandfather. But whatever.)

                So… again…


                What are we talking about?Report

              • Jesse in reply to Jaybird says:

                My argument is that vast swathes of the white working class never had this mythical solidarity with the rest of the rest of the working class they supposedly had, since they abandoned that solidarity the moment members of the non-white working class asked for actual solidarity.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Jesse says:

                Okay. But the part of the tweet that got my attention wasn’t the “the New Left replacement of working class labor solidarity of the old Left with the moral fashions of the educated elite” part.

                It was the Helen Andrews quotation that got me.Report

              • Saul Degraw in reply to Philip H says:

                Yes and no. He was never a liberal lion but he is always willing to look at where the wind is blowing and go in that direction. Biden is putting forward one of the most progressive agendas in my lifetime. It is rather frustrating that people seem to get stuck in “X is Y” ideas so much.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Saul Degraw says:

                Biden is putting forward one of the most progressive agendas in my lifetime.

                Much like with many of the assertions made by whats-his-name back when the votes were still being counted, I imagine that we’ll want to come back to this assertion and ask how it’s working out.Report

      • LeeEsq in reply to Jesse says:

        The Democratic Party was never really a true working class party like Labour in the United
        Kingdom. Democratic voters did tend to be less affluent than Republican voters but there was always a big amount of socio-economic support for both parties in American history.Report

  4. Saul Degraw says:

    I think the thing that makes Cancel Culture critics angry is that people they disagree with have the power and ability to use the public sphere for action. Andrew Sullvian had a twitter fit during the weekend over the Times running a story on Ted Cruz’s texts and e-mails for the Cancun debacle. He called it the height of illieberalism for publishing private e-mails/texts even though it is clear that the Times received those from Ted Cruz’s “friends.” Never mind that Sullivan has done this on his own blog when it fits his needs.

    “Own the libs” is an automative pathology where people defend a lot of shit in order to build that substack following. Sullivan has gotten what he needed from liberalism and is now reverting to his Tory-reactionary self.Report

  5. CJColucci says:

    It’s certainly true that the white working class is far less likely to vote Democratic than it used to. Some of that has to do with a certain tone-deafness of affluent, educated liberals to working class (note I did not say “white working class”) concerns, who are more focused on their own concerns. But what does it mean to say that they have “abandoned” the working class? When it comes to actual, substantive government policies that would benefit the working class, or that the working class perceives would benefit it, which party is more likely to enact them? Or even want them? What would a current package of pro-working class policies look like? I’m old enough to remember when Democrats advocated eliminating 14(b) of the Taft-Hartley Act, which once-powerful private sector labor unions very much wanted done. That went nowhere, though not because affluent liberals opposed it. Is there a pro-labor package of laws that the Democrats could put forward now — or, really, any time in the last 40-odd years — with some prospect of success? Should the Democrats put forward a big, doomed program? Maybe they should, win or lose, for the sake of messaging. I’d certainly like to see it tried. I’d also like to see more affluent, educated liberals who can sit comfortably in a bar offering only mass-market beer and inexpensive whiskey and schmooze with blue-collar workers — though, looking at the actual candidates running in districts dominated by such voters, I think that is only a small part of the problem. Unless the problem is that the white working class objects to the mere existence of affluent, educated liberals. And that opens a whole different can of worms.Report

    • Jaybird in reply to CJColucci says:

      Is there a pro-labor package of laws that the Democrats could put forward now — or, really, any time in the last 40-odd years — with some prospect of success?

      Depending on your definition of “labor”, I think that something like E-Verify might get off the ground.

      Depending on your definition of “labor”, of course.

      We discussed this back in 2013.

      The interaction, if you don’t care to click on the link, goes:

      Me: Who is the injured party when a willing worker crosses a picket line?
      Them: Every other worker.
      Me: It’s in that vein that people say that unskilled labor trying to make better lives for themselves and their families and their children and their babies are injuring the workers here.

      With whom do you feel solidarity?
      Well, you’d best define “labor” so that it benefits your co-solidaritans.Report

    • InMD in reply to CJColucci says:

      Potentially relevant piece from one of Yglesias’ minions. Part of the issue is the perception that working class assistance is being targeted based on race even where it isn’t:


      • CJColucci in reply to InMD says:

        Interesting. I certainly agree that programs designed to benefit the whole working class should be marketed as benefiting the whole working class. Full stop. But, as author Marc the Intern points out, it is also true that such programs are disproportionately good for minorities. Somebody is bound to notice this and there’s no effectual way to gag people who want to point this out because they think it is a good thing, or because they are particularly dependent on minority votes, or, to be cynical about it, because they think they can turn the white portion of the working class against the programs’ advocates. I suppose what this amounts to practically is that the top of the ticket will for a long time to come be salt-of-the-earth white guys who can project — honestly or not, but convincingly — a sense of our all being in this together, without the unseemly racial stuff.Report

        • Oscar Gordon in reply to CJColucci says:

          Marketing is still marketing. If you widely talk a great deal about a program being good for sub-group X, even if it is good for everyone, people who are not part of X will not see it as something for them. If you need their support, or at the very least, you need them to not actively oppose it, don’t give them a reason to believe they won’t benefit from it.Report

          • CJColucci in reply to Oscar Gordon says:

            Who is the “you” who should STFU, and how do we do that?Report

            • Oscar Gordon in reply to CJColucci says:

              Whoever is honestly trying to sell the program. What is more important, getting broad buy-in, or signaling to people for whom the benefits of the program are obvious that you also see that particular benefit?

              Other progressives should understand that your program will work towards racial equality. You shouldn’t need to keep messaging that to everyone.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Oscar Gordon says:

                “They wanted me to support higher costs to upgrade the Texas electricity grid.
                But then I read an article on World Net Daily that said it would benefit immigrant migrant workers and I said no way!”

                *shivers, throws another scrap of pallet lumber on the trash can fire and turns the pigeon roasting on a curtain rod*Report

              • CJColucci in reply to Oscar Gordon says:

                Since not everyone is or should be in the business of selling the program to the WWC, what do we do about people who want to say true things relevant to some legitimate audience?Report

              • Oscar Gordon in reply to CJColucci says:

                What’s wrong with just saying it will benefit everyone in this economic demographic.

                IMHO, the issue is less that minorities are getting a welfare benefit and more the (mistaken) belief that the same benefit will be denied to the rest of the demographic.Report

              • CJColucci in reply to Oscar Gordon says:

                I’m not sure I understand what you think is in dispute. Some people, who are trying to sell a program to the WWC, ought to be saying what you say they should be saying. That was my point. But nobody is in charge of what everybody else says. There is no Message Central that can tell people not in that line of work to STFU about the specific benefits to minorities. And in a free society, there shouldn’t be. But that does present a practical problem.Report

              • Oscar Gordon in reply to CJColucci says:

                My bad, I thought you were talking about the message, and the messengers.

                Party discipline, perhaps? I don’t really know. I’ve mentioned before I think the left has problems with messaging and my point above holds (that they need to choose between signaling and appealing to the WWC*).

                *Personally, I don’t care what they do, but if signaling is more important than appealing to the WWC, then they shouldn’t keep complaining about being losing the WWC. I mean, say what you will, but Trump was constantly signaling to his base and gave zero shites about appealing to anyone else, and he not only got elected to POTUS, but spent 4 years running as many old school GOPers to ground as he could.Report

      • Chip Daniels in reply to InMD says:

        Marc the Intern’s piece is making the same point that I’ve been making, just from a different direction.

        That is, he asserts that support for social benefits drops when they appear to be targeted to help people of color.

        I guess the secret to winning back these totally nonracist white people is to wave our hands and speak very fast and hope no one notices that we are also helping people of color.Report

  6. CJColucci says:

    How many white working class votes would E-Verify swing? And who opposes it?Report

    • Jaybird in reply to CJColucci says:

      How many white working class votes would E-Verify swing?

      I don’t know. I imagine that doing that would be something that would give benefits slowly over the course of a couple of years (and it’d take a couple of high-profile busts to get it into the public consciousness that the pro-labor parts that show up at the margins (and, eventually, on the other side of the margins)) for it to be something that political parties could run on the importance of keeping it and how THE OTHER PARTY WANTS TO ELIMINATE E-VERIFY BECAUSE THEY ARE CORPORATE BOOTLICKERS.

      As for the *WHITE* *WHITE* *WHITE* part of your question, I believe that studies have shown that the biggest beneficiaries are the lowest rung workers. So maybe it wouldn’t help the WWC that much (given that they’re 2 or 3 rungs up).

      Who opposes it?


      • CJColucci in reply to Jaybird says:

        Which “OTHER PARTY WANTS TO ELIMINATE E-VERIFY BECAUSE THEY’RE CORPORATE BOOTLICKERS”? And “Donors” to whom? Or to which bootlicking party? One party has historically been corporate bootlickers on principle; the other has shown that it can be had in exchange for something else. Admittedly, the choice between lukewarm friends and declared enemies is not the most appealing. I suspect it will take more than a couple of small-bore pet projects to swing the WWC vote from the latter to the former.Report

        • North in reply to CJColucci says:

          Well the other party in this scenario would be the party (whichever one) that wanted to relax an e-verify regime. Either party could enforce one, of course. The GOP on “muh borders” grounds and the Dems on “This way we can force employers of undocumented immigrants to meet labor and pay standards”.

          The donors, of course, are anyone who employs undocumented immigrants. They want the status quos: relatively open borders and no substantive move to deport but enough of a threat of it to keep workers terrified and willing to work for nickels.

          But let’s be real… a concrete solid e-verify system would really screw around with things. A lot of Democratic constituencies (well off but not crazy rich people with their landscapers, housekeepers and nannies) and Republican constituencies (farmers and corporate users and abusers of cheap immigrant labor) would get their oxen gored. No one would be happy. The left would be unhappy because a LOT of undocumented immigrants wouldn’t come here if there was a solid eVerify system; the right would be unhappy because those workers who were here would have to be treated like human beings and everyone would be unhappy because the cost of entire families of goods and services would skyrocket.Report

    • Jaybird in reply to Saul Degraw says:

      I’m not sure that that’s “Cancel Culture” as much as “Grievance Culture”. She quit and wrote a letter saying “I quit because I wouldn’t bend the knee to the Wokenistas!”

      The Amie Wolf thing. Now *THAT* is Cancel Culture. (But it’s more of a “Cancel Culture biting a Canceller in the butt” thing.)Report