In the News

Here is some stuff in the news today...

[Content Note: Christian Supremacy] Everyone's favorite pontiff, Pope Francis, has released a document urging "greater acceptance for divorced people and those in same-sex relationships while adhering to traditional church teachings." Yay, he's so progressive! Except: Still no same-sex marriage or birth control. "He said the belief that feminism was to blame for the crisis in families today was completely invalid." Thanks!

Speaking of the Pope, Bernie Sanders says he got an invite to the Vatican for a "conference on economic and social issues hosted by a pontifical academy." But the Vatican says he wasn't invited and accused him "of showing 'monumental discourtesy' in seeking an invitation and for putting a political cast on the gathering in Rome." Whooooooops! I don't know who's right! All I know is that if you don't like "the establishment," hanging out at the Vatican, which is basically the Cradle of the Establishment, is very weird!

In other Sanders news, CBS' Charlie Rose asked him about calling Hillary Clinton unqualified, and here's the exchange that followed:
SANDERS: What I said was in response to what she has been saying. Washington Post headline, quote, "Clinton questions whether Sanders is qualified to be president." I thought it was appropriate to respond.

ROSE: But is it tit for tat? Is that what this campaign conversation ought to be about?

SANDERS: No, it certainly should not be. And as you may know, I have tried to run an issue-oriented campaign which is what I believe the American people wanna hear. They want to hear about what ideas we have to improve their lives, not just attacking each other every day. But what I do have to say, Charlie, if we are getting attacked—every single day—by the Clinton campaign, I want them to know we're gonna respond, in kind.

ROSE: Do you believe Secretary Clinton is unqualified to be president?

SANDERS: Well, does Secretary Clinton believe that I am unqualified to be president?

ROSE: But why can't you simply say yes? She has a first-rate resume in terms of a life in public service. She's one of the most qualified people to run.
I don't even know what to say anymore.

[CN: Discussion of violence and racism] Yesterday in Philadelphia, Bill Clinton was interrupted by protestors (who he thought and were widely reported to be affiliated with Black Lives Matter, but according to the protesters themselves they are not) and they had a fraught exchange. Video of the incident is viewable here. I have a whole bunch of thoughts and feelings about this, all jumbling together at once. Re-litigating the 1990s through a modern lens has meant, on a number of issues, that some of the historical context gets lost—so I understand why he felt obliged to try to provide context. That context is important, but no one is going to hear it when it's delivered this way. (Which, as it turns out, he agrees with upon reflection.) That said, I also understand why he was angry, when he had someone holding a sign saying his wife is a murderer right in front of him. I also understand why people are protesting, and support their right to do it, even if I don't always like the approach. Sometimes, politics just makes my heart hurt, and I don't know what else to say besides that.

[CN: Racism] Here's just a terrific interview with a few Trump supporters, who really appreciate how blunt he is about his assholery. (I'm paraphrasing.) I will never get over how there are people who think billionaire corporate monster DONALD TRUMP will not be beholden to Wall Street. Okay.

[CN: War on agency] Teddy Wilson has the latest on anti-choice fuckery in Mississippi, where the state legislature is trying to criminalize the dilation and evacuation procedure. For fuck's sake.

[CN: War on agency] Meanwhile, in Indiana: "Women are contacting Indiana Governor Mike Pence to tell him about their periods. The women are protesting against the Governor's decision to sign a bill which restricts abortion rights in the state [by] sending detailed accounts of their menstrual cycles. The protests suggest that, as the state government has got involved in abortion rights, they might want to know more about women's menstrual issues." Enjoy your reading, Governor Pence!

Heads-up, Netflixers: "Netflix will raise prices on about 17 million of its standard accounts next month, and most people have no idea. In May 2014, Netflix began to raise the price of its standard streaming plan for new subscribers, first to $8.99 a month, then to $9.99 a month last October. Existing subscribers, however, were grandfathered in at $7.99 a month for the two-stream, 'HD' quality plan. But those days will soon be over. Next month, these grandfathered customers will be moved up to $9.99 for the standard plan. Analysts at UBS have estimated that this change will affect about 37% of US subscribers, or 17 million people. And most of those 17 million subscribers aren't aware of the coming changes. In a recent JP Morgan survey, about 80% of those who will be 'un-grandfathered' in May didn't know the price hike was coming."

And finally! Bear the Dog was scheduled to be euthanized the day he was adopted from a local shelter, and now he is living the high life! Yay!

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