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Stuff You Should Consume - April 21, 2022
Welcome to this week’s edition of “Stuff You Should Consume” — a weekly email for Message Box subscribers with important and interesting articles, videos, podcasts, and polling memos.
“Political Experts React to Good 2022 Democrat Midterm Ads with Paul Begala,” Crooked Media
“Can Democrats avoid a looming electoral disaster?” by G. Elliot Morris, Democracy by the Numbers
Instead, my argument is that this unified progressive agenda does nothing to bring back into the fold the conservative working-class voters — mainly white, but growing significantly more Latino recently — who have abandoned the Democrats and caused the structural disadvantages that are dragging them down today. The party needs a renewed identity as a pro-worker party, not one where coastal elites control the party line on policy and messaging. And it needs to be substantially more diverse in its approach to talking to voters in different areas of the country; messages that work in young, diverse urban cores do not work in educated white suburbs or shrinking exurbs.
“Is Our Children Learning Too Much?” by Christopher Hooks, Texas Tribune
The moral panic is also useful if your goal is to weaken public education in favor of parochial and other private schools. Christopher Rufo, a fellow at the conservative Manhattan Institute, has helped kick-start and nurture the fight over CRT and school “pornography” in the past several years. In early April, he spoke at Hillsdale College, in Michigan, and outlined a teleology of his crusade. “To get universal school choice, you really need to operate from the position of universal public school distrust,” he said. “In order for people to take significant action, you have to make them feel like they have something at stake.” Offering parents a taxpayer-funded choice among public and private schools has been a hard sell, in Texas and elsewhere. Perhaps calling school librarians pedophiles will do the trick.
“What’s the end-game of Critical Race Theory fear-mongering?” More Perfect Union
When the survey investigated respondents’ views about what exactly threatens democracy, the distance between Republicans and Democrats came into even sharper relief. Democrats are disturbed by the growing strength of white nationalist groups, as well as by state legislatures’ increasing power to determine the outcome of presidential elections. Republicans are disturbed by mandated vaccination and mask-wearing but unbothered by the filibuster and positively cheerful about Trump’s attempts to overturn the result of the 2020 election. While they either don’t care or don’t believe that their party is making it harder to vote, they are quite worked up about Democrats committing so-called election fraud.