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What matters now. A publication from Medium about politics, power, and culture.

Why are more Americans watching a South Korean TV series than any other show on Netflix, a series that looks to become the most popular show on Netflix ever?

Maybe because “Squid Game,” a fable of cruel hyper-capitalist brutality and selfishness, strikes a chord in our own hyper-capitalist country of…

Image via NBC

Before murderer Gary Gilmore was executed by a firing squad in 1977, he made the choice to become an organ donor, offering up his eyes, kidneys, pituitary glands, and liver. His whole execution captured the public imagination — he was the first person killed after the Supreme Court reinstated the…

No Mercy No Malice

Each of the following trends, in isolation, is perplexing. In concert, they are disturbing:

I’ve mentioned this topic before, highlighting an emerging crisis among young men, and it elicits a range of emotions and responses — especially in the reductionist world of social media.

Photo by Michael Dziedzic on Unsplash

Here is Nicholas Christakis, the sociologist and physician at Yale University, tweeting in solidarity with a political science lecturer at UCLA, Lt. Col. W. Ajax Peris, under fire for using the n-word in class:

Kushner in 2008, photo in Vanity Fair by Michael Sofronski

Jared Kushner, a Reuters story recently reported, “is stepping away from politics for the foreseeable future” and “re-entering the private sector.”

Which made me think: re-enter the private sector?

What does that even mean for a real estate heir married to a real estate heiress with a combined inherited fortune…

If (per the Gospel of St Romney), “corporations are people (my friend),” what kind of people are they? In 2003, Mark Achbar’s documentary “The Corporation,” made the compelling case that corporations are sociopaths (and hey, look, there’s a sequel!).

Ted Chiang says corporations are a procedural version of the…

What Shor gets right
Shor is correct that most Democratic messaging makes it harder to win elections because it either fails to persuade or perversely actually alienates many conflicted (rather than “moderate”) voters. The former is true for messages that primarily stress policy issues; the latter comes into play with messages…

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

“I believe that Facebook’s products harm children,” said whistleblower Frances Haugen, as she testified before a Senate panel earlier this week. She claims to have inside information proving that Facebook’s social media products, which also include Instagram and WhatsApp, are “generating self-harm and self-hate — especially for vulnerable groups, like…

Photo by Andy Feliciotti on Unsplash

I was born in the United States. Therefore, I’m an American citizen. I have a passport and vote in every major election.

But I’m not a proud American. My votes are cast via absentee ballot from my home in Canada where my wife and I enjoy the universal (and very…

A US $100 bill; in place of Jefferson, there is a covid molecule; the US Treasury seal has been replaced by Merck’s wordmark and the $100 indicia has been swapped for Merck’s wordmark.

Comparing the government to a household or a business isn’t merely inapt (a government is a currency creator, while a household is a currency user — their budgeting constraints are totally unrelated) it’s also profoundly dishonest.

Like, if you really are worried about government “living beyond its means,” then you…


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