It's even worse than it appears.
Ari Melber is having his moment, like Ted Koppel with the Iran hostage crisis. The rest of MSNBC tries to cover every story as if it's a horse race. Trump's corruption doesn't fit the horse race model very well, hence they are failing. I assume CNN is the same.#
From what I hear on MSNBC, we have no idea what the Mueller report says. We only know what Barr says the report says. Reminds me of a Watergate story. Nixon didn't want to release the tapes because they would incriminate him. So he got a Democratic senator from the south who mostly voted Republican to listen to the tapes, and he came out and said basically Nixon is right, nothing criminal here. It didn't work. The tapes ultimately were released. The more the Repubs don't want the Mueller report released, the more it says it must be released. No one is going to give up on this. #
Can a president be indicted? Imho it might depend on how heinous and dangerous the crime. Being controlled by a foreign enemy might make a difference.#
Bug fixed in feedBase. If the user logs off, changes their Twitter username, then logs back into the app, the updates will go to the old username. This was a caching issue in the davetwitter package. Thanks to vincode-io for the excellent detective work and report. I was able to understand the problem immediately, and it was easy to fix. #
Independent of whether Congress impeaches, it would be great to have a public resource that listed all of Trump's clearly impeachable offenses, with Clinton's 1998 impeachment as the benchmark.#
Social topology, something I've been thinking about for a long time. When I was a math student, I got interested in graph theory, and wrote all kinds of Fortran apps that walked graphs, figuring out things about them. Not a great choice of language for that. Graph theory is part of at least two branches of math, combinatorics and topology. And I think there must be a mapping from topology to the structure of online communication systems. Looked at a particular way, we've been spending the whole of my career in tech, dating back to the 70s, studying, without any sense of the theory, the topology of net communication systems. Blogs are very different from mail lists, so different the could be considered opposites. List all the different rules for each of the following: Facebook groups, Facebook messages, public Twitter, Twitter DMs, Instagram, Snapchat, AppleLink, Reddit, Whatsapp, on and on. And the tools we use for managing developer groups also yield different kinds of social topology. I was just thinking about the difference between Slack and GitHub as two recent examples of development systems I've used. #
  • Before Walter Cronkite did an hour special saying the Vietnam War was unwinnable, press coverage was pretty much re-written press releases from the Pentagon. Cronkite's observation, that the war was unwinnable, turned press coverage in a different direction. The question of whether or not we should be in Vietnam was now something they could ask, and did. #
  • We're in a similar situation now. People are covering climate change and Trump as if the normal rules of journalism can deal with these two crises. Clearly they cannot. We need a different approach.#
  • Postscript #1: Jon Stewart was definitely on track to be the current day Walter Cronkite before he left The Daily Show. I know he disclaimed that he was just a comedian, but he was much more than that. #
  • Postscript #2: Three observations that address the shortcomings of news in covering the current situation. If Cronkite were alive and observing the rise of Trump and our failure to address climate change, I'd like to think he'd do a corner-turn today like the one he did in 1968 around these ideas.#
    • Occam's Razor. If it's obvious, report it as obvious.#
    • Common sense. Life teaches us how people are. Use that info.#
    • This is a dire situation. (Trump, climate change.)#
  • Postscript #3: The title of this piece is derived from the song Mrs Robinson by Simon and Garfunkel. #

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Last update: Sunday March 24, 2019; 8:09 PM EDT.