A CU BUFFS GAME WILL EAT A LOT OF THE SHOW So we will be ready to go as soon as it is over at 2-ish. Go Buffs!
THIS IS A GREAT ARTICLE ON ABSTINENCE VERSUS HARM REDUCTION IN CALIFORNIA And as our elected leaders are still hellbent on following the same failed strategies California has followed that have only lead to an explosion in their homeless population, I'm hoping that they will read this article from Real Clear Investigations. It's a great backgrounder on how "harm reduction" came to mean addicts are not made to be clean and sober and why that strategy is failing addicts. We need to watch this legislative session because I would not put it past our new progressive Dem controlled Legislature from trying to codify the harm reduction model to the exclusion of abstinence based programs here.
HOW A CRYPTO BILLIONAIRE BOUGHT THE MEDIA This FTX crypto currency exchange keeps getting more and more interesting. This is a really good article on how the founder of the FTX exchange Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) paid off reporters and news organization which in turn wrote glowing stories about what a great guy he was, giving him more legitimacy which brought in more investors. It's a genius PR strategy that worked brilliantly and bought him a lot of unearned air time and helped him grow his apparent Ponzi scheme even larger. Read this for more. I think a lot of people were easy to dupe because crypto is damn hard to understand but everyone wanted a piece of what this guy was selling with the help of the New York Times and others.
IN CASE YOU WERE WONDERING THE CON MAN DONATED A TON OF MONEY TO DEMOCRATS And by a ton, I mean $38 MILLION in this last election cycle alone. Read more here, no word yet on if any of the Dems who benefitted will return the funds. JK, that won't happen. Most of it went to a Super PAC that only supports Dems and gun control.
DENVER AREA CAR THEFTS ARE GETTING WORSE And by a lot. Westword does a deep dive here, but the numbers are shocking when you consider that car thefts have DOUBLED in the last three years. DOUBLED. It's not as bad outside the city of Denver but there it's even getting worse. I can't wait to see what our Democratic Legislature does to stop this. Here's a longer article about it in the Denver Gazette as well.
STOP BLAMING CHARTER SCHOOLS FOR DECLINING ENROLLMENT There are a lot of things circulating right now that want to place the blame for declining enrollment at traditional public schools on charter schools. As if charter schools are clubbing people over the head and forcing kids to go there. The reality is that many people have moved to charter schools because during the pandemic, when teachers unions successfully shut down traditional schools, charter schools were open. Charter schools aren't teaching little children that they can choose their gender or that if they are white they are the oppressors. They not only welcome parental involvement they rely on it. Instead of looking to what's working and asking how that can be emulated in a traditional public school they are working to make them the scapegoat for declining children populations and their own bad decision making. This column pushes back, but not as hard as I would like.
IT'S TIME TO PLAN YOUR HOLIDAY FAMILY FUN And this is a comprehensive list of cool Christmas stuff you can do, from drive through lighting displays to the wonderful Polar Express train in Durango that is fantastic! Read them all here.
THE GOP HAS TAKEN THE HOUSE It's official at least we know this for sure. The New York Times writes a somber article about the GOP getting to 218 with a win in California of all places. This is at least some solace after these midterms.
HAS THE GOP BEEN CONSUMED BY ANGER? My good friend Kelly Maher wrote this column about it and it's very good, but I think it lacks some historical context. Though I do think she's right that "hating Democrats" is not a platform, I think she glosses over the challenges candidates face with the media coverage in this particular era. She glosses over the Dark Brandon speech, the years of name calling directed at Republicans, and the way Democrats lied and misconstrued so much of what Republicans said when they tried to talk issues. That being said, "hating Democrats" is NOT a platform that has a winning message and the GOP would do well to rethink two things. First off, they need to understand that they must go after young people where they are, which is on TikTok and other social platforms. It's the only way to avoid the media which is not going to treat them fairly (see the treatment of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, two guys who only wanted to talk issues but were cast as grandma killers and dog torturers instead). Second, we live in a world with mail in ballots,and the GOP must start to play the same ballot games the Dems do, which KellyAnne Conway endorses here. The game has changed and it will never get fixed if the GOP is out of power permanently.
ANOTHER BILLIONAIRE DUMPS TRUMP And if you're keeping score at home this is the fourth billionaire Trump backer who has said, "no thank you" to this run for President. These may not seem like a big deal, but these guys don't just donate themselves, they have a tremendous amount of influence on a lot of OTHER donors who take their cues from where the smart money goes. The latest is an heir to the Estee Lauder fortune, who backed Trump on both of his last elections. This one likely feels personal as Ronald Lauder has known Trump since college but has now donated to the re election campaign of Trump rival Ron DeSantis instead.
DENVER RECONSIDERS WHEN TO OPEN WARMING SHELTERS I've thought a lot about what it must be like to have spent the past week in a tent on the streets. It makes me more certain that we have to put an end to this nonsense permanently. It's inhumane and wrong to allow human beings to live like this in a first world country. Denver is rethinking when they will open their emergency warming shelters because this week wasn't cold enough to meet the current standards. I think we can all agree it was dang cold. Read more here.
RONNIE THE DONKEY IS GOING AFTER HIS OWN FAME After his friend and fellow animal sanctuary resident Steve the Donkey went viral. Ronnie needs a bit of work.
FORGET IN AND OUT BURGER, I'M CRAZY FOR EL POLLO LOCO And now we have the first of many in Denver! I never go up that far north but I'm going to make an exception for this. Find out more about this magical chicken joint here.
DISNEY RAISES PRICES AT DISNEY WORLD FOR THE SECOND TIME THIS YEAR And I keep thinking they are going to price everyone out of the market but the parks are still full even as prices are just stupid. I grew up going to Disney World and I love it, but $124 bucks a DAY without a park hopper? That's just dumb. And you have to have a reservation to get into the park, which renders the annual passes pretty much useless. I think Walt is spinning in his cryogenic chamber below Cinderella's castle.
THE UAW LEADERSHIP IS LYING TO ITS MEMBERS Did you know that a dozen United Auto Workers officials, including two past presidents, have been charged with money laundering and embezzlement in the last five years? Oddly this escaped me even though I read the news for a living. This story in The Intercept does a deep dive into the union's books, which have been presented by UAW leadership as quite rosy even though they are nothing of the sort. Why is a union allowed to continue with this level of corruption over and over again? Just kidding, we both know why, these guys are in charge of making sure Democrats get a ton of campaign donations as a means of dispensation. Read more here.
THIS KITTY DIDN'T HAVE TO USE ANY LIVES THIS DAY This is stressful to watch.