The Weekly Arc: June 23, 2017
Welcome to Arc’s newsletter, sent out once per week, highlighting the best and most interesting stories from around the web. The Weekly Arc is curated by Berny Belvedere. Past editions can be accessed here.
Special Project: When Liberalism Stops Being Liberal
Medium has partnered with Arc Digital to launch a project entitled “When Liberalism Stops Being Liberal,” with “liberalism” of course being a reference to the political-philosophical order rather than to the ideological position — in other words, we’re talking about the social and political architecture of the West for the past couple of centuries, not the word that today just basically means “Democrat.”
The result is an incredible array of essays on the various illiberalisms that, paradoxically, sprout up within societies broadly committed to the liberal tradition.
- Part 1: “Identity Politics” by Varad Mehta
- Part 2: “Political Correctness” by Cathy Young
- Part 3: “Big Government” by Ben Domenech
- Part 4: “Campus Censorship” by Leslie Loftis
- Part 5: “Free Speech in a Global Context” by Nicholas Grossman
- Part 6: “Religious Liberty” by Erick Erickson
- Part 7: “Education” by Ryan Huber
Please note that the series is members-only. To read these essays, you’ll need to become a member. That’s how journalism that has eschewed the advertising model of revenue works. Your membership helps fund writing that you hopefully find illuminating and enjoyable.
I’ve read widely on this subject, and there is no better collection of columns on this topic than this series.
Senate Healthcare Bill is Unveiled
The 142-page bill, which Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) released after weeks of drafting it in secrecy, drew swift criticism from hard-right senators who argued it does not go far enough in undoing Barack Obama’s signature health-care law, the Affordable Care Act. It also prompted an outcry from centrist senators and medical organizations worried that it takes on the law, known as Obamacare, too aggressively and would lead to millions losing their health care or receiving fewer benefits.
These critics effectively delivered their opening bids in what is expected to be a contentious week of negotiations. McConnell is trying to pass the bill before the July 4 recess, with Republican leaders seeking to quickly learn whether they will be able to fulfill years of promises to roll back the law or whether it’s time to turn to other items on their legislative agenda, such as overhauling the tax code. …
The next big showdown will come early next week when the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office releases its analysis of the bill. Congress’s scorekeeper is expected to release a comprehensive estimate of how many people could lose their insurance coverage under the proposal and what impact it may have on premiums, as well as on the federal budget deficit — numbers many Republican senators said they need to see before making a final decision.
It is unclear what a bill capable of attracting the 50 out of 52 Republicans needed for passage would look like — or whether such a compromise is possible. What is clear is that the bill McConnell released will need to change to survive.
Like the bill that passed the House in May, the Senate measure would cut off expanded Medicaid funding for states — but at a more gradual rate, by phasing out the higher federal spending between 2020 and 2024. But it would enact deeper long-term cuts to the program, which provides health-care coverage for 74 million Americans. …
In a nod to centrist senators, the Senate bill would preserve two of the ACA’s most popular provisions: Insurers could not deny coverage based on preexisting conditions, and children could stay on their parents’ plans until the age of 26 — though critics said people with past illnesses might not be able to afford plans under the revamped rules. …
The Senate bill would abolish the penalties for two of the ACA’s central mandates — that individuals must show proof of insurance when filing their taxes and that firms with 50 workers or more must provide health coverage — while providing less money for moderate- and low-income Americans buying insurance on the individual market. …
The bill is being moved under arcane budget rules that allow it to be passed with a simple majority. McConnell has little margin for error in a chamber where Republicans hold a 52-to-48 advantage and Democrats are firmly united against the legislation. — The Washington Post
Yanez Acquitted in Killing of Castile
The images had transfixed people around the world: A woman live-streaming the aftermath of a police shooting of her boyfriend, Philando Castile, and narrating the searing, bloody scene that was unfolding around her.
On Friday, a jury here acquitted the Minnesota police officer, Jeronimo Yanez, of all charges in shooting, which happened in July 2016 and left Mr. Castile dead, raising the national debate over police conduct toward black people. Officer Yanez, an officer for the suburb of St. Anthony, had been charged with second-degree manslaughter and endangering safety by discharging a firearm in the shooting.
The verdict was announced in a tense courtroom here late Friday afternoon, after five days of deliberations, and the officer was led quickly out of the courtroom, as were the 12 jurors. Mr. Castile’s family, which had nervously watched the proceedings from the front row, abruptly left as well. — The New York Times
After the verdict, Officer Yanez’ dashcam footage was released. Here’s the video, along with a description.
Kalanick Out as CEO of Uber
Facing mounting investor pressure brought on by a torrent of scandals, Travis Kalanick, co-founder and chief executive of ride-hailing company Uber, resigned — just a week into a leave of absence meant to quell concerns about his management style.
The New York Times reported that five of Uber’s major investors demanded Kalanick’s immediate resignation because the company needed a change in leadership. Kalanick reached his decision to resign after hours of talks with some of the investors. — The Los Angeles Times
Our media landscape is dominated by loud voices with little interest in producing smart analysis. If you value the work we do, if you appreciate the model of news and commentary we embody, then we are asking for your help.
To support us at $2 per month, please click here.
- Obama’s Secret Struggle to Punish Russia for Putin’s Election Assault by Greg Miller, Ellen Nakashima, and Adam Entous (The Washington Post)
- What’s Wrong With The Democrats? by Franklin Foer (The Atlantic)
- How the Democrats Lost Their Way on Immigration by Peter Beinart (The Atlantic)
- In Search of the American Center by Ross Douthat (The New York Times)
- The Democratic Journey to the Populist Left by Edward Luce (Financial Times)
- The Rise of Jeremy Corbyn and the Death Throes of Neoliberalism by Pankaj Mishra (The New York Times Magazine)
- America’s Endgame in Syria by Nicholas Grossman (Arc)
- The Supreme Court’s Chance to End the Gerrymander by the Editorial Board (Bloomberg View)
- They Are Wrong. They Should Die. by Berny Belvedere (Arc)
- Capitalism Should Be Our Weapon of Choice in Cuba by Rand Paul (Reason)
- Why Do Democracies Fail? by David Frum (The Atlantic)
- Statehood for Puerto Rico by Charlie Gerow (Arc)
- Liberalism, Conscience, Tolerance, and the Culture Wars by Elizabeth Rachel Finne (Arc)
- The Reformation at 500 by Russell Moore (National Review)
- Evangelical Leaders Push for Criminal Justice Reform by Adelle M. Banks (Religion News Service)
- 2017 Bible Minded Cities (Barna)
- Will Christianity Survive in the Middle East? A Christian Perspective by Kent R. Hill (Providence)
- Meet One of the Finest Theologians of the Last 50 Years by Matthew Arbo (The Gospel Coalition)
- Can You Kill the Islamic State? by Ali H. Soufan (The New York Times)
- How Drug Prohibition Fuels American Carnage by Conor Friedersdorf (The Atlantic)
- How The Guardian Lost America by Steven Perlberg (BuzzFeed)
- Cultural Relativism, Mathematics, and Thoughts by Berny Belvedere (Arc)
- “Illegal Immigration” Is Not Zero or Negative by Lyman Stone (In a State of Migration)
- Liberals Need to Be More Conservative About Immigration by Ramesh Ponnuru (Bloomberg View)
- A Year of Blessings in Disguise by Henry Kopesky (Arc)
- Philando Castile Video Shows a Cop Who Panicked and Killed an Innocent Man by Jacob Sullum (Reason)
- Planned Parenthood’s Century of Brutality by Kevin D. Williamson (National Review)
- Globalism And Why We Hate Each Other by Ben Domenech (The Federalist)
- The Paralyzing Trap of System-Level Analysis by Ryan Huber (Arc)
- What Happened to Black Lives Matter? by Darren Sands (BuzzFeed)
- Yes, Hate Speech is Free Speech by Rich Lowry (National Review)
- America’s Banks Are Really, Really Healthy by Donna Borak and Matt Egan (CNN Money)
- The Conservative Case for Unions by Jonathan Rauch (The Atlantic)
- The Perils of Nationalization (The Economist)
- Consumers Turn Shopping Into a Political Statement by Shannon Bond (Financial Times)
- Is the American Dream Really Dead? by Carol Graham (The Guardian)
- Americans Are Living as Large as Ever by Stephen Mihm (Bloomberg View)
- Let Us Plunge toward Our Fast-Unfolding Future by George Will (National Review)
- Zuckerberg’s Opiate for the Masses by Andy Kessler (The Wall Street Journal)
- How Governments Harm Society by Chris Leeson (Arc)
- Inside Microsoft’s AI Comeback by Jessi Hempel (Wired)
- Is The Concern Artificial Intelligence — Or Autonomy? by Alva Noe (NPR)
- Quantum Common Sense by Corey S Powell (Aeon)
- Can Amazon Be the Next Apple? by Marc Levinson (The New York Times)
- We Need To Educate Kids For The Future, Not The Past by Greg Satell (Arc)
- What Will Driverless Cars Actually Look Like? by Victor Luckerson (The Ringer)
- Don’t Fall for the ‘Memory’ Pills Targeting Baby Boomers by Emily Dreyfuss (Wired)
- How the Summer Blockbuster Was Born by Natalie Mokry (Film School Rejects)
- Ron Howard Steps in to Direct Han Solo Movie (The Hollywood Reporter)
- Now is a Great Time to be a Nintendo Fan by Ben Gilbert (Business Insider)
- The 50 Best Good Bad Movies (The Ringer)
- If Daniel Day-Lewis is Really Done Acting, is it Any Surprise He Did it on His Own Terms? by Ann Hornaday (The Washington Post)
- Woke Pop-Culture Criticism is Supposed to Spur us to Political Action. It’s Paralyzing us Instead. by Shaun Scott (Quartz)
- Apple Is a Step Closer to Making Its Own TV Shows by David Sims (The Atlantic)
- Better Call Saul Double Review: S03E08 & E09 by Sarah Parro (Arc)
- 2017 NBA Draft Picks: Complete Results, Full List of Players Selected, Highlights, Grades (CBS Sports)
- The World Without Messi: We Won’t Get to Enjoy the Iconic #10 Much Longer by Chris Jones (ESPN FC)
- Thank the Good Lord for Making Me a Yankee by Brad Callas (Arc)
- Five Reasons To Believe Mystic Mac Will Beat Money Mayweather by Chuck Mindenhall (The Ringer)
- Derek Carr’s Contract, Wall Street, and Income Inequality by Tho Bishop (Arc)
- Five Sleeper NBA Teams that Could Trade for Paul George by Brandon Anderson (Arc)
- Is Cristiano Ronaldo Really Going to Leave Real Madrid? by Ryan O'Hanlon (The Ringer)
- The Arc Digital 2017 NBA Draft Big Board by Brandon Anderson (Arc)
Have you experienced the transformative thrill of liking a page on Facebook, or following an account on Twitter? No? Well, then, carpe diem!
This Week In History
1995 — Jonas Salk (b. 1914), who developed the polio vaccine, passes away.
2016 — The United Kingdom votes to leave the European Union in their “Brexit” referundum.
1509 — The coronation of King Henry VIII of England.
1901 — Pablo Picasso’s first exhibition opens in Paris. He is 19 years old.
1987 — Lionel Messi, for some already the greatest soccer player ever, is born.
1896 — The first movie theater in the U.S. opens. It is called Vitascope Hall, and it’s in New Orleans. The price is 10 cents for admission.
1974 — Derek Jeter, Mr. November, the legendary New York Yankee, is born.
1613 — William Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre burns down.
1852 — Henry Clay (b. 1777), the Great Compromiser, one of the greatest legislators in congressional history, passes away.
1964 — After an 83-day filibuster, the Civil Rights Act passes the U.S. Senate.
Do not read, as children do, to amuse yourself, or like the ambitious, for the purpose of instruction. No, read in order to live.
— Gustave Flaubert