How fringe lunatics magically become a national movement

From The Washington Post:

A network of right-leaning individuals and groups, aided by nimble online outfits, has helped incubate the fervor erupting in state capitals across the country. The activism is often organic and the frustration deeply felt, but it is also being amplified, and in some cases coordinated, by longtime conservative activists, whose robust operations were initially set up with help from Republican megadonors.

The Convention of States project launched in 2015 with a high-dollar donation from the family foundation of Robert Mercer, a billionaire hedge fund manager and Republican patron. It boasts past support from two members of the Trump administration — Ken Cuccinelli, acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, and Ben Carson, secretary of housing and urban development.

It also trumpets a prior endorsement from Ron DeSantis, the Republican governor of Florida and a close Trump ally who is pursuing an aggressive plan to reopen his state’s economy. Cuccinelli, Carson and DeSantis did not respond to requests for comment.

The individual protesters have strong feelings—based on misinformation and cultural/political affiliation—just like the Tea Party people did, but this is not some grassroots organic movement. There is a pre-existing and well-financed right-wing infrastructure that has been built over the last four decades to amplify this sort of stuff.

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How fringe lunatics magically become a national movement

From The Washington Post:

A network of right-leaning individuals and groups, aided by nimble online outfits, has helped incubate the fervor erupting in state capitals across the country. The activism is often organic and the frustration deeply felt, but it is also being amplified, and in some cases coordinated, by longtime conservative activists, whose robust operations were initially set up with help from Republican megadonors.

The Convention of States project launched in 2015 with a high-dollar donation from the family foundation of Robert Mercer, a billionaire hedge fund manager and Republican patron. It boasts past support from two members of the Trump administration — Ken Cuccinelli, acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, and Ben Carson, secretary of housing and urban development.

It also trumpets a prior endorsement from Ron DeSantis, the Republican governor of Florida and a close Trump ally who is pursuing an aggressive plan to reopen his state’s economy. Cuccinelli, Carson and DeSantis did not respond to requests for comment.

The individual protesters have strong feelings—based on misinformation and cultural/political affiliation—just like the Tea Party people did, but this is not some grassroots organic movement. There is a pre-existing and well-financed right-wing infrastructure that has been built over the last four decades to amplify this sort of stuff.

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Pretty excited about my new books.

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I am pretty excited about today’s Discogs arrival.

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Charlie Baker is crazy if he re-opens schools so that kids can be subjected to standardized testing.

Coronavirus in Massachusetts: Gov. Charlie Baker holds off on deciding when schools will reopen, says he can’t ‘wave magic wand’ – masslive.com:

One reason Baker said he wants to see schools reopen before the end of the school year would be so students could take tests to determine how far behind they fell due to the pandemic.

Baker said competency tests are important “so that there’s some idea about things people could work on over the course of the summer so they’re not completely behind when they show up in the fall.”

Nobody is falling behind anyone, and standardized tests are bullshit in normal times.

The idea that we are going to send kids back to schools so that we can cram in some more testing is crazy talk.

Governor Baker’s office phone number is (617) 725-4005.

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It is a shame that pretty much none of the streaming services has any of The Comsat Angels’ albums. Fortunately, I bought the remastered version of Waiting For a Miracle when it was released a few years ago. These guys were really, really good for their first few albums.

Unfortunately, I did not buy a copy of Sleep No More, and now it is really hard to find without spending a bunch of money.

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I look forward to a time when we no longer need to keep a Jabra in the dining room.
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I’m not sure what it means, but I have been listening to a lot of Pink Floyd this week.

This morning’s selection is Atom Heart Mother.

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Both of my kids taught themselves to ride their bikes today, and I am feeling pretty good as a parent.
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