Winners, losers and the backstory

Dec 20, 2017

“Nothing like that 12:48 am time stamp. Senate is done with the tax bill,” tweets Richard Rubin, who links to his piece in The Wall Street Journal, Congress Is on Brink of Tax Overhaul. Vox’s Tara Golshan looks at 4 winners and 4 losers from the Republican tax bill. On the losing side, “Tucked into the GOP tax bill: a provision that hurts hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico,” tweets Marina Fang. As Jennifer Bendery of HuffPost writes, The GOP's Tax Bill Kicks Puerto Rico When It's Down. “Afflicting the afflicted: #GOPTaxBill hits hurricane-struck #PuertoRico with new taxes,” tweets David Beard.

For the “Backstory on how Republicans delivered the tax cut @jimtankersley @arappeport,” as Michael Tackett tweets, read How Republicans Rallied Together to Deliver a Tax Cut, by Jim Tankersley and Alan Rappeport of The New York Times. Jennifer Rubin calls it “a portrait of senators so desperate they decided to ignore reality.” “Trump’s Chuck and Nancy plan worked,” says Farhad Manjoo, who highlights: “A significant moment came in September, when Mr. Trump cut a deal with the Democratic leaders, Representative Nancy Pelosi of California and Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, to prevent a government shutdown and raise the federal debt limit.” Carol Giacomo sums it up: “Elections matter.”

Speaking of, here’s one “For those who like to say a single vote doesn't matter,” as Matthew Brooks tweets. Democrat Shelly Simonds wins Va. House seat in recount by single vote; creating 50-50 tie in legislature. Greg Schneider reports on the story for The Washington Post. As Brian Edwards-Tiekert puts it, “Hey while we were being cynical, a single person's vote changed control of the #Virginia House of Delegates.”

Family feud

“How a family feud within Conservatism over Trump reveals a deeper schism. Elegant read,” tweets Laura Trevelyan. At The AtlanticDavid Frum writes that Conservatism Can't Survive Donald Trump Intact. “People get mad whenever I praise @davidfrum but he really knows the American right. This piece is excellent,” says Jeet Heer. Erica Grieder tweets, “This response to @charlescwcooke, by @davidfrum, is worth your time.” Francis Wilkinson calls it “The essential Frum.” The moral: “When life gives you poisoned lemons, don’t make lemonade,” says Brian Beutler.

Somebody has a lot of ’splainin’ to do...

Carlos Tejada is referring to the death of Bernard Law, Powerful Cardinal Disgraced by Priest Abuse Scandal. Robert McFadden has the obit for The New York Times. Tweets Susan Hogan, “New York Times brutal assessment of Cardinal Law is spot on.” As Bert Archer says, “Ding dong…” And Shibley Telhami tweets, “If there is heaven, he is definitely not headed there.”

Mark Feeney has the obit for The Boston Globe, which won a Pulitzer gold medal for its coverage of sexual abuse by Roman Catholic priests: Cardinal Bernard Law, controversial figure who led Boston archdiocese for 19 years, dies at 86. Tweets Nicole Dungca, “The numbers in this Bernard Law obituary are still staggering.”

Journalists in peril

“Now we learn why the two Reuters journalists were arrested in Rakhine state,” tweets @nycsouthpaw, referring to As Signs of a Mass Grave Emerge, Myanmar Cracks Down, by Hannah Beech and Saw Nang of The New York Times. They write, “Two journalists arrested last week in Myanmar had obtained photographs from residents of a village in which, the country’s army chief has said, a mass grave was found. The area is in northern Rakhine State, where a military campaign against Rohingya Muslims has raged for more than three months.”

And “Yet another journalist has been killed in Mexico, this time in Veracruz. That's at least 10 so far this year,” tweets Keegan Hamilton, who links to the AP report, Mexican journalist shot dead a primary school holiday party.

What to read

What was the best read story of 2017? As Rick Edmonds of Poynter reveals, it's The Atlantic’s ‘My Family’s Slave.’

“Beautiful and thought-provoking: what it's like to meet the dad who abandoned you as a kid,” tweets Guy Chazan, of Stephen Bush’s piece for the NewStatesmen, On the Tube, I saw the father I’d never met - and was happy to find that I had nothing to say to him. “Moving, personal & political. If you only have time to read one thing today make it this,” says Emma Graham-Harrison.

In his new piece for The Guardian, Our selective blindness is lethal to the living world, George Monbiot writes, “Every summer night, an unseen drama unfolds over our gardens, as moths, whose ears are tuned to the echo-locating sounds bats make, drop like stones out of the sky to avoid predation. Some tiger moths have evolved to jam bat sonar, by producing ultra-sonic clicks of their own. We destroy the wonders of the unseen world before we appreciate them.”

On the identity politics of poutine

And finally today, “i've found it... the world's most canadian story,” says Anna Silman, of Calling Poutine ‘Canadian’ Gives Some in Quebec Indigestion, by Dan Bilefsky and Lesley Chesterman of The New York Times. “On the identity politics of poutine, which I would probs kill for rn,” tweets Caitlin Dewey. Tweets Lisa Ryan, “this article is ... amazing.” “Haute Poutine!” says Jennifer Ludden.

Wednesday round-up:

About the author

Nashville-based writer, marketing communications consultant, and all-around word nerd. Usually covered in dog and/or cat hair.

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