No bueno.

The U.S. confirmed at least 83,010 coronavirus cases on Friday, the country’s highest daily total since the pandemic started, according to data from the COVID Tracking Project.

Friday, October 23rd, 2020

3-W’s:

  1. wear a mask
  2. wash your hands
  3. watch your space

Please. We must. So many people are going to die, as well as long-term health issues, like strokes, heart attacks, other vascular related issues. A hospital in Twin Falls, Idaho, is no longer accepting children, and COVID patients are being flows to Boise, Portland, and Seattle.

It. Is. Not. Political.

This.

Is.

A.

Health.

CRISIS.

 

Time.

For the first time, the TIME logo on the magazine’s cover has been replaced with another word: VOTE.

This election we decide if we want to keep the America we believe in and hope for, or the America we have become. Choose wisely. Be the bridge.

 

The love.

“Let this be the anthem that leads us to polls.”

Laurene Powell Jobs, Emerson Collective

Darkness, Sadness, Joy 🔆

“Darkness can come in many forms, sometimes fast, sometimes creeping slowly. Ours came at warp speed and was all-encompassing when our son, Matthew, was brutally murdered 22 years ago simply for being gay.

One minute we were a family of four, the next, we were three. We were experiencing so many emotions – anger, confusion, grief and a sense of emptiness — all at once.

As time passes, light finds a way, in many ways, sometimes fast, sometimes creeping slowly. Our light was family and friends, both known and unknown. We had found a new community who loved without judgement and welcomed us with open arms.

Darkness, however, is never far away. Darkness demands your attention, but after seeing the light you can leave the darkness where it is and not embrace it.

Sadness is present every day. It is an ache, an emptiness, a loss of what you thought your life would be. Maybe sadness is a recovery from darkness; that recovery may well last the rest of your days. However, you can be sad and still function. Functioning is surviving your darkness and your sadness. Functioning is finding a purpose to still be present.

The next step is the joy you find from serving your purpose, from helping others in a way that speaks to your heart. Everyone is going through their own particular pain. You may not see it—they may not want to talk about it but it is there. Joy is especially welcome when sadness has been your overriding emotion.

Even joy can be interrupted by an unexpected memory – a scent, a song, even a shadow can awaken the sadness. But now you know you can survive it. You can even embrace the memories, feel the sadness and return to joy.”

Judy Shepard
Gay rights activist and mother of Matthew Shepard, who was interred at the Cathedral in 2018, 20 years after his murder that galvanized the gay rights movement

The prayer of St. Francis:

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace
Where there is hatred, let me sow love
Where there is injury, pardon
Where there is doubt, faith
Where there is despair, hope
Where there is darkness, light
And where there is sadness, joy
O Divine Master, grant that I may
Not so much seek to be consoled as to console
To be understood, as to understand
To be loved, as to love
For it is in giving that we receive
And it’s in pardoning that we are pardoned
And it’s in dying that we are born to eternal life.

The Prayer of St. Francis describes a world—and a state of being—that is often the one we strive for but rarely see. Where there is hatred, we instead find love; where there is injury, pardon. It describes an active faith, one that is shaped and reshaped and constantly striving toward perfection. – The St. Francis Project

stfrancisproject.org


We need you to ship it.

From author Seth Godin:

In this whiteboard video, Seth Godin challenges you, whatever it is you do for a living, to figure out how to do work that matters, work you’re proud of.

“This is the book I need right now. It’s an extraordinary and electrifying call to action for writers, artists and creators in every walk of life. I re-read passages and felt as if my own secret creed was being explained back to me, in words I hadn’t yet found.”
Rosanne Cash, Grammy-winning singer-songwriter

Creative work doesn’t come with a guarantee. But there is a pattern to who succeeds and who doesn’t. And engaging in the consistent practice of its pursuit is the best way forward.

Based on the breakthrough Akimbo workshop pioneered by legendary author Seth Godin, The Practice will help you get unstuck and find the courage to make and share creative work. Godin insists that writer’s block is a myth, that consistency is far more important than authenticity, and that experiencing the imposter syndrome is a sign that you’re a well-adjusted human. Most of all, he shows you what it takes to turn your passion from a private distraction to a productive contribution, the one you’ve been seeking to share all along.

With this book as your guide, you’ll learn to dance with your fear. To take the risks worth taking. And to embrace the empathy required to make work that contributes with authenticity and joy.

Authenticity is mandatory, I think, yet, I understand their message.- dayle

26,000,000!

As of Saturday, 26,000,000 of us have voted early!

Keep going. We’re doing this.

V

O

T

E

Korby Lenker.

I had a little free time last week waiting for the mixes to come back for Man in the Maroon. After six months of the meticulous layering and brushwork that is recording a studio album, I really needed to do something live and warty. This is that.

“What the World Needs Now” was written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David in 1962. I don’t know when I first heard it. A long time ago.

I made this recording because, well first because I like the melody and the chords and the way they fall under your hands with simple voicings. But it’s the philosophy of the song that grabs me most.

What the world needs now is love, sweet actual clear-eyed humble love.

Love as in, forgiveness, tolerance, a little humility, maybe some gratitude, some brotherly or sisterly encouragement. I’m talking about the harder love. Bible verse love. The one about loving your enemy.

Maybe it’s better to substitute enemy for “they who do not think like you.”

Politics are really important to people right now. Fine. It’s an inevitable aspect of the organization of messy humans that we won’t all agree, that some people want more or fewer boundaries or taxes or genders or wild places. But the political appendage is a forked tongue. Division is basic to its nature. Add to the age old tension a current climate rife with bad faith actors and institutional agendas and you have, well you have a pretty tough moment to live in.

I have my own thoughts on how I think society should be arranged, but it’s not where I live. Life is too short, too mysterious to spend it hating my neighbor.

Ideas are what make me excited about being alive. Ideas in books, in history, in the collective repository of recorded human experience, and ideas in the daily realtime interactions I have with the people around me, some of whom think very differently from me. That I can count among my friends conservative churchgoers and transgendered singersongwriters is one of the great joys of my life. I love these people, not in spite of how they think, but because of how they think. Does that make sense?

The day Justice Ginsburg died, I watched that documentary on her life. One moment that glittered like wet grass was when the judge’s colleague expressed her complete incomprehension at Ginsburg’s friendship with fellow Justice, the conservative Antonin Scalia. I thought, and think, Why is that so hard to understand? They both enjoy opera. They respect one another. They are experts at the top of their game.

It’s a bigger essay than this one that could adequately unpack what led us to this, our zeitgeist of universal distrust. But I have a few small things I want to say about it, about the culture of contempt for the Other Side, on both sides.

Contempt is a particularly malevolent form of pride. If I have contempt for you, if I call you evil or stupid, then I am spared the annoying difficulty of actually considering what you have to say. But not only is it a cheap move, it corrodes the gears and anvils and hammers that have for centuries kept the delicate machinery of a free society in working order. Beneath the smug self-assured vitriol of righteous indignation, often expressed in the safe company of the like-minded, who can be counted on to support the statement with likes and RTs, is perhaps a fear throbbing like a tumor that the speaker might not be as right as he thinks he is.

It’s a situation familiar to relationship counselors that a marriage can recover from almost anything, save contempt. Where contempt grows, relationships die. It’s the most pernicious form of social corrosion, whether that’s between two people or two hundred million.

A corollary thought: I was fortunate to grow up in an environment that encouraged critical thinking. Which means, among other things, not to be too sure you know what think you know. I fall short of this all the time, but when I encounter someone who has an idea I think I disagree with, I try to listen to him or her. To actually listen. I try to hear what he has to say and I make an effort in good faith to understand. I think: there is a reason why this person thinks the way he does. He might actually have something valuable to tell me.

Even if I’m not swayed by the argument, my own perspective is likely strengthened, or even slightly modified, from the challenge. Either way I’m better for it, I’m richer for it, and hopefully I come away from the exchange with a deeper understanding of the world and the many different ways people choose to see it.

This kind of exchange has shaped the cultural and intellectual development of the West since at least Plato’s time. It’s rather elegantly described in a little philosophical nugget called the Hegelian dialectic. Thesis, anti-thesis, synthesis.

Across the porch from me is a pumpkin, glowing bright orange in the afternoon sunlight. I now invite it to participate in my quick illustration of the Hegelian dialectic.

Thesis: “Carving pumpkins is a stupid waste of time.”

Anti-thesis: “Okay, but look at this pumpkin. My six year old daughter carved it with me last weekend. She ate a pumpkin seed and barfed on the porch and then laughed about it and it made me laugh too and while we were both laughing the neighbor dog came and licked it up which made us both laugh even harder. And now every time I see the pumpkin I think of that memory. It makes me smile.”

Synthesis: “Okay I get that. Perhaps I could say that carving pumpkins is a stupid waste of time unless undertaken with one’s daughter, in which case its prospect improves considerably.”

Not a scintillating illustration but then again it’s just a pumpkin. My point is, that kind of co-evolving exchange has gone into a wintry hibernation. So many people are very sure of what they know these days, and that’s the part I don’t understand.

It seems to me an intellectually flimsy way to face a world of actual, complicated problems. Unless I am willing to sharpen myself against the whetstone of a different perspective, my confidence is going to break upon contact with the first hard object it encounters. And my argument won’t fare much better. If I can’t bear to listen to a new idea because its very expression represents a threat to my personal safety, I’m destined to live inside a cage of my own making, interacting only with people who think the way I do. Brittleness follows.

What the world needs now is love, sweet love. It needs good faith. It needs people brave enough to listen to someone who thinks differently, without calling her a name. I’m not telling you what to do or how to feel or who to vote for. Maybe I’m inviting you to look into your heart, when no one else is around, and see what’s actually in there. What it tells you.

I look in my own heart and I wonder: to what extent am I culpable for the problems in the world, in my country, neighborhood, family? In my own small way, what can I do about it?

What kind of world do I want to live in? Or at the very least, what kind of person do I want to be in the world in which I live? Am I being him?

I don’t think this was my best piece of writing but I just wanted to get something off my chest. Mostly I just want to lean toward forgiveness and tolerance and civility as much as is possible. I’ve travelled all over the world and I can’t help but love it here. It’s my home. And you want peace in your home.

https://www.korbylenker.com

This one feels different.

Ian Allen for The New York Times

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/17/opinion/covid-19-winter.html

In My Mountain Town, We’re Preparing for Dark Times

As the contagion spreads, we look ahead to winter and wonder whom we can safely pull close.

Sleeping Giants

#StopHateForProfit

@slpng_giants
From Stanford University:

Matt Rivitz is a founder of Sleeping Giants, a crowd-sourced anti-bigotry and corporate responsibility campaign that started on Twitter as a reaction the intense racism sexism and xenophobia found on Breitbart News on the heels of the 2016 Presidential Election.

The Campaign has exploded, with over a million followers across Twitter and Facebook and Sleeping Giants chapters in 11 other countries and territories including the EU, France, Brazil and Australia, each fight against bigotry and disinformation in media sources in their own countries.

Besides being responsible for now over 4,200 advertiser deciding to leave Breitbart News, Sleeping Giants has also been partially or fully responsible fo the majority of advertisers leaving Bill O’Reilly’s former show on Fox News which resulted in his firing; the departure of dozens of advertisers from Tucker Carlson Tonight on Fox News after a series of anti-Immigrant and racist segments; the removal of conspiracy theorist Alex Jones across nearly every major social platform from YouTube to Facebook and even the “Sleeping giants Amendment”, signed in law in France requiring transparency in advertising placement. Additionally, Sleeping Giants is a founding member of the Stop Hate for Profit campaign, asking for broader responsibility around hate and disinformation on Facebook and Matt personally sits on the Real Facebook Oversite Board, which serves as a check on Facebook’s current oversight boards decisions.

Anonymous until July 17, 2018, Matt’s identity was exposed without his permission by website The Daily Caller, resulting in a coordinated harassment campaign by white supremacists on social media including death threats against his children and wife and staved off a threatened lawsuit by Breitbart News.

Matt continues to lead sleeping Giants as it moves into broader missions around the health of the Internet and social platforms and overall corporate responsibility while continuing his work as a freelance copywriter in advertising.

Credit…Left, Elizabeth Cecil for The New York Times; right, Mustafah Abdulaziz for The New York Times

By

Just after the 2016 election, an anonymously run Twitter account emerged with a plan to choke off advertising dollars to Breitbart News, the hard-edge, nationalist website closely tied to President Trump’s administration.

The account, named Sleeping Giants, urged people to collect screenshots of ads on Breitbart and then question brands about their support of the site. Sleeping Giants correctly guessed that many companies did not know where their digital ads were running, and advertisers were caught off guard as the account circulated images of blue-chip brands in proximity to headlines like “Birth Control Makes Women Unattractive and Crazy.”

As hundreds of brands blocked their ads from appearing on Breitbart, and the account expanded to put pressure on certain Fox News shows, the people behind Sleeping Giants maintained their anonymity — until this week.

Matt Rivitz, a freelance copywriter in San Francisco who has worked with a range of advertisers, was identified as the account’s creator against his wishes on Monday by The Daily Caller, the conservative news and opinion website co-founded by the Fox News host Tucker Carlson. Mr. Rivitz, 45, confirmed the report on Twitter, where Sleeping Giants has more than 160,000 followers. He runs the account with Nandini Jammi, 29, a freelance copywriter and marketing consultant, along with other still anonymous contributors.

“The way it happened sucks, but I’m super proud of this thing and of all the people who worked on it and all the people who followed it,” Mr. Rivitz said in his first interview since his involvement in the account was revealed. “We’re happy that we made advertisers think a little bit and realize what they’re supporting.”

Mr. Rivitz did not expect to rock the ad and media worlds with Sleeping Giants, which he viewed as an apolitical crusade against hate speech. While he is a registered Democrat, he said he had never been politically active outside of attending “maybe two marches pre-election.” Most of his work for advertisers was focused on television commercials and did not involve social media. He wasn’t a particularly active Twitter user.

But Mr. Rivitz said he was struck by what he viewed as “incredibly bigoted and racist and sexist” content on Breitbart News, including in its comment sections, after his first visit to the site in November 2016. The site had gained prominence because of its ties to Stephen K. Bannon, its former chairman, who was Mr. Trump’s chief strategist.

“I was pretty amazed at the stuff they were printing, and my next thought, being in advertising, was, ‘Who is knowingly supporting this stuff?’” he said. “I thought maybe it would be two to three companies, and I quickly realized within a couple hours it was all placed programmatically.”

Mr. Rivitz was referring to the automated systems that place most online ads and tend to target consumers based on who they are, rather than which site they are visiting.

“It didn’t seem like the advertisers would want to be there,” he said. “I just set up this anonymous Twitter handle and set up an anonymous email and just went for it, because I wanted to contact one advertiser — a progressive loan company from San Francisco.” (The company, Social Finance, quickly pulled its ads.)

Brian Glicklich, a spokesman for Breitbart, said, “The specific allegations they make about our content being racist, sexist or bigoted are false.”

Sleeping Giants contributed to a broader industry reckoningaround how the automated placement and scale of online ads could fund toxic content and extremism. It also highlighted the challenges that companies face in controlling where their ads end up.

Early on, it flagged an advertisement from Workable, a start-up that sells recruiting software, above the Breitbart headline “There’s No Hiring Bias Against Women in Tech, They Just Suck at Interviews.” A screenshot made its way to Nikos Moraitakis, Workable’s chief executive, who said he “nearly had a heart attack” when he saw it. The company, which appeared on the site through one of the Google companies that broker web ads, added Breitbart to its “opt out” list.

The account also gained attention when it highlighted the presence of Kellogg’s ads on Breitbart, which resulted in the breakfast cereal company’s blacklisting the site. In response, Breitbart attempted a #DumpKelloggs campaign.

Mr. Rivitz said the idea behind Sleeping Giants was to inform advertisers, rather than to force boycotts. Breitbart News saw the account’s mission differently.

“Sleeping Giants’ political playbook is to attack opposing speech through harassment and false claims to try to drive it out of business,” Mr. Glicklich said. “They and others have failed at this every time it has been attempted. Democracy flourishes from more conversation, not less, which is why Matt Rivitz’s speech suppression through economic force is among the most reviled techniques of coercion.”

Shortly after Mr. Rivitz started the account, it caught the attention of Ms. Jammi, an American who lives in Berlin. She also visited Breitbart after the election and was startled to see ads from major companies there, thanks to her browsing history. Mr. Rivitz contacted Ms. Jammi through Twitter after seeing a post she had written for Medium on how marketers could blacklist Breitbart, and the two joined forces.

Ms. Jammi, who said her previous interest in politics had amounted to nothing more than following the news, discussed anonymity “early and often” with Mr. Rivitz.

“Initially, we were kind of freaked out at the alt-right influence, and, obviously, one of our primary concerns was staying safe,” she said.

Knowledge of their involvement was limited to a tight circle of family and friends. Mr. Rivitz and Ms. Jammi, who have met in person once, said they each spent three to eight hours a day on Sleeping Giants — posting tweets and corresponding with companies and advertisers — while working at their day jobs. They were vague about how many other people help run the account and its Facebook page, citing privacy concerns and threats.

Since Sleeping Giants got its start, a great number of brands have taken steps to make sure that they do not appear on Breitbart. The site had about 649 advertisers on its website last month, showing around 1,902 different display ads, according to data from Moat Pro, a digital ad intelligence product. That was down from 3,300 advertisers and 11,500 display ads in November 2016. (Sleeping Giants’ count of departed advertisers is closer to 4,000.)

As Sleeping Giants expanded, it broadened its mission to making “bigotry and sexism less profitable” over all. In April 2017, it rallied its following to join the widespread pressure on companies that advertised on “The O’Reilly Factor” after The New York Times reported that Bill O’Reilly, the Fox News show’s host, had settled with at least five women who had accused him of harassment. This year, the account added to the pressure on brands whose commercials appeared on “The Ingraham Angle,” the Fox News show hosted by Laura Ingraham, after she ridiculed a student survivor of the Parkland, Fla., school shooting.

Critics have accused Sleeping Giants of engaging in a form of censorship, a criticism that Mr. Rivitz rejected.

“There are plenty of conservative- and liberal-leaning news organizations that are doing everything in good faith and are talking about policy without bringing divisiveness and racism into it, and that’s where the break is with some of these websites,” he said.

He added that he had received a barrage of threats and harassment in the wake of the Daily Caller article, which also named his wife and friends.

Ms. Jammi, who was not named by The Daily Caller, said she wasn’t sure what kind of harassment to expect, now that her role had been made public. She added that she hoped the attention would raise scrutiny of the big-tech platforms that kept advertisers in the dark.

“Breitbart is where we started, but ultimately the problem is not Breitbart or The Daily Caller — the problem is the tech companies,” Ms. Jammi said. “I fully support that right for them to write whatever they want. What I have a problem with is Facebook and Twitter monetizing it.”

Mr. Rivitz said the Sleeping Giants community had grown so robust that he felt like an administrator. Still, he said, its mission remains the same.

“People can use their free speech to say whatever they want and print whatever they want, and that’s what makes this country great,” Mr. Rivitz said, “but it doesn’t mean they need to get paid for it, especially by an advertiser who didn’t know they were paying for it.”

[Doris Burke contributed research.]
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/20/business/media/sleeping-giants-breitbart-twitter.html

    12.21.19
    ‘The event gets underway at 5 p.m. at Ketchum Town Square with music by Tylor and the Train Robbers. Their music will be followed by a showing of Teton Gravity’s Research’s 25-minute film “Fire on the Mountain” showcasing music by the Grateful Dead.’

    [Eye On Sun Valley]

    Clean Web Design