It’s tough to be elevator-phobic and live in New York City. You end up climbing a lot of stairs

The Elevator-Phobes of a Vertical City: “My record up is 22 flights. My record down is 50. That’s at my parents’ place in Tribeca. They moved to the city a few years back and gleefully flocked to a 50th-floor apartment with truly stunning panoramic views. They tell me they love me, but sometimes I’m not sure.” (Topic)

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Makes Case against Socialism [National Review]

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez criticized Uber as predatory even while her campaign used it extensively.

There’s a kernel of legitimate criticism here, mixed in with a bushel of conservative straw-man arguments.

This article, and the controversy, are from August. I’m just finding out about it now.

The White Instagram Influencers Pretending to Be Black: ‘My Style Is My Own’ [The Daily Beast]

I don’t know if it’s justified to claim, as the headline does, that these white Instagram influencers are “pretending to be black.” Only one is doing that – and she only did it for a while. The others are upfront about their ethnic heritage.

On the other hand, cultural appropriation is a thing. I view it as economic: Elvis Presley gets rich doing covers of “race records,” while the original performers struggle to make a living. I think the mainstream definition of cultural appropriation is more broad and intangible than the one I use.

Google donated $5k to GOP Senator who “joked” about attending a lynching with her Black opponent [Cory Doctorow/Boing Boing]

Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith is a Mississipi GOP Senator is going into a runoff election against her Democratic opponent, a Black man named Mike Espy who might end up the first Black Mississipi Senator since 1883. She made headlines last week with a joke about attending a “public hanging.” She also made public comments in favor of voter suppression.

Google donated $5,000 to her campaign.

Google says they made the donation before they heard about her comments and they never would have donated had they known. However, she espoused hateful views before her recent comments, and Google isn’t asking for its money back.

‘Unwanted subject’: What led a Kirkland yogurt shop to call police on a black man [Seattle Times]

Seattle area yogurt shop employees wet their pants because a black guy is in their store, police go along with it. He’s a military veteran whose job is to supervise family visitation – he was working at the time, accompanying a mother and her daughter on a trip out for yogurt.

As Inmates, They Fight California’s Fires. As Ex-Convicts, Their Firefighting Prospects Wilt [NYTimes]

Convicts are on the front lines fighting California wildfires, earning a fraction of professional firefighters’ pay for the same risks and work. Several inmates have died fighting fires since 1983. And yet when prisoners finish they’re sentence, they find it hard to become professional firefighters.

Are Jared and Ivanka Good for the Jews? [NYTimes]

Donald Trump’s apparent coziness with anti-Semites is difficult to reconcile with Jared and Ivanka Trump. Jared is the grandson of a Holocaust survivor, and Ivanka converted to Judaism to marry him. They’re not just Jews – they’re Orthodox Jews, who observe the Sabbath every Saturday. And they are also, seemingly, the only people Donald Trump fully and completely trusts, both in business and personally.

I don’t think Donald Trump is himself racist. He doesn’t believe in anything but Donald Trump. I’m reminded of John Goodman’s line in the Big Lebowski: Nazis were awful people, but at least they stood for something. Donald Trump stands for and believes in nothing but Donald Trump.

But Trump’s core, most loyal supporters are racists, and Trump knows it. founder Joshua Schachter tells the story of his pioneering social sharing platform

Did I Make a Mistake Selling to Yahoo? (New York Magazine)

Much as I loved – and I continue to use clone – was never going to be Facebook- Google- or even Twitter-big. People like images and design; a bare-bones text-only site was always going to be a niche.

(Oh, yeah, is that so, respond Reddit and Craigslist, sarcastically.)

40-hour work-week as a tool of immiserating economic growth

“The culture of the eight-hour workday is big business’ most powerful tool for keeping people in this same dissatisfied state where the answer to every problem is to buy something.” Via Cory Doctorow on Boing Boing

Man shouts ‘Heil Hitler! Heil Trump!’ in Baltimore theater during ‘Fiddler on the Roof’

After a man shouted “Heil Hitler! Heil Trump!” during a Baltimore performance of “Fiddler on the Roof,” audience members told a reporter they believed they were about to die in a mass shooting. [Xeni Jardin/Boing Boing]

Saudi prosecutor seeks death penalty for Khashoggi murder, says journalist was killed by sedative overdose

Saudi prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for five people involved in killing and dismembering journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The Saudis continue to maintain this was a rogue operation. [CNN]

Reevaluating Lee

Gen. Stanley McChrystal: “At 63, I Threw Away My Prized Portrait of Robert E. Lee.” “Lee was a willing and active participant in a society and economy that rested on slavery, and he fought ferociously to defend it. Lee was a Southerner, and efforts to depict him in opposition to slavery run contrary to his actions.” (The Atlantic)

Trump’s Acting Attorney General was an active participant in a scam company that marketed “masculine toilets”

Matthew Whitaker advised a scam company that promoted toilets for men with large penises and a blockchain time travel scheme. He used his authority as a former US Attorney to threaten critics. [Cory Doctorow/Boing Boing]

All the best people.