Jeb Bush on Oregon Shooting: “Stuff Happens.”

Jeb Bush on Oregon Shooting: “Stuff Happens.”

Earlier today in South Carolina, Jeb Bush actually used the phrase “stuff happens” to describe mass shootings. He was trying to explain why America doesn’t need any more gun responsibility laws, but it sure sounded callous: But everyone makes mistakes. Surely Bush didn’t mean what he said? Well, yes. Yes he did. In fact, he doubled down: Someone asked President Obama about Bush’s comment, and his response was perfect: Like everyone else in the entire world, I’ve been unimpressed with Jeb Bush as a campaigner. He’s testy, he’s inarticulate, he’s all stammer and no substance. But I think this might just be the beginning of the end for his campaign. Like President Obama , the American people are sick of hearing the same narrative drop every time a mass shooting happens. And Bush’s frankly bizarre choice to act blasé in the aftermath of a shooting rather than to propose any solution—any solution at all—is perfectly making Obama’s point.

Anybody Need a Job Making Pizza?

Anybody Need a Job Making Pizza?

Remember Z Pizza, the franchise that closed earlier this year ? Remember how its owner claimed it was closing due to Seattle’s minimum wage, and that she was “absolutely…terrified” for her employees, because “I have no idea where they’re going to find jobs, because if I’m cutting hours, I imagine everyone is across the board?” Well, nobody has to be terrified. The above sign has been posted in the windows of Big Mario’s Pizza, just five minutes’ walk from where Z Pizza used to be, for about the last week. If you can’t read through the glare of the window, it reads: NOW HIRING! Big Mario’s is hiring personnel for all kitchen positions: —Pizza Cooks —Prep Cooks —Counter —Delivery Drivers Our new location in Lower Queen Anne will be opening in October and we need staff members for both location. If you are interested please bring in your resume and ask for a manager or email it to jobs.bigmarios@gmail.com So if you know anyone who’s out of work—of course, with unemployment down to 3.15% in Seattle , you might not—send them over to Big Mario’s, which is doing so well that it’s opening a second location. Look, as Goldy pointed out , all this anecdotal evidence is just that: anecdotal. Big Mario’s hiring employees and opening another location is an anecdote, same as Z Pizza’s closure is an anecdote. The point we’re making by bringing up these anecdotes is twofold: 1) By mirroring the right-wing efforts to turn anecdotes into trends and explaining why they don’t work, we’re identifying the problem by example. and, more importantly: 2) We’re identifying the inherent flaws in media coverage on this topic. Back in April if you took Q13’s report on Z Pizza as guidance, a report that only used one source and treated it like news, you would expect to live in a very different Seattle right now. Q13 hinted that we
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Daily Clips: October 2nd, 2015

Daily Clips: October 2nd, 2015

More Americans have died in the last year from gun violence than in the last 40 years from terrorist attacks: This statistic, right here, outlines the absurdity of our current situation: we are so fearful of “others” attacking us that we are completely forgetting that the greatest violence in our nation comes from within. In a similar vein, LOLGOP had this incredible tweet that sums up our inability to focus on what’s important: 31 cases of voter impersonation since 2000. 10,000 gun deaths in America THIS YEAR. Guess which problem the GOP is trying to fix. — LOLGOP (@LOLGOP) October 2, 2015 Why conservatives mistrust even modest efforts at gun control:  David Graham has a thoughtful article on the psychological nature of the gun control debate. He warns gun control supporters that we cannot ignore the deep levels of distrust gun owners have towards the federal government. While these feelings about the intentions of government are inherent within the American political psyche, Graham doesn’t completely absolve the gun lobby. He notes that gun lobbyists “of course” work to encourage and exploit this fear. He closes by saying, “any attempt to reform gun laws will have to grapple with this fear of government.” Nick Hanauer to tech community: Step up your social and civic engagement:  Our Supreme Troublemaker spoke at GeekWire’s summit yesterday and he touched on many subjects, including the $15 minimum wage, the civic engagement of Amazon, and the future of the gig economy. He decried the current state of wages, claiming “there is also no earthly reason why giant corporations can’t pay workers enough to participate in the economy.” Cartoon of the day:

Seattle’s Unemployment Rate Falls to Seasonally Adjusted 3.15%

Seattle’s Unemployment Rate Falls to Seasonally Adjusted 3.15%

Earlier this week I gave a thrashing to Forbes blogger Mike Patton for suggesting that an April through July rise in Seattle’s non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate represented the early “negative financial consequences” of the city’s $15 minimum wage ordinance. Which was just plain stupid . The non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate always bottoms out in April before rising over the next two or three months as high school and college graduates enter the labor market. Always. But in case Patton is interested in digging his hole even deeper, he should take a look at the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ latest city-level numbers: Seattle’s non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 3.3 percent in August, while the July numbers have been revised down from 3.7 to 3.6. And seasonally adjusted, the Seattle’s unemployment rate is even more impressive—a mere 3.15 percent! That’s the lowest rate since April 2008, and just 0.3 points higher than the city’s freakish 2.85 percent February 2008 rate, just before the housing bubble popped, dragging the global economy into the Great Recession. By comparison, during the entire length of our extended dot.com boom, Seattle’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate never dipped below 3.5 percent. (And yes, we’re talking about just the city proper here, not the bullshitty three-county Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue MSA.) I emphasize the historical comparison (this BLS data set only goes back as far as 1990) not to boast about Seattle’s extraordinarily strong jobs market, but to warn observers that this likely isn’t sustainable. Minimum wage critics are looking for any uptick in unemployment as evidence of the detrimental effect of our $15 minimum wage ordinance, but we’ve really got nowhere to go but up. Think back again to the heady days of the dot.com boom when everybody in Seattle was getting rich: our unemployment rate bounced between 3.5 percent 4.25 percent for more than three years. And that was great!
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You Really Should Watch President Obama Address the Nation After Today’s Shooting

You Really Should Watch President Obama Address the Nation After Today’s Shooting

I’ve seen President Obama speak probably hundreds of times in my life—sometimes in person, sometimes on TV, sometimes on the internet—and I’ve never seen him this angry and exasperated and disappointed. This is man who has stood in front of the country more than a dozen times after mass shootings. He knows exactly what he can do to stop this from happening. But he also knows he can’t do anything without the support of other lawmakers. So of course he’s angry and tired. I’m angry and tired. I bet you’re angry and tired, too. But Obama is the most powerful man in the world, and he has to go up in front of the nation every time this happens and admit that he’s helpless to do anything about it, and it’s likely to happen again. That’s got to be a terrible feeling.

Daily Clips: October 1st, 2015

Daily Clips: October 1st, 2015

Bernie Sanders raises $24 million, exceeding Obama’s 2008 pace:  The appetite for a politician who exclusively talks about the realities facing Americans was always strong going in to this election cycle. But even the most ardent Bernie supporter couldn’t have foreseen the excitement and firepower that Sanders’ campaign is generating. I will say that it is somewhat misleading to compare Bernie’s 2016 online haul to Obama’s 2008 effort, seeing as Facebook was nowhere near as ubiquitous. For example, in 2008 there were only 145 million monthly users on Facebook and in 2015 there were 1.5 billion . That represents a slight bump in social media use. Nonetheless, what Bernie Sanders is doing in this election is very surprising and very inspiring. Kevin McCarthy’s truthful gaffe on Benghazi: For those of you who haven’t heard, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy admitted (on live television) that the Benghazi circus was nothing but a plot to hurt Hillary Clinton’s poll numbers. How shocking. He explained: Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right? But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she’s untrustable. But no one would have known any of that had happened, had we not fought. Jeb Bush is not the “smart Bush”:  I wrote about Jeb!’s most recent racist gaffe , but here is an excellent fisking of his ridiculous statement about the Redskins name. “400 families have given half the money in this election cycle so far. That’s not American democracy. That’s banana republic democracy.”  

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