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Wow everyone - when I said we should get weird and see where it takes us, I had no idea this is what would happen. THANK YOU ALL for making our first Office Hours a HUGE success. Rest assured, we're absolutely going to be doing this again. I'm gonna log off and feed the dog (and myself) but PLEASE feel free to chat amongst yourselves. This whole thing is as much yours as it is ours!

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rafi what's the weirdest thing you've eaten this week

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Swallowed a midsize bug on a walk yesterday. IDK what kind though.

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i suppose this counts but i know you put some depraved shit from your fridge together in a strange combination when no one was looking

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I've been putting horseradish on my turkey sandwiches, does that count?

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What's midsize?

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Bigger than a gnat, smaller than a large fly

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why are you just out here eating bugs rafi

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i was skateboarding down a hill, Jack. Because i'm a "cool dad" who had to get to the playground quickly.

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woah Rafi, you skateboard?

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Paul Blest, Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

if you get a certain number of subscribers per month, will one of you promise to bro ice yourselves and film yourself doing it?

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if we gross $100k by end of week jack crosbie will do this

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hm

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

hell yes

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I'll do it. I enjoy shenanigans.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

TYFYS

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I am a hero, it's true.

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When did this become a thing again? I vividly remember this happening sometime during like 2010(maybe?).

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Paul Blest, Jack Mirkinson, Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

Rafi, hi, hey, first-time long-time. Thanks for taking my comment. So, uhh the Avengers movies. Lotta folks say they're good, a lotta folks say they're bad. I dunno, just wanted to hear your thoughts. You really think they'll hold up? 'Preciate your time.

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who is this and why are you desecrating this holy space

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[Rafi's office]

Me: [chanting] Love and Thunder, Love and Thunder-

Children: Love and Thunder, LOVE AND THUNDER

Wife: [pounding her clipboard] LOVE AND THUNDER, LOVE AND THUNDER, LOVE AND THUNDER!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

good nick martin bit, imposter!!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger

Can we remember some bloggers? I'll go first:

David Roth

Caity Weaver

Giri Nathan

Ashley Feinberg

Drew Magary

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Getting Hit By A Bus

(on cereal) Tim Marchman

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+1 milk and honey original café mix

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Jack Mirkinson, Aleks Chan, Caitlin Schneider

this may seem strange, but watching y'all get shitcanned, did inspire me to start writing about politics in a meaningful way. And also made me realize that there is no liberation till we own the means of production. SO THANK YOU, and I'm glad to see this thing around.

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Wow, that's awesome! Where are you writing? Drop a link!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Rafi Schwartz
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hot dog blog is deranged and i respect it

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ok yes the hot dog blog is very good, you saw it all the way through and we love to see it

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

oh and my twitter @MusicIsAwful

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Crosbie

"Counterpoint: Inject the Fanless Hot Dog Eating Championship Straight into my Cochlea" lmao, it's a good blog!!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

loved the terrace house piece today. don't have a question sorry

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That's okay - not everything needs to be a question! I also loved the Terrace House piece, and am thrilled that Sam not only got to write it, but absolutely fucking nailed it from top to bottom

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aw thanks mike!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Jack Mirkinson, Jack Crosbie, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

how are you feeling about the future of worker owned/crowd funded media after day 2 of paid subs?

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we're gonna buy the new york times and make it Good

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fuckin great!!!

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incredible!!!!

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So far so good!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Crosbie

I would kill for an occasional burneko food post

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call your representative(s)

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can't afford him, but we're pleased to bring you Hal Burbanco's "i can eat this if i try" column

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+1 Emergency Chicken Soup

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Rafi Schwartz

I'm taking an online class with some undergrads about "oral post colonial literature" and my brain is so irony poisoned that I let out an involuntary laugh discussing a racist academic's ramblings about black teenagers telling yo mama jokes as an example of oral tradition in the 1970s and an anthropology major lectured me about how it's not funny and I don't know how to explain to her that I am completely broken by reading horrible things on the internet and there is absolutely no way I can stop myself from laughing at this kind of stuff.

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irony poisoning is real and will be in the next DSM

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger

dover street market is doing an irony line???

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I wish I could help, but my brain is just as broken, if not more so. I'm not sure how much of a help I'd be tbh

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Rafi Schwartz

I am the memefan and it do be like that sometimes

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Mirkinson, Rafi Schwartz

So anyone come up with any cool new ways to convince themselves that a Joe Biden presidency won't lead to a further right/center journey from the Democrats?

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white claw has new flavors out

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger

Hope rises from the cold drinks section

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have you tried deep denial — that often works wonders

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Mirkinson

need to ask my therapist to help with that.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

Can't say I like it at all, but I'm trying to console myself with working to get more progressives elected so we can topple the corporatists.

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But also I've started drinking more whiskey

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I just tell myself that he’ll probably be dead in 4 years, and his VP/heir apparent may not completely suck.

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My naive take is that much like how it seems that Trump helped spark elections for progressive Dems, a centrist president at this particular capital-M Moment could inspire the same thing. "See, even just being a Democrat" messaging could probably go a long way.

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Could you expound on the back half of that?

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Thinking about how anything from a punch to a high five accidentally connecting with his face (or Abs) would be absorbed into the patchy wrinkles and dissolved by the snappy botox walls beneath, as the would-be attacker's fingernails emerge from his gums as new teeth

the world will recoil in horror, and realize that Joe Biden's face skin is only a metaphor for the anti-progress ideological voltron of which each piece was piloted perfectly into his brain by bad faith ideologues and lobbyists alike with the sole intent of "Governing, the American Way" by process of (TomHardy's Inception CharacterName) fan-fic LARPing

thakns for coming at my ted tlak:)

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Paul Blest, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

blogs are fake, can't prove they are real

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Caitlin Schneider

Scott my sibling got a tattoo of Mae on their arm lol, love NITW

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Can't prove they're not, either. BOOM.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Jack Mirkinson, Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Rafi Schwartz

This model gives me something sort of akin to hope as a freelancer losing outlets and opportunities by the day. Stay angry and thanks for making my inbox less of a fucking nightmare.

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Aw, thanks man! I completely get the sentiment. Hopefully if this ends up being a success, we'll be in a position to actually start commissioning pieces from outside our founding members. The more people like, subscribe, etc, the more likely it is we'll be able to expand what we do!

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Or at least a more well-reported nightmare.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Crosbie, Rafi Schwartz

Can you guys do some sports posts?

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we can barely do non-sports posts

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

long time listener, first time caller here. no question, just came here to say that i didn't think hell world and discourse (aka zombie-splinter) would be the only two publications i pay for in 2020, let alone get all my, uh, news from, while removing myself from twitter and instagram completely because they became the impossible-to-believe larger-than-2019 absolute fuckin' dumpster fires, but 2020's weird as shit. i'll let luke trawl twitter for anger inducing takes and let you guys tell me what's important enough to pay attention to. thanks for not disappearing into bird-takes like barry did but instead coming up with this genius-level replacement plan.

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Thank YOU for sticking with us - it's pretty wild to be here, but seeing comments like this from people who really appreciate what we're trying to do. I will do my very best not to blog about birds, but I'm afraid I can't promise it won't happen.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Jack Mirkinson, Aleks Chan, Caitlin Schneider

Hey Rafi, Tom from Gizmodo here. You *sure* you're not David Cross or one of his long-lost sons?

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Truthfully? No, I'm not sure.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Jack Mirkinson, Rafi Schwartz

which discourse person drops the best slack content

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are you trying to start a war

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that's right, jack.

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Define "best"

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could be a combination of best quips, best article curation, best hate read curation....depends on the vibe of the slack, really

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I think I can say with minimal pushback that my slacks are the most annoying - but that with great risk occasionally comes great reward.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

As a new journalist whose first job out of college is at a local paper owned by Gannett, it's real cool to see something like this and I'm really pulling for y'all

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Thank you! Where're you writing at? And good luck with the new career!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Rafi Schwartz

The Asbury Park Press, my hometown NJ paper. I'm technically a "digital producer" so I don't get to write as often as I like, but I'm currently attempting to become a library beat reporter for my own entertainment. Thanks for the well wishes!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

hi there! i was wondering if discourse is taking any freelance pitches? i inhaled the terrace house piece from today and it's really nice to see such excellent writing about a topic that has so many factors feeding into it with also a candid take to it which are difficult to find in mainstream outlets. i'm so happy that this exists

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Hi! We're not at the moment, but it's our full intention to start commissioning freelancers at good rates as soon as we can afford to. So glad you liked Sam's post!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Crosbie, Rafi Schwartz

Can I disable emails for replies/likes on my comments?

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I'm gonna ask Substack about this it's driving me fuckin NUTS!!!!!!!!

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this is driving me nuts too and i have yet to figure out a way around it -- when i tried to unsubscribe it unsubscribed me from the blog entirely? very unsure. will report back once we figure it out

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I am getting an email for EVERY comment and sub-comment on this page, so, consider yourselves lucky.

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For me, at the bottom of the email notification, there is a 'mute thread' button. Not sure how that works for the writers, but for me as a commenter it worked and put an orange box right above the comments that says "Email notifications are disabled for this thread."

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

Before Splinter died, I think I remember yall soliciting nominations for Worst State/Local Politicians. Any chance you'll revive that feature in the future?

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Mike, great question. I would LOVE it to, but every time I bring it up everyone groans so loud.

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You got a recommendation?

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

Art Pope has had a hand in nearly every shitty thing to happen in NC over the past 10 years. He just got appointed to the UNC Board of Governors.

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More like Art Nope!!!

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fucking art pope, yes we need more national coverage of that goon

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Lol, former North Carolinian here, and Paul Blest is still down there. Art Pope is def a familiar character to us both.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

As an ex-Ohioan, I can tell you: it's any state-level Ohio politician outside of the major metros.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Mirkinson, Jack Crosbie, Aleks Chan, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

t*yl*r sw*ft?

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we don't know that she DOESN'T read us.......

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@ tree paine we know you're watching, hello

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looking forward to the documentary where ta y lor yells at her manager "I'M TWEETING ABOUT DISCOURSE BLOG AND I WON'T BE SILENCED ANYMORE"

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Huge fan of the people who have put this together. Like many I am poor at the moment so I cannot subscribe as I would like to, but is there any way I can still contribute or donate what I am able to afford?

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This brings an interesting idea to light, how to gift subs to other members while maintaining privacy of contact info?

Maybe a "Gift List" for people who want to sub but cant afford, and an option to default a gift purchase to someone from that list?

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Along with a weekly or monthly purge, to renew odds and keep the list from becoming forever long.

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This is an interesting idea! We've had some folks reach out to us interested in gifting subscriptions to people who can't afford it, so I'm in the middle of figuring that out, but this is a good extension of that. Stay tuned!

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Hey Joseph, what's your email?

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Or if you'd rather not put it here, you can email me directly: alekschan@gmail.com.

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my name at gmail

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Jack Mirkinson, Jack Crosbie, Rafi Schwartz

ahaha keep it chill and keep it tight folks \m/

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Rafi Schwartz

One of the most frustrating things about being a progressive Jew who belongs to an orthodox synagogue and sends my kids to a Jewish day school is the lack of voices in my community who are willing to speak out against Israel. I recognize how the indoctrination has been successful in teaching multiple generations of American Jews to hate the Palestinians and I've tried to break that cycle with my own kids and pushing back against others in my community with very limited success outside my own house. Any suggestions on how best to combat this insular, backwards thinking and be able to promote pro-Palestinian voices to better educate folks who refuse to look past the incorrect concept that being anti-Israel is anti-Semitic?

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Boy, I feel ya on this one, and wish I had an easy, turn-key answer for you. One of the best things I've found is to try and balance being knowledgeable about Palestinian liberation, Zionism, and the various subsets thereof, with not coming off as antagonistic, or indignant when I have those conversations with people. And, the optimist in me thinks it's partially just a matter of waiting - the whole conversation around Israel/Palestine is changing so quickly that I suspect that attitudes and opinions that once seemed totally off limits might soon be much more palatable. At least, I hope so. Good luck!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

I definitely second this approach and have found it works in the long term. At the very least, it gets people to not reflexively spew hate in your general direction. The downside is that it can feel like an uphill battle.

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I hear you. I'm not naive enough to think I'm going to get a lot of people to open their eyes, but if I can even help some folks make incremental progress, it's better than nothing.

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Thanks, man. I want to share your optimism. I'm definitely seeing some younger kids in my community willing to be more open-minded and that's great!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

Yes, stop going to that synagogue. You can raise your children without groupthink and they will be better for it.

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While certainly not the main reason that I attend, I don't think removing myself from a place and allowing the groupthink to be even more insular is really the best option.

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As an alternative, you could bring some Palestinian refugees to the synagogue with you as a way to humanize them.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Aleks Chan, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

Does Aleks allow you guys to wear shorts to work

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Mirkinson, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

I couldn't subscribe fast enough, glad to see this place up and running, and looking forward to years on decades of solid news.

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I appreciate your optimism! Right now I'm just looking forward to making it to the weekend in one piece

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

Coming from a world where I watch friends bootstrap in tech, it's refreshing to watch journos do the same, cheers to you all when you finally make it to the weekend!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Mirkinson, Rafi Schwartz

That image brings to mind an idea for a short story I had years ago, after I had already dropped out of grad school. An epistolary story told solely thru the letters and telegrams of Indiana Jones’ increasingly distressed graduate assistant.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Caitlin Schneider, Rafi Schwartz

Really happy to be a subscriber! Thanks for everything!

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Really happy to have you as a subscriber, Bill! Thanks for chiming in, and please - feel free to let us know what else you'd like to see from our scrappy little collective!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Rafi Schwartz

What’s a blog

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Kind of like like a blob, but more typos

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Aleks Chan, Rafi Schwartz

Heyo. First time, long time. I'm so glad this is happening, and I'm proud to subscribe. Good luck, gang. We're rooting for you.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

I am just so thoroughly, thoroughly, thoroughly happy for all of you.

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Your happiness makes me happy!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Aleks Chan, Rafi Schwartz

The good folks at BroBible ranked the best song of the summer since 2000 and they picked... Rihanna's Pon de Replay? Are they nuts or smarter than everyone else https://brobible.com/culture/article/best-song-of-summer-since-2000/

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what the fuck is this man

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I'm afraid it's actually "Feel Good Inc." off Demon Dayz - the soundtrack to the drunkest summer of my, and anyone else's, life.

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Pon de Replay is pretty good, too, though.

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Pon de Replay is amazing, but it's gotta be Feels So Close by Calvin Harris, right???

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pon de replay slaps

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

Dave

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what the fuck is this man

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i'm as stumped as you!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

Which signatory to the Harper's Letter, if any, had the biggest "oh. oh no." reaction upon seeing the full list, ya think?

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Paul Blest, Aleks Chan

When they said "The forces of illiberalism are gaining strength throughout the world" they were talking about Discourse Blog

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Aleks Chan

Thanks we thought so too

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Greil Marcus, no question.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

The more interesting question to me is "Why did Bret Stephens say no?"

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Rafi Schwartz

So I have a question for an experienced writer such as yourself Rafi! I recently accepted a job freelance writing at a popular publication. I interviewed with the editor I'd be working under and they were awesome and open and I'm chomping at the bit to get writing!

But I'm just sitting here. The last update I got was a week ago on Monday when I was told I'd be put into a bunch of different systems right away, but I only got put into one. And I've followed up a couple of times, as recently as today, regarding an update of when I can expect things to kick off. But nothing. With our fraught the world of digital media is, should I be as anxious about this as I am or is this just par for the course?

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

To give further context, I've signed an agreement to work for the publication, and on Thursday I got an automated email entering me into their billing system.

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From what it sounds like, you're being churned through the typically slow bureaucratic process. Everything always takes forever to process, especially at bigger places. If you signed something, you should be good! Stay strong.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Aleks Chan

Thanks for the kind words Aleksander. So excited to be supporting this project!

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Without knowing the specifics, it sounds like it might just be a hurry up and wait type situation. You signed paperwork, you're in the system. Seems like they're just not quite as together as you are, or are simply so huge that the gears take an insufferable time to get going. Good luck though!

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Aleks Chan, Rafi Schwartz

It's a large site, so that's what the rational part of my brain is telling me. It's just so strange to have got an interview so quickly, been offered the job right after, and have it expressed that they'd get me started as soon as possible, and now as soon as possible is now seemingly weeks. What gets me is the lack of communication. The editor was very open about a lot of things and we spoke very candidly. I at the very least expected a reply email confirming things were taking longer when I reached out for an update, but the most interaction I've had with them was a tweet of mine that they liked haha.

It just sucks when a job means everything to you but for the job and employer you're just another employee. I know I'm preaching to the choir on that front with you guys. As a former GMG contract employee myself do I know it all too well also.

I'm so glad you guys put this together! Splinter was a daily read for me and I was devastated at the loss. Looking forward to Discourse blooming into something even better! Thank you so much for the encouraging words.

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sorry not rafi but did they give you a start date? is it a day rate kinda thing or pay-per-piece?

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Jack Crosbie, Rafi Schwartz

"sorry, not rafi" is how you should start all your sentences

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No specific start date! But it seemed like they were eager to get me writing immediately. It's pay-per-piece (at a decent rate I'd say).

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yeah if it's not regular shifts, sounds like they're just dragging their feet at doing their side of the work in getting your pitches in, figuring out what kind of stories they need etc. i'd say ping them again sometime this week, maybe if you want to go above and beyond include a few ideas for your first pieces -- not full pitches, just like one-sentence hits so they know you're thinking about angles.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Rafi Schwartz

Very glad this experiment seems to have had a positive beginning. Are there plans to pull in more writers from Splinter or Deadspin as you continue on? Also is it bad to want to keep the best parts of the American ideal even if the actual history falls well short of, or at times is antithetical to, said ideal? (asking for friend)

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I think we'd love to have more writers from all over, if we can! One of the reasons we're so excited about opening up our subscription service is that hopefully it will give us the means to actually pay contributors a decent rate.

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Jul 7, 2020Liked by Katherine Krueger, Rafi Schwartz

Will Rafi's Trump Brain Status: [soupy variable here] series return???

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is this Rafi's alt

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Will Rafi win Comeback Blogger of The Year? tune in to find out!

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