How the White House Correspondents Dinner Broke the Democratic Party

When I was a political reporter in Washington, I used to loathe the White House Correspondents Dinner. I hated how it portrayed Beltway journalism as a game. How it reduced the project of government accountability to performative antagonism practiced daily by reporters in White House press briefings — a performance exposed annually at a dinner where the most powerful people in the world would rub elbows and yuck it up about funny “inside jokes” like George W. Bush’s bungling of the Iraq War and the media’s culpability in helping him do it.

Maybe because I was a reporter at the time, I always considered the dinner’s rottenness from the perspective of the relationship between the media and politicians, lamenting that images from the Washington Hilton of the press mingling with administration officials in black tie undercut the public’s faith in an independent media.

But the further away I’ve gotten from the experience — and the faster our republic has tumbled toward oblivion — the more I’ve considered how the dinner contributed in other, significant ways to the brokenness of our current political moment: The dinner highlights the laughable disconnect between the people in Washington with the power to do something (the dinner attendees) and the rest of us mere mortals (people largely not watching the dinner at home on C-SPAN).

The presidency of Barack Obama transformed the Democratic Party in ways many pundits already have explored ad nauseum, from a revolution in data analytics to Obama’s creation of an entire political infrastructure outside of the Democratic National Committee. Yet, the White House Correspondents Dinner, now that it’s back from its hiatus in the two years we acknowledged the ongoing pandemic as real, is also a reminder of perhaps Obama’s worst contribution to modern politics: the marriage between actual Hollywood and the “Hollywood for ugly people” known as Washington.

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Motion Picture Association wants online ID checks to curb piracy

The Motion Picture Association (MPA) wants stricter online identity checks to be part of the new trade agreement between the US and countries in the Indo-Pacific region. The film industry group also wants offline enforcement tools to apply online.

MPA is concerned that website operators use unconfirmed identities when signing up for Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) services. There are multiple types of IaaS services, but MPA narrows it down to CDNs, proxy services, domain registrars, and web hosting. Companies providing these services enable piracy by providing their services to piracy websites, MPA argues.

IaaS services providers are currently not legally obligated to carry out identity checks. MPA believes the new trade agreement between the US and Indo-Pacific region is an opportunity to introduce such a requirement, Torrent Freak reports.

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Kyle Rittenhouse Not Guilty Verdict Breaks Hollywood: ‘I Weep for This Country’

Left-wing Hollywood celebrities experienced a collective meltdown after a jury in Kenosha, Wisconsin, acquitted 18-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse of all charges on Friday. “I weep for this country,” one star lamented, while another claimed the verdict represented a victory for “white supremacy.”

Celebrities including Sophia Bush, Patton Oswalt, and Josh Gad took their cues from the establishment media by insisting on a racial angle to the verdict, even though all the parties in the case were white. Other celebrities simply vented their rage, like Alyssa Milano, who hurled expletives at her TV as the verdict was read.

“This is white supremacy in action,” Sophia Bush tweeted.

“So…the white guy goes free. Is that the message?” author Stephen King wrote.

“Fucking not guilty,” Alyssa Milano despaired.

In one bizarre instance, ABC’s Scandal star Kerry Washington paid tribute to the two men Rittenhouse shot and killed out of self-defense — Joseph Rosenbaum, a pedophile sex offender, and Anthony Huber, a habitual woman beater.

Kyle Rittenhouse was acquitted of all charges on Friday following three days of jury deliberation. The 18-year-old faced two charges of murder, one charge of attempted murder, and two charges of reckless endangerment stemming from last year’s Black Lives Matter riots that saw large parts of Kenosha burn to the ground.

Rittenhouse’s attorneys argued their client acted in self-defense when he was attacked while helping to defend property against violent rioters. Rittenhouse shot and killed two rioters after they threatened him — Joseph Rosenbaum, who reached for Rittenhouse’s rifle, and Anthony Huber, who hit Rittenhouse in the head and neck with a skateboard, and reached for the rifle.

Hollywood celebrities didn’t appear concerned with the details of the case when they reacted with rage to the jury’s decision.

One Tree Hill star and left-wing activist Sophia Bush called the verdict a “miscarriage of justice,” adding: “This is white supremacy in action.

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