Gail: Hey, it’s hot and humid outside. It’s not fair to try to lead me down the path of Hillary Clinton. See, the whole world changed with the advent of social media. If you have influencers with millions of followers warning that, for example, giving milk to babies is dangerous, you need to do more than just issue a press release.
Bret: I’m pretty sure we could get the word out that milk is generally okay for babies or that vaccines are generally safe without setting a precedent that the federal government can work with big tech to censor individual speech.
Gail: Of course I agree with you on freedom of expression. But in the process of protecting it, it is natural to discuss specific cases in particular detail. We will pick this up again soon. Well, forever, probably.
But let me be boring for a second and ask you about the Congress. I just got over that deficit crisis, and another one is coming around the corner this summer. What is your long-term advice? Spend less? Tax plus? Ignore the whole thing and think it’ll work somehow, like always?
Bret: My advice: talk less, smile more. Seriously, what we need from Congress and the President is to get through the next 18 months without another manufactured internal crisis. Between the war in Ukraine, the increasing nuclearization of Iran, and China’s saber rattling over Taiwan, we have more than enough to worry about abroad.
Gail: Hmm. One writer’s manufactured domestic crisis is perhaps another’s reasonable disagreement. And while Congress isn’t always fascinating, it’s at the top of the critical, if arguably boring, ladder.
Bret: Before we go, Gail, I have to talk about Penelope Green’s fabulously funny obituary in The Times by Sue Johanson, a Canadian sex educator who died last month at 92. She has the most memorable paragraph to ever appear in the newspaper. for at least a month, if not a year. I have to quote it in full:
Is it weird putting body glitter on your boyfriend’s testicles? Is it safe to have sex in a jacuzzi? Could a Ziploc bag serve as a condom? If condoms are left in a car and freeze, are they still good? Answers: No. No (chlorinated water is too harsh on the genitals, particularly women’s). Definitely not. And yes, once defrosted.
I mean, after that, what else is there to say?
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