Common Ground #24 🤝

Brian Snyder / Reuters

Brian Snyder / Reuters

Quick reminder

We recently launched a new series called Common Ground. As a reminder, our goal with this series is to highlight the common values that left and right-leaning media outlets share. We're doing this because we want to remind our readers that not every topic is partisan and polarizing.

How will we do this?

We’ll take articles from the left and the right that seem to be telling a news story in the same way - and extract common values from them. We hope these common values spark a conversation of agreement with your neighbor on the other side of the aisle. 😊


Washington Examiner (right): Apple flunks its own standard on Data Privacy Day

The Atlantic (left): FaceTime Is Eroding Trust in Tech

Summary: A recent flaw in Apple’s group Facetime feature allowed users to eavesdrop on other users. While Apple took down the feature to fix it, the left and the right used this opportunity to highlight the eroding trust in technology in general.

Evidence of common ground:

  • Washington Examiner places this incident in “a digital landscape where consumers and governments are rightly questioning just how much data companies have”

  • The Atlantic places this incident in the landscape of Facebook’s “careless infrastructure [which] upended democracy” and Twitter and Instagram feeling like they are “designed to deliver harassment rather than updates from friends”

  • The Atlantic says “privacy paranoiacs have been totally vindicated”

  • Washington Examiner says it’s “a serious blow to Apple, which had held itself to a higher standard of data privacy and user protection”

Common ground: 
Even our privacy heroes are failing us, and it speaks to a understandable trend of distrust in big tech companies


Newsmax (right): Elizabeth Warren Thinks Your Property Isn't Really Yours — It's Hers

Wired (left): Why Taxing The Rich May Not Save Democracy

Summary: Elizabeth Warren is in the 2020 presidential race on the far left side of a crowded Democratic field. She unveiled a new tax plan this week that hopes to redistribute some of the wealth in the U.S. The plan calls for a yearly 2% tax on net worth for people with over $50 million in assets, and a 3% tax for people with over $1 billion in assets. Articles from both the left and right criticized it.

Evidence of common ground:

  • Both agree that the tax could be outmaneuvered by the rich. Newsmax says the plan “ignores… that wealth is mobile”, and Wired says “enforcing it [on overseas assets] would be nigh-impossible”.  

  • Wired points out that France, Sweden, and other countries with higher taxes on the rich are seeing the same anti-immigrant and pro-nationalist movements as the U.S.

  • Newsmax says the plan ignores how wealth redistributes money on its own

  • Wired asks if it would move inequality towards equality, and says “based on past experience, the answers may be disappointing”

Common ground: 
This tax will be difficult to enforce, and it might not be the best solution to problems such as poverty and national disunity

When your iPhone won't stop spying on you



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