Good morning, everyone.
A common refrain you hear that benefits none but those that wish to continue stewing in paralysis and misery is the proclamation that "people were stronger back then." Surely, there are things we can learn from the era prior to air conditioning and 24/7 electricity, but to bemoan the loss of some vital aspect of man achieves very little except to demoralize him to no effect. That which we are, we are. When the hammer falls and the demands required of man increase, some will rise and some will fall just as in the past.
If the past is useful for anything, it's useful as inspiration for the future. One shouldn't look into the past with the limp nostalgia of a man who's lost his way, but with the attitude of a raider grabbing onto bits and pieces of information and knowledge that will propel him into the future while cavalierly shredding the rest. As we mentioned a few weeks back, history is the language of power. It is in the past that we find justification for the future, and just as the future is under constant revision, so too is the past.
A sustainable vision of the future will not be found in Science or Politics, but only through communion with the long legacy of our forbears — be it in the Church, the great books of the Western world, or an understanding of history and what got us here. By their nature, Science and Politics only give us short-term material answers to what are overwhelmingly spiritual problems.
At the end of today's newsletter are the closing lines of Lord Alfred Tennyson's 'Ulysses' which express this point well. I won't quote it, but instead, will push you to scroll down (past all the other amazing content) and read it for yourself.
Today, we review the Metro charter amendments that will be on the August primary ballot, track Elon Musk's movements, and observe the devastating effects of adopting progressivism whole hog has had on Disney.
Also, be sure to check out our podcast. New episodes every Monday. Available wherever you get your podcasts.
Thanks for reading.
Valerie Malfy continues her romp through Nashville's most esteemed and noteworthy drinking establishments. This week, she highlights some hidden gems — those that might require a couple of tries to find the door.
- Nashville's Best Beer Gardens (Read)
- Best Patio Beverages in Nashville (Read)
- Nashville's Best Old Fashioneds (Read)
𝌡 The August 4th Ballot is Stacked
At The Pamphleteer, we’ve observed that sometimes there just isn’t enough time to become well acquainted with candidates, topics, and issues before we make it to the ballot box. We’ve seen text messages with mock ballots that include checkmarks next to the candidates the sender is suggesting you vote for (we all have that one political friend we trust). Voters are bombarded with signs, ads, mudslinging, narratives, and candidates attempting to grab headlines by making outlandish accusations. It’s tiring. It’s confusing.
As we move into the August primary, then to the general election in November, we will set you up as best we can to tackle this year’s elections with confidence. Not only will we have a voter guide coming out, but we will also be highlighting how to discern the traits you’re looking for in a candidate while listening to them speak. We’ll also be having 5th-district U.S. Congressional candidates on our new podcast.
Lastly, we’ll be keeping you up to date with places you can catch politicians speaking, we’ll be summarizing those events, and we will be brushing you up on the issues and names you’ll be seeing on the ballot. That brings us to today’s quick rundown.
CHARTER AMENDMENTS YOU’LL BE VOTING FOR
Metro council unanimously passed four charter amendments that you’ll see on the August primary ballot. Why? Because you’ll literally be voting on whether or not to pass them into law. Some directly impact voters more than others. Today, we’ll look at the Metro Charter amendment that impacts Davidson County voters the most.
CHANGING PETITIONS FOR METRO DECISIONS
This Charter Amendment changes 2 things:
- It will require the signatures of 10% of all registered voters in Davidson county for a petition. These petitions are required if the public wishes to introduce a referendum (regarding a single issue) to be voted on via direct public vote on the ballot.
- It will give the public 90 days to acquire these signatures.
This might not sound like a bad deal, but this Charter Amendment makes the petition process more difficult than the current standing rules. Right now, a petition only requires the signatures of 10% of the number of voters who cast a vote in the last election. This, of course, is a much smaller number compared to the total number of registered voters in Davidson county.
THINGS TO NOTE
- The new Charter Amendment makes it easier for “housekeeping” purposes since the number of people who vote from election to election varies.
- Originally, the Charter Amendment proposal was set for 15% of all registered voters with a 60-day window. After discussions among council members, they changed it to 10% and 90 days.
THIS ISN’T JUST ABOUT THE TAX INCREASE
Though local media has focused on the petition filed back in 2021 regarding the 34% property tax increase, that’s not the only controversial petition that has been presented in the last few years. Lest we forget, back in 2018 a controversial community police oversight board was created after a petition got the issue on the ballot.
- Council approves new contract with trash pickup vendor (Main Street) Council members took another step toward a long-term resolution of Metro’s trash woes on Tuesday, approving a $7.5 million contract with Waste Management.
- Nashville commute times are rising as downtown workers return to offices (NBJ) Nashville is one of the few cities studied that saw more traffic to downtown than pre-pandemic.
- Tennessee is ranked 42 in teacher salary. What does that mean for recruitment? (Tennessean) Tennessee is ranked No. 42 for public teacher salary with an average of $52,871 in the 2020-2021 school year, the report said. The national average public school teacher pay topped $65,000 that same year.
- First Responder Focused Nonprofit Pays Off Mortgages Of Fallen TN Soldiers, Police Officer (TCN) The Tunnel to Towers Foundation has paid off the mortgages of a fallen Franklin Police Officer and five fallen soldiers from Tennessee.
- Tennessee State gets $1.9M agriculture grant from USDA (AP) Tennessee State University won a $1.9 million grant for its College of Agriculture to lead a group of historically Black schools in research around sustainable agriculture and environmental conservation, the college announced on Monday.
- Supreme Court finds Lee’s school voucher program doesn’t violate home rule protections (TNJ) The 3-2 decision released Thursday came after the high court decided to rehear arguments following the death last year of Justice Connie Clark. Court of Appeals Judge Skip Frierson sat in on the case and sided with Chief Justice Roger Page and Justice Jeff Bivins. Justices Sharon Lee and Holly Kirby dissented.
- Governor Lee Signs Ford Megasite Contractor Transparency Bill Into Law (TCN) Contractors who do more than $100,000 of work at the site will be required to disclose details such as number of employees, the state of residence for each worker, union affiliation (if any) and the work they performed to the state building commission and the speakers of both legislative chambers quarterly.
- S.C. developer pays $1.1M for Antioch property (Post)
- Midtown project put on hold (Post)
- Tanger Outlets breaks ground in Antioch (Main Street)
- Fairgrounds apartment property sells for undisclosed sum (Post)
♨︎ MUSK TRACKER: PV=nRT
The political pressure placed on Elon Musk must be immense. You can speculate all you want about the man's real motives, but it's clear that his plans to take over Twitter will disturb something in the halls of power. The first evidence of the mounting pressure is the removal of Tesla from the S&P 500's ESG index. A blog post from the index indicated that the removal was due to Tesla’s “lack of a low-carbon strategy”, and “codes of business conduct,” along with racism and poor working conditions reported at Tesla’s factory in Fremont, California.
Notice the racism.
Tesla will be eligible for re-inclusion during next year's annual rebalance. Until then, Musk has warned people that "political attacks on [him] will escalate dramatically in coming months." The man has taken on a more deliberately political tenor of late. He's criticized Biden, stated his intention to "vote Republican", and leaned into his mystifying Twitter activity. Is Musk the good guy? I find these kinds of questions tiresome.
What's obvious though is that his plans are generating an immune response in academia, the media, and DC which is good because the nation is sick. It's possible that Musk's forward thrust will nudge the nation back in the other direction and out of the clutches of people who think men can get pregnant and have abortions. A proper immune response here would be the removal of such people from positions of even moderate influence and their station changed to that of a struggling Off-Broadway actress where they belong.
In the meantime, another billionaire, Jeff Bezos, has begun to become equally political, criticizing Biden's plans to tamp down inflation. After four years of hearing that we need adults in DC, they've finally begun to show up — albeit not in DC exactly.
⤵ GRAPH OF THE DAY: DISNEY'S DESCENT INTO THE ABYSS
⚔ MISSIVES ⚔
- 🤡 After a wave of backlash, the Department of Homeland Security is considering shutting down its just-created Disinformation Governance Board, which was officially tasked with combatting false narratives around domestic terrorism and human trafficking along the border, but which was widely interpreted as having a much broader brief to monitor and possibly curtail disfavored political speech.
- 🇹🇷 Turkey on Wednesday vetoed a Nato decision on whether to accept Finland and Sweden into the military alliance in the first official vote on membership.
- 🍼 U.S. health regulators took steps to allow more foreign baby formula on American shelves, easing rules that had effectively prevented shipments from many overseas manufacturers.
- 📉 Crypto exchange Coinbase will slow down hiring and reassess headcount needs as the broader crypto market sees a downturn, the firm said in a note to employees.
- ⛏ China is once again contributing a significant chunk of the world's bitcoin (BTC) mining operations despite the ban last year. Following the crackdown on bitcoin mining in the country last year, China's share was reduced to 0% in July and August. However, that figure was up to 22.29% in September and fluctuated around 20% in October-January.
- 📄 New York Governor Kathy Hochul has announced a strict series of gun control regulations, days after a racially motivated shooting in Buffalo that killed ten people.
- 🎯 Target Corp. plunged the most since 1987’s Black Monday crash after becoming the second big retailer in two days to trim its profit forecast. Operating profit will amount to only about 6% of sales this year, 2% below the previous forecast.
THINGS TO DO
View our full event calendar here.
🍺 The Pamphleteer hosts Bar Hours on the last Thursday of every month — May 26th will be our next meeting — at Lucky's 3 Star Bar from 6-8 PM. The first ten guests get drinks on the company tab.
🎪 Check out our favorite driving distance festivals this summer.
👨🏻🌾 The Pamphleteer farmer's market guide.
👂 Listen to The Pamphleteer's Picks, a playlist of the bands featured in this week's calendar.
⚾️ Sounds vs. Bats @ First Horizon Park, 6:35, $15+, Info
🍀 Live Irish Music @ McNamara’s Irish Pub, 6p, Free, Info
🎸 Kelly’s Heroes @ Robert’s Western World, 6:30p, Free, Info
🕺 Franc Moody @ Exit/In, 8p, $22, Info
ON THE RADAR
🎻 Leftover Salmon (5/24-25) @ Station Inn, $35, Info
👁 Beethoven's 9th (6/2-5) @ Schermerhorn, $25+, Info
🚨 Eprom (6/25) @ Eastside Bowl, 9p, $25.50, Info
🎸 Boulevards (7/17) @ Basement East, 7p, $10, Info
🎸 My Morning Jacket (9/23) @ Ascend Amphitheater, 7p, $22.88, Info
🎸 Smashing Pumpkins (10/10) @ Bridgestone Arena, 6:30p, $133+, Info
⏚ TRANSMISSIONS FROM THE GROUND: Apollo Suns at the Cobra
Ran into some real nuts at Cobra in East Nashville last night, which is to be expected. I tried to get a mushroom-addled drifter to explain to me what fractals were, but that's a fool's errand.
Apollo Suns was an entertaining show. From the beginning, the seven-piece band was on the offensive with a high-paced, energetic set. Keyboard, trombone, trumpet, sax, guitar, bass, and drums. The keyboard player looked like a mad scientist reeling over his creations and the guitar player looked like a white Genghis Khan. They're like a fast-paced Lettuce or Budos Band, or if you know Chicago's "25 0r 6 or 4", it's that same energy without lyrics. They were riding crescendos like a wave.
The band hails from Winnipeg. So much good music comes from Canada, one has to wonder if being locked indoors for the winter provides fertile ground for a good music scene. After all, the Brits have their dreary weather and legendary music.
NEW THIS WEEK
FROM THE ARCHIVE
Around the Web
➫ Spite buildings: when human grudges get architectural – in pictures Feuding brothers, thwarted lovers, and a lot of spoiled views: ‘spite buildings’ are our smallest human pettiness made manifest in bricks and mortar. Here are some of the best/worst
✱ Shuffled By the iPod The iPod is leaving the market, which means that now’s as good a time as any to consider the many audio players it vanquished along the way.
↯ Three Big Questions That the American Establishment Got Wrong Who benefited from the obvious nonsense that became post-Cold War America’s trade, foreign, and federal deficit policies?
Political Theater Highlight Reel
- NZ PM Jacinda Ardern asks people she just met maskless to put on a mask since it's a public event
- George W. Bush: “The decision of one man to launch a wholly unjustified and brutal invasion of Iraq. I mean of Ukraine.”
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Words of Wisdom
Though much is taken, much abides; and though
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven; that which we are, we are;
One equal tempter of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.
Lord Alfred Tennyson, 'Ulysses'