Public Things

Donald Cohen
Public Things is a newsletter for people who think that certain things—like water, education, and Covid-19 vaccines—should belong to all of us.
Created 19 Jul 2021
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  • The real problem with privilege
    13 Dec 2021 • 2 min read
    Ok, that's a little overstated. But it's at least one of the problems. I've done a number of interviews and podcasts since my book came out a few weeks ago (available at your local bookstore!) Sometim...
  • Is it really the profit motive?
    27 Nov 2021 • 3 min read
    My book came out last week so I've been doing interviews and podcasts. My favorite, by far, was with my conservative cousin and never-Trump leader, Charlie Sykes, on his popular Bulwark Podcast. We ac...
  • The most important difference between Google and the Public Library: Us
    13 Nov 2021 • 2 min read
    The obvious differences are clear – one’s a private company trying to take over the world and making oodles of money doing it. (yeah, I use it all the time too.) The other is a public institution that...
  • What just happened?
    06 Nov 2021 • 3 min read
    Everyone has opinion about what happened in last Tuesday's election. McAuliffe was just another Clinton Democrat who didn't motivate the base (true;) a candidate who doubled down on a progressive agen...
  • Why is it so hard to say good things about public things?
    31 Oct 2021 • 4 min read
    This newsletter is called public things. So much of our lives are about private things—our houses, our cars, our food, our binge watching (and trying to figure out what streaming services we’re subscr...
  • We're all in the pool together - literally
    16 Oct 2021 • 1 min read • 2 0
    Photo by USAG Livorno PAO. We went swimming again last night as we try to do several times per week. We swim in one of Los Angeles's 61 public pools. Many close for the winter but three within a ten-m...
  • Janet Yellen is smarter than me. Mostly.
    10 Oct 2021 • 2 min read • 1 0
    Photo by European Central Bank Child care is in the news as debate continues in Congress between the Democratic majority and two Senators. It's a big deal. That parents are left on their own to pay fo...
  • Is there a difference between immigration and migration?
    03 Oct 2021 • 2 min read
    Or between immigrant and migrant; immigrate or migrate ("emigrate" is too much complexity for this post.) And it’s my Substack so I don’t need to be comprehensive, accurate nor precise. So, to me, yes...
  • The Tree and the Bird and the Fish and the Bell
    25 Sep 2021 • 3 min read
    I like this Substack thing. I can write what I want, wander about, and muse about things I read and think about while doing laps now that our public pools are open. Today is Public Lands Day and that ...
  • Hate, Not Heritage: 'Public' means ALL, not SOME
    19 Sep 2021 • 3 min read
    I'm new to this Substack thing. I'm going to use it to write things about that come to mind, articles I read, or anything that moves me under the theme of Public Things. (check out my book, The Privat...
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