You're invited ... On Monday at 8 a.m. in D.C., Bradley Whitford (Josh Lyman on "The West Wing"), AOL pioneer Jean Case, NBC's Steve Kornacki and Vox Media CEO Jim Bankoff will join me for a conversation about access to the Internet, tech and media, and the impact on culture and politics. RSVP here.
A well-known female veteran of the media business emailed me as new revelations were posted about Mark Halperin:
If you are anxiously looking around your media organization wondering who the harassers are or were, start with the men in power who are bullies: who screamed at subordinates, berated them, seemed to take pleasure in humiliating them — often publicly. We all know them. We have all worked with them. There is clearly a correlation between that behavior and this. ...
I would love to send a message to the screamers that their behavior will no longer be tolerated.
There's clearly a lot of screaming in tech, as well as in media and movies.
Halperin's had been quite an empire. If you change the game once, it's pretty cool. Changing the game more than once? Very small club. And Halperin did it repeatedly: "The Note" at ABC ... "The Page" at TIME ... The "Game Change" franchise ... Showtime's "The Circus" series.
His comeuppance all came within 24 hours of CNN's story quoting five women as saying that he "sexually harassed women while he was in a powerful position at ABC News" (political director from 1997 to 2007):
In what's becoming a pattern, more revelations poured out:
Stunning tally from Glenn Whipp, the L.A. Times reporter who broke the stories about the assaults on young industry women by creepy movie director James Toback:
Be smart: It's a tragedy that went on for decades — too many talented, eager women whose ambitions were thwarted, or pride subsumed, by selfish, gross, sometimes criminal men.
Trump's opioids directive "does not on its own release any additional funds to deal with a drug crisis that claimed more than 59,000 lives in 2016, and the president did not request any, although his aides said he would soon do so," the N.Y. Times' Julie Davis writes on the front page.
From Trump's remarks:
I had a brother, Fred — great guy, best-looking guy, best personality — much better than mine. (Laughter.) But he had a problem. He had a problem with alcohol, and he would tell me, "Don't drink. Don't drink." He was substantially older, and I listened to him ... But he would constantly tell me: "Don't drink." He'd also add: "Don't smoke." But he would say it over and over and over again.
And to this day, I've never had a drink. And I have no longing for it. I have no interest in it. To this day, I've never had a cigarette. Don't worry: Those are only two of my good things. I don't want to tell you about the bad things. (Laughter.) There's plenty of bad things too.
But he really helped me. I had somebody that guided me, and he had a very, very, very tough life because of alcohol. Believe me: very, very tough, tough life. He was a strong guy, but it was a tough, tough thing that he was going through. But I learned because of Fred. I learned.
"For months, a threat to big tech has been building from the top ... But now figures of both major parties say the unhappiness with the companies is also bubbling up from the bottom," Axios' Steve LeVine writes:
Axios smart brevity video with Jonathan Swan: "Steve Bannon and the war for the Republican Party."
P.S. L.A. Times lead story, "Vote signals rough road for tax plan: House Republicans barely pass a budget outline that clears the way for Trump's proposal to cut rates," by Lisa Mascaro:
Guest opinion on Axios ... Mario Schlosser and Joshua Kushner (younger brother of Jared), co-founders of Oscar Health, an insurance startup that will offer individual plans in six states this year:
"How Did David Rubenstein — Yes, That David Rubenstein — Become a TV Star? He's a socially awkward 68-year-old private equity titan — and his show is one of Bloomberg's fastest-growing programs," by Washingtonian's Ben Wofford:
"Seventeen years after Vladimir Putin first became president, his grip on Russia is stronger than ever," The Economist writes in its cover editorial (leader):
"Endurance feats at what amounts to warp speed have captured the imagination of an increasing number of trail runners, climbers and mountaineers," AP's Brian Melley writes from L.A.: