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(David Bythewood) #303

Hung jury refuses to convict humanitarian volunteer who helped migrants

There is definite evidence the census rigging was racist. How can they claim he gets executive privilege?

Trump asserts executive privilege over census citizenship question info as Dems prepare contempt vote

Reminder: Thomas B. Hofeeler’s hard drives revealed how they planned to weaponize the census:


#304

We need this bill. Although this would be only a small step, it would be a step in the right direction. It’s encouraging that this was introduced by a bipartisan group.

And we need to take even stronger actions in this direction. We also need to eliminate dark money in election campaigns and in social media influence campaigns.

It’s too bad that a dialogue on sound, constructive, vital legislation like this is perpetually drowned out by Trump’s reality-TV carnival – a reminder of why we must hold the House and take the Senate and the Executive branches so we can get back to passing sensible legislation like this.

A bipartisan group of U.S. senators on Monday announced they were introducing a bill to toughen U.S. laws requiring shell companies to disclose their true owners’ identity.

Two Republicans on the Senate Banking Committee, Tom Cotton and Mike Rounds, and Democratic committee members Mark Warner and Doug Jones said their proposed new law would improve corporate transparency, strengthen national security and make it easier for investigators to crack down on illicit financial activity by terrorists, drug dealers and other criminals.

The senators said one of the principal aims of the new law would be to require shell companies, which the senators said were “often used as fronts for criminal activity” to disclose their ultimate, real owners to the U.S. Treasury Department.

The senators said the bill would also update outdated federal anti-money laundering laws by improving communications between law enforcement and regulatory agencies and the financial industry and “facilitating” the adoption by the industry and regulators of advanced technology.


(David Bythewood) #305

Ahhhhh… WTF?
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Oh. I get it now. Geraldo re-tweted Chris Cuomo, mocking him. And Donnie, chaotic as always, seized upon a minor typo in Chris Cuomo’s post that is not at ALL visible unless you click on said post… and corrected it… and… he is so dumb.
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#306

Whodah thunk?

President Trump’s speech at the Lincoln Memorial on the Fourth of July is expected to drive up security costs for an annual event that draws hundreds of thousands of visitors to the nation’s capital.

But the president has still not fully paid the bill for the last time he addressed a massive crowd on the Mall: His 2017 inauguration.

The Trump administration and Congress owe D.C. more than $7 million in expenses from Trump’s inauguration, according to federal and city financial records. The total cost of the four-day celebration, which culminated with a parade and gathering of roughly 600,000 people on the Mall, was $27.3 million.

As a result, the District has been forced to dip into a special fund that covers annual security costs for protecting the city from terrorist threats and hosting other events such as demonstrations, state funerals and the visits of foreign dignitaries. That fund, which for years was adequately replenished by federal dollars, is now on track to enter the red by this fall, records show.

Our Commander in Chief’s negligence in reimbursing D.C. has reduced our ability to guard against terrorists. So much for his oath to protect us.


(David Bythewood) #307

Remember when Steve Mnuchin canceled the Harriet Tubman $20 bill, stating it was far from development? Yeah, that was a lie, it was pretty much virtually finished.

See a Design of the Harriet Tubman $20 Bill That Mnuchin Delayed

…Donnie just posted this… for Flag Day.

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#308

OMG. He’s actually proud of that photo?

This calls for an ever-relevant meme:


#309

WTF is going on here? This whole extreme alt-right media story that’s happening on the sidelines of the Trump Admin is just so crazy. Alex Jones is con man that says crazy things just to get people to buy vitamins in his online store.


(David Bythewood) #310

Same story:

Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones sent child pornography to the lawyers for the families of the Sandy Hook shooting. The lawyers contacted the FBI after discovering child porn in electronic files Jones turned over as a result of their lawsuit.

In response, Jones said on his show: “I pray for divine intervention against the powers of Satan. I literally would never have sex with children. I don’t like having sex with children. I would never have sex with children, I am not a Democrat, I am not a liberal.”

The FBI said they could not confirm or deny any investigations. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Connecticut, which Jones claimed would release a statement declaring him a victim in the matter, has declined to comment.


#311

So let me get this straight, Alex Jones sent kiddie porn to the lawyers of Sandyhook parents and then accused the FBI of planting the kiddie porn on his computer servers? How is this guy not in jail yet? Isn’t even possession of that kind of porn a felony?

Update: I went to twitter and found a great thread of this story. :point_down:click tweet to view full thread. What a story, what a moron. So 2019…


(David Bythewood) #312

One of the claims being made is that it was unsolicited and incoming and buried among a large amount of e-mails he turned over to them, though that seems spurious and strange. It’s still developing.


(David Bythewood) #313

The British research submarine Boaty McBoatface discovered a significant link between Antarctic winds and rising sea temperatures on its maiden outing.


#314

The issue of income inequality in this country has lowered the standard of our educational system. NO DOUBT ABOUT IT. Would there ever be any incentive for the rich guy to provide an education and an economic opportunity? Sure if more people were outside-of-the-box thinkers it could change a lot.

But some of the premises for getting that good education are stuck in a cycle of poverty, neglect and disinterested in bringing up the educational standards.

Lack of a good education is a big systemic problem…we can not just throw money at short term solutions…There could be and might be a better way.

Like many rich Americans, I used to think educational investment could heal the country’s ills—but I was wrong. Fighting inequality must come first.

Long ago, I was captivated by a seductively intuitive idea, one many of my wealthy friends still subscribe to: that both poverty and rising inequality are largely consequences of America’s failing education system. Fix that, I believed, and we could cure much of what ails America.

This belief system, which I have come to think of as “educationism,” is grounded in a familiar story about cause and effect: Once upon a time, America created a public-education system that was the envy of the modern world. No nation produced more or better-educated high-school and college graduates, and thus the great American middle class was built. But then, sometime around the 1970s, America lost its way. We allowed our schools to crumble, and our test scores and graduation rates to fall. School systems that once churned out well-paid factory workers failed to keep pace with the rising educational demands of the new knowledge economy. As America’s public-school systems foundered, so did the earning power of the American middle class. And as inequality increased, so did political polarization, cynicism, and anger, threatening to undermine American democracy itself.

Taken with this story line, I embraced education as both a philanthropic cause and a civic mission. I co-founded the League of Education Voters, a nonprofit dedicated to improving public education. I joined Bill Gates, Alice Walton, and Paul Allen in giving more than $1 million each to an effort to pass a ballot measure that established Washington State’s first charter schools. All told, I have devoted countless hours and millions of dollars to the simple idea that if we improved our schools—if we modernized our curricula and our teaching methods, substantially increased school funding, rooted out bad teachers, and opened enough charter schools—American children, especially those in low-income and working-class communities, would start learning again. Graduation rates and wages would increase, poverty and inequality would decrease, and public commitment to democracy would be restored.

To be clear: We should do everything we can to improve our public schools. But our education system can’t compensate for the ways our economic system is failing Americans. Even the most thoughtful and well-intentioned school-reform program can’t improve educational outcomes if it ignores the single greatest driver of student achievement: household income.


#315

(US air quality is slipping after years of improvement)

After decades of improvement, America’s air may not be getting any cleaner.

Over the last two years the nation had more polluted air days than just a few years earlier, federal data shows. While it remains unclear whether this is the beginning of a trend, health experts say it’s troubling to see air quality progress stagnate.

There were 15% more days with unhealthy air in America both last year and the year before than there were on average from 2013 through 2016, the four years when America had its fewest number of those days since at least 1980.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly claimed just the opposite, saying earlier this month in Ireland: “We have the cleanest air in the world, in the United States, and it’s gotten better since I’m president.”

That’s not quite the case. There were noticeably more polluted air days each year in the president’s first two years in office than any of the four years before, according to new Environmental Protection Agency data analyzed by The Associated Press.

The Trump administration is expected to replace an Obama-era rule designed to limit emissions from electric power plants on Wednesday. Called the Clean Power Plan, it would have gradually phased out coal-burning power plants that emit both air pollutants and heat-trapping gases responsible for climate change.

Air quality is affected by a complex mix of factors, both natural and man-made. Federal regulations that limit the emissions of certain chemicals and soot from factories, cars and trucks have helped dramatically improve air quality over recent decades. In any given year, however, air quality can be affected by natural variations. That may be what’s behind the stalled progress, scientists say.

“What you’re seeing is a flattening off of progress as opposed to a major change in the wrong direction,” said former deputy EPA administrator Bob Perciasepe, president of the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions.

But Trump is moving to loosen regulations on coal-fired power plants and cars that scientists credit for cleaner air, and he appears to be less stringent about enforcing current rules, according to data obtained by environmental advocates through the Freedom of Information Act.

Scientists say that it is too early to see the effects of changes in environmental policy of the Trump administration, which took office in January 2017.

But they say looser restrictions and lax enforcement would almost certainly reverse the gains that have been made in recent decades, potentially turning what has so far been a modest, two-year backslide into a dangerous trend.

“Today it feels like the future of our kids and our country is at stake,” said former Obama EPA chief Gina McCarthy, now director of the Center for Climate, Health and the Global Environment at the Harvard School of Public Health. “We do not have the cleanest air and we have not crossed the finish line when it comes to pollution.”

The EPA quietly posted new air quality data online last month that shows a recent uptick in polluted days.

Five hundred and thirty-two American metro areas reported a total of 4,134 days in 2018 when the official air quality index passed 100, which means it is unhealthy for people with heart and lung disease, the elderly and the very young. That’s about 15% more bad air days per city than the average for from 2013 to 2016, America’s clean air heyday.

The worst of the bad air days jumped even more. On average, in 2017 and 2018 there were nearly 140 times when a city’s air pollution reached the worst two categories — “very unhealthy” and “hazardous” — with the air quality index greater than 200. That’s more than two-and-a-half times the average of nearly 55 from 2013 to 2016. Last year, Riverside, California, topped the nation with 13 days in the worst two air quality categories and had the most bad air days of all types: 173.

About 100,000 Americans each year die prematurely because of polluted air, studies show.


(David Bythewood) #316

Orlando Sentinel announces 2020 endorsement: Not Trump

“Some readers will wonder how we could possibly eliminate a candidate so far before an election, and before knowing the identity of his opponent. Because there’s no point pretending we would ever recommend that readers vote for Trump,” the editorial board wrote.

“After 2½ years we’ve seen enough. Enough of the chaos, the division, the schoolyard insults, the self-aggrandizement, the corruption, and especially the lies.”

The Sentinel dubbed Trump’s “successful assault on truth” as “the great casualty of this presidency, followed closely by his war on decency” and said the commander in chief “has diminished our standing in the world.”


(David Bythewood) #317

Air Force landlord falsified records to boost income, documents show

A past manager for one of the U.S. military’s largest housing providers eventually refused directions from his superiors to doctor maintenance logs at Tinker Air Base and then resigned.



#318

PA is giving Earned Income Tax Credits at almost a dollar-for-dollar rate to companies and individuals who donate to organizations who funnel those donations to religious and private schools, creating a loophole that makes the state a de facto contributor to religious schools. There is a state cap of 110 M, and the PA legislators want to raise it. Gov Wolf, (the firewall of all ridiculousness) vetoed the bill, but the Republicans, who argue that this is about making private school affordable to deserving, poor kids, will find a way to sneak the funding into the budget.


(David Bythewood) #319

I would like to note that I have never seen a devastating wind or solar explosion.

Just saying.

Philadelphia refinery fire and explosion caught on video by commuters

There is no way this can go horribly wrong.

New Alabama Law Permits Church to Hire its own Police Force


(David Bythewood) #320

Just plain neat and NOT horrible for once:


(M A Croft) #321

Wow! Thanks for that. My wife is a resource teacher for visually impaired children here. That’s so cool.


(David Bythewood) #322

Trump’s efforts to goad Iran into war are ramped up:

Trump Imposes New Economic Sanctions on Iran