We report only news that has an impact on American culture.
No shark attacks, no celebrities or sports heroes.
No click-bait. No time-wasting videos. No ads.
Art of the Deal co-author predicts Trump to resign by autumn.
The Independent via Yahoo News
> Tony Schwartz, who has been a vocal critic of President Trump and spent 18 months interviewing and shadowing him in the 1980’s, suggested he would negotiate a deal for immunity in the Russia investigation in exchange for giving up his seat in the Oval Office.
> “The circle is closing at blinding speed. Trump is going to resign and declare victory before Mueller and Congress leave him no choice”.
> … “The end game is on: Trump goes down or we do. He will blow up the world to prove he matters. We must stand up in opposition every day.”
> … “The Russia stuff will be huge. He doesn’t want to go to jail.”
Study shows Americans shifting toward health care for all Vox
> For the past few years, pollsters have asked about a thousand or so Americans the same question: Does the government have an obligation to ensure all Americans have health care?
> They’ve found a remarkable shift, with Americans swinging sharply toward the belief that the government ought to play a very large role in the health care system.
> Specifically, the percentage of Americans who think the government has an obligation to ensure coverage to all citizens has risen from 42 percent in 2013 to 60 percent in 2017.
Van rams crowd in deadly Barcelona attack AFP
> Catalan government says 13 dead, 50 injured.
> Death toll is “bound to rise”
Disgusting response by unhinged lunatic in the Oval Office The Daily Beast
“Study what General Pershing of the United States did to terrorists when caught,” the so-called president tweeted. “There was no more Radical Islamic Terror for 35 years!”
>Trump repeatedly referenced the fabricated tale during the 2016 presidential campaign, despite it having been disproven on numerous occasions. According to the lie, U.S. General John J. Pershing threatened Muslim terrorists in the Philippines by executing them with bullets dipped in pigs’ blood and burying them among the pigs.
>>> GOP Sen. Corker calls for “radical changes” in White House
Chattanooga Times Free Press
Advance made toward blood test that can spot cancers NBC News
> Researchers say they have taken a big step towards developing a test that can tell people if they have cancer long before the first symptoms show up.
> The blood test detected the majority of cancers in people with four of the biggest cancer killers: breast, colon, lung and ovarian cancer, the team at Johns Hopkins University said.
> The test is a long way from being used to screen for cancer, but the study shows a way to get there, the team reported in the journal Science Translational Medicine.
“Pizza panic” rumor monger keeps Top Secret security clearance
The Daily Beast
> Jack Posobiec is one of the right’s leading agitators and conspiracy theorists.
> He implied there may be a child-sex ring under a D.C. pizza joint run by Democrats. He peddled rumors about the murder of former DNC staffer Seth Rich. He interrupted a supposedly anti-Trump Julius Caesar play, yelling “you are all Goebbels.” He popularized a WikiLeaks campaign against a French presidential candidate. He even tried to sabotage a D.C. protest by holding up a sign that said, “Rape Melania.”
> Posobiec did all of this, and more, as a U.S. Navy intelligence officer, apparently while he had one of the military’s highest security clearances.
What’s stopping the airlines from making your seat even more miserable? Bloomberg
The industry has been squeezing you for years. But competition and the courts may soon provide relief.
List of world’s 10 “most livable cities …” And none are in US
The Economist, via CNN Travel
> annual list assesses stability, healthcare, culture, environment, education and infrastructure in 140 cities.
>Melbourne, Vienna, Vancouver top the list.
> Honolulu, Washington and Boston are highest ranked in US.
PETA admits “terrible mistake” killing girl’s pet chihuahua Newser
> A family has settled a lawsuit against the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals for taking a girl’s unattended dog and euthanizing it. PETA said it will pay the family $49,000 and donate $2,000 to a local SPCA to honor the dog. The family had sought up to $7 million.
> Wilber Zarate had sued PETA for taking his daughter’s Chihuahua from a mobile home park and putting it down before the end of a required five-day grace period.
> Two women affiliated with PETA traveled to Accomack, Virginia, because they said a mobile home park owner asked for help capturing wild dogs and feral cats.
> The women removed an unattended and unleashed Chihuahua named Maya, which was a Christmas president to 9-year-old Cynthia Zarate.
> Maya was put down later that day, a violation of a state law that requires a five-day grace period. PETA was fined $500 for the violation.
“One of us is going to be a hegemon in 25 or 30 years and it’s gonna be them if we go down this path. If we continue to lose it, we’re five years away, I think, 10 years at the most, of hitting an inflection point from which we’ll never be able to recover.”
Trump: “Foolish” to take down Confederate statues.
Nation’s culture “being ripped apart.”
> He’s “sad” over “removal of beautiful statues”
Wonky GPS aboard Black Sea ships suggests Russian cyber-weapon
> Reports of satellite navigation problems in the Black Sea suggest that Russia may be testing a new system for spoofing GPS, New Scientist has learned. This could be the first hint of a new form of electronic warfare available to everyone from rogue nation states to petty criminals.
“In about the next 30 to 35 days, I will be the most colourful character you have ever talked about,” Sater told New York Magazine. “Unfortunately, I can’t talk about it now, before it happens. And believe me, it ain’t anything as small as whether or not they’re gonna call me to the Senate committee.”
SF Bay Area averaging one car-to-car shooting per week
> “The vast majority of these are targeted and many of them are gang-related,” said Officer John Fransen of the CHP’s Golden Gate Division, which is investigating 83 of the 100 shootings.
Gas warfare common in Syria, inspectors say Reuters
> A promise by Syria in 2013 to surrender its chemical weapons averted U.S. air strikes. Many diplomats and weapons inspectors now believe that promise was a ruse.
> They suspect that President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, while appearing to cooperate with international inspectors, secretly maintained or developed a new chemical weapons capability. They say Syria hampered inspectors, gave them incomplete or misleading information, and turned to using chlorine bombs when its supplies of other chemicals dwindled.
> There have been dozens of chlorine attacks and at least one major sarin attack since 2013, causing more than 200 deaths and hundreds of injuries. International inspectors say there have been more than 100 reported incidents of chemical weapons being used in the past two years alone.
Racist Daily Stormer site moves to Russian domain server Ars Technica
> Editor Andrew Anglin argued that the campaign against the site has actually worked in the Daily Stormer’s favor. “We’ve been given a massive amount of publicity by the media,” Anglin wrote. Anglin posted a traffic chart showing that the site got a massive surge in the hours before it was taken down.
> It’s an example of the Streisand effect: when efforts to suppress information leads to media attention that actually increases public exposure. Until this week, the Daily Stormer was an obscure site frequented by a small number of hardcore racists. The campaign against the site didn’t get it shut down, but it did raise its profile.
Trump signs expanded GI Bill into law AP
> The Forever GI Act immediately removed a 15-year time limit on the use of GI benefits. The measure also increases financial assistance for thousands serving in the National Guard and Reserve, building on a 2008 law that guaranteed veterans a full-ride scholarship to any in-state public university, or a similar cash amount to attend private colleges.
Trucker formally indicted for 10 immigrant deaths in Texas Reuters
> A truck driver accused of smuggling immigrants inside a packed and sweltering tractor-trailer through Texas, 10 of whom died, was formally indicted by a federal grand jury on Wednesday on charges that can carry the death penalty, prosecutors said.
> James Bradley Jr., 60, was given a five-count indictment that included charges of transportation of undocumented aliens resulting in death and conspiracy to transport aliens resulting in death.
Could this common probiotic save 600,000 babies a year? NPR
> Scientists in the U.S. and India have found an inexpensive treatment that could possibly save hundreds of thousands of newborns each year.
> And it turns out, the secret weapon was sitting in Asian kitchens all along: probiotic bacteria that are common in kimchi, pickles and other fermented vegetables.
> Feeding babies the microbes dramatically reduces the risk newborns will develop sepsis, scientists report Wednesday in the journal Nature.
> Sepsis is a top killer of newborns worldwide. Each year more than 600,000 babies die of the blood infections, which can strike very quickly.
White nationalists taking ancestry tests, and some don’t like results Stat
> There’s a trend of white nationalists using these services to prove their racial identity, and then using online forums to discuss the results.
> But many are disappointed to find out that their ancestry is not as “white” as they’d hoped. In a new study, sociologists Aaron Panofsky and Joan Donovan examined years’ worth of posts on Stormfront to see how members dealt with the news.
Craig Cobb reacted in shock after hearing that his DNA testing revealed his ancestry to be only “86 percent European, and … 14 percent Sub-Saharan African.”
Oregon makes drug possession a misdemeanor KATU-TV
> A bill signed by Oregon Gov. Kate Brown on Tuesday makes personal-use possession of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine and other drugs a misdemeanor, not a felony.
> Oregon joined just a handful of other U.S. states in defelonizing drugs under the new law, which was supported by law enforcement groups and takes effect immediately.
Trump stooge Hicks named communications director The Daily Caller
> Hope Hicks, from Connecticut, was a model and actress before her start in politics. She officially came onto the Trump radar in 2014, when Ivanka hired her to work in her fashion line.
>>> She’ll last 2-3 weeks. Then Therno for 2-3 days. Then it’ll go to some random homeless guy in Lafayette Park. John Schindler on Twitter
In FBI’s hands: Malware expert who could tell all on Russia hack NY Times
> KIEV, Ukraine — The hacker, known only by his online alias “Profexer,” kept a low profile. He wrote computer code alone in an apartment and quietly sold his handiwork on the anonymous portion of the internet known as the Dark Web. Last winter, he suddenly went dark entirely.
> Profexer’s posts, already accessible only to a small band of fellow hackers and cybercriminals looking for software tips, blinked out in January — just days after American intelligence agencies publicly identified a program he had written as one tool used in the hacking of the Democratic National Committee.
> But while Profexer’s online persona vanished, a flesh-and-blood person has emerged: a fearful man who the Ukrainian police said turned himself in early this year, and has now become a witness for the F.B.I.
> “I don’t know what will happen,” he wrote in one of his last messages posted on a restricted-access website before going to the police. “It won’t be pleasant. But I’m still alive.”
SHOCKED AND APPALLED?
Consumer lawsuit calls Nestle Poland Spring Water a “colossal fraud”
Courthouse News Service
> Nestle’s marketing and sales of Poland Spring water has been “a colossal fraud perpetrated against American consumers,” 11 people claim in a federal class action.
> Filing their suit Tuesday in Connecticut, where Nestle is based, the lead plaintiffs from the Nutmeg State as well as New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. They say they would not have paid a premium for the water had they known it did not actually come from eight purported natural springs in Maine.
Amazon is doing great damage to tax paying retailers. Towns, cities and states throughout the U.S. are being hurt – many jobs being lost!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 16, 2017
Confederate monuments removed in Baltimore Reuters
> Work crews took down four Confederate monuments in Baltimore overnight into Wednesday, days after white nationalists led a deadly protest over the planned removal of a Confederate statue in Charlottesville, Virginia.
> Monuments to Robert E. Lee, commander of the pro-slavery Confederate army in the American Civil War, and Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, a Confederate general, were dismantled from the city’s Wyman Park Dell after the city council on Monday approved the removal of four statues, the Baltimore Sun reported.
> “It’s done,” Mayor Catherine Pugh told the newspaper on Wednesday. “They need to come down. My concern is for the safety and security of our people. We moved as quickly as we could.”
Brexit mainstay quits. Seeks new party to halt Brexit. Politico
> “This is far, far beyond a joke. It is a national emergency,”
> “Not much going on upstairs,” with Prime Minister May.
Kellogg can’t duck claims its cereals contain too much sugar
Courthouse News Service
> SAN JOSE, Calif. (CN) – The maker of Raisin Bran and Frosted Mini-Wheats must answer a legal challenge in federal court in San Jose, California, saying Kellogg’s breakfast cereals are in fact unhealthy and contribute to obesity and disease because they are laced with extra sugar, in the wake of a 64-page ruling by U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh who sits in a jurisdiction sometimes referred to by its own judges as “the food court.”
> Koh granted in part and denied in part Kellogg’s motion to dismiss a class action claiming several of its cereals and breakfast bars are labeled as healthy when they contain enough sugar to compromise the health of people who eat it regularly.
KKK chimes in on Charlottesville:
“I’m sorta glad that them people got hit and I’m glad that girl died,” KKK Grand Dragon Justin Moore said in a voicemail to WBTV. “They were a bunch of Communists out there protesting against somebody’s freedom of speech, so it doesn’t bother me that they got hurt at all.” Raw Story
“No place for racial hatred or extremism” Tweets Commandant of Marines
Republican National Committee stands behind Trump’s message of “love and inclusiveness.” Seriously? The Hill
> The Republican National Committee is standing behind President Trump amid bipartisan backlash from his Tuesday statement on the violence in Charlottesville, Va.
> RNC spokeswoman Kayleigh McEnany wrote in a tweet that the party supports what she called the president’s “message of love and inclusiveness,” insisting Trump’s remarks on Tuesday marked a strong rebuke of hate.
Trump sees blame on “both sides” Politico
> President Donald Trump on Tuesday doubled down on his initial reaction to a deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, laying blame on “both sides” and asking why the “alt-left” isn’t being held accountable for the violent clashes.
> “You had a group on one side and you had a group on the other, and they came at each other with clubs and it was vicious and it was horrible, and it was a horrible thing to watch,” the president told reporters from the lobby of Trump Tower. “I think there’s blame on both sides.”
> The president tried to brush past questions about the alt-right, a term embraced by a segment of Trump’s base, and quickly tried to turn attention to the other side.
> “What about the alt-left that came charging at the, as you say, the alt-right? Do they have any semblance of guilt?” Trump asked. “What about the fact that they came charging with clubs in their hands, swinging clubs? Do they have any problem? I think they do.”
>>> Anyone who spent 5 minutes listing to talk radio today will know that Trump’s comments will play well with the base… Charlie Sykes on Twitter
>>> Trump’s rhetoric was a call to arms to his white nationalist base. He’s mobilizing them for an armed conflict if Mueller recommends charges. Spin Doctor on Twitter
>>> Thank you President Trump for your honesty & courage to tell the truth about Charlottesville & condemn the leftist terrorists in BLM/Antifa David Duke on Twitter
After 60-year quest, key ingredient of “magic mushrooms” may be synthesized
Chemical and Engineering News
“The new work lays the foundation for developing a fermentation process for production of this powerful psychedelic fungal drug, which has a fascinating history and pharmacology.”
Diplomacy may be working as N. Korea delays missile test
Voice of America
> North Korean leader Kim Jong Un Tuesday appeared to postpone a plan to fire missiles toward Guam, a move that could help defuse the potential for imminent conflict, and give new momentum to reported behind the scenes efforts underway to find a peaceful resolution to the nuclear crisis on the Korean Peninsula.
Research: Tiny fraction of oceans could provide all the world fish to eat — if properly farmed.
> “We need to find more protein for our growing population, and we have pretty much tapped out wild fish as protein sources. This study shows that farming fish in the ocean could play a huge role in feeding people without degrading our ocean or overfishing wild species.”
Here’s how to tell if your eclipse glasses are safe Popular Science
Alaska’s biggest newspaper files for bankruptcy
Courthouse News Service
The publisher of Alaska Dispatch News filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Saturday in the wake of last week’s eviction notice from the cable company renting space for the paper’s only working printing press.
Trump tweets cartoon of train running down CNN reporter The Daily Beast
Thirty minutes after promoting the cartoon at 7 a.m. Tuesday, it was deleted from Trump’s Twitter feed.
More execs quit Trump council BBC
“Granny pods” help Portland’s housing crunch NPR
> Earlier this year, Michelle Labra got a notice that the rent on her two-bedroom apartment was doubling, from around $620 a month to more than $1300.
> She worried she was being priced out of Portland, and would have to move to the suburbs.
> But Labra and her family didn’t get pushed out of their North Portland neighborhood, Cully. They were able to stay by moving into a little house, 800 square feet, built in a neighbor’s back yard. It’s a type of housing city planners refer to as an accessory dwelling unit, or ADU, often called a granny flat or granny pod.
> “When I first came in and I saw this beautiful house, I was amazed,” Labra says. “We’ve never had a place that’s new like this. My kids loved it, and they were already wanting to get their stuff together and saying, mom, when can we move in?”
> With a lot of cities looking for solutions to rising housing prices, the idea of making it easier for homeowners to add small second units in their backyards and garages is gaining traction.
>>> L.A. County to pay homeowners in effort to house homeless LA Daily News
>>> Huge surge in foreigners buying Texas properties Dallas Morning News
Lawsuit: Trump fabricated his claim that most terrorist acts committed by foreigners Newsweek.
“I not only believe that the White House made up ‘alternative facts’ about the substance of this matter in a presidential address to a joint session of Congress. I don’t believe that the National Security Division of the Justice Department provided any data or analysis to the White House that could reasonably be read to support the president’s claim. In other words, I believe the president was lying not merely about the underlying facts but also about his own Justice Department.”
- Srinivas Kuchibhotla, right, with his wife, Sunayana Dumala, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in an undated photo. Mr. Kuchibhotla was shot dead outside a bar in Kansas on February.
- James Harris Jackson, a white man, traveled from Baltimore to New York City in March with the goal of killing black men, investigators said. Soon after he arrived, he fatally stabbed one, Timothy Caughman, 66, with a sword in Midtown Manhattan.
- Jeremy Joseph Christian flew into a rage when he saw a young woman in a hijab on a commuter train in Portland, Ore., and began yelling anti-Muslim insults at her and her friend. When other passengers intervened, he pulled out a knife and slashed their throats.
- Destinee Mangum, one of the targets of hate speech on a MAX train,
- Devon Arthurs, 18, a former neo-Nazi who converted to Islam, took three people hostage inside a head shop in Tampa, Fla., in May. He told the hostages he was angry about American bombings in the Muslim world and said he had killed someone.
The police convinced Mr. Arthurs to release the hostages and arrested him. He told them he had killed two of his roommates, Jeremy Himmelman, 22, and Andrew Oneschuk, 18, because they did not respect his religious beliefs. He said they were neo-Nazis, which their families denied.
- Richard W. Collins III, 23, had just been commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Army and was three days from graduating from Bowie State University in Maryland when he was stabbed and killed by Sean C. Urbanski, 22, a student at the University of Maryland. Mr. Collins was black and Mr. Urbanski is white.
North Carolina protesters topple Confederate statue The Guardian
> Protesters in North Carolina toppled a nearly century-old statue of a Confederate soldier on Monday at a rally against racism.
> Activists in Durham brought a ladder to the statue and used a rope to pull down the Confederate soldiers monument. A diverse crowd of dozens cheered as the bronze statue fell and others began to kick it.
Daughters of Confederacy remove statue from downtown Gainesville Local ABC TV
Texas A&M cancels white nationalist rally The Daily Beast
> Wild bees, such as bumblebees, don’t get as much love as honeybees, but they should. They play just as crucial a role in pollinating many fruits, vegetables and wildflowers, and compared to managed colonies of honeybees, they’re in much greater jeopardy. > A group of scientists in the United Kingdom decided to look at how bumblebee queens are affected by some widely used and highly controversial pesticides known as neonicotinoids. > Neonics, as they’re often called, are applied as a coating on the seeds of some of the most widely grown crops, including corn, soybeans and canola. These pesticides are “systemic” — they move throughout the growing plants. Traces of them end up in pollen, which bees consume. Neonicotinoid residues also have been found in the pollen of wildflowers growing near fields and in nearby streams. > The scientists, based at Royal Holloway University of London, set up a laboratory experiment with bumblebee queens. They fed those queens a syrup containing traces of a neonicotinoid pesticide called thiamethoxam, and the amount of the pesticide, they say, was similar to what bees living near fields of neonic-treated canola might be exposed to.
> Bumblebee queens exposed to the pesticide were 26 percent less likely to lay eggs, compared to queens that weren’t exposed to the pesticide. The team published their findings in the journal Nature Ecology and Evolution.
> “Without the queen laying eggs, there is no colony,” says Nigel Raine, one of the scientists who conducted the experiment.
Lawyer calls it “rape by cop.” Charges dismissed after deputies dismissed after vaginal search of college student lasted 11 minutes. Law Newz
> Three police officers in Harris County, Texas had been indicted after a forced strip and cavity search of a woman during a traffic stop two years ago. Now, after charges against two of the officers were dismissed and the other has yet to ever face criminal charges, images from police dashcam video are drawing an outcry all over again, and new charges may be on the way.
> The officers searched Corley’s clothing for contraband, and found nothing, but they didn’t stop there. The video, which has yet to be published in full, but viewed by the local station who posted still shots, shows the officers slamming Corley onto the ground of a parking lot, putting her head underneath a car, and pulling her pants down. After exposing Corley from the waist down in public, the cops then conducted a cavity search that reportedly lasted 11 minutes.
With quantum computers, says leading physicist, there’ll be nowhere to hide — anything. Futurism
… no encryption existing today would be able to hide from the processing power of a functioning quantum computer. Medical records, financial information, even the secrets of governments and military organizations would be free for the taking—meaning that the entire world order could be threatened by this technology.
Justice Department demands IP addresses of 1-million-plus Trump resistors
> The Department of Justice has requested information on visitors to a website used to organize protests against President Trump, the Los Angeles-based Dreamhost said in a blog post published on Monday.
> Dreamhost, a web hosting provider, said that it has been working with the Department of Justice for several months on the request, which it believes goes too far under the Constitution.
> DreamHost claimed that the complying with the request from the Justice Department would amount to handing over roughly 1.3 million visitor IP addresses to the government, in addition to contact information, email content and photos of thousands of visitors to the website, which was involved in organizing protests against Trump on Inauguration Day.
> “That information could be used to identify any individuals who used this site to exercise and express political speech protected under the Constitution’s First Amendment,” DreamHost wrote in the blog post on Monday. “That should be enough to set alarm bells off in anyone’s mind.”
Black market purchases, Russian suppliers behind N. Korea missile program
> North Korea’s success in testing an intercontinental ballistic missile that appears able to reach the United States was made possible by black-market purchases of powerful rocket engines probably from a Ukrainian factory with historical ties to Russia’s missile program, according to an expert analysis being published Monday and classified assessments by American intelligence agencies.
> The studies may solve the mystery of how North Korea began succeeding so suddenly after a string of fiery missile failures, some of which may have been caused by American sabotage of its supply chains and cyberattacks on its launches. After those failures, the North changed designs and suppliers in the past two years, according to a new study by Michael Elleman, a missile expert at the International Institute for Strategic Studies.
> Such a degree of aid to North Korea from afar would be notable because President Trump has singled out only China as the North’s main source of economic and technological support. He has never blamed Ukraine or Russia, though his secretary of state, Rex W. Tillerson, made an oblique reference to both China and Russia as the nation’s “principal economic enablers” after the North’s most recent ICBM launch last month.
Man arrested in plot to detonate vehicle bomb in Oklahoma City KOCO TV
> A Sayre, Oklahoma, man was arrested early Saturday morning in connection with a plot to detonate a vehicle bomb in downtown Oklahoma City.
> According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Jerry Drake Varnell, 23 was arrested early Saturday morning in connection with a plot to detonate a vehicle bomb at BancFirst, 101 N. Broadway.
> According to a criminal complaint, the FBI arrested Varnell at approximately 1 a.m. after he attempted to detonate what he believed to be an explosives-laden van he had parked in an alley next to BancFirst. The complaint alleges that Varnell initially wanted to blow up the Federal Reserve Building in Washington, D.C., with a device similar to the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing because he was upset with the government.
Dad disowns neo-Nazi:
“You will have to shovel our bodies into the oven, too.”
> “I, along with all of his siblings and his entire family, wish to loudly repudiate my son’s vile, hateful, and racist rhetoric and actions.”
US tax change proposals anger realtors, builders, charities Reuters
> These groups say proposed changes will hurt home sales and cut charitable contributions.
> The National Association of Realtors issued an “August Recess Talking Points” circular imploring members to remind lawmakers that “Homeowners must be treated fairly in tax reform” to avoid “another housing crash.”
> The group cited a report it commissioned from PwC that estimated home values could quickly dive more than 10 percent if the tax plan becomes law.
> To simplify the tax code, Republicans have proposed eliminating nearly all tax write-offs including those for state and local taxes, then doubling the standard deduction. This would eliminate the incentive to itemize and should drastically reduce the number of taxpayers who do so.
Seniors becoming pot heads at rapid rate CBS Denver
“I’ve generally felt that recreational drugs of any kind were no nos, and I still do,” says 91-year-old Duane Kniebes. “Cannabis seems to be somewhere in between.”
The last American baseball glove manufacturer refuses to die Bloomberg
> Since the Great Depression, Nokona has been making gloves in a small town outside Dallas with a long history of producing boots and whips for cowboys. There’s a livestock-feed store next door to the factory, which offers $5 tours for visitors who want to see how the “last American ball glove” is made. You can watch employees weave the webbing by hand, feed the laces through the holes with needles, and pound the pocket into shape with a rounded hammer. The American flag gets stitched into the hide — and that, they say at Nokona, is more than just a business matter.
Merck CEO resigns from Trump council in protest Reuters
> Merck & Co Inc Chief Executive Kenneth Frazier resigned from U.S. President Donald Trump’s American Manufacturing Council on Monday, saying he was taking a stand against intolerance and extremism.
> “America’s leaders must honor our fundamental views by clearly rejecting expressions of hatred, bigotry and group supremacy, which run counter to the American ideal that all people are created equal,” Frazier, who is African-American, said in a statement announcing his resignation.
>>> Now that Ken Frazier of Merck Pharma has resigned from President’s Manufacturing Council, he will have more time to LOWER RIPOFF DRUG PRICES! Trump Tweet
Not angry or hateful, says white nationalist whose pix went viral Raw Story
> A white nationalist who attends the University of Nevada, Reno says that he is not the “angry racist” that is portrayed in a viral photo of him carrying a torch at a white nationalist protest rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.
> Peter Cvjetanovic, 20, told KTVN that he traveled from Reno to Charlottesville to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee.
> “I came to this march for the message that white European culture has a right to be here just like every other culture,” Cvjetanovic opined. “It is not perfect; there are flaws to it, of course. However I do believe that the replacement of the statue will be the slow replacement of white heritage within the United States and the people who fought and defended and built their homeland. Robert E Lee is a great example of that. He wasn’t a perfect man, but I want to honor and respect what he stood for during his time.”
Charlottesville suspect washed out of Army boot camp. The Daily Beast
Teacher says Fields idolized Hitler Time
“Once you talked to James for a while, you would start to see that sympathy towards Nazism, that idolization of Hitler, that belief in white supremacy. It would start to creep out.”
Fields denied bail Stars and Stripes
> The judge says the public defenders’ office informed him it could not represent Fields because a relative of someone in the office was injured in Saturday’s protest. Downer said Charles Weber, a local attorney, will be appointed to represent the 20-year-old Fields.
>The next scheduled court hearing is Aug. 25, though Fields’ attorney could request a bond hearing before then.
White nationalist marcher ID’d, fired from hot dog joint in Berkeley Berkeleyside
> Hordes of people took to Top Dog’s Yelp pages and social media accounts Saturday, calling for him to be fired.
Charlottesville victim’s mother: I want her death to be a rallying cry
> The mother of the woman who was killed while protesting a violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va. this weekend said her daughter was a passionate activist who wished to bring an end to injustice.
> Heather Heyer’s mother, Susan Bro, said her daughter’s tragic death should be used as “a rallying cry for justice.”
> “Heather was not about hate, Heather was about stopping hatred,” Bro said in an interview with the Huffington Post. “Heather was about bringing an end to injustice. I don’t want her death to be a focus for more hatred, I want her death to be a rallying cry for justice and equality and fairness and compassion.”
CAR SLAMS INTO CROWD AT CHARLOTTESVILLE RALLY CNN
> One person killed. 19 injured.
> Several pedestrians were struck Saturday in a three-vehicle crash in Charlottesville, Virginia, where police were dispersing demonstrators from a white-nationalist and right-wing rally, the Virginia State Police said on Twitter. There are “multiple injuries,” police said.
>> Being held without bail on murder, other charges in Charlottesville hit-and-run: James Alex Fields, Jr., 20, of Maumee, Ohio.
>>> We ALL must be united & condemn all that hate stands for. There is no place for this kind of violence in America. Lets come together as one! Trump on Twitter
>>> I would recommend you take a good look in the mirror & remember it was White Americans who put you in the presidency, not radical leftists. David Duke responding to Trump on Twitter.
>> The President’s ambiguity in this moment serves one purpose: to signal positively to the white supremacists whose support he enjoys. Evan McMullin on Twitter
>> The White House response also included a since deleted tweet from the homeland security adviser Tom Bossert, in which he condemned “the violence and hate in Charlotte”. The city of Charlotte is in North Carolina. (The Guardian)
Video of car that hit protesters /Twitter
“Unite the Right” rally has Charlottesville on edge CNN
> White nationalists and counterprotesters are expected to flood downtown Charlottesville Saturday as the Virginia city braces for the “Unite the Right” rally.
> By noon, thousands are expected to gather in Emancipation Park, where barricades have been placed in proximity to the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.
> The rally comes hours after a large group of torch-bearing white nationalists marched through the University of Virginia campus Friday night.
> Outraged by the city’s plans to remove the trace of its Confederate past, alt-right activists and Ku Klux Klan members have come to the city in recent months.
>>> Virginia governor declares state of emergency Bloomberg
>>> Nazis marching through #Charlottesville right now. No National Gaurd, no tear gas, no full body armour. The double standards are sickening. Dan Mazey on Twitter
>>> Incredible moment for white people who’ve had it up to here & aren’t going to take it anymore. Jason Kessler on Twitter.
Much “made in China” clothing actually from North Korea Reuters
> Using North Korea to produce cheap clothes for sale around the globe shows that for every door that is closed by ever-tightening U.N. sanctions another one may open. The UN sanctions, introduced to punish North Korea for its missile and nuclear programs, do not include any bans on textile exports.
GOP Senator: No thanks to war with Venezuela. Congress doesn’t vote to spill blood based on who Trump lashes out at today. Politico
> Rebuke from Ben Sasse, member of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Experts: North Korea is bluffing. Its rockets can’t reach US mainland
> Massachusetts Institute of Technology rocket expert Ted Postol and two German experts, Markus Schiller and Robert Schmucker of Schmucker Technologie, published their findings Friday in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, in a paper they titled “North Korea’s ‘Not Quite’ ICBM Can’t Hit the Lower 48 States.”
> “From the point of view of North Korean political leadership, the general reaction to the July 4 and July 28 launches could not have been better,” the authors wrote. “The world suddenly believed that the North Koreans had an ICBM that could reach the West Coast of the United States and beyond. But calculations we have made—based on detailed study of the type and size of the rocket motors used, the flight times of the stages of the rockets, the propellant likely used, and other technical factors—indicate that these rockets actually carried very small payloads that were nowhere near the weight of a nuclear warhead of the type North Korea could have, or could eventually have. These small payloads allowed the rockets to be lofted to far higher altitudes than they would have if loaded with a much-heavier warhead, creating the impression that North Korea was on the cusp of achieving ICBM capability.”
Jury orders blogger to pay $8.4 million to soldier she accused of rape WaPost (soft paywall)
During a six-day trial that ended Aug. 1, a jury in Fairfax County, Va., heard from both David Riggins and Susan Shannon at length. And after 2½ hours of deliberation, they sided emphatically with Riggins, awarding him $8.4 million in damages, an extraordinary amount for a defamation case between two private citizens. The jury ordered Shannon to pay $3.4 million in compensatory damages for injury to his reputation and lost wages, and $5 million in punitive damages, “to make sure nothing like this will ever happen again,” according to one of the jurors.
How gene editing and pig organs can end human transplant shortage
> Not only have scientists made a controversial possibility—animal organs in humans—more likely, but they’ve done so using a controversial technology: CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing.
>>> Newsweek and other media have manufactured an impending crisis about gene manipulation. The video that plays (whether I want it or not)when I punch through to the Newsweek article immediately brings up the issue of designer babies. That’s like worrying about nuclear holocaust shortly after a caveman rubs two sticks together and produces fire. Hyperbole? I don’t think so. Eye color may be within reach within a few years, but IQ? We don’t even understand which 100,000 genetic interactions drive intelligence.
CRISPR is a marvelous tool. If prior genetic modification was a sledgehammer, CRISPR is a scalpel. Can we misuse it? You bet. But the tool is not controversial … just the cavemen that use it. John Rogers, commenting via e-mail.
FEATURES FROM THIS WEEK
THAT YOU MAY HAVE MISSED
Americans are drinking more. A lot more. CNN
> Overall, alcohol use disorders rose by almost 50%, affecting a projected 8.5% of the population during the first research period, and 12.7% during the second. That’s almost 30 million Americans actively struggling with alcohol abuse.
> Alcohol use disorders have almost doubled (92.8%) among the African American population, and increased nearly 84% among women.
> However, the group that saw the highest increase was senior citizens. Individuals 65 and older saw a staggering 106.7% increase in alcohol use disorders from 2002/2003 to 2012/2013. For 45- to 65-year-olds, that increase was also high at 81.5%.
VLAD’S VENEZUELA: Moscow snapping up oil assets Reuters
> Venezuela’s unravelling socialist government is increasingly turning to Russia for the cash and credit it needs to survive – and offering prized state-owned oil assets in return.
Confirmed: 2 planets around Tau Ceti in habitable zone. But don’t look for little green men Gizmodo
> Mildly encouraging news for Earthlings hoping to escape the scorched ruins of our own planet: A team of astronomers has found evidence for four Earth-sized (ish) worlds orbiting tau Ceti, a Sun-like star located just 12 light years away. Two of these planets, the researchers say, might barely be on the edge of the habitable zone, that not-too-hot, not-too-cold region that can potentially support liquid water and even life.
> But this isn’t tau Ceti’s first rodeo, and some of the experts Gizmodo spoke to suggested we shouldn’t get too excited about the latest claims that this intriguing star system might be habitable.
US airstrikes kill 16 Afghans. Some were children. NY Times
> Afghan officials said on Friday that American warplanes had killed 16 civilians as they tried to flee an area in eastern Afghanistan controlled by Islamic State militants.
> Hajji Saz Wali, the governor of Haska Meena Distric, said the victims included women and children; eight were from one family, and four others from a second family.
> The victims died Thursday afternoon when the vehicles they were traveling in were hit by American airstrikes believed to be targeting Islamic State militants in the area, Mr. Wali said. It is not known how many were wounded, he added.
> A spokesman for the American military said that the Pentagon was aware of the reports but would not comment immediately.
How Trump’s pullout from Pacific trade pact is screwing US farmers. Politico
Now other nations launch 27 separate negotiations to undercut U.S. exporters.
The 12-nation TPP, covering 40 percent of the world’s economy, was a chance to erase punishing tariffs that restricted the United States—the onetime “breadbasket of the world”—from selling its meats, grains and dairy products to massive importers of foodstuffs such as Japan and Vietnam.
“I’m scared to death,” said Ron Prestage, referring to Trump’s decision to pull out of the TPP. The family-owned Prestage Farms is building a pork processing facility outside Eagle Grove, Iowa, that depends on a robust export market. | M. Scott Mahaskey/POLITICO
Former Wells Fargo worker: I was told to “go out and club the baby seals” (i.e. mom and pop shops with no legal support.) Newser
> The bank is now accused of targeting mom-and-pop shops in a deliberate, years-long overcharging scheme related to the processing of credit-card transactions.
> A former employee of Wells Fargo Merchant Services, which is 40% controlled by First Data, tells CNNMoney he was instructed to “go out and club the baby seals: mom-pop-shops that had no legal support” while working for the business between 2011 and 2013. A lawsuit claims the scheme involved getting small business owners to sign a 63-page merchant agreement that used “deceptive language” to hide “massive early termination fees.”
Lawsuit seeks to stop mugshot profiteers
Courthouse News Service
> A South Florida man filed the first lawsuit in the state aimed at enforcing a new law that prohibits mugshot publishers from charging fees for removing unflattering arrest photos from their websites.
> B.H., a chiropractor, claims Mugshots.com is sullying his reputation by refusing to remove his arrest photo from its webpage. He sued its purported operator, Openbare Dienst Internationale LLC, and another website, Jailbase.com, on Aug. 1 in Broward County Court.
>Florida this year enacted a law that requires mugshot publishers to remove a person’s arrest photo from their websites, at no charge, within 10 days of receiving a formal request for removal. The measure passed with wide bipartisan support and Gov. Rick Scott signed it into law in Jun
Illinois governor candidate: Free all imprisoned for low-level drug offenses
> Chicago Alderman Ameya Pawar, one of several Democrats vying for his party’s nomination to run for Illinois governor against incumbent Republican Bruce Rauner, doesn’t think the drug war was a failure.
>“The war on drugs was a success,” he said in a speech on criminal justice reform given last month. “Because the war on drugs was never actually on drugs. It was against black people.”
Team Trump: Manafort? We hardly knew him The Daily Beast
> The president and his White House staff have for months minimized Paul Manafort’s role in the 2016 presidential campaign, repeatedly describing it as a “very short period of time.”
>Trump’s attempt to downplay his relationship with Manafort left out some pertinent facts, however …
Court: California billionaire can’t keep people off “his” beach Mercury News
> A Silicon Valley billionaire who locked the gates at a popular Northern California beach must open them to the public, a state appeals court has ruled.
> In a decision that could have far-reaching impacts on other coastal access cases, the First District Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled 3-0 that venture capitalist Vinod Khosla violated the California Coastal Act when he ended decades of public access to Martins Beach, south of Half Moon Bay, after he purchased the 89-acre property surrounding the beach.
Workers: Building Teslas is like life in Hell The Daily Beast
> “Preventable injuries happen often. In addition to long working hours, machinery is often not ergonomically compatible with our bodies,” Moran wrote. “There is too much twisting and turning and extra physical movement to do jobs that could be simplified if workers’ input were welcomed… A few months ago, six out of eight people in my work team were out on medical leave at the same time due to various work-related injuries.”
I went to the Wisconsin Foxconn meeting
and all I got was this lousy essay.
Xx Yes, Foxconn, in all its majesty, deigns to bestow magical gifts on the lowly, beat-down state of Wisconsin.
xx 13,000 jobs! A plant bigger than the Great Wall of China! A “Wiscon Valley” that makes Silicon Valley look like a dead end street.
xx Well. Maybe.
— REVERSE LIGHTNING —
Extreme weather could kill masses in Europe by century’s end Reuters
Europe’s death toll from weather disasters could rise 50-fold by the end of this century, with extreme heat alone killing more than 150,000 people a year by 2100 if nothing is done to curb the effects of climate change, scientists said on Friday.
In a study in The Lancet Planetary Health journal, the scientists said their findings showed climate change placing a rapidly increasing burden on society, with two in three people in Europe likely to be affected if greenhouse gas emissions and extreme weather events are not controlled.
Donald Trump and the Fall of the American Empire The Intercept
“The American Century, proclaimed so triumphantly at the start of World War II, may already be tattered and fading by 2025 and, except for the finger pointing, could be over by 2030.”
For the majority of Americans, the 2020s will likely be remembered as a demoralizing decade of rising prices, stagnant wages, and fading international competitiveness. After years of swelling deficits fed by incessant warfare in distant lands, in 2030 the U.S. dollar eventually loses its special status as the world’s dominant reserve currency.
Pentagon study sees American empire collapsing AlterNet
The document concludes that the world has entered a fundamentally new phase of transformation in which US power is in decline, international order is unravelling, and the authority of governments everywhere is crumbling.
… US now inhabits a dangerous, unpredictable world, whose defining feature is “resistance to authority.” DOWNLOAD AVAILABLE ON THIS DEP’T OF DEFENSE PAGE
Four simple steps toward health care for all Americans
It begins with the simplest and most obvious step: health care for ALL American children. Period.
And then …
Crime threatens tourism in Cancun USA Today
Violent crime is encroaching on this Riviera Maya tourist hot spot, as well as nearby Playa del Carmen and Tulum, jeopardizing a $20 billion a year business that attracts millions of visitors lured by the white sand beaches, archaeological ruins and pulsing nightlife.
Although the crime wave so far is mostly limited to areas outside the resorts where tourists stay, Cancun shows signs of following the ill-fated path of Acapulco. That city was once the granddaddy of Mexican tourist destinations, but now is one of country’s deadliest areas and no longer a mecca for international travelers.
The richest little coffee house in the world. VOA
There’s a café in Silicon Valley where the biggest names in tech are known to take their lattes, attracting startup founders who frantically pitch venture capitalists holding court at the wooden tables. Coupa Café in Palo Alto, California, has a certain electric buzz …
350 jobs, and many more illusions, lost as GE plant closes … and here’s why no power on Earth could stop it.
How Trump missed his chance to put his presidency on the road to greatness.
Yes, our Praire Sage has come under a barrage of criticism lately. Sad! Unfair! Let us defend our hero by pointing out the glories of his frankly astonishing life.
King shows off “model” of his border wall Yahoo
He’s ready to have his family’s construction company in Iowa start work on the real thing.