Wednesday 12/6

According to a whistleblower:
At Inauguration, Flynn texted OK for Mideast nuclear reactors
 U.S. financial sanctions hobbling the nuclear project were going to be “ripped up.”
WASHINGTON  — A whistleblower has told House Democrats that during President Donald Trump’s inauguration speech, national security adviser Michael Flynn texted a former business associate to say a private nuclear reactor plan Flynn had lobbied for would also have his support in the White House.
> As the whistleblower chatted with Flynn’s associate at an Inauguration Day celebration on Jan. 20, Flynn sent text messages saying the associate’s nuclear proposal was “good to go,” the whistleblower said. According to the whistleblower, Flynn also informed the associate that his business partners could move forward with their project, which aimed to construct a network of nuclear reactors across the Mideast with support from Russian and other international interests.
> Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings said Wednesday that the whistleblower’s allegations raise concerns that Flynn improperly aided the nuclear project after joining the White House as one of Trump’s top national security officials.

When the whistleblower asked why the United States needed to be involved in a Middle East nuclear project, Mr. Copson explained that the U.S. would provide military support to defend these installations. He also explained that this would provide a pretext for placing US military forces in these countries.

Trump plays Jerusalem card The Hill
The latest sideshow … let’s see, shake up the Middle East, chaos maybe war and terrorism result, Americans rally behind strong leader … OR …
is this some kind of deal/payback with Netanyahu?

>>> PLO warns: “Nuts all over the world” will turn to violence
Washington Examiner
… And from Axios:
>>> Pope “profoundly concerned”
>>> Turkism PM “act of madness”
>>> “This upsets everyone in the Middle East except Israel.”

2008 account of “roast” shows that Matt Lauer’s sexcapades were widely known
Including by execs and stars at NBC
The Village Voice
> “Look at Katie Couric. She juggled Matt’s balls for six years. That’s three years per ball.”
> “When Katie (Couric) did the colonoscopy live on television, doctors found Matt’s head.”
> “He loves to eat Curry.” (The room loved that one, and Ann Curry blanched.)
> And finally from Lauer himself: “What’s with all the small-dick jokes? It was fun to look over and see Ann Curry laughing… like she doesn’t know how big my dick really is.”

New accuser, pressure grows on Franken to quit CNBC

Please, no jail time: The Movie NY Times
To beg for leniency, defense attorneys are producing entire documentaries for an audience of one: the judge.
> In sentencing videos, lawyers try to portray their clients in a positive light, notwithstanding the nature of the crime of which they were found guilty. These short videos, which can cost $5,000 to $25,000 to make, can be extremely effective, sometimes substantially decreasing sentences, including those involving the death penalty.

Toll to drive 10 miles into DC reaches $40. NY Times
> But transit officials said the congestion pricing system was working as designed: keeping traffic moving by encouraging people to car-pool or take alternate routes.
> The toll prices, which change every six minutes, depend on the volume of traffic and the distance traveled. Drivers traveling the full nine miles from the Beltway to downtown Washington around 8 a.m. on Tuesday paid $40, but someone driving in the other direction at 4:15 p.m. would have paid less than $7. The peak price lasted only one six-minute period, the Department of Transportation said.
> “No one has to pay a toll,” a transit official said. “You simply could have put another person in your car.”

“Holy crap!”
Experts find tax plan riddled with glitches, easily gamed
> In many cases, Republicans are giving taxpayers little time to adjust to sometimes major changes in policy. An entirely new international tax regime, one experts are still trying to parse, would go into effect Jan. 1, only days after lawmakers hope to push the plan through Congress.
> “The more you read, the more you go, ‘Holy crap, what’s this?’” said Greg Jenner, a former top tax official in George W. Bush’s Treasury Department. “We will be dealing with unintended consequences for months to come because the bill is moving too fast.”

New York-Seattle flight diverts after all restrooms quit working Billings Gazette
Oh God. This will give the airlines ideas. Rip out the restrooms and replace ’em with seats, and land every three hours for a bathroom break.

Market analysis sees steady erosion of cable-TV subscribers Motherboard
majority of homes will still pay for TV in 2030.

Russia banned from 2018 Olympics
Clean athletes may compete under neutral flag
The International Olympic Committee has ruled on Tuesday that a special commission will select clean Russian athletes who will be able to compete at the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in South Korea’s Pyeongchang.

German pilots won’t deport asylum seekers, refuse to fly The Independent
German pilots have grounded more than 220 flights because they were being used to deport failed asylum seekers.
Many of the pilots involved said they wanted no part in sending people back to Afghanistan, where violence is still rife following years of war and occupation by Western forces.


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