Wednesday

 

NYT publishes account of “resister” inside White House
By anonymous senior official in Trump administration
(RealNews excerpt)
— 
President Trump is facing a test to his presidency unlike any faced by a modern American leader.
— It’s not just that the special counsel looms large. Or that the country is bitterly divided over Mr. Trump’s leadership. Or even that his party might well lose the House to an opposition hellbent on his downfall.
— The dilemma — which he does not fully grasp — is that many of the senior officials in his own administration are working diligently from within to frustrate parts of his agenda and his worst inclinations.
… The root of the problem is the president’s amorality. Anyone who works with him knows he is not moored to any discernible first principles that guide his decision making.
… Although he was elected as a Republican, the president shows little affinity for ideals long espoused by conservatives: free minds, free markets and free people. At best, he has invoked these ideals in scripted settings. At worst, he has attacked them outright.
— In addition to his mass-marketing of the notion that the press is the “enemy of the people,” President Trump’s impulses are generally anti-trade and anti-democratic.
… Meetings with him veer off topic and off the rails, he engages in repetitive rants, and his impulsiveness results in half-baked, ill-informed and occasionally reckless decisions that have to be walked back.
— “There is literally no telling whether he might change his mind from one minute to the next,” a top official complained to me recently, exasperated by an Oval Office meeting at which the president flip-flopped on a major policy decision he’d made only a week earlier.
… We fully recognize what is happening. And we are trying to do what’s right even when Donald Trump won’t.
… Given the instability many witnessed, there were early whispers within the cabinet of invoking the 25th Amendment, which would start a complex process for removing the president. But no one wanted to precipitate a constitutional crisis. So we will do what we can to steer the administration in the right direction until — one way or another — it’s over.
— The bigger concern is not what Mr. Trump has done to the presidency but rather what we as a nation have allowed him to do to us. We have sunk low with him and allowed our discourse to be stripped of civility.

44% of millennials say they’ve deleted Facebook app
Pew Research

Cop to Tased girl: “This is why there’s no grocery stores in black community”
Cincinnati.com
Cincinnati police investigators said an officer who deployed a Taser to stop an 11-year-old girl from shoplifting violated the department’s use of force policy, but also found problems with his telling the girl: “You know, sweetheart, this is why there’s no grocery stores in the black community.”

NFL loosens the rules for streaming its games
AP

A first: Genetically-engineered mosquitoes to be released in Africa
Stat

Some buildings collapse as powerful quake hits Hokkaido, Japan
Reuters

The three weak points of US democracy
The Conversation
By John Rennie Short, Professor, School of Public Policy, University of Maryland
— I’m a social scientist and public policy scholar who studies sources of stress in the U.S. political system. Here are three sources of a growing deficit of democracy.


Who put the Me in GoFundMe?
Lawyer says do-gooders kept most of $400,000 raised for homeless man
NPR
— When Johnny Bobbitt first met Kate McClure and their feel-good story about a chance encounter that changed both their lives hit the daytime TV circuit, he said her generosity inspired an “indescribable” feeling in him. But less than a year later, that feeling has become devastation, according to his lawyer.
— Bobbitt and his attorney claim that more $400,000 raised by McClure and her boyfriend in a GoFundMe campaign intended to lift him out of homelessness, has vanished without ever reaching him.


Ayanna Pressley whips 10-term congressman, set to become the state’s first black congresswoman
HuffPo
ayanna— Boston City Council member Ayanna Pressley beat a 10-term incumbent Tuesday to win the Democratic nomination for Massachusetts’ 7th Congressional District, an upset building on the momentum for progressives sparked by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s victory in a New York House primary earlier this summer.


Avenatti: 2020 Dem presidential candidate must demand the Supreme Court add seats
The Hill
— “In light of the [Merrick] Garland seat that was stolen, together with the events of today and the hiding of docs, etc., the court must be expanded to 11 seats after 2020,” Avenatti tweeted, referring to former President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee.


Half of Facebook users say they don’t understand how news feed works
USA Today
— Older Facebook users are even less likely to understand the news feed. Only 38 percent of those 50 years of age or older said they had a good understanding of why posts appear, according to Pew’s survey of 4,594 U.S. adults including 3,413 Facebook users, conducted May 29-June 11, 2018. Among younger users aged 18 to 29, 59 percent said they do.
√ And the 47% who claim they know are kidding themselves. 


Curious! Chinese billionaire let go after Minnesota rape allegations
The Wall Street Journal
— Given the serious allegation, the release is “very, very strange,” said David Levine, a law professor at the University of California Hastings College of the Law who is knowledgeable about criminal law.
— “The risk of flight is enormous,” Mr. Levine said. “It’s a person with a lot of assets. Even bail would have meant nothing because he could afford any amount of bail.”


UK police ID 2 Russkies, say they carried out Salisbury chem attack with perfume bottle
Vice News
— The British government said Wednesday it is charging two Russian men with the attempted murder of Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the town of Salisbury in March using the military-grade nerve agent Novichok.
— Scotland Yard says it has sufficient evidence to charge Russian nationals Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov with conspiracy to murder.
>>> Brit PM says operation approved by Kremlin
Reuters/Twitter live
russkies-salisbury.jpg


The job Americans won’t take:
Arizona looks to Philippines to fill teacher shortage
The Guardian
teacher-phils
— Melvin Inojosa, 29, bounded between lab tables, sinks, a whiteboard and his desk, exclaiming “Optics!” “Quantum mechanics!” “Thermodynamics!”


Furious Trump trapped himself by yapping into Woodward’s voice recorder
Axios
— “Trump was editing an upcoming speech with [then-staff secretary Rob] Porter. Scribbling his thoughts in neat, clean penmanship, the president wrote, ‘TRADE IS BAD.'”


Woodward book reveals a White House madhouse
BBC
Chief of Staff Kelly repeatedly calls Mr Trump an “idiot” and said that “it’s pointless to try to convince him of anything. Defense Secretary Mattis told an aide that the president has the foreign policy understanding of a “fifth- or sixth-grader” (an 11 or 12-year-old).

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