Weekender

New Jersey, with nothing better to do with its money, decides to hand $425 million to film crews
NJ.Com
— Oh, and there’s a Garden State pride element, the governor said. Let the state be the backdrop to movie stars and New Jerseyans will have a sense of pride.
∑ They’re gonna need one hell of a lot of pride when they get their next property tax bill. Yep, New Jersey folks pay the highest property taxes in the nation and let’s not even think about the looming pension fiasco… 

Feds to seize Manafort’s Trump Tower condo
NPR
√ Hopefully, it’s the beginning of a trend.
— In addition to the condo, the government plans to seize other properties from Manafort — including a luxury estate in the Hamptons and locations in New York — as well as funds from three bank accounts and a life insurance policy, according to the court filing.

√ It’s not a democracy, chapter 2018
Senators representing minority of Americans about to confirm a so-called Justice opposed by most
Washington Post Analysis
— Kavanaugh has a distinct honor: He will be the first justice nominated by someone who lost the popular vote to earn his seat on the bench with support from senators representing less than half of the country while having his nomination opposed by a majority of the country.

Dump Collins fund grows to $3 million
Raw Story
— Citizens outraged over the fact that Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) has said she will vote to confirm controversial jurist Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court are raising money at a breathtaking pace.

Chernobyl begins new life as solar power park
AFP
— Ukraine launched Friday a park of photovoltaic panels at the former Chernobyl power plant as the country seeks to use solar power to give the scene of the world’s worst nuclear disaster a new lease on life.
— The 1 million-euro ($1.2-million), one-megawatt plant is located just a hundred metres (yards) from a giant metal dome sealing the remains of the the nuclear power plant which suffered a catastrophic meltdown in 1986.

Chicago cop guilty of murder
The Guardian
cop— The white Chicago police officer who shot black teenager Laquan McDonald 16 times in an encounter captured on dashcam video footage has been found guilty of second-degree murder.
— After a second day of deliberation, the jury brought a verdict in the highly sensitive case, which will inevitably be divisive in a city struggling to overcome racial tension between black communities and a predominantly white police force.
— The jury was instructed that first-degree murder would carry a sentence of 45 years to life, while the sentence for second-degree murder ranged from probation to 20 years. Van Dyke was also found guilty on 16 counts of aggravated battery that carried sentences of six to 30 years. He was found not guilty of official misconduct.

NEWSPAPER DOES HATCHET JOB ON HATCH
“Worse, it betrays a positively medieval attitude toward all women as sex objects who cannot be believed or taken seriously.”
Salt Lake Tribune slams Utah icon Orrin Hatch

Therapy dogs sometimes bring superbugs to sick kids
AP

With newest MacBook Pro, let Apple repair it or else…
Gizmodo

US jobless level hits lowest point in 50 years
NPR

Lawsuit claims LaCroix water contains cockroach insecticide
USA Today

Fargo schools tell 60 kids: Stay home until you get vaccinated
Valley News Live

……. Buses on demand………
How one city fights Uber to save public transit
Motherboard
— Belleville, Ontario is piloting the on-demand technology on its night bus route. Riders can call in or use an app to schedule pickups days before their trip, or just a few minutes prior. They get an automatic confirmation, and the time the bus is scheduled to arrive to pick them up. Passengers can also flag down a bus, and the driver can register their ride on the spot.
— Belleville city officials are loving it so far. “We don’t have to do that full loop around the city hoping somebody gets on board.”

Interpol president has disappeared in China
Motherboard
√Is there some big dark hole in China where all these people go?

— Meng Hongwei, a member of the Chinese Communist party and president of Interpol, has been missing for a week.

Microbiologists Are Suddenly Worried About Synthetic Smallpox
Futurism
… Critics argue that the paper not only demonstrates that you can synthesize a deadly pathogen for what Science reported was about $100,000 in lab expenses, but even provides a slightly-too-detailed-for-comfort overview of how to do it.

Baseball attendance down again, sinks to 2003 levels
BNN Bloomberg
— Major League Baseball attendance dropped 4 per cent this year, continuing a steady decline for “America’s Pastime.” It’s the lowest league-wide attendance since 2003 and the largest single-season drop in a decade.
— What does that mean for a team’s bottom line? Bloomberg News crunched some numbers to get a better understanding. While some clubs saw a jump in attendance, 17 of the 30 franchises sold fewer tickets than they did last year. Using average ticket prices from Team Marketing Report, that comes to about US$93.7 million in lost ticket revenue in 2018.
— Teams with the largest drops include the Miami Marlins (down $24.5 million) and the Toronto Blue Jays (down $22.9 million). (The Marlins recently changed the way they report attendance, which could account for part of the decline.) The defending-champion Houston Astros were a big winner, with a projected $23.2 million boost in sales.

No more Swiss secret bank accounts
Reuters
— The era of mystery-cloaked numbered Swiss bank accounts has officially come to a close as Switzerland, the world’s biggest center for managing offshore wealth, began automatically sharing client data with tax authorities in dozens of other countries.

MURKOWSKI LEANING NO
AP
— Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski is strongly suggesting she will vote no on Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court. The Alaskan told reporters Friday it’s time to think “about the credibility and integrity of our institutions.” Murkowski was the lone Republican to vote against advancing Kavanaugh’s nomination on Friday. She’s one of two Senate Republicans — along with Susan Collins of Maine — who support abortion rights.

Wind-powered grid would take land — lots of land
The Harvard Gazette
“Wind beats coal by any environmental measure, but that doesn’t mean that its impacts are negligible,” said the senior author of the papers. “We must quickly transition away from fossil fuels to stop carbon emissions. In doing so, we must make choices between various low-carbon technologies, all of which have some social and environmental impacts.”
>>> Drudge headline for this story: Wind farms cause global warming

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