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Will Supreme Court kill Medicare for All? Maybe — Democrats should fight for it anyway

The Kavanaugh court will find some excuse to destroy Medicare for All. That’s no excuse for not fighting

Politics

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Senate would like to talk with one of Trump's other friends in Moscow

David Geovanis is an American businessman who was born in Massachussets and is a graduate of Donald Trump's alma mater, the Wharton School, but he’s also been in Russia since the 1990s, has since become a Russian citizen, and is one of Trump’s most fa
Daily Kos

Senate would like to talk with one of Trump's other friends in Moscow

David Geovanis is an American businessman who was born in Massachussets and is a graduate of Donald Trump's alma mater, the Wharton School, but he’s also been in Russia since the 1990s, has since become a Russian citizen, and is one of Trump’s most familiar contacts in Moscow. It’s that connection that has put Geovanis’ name on the list of people whom Congress would very much like to speak with, but who have so far avoided making an appearance. Among other things, they’d like to know if there really is material that the Russians could use as leverage over Trump. The events involving Geovanis go back to 17 years before the 2013 Miss Universe weekend usually associated with the “pee pee tape.” According to CNN, Geovanis arranged Trump’s 1996 trip to Moscow as part of an earlier plan to build a Trump Tower in the Russian capital. That trip included a meeting with the mayor of Moscow, one in which Trump was assisted by Geovanis along with his associates Howard Lorber and Bennet LeBow.  And it’s here that this story starts to run in every direction. If the name Howard Lorber sounds familiar, it’s because Lorber was one of the two men whom Donald Trump Jr. called after arranging the Trump Tower meeting with Russian operatives. Though the media has been quick to jump on the idea that the calls were somehow innocent, the truth is that, moments after arranging a meeting with Russian operatives identified to him as as being in the service of the Russian government, Donald Trump Jr. called on a man whom he knew as one of his father’s connections to Moscow. Not only that, but Geovanis, Lorber, and LeBow were all in Moscow trying to get Trump’s tower built on land they had purchased under the name the Brooke Group. Since then, they’ve changed the name to Vector Group, and a major investor in the company is conservative billionaire, Trump supporter, and Steve Bannon partner Robert Mercer. But, while Lorber and LeBow stayed with Vector, Geovanis moved on to working for someone with other connections to Trump—Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, also known as Paul Manafort’s boss.  It’s … complicated. And it’s made more complicated because Geovanis has so far ignored requests to talk to the Senate Intelligence Committee. But there seems to be no one involved in the story of Trump 2016 who doesn’t have some tie to that trip in 1996. 

This Week in Statehouse Action: A Little Less Legislation edition

Last weekend, a tribute to Elvis Presley aired on NBC, and I was so confused. Why honor Elvis now? He was born in January, died in August, and … did nothing of particular note in any February. Last December was the 50th anniversary of his big 1968 comeba
Daily Kos

This Week in Statehouse Action: A Little Less Legislation edition

Last weekend, a tribute to Elvis Presley aired on NBC, and I was so confused. Why honor Elvis now? He was born in January, died in August, and … did nothing of particular note in any February. Last December was the 50th anniversary of his big 1968 comeback special, so maybe NBC was trying to get in on that hot commemorative action but things ran just a bit behind schedule. Sometimes legislatures run behind schedule, too. That’s how we end up with special sessions, unfunded state governments, and creative timekeeping (yes, sometimes lawmakers do just turn the clocks in the room back to avoid missing that midnight deadline). Campaign Action ERA Blues: In Virginia, where Gov. Northam still hasn’t resigned, the House of Delegates dealt the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment a lethal blow on Thursday. The measure, which passed the state Senate earlier in the session with solid bipartisan support, had failed to make it out of a House committee—the traditional path to the floor for any piece of legislation. With just a couple of days remaining in the 2019 legislative session, House Democrats made a last-ditch play to save the ERA—specifically, a rules change that would have allowed the measure onto the House floor for a vote by the full chamber. And it almost worked. All 49 Democratic House members voted for the change, as did one Republican: Lucky David Yancey, who achieved infamy in early 2018 for keeping his seat—and keeping Republicans in control of the chamber—by literal luck of the draw. Fun fact! Clinton won Yancey’s seat in 2016 50-44, and his HD-94 is one of the districts that will become even bluer under the new court-drawn House maps that will be in effect this fall. The most bitter thing about this tie vote, though, isn’t Yancey’s obvious fear of losing his trending-Democratic seat. You see, two other Republicans actually signed on as co-sponsors of the ERA: Dels. Roxann Robinson and Chris Stolle. And both voted against allowing the measure they were willing to put their names on get a full vote on the House floor. Robinson’s HD-27 went for Trump 48-46 and will be unaffected by the new House map. Democrat Larry Barnett is taking her on this fall, though it’s not too late for other candidates to jump in. Stolle’s HD-83 went for Trump 51-44, but it’s going to move significantly towards the Democratic column under the new House maps a court drew to remedy the GOP General Assembly’s racial gerrymander—the redrawn district backed Clinton 48-47. Democrat Nancy Guy has filed to run against Stolle, but considering how much bluer this district is about to get, expect more Democrats to jump in the race before filing closes in March.

McCabe's 'masterful chess move' may have cemented Mueller's appointment and Trump's fate

The actions of former acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe immediately following the early firing of James Comey may have virtually ensured the appointment of a special counsel to investigate Donald Trump, according to a panel of experts on MSNBC. The revelatio
Daily Kos

McCabe's 'masterful chess move' may have cemented Mueller's appointment and Trump's fate

The actions of former acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe immediately following the early firing of James Comey may have virtually ensured the appointment of a special counsel to investigate Donald Trump, according to a panel of experts on MSNBC. The revelation arose from an interview Deadline's Nicolle Wallace conducted with McCabe on Wednesday. Panelists listening in the green room first surmised and later confirmed with McCabe directly that he had added Trump's name to the FBI's existing Russia investigations instead of opening up separate investigations into him. McCabe also, they confirmed, added the obstruction of justice case to the existing probe into Russian interference. «He added the president to the already predicated, already long existing case on Russian meddling with the campaign,» explained former FBI Assistant Director Frank Figliuzzi. «The obstruction case was not separate either. He added that to the existing [counterintelligence] case, so anyone trying to close that is closing an obstruction case on the president.» The way McCabe decided to structure the cases had both practical impact and, in retrospect, symbolic importance. Symbolically, it meant that McCabe had what he himself described as «an articulable basis» to add Trump's name to the existing probe. «Why is that important?» said Figliuzzi. «That case was a full counterintelligence investigation ... you have specific and articulable facts that someone is or may be an agent of a foreign power. He felt he had enough [evidence] to add Trump's name to that existing case—that's big news.» But McCabe’s actions also had some very important immediate effects. First, it meant that investigators instantly had a full panoply of investigative tools—such as going to FISA court—already at their disposal.  Additionally, both Figliuzzi and former Justice Department spokesperson Matt Miller agreed that it was a «masterful chess move» in the moment in terms of ensuring the probe would have a certain amount of longevity. 

Senate Democrats plan to introduce resolution blocking Trump's national emergency

Senate Democrats are preparing to introduce a resolution rejecting Donald Trump's national emergency declaration as House Democrats plan to take a similar step Friday. Similar to Pelosi's push for a bipartisan front against Trump's attempt to seize some $6 b
Daily Kos

Senate Democrats plan to introduce resolution blocking Trump's national emergency

Senate Democrats are preparing to introduce a resolution rejecting Donald Trump's national emergency declaration as House Democrats plan to take a similar step Friday. Similar to Pelosi's push for a bipartisan front against Trump's attempt to seize some $6 billion in funding for his border wall, Sen. Chuck Schumer also urged members of both parties to reject Trump's power grab. “This issue transcends partisan politics, and I urge all senators — Democrats and Republicans — to support this resolution to terminate the president’s emergency declaration when it comes up for a vote in the Senate," Schumer said in a statement. The Resolution of Disapproval only requires majority support in both chambers to pass, and it is expected to sail through the House. If all Democratic senators vote for it in the upper chamber, the support of only four GOP senators would be needed to send it to Trump's desk. Trump is expected to veto it, most likely without a hint of grace. A two-thirds vote would be needed in both chambers to override a veto and for the resolution to succeed.  Though at least half a dozen Republican senators have expressed doubts about Trump's declaration, Sen. Susan Collins of Maine is the only one to say she will support the disapproval resolution. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell capitulated to Trump, going on the record in support of the national emergency, in exchange for Trump's signature on the government funding bill.  Sounds like all those GOP senators are going to have a chance to choose between backing Trump's indefensible executive action or actually taking a stand. Popcorn, please.   

Leader of White House climate panel compared attempts to curb CO2 with Hitler's attacks on the Jews

The White House is establishing a new climate group, the Presidential Committee on Climate Security. If you’re thinking that Finally!! the Trump regime is becoming enlightened about the crisis we have on our hands … well, you’ve forgotten who we’r
Daily Kos

Leader of White House climate panel compared attempts to curb CO2 with Hitler's attacks on the Jews

The White House is establishing a new climate group, the Presidential Committee on Climate Security. If you’re thinking that Finally!! the Trump regime is becoming enlightened about the crisis we have on our hands … well, you’ve forgotten who we’re dealing with here.  Trump and his coterie of climate science deniers have something else than enlightenment in mind: shooting down assertions that climate change is a national security threat, according to several federal intelligence agencies, including the office of the Director of National Intelligence, the Pentagon, and all the service branches. Suspicions that these agencies are all part of a climate change hoax just drip off the wording in a late-2018 National Security Council discussion paper on the matter. After taking note of the assertions of the agencies and departments, it states, “However, these scientific and national security judgments have not undergone a rigorous independent and adversarial scientific peer review to examine the certainties and uncertainties of climate science, as well as implications for national security,”  Rigor. Independence. That’s certainly what we can expect from a committee to be led by NSC member Will Happer, a distinguished emeritus Princeton physics professor who was once chair of the George C. Marshall Institute, a right-wing disinformation outfit that disputes the overwhelming consensus of climate scientists. He has served in several government posts, including as director of the Office of Science in the Department of Energy under the first President Bush in 1991-93. He is also a veteran member of the Cold War advisory group JASON, set up to scrutinize defense-related science questions. Happer believes that extra carbon dioxide pumped into the atmosphere should be counted as an asset, not a detriment. Ten years ago, as reported by the Daily Princetonian, he said of climate science: “This is George Orwell. This is the ‘Germans are the master race. The Jews are the scum of the earth.’ It’s that kind of propaganda,” Happer, the Cyrus Fogg Brackett Professor of Physics, said in an interview. “Carbon dioxide is not a pollutant. Every time you exhale, you exhale air that has 4 percent carbon dioxide. To say that that’s a pollutant just boggles my mind. What used to be science has turned into a cult.” [...] “All the evidence I see is that the current warming of the climate is just like past warmings. In fact, it’s not as much as past warmings yet, and it probably has little to do with carbon dioxide, just like past warmings had little to do with carbon dioxide,” Happer explained. Then, in 2014, as reported this week by Ed Mazza, Happer went full wacko in an interview on CNBC’s Squawk Box: “The demonization of carbon dioxide is just like the demonization of the poor Jews under Hitler. Carbon dioxide is actually a benefit to the world, and so were the Jews.” So climate scientists aren’t just mistaken and “alarmist.” They seek a new Holocaust. Your tax dollars at work. The climate security panel’s report can be counted on to be a doozy. Perhaps they can juice it up with a foreword from Republican Sen. James “Snowballs Mean There’s No Warming” Inhofe.

Trump labor secretary broke federal law with sweetheart deal for billionaire pedophile, judge rules

Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta has been one of the more low-profile members of Donald Trump’s Cabinet … so renewed attention to Acosta’s role in a sweetheart deal for a billionaire pedophile is a reminder of what a collection of nightmares that Ca
Daily Kos

Trump labor secretary broke federal law with sweetheart deal for billionaire pedophile, judge rules

Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta has been one of the more low-profile members of Donald Trump’s Cabinet … so renewed attention to Acosta’s role in a sweetheart deal for a billionaire pedophile is a reminder of what a collection of nightmares that Cabinet is. Acosta is one of a group of federal prosecutors who broke federal law in their handling of a plea deal for Jeffrey Epstein more than a decade ago, a judge ruled Thursday. Acosta, as the U.S. attorney in Miami at the time, negotiated a non-prosecution deal with Epstein that allowed him to serve just 13 months in county jail after pleading guilty to two state-level prostitution charges, despite evidence that he was breaking federal law by running an international sex-trafficking operation with underage victims. Not only did the billionaire pedophile get off with an incredibly light sentence, but—and this is the part where Acosta and his associates acted illegally, according to U.S. District Judge Kenneth Marra—Epstein’s victims weren’t notified of the deal, so they didn’t have the opportunity to call for its rejection. Two of Epstein’s victims sued in 2008,  citing their rights under the Crime Victims’ Rights Act, and 11 years of litigation later, they have won, with Marra writing that “Particularly problematic was the Government’s decision to conceal the existence of the [agreement] and mislead the victims to believe that federal prosecution was still a possibility.’’ Federal prosecutors, led by Acosta, gave Epstein a voice they denied his victims: “While the Government spent untold hours negotiating the terms and implications of the [agreement] with Epstein’s attorneys, scant information was shared with victims.’’ It’s unlikely that Epstein will go back to jail a decade after his release, but the judge gave prosecutors and the victims 15 days to agree on a remedy.

Economics

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This year Samsung, LG, GE appliances gain striking finishes, souped-up smarts - CNET

Large appliance makers will add enhanced smarts, new functions and slick finishes to their 2019 lineups.
CNET News

This year Samsung, LG, GE appliances gain striking finishes, souped-up smarts - CNET

Large appliance makers will add enhanced smarts, new functions and slick finishes to their 2019 lineups.

Facebook allowed advertisers to target people interested in Nazis - CNET

Advertisers could reach people interested in perpetrators of the Holocaust and neo-Nazi music, the Los Angeles Times reports.
CNET News

Facebook allowed advertisers to target people interested in Nazis - CNET

Advertisers could reach people interested in perpetrators of the Holocaust and neo-Nazi music, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Science

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Podcasting startup WaitWhat raises $4.3M as interest in audio content explodes

The production business behind Reid Hoffman's 'Masters of Scale' podcast raised the funds from Hoffman himself, plus Cue Ball Capital, Burda Principal Investments and more.
TechCrunch

Podcasting startup WaitWhat raises $4.3M as interest in audio content explodes

The production business behind Reid Hoffman's 'Masters of Scale' podcast raised the funds from Hoffman himself, plus Cue Ball Capital, Burda Principal Investments and more.

Sunsama’s $10/month task management calendar cleans up your online productivity

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard friends lament how difficult it is to find a decent calendar app. The stock calendar apps are certainly serviceable but there’s so much that they can’t handle in terms of managing and pri
TechCrunch

Sunsama’s $10/month task management calendar cleans up your online productivity

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard friends lament how difficult it is to find a decent calendar app. The stock calendar apps are certainly serviceable but there’s so much that they can’t handle in terms of managing and prioritizing tasks. Sunsama, launching out of Y Combinator’s latest batch, is taking a […]

Achieving greater efficiency for fast data center operations

Algorithm and software system Shenango improves data center efficiency for microsecond-speed operations by better allocating data processing across CPU cores to reduce tail latency and ensure hardware runs productively.
Latest Science News -- ScienceDaily

Achieving greater efficiency for fast data center operations

Algorithm and software system Shenango improves data center efficiency for microsecond-speed operations by better allocating data processing across CPU cores to reduce tail latency and ensure hardware runs productively.

Chemical added to consumer products impairs response to antibiotic treatment

Triclosan exposure may inadvertently drive bacteria into a state in which they are able to tolerate normally lethal concentrations of antibiotics -- including those antibiotics that are commonly used to treat urinary tract infections (UTIs).
Latest Science News -- ScienceDaily

Chemical added to consumer products impairs response to antibiotic treatment

Triclosan exposure may inadvertently drive bacteria into a state in which they are able to tolerate normally lethal concentrations of antibiotics -- including those antibiotics that are commonly used to treat urinary tract infections (UTIs).

Three years into soda tax, sugary drink consumption down more than 50 percent in Berkeley

Consumption of sugary drinks dropped 52 percent among Berkeley's low-income residents in the three years after the city enacted a penny-per-ounce excise tax on sugar-sweetened beverages in early 2015, a new study shows. The study, which is the first to docume
Latest Science News -- ScienceDaily

Three years into soda tax, sugary drink consumption down more than 50 percent in Berkeley

Consumption of sugary drinks dropped 52 percent among Berkeley's low-income residents in the three years after the city enacted a penny-per-ounce excise tax on sugar-sweetened beverages in early 2015, a new study shows. The study, which is the first to document the long-term impacts of a soda tax in the United States, suggests that taxation may be an effective tool in the fight against diabetes, heart disease and obesity.

Culture

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This Shirtless Abraham Lincoln Statue Is Going Viral on Twitter

Someone recently discovered a shirtless Abraham Lincoln statue in California, and the Twitter community can’t handle it. On Tuesday, Zack Stentz posted a picture of the steamy statue on his Twitter account. “Reminder […] The post This Shirtl
Geek.com

This Shirtless Abraham Lincoln Statue Is Going Viral on Twitter

Someone recently discovered a shirtless Abraham Lincoln statue in California, and the Twitter community can’t handle it. On Tuesday, Zack Stentz posted a picture of the steamy statue on his Twitter account. “Reminder […] The post This Shirtless Abraham Lincoln Statue Is Going Viral on Twitter appeared first on Geek.com.

Plans for new city pavilion harks back to Epcot's roots

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - Epcot is returning to its city roots. Officials at Walt Disney World said Thursday that new additions to Epcot include a pavilion featuring an interactive city with hands-on activities. Epcot was originally conceived by Walt Disney in th
www.washingtontimes.com stories: Travel

Plans for new city pavilion harks back to Epcot's roots

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - Epcot is returning to its city roots. Officials at Walt Disney World said Thursday that new additions to Epcot include a pavilion featuring an interactive city with hands-on activities. Epcot was originally conceived by Walt Disney in the 1960s as an experimental city. In fact, the ...

This Robot Museum Plans to ‘Construct Itself’ in Seoul

Seoul’s Robot Science Museum won’t be an ordinary attraction: The planned structure will reportedly “construct itself” and have robots aid its building process. Melike Altınışık Architects (MAA), a Turkish firm, recently won a [
Geek.com

This Robot Museum Plans to ‘Construct Itself’ in Seoul

Seoul’s Robot Science Museum won’t be an ordinary attraction: The planned structure will reportedly “construct itself” and have robots aid its building process. Melike Altınışık Architects (MAA), a Turkish firm, recently won a […] The post This Robot Museum Plans to ‘Construct Itself’ in Seoul appeared first on Geek.com.

Universal Reveals New ‘Harry Potter’ Roller Coaster Opening in June

Looks like Universal Orlando will be the place to be for Potterheads this June. The theme park  announced on Thursday the official opening date for a new Harry Potter thrill ride coming to The […] The post Universal Reveals New ‘Harry PotterR
Geek.com

Universal Reveals New ‘Harry Potter’ Roller Coaster Opening in June

Looks like Universal Orlando will be the place to be for Potterheads this June. The theme park  announced on Thursday the official opening date for a new Harry Potter thrill ride coming to The […] The post Universal Reveals New ‘Harry Potter’ Roller Coaster Opening in June appeared first on Geek.com.

Geek Deals: Nintendo Switch Games Starting at $45, First Discount on Resident Evil 2

Looking for some affordable Switch games? You can grab Super Mario Odyssey, Breath of the Wild, and Splatoon 2 for just 45 bucks each at Walmart. Plus, you can find discounts on other […] The post Geek Deals: Nintendo Switch Games Starting at $45, Firs
Geek.com

Geek Deals: Nintendo Switch Games Starting at $45, First Discount on Resident Evil 2

Looking for some affordable Switch games? You can grab Super Mario Odyssey, Breath of the Wild, and Splatoon 2 for just 45 bucks each at Walmart. Plus, you can find discounts on other […] The post Geek Deals: Nintendo Switch Games Starting at $45, First Discount on Resident Evil 2 appeared first on Geek.com.

Work Out Like Cap With Hayabusa’s New Marvel Line

Here’s a fun fact from me, your good friend who loves to ruin the things you love: You know that legendary scene in The Avengers where Nick Fury approaches Captain America in a […] The post Work Out Like Cap With Hayabusa’s New Marvel Line appea
Geek.com

Work Out Like Cap With Hayabusa’s New Marvel Line

Here’s a fun fact from me, your good friend who loves to ruin the things you love: You know that legendary scene in The Avengers where Nick Fury approaches Captain America in a […] The post Work Out Like Cap With Hayabusa’s New Marvel Line appeared first on Geek.com.

Sport

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VIDEO: eNASCAR Heat Pro League Showcase visits Martinsville

In the third week of the eNASCAR Heat Pro League Showcase races, the 100 drivers who are fighting for supremacy ahead of the upcoming Pro League draft battled on the half-mile paper clip known as Martinsville Speedway. There were four 40-lap races held with g
Motorsport.com - All - Stories

VIDEO: eNASCAR Heat Pro League Showcase visits Martinsville

In the third week of the eNASCAR Heat Pro League Showcase races, the 100 drivers who are fighting for supremacy ahead of the upcoming Pro League draft battled on the half-mile paper clip known as Martinsville Speedway. There were four 40-lap races held with gamers driving trucks for the first time in the series.In the Playstation B division DIESEL_PYLES took the lead early and went on to score ...Keep reading

Testing verdict: Where exactly is Mercedes at after week one?

But how convincing were its times, and does the fact it is now the only team on the grid not running a high-rake ride height set-up make its life harder under the new rules that are in place for this year?Former F1 technical director Gary Anderson and Autospo
Motorsport.com - All - Stories

Testing verdict: Where exactly is Mercedes at after week one?

But how convincing were its times, and does the fact it is now the only team on the grid not running a high-rake ride height set-up make its life harder under the new rules that are in place for this year?Former F1 technical director Gary Anderson and Autosport’s Jack Benyon join Glenn Freeman in Barcelona to discuss the good and the possibly bad news for Mercedes, plus what we can read into ...Keep reading

Full NASCAR 2019 Atlanta weekend schedule

The schedule is subject to change. All times Eastern.Friday, Feb 2211:35 a.m. - 12:55 p.m., Cup Series practice (TV: NASCAR.com)1:05-1:55 p.m., first Xfinity Series practice (TV: NASCAR.com)2:05-2:55 p.m., first Truck Series practice (TV: NASCAR.com)3:05-3:5
Motorsport.com - All - Stories

Full NASCAR 2019 Atlanta weekend schedule

The schedule is subject to change. All times Eastern.Friday, Feb 2211:35 a.m. - 12:55 p.m., Cup Series practice (TV: NASCAR.com)1:05-1:55 p.m., first Xfinity Series practice (TV: NASCAR.com)2:05-2:55 p.m., first Truck Series practice (TV: NASCAR.com)3:05-3:55 p.m., final Xfinity Series practice (TV: Fox Sports 1 - FS1)4:05-4:50 p.m., final Truck Series practice (TV ...Keep reading

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