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  1. #17146

    Re: National, Regional and Local News

    I will try to explain Oliver North's conscience.
    In the 1970's, Venezuela's greatest funny writer, who went by the nom-de-plume OTROVA GOMAS (Justano Therbum) wrote a story called "We have been exposed!". It was published in the weekly comedy magazine "The Educated Sadist". It applies. I will try to reproduce it here.
    ---0---
    It was 2 PM when I picked up the phone. I dialed a number at random. A male voice picked up on the other side.
    "Hello" it said.
    I yelled "Run! They know about what we are doing!"
    I heard the phone being dropped and the sound of furniture being knocked over, the screams of the man clearly audible through the phone.
    I dialed another number. Again, a male voice answered.
    "Hello?" he said.
    I again yelled "Run, they know what we are doing!"
    I heard screams as the phone was dropped, and again the fading footsteps of somebody running.
    I did the same thing a few more times, and every time I just heard the person dropped the phone and run. But then I dialed another person and something else happened.
    "Run!" I said, "They know what we are doing!"
    The man on the other side laughed, as I heard the ice on his glass clink in the background, as he stirred it.
    "I don't care. Everybody in this country knows that we are stealing everything we can" he said, an obvious smile on his face.
    If there is something that I know about is how to deal with cold-hearted, viscous men like this.
    "Yes," I added, "but HE knows you are not giving him his cut!". I then heard the same loud thud, as he obviously started running.
    I was about to pick up the phone again and dial another number when the phone rang. I picked it up and answered: "Hello?"
    "Run, they know what we are doing!" an anonymous voice said.
    "I know" I said. "They already called me"
    "So, what do we do?!"
    I had to be honest with him: "Stop talking like a**holes over the phone and get the f*** out of here" I said, before hanging up.
    I tried to dial a few more numbers but all I got was busy lines. In the street I could hear the shouts of people screaming "They know!!!" or "We have been exposed!!!". I tried to dial a few more numbers, but it was in vain. Outside the window, all I could see was the huge traffic jam, heading towards the airport...


    ---0---
    Oliver North has no conscience. He just was not given his cut of the deal. That's all.
    I mean, I know you guys are becoming the United States of South America, but we invented that crap!!!!
    Face it. It's the apocalypse.

  2. #17147

    Re: National, Regional and Local News

    Jerry Falwell Jr. will take an indefinite leave of absence from Liberty
    By
    Sarah Pulliam Bailey
    August 7, 2020 at 5:25 p.m. EDT

    Jerry Falwell Jr. will take an indefinite leave of absence from Liberty University after posting a racy photo to social media from his vacation where his pants were unzipped, his midriff was out, and he is standing next to a woman holding a glass of dark liquid. He later deleted the photo.

    The school issued a brief statement saying that the executive committee of Liberty’s board of trustees met Friday and requested that Falwell take leave. That committee of eight people includes Falwell, according to the school’s website.

    On Thursday, Rep. Mark Walker (R-N.C.), a Southern Baptist minister and former Liberty instructor, called for Falwell’s resignation, citing several recent after several scandals.

    “Jerry Falwell Jr’s ongoing behavior is appalling,” Walker, the vice chairman of the powerful House Republican Caucus, wrote on Twitter. “I’m convinced Falwell should step down."

    In recent months, Falwell’s behavior has been blasted by his own students, young alumni and Black alumni, but this week White evangelical leaders openly criticized him on social media.

    Colby Garman, a pastor and executive committee member of the Virginia Southern Baptist Convention, echoed Walker’s call for Falwell to step down. Liberty graduate Dean Inserra, a megachurch pastor in Florida, urged the university board members to “show some courage.” Bible teacher Beth Moore wrote, “I just want everybody to zip up their pants is all.”

    Speaking to the Lynchburg, Va., radio station WLNI, Falwell said the woman in the photo was his “wife’s assistant” — and, he said, the inspiration for undoing his pants zipper and exposing his stomach.

    “She’s pregnant, so she couldn’t get her pants up,” he said as the host chuckled. “And I had on a pair of jeans that I hadn’t worn in a long time, so I couldn’t get mine zipped, either. And so I just put my belly out like hers.”

    “She’s a sweetheart,” he added, “and I should never have put it up and embarrassed her.”

    Falwell’s father, Jerry Falwell Sr., was a prominent Southern Baptist pastor who co-founded the once-influential Moral Majority, a group that pushed for conservative politics. After his death, his sons succeeded him; Jerry Falwell Jr. took over the university while his son Jonathan Falwell became senior pastor of the church his father founded.

    Teo Armus contributed to this report.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/relig...ge%2Fstory-ans
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.




  3. #17148

    Re: National, Regional and Local News

    You know what? The explanation is so outrageous that I will buy it. Move on. He is a despicable person, but not because of this.
    When will people realize that Social Media is basically deadly for the famous?
    Face it. It's the apocalypse.

  4. #17149

    Re: National, Regional and Local News

    Midwest derecho devastates Iowa corn crop. Satellite imagery shows damage.
    More than 10 million acres, or 43 percent, of the state’s crops were affected.


    Flattened corn in Churdan, Iowa. (Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship)

    By
    Matthew Cappucci
    August 12, 2020 at 1:59 p.m. EDT

    Monday’s derecho across the Corn Belt and Midwest laid siege to more than 10 million acres of Iowa’s corn and soybean crop, devastating farmers and capping off what has already been a difficult few years of farming for many.

    Up to 43 percent of the state’s corn and soybean crop have suffered damage from the storms that brought winds exceeding 100 miles per hour at times, a severe blow to a 10 billion-dollar industry that’s central to the Hawkeye State’s economy. The magnitude of the battered vegetation was even visible on the same weather satellites used to track Monday’s violent thunderstorms.

    State officials continued to survey the damage Wednesday in hopes that some of the crop may be salvageable. Iowa governor Kim Reynolds (R) issued a disaster proclamation for 20 Iowa counties, freeing up state funding for disaster response and recovery. The state is also making grants available to low-income families who find themselves faced with food, repair, or temporary housing expenses in the wake of the disaster.

    “Though it will take days or weeks to know [the] full scope of damage, initial reports are significant,” said Reynolds at a news conference on Tuesday. She noted that the state is working to frame its storm response while also managing the ongoing covid-19 epidemic.

    Drive-up covid-19 testing sites in Cedar Rapids, Davenport and Marshalltown were closed Monday and Tuesday. “They are working to reopen those as quickly as possible,” said Reynolds.

    Satellite captures scenes of storm damage

    Satellite imagery on Tuesday captured the scope of the agricultural destruction. At least two significant swaths of wind damage can be seen, particularly north of Interstate 90. Radar signatures indicate the core of 90 to 100 mph winds may have been between 30 and 50 miles wide at times.

    Winds were clocked at 112 mph in Midway, Iowa, about 10 miles north of Cedar Rapids. A gust to 100 mph was recorded nearby in Hiawatha.

    A personal weather station measured a gust of 106 mph in Marshalltown, a city of 27,000 northeast of Des Moines. The airport gusted to 99 mph as the storms barreled through.

    All told, more than 700 instances of damage or severe weather were reported to the National Weather Service following the passage of the derecho, which wrought havoc along a track some 700 miles long from Nebraska to Indiana.

    Millions of bushels of corn damaged
    North of Des Moines you go, the worse the corn looked. However, in the fields I checked I didn't see any actual snapping of corn. A lot was laid down. However, only time is going to tell. pic.twitter.com/S2SD7BtFfj

    — Dustin Hoffmann, Iowa Ag Radio (@Dustin_IAAgBiz) August 10, 2020

    Jan Dutton, chief executive of Prescient Weather, a private forecasting group specializing in predictions for agricultural interests, said between 180 and 270 million bushels of corn were likely affected. His technique employed his company’s corn production forecast, which predicts crop yields based on antecedent and ongoing weather conditions.

    “I saw the satellite image, outlined the counties in Iowa that were affected by the derecho, and looked at what counties were inside the domain,” explained Dutton.

    He said that figure causes a serious dent in yield for Iowa, but that other states could help soften the deficit.

    “Total corn production for the U.S. is going to be 15.4 to 15.6 billion bushels,” said Dutton. “The amount impacted is like one purchase from China.”


    In this aerial image from a drone, damaged grain bins are shown at the Heartland Co-Op grain elevator on Tuesday in Luther, Iowa. (Daniel Acker/Getty Images)

    Iowa is the number one producer of corn in the United States, comprising roughly a sixth of nationwide yields in 2019, when 2.58 billion bushels were harvested. The state has been the country’s top corn producer every year for the past 26 years.

    Not all of the corn affected by the derecho was necessarily destroyed, however. It will take time for agronomists to assess the health of corn plants affected, said Keely Coppess, communications director for the Iowa Department of Agriculture.

    “A lot of the corn is in the later development stages,” said Coppess. “Some is at a 45-degree angle, but it may attempt to stand back up. But it’s really too soon to tell. We’ll know more in a week or so.”

    Carl Jardon, the vice president of the Iowa Corn Growers Association, said in a statement that the derecho affected the entire width of the state.

    “Harvest will begin shortly and one-third of Iowa’s crop are flattened, it’s hard to tell at this point whether all the corn will recover and the impact of potential yield,” he said. “2020 has been a year of downfalls for the farmer. It has been one hit after another with trade disputes, low demand and attacks on ethanol and the Renewable Fuel Standard, on top of a global pandemic and the lowest corn prices in over a decade.”

    Corn is typically harvested in Iowa between late September and mid October.

    This is from around in Greene County, Iowa just NW of Perry

    Jim Smith the corn was suffering from the drought. Then we got a little rain last week. And now this. All eight of my corn fields look this flat and quite a bit of it snapped not just leaning. 1/2 pic.twitter.com/hFOTn1AZ7a

    — Jim Smith, Ph.D. (@JimSmith87) August 11, 2020

    Corn plays a significant role in Iowa’s climate. By releasing water into the atmosphere in a process called evapotranspiration, it has been shown to increase the dew point and subsequently the humidity. That can lead to higher heat indexes during heat waves, and can also contribute to fueling severe thunderstorms.

    A serious storm that initially came by surprise


    The National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center's 7 a.m. Central time forecast on Monday placed a level 1 out of 5 “marginal risk” of severe weather over Iowa. Overlaid are wind reports in blue and tornado reports in red. The forecast was elevated to a level 4 out of 5 “moderate risk” in Chicago five hours later when the severity of the storms became apparent. (NOAA/SPC)

    The vicious windstorm came by surprise on a morning when most of Iowa was only predicted to see very isolated severe weather. The National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center (SPC) had issued a level 1 out of 5 “marginal risk” of severe weather for most of Iowa just a few hours before winds began gusting upward of 90 mph in the central part of the state. Only after the storms began their violent march to the east did SPC issue a dramatic upgrade in their storm outlook to a level 4 out of 5 “moderate risk” from central Iowa east to Chicago. In areas to the east of the Iowa cornfields, the forecast is considered a success.

    Derechos are notoriously difficult to predict, since the atmospheric ingredients for them are in place during much of the summer; yet those ingredients are rarely combined in the necessary way to generate such a fierce storm system.

    “It was very bizarre … it’s been a whirlwind,” said Brandi Snyder, a spokesperson for the Iowa Corn Growers Association. “I remember my husband telling me it will be cooler, like 75 [degrees] … he said, ‘there won’t be much heat.’”


    A time sequence of the derecho as it blasted eastward Monday. (NWS Chicago)

    But when she awoke Monday morning, it was hot and humid — even by Iowa standards.

    “I woke up and noticed all of our windows were fogged over,” she said. “You could just feel the extreme humidity. It was weird out.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/weath...mpaign=wp_main
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.




  5. #17150

    Re: National, Regional and Local News

    Nick Bunker
    @nick_bunker
    Just showed this graph to someone for the first time. Don't think I did enough to prepare them for what they were about to see.

    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.




  6. #17151

    Re: National, Regional and Local News

    This is a distraction for sure but...

    Vivian Salama
    @vmsalama
    THIS IS SOMETHIN’: The U.S. Energy Department proposed easing water efficiency requirements for shower heads Wednesday following multiple complaints from President Donald Trump about how low water flow is impeding his ability to properly wash his hair.

    “You turn on the shower -- if you’re like me, you can’t wash your beautiful hair properly,” Trump said this month during a visit to a Whirlpool Corp. manufacturing plant in Ohio. “You waste 20 minutes longer. Please come out. The water -- it drips, right?”

    The rule, if finalized, would subvert a 1992 law signed by Republican President George HW Bush, & would lead to the waste of enormous amounts of water and energy, & increase greenhouse gas emissions, according to the Appliance Standards Awareness Project, an environmental group.
    Trump to Relax Rules for Showers After Complaints About Flow
    By Ari Natter
    August 12, 2020, 12:37 PM EDT Updated on August 12, 2020, 2:36 PM EDT
    ‘You can’t wash your beautiful hair properly,’ Trump lamented
    Rule would weaken standard for shower heads set in the 1990s"
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.




  7. #17152

    Re: National, Regional and Local News

    Trump.....beautiful hair???? GH

  8. #17153

    Re: National, Regional and Local News

    The Associated Press @AP

    Jerry Falwell Jr. is out, at least temporarily, as president of evangelical Liberty University, but whether he will break permanently with the Christian institution that is synonymous with his family name is another matter.

    https://apnews.com/c4d4cfc938ff3f8bd...source=Twitter
    “No matter how cynical I get, I just can't keep up.” – Lily Tomlin.




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