December 4, 2016

Fire at Ghost Ship warehouse and artist space in Oakland kills as many as two dozen.   http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2016/12/03/least-9-dead-oakland-warehouse-party-fire/94881696/   Artists throwing party reportedly built structures “for festivals like Burning Man”.   http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/12/03/inside-the-oakland-party-fire-one-rickety-staircase-inside-a-tinderbox.html

Senate Republican leaders reportedly hit brakes on Medicare privatization plans.  http://www.politico.com/story/2016/12/republicans-medicare-overhaul-232087

Green Party refuses to post $1 million bond for state-wide Pennsylvania recount, says the amount is unreasonable. County by county effort to continue.  http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/12/03/504285672/jill-stein-campaign-drops-her-recount-effort-in-pennsylvania   Trump’s lead over Clinton in Pennsylvania has reportedly dropped to 0.8% – if it falls to 0.5% during the partial recount, a state-wide recount will be triggered.   http://www.cnbc.com/2016/12/02/recount-news-heres-the-latest-on-the-recount-efforts-in-mi-wi-and-pa.html

New Jersey Muslim cleric who says he was tortured in Israel faces deportation, government claims he lied when applying for permanent resident status in 1999.  http://www.nj.com/bergen/index.ssf/2016/12/prominent_nj_muslim_leader_to_face_deportation_aga.html

Walmart reportedly agrees to $7.5 million settlement over allegations that it denied healthcare coverage to same-sex spouses of employees.   http://www.khou.com/money/business/walmart-agrees-to-75-million-settlement-in-same-sex-benefits-lawsuit/362399261

Obamacare planner says program should be updated, attacks on the program are a “classic example of a political party placing its own self-interest ahead of the good of the nation”.   https://www.salon.com/2016/12/03/obamacare-architect-ezekiel-emanuel-donald-trump-has-an-opportunity-to-do-enormous-good-or-to-create-chaos/   Discusses need to get healthy, young people to participate, but does not mention single-payer “Medicare for all” type alternatives which could be funded through payroll deductions.   http://www.pnhp.org/facts/what-is-single-payer

Trump’s Secretary of Commerce pick Ross reportedly backed TPP trade agreement, said in 2012 “…it’s a fiction on both sides that those jobs will come back”.   http://money.cnn.com/2016/12/02/news/economy/kfile-wilbur-ross-tpp/

Democrats still playing the blame game. “If the autopsy takeaways are that third parties and Comey were the problems, then the lessons Democrats will take ahead of 2020 are that they need to blast Jill Stein and Gary Johnson into outer space and prevent FBI directors from releasing vague letters, and everything should be fine.” http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2016/12/hillary_clinton_didn_t_lose_because_of_jill_stein_and_james_comey.html

When political polls are outlawed, Italians get creative. “The church is apparently very divided on this “divine judgement”, according to the site, which displays a choice between saints: San Simplicio (or “SI”) and San Norberto (or “NO”).”  http://qz.com/851663/italy-referendum-polls-websites-are-dodging-a-ban-on-voter-polls-by-disguising-them-as-horse-races-car-reviews-or-vatican-gossip/

Trump’s Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is reportedly the sister of Blackwater private security company founder Erik Prince. When asked at a 2001 conference for Christian philanthropists why she and her husband did not simple found Christian schools with their vast wealth instead of advocating publicly funded charter schools, she allegedly replied she preferred an approach “that really may have greater Kingdom gain in the long run by changing the way we approach things, in this case the system of education in the country.”   http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/betsy-devos-religion-in-schools_us_583f04d1e4b04fcaa4d61c88

Police departments accused of planting “fake news” stories.   http://fusion.net/story/373626/police-fake-news-real-news-who-cares/

Witness in McKnight shooting claims assailant stood over McKnight and shot him a final time after he was on the ground.  http://www.si.com/nfl/2016/12/02/joe-mcknight-shooting-death-ronald-gasser

Littoral Combat Ships are turning into the Navy’s F-35 fighter – way, way over budget and not performing reliably.   http://www.military.com/daily-news/2016/12/02/acquisition-chief-lcs-program-broke-navy.html

Non-profit group Protect Our Elections contests Florida election results, may result in recount. Wisconsin Governor Walker suggests limiting possibility of recounts in future elections.   http://whowhatwhy.org/recount-roundup/

Textbook publishers accused of muddying causes of Civil War to avoid offending southern school districts. “…when each state left the Union, its leaders made clear that they were seceding because they were for slavery and against states’ rights.”   https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2015/07/01/why-do-people-believe-myths-about-the-confederacy-because-our-textbooks-and-monuments-are-wrong/   The author argues that southern states wrote in their own secession declarations that northern states had passed laws that allowed runaway slaves to remain and were ignoring the federal Fugitive Slave Act requiring that runaway slaves be returned.

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December 4, 2016

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