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“The U.S. military began preparing in earnest for Hurricane Irma on Wednesday, readying four Navy ships for potential disaster relief while moving aircraft and U.S. troops in advance of the arrival of the Category 5 storm.
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has approved the use of the USS Oak Hill and the USS Kearsarge, amphibious ships now off Florida’s east coast, if help is requested from Gov. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), said Army Lt. Col. Jamie Davis, a Pentagon spokesman. The ships were originally deployed late last month with hundreds of Marines and sailors aboard to respond to Hurricane Harvey in Texas, but could instead be sent to Florida.” More here.> U.S. military preparations for Hurricane Irma now include four Navy ships and thousands of troops
“A Florida woman broke down in tears inside of a Lowe’s on Thursday when she realized that the store was out of generators.
Pam Brekke was in a panic, considering that her father is on oxygen and in need electricity to run his machine. And considering that Hurricane Irma is threatening to slam the region with potentially historic force, her reaction is understandable.
But just as Brekke was crying over missing out on the last available generator, a man named Ramon Santiago — a stranger she had never met — came up to her and offered her the generator he had planned to purchase.
“A towering spillway at the nation’s tallest dam was crumbling, and tens of thousands of people were fleeing for their lives. But as darkness fell, state officials realized dealing with the unfolding crisis in Northern California was about to get even worse: They couldn’t see.
One of Seven photos from AP. Oroville Dam spillway.
For years, federal regulators urged state officials in charge of the Oroville Dam to consider installing cameras, lights and more sensors and monitors to help alert managers to potential structural problems and, in a crisis, ensure there would be time to evacuate towns downstream. But on Feb. 12, as murky floodwaters washed away the second of two failing spillways, nightfall left officials struggling to figure out what was happening.” More here.>AP Exclusive: ‘Is risk gone?’ Confusion as dam crisis grew
“A 32-year-old man told police he was held hostage and repeatedly sexually assaulted for three days by a woman he met online, according to the New Orleans Police Department. He was one of five people who reported being raped in New Orleans over the three-day Labor Day weekend.
According to police, the 32-year-old man reported that he met an unknown woman on a dating website a week prior to meeting her in person last Friday (Sept. 1) at his Central City residence. The man told police he was arguing with the woman on Saturday morning when the confrontation “turned physical.” More here.> Man reports being held hostage, raped for 3 days by woman, NOPD says
“A kidnapped Minnesota teen bravely swam across a lake to safety from her abductors after nearly a month in captivity.
Thomas Barker (from left), Joshua Holby and Steven Powers Alexandria Police Department
Jasmine Block, 15, was reunited with her family this week after she disappeared from her Alexandria home in August, news station WCCO reported.
“Offended that a man would offer to pay for the items he was attempting to shoplift from a 7-11 in West Hollywood, California, a theft crushed the skull of the Good Samaritan with an axe, police report.
MOBILE, AL (WALA) –“FOX10 News Fugitive Files suspect James Pritchard faces burglary and assault charges. Mobile Police say, during a jealous rage involving his ex-girlfriend’s new boyfriend, Pritchard attacked the man and stabbed him repeatedly.
FOX10 News Fugitive Files James Pritchard (Image: Mobile Metro Jail)
“The victim actually woke up to Mr. Pritchard assaulting him at that time. He was unable to get his cellular phone because of the struggle with Mr. Pritchard at that time. Shortly after the struggle, Mr. Pritchard did leave the residence and the victim was able to call the police,” said Mobile Police Officer Donald Wallace.” More here.> Stabbing on Baltimore Street
“The Social Security Administration paid out nearly $38 million in disability insurance payments to 746 deceased veterans, the agency’s inspector general found, because the deaths had not been properly recorded in the agency’s databases. Unless Social Security corrects its records, it will likely make another $7.3 million in improper payments over the next 12 months.” More here.> Social Security Paid Disability Benefits to More Than 700 Deceased Veterans
“Ten sharks were found in the basement pool of a New York home Wednesday after environmental conservation officers searched the residence.
Officials with the state Department of Environmental Conservation said the 15-foot-diameter above ground basement pool inside a home in the Dutchess County hamlet of LaGrangeville had seven live sandbar sharks, two dead leopard sharks and one dead hammerhead shark.” More here.> 10 sharks found in home’s basement pool
LUFKIN, Texas (AP) — “A Texas woman is being held on several charges after she slipped her handcuffs, stole a police SUV and then led officers on a pursuit that reached speeds of nearly 100 mph (160 kph).
Thirty-three-year-old Toscha Sponsler was being held Thursday in the Angelina County jail on charges that include evading arrest.
“Why is health insurance so complicated, while car insurance and life insurance are so simple? Can health insurance be more like, well, insurance? Lanhee Chen, fellow at the Hoover Institution, explains.” > Why Is Health Insurance so Complicated?
“In the first seven months of his presidency, Donald Trump has tried to fulfill his campaign promises to reverse a number of Obama-era policies, including Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, the program Obama created by executive order in 2012 for children brought to America illegally. Arguably, Trump won the White House on such promises, and it stands to reason that he would try to follow through on them now that he’s in office.
Shortly after the government shutdown in 2013, then-President Obama said if Republicans didn’t like his policies then they should go out there and “win an election,” not try to undermine the policies they don’t like. That’s exactly what the GOP did, first in 2014 and again in 2016, taking control of both Congress and the White House.
Yesterday I argued that President Trump’s pivot is real, and it’s spectacular. After Trump’s head-scratching deal with Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi which turned the conventional wisdom in Washington upside down, it’s hard to argue otherwise. But let’s be clear about what this pivot is, and what it isn’t. This pivot doesn’t mean Trump will start working with Democrats to get GOP priorities done. That’s absurd. What it means, if applied broadly, is that Trump will dump anything Congressional Republicans favor which represent heavy lift items and instead make his agenda the five to ten most popular things in both parties, with the understanding that the weak-spined GOP will buckle before you, while daring Democrat elites to own the defeat of popular bipartisan ideas in service to their “hashtag resistance” base.” More here.> Trump’s Potential Triangulation
“For the second time in three months, Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee have grilled one of President Trump’s judicial nominees about their religious beliefs. Um … isn’t there something in the Constitution about that?
Senate Democrats came dangerously close to crossing a constitutional line regarding religious faith during an inquisition of one of President Trump’s nominees for the federal court.
Senators on Wednesday grilled federal judicial nominee Amy Barrett – demanding to know how her faith would influence her decisions from the bench. Barrett is a professor at Notre Dame Law School and a devout Catholic.
“European leaders accepted the transformation of parts of their countries into enemy territories. They see that a demographic disaster is taking place. They know that in two or three decades, Europe will be ruled by Islam.
Ten years ago, describing what he called “the last days of Europe,” the historian Walter Laqueur said that European civilization was dying and that only old monuments and museums would survive. His diagnosis was too optimistic. Old monuments and museums might well be blown up. Look nowhere else than what the black-hooded supporters of “Antifa” — an “anti-fascist” movement whose actions are totally fascistic — are doing to statues in the United States.” More here.> “the last days of Europe”, The Islamic Future of Europe
PARIS – “Tensions within France’s far-right National Front party, on the rise since leader Marine Le Pen’s resounding loss in the country’s May presidential race, are hitting a crescendo as Le Pen prepares to reset party priorities.” More here.> Tensions emerge in France’s far-right after election loss
“An investigation is underway in Germany this week after anti-immigration protesters hurled tomatoes at German Chancellor Angela Merkel during a campaign event in southern Germany.
Police said at least two tomatoes were thrown at Merkel during her speech at a campaign rally Tuesday, with one hitting her left hip, leaving a stain on her signature jacket, and another one hitting the event’s moderator, Germany’s DPA news agency reported.” More here.> Merkel hit with tomato during campaign rally in Germany
BEIRUT (AP) — “Israeli warplanes struck a military position near the Mediterranean coast in western Syria Thursday, killing two soldiers, the Syrian army said, in a stronghold of President Bashar Assad that is also heavily protected by the Russians and Iranians.
This Thursday, Dec. 29, 2016 photo shows an Israeli Air Force F-15 plane in flight during a graduation ceremony for new pilots in the Hatzerim air force base near the city of Beersheba, (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
The airstrike targeted a facility near the town of Masyaf, in Hama province, described by some as a missile producing factory, amid Israeli outrage over Iran’s growing influence in the war-torn country.
“Fireworks blazed through the sky in North Korea’s capital Wednesday night as thousands of people attended a mass rally to celebrate the regime’s weekend nuclear test and rally speakers vowed to end “the destiny of the gangster-like U.S. imperialists.”
The scientists responsible for developing the supposed hydrogen bomb that was detonated Sunday were welcomed to streets of cheering citizens leading to Pyongyang’s Kim Il Sung Square. Photos and a video released by the official Korean Central News Agency showed thousands more lining up in the capital.” More here.> North Korea celebrates nuclear tests
“Illegal immigrant families received nearly $1.3 billion in Los Angeles County welfare money during 2015 and 2016, nearly one-quarter of the amount spent on the county’s entire needy population, according to data obtained by Fox News.
“In the last week, there have been reports of several pigs flying by various windows in every city. Pigs only fly when there’s been a unique occurrence, and we certainly have had a few.
For weeks after the riot in Charlottesville, Virginia, almost everyone in the political and media establishments refused to acknowledge the violence and nature of the anarchist group antifa. More than two weeks later, that dam broke, and newspapers and politicians finally admitted that antifa was an obscenely violent group and condemned them.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was one of the first to publicly denounce them, a day later House Speaker Paul D. Ryan played catch-up and did the same.
Then a bombshell report from Politico revealed as early as spring 2016, the Department of Homeland Security classified antifa as using domestic terrorist violence.
“Federal authorities have been warning state and local officials since early 2016 that leftist extremists known as ‘antifa’ had become increasingly confrontational and dangerous, so much so that the Department of Homeland Security formally classified their activities as ‘domestic terrorist violence,’ according to interviews and confidential law enforcement documents obtained by Politico.”
For some reason, the Obama administration kept that a secret. Now, despite all this evidence, we still wait for people like former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and former President Barack Obama to denounce and condemn antifa. Now, even the media admit the true nature of the group of thugs. Yet these career politicians, who hold themselves up as beacons of truth and morality, continue to lie by omission, simply because they believed they could isolate President Trump. They failed.
On the heels of that fiasco attempting to lionize purveyors of political violence, something else happened — two women leaders of the Democratic Party have come out and essentially said it’s time to stop attacking Mr. Trump.” More here.> Democratic leaders change their tune on Trump
Indonesia's parliament unanimously approved a strengthened anti-terrorism law, expanding the definition of terror and lengthening detention periods, spurred into action by bombings less than two weeks ago that involved children as perpetrators.
The former Treasurer of Jackson County, Kentucky was indicted today for stealing over $160,000 from the Jackson County government and misusing the identities of two other Jackson County employees to facilitate her thefts. Acting Assistant Attorney General John P. Cronan of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Robert M. Duncan Jr. for th […]
Two employees of an international engineering consulting firm were charged in a superseding indictment filed today for their alleged participation in a scheme to launder bribe payments to foreign government officials for the benefit of a Columbus, Ohio-based subsidiary of Rolls-Royce plc, to secure a contract to supply equipment and services to power a gas p […]
The petitions of the day are: Clearstream Banking S.A. v. Peterson 17-1529 Issue: Whether foreign sovereign property held by a foreign financial intermediary in a foreign country may, under any circumstances, be subject to execution in United States courts. Bank Markazi v. Peterson 17-1534 Issue: Whether a foreign sovereign’s property outside of the United S […]
Deepak Gupta is the founding principal of Gupta Wessler PLLC. He was counsel of record on an amicus brief for the American Association for Justice supporting the employees in Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis. The Court has abandoned all pretense of ascertaining congressional intent with respect to the Federal Arbitration Act, building instead, case by […] The pos […]
For the Los Angeles Times, David Savage reports on Epic Systems v. Lewis, in which the court held on Monday that arbitration clauses in employment contracts that require employees to forgo class and collective actions are enforceable, noting that “[s]cholars who have looked into the 1925 [Federal Arbitration Act] find it remarkable that an obscure […] The po […]