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For the purposes of this show, I operate on two mottoes:
- You’re entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts;
- An educated electorate is a prerequisite for a democracy.
“If you don’t want to hear it on the radio, DON’T DO IT!” ~ Maxine Messenger, regular radio sign-off
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- Trump is implicated in his attorney’s Stormy Daniels payment for the first time, by Aaron Blake March 5 at 2:40 PM Email the author
- President Trump and porn star Stormy Daniels. (Carolyn Kaster, Matt Sayles/AP)
- The headline on the Wall Street Journal’s latest Stormy Daniels scoop is that Trump attorney Michael Cohen’s $130,000 payment to the porn star set off red flags and was reported to the Treasury Department. But what came next seems much more important.
- The Journal is also reporting that Cohen couldn’t get a hold of Trump late in the process and that he later complained that Trump hadn’t reimbursed him for the payment to Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford:
- Cohen said he missed two deadlines earlier that month to make the $130,000 payment to Ms. Clifford because he couldn’t reach Mr. Trump in the hectic final days of the presidential campaign, the person said.
- Clifford was owed the money in return for signing an agreement that bars her from discussing an alleged sexual encounter with Mr. Trump in 2006, people familiar the matter said.
- After Mr. Trump’s victory, Mr. Cohen complained to friends that he had yet to be reimbursed for the payment to Ms. Clifford, the people said.
- This may read like background used to fill out a story, but it is actually quite significant. These paragraphs represent the first time a major news outlet has reported that Cohen had spoken even behind the scenes about Trump being involved in the payment. Previously, the origins of the payment were more mysterious.
- Former Trump aide says he’s refusing Mueller subpoena: ‘Screw that’, By Eli Watkins, CNN (Updated 6:16 PM ET), Mon March 5, 2018
- Washington (CNN) – In a defiant pair of CNN interviews, former Trump campaign aide Sam Nunberg said Monday he refuses to comply with a grand jury subpoena [from Mueller] in the Russia investigation.
- “Screw that,” Nunberg told CNN’s Gloria Borger. “Why do I have to go? Why? For what?”
- Former Russian spy in critical condition in the U.K. from ‘unknown substance’, By Oren Dorell, USA TODAY Published 3:52 p.m. ET March 5, 2018 | Updated 5:29 p.m. ET March 5, 2018
- Police in the southwest of England reported that two people are in critical condition and are being treated for suspected exposure to an unknown substance. USA TODAY
- A former Russian spy and a woman were in critical condition at a British hospital Monday, after becoming sick from an “unknown substance,” according to police and the BBC.
- The incident is reminiscent of the 2006 poisoning death of another former Russian agent, Alexander Litvinenko, after he was exposed to a rare radioactive isotope, polonium-210.
- A U.S. aircraft carrier arrived in Vietnam for the first time since the fall of Saigon, By Alex Horton March 5 at 1:46 PM Email the author
- Armed Vietnamese soldiers watched as an American aircraft carrier approached their country’s coastline Monday for the first time in more than four decades. The vessel was on a mission of diplomacy, not war.
- The port call involving nearly 6,000 sailors marks the largest U.S. presence in Vietnam since the 1975 U.S. withdrawal after years of combat — a stark picture of how China’s solidifying grasp of the strategic South China Sea has prompted Vietnam to rethink its defense alliances in the region.
- … Defense Secretary Jim Mattis visited the country in January to tout strengthening ties on the heels of a new strategy to refocus defense efforts on big-power militaries. He called on the Pentagon to keep pace with a resurgent Russia and China by building relationships in key regions such as Southeast Asia.
- Australia Seeks Hydrogen to Soak Up Excess Renewable Energy Production, By Jason Deign [greentechmedia.com] March 05, 2018
- Australia’s top gas distribution network operator, Australian Gas Infrastructure Group, plans to mix hydrogen into its supplies to take advantage of excess renewable generation.
- In February, the company announced plans for an AUD $11.4 million (USD $8.9 million) hydrogen power-to-gas demonstration plant, to be built in Adelaide, South Australia.
- The hydrogen produced by the plant will be injected into the local gas distribution network at the Tonsley Innovation District, south of Adelaide, to provide low-carbon gas to homes and businesses, Australian Gas Infrastructure Group said.
- America’s Cultural Revolution, by Catherine Rampell
- Last month in Shanghai, Chinese venture capitalist Eric X. Li made a provocative suggestion. The United States, he said, was going through its own “Cultural Revolution.” …
- Li said he saw several parallels between the violence and chaos in China decades ago and the animosity coursing through the United States today. In both cases, the countries turned inward, focusing more on defining the soul of their nations than on issues beyond their borders.
- He said that both countries were also “torn apart by ideological struggles,” with kinships, friendships and business relationships being severed by political differences.
- “Virtually all types of institutions, be it political, educational, or business, are exhausting their internal energy in dealing with contentious, and seemingly irreconcilable, differences in basic identities and values — what it means to be American,” he said in a subsequent email exchange. “In such an environment, identity trumps reason, ideology overwhelms politics, and moral convictions replace intellectual discourse.”
- 7 Reforms After Trump, by Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) 12/3/17, 19:31
- Repeal Shelby v Holder (LEGISLATE: Renew Voting Rights Act)
- Repeal Citizens United (LEGISLATE/AMENDMENT: Limit Money in Politics, abolish anonymous money in politics)
- Abolish electoral college (or can it be saved?)
- Apply anti-nepotism law to White House (It was WRITTEN for White House [Robert Kennedy serving with JFK])
- POTUS candidates must release tax returns (LEGISLATE/AMENDMENT: for how many years)
- Presidents may not self-pardon (AMENDMENT OR LEGISLATION: or pardon executive appointees?)
- Special counsel has power to indict president
- 2/3 Senate vote to confirm SCOTUS appointment
TOPICS FROM PREVIOUS WEEKS:
- What do belts around Proxima Centauri mean for exoplanet research?, By John Wenz | Published: Friday, November 03, 2017 [http://www.astronomy.com]
- TV Talk:
- “The Good Place”
- “The Orville”
- “Adam Ruins Everything”
SOURCES WHICH MAY BE RELEVANT TO OTHER DISCUSSION: