What We're Reading

Daily Reads: Bannon Declares War on GOP; Russia’s Sputnik News Agency Under Investigation by FBI

A roundup of stories we're reading at BillMoyers.com HQ...

Bannon Declares War on GOP

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Not-so-big-government –> Lorraine Woellert reports for Politico that “more than a decade of budget cutting and a rash of government job vacancies are taxing Washington’s ability to cope with a one-two punch of epic storms,” not to mention some massive wildfires out west.

And as Irma rushes ashore for a second time in South Florida, Mother Jones’ Rebecca Leber explains how “poor development planning, storm amnesia, a faulty insurance system, and a strong dose of climate-change denial have made coastal Florida, especially Miami and Tampa, much more vulnerable” to such storms than their location alone would dictate.

In work-obsessed America, The Atlantic’s Gillian White writes that in addition to other sources of stress, some Floridians also had “to consider whether evacuating could put their job at risk.”

At The New York Times, Sopan Deb writes that the wisdom of sticking TV reporters in the middle of potentially catastrophic storm conditions just so they can give viewers a taste of what it’s like is increasingly being called into question.

Speaking of dubious journalism, Sam Stein reports for The Daily Beast that “few pundits are talking about climate change, and fewer reporters are asking about it, even as parts of Texas remain underwater from Hurricane Harvey.” Stein notes that no reporter has asked Donald Trump or top White House officials about the topic during the past stormy month.

Street fighter –> That’s how Steve Bannon described himself in an interview with Charlie Rose in which he claimed that the GOP establishment has attempted to “nullify” the 2016 election and vowed to wage war against what he sees as feckless Republicans on Trump’s behalf.

Into the fire –> Anna Mehler Paperny reports for Reuters that “Canada has deported hundreds of people to countries designated too dangerous for civilians, with more than half of those people being sent back to Iraq.”

Propaganda –> The Russian news agency Sputnik is under FBI investigation for potentially “acting as an undeclared propaganda arm of the Kremlin in violation of the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA),” report Michael Isikoff and Hunter Walker for Yahoo! News.

In somewhat related news, Lucia Graves writes at The Guardian that dozens of Wall Street Journal staffers have quit amid widespread “outrage over pressure from management to normalize Trump.”

Bait-and-switch –> Paul Blumenthal and Arthur Delaney report for The Huffington Post that that the credit agency Equifax, which experienced one of the greatest data breaches ever last week, is trying to use the disaster to lure in future customers with a deceptive marketing scheme. 

Still reverberating through DC –> Conservatives are still reeling from the budget deal Trump unexpectedly cut with Democrats last week, according to William Cummings at USA Today.

The New York Times’ Sheryl Gay Stolberg explains how the deal may have relieved some pressure on Speaker Paul Ryan’s right flank by turning the right’s ire toward the White House.

And at The American Prospect, Paul Waldman warns that a slew of think-pieces claiming that the deal shows that Trump’s “a true independent, unmoored from party loyalty,” are dangerously misguided.

Westward shift –> California is expected to move its presidential primaries, with their huge delegate hauls, from June to March in 2020. Politico’s David Siders and Gabriel Debenedetti explain how that might “jolt” the presidential race.

Prodigal son –> Ali Soufan writes at The Daily Beast that 28-year-old Hamda bin Laden, Osama’s son, is now “the most likely candidate to reunite a fractured jihadi movement and lead al-Qaida to a future still more violent than its past.”

Driving ahead –> In its quest to lower greenhouse gas emissions, China will soon ban the sale of vehicles that run on fossil fuels at some point in the coming years, “a move that will accelerate the push into the electric car market,” according to Bloomberg.

See you in court –> At the Los Angeles Times, former Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano explains why she’s suing the Trump regime over its decision to discontinue the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

Damn lies and statistics –> Rebecca McCray writes at Slate that both Donald Trump and his attorney general, Jeff Sessions, paint a bleak picture of a crime wave that the data show to be wildly exaggerated — and that’s putting it mildly.

After 16 years, what is there to say? –> A picture’s worth a thousand words, and Yahoo! News photographer Gordon Donovan returned to document some of the iconic images captured in New York on 9/11.

Parole? –> Leslie van Houten, the youngest member of Charles Manson’s murderous cult, was granted parole by a California board after 48 years in prison, but Gov. Jerry Brown could still block her release, as he did last year. Harriet Agerholm has more on that story at The Independent.

Best practices, sleeping edition –> A recent study by researchers at the Mayo Clinic found that people sleep better with their dogs in the same room, but they experience worse sleep when they actually share a bed with Fido. Najja Parker has the details at The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Daily Reads was compiled by BillMoyers.com staff and edited by Kristin Miller.



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