Good morning — and happy Friday! Tales of a large aquatic beast living in Scotland’s Loch Ness go back hundreds of years, but the modern legend of “Nessie” was born on this date in 1933 when an account of a sighting was published in the Inverness Courier, and a Courier editor decided that “Loch Ness Monster” would be a catchy name for the creature.
An “extraordinary” assembly of bishops –>Pope Francis is convening a high-level meeting of Catholic clerics to re-evaluate the church’s stances on contraception, cohabitation, divorce, remarriage and same-sex unions, reports Henry Chu for the LAT.
Doing something about it –> Harvard legal scholar Lawrence Lessig announced the launch of a “Super PAC to end Super PACs” — the centerpiece of a campaign to get money out of politics. Denver Nicks reports for Time Magazine. BillMoyers.com spoke to Lessig about his strategy last week.
Getting a raise –> Seattle Mayor Ed Murray announced a deal struck by representatives of labor and business to raise Seattle’s minimum wage to $15 per hour by the end of the decade, at which point it will increase automatically every year. The City Council still has to vote on the plan. Alan Pyke has more details at ThinkProgress.
Speaking of progressive cities –> New York City cut a deal with its teachers that the NYT’s Michael Grynbaum and Nikita Stewart describe as a “a milestone moment” for Mayor Bill de Blasio and a roadmap for negotiations with other city workers.
Still a nothing-burger –> The conservative media are very excited about a memo detailing the White House’s approach to BENGHAZI!! At The Daily Banter, Tommy Christopher lays out the real story, which is predictably lacking in shock value.
Nothing to see here, folks –> A private school in Ohio plans to test all of its students for drugs using testing kits purchased for $40 each from a company run by the brother of the school’s president. School officials insist there’s no conflict of interest. Patrick O’Donnell reports for the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
“A better class of racist” –> The Atlantic’s Ta-Nehisi Coates contrasts the “oafish” racism of Cliven Bundy with the more “elegant” kind.
Party like it’s 1999 –> Salon’s Andrew Leonard writes that there are signs pointing to the rise of another tech bubble, and says that if/when it pops, it will be the little guys who get hurt.
Unsafe campuses –> The federal government is investigating 55 colleges for their handling of sexual assault complaints.
Cruel and unusual –> The United Nations human rights office says Oklahoma’s botched execution of Clayton Lockett “may amount to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment under international human rights law,” according to the AP (via WaPo).
That’s some expensive pizza –> A for-profit college offered its students free pizza to lobby against the Obama administration’s regulation of schools that leave their students loaded with mountains of debt. David Halperin has the story at The Republic Report.
Nessie, is that you? –> A sonar image of a large object moving underwater in Loch Ness is getting people excited, according to the International Business Times.