What We're Reading

Morning Reads: How Do You Solve a Problem Like the Donald?; The Earth’s Spiking Fever

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

Morning Reads: The Earth's Spiking Fever and GOP Disunity

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks during a campaign event at Briar Woods High School, August 2, 2016 in Ashburn, Virginia. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Getting worse –> Seth Borenstein for the Associated Press: “Earth’s fever got worse last year, breaking dozens of climate records, scientists said in a massive report nicknamed the annual physical for the planet. Soon after 2015 ended, it was proclaimed the hottest on record. The new report shows the broad extent of other records and near-records on the planet’s climatic health… ‘I think the time to call the doctor was years ago,’ NOAA climate monitoring chief Deke Arndt, co-editor of the report, said in an email. ‘We are awash in multiple symptoms.'”

And: George Monbiot for The Guardian: “This, on current trends, will be the hottest year ever measured. The previous record was set in 2015; the one before in 2014. Fifteen of the 16 warmest years have occurred in the 21st century. Each of the past 14 months has beaten the global monthly temperature record. But you can still hear people repeating the old claim, first proposed by fossil fuel lobbyists, that global warming stopped in 1998…

“Eight months ago in Paris, 177 nations promised to try to ensure the world’s average temperature did not rise by more than 1.5C above the pre-industrial level. Already it has climbed by 1.3C — faster and further than almost anyone predicted. In one respect, the scientists were wrong. They told us to expect a climate crisis in the second half of this century. But it’s already here.”

How do you solve a problem like the Donald? –> Jonathan Chait writes this morning at New York magazine about growing concern among Republicans with their nominee: “Over the last 24 hours, Donald Trump has insulted his party’s former presidential nominee (former prisoner of war John McCain, for allegedly turning his back on veterans!), its current Republican speaker of the House, the parents of a slain war hero, the capital city of the state that is the lynchpin of his electoral strategy, and a baby.”

So much for party unity: Yesterday Trump refused to endorse Speaker Paul Ryan or John McCain, both of whom face primary challengers. He even said Ryan’s opponent had run a “very good campaign.” He told The Washington Post’s Philip Rucker: “I like Paul, but these are horrible times for our country. We need very strong leadership. We need very, very strong leadership. And I’m just not quite there yet. I’m not quite there yet.”

This phrasing sounds remarkably familiar: When Ryan was asked in May whether he’d endorse Trump, he replied, “I’m just not ready to do that at this point. I’m not there right now.” Trump has been known to hold a grudge.

And: CNN’s Dylan Byers notes that Trump broke the news of his non-endorsement in an interview with The Washington Post, a paper that he has banned from covering his events — and that, despite the interview, still remains banned, according to the campaign.

Obama speaks out –> “The Republican nominee is unfit to serve as president. I said so last week, and he keeps on proving it.” On Republicans: “The question they have to ask themselves is: If you are repeatedly having to say in very strong terms that what he has said is unacceptable, why are you still endorsing him? What does this say about your party that this is your standard-bearer?”

More DNC resignations –> Alex Seitz-Wald for NBC: “Democratic National Committee CEO Amy Dacey and two other top officials are stepping down, the party announced Tuesday, following the publication of hacked internal emails. Communications Director Luis Miranda and Chief Financial Officer Brad Marshall joined Dacey in announcing their resignations, after emails showing their apparent favoritism toward Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary were published by WikiLeaks. The emails also led to the resignation of DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.”

The usefulness of the military family –> Given the Khan’s time in the spotlight attacking Donald Trump, Brendan James conducts an interview for Slate with anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, who was in a similar position. “Sheehan was a key figure in the Democrats’ efforts to reclaim power in Congress, which were predicated on riding, if not co-opting altogether, the moral energy of the anti-war movement. The strategy by the 2006 midterms was to rail against the now-unpopular war and regain a majority in the House. Sheehan met with members of Congress. She campaigned relentlessly. “Every Democrat I met with in 2005 said, ‘If you help us win the House, we’ll help you end the war,’ ” she recalled. Only one of those two things came true… The party did reclaim Congress, though, and before long Nancy Pelosi presided over a new bill that continued to fund the war to the tune of $95 billion.

Novel campaign tactic –> Clay Bailey for the Memphis Commercial Appeal: “Longtime District 95 state Rep. Curry Todd was arrested on a theft warrant Tuesday in connection with removing opponents’ campaign signs from locations in Collierville, the Memphis suburb he represents.” Todd is in a contentious primary and one of his opponents’ supporters captured a photo of the candidate dashing through a lawn, arms full of campaign signs.

Morning Reads was compiled by John Light and Theresa Riley. See a story that you think should be included in Morning Reads? Tell us in the comments!

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