What We're Reading

Morning Reads: How Trump TV Began; Two-Thirds of Wildlife Gone by 2020?

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

Morning Reads: How Trump TV Began

Jared Kushner (L), husband of Ivanka Trump, and Donald Trump's campaign Chief Executive Officer Stephen Bannon (R) watch as Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks during a rally in Canton, Ohio. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

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The future of Trump? –> Bloomberg Businessweek has a fascinating long read documenting the closing days of the Trump campaign — and Trump’s plans for whatever’s next. Included is some background on the much discussed — although denied by the campaign — Trump media network:

“According to a source close to Trump, the idea of a Trump TV network originated during the Republican primaries as a threat [Trump son-in-law Jared] Kushner issued to Roger Ailes when Trump’s inner circle was unhappy with the tenor of Fox News’ coverage. The warring factions eventually reconciled. But Trump became enamored by the power of his draw after five media companies expressed interest. ‘One thing Jared always tells Donald is that if The New York Times and cable news mattered, he would be at 1 percent in the polls,’ says the source. ‘Trump supporters really don’t have a media outlet where they feel they’re represented.'”

ALSO: Ashley Park and Nick Corasaniti of The New York Times report, “a new emotion is taking hold among some Trump supporters as they grapple with reports predicting that he will lose the election: a dark fear about what will happen if their candidate is denied the White House. Some worry that they will be forgotten, along with their concerns and frustrations. Others believe the nation may be headed for violent conflict.”

Shocking wildlife loss –> There’s a new study from the World Wildlife Fund and its findings are stunning: “a precipitous decline in the world’s animal populations as thousands of species scramble to survive against a sole enemy: humans,” Nick Visser of The Huffington Post writes.

“The 2016 version of WWF’s biennial Living Planet Report, published Thursday, found a 58 percent overall decline in vertebrate populations from 1970 to 2012, the latest year with available data. The nonprofit warned that if current trends continue, the world could lose more than two-thirds of wildlife by 2020.” The culprits: “habitat loss, overexploitation, pollution, invasive species and climate change.”

Foundering Obamacare? –> Brian Beutler at The New Republic: “Because Democrats passed laws when they had majorities, Republicans will boycott health legislation forever. An anticipated 22 percent increase in average insurance premiums within the Affordable Care Act exchanges has Democrats facing a new round of partisan Obamacare attacks. This was all perfectly predictable, but it raises the question, once again, of what, if anything, Republicans will be willing to do to sand down the health care system’s rough edges once the election’s over.”

Coal country transition –> “The US government released $28 million in federal grants to 13 coal-producing states on Wednesday to help them cope with the decline of the coal industry, driven by the move toward cleaner energy,” Reuters reports, roughly doubling the amount of federal money that’s been invested in coal country this year trying to spur economic activity. If elected, Hillary Clinton has promised to make an investment of $30 billion in the region.

Wait, what? –> Michael Morell, a former acting director of the CIA and current advisor to Hillary Clinton who could be awarded a post in her administration, offered this scenario yesterday at a Center for American Progress event: a naval quarantine. “Ships leave Iran on a regular basis carrying arms to the Houthis in Yemen,” he said. “I would have no problem from a policy perspective of having the US Navy boarding their ships, and if there are weapons on them, to turn those ships around.” New York magazine’s Eric Levitz: “How many Americans (whose paychecks aren’t directly or indirectly subsidized by Gulf State monarchies) think keeping Yemen within Saudi Arabia’s sphere of influence is a cause worth entering another Middle Eastern war over?”

Election night trolling –> Hillary Clinton’s team has planned her election night party for the Javits Center on New York’s West Side, a convention building with soaring glass walls and ceilings that, if she’s successful, would symbolically underscore her victory. Extra bonus: Donald Trump is known to hate the center because his bid to build it was rejected, and the resulting structure obstructs his view of the Hudson River.


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



We produce this news digest every weekday. You can sign up to receive these updates as an email newsletter each morning.