👓 U.S. Opposition to Breast-Feeding Resolution Stuns World Health Officials | New York Times

Read U.S. Opposition to Breast-Feeding Resolution Stuns World Health Officials by Andrew Jacobs (nytimes.com)
Trade sanctions. Withdrawal of military aid. The Trump administration used both to try to block a measure that was considered uncontroversial and embraced by countries around the world.

You know what I want for my birthday? Stupidity like that described in this article not to exist.

Nestle gave a half-assed response here. They can do far better. Now that their US headquarters has left Glendale, California for Virginia, I suspect their political stance will actually get worse on these issues.

A 2016 Lancet study found that universal breast-feeding would prevent 800,000 child deaths a year across the globe and yield $300 billion in savings from reduced health care costs and improved economic outcomes for those reared on breast milk.  

Pure corruption here. Protectionism to prop up profits of approximately 630 million versus major benefits and savings of 300 billion. Even if you look at the calculus of the entire industry of 70 billion it becomes a no brainer.

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👓 Trump has turned words into weapons. And he’s winning the linguistic war | George P Lakoff and Gil Duran | Opinion | The Guardian

Read Trump has turned words into weapons. And he's winning the linguistic war by George P Lakoff, Gil Duran (the Guardian)
From ‘spygate’ to ‘fake news’, Trump has turned words into weapons. The press must do more to dull their power
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👓 George Lakoff says this is how Trump uses words to con the public | CNN: Money

Read George Lakoff says this is how Trump uses words to con the public (CNNMoney)
Lakoff said the president manipulates language to control the public narrative.
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🎧 ‘The Daily’: The Truth Behind #WhereAreTheChildren | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: The Truth Behind #WhereAreTheChildren from nytimes.com

The United States government lost track of nearly 1,500 undocumented children in the last three months of 2017, giving rise to claims that they had been separated from their families at the border. What does the confusion reveal about President Trump’s approach to immigration?

On today’s episode:

• Caitlin Dickerson, a national immigration reporter for The New York Times.

Background reading:

• An official with the Department of Health and Human Services said that the agency had not been able to contact 1,475 migrant children it had placed with sponsors in the United States. The children had entered the country as unaccompanied minors; many were fleeing violence in Central America.

• The Trump administration says it separates immigrant families only when necessary to protect the child. But the government’s own figures show this has happened in more than 700 cases.

• The number of children who were unaccounted for was conflated with the number of children who been separated from their guardians in a public outcry that gave rise to hashtags like #WhereAreTheChildren.

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👓 Trump Appointee Compiles Loyalty List of U.S. Employees at U.N., State | Foreign Policy

Read Trump Appointee Compiles Loyalty List of U.S. Employees at U.N., State (Foreign Policy)
Mari Stull’s arrival at the State Department’s International Organization Bureau is triggering an exodus of top career staffers.

It’s just this type of insidious institution destruction that is heavily eroding our government and our society. Regardless of which administration takes over next, it just means a whole lot more work and effort to rebuild.

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👓 Des Moines DREAMer dies within weeks after being sent back to Mexico’s violence | Des Moines Register

Read Des Moines DREAMer dies within weeks after being sent back to Mexico’s violence by Rekha Basu (Des Moines Register)
Manuel Antonio Cano Pacheco should have graduated from high school in Des Moines last month. The oldest of four siblings should have walked across a stage in a cap and gown to become a proud symbol to his sister and brothers of the rewards of hard work and education. Instead, Manuel died a brutal death alone in a foreign land, a symbol of gang supremacy in a country plagued by violent drug cartels. It happened three weeks after U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement returned him to Mexico, a country he had left at age 3 when his parents brought him here without a visa.

And apparently it’s now common that deportees are being kidnapped and ransomed once they’re back now?

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👓 Roger Stone to Associate: “Prepare to Die” | Mother Jones

Read Roger Stone to Associate: “Prepare to Die” by Dan Friedman (Mother Jones)
The radio host who claims Stone used him as a false alibi says Stone threatened him.
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🎧 ‘The Daily’: A Child of Gaza Becomes a Political Symbol | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: A Child of Gaza Becomes a Political Symbol by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

The death of a Palestinian baby during the protests in Gaza became a rallying cry for critics of Israel. Within hours, the family’s story was being questioned.

On today’s episode:

• Declan Walsh, the Cairo bureau chief for The New York Times, who has been reporting from Gaza.

Background reading:

• Layla Ghandour, an 8-month-old Palestinian girl, inhaled tear gas during the protests at the Gaza border on Monday and died hours later. The tragedy became a focal point of outrage for critics of Israel’s use of force, while the Israeli military and its supporters questioned the narrative around her death as a political ploy by Hamas.

• The child was one of more than 60 Gazans killed during this week’s demonstrations, which were held to draw attention to the 11-year Israeli blockade of the territory. The violence gave way to mourning on Tuesday, the 70th anniversary of what Palestinians refer to as the Nakba, or Catastrophe, when hundreds of thousands fled their homes upon the creation of the state of Israel.

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🎧 ‘The Daily’: Two Views of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: Two Views of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

Many Israelis see the relocation of the United States Embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv as a historic milestone for the Jewish state. But for Palestinians, who hope to see the eastern part of Jerusalem as the capital of a Palestinian state, it’s a betrayal.

On today’s episode:

• David M. Halbfinger, the Jerusalem bureau chief for The New York Times.

• Declan Walsh, The Times’s Cairo bureau chief, who has been reporting from Gaza this week.

Background reading:

• At least 58 Palestinians were killed and 2,700 injured on Monday as demonstrators clashed with Israeli forces along the Gaza border fence.

• Meanwhile, an hour’s drive away, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel celebrated the new American embassy in Jerusalem at a ceremony attended by Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner.

• Here are images of the two contrasting scenes, which illustrate the widening chasm between Israelis and Palestinians after 70 years of conflict.

While listening I forgot about the opener and thought the first half was too chipper and upbeat. I was ready to get upset at the break thinking that they were doing their usual commercial and closing. I had a sigh of relief that it continued. The second half made for a far more balanced picture.

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🎧 ‘The Daily’: The C.I.A.’s Moral Reckoning | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: The C.I.A.’s Moral Reckoning by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

Gina Haspel, President Trump’s pick for C.I.A. director, faced the Senate Intelligence Committee for the first time on Wednesday as her confirmation hearings began. Lawmakers addressed her with an unusual line of questioning: What is your moral character?

On today’s episode:

• Matthew Rosenberg joins us from Washington, where he covers intelligence and national security for The New York Times.

Background reading:

• Ms. Haspel defended the C.I.A.’s torture of terrorism suspects after the Sept. 11 attacks, but vowed that she would not start another interrogation program.

• Among the issues raised in the hearing were Ms. Haspel’s involvement in a black site in Thailand where Qaeda suspects were tortured, her role in carrying out an order to destroy videotapes of C.I.A. interrogations, and her willingness to defy a president who has supported waterboarding.

We’ve recently seen the head of the F.B.I. be ousted because he ostensibly wouldn’t take a loyalty oath and refused to close an investigation. Could this happen again? Could it be far worse?

They stopped far too short here in opening up questions of harkening back to the Third Reich and Hitler and his government commanding people to commit genocide. We all know there’s a line one can’t cross and use the defense that “I was commanded to by the authorities.”

So the real question is: will Haspel stand up to Trump to prevent moral atrocities which Trump may want to inflict, whether this may extend to areas like torture or, perhaps, far worse?

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👓 Is America on the Verge of a Constitutional Crisis? | The Atlantic

Read Is America on the Verge of a Constitutional Crisis? (The Atlantic)
As the Trump presidency approaches a troubling tipping point, it’s time to find the right term for what’s happening to democracy.

Some great definitions and structure laid out for something that may be more necessary in the near future.

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📺 “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” Iran Deal | HBO

Watched "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver" Iran Deal from HBO
With Alivia Clark, David Kaye, Thomas Kopache, John Oliver. 'Iran Deal' is the worst deal of all time in Donald Trump's Eyes. But John Oliver Explains Why It Is Better Than No Deal. Because this deal strictly forbade Iran to develop any sort of nuclear weapons. And all of their declared nuclear sites have close monitoring, as well as any suspected site could be monitored within 24 days of the request. The sad part is, top advisers of Trump administration are also against the deal. That is why John prepared a new ad with catheter cowboy to explain the matter to Trump and scheduled it on his favorite Sean Hannity's show.

This would be funny if it weren’t so painfully true. The idea of placing ads on Hannity is pretty intriguing though.

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📺 “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” Corporate Taxes | HBO

Watched "Last Week Tonight with John Oliver" Corporate Taxes from HBO
Directed by Paul Pennolino. With David Kaye, John Oliver. John Oliver talks about the Corporate Taxes. He gives examples of how big corporation always tries to evade taxes. They are using the loop holes in American tax system. He also expressed his doubts about the promises were made by the new tax plan. He used the unfruitful past experience of tax holiday to support his claim.
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🎧 ‘The Daily’: Gina Haspel and the Shadow of Torture | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: Gina Haspel and the Shadow of Torture by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

The Central Intelligence Agency is waging an unusual campaign to make Gina Haspel its next leader, despite her polarizing past. Why do officers see her most controversial quality as her greatest asset?

On today’s episode:

• Adam Goldman, a reporter who covers the intelligence community for The Times.

• John Bennett, a former chief of the C.I.A.’s clandestine service who retired in 2013.

Background reading:

• Gina Haspel, President Trump’s nominee for C.I.A. director, is expected to face tough questions at a Senate confirmation hearing on Wednesday about her involvement in torture and secret prisons after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

• Ms. Haspel offered to withdraw her nomination last week amid concerns that her role in the brutal interrogation of a Qaeda suspect in Thailand would scuttle her confirmation.

Apparently there’s a broader story to be told about Haspel than the one that’s been circulating recently. Perhaps she’s not as pro-torture as previously indicated?

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🎧 ‘The Daily’: The Return of Rudy Giuliani | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: The Return of Rudy Giuliani by Michael Barbaro from nytimes.com

Since joining President Trump’s legal team, Rudolph W. Giuliani has repeatedly made attention-grabbing TV appearances in which he has antagonized Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel overseeing the Russia investigation. The strategy is reminiscent of one that Mr. Giuliani has used before — 30 years ago, as a prosecutor in New York City taking on the Mafia.


On today’s episode:

• Michael Winerip, who covered Mr. Giuliani’s rise as a Manhattan prosecutor in the 1980s for The New York Times.

Background reading:

• Mr. Giuliani’s revelation that President Trump reimbursed his personal lawyer for a $130,000 payment to Stephanie Clifford, the pornographic film actress known as Stormy Daniels, may expose the president to new legal and political troubles.

• In an interview on Sunday, Mr. Giuliani suggested it was possible that other women had received hush money on behalf of Mr. Trump and that the president might invoke the Fifth Amendment to avoid testifying in the Russia investigation.

• Mr. Giuliani’s recent criticism of law enforcement has come as a surprise to those who have known him as one of its fiercest advocates.

So the implication here is not so much that Trump is bringing in someone who has been a champion for him, but that he’s brought in someone with experience prosecuting massive corruption and criminal enterprise similar to the mafia.

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