Daily Bread for 5.11.17

Good morning.

Thursday in Whitewater will be partly cloudy with a high of sixty-eight. Sunrise is 5:34 AM and sunset 8:07 PM, for 14h 32m 27s of daytime. The moon is full with 99.6% of its visible disk illuminated. Today is the one hundred eighty-fourth day.Days since Trump’s election, with 11.9.16 as the first day.

On this day in 1888, composer and lyricist Irving Berlin is born. On this day in 1955, the NBA approves the transfer of the Milwaukee Hawks to St. Louis.

Recommended for reading in full —

Jeremy Venook reminds readers that Trump’s Been Talking About His Business Interests in Russia for 30 Years: “Trump’s desire to move on from the Russia investigation, which has plagued his administration in its early days, is understandable. Unfortunately for the president, one big obstacle to doing so will likely be his own words: He has spent decades pursuing—and publicly discussing—business ties in Russia, meaning that his claims to currently have “no connections to” the country strain credulity.

Trump’s references to Russia go back at least as far as his 1987 book The Art of the Deal, in which he wrote that he was in talks with the Soviet ambassador Yuri Dubinin “about building a large luxury hotel across the street from the Kremlin in partnership with the Soviet government.” He attempted, ultimately unsuccessfully, to seal the deal with a visit to Moscow, during which, according to The Washington Post, Trump “met with a lot of economic and financial advisers in the Politburo,” the Soviet Union’s chief political body….”

Julian Sanchez runs through Some Obvious Thoughts about the Comey Firing: “We are asked to believe that the decision to fire the FBI director — so abruptly he learned about it from a cable news chyron while out of D.C. — was based on a dashed off memo, and a response from the Attorney General, both issued the same day. We are asked to believe that it was motivated by Comey’s breaches of FBI protocol: First, in publicly criticizing Hillary Clinton, rather than letting Attorney General Loretta Lynch announce the decision that the former Secretary would not be indicted, and then in informing Congress that he had (fruitlessly, as it turned out) reopened the investigation into her e-mails. These are breaches both Trump and Sessions praised effusively at the time, with Sessions even declaring that Comey had an “absolute duty” to act as he did. All of them, of course, were well known long before Trump took office and chose to retain Comey.

The most charitable thing one can say about this narrative is that it is not even intended as a serious attempt to advance a genuine rationale. It is an attempt to be cute. Having been directed to concoct a reason to eliminate Comey, the Attorney General ran with a slapdash pastiche of Democrats’ complaints. Anyone who’s been on a long car trip with a sibling knows this gag: “Stop hitting yourself! Stop hitting yourself!” The only people even pretending to take this explanation seriously are those paid for the indignity.”

Meg Jones writes that a Critically ill bonobo needed life-saving care from Children’s Hospital staff: “When [respiratory therapist Khris] O’Brien arrived at the zoo last November she learned Noelle, a 3-year-old bonobo was listless and appeared blue, which meant she was not getting enough oxygen. While it may seem odd to call Children’s Hospital staff to help with an ill primate, it actually made a lot of sense.

Because bonobos are very similar to humans, and treating a sick 3-year-old bonobo is not much different from treating a sick 3-year-old child. They’re just hairier.

“I have treated children for 35 years so it wasn’t that big of a stretch,” said O’Brien, respiratory clinical program coordinator at Children’s. “Honestly, when I saw this poor, sick, basically, child lying on the gurney, I went into ‘I’ve got to help her’ mode. That was my only thought.”

Bonobos share close to 98% of their genomes with humans. They’re extremely sensitive to human illnesses such as whooping cough, chicken pox, colds and influenza, which is why the zoo’s troop of 23 bonobos get flu shots every year. In fact, they get the exact same flu shot as humans.”

Lee Bergquist reports that Disease takes ‘catastrophic’ toll on Wisconsin bats: “White-nose syndrome was first discovered at a single site in Grant County in southwestern Wisconsin in 2014 and has now spread to 14 counties, according to the DNR.

Wisconsin has one of the largest hibernating bat populations in the Midwest. Two years ago, DNR officials estimated the population at 350,000 to 500,000 bats. In the spring, many migrate to neighboring states.

The disease has major repercussions for agriculture because bats pollinate, disperse seeds and consume massive volumes of insects.

According to the DNR, researchers have estimated that Wisconsin farmers save $600 million to $1.5 billion on pesticides annually because of bats.”

Now one can explore the ocean in this personal submarine: