Daily Bread for 8.12.17

Good morning.

Saturday in Whitewater will be mostly sunny with a high of seventy-five. Sunrise is 5:59 AM and sunset 8:00 PM, for 14h 00m 57s of daytime. The moon is a waning gibbous with 76.5% of its visible disk illuminated. Today is the two hundred seventy-sixth day.Days since Trump’s election, with 11.9.16 as the first day.

On this day in 1981, IBM introduces the IBM Personal Computer (Model 5150):

By the end of 1982 IBM was selling one PC every minute of the business day.[27] It estimated that 50 to 70% of PCs sold in retail stores went to the home,[96] and the publicity from selling a popular product to consumers caused IBM to, a spokesman said, “enter the world” by familiarizing them with the Colossus of Armonk. Although the PC only provided two to three percent of sales[2] the company found that it had underestimated demand by as much as 800%. Because its prices were based on forecasts of much lower volume—250,000 over five years, which would have made the PC a very successful IBM product—the PC became very profitable; at times the company sold almost that many computers per month.[36][44][21] Estridge claimed in 1983 that from October 1982 to March 1983 customer demand quadrupled. He stated that the company had increased production three times in one year, and warned of a component shortage if demand continued to increase.[49] Many small suppliers’ sales to IBM grew rapidly, both pleasing their executives and causing them to worry about being overdependent on it. Miniscribe, for example, in 1983 received 61% of its hard drive orders from IBM; the company’s stock price fell by more than one third in one day after IBM reduced orders in January 1984. Suppliers often found, however, that the prestige of having IBM as a customer led to additional sales elsewhere.[48]

On this day in 1939, the Wizard of Oz holds a world premiere:

According to the fan site, thewizardofoz.info, “The first publicized showing of the final, edited film was at the Strand Theatre in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin on August 12, 1939. No one is sure exactly why a small town in the Midwest received that honor.” It showed the next day in Sheboygan, Appleton and Rhinelander, according to local newspapers. “The official premiere was at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood on August 15, attended by most of the cast and crew and a number of Hollywood celebrities.” [Source: thewizardofoz.info/.]

Recommended for reading in full — 

Dave McKinney reports for Reuters what Wisconsinites have know for years, that Audits show lax oversight by Wisconsin agency counting Foxconn jobs:

CHICAGO (Reuters) – The Wisconsin agency tasked with holding Foxconn accountable for delivering up to 13,000 jobs in exchange for $1.5 billion in state payroll tax credits has a history of failing to verify job-creation claims and rewarding companies that fall short of quotas, according to state audits.

The deal to secure Foxconn’s proposed LCD screen plant announced late last month is one of the largest economic development agreements in U.S. history and counts President Donald Trump, who rode into office on promises of creating manufacturing jobs, as one of its proponents.

A May audit found the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) did not independently verify jobs numbers claimed by recipients of tax credits and posted inaccurate jobs figures online. Earlier such reports by the non-partisan Legislative Audit Bureau identified similar shortcomings in 2013 and 2015….

Oliver Darcy describes The chaos behind the scenes of Fox News’ now-retracted Seth Rich story:

For more than two months, Fox News has declined to explain the story behind one of its most high-profile journalistic disasters — the publication of an article that aimed to tie slain Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich to Wikileaks. Now CNN has learned the details and is disclosing them for the first time.

Rod Wheeler, a Fox News contributor and former detective hired to investigate Rich’s death on behalf of the slain man’s family, sued the network last week, claiming that quotes in the story attributed to him were fabricated, and that the whole effort had been a collaboration with the White House to advance a storyline aimed at discrediting allegations President Trump colluded with Russia to influence the outcome of the 2016 election. (The White House has denied being involved with the story.)

But CNN’s reporting into what happened behind the scenes at Fox News shows that Wheeler’s own actions likely played a central role. In the day leading up to the article’s publication, Wheeler went rogue. In doing so, he sent the network’s editorial process into chaos, and as a result the article was rushed to the site without undergoing the kind of editorial scrutiny it should have received….

Benjamin Wittes describes why he filed The Friendliest Lawsuit Ever Filed Against the Justice Department:

I filed it because I believe President Trump lied before Congress about data kept by his Justice Department, and I want to find out whether I’m right.

Back in February, speaking before a Joint Session of Congress, President Trump declared that: “according to data provided by the Department of Justice, the vast majority of individuals convicted of terrorism and terrorism-related offenses since 9/11 came here from outside of our country.”

There’s a lot of reason to believe this statement is a compound lie—both to believe that the vast majority of individuals convicted of terrorism-related crimes did notcome here from elsewhere and to believe that the men and women of the Department of Justice did not provide any data suggesting otherwise….

Alex Whiting ponders the FBI Search of Paul Manafort’s Home: What Does It Really Mean?:

On Wednesday news broke that at the end of last month, FBI agents searched one of Paul Manafort’s homes for documents as part of the Russia collusion investigation, directed by special counsel Robert Mueller. What is the significance of this news, and why didn’t Mueller just obtain the documents by grand jury subpoena?

Mueller’s use of a search warrant tells us that he was able to establish on the basis of evidence, and to the satisfaction of a United States Magistrate-Judge, that there was probable cause to believe that evidence of a specific crime or crimes existed in the location to be searched. That standard is significantly higher than what is required to obtain a grand jury subpoena, which can be used to obtain any evidence that a grand jury (under the direction of a prosecutor) decides will be helpful to their investigation. Mueller’s resort to a search warrant shows, therefore, that his investigation has advanced, has identified specific potential crimes, and is zeroing in on key evidence. Since it was Manafort’s house that was searched, it is likely that he is implicated in the crimes, but that is not necessarily the case. Further, it should be clear that just because Mueller has now reached this stage in the investigation, it does not necessarily mean that Manafort or anybody else will be ultimately charged with crimes.

Now why did Mueller use a search warrant instead of a subpoena, particularly since Manafort’s attorney says that they have been cooperating with the investigation all along? I can think of four possible reasons for Mueller’s move (none of which are mutually exclusive) [reasons follow]….

Here’s what it’s like to ride the thrilling Coney Island Cyclone: