Daily Bread for 7.4.19

Good morning.

Independence Day in Whitewater will be mostly sunny, with afternoon thundershowers, and a high of eighty-five.  Sunrise is 5:22 AM and sunset 8:36 PM, for 15h 14m 04s of daytime.  The moon is a waxing crescent with 4% of its visible disk illuminated.
Today is the nine hundred sixty-eighth day.

Whitewater’s Independence Holiday events begin just before 10 AM this morning with the Whippet City Mile, a parade, food vendors and carnival, a car show, a ski show, and music along the Cravath Lakefront.

On the night of July 4, 1776, John Dunlap prints the first broadsides of the Declaration of Independence.

Recommended for reading in full:

 Donna Cassata reports Rep. Amash, lone GOP critic of Trump, leaves Republican Party:

Rep. Justin Amash, the only Republican in Congress to have accused President Trump of impeachable acts, said Thursday he is leaving the Republican Party and becoming an independent, bemoaning that “modern politics is trapped in a partisan death spiral, but there is an escape.”

In an op-ed in The Washington Post, the Michigan congressman described himself as a lifelong Republican who has grown disenchanted with party politics and frightened by a two-party system that has “evolved into an existential threat to American principles and institutions.”

(Amash is as close to a credibly right-of-center libertarian as anyone in the  GOP.  He’s much, much closer to a traditional conservative-libertarian view than either Ron or Rand Paul.  Where he goes from here one cannot say.  One can be sure, however, that opposition to Trumpism requires a Coalition of All Democratic Forces, and that coalition’s electoral success depends on supporting a major-party alternative to Trump.)

Ted Hesson and Cristiano Lima report Border agency knew about secret Facebook group for years:

Customs and Border Protection officials have been aware for up to three years that a secret Facebook group for current and former Border Patrol agents was posting offensive messages — far longer than previously reported.

Border Patrol leadership knew about photos posted to the group as far back as 2016, when agents reported them, according to a current Homeland Security official. The images — several of which were provided to POLITICO — show agents engaging in conduct that includes simulating sex acts and taking selfies while defecating. A former DHS official said he was aware of the Facebook group during the past year.

Neither official knew of any serious punishment ever leveled at members of the Facebook group.

ProPublica reported Monday that comments in the “I’m 10-15” Facebook group posted as recently as last week mocked the death of a 16-year-old detained Guatemalan migrant, made bigoted remarks about throwing a burrito at two Latina congresswomen, and posted obscene and misogynistic illustrations of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.). The group’s name refers to the code used to signal “aliens in custody.”

(See also Inside the Secret Border Patrol Facebook Group Where Agents Joke About Migrant Deaths and Post Sexist Memes.)

How a former FBI agent took down a Russian spy:

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