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Foxconn: Seth Meyers on One of Trump’s (and Walker’s) Biggest Scams, the Foxconn Deal

The Wisconsin Foxconn project that Trump, Walker, and local development men touted was a house of cards, with each card in the deck no better than a three of spades. Their supposedly serious effort now finds itself a national punchline.

Previously10 Key Articles About FoxconnFoxconn as Alchemy: Magic Multipliers,  Foxconn Destroys Single-Family HomesFoxconn Devours Tens of Millions from State’s Road Repair BudgetThe Man Behind the Foxconn ProjectA Sham News Story on Foxconn, Another Pig at the TroughEven Foxconn’s Projections Show a Vulnerable (Replaceable) WorkforceFoxconn in Wisconsin: Not So High Tech After All, Foxconn’s Ambition is Automation, While Appeasing the Politically Ambitious, Foxconn’s Shabby Workplace ConditionsFoxconn’s Bait & SwitchFoxconn’s (Overwhelmingly) Low-Paying JobsThe Next Guest SpeakerTrump, Ryan, and Walker Want to Seize Wisconsin Homes to Build Foxconn Plant, Foxconn Deal Melts Away“Later This Year,” Foxconn’s Secret Deal with UW-Madison, Foxconn’s Predatory Reliance on Eminent Domain, Foxconn: Failure & FraudFoxconn Roundup: Desperately Ill Edition,  Foxconn Roundup: Indiana Layoffs & Automation Everywhere, Foxconn Roundup: Outside Work and Local Land, Foxconn Couldn’t Even Meet Its Low First-Year Goal, Foxconn Talks of Folding Wisconsin Manufacturing Plans, WISGOP Assembly Speaker Vos Hopes You’re StupidLost Homes and Land, All Over a Foxconn Fantasy, Laughable Spin as Industrial Policy, Foxconn: The ‘State Visit Project,’ ‘Inside Wisconsin’s Disastrous $4.5 Billion Deal With Foxconn,’ Foxconn: When the Going Gets Tough…, The Amazon-New York Deal, Like the Foxconn Deal, Was Bad Policy, Foxconn Roundup, Foxconn: The Roads to Nowhere, Foxconn: Evidence of Bad Policy Judgment, Foxconn: Behind Those Headlines, Foxconn: On Shaky Ground, Literally, Foxconn: Heckuva Supply Chain They Have There…, Foxconn: Still Empty, and the Chairman of the Board Needs a Nap, Foxconn: Cleanup on Aisle 4, Foxconn: The Closer One Gets, The Worse It Is, Foxconn Confirm Gov. Evers’s Claim of a Renegotiation DiscussionAmerica’s Best Know Better, Despite Denials, Foxconn’s Empty Buildings Are Still Empty, Right on Schedule – A Foxconn Delay, Foxconn: Reality as a (Predictable) Disappointment, Town Residents Claim Trump’s Foxconn Factory Deal Failed Them, Foxconn: Independent Study Confirms Project is Beyond Repair, It Shouldn’t, Foxconn: Wrecking Ordinary Lives for Nothing, Hey, Wisconsin, How About an Airport-Coffee Robot?, Be Patient, UW-Madison: Only $99,300,000.00 to Go!, Foxconn: First In, Now Out, Foxconn on the Same Day: Yes…um, just kidding, we mean no, Foxconn: ‘Innovation Centers’ Gone in a Puff of Smoke, Foxconn: Worse Than Nothing, Foxconn: State of Wisconsin Demands Accountability, Foreign Corporation Stalls, Foxconn Notices the NoticeableJournal Sentinel’s Rick Romell Reports the Obvious about Foxconn Project, Foxconn’s ‘Innovation’ Centers: Still Empty a Year Later, Foxconn & UW-Madison: Two Years and Less Than One Percent Later…, Accountability Comes Calling at Foxconn, Highlight’s from The Verge’s Foxconn AssessmentAfter Years of Promises, Foxconn Will Think of Something…by JulyFoxconn’s Venture Capital Fund, and New, More Realistic Deal Means 90% Reduction in Goals.

Friday Catblogging: Cat-cus

See also Bobcat in a Cactus (the cat’s not stuck – she can handle the needles just fine).

 

 

 

 

 

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Daily Bread for 4.30.21

Good morning.

Friday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of sixty. Sunrise is 5:48 AM and sunset 7:55 PM, for 14h 06m 40s of daytime.  The moon is a waning gibbous with 84.3% of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1803, the United States purchases the Louisiana Territory from France for $15 million, more than doubling the size of our young nation.

Recommended for reading in full — 

Ellen Nakashima, Shane Harris, and Tom Hamburger report FBI warned Giuliani, key Trump ally in Senate of Russian disinformation campaign targeting Biden:

The FBI warned Rudolph W. Giuliani in late 2019 that he was the target of a Russian influence operation aimed at circulating falsehoods intended to damage President Biden politically ahead of last year’s election, according to people familiar with the matter.

The warning was part of an extensive effort by the bureau to alert members of Congress and at least one conservative media outlet, One America News, that they faced a risk of being used to further Russia’s attempt to influence the election’s outcome, said several current and former U.S. officials. All spoke on the condition of anonymity because the matter remains highly sensitive.

Giuliani received the FBI’s warning while deeply involved with former president Donald Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign and related activities in Ukraine to surface unflattering or incriminating information about the Biden family. The revelation comes as the FBI this week seized Giuliani’s cellphone and other electronic devices as part of a long-running criminal investigation into whether the onetime New York mayor and personal attorney for Trump acted as an unregistered foreign agent.

The warning, made by counterintelligence agents, was separate from the Justice Department’s ongoing criminal probe, but it reflects a broader concern by U.S. intelligence and federal investigators that Giuliani — among other influential Americans and U.S. institutions — was being manipulated by the Russian government to promote its interests and that he appears to have brazenly disregarded such fears.

(A knowing, willing Russian asset. Worse than a fellow traveler – Giuliani was a true fifth columnist.)

 Steven Pifer writes The first 100 days: Breaking with Trump on Russia:

President Joe Biden is the first president since the Cold War to begin his term not seeking closer relations with Russia; there will be no “reset.” He has indicated instead that he will push back against Russian misbehavior while seeking to cooperate where doing so advances U.S. interests. In his first 100 days Mr. Biden has sought to distinguish his policy from that of Donald Trump, who seemed incapable of criticizing Vladimir Putin or Russian transgressions.

The first full day of his administration illustrated Mr. Biden’s approach. The White House said he would extend the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) for five years, essentially accepting an offer Mr. Putin had made more than a year earlier—but something that was very much in the interest of U.S. national security. White House officials also announced that Mr. Biden had asked for assessments of Russian actions such as interference in the 2020 presidential election and the Solar Winds cyber hack, promising that the administration would “hold Russia to account for its reckless and adversarial actions.”

Mr. Biden described his policy directly to Mr. Putin in a January 26 phone call. He discussed New START and strategic stability but also raised issues of concern, including Ukraine, election interference and Kremlin-opponent Alexey Navalny’s poisoning. The White House read-out of the call (there were several important Trump-Putin calls with no read-outs) noted that the president had also said that the United States would “act firmly in defense of its national interests in response to actions by Russia” that caused harm to America or its allies.

Alligator Crashes Toronto FC Soccer Practice in Florida:

Daily Bread for 4.29.21

Good morning.

Thursday in Whitewater will see times of sun and clouds and a passing shower this afternoon with a high of sixty-eight. Sunrise is 5:49 AM and sunset 7:54 PM, for 14h 04m 10s of daytime.  The moon is a waning gibbous with 91.9% of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1986, American and European spy satellites capture the ruins of the 4th reactor at the Chernobyl Power Plant.

Recommended for reading in full — 

 Ezra Klein writes Democrats and Republicans Can’t Agree on Anything. They Shouldn’t Have To:

If anything, past legislation in America is too stable. More old policy should be revisited, and if it’s not working, uprooted or overhauled. There’s nothing wrong with one party passing a bill that the next party repeals. That gives voters information they can use to decide who to vote for in the future. If a party repeals a popular bill, they will pay an electoral price. If they repeal an unpopular bill, or replace it with something better, they’ll prosper. That’s the way the system should work.

We are a divided country, but one way we could become less divided is for the consequences of elections to be clearer. When legislation is so hard to pass, politics becomes a battle over identity rather than a battle over policy. Don’t get me wrong: Fights over policy can be angry, even vicious. But they can also lead to changed minds — as in the winning coalition Democrats built atop the successes of the New Deal — or changed parties, as savvy politicians learn to accept the successes of the other side. There is a reason Republicans no longer try to repeal Medicare and Democrats shrink from raising taxes on the middle class.

This is what Manchin gets wrong: A world of partisan governance is a world in which Republicans and Democrats both get to pass their best ideas into law, and the public judges them on the results. That is far better than we have now, where neither party can routinely pass their best ideas into law, and the public is left frustrated that so much political tumult changes so little.

Maya Wei-Haas reports Rare chunks of Earth’s mantle found exposed in Maryland:

Standing among patches of muddy snow on the outskirts of Baltimore, Maryland, I bent down to pick up a piece of the planet that should have been hidden miles below my feet.

On that chilly February day, I was out with a pair of geologists to see an exposed section of Earth’s mantle. While this layer of rock is usually found between the planet’s crust and core, a segment peeks out of the scrubby Maryland forest, offering scientists a rare chance to study Earth’s innards up close.

Even more intriguing, the rock’s unusual chemical makeup suggests that this piece of mantle, along with chunks of lower crust scattered around Baltimore, was once part of the seafloor of a now-vanished ocean.

Over the roughly 490 million years since their formation, these hunks of Earth were smashed by shifting tectonic plates and broiled by searing hot fluids rushing through cracks, altering both their composition and sheen. Mantle rock is generally full of sparkly green crystals of the mineral olivine, but the rock in my hand was surprisingly unremarkable to look at: mottled yellow-brown stone occasionally flecked with black.

“Those rocks have had a tough life,” says George Guice, a mineralogist at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History.

 Bank of England looks into launching its own ‘Britcoin’:

Daily Bread for 4.28.21

Good morning.

Wednesday in Whitewater will be partly cloudy with a high of sixty-five. Sunrise is 5:51 AM and sunset 7:52 PM, for 14h 01m 38s of daytime.  The moon is a waning gibbous with 97.1% of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Tech park Board meets via audiovisual conferencing at 7 AM and the Pedestrian and Bicycle Meeting meets via audiovisual conferencing at 5 PM.

On this day in 1973, The Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd, recorded in Abbey Road Studios goes to number one on the US Billboard chart, beginning a record-breaking 741-week chart run.

Recommended for reading in full — 

 Hamid Aleaziz reports ICE Will No Longer Arrest Immigrants At Courthouses Unless There’s A Public Safety Threat:

On Tuesday, the Biden administration will issue a policy that sharply limits the immigrants whom ICE officers can arrest at courthouses after years of criticism of the practice, according to government officials and documents. The policy also applies to US Customs and Border Protection officials as well.

“Ensuring that individuals have access to the courts advances the fair administration of justice, promotes safety for crime victims, and helps to guarantee equal protection under the law,” Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement to BuzzFeed News. “The expansion of civil immigration arrests at courthouses during the prior administration had a chilling effect on individuals’ willingness to come to court or work cooperatively with law enforcement. Today’s guidance is the latest step in our efforts to focus our civil immigration enforcement resources on threats to homeland security and public safety.”

(These arrests during the last administration weren’t about safety, they were an attempt to deny access to the courts.)

Paul Farhi reports A New York Post story about Kamala Harris triggered conservative outrage. Almost all of it was wrong. Now the reporter has resigned:

A longtime New York Post reporter said she has resigned after being “ordered” to write a false story that claimed undocumented minors were being welcomed to the United States with copies of a children’s book written by Vice President Harris.

“The Kamala Harris story — an incorrect story I was ordered to write and which I failed to push back hard enough against — was my breaking point,” Laura Italiano tweeted Tuesday afternoon, several hours after her viral article about the books had been deleted from the Post’s website and replaced with corrected versions.

Italiano, who has written for the Post since the 1990s, according to news archives, could not be immediately reached for comment.

Since the Post published the story on its front page Saturday, the conservative mediascape has been in an uproar over the supposed distribution of Harris’s 2019 book, “Superheroes Are Everywhere,” at migrant shelters. A slew of prominent Republicans expressed outrage over the possibility that taxpayers were funding the program. Even the White House press secretary was grilled about it.

And then on Tuesday, in a one-sentence note at the bottom of the original online article, the Post acknowledged that almost none of it was true.

“Editor’s note: The original version of this article said migrant kids were getting Harris’ book in a welcome kit, but has been updated to note that only one known copy of the book was given to a child,” it read in full.

In fact, it’s not even clear whether a child actually received that single copy of the book, which was photographed by Reuters on a vacant bed at a shelter in Long Beach, Calif., last week. It was one of many items, including toys and clothing, donated by residents in a citywide drive, Long Beach officials said. No government funds were used to purchase the items, according to a city spokeswoman.

 Building Houses on Mars:

Daily Bread for 4.27.21

Good morning.

Tuesday in Whitewater will be partly cloudy with a high of eighty-six. Sunrise is 5:52 AM and sunset 7:51 PM, for 13h 59m 05s of daytime.  The moon is a waning gibbous with 99.4% of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Finance Committee meets via audiovisual conferencing at 4:30 PM.

On this day in 1986, the city of Pripyat and surrounding areas are evacuated due to Chernobyl disaster.

Recommended for reading in full — 

 Craig Gilbert writes Wisconsin will neither gain nor lose a US House seat in long-awaited reapportionment data:

The U.S. Census Bureau released its highly anticipated 2020 state population counts Monday, showing Wisconsin with 5,893,718 residents, placing it 20th among the 50 states.

The new apportionment data unveiled by the Census Bureau determines the number of U.S. House seats and the number of Electoral College votes for each state over the next decade.

As expected, the size of Wisconsin’s U.S. House delegation will remain unchanged between now and 2032 at eight seats, even though some other Midwestern states —  Michigan, Illinois and Ohio — will lose a seat due to population changes.

Kelly Meyerhofer reports UW-Madison engineering professor who led ‘toxic’ lab will resign this summer:

Akbar Sayeed, a professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering since 1997, will resign Aug. 1, according to an email sent by department chairwoman Susan Hagness on Monday.

Sayeed’s resignation comes more than four years after the 2016 death of doctoral student John Brady, who left behind a trail of digital evidence documenting the damaging effect Sayeed had on the well-being of students working in his lab.

UW-Madison officials investigated Sayeed’s behavior and found he violated a policy against hostile and intimidating behavior. A university report described the lab’s environment as “toxic.”

The case, first reported by the Wisconsin State Journal in the fall of 2019, brought attention to the power imbalance between graduate students and the faculty advisers who oversee them.

It also brought scrutiny to an administrators’ decision allowing Sayeed to return to UW-Madison in 2020, following a two-year unpaid leave in which he landed a prestigious job working for the National Science Foundation. He was fired from the job after UW-Madison belatedly informed the agency about the circumstances behind his university leave.

Peter Stone reports Republican lawyer is key player in voter suppression drive across US:

It was an abrupt end to two decades as a partner at legal giant Foley & Lardner for the influential and conservative election lawyer Cleta Mitchell.

Days after Mitchell participated in Donald Trump’s controversial 2 January phone call with Georgia’s secretary of state where the then president pressured him to “find” him more votes to reverse Joe Biden’s win, Mitchell resigned her post in the midst of an internal firm review and mounting criticism.

But Mitchell, a combative and top lawyer in the right’s drive to promote unproven charges of sizable voting fraud in 2020 and tighten future voting laws, was not idle for long. She has now emerged in a series of roles that have put her at the heart of what many see as a ferocious Republican push on limiting voting rights that now reaches across America.

Last month, Mitchell was tapped by the libertarian FreedomWorks to spearhead a $10m drive in seven key states including Georgia, Arizona and Michigan to change voting laws to curb potential but unproven election fraud, which many Democrats and legal experts view as aimed at limiting minority votes.

(Note well: if FreedomWorks were ever ‘libertarian,’ it was long years ago; like many other professedly libertarian organizations, it’s controlled by conservative donors.)

Goldendoodle shows stunning breakaway speed, hounds high school runner at finish line:

(Holly the Goldendoodle enters the competition at 1:40 on the video.)

Why People Still Get Print Newspapers

In Whitewater – like other small places across America – there may still be nearby newspapers, but none of any merit. If one thought only of quality as the measure of survival, then for the Whitewater area the Gazette, Daily Union, and Register would long ago have vanished. (Indeed, I have underestimated the longevity of these publications, as I’ve considered quality reporting as a reason to read them.)

Mark Coddington and Seth Lewis report on a study that uncovers reasons apart from content that entice print readers. In Why Do People Still Get Print Newspapers?, they write:

In a digital era dominated by mobile and social media, why do people still get print newspapers?

new study in the journal New Media & Society — involving interviews with 488 news consumers in Argentina, Finland, Israel, Japan, and the United States, representing one of the largest interview-based studies of its kind — suggests that we have been thinking about this question the wrong way.

In much of communication research (and, we would add, much of the industry conversation about the transformation of news), a lot of emphasis is placed on “media-centric” factors such as content and technology — for example, on how people respond to different types of information, or on how various tools and platforms might influence the experiences people have and the preferences they express about media use. But, as the authors argue based on their extensive set of interviews, a “media-centric” focus is missing the point of how media are actually experienced by people in the day to day — and by recognizing that, by “de-centering” the media from our analysis, those who study journalism and communication can better appreciate exactly how media processes and everyday life are interwoven.

Of the study, Coddington and Lewis write that

with regard to ritualization, the authors find that interviewees have “highly ritualized everyday lives.” This is no real surprise on its own, but it serves as a reminder that people “fold their media reception into these rituals.” As the study makes clear: “people visit coffee shops and read newspapers they encounter there as part of the experience — but they do not go to coffee shops primarily to do this. Similarly, young interviewees visit their parents as part of family routines and read the newspaper they encounter in their households — but do not visit their parents primarily to get the news.” Notably, however, it was older interviewees who were more likely to have “sedimented” in their everyday rituals certain routinized ways of feeling, touching, and reading newspapers, which indicates how the interplay of everyday ritual and media practice may become embedded over time.

Generations and habits change, of course, so print publishing that depends on readers’ “highly ritualized everyday lives” cannot expect to carry on forever.

For a print publication that cares only about an existing readership, decline might yet be slow. For a print publication – or any publication, really – that seeks new readers (particularly newcomers to a community) – “highly ritualized” habits will be of much less value.

For attracting new readers, it doesn’t matter what existing readers want or consider good – it matters what new readers and newcomers want and consider good.

Daily Bread for 4.26.21

Good morning.

Monday in Whitewater will be partly sunny with a high of seventy-four. Sunrise is 5:54 AM and sunset 7:50 PM, for 13h 56m 30s of daytime.  The moon is full with 99.5% of its visible disk illuminated.

Whitewater’s Urban Forestry Commission meets via audiovisual conferencing at 4:30 PM, the Board of Review via audiovisual conferencing at 6:30 PM, the Whitewater Unified School District Board via audiovisual conferencing in closed session at 5:45 PM and in open session via audiovisual conferencing for the public at 7 PM. [Update note: the Board will begin in open session @ 5:45 PM and thereafter enter into closed session before resuming open session at 7 PM. Wisconsin law does not allow a public body to begin in closed session, or conduct an organizational meeting in closed session. See Wis. Stat. § 19.83(1), Wis. Stat., §19.85(1).]

On this day in 1865, Union cavalry troopers corner and shoot dead John Wilkes Booth.

Recommended for reading in full — 

 Emily Hamer reports Watch now: Madison partygoer shatters SUV windshield during Mifflin Street Block Party:

Madison police are investigating after a handful of Mifflin Street Block Party attendees stood atop an SUV and one of them shattered the front windshield of the vehicle by stomping on it during Saturday’s alcohol-fueled gathering.

Sgt. Matthew Baker said police have tentatively identified the person seen in a video smashing the windshield and “charges may be forthcoming.” Baker said he did not know whether the young man was a UW-Madison student.

In the video, which was obtained by the Wisconsin State Journal, the young man is seen kicking in the windshield while standing on the hood of the white SUV and holding what looks to be a can of beer in one hand.

It’s unclear whether police officers were nearby while the windshield was being smashed. They’re not seen in the video. But at least four officers are seen in the background of a photo that shows partygoers still on top of the SUV after the window was shattered. Baker did not respond to a question about why officers in the area did not prevent the SUV from being trashed.

Another video shows about a dozen people standing on top of the SUV in a crowd of hundreds of people closely packed together, almost none wearing masks as the COVID-19 pandemic persists. Despite the health risks, several thousand revelers showed up to the 400 and 500 blocks of West Mifflin Street Saturday for the annual party, which was canceled last year because of COVID-19.

Jon Swaine reports CEO of vaccine maker sold $10 million in stock before company ruined Johnson & Johnson doses:

The stock price of government contractor Emergent BioSolutions has fallen sharply since the disclosure at the end of March that production problems at the firm’s plant in Baltimore had ruined 15 million doses of Johnson & Johnson’s coronavirus vaccine. Since then, AstraZeneca moved production of its own vaccine out of the facility, and Emergent temporarily halted new production there altogether.

Those developments came after Emergent’s stock price had tumbled on Feb. 19, following the company’s published financial results. Emergent stock has fallen since mid-February to about $62 a share from $125 a share, or just more than 50 percent.

But the decline has had less of an impact than it might have on the personal finances of Emergent’s chief executive, Robert G. Kramer, who sold more than $10?million worth of his stock in the company in January and early February, securities filings show. Based on the market price, the stocks that Kramer sold would now fetch about $5.5?million.

The transactions were Kramer’s first substantive sales of Emergent stock since April 2016, according to a review of securities filings by The Washington Post.

Those 2016 sales by Kramer, along with sales by other Emergent executives around the same time, were the subject of a lawsuit brought by investors who alleged that executives offloaded stocks after making misleading claims about the scale of an upcoming order from the government for an anthrax vaccine.

Continue reading

Daily Bread for 4.25.21

Good morning.

Sunday in Whitewater will see an afternoon shower with a high of 50.  Sunrise is 5:55 AM and sunset 7:49 PM, for 13h 53m 54s of daytime.  The moon is a waxing gibbous with 95.8% of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1959, the Saint Lawrence Seaway, linking the Great Lakes and the Atlantic, officially opens to shipping.

Recommended for reading in full — 

 Richard Hansen writes Vaccinations in many conservative Wisconsin counties are lagging, but health officials are hopeful:

In Clark County, where Trump won about 67% of the 2020 vote, the vaccination rate as of Friday was about 23% — making it the Wisconsin county with the second lowest vaccination rate.

And Rusk County, where Trump won about 67% of the vote last year, is third lowest in the state when it comes to COVID-19 vaccinations. There, only about 27% of the population had gotten a first dose.

Taylor, Clark and Rusk are rural counties located in the west central and northern parts of the state, in the heart of Wisconsin’s dairy country. But gaps in vaccination rates have emerged around the state — where out of Wisconsin’s 72 counties, the 24 counties with the lowest vaccination rates all backed Trump last year by double-digit margins.

….

Of course politics isn’t the only factor. Education is another — counties that are lagging when it comes to vaccinations tend to have more adults who didn’t graduate from high school or college, the Journal Sentinel analysis found. Some of the counties, including Clark and Taylor, have significant Amish and Mennonite populations. And the statewide COVID-19 vaccination trends are similar to those for annual flu shots.

 Julian Borger and Martin Chulov report Biden becomes first US president to recognise Armenian genocide:

Joe Biden has become the first US president declare formal recognition of the Armenian genocide, more than a century after the mass killings by Ottoman troops and opening a rift between the new US administration and Ankara.

“The American people honour all those Armenians who perished in the genocide that began 106 years ago today,” Biden said in a statement on Saturday.

“Beginning on 24 April 1915 with the arrest of Armenian intellectuals and community leaders in Constantinople by Ottoman authorities, one and a half million Armenians were deported, massacred or marched to their deaths in a campaign of extermination.”

….

The declaration marked the culmination of decades of lobbying by Armenian American organisations.

“This is a critically important moment in the defence of human rights,” said Bryan Ardouny, head of the Armenian Assembly of America. “It’s been a long journey. President Biden is standing firm against a century of denial, and is charting a course in for human rights everywhere.”

The killing of up to 1.5 million Armenians was carried out as the Ottoman empire was collapsing and the modern state of Turkey was being born. Many victims died in death marches into the Syrian desert. The slaughter is widely viewed as a crime on a monumental scale – and a grim precursor to the Nazi Holocaust.

Ronald Reagan referred the Armenian genocide in passing in a statement on the Holocaust in 1981, but it was not followed by a formal recognition. Barack Obama promised Armenian Americans he would take that step but reneged once in office, unwilling to upset an ally. In 2019, both chambers of Congress declared their own recognition, despite Donald Trump’s efforts to stop them.

Inside The Mall Where Everything Is Recycled:

Daily Bread for 4.24.21

Good morning.

Saturday in Whitewater will be mostly cloudy with a high of 63.  Sunrise is 5:57 AM and sunset 7:48 PM, for 13h 51m 17s of daytime.  The moon is a waxing gibbous with 90% of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1977, the Morris Pratt Institute, dedicated to the study of Spiritualism and Mediumship, moves from Whitewater to Waukesha.

Recommended for reading in full — 

 Richard Hansen writes Republicans Aren’t Done Messing With Elections:

A new, more dangerous front has opened in the voting wars, and it’s going to be much harder to counteract than the now-familiar fight over voting rules. At stake is something I never expected to worry about in the United States: the integrity of the vote count. The danger of manipulated election results looms.

We already know the contours of the battle over voter suppression. The public has been inundated with stories about Georgia’s new voting law, from Major League Baseball’s decision to pull the All-Star Game from Atlanta to criticism of new restrictions that prevent giving water to people waiting in long lines to vote. With lawsuits already filed against restrictive aspects of that law and with American companies and elite law firms lined up against Republican state efforts to make it harder to register and vote, there’s at least a fighting chance that the worst of these measures will be defeated or weakened.

The new threat of election subversion is even more concerning. These efforts target both personnel and policy; it is not clear if they are coordinated. They nonetheless represent a huge threat to American democracy itself.

Some of these efforts involve removing from power those who stood up to President Donald Trump’s attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election. The Georgia law removes the secretary of state from decision-making power on the state election board. This seems aimed clearly at Georgia’s current Republican secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, punishing him for rejecting Mr. Trump’s entreaties to “find” 11,780 votes to flip Joe Biden’s lead in the state.

Ed Pilkington reports Ivy League colleges urged to apologize for using bones of Black children in teaching:

Two Ivy League institutions, the University of Pennsylvania and Princeton, are facing mounting demands to apologize and make restitution for their handling over decades of the bones of African American children killed by Philadelphia police in 1985.

As calls pour in for action to be taken over the use of the children’s remains as props in an online Princeton anthropology course – without permission from parents of the dead children – there is also rising concern about the whereabouts of the bones.

Fragments belonging to one or possibly two Black children have been held by the universities for 36 years, but now appear to have gone missing.

They are currently in use as a “case study” in an online forensic anthropology course fronted by Princeton that is openly available on the internet. The bones are shown on camera as teaching tools – without the blessing of relatives who were unaware their loved ones’ remains were harboured in academic collections.

The course, Real Bones: Adventures in Forensic Anthropology, is presented by Prof Janet Monge, an expert on bone collections who is on faculty at both Princeton and Penn. On video, she holds up the pelvis and femur of a girl whose remains were collected from the ashes of the 13 May 1985 police bombing of the headquarters of Move, a Philadelphia-based black liberation and back-to-nature group.

Eleven group members died in the fire, including five children.

SpaceX launches Crew-2 astronauts to space station, nails booster landing:

Daily Bread for 4.23.21

Good morning.

Friday in Whitewater will be partly cloudy with a high of 58.  Sunrise is 5:58 AM and sunset 7:47 PM, for 13h 45m 59s of daytime.  The moon is a waxing gibbous with 81.7% of its visible disk illuminated.

On this day in 1985, Coca-Cola changes its formula and releases New Coke. The response is negative, and the original formula is back on the market in less than three months.

Recommended for reading in full — 

 Patrick Marley reports Federal COVID relief coming to Wisconsin and its local governments totals $20 billion, new report says:

The report provides the best accounting yet of the funds flowing into the state because of the pandemic. It tallies $19.9 billion coming to the state but notes that figure likely understates how much Wisconsin will ultimately receive.

By any measure, $20 billion is a stunning sum of money. For instance, it would be enough to run Milwaukee County for 17 years.

The report notes the recent round of aid is about twice as much as Wisconsin governments received from Congress in 2009 in response to the Great Recession.

The biggest share of the COVID-19 aid — $5.2 billion — comes as general relief to the state. Evers must follow federal rules for spending that money but has substantial leeway on what he does with it. He is concentrating the funding on the health care response and economic aid, such as with aid to businesses and renters.

….

Local governments are also getting general relief, with Wisconsin counties and municipalities receiving $2.3 billion in the latest round of help.

The federal government is providing more than $4 billion for the state’s unemployment system because of the pandemic. That provided those who lost their jobs with extra help — $600 a week initially and $300 a week more recently.

Another $3.7 billion is going to K-12 schools, colleges and universities and $800 million toward child care, the report found.

….

The report examines aid going to governmental entities but not directly to individuals. For instance, it does not include in its total the stimulus checks sent to Wisconsinites over the last year, which the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau estimates to be $13.6 billion.

Adam Serwer writes ‘Anglo-Saxon’ Is What You Say When ‘Whites Only’ Is Too Inclusive:

Last week, far-right Republican Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar distanced themselves from a proposal to create an America First Caucus, after a document bearing the group’s name made reference to “Anglo-Saxon political traditions.”

….

it helps to understand that “Anglo-Saxon” is what you say when “whites only” is simply too inclusive.

The Anglo-Saxonism to which I refer has little to do with the Germanic peoples who settled in medieval England. Rather, it’s an archaic, pseudoscientific intellectual trend that gained popularity during the height of immigration from Eastern and Southern Europe to the United States, at the turn of the 20th century. Nativists needed a way to explain why these immigrants—Polish, Russian, Greek, Italian, and Jewish—were distinct from earlier generations, and why their presence posed a danger.

They settled on the idea that the original “native” American settlers were descended from “the tribes that met under the oak-trees of old Germany to make laws and choose chieftains,” as Francis Walker put it in The Atlantic in 1893, and that the new immigrants lacked the biological aptitude for democracy. Anglo-Saxon was a way to distinguish genteel old-money types, such as nativist Republican Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, from members of inferior races who had names such as, well, McCarthy. The influential eugenicist Madison Grant insisted that the Irish possessed an “unstable temperament” and a “lack of coordinating and reasoning power.”

Bar in New York subway station gets noticed: