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Friday News: “Inflation Is Closing In on Fed’s Target”; “Trump recorded pressuring Wayne County canvassers not to certify 2020 vote”; Mike Johnson Leads “Congress’ ‘Christian fascist’ caucus”; “Virginia looks to land major pro sports, but at what cost?”






by Lowell

Here are a few international, national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Friday, December 22.

  • November shatters global temperature records, marking 6 record-warm months in a row (We’ve got a huge problem here.)
  • Winter is losing its bite. And the consequences will ripple through multiple areas of life
  • Changing climate casts a shadow over the future of the Panama Canal – and global trade (“Facing a near unprecedented ‘rainfall deficit’, the Panama Canal has been forced to restrict the number of vessels passing through it.”)
  • With Wars and Climate Change, Brace for Worsening Tumult in 2024
  • Scientists find new way to desalinate seawater using solar power, study says
  • More Drones, Fewer Parks. Ukrainians Urge Spending Shift as War Drags On.
  • Putin ‘has Trump’s number’ and still sees him ‘as an asset’, says Fiona Hill (No doubt, Trump is a Russian asset. Just think about that.)
  • US takes aim at financial institutions with new Russia sanctions authority
  • Palestinian support for ‘armed struggle’ is rising as Gaza death estimate tops 20,000 (“‘You cannot kill people into liking you,’ a policy analyst said in response to a recent poll.”)
  • Gaza’s entire population facing crisis levels of hunger, risk of famine, report finds
  • The case of al-Shifa: Investigating the assault on Gaza’s largest hospital
  • Gaza death toll surpasses 20,000 and Israel expands ground offensive despite pressure to scale back
  • Satellite imagery shows more than 500 impact craters left by massive bombs in Gaza
  • Israel Bombed Areas It Ordered Gaza Civilians to Go, Visual Evidence Shows (Obviously, Israel needs to demolish Hamas – which is pure evil – but bombing areas where it orderd civilians to go is not acceptable.)
  • Israel-Hamas war live updates: Hamas reportedly rejects Israeli cease-fire offer (“A long-delayed vote on a resolution for desperately needed aid to Gaza is expected today at the United United Nations Security Council.”)
  • Gunman opens fire in a Prague university, killing 14 people in Czech Republic’s worst mass shooting
  • Shock in Prague but shootings not unknown in Czech Republic (“Police say gunman owned multiple firearms, as allowed by among the most permissive gun laws in the EU”)
  • U.S. and China military leaders speak for the first time in over a year
  • Electric Cars Are Pushing the Age of Oil to Extinction in China
  • Congo awaits first provisional election results after messy vote
  • Khashoggi’s widow wins political asylum in the United States
  • White House Says $14.1 Billion U.S. Steel Sale Deserves ‘Serious Scrutiny’ (“Under the deal, Japan’s Nippon Steel would acquire one of America’s most storied industrial enterprises”)
  • US offshore wind poised for success next year after turbulent 2023
  • Inflation Is Closing In on Fed’s Target (“Easing price pressures and rallying markets have Americans feeling better about the economy”)
  • Crime is down. No, really. (“To put the numbers in perspective, even a 4 percent drop in violent crime “would lead to the lowest violent crime rate nationally since 1969.” (If the rate of decline in property crime holds up, that rate would be the lowest since 1961.) At the very least, we know violent and property crime dropped, with the final data available next year.”)
  • House speaker’s Christian nationalist ties spark first amendment fears
  • Congress’ “Christian fascist” caucus: Mike Johnson brings MAGA fully into the House (“The elevation of Johnson to speaker is a kind of foreshadowing of the retrograde social order MAGA wants to impose”)
  • Scoop: Mike Johnson urges Biden to unleash executive actions on border security (Johnson’s actual job is to work with the Senate and the president to pass LEGISLATION. Instead, he skipped town.)
  • How Republicans are weaponizing antisemitism to take down DEI (“Congressional Republicans say that college diversity, equity, and inclusion programs exacerbate anti-Jewish prejudice.”)
  • New Trump Cases Shadowed by Rocky Relationship With Supreme Court
  • Trump recorded pressuring Wayne County canvassers not to certify 2020 vote
  • Violent online rhetoric heats up after Colorado ballot ruling on Trump
  • Trump advisers and Colorado Republicans huddle after shock ruling
  • Jack Smith Swings Back at Trump in Push to Start Working on South Florida Jury Questionnaire
  • McConnell, Thune silence on Colorado decision sparks fire from Trump Jr.
  • Young Voters Overwhelmingly Support Biden Over Trump, Finds Economist/YouGov Poll
  • No Labels floats the possibility of a coalition government or Congress selecting the president in 2024 (These people are completely unhinged – and dangerous.)
  • American democracy is cracking. These ideas could help repair it. (Great, but the problem is Republicans have blocked and will continue to block almost all of these.)
  • Jan. 6 rioters the far right claimed were antifa keep getting unmasked as Trump supporters (Why even give ANY credence to the far right’s insane claims?)
  • Hunter Biden Text Cited in Impeachment Inquiry Is Not What G.O.P. Suggests (“A 2019 message from President Biden’s son alluded to giving his father half his salary. The back story does not support assertions of corruption.”)
  • Elite US universities face a political crisis they can’t control
  • Man Accused of Ramaswamy Death Threat Is Charged With Threatening Christie
  • With DeSantis struggling, Trump might be in for a Haley surprise
  • DeSantis spread false information while pushing trans health care ban and restrictions, a judge says (DeSantis = DeSatan)
  • Could a Democrat Beat Rick Scott in Florida’s US Senate Race? (“Democrats are hoping Debbie Mucarsel-Powell can help them keep control of the Senate in 2024.”)
  • The Eye-Popping Details of Rudy Giuliani’s Bankruptcy Filing (“Trump’s former lawyer may be liable for up to $500 million in unpaid debts.” It’s astounding that this guy was mayor of New York City.)
  • Rudy Giuliani files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in New York after defamation case
  • Substack says it will not remove or demonetize Nazi content (“Substack co-founder Hamish McKenzie’s plan to ‘strip bad ideas of their power’ is to profit from disseminating them as widely as possible.” Yeah…no.)
  • Meta Was Warned Privacy Push Would Shield Predators
  • Schiff riding high amidst scramble for 2nd place in CA Senate race
  • Which Confederate statues are gone in the DMV — and which remain? (The WaPo and other news outlets really should stop using “DMV” – which stands for “Department of Motor Vehicles” – as an abbreviation for the DC/MD/VA region.)
  • Again, Virginia looks to land major pro sports, but at what cost? (“It’s not that Virginia can’t have nice things. It’s a question of who pays for them and who owns what after it’s all done… I have never been comfortable with the notion of obligating public money to build lavish sports/entertainment playpens for billionaire owners of privately held teams.”)
  • Looking Back at Virginia Politics in 2023: Highlights…and Lowlights
  • FOIA Friday: New legislation and menorah lighting cancellation emails
  • What would Virginia need for a future of electric and automated aircraft?
  • Va. appeals court says police stop of Black man in Waynesboro invasion case didn’t violate rights
  • Lawmakers from opposite sides of the aisle, and the state, bring their Richmond friendship on the road to Southwest Virginia
  • Youngkin cuts state funding for New College Institute, drawing criticism from Republican lawmaker
  • ‘Grandfather of Norfolk’: 84-year-old convenience store owner killed, another injured in shooting outside business
  • Fairfax Co. concludes investigation into student data breach
  • Youngkin’s proposed education budget ‘unacceptable,’ says Kamras
  • D.C.-area forecast: Tranquil into the weekend as temperatures turn milder
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