AuthorTopic: The Surlynewz Channel  (Read 601956 times)

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
Atavistic Royal agrees to Boris Johnson's request to shut down Parliament
« Reply #3900 on: August 28, 2019, 08:11:06 AM »
Queen Elizabeth agrees to Boris Johnson's request to shut down Parliament to force through a no-deal Brexit
https://www.businessinsider.com/reports-boris-johnson-to-suspend-parliament-from-mid-september-no-deal-brexit-2019-8

Adam Payne and Adam Bienkov 1h
 






The queen has agreed to a request by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to suspend Parliament in mid-September to force through a no-deal Brexit
Johnson will hold a queen's speech in mid-October, with Parliament suspended and on recess for weeks beforehand.[/li][/list]
Members of Parliament would then have just days left to block Johnson from forcing through a no-deal exit on October 31.
Opponents accused Johnson of a "deeply undemocratic" move.
Johnson insisted Parliament would still have "ample time" to debate Brexit.



The queen has agreed to a request by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to suspend Parliament just days after it returns from summer recess next week, until mid-October, to force through a no-deal Brexit.

Johnson on Wednesday morning asked the monarch to prorogue Parliament on September 9, just days after members return from their summer break, until October 14.

It means MPs who oppose a no-deal Brexit and are plotting to stop it will have just days to find a way of doing so, either side of these dates. The UK is scheduled to leave the European Union on October 31.

The request is a normally a formality under the UK constitution. Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and other opposition leaders requested a meeting with the queen to request she block Johnson's request.

The pound fell 0.7% against the dollar and 0.6% against the euro on Wednesday afternoon, following news of Johnson's move.

The House of Commons' speaker, John Bercow, described the decision as a "constitutional outrage."

"However it is dressed up it is blindingly obvious that the purpose of prorogation now would be to stop Parliament debating Brexit and performing its duty," he said in a statement.

In a letter to all members of Parliament, Johnson defended the decision, saying lawmakers would still have an opportunity to debate Brexit after he has finished negotiations with the EU and before Britain's October 31 exit date.

"Parliament will have the opportunity to debate the Government's overall programme, and approach to Brexit, in the run up to EU Council, and then vote on this on 21 and 22 October, once we know the outcome of the Council," he wrote.

The prime minister told ITV News that MPs would have "ample time" to scrutinize Britain's exit from the EU.

"We need new legislation, we've got to be bringing forward new and important bills, and that's why we are going to have a queen's speech and we are going to do it on October 14 and we have got to move ahead now with a new legislative program," he said.

"If you look at what we are doing, we are bringing forward a new legislative program on crime, on hospitals, making sure that we have the education funding that we need and there will be ample time on both sides of that crucial October 17 summit.

"Ample time in Parliament for MPs to debate the EU to debate Brexit and all the other issues. Ample time."

Under Johnson's timetable, his government would deliver the queen's speech — its policy agenda for that session of Parliament — on Monday, October 14. A queen's speech usually comes with five days of parliamentary debate.

'Deeply undemocratic, unconstitutional and fundamentally political'

Former Conservative Chancellor Philip Hammond condemned the move.
"It would be a constitutional outrage if Parliament were prevented from holding the government to account at a time of national crisis," he tweeted. "Profoundly undemocratic."

Johnson's opponents urged him to think again.

"Shutting down Parliament would be an act of cowardice from Boris Johnson," the Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson said.

"He knows the people would not choose a No Deal and that elected representatives wouldn't allow it. He is trying to stifle their voices.

"By suspending Parliament to force through a No Deal, Boris Johnson and the Government would remove the voice of the people at the most important time. It is a dangerous and unacceptable course of action which the Liberal Democrats will strongly oppose."

Brexit opponents said Johnson's move was an act of tyranny and called on the queen to step in.

"It would make no sense for the queen to back this deeply undemocratic, unconstitutional and fundamentally political maneuver from the government," Naomi Smith, the CEO of the pro-EU group Best for Britain, said.

"If the queen is asked to help, she would do well to remember history doesn't look too kindly on royals who aid and abet the suspension of democracy."

During the Conservative leadership contest, Johnson played down the prospect of his suspending Parliament as prime minister, saying it was a course of action that he was "not attracted to."

His move to do so sets up what will almost certainly be a frantic few days in the House of Commons in which MPs on all sides work furiously to prevent the UK from leaving the EU without a deal on October 31.

This would most likely come in the form of legislation, with the Financial Times reporting that MPs planned to take control of the House of Commons order paper and legislate for a further extension to the Article 50 process.

However, MPs opposed to no deal are ready to bring Johnson down in a no-confidence vote if necessary.

About 160 MPs opposed to a no-deal Brexit gathered in Church House, near the Houses of Parliament, on Tuesday and signed a pledge to prevent a no-deal exit "using whatever mechanism possible."
“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
AOC Brought the Receipts on Donald Trump and the Electoral College
« Reply #3901 on: August 28, 2019, 11:23:43 AM »


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Brought the Receipts on Donald Trump and the Electoral College
Meanwhile, the only real argument from The College Defenders is "we like it this way."

https://www.esquire.com/news-politics/a28842736/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-electoral-college-donald-trump-campaign/?source=nl&utm_source=nl_esq&utm_medium=email&date=082819&utm_campaign=nl17891939&src=nl



Our president has reportedly promised to pardon his subordinates if they break the law while following his orders to get the Big, Beautiful Wall built, which you can file under Things That Would See Any Other President Subjected to Impeachment Hearings. But it seems that as long as Nancy Pelosi is Speaker of the House, the most severe repercussions he'll face are Concerned Statements. No need to use the constitutional tools at the Speaker's disposal in order to uphold her and her colleagues' oath to protect that Constitution. Beat him in 2020 will be the rallying cry.

In fairness, a new poll from Quinnipiac would seem to indicate the odds of that happening aren't bad at all. The major Democratic candidates would all trounce the president in the national popular vote, you see.

Biden 54% — Trump 38%
Sanders 53% — Trump 39%
Warren 52% — Trump 40%
Harris 51% — Trump 40%
Buttigieg 49% — Trump 40%
Though this poll indicates these candidates would get substantially more votes than Trump in an election, it doesn't actually mean much in our electoral system. Getting more votes is only roughly correlated with winning the presidency. This is because we are still mucking about with the Electoral College, a grotesquely undemocratic mechanism which has seen the candidate who won more votes lose the election in two of the last five contests.


President Bush Addresses The Nation
Here’s an argument against the Electoral College.

The College makes the election a state-by-state competition where each state's number of Electoral votes is the combined number of representatives and senators it has. Because the Senate is also an undemocratic institution, where Montana's 1 million residents have the same number of senators as do California's 39.5 million people, the Electoral College has the effect of making some people's votes count more than others. Specifically, it gives the residents of rural areas more power than residents of more densely populated urban areas. It also renders the votes of the vast majority of Americans who don't live in Swing States essentially meaningless. That goes for New York or California, but it also goes for Alabama and Mississippi. Presidential candidates can ignore the vast majority of Americans while concentrating almost entirely on Michiganders or Pennsylvanians.

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez pointed this out last week:



All that abolishing the Electoral College would do is make everyone's votes count equally. It would not lead to candidates only campaigning in urban areas—there aren't enough votes there to win. But Republicans well know they've secured two presidents thanks to the College since 2000, and they're not going to give up a mechanism that entrenches their minority rule easily. So naturally, Bloomberg's Sahil Kapur reports, they freaked the fuck out at AOC:



Silenced!
Twitter
Again: going to a national popular vote would not "silence" Republicans or residents of rural areas. It would merely make their votes count the same as everybody else's, and force presidential candidates to appeal to broader swathes of the American population. But this could have the effect of forcing Republicans to appeal to constituencies outside their base, a concept the party abandoned years ago in favor of voter suppression, hyperpartisan gerrymandering, and appeals to white identity.

(It's around here where The College Defenders will pop up with arguments about how we're a republic, not a democracy—which Jamelle Bouie of The New York Times brilliantly dismantled this week—or worse, weird patronizing crap about how you can't change the system just because you lost. Stop trying to remedy the injustice which happens to benefit me politically because it could benefit you politically.)

Anyway, the freshman congresswoman did not hesitate to produce The Receipts.



There is always a tweet, mostly because the current president has few fixed beliefs beyond They're Killing Us on Trade and What Benefits Me, Personally, Right Now?

This is all chatter, of course, until the Democratic Party can rise to sufficient power, with leaders who have sufficient vision and courage, to make foundational reforms to the system. The platform should include getting the money out of politics and breathing life back into the voting rights of citizens—primarily people of color—who have been stripped of it. That effort has gone to another level since the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act in 2013 and Republican legislatures went gangbusters. The Democrats' H.R. 1 was a great start on this, but any long-term plan to make the United States a more truly representative democracy should include destruction of the Electoral College. One person, one vote. That's it.
“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
Our Lawless President Is Trampling Still More Laws to Build His Big, Beautiful Wall
Donald Trump operates on the premise that the rules do not apply to him. Increasingly, it seems he is right.


US-politics-immigration-Mexico-IMMIGRANTS
JIM WATSONGETTY IMAGES

So the president is promising to pardon his subordinates if they have to break the law to carry out his orders to build the Big, Beautiful Wall, the latest spasm of abject lawlessness from someone whose lifelong principle is that the rules do not apply to him. This is not the best attribute to have in the world's most powerful man, particularly with a supine Congress—where one body is controlled by his lackeys and the other is run by Democrats afraid of their own shadow—and a court system increasingly stuffed full of Federalist Society dependables who can help enact conservative priorities from the bench. That's the same court system that OK'd his phony national emergency, which he admitted was phony while announcing it.

This week, we are seeing the results. By declaring the emergency, Trump sought to seize funds Congress appropriated for different purposes—specifically, to the Department of Defense—and use them to build his Big, Beautiful Wall. This was an explicit response to the Legislative Branch's refusal to appropriate Wall funding. The power of the purse is the legislative branch's lever to reign in the power of the executive. If the president can simply take money and use it for whatever he wants, Congress is functionally powerless. It deals profound damage to the separation of powers, and the checks and balances that ensures, which undergird the American republic.

Having run roughshod over such foundational legal principles, then, it was no surprise the president would bulldoze other legal hurdles. The Washington Postpredicted as much in its report detailing his pledge to pardon his law-breaking staff.

President Trump is so eager to complete hundreds of miles of border fence ahead of the 2020 presidential election that he has directed aides to fast-track billions of dollars’ worth of construction contracts, aggressively seize private land and disregard environmental rules, according to current and former officials involved with the project.

Now, as CBS News reports, we're seeing that in action.

The first phase of construction in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, which runs along the southern border with Mexico, will replace a two-mile stretch of 15-foot-high fencing with structures that are twice as tall and feature large flood lights to illuminate the surrounding areas, according to a government court filing and congressional staffers familiar with the plans.
The project is the first construction of new border barriers on federal lands using funds diverted from the Defense Department under President Trump's national emergency declaration. The Department of Homeland Security told a federal court earlier in August that it plans to eventually replace nearly 44 miles of existing pedestrian and vehicle fencing with 30-foot steel bollards, creating a barrier spanning most of Organ Pipe as well as portions of an adjacent wildlife refuge.
Some members of Congress and environmental activists say erecting the massive structures will severely hamper animal migration, cut wildlife off from already-scarce desert water sources and threaten animals' ability to flee natural disasters like floods and wildfires. The 516-square-mile Organ Pipe monument is named for the unique cacti that dot the landscape. Several endangered species call it home, including the Sonoran pronghorn and desert bighorn sheep.

It seems almost quaint to hope this administration would heed environmental concerns before embarking on a project that tickles The Base. Workers are using heavy machinery and pumping the scarce groundwater nearby, but the idea Donald Trump would care verges on the absurd. So is the notion he would care what local communities think.

Donald Trump Holds MAGA Rally In El Paso To Discuss Border Security
Anything to stimulate The Base.
Joe RaedleGetty Images

But note that this is federally protected land: it's a national monument, and there's a wildlife refuge next door. This is the law, and it's getting trampled.

In May, the Department of Homeland Security waived dozens of laws to allow construction in Organ Pipe and other wildlife refuges in southwestern Arizona. In a notice in the Federal Register, Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan pointed to high level of illegal crossings in the Tucson sector, which includes Organ Pipe, and said existing barriers "no longer satisfy Border Patrol's operational needs." ...
Under a 2005 law, the homeland security secretary can waive any laws "necessary to ensure expeditious construction" of barriers along the border and can overrule other agencies like the National Parks Service, which administers national parks and monuments. McAleenan invoked that authority to waive the department's obligations under 36 federal laws, including the Clean Air Act, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the National Fish and Wildlife Act.

So, there's a law which says you can just "waive" other laws if you want to build a wall. The Supreme Court declined to hear a challenge to this totally normal thing in 2008, essentially offering the Bush administration—and now, the Trump administration—carte blanche to ignore inconvenient environmental statutes. What a stunning illustration of our national priorities.

What we all increasingly must come to terms with is that the law is whatever five guys on the Supreme Court say it is—and, to a lesser extent, what folks on the various lower courts say. Whether that is grounded in precedent and reason and the circumstances of reality depends on who's doing the saying at any given time. The Court's ruling on the national emergency, which ignored that Trump openly admitted he was declaring an emergency to speed up the process—that is, that there wasn't actually an emergency—was not the only recent ruling made from some sort of existential vacuum. The Court also OK'd Trump's Definitely Not a Muslim Ban in a decision that completely ignored the fact that Trump had referred to previous versions of the Definitely Not a Muslim Ban as a "Muslim Ban."

US-POLITICS-TRUMP-WALL
Anything is permissible if it leads to The Wall.
MANDEL NGANGetty Images

Yes, lawlessness is the order of the day. In an authoritarian state—and that is what we're heading towards—the law is what those in power say it is. This isn't even the first time Trump has dangled pardons for subordinates who break the law following his orders. The New York Timesreported in April that Trump told then-Border Patrol chief Kevin McAleenan—now head of the Department of Homeland Security—that he'd pardon him if he hit some legal trouble for following the president's directive to shut down the southwestern border entirely. The president did this in a room full of people! There were witnesses! Now the Washington Post's Greg Sargent reminds us that House Democrats requested a list of people who were at the meeting in order to corroborate the story, and the Department of Homeland Security has simply ignored them.

Fuck your oversight powers. The president believes he can do anything he wants, and that he is not accountable to the other branches of government. In theory, this is crazy, and it is grounds for his removal from office. In practice, it appears that he is right, and that everything you learned in school about our constitutional system was a fairytale. Unless, of course, the American people decide that it all still matters.

“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
Mar-a-Lago is in the projected path of Hurricane Dorian
« Reply #3903 on: August 29, 2019, 04:06:14 PM »
Trump’s Mar-a-Lago is in the projected path of Hurricane Dorian
Could the storm hit Florida near the Winter White House? It’s possible.



Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate is shown, Wednesday, July 10, 2019, in Palm Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

Hurricane Dorian is threatening to strike Florida near Mar-a-Lago, President Donald Trump’s prized South Florida resort.

The storm is projected to make landfall as a Category 4 hurricane on Monday, with Melbourne as the most likely landing spot. That’s about 115 miles north of Palm Beach, where Trump’s ocean-front hotel is situated. Mar-a-Lago remains in the “cone of uncertainty" — the range of potential paths the hurricane could take as it strengthens in the Caribbean.

Previous hurricane models suggested Dorian could pass right through the so-called Winter White House, a frequent destination for Trump’s working vacations. As of Thursday morning, though, the storm’s path has shifted slightly north as it slows its forward motion and intensifies.


The south side of a hurricane is typically the safer side of a storm.

The U.S. Secret Service declined to respond to questions about any security measures taken at Mar-a-Lago during an extreme weather event and directed questions to the resort. The Trump Organization and the White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Trump has tweeted he is monitoring the storm, first celebrating the storm had spared Puerto Rico before warning Floridians it was headed their way.

“It will be a very big Hurricane, perhaps one of the biggest!” Trump wrote.

Guests of Mar-a-Lago were forced to evacuate during Hurricane Irma in 2017. Trump once claimed the property sustained $17 million in damage during the infamous 2005 hurricane season, but an Associated Press investigation found little evidence the private club took a hit.


The seaside resort was built in 1927. Trump purchased it in 1985.
“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Offline RE

  • Administrator
  • Chief Cook & Bottlewasher
  • *****
  • Posts: 39390
    • View Profile
Re: Mar-a-Lago is in the projected path of Hurricane Dorian
« Reply #3904 on: August 29, 2019, 04:41:42 PM »
Hopefully it will be wiped off the face of the earth for all time.

Re
Save As Many As You Can

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
Minimum wage doesn't cover the rent anywhere in the U.S.
« Reply #3905 on: August 31, 2019, 09:09:39 AM »
Not sure this is news, but...

Minimum wage doesn't cover the rent anywhere in the U.S.



A minimum-wage worker would have to put in lots of overtime to be able to afford a modest, two-bedroom apartment anywhere in the country. And downsizing to a one-bedroom pad barely helps.

Even with some states hiking pay for those earning the least, there is still nowhere in the country where a person working a full-time minimum wage job can afford to rent a decent two-bedroom apartment, according to an annual report released Wednesday by the National Low Income Housing Coalition.

Even the $15 hourly wage touted by labor activists would not be enough to make housing affordable in the overwhelming majority of states, the coalition found. Nationally, someone would need to make $17.90 an hour to rent a modest one-bedroom or $22.10 an hour to cover a two-bedroom place.

Renters across the country earn an average hourly rate of $16.88, the report estimated, a finding that illustrates how even folks earning more than the minimum wage scramble to pay for housing.

The findings are based on the standard budgeting concept of not spending more than 30 percent of one's income on housing.

The nation's costliest housing is in Hawaii, where one would need to earn $36.13, or roughly $75,000 a year, to be able to rent a modest two-bedroom. The state's minimum wage increased to $10.10 an hour this year.

The cheapest housing in the U.S. can be found in Arkansas, where the minimum wage is $8.50 an hour. Yet one would have to make $13.84 an hour, or roughly $29,000 a year, to afford a two-bedroom apartment.

A one-bedroom is affordable for minimum-wage employees in all of 22 counties in just five states -- Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon and Washington. Each has a higher minimum wage than the $7.25 federal minimum.

The study bases its definition of "modest" rental housing on a weighted average of fair market rent estimates developed annually by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to calculate the agency's housing assistance to poor people around the country.

The cost of housing has steadily risen along with increased demand for rentals, yet new construction has trended toward the high-end market due to lofty development expenses, the findings said.

"While the housing market may have recovered for many, we are nonetheless experiencing an affordable housing crisis, especially for very low-income families," Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont wrote in the report's preface. "In America today, nearly 11 million families pay more than half of their limited incomes toward rent and utilities. That leaves precious little for other essentials."
“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Offline azozeo

  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 9498
    • View Profile
Re: Minimum wage doesn't cover the rent anywhere in the U.S.
« Reply #3906 on: August 31, 2019, 02:56:16 PM »
Not sure this is news, but...

Minimum wage doesn't cover the rent anywhere in the U.S.



A minimum-wage worker would have to put in lots of overtime to be able to afford a modest, two-bedroom apartment anywhere in the country. And downsizing to a one-bedroom pad barely helps.

Even with some states hiking pay for those earning the least, there is still nowhere in the country where a person working a full-time minimum wage job can afford to rent a decent two-bedroom apartment, according to an annual report released Wednesday by the National Low Income Housing Coalition.

Even the $15 hourly wage touted by labor activists would not be enough to make housing affordable in the overwhelming majority of states, the coalition found. Nationally, someone would need to make $17.90 an hour to rent a modest one-bedroom or $22.10 an hour to cover a two-bedroom place.

Renters across the country earn an average hourly rate of $16.88, the report estimated, a finding that illustrates how even folks earning more than the minimum wage scramble to pay for housing.

The findings are based on the standard budgeting concept of not spending more than 30 percent of one's income on housing.

The nation's costliest housing is in Hawaii, where one would need to earn $36.13, or roughly $75,000 a year, to be able to rent a modest two-bedroom. The state's minimum wage increased to $10.10 an hour this year.

The cheapest housing in the U.S. can be found in Arkansas, where the minimum wage is $8.50 an hour. Yet one would have to make $13.84 an hour, or roughly $29,000 a year, to afford a two-bedroom apartment.

A one-bedroom is affordable for minimum-wage employees in all of 22 counties in just five states -- Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon and Washington. Each has a higher minimum wage than the $7.25 federal minimum.

The study bases its definition of "modest" rental housing on a weighted average of fair market rent estimates developed annually by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to calculate the agency's housing assistance to poor people around the country.

The cost of housing has steadily risen along with increased demand for rentals, yet new construction has trended toward the high-end market due to lofty development expenses, the findings said.

"While the housing market may have recovered for many, we are nonetheless experiencing an affordable housing crisis, especially for very low-income families," Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont wrote in the report's preface. "In America today, nearly 11 million families pay more than half of their limited incomes toward rent and utilities. That leaves precious little for other essentials."




BAHAHAHAH.......

There is no life outside "The Mohave" amigo.
Squattin' in the Mohave sux in Julius & Augustus but the rest is teflon............ :icon_sunny:


<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/8qrriKcwvlY&fs=1" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/8qrriKcwvlY&fs=1</a>
I know exactly what you mean. Let me tell you why you’re here. You’re here because you know something. What you know you can’t explain, but you feel it. You’ve felt it your entire life, that there’s something wrong with the world.
You don’t know what it is but its there, like a splinter in your mind

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
Re: The Surlynewz Channel
« Reply #3907 on: September 02, 2019, 08:48:57 AM »
We'll find out in a couple of days whether Bill Paler is correct, or not.

China just took Donald Trump’s legs out

Last night Donald Trump allowed his latest tariffs on Chinese goods to go into effect, after China made clear that it had no intention of caving to him. Why would China cave, when Trump is losing the trade war? Sure enough, China responded today – not by backing down, but by taking Trump’s legs out.

This morning China announced retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods, including oil, according to the Economic Times. Even as we wait to see what kind of financial and economic impact China’s tariffs will have on the United States, the reality is that the perception matters more when it comes to Trump’s fate.

The stock market has been tanking for quite some time now, due to Trump’s tariffs on China, and the negative impact that it’s having on the U.S. economy. The stock market only bounced back a bit this past week because Trump falsely claimed that he was on the phone working with China to end the trade war (Trump’s handlers later admitted that no such phone calls happened).

Now that Trump has gone through with his new tariffs, and China has responded by retaliating instead of backing down, U.S. investors will interpret this as a death knell for economic growth. The stock market will go off a cliff this week, even before the negative impact of these new tariffs shows up in economic growth reports. China just took Trump’s legs out – but only because Trump forced the issue. The question continues to be if and when Trump will humiliatingly admit defeat in his failed trade war and try to begin repairing the damage he’s done, or if he’ll simply allow the trade war to finish him off instead.

“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
‘This Will Teach You Next Time,’ 911 Dispatcher Told Arkansas Woman Who Drowned
« Reply #3908 on: September 02, 2019, 11:18:02 AM »
‘This Will Teach You Next Time,’ 911 Dispatcher Told Arkansas Woman Who Later Drowned.
Debbie Stevens was delivering morning newspapers in her S.U.V. when she was swept away by floodwaters in Fort Smith, Ark.



Debbie Stevens, 47, made two frantic phone calls: One to her mother-in-law, and another to 911 to beg for help.via Facebook

It was still dark out in Fort Smith, Ark., as Debbie Stevens tended to her newspaper delivery route as she had for more than 20 years.

That’s when her gray Mazda S.U.V. was swept up by quickly rising floodwaters from heavy rainfall. She first called her mother-in-law, who was also driving a paper route, but hung up and called 911 at 4:38 a.m., as the water rose to her car window. Ms. Stevens, 47, spent the next 22 minutes on the phone with an emergency dispatcher frantically pleading for help and saying that she could not swim.

The dispatcher, Donna Reneau, repeatedly told a sobbing Ms. Stevens to calm down. “This will teach you next time, don’t drive in the water,” she said, according to a recording of the call that was released by the police. “You put yourself in danger,” she added.

Ms. Stevens drowned in her vehicle on Aug. 24 before emergency responders reached her, according to a police statement. Audio from the 911 call captured her last moments, and at times Ms. Reneau seemed frustrated and dismissive of Ms. Stevens’s panic.

Ms. Reneau did not respond to phone calls or emails requesting comment on Sunday.

Aric Mitchell, a spokesman for the Fort Smith Police Department, said that Ms. Reneau, a certified training operator, had handed in her resignation on Aug. 9. Ms. Stevens’s call was taken during her last shift, he said.

The police statement called the operator’s words “calloused and uncaring at times,” but said “sincere efforts were being made to locate and save Mrs. Stevens.”

“We were working diligently to get to her; we were doing everything that we possibly could to save her,” Danny Baker, the department’s interim chief, said during a news conference on Thursday.

“None of us take this lightly,” he said. “It’s never an easy thing to have an opportunity to save someone’s life and then not be able to do that.”

“I know that that dispatcher is equally upset about the outcome of this and the fact that she was not able to save Mrs. Stevens,” he added.

Mr. Mitchell said that the department had received several flood-related calls that night, and that there had been no other fatalities. The department was compiling Ms. Reneau’s employment record, which Mr. Mitchell described as “largely clean.”

Minutes after Ms. Stevens called, the Fire Department and a police unit were dispatched to the scene. The emergency responders arrived in fewer than 10 minutes, but they could not locate Ms. Stevens’s vehicle, the statement said.

The flash flood had swept Ms. Stevens’s vehicle off the road and into a copse of trees. The water was rising around her car as she waited for rescue.

“It’s all the way up to my neck,” Ms. Stevens said to Ms. Reneau. “I’m the only one in the vehicle with all of my papers floating around me. Please help me. I don’t want to die.”

Ms. Reneau responded: “You’re not going to die. Just hold on.”


Donna Reneau, the dispatcher who took Ms. Stevens’s call, handed in her resignation on Aug. 9, a police spokesman said.FSPD
The main roadways were blocked by water. A boat was requested just before the call between Ms. Stevens and the dispatcher was disconnected, according to the police.

Moments before the call ended, Ms. Stevens started screaming that she could not breathe. “Ms. Debbie, you are breathing just fine because you are screaming at me,” Ms. Reneau responded. “I need you to calm down.”

When Ms. Stevens did not respond, Ms. Reneau said, “Oh, my God, it sounds like she’s underwater now.”

The responders located Ms. Stevens’s vehicle shortly after the call ended, but the rushing water prevented an officer, armed with a life vest and a rope, from reaching the vehicle. The rescue boat arrived nearly 15 minutes later, and it took the responders another 45 minutes to make their way to her.

Just before 6 a.m., rescuers pulled Ms. Stevens from the vehicle and tried to resuscitate her, but she had already drowned, the police statement said.

“I am heartbroken for this tragic loss of life and my prayers are with Debra’s family and friends,” Chief Baker said in the statement.

“All of our first responders who attempted to save Mrs. Stevens are distraught over the outcome,” he said. “For every one of us, saving lives is at the very core of who we are and why we do what we do. When we are unsuccessful, it hurts.”

After the episode, the Police Department started an internal investigation into response policies and dispatch center training, Chief Baker said at the news conference. Ms. Reneau will not be investigated because she no longer works for the department, he said.

Chief Baker told KFTA, a local television station, that no action would be taken against Ms. Reneau because she had not done anything criminally wrong.

Rebeca Stewart, Ms. Stevens’s sister-in-law, told the station that Ms. Stevens “had a heart of gold and would do anything for anyone.”

Neil Vigdor contributed reporting.

Mariel Padilla is a reporter covering national breaking news for the Express desk, based in New York. @marielpadilla_
“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
Las Vegas in the climate crisis: 'a place where we never go outside'
« Reply #3909 on: September 03, 2019, 04:31:20 AM »
The hellish future of Las Vegas in the climate crisis: 'a place where we never go outside'



The Clark county death investigator Jill Roberts vividly recalls the sunny 115F (46C) afternoon last summer when she entered a Las Vegas home with no functional air conditioning. The indoor heat felt even worse than the broiling temperature outside. She climbed up the stairs, through thick, stifling air, landing in a third-story bedroom where the resident had died in sweltering conditions. The room had no fan and the door was shut. It felt as if it couldn’t get any hotter.

“Our elements are unforgiving. Especially on those 115F days, it doesn’t take a lot,” Roberts told the Guardian. “In that situation I’ll go stand in the sun in the 115F heat to do my paperwork as opposed to staying in the house because it’s that hot.”

The coroner’s office in Clark county, which encompasses Las Vegas, often records heat as a contributing factor to accidental deaths. There are hikers succumbing to lethal temperatures in the surrounding desert and heat-related deaths in cars and homes when occupants forgo cooling. Roberts has seen homeless people with post-mortem burns from collapsing on hot streets.

. And it will get worse. Las Vegas is the fastest warming city in the United States, its temperatures having risen 5.76F since 1970. A June study of coroner data by the Las Vegas-based Desert Research Institute found a correlation between heat waves and heat-related deaths in southern Nevada, both of which, they say, are on the rise. And a recent Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) report warns that without global action to reduce carbon emissions, the city will likely experience 96 days of heat above 100F by the end of the century, including 60 days over 105F, and 7 “off the chart” days that would break the current heat index.

Every city has its own challenges in adapting to climate change, even those that are supposedly accustomed to severe heat. In Las Vegas, a laissez-faire attitude toward growth has allowed high temperatures to become even more deadly, and the scorching heat now threatens the city’s basic functionality.

Like the tourist guzzling alcohol by the resort pool, smiling and flirting until he faints from dehydration, southern Nevada has welcomed unfettered development since the 1930s – the advent of the home cooling era – when its population began to double in size nearly every decade despite limited water resources and increased drought. The resorts have long been the economic driver. Over a third of the area’s workforce is supported by the 40 million visitors a year who descend on their gargantuan hotel towers, bustling casinos and massive convention halls. And as tourism grows, so does the population.



During the boom years before the 2008 housing crisis, hundreds of miles of desert landscape were paved over with heat-absorbing asphalt and concrete, worsening a “heat island” effect in the cauldron-like valley. Outward growth also led to vehicles motoring further across the sprawling metropolis, increasing heat-trapping carbon emissions.

Now, with growth having continued each year since 2011, and new home developments returning to boom-era levels, Sin City is reckoning with a future that looks downright hellish.

“The thing about Vegas is, we always do feast and famine,” said Tick Segerblom, a former state senator who now sits on the Clark county commission, which governs the Las Vegas Valley. “We never bother to say, ‘Where are going? What are we doing?’”

During summer months, when Las Vegas city buses break down notoriously often, many pedestrians carry umbrellas to protect their skin, and those without cover often “shadow walk”, following the shade of palm trees, signs and buildings to avoid direct exposure to a sunshine that can cause humans to overheat.

The city’s poorest residents are most at risk. Fans and cooling systems can save lives, said Jill Roberts, the coroner office investigator, “but some people just don’t have the funds to fix their air conditioning or have working equipment.”



Hundreds of homeless people living in the city choose to camp in storm drains rather than sleep above ground – another dystopian irony to the city’s reputation for glitz and glamor. Those who dislike the tunnels often have to work hard to stay cool. Marcy Averett, 49, and her husband spend 15 hours a day collecting recyclables. But each day before they set off, they buy ice.

“I have to have cold water. I don’t know how people do it with hot water,” she told the Guardian on an August afternoon as she dragged a shopping cart filled with aluminum cans out of the blistering sun, into the shade of a highway overpass. An orange cooler hung from the side of her cart. Averett had a spray bottle to mist her face and neck, and applied lip balm as we spoke. “I put medicated moisturizer on my lips constantly, all day every day, and my lips are still cracked. It’s this heat.”

Like many other rapidly warming cities across the United States, Vegas has only recently begun to reckon with its future.

“The real question is, do we want a place where we just go from our houses to our cars to our offices, and never go outside because it’s too hot?” Segerblom, the former state senator, asked. “How many months of the year is that tenable?”

Rachel Licker of the Union of Concerned Scientists warned that southern Nevada’s productivity and essential services will become increasingly stressed as temperatures rise – construction projects will slow or stop more frequently to ensure worker safety; police and postal workers may be impacted; and since studies show school children perform worse as temperatures rise, teachers may need to adjust testing schedules and standards for days if not months at a time.

Meanwhile, power surges may become more common if increased demand overwhelms electrical grids, leaving the people most sensitive to heat illness such as children and the elderly without a cooling system when it’s needed most.

“Even though people in Las Vegas might be used to high levels of heat, it’s going to get even hotter, and we don’t know how much they’re going to be able to withstand,” Licker said.

As Las Vegas Valley reaches its limits, many in the community believe now is an opportune time to contemplate the future of the city. “What do we want to be when we grow up?” said Segerblom. “Is there a way to manage this valley that’s good for the quality of life of the citizens of Nevada, not just for the tourists and hotels?”

He noted that while state and federal policies get the most media attention, municipal governments can impact the environment just as well. Planting more native trees and shrubs, enforcing energy-efficient building standards, zoning to promote upward rather than outward growth, and developing alternatives to blacktop roads and concrete sidewalks are all policies that could have a major impact.

To lessen its own carbon footprint, the city of Las Vegas already began powering all government buildings and streetlights with renewable energy in 2016. The state’s largest energy consumers, the multi-thousand room hotels and casinos on the strip, have also made environmental sustainability a priority in recent years. MGM Resorts has over 20 acres of solar panels atop the Mandalay Bay convention center, and much of the electricity flowing through properties like the Bellagio, Luxor and New York, New York comes from a solar array in the Mojave Desert.

“We do feel it’s our responsibility to find innovative ways to use less energy and procure clean energy for our resorts,” said Mark Campbell, MGM Resorts’ executive director of sustainability. The company also donates unserved banquet food to a local food bank and uses smart thermostats to avoid cooling vacant rooms.

For their part, Nevada voters passed a ballot initiative requiring state utilities to get 50% of their electricity from renewable sources by 2030. As a constitutional amendment, the proposal needs to pass a second time to take effect. But state lawmakers made that vote moot by adopting the standards on their own, on Earth Day 2019, through a legislative bill that received unanimous support. Nevada is rare state now in which reducing carbon emissions has become a bipartisan concern.

In seeking more access to clean energy sources, the state hopes to get ahead of the dilemma posed by longer and more intensive air conditioning seasons that amount to more greenhouse gas emissions spewed into the air.

“Heat is currently the top killer for weather-related hazards in the United States,” said Licker. “Those kinds of numbers would just get worse if we’re headed toward really significant climate change.”
“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
Argentina Restricts Access to Foreign Currency to Stave Off Financial Crisis
« Reply #3910 on: September 03, 2019, 04:37:42 AM »
Argentina Restricts Access to Foreign Currency to Stave Off Financial Crisis

Ricardo Ceppi/Getty Images

BUENOS AIRES — Trying to put the brakes on a financial crisis that has engulfed Argentina in recent weeks, President Mauricio Macri imposed new restrictions on access to foreign currency.

The restrictions, which took effect Monday, are a remarkable about-face for Mr. Macri, who came into office promising to open up the economy but is instead putting in place the types of measures he has long criticized as he heads into October’s presidential election.

His move reflects just how much Argentina’s economy has gone into a tailspin in the weeks since a nationwide primary last month, in anticipation of the presidential election, yielded a surprising result: The main opposition candidate, Alberto Fernández, had a surprisingly strong showing over Mr. Macri.

Mr. Fernández is running on a ticket with the former president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, as his vice president. Investors fear that if he wins the October election it would amount to a return to the interventionist economic policies that came to mark her back-to-back administrations from 2007 to 2015.

In those years, the government distributed aid to the poor without budget discipline, yielding enormous deficits that caused investors to flee. A weakened currency raised the prices of imports. By the time Mr. Macri took over, Argentina was awash in red ink and inflation.

He began a round of budget-cutting, which infuriated the poor without yielding the economic growth he promised. But the possibility of the return of left-wing populismhas international markets worried that Argentina is headed back to excessive spending.

As investors have stampeded for the exits, the currency has plunged anew.

One of Mr. Macri’s first measures after taking office in December 2015 was to get rid of restrictions on the purchase of foreign currency and the free flow of capital.

But his push to open the economy didn’t usher in a new wave of investment. Conditions have since spiraled.

So the new restrictions on capital “ended up being inevitable,” said Martín Kalos, chief economist of Elypsis, a local economic consultant organization. “Macri needed to take drastic and pragmatic measures for the crisis not to continue and worsen from here to December.”

On Monday the new restrictions at least had some of the desired effect as the peso strengthened slightly.

Banco Galicia on Corrientes Avenue in Buenos Aires was busier than normal on Monday.

“I was surprised at how things were relatively calm,” said Walter Gastrell, a 78-year-old retiree, who went to the bank to see what the reaction would be to the currency restrictions. “With all the experience we’ve had with crises, this feels like history repeating itself.”

Mr. Gastrell said he was currently debating whether to take his money out of the bank, fearing there may come a point when the government would limit withdrawals, as has happened before in Argentina.

The value of the peso has plunged around 25 percent since the primary amid a broad sell-off of Argentine assets and debt. The Central Bank has also been hemorrhaging reserves as it has tried to shore up the peso.

Speaking in a television interview Sunday night, Hernán Lacunza, the economy minister, made clear the new measures were taken to prevent the crisis from worsening.

Under the restrictions, which were unveiled on Sunday, Argentines are limited to buying no more than $10,000 a month in foreign currency while corporations require authorization to buy any foreign currency that is not for international trade.

Companies must also repatriate earnings from foreign sales within five business days.

The government “considered it necessary to adopt a series of extraordinary measures aimed at assuring the normal functioning of the economy, sustain the level of activity and employment and to protect consumers,” said the official announcement of the new controls.

“Capital controls are not ideal, but they are necessary if you want to put the brakes on the foreign exchange rate,” said Marina Dal Poggetto, executive director at EcoGo, an economic consultant group in Buenos Aires.

The key to know whether the measures are working will come over the next few days when data will show whether bank withdrawals that had been accelerating since the primary slow down, Ms. Dal Poggetto said.

Although Mr. Fernández has been highly critical of Mr. Macri’s running of the economy and the $57 billion line of credit he sealed last year with the International Monetary Fund, he has yet to detail what he would do to turn around the economy.

The new restrictions came mere days after Argentina said it would seek to defer payments on $101 billion of debt amid rising fears that the country may eventually end up defaulting on its debt. Argentina has defaulted on its sovereign debt eight times since it obtained independence from Spain in 1816.

Memories of default made Argentines worry about their deposits in recent weeks as friends exchanged text messages about the need to withdraw cash. Rumors of impending restrictions on withdrawals have so far failed to materialize though.

Sandra Menéndez, a 54-year-old accountant, said there were more people than normal at the branch of the Santander bank she had just visited.

“There were a lot of people last week as well,” she said, describing it as “the Argentine psychosis” to always seek refuge in the United States dollar at times of economic uncertainty.

Ms. Menéndez lost “the equivalent of a small apartment” in savings during the 2001 crisis, when Argentina defaulted on some $100 billion in debt amid a spectacular economic collapse. But for now, she continues to have faith in the financial system.

Some are bracing for more pain.

“The situation can definitely get worse,” said Valeria Armesto, a 40-year-old photographer who was leaving Banco Galicia with her two children, aged 6 and 8. “You never know with this government.”

A version of this article appears in print on , Section A, Page 8 of the New York edition with the headline: Argentina Races to Curb Financial Crisis. Order Reprints | Today’s Paper | Subscribe
“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
Water is a growing source of global conflict. Here’s what we need to do
« Reply #3911 on: September 11, 2019, 05:16:27 PM »
Water is a growing source of global conflict. Here’s what we need to do


In 2017, water was a major factor in conflicts spanning 45 countries - including Syria Image: REUTERS/Bassam Khabieh

The most intensive drought ever recorded in Syria lasted from 2006 to 2011. Water scarcity hit households, businesses and infrastructure, while in the countryside crops failed, livestock died, and entire families moved to the country’s cities. The subsequent eruption of civil war in 2011 led to as many as half a million deaths, as well as massive migration flows to neighbouring countries and beyond, and untold misery. Syria’s war has been a tragic illustration of the central, driving role that water insecurity can play in instability and conflict.

This is no surprise. In 2017 alone, water was a major factor in conflict in at least 45 countries, including Syria. Its importance as a resource means that water-related insecurity can easily exacerbate tensions and friction within and between countries. It can be weaponized; nefarious actors can gain control of, destroy, or redirect access to water to meet their objectives by targeting infrastructure and supplies. Advancements in cyber attacks on critical infrastructure raise further concerns as to the security of water systems.

The World Economic Forum’s Global Risk Report (GRR) has listed water crises among the top-five risks in terms of impact for eight consecutive years. In the most recent version of the report, it remains nested among a cluster of other risks that are rated as having both a very high likelihood and a very high impact. These include extreme weather events, natural disasters, the failure of climate change adaptation and mitigation, man-made environmental disasters, biodiversity loss and ecosystem collapse, interstate conflict and large scale-involuntary migration.

These risks are increasingly interconnected. Failure to mitigate climate change could lead to more extreme weather events, ecosystem collapse and a greater likelihood of man-made environmental disasters. All of these can exacerbate food and water insecurity, which in turn can lead to human deprivation, and could make these and other risks like migration and conflict more likely in a negative feedback loop. Around two thirds of the world’s population, or 4 billion people, currently live without sufficient access to fresh water for at least one month of the year.

Further complicating the picture is the reality that securing water for food and economic activity will only become more difficult over time. As economies develop, their water consumption patterns shift and overall demand rises dramatically to meet the needs of food production, thirsty manufacturing and other industries, thermal power plants and households. However, water supplies are often damaged by poor management, pollution and over-consumption, in addition to supply-side reductions due to climate change impacts and the ecosystem degradation mentioned above.

Many of these drivers of insecurity can be seen in the Inner Niger Delta area of Mali, a marshy wetlands along a stretch of the Niger river. Disruptions to the Delta’s waters, for instance through the construction of two upstream dams, risk destroying fragile ecosystems and further destabilizing the entire region. Altering downstream flows can jeopardize traditional economic activities that underpin the viability of Delta fishing villages, destroying livelihoods and exacerbating social tensions such as intergenerational friction.

Combined with reductions in available farmland associated with rising temperatures and desertification, such environmental degradation risks further fuelling mass migration to the Malian capital Bamako and Europe. The journey is not a safe one, with criminalised trafficking routes that pass nearby between the West African coast and the Sahara. The history of radicalization in the region by extremist groups that have established themselves in northern Mali further illustrates the vulnerabilities facing the displaced and disenfranchised. People whose access to water is limited risk becoming increasingly marginalized, and a target for recruitment by radical groups. Water is critical to the region’s security.

The Inner Niger Delta illustrates the critical role that water insecurity can play in exacerbating other risks, and the necessity of holistic policy approaches. Unfortunately, water insecurity is not yet taken seriously enough by all actors, despite its central role in our economies and in human lives and livelihoods. In most scenarios, the true security threat caused by water insecurity is not a ‘water war’, but rather in its secondary impact on associated human security, that which can then exacerbate local, regional and international security threats.

It can impede or reverse economic development, and prevent countries from playing their art in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. It can also affect the private sector, for instance by affecting critical parts of complex supply chains. Robust solutions to the water security challenge are critical for everybody from public policymakers and businesses to the wider public and the international community. A new generation of public-private partnerships can be part of the solution to such complex and interrelated risks, responding with urgency and innovation to manage the ‘less for more’ challenge of reduced supply and increased demand.

Advances in technology can play an important role in this new era of collaboration. Real-time data is already being used to generate insights about the interplay of risk factors, allowing the development of sophisticated early-warning tools. The Water, Peace and Security Partnership partnership, for instance, crunches vast amounts of data, using machine-learning and other technologies to identify patterns that indicate the high risk of a conflict situation developing. It does not simply flash a warning light, but points to the factors that need to be addressed through capacity-building and stakeholder engagement to mitigate any potential conflict.

The tool, presented to the UN’s Security Council in 2018, aims to build cohesion for collective action among diplomats, defence analysts, development and humanitarian experts and environmental scientists. Another partnership, Digital Earth Africa, is developing an open-access platform of analysis-ready geospatial data for public use that will enable African nations to track environmental changes across the continent in unprecedented detail, including flooding, droughts, soil and coastal erosion, agriculture, forest and land-use change, water availability and quality, and changes to human settlements.

Such insights can help governments, businesses and communities better understand and address the interconnected web of environmental risks, in particular the impacts of climate change. From variations in rainfall patterns to extended periods of extreme weather events, building resilience across agricultural, industrial and domestic water supplies is a key priority for increasing water security.

The complex challenges and impacts of water crises will certainly make it difficult to shift from the top of future global risk lists. But real progress can be made, especially through cross-sectoral partnerships and platforms that can engage with such complexity. The 2030 Water Resources Group, which works across a network of more than 600 partners to tackle the water supply-demand gap in 14 different geographies, is a promising blueprint for effective public-private cooperation.

Access to better data can bolster such collaborations and lead to more effective solutions, for instance through mapping water risk, and generating greater understanding of how physical water shortages affect societal tensions, political disruptions and cross-border migration. These are just a few examples of how the world is already developing the types of ‘next generation’ insights, tools and partnerships needed to tackle water insecurity. But what the Global Risk Report makes clear is that any solution needs to be underpinned by an increased awareness of the scale and interconnectedness of the water security challenge before us.

“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
U.S. HAS SPENT SIX TRILLION DOLLARS ON WARS THAT KILLED HALF A MILLION PEOPLE
« Reply #3912 on: September 11, 2019, 05:33:51 PM »
U.S. HAS SPENT SIX TRILLION DOLLARS ON WARS THAT KILLED HALF A MILLION PEOPLE SINCE 9/11, REPORT SAYS

The United States has spent nearly $6 trillion on wars that directly contributed to the deaths of around 500,000 peoplesince the 9/11 attacks of 2001.

Brown University's Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs published its annual "Costs of War" report Wednesday, taking into consideration the Pentagon's spending andits Overseas Contingency Operations account, as well as "war-related spending by the Department of State, past and obligated spending for war veterans' care, interest on the debt incurred to pay for the wars, and the prevention of and response to terrorism by the Department of Homeland Security."

The final count revealed, "The United States has appropriated and is obligated to spend an estimated $5.9 trillion (in current dollars) on the war on terror through Fiscal Year 2019, including direct war and war-related spending and obligations for future spending on post 9/11 war veterans."

"In sum, high costs in war and war-related spending pose a national security concern because they are unsustainable," the report concluded. "The public would be better served by increased transparency and by the development of a comprehensive strategy to end the wars and deal with other urgent national security priorities."

4863570
U.S. Marines with Weapons Company, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, attached to Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force, Crisis Response-Central Command fire 120-millimeter mortars in support of coalition efforts to defeat the Islamic State militant group at an undisclosed location in Syria, on September 10. CORPORAL GABINO PEREZ/U.S. MARINE CORPS/DEFENSE DEPARTMENT

The U.S. embarked on a global war on terror following the 9/11 attacks that killed nearly 3,000 and were orchestrated by Islamist militant group Al-Qaeda. Weeks later, the U.S. led an invasion of Afghanistan, which at the time was controlled by Al-Qaeda ally the Taliban. In March 2003, Washington overthrew Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, accusing him of developing weapons of mass destruction and harboring U.S.-designated terrorist organizations.

Despite initial quick victories there, the U.S. military has been plagued by ongoing insurgencies these two countries and expanded counterterrorism operations across the region, including Libya, Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen. In 2014, the U.S. gathered an international coalition to face the Islamic State militant group (ISIS), which arose out of a post-invasion Sunni Muslim insurgency in Iraq and spread to neighboring Syria and beyond.

Wednesday's report found that the "US military is conducting counterterror activities in 76 countries, or about 39 percent of the world's nations, vastly expanding [its mission] across the globe." In addition, these operations "have been accompanied by violations of human rights and civil liberties, in the US and abroad."

Overall, researchers estimated that "between 480,000 and 507,000 people have been killed in the United States' post-9/11 wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan." This toll "does not include the more than 500,000 deaths from the war in Syria, raging since 2011" when a West-backed rebel and jihadi uprising challenged the government, an ally of Russia and Iran. That same year, the U.S.-led NATO Western military alliance intervened in Libya and helped insurgents overthrowlongtime leader Muammar el-Qaddafi, leaving the nation in an ongoing state of civil war.

20181115_cost_war_terror_newsweek_720
A chart details the financial and human cost of the "War on Terror" since the deadly events of September 11, 2001. The toll of deaths may be much higher and is also compounded by hundreds of thousands killed by the side effects of such conflicts.WATSON INSTITUTE FOR INTERNATIONAL AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS/BROWN UNIVERSITY/STATISTA/NEWSWEEK

The combined human cost for the U.S. throughout its actions in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan was 6,951 troops, 21 civilians and 7,820 contractors.

"While we often know how many US soldiers die, most other numbers are to a degree uncertain. Indeed, we may never know the total direct death toll in these wars. For example, tens of thousands of civilians may have died in retaking Mosul and other cities from ISIS but their bodies have likely not been recovered," the report noted.

"In addition, this tally does not include 'indirect deaths.' Indirect harm occurs when wars' destruction leads to long term, 'indirect,' consequences for people's health in war zones, for example because of loss of access to food, water, health facilities, electricity or other infrastructure," it added.

n February, President Donald Trump estimated that "we have spent $7 trillion in the Middle East," saying "what a mistake" it was. Weeks later, he reportedly told his military advisers to prepare a plan to withdraw from Syria as the war against ISIS entered its final phases, though senior Washington officials have since expanded the U.S. mission— considered illegal by the Syrian government and its allies—to include countering Iran and its allies.

“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

Offline RE

  • Administrator
  • Chief Cook & Bottlewasher
  • *****
  • Posts: 39390
    • View Profile
Re: U.S. HAS SPENT SIX TRILLION DOLLARS ON WARS THAT KILLED HALF A MILLION PEOPLE
« Reply #3913 on: September 11, 2019, 09:18:28 PM »
U.S. HAS SPENT SIX TRILLION DOLLARS ON WARS THAT KILLED HALF A MILLION PEOPLE SINCE 9/11, REPORT SAYS

That works out to 6,000,000,000,000/500,000 = $12,000,000/Dead Person.

Very Expensive!  This from the same folks who pay $500K for a toilet of course.  ::)

RE

Save As Many As You Can

Online Surly1

  • Administrator
  • Master Chef
  • *****
  • Posts: 16653
    • View Profile
    • Doomstead Diner
Re: U.S. HAS SPENT SIX TRILLION DOLLARS ON WARS THAT KILLED HALF A MILLION PEOPLE
« Reply #3914 on: September 12, 2019, 02:32:11 AM »
U.S. HAS SPENT SIX TRILLION DOLLARS ON WARS THAT KILLED HALF A MILLION PEOPLE SINCE 9/11, REPORT SAYS

That works out to 6,000,000,000,000/500,000 = $12,000,000/Dead Person.

Very Expensive!  This from the same folks who pay $500K for a toilet of course.  ::)

RE

Sounds about right.

OTOH, a handful of the Very Best People got paid handsomely for supplying Our Boys in Uniform.
“The old world is dying, and the New World struggles to be born: now is the time of monsters.”

 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
73 Replies
27004 Views
Last post March 02, 2019, 12:54:20 PM
by azozeo
0 Replies
761 Views
Last post July 01, 2018, 08:07:18 PM
by Palloy2
0 Replies
461 Views
Last post August 05, 2019, 03:51:00 AM
by RE