My teacher told me not to worry about my spelling, because in the future everything will have AutoCorrect. And for that I am eternally grapefruit.
Big Bucks for Russian Oil? Just Say Nyet.
A cap on the price of Russian oil will restrict Russia's revenues for its "illegal war in Ukraine", the US says.
The cap, approved by Western allies on Friday, is aimed at stopping countries paying more than $60 (£48) for a barrel of seaborne Russian crude oil.
The measure - due to come into force on Monday - intensifies Western pressure on Russia over the invasion.
Ukraine said the Western-proposed cap should be halved. Russia said it would not supply to countries enforcing it.
The price cap was put forward in September by the G7 group of industrialised nations (the US, Canada, the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the EU) in a bid to hit Moscow's ability to finance the war in Ukraine.
In a joint statement, the G7, the European Union and Australia said the decision was taken to "prevent Russia from profiting from its war of aggression against Ukraine".
A crocodile breeding centre in India is in the process of shifting 1,000 crocodiles to a zoo located some 1,931km (1,200 miles) away - and owned by billionaire Mukesh Ambani.
Last year India's zoo regulator approved the transfer of mugger crocodiles from Madras Crocodile Bank Trust in the southern state of Tamil Nadu to Greens Zoological Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre in the western state of Gujarat. About 300 crocodiles have been relocated to Gujarat so far.
Officials of the 8.5-acre breeding centre said the crocodiles were being relocated as overcrowding in their original home was leading to fights.
"Because of overpopulation at the bank, hundreds of crocodile eggs are destroyed every year," says Nikhil Whitaker, curator of the centre in Chennai city. "The decision to shift the crocodiles was taken to give them a better space to live in," he adds.
The Indians sharing their villages with crocodiles
Over the years, the bank has been sending its crocodiles to protected areas and zoos across India. However, this is the first time that such a large number of crocodiles are being shifted.
The 425-acre, three-year-old zoo in Gujarat's Jamnagar city has said in its latest annual report that the crocodiles "will be given adequate space, food and care".
The breeding centre in Chennai was started in 1976 for conserving mainly three native species of crocodiles - muggers, saltwater crocodiles and gharials.
It initially had around 40 crocodiles, and the goal was to protect them so that they could multiply and their populations could be released into the wild to restock their natural habitats.
I Wouldn't Want a Bunch of Crocodiles Released Anywhere Near Me
The Bad Old Days. Getting Nostalgic Over Mass Murder
Recent years have seen a resurgence in nostalgia for the British empire. High-profile books such as Niall Ferguson’s Empire: How Britain Made the Modern World, and Bruce Gilley’s The Last Imperialist, have claimed that British colonialism brought prosperity and development to India and other colonies. Two years ago, a YouGov poll found that 32 percent of people in Britain are actively proud of the nation’s colonial history.
This rosy picture of colonialism conflicts dramatically with the historical record. According to research by the economic historian Robert C Allen, extreme poverty in India increased under British rule, from 23 percent in 1810 to more than 50 percent in the mid-20th century. Real wages declined during the British colonial period, reaching a nadir in the 19th century, while famines became more frequent and more deadly. Far from benefitting the Indian people, colonialism was a human tragedy with few parallels in recorded history.
Experts agree that the period from 1880 to 1920 – the height of Britain’s imperial power – was particularly devastating for India. Comprehensive population censuses carried out by the colonial regime beginning in the 1880s reveal that the death rate increased considerably during this period, from 37.2 deaths per 1,000 people in the 1880s to 44.2 in the 1910s. Life expectancy declined from 26.7 years to 21.9 years.
In a recent paper in the journal World Development, we used census data to estimate the number of people killed by British imperial policies during these four brutal decades. Robust data on mortality rates in India only exists from the 1880s. If we use this as the baseline for “normal” mortality, we find that some 50 million excess deaths occurred under the aegis of British colonialism during the period from 1891 to 1920.
Fifty million deaths is a staggering figure, and yet this is a conservative estimate. Data on real wages indicates that by 1880, living standards in colonial India had already declined dramatically from their previous levels. Allen and other scholars argue that prior to colonialism, Indian living standards may have been “on a par with the developing parts of Western Europe.” We do not know for sure what India’s pre-colonial mortality rate was, but if we assume it was similar to that of England in the 16th and 17th centuries (27.18 deaths per 1,000 people), we find that 165 million excess deaths occurred in India during the period from 1881 to 1920.
Moving the Troops Around in Ukraine. What's It All Mean? Beats Me.
Two movements in other areas worth noting this morning:
First, there continue to be reports of Russia relocating troops and collaborators out of areas on the eastern (left) bank of the Dnipro River in Kherson oblast. There have been reports of this in both Nova Kakhovka and in Oleshky directly across the river from the city of Kherson. Russia may be responding to shelling from the other side of the river, or they may simply feel that the kilometer-wide Dnipro provides enough protection that they can afford to thin their ranks in this area.
Second, Ukraine is definitely bolstering its forces in Bakhmut. Over the last few days new classes of equipment, including donated self-propelled artillery, have been moved into the area and some of the most experienced fighters from the counteroffensives appear to have been assigned to reinforce existing troops. This could be nothing more than cycling troops and equipment that have held this area for months back from the front for much deserved R & R. But it might also represent an intention to give Ukraine more flexibility for response in the area. Stay tuned.
An elderly Black woman was arrested over a $77 unpaid trash bill—and the chief of police has the caucasity to defend it.
According to reporting from CBS News-42, as Martha Louis Menefield was handcuffed and put into a patrol car, one of the arresting officers told her not to cry. “He kind of whispered it to me: ‘Don’t cry,’” she said.
When the two officers initially approached Menefield, she told WIAT she thought they were joking when they said they were there to arrest her. She swore she’d paid the $77.80 bill.
But the officers weren’t joking, and they placed the elderly woman in handcuffs as she quietly began to cry.
“How would you feel if they came and arrested your grandmama?” she asked the officer. WIAT reports the officer did not respond to her question.
“I’m just happy my grandkids weren’t here to see that,” Menefield said, her voice shaking. “That would have upset them. I was so ashamed. And it’s been bothering me.”
Valley Police Chief Mike Reynolds defended his officers and released a statement on Facebook regarding Menefield’s arrest.
Reynolds wrote in part that the city had issued a citation for payment for the trash bill for three months in a row, attempted to reach Menefield by phone, and left a note on her door. When the elderly woman failed to respond and did not arrive in court about the case, a warrant for “Failure to Pay-Trash” was issued.
He adds that “Ms. Menefield was treated respectfully” by the officers and was finally released on bond.
Mr. Micawber: "Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen, nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery."
Did You Remember That Previous Gut Did These Things?
Tried to buy Greenland.
Wanted to nuke hurricanes.
Doctored a hurricane forecast map with a Sharpie.
Attempted a coup to stay in power.
Absconded with thousands of classified documents, lied about it and refused to give them back when the feds asked nicely.
Sent unidentified federal officers to Portland, Oregon, to abduct protesters and spark a conflagration that could be used as a pretense for implementing martial law.
Ordered peaceful protesters tear-gassed so he could pose for a photo-op with a Bible outside a church.
Tried to blackmail Ukraine into manufacturing dirt for his 2020 campaign.
Asked Russia for help in his 2016 campaign — and got it.
Had a weird affinity for Russian President Vladimir Putin. (Remember the Helsinki summit?)
Invited Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to an in-person meeting in the Oval Office, where he accidentally revealed top-secret intelligence.
Wanted to withdraw the U.S. from NATO.
Separated migrant parents from their children, locked the kids in cages and then failed to reunite them.
Insisted that “raking” would prevent forest fires because “you’ve got to take care of the floors. You know the floors of the forest, very important.”
Covered for Saudi Arabia after Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman ordered the gruesome murder and dismemberment of a U.S. journalist with a bone saw. (Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, owes Saudi Arabia $2 billion, and the crown prince has reportedly bragged about having Kushner “in his pocket.”)
Intervened to get Kushner top-secret clearance after he was denied over concerns about foreign influence.
Put Kushner in charge of Middle East peace.
Embraced rampant nepotism.
Touted injecting disinfectant as a COVID-19 cure.
Touted ultraviolet light as a COVID-19 cure.
Touted hydroxychloroquine as a COVID-19 cure.
Touted ivermectin as a COVID-19 cure.
Told people not to wear face masks to cut down the spread of COVID-19, even though they work.
Actively discouraged COVID-19 testing.
Refused to send federal aid to New York City amid the first COVID-19 wave because the virus was hitting Democratic-voting states hardest.
“Jokingly” said on multiple occasions that he deserved to be president for more than two terms.
Thought climate change was a Chinese hoax.
Built an incomplete border wall that doesn’t work, wasn’t needed and wasn’t paid for by Mexico.
Started a trade war with China that mainly hurt U.S. consumers.
Threw food when angry.
Saw no problem with his vice president potentially being hanged by a violent mob he’d summoned and sent to the U.S. Capitol to disrupt the peaceful transition of power.
Stared directly at the sun.
Started his presidency with an easily disproved lie about the crowd size at his inauguration.
Thought people needed an ID to buy cereal.
Fired James Comey as FBI director because he didn’t like the bureau investigating Russian meddling in the 2016 election. (Later, it was revealed that Trump’s campaign manager gave detailed internal polling data to a Russian intelligence agent.)
Was a “fucking moron,” according to Rex Tillerson, his secretary of state.
Fired the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s China-based pandemic response team — and then when a pandemic happened years later, said, “I don’t take responsibility at all” for COVID-19.
Repeatedly embraced racism.
Thought repeating “person, woman, man, camera, TV” would assure Americans of his mental stability.
Tweeted literal gibberish — a lot.
Lied all the time. (And still does.)
Openly embraced and amplified QAnon conspiracy theories.
Got impeached twice.
Passed huge tax cuts for wealthy corporations ― and massively grew the national debt.
Flip-flopped on whether the White House had ordered the USS John McCain be hidden so he wouldn’t get mad. (It did.)
Called American military members who died in the line of duty “losers” and “suckers.”
Claimed to have bone spurs to get out of military service.
Binge-watched Fox News when he should have been working.
Played so, so much golf.
Raked in cash from foreign interests at his Washington hotel in an operation sometimes described as the “epicenter” of a corrupt presidency.
Held a rally that may have led to the death of Herman Cain.
Allegedly directed his lawyer to commit campaign fraud to cover up that Trump cheated on his wife after she had recently given birth.
Was accused of sexual misconduct by more than two dozen women.
Dismissed any bad news about himself as “fake.”
Lied about voluntarily turning over his tax returns.
Ate well-done steak — with ketchup.
Described white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia, as “very fine people.”
Grossly abused the presidential pardon on his way out the door.
Used private communication services extensively after arguing that Hillary Clinton should be jailed for having a private email server.
Refused to release White House visitor logs.
Went to Puerto Rico and threw paper towels at people desperate for actual hurricane aid.
Discouraged exercise because he believes bodies are like batteries, with a finite amount of energy. Wow! What a Record!
Hoe to Go From the Hospital Directly to Jail. Do Not Pass Go.
A 72-year-old woman has been arrested after she allegedly switched off a hospital roommate’s ventilator - twice - because she was annoyed by the sound it made, authorities in Germany said Thursday.
The woman was jailed on suspicion of attempted manslaughter following the incident at a hospital in the southwestern city of Mannheim on Tuesday evening.
Police and prosecutors said in a statement that the suspect is alleged to have switched off a 79-year-old woman’s ventilator and, despite then being told by staff that it was vital for the patient, switched it off again later in the evening.
The older patient had to be revived and, while her life is not in danger, still requires intensive care, authorities said.
I Suspect Jail Food Makes Hospital Food Look Damned Good.
A Georgia man was arrested for allegedly firing a gun through his front door at a teenager volunteering for Sen. Raphael Warnock's campaign, striking the boy in the leg, police said.
The incident occurred Thursday around 5:30 p.m. in Savannah, while the 15-year-old was campaigning for Warnock's upcoming runoff election, police said.
The suspect -- who was "quickly identified" as 42-year-old Jimmy Paiz -- allegedly fired a shot through the closed front door, striking the teen, police said. The boy was transported to a local hospital and treated for non-life-threatening injuries.
"At this point, there is no indication the shooting was politically motivated," the Savannah Police Department said in a statement Friday.
A second Indiana judge on Friday blocked the state from enforcing its law banning most abortions after Jewish, Muslim and other non-Christian women challenged it in a lawsuit.
Marion County Superior Court Judge Heather Welch issued a preliminary injunction against the Republican-backed law, which prohibits abortions with limited exceptions for rape, incest, lethal fetal abnormalities or a serious health risk to the mother. The plaintiffs have argued that the measure infringes on religious freedom protected by another state law.
The law had already been on hold, as another judge in September blocked Indiana from enforcing it while Planned Parenthood and other healthcare providers challenge it in court.
Republicans must “quit underestimating” Joe Biden, the former US House speaker Newt Gingrich said, because the president is winning the fight.
Writing on his own website, Gingrich said: “Conservatives’ hostility to the Biden administration on our terms tends to blind us to just how effective Biden has been on his terms.
“… We dislike Biden so much, we pettily focus on his speaking difficulties, sometimes strange behavior, clear lapses of memory and other personal flaws. Our aversion to him and his policies makes us underestimate him and the Democrats.”
Gingrich’s words pleased the White House – Ron Klain, Joe Biden’s chief of staff, tweeted a link with the message: “You don’t have to take my word for it, any more.”
The column also caused consternation among Washington commentators, in part because, as Axios put it, “a leader of the GOP’s ’90s-era New Right [is] arguing that Joe Biden is not just a winner – but a role model”.
Gingrich has been a fierce partisan warrior ever since he entered Congress, in 1979, then as speaker led the charge against Bill Clinton, culminating in a failed attempt to remove the Democrat via impeachment. In the conclusion to his column, he used the term “Defeat Big Government Socialism” – a version of the title of his latest book.
Gingrich told Axios: “I was thinking about football and the clarity of winning and losing. It hit me that, measured by his goals, Biden has been much more successful than we have been willing to credit.”
Biden recently turned 80. He has said he will use the Christmas holiday to decide if he will run for re-election.
Gingrich, 79, compared Biden to Dwight Eisenhower and Ronald Reagan, the latter previously the oldest president ever in office, having been 77 when he left the White House in 1989.
Reagan and Eisenhower, Gingrich said, “preferred to be underestimated” and “wanted people to think of them as pleasant – but not dangerous”, and thereby enjoyed great success.