Archives Revue de presse - 2019
No other Congress has ever looked like this
Clare Foran and Phil Mattingl (CNN, 04/01/2019)
The 116th class of Congress broke barriers before its members even set foot in Washington.
One example: Rep. Ilhan Omar, a Minnesota Democrat and the first Somali-American member of Congress, noted the history of her election on Twitter on Wednesday night.
"23 years ago, from a refugee camp in Kenya, my father and I arrived at an airport in Washington DC," she tweeted, along with a photo of her and her father smiling with suitcases. "Today, we return to that same airport on the eve of my swearing in as the first Somali-American in Congress."
In the First Forty-Eight Hours of the New Congress, a Mixed Triumph for Nancy Pelosi
Osita Nwanevu (The New Yorker, 06/01/2019)
When Nancy Pelosi retook the House Speaker’s gavel, on Thursday, there were few remnants of the quashed mutiny among the Democratic ranks in the fall. Representatives even added flourishes to their votes for Pelosi.
“Standing on the shoulders of the women who marched one hundred years ago for me to have the right to vote, I cast my vote for Nancy Pelosi,” Brenda Lawrence, of Michigan, said.
“Born and raised in Baltimore, Nancy D’Alesandro Pelosi!” Dutch Ruppersberger, from Maryland, yelled.
Liberal Freshmen Are Shaking the Capitol Just Days Into the New Congress
Catie Edmondson, Emily Cochrane and Lisa Friedman (The New York Times, 06/01/2019)
It took less than 48 hours into the new Congress for some of the most liberal freshmen of the now Democratic-controlled House to upend Capitol Hill — and they see no reason to slow down.
They have pressed for an ambitious and costly climate change proposal that would eliminate the use of fossil fuels in 12 years and provide a job to anyone who wants one. After conservatives tried to embarrass Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York with old footage of her dancing, she faced them down by videotaping new footage of her dancing — outside her new congressional office.
I was the youngest woman in Congress. Here's my advice to those who have taken my place
Elise Stefanik (USA Today, 04/01/2019)
Now that the 116th Congress is sworn into office, I am proud and honored to pass along the historic distinction as the youngest woman ever elected to Congress to two dynamic, young women who surpassed my record this past election cycle: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and Rep. Abby Finkenauer, D-Iowa.
During my swearing in four years ago, I felt overwhelmed and awestruck by the outpouring of genuine encouragement and support from my colleagues. One of the most gracious things that happened to me that week was when I opened up Politico and read a column headlined “How to Be Young and Female in Congress” by former New York representative Elizabeth Holtzman, the previous youngest woman ever elected to Congress. I treasure the wise counsel that Elizabeth publicly imparted to me in that piece, and I promised myself I would do the same to the next guardian of the title “youngest woman ever.”
08 January 2019 - Cyntoia Brown Granted Clemency After Serving 15 Years for Killing Man Who Bought Her for Sex
Cyntoia Brown, sentenced to life for murder as teen, is granted clemency
Samantha Schmidt (The Washington Post, 07/01/2019)
Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam granted full clemency to Cyntoia Brown, an alleged sex trafficking victim serving a life sentence for the 2004 murder of a man who picked her up and took her to his home.
After serving 15 years in prison, Brown will be released Aug. 7 and will remain on supervised parole for 10 years, Haslam (R) announced Monday, calling it a “tragic and complex case.”
Brown, whose case drew national attention and support from celebrities including Rihanna and Kim Kardashian, was 16 years old when she committed the crime in what she described as an act of self-defense.
Cyntoia Brown Is Granted Clemency After 15 Years in Prison
Christine Hauser (The New York Times, 07/01/2019)
Gov. Bill Haslam of Tennessee granted clemency on Monday to Cyntoia Brown, commuting her life sentence for killing a man who had picked her up for sex when she was a teenage trafficking victim.
Ms. Brown, 30, will be released to supervised parole on Aug. 7, said Mr. Haslam, who will leave office later this month. She will have served 15 years in prison.
“Cyntoia Brown committed, by her own admission, a horrific crime at the age of 16,” Mr. Haslam, a Republican, said. “Yet, imposing a life sentence on a juvenile that would require her to serve at least 51 years before even being eligible for parole consideration is too harsh, especially in light of the extraordinary steps Ms. Brown has taken to rebuild her life.”
Cyntoia Brown, Sentenced to Life in Prison as a Juvenile Victim of Sex Trafficking, Will Finally Go Free
Bridget Read (Vogue, 07/01/2019)
Cyntoia Brown, a Tennessee woman who has been incarcerated since the age of 16, has been granted clemency after spending 15 years in prison for killing a man who had bought her for sex in 2004. Activists and human rights organizers rejoiced at the decision, having fought a long battle to free Brown, who was serving a life sentence and was tried as an adult despite being convicted as a minor, and one who had been sex trafficked; juvenile sentencing laws in Tennessee have since been amended. In a statement, Brown reacted to the news: “With God’s help,” Brown said, “I am committed to live the rest of my life helping others, especially young people. My hope is to help other young girls avoid ending up where I have been.”
Brown’s case has attracted attention from celebrities including Rihanna, Ashley Judd, Amy Schumer, and Kim Kardashian West (who last year advocated for the release of Alice Johnson, another woman serving life in prison) for the harsh sentence Brown received both as a teenager and as a victim of sex trafficking. Prosecutors said that Brown, now 30, shot Johnny Mitchell Allen in the head while he was sleeping, and stole money and guns from him; her defense argued that Brown was worried for her life. Brown’s case has helped spark a debate about reviewing life-without-parole sentences imposed on teens in Tennessee and about treating juvenile sex-trafficking victims as just that—victims.
Cyntoia Brown: sex trafficking victim in prison for murder granted full clemency
Associated Press (The Guardian, 07/01/2019)
The Tennessee governor, Bill Haslam, has granted clemency to a woman serving a life sentence for murder who says she was a victim of sex trafficking and who has been supported by celebrities including Rihanna and Kim Kardashian West.
The Republican governor, whose term ends in two weeks’ time, chose to show mercy to the now 30-year-old Cyntoia Brown by releasing her on 7 August this year. Brown was sentenced to life in prison for killing a man when she was 16.
She will remain on parole supervision for 10 years on the condition she does not violate any state or federal laws, holds a job and participates in regular counseling sessions.
Trump walks out of shutdown negotiations after Democrats reject wall money, calls meeting ‘total waste of time’
Erica Werner, Sean Sullivan, Mike DeBonis and Seung Min Kim (The Washington Post, 09/01/2019)
Talks between President Trump and congressional Democrats aimed at ending the partial government shutdown collapsed in acrimony and disarray Wednesday, with the president walking out of the White House meeting and calling it “a total waste of time” after Democrats rejected his demand for border-wall funding.
Furious Democrats accused Trump of slamming his hand on the table before he exited, and they said he ignored their pleas to reopen the federal government as they continue to negotiate over his border wall demands. With the shutdown nearing the three-week mark, some 800,000 workers are about to miss their first paycheck.
“He thinks maybe they could just ask their father for more money. But they can’t,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), an implicit dig at Trump’s wealthy upbringing.
Trump’s Emergency Powers Threat Could End Shutdown Crisis, but at What Cost?
Charlie Savage (The New York Times, 09/01/2019)
President Trump’s repeated threat to declare a national emergency so he can build his border wall without congressional approval has been denounced by Democrats as extreme and an overreach. But it could be the only politically realistic way out of the shutdown crisis in the nation’s capital.
“I think we might work a deal, and if we don’t, I may go that route. I have the absolute right to do national emergency if I want,” Mr. Trump told reporters on Wednesday. “My threshold will be if I can’t make a deal with people that are unreasonable.”
If the president does invoke emergency powers to circumvent Congress, it would be an extraordinary violation of constitutional norms — and establish a precedent for presidents who fail to win approval for funding a policy goal.
The government shutdown's impact so far
Daniel Barnes (ABC News, 09/01/2019)
The federal government is well into its third week of a partial shutdown, and President Donald Trump appears no closer to a deal with Democratic leaders to reopen several key agencies.
As a result, more and more government functions are faltering, and an estimated 800,000 federal employees are facing the prospect of missing their first paychecks of 2019.
With negotiations at a standstill, Trump has threatened to keep key agencies shuttered for months or even a year if Democrats don't agree to fund his desired border wall, and he is considering declaring a national emergency to try to get it done without them.
Buckle up, this government shutdown is going to break all records
Chris Cillizza (CNN, 09/01/2019)
Welcome to day 19 of the government shutdown!
As it stands, this is already the second-longest shutdown in modern political history -- and by Saturday, it will break the record currently held by the 1995-1996 shutdown showdown at 21 days.
And barring a Doug-Flutie-to-Gerard-Phelan level Hail Mary, this shutdown could well drag on for weeks -- not just days -- longer.
Trump Says He's Likely To Declare National Emergency If Congress Won't Fund Wall
Brian Naylor (NPR, 10/01/2019)
President Trump says he is willing to declare a national emergency if Democrats don't go along with his demands for $5.7 billion for a border wall.
Trump's campaign for a border wall took him to McAllen, Texas, on Thursday for a visit to a Border Patrol station and a roundtable discussion with local officials, before heading to the Rio Grande.
As he left the White House on Thursday morning, Trump said he has the "absolute right" to declare a national emergency in order to construct a border wall but said he prefers to continue efforts to make a deal with Congress. However, he said, "If we don't make a deal, I think it would be very surprising to me" to not declare an emergency.
Trump says 'the law is 100% on my side' for national emergency
Emily Birnbaum (The Hill, 10/01/2019)
President Trump during an interview on Thursday night said that the law is "100 percent on my side" when it comes to declaring a national emergency over the situation at the border.
"If we don’t make a deal with Congress, most likely I will do that," Trump told Fox News's Sean Hannity, referring to declaring a national emergency. "I would actually say I would. I can’t imagine any reason why not, because I’m allowed to do it."
"The law is 100 percent on my side," he said.
A history of Trump’s promises that Mexico would pay for the wall, which it refuses to do
Glenn Kessler (The Washington Post, 09/01/2019)
“I would build a great wall, and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me, and I’ll build them very inexpensively, I will build a great, great wall on our southern border. And I will have Mexico pay for that wall.”
— Donald Trump, in his presidential announcement speech, June 16, 2015
Who will pay for Donald Trump's border wall?
(The Guardian, 11/01/2019)
Donald Trump has visited the southern US border in Texas after walking out of talks to resolve one of the country’s longest government shutdowns in history. The president has refused to authorise the release of funds to pay up to 800,000 government workers until he secures funding for his central campaign promise of a border wall.
The Guardian’s US political correspondent, Lauren Gambino, joins Anushka Asthana to discuss the paralysis in the US government and why the president is so fixated on building his wall. And, as Trump tries to rally support in Texas, the Guardian’s Bryan Mealer reports that there is indeed a crisis at the border, but one largely of the president’s own making. Refugees and asylum seekers are facing appalling living conditions in detention centres struggling to cope with new arrivals.
Theresa May says no Brexit more likely than no deal
(BBC News, 14/01/2019)
Prime Minister Theresa May is making a last-ditch attempt to persuade MPs to back her Brexit deal as Tuesday's key Commons vote looms closer.
She will use a speech on Monday to warn that Parliament is more likely to block Brexit than let the UK leave without a deal.
Mrs May will add that trust in politics will suffer "catastrophic harm" if the referendum result is not implemented.
Brexit vote on Theresa May's deal: The possible outcomes and what it means for no-deal
Jack Maidmen (The Telegraph, 14/01/2019)
When MPs vote on Theresa May’s Brexit deal they are likely to fire the starting pistol on the most tumultuous three month period in recent British political history.
Nobody knows for certain where the UK will end up by March 29 but the journey starts with what happens tomorrow night.
Here is an assessment of the possible outcomes of the meaningful vote.
It’s decision time for Theresa May’s Brexit deal. What happens next?
Michael Savage (The Guardian, 13/01/2019)
The speeches will have been made; the cabinet rows put on hold. The EU will have made a last-minute attempt to appease sceptical MPs. On Tuesday evening, MPs are finally due to troop through the voting lobbies to cast their judgment on Theresa May’s much-maligned Brexit deal.
Even for the most rebellious, it will come as a long overdue moment of clarity. “The truth is, we need to decide one way or another whether or not we want the PM’s deal,” said one senior Tory rebel. “We’ve got to give a clear message about its acceptability to parliament, or otherwise, on Tuesday. I feel that anything else is a bit of a distraction.”
Downing Street insiders are adamant that the vote, which has already been delayed once to avoid a heavy defeat, will go ahead this time. Yet with the Brexit process descending into the labyrinthine world of parliamentary procedure, there is a twist or two left before MPs take the plunge. Before the key vote on Tuesday night, votes will also be held on amendments designed to reshape May’s deal – some in effect reject the agreement, even before the proper vote on it has taken place.
Jeremy Corbyn Dashes 'People's Vote' Hopes And Backs Fresh Brexit Deal
Rachel Wearmouth (The Huffington Post UK, 13/01/2019)
Jeremy Corbyn has dashed hopes he could back a so-called ‘People’s Vote’ by saying he wants a renegotiated Brexit deal.
Speaking on BBC One’s Andrew Marr Show, the Labour leader was asked what should come next if Theresa May’s deal is voted down in parliament.
He said “my own view is I would rather get a negotiated deal now” before adding that “everything” depends on Tuesday’s critical vote.
'Me Too' beats 'big dick energy' as Macquarie Dictionary's 2018 word of the year
Steph Harmon (The Guardian, 15/01/2019)
“Big dick energy”, “single-use” and “deepfake” have missed out on being named 2018’s word of the year, with Australia’s Macquarie Dictionary landing on “Me Too” for its annual honour.
The phrase, first coined by American social activist Tarana Burke in the mid-2000s, went viral in 2017 following a tweet by actor Alyssa Milano, who – in the wake of allegations against Harvey Weinstein – encouraged victims of sexual harassment or assault to share their stories in order to show the breadth of the problem.
The phrase has been added to the dictionary, where it is defined as an adjective “of or relating to the Me Too movement … [or] an accusation of sexual harassment or sexual assault”; and as a verb, which means “to accuse (someone) of having committed sexual harassment or sexual assault” – as in, “to be Me Tooed”.
'Me Too' named Macquarie Dictionary's 2018 word of the year
Mary Ward (The Sydney Morning Herald, 15/01/2019)
It is not a single word, and you probably first heard it in 2017, but – despite this – "Me Too" has been named Macquarie Dictionary’s word of the year for 2018.
The phrase beat out 15 shortlisted words for the top spot, including "deepfake", Scandinavian wellness trend "hygge" and "BDE" (that's "big dick energy", Twitter's favourite description of both Ariana Grande and Anthony Boudain).
"Me Too" was first coined by US activist Tarana Burke in 2006, who used it to create a campaign encouraging women of colour to share their stories of sexual abuse on now defunct social media network, MySpace.
Macquarie Dictionary word of the year goes to 'me too', in a year filled with digital uncertainty
Tiger Webb (ABC News, 15/012019)
Oxford Dictionaries gave us toxic. For the Collins, it was single-use. The American Dialect Society chose tender-age shelter. It's word of the year season, and the Australian votes are in.
Macquarie Dictionary, one of two Australian lexicographical entities to pick a word of the year, has revealed its overall choice for 2018's word of the year: me too, in its expanded noun and adjectival senses.
The dictionary's word of the year panel also gave honourable mentions to deepfake (a computer-generated video of an individual, typically created without consent for malicious purposes) and big dick energy (a noun denoting a highly specific sense of self-confidence).
The power of MeToo: how feminism changed the dictionary
Van Badham (The Guardian, 15/01/2019)
MeToo has received its fair recognition from Australia’s Macquarie Dictionary, becoming its word of the year.
That dictionary defines it as an adjective, describing a relation of or to “the Me Too movement … [or] an accusation of sexual harassment or sexual assault”. It also has a meaning as a verb – the action of accusing “(someone) of having committed sexual harassment or sexual assault” – as in, “he has been MeTooed”.
Although the term now denotes a movement, it was conceived in 2006 as “a kind of bat signal between survivors of sexual violence” by Tarana Burke, who used it as the name of an activist group.
May survives, but the Brexit battle resumes
Jane Merrick (CNN, 17/01/2019)
In what is now becoming a familiar sight on TV screens in homes across the UK, Theresa May walked out of the door of Downing Street late on Wednesday evening to address the nation.
Feverish speculation that she might call an early general election, having failed to win support for her Brexit plan, had been tempered earlier by the presence of the British government crest on the lectern -- a sign that she would not be making a party political statement but speaking as Prime Minister on government business.
The short statement was intended to provide reassurance to a country that seems exhausted by Brexit and shaken by uncertainty.
Brexit: Theresa May says MPs must 'work together' to deliver Brexit
(BBC News, 16/01/2019)
Theresa May has called on MPs to "put self-interest aside" and "work constructively together" to find a way forward for Brexit.
Earlier, the prime minister won a vote of no confidence by 325 to 306, as rebel Tory MPs and the DUP backed her to stay in No 10.
But just 24 hours before, both groups ensured her Brexit plan was voted down.
What are the alternatives to May's rejected Brexit deal?
Peter Walker (The Guardian, 06/01/2019)
After Tuesday night’s crushing defeat for Theresa May’s Brexit deal, there is perhaps one thing on which almost all MPs can agree: there is no obvious consensual route forward. Following are the main possibilities, the obstacles they face and an educated guess at how much support they might command. Most of them would probably involve an extension of article 50 beyond the 29 March deadline. Revoking article 50 is also possible, but unlikely without a second referendum.
Brexit: Theresa May survives confidence vote, but Brussels is in charge now
Chris Stafford (The Conversation, 16/01/2019)
Just 24 hours after suffering a historic defeat in parliament over her Brexit deal, the prime minister has survived a vote of no confidence in her government – thanks to the support of her backbench MPs. Up until this point, these same backbench MPs have been all too willing to vote against her and her Brexit deal.
The result was expected, given that a Conservative rebellion would have likely resulted in a general election that might have gone very badly for the party. Ousting the prime minister is less appealing when, instead of offering the potential for career advancement, there is a strong chance that it would instead lead to a demotion to the shadow cabinet.
With the very public plotting and scheming that has been displayed over Brexit, it is little wonder that British people have become profoundly mistrustful of their elected representatives and their motivations. What happens next is therefore crucial not only for the prime minister and the country, but also the public’s faith in the nation’s democracy.
A tribal elder and a high school junior stood face to face, and the world reacted
Michael E. Miller (The Washington Post, 20/01/2019)
The three groups that met Friday in the cold shadow of the Lincoln Memorial could hardly have been more different. They were indigenous rights activists from Michigan, Catholic schoolboys from Kentucky — some wearing Make America Great Again hats — and Hebrew Israelites from the nation’s capital.
They were Native American, Caucasian and African American; old, young and middle-aged.
And there, beneath the fallen president’s promise to work “with malice toward none, with charity for all,” they came together in an incident that would echo nationwide for its ugliness.
Nathan Phillips Says He Was Playing Peacemaker When MAGA Students Taunted Him
Peter Wade (Rolling Stone, 20/01/2019)
Nathan Phillips, a Vietnam veteran and member of the Omaha Nation who was visiting Washington, D.C., to attend the Indigenous Peoples March, got into a confrontation with a group of white, male teenagers attending the March for Life protest against abortion rights happening that same day. Video of the incident quickly went viral, and the teenagers from Covington Catholic High School, an all-male school in Kentucky, were harshly criticized.
The video is a disturbing and eerie echo of angry white mobs yelling at Black Americans for protesting Jim Crow-era discrimination, but now streaming in full color on social media in the year 2019.
We have a long history of disrespecting Native Americans and denying their humanity
Ezra Rosser (The Hill, 20/01/2019)
The viral video of a group of teenage boys appearing to taunt Nathan Phillips, a Native American veteran, as he played a drum during the Indigenous Peoples March is another reminder of the racism and intolerance that plague the country.
Some observers and some news accounts now insist that the video was edited, that a longer version shows a different version of the episode. Yet, if the original version of events proves to be true, it will be a chilling continuation of the long history of disrespecting Indians and denying them their basic rights.
Since many of the boys shown in the video wore “Make American Great Again” caps, it is not surprising that President Trump is receiving much of the blame for their apparent behavior.
New Video Complicates Uproar Over Incident Between Student And Native American Man
Nick Visser (The Huffington Post, 21/01/2019)
More video emerged on Sunday of the viral moment between a Native American man and a student wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat, complicating an incident that has already been cast as yet another parable of the nation’s heavily divided politics and growing racial tension.
More than an hour of footage shot before the encounter was uploaded on YouTube on Sunday, and appeared to show a confrontation between a large group of Catholic students instigated by black men who identified themselves as Hebrew Israelites. In the clip, the men can be heard shouting at anyone on scene at the Lincoln Memorial, including other black visitors and Native Americans.
The camera then turns to the students, who were in Washington for an anti-abortion rally, some of whom were wearing hats with President Donald Trump’s campaign slogan.
Spice Girls T-shirts sold to raise money for Comic Relief 'made in factory paying staff 35p an hour'
Sophie Williams (Evening Standard, 21/01/2019)
Spice Girls T-shirts sold to raise money for a Comic Reliefcampaign were made in a factory where workers are paid 35p an hour, according to reports.
The garments aim to raise money for the charity’s “gender justice” campaign and are emblazoned with the phrase #Iwannabeaspicegirl.
The T-shirts cost £19.40 with 100 per cent of the proceeds go towards the campaign, which helps champion equality for women.
The Spice Girls Are “Shocked And Appalled” By Gender Justice T-Shirt Reports
Alice Newbold (Vogue, 21/01/2019)
The Spice Girls have released a statement declaring that the band is “deeply shocked and appalled” by investigative reports which found that its Comic Relief “gender justice” T-shirts were made in a Bangladesh factory where women earn the equivalent of 35p an hour.
The charity tees, which bear the message “#IWannaBeASpiceGirl”, were produced by mostly female machinists who told The Guardian that they were forced to work up to 16 hours a day and were verbally abused and harassed for not hitting targets. Comic Relief is due to receive £11.60 from the sales of each £19.40 T-shirt for its Power Up initiative, which is part of its Gender Justice campaign, but is yet to receive any money from the garments sold during a three-week period last year.
'Inhuman conditions': life in factory making Spice Girls T-shirts
Simon Murphy (The Guardian, 20/01/2019)
Salma has never even heard of the Spice Girls. Her life, hunched over a sewing machine for up to 16 hours a day, is a world away from the luxuries enjoyed by the millionaire pop band.
But while neither knows it, Salma and the Spice Girls are connected. The factory where she has worked for more than five years, off a narrow, winding road three hours’ drive from Dhaka, is where charity T-shirts designed by the group were made.
The £19.40 garments were produced on behalf of the Spice Girls and then sold to raise money for a Comic Relief campaign intended to “champion equality for women”, which pointed out how “women earn less”. It is a reality Salma knows only too well.
Bangladesh factory workers making Spice Girls 'gender justice' T-shirts earn $2 a day
Vita Molyneux (Newshub, 21/01/2019)
Factory workers in Bangladesh say they are suffering inhumane working conditions sewing charity T-shirts for the Spice Girls.
The shirts retail for NZ$37, and according to the website selling them, all proceeds support charities that are "trying to tackle women's issues via Comic Relief's Gender Justice initiative".
A worker for Interstoff Apparel, the company that manufactures the shirts, says employees work 16-hour days with no sick leave, no breaks and suffer verbal abuse from their management.
Donald Trump delays State of the Union Address after Nancy Pelosi bars him from House chamber
Nick Allen (The Telegraph, 24/01/2019)
Donald Trump said in a late night Tweet on Wednesday that he would delay a State of the Union address until the government shutdown was over.
The move came in response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's move to bar him from delivering the annual presidential address in its traditional location, the chamber of the House of Representatives.
Nancy Pelosi, the Democrat Speaker of the House, announced the US president was not welcome for the planned major speech on Jan 29.
Trump says he won't deliver State of the Union address until shutdown is over
Sabrina Siddiqui (The Guardian, 24/01/2019)
Donald Trump has said he will wait until the government shutdown is over before giving his State of the Union address because nowhere could compete with the “history and tradition” of the House chamber.
House speaker Nancy Pelosi told the president earlier on Wednesday that she would block him from delivering the speech in the House chamber until the government has reopened.
It led to speculation that Trump could instead make his address from the Oval Office, the Senate chamber or even the Mexican border.
A Contest of Wills, and a Way Out
The Editorial Board (The New York Times, 23/01/2019)
It is beyond time for this pernicious shutdown to end. With each passing day, more Americans are feeling the pinch of having the federal government thrown into chaos by a political standoff over President Trump’s demand for a wall on the southern border.
The continuing battle increasingly resembles an episode of “Real Housewives,” with the attendant name-calling and hair-pulling. On Jan. 16, the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, sent Mr. Trump a letter suggesting that he postpone his State of the Union address until the government reopened. The following day, Mr. Trump hit back, withdrawing military support for a congressional delegation that Ms. Pelosi was preparing to lead to Afghanistan.
Come Saturday, Mr. Trump introduced a new immigration plan that he touted as a grand compromise but that, in reality, included enough poison pills to gag all but fervent hard-liners. On Wednesday, he followed up with a letter to Ms. Pelosi, declaring his intention to deliver his big speech as planned in the House chamber, shutdown or no. The speaker promptly announced that she would not allow the president to speak on the House floor for the duration of the shutdown.
The Trump-Pelosi State of the Union letter duel, annotated
Philip Bump (The Washington Post, 23/01/2019)
A president’s State of the Union address is not generally something that spawns an ongoing political fight. That the president update Congress on the state of the union is written into the Constitution, so it can’t be avoided. In recent decades, though, that update has become a speech, televised live, centered on the president’s policy and accompanied by various expected bits of pageantry: Whom will the president invite? Which random Cabinet member has to go hide on the off chance that the entire Capitol falls into a volcano? That sort of thing.
In 2019, the State of the Union has spawned the first real feud between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and President Trump (excluding the shutdown, which began before she took the gavel). After inviting Trump, Pelosi uninvited him, citing the shutdown, now more than a month old. Trump first replied by taking away Pelosi’s ability to travel overseas and then, Wednesday, said he was going to show up to give his speech next Tuesday anyway.
There’s just one problem: Without the House’s approval — which is to say Pelosi’s — he can’t.
Queen makes plea for Britons to find 'common ground'
(BBC News, 25/01/2019)
The Queen has urged people to find "common ground" and to respect "different points of view".
Commentators say the remarks will be seen as referring to the Brexit debate, with MPs due to vote on the PM's deal for leaving the EU again next week.
MPs rejected the deal last week but the UK will leave on 29 March with no deal unless they can agree on a way forward.
Queen's speech calling for 'common ground' seen as Brexit allusion
Caroline Davies (The Guardian, 24/01/2019)
The Queen has called for “common ground” and “never losing sight of the bigger picture” in a speech to mark the centenary of the Sandringham Women’s Institute (WI), which is likely to be interpreted as a veiled reference to the toxic debate around Brexit.
She spoke of the virtues of “respecting” the other person’s point of view, as parliament remains deeply divided over the issue of Britain leaving the EU.
The Queen, who as head of state constitutionally remains publicly politically neutral, reflected in her speech on a year of change, during which it was clear the qualities of the WI endure, she said.
Queen urges politicians to 'seek middle ground' in apparent bid to end Brexit divisions
Gordon Rayner (The Telegraph, 24/01/2019)
The Queen appeared to send a message to politicians deadlocked over Brexit on Thursday as she spoke of “coming together to seek out the common ground”.
Her Majesty used a speech to the Sandringham Women’s Institute to emphasise the need for people to be respectful of “different points of view”.
Although the monarch is expected to be politically neutral, she has a track record of making her feelings known at times of national crisis, having subtly intervened in the Scottish independence referendum.
The Queen urges country to seek common ground in apparent reference to vitriolic Brexit debate
Shehab Khan (The Independent, 25/01/2019)
The Queen has urged people to seek common ground and to never lose sight of the bigger picture in what is likely to be interpreted as a reference to the often vitriolic debate over Brexit.
In a speech to the mark the centenary of the Sandringham Women’s Institute (WI), the Queen echoed the message from her Christmas Day address, calling for people to respect the views of those they do not agree with.
As head of state, the Queen is required to remain politically neutral, but her words are likely to be seen as a veiled attempt to reverse the current tenor of public debate as opinion polls reveal a deeply divided country and politicians suffer harassment outside parliament.
Donald Trump Reopens the Government and Gets Schooled
John Cassidy (The New Yorker, 25/01/2019)
Perhaps the most disturbing lesson of the stupid and pointless five-week partial government shutdown, which ended on Friday, is that Donald Trump and his cronies—step forward, Wilbur Ross—are just who they appear to be: rich, out-of-touch old white guys who don’t have any conception of what it is like to be a regular government worker living from paycheck to paycheck. The other takeaway, a more encouraging one, is that Trump is also just a regular politician, subject to the normal laws of political gravity.
Speaking in the White House Rose Garden on Friday afternoon, the President said he would sign a temporary spending bill, which will enable shuttered federal agencies to reopen and allow about eight hundred thousand federal employees to start receiving back pay for the wages they have missed out on. He also expressed confidence that Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill would use the three weeks to reach a “fair deal” on additional spending for border security. And he claimed that the Democrats had “finally and fully acknowledged that having a barrier, a fence, a wall, or whatever you call it, will be an important part of the solution.”
Shutdown debacle leaves Trump with stark choices
Stephen Collinson (CNN, 28/01/2019)
It's as if President Donald Trump's humiliation over the government shutdown and his failed push to honor his core campaign promise never happened.
"Does anybody really think I won't build the WALL? Done more in first two years than any President! MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!," Trump tweeted on Sunday night, hitting back at the overwhelming media consensus that he had been outplayed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
But whether the President is simply defiant or in denial or is yet to process the lessons of the 35-day impasse that ended with his capitulation on Friday, he's facing wrenching political choices.
Donald Trump 'prepared for another Government shutdown', says White House chief of staff
Jacob Jarvis (Evening Standard, 27/01/2019)
President Donald Trump is prepared for another Government shutdown if he is not satisfied by plans for border security, according to the acting White House chief of staff.
Mick Mulvaney says President Trump is opposed to seeing federal agencies closed again nor does he want to declare a national emergency.
However, he says the US leader is prepared for either should Congress not work with him to secure the southern border to his satisfaction.
As Government Reopens, the New Congress Tries to Begin Again
Nicholas Fandos (The New York Times, 27/01/2019)
With the government shutdown over for now, the 116th Congress will hit reset this week, showcasing a Democratic agenda in the House that was overshadowed by the struggle to reopen the government and furnishing both chambers with early opportunities to test whether divided government can produce results.
The House, which spent weeks passing futile bills to reopen the government, will turn to legislation higher on the Democrats’ priority list, including a bill to raise pay for civilian federal employees. Leading Democrats also plan to reintroduce a marquee bill to close the pay gap between men and women that they have fought to enact for years.
In the Senate, Republicans will try to push through a bipartisan Middle East policy bill that includes a disputed provision targeting the movement to boycott, divest from and sanction Israel. With the measure, Republicans will test for fractures in the resurgent Democratic Party, where Palestinian rights activists have found new voices in House freshmen such as Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota.
29 January 2019 - Joshua Tree National Park May Feel The Effects Of Government Shutdown For Hundreds Of Years
Joshua Tree Suffered 'Irreparable' Harm During Shutdown, Could Take 300 Years to Recover
Katherine Hignett (Newsweek, 28/01/2019)
A former park supervisor condemned the impact of the recent government shutdown on California’s Joshua Tree National Park at a protest rally Saturday.
Activists said that the lack of park rangers on duty left the iconic protected area open to off-roading, vandalism and illegal camping.
"What's happened to our park in the last 34 days is irreparable for the next 200 to 300 years," Curt Sauer, who was park superintendent from 2003 to 2010, told locals at the rally, according to Palm Springs' Desert Sun newspaper.
As Joshua Tree reopens, anger over damage to economy, environment
Louis Sahagun (Los Angeles Times, 26/01/2019)
Against a backdrop of jumbled boulders and spindly trees, former Joshua Tree National Park Supt. Curt Sauer joined dozens of people at a rally in this high desert enclave on Saturday to express their anger over the economic and physical damage caused by the partial government shutdown to the park and the surrounding community.
President Trump signed a short-term spending bill on Friday that will reopen the government until Feb. 15. But the 35-day shutdown has already taken a heavy toll on the economy of this dusty refuge for nature lovers, rock climbers and artists at the main gateway to the 800,000-acre national park, as well as on the otherworldly landscape within the park’s boundaries.
Former Joshua Tree supervisor warns of ‘irreparable’ damage to park from shutdown
Avery Anapol (The Hill, 28/01/2019)
A former superintendent of California’s Joshua Tree National Park is warning of “irreparable” damage to the park following the partial government shutdown.
Curt Sauer cited widespread illegal off-roading and other environmental concerns that arose during the funding lapse while addressing a gathering of dozens of park visitors and supporters on Saturday.
“What's happened to our park in the last 34 days is irreparable for the next 200 to 300 years," he said, according to the Palm Springs Desert Sun.
Joshua Tree national park 'may take 300 years to recover' from shutdown
Ashley Boucher (The Guardian, 29/01/2019)
The former superintendent of Joshua Tree national park has said it could take hundreds of years to recover from damage caused by visitors during the longest-ever government shutdown.
“What’s happened to our park in the last 34 days is irreparable for the next 200 to 300 years,” Curt Sauer said at a rally over the weekend, according to a report from the Desert Sun. Sauer retired in 2010 after running the park for seven years.
The park reopened Monday after the record 35-day shutdown, and park workers returned to a state of chaos, including damaged trees, graffiti and ruined trails. The reduced ranger supervision during the shutdown saw increased vandalism at the park, causing officials to announce on 8 Januarythat Joshua Tree would temporarily close. It was announced a day later that officials were able to use recreation fee revenue to avoid the closure.
Undiscovered Merlin tale fragments found in Bristol archives
Steven Morris (The Guardian, 30/01/2019)
An intriguing, previously unknown 13th-century version of a tale featuring Merlin and King Arthur has been discovered in the archives of Bristol central library.
The seven handwritten fragments of parchment were unearthed bound inside an unrelated volume of the work of a 15th- century French scholar.
Written in Old French, they tell the story of the Battle of Trèbes, in which Merlin inspires Arthur’s forces with a stirring speech and leads a charge using Sir Kay’s special dragon standard, which breathes real fire.
Middle Ages Merlin manuscript found in Bristol University library
(BBC News, 30/01/2019)
Fragments of a manuscript from the Middle Ages which tell the story of Merlin the magician from Arthurian legend have been found in a library.
Seven hand-written fragments were found by the University of Bristol's special collections librarian.
Specialists analysing the pieces said they contained "subtle but significant" differences from the traditional story.
Centuries lost ‘Bristol Merlin’ uncovered at city’s Central Library
Press release (Bristol University, 30/01/2019)
Academics from the Universities of Bristol and Durham are now analysing the seven parchment fragments which are thought to come from the Old French sequence of texts known as the Vulgate Cycle or Lancelot-Grail Cycle, dating back to the 13th century.
Parts of the Vulgate Cycle were probably used by Sir Thomas Malory (1415-1471) as a source for his Le Morte D’Arthur (published in 1485 by William Caxton) which is itself the main source text for many modern retellings of the Arthurian legend in English, but no one version known so far has proven to be exactly alike with what he appears to have used.
In addition, one of the most exciting elements of this particular find is that the Bristol fragments contain evidence of subtle, but significant, differences from the traditional narrative of the stories.
BBC Offers Clarification: Theresa May Isn’t Going to Brussels in a Warplane
Palko Karasz (The New York Times, 31/01/2019)
In the flood of news about Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union, a few seconds of black-and-white film broadcast on the BBC stood out on Wednesday.
As an anchor ended an evening news program by saying, “Theresa May says she intends to go back to Brussels to renegotiate her Brexit deal,” the screen showed grainy images of World War II planes that appeared to be Spitfires.
The odd pairing caught the eye of many viewers, who shared the video clip on social media.
Theresa May will not be flying to Brussels in Spitfire, BBC clarifies
Matthew Weaver (The Guardian, 31/01/2019)
The BBC has blamed “human error” for a suggestion on its News at Six that Theresa May would be flying back to Brussels for more Brexit talks in a second world war Spitfire.
But the explanation has been greeted with scepticism by some who saw the incident as an example of pro-Brexit bias at the corporation.
At the end of Wednesday’s evening programme viewers were shown black and white footage of the iconic planes as newsreader Sophie Raworth summarised the prime minister’s plan to reopen Brexit talks with EU leaders.
BBC gaffe shows Theresa May travelling to Brussels in World War 2 plane
A gaffe by BBC News at Six made it look like Theresa May was travelling to Brussels to reopen talks with the EU on Brexit deal in a fleet of second world war fighter planes.
The video has been shared on social media, with users seeing the funny side.
BBC News gaffe sees Second World War footage played over Theresa May Brexit item
James Morris (Evening Standard, 31/01/2019)
This is the moment BBC News baffled viewers in a gaffe involving Theresa May's Brexit negotiations and Second World War planes.
As Wednesday’s News at Six show wrapped up, presenter Sophie Raworth reminded her audience of the night’s main news item.
“Theresa May," she announced, "says she intends to go back to Brussels to renegotiate her Brexit deal, but EU leaders say the deal is done…”
Riots After a No-Deal Brexit? Save the Queen
Iliana Magra (The New York Times, 03/02/2019)
Should Britain stumble out of the European Union without a deal and riots erupt in the streets, officials have a plan:
Evacuate Queen Elizabeth II from London, local news outlets reported on Sunday.
Reports of a scenario to save the queen and senior members of her family came to light as the deadline for Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union loomed. With fewer than 55 days until the formal divorce, now set for March 29, the country has been flooded with news of emergency preparations in the event no deal is reached.
Queen to be evacuated if Brexit turns ugly – reports
Reuters (The Guardian, 03/02/2019)
British officials have revived cold war emergency plans to relocate the royal family should there be riots in London if Britain suffers a disruptive departure from the European Union, two Sunday newspapers have reported.
“These emergency evacuation plans have been in existence since the cold war but have now been repurposed in the event of civil disorder following a no-deal Brexit,” the Sunday Times said, quoting an unnamed source from the government’s Cabinet Office, which handles sensitive administrative issues.
The Mail on Sunday also said it had learnt of plans to move the royal family, including Queen Elizabeth, to safe locations away from London.
Newspaper headlines: 'Brexit plan to evacuate the Queen'
Staff (BBC News, 03/02/2019)
The Sunday Times devotes its front page to suggestions that the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh could be evacuated from London and taken to a secret location in the event of riots triggered by a no-deal Brexit.
A Cabinet Office source said plans to rescue the royals were originally drawn up during the Cold War but have now been "repurposed" by Whitehall, in case there is civil disorder if Britain leaves the EU without a deal.
A government source, quoted by the Mail on Sunday, acknowledges such a scenario might seem far-fetched, but says contingency planners have to envisage "every possible eventuality".
Queen would be ‘evacuated from London in event of no-deal Brexit riots’
Colin Drury (The Independent, 03/02/2019)
The Queen would be evacuated from London if riots broke out following Brexit, according to reports.
She would be joined by the whole royal family in a safe house away from the capital in an alleged revival of emergency Cold War plans should civil unrest unfold if Britain leaves the EU without a deal.
“These emergency evacuation plans have been in existence since the Cold War, but have now been repurposed in the event of civil disorder following a no-deal Brexit,” a cabinet office source told The Sunday Times.
El Chapo jury begins deliberations after 56 witnesses, 200 hours of testimony
Ray Sanchez (CNN, 04/02/2019)
Jurors began deliberating Monday afternoon in the case of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzmán, the beginning of the end to a case that featured 56 witnesses and 200 hours of testimony.
For two and half months, an anonymous and partially sequestered jury of seven women and five men in Brooklyn federal court sat through a case that could be described as "International Drug Trafficking 101."
They heard testimony about unspeakable tortures and ghastly murders, epic corruption at nearly every level of Mexico's government, narco-mistresses and naked subterranean escapes, gold-plated AK-47s and monogrammed diamond-encrusted pistols.
El Chapo Trial: The 11 Biggest Revelations From the Case
Emily Palmer and Alan Feuer (The New York Times, 03/02/2019)
After a lengthy 11-week trial, a jury on Monday will begin deliberating the case of Joaquín Guzmán Loera, the Mexican drug kingpin known as El Chapo. Mr. Guzmán faces 10 charges, including leading a criminal enterprise and the importation and sales of large amounts of narcotics into the United States. If convicted, he faces life in prison.
The trial has allowed prosecutors to extensively detail the inner workings of Mr. Guzmán’s Sinaloa cartel, providing unparalleled insight into international drug trafficking. Here are 11 of the most important takeaways, in no particular order.
El Chapo trial: witness claims drug lord committed statutory rape
Edward Helmore (The Guardian, 03/02/2019)
Unsealed documents about the Mexican drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán contain claims by witnesses that he engaged in sexual acts with minors he called “vitamins”. The disturbing allegation comes just as a jury is about to start deliberating in the US drug-trafficking case.
According to papers made public late on Friday, a key government cooperator told authorities Guzmán had him drug girls as young as 13 before Guzmán coerced them into sexual activities at one of his Mexican hideouts in the late 2000s.
One of Guzmán’s lawyers called the accusations “extremely salacious” and questioned the timing of the government filing.
The rise and fall of 'El Chapo,' Mexico's most wanted kingpin
Dave Graham (Reuters, 04/02/2019)
Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman is Mexico’s most notorious kingpin who shipped tonnes of drugs around the world, escaped two maximum-security jails and became one of the world’s most-wanted fugitives.
He now faces the prospect of life in prison.
Jurors on Monday will begin deliberations on 10 criminal counts facing Guzman, 61, in the trial that began in November in New York.
On Trump's big night, Democratic congresswomen in white stole the spotlight
Aaron Kall (The Hill, 06/02/2019)
Since President Donald Trump's State of the Union address was an 82-minute production, there are plenty of contenders for the most memorable moment of the evening. Holocaust and Tree of Life Synagogue shooting survivor Judah Samet was acknowledged from the crowd, while Trump conducted a moving rendition of "Happy Birthday" in his honor. Adorable 10-year-old New Jersey cancer survivor Grace Eline was recognized on camera as well. In addition to battling the disease, she has also raised $40,000 for the fight against cancer. Special guests Matthew Charles and Alice Johnson were both overcome with joy and served as icons for the bipartisan criminal justice reform legislation passed by Congress in late 2018.
Ultimately, there were way too many guests present for one in particular to stand out and be remembered for years to come. On policy matters, Trump was scattershot over the course of the evening. In one sequence, he transitioned from paid family leave to abortion, and then — even more awkwardly — to military spending levels. This tell-tale sign that multiple advisers with differing ideologies contributed to the speech, left it with no strong common theme or message. Years from now, Trump's 2019 address will be remembered for the Democratic Congresswomen who wore white and the moment they briefly abandoned their fight.
Trump Delivered Address. Democratic Women Sent a Message Too.
Maya Salam (The New York Times, 06/02/2019)
Women have never held as much power in the United States government as they do now, and on Tuesday night it showed as President Trump delivered his State of the Union address surrounded by a historic number of women.
Present, of course, were the 131 women elected to serve in the Senate and House, many of whom were seated together and dressed in all white. White is the color of the women’s suffrage movement, and it was worn to represent issues like reproductive rights and equal pay, my colleague Sheryl Gay Stolberg, a Times congressional correspondent, reported.
Why Women Wear White, A Brief History Of Political Fashion
Julia Brucculieri (The Huffington Post, 06/02/2019)
Dozens of women members of the House of Representatives made a powerful statement on Tuesday night when they attended President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address wearing white.
The shade is a nod to the suffrage movement and female activists who fought for women’s right to vote. Last week, Rep. Lois Frankel (Fla.), chair of the House Democratic Women’s Working Group, urged female lawmakers to wear white for Trump’s speech to “honor all those who came before us and send a message of solidarity that we’re not going back on our hard-earned rights.”
And send a message, they did. Photos from the address show a visually striking image of women all in white, a statement that’s difficult to ignore.
Remarks by President Trump in State of the Union Address
(The White House, 06/02/2019)
We meet tonight at a moment of unlimited potential. As we begin a new Congress, I stand here ready to work with you to achieve historic breakthroughs for all Americans.
Millions of our fellow citizens are watching us now, gathered in this great chamber, hoping that we will govern not as two parties but as one nation. (Applause.)
The agenda I will lay out this evening is not a Republican agenda or a Democrat agenda. It’s the agenda of the American people.
George Orwell: British Council apologises for rejecting food essay
Alison Flood (The Guardian, 07/02/2019)
More than 70 years after the event, the British Council has apologised to George Orwell for commissioning and then rejecting an essay about British food.
The author of Nineteen Eighty-Four and Animal Farm was, the body has revealed, commissioned to write British Cookery in 1946, as part of the organisation’s efforts to promote British culture overseas. But a discovery in the British Council’s archives has revealed that after commissioning the essay, it declined to publish it, telling Orwell that it was problematic to write about food in a time of strict rationing.
“I am so sorry such a seemingly stupid situation has arisen with your manuscript,” runs the letter, raising “doubts on such a treatment of the painful subject of Food in these times”. The publications department representative tells Orwell he has written “a good essay … apart from one or two minor criticisms, I think it is excellent,” but that “it would be unfortunate and unwise to publish it for the continental reader”.
George Orwell Gets an Apology for a Rejection Letter (but Not for His Marmalade Recipe)
Anna Schaverien (The New York Times, 07/02/2019)
Rejection is a rite of passage that every writer, even some of the greatest — like George Orwell — has experienced.
Ernest Hemingway was told his writing was “tedious and offensive” by one publisher. Another rebuffed Herman Melville’s masterpiece, “Moby Dick,” questioning, “Does it have to be a whale?”
A 73-year-old rebuff of Orwell, the author of “1984” and “Animal Farm,” recently came to light, and he received a belated apology for it on Thursday.
George Orwell gets food essay apology from British Council after 70 years
(BBC News, 07/02/2019)
It seems even the best of writers get rejected - but not all of them can expect an apology 70 years later.
The British Council has apologised to George Orwell after rejecting an essay of his seven decades ago.
The author of 1984 and Animal Farm wrote the piece, entitled British Cookery, in 1946.
British Council apologises 70 years after rejecting George Orwell essay on food
Tim Wyatt (The Independent, 07/02/2019)
An essay on the UK's cooking by George Orwell was rejected more than 70 years ago by the British Council.
The cultural institute wrote a letter of apology to the world-renowned writer of 1984 and Animal Farm after it discovered in the archives its rejection letter of his treatise on traditional British food.
Despite commissioning the author in 1946 to defend British cuisine as part of its efforts to promote home cooking overseas, the Council changed its mind and returned the essay unpublished.
Denver teachers set to strike on Monday over pay
Chris Mills Rodrigo (The Hill, 10/02/2019)
Denver Public School (DPS) teachers will begin a strike on Monday over failed negotiations over compensation.
The Denver Classroom Teachers Association (DCTA) announced Saturday that they would begin striking for the first time in 25 years.
“Teachers were stunned when DPS proposed hiking incentives instead of putting that new money into base pay where it could make the entire district more competitive," DCTA President Henry Roman said. "We are incredibly disappointed that on the last day of bargaining and less than two days before a strike, they doubled down on one-time incentives teachers do not want, and the data shows do not work to keep teachers in their schools.”
Denver is so expensive that teachers have to get creative to make ends meet
Christina Zdanowicz (CNN, 10/02/2019)
For 14 months, teachers in Denver have been negotiating with Denver Public Schools for more pay. On Saturday, the Denver Classroom Teachers Association said talks had broken off and they'll walk on Monday.
Yes, it's about money, many have told CNN. But it's also about the uncertainty of living paycheck to paycheck. It's about the necessity of taking on a second or third job. It's about the untenability of carrying on this way much longer.
Here are some of their stories.
Denver teachers on track to strike for first time in 25 years
(CBS News, 10/02/2019)
Denver teachers are planning to strike Monday for the first time in 25 years after failed negotiations with the school district over base pay. The teachers union and Denver Public Schools met Saturday in an attempt to reach a new contract after more than a year of negotiations, but both sides left disappointed.
The Denver Classroom Teachers Association (DCTA) released a statement after the meeting saying the district's proposal lacks transparency and "pushes for failed incentives for some over meaningful base salary for all."
Denver teachers set to strike over better pay and working conditions
Michael Sainato (The Guardian, 10/02/2019)
School teachers in Denver, Colorado, are set to strike on Monday in the latest of a wave of actions that has swept the sector in the past year as educators battle for better pay and working conditions.
In Denver, teacher salaries have been steadily decreasing, leading to high turnover in the district. Teachers are forced to financially rely on bonuses and incentives beyond their control as part of a system called ProComp, first enacted in 2005.
“The bonuses and the amounts change every year. This has led to a problem where teacher salaries are different every year, and teachers, including myself, have been getting paid less every year,” said Michelle Garrison, a teacher at Farrell B Howell Early Childhood Education-8th grade school “You don’t ever get a paycheck that’s the same. It makes it hard for budgeting.”
Southern Baptist Leaders Promise ‘Change’ After Report Uncovers Rampant Sexual Abuse
Dominique Mosbergen (The Huffington Post, 11/02/2019)
Leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention, the second-largest faith group in the U.S., have vowed real “change” in the aftermath of a damning investigative report by the Houston Chronicle and San Antonio Express-News that uncovered decades of sexual abuse by hundreds of church leaders and volunteers.
According to the three-part investigation, the first installment of which was published on Sunday, about 380 Southern Baptist pastors, ministers, youth pastors, Sunday school teachers, deacons and church volunteers have faced allegations of sexual misconduct since 1998. More than 200 of them have been convicted or took plea deals, the newspapers reported, and nearly 100 are currently in prisons across the nation.
The victims of the accused number more than 700, the report said. They include teenagers and children, some as young as 3, who were “molested or raped inside pastors’ studies and Sunday school classrooms.”
‘Pure evil’: Southern Baptist leaders condemn decades of sexual abuse revealed in investigation
Kristine Phillips and Amy B Wang (The Washington Post, 10/02/2019)
“20 years, 700 victims”
So reads part of the headline of a sweeping investigation that has found years of sexual abuse perpetrated by hundreds of Southern Baptist church leaders against an even larger number of victims.
The Houston Chronicle and the San Antonio Express-News reported that nearly 400 Southern Baptist church leaders and volunteers have faced sexual misconduct allegations in the past two decades. As many as 700 victims — some as young as 3 — were sexually abused, some raped and molested repeatedly, according to the report.
380 Southern Baptist leaders and volunteers accused of sexual misconduct
Daniel Burke (CNN, 11/02/2019)
Since 1998, about 380 Southern Baptist leaders and volunteers have faced allegations of sexual misconduct, according to a sweeping investigation by two Texas newspapers.
The Houston Chronicle and the San Antonio Express-News also found that in the past 20 years, more than 700 victims have been abused, with some urged to have abortions and forgive their abusers.
The newspapers said their investigation included "examining federal and state court databases, prison records and official documents from more than 20 states and by searching sex offender registries nationwide."
Southern Baptist Church Sexual Abuse Database Reveals Hundreds of Convicted Predators Among Leaders
Benjamin Fearnow (Newsweek, 10/02/2019)
Two Texas newspapers compiled a database of more than 200 sexual abuse offenders and 700 victims within the Southern Baptist Church despite decades of convention leaders refusing demands to create such a list themselves.
The Houston Chronicle and the San Antonio Express-News collected the mug shots and sexual abuse reports of hundreds of Southern Baptist church leaders from the past two decades. More than 220 leaders, including ministers, pastors and Sunday school teachers from the Southern Baptist Convention's 47,000 churches have been convicted of sex crimes, which included disturbing and heart-wrenching anecdotes of church affiliates raping young children.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Unveils Landmark Green New Deal Resolution
Alexander C. Kaufman (The Huffington Post, 07/02/2019)
The Green New Deal is finally taking form.
On Thursday, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) unveiled a landmark resolution cementing the pillars of an unprecedented program to zero out planet-warming emissions and restore the middle-class prosperity of postwar America that the original New Deal helped spur.
Just three months after calls for a Green New Deal electrified a long-stagnant debate on climate policy, the Democratic lawmakers released the six-page document outlining plans to cut global emissions 40 to 60 percent below 2010 levels by 2030 and neutralize human-caused greenhouse gases entirely by 2050.
Here's what the Green New Deal actually says
Zachary B. Wolf (CNN, 14/02/2019)
Green New Deal fits perfectly on a bumper sticker.
But the proposal, which is on its way to becoming a litmus test for the Democratic Party's many 2020 contenders, isn't a simple fix for what ails the US. It would equal taking American society back to the drawing board and rebuilding it from the safety net up.
President Donald Trump and Republicans like Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell want to use the proposal to paint Democrats as trying to mandate a socialist utopia on the country, which is probably why House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been publicly skeptical -- even though most Democrats running for president have signed on, at least conceptually.
3 tests the Green New Deal must pass to work
Andrew Revkin (National Geographic, 14/02/2019)
As an array of recent surveys have shown, growing and increasingly bipartisan ranks of Americans want the government to act to limit human-driven climate change and help expand renewable energy sources like wind and solar.
But after three decades of incremental steps, with emissions of greenhouse gases rising again in the United States and around the world and impacts increasing, what new approaches can make a difference? How should they be paid for?
The climate conversation is now centered on a proposed “Green New Deal,” a massive federal push to cut emissions driving climate change and boost resilience and job prospects for America’s working class and poor communities.
The Green New Deal Is What Realistic Environmental Policy Looks Like
Jedediah Britton-Purdy (The New York Times, 14/02/2019)
Everyone is lining up to endorse the Green New Deal — or to mock it. Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand have all endorsed the resolution sponsored by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Senator Edward Markey of Massachusetts.
Conservative critics predictably call it “a shocking document” and “a call for enviro-socialism in America,” but liberal condescension has cut deeper. The House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, essentially dismissed it as branding, saying, “The green dream, or whatever they call it, nobody knows what it is, but they’re for it, right?” Others have criticized it for leaving out any mention of a carbon tax, a cornerstone of mainstream climate-policy proposals, while embracing a left-populist agenda that includes universal health care, stronger labor rights and a jobs guarantee.
What do these goals have to do with stabilizing atmospheric carbon levels before climate change makes large parts of the world uninhabitable? What has taken liberal critics aback is that the Green New Deal strays so far from the traditional environmental emphasis on controlling pollution, which the carbon tax aims to do, and tries to solve the problems of economic inequality, poverty and even corporate concentration (there’s an antimonopoly clause).
International Women's Day: History, strikes and celebrations
(BBC News, 05/03/2019)
You might have seen International Women's Day mentioned in the media or heard friends talking about it. But what is it for? When is it? Is it a celebration or a protest? And is there an equivalent International Men's Day?
For more than a century people around the world have been marking 8 March as a special day for women. Read on to find out why.
Porirua's women councillors call for better balance
(The World News, 07/03/2019)
Porirua City Council has the most diverse representation in NZ. This year, Porirua’s women councillors are calling for more women to stand in local government elections in support of the "Better Balance" theme for International Women’s Day on Friday 8 March
Porirua City has five women elected, three of whom are Pasifika and MÄori.
Big firms lying about female and minority directors, says top business chief
Jasper Jolly (The Guardian, 08/03/2019)
Exclusive: Charlotte Valeur says she will call for new laws if FTSE 350 firms don’t improve diversity
The new chair of one of the UK’s most influential business groups has accused Britain’s biggest companies of lying when they say they cannot find enough female or ethnic minority directors.
Happy International Women’s Day! Have a Sticker
Jessica Powell (The New York Times, 07/03/2018)
It’s not just your ovaries that we’re celebrating.
Congratulations — Friday is International Women’s Day! As a woman, you must be so pleased to be recognized.
In this day and age, when everything is so polarizing, it’s really hard for progressive, multinational corporations like ours to know just when and how to take a stand. But this day is important to us. And while some might say that coming out in support of International Women’s Day is a bold move — even a controversial one — we are willing to stick our necks out to show solidarity with half of the world’s population.
Trump border wall request will set up new budget fight, adviser says
Guardian staff and agencies (The Guardian, 10/03/2019)
Donald Trump will on Monday will ask Congress for an additional $8.6bn to pay for the wall he has promised to build on the border with Mexico, officials familiar with his 2020 budget request said.
Asked if that meant there would be another budget fight over the wall, like that which led to a long and damaging government shutdown at the turn of the year, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said: “I suppose there will be ...
“He’s going to stay with his wall and he’s going to stay with the border security theme. I think it’s essential.”
'We hope he learned his lesson,' Pelosi says of report Trump wants $8.6B more for wall
William Cummings (USA TODAY, 10/03/2019)
Congressional Democrats refused President Donald Trump's newest request for border wall funding even before the White House officially made it.
In response to media reports Sunday that the president plans to ask Congress for an additional $8.6 billion in funding for construction of a wall on the U.S.-Mexican border, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. – who recently refused to approve $5.7 billion in border wall funding despite a record 35-day government shutdown – made it clear that they would not approve the money.
Warning signs for Trump loom as he unveils budget
Stephen Collinson (CNN, 11/03/2019)
Early warning signs are flashing for President Donald Trump on some of his core arguments on immigration, the economy and North Korea that are central to his 2020 re-election message.
Complications on each of those policy areas threaten to undermine the narrative of unprecedented success that the President has weaved around his first two years in office and are driving political debate as the administration unveils its budget on Monday.
Trump's 2020 budget calls for $2.7T in spending cuts, promises to erase deficit in 15 years
Melissa Quinn (Washington Examiner, 10/03/2019)
President Trump will unveil his fiscal 2020 budget request to Congress on Monday which calls for $2.7 trillion in spending cuts and balances in 15 years, according to the White House budget office.
The budget from the White House is the first the president will send to a divided Congress, and the proposal is likely to face fierce opposition from the new Democrat-controlled House.
Elizabeth Warren vows to break up tech giants if elected in 2020
(BBC News, 09/30/2019)
US Democrat Elizabeth Warren has proposed breaking up tech giants like Amazon, Facebook and Google if elected to the US presidency in 2020.
Seeking to stand out in a crowded Democratic field, Ms Warren told a crowd in Queens, New York, that she was "sick of freeloading billionaires".
Her regulatory plan would reverse some tech mergers and stop companies from competing on their own platforms.
Elizabeth Warren is right – we must break up Facebook, Google and Amazon
Robert Reich (The Guardian, 10/03/2019)
The titans of the new Gilded Age must be busted and the idea has bipartisan support. It’s time big tech was brought to heel.
The presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren announced on Friday she wants to bust up giants like Facebook, Google and Amazon.
America’s first Gilded Age began in the late 19th century with a raft of innovations – railroads, steel production, oil extraction – but culminated in mammoth trusts run by “robber barons” like JP Morgan, John D Rockefeller, and William H “the public be damned” Vanderbilt.
4 Reasons Elizabeth Warren Is Wrong About Breaking Up Amazon
Peter Cohan (Forbes, 11/03/2019)
Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren wants to break up Amazon. She thinks that will make things better for its competitors and cost Amazon -- in which I have no financial interest -- its "monopoly profits."
But I believe she is wrong about the purpose of antitrust law and the notion that Amazon has monopoly profits.
I have contacted Amazon to request comment and will update this post if I receive a response.
Facebook deletes, and then restores, Elizabeth Warren’s ads criticizing the platform, drawing her rebuke
Isaac Stanley-Becker and Tony Romm (The Washington Post, 12/03/2019)
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts Democrat vying for the presidency, didn’t have to search far and wide for ammunition in her salvo against Facebook and other technology giants.
Her own campaign, she said on Monday, had become a case study in the need to curtail Facebook’s power, after the company temporarily removed her ads flaying the social networking service as anti-competitive. She used the flap to warn that it was dangerous for cyberspace to be “dominated by a single censor.”
Brexit: MPs reject Theresa May's deal for a second time
(BBC News, 13/03/2019)
Theresa May's EU withdrawal deal has been rejected by MPs by an overwhelming majority for a second time, with just 17 days to go to Brexit.
MPs voted down the prime minister's deal by 149 - a smaller margin than when they rejected it in January.
Mrs May said MPs will now get a vote on whether the UK should leave the EU without a deal and, if that fails, on whether Brexit should be delayed.
The Brexit Plan Just Failed Again: What Happened, and What’s Next?
(The New York Times, 12/03/2019)
Parliament’s rebuke to Prime Minister Theresa May, on the issue that has dominated British politics for three years, casts the nation’s political and economic future into confusion with just 17 days left until its scheduled exit from the European Union.
The vote is sure to intensify calls for her to either step down, call a general election, or both. Plenty of Conservative lawmakers would like to take her place as party leader and prime minister, but there is no obvious front-runner, and the outcome of a general election is just as unclear.
Second Brexit deal defeat deepens UK crisis
Charlie Cooper and Annabelle Dickson (Politico Europe, 13/03/2019)
MPs in Westminster dealt another crushing defeat to the Brexit deal agreed between the U.K. and the EU, voting against it by 391 to 242 — a margin of 149.
It is the second time that the House of Commons has rejected the deal following the thumping 230-vote margin of defeat when Prime Minister Theresa May first called a ratification vote in January.
The vote plunges the U.K. deeper into political crisis. Two months of effort to secure changes to the deal, bringing the country to within 17 days of its legal departure date, earned a prize of no more than 39 Conservative MPs switching sides to vote for the agreement.
Brexit may no longer mean Brexit
Ishaan Tharoor (The Washington Post, 13/03/2019)
British Prime Minister Theresa May endured another humiliating blow in Parliament on Tuesday as lawmakers once more voted down her withdrawal plan from the European Union. The margin of defeat — 149 votes — was only a slight improvement from the 230-vote repudiation May’s deal received in January. The prime minister spent weeks trying to thrash out a more politically suitable deal and desperately tried to frame new concessions she won from European interlocutors as sufficient to get the deal done. But not enough members of her own ruling Tories were convinced.
May’s government is technically supposed to take Britain out of the European Union in just over two weeks’ time. But that and so much more about the political future of Europe’s second-largest economy is now in limbo.
Brexit: Parliament rejects a no-deal departure
William Booth, Karla Adam and Michael Birnbaum (The Washington Post, 13/03/2019)
Parliament on Wednesday voted, twice, that Britain should not leave the European Union without a proper withdrawal agreement, signaling that lawmakers will also ask European leaders for permission to delay Brexit.
The no-deal votes were in many ways symbolic — taking the temperature of Parliament, rather than setting concrete policy. The wishes expressed by lawmakers do not tie the hands of the British government, nor do they commit the E.U. to any action.
Prime Minister Theresa May conceded there was a “clear majority” against a no-deal Brexit, but she warned lawmakers that the “legal default” was that Britain would still leave without a deal on March 29 unless another agreement is reached.
Brexit could be delayed until June as Theresa May launches bid for third 'meaningful' vote on deal
Joe Watts (The Independent, 13/03/2019)
Britain’s departure from the EU looks set to be delayed until June after Theresa May launched a desperate last-ditch bid to make MPs vote on her Brexit deal a third time.
On a farcical night in Westminster, Ms May was forced to concede she would go to Brussels and ask for the short extension – but only if the Commons approves her deal next week.
If MPs reject her deal at the third time of asking, she warned that a longer extension would leave Britain at the mercy of EU demands for new concessions and mean the UK must take part in European elections in May.
The prime minister was pushed to make the offer after a chaotic night for the government which ended with Tory rebels – including several cabinet ministers – helping to pass a vote demanding a no-deal Brexit be completely ruled out.
Theresa May has lost control of Brexit and now anything is possible
Jane Merrick (CNN, 14/03/2019)
The mantra of politicians who want Britain to leave the European Union has always been "take back control."
As Westminster prepares itself for a third consecutive night of Brexit drama, the question is now: Who is in control?
It's certainly not Theresa May. On Wednesday, she suffered another humiliating defeat, with members of her own Cabinet refusing to support the government's position in a crucial vote on the issue of a no-deal Brexit.
On Thursday, lawmakers will vote on whether to delay the UK's departure from the European Union beyond March 29. Many see that delay as an opportunity to push for a "soft" Brexit, with the UK maintaining strong links to the EU.Lawmakers will vote on a motion, put forward by the government, which suggests delaying Brexit for a short period -- until the end of June at the latest.
How May’s Brexit deal laid bare Tories’ deep divisions over Europe
Heather Stewart and Rajeev Syal (The Guardian, 14/03/2019)
Throughout yet another neuralgic day of Brexit debate at Westminster, the deep divisions in the Conservative party were again on excruciating display.
Collective responsibility has long been suspended, as shifting groups of ministers and backbenchers pursue their own favoured Brexit outcome. But the chaotic votes of Wednesday night smacked of a government falling apart.
First, six cabinet ministers most notable for their leadership ambitions – Gavin Williamson, Jeremy Hunt, Alun Cairns, Andrea Leadsom, Penny Mordaunt and Sajid Javid – supported the Malthouse compromise, a policy that would involve junking the deal their own government had spent two years negotiating.
May Suffers Mass Tory Revolt As MPs Vote For Three-Month Brexit Delay
Paul Waugh (The Huffington Post, 14/03/2019)
Theresa May has suffered a mass Tory revolt by her ministers and MPs as she caved to pressure to delay Brexit by three months.
Amid shambolic scenes in Parliament, the prime minister’s tattered authority took a fresh blow when more than half her party opposed her government move to postpone exit day from March 29 to June 30.
Some seven Cabinet ministers, including her Brexit Secretary Steve Barclay, voted against May’s motion, which was aimed at giving her extra time to get her EU-UK divorce deal passed and put on the statute book.
Earlier, she had seen off a dramatic attempt by parliament to seize control of the Brexit process.
Brexit: What happens now?
Peter Barnes (BBC News, 15/03/2019)
Now MPs have backed a delay, Theresa May has to request an extension to Article 50 from the EU.
Assuming the other member states all agreed, Brexit would be postponed. Theresa May says this should be for no longer than three months. But she has also raised the prospect of a much longer extension if MPs won't back her deal.
There are still plenty of possible outcomes.
Brexit has taken a notable step backwards
Luke McGee (CNN, 14/03/2019)
It's tempting to believe the cliche that in Brexit, nothing ever changes.
But after three nights of dramatic, confusing and chaotic votes in the House of Commons, things are looking a little different.
We now know that on Thursday of next week (March 21), Prime Minister Theresa May will ask the European Union to extend the Article 50 Brexit deadline. For how long depends on whether or not her Brexit divorce deal is approved by her own lawmakers before that date.As things stand, her deal looks no closer to passing a vote in parliament. On Thursday, 188 members of her own party voted against the government's motion to delay Brexit.
Only two things of late have carried a majority among lawmakers: opposing a no-deal Brexit and delaying Brexit, which both sound distinctly un-Brexity. And neither is entirely within the United Kingdom's control.
The Guardian view on Brexit delay: time to let reality in
(The Guardian, 14/03/2019)
For nearly two years, Britain has known when it is supposed to leave the EU. Its politics have been consumed by the question of how. There has been less exploration of why. The simplest answer is that a majority voted to do so and that their preference should, on democratic principle, be respected. But when the government has failed to find a safe Brexit path, to proceed regardless of the consequences is to risk being wantonly destructive. Just such a point of failure has been reached. A vote by MPs last night recognising the need to delay the 29 March departure date proves it. But there is no more clarity about the purpose of such an extension than there is about the ultimate goals of Brexit itself.
An amendment calling for another referendum was soundly beaten. That cannot be the end of the idea. Labour abstained, with many of its MPs supporting a public vote in principle but believing the question had been put prematurely. Such tactics aside, a clear majority of MPs are currently committed to quitting the EU. Sadly, intent alone doesn’t bring practical solutions closer.
Despite U.K. Vote, 'Hard Brexit' Is Not Off The Table
Kenneth Rapoza (Forbes, 13/03/2019)
The U.K. Parliament voted today to eliminate the threat of a hard Brexit by taking the chance of crashing out of the European Union before the March 29 deadline is off the table on Wednesday. But BNP Paribas warned that the odds of a no-deal Brexit are not zero.
The French multinational gives it 25% odds.
Today’s vote means the Article 50 rule, invoked in March 2017, will either have to be extended or the U.K. will have to miraculously come to a Brexit deal with the EU before the two-year deadline in just over two weeks. Considering the Brits have spent the last two years failing to agree on how a split from the EU, the odds of them figuring it out in two weeks are probably zero. An extension is likely. Either the British MPs are listening to the market, or the market’s crystal ball is working after failing to correctly predict Brexit in the first place.
New Zealand To Announce New Gun Laws To Make Country Safer, Says PM Jacinda Ardern
Rohini Chatterji (The Huffington Post, 18/03/2019)
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Monday she would announce new gun laws within days, after 50 people were killed in mass shootings at two mosques in the city of Christchurch.
Australian Brenton Tarrant, 28, a suspected white supremacist, was charged with murder on Saturday. Tarrant was remanded without a plea and is due back in court on April 5 where police said he was likely to face more charges.
“Within 10 days of this horrific act of terrorism we will have announced reforms which will, I believe, make our community safer,” Ardern said at news conference after her cabinet reached in principle decisions on gun reform laws in the wake of New Zealand’s worst ever mass shooting.
New Zealand welcomes gun control after mosque massacre: 'There will be no opposition'
Stephen Wright and Kristen Gelineau - Associated Press (Washington Times, 17/03/2019)
The New Zealand leader’s promise of tightened gun laws in the wake of the Christchurch mosque shootings has been widely welcomed by a stunned population.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said her Cabinet will consider the details of the changes on Monday. She has said options include a ban on private ownership of semi-automatic rifles that were used with devastating effect in Christchurch and a government-funded buyback of newly outlawed guns.
While curtailing gun owners’ rights is a political battleground in the United States, Christchurch gun owner Max Roberts, 22, predicted Ardern won’t face serious opposition to her agenda.
It's a watershed moment for gun control in New Zealand, but there are no quick fixes
Tim Lister (CNN, 18/03/2019)
In the wake of last Friday's attacks in Christchurch in which 50 people were killed, New Zealand faces a defining moment on the availability of guns in society.
Prime Minister Jacinda Arden has pledged tough measures to limit their circulation -- but in a country with a strong hunting tradition, where there is roughly one gun for every four people, it will be no easy path.
As Arden herself said at the weekend, there have been unsuccessful attempts to tighten gun control in the past -- in 2005, 2012 and again two years ago. For previous governments, it has not been a priority -- because while having relatively high gun ownership, New Zealand has until now had relatively few gun-related deaths.According to figures compiled by the University of Sydney, New Zealand had 1.24 gun related homicides per 100,000 people in 2015. This is in contrast to the United States, which had 11 deaths per 100,000 people in 2015, according to a report from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Unlike in America, New Zealand is likely to make 'huge changes' to 'liberal' gun control laws after attacks, experts say
Chantal Da Silva (Newsweek, 15/03/19)
March 15 will forever be synonymous with what New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Adern called one of the nation's "darkest days," with at least 49 people killed and almost 50 wounded in shootings at two mosques in Christchurch.
In the country's first gun massacre for nearly 30 years, gun control experts told Newsweek that Friday's shootings, which Ardern said "can only be described as a terrorist attack," are likely to bring about "huge changes" to New Zealand's gun control laws.
"I don't know the details of exactly what will happen in New Zealand. All I know is that there is bound to be change," gun control expert Philip Alpers, a New Zealand-born researcher at the University of Sydney and founding director of GunPolicy.org, which tracks gun laws around the world, told Newsweek.
Dick Dale obituary
Garth Cartwright (The Guardian, 18/03/2019)
Dick Dale, who has died aged 81, was the American guitarist whose powerful twang saw him hailed as the King of the Surf Guitar. His chart success in the 1960s was brief, yet as a pioneer of the electric guitar his influence was immense, and in 1994 he won a huge new audience when Quentin Tarantinoused Dale’s 1962 recording of the Greek standard Misirlou over the opening credits of his hit film Pulp Fiction.
Dale’s 1961 single, Let’s Go Trippin’, issued on his own label, Del-Tone Records, is now considered the first surf record. The following year, on Misirlou (originally titled Miserlou), he mixed Arabic scales with reverb to create one of the most exciting instrumentals in rock history.
Dale issued his debut album, the live Surfers’ Choice, in late 1962. Such was its popularity that a bidding war began and he was signed to Capitol Records in early 1963. His debut Capitol 45 was King of the Surf Guitar, also the title of an album that June. Surf music had by now become a phenomenon and Dale’s fellow southern Californians the Beach Boys were also gaining fame: on their 1963 album Surfin’ USA they covered Misirlou and Let’s Go Trippin’.
Dick Dale: 'King of Surf Rock' guitarist dies aged 81
Mark Savage (BBC, 18/03/2019)
Dale was known for his blindingly fast strumming style, which inspired acts like The Beach Boys and Jimi Hendrix.
He said the sound reminded him of the rumble and crash of the waves, and the noises of marine animals as he surfed in California.
Dale's bassist Sam Bolle confirmed the star had died on Saturday night.
The cause of death is not yet known, but the guitarist had a long history of ill health, including renal failure, diabetes and cancer.
Dale's agent called his death "a sad day for rock 'n' roll".
Dick Dale: 1937–2019
Dave Hunter (Premier Guitar, 18/03/2019)
Although he is often discussed purely within the context of surf music, Dick Dale was one of the earliest and most influential guitar heroes of the post-swing era of popular music and a central figure in transitioning ’50s rock ’n’ roll to a more raucous breed of ’60s rock.
Rarely has the phrase ”ahead of his time” been so aptly applied as in the case of Dick Dale, who died at age 81 on Saturday, March 16, while in treatment for heart and kidney failure at the Loma Linda University Medical Center in Loma Linda, California. Dale used his equipment, unique playing technique, and the power of sheer volume to create a musical experience of the sort that wouldn’t be the norm among other guitarists for another half-decade or more—in the process, earning the title “the Father of Heavy Metal,” in addition to having been crowned “the King of Surf Guitar.” In so doing, Dale also played a major role in shaping the equipment needed for this bombastic new form of cultural expression, thereby both enabling and legitimizing the pure need for power for future generations.
Surf rocker Dick Dale shaped the sound of Southern California — and spread it to the world
Mikael Wood (Los Angeles Times, 18/03/2019)
Dick Dale played electric guitar like he was more interested in the electricity than in the guitar.
Listen to the way he starts his signature song, “Misirlou,” with the sound of his pick slicing against a quivering string — a power line, basically — to create the audible equivalent of sparks.
The tune is a traditional Arabic melody that Dale, born Richard Monsour, picked up during his childhood outside Boston as the son of an immigrant father from Lebanon. But when he adapted the song in the early 1960s, the guitarist cranked the tempo and the volume so that it seemed to crackle with fresh adventure.