Hello Florence

Hurricane Florence, seen above from the International Space Station, reached Category 4 (131-155mph) on Monday, a bit earlier than expected, and is forecast to hit the Carolinas on Thursday.

Craig Crawford

Author: Craig Crawford

Trail Mix Host

55 thoughts on “Hello Florence”

  1. speaking of being gone with the wind, the wind bag’s fav staff purveyor of mean was the subject of a Rosh Hashanah sermon according to the guardian:


    The childhood rabbi to Stephen Miller, special adviser to Donald Trump and a key architect of his “zero-tolerance” immigration policies, criticized his former charge on Monday as a purveyor of “negativity, violence, malice and brutality” who had learned nothing from his Jewish spiritual education.
    Rabbi Neil Comess-Daniels of Beth Shir Shalom, a progressive reform synagogue in the beachside city of Santa Monica where Miller grew up, devoted his sermon marking the Jewish New Year to a striking denunciation of Miller and the now-abandoned policy he championed of separating immigrant families at the border.
    “Honestly, Mr Miller, you’ve set back the Jewish contribution to making the world spiritually whole through your arbitrary division of these desperate people,” the rabbi said. “The actions that you now encourage President Trump to take make it obvious to me that you didn’t get my, or our, Jewish message.
    “This is the season of apology, and to get to an apology, shame over past actions is necessary. Some shout at others when they are self-righteous enough: you should be ashamed of yourself! That’s not something I would ever shout or demand.” But Comess-Daniels went on to say it was up to Miller to acknowledge his wrongdoing.
    The service for Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, was held on the campus of Santa Monica high school, which Miller attended from 1999 to 2003, and broadcast live on Facebook. Rabbi Comess-Daniels found a receptive audience, which greeted his words with rapturous applause.
    Comess-Daniels’ denunciation follows on the heels of a similar repudiation by Miller’s uncle, David Glosser, who described his “dismay and increasing horror” at the behavior of his nephew in an essay for Politico last month. “In the face of the virtual kidnapping of thousands of innocent children, I didn’t feel I had the ethical standing to remain silent,” Glosser later explained to the Guardian.
    Comess-Daniels, a champion of immigrant rights and interfaith dialogue, particularly with Muslims, has spoken out about Miller before, but never so frankly. Miller’s parents, who still live in Santa Monica, have not been members of Beth Shir Shalom for many years.Miller never completed his bar mitzvah there but he attended Hebrew school, where he was known as a provocateur unafraid to alienate his classmates. One contemporary has recounted how Miller sabotaged an ethical discussion over who should receive the last slice of a pizza by slapping his bare hand over it, “palm to cheese”.
    Comess-Daniels told the Rosh Hashanah faithful that some of his fellow rabbis had questioned how he had educated Miller. “I can assure you, as I can assure them,” he said, “that what I taught is a Judiasm that cherishes, wisdom, values … wide horizons and an even wider embrace … [Separating families] is completely antithetical to everything I know about Judaism, Jewish law and Jewish values.”
    Comess-Daniels made no apology for offering so overtly political a sermon. “In a free society, some are guilty, all are responsible,” he said. “Because we want this society to remain free, we will continue to act.”

  2. Can we talk about Serena for a second?

    Hurricanes used to be named after only women.  Folks don’t like it when a female makes a ruckus.  PC made it necessary to add men’s names to the line-up.

    I remember Jimmy Conners, Ilye  Nastasi, and, John MacEnroe’s terrible tempers.   However, what I saw from Serena was nothing like the outbursts of male players, with the exception of smashing her racquet.

    She actually sounded quite calm when she was speaking.   Maybe she could have been a better sport about it, but I do think she’s getting a raw deal.  Men do get away with bigger outbursts…or they’re quickly forgotten.

    The Australian cartoon was so racist, that the sexism was buried.  The point that the ~artist~ thought Serena was being a poor sport and having a tantrum could’ve been made without the racist  caricature of Serena.

    I think every woman should start being really honest all the time, instead of being quiet and saying things are fine, when they are not fine at all.   Folks will be scared or put off by it, but it will normalize things.

  3. bid

    great thoughts on the Serena Williams debacle.  I was shocked to read the Martina Navratilova editorial in the NYTimes telling Williams to shut up and take it like a girl.

  4. seems to me her coach (not her) should be the one fined.

    BTW, what’s the history on  others charged with receiving illegal coaching from the players’ box?


    bleacherreport:  Serena Williams’ Coach Admits to Coaching Amid Carlos Ramos US Open Controversy

    Serena Williams‘ coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, disclosed he was coaching from the players’ box during Williams’ controversial U.S. Open final against Naomi Osaka on Saturday at Arthur Ashe Stadium in Flushing Meadows, New York.
    “All coaches are coaching throughout the match,” he told ESPN (h/t 5News’ Andrew Scaglione). “But check the record. I’ve never been called for a coaching violation in my career.”
    Chair umpire Carlos Ramos assessed Williams a warning for receiving illegal coaching from the players’ box, but she told Ramos the action was not warranted.
    “I don’t cheat to win,” she said. “I’d rather lose.”

  5. Bid…  I used to politely keep my mouth shut whenever around any conservative that proclaimed (always loudly) his/her political views.  No more…  I’m still polite…  but I don’t hesitate to tell them that I disagree with their point of view.

    Today is the NH state primary.  I have to take a Democratic ballot… there isn’t much choice on the ballot because a lot of our legislature are already Dems and running unopposed.  But where ever I have a choice, I’m marking my X next to the woman’s name.

  6. Trevor discusses the controversial call against Serena Williams at the U.S. Open and the double standards in sports.

  7. The only people who can afford to leave are the rich, and you don’t need to remind them.  Where are all these evacuees staying?


    You’re point about Puerto Rico is well-taken.  Where the heck were they going to go?

    Family friends got evac orders, yesterday- they don’t have money for a week in a hotel “at higher ground”. They’ll probably sleep in a car, because that’s safe to do in a hurricane, right?

  8. Agree Bink that evacuation shelters only seem to pop up after a storm. We need our Red Cross expert Blue Bronc’s thoughts on that. Trump has tweeted “we’re here for you” so everything will be just fine.

  9. How did you post 2 minutes in the future, Flatus?  Amazing!


    Don’t worry- no one is getting hurricane preparedness advice from a message board, one way or the other, Flatus. Oh, and see? SC has it figured out, already. Well done.

  10. Bink, please don’t discourage average people from evacuating. In SC each household is provided, every year, an up-to-date Hurricane Guide providing detailed instructions on how to survive. My county (Richland) is a reception area for evacuees. All schools have been closed. They will be used as shelter space as required. We’re good at it. Just ask the folks from New Orleans. If you are affected go to scemd.org

  11. petfriendlytravel has this helpful info:
    Pet Evacuation and Pet Friendly Emergency Shelters
    Find information on pet and animal evacuation in a disaster, pet friendly evacuation shelters, pet friendly emergency shelters, hurricane shelters with pets
    Since Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans in 2005, major changes have been made to federal and state emergency planning laws with respect to animals. At the time, there were no laws that required that animals be evacuated, rescued or sheltered in an emergency. The lack of provisions for pets put human health and safety in jeopardy because some pet owners chose to weather the storm at home for fear of what would happen to their animals. As a result, federal and state laws have been passed to include provisions for evacuation of animals, rescue and recovery, shelters and tracking in disaster plans.
    Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards (PETS) ActIn 2006, the federal Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards (PETS) was passed. PETS directs the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to develop emergency preparedness plans and ensure that state and local emergency plans take into account the needs of individuals with pets and service animals during a major disaster or emergency. Since then, over 30 states have adopted either a law that deals with disaster planning and pets or have made known administrative plans on the subject. PETS Act FAQ
    AKC Pet Disaster ReliefAfter the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, local Emergency Management teams are now required by Federal Law to have readiness plans and resources available to help citizens and their pets in the event of a disaster. AKC Pet Disaster Relief helps local Emergency Management provide animal care services immediately following a disaster. AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailers are stocked with essential, nonperishable necessities for sheltering pets. The supplies can be used to create a safe, temporary home-base for displaced animals and can be used to create one of two types of animal shelters. Co-location Shelters: A shelter that houses both humans and their animal companions. The people housed at the shelter are responsible for their animal’s general care. Lost and Found Pet Shelters: Displaced animals are housed in what often becomes a pop-up reunion center as people and animals are reunited. Approved volunteers and shelter staff provide animal care.

  12. and here’s BringFido on:

    Pet Friendly Evacuation Shelters for Hurricane Florence

    Pet-friendly shelters are designed to accommodate household pets during an evacuation. All pet-friendly shelters require pre-registration of pets, proof of residency within the evacuation zone, and current medical and vaccination records for each pet. While in the shelter, owners are responsible for the feeding, care, clean-up, and behavior of their pets. Shelter openings are incident-specific. Never go to a shelter unless local officials have announced it is open and you have filled out the pre-registration form. See below for a list of pet-friendly shelters opening for Hurricane Florence. It will continue to be updated as more shelters are announced.
    Last updated: September 10, 2018 at 9:56PM EDT

    Georgia | The Carolinas | Virginia

  13. Here when there is flooding and mandatory evacuations a lot of the hotels/motels have an evacuation rate also if you have renters or homeowners insurance it usually pays for expenses when you are out of your house due to an emergency.

  14. I saw Charleston was giving out free sandbags to residents- limit of 10 per family.  10 sandbags are sure to stop a Cat 5, right?

    Ok, i’m done. Just be wary of inducing panic remotely, going forward, please? Great, thanks.

  15. bbronc, know the trail is rooting for your safety and well being while deployed on your mission comforting those confronting whatever Florence brings them.

  16. at 9:05 a.m. from  wapo:


    The center is warning of an “extremely dangerous” triple threat in the Carolinas and Virginia:
    1) A “life-threatening storm surge” at the coast — a rise in ocean water over normally dry land.
    2) “Life-threatening freshwater flooding from a prolonged and exceptionally heavy rainfall event” from the coast to interior sections.
    3) “Damaging hurricane-force winds” at the coast and some distance inland.
    Like Hurricane Harvey, which stalled over Texas in 2017, Florence could linger over the Southeast for several days after landfall. Forecast models suggest that at least one to two feet of rain could fall in some areas. The flooding might be similar to or worse than what the Carolinas experienced during Hurricane Matthew in 2016.

  17. I somehow don’t think anyone who wasn’t going to get riled up and leave for higher ground anyway given the onslaught of forecasts of the end of the world by the Weather Channel, local TV, print and electronic news, national television, Cable news, state and local government officials and almost every internet news or weather platform is going to be persuaded by a message board or blog to come to their senses and leave to save their own asses.  Where is Florence going to make landfall?  Ask me Saturday (maybe even Friday) and I’ll have a good idea and then we’ll know who really needed to evacuate.  As the old barkers used to say, “Ya pays your money and ya takes your chances.”  If not knowing whether I’m in an area that will REALLY get the shit slammed out of it meant driving inland and sleeping in my car for a couple of nights if I can’t find a friend, family member, shelter or afford a hotel, I’d probably take that option rather than take the chance that I was wrong.  A few days of discomfort versus possible death doesn’t strike me as too difficult a choice to make.

  18. Yesterday and last night we had a couple of not-so-heavy thunderstorms come through. Experienced a total of 0.95-in of rain. Pressure dropped to a min of 29.73; it is now 29.92. It’s a very pleasant day with some wispy clouds and light winds from the southwest.

  19. It’s 9/11 and would our current administration make the same mistakes the Shrubians made.  Probably and worse

  20. Patd et Al

    OMG division of human affairs.  Beth Shir Shalom (called Beth Shalom when I attended) is where I converted.  Of course that was back in 1978 and the man who handled that somewhat questionable event, Rabbi Earl Jordan is now long retired in Florida.


  21. Those horses have probably ridden out a lot of storms right where they all, not that all probably made it.

    When hurricanes have come into the TX gulf area, there is a convoy coming up to N TX to stay with friends and family.  They do open shelters ahead of time up here, when they know folks are headed north.

  22. For anyone who might be in the neighborhood

    REDWOOD COAST DEMOCRATS 3RD ANNUAL BARN PARTY & 2018 Election FundraiserSaturday, September 15     2-6pmKenny Jowers’ Ranch, 43700 Mountainview Road, Manchester (Hwy 1 ontoMountainview to the 1st gate on the left)Free BBQ and Mexican Food, Beer & Wine on Sale, Free Admission, Open to AllHonored Guests:  Congressman Jared Huffman, State Controller Betty Yee,State Senators Mike McGuire & Jim Wood, and moreLive Blue Grass Music featuring Vintage Grass, Blue Wave T-Shirts, DoorPrizes, etc.

  23. 1. How much did Progressive Insurance pay to have this storm named Flo ?

    2. Only in trump’s America would a potential disaster emergency be named after a great and historical Italian city.

    3. Please be careful, safe, and kind, all you wonderful Easterners.

  24. the cut at  ny magazine:  Donald Trump Is Having a Really Hard Time Honoring 9/11

    Tuesday marks the 17th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, during which approximately 3,000 people were killed after airplanes flew into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. And to the surprise of absolutely no one, President Donald Trump sure seems to be having a tough time appropriately honoring the occasion.
    Trump started out the somber day in his usual fashion: tweeting about Hillary Clinton and special counsel Robert Muller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. Of course.

    The president then briefly went back and forth between tweeting about “#September11th” and live tweeting the rest of Lou Dobbs’s Fox News program, before posting about his attorney Rudy Giuliani, whom he once reportedly referred to as a little baby who needs his diaper changed:

    Trump, of course, then continued to tweet — and excitedly reminded us just how long it’s been since the attack:

    Shortly after, Trump and his wife, First Lady Melania Trump, arrived at an airport in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. They were en route to visit the Shanksville memorial site of United Flight 93. But upon arrival, the president had a rather … odd … reaction: he was photographed emphatically pumping both of his fists.
    Immediately after the fist pump, Trump and the First Lady appeared to be having a great time greeting supporters at the airport.
    Later, when it was time for Trump to give a speech at the Shanksville memorial site, the president walked up to the podium — while pointing at people in the crowd and mouthing the words “thank you” as they clapped for him. That moment occurs around the 56:50 mark in the longer video here, but a shorter clip of his speech, during which he slowly read aloud from a teleprompter, is below.

    Donald Trump and supporters on 9/11. Photo: Evan Vucci/AP/REX/Shutterstock

    Later, when it was time for Trump to give a speech at the Shanksville memorial site, the president walked up to the podium — while pointing at people in the crowd and mouthing the words “thank you” as they clapped for him. That moment occurs around the 56:50 mark in the longer video here, but a shorter clip of his speech, during which he slowly read aloud from a teleprompter, is below.

    We will continue to update this post throughout the day as Trump attempts to mourn a national tragedy.


  25. There has been a rumor going around that trump will soon cashier General Mattis. I hope that rumor is unfounded. I respect Mattis more than I do for the general run of general officers. It would be nice if ‘Mad Dog’ would give Vice Usurper pence a nudge toward the 25th Amendment Solution. Perhaps the general fears the ferret-eyed Indianan more than he fears the Greatest President, Legal and Military Genius, and Pussypincher in the History of This or Any Other Universe.

  26. woodward book exoses creepy crawlies under the rock, like watching roaches scatter
    President Donald Trump accused former New Jersey governor Chris Christie of “stealing from me” and feared that a presidential transition team was “jinxing” his chances of victory during the 2016 presidential campaign, according to journalist Bob Woodward’s new book on the Trump White House.

    In one passage from “Fear: Trump in the White House,” Woodward described a scene in which then-candidate Trump summoned Christie to Trump Tower along with campaign CEO Steve Bannon. Trump was angry to learn that Christie, whom he made head of his transition team in May 2016, was raising money for the team’s operations.
    “Where the (expletive) is the money?” Trump asked Christie, according to Woodward. “I need money for my campaign. I’m putting money in my campaign and you’re (expletive) stealing from me.”

    Christie explained the money was necessary for the transition team to do its job of preparing Trump to smoothly take over the executive branch of the government should he defeat his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton.

    Trump responded that one reason 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney failed to defeat President Barack Obama was because he spent too much time on his transition and not enough time campaigning, Woodward writes.
    “That’s why he lost,” Trump said.
    Trump also expressed concern that the transition team was bringing bad luck to his campaign.
    “You’re jinxing me,” Woodward quotes Trump as saying. “I don’t want a transition. I’m shutting down the transition. I told you from day one it was just an honorary title. You’re jinxing me. I’m not going to spend a second on it.”

    At that point, Bannon jumped in and tried to explain why the transition team was useful, according to Woodward. But Trump repeated, “It’s jinxing me.”
    After Bannon said that the news media was likely to read an end to the transition team as a sign that Trump didn’t believe he could win, the candidate relented. But he wanted the transition operation to be scaled down and for Christie to stop fundraising, Woodward writes.
    “He can have his transition,” Trump said, according to the book. “But I don’t want anything to do with it.”
    Trump replaced Christie as head of the transition team with his running mate, Vice President Mike Pence, three days after his election victory.

  27. http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/406089-christie-accuses-bannon-of-being-woodwards-co-author

    Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) is accusing former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon of being a “co-author” of the tell-all White House book by veteran journalist Bob Woodward.
    “Unfortunately, it appears Bob Woodward has used perpetual leaker Steve Bannon as a co-author for his book,” Christie tweeted, referencing Woodward’s “Fear: Trump in the White House,” which hit shelves on Tuesday.
    “His non-stop, self-centered leaking is why Steve was fired from the White House in the first place,” Christie added.
    Christie in a subsequent tweet accused Woodward of “being a stenographer for Mr. Bannon’s self-aggrandizing revisionist history” and claimed Woodward had not contacted him for a fact check.
    Woodward in the book reports that Trump once accused Christie of “stealing” from him when the former New Jersey governor was working for his 2016 presidential campaign.
    “Where the f— is the money?” Trump reportedly asked Christie, referring to funds the transition team was using, according to Woodward. “I need money for my campaign. I’m putting money in my campaign and you’re f—ing stealing from me.”
    Christie denied the quotes attributed to him.

  28. irish nat’l newspaper the independent:

    US President Donald Trump has cancelled his visit to Ireland planned for later this year, Independent.ie understands.


    Sources say the controversial trip, planned for November 12, will not now go ahead.
    The development will come as a massive relief to the Government.
    Mr Trump was planning to spend one day in Dublin before travelling to Doonbeg, Co Clare where he owns a golf link.

    The stopover was on his way home from Armistice Day commemorations in France on November 11.
    Sources have indicated to Independent.ie that his entire European itinerary is now under review – but the Irish element is set to be cancelled.
    Much like when the US President announced he was coming, the Government here has been caught totally unaware.
    A spokesperson for Taoiseach Leo Varadkar was earlier unable to confirm the story even after it was broken on Independent.ie.
    However, a Government spokesperson has now confirmed to Independent that the trip has been “postponed due to scheduling reasons”.
    He said it is still possible that President Trump will take up Mr Varadkar’s invitation at a future date but November will not be happening.
    Contacts between Mr Varadkar’s office and the US Embassy are ongoing this evening.
    Speaking at a press conference this evening, The White House said it has not yet made a final decision on whether U.S. President Donald Trump will make a stop in Ireland as part of his trip to Paris later this autumn.
    “The president will travel to Paris in November as previously announced. We are still finalizing whether Ireland will be a stop on that trip. As details are confirmed we will let you know,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters.
    The US President had been due here on 12 November, something which Taoiseach Leo Varadkar admitted earlier this month wasn’t expected.
    Speaking on The Marty Squad on RTE Radio One on 2 September, the Taoiseach explained: “It came a little bit out of the blue.
    “There is an open invitation to the US President to visit Ireland at any time, I think they’ve all visited since Reagan, if not before and obviously there’s an open invitation for me, or any future Taoiseach, to attend Washington in March.
    “We hadn’t known until just a couple of days ago that he was going to take the opportunity of his visit to Paris for the Armistice commemorations, commemorating a hundred years of the end of the First World War, to visit Dublin, and also he’s going to go to Doonbeg too.
    “We’ve got to work out on a programme and all the rest of it but I think any programme we will have will have to respect the fact that we will inaugurating our own President on the 11th of November.
    “And also will have to make sure that we have enough time and space to commemorate the Armistice because bear in mind hundreds of thousands of Irish people, including a lot of people from this city, fought in the first world war. We need to make sure that’s appropriate and fits around that as well.”
    Political parties including Labour and the Greens had said they would be protesting against Mr Trump’s visit.
    Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin has claimed the expected cancellation of US President Donald Trump’s planned visit to Ireland reflects a relationship between the two countries that is “not functioning”.
    Mr Martin said the whole episode has been “a very unedifying experience”.
    And he pointed to the lack of a US ambassador to Ireland for two years when he said: “I think it’s time to try and get this relationship sorted”.
    He said the way Mr Trump’s visit and expected cancellation played out has been “extraordinary”.
    He said the Government hadn’t been alerted that the visit was on in the first instance.
    “It was a bolt out of the blue. Then suddenly, in a similar manner it emerged that the visit is off.”
    Mr Martin said it showed the need for some indication of when a US ambassador would be appointed as in the past they had been a “key conduit” with American Presidents.
    “I think the Government should put a bit of pressure on to get an ambassador at least identified,” he said.
    Asked if he had ever seen such haphazard organisations for a visit by a US President Mr Martin, a former foreign affairs minister said: “No I haven’t I have never seen anything like this before.”
    Mr Martin said that bar Taoiseach Leo Varadkar’s controversial joke about helping Mr Trump in relation to his Co Clare golf club, the St Patrick’s Day festivities in the US “went reasonably well”.
    He added: “I’ve never seen anything like this, genuinely.
    “This is reflective of a relationship that is now not functioning, that needs to get sorted and needs structures in place.”
    He also said it could be symptomatic of how Mr Trump operates, making decisions and undoing them quickly.
    Mr Martin said discussions with the US President are needed on trade and protectionism, the undocumented Irish, foreign direct investment and dispelling the perception that Ireland is a tax haven and the European Union.
    He said: “Those are the issues I think we need to reset the button on.”

  29. those pesky russkies!

    nbc news:  U.S. investigators suspect Russia in mystery ‘attacks’ on diplomats

    Intelligence agencies investigating mysterious “attacks” that led to brain injuries in U.S. personnel in Cuba and China consider Russia to be the main suspect, three U.S. officials and two others briefed on the investigation tell NBC News.

    The suspicion that Russia is likely behind the alleged attacks is backed up by evidence from communications intercepts, known in the spy world as signals intelligence, amassed during a lengthy and ongoing investigation involving the FBI, the CIA and other U.S. agencies. The officials declined to elaborate on the nature of the intelligence.
    The evidence is not yet conclusive enough, however, for the U.S. to formally assign blame to Moscow for incidents that started in late 2016 and have continued in 2018, causing a major rupture in U.S.-Cuba relations.
    Since last year, the U.S. military has been working to reverse-engineer the weapon or weapons used to harm the diplomats, according to Trump administration officials, congressional aides and others briefed on the investigation, including by testing various devices on animals. As part of that effort, the U.S. has turned to the Air Force and its directed energy research program at Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico, where the military has giant lasers and advanced laboratories to test high-power electromagnetic weapons, including microwaves.
    Although the U.S. believes sophisticated microwaves or another type of electromagnetic weapon were likely used on the U.S. government workers, they are also exploring the possibility that one or more additional technologies were also used, possibly in conjunction with microwaves, officials and others involved in the government’s investigation say.
    The U.S. has said 26 government workers were injured in unexplained attacks at their homes and hotels in Havana starting in late 2016, causing brain injuries, hearing loss and problems with cognition, balance, vision and hearing problems. Strange sounds heard by the workers initially led investigators to suspect a sonic weapon, but the FBI later determined sound waves by themselves couldn’t have caused the injuries.
    This year, one U.S. worker in China was diagnosed with similar symptoms after hearing bizarre sounds in Guangzhou, and more from China are being tested.
    The precise motive remains unclear, but the incidents have driven a wedge between the U.S. and Cuba that has led Washington to remove most of its diplomats and spies from the island. Early in the investigation, senior U.S. officials raised the possibility the illnesses were unintended consequences of some new spying technology. But the fact the incidents continued long after they became publicly known has cast doubt on the possibility that the damage was accidental.
    In testimony before Congress last week, State Department officials were unanimous that the incidents should be considered “attacks.”
    “The State Department has come to the determination that they were attacks,” Ambassador Peter Boode, who leads the task force responding to the incidents, told a House Foreign Affairs Committee panel.
    A U.S. official separately tells NBC News that the U.S. has “no reason to believe this was anything but an intentional act.”
    If Russia did use a futuristic weapon to damage the brains of U.S. personnel, it would mark a stunning escalation in Russian aggression toward Western nations, compounded recently by the use of a military-grade nerve agent to poison an ex-spy and his daughter in Britain. Although the full extent of the resulting diplomatic fallout is difficult to predict, a determination that Russia was behind the Cuba attacks would trigger outrage in Congress and foreign capitals and calls for an immediate, concerted response, especially as President Donald Trump faces continued questions about his willingness to challenge Russia and President Vladimir Putin.

  30. Ha!  Chris Christie just confirmed that part of Woodward’s book by going after BananaNazi.

    No-regard is safe as kittens until November, but I don’t think Christie is getting anything from Trump.

  31. Interesting 9/11 factoid I came across today in doing some research on Gary Hart.

    Hart gave a speech before the American international law firm Coudert Brothers on September 4, 2001, exactly one week before the September 11 attacks, warning that within the next 25 years a terrorist attack would lead to mass deaths in the United States. Hart met with aviation executives in Montreal, Canada, on September 5, 2001, to warn of airborne terrorist attacks. The Montreal Gazette reported the story the following day with a headline, “Thousands Will Die, Ex-Presidential Hopeful Says.”  On September 6, 2001, Hart met with National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice to urge, “You must move more quickly on homeland security. An attack is going to happen.”


  32. Love Bob. Always liked that Ruben Carter song. Saw Bob last December. Odd concert. Glad I knew most of the words, otherwise I wouldn’t have had a clue what songs he was singing. And he never touched a guitar. He definitely threw me a curve.

  33. Looks like the horses are going to be spared a lot of damage. There is a stationary front that will direct Florence south and west, sparing the Mid-Atlantic region serious damage. There will still be rain and flooding, but not tropical storm driven. But, it could make Atlanta a wet place to be this weekend.

  34. “unbelievable damage” was the phrase used this a.m. by wapo story:
    Hurricane Florence charges toward Carolinas with ‘potential for unbelievable damage’
    The National Hurricane Center is warning of a triple threat in the Carolinas:

    A “life-threatening storm surge” at the coast — a tsunami-like rise in ocean water over normally dry land.
    “Life-threatening freshwater flooding from a prolonged and exceptionally heavy rainfall event” from the coast to interior sections.
    “Damaging hurricane-force winds” at the coast and some distance inland.

    Like Hurricane Harvey, which stalled over Texas in 2017, Florence could linger over the Southeast for several days after landfall, unloading 15 to 25 inches of rain and isolated amounts of up to 40 inches. Flooding from heavy rains is the second-leading cause of fatalities in landfalling tropical storms and hurricanes.



  35. I am talking regions.  Mid-Atlantic is New York to the Virginia North Carolina border.  The Carolina’s are going to be hammered, but north of the North Carolina Virginia border will be out of the direct impact.  There will be storm surge up the Bay and along the Atlantic side of Delmarva, but not like previously forecast, that includes the horses.

    Florence is going to dump a lot of water on the Carolina’s then move west and loop up to the D.C. area mid-week.

    Now that the storm is closer and the models are getting closer together the forecasts are better.  I sure would not like to be on the Carolina coast come Friday.

  36. The good news is that the winds have dropped to 110 mph and Flo has been downgraded to a Cat 2 storm. If that trend continues it should lessen the damage wrought by her. The bad news is she’s gotten bigger. Go inland. Hunker down. O

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