In the News

Here is some stuff in the news today...

[Content Note: Earthquake; death; injury] A second devastating earthquake has hit Nepal: "A 7.3 magnitude earthquake killed at least 37 people and spread panic in Nepal on Tuesday, bringing down buildings already weakened by a devastating tremor less than three weeks ago and unleashing landslides in Himalayan valleys near Mount Everest. Most of the reported fatalities were in villages to the east of Kathmandu, only just beginning to pick up the pieces after the April 25 quake that left more than 8,000 people dead. The new earthquake was centered 76 km (47 miles) east of the capital in a hilly area close to the border with Tibet, according to coordinates provided by the U.S. Geological Survey. Aid workers reported serious damage to some villages seen from the air and witnesses reported seeing rocks and mud crashing down remote hillsides lined with roads and small hamlets." I don't even know what to say. There aren't sufficient words, not that I can find. As always, please feel welcome and encouraged to leave suggestions for how to help in comments.

[CN: Extreme weather] In related news: "The El Nino effect, which can drive droughts and flooding, is under way in the tropical Pacific, say scientists. Australia's Bureau of Meteorology predicted that it could become a 'substantial' event later in the year." Fuck.

[CN: Police brutality; racism] The Cuyahoga County (Ohio) Sheriff's Department, which took over the investigation of 12-year-old Tamir Rice's death from the Cleveland Police Department earlier this year, says their investigation is almost complete. Terrific. But will this six-month investigation result in anything that even resembles accountability?

[CN: Hunger and thirst] Oh dear: "A group of 350 migrants from Myanmar have told an activist by phone that they have been abandoned by their crew and need help. The migrants, including 50 women and 84 children, say they have had no food or water for three days. The passengers were calling for help and crying down the phone, said Chris Lewa of the Arakan Project which works with the Rohingya ethnic minority. ...The migrants' location is unclear but they think they may be close to the Malaysian island of Langkawi. They can see land and they said they have seen several ships in the area and have signalled for help but none has approached. Earlier on Tuesday, Indonesia said it had turned away a boat the previous day carrying hundreds of migrants believed to be from Myanmar and Bangladesh. Indonesia's navy said it provided the vessel with food and water on Monday before sending it back out to sea. It said that it did so because the migrants wanted to reach Malaysia, but an international migration agency said the decision was 'shocking.' As many as 8,000 migrants from Bangladesh and Myanmar are believed by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to be stranded at sea."

There are a whole lot of reasons that I don't want the US to the be the "world police," but goddamn if I don't wish we used our global reach to answer explicit calls for help like this, rather than imposing our will with weaponry around the fucking world.

[CN: War on agency; sexual assault] "Undeterred by recent controversy over legislative efforts to restrict abortion access for rape victims, Republicans in Congress are preparing to wade back into the fray this week." Of course they are. "House leaders are readying another vote on a national 20-week abortion ban—this time, with slightly different language related to sexual assault that party leaders say will allow the legislation to more easily advance." Fuck. Off.

Pew finds that fewer USians are identifying as Christians these days. Huh. Hard to believe, what with so many prominent conservative evangelicals giving Christianity THE BEST reputation.

[CN: Sexual assault] This fucking guy: "Sweden's highest court has thrown out Julian Assange's appeal against his arrest warrant, dashing his immediate hopes of an end to his three-year confinement in Ecuador's embassy in London. His lawyers were, however, encouraged by a 4-1 decision by the judges, which a senior legal figure said indicated the court could still change its mind." I don't believe his victims will ever get justice. I desperately hope I am wrong.

Neat: "11 Super-Cool Science Photos from the Past Decade." If you don't like mice or insects, maybe skip this one.

Whoa: "A painting by Pablo Picasso has set a new world record for the most expensive artwork to be sold at auction after reaching $179m (£115m) in New York. ...Overall, 34 of 35 lots sold at Monday's auction for a total of $706 million." Good job, 1percenters! You're doing great!

And finally! "From Scared Stiff to Slobbery Kisses, Terrified Pit Bull Transforms after Rescue from Trash Heap." All the blubs foreverrrrrr!

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