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Wednesday, Sep 20th

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Trump review leans toward proposing mini-nuke

Trump ;eams tpward mini nuke

The Trump administration is considering proposing smaller, more tactical nuclear weapons that would cause less damage than traditional thermonuclear bombs — a move that would give military commanders more options but could also make the use of atomic arms more likely.

A high-level panel created by President Donald Trump to evaluate the nuclear arsenal is reviewing various options for adding a more modern "low-yield" bomb, according to sources involved in the review, to further deter Russia, North Korea or other potential nuclear adversaries.

TVNL Comment:  The insanity starts, and proliferates.  Mini nukes?  Does Trump understand that our adversaries are capable of doing the same.  He's playing war games without understanding the consequences.  We're all toast.

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Equifax data breach could create lifelong identity theft threat

Data break at Equifax puts people at lifetime risk

When a credit card gets stolen, it's easy for the victim of the crime to shut down the card, get a new account number and avoid monetary loss. But financial peril rises and can persist for years when personal data likely to stay the same forever -- like Social Security numbers, names and dates of birth -- get stolen like it did in the cyber attack on credit-reporting service Equifax.

Once hackers gain access to these key pieces of personal data -- which is akin to the DNA of a person's online digital self -- it is at the cyber thieves' disposal forever to cause harm.

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NASA maps summer melt of Greenland Ice Sheet

NASA maps summer ice melt in GreenlandNASA's Operation IceBridge has been mapping summer ice melt of the Greenland Ice Sheet since Aug. 25 using a B200T King Air aircraft.

The flights will go through Sept. 21, with repeat paths to be flown in the spring to monitor seasonal changes in the elevation of the ice sheet.

"We started to mount these summer campaigns on a regular basis two years ago," Joe MacGregor, IceBridge's deputy project scientist and a glaciologist with NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, said in a press release. "If the flights go as expected, the result will be a high-quality survey of some of the fastest melting areas in Greenland and across as much of the island as possible."

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Legal defense fund could be set up for WH staffers in Mueller probe: report

Fund for legal defense of WH staff

A legal defense fund for White House staffers being questioned by special counsel Robert Mueller could be in the works, according to The Daily Beast.

Sources familiar with the matter told the website that efforts are underway to help staff members pay for lawyers representing them in the ongoing investigation into ties between President Trump’s campaign and Russia.

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Feds Running Out of Money to Fight Massive Oregon Wildfire

Feds running out of money to fight Oregon firesWhile the East Coast prepares for Hurricane Irma, Oregon is battling an inferno that could bleed the U.S. Forest Service dry this week.

More than 30,000 acres of the Columbia River Gorge west of Portland have burned since  Saturday, according to Oregon State Police, and almost 2,000 homes are in the path of the fire. Meanwhile, the Forest Service faces a funding shortage, according to Oregon’s congressional delegation.

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Eric Bolling Out At Fox News

Eric Bolling out at FOX news

Fox News has parted ways with host Eric Bolling, the network confirmed Friday, just over a month after an exclusive HuffPost report revealed Bolling sent inappropriate text messages to current and former female colleagues.

News of the departure comes after two HuffPost reports revealed a pattern of inappropriate behavior by Bolling, who co-hosts “Fox News Specialists.” Fox News will cancel the program, it said in a statement.

“Eric Bolling and Fox have agreed to part ways amicably,” the network said. “We thank Eric for his ten years of service to our loyal viewers and wish him the best of luck.”

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Mueller seeks interviews with WH staff over Trump Tower meeting statement

Robert Mueller to question WH staff over Trump letterSpecial Counsel Robert Mueller's team has approached the White House about interviewing staffers who were aboard Air Force One when the initial misleading statement about Donald Trump Jr.'s meeting with a Russian lawyer at Trump Tower was crafted, three sources familiar with the conversations said.

The special counsel's discussions with the White House are the latest indication that Mueller's investigators are interested in the response to the Trump Tower meeting. Mueller wants to know how the statement aboard Air Force One was put together, whether information was intentionally left out and who was involved, two of the sources said.
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Major Hurricane Irma likely to deliver destructive blow to Florida this weekend

Irma likely to deliver destructive blow to FloridaAfter blasting the northern Caribbean, deadly Hurricane Irma will turn toward the United States, unleashing destructive winds, flooding rain and dangerous seas across Florida starting on Saturday.

"Unfortunately, there is no way the United States is going to avoid another catastrophic weather event," Dr. Joel N. Myers, founder, president and chairman of AccuWeather said.

"There will be massive damage in Florida. [It will be] the worst single hurricane to hit Florida since Hurricane Andrew in 1992," Myers said.

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Interior Dept. faulted for subsidy to firm once tied to David Bernhardt, now the deputy secretary

David Berhardt, DOI

An Interior Department agency responsible for managing water in the western United States improperly provided millions of dollars in subsidies to contractors in California, according to an inspector general's report, including to a major water district once represented by a lobbyist who is now Interior’s second highest-ranking official.

The Bureau of Reclamation, the Interior Department's top watchdog concluded, didn't fully disclose to Congress and others the $84 million cost of its Bay Delta Conservation Plan in California. It also said the bureau couldn't provide paperwork for why the water contractors didn't have to pay back $50 million in federal funding.

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