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TexasTowelie

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 78,448

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Alaska Gov. Dunleavy wields veto pen to attack state Supreme Court over abortion ruling

Alaska conservatives have fought for decades to block the state from paying for what they call “elective” abortions – those outside cases of rape or incest, or when the mother’s life is in danger.

But over those decades, they’ve been stymied by the Alaska Supreme Court, which has rejected their efforts on constitutional grounds — most recently in February.

Those rulings have negated lawmakers’ efforts to strip abortion-related funding from the state budget. So on Friday, Republican Gov. Mike Dunleavy employed a new tactic: He vetoed $335,000 from the budget of the Alaska Supreme Court.

“The legislative and executive branch are opposed to state-funded elective abortions; the only branch of government that insists on state-funded elective abortions is the Supreme Court,” Dunleavy’s administration wrote in a budget document released Friday. “The annual cost of elective abortions is reflected by this reduction.”

Read more: https://www.alaskapublic.org/2019/06/28/alaska-gov-dunleavy-wields-veto-pen-to-attack-state-supreme-court-over-abortion-ruling/

Bernie Sanders was not happy about Eric Swalwell's 'pass the torch' line

During the second night of the first Democratic presidential debates, Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., repeatedly told former Vice President Joe Biden and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders to "pass the torch" to a younger generation of Democrats.

Sanders didn't like it.

After the debate, Sanders told NBC's Andrea Mitchell that Swalwell's attacks were a form of "ageism."

"I think that's kind of ageism to tell you the truth," Sanders said of Swalwell's "pass the torch" line. "And I think what we're trying to do and all of us are trying to do is to end discrimination in this country against women, against minorities, against the LGBT community, and I think ageism as well."

https://twitter.com/RealSaavedra/status/1144472375787806721

Read more: https://www.sfgate.com/politics/article/Bernie-Sanders-unhappy-torch-Eric-Swalwell-ageism-14058825.php

Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes faces jail time for fraud charges. Her trial is set to begin in

Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes faces jail time for fraud charges. Her trial is set to begin in summer 2020.


Elizabeth Holmes will soon have her day in court.

On Friday, a judge in the US District Court for the Northern District of California said the trial for the founder of the blood-testing company Theranos and Sunny Balwani, its former president, would begin next summer. Jury selection will begin the week of July 28, 2020, and opening statements will start August 4, 2020, a spokesman for the US attorney's office said.

Holmes and her attorneys had been pushing for a delay in setting the court date, asking prosecutors for millions of documents.

In June 2018, the Department of Justice charged Holmes and Balwani with nine counts of wire fraud and two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, stemming from allegations that the two engaged in a scheme to defraud investors and a separate scam to defraud doctors and patients while at the blood-testing company. Both Balwani and Holmes have pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The DOJ said at the time that Holmes and Balwani could face up to 20 years in prison each, as well as a $250,000 fine plus restitution, for each count on which they're convicted.

Read more: https://www.sfgate.com/technology/businessinsider/article/This-Woman-s-Revolutionary-Idea-Made-Her-A-5789343.php

4-alarm fire burns condo complex under construction in Santa Clara

SANTA CLARA — A four-alarm fire consumed a 56-unit luxury condominium complex under construction in Santa Clara on Friday, sending workers running for their lives and throwing a thick plume of smoke into the sky that could be seen for miles.

At least one “person of interest” was detained near the scene about 12:30 p.m. and later released without any charges, according to Santa Clara police Capt. Wahid Kazem.

“Our investigators are currently working to make a determination if this person is involved in this incident or not,” Kazem said.

The blaze ignited at the Anantara Villas, 1850 El Camino Real, just after 11 a.m. and was contained by 1:30 p.m., said Santa Clara fire Chief Bill Kelly. Firefighters, however, expected to spend the remainder of the day extinguishing hot spots throughout the structure.

Read more: https://www.mercurynews.com/2019/06/28/4-alarm-fire-burning-near-santa-clara-university/
San Jose Mercury News


A four-alarm fire destroys an apartment complex at the corner of El Camino Real and Scott Blvd in Santa Clara, Calif., on June 28, 2019. (Photo by Arif Ahmed)

A 'significant leap' in experiments at nuclear fusion project based at General Atomics

The energy potential for nuclear fusion has always been remarkably ambitious but progress has usually been painfully slow.

But researchers and collaborators working on the DIII-D National Fusion Facility based at San Diego’s General Atomics have completed a series of successful experiments with an approach called “Super-H Mode” that has improved performance so dramatically they think it will accelerate the development of nuclear fusion reactors that could result, in theory, in a virtually limitless source of clean, carbon-free energy.

“Fusion energy research historically advances with steady and marked improvements over time,” David Hill, director of DIII-D, said in a statement. “It is not often you see a significant leap in results like we have seen with Super-H Mode. This discovery has significant ramifications for future fusion energy plants, and we’re excited to see how far it will carry the field forward.”

The results were published this week in the International Atomic Energy Agency’s journal of nuclear fusion research.

Read more: https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/business/energy-green/story/2019-06-25/researchers-report-a-significant-leap-in-nuclear-fusion-experiments

Cross-posted in the Environment & Energy Group.

A 'significant leap' in experiments at nuclear fusion project based at General Atomics

The energy potential for nuclear fusion has always been remarkably ambitious but progress has usually been painfully slow.

But researchers and collaborators working on the DIII-D National Fusion Facility based at San Diego’s General Atomics have completed a series of successful experiments with an approach called “Super-H Mode” that has improved performance so dramatically they think it will accelerate the development of nuclear fusion reactors that could result, in theory, in a virtually limitless source of clean, carbon-free energy.

“Fusion energy research historically advances with steady and marked improvements over time,” David Hill, director of DIII-D, said in a statement. “It is not often you see a significant leap in results like we have seen with Super-H Mode. This discovery has significant ramifications for future fusion energy plants, and we’re excited to see how far it will carry the field forward.”

The results were published this week in the International Atomic Energy Agency’s journal of nuclear fusion research.

Read more: https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/business/energy-green/story/2019-06-25/researchers-report-a-significant-leap-in-nuclear-fusion-experiments

Cross-posted in the Science Group.

California cities face $600K fines if they break state housing law in Newsom's budget deal

California will punish cities and counties that don’t meet their housing goals under a deal Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders announced Thursday.

If a court finds that a city or county violates a state law that sets targets for how much housing a community must plan to build, the fines could range from $10,000 to $600,000 per month, according to the bill language published Thursday.

Local governments would have a year to comply before the fines kick in after a court finds them in violation of the law. The fines would increase over time if the local government remains out of compliance.

After six months of fines, the court could take over a local government’s authority over its housing plans.

Read more: https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article232023537.html

$1.2 billion CalPERS lawsuit over long-term care gets go-ahead from judge

Public workers and retirees who sued CalPERS over an 85 percent rate increase to long-term care insurance plans could find out next week whether their lawsuit will move forward.

The lawsuit cleared a potential hurdle when a judge tentatively ruled that it shouldn’t be thrown out based on how much time passed before it was filed, and a decision on a second piece of the trial is expected Monday or Tuesday.

A few people who bought the plans filed a class-action lawsuit after the California Public Employees’ Retirement System notified them it planned to hike premiums in 2015 and 2016. The suit’s class includes up to about 100,000 people who faced the rate hikes. Plaintiffs claim the increases and associated costs amount to about $1.2 billion.

The people who filed the lawsuit said the rate hike violated contracts and promises in marketing materials for the plans. CalPERS said it had the authority to raise the rates and needed to do so to sustain the insurance plans.

Read more here: https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/the-state-worker/article232052397.html

PG&E faces more financial woes over wine country wildfires that killed 44 people

Trying to dig its way out of bankruptcy, PG&E Corp. is likely to take another financial hit as the California Public Utilities Commission opens a formal “penalty case” over the utility’s role in the 2017 wine country wildfires.

The fines could be considerable. The commission fined PG&E about $1.6 billion following the 2010 San Bruno natural gas pipeline explosion that killed eight people. The October 2017 fires killed 44 people, destroyed nearly 9,000 buildings and burned a total of 245,000 acres.

In an order released late Thursday, the PUC said its safety division has already concluded that PG&E failed to operate its electrical equipment properly and had “various deficiencies” in its tree-trimming program, contributing to the 2017 fires.

“PG&E’s violations during the 2017 fire siege are extensive and disturbing, and go to basic requirements, such as the failure to maintain adequate records,” PUC Commissioner Clifford Rechtschaffen said in a prepared statement.

Read more: https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article232067997.html

Sacramento County ordered to post bond while it appeals $107 million jury verdict

A federal judge has ordered Sacramento County to post a bond of more than $50 million while it appeals a jury verdict that awarded $107 million to two gravel mining families who contend the county unfairly forced them out of business years ago.

The order by U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller was filed in federal court Friday morning in Sacramento and could result in the county having to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars in premiums to obtain the bond, according to court filings.

Sacramento County officials have been fighting the March 2017 verdict for more than two years, and have argued in court papers that the county should not be required to post a bond while the matter is under appeal.

Mueller’s order stayed imposition of the verdict while the county continues its appeal, but rejected the county’s position that it should not have to post a bond while the legal fight goes on.

Read more: https://www.sacbee.com/news/business/article232071872.html
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