Only in the Park Slope Barnes & Noble, kids. Only in Park Slope.
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Once again, the courts are stepping in to block Trump administration policy
U.S. District Judge Michael J. McShane late Tuesday said he’ll grant a preliminary injunction against new federal restrictions that bar taxpayer-funded family planning clinics from referring patients to abortion providers, calling the rule a “ham-fisted approach to public health policy.”
Oregon is one of 20 states and the District of Columbia that challenged the Trump administration’s changes to the Title X family planning program in U.S. District Court in Oregon, along with Planned Parenthood affiliates and the American Medical Association.
They sought a national injunction. But the judge said he’s reluctant to set “national health care’’ policy and would describe the scope of his injunction in a formal written opinion soon. The U.S. Justice Department urged any injunction apply only to the plaintiffs in this case, noting at least four similar suits pending in other states.
McShane said the so-called “gag rule” – barring physicians from referring patients who don’t want to continue their pregnancies to an abortion provider – prevents doctors from behaving like medical professionals.
The judge also found that it would create a class of low-income women who couldn’t receive a full range of medical care options, foster a “geographic vacuum” in reproductive health care clinics and likely cause an increase in abortions due to more unwanted pregnancies.
A damning report on a post-war institution
The Boy Scouts have kept files going back decades showing that nearly 8,000 volunteers have been excluded from the organization because they had been accused of sexually abusing children, according to a review by an expert on child sexual abuse.
The expert, Janet Warren, a professor at the University of Virginia, revealed the scope of the reported abuse when she testified as an expert witness in a trial involving allegations of child sexual abuse at a children’s theater in Minneapolis.
Ms. Warren said during her testimony that she had been hired by the Boy Scouts and spent five years reviewing data known as the “perversion files’’ that contained information on volunteers whose involvement in the group had been ended “because of reasonable allegations of child sexual abuse.”
Democrats aren’t rallying behind Bernie Sanders’s CNN town hall proposal to give the vote to the incarcerated
A promising sign for 2020 Democrats
Turnout among 18-to 29-year-old voters surged between 2014 and 2018, according to data released Tuesday.
In 2014, just 20 percent of people in that age group voted, compared to 36 percent in 2018, or an increase of 79 percent, the Census Bureau reported, citing data from the Voting and Registration Supplement.
Overall turnout was the highest it had been in decades, increasing from 41.9 percent in 2014 to 53.4 percent in 2018. According to The Washington Post, the 2018 turnout represents a 100-year high.
The bureau also noted dramatic increases in turnout among Hispanic and Asian voters. The turnout for both Hispanic voters and non-Hispanic Asian voters increased by 13 percentage points, a 50 and 49 percent increase respectively.
Operation Bury Your Boss’s War Crimes
Stabbing a defenseless teenage captive to death. Picking off a school-age girl and an old man from a sniper’s roost. Indiscriminately spraying neighborhoods with rockets and machine-gun fire.
Navy SEAL commandos from Team 7’s Alpha Platoon said they had seen their highly decorated platoon chief commit shocking acts in Iraq. And they had spoken up, repeatedly. But their frustration grew as months passed and they saw no sign of official action.
Tired of being brushed off, seven members of the platoon called a private meeting with their troop commander in March 2018 at Naval Base Coronado near San Diego. According to a confidential Navy criminal investigation report obtained by The New York Times, they gave him the bloody details and asked for a formal investigation.
But instead of launching an investigation that day, the troop commander and his senior enlisted aide — both longtime comrades of the accused platoon leader, Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher — warned the seven platoon members that speaking out could cost them and others their careers, according to the report.
The stuff of sci-fi prologues
A dome-shaped probe known as SEIS landed on the surface of Mars in December after hitching a ride on NASA’s InSight spacecraft.
Its instruments measure surface vibrations caused by weather but are also capable of detecting movement from deep within the planet—so called “marsquakes”—or those caused by meteorite impacts.
The French space agency Cnes, which operates SEIS, said it had detected “a weak but distinct seismic signal” from the probe.
According to NASA’s Bruce Banerdt, the quake detection “marks the birth of a new discipline: Martian seismology.”
But will he rip off the contractors that build it?
Drain the…you know the rest
The Interior Department’s Office of Inspector General has opened an investigation into whether six of President Trump’s appointees have violated federal ethics rules by engaging with their former employers or clients on department-related business.
The new inquiry, which the office confirmed in an April 18 letter to the nonprofit Campaign Legal Center, is looking into senior Interior officials, including Assistant Secretary for Insular and International Affairs Doug Domenech, White House liaison Lori Mashburn and three top staffers at the Office of Intergovernmental and External Affairs. The Campaign Legal Center detailed the officials’ actions in a Feb. 20 letter to the inspector general’s office, suggesting a probe was warranted.
To avoid conflicts of interest, Trump signed an executive order days after taking office that requires appointees to recuse themselves from specific matters involving their former employers and clients for two years. The complaint, which cites reports in HuffPost and the Guardian as well as extensive public records, outlines how a half-dozen political appointees at Interior continued to discuss policy matters with organizations that had employed them in the past.
Winning over black voters nationwide – much less in his hometown – might be a problem for Mayor Pete
C.J. Neely, a black 16-year-old who has lived here all his life, thinks it’s pretty cool that Pete Buttigieg, the mayor of this small city of about 100,000 people, is running for president.
“I never heard about anybody from Indiana running for president,” Neely said recently outside his childhood home in the city’s northwest.
Just a few days before, Buttigieg, a rising star of the Democratic Party, officially launched his bid for president at an abandoned Studebaker plant downtown that the city helped convert into a 800,000-square-foot tech hub, a symbol of the city pushing beyond its 20th century roots.
They will be sorely missed
More evidence that the economy is not heading for a fall in the near term