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Member since: Thu Feb 14, 2008, 11:58 AM
Number of posts: 30,896

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Nearly 1.7 million Georgians have already cast ballots in the state's Senate runoff elections...

Nearly 1.7 million Georgians have already cast ballots in the state’s Senate runoff elections, setting a near-presidential level pace. About 50,000 of those votes were cast by Georgians who didn’t participate in the general election, per @gtryan’s analysis. #gapol #gasen


Good lawd, the WSJ Opinion page is at it again (Scott Altas):



House conservatives strategize with Trump and Pence in push to challenge Biden's win

Source: CNN

(CNN)Alabama GOP Rep. Mo Brooks and fellow House conservatives met privately on Monday with President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence as the lawmakers prepared to mount a long-shot bid in January to overturn the Electoral College results that made Joe Biden the official winner of the election.

The discussion focused on Trump's baseless claims and conspiracies that the election was stolen from him, participants said, and lawmakers emerged confident that there were would be a contingent of House and Senate Republicans who would join the effort and prompt a marathon debate on the floor on January 6 that would spill into January 7.

Pence's involvement in the meeting is significant because he will preside over the joint session of Congress that would count the electoral votes that day. Brooks said that Pence attended "different parts" of the meeting.

"I believe we have multiple senators and the question is not if but how many," Brooks said, something that would defy the wishes of Senate Republican leaders who are eager to move on and urging senators not to participate since doing so could force them to cast a politically toxic vote against Trump.

Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/21/politics/house-conservatives-trump-meeting/index.html


Treasury Department's Senior Leaders Were Targeted by Hacking

Source: NYT

WASHINGTON — The Russian hackers who penetrated United States government agencies broke into the email system used by the Treasury Department’s most senior leadership, a Democratic member of the Senate Finance Committee said on Monday, the first detail of how deeply Moscow burrowed into the Trump administration’s networks.

In a statement after a briefing for committee staff members, Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon, who has often been among the sharpest critics of the National Security Agency and other intelligence agencies, said that the Treasury Department had acknowledged that “the agency suffered a serious breach, beginning in July, the full depth of which isn’t known.”

The Treasury Department ranks among the most highly protected corners of the government because of its responsibility for market-moving economic decisions, communications with the Federal Reserve and economic sanctions against adversaries. Mr. Wyden said the hackers had gained access to the email system by manipulating internal software keys.

The department learned of the breach not from any of the government agencies whose job is to protect against cyberattacks, but from Microsoft, which runs much of Treasury’s communications software, Mr. Wyden said. He said that “dozens of email accounts were compromised,” apparently including in what is called the departmental offices division, where the most senior officials operate.

Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/21/us/politics/russia-hack-treasury.html


These tiny windows were used in Europe during the Black Plague and today, they're back in business


Biden taps former Warren aide for economic team

Source: The Hill

President-elect Joe Biden on Monday tapped Bharat Ramamurti, a former adviser to Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), as a new member of his economic team.

Ramamurti, who sits on the congressional commission overseeing COVID-19 relief funding, will serve as deputy director for financial reform and consumer protection on the National Economic Council.

David Kamin, an economic and budget adviser in the Obama White House who's now a law professor at New York University, will serve as deputy director for the council, which will be led by Brian Deese, deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget during the Obama administration.

The Biden transition team also announced Joelle Gamble, a board member at the progressive Roosevelt Institute, as a special assistant to the president for economic policy.

Read more: https://thehill.com/policy/finance/531133-biden-taps-former-warren-aide-for-economic-team

Robert E. Lee's last resting place in the Capitol, in the Crypt. Beginning at 4 am today...

Surreal Moon Photo Looks Like a Giant Eye Peeking Through Rock Arch in the Desert

At the end of October, photographer Zach Cooley ventured to Arches National Park in Utah. There, he captured a surreal sight: a full moon framed by the North Windows Arch that makes it look like a giant eye in the sky. In brilliant single-exposure photos, the beguiling visual is almost too perfect to be real.

Cooley’s incredible images represent a lot of planning on his part. “Moon photos like this can involve some fairly extensive planning, and that was certainly the case for this shot,” he tells My Modern Met. “I use multiple specialized photography apps which allow me to see exactly where the moon will appear at any given time and position (PlanIt!, The Photographer’s Ephemeris (TPE), and PhotoPills).”

Putting himself in the exact right place at the right time was also key. “For precision alignment, you have to be standing in just the right spot, and a few steps in the wrong direction could mean you miss the target.” Cooley was nervous as the moment approached; he wondered, would he be standing in the correct spot? “I was never happier when it appeared in the right place and I knew I could achieve the planned shot.”

Capturing Earth’s satellite has long been a fascination for Cooley. “I have a memory of when digital cameras were fairly new and my dad tried taking a photo of the full moon straight above us. It didn’t turn out at all,” he recalls. “He captured the same thing that many today do with cell phones—just a white disc, lacking the details that we can see with our eyes.”


Sooo, this is what went on at a Turning Point USA event:


This too, also:

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