Midday open thread: Democrats say new judge threat to Native sovereignty; GDP rises by 2.9% in 2018
Today’s comic by Ruben Bolling is A very Peanuts third-party candidate:
• Rising sea levels eat the land and revenue of coastal communities: The rise is eroding property values from Maine to Mississippi by billions of dollars in the past 10 years as buyers pay less for homes in neighborhoods where high-tide flooding is creeping in, a new report shows. The loss in property values highlights is happening while sea level rise makes governments build flood walls and repair infrastructure more often. The rise eats the property tax base that provides many cities’ primary revenue stream for funding that work. […] Climate change is speeding up sea level rise and these have driven a rapid increase in the frequency of coastal flooding on the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts in recent decades. Residents and local businesses are already feeling the costs.
• Democrats sound alarm on Trump appeals court nominee Eric Miller: “He has spent much of his career fighting against the interests of tribal governments and tribal sovereignty,” Sen. Maria Cantwell of Washington said in a speech in the morning that led off the Democratic assault. By a vote of 53-46 the Senate on Monday evening confirmed attorney Eric Miller to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Numerous Democrats objected, and took note of opponents in Native tribes across the country. “He has spent much of his career fighting against the interests of tribal governments and tribal sovereignty. He has argued against tribal fishing rights, challenging tribal sovereignty, and fighting against the protection of Native American religious and traditional practices,” she said. Cantwell is a member of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs and was the first woman to serve as its chair.
• Real (inflation-adjusted) GDP grew 2.9% in 2018, same as 2015: In 2017, growth in real gross domestic product was 2.2%. For the 4th Quarter of 2018, GDP grew at an annual rate of 2.6%, substantially better than the 2% that expert consensus had forecast. Next month, the Bureau of Economic Analysis will, as it always does, revise the previous report as more comprehensive data become available. Donald Trump had promised a 4% growth rate, but neither in 2017 (2.2 percent) nor 2018 did the economy come close to that. Last July, when the initial GDP report for the 2nd Quarter was 4.1% (later revised to 4.1%), Trump crowed that we’d be seeing even bigger numbers soon. But the 3rd Quarter came in at 3.4%. The median forecast for the 1st Quarter of 2019 is 2.4%.
You know what this tweet means. Another summit in an Asian capital. But maybe by then Trump will be wearing an police ankle bracelet and won’t be able to attend.
North Korea disputes Trump’s claim that it demanded the removal of all sanctions, saying they only asked for partial removal of sanctions. https://t.co/Ww5I0wjzFZ
— Jennifer Epstein (@jeneps) February 28, 2019
• Navy hasn’t delivered on promised changes after 17 sailors were killed in two destroyer collisions in 2017: The promises included more sailors on those ships, better training for them, timely repairs on broken equipment, and an end to the practice of forcing ships out to sea before they are adequately prepped. An admiral was sent on a speaking tour to convince officers that the Navy was committed to making the changes. But when commanders asked if they could reject orders to sail if they weren’t ready, the admiral grew angry and said: “If you can’t take your ships to sea and accomplish the mission with the resources you have, then we’ll find someone who will.” That gave those officers and many others through the Navy grapevine the idea that the Navy is not serious about making the changes. Interviews conducted by ProPublica have found that the Navy’s commitment is still missing.
• Jonah “Liberals Are Fascists” Goldberg likely to become editor-in-chief of new conservative media outfit: Goldberg will soon leave National Review to start a new conservative media company together with Steve Hayes He was editor-in-chief of The Weekly Standard before it was shuttered by its owner in December. The two men told Mike Allen at Politico that “they plan a reporting-driven, Trump-skeptical company that will begin with newsletters as soon as this summer, then add a website in September, and perhaps ultimately a print magazine.”
On today’s Kagro in the Morning show: The Cohen hearing was such a big deal yesterday, we needed a whole show for hot takes today. The only competition was the nothingberder in Hanoi, yet another subpoena of the most corrupt inauguration ever, and a sprinkling of other Topics o’ Interest.