Rise and Shine: Dec. 10, 2019

Time to take on Tuesday, CivMixers! Good morning.

It’s Nation Human Rights Day, which marks the United Nations General Assembly’s adoption and proclamation of the first global enunciation of human rights and one of the early major achievements of the new UN in 1948.

On a less serious note, it’s also National Lager Day. For the uninitiated, lager is a kind of beer that is “effervescent and “light in color and body.” Lagers ferment slowly and at low temperatures from the bottom up, as opposed to ales.

On this day in 1964, the Nobel Peace Prize was presented to civil rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Oslo.

The weather today is going to be, well, odd. It’s going to start out unseasonably warm, with temperatures rising to near 50 degrees, and then dropping down to around 40, according to The Weather Channel. It will be very cloudy with a chance of rain showers.

And don’t get used to this light jacket situation; tomorrow we’re headed back for the 30s again, though it looks like the sun will break through some time in the afternoon.

In birthday news…Actress Raven-Symone is 33. Celebrity chef Bobby Flay is 54. Actor/director Kenneth Branagh is 58. Actress Nia Peeples is 57.

Poet Emily Dickinson was born on this day in 1830. She died of Bright’s disease, described in modern medicine as acute or chronic nephritis, in 1886.

Also born on this day in 1815 was the British mathematician Ada Lovelace, who is known as the first computer programmer for writing the world’s first machine algorithm for an early computing machine that existed only on paper. She died in 1852 of cancer at the age of 36. Lovelace has her own day of celebration in October.

It’s a big day in modern-day D.C.

House Democrats are preparing to announce at least two articles of impeachment against President Trump, charging him with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress for conduct they called a “clear and present danger” to the 2020 election and national security.

Notably absent from the planned charges: Bribery.

Trump yesterday – yet again – dismissed the impeachment inquiry as a partisan “witch hunt,” “a disgrace” and “a hoax.”

This comes after Democrats and Republicans who squared off at an impeachment hearing in the House Judiciary Committee had one remarkable point of agreement: Both said that there are four key facts at the heart of the debate about whether Trump should be impeached by the House and removed from office.

In non-impeachment news…

F.B.I. officials had sufficient reason to open the investigation into links between Russia and Trump campaign aides in 2016 and acted without political bias, a long-awaited report said, but it concluded that the inquiry was a rushed and dysfunctional process marked by serious errors in documents related to a wiretap.

…The exhaustive report by the Justice Department’s independent inspector general, Michael Horowitz, faced an immediate challenge. Attorney General William Barr sought to undermine the key finding that investigators had an adequate basis to open the inquiry, known as Crossfire Hurricane.

Thousands of pages of documents detailing the war in Afghanistan released by The Washington Post paint a stark picture of missteps and failures — and delivered in the words of prominent U.S. officials, many of whom publicly had said the mission was succeeding.

Mayor Pete Buttigieg will disclose his management consulting clients, open his fund-raisers to reporters and reveal the names of people raising money for his presidential campaign – a series of significant concessions toward transparency for a candidate under increasing pressure to release more details about his personal employment history and campaign finances.

A new poll of registered Democrats has Hillary Clinton as their top choice for the 2020 Democratic Party presidential nomination — and she’s not even running.

Pierce Bush, a grandson of former President George H.W. Bush, launched a Texas congressional run and aligned himself with Trump, who his late grandfather blasted as a “blowhard” and voted against in the 2016 campaign.

Four months before the first deadly crash of Boeing’s 737 Max, a senior manager approached an executive at the company with concerns that the plane was riddled with production problems and potentially unsafe. That manager, whistle blower Ed Pierson, plans to tell his story to Congress tomorrow.

A 3-year-old child struck and killed by a truck in Harlem while crossing the street in his stroller with his mother was the sixth child pedestrian to be killed on city streets in 2019, according to city data, and the 104th pedestrian to be killed by a vehicle so far in 2019, compared to 101 in the same period last year.

New York State is holding steady as the nation’s third worst “judicial hellhole,” according to a report by the American Tort Reform Foundation.

The de Blasio administration agreed to pause a program that relocates homeless families to Newark following a lawsuit by the New Jersey city. A motion for a temporary restraining order filed by Newark was withdrawn as a result.

A new law signed by Gov. Cuomo lays the groundwork for the manufacture and sale of home-grown hemp products — including popular CBD oil — across the state. But food and beverages containing CBD, which NYC has banned, aren’t covered.

An Albany judge has dismissed a lawsuit that challenged the constitutionality of New York’s controversial new school vaccination requirements.

Troy residents and business owners will soon see their trash bills go up.

Cuomo ordered the state health department to probe allegations of “horrific” overcrowding and understaffing at Mount Sinai Hospital’s emergency department.

The state Board of Regents appointed Shannon Tahoe as interim commissioner. Tahoe had been serving as acting commissioner of education and president of the SUNY system since Nov. 16 and has served in various legal and administrative capacities in the State Education Department since 2006.

With an eye toward ensuring city services and operations are equitable for all Albany neighborhoods, Common Councilwoman Dorcey Applyrs will take on the role of chief city auditor next year when Sue Rizzo departs to assume the role of Albany County comptroller Jan. 1.

Rensselaer County held its first of three forums on criminal justice reforms set to take place in New York on Jan. 1.

Rensselaer County Executive Steve McLaughlin is calling New York’s bail and discovery reforms an unfunded mandate by the state that will cost him at least $400,000 to implement.

Disgraced ex-lawyer Thomas Lagan is blaming alcohol for his role in a nearly $12 million rip-off that victimized elderly clients, including Niskayuna philanthropists Warren and Pauline Bruggeman. His sentencing in U.S. District Court is set for tomorrow.

Sharing stories of obscured parking meters, buried streets and hulking snowbanks, a half-dozen Schenectady residents, many of them visibly emotional, excoriated lawmakers yesterday, contending the city was ill-prepared and needed to revisit its snow removal policies to determine what exactly went wrong.

The Board of Regents requested an increase in state education spending by $2 billion, focusing the increase on lifting foundation aid by $1.9 billion. This comes as state lawmakers set out to possibly rewrite the formula, hosting public forums on the subject around the state this winter.

The leader of the State Senate, Andrea Stewart-Cousins, says she does not think there will be new broad-based taxes on the wealthy to close the state’s multi-billion dollar budget shortfall.

A study led by a University at Albany researcher has found an increase in the kind of weather conditions that can lead to more hail storms in the Northeast.

New Yorkers have been moving south to Florida for years, to escape both the taxes and cold weather. But now, a relocation website suggests that the Empire State may have the Sunshine State beat on one cost of living measure: monthly utility bills.

The judge hearing the Schoharie limousine crash case has ordered that grand jury minutes in the case be turned over to the defense.

Albany Police Officer Sadaka Kitonyi is spending his own money to give back to those in need this holiday season.

The Daily Gazette has acquired the Amsterdam Recorder, along with two of its weekly newspapers – the Courier-Standard-Enterprise and Fulton County Express.

The three papers will remain in publication and remain based in Amsterdam, though not in the same building off Route 5S that has been home to The Recorder for decades, according to Gazette Publisher John DeAugustine.

Cosmetic billionaire Ronald Lauder, the head of the World Jewish Congress, is launching a $25 million campaign to combat anti-Semitism in American politics.

Seven more women have come forward with accounts of unwanted sexual touching by the actor Cuba Gooding Jr. going back to 2003, prosecutors said in court documents, bringing the number of his accusers to 22.

An autopsy performed on rapper Juice WRLD was inconclusive and additional tests are needed to determine the up-and-coming rapper’s exact cause of his death, the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office in Illinois said.

The rapper suffered convulsions and went into cardiac arrest as police and federal agents were searching his and his entourage’s luggage for guns and drugs at a private hangar at Midway Airport over the weekend, according to law enforcement sources.

“Beetlejuice,” which overcame a sluggish start to become a fan favorite on Broadway, is being evicted from its theater to make room for another musical that promises to be more lucrative.

Federal health officials are advising consumers to throw out a chopped salad kit from their refrigerators after it was linked to a recent E. coli outbreak that made people sick in several states.

The New England Patriots and coach Bill Belichick are being investigated by the NFL to determine whether or not the team had someone recording the Bengal’s sideline during Sunday’s loss to the Cleveland Browns, Cincinnati coach Zac Taylor told reporters.

Photo credit: George Fazio.

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