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Irma blacks out Puerto Rico

The Associated Press SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Hurricane Irma blacked out much of Puerto Rico as the dangerous Category 5 storm raked the U.S. territory with heavy wind and rain while staying just out to sea, and it headed early today toward the Dominican Republic and Haiti. To the east, ...

Trump overrules GOP on spending, debt, Harvey aid

The Associated Press WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump briskly overruled congressional Republicans and his own treasury secretary Wednesday to cut a deal with Democrats to keep the government operating and raise America’s debt limit. The immediate goal was ensuring money for hurricane ...

Prices rise on Houston’s ‘cheap’ housing in the wake of Harvey

As the floodwaters recede, much of Houston’s famously “affordable” housing may seem less of a bargain. We’re not just talking about rising rents, inevitable with so many units destroyed. We are talking about the emotional cost of having to move in with friends, rebuild and buy new ...

Bennett accuses Las Vegas police of racially motivated excessive force

The Associated Press LAS VEGAS — Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett accused Las Vegas police on Wednesday of racially motivated excessive force, saying he was threatened at gunpoint and handcuffed following a report of gunshots at an after-hours club at a casino-hotel. Police ...

Big number

According to a Los Angeles Times story about a legal dispute between Apple and Qualcomm "the workings of today’s smartphones involve an estimated 250,000 patents." (See http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-tn-apple-qualcomm-20170902-story.html)

Gambling

Bloomberg reports that small companies have taken up a large portion of Florida's home insurance business after the giants, disliking their losses during 2005 when many storms hit Florida, pulled back. This is a subset of the 'Fireproof Hotel' problem that RtO has so often commented on. You ...

Book Review 393: The Fifties

THE FIFTIES, by David Halberstam. 800 pages, illustrated. Villard W.H. Auden famously labeled the ’30s “a low, dishonest decade,” but the ‘50s were as low and a whole lot meaner. There were men as mean as Hoover, McCarthy, the Dulles brothers, LeMay and Nixon in the ‘30s but they ...

Jeff Sessions, racist

RtO once said that Jeff Sessions is always about race. It's true. Everything that comes out of his mouth is dog-whistle. Now.,thanks to the anger generated by the assault on the Dreamers, various left voices are publicizing what may have been his most open racist statement. It was made in ...

Trump orders end to program protecting ‘dreamers’

The Associated Press WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday began dismantling Barack Obama’s program protecting hundreds of thousands of young immigrants who were brought into the country illegally as children, declaring he loves the “dreamers” who could face deportation but ...

Self-governance focus of most people; Regulatory State thinks otherwise

Back when I was a pollster, I would explain that following the daily polls was like watching a heavy rainfall on the surface of a river. There’s a lot of action and noise and splashing around, but nothing that gives you a real sense of where the river is going. For that, you must look beneath ...

Elliott’s appeal denied, but will play in opener

The Associated Press SHERMAN, Texas— An arbitrator denied Dallas running back Ezekiel Elliott’s appeal of a six-game NFL suspension in a domestic violence case Tuesday, but the 2016 league rushing champion will play in the Cowboys’ season opener because of the timing of the ...

Williams reaches semifinals

The Associated Press NEW YORK — Venus Williams’ remarkable renaissance continues. Williams secured her first U.S. Open semifinal berth since 2010, and reached her third major semifinal of the season — something she last did 15 years ago — by edging two-time Wimbledon champion Petra ...

Red Sox reportedly used Apple Watch to steal Yankees’ signs

The Associated Press BOSTON — The Boston Red Sox admitted to Major League Baseball that they used an Apple Watch to relay signals from opposing catchers to Boston players, The New York Times reported Tuesday. Using electronic devices to steal signs is against major league rules. MLB is ...

U.S. envoy: N. Korea ‘begging for war’

The Associated Press NEW YORK — North Korea’s leader is “begging for war,” the U.S. ambassador said Monday at an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council, as members called for punishing the country with even stronger sanctions for its powerful nuclear test. Ambassador Nikki ...

Calif. official pushes robot tax to battle automation

The Associated Press SAN FRANCISCO — Security guard Eric Leon watches the Knightscope K5 security robot as it glides through the mall, charming shoppers with its blinking blue and white lights. The brawny robot records video and sounds alerts. According to its maker, it deters mischief just ...

Focus group offers reprimand to Trump: ‘It’s not about you’

On a late summer night, some 230 days into the Trump presidency, a dozen Pennsylvania voters gathered around a conference table in Pittsburgh and were asked by respected Democratic pollster Peter D. Hart to just give “a word or a feeling about Donald Trump.” The answers from this group ...

Critics of Harvey ‘price gouging’ have it backward

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is upset about “price gouging” during hurricane Harvey. Some stores raised prices to $99 for a case of bottled water — $5 for a gallon of gas. “These are things you can’t do in Texas,” he says. “There are significant penalties if you price ...

Federer heads to quarterfinal with del Potro

The Associated Press NEW YORK — The only bit of trouble for Roger Federer in his fourth-round match at the U.S. Open on Monday was when he felt the tightening of a muscle at the back of the top of his left leg. Federer got a medical timeout after the second set against No. 33 seed Philipp ...

Thomas earns fifth PGA Tour victory of 2017

The Associated Press NORTON, Mass. — Justin Thomas keeps piling up wins, and all that does is make him want more. Thomas kept his patience when Jordan Spieth shot out to a brief lead at TPC Boston and Marc Leishman built a two-shot advantage at the turn. Keeping his mistakes to a minimum, ...

Martinez makes history

The Associated Press LOS ANGELES — J.D. Martinez’s day took a record-tying turn after slow start. Martinez matched a major league mark with four home runs Monday, becoming the 18th player to accomplish the feat as the Arizona Diamondbacks won their 11th straight game, 13-0 over the ...