🇺🇸 Idalia’s Incursion
Plus, expensive, stinky cheese.
Good morning, and happy Thursday. A Minnesota teen reeled in a wallet with $2,000 while on a fishing trip this summer — but he chose not to fry this one up for dinner. Instead, he took it back to the owner and made a lifelong friend.
Plus, a 4.8-pound wheel of Spanish cheese broke a world record when it was auctioned for more than some new cars.
Also, today’s sponsor is transforming 7 billion smartphones into EarnPhones. It’s an interesting concept, click here to check it out.
Left: Don't Expect the Justice System Alone To Save Democracy Quinta Jurecic, Atlantic
Left: Republicans Demand a Ransom To Free Trump Heather Parton, Salon
Left: State Republicans Try to Remove Top Jurist for Mentioning the Existence of Racial Bias Billy Corriher, Slate
Right: 2024 GOP Field Set To Narrow Quickly James Antle, Washington Examiner
Right: The AP's Vile Blame Game on Racist Murders in Jacksonville Guy Benson, Townhall
Right: Republican courage now means dropping out, not staying in Hugo Gurdon, Washington Examiner
McConnell Freezes Again, Giuliani Liable, Russia-North Korea Arms Deal
US: Sen. Mitch McConnell appears to freeze again at a Kentucky event (NBC News)
US: Judge rules former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick is not competent to stand trial in sex abuse case, dismisses charges (CNN)
US: Judge rules Navarro didn’t prove Trump invoked executive privilege over Jan. 6 testimony (The Hill)
US: Judge holds Giuliani liable in Georgia election workers’ defamation case for withholding information (AP)
World: US says Russia has made 'shameful' moves toward new North Korea arms deals (NPR)
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Hurricane Idalia hit Florida yesterday morning as the southwestern US braced for strong winds and potential flooding. The storm touched down near Keaton Beach in northwest Florida with winds up to 125 mph.
Reporting from the Left: Some 280,000 in Florida without power as damage surges begin in Idalia’s wake (Miami Herald)
Reporting from the Right: Tropical Storm Idalia causes 'severe damage' and catastrophic flooding as it rips through coastal states (Fox News)
From The Flag: Initially classified as a Category 4 hurricane, Idalia was later downgraded to Category 1. Despite the downgrade, at least 30 counties in western and Central Florida have issued evacuation orders. Coastal communities could see ocean storm surges as high as 16 feet. Here’s how both sides are covering the hurricane.
Hurricanes Are Becoming Stronger. Human and financial costs are also increasing.
The hurricane could expose insurers and their customers to huge losses across a wide stretch of Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas.
We have long ignored the consequences of fossil fuel usage, and we are creating conditions that favor even stronger hurricanes.
Fear and confusion reign in Perry, where even emergency shelters were forced to close because of the hurricane’s strength
Idalia Could Become Another Multibillion-Dollar Superstorm Andrew Ross Sorkin et al., The New York Times: “Officials along Florida’s Gulf Coast and in Georgia and the Carolinas have issued emergency warnings, as the region braces for yet another ‘multibillion-dollar insurance industry event.’ Last September, Hurricane Ian, a Category 4 storm, slammed into Florida, inflicting nearly $100 billion in damage. Such disasters are becoming more common — and more costly — each year, sending insurance costs soaring for homeowners and businesses. Insurance companies are still reeling from Ian. Some firms doubt they can continue to cope with such superstorms, while others have limited their business in the state. One of their big complaints: State regulations prevent them from raising prices for customers, they say, forcing them to say no to new policies. Florida’s woes reflect a nationwide problem, one that is expected to intensify as climate change unleashes more extreme weather events.”
Storms Like Hurricane Idalia Thrive on Global Warming John Hocevar, Newsweek: “The community of Apalachee Bay is preparing for its first major hurricane in at least 172 years. And as Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) dismisses climate change as ‘left-wing stuff,’ residents are shuttering their homes, schools, and businesses and fleeing to safety, and many more are deciding whether to leave. This upheaval of entire communities has become all too familiar as we grapple with the mounting climate chaos unleashed by record-breaking temperatures on both land and sea. … As far back as 2015, scientists knew that for every degree Celsius (1.8 F) that ocean surface temperatures increase, hurricane intensity can increase by 16 percent. Florida's sea temperatures recently hit a whopping 101 degrees Fahrenheit—a frightening number that some liken to the ocean becoming a saltwater jacuzzi. The resulting die-off of coral reefs that usually help shield communities from the storm surge leaves already vulnerable people even more exposed.
One more opinion piece from the Left: ‘Danger everywhere’: Idalia leaves trail of destruction in Florida Anthony White, The Guardian
Mixed: Hurricanes Becoming Stronger vs. Hurricane Intensity Is The Same
Hurricane intensity has risen over the past 20 years. Eight of the 10 most active years since 1950 have occurred since the mid-1990s.
National Democrats and Trump supporters need to stop taking this as a political opportunity to pile on Governor Ron DeSantis.
The Left claims fossil fuels and climate change are creating more intense hurricanes, but Idalina’s intensity isn’t much different from when a hurricane hit the same area in 1896.
Why Hurricanes Are Becoming More Intense Eric Niiler, The Wall Street Journal: “This year’s record-setting ocean temperatures are the result of decades of climate warming and an El Niño pattern that is releasing heat from the Pacific into the atmosphere and affecting ocean temperatures globally, according to Michael McPhaden, senior scientist at NOAA’s Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory in Seattle. … This year’s record-setting ocean temperatures are the result of decades of climate warming and an El Niño pattern that is releasing heat from the Pacific into the atmosphere and affecting ocean temperatures globally, according to Michael McPhaden, senior scientist at NOAA’s Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory in Seattle. … Hurricane intensity–a measure of wind speed–has risen over the past 20 years. Eight of the 10 most active years since 1950 have occurred since the mid-1990s. The number of major hurricanes–those rated Category 3 and higher–has also increased.”
A Hurricane Warning Charles C.W. Cooke: “Keep your stupid games away from your reporting on Hurricane Idalia. Stop it. Cut it out. Adjust your thinking, and do it now. This is a natural disaster, not a gameshow. … Already, Governor DeSantis is being asked questions about Donald Trump while he’s trying to deliver updates. Stop that. The hurricane is a part of the primary in the sense that Ron DeSantis is an active governor who is being tested before voters’ eyes. The hurricane is not the primary in the sense that it’s a WWE ring or an opportunity to drive clicks from people who are obsessed with cable news. The role of the press here should be to relate facts accurately; it should not be to turn this into a cage fight. The local media here in Florida understand that this isn’t a partisan matter. So do most of the state’s Democrats.”
One more opinion piece from the Right: Reminder: Hurricanes Aren’t New Rich Lowry, National Review
Americans Believe Climate Change is a Factor, But They’re Divided Along Partisan Lines
Earlier this month, the Pew Research Center released a report illustrating Americans’ sentiments about climate change. One finding shows that a majority of Americans (61%) say that global climate change is affecting their local community either a great deal or some. About four in ten (39%) see little or no impact in their own community (Pew Research Center).
A Washington Post-University of Maryland survey conducted in the latter half of July found a partisan divide over other severe storms — including hurricanes — with 54% of Democrats attributing such events to climate change compared to 33% of Republicans (The Washington Post).
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Charleston Earthquake, Luxe Pistachios, Birthday Paradox
A visible fissure and a wrecked brick house in Charleston’s Tradd Street in the aftermath of the earthquake.
On This Day in 1886: An earthquake near Charleston, South Carolina, leaves more than 100 people dead and hundreds of buildings destroyed. This was the largest recorded earthquake in the history of the southeastern United States.
Taste: Pistachios Are Quiet Luxury
Today I learned the birthday paradox says that in a group of 23 randomly selected people, there is a 50% chance that at least two of them have the same birthday.