October 11th – The Day’s Most Fascinating News

Our teens are anxious, Norcal fires spread, and someone's going insane in the nuclear membrane.

“It’s tempting to blame helicopter parents with their own anxiety issues for that pressure (and therapists who work with teenagers sometimes do), but several anxiety experts pointed to an important shift in the last few years. “Teenagers used to tell me, ‘I just need to get my parents off my back,’ recalls Madeline Levine, a founder of Challenge Success, a Stanford University-affiliated nonprofit that works on school reform and student well-being. ‘Now so many students have internalized the anxiety. The kids at this point are driving themselves crazy.'” From the NYT Magazine: Why Are More American Teenagers Than Ever Suffering From Severe Anxiety? (And what should parents, schools, and therapists be doing to address the growing problem?) As a person with 75 browser tabs and a few social networks open every morning, I find it hard to believe that the bombardment of information from the Internet isn’t a contributing factor. The stress is always out there if you know where to look.


Juvenile Brawl

“Journalists found a troubled system beset by lax hiring standards, low pay, sexual misconduct and beatings bought for the price of a pastry.” Got a criminal record? A bad employment history? Well, there’s good news: The Florida juvenile justice is hiring, and you’re just what they’re looking for. From a team of reporters at the Miami Herald, a disturbing series on the juvenile detention centers turned into modern-day gladiator pits: Fight Club.

+ The Marshall Project: “Cooking Them to Death”: The Lethal Toll of Hot Prisons.


Is This Normal Yet?

While some Norcal residents have been able to get back to their neighborhoods to see if their houses are there, new neighborhoods are at risk as one of the worst fires in California history continues to spread. One resident of the hardest hit neighborhood in Santa Rosa wondered, “How do you put an entire neighborhood back together?” (Here’s some drone footage of the damage he was seeing when he asked the question.)

+ Bear With Me: My good friends (and excellent artists) Annie and Eric are donating 100% of the online sales of their I Love You California Collection to help support the relief efforts for those affected by the California wildfires. And I’ll match whatever they raise this week. So please help out by helping yourself to some cool art.

+ East Bay Times looks at the power lines connected to the Norcal fires.

+ NY Mag: “We have not, at all, arrived at a new normal. It is more like we’ve taken one step out on the plank off a pirate ship.”


Eyes on the Spies

“What gave the Russian hacking, detected more than two years ago, such global reach was its improvised search tool — antivirus software made by a Russian company, Kaspersky Lab, that is used by 400 million people worldwide, including by officials at some two dozen American government agencies.” The software that was supposed to protect the system was being used to hack the system. From the NYT: How Israel Caught Russian Hackers Scouring the World for U.S. Secrets. “It was a case of spies watching spies watching spies.”


Insane in the Nuclear Membrane

“The July 20 meeting was described as a lengthy and sometimes tense review of worldwide U.S. forces and operations. It was soon after the meeting broke up that officials who remained behind heard Tillerson say that Trump is a moron.” NBC News reports that Trump wanted a tenfold increase in the nuclear arsenal. (Remember when our biggest nuclear concern was that W couldn’t pronounce the word?)

+ Trump called the story … wait for it … fake news. And as Daniel Dale explains, “the president, sounding tyrant-adjacent, floats the idea of pulling news outlets off the air for critical stories about him.” Trump later complained that it’s “frankly disgusting the press is able to write whatever it wants to write.”

+ Related: Wall Street Journal reporter sentenced to prison by Turkish court.

+ The Atlantic: Are Trump’s feuds with Tillerson and Corker a prelude to war.

+ Question: Who said this: “Once you come into the Oval Office, and you understand the tremendous decisions that you have to make and the magnitude of those and the effect that it’s going to have on the world. I think that there’s a tremendous soberness and typically when you go in, you can end with lots of very highly qualified people around you.” Answer: Bob Corker. McKay Coppins on how Republicans got Trump catastrophically wrong.


Scouts’ Honor

“The Boy Scouts of America’s board of directors has unanimously agreed to welcome girls into the Cub Scout program and to forge a path for older girls to pursue and earn the highest rank of Eagle Scout.” The Boy Scouts will allow girls to join in a move drawing positive reactions. (You’ll never guess who was the first dipshit to question the Boy Scout’s decision…)

+ Earlier this year, the Boy Scouts opened membership to transgender boys


Nice Work, Genius

“Each of the recipients has been selected for having ‘shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction’ — and each will receive a $625,000 award from the foundation “as an investment in their potential,’ paid out over five years with no strings attached.” From NPR: Here are the 2017 MacArthur ‘Genius’ Grant Winners. (Not a single one of these geniuses has ever challenged anyone to an IQ contest.)


Contrary in a Coal Mine

“By requiring power producers to reduce sulfur emissions from electricity generation, the Clean Air Act triggered a shift in U.S. coal production from Appalachia, where coal is high in sulfur, to western states with abundant supplies of low-sulfur coal. However, overall U.S. coal employment was mostly unaffected by these regulations. Instead, the decline in coal employment has been largely driven by market forces.” The EPA is scrapping Obama’s clean power plan in the name of helping coal miners. There’s only one problem (in addition to the environmental cost): It won’t help them. It will hurt them.


Soc It To Me

“U.S. men’s soccer is obviously no stranger to embarrassment and heartbreak on the international stage … But what happened Tuesday night may stand alone.” FiveThirtyEight on the worst loss in the history of US Men’s Soccer.

+ ESPN on how the Warriors revolutionized basketball on a plate of appetizers.


Bottom of the News

Occasionally, my life choices are vindicated by a news story. Here’s Mel Magazine to explain why Wallowing Is the Best Way to Get Over Pretty Much Everything. (Best of all, this article made me feel even worse about my problems!)

+ Breaking news: Roy Moore isn’t nearly as upstanding as we all thought he was.

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