Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 01/11/2019

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

UTEP HAS BEEN DECLARED A TOP TIER RESEARCH UNIVERSITY!  HOORAY!!  MAYBE THEY CAN RESEARCH HOW TO HAVE A DECENT FOOTBALL TEAM. ZING! – Congratulations to UTEP for attaining a R1 designation in the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education.  The designation is only attained by the top tier of universities that make up the top 4.5% of the nation’s schools.  Kudos to UTEP for focusing on the important things in college like education and learning and not blowing all their money on sports and other random nonsense.  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

THE TORNILLO DETENTION CENTER/INTERNMENT CAMP IS FINALLY CLOSING.  GOOD RIDDANCE AND NOW WE HOPE THAT THE MORON’S RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS POLITICAL STUNT FOLLOW THE CAMP’S LEAD AND SIMPLY DISAPPEAR – According to U.S. Representative Will Hurd, the migrant youth detention center/internment camp/disgusting political showcase is finally closing and being removed from Tornillo.  Ever since Donald Trump decided to attack migrant children, the center was used to house unaccompanied minors waiting to be reunified with family in the country.  Most of these kids will now go to more stable shelters throughout the country that normally handle these situations and will soon be reunited with their families as they await their day in court.  And the disastrous Tornillo Camp is just another example of the shitshow that Donald Trump creates when he tries to fix things with new ideas that are infinitely worse than what is currently being done.  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

TEXAS ATTORNEY GENERAL KEN PAXTON IS EITHER A FUCKING MORON OR A RACIST SACK OF SHIT WHO PULLS FAKE STATISTICS OUT OF HIS ASS IN ORDER TO APPEASE HIS MASTER DONALD TRUMP – In a brazen attack on El Paso and its people, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton made the amazingly ignorant statement that the border wall in El Paso helped lower crime in a once “lawless” city.  The truth is that no statistics back that claim up and some stats even show the opposite happening with crime rising slightly in the years after the wall went up about a decade ago.  To make up shit and say that El Paso was a violent place before the idiotic border wall went up is just a vile lie that is laced with racism and sycophantic love for Donald Trump.  Just look at the stats!  There are no statistics that show that crime was high before the wall.  Hell, crime has been down since the 1980s and has remained at the lowest levels in the state since then.  Even the local media – which normally supports stupid conservative talking points and bends the knee to their conservative corporate masters – went out of their way to fact check this dumbass fucker.  When KFOX and the El Paso Times take time off from their busy schedule of spouting right wing idiocy to correct you, you know that the comment was utter bullshit.  In closing, fuck off Ken Paxton.  (cbs4local.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

WE ARE ONE STEP CLOSER TO THE END OF ONE OF THE DUMBEST CONFLICTS IN A WORLD FILLED WITH DUMB CONFLICTS – After decades of fighting between the Greek region and the new nation over the right to use “Macedonia”, it looks like the conflict between the areas with the same name will finally be resolved.  Macedonia’s parliament (the country, not the region) has narrowly approved a constitutional amendment by the necessary 2/3 majority to rename itself as the Republic of North Macedonia.  The Greek parliament still has to approve the deal that was proposed by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and his Macedonian – correction, North Macedonian – counterpart Zoran Zaev.  People on both sides are still bitching and complaining over the name and taking things to scary levels, but overall it looks like it will all be approved and this 27 year long pissing match over a name will finally end.  This will hopefully end Greece’s decades long cock block of “North Macedonia” and they will finally be able to join NATO and the EU.  Crazy people on both sides with nothing better to do will still debate random things like the actual birthplace of Alexander the Great.  But as long as they don’t kill each other or hurt each other physically this compromise will be considered a great success.  Zeno The Fox would be proud.  (bbc.com)

SOMETIMES TWITTER CAN BE A VALUABLE TOOL AND USED FOR POSITIVE CHANGE AND TO SAVE LIVES.  BUT THE OTHER 99% OF THE TIME IT’S JUST AN OUTLET FOR VILE RACISTS TO SAY HORRIBLE THINGS – Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun is the 18-year old Saudi girl that made international headlines this week after escaping her family while in Kuwait and then being trapped in Thailand while attempting to get to Australia in an asylum bid.  Her desperate cries for help via Twitter, while trapped in a Bangkok airport hotel room, attracted so much attention that multiple governments got involved to help her leave Thailand and seek asylum.  In a matter of days she went from having only 24 followers to thousands of followers that all helped her get her message out to the world.  For an excellent summary, check out the BBC’s excellent timeline of events that follows her entire ordeal from the first tweet to the tense moments where it looked like authorities in Thailand would send her back to her family and a possible death sentence for renouncing Islam.  Truly riveting stuff.  If it weren’t for Twitter, she would probably be dead – so who says Twitter can’t be used for the forces of good?  (bbc.com)

WHEN DOGS LEARN TO USE GUNS THEY WILL BECOME THE ULTIMATE KILLING MACHINE AND WILL RULE THE WORLD.  OUR TIME IS UP! –In an absurdly tragic story out of Mississippi, a former LSU football player was shot in the leg by his dog and had to have the wounded leg amputated.  Although it sounds like a crazy drunk hunting story, it does appear that his dog accidentally shot him.  According to his friends, Matt Branch left his loaded shotgun on the bed of his truck when Tito the dog jumped in the truck and accidentally stepped on the trigger causing the gun to fire through the side of the truck and hitting his leg.  No word if Tito has already been questioned by police.  On a side note, check out the over-the-top graphic which might have been created by the KDBC graphic department on a bender – a foreboding LSU logo looks on as a shadowy picture of a man hunting with his dog fills the screen.  It’s practically the promo image to a cheesy Netflix show.  Even a caricature of a dog shooting a guy with a machine gun would have been less melodramatic.  (cbs4local.com)

Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 01/04/2019

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

EL PASO COUNTY WILL ONCE MORE ATTEMPT TO MAKE THE MISSION TRAIL INTO A SOMEWHAT COHESIVE TRAVEL ZONE.  THIS INVOLVES GETTING SOCORRO, SAN ELIZARIO AND EL PASO TO WORK TOGETHER; SO EL PASO COUNTY BASICALLY WANTS TO GET INTO THE CAT HERDING BUSINESS – The existing Missions in Ysleta, Socorro and San Elizario are some of the oldest in North America that are still standing and are cultural treasures.  El Paso County is once more attempting to make the Mission Trail a legitimate unified travel area that is properly maintained and has a consistent look and feel.  This time it looks like the County legitimately wants this to happen and has hired independent planners and consultants to work with all the local interest holders to get this done properly.  Although it would be nice to see a unified trail go from Ysleta to San Elizario, it would be much better if the TRUE Mission Trail was honored by including the Mission Guadalupe in downtown Juarez as the starting point and then have the trail pass through the Bronco Swap Meet area where the Senecu Mission once likely stood.  Come on, let’s make this a truly international and accurate Mission Trail.  (elpasoinc.com)

THE LAS CRUCES CITY GOVERNMENT ISN’T MESSING AROUND, THEY STARTED THE NEW YEAR OUT WITH A TOP TEN LIST OF PROJECTS THEY WANT TO GET DONE FOR 2019 AND THEY’RE STARTING ON THEM AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.  WAY TO SHOW SOME INITIATIVE, LAS CRUCES! – The city leaders of Las Cruces have chosen the top 10 projects that they will be focusing on this year and they aim to get them started and/or completed by the end of the year.  Among the projects on the list are improvements to public safety and infrastructure; but the most ambitious are improvements to the Las Cruces Airport and the construction of a parking garage in Downtown Las Cruces.  The parking garage will serve to accommodate the extra traffic that is coming to the now booming Downtown area and will hopefully encourage even more development in the heart of the city.  Though the project won’t be completed for a few years, the city hopes to get the ball rolling on this multi-million dollar project this year.  Kudos, Las Cruces.  (cbs4local.com)

THE HUMANE SOCIETY OF EL PASO HAS ALWAYS BEEN A BIT INCOMPETENT, SO IT’S NO SURPRISE THAT THEY MANAGED TO HIRE THE WORST POSSIBLE PERSON AS DIRECTOR – Anyone who has ever dealt with the Humane Society of El Paso has left scratching their head as to how such a poorly run unit can continue existing without any major changes.  Their main job is to take in animals but somehow they never have enough space and it seems they waste money on other things not related to their main goal of taking in animals.  Naturally, the non-profit decided to outdo themselves in 2018 by hiring a fancy pants out-of-towner to be director that turned out to be a mightily sketchy individual.  Director Luke Westerman was so sketchy that he was indicted last month for theft and securities violations that occurred during his time working in Wall Street.  Wall Street is a skeevy cesspool of white collar corruption and borderline fraud – you really have to be slimey to get charged with something while working in Wall Street.  So now there is an arrest warrant out for the director of El Paso’s Humane Society and you just know they are STILL going to look for a fancy pants out-of-towner to take over because apparently no one in El Paso is capable of running an animal shelter poorly.  (cbs4local.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

NOW GERMANY IS GETTING ATTACKED VIA WIDE SCALE POLITICAL HACKING.  GEE, I WONDER WHO IS BEHIND THE HACKS? – A large scale data dump has occurred in Germany where personal info on multiple politicians and public figures has been posted on Twitter.  Though it is believed that no government computers were attacked for the info, it appears that the data has been harvested for years from various email and social media accounts.  All political parties (except for – SHOCK – the far-right Alternative for Germany) were affected by the data dump and authorities believe that foreign hackers were responsible.  What right wing, borderline fascist country has been hacking others for years in an attempt to undermine western governments and try to pathetically recapture their glory years as a global power?  What country could have been involved?  The world may never know, but we’ll ask Vladimir Putin if he has any ideas.  (apnews.com)

PINK FLOYD SHOULD NOW DO A REMAKE OF THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON IN CHINESE – Congratulations go out to China for being the first country to land a spacecraft on the far side of the Moon.  The Chang’e-4 craft and rover landed this week and the rover successfully went out to the surface of the Moon and sent back pictures.  The mission will do some geological studies on the Moon, but like most space missions the core of the project was for bragging rights.  Maybe this will start another space race and we can properly go back to the moon and look beyond to asteroids and other planets for future experiments and possible colonization trips.  We are truly fucked if we have to rely on Elon Musk and his fleet of kid-size submarines to get us to Mars and beyond.  (bbc.com)

CALLING TRUMP A MOTHERFUCKER IS A BIT OF A LOW BLOW.  WITH ALL DO RESPECT, HE’S MORE OF A DAUGHTERFUCKER THAN A MOTHERFUCKER – The government is still in shutdown mode and Donald Trump is willing to keep this going for years if he doesn’t get his stupid, racist wall.  That smug fucker doesn’t care if people go without a paycheck or suffer from unpaid bills because he is a pampered toddler who has never suffered a day in his life.  And through all of this, the dumbass and his Republican cronies were angered when Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib said, “We’re going to impeach this motherfucker!”.  Donald Trump has uttered offensive diatribes and racist comments for years and NOW he’s offended.  Joke’s on him though.  It doesn’t matter how long he shuts down the government, that won’t stop Mueller’s investigation and his inevitable impeachment.  (apnews.com / bbc.com)

Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 12/28/2018

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

IT’S A TREE AND A RANDOM COLOR VERSUS PANTHERS IN A HIGH NOON SHOWDOWN AT THE SUN BOWL – As we say goodbye to 2018, we have the final major event on El Paso’s calendar coming up on New Year’s Eve ……. the Sun Bowl.  This year the Stanford Cardinal takes on the Pittsburgh Panthers in a contest that promises to be quite entertaining.  So go out and get your ticket and let’s sell out the Sun Bowl.  This is one of the main showcase events for the Greater Mogollon land and it’s always cool to see the Sun Bowl filled up for a global audience.  And if you are a gambler, my pick is Stanford.  In a basic mascot analysis, a panther would kick a color’s ass – Stanford’s nickname is cardinal the color as opposed to cardinal the bird.  But Stanford’s unofficial mascot is a crazy tree with googly eyes and you just can never underestimate a crazy tree – bet all your money on the team with a crazy tree.  (ktsm.com)

KUDOS TO THE ANNUNCIATION HOUSE AND OTHER LOCAL CHARITIES FOR STEPPING UP IN HOUSING CENTRAL AMERICAN IMMIGRANTS SHAMELESSLY DROPPED OFF IN EL PASO – As most people already know, ICE and the other tone deaf morons in the government decided that the best Christmas gift they could give Central American refugees would be to drop them off in the middle of downtown El Paso with no warning and let them fend for themselves in the bus station.  Thankfully, El Paso and its countless charities and concerned citizens banded together to get these poor people a warm meal, a roof over their heads and a chance to travel to their loved ones throughout the U.S.  Annunciation House has really stepped up in this situation and the El Paso Community Foundation has done its share with a generous donation of $40,00 to them.  Kudos to El Paso for standing up to Trump and Company’s vile attempt at causing a crisis in El Paso by leaving thousands of migrants on the streets without warning.  Unlike other cities, El Paso isn’t filled with racist shitheads and the city handled this with compassion and composure.  There were a few sour points, but overall the community’s response was commendable.   So keep the good vibes going by donating whatever you can to the Paso Del Norte area organizations doing good work during these hard times.  (cbs4local.com)

SNOWMAGGEDON 2018 (DECEMBER EDITION) – Snow is predicted throughout the Paso Del Norte area starting today and, as always, it’s time for the annual tradition of people acting like they’ve never seen snow before even though it snows every year here.  So be careful out there because it’s going to get cold and icy.  (cbs4local.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

KRAKATAU ERUPTED AGAIN.  YES, THAT KRAKATAU – Last weekend, Anak Krakatau in Indonesia had a rather large eruption that caused a massive collapse of land into the ocean that created a tsunami that killed hundreds of people in the surrounding coastal areas.  If the name Krakatau sounds familiar it’s because it was the site of a massive eruption in the 19th century that was heard thousands of miles away and that ejected so much debris into the atmosphere that it altered climate patterns GLOBALLY for years to come.  This volcano is Anak Krakatau (Child of Krakatau) and is on top of what once was Krakatau.  The alert level has been raised in the area and there is still a chance of a large eruption.  Though the odds of a massive 19th century-size eruption are low, it is still possible that Anak Krakatau is not done yet.  Be safe, Indonesia.  (bbc.com)

ULTIMA THULE SOUNDS LIKE A HEAVY METAL BAND.  MAYBE NASA WILL DISCOVER HEAVY METAL IN SPACE! – NASA’S New Horizons spacecraft made headlines when it photographed Pluto and took data from the solar system orb and now it has gone even further.  On New Year’s Day, New Horizons will make history when it photographs and collects data on Ultima Thule, a Kuiper Belt object that is billions of miles from Earth.  If all goes to plan, the spacecraft will speed by Ultima Thule and take pictures and collect data and then turn it’s transmitter to Earth where it will send the data at a snail’s pace over the next few years.  This will be the farthest object ever visited by an Earth-based spacecraft and is an amazing feat of engineering and scientific know-how.  And it will definitely inspire many rock bands in the years to come to name themselves after some variation of UTLIMA THULE.  (apnews.com)

GOODBYE, 2018! – 2018 has come to an end and we now welcome 2019 with open arms.  Like most years, 2018 was a bittersweet year with ups and downs that we sadly leave in the rear-view mirror.  But now we welcome 2019 and the hopes of something better in the year ahead.  If you are in the area, make sure to bring in the New Year in Las Cruces for the annual Chile Drop.  It’s a cool event that keeps on getting bigger and better every year and is the de facto New Year’s Eve focal point for the Greater Mogollon land.  Happy New Year, everybody!  (Wikipedia.org)

Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 12/21/2018

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

LET’S FIND THE FUCKER THAT BURNED DOWN THAT MOBILE HOME IN SUNLAND PARK AND KILLED A LITTLE GIRL – Arson is suspected in the case of the mobile home fire in Sunland Park that killed 8-year old Marisa Munoz.  The arsonist/murderer is yet to be caught but authorities are on the hunt.  So if you have any information on this case, please call the local authorities or Crime Stoppers.  Let’s catch this bastard.  (cbs4local.com)

IN THEIR DEFENSE, HOMELAND SECURITY DOESN’T KILL ALL THE CHILDREN THAT COME THROUGH THE BORDER – Kudos to the Customs and Border Protection Officers at the Paso Del Norte Bridge for saving the life of an 11-month old Guatemalan child at the bridge last week.  The young girl was choking after being fed by her mother and the quick acting officers managed to perform the Heimlich maneuver and save her life.  This comes on the heels of news that a 7-year old girl in Border Patrol custody died from health complications after reaching the U.S. at Antelope Wells and being transported to Lordsburg.  Though to be fair, anybody having a major medical emergency in Lordsburg will have a hard time surviving since the nearest trauma center is in El Paso.  But refugee children should at least get a basic medical check when they arrive at the border to make sure something like this doesn’t happen, one dead child is way too many.  (cbs4local.com)

WESTSTAR TOWER WATCH (END OF 2018 EDITION) – WestStar Tower will one day be the tallest building in El Paso and construction is looking to ramp up in 2019.  The building at Hunt Plaza will be 313 Feet and 6 inches tall and will house the headquarters for WestStar Bank.  The site clearing and foundation work is coming along nicely and we will soon be seeing more vertical elements going up in the coming months.  Dowtown El Paso is growing and sometime in 2020 the skyline will change dramatically once the tower is completed.  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

WHO KNEW LAWS THAT ENCOURAGE SLAVE LABOUR WOULD BE SO UNPOPULAR?  SOMEBODY SHOULD TELL THE FASCIST GOVERNMENT IN HUNGARY ABOUT HOW SLAVE LABOUR IS BAD – The right-wing, fascist, nut job leadership in Hungary has done it again and passed another stupid law.  This time, however, the law fucks over the majority of the working class in the country and the people don’t like it.  Thousands of people across Hungary have taken to the streets to protest the Fidesz party’s tribute to corporate welfare – the overtime “slave law”.  Among other things, the law allows employers to demand 400 hours of overtime a year (up from 250 hours a year) and lets companies “hold” the payment for this overtime for up to 3 years.  Because everyone knows that money-making corporations need the most welfare from the government to survive.  The law was pushed by Prime Minister Orban and President Ader whose party is also pushing a law to create special courts completely controlled by the powers that be – not fascist at all.  So even though the majority of the people are against this and visibly angry at the government, the right wing idiots in the government are blaming George Soros and some stupid random conspiracy theories for the protests.  Right wing morons around the world are all the same,  George Soros is apparently the boogey man that can appear all over the world and give money to protestors that are asking for – GASP – basic human rights.  (bbc.com)

IDIOT MAN-CHILD THROWS TEMPER TANTRUM OVER POINTLESS WALL AND ENDS UP SHUTTING DOWN GOVERNMENT AND COSTING MANY THEIR LIVELIHOOD – It’s official, the idiot Donald Trump is going to make his racist monument border wall the hill that he dies on.  After agreeing to a Republican/Democrat compromise to keep the government funded for a few months, Donald Trump decided at the last minute that he wouldn’t sign off on it because some right wing idiots on TV told him not to do it unless it included billions of dollars for a stupid wall.  Let’s ignore for a minute that illegal immigrants will still be able to come over on boats, planes and expired visas regardless of how big the wall is.  But wasting billions of dollars for a stupid vanity project is just irresponsible and criminal in today’s economic climate.  But Trump’s base – racist morons who don’t live near the border and who have never even seen the border – are more than happy to support Trump to fulfill their racist fantasies in the guise of “national security”.  So once more, the idiot Donald Trump has made a shit show of the government and now even the stock market is collapsing.  Well done, Donald Trump.  It bears repeating, Donald Trump is a complete, fucking cunt.  (apnews.com)

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYBODY! – Christmas is coming up next week and I just want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and good vibes this holiday season from me and the rest of the Simple Minded family.  We come off a bit rough around the edges sometimes but we just want everyone to be happy and live in a world that isn’t horrible.  In uplifting holiday news, today we found out a minor Christmas miracle occurred in England when LadBaby’s spoof song, “We Built This City … On Sausage Rolls”, claimed the Christmas number one spot on the singles sales chart.  For those that don’t know, the battle for the number one song at Christmas is a time-honored tradition in England and it is quite remarkable for a spoof charity single by an internet star to reach the top spot.  And it’s all for charity, so everyone’s a winner.  Merry Christmas, one and all.  (bbc.com)

Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 12/14/2018

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

AND SO, THE CITY OF EL PASO BEGINS ITS QUIXOTIC QUEST TO IMPROVE BRIDGE CROSSING TIMES AT THE BORDER. AS LONG AS THE BABY HUEY FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IS IN CHARGE OF BRIDGE CHECKS, NOT MUCH WILL PROBABLY GET DONE – The City of El Paso is pledging more than $30 million on a plan to improve crossing times and efficiency on the international bridges that connect El Paso and Juarez. There are no real details on what exact projects will be done at the bridges, but at least they’re trying to make things better. Currently the city has been paying for extra overtime for federal bridge staff but the results of that have been mixed. Maybe if they build more bridges or add lanes that will at least add more capacity, but the core issue of the idiot Baby Huey government getting in the way will be the main source of delays in crossing. Although the local economy would benefit exponentially from more efficient bridge operations and faster crossing times, the feds will just complain about how it is more important to protect ‘Murica’ from the ‘drigs’ and ‘terists’ and that’s why they have to poke their ass on the inspections. And how else will the Baby Huey secret police at the border get tons of overtime for just standing around and doing jack shit? It would be nice if the local government could take matters into its own hands, but morons at the federal level – both in D.C. and Mexico City – will always have the final say on border crossings. (cbs4local.com)

PARTS OF MONTANA VISTA ARE FINALLY GETTING SEWER SERVICE. HOORAY! MAYBE NOW MONTANA VISTA CAN INCORPORATE AND TRY TO MOVE FORWARD WITH MORE INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS – The Texas Water Development Board has approved over $12 million to be used in the community of Montana Vista to bring sewer service to over 800 residences in the area. The funds will come from the Economically Distressed Areas program and is a continuing step to get the infrastructure in Montana Vista up to livable standards. More work is needed, obviously, but our local representatives are working hard to get more funding for these economically distressed areas both here in the region and in the rest of the state. And with all this advancement, maybe the residents of Montana Vista will one day band together to incorporate into a city and bring more development to their community. They can either follow the path of San Elizario or choose to be become Chaparral 2. (elpasoheraldpost.com)

LUMINARIAS ON SCENIC DRIVE AND KHALID CLAUS, AARON JONES CLAUS & ALVIN JONES CLAUS DELIVERING PRESENTS. IT’S BEGINNING TO LOOK A LOT LIKE CHRISTMAS! – Christmas is arriving in the desert and, though it’s been pretty warm, we are in the midst of winter and the holiday season. Holiday events are popping up around the Mogollon region, but the annual Navidad de La Fe Luminarias on Scenic Drive is one of the more beautiful events and it’s happening this weekend. And kudos to Khalid, Aaron Jones and Alvin Jones for donating toys to Ernesto Serna School (Khalid) and East Point Elementary (Jones Brothers). For a second straight year Khalid even delivered the toys personally, so extra kudos for him. Other local celebrities now have to step up and donate even more toys to children! In addition, countless local charities are accepting donations this holiday season to help those in need throughout the region. So make your own Christmas magic and help as much as you can this year – you’ve got a few weeks left. (elpasoheraldpost.com/cbs4local.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

VENEZUELA HAS DONE THE IMPOSSIBLE AND THEIR ANNUAL INFLATION RATE HAS GONE UP BY MORE THAN ONE MILLION PERCENT. NEXT YEAR, PRESIDENT NICOLAS MADURO HOPES TO OUTDO HIMSELF AND CONTINUE TO DESTROY THE ECONOMY SO THAT THE ANNUAL INFLATION RATE CAN GO UP BY ONE MILLION BILLION PERCENT! – In case you were wondering, Venezuela is still a disaster with no end in sight. Inflation continues to rise and people are leaving the country in droves in search of a better life. This year inflation went up by over one million percent and the International Monetary Fund expects inflation next year to rise by 10 million percent! Venezuela is truly fucked and the only solution is for President Nicolas Maduro to dig up the corpse of Hugo Chavez and sodomize it on national television while he puts a gun in his mouth and pulls the trigger. Even then, the inflation rate will only go down to thousand percent range depending on who takes over. Much like Zimbabwe, the government is incompetent enough to keep this going for years and simply printing more currency in the hopes that magic fairies and unicorns will appear and fix everything. So even though most people in Venezuela have millions in local currency, those millions are worth a few dollars in the real world and basic goods in the black market are priced out of the range of most people. Venezuela, we hardly knew ye. (reuters.com)

TRY NEW JOHNSON & JOHNSON BABY POWDER. NOW WITH ASBESTOS TO MAKE YOUR BABY FIREPROOF! – A report from Reuters revealed newly released internal documents from Johnson & Johnson that showed that trace amounts of asbestos have been found in their iconic talcum powder for years. The news has caused the company to get hammered on Wall Street and the lawsuits that were pending against the company have now gathered more steam. Although there is no hard scientific evidence that these trace amounts of asbestos in their talc caused cancer, the fact that they hid this information from consumers and regulators is very damning for the company. On the bright side, if you want to fireproof your house all you need to do is cover it in baby powder. (reuters.com)

MEANWHILE IN THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO, EBOLA KEEPS GOING STRONG – The latest report from the World Health Organization shows that the spread of Ebola in Northeast DR Congo continues to grow and has reached some larger cities. Though the rate that it is spreading is not too fast, Ebola is very dangerous and not the type of disease you want out in the open. The WHO is working hard with local authorities to contain this epidemic, but rough conditions in the region are making this prospect very hard. So although it’s a slow burn, this thing still has the potential to go to neighboring areas and cause even bigger problems in the future. At least there’s no asbestos in the Ebola, so we got that working in our favor. (arstechnica.com)

Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 12/07/2018

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

LET’S ALL WELCOME CURACUBBY TO EL PASO – Another tech firm has decided to expand into ElPaso and it really is looking like there will be a tech scene in Downtown ElPaso.  The latest firm to enter the market is Curacubby, which to my extreme disappointment does not make computer software designed to match pediatricians with baby bears.  Curacubby is – in fact – a tech company that runs an online management system for schools and care providers that handles everything from enrollment to billing. The company is currently hiring and hopes to fill various positions with local talent.  So if you’ve ever wanted to work for a tech startup, now is your chance – and you don’t even have to move to Silicon Valley!  Kudos to the local city governments, the Borderplex Alliance and everyone else who is working behind the scenes to make deals like this happen.  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

ANOTHER ROUND OF APPLAUSE FOR RON STALLWORTH. THIS IS BECOMING A COMMON OCCURRENCE – The accolades just keep on coming for BlacKKKlansman, the movie based on the book by local legend Ron Stallworth.  This week the film was nominated for multiple Golden Globes and with awards season upon us the accolades should just keep rolling in. Both the movie and book recount Ron Stallworth’s time in law enforcement in Colorado and the time he spent undercover as a member of the Ku Klux Klan.  Which was all the more dangerous and absurd because Ron Stallworth is black. Ron Stallworth is a great El Pasoan and it’s good to see his story get a much deserved international audience. It’s looking like we’ll be seeing BlacKKKlansman mentioned multiple times when Academy Award nominations are announced.  (cbs4local.com)

SO WHAT’S THE PUNISHMENT FOR GETTING DRUNK AND KILLING SOMEONE?  SIX MONTHS IN JAIL AND PROBATION.  EL PASO JURIES ARE NOT VERY GOOD AT GIVING OUT PUNISHMENTS – A verdict was reached this week in the case of Lorenzo Anchondo, who killed Xiaoyan Shi when he drunkenly went over the curb and hit a stop sign that landed on the victim’s head. An El Paso jury found him guilty of intoxication manslaughter for the offense but his “punishment” was a paltry 6 months in jail and probation.  To put that in perspective, if Lorenzo Anchondo would have had a box of kiddie porn in his car he would have gotten like 10 years in prison for that alone.  But KILLING someone only gets him a few months in jail.  Hell, even Billy Abraham got more time in PRISON and the person he killed was a drunk hobo who was crossing in the middle of the street away from the crosswalk in the dead of night. Anchondo must have been driving pretty fast to knock down a stop sign with such force that it killed someone, but I guess they only want to focus on the drinking and not the dangerous speed in a residential area.  El Paso juries are proof that common law and the 12-juror system might not be the best way to handle a legal system.  Bring on efficient European-style civil law!  (ktsm.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

THE DEATH CROSS IS COMING FOR YOU!  BEWARE!  BEWARE! – The financial markets have been tanking this week (who knew trade wars and piss poor management of the country could lead to volatility and horrible market conditions?) and experts predict that it’s probably going to get worse in the coming months.  The Death Cross occurs when “an index’s near-term moving average of daily closing prices falls below its long-term moving average as both averages are declining.”  And that very same phenomenon occurred on Friday like a majestic financial groundhog. This indicates that the index will fall more in the short term but any long term predictions are still up in the air. For my money, my favorite financial groundhog is the inverted yield curve and that one says we’re fucked. But fret not, as long as Americans keep making stupid purchases the markets will continue to fluctuate but remain in relatively stable territory.  If the end of year reports still show that people are buying TVs, iPhones, Netflix subscriptions, large trucks and other shit that they don’t need all will remain relatively stable.  If there is one national resource that America has in droves – it is stupidity.  And that is the real commodity that keeps the economy running.  (reuters.com)

TURNS OUT THE PLAGUE HAS BEEN A PAIN INHUMANITY’S ASS FOR FAR LONGER THAN ORIGINALLY THOUGHT – The 5,000 year old bones of a young woman found in Sweden have revealed the presence of plague according to DNA analysis.  The finding makes her the earliest known victim of the plague in humans and might explain the huge migrations and population shifts that are found throughout this time period.  The research by scientists Nicolas Rascovan and Simon Rasmussen published in the journal Cell reveals that the strain in the woman was the pneumonic plague which would have made it easier to spread from person to person in close quarters. If this spread like outbreaks that are found in Europe’s written historical record, it would have been cataclysmic to all the early civilizations around at that time and would have led to a significant paradigm shift in the history of the world.  It’s very interesting that this can be dated to the mysterious 3000 B.C. mark where many legendary figures are said to originate and where massive global change is believed to have occurred.  Plague is a bitch.  (blogs.discovermagazine.com)

FRANCE IS RIOTING!  IN RELATED NEWS, THE SKY IS BLUE – More people and groups around France have been emboldened by the “yellow vest” protesters and their successful anti-fuel tax demonstrations.  The discontent in France is so great that French authorities expect more protests and possible riots this weekend and have closed important venues for the next few days.   The lack of leadership for this movement makes it difficult to gauge just what their endgame is, but as long as the rich get tax breaks and the poor get shafted people will continue to protest and fight back.  Though it should be noted that these are prim and proper protesters that only do it on the weekends and go back to work during the week.  They want to change France, not destroy it completely.  But yeah, Macron is sort of fucked.  (bbc.com)

Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 11/30/2018

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

ABOUT TIME THEY ALLOW INDUSTRIAL HEMP PRODUCTION IN NEW MEXICO.  YOU’D LITERALLY HAVE TO SMOKE POUNDS OF IT TO GET EVEN REMOTELY HIGH.  WHY IS IT EVEN ILLEGAL IN THE FIRST PLACE? – Amazingly, growing industrial hemp in New Mexico was not allowed and will finally start up as a legitimate industry in 2019.  New Mexico State University, the all-knowing beacon of all things agricultural, approved the regulations for hemp production on Thursday and the New Mexico Department of Agriculture will enforce the regulations starting in 2019.  Hemp promises to be a lucrative crop for New Mexico farmers and will also benefit the environment because it uses much, MUCH less water than some of the other crops being grown in the state.  And because society has to pander to the right wing nut jobs, all hemp that has more than .3 percent THC will be destroyed so that the “precious children” are not poisoned by the big bad marijuana drug.  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

THE RACETRACK IN VADO IS ALMOST COMPLETE!  HOORAY FOR VADO! – After years of planning and construction, Vado Speedway Park is looking like it will be ready for competition starting next spring.  The track will take over the majority of races that used to occur at Southern New Mexico Speedway and will look to expand with more races.  This is a great project for Vado and other small communities in the region should look at creating unique opportunities such as this to expand their economic output.  Good show, Vado.  Good show, Jones family.  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

RULE NUMBER ONE FOR A SUCCESSFUL RELATIONSHIP IS TO ALWAYS BLAME KIDNAPPERS WHEN YOU GO OUT DRINKING WITH YOUR FRIENDS AND DON’T RETURN UNTIL THE FOLLOWING MORNING – Simple Minded Entertainment’s Hero of the Week award goes to Jorge Parra, who decided to cover up a night of drinking and drug use in Juarez by telling his wife that he was kidnapped and that his car was stolen.  He would have gotten away with it too if it wasn’t for his meddling wife and those meddling Scooby kids.  She was naturally worried that her family was in danger and went to the police who subsequently charged Jorge Parra with making a false report once the expertly planned scheme was unraveled by the authorities.  Remember, the key to a happy marriage is to create an elaborate lie when you do something wrong AND THEN tell your significant other not to go to the police because the cartels know where you live.  The last part is the key to protecting the lie and the relationship.  (cbs4local.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

BUENOS AIRES WELCOMES THE G20 SUMMIT THIS WEEKEND AND, AS LONG AS NOTHING BLOWS UP, IT WILL BE CONSIDERED A GREAT SUCCESS – The G20 shindig will take place in Argentina this year and, as usual, we can expect more talking from world leaders and only the most minimal of action.  Hot button issues this year include climate change, Russia being a bully and all the disasters that Donald Trump has created through his stupidity.  Buenos Aires has decided to keep things classy this year as the major global event will occur less than a week after the Copa Libertadores final between River Plate and Boca Juniors – two teams from Buenos Aires – was canceled because fans of one team attacked the players of the other team before the game started.  Not to be outdone, a local TV station put up a picture of Apu from The Simpsons when Prime Minister Modi of India arrived in the country.  Keep it classy, Buenos Aires.  (bbc.com)

REST IN PEACE, GEORGE BUSH – Former President George H.W. Bush passed away tonight at the age of 94.  Although many people didn’t agree with his policies, President Bush was able to compromise and work with politicians of different backgrounds to get things done.  He served his country throughout his life, starting in the military and then moving through different areas of public service.  He was not perfect and there will be some debate on his legacy and on the impact of some of his policies, but he comported himself with respect to the job at hand throughout his career.  He also led indirectly to some of the best comedic skits in the history of Saturday Night Live and was a good sport about the constant satire during his term in office.  Rest in peace, President George Bush.  (reuters.com)

A LARGE EARTHQUAKE HAS STRUCK THE PACIFIC COAST OF CALIF ……. ALASKA.  OH YEAH, ALASKA GETS EARTHQUAKES TOO – A magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck near Anchorage, Alaska this week causing structural damage throughout the city but, luckily, no major loss of life.  Most people don’t associate Alaska with earthquakes, but it is on the Ring of Fire and was the location of the massive 9.2 magnitude Good Friday earthquake that occurred in 1964.  Who knew that the Syfy channel movie Ice Quake was a documentary?  (reuters.com)

 

Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 11/23/2018

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

IT’S GOOD THAT THE COUNTY GOVERNMENT IS PLANNING TO SPEND MONEY ON ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT.  BUT THIS BEING EL PASO COUNTY, THEY MIGHT JUST SPEND THE $2 MILLION ON TRYING TO LURE ANOTHER WHATABURGER TO SOCORRO – El Paso County is looking at creating an economic development fund of $2.5 million dollars to attract businesses and jobs to the El Paso area.  The money will be used for infrastructure, land acquisition and other incentives to try and lure companies to El Paso that will hopefully create high paying jobs.  It’s nice to see the county government show some initiative and try to create business opportunities in the region.  As long as they don’t blow the entire fund on a stupid project this should be a great investment.  Though judging by some past El Paso County foibles, spending the entire fund on something stupid is, unfortunately, a possibility.  (cbs4local.com)

COME JOIN SOME OF PASO DEL NORTE’S BEST AUTHORS FOR A CHARITY Q&A FOR A GREAT CAUSE – The SOMOS fund was created by the El Paso Community Foundation to help out youth in Juarez that have been impacted by violence.  Next week they will be having a cool benefit that will feature a Q&A with important local authors, including Benjamin Alire Saenz, Ron Stallworth, Philip Connors, Andrew Selee and others.  You will have the opportunity to listen to these great authors for a minimum donation of just $25 or a donation of $100 which includes copies of the authors’ books.  A bunch of books for $100 and you get to meet the authors; that’s a bargain!  So mark your calendars for November 27 and head on out to the SOMOS fundraiser in Downtown.  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

IF ANYONE DESERVES A KICKSTARTER DONATION, IT’S THE MAN THAT CREATED WICKED LAKE.  LET’S ALL GIVE HIM MONEY AND THEN MAYBE HIS NEXT PROJECT WILL BE WICKED LAKE 2! – Zach Passero is best known for the movie Wicked Lake, the heart-warming story of hot naked witches from El Paso that go to Ruidoso to kill redneck sociopaths.  It’s a great slasher film that makes Cinemax late night movies proud and that deserves more attention as a cult classic.  Passero’s latest project is an animated feature called The Weird Kidz about teens that go out into the desert for a camping trip in a mysterious location.  I don’t believe this movie will have hot naked girls, but it still sounds pretty cool.  So go on The Weird Kidz kickstarter page and donate some money.  If not for this movie, do it for all the wonderful lesbian witch memories that Wicked Lake provided us.  (elpasoinc.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

ALTHOUGH YEMEN IS NOT YET IN FAMINE MODE, THE CIVIL WAR HAS ALREADY CREATED A HELLISH HUMANITARIAN CRISIS THAT HAS CLAIMED THE LIVES OF TENS OF THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE.  BUT AT LEAST SAUDI ARABIA GETS TO STOKE ITS EGO BY BEING A REGIONAL BULLY.  DONALD TRUMP MUST BE PROUD – New analysis by charities on the ground show that over 85,000 children may have died from starvation and health issues in the 3 years that the civil war has ravaged Yemen.  That number ONLY includes children under 5 and doesn’t even take into account all the people that have died because of the actual civil war and adults who have died because of the collapse of health care and society in general.  To make matters worse, Saudi Arabia has been using this whole conflict as an excuse to bully the region and is the main cause of all the major attacks in the area.  But maybe the international community led by America will step in and bring peace in the regi …….. never mind, Donald Trump isn’t done bending over for Saudi Arabia.  Even after the Saudi government brazenly murdered a journalist in a foreign country, Donald Trump went out of his way to write a letter of support for Saudi Arabia that practically apologized for the U.S. government’s investigation of the matter.  But he’s only doing this because he loves America and not because the Saudis pump money into his hotels and his businesses.  Meanwhile, thousands of children continue to die for a bullshit conflict.  (bbc.com)

JUST A REMINDER THAT THE EBOLA OUTBREAK IN THE CONGO IS STILL GOING STRONG.  THIS STORY GETS LOST IN THE SHUFFLE OF MAJOR NEWS STORIES AND IT’S SOMETHING THAT MORE PEOPLE SHOULD KNOW ABOUT – Dozens of new ebola cases are being confirmed daily in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the outbreak doesn’t have an end in sight.  Because the infections are popping up in the northeastern part of the country that is plagued by constant conflicts, medical staff are finding it hard to enter the area and contain the problem.  So even though the official number is over 350 infected individuals since the start of the outbreak in July, that number is probably higher and the potential for more infections is worse than what is being reported.  This is truly a horrible situation and the risk to neighboring countries and communities is very high.  Hopefully this story gets more attention from the international community before it’s too late.  (reuters.com)

THE NATIVES OF NORTH SENTINEL ISLAND DON’T LIKE OUTSIDERS.  SO IT’S A GOOD IDEA NOT TO MARK THAT PLACE DOWN ON YOUR TRENDY, INSTAGRAM, BUCKET LIST MUST SEE LIST – A young American adventurer/missionary was murdered on North Sentinel Island when he attempted to visit with the mysterious inhabitants of North Sentinel Island and talk to them about Jesus and/or take a selfie.  It is believed that the island has been inhabited for thousands of years by a single tribe with the most minimal of human interaction and with no knowledge of the outside world.  It should be noted that the reason this is considered one of the most “undisturbed places on Earth” is because it is far away from major shipping lanes and there is very little of value in the area.  Rest assured that if there was gold, diamonds and/or oil on that island; all these guys would already be dead and we wouldn’t be talking about “mysterious” islanders and whether or not the outside world should make contact with them.  It’s actually quite adorable to see videos and pictures of tribesmen walk to the beach completely naked with bows and arrows acting like badasses and “protecting” their island.  So adorably delusional.  If they only knew that they were part of a human zoo display protected by the government and that any random idiot with guns from Wal-Mart could wipe out their entire civilization in a matter of minutes.  Maybe Earth is like the North Sentinel Island of the Universe and some kind-hearted aliens are protecting us – without our knowledge – from meaner aliens that could wipe us out in the drop of a hat.  (bbc.com)

 

Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 11/16/2018

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

NEXT YEAR THEY SHOULD AIM FOR OVER $500,000 FOR EL PASO GIVING DAY.  EL PASO REALLY DOES CARE – El Paso Giving Day is a neat event started by the Paso Del Norte Foundation that gathers local charities together and encourages the community to donate online.  The charities are rewarded with bonus grants depending on their performance and the extra publicity really helps many organizations get more money.  This year the group surpassed their goal and over $300,000 was raised on over 2,000 donations.  Good show, everybody that donated.  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

LET’S LIGHT UP PLAZA DE LOS LAGARTOS IN STYLE – Winterfest is back and now it includes streetcars!  Sunday marks the start of Downtown El Paso’s Winterfest with the annual light parade and tree lighting ceremony at the Plaza De Los Lagartos.  In addition to the light display, the nearby Winterfest will include a skating rink, holiday displays, food, vendors and occasional crippling cold.  This year the streetcars are finally operational in downtown and they will be giving free rides on the weekends throughout the holiday season and the duration of Winterfest.  Let’s all go to Downtown El Paso to look at lights, ride trolleys and possibly get drunk at all the bars.  Hooray for El Paso-style Christmas!  (cbs4local.com)

ONCE MORE, THE MAJESTIC CREOSOTE AND DESERT LIZARD ARE OVERLOOKED – The Socorro Independent School District has just announced the name and mascot for the newest school and it will be called ……. Cactus Trails Elementary Diamondbacks.  Although it’s a decent name and mascot, there are tons of plants and animals in the Chihuahuan Desert that are more common than cacti and diamondbacks.  Our native creosote, mesquite, ocotillo, yucca, lizards, coyotes and even beavers are constantly overlooked and it would be nice if they got a little more love than the ever popular cactus.  There’s more to a desert than cacti, people!  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

WHO WOULD’VE THOUGHT THAT BREXIT WAS GOING TO BE SUCH A COMPLETE CLUSTERFUCK.  AH YES, EVERYBODY WITH HALF A BRAIN – The UK is on the verge of coming up with a Brexit agreement with the European Union and they are pretty much in a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” situation.  The deal they have isn’t perfect but it’s the best the UK will be able to get after voting for such a stupid idea in the first place.  Prime Minister Theresa May will now have to fend off challengers within her own party who feel she is not very good at her job and try to get enough votes to pass this agreement in parliament.  Brexit, so far, has been a disaster but things can get much worse if this agreement fails in parliament and if Theresa May is replaced as Prime Minister.  Stay tuned.  (bbc.com)

AN ALL NATURAL PLANT THAT PROVIDES PAIN RELIEF WITH MINIMAL SIDE EFFECTS COMPARED TO SIMILAR PHARMACEUTICALS, YOU SAY?  YOU BET YOUR ASS THE GOVERNMENT IS GOING TO DECLARE IT ILLEGAL AND HELP OUT THEIR BUDDIES IN THE PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY – Kratom is a tree whose leaves are often consumed as a tea to relieve pain and anxiety in people.  The plant has naturally occurring opiod-like compounds that seem to help many people; but that appears to be a threat to established pharmaceuticals.  Even though the “evidence” about the dangers of Kratom that the government is using is flimsy at best, there are rumors that the government will soon declare this natural remedy an illicit drug on par with cocaine and meth.  The only danger that Kratom poses is to the pocketbooks of the pharmaceutical industry, lobbyists and complicit members of the government.  So naturally, Kratom is the devil and the conservative idiots who make up these bullshit laws will demonize it while “legal” opioids kill millions more than Kratom ever could.  Good job, America!  (blogs.discovermagazine.com)

SAD NEWS, TRUE BELIEVERS – Stan Lee, one of the most important figures of the American comic book industry, passed away earlier this week at the age of 95 in Los Angeles.  He will always be remembered for playing an important role in the creation of such legendary comic book creations like Spider-Man, the X-Men and many others.  His work with Marvel alone led directly to the creation of a billion dollar industry in films alone!  The man was truly a legend.  Excelsior!  (marvel.com)

 

Simple Minded Weekly Recap-ITATION! – 11/09/2018

PASO DEL NORTE-CENTRIC NEWS

THE STREETCARS ARE BACK IN EL PASO!  SADLY, THESE FANCY PANTS, MODERN STREETCARS WILL NOT BE PULLED BY MULES LIKE IN THE GOOD OL’ DAYS – It’s official!  As of today, the El Paso Streetcar system will be back in business after being gone for decades.  The trolleys – as the cool kids call them – are the original Presidents Conference Committee Streetcars that ran on the El Paso system back in the day and that have been lovingly restored for modern use.  The system will run on two loops from downtown to UTEP and consists of a 4.8 mile route with over twenty stops.  And as an added inauguration bonus, the streetcars will be available for free rides on weekends until January 6.  So get a move on and get on the streetcar.  Free trolleys!  Hooray!  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

EVEN IN FAILURE, BILLY ABRAHAM STILL WALKS AWAY WITH HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS.  NOTHING WILL EVER STOP WILLIAM “BILLY” ABRAHAM – It finally happened.  After all the fines, threats and lawsuits; the courts have finally auctioned off Billy Abraham’s properties in El Paso to pay off all his creditors.  In the end, 11 of his properties were sold for a total of $10.53 million in bankruptcy court this week.  The sales amount will allow all his creditors to be paid and leaves him with a substantial amount of money to do as he pleases.  This marks a new chapter in the history of Downtown El Paso as some wonderful historic landmarks (such as the Kress Building and Caples Building) will now be in the hands of people who should be able to renovate them and bring them back to their old glory.  Interestingly enough, Paul Foster was shut out of the auction when he was unable to purchase the Kress Building after bidding got to high.  This was the only building he made a move on even though he had shown great interest in buying up all the buildings in an earlier offer that was rejected by Abraham.  As for Billy Abraham, he now has spending money so he can finally buy an old building and renovate it – that or he just uses up all his cash and turns The Tap bar into some super nightclub.  (elpasotimes.com)

AFTER YEARS OF POINTLESS LEGAL FIGHTS, A COURT OF APPEALS HAS RULED THAT THE CITY OF EL PASO HAS THE RIGHT TO HOST SPORTS, AND WHATEVER IT WANTS, INSIDE THE WAITING-T0-BE-BUILT ARENA.  AND WE’RE SLOWLY GETTING TO THE POINT WHERE MAX GROSSMAN WILL FINALLY SHUT THE FUCK UP FOR GOOD AND BE COMPLETELY IGNORED BY THE MEDIA – The Downtown Arena project is closer to reality now as the courts have removed a major obstacle to attracting tenants and sponsorships for the arena.  Though there is still room for more appeals, it looks like sports will be a major part of the downtown arena.  It would probably be best for critics of the arena to just compromise and work for the preservation of some buildings and the facades of the more unique structures before their grandstanding results in the entire neighborhood getting flattened.  The courts at the federal level would not get involved with property rights and at this point there is no real reason to save the entire arena footprint as is.  Just pick the most important structures and at least get the city to incorporate the buildings or the facades into the final arena complex.  Hopefully Max Grossman will finally ride off with his butt buddy to Houston and someone intelligent will finally step up among the “historians” and “conservationists” to work out a compromise that gets the arena built and saves a few of the more meaningful structures in the area.  (elpasoheraldpost.com)

REST OF THE WORLD-CENTRIC NEWS

“CALIFORNIA IS BURNING” IS A PHRASE THAT GETS MORE USAGE EVERY YEAR.  SO WHAT WE HAVE LEARNED FROM CLIMATE CHANGE PATTERNS IS THAT SOME PLACES WILL GET SWALLOWED BY THE OCEAN AND CALIFORNIA WILL JUST SPONTANEOUSLY COMBUST – Multiple fires are raging in California and two of them look pretty bad.  The Camp Fire in northern California practically wiped out the town of Paradise and the Woolsey Fire in the southern part of the state looks to destroy tons of homes around the Malibu area.  To add insult to injury, the Woolsey Fire is raging around the city of Thousand Oaks which just went through a terrible mass shooting/terrorist attack this past weekend that claimed the lives of 12 people in a country music bar.  Although the fires are not completely contained, most of the endangered areas have been evacuated and the firefighters on the ground will do all they can to limit loss of life and property.  It’s a sad state of affairs when writing about deadly forest fires and mass shootings becomes common practice.  Be careful out there, everyone.  (reuters.com)

IT WASN’T A BLUE TSUNAMI, BUT THE ELECTIONS DID PRODUCE A SIGNIFICANT BLUE WAVE – The mid-term elections are over and Democrats have taken over the House of Representatives and have come ever so close to flipping the Senate.  The Senate dream was a bit of a stretch considering most of the seats up for grabs were in majority Republican-held, hillbilly territory that worships Donald Trump – but they did come close.  So it might not have been a complete rebuke of Donald Trump and his idiot xenophobic, fascist policies – but the people have spoken and they are mad.  And even though he didn’t win, Beto O’Rourke lost the Texas Senate race by only 200,000 votes or so and helped lift Democrats around the state to upset wins.  It’s pretty amazing that a Democrat came that close to winning a statewide contest in Texas of, all places.  Maybe the state is finally turning blue.  You made El Paso fucking proud, Beto.  Onward to 2020 where hopefully we will finally be rid of the orange, fascist sack of shit in the White House.  (fivethirtyeight.com)

OUMUAMUA IS PROBABLY NOT A PIECE OF AN ALIEN SPACECRAFT, BUT IT MIGHT BE.  THE ONLY THING THAT SCIENTISTS CAN ALL AGREE ON IS THAT IT WAS WEIRD AND PENIS-SHAPED – Oumuamua was the weirdo space object that entered the solar system (and our hearts) from a weird trajectory last year that instantly generated speculation about being interstellar and maybe even an alien object.  In addition to the weird path in travels, its penis shape has also been a mystery because no known space objects of that size resemble a penis.  A new study by Harvard astronomers Shmuel Bialy and Abraham Loeb has suggested that because of its shape, size, trajectory and speed that it might be a solar sail or some other similar object from an alien spacecraft.  While the research offers this as just one possible explanation, many people have criticized the report.  But as it stands, it’s either alien space junk or a one-in-a-million penis-shaped object from a penis solar system where everything is shaped like penises.  You decide!  (abc.net.au)