Photo: An aerial shows damage caused by wildfires in Santa Rosa, California, October 11, 2017. (DroneBase/Reuters)
FROM THIS EPISODE
Former President George W. Bush has hardly been heard from for 10 years. But today in New York, he delivered a scathing speech about the current state of American politics. "Bigotry seems emboldened. Our politics seems more vulnerable to conspiracy theories and outright fabrication" We have seen the return of isolationist sentiments – forgetting that American security is directly threatened by the chaos and despair of distant places."
In Politico today, Edward-Isaac Dovere calls that "an unmistakable denunciation of Trumpism" without mentioning the president by name.
The blazes in Northern California are being called "firestorms," "hurricanes" and "blizzards of flame." They've been compared to a "blowtorch." In a state where wildfires are hardly uncommon, experts say civilian casualties and property loss are "historic" — like "nothing [they've] ever seen." The death toll is at least 42; some 3000 homes were destroyed; 213,000 acres have been turned into charred wastelands. Survivors are warned that debris is too toxic to allow digging for beloved possessions; smoke and ashes are causing health problems for miles around. What caused the fires? Why did they spread? Can the next ones be prevented?
Nick Rahaim, Press Democrat (@nrahaim)
Karen Relucio, Napa County Division of Public Health
Stephen Pyne, Arizona State University
Scott Stephens, University of California, Berkeley (@ESPM_Berkeley)
Press Democrat editorial on lessons from Northern California's fires
Press Democrat: EPA to oversee toxics cleanup after fires in Sonoma and Napa Counties
Stephens: spending more on fire suppression won't reduce losses
The William Albert Noyes Laboratory of Chemistry
University of Chicago at Urbana-Champaign
Photo by Beyond My Ken
Since the Great Recession and the start of the Obama Administration, the federal government has been cutting back on basic research grants to public universities. In the Midwest, that's bad for the economy. Internationally, it's a decline of American leadership, especially compared to China. That's according to Jon Marcus, higher-education editor at the Hechinger Report. He's written about it recently in the Atlantic.
More From To the Point
Ronen Bergman on Israel’s targeted assassinations Israeli intelligence agents now admit Palestinian leaders have been officially targeted for assassination--2700 times. Author Ronen Bergman talks about the unusual assassination tactics and how he recently challenged the Prime Minister of Poland over the country’s role in the Holocaust.
Restoring public confidence in our institutions Are President Trump and allies in Congress eroding public trust in democratic government? Even a former Republican governor warns that attacks on Special Counsel Robert Mueller have gone too far. A constitutional scholar and a former FBI agent see real threats to both federal law enforcement and national security.
LATEST BLOG POSTS
3 reasons why your commute between Ventura and Santa Barbara has gotten even worse It’s been over a month since deadly mudslides washed through Montecito and shut down Highway 101 for weeks. But, even though the highway is now clean, open and back to… Read More
Vote: What should we answer next? We’ve looked at the history of the Nike missile base, found out about the empty land near LAX, and answered many of your marijuana questions. Now you get to vote!… Read More