FROM Joseph Horacek, III
Giant Homes with Invisible Owners In the posh LA suburb of Bel-Air, "Starship Enterprise" stands for a 30,000-square-foot, curved glass-and-steel mega-mansion being constructed in apparent defiance of building codes or the possibility of earthquake-induced landslides. Celebrity developer Mohamed Hadid faces criminal charges for illegal construction, but accountability is problematic. The building is legally owned by a limited liability corporation. That makes "Starship Enterprise" just one of many according to New York Times reporter Louise Story. She’s author of a seven-part series on properties owned by shell companies across the country.
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Ex-FBI Director Comey tells his side of the story Today, former FBI Director James Comey came close to calling the President who fired him a liar. The White House denied the claim and called it insulting, but Republican Senators did not challenge Comey’s truthfulness. Many questions remain: did the President try to obstruct a federal investigation? Later, we’ll go behind the “velvet rope” for a look at 5-Star health care for the richest Americans.
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?