The Wider World

Two-year budget deal made in Senate

A TWO-YEAR budget deal has been worked out in the U.S. Senate, which will avoid a government shutdown.

A two-year federal budget deal has been reached by Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Senate. According to the Associated Press, the agreement – announced on Wednesday – will raise the lending cap for the federal government, and increase funding both for the military and domestic concerns, including disaster relief.

However, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-California) is opposed to the proposal because it doesn’t address one Democratic priority – requiring a vote on the status of “Dreamers” – people brought illegally into the United States as children – who had been protected under President Barack Obama’s DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) policies.

Pelosi spoke for eight hours on Wednesday, which is believed to be the longest speech ever made in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Trump wants a military parade

Planning is proceeding for a “grand parade” to honor and celebrate U.S. military services. On Tuesday, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee confirmed the proposal, requested by President Donald Trump.

DONALD TRUMP (Gage Skidmore photo).

On MSNBC, Senator Dick Durbin termed the parade “a fantastic waste of money,” while White House legislative director Marc Short said, “I’m not sure honoring our military is a waste of money.”

The idea for the parade reportedly originated with a parade in France that celebrated Bastille Day, the French equivalent of Independence Day. Mr. Trump viewed the parade and was impressed.

One possible date for the parade could be Veterans Day – Nov. 11 – which would coincide with the 100th anniversary of the end of World War 1, in which America and its allies prevailed.

Los Angeles Times will have a new owner

After years on the selling block, the Los Angeles Times has been sold. The new owner would be Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, a biotech billionaire who reportedly purchased the daily newspaper for $500 million from its former owner Tronc.

Tronc used to be known as the Tribune Company. The sale also included the San Diego Union Tribune. It’s initially unclear if the deal includes the Times’ community newspapers such as the Daily Pilot (Costa Mesa-Newport Beach) and the Burbank Leader, a twice-weekly paper.

Ozone layer thinning over cities, says study

A new study says that the ozone layer around the earth that protects life from ultraviolet radiation is getting thinner over cities and other population areas, but is a bit more robust above the North and South poles.

USA Today on Wednesday reported that the study, conducted by the Imperial College in London, showed that the ozone layer be declining since the 1980s. A ban on the use of fluorocarbon has benefitted the extreme north and south of the planet.

The specific cause of the changes is unclear, said the study’s authors in an article in a scientific journal.




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