The Wider World

Snow storm still lashes the U.S.

SNOWY WEATHER continues across much of the U.S. from Texas to the Northeast (Flickr).

Much of the United States from the Midwest all the way to the Northeast is without electricity as winter storm Uri continues to drop many tons of snow.

According to United Press International, more than 4 million people were without power in Texas as of Tuesday morning. Widespread outages were also reported in Louisiana, Oklahoma, Kentucky and West Virginia. The death toll – depending on how fatalities are allied – could be as high as 24 people

Not only is electricity out in many areas, but also because some water treatment plants are off-line, authorities are urging people to boil water for drinking, or use bottled water if available.

Many airline flights have been cancelled, oil and natural gas production has been interrupted and halts in auto production have been called by General Motors, Ford and Toyota. The shipment of COVID-19 vaccines has also been delayed.

News: Stimulus package vote coming

MITCH McCONNELL is under attack by former president Donald Trump (Shutterstock).

President Joe Biden’s proposed $1.9 trillion economic relief package could come up for a vote in the House of Representatives by sometime next week, news organizations are reporting.

The measure is expected to pass the House, where Democrats hold the majority. The Senate, which is evenly divided 50-50 between the two parties, could see Vice President Kamala Harris again cast a deciding tie-breaking vote

  • Former president Donald Trump on Tuesday called on Senate Republicans to oust Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky from his position as minority leader of the upper house of Congress. According to the New York Times, he described McConnell – who voted against convicting Trump in both his impeachment trials, but recently denounced him – as a “dour, sullen and unsmiling political hack.”

Business: This may not be good news

ALDEN CAPITOL is buying more newspapers (OC Tribune photo).

Alden Global Capital, a hedge fund known for buying newspapers and squeezing them hard for profits, will acquire Tribune Publishing, which operates the Chicago Tribune, New York Daily News and other papers.

In this area, Alden – through the Southern California Newspaper Group – owns and operates the Orange County Register, Long Beach Press Telegram, South Bay Daily Breeze and other papers.  In its efforts to make money in a world where newspaper readership and advertising are plunging, Alden has slashed payrolls, consolidated newsgathering and sold property.

  • Wall Street turned a bit chilly on Tuesday as two of three major stock indexes showed declines. The Dow Jones Average rose 64.35 points to 31,522.75, but the S&P 500 dropped 2.24 points to 3,932.59. Nasdaq had the biggest retreat, falling 47.97 points to 14,047.50.

Sports: Dodgers on top, and Angels rise

Sports Illustrated kicked off the pre-season prognostication this week with its rankings of all 30 teams in Major League Baseball.

On top, as you might expect, are the Los Angeles Dodgers, 2020 World Series champs. The rest of the top five are the San Diego Padres, New York Yankees, Atlanta Braves and Chicago White Sox.

The Los Angeles Angels – last rated 24th – get 13th place, thanks to some clever (but potentially shortsighted) roster changes. That actually makes the Halos figured at second place in the AL West behind the Houston Astros.

So who’s at the bottom? SI has the Pittsburgh Pirates in 30th place. The Texas Rangers are 29th, the Colorado Rockies 28th, the Baltimore Orioles 27th and Detroit Tigers 26th.

Monday night’s local results:

  • Los Angeles Clippers 125, Miami Heat 118. Marcus Morris scored 32 points as the Clips won to improve their record to 21-8, a half-game behind the Lakers in the NBA Pacific Division.
  • San Jose Sharks 3, Anaheim Ducks 2. Sam Steel and Max Comtois scored for the Ducks, who are now 6-7-3, and are now tied for fourth place in the NHL West.

Weather:  Lucky to be here and warm

While much of the rest of the nation is shivering in snow, we in West Orange County can expect to enjoy comfortable spring like weather this week.  Tuesday night’s low with be 46 degrees with clear skies. On Wednesday, the daytime high will be 68 (low of 49) and sunny. That’s the way it looks the rest of the week, with highs of 72 and 70 Thursday and Friday. Overnight lows will climb to 53 by Sunday. By Sunday, the daytime high could climb as high as 80. For coastal areas –Huntington Beach – there is a small craft advisory in place until 3 a.m. Wednesday. Daytime highs in Surf City will be about four to five degrees cooler than inland West Orange County.

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