To Save This Palm-Filled Paradise, Biologists Must Kill the Trees

We Need to Talk About the GOP’s ‘Black Friends’ ; Police PR Machine Under Scrutiny for Inaccurate Reporting ; and More Picks

Palmyra, palm trees, removal, biodiversity
The author writes, “The slashing and poisoning [of trees] is part of an unprecedented endeavor to rid the remote [Palmyra] atoll of all but a few coconut palms (Cocos nucifera). The gangly tree is an icon of idyllic tropical islands, but also an aggressive invasive species that crowds out native plants and animals. By removing 99% of Palmyra’s millions of palms, biologists hope to create more room on the atoll's three dozen islets for indigenous forests and seabirds, including the world’s second largest colony of red-footed boobies.” Photo credit: US Fish and Wildlife Service Headquarters / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)
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We Need to Talk About the GOP’s ‘Black Friends’ (Russ)

From the Nation: “The Republicans have invited a cadre of professional ‘Black friends’ to validate Donald Trump and make white people feel a little less racist while supporting white supremacy. There’s a word for what Republicans are doing — tokenism. … It is important to understand that tokenism is not done to benefit minorities, not even the token minorities used in the scheme. Tokenism is done for the benefit of white people, to make them feel more comfortable and less complicit in the prejudice and bias of their institutions, schools, and workplaces. It’s done to shield white endeavors from accusations of discrimination.”

Police PR Machine Under Scrutiny for Inaccurate Reporting, Alleged Pro-Cop Bias (Reader Steve)

The author writes, “Inaccurate police accounts are sometimes due to the information fog of a fast-moving event. But critics say police press operations nearly always put forth a story line that makes officers’ actions appear justified. And when police spokespeople publicize the prior criminal history of people killed by law enforcement or call them ‘gang members,’ it amounts to an insidious form of police abuse, they say.”

Did You See Photos of Officers Supposedly Injured Last Weekend in NW Cities? The Facts Don’t Check Out (DonkeyHotey)

The author writes, “On Aug. 25, a grid of the four photos, featuring bloodied and bandaged police officers, was circulating widely on Facebook with more than 1,200 shares and 56,000 views. ‘50 police officers were injured by Dems and BLM rioters over the weekend in Portland Seattle and other nearby cities,’ the caption read. ‘Pray for their safety.’ However, research into the origin of the photos reveals they were all taken in Australia — and not over the weekend.”

Montenegro Is Heading the Same Way as Belarus (Russ)

From Euronews: “As the situation in Belarus continues to deteriorate, Europe may soon have another electoral crisis at its periphery. In Montenegro, decades of the same man’s rule and widespread discontent is likely soon to be [dealing with] electoral fraud. The tiny Western Balkan nation — currently waiting for EU membership to be bestowed upon it — [headed] to the polls on Sunday for a result many believe has already been sealed. … In Montenegro, instances of pre-poll deception give some indication of what to expect. Investigations of the electoral roll shows the presence of 50,000 phantom voters in a country with little over 600,000 people. Half of registered voters are listed without an address. And now, new evidence is emerging of citizens from other Balkan countries being fraudulently given voting cards.”

An Ohio Man Built a Backyard Squirrel Bar With Seven Types of Nuts on Tap (Mili)

The author writes, “Michael Dutko, a 35-year-old hobbyist, has been creating art and household items from wood for most of his life, and even chronicles it on his YouTube channel Duke Harmon Woodworking. But it’s his fun twist on a squirrel feeder that’s made him Internet famous. ‘The Nutty Bar,’ which is attached to his backyard fence in Hilliard, looks just like a real bar, and even has a range of nuts on tap. … Lucky squirrels who find their way to the bar get to choose from seven different nuts named after beers: Cashew Dunkel, Peanut Pilsner, Almond Ale, Walnut Stout, Sunflower Saison, Pecan Porter and Pistachio Pale Ale.”

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