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Atmospheric River Storms Are Growing Deadlier. The Race to Understand Them Is On (Maria)

The author writes, “The storm raged over California for more than five days. As the powerful atmospheric river made landfall, furious winds and torrential downpours ripped trees from their roots, turned streets into rivers and sent mud cascading into homes. Along with chaos, the storm brought opportunity. Scientists were ready, on land and in-flight, to deploy instruments that measure atmospheric rivers like this one.”

The Ominous News for Democrats in Pennsylvania’s ‘Latino Belt’ (Al)

From Politico: “Latinos — the state’s fastest-growing demographic group — now comprise the majority or a plurality in a collection of historically Democratic small and midsized cities spanning from northeastern Pennsylvania to the Lehigh Valley. Once an empire of coal and steel but now a global hub for warehousing and logistics, this Latino Belt is suddenly poised to reshape politics in one of the most pivotal states in the nation.”

TikTok Has an AI Conspiracy Theory Problem (Russ)

From Media Matters for America: “Users are exploiting TikTok’s Creativity Program by pumping out viral conspiracy theory content, using AI-generated images and voices for profit. While scrolling the popular video-sharing platform, users may come across conspiracy theories seemingly read by an AI-generated voice and presented along with a series of apparently AI-generated images. These videos range from making various baseless and outrageous claims about the U.S. government capturing mythical or fictional creatures like vampires, wendigos, or King Kong, to conspiracy theories arguing that advanced ancient civilizations have been systematically erased from history.” 

Michigan Case Offers an Example of How Public Trust Suffers When Police Officers Lie (Reader Jim)

The author writes, “With American trust in police plummeting, buttressed by cellphone and bodycam videos that can expose untruths, a profession once broadly considered above reproach has seen its reputation suffer. ‘It’s well accepted that the weakest and most vulnerable members of society are the biggest victims of coercive practices, like police being dishonest and deceptive practices in interrogations,’ said James Craven, a legal associate with Cato Institute’s Project on Criminal Justice and a former criminal defense attorney.”

In California, Some Homeless Have Resorted to Living in Caves. ‘Where Else Are They Gonna Go?’ (Reader Steve)

The author writes, “For decades, at least, the unhoused have sought refuge along the banks of the Tuolumne River. But recently, some have literally carved out places to call home. The work put into creating the caves — makeshift tile flooring, recessed shelves and cubbies, a ventilated fireplace — indicates intended long-term occupancy. But last month, the city cleared them out after giving notification for the homeless to leave the area.”

Canada’s Logging Industry Devours Forests Crucial to Fighting Climate Change (Laura)

The authors write, “A study finds that logging has inflicted severe damage to the vast boreal forests in Ontario and Quebec, two of the country’s main commercial logging regions.”

Alabama Station in Disbelief After 200-Foot Radio Tower Stolen (DonkeyHotey)

From NBC News: “A radio station in Alabama was forced to go silent after thieves stole its 200-foot radio tower and other equipment from a building. The station, WJLX, sent a landscaping crew to the site Friday morning for spring cleaning, only to find the 200-foot radio tower gone. When a crew member called the station’s general manager to break the news, he was in disbelief. ‘What do you mean the tower is gone? Are you sure you’re in the right place? I actually used more colorful words than that,’ Brett Elmore recounted to NBC News. ‘He said there’s wires all over the ground and the tower is gone.’”


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