tech, cybercrime, Russia, U.S., Treasury Department, UK
Photo credit: Richard Patterson / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Listen To This Story
Voiced by Amazon Polly

PICKS are stories from many sources, selected by our editors or recommended by our readers because they are important, surprising, troubling, enlightening, inspiring, or amusing. They appear on our site and in our daily newsletter. Please send suggested articles, videos, podcasts, etc. to

US, UK Hit Russian Group With Cybersecurity Sanction (Maria)

The author writes, “The US Treasury Department on Thursday announced a joint US-UK effort to sanction Russian cybercriminals as the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine nears and the Treasury tightens its efforts to financially punish violators of existing sanctions. The US coordinated with the United Kingdom to impose sanctions on seven people that it said are part of the Russia-based cybercrime gang Trickbot. … Trickbot is named for a strain of trojan viruses originally used to steal financial data. The viruses have infected millions of computers worldwide, including ransomware attacks that targeted hospitals in the United States.”

Mississippi House OKs New Court System — To Be Appointed by White State Officials — For Second-Blackest US City, Stoking Tension (DonkeyHotey)

The author writes, “The Mississippi House has approved the creation of a new court system in which judges and prosecutors would be appointed by state officials — who all happen to be white — for the capital of Jackson, which has the second-highest percentage of Black residents among U.S. cities. The bill proposing the new court, which needs approval from the state Senate and governor to become law, was overwhelmingly passed Tuesday by a supermajority of white Republican legislators after intense opposition by Black Democratic legislators, news outlets reported.”

Biden Administration Braces for Ruling That Could Ban Abortion Pills (Sean)

The author writes, “Doctors and advocates are urging people to pre-order and stockpile abortion pills while they still can in the face of a looming court decision that could wipe out access to the drugs nationwide. District Court Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk in Amarillo, Texas, could either strike down the FDA’s decades-old decision to approve mifepristone — the first of two pills used to end a pregnancy — or roll back more recent agency decisions making the pills available via telemedicine, mail delivery and pharmacy pickup.”

The Balloon Affair Is a Sputnik Moment (Sean)

From Vox: “Now that the US military has shot down a suspected spy balloon from China, there will be debates about the balloon’s meaning, its capabilities, and why it was up there in the first place. Though [last] Friday former CIA director Michael Hayden said its threat to the welfare of Americans was vastly inflated, others described the incident as a wake-up call. Former Trump national security adviser H.R. McMaster hopes it will lead to a ‘sputnik moment,’ harkening back to the US space race with the Soviet Union. The Wall Street Journal even warned of a ‘balloon gap’ with China.”

FAA Clears Hydrogen-Powered Airplane for First Flight at Washington Lake (Reader Steve)

The author writes, “The dream of carbon-free flight is inching toward some reality. The Federal Aviation Administration on Monday granted California-based Universal Hydrogen clearance to proceed with a first flight of its hydrogen-powered Dash-8-300 test airplane at Moses Lake.”

Unveiling the Predatory Tactics of the Formula Milk Industry (Mili)

From The Lancet: “For decades, the commercial milk formula (CMF) industry has used underhand marketing strategies, designed to prey on parents’ fears and concerns at a vulnerable time, to turn the feeding of young children into a multibillion-dollar business. The immense economic power accrued by CMF manufacturers is deployed politically to ensure the industry is under-regulated and services supporting breastfeeding are under-resourced. These are the stark findings of the 2023 Breastfeeding Series, published in The Lancet.”

Oil Lobby Prompts Right-Wing Media to Save Whales — From Wind Power (Russ)

From FAIR: “Republicans and right-wing commentators suddenly want to save the whales — and much of the news media is buying it. As a humpback whale was found on the shore at Brigantine, New Jersey on January 12 — the seventh dead whale to wash up on a New York or New Jersey beach since December 5 — local Republicans rushed to blame it on offshore wind development projects.”


Comments are closed.