** tap tap tap ** This thing on?
Oh, hello, dear readers. Bet you thought I’d forgotten about you! Well, no. First, an explanation: my workload literally doubled as of September 14. This was completely self-inflicted: they said, “do you wanna?” and I said, “yeah, sure! Sounds fun!” And it is fun and challenging and everything else, except it has left very little time for me to blog, for which I apologize. I’ve even thought about putting the blog on hiatus again.
This week was especially bad for me and I was basically a giant stress ball. I still managed to compile some good news but until I get a better handle on things I’m afraid blogging is going to be erratic. Totes sorrz, guyz.
Without further ado, your Good Friday roundup:
• Germany hits a new renewable energy milestone, getting 27.7% of its electricity from renewable sources so far this year. That’s a 3% increase over last year.
• Not so much good news as No Shit, Sherlock news but, it appears access to birth control prevents pregnancy and abortion in high-risk teens.
• The U.S. will pay $554 million to the Navajo Nation to settle claims about mismanagement of reservation funds and resources. It’s the largest-ever settlement between the U.S. and a single Native American tribe.
• This is intriguing: an insect-based livestock feed that could save us all.
• Democrats finally find their spine on culture war issues.
• A federal appeals court has struck down two of North Carolina’s most horrendous voting restrictions.
• California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law a bill that allows family members to ask a judge to remove guns from a relative believed to be a risk to themselves or others.
• Related: California becomes the first state in the country to ban single-use plastic bags. Over 100 cities in the state have already enacted bans. This is such great news I can’t even tell you. What this means for litter and wildlife is tremendous.
• Old news by now but congrats to Bill & Hill and Chelsea and Marc on the birth of a future president!
• The Montana teacher who was given just 30 days for raping a 14-year-old student has been re-sentenced for 10 years. This is a horrendous story. The victim, who has since committed suicide, was blamed by the original judge.
• Florida actually convicted a white man of killing a black kid for the first time in, like, ever.
Good News, Tennessee Edition:
• Brown’s Grocery & Hardware, an old-time country store in Carter County, has installed solar panels on its roof that will generate 44 kilowatts of electricity.
This week’s cool video: If you missed John Oliver’s truly excellent expose on the bullshit known as the Miss America “scholarship” program, do yourself a favor and watch it here. It’s the best 15 minute investment you’ll have made in quite a while.
I’ve always thought a “scholarship” that requires you to parade around in a bikini is not one that’s interested in scholarly pursuits.