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President Barack Obama will meet with South Korean President Park Geun-Hye on Tuesday instead of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte after he referred to Obama as a "son of a whore." National Post reports:
In his typical foul-mouthed style, Duterte responded: “I am a president of a sovereign state and we have long ceased to be a colony. I do not have any master except the Filipino people, nobody but nobody. You must be respectful. Do not just throw questions. Putang ina I will swear at you in that forum,” he said, using the Tagalog phrase for son of a bitch. Some translations have suggested the phrase is closer to “son of a whore.”

In July, the Turkish military attempted a coup to take out President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's regime. They failed, which led to a crackdown by the government and a purge of anyone the government felt had ties to scholar Fetullah Gulen, who they feel devised the coup. Erodgan has railed against the West for not standing with its NATO ally, but that all changed this weekend. President Barack Obama met with Erdogan and promised the U.S. will help bring the coup plotters to justice.

With less than 140 days left in the Oval Office, President Obama is attempting to ensure his legacy of foreign policy ineptitude continues on after his term ends. It appears as if he has succeeded with the Chinese, as observers indicate he was denied the usual pomp and pageantry reserved for greeting other heads-of-state.
China’s leaders have been accused of delivering a calculated diplomatic snub to Barack Obama after the US president was not provided with a staircase to leave his plane during his chaotic arrival in Hangzhou before the start of the G20. Chinese authorities have rolled out the red carpet for leaders including India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, the South Korean president, Park Geun-hye, Brazil’s president, Michel Temer, and the British prime minister, Theresa May, who touched down on Sunday morning.

In a move that is being hailed as cementing his conservation legacy, Obama has, with the stroke of his pen, expanded a national marine monument off the coast of Hawaii to over 582,578 square miles.  This move will, however, destroy commercial fishing and potential drilling and mineral collection in a vast expanse of our waters. The Hill reports:
President Obama on Friday morning created a massive national monument off the coast of his native Hawaii, the world’s largest protected area. The declaration expands more than threefold the size of the Papahānaumokuāke Marine National Monument, surrounding the outlying northwestern Hawaiian islands. The move in Obama’s final months further cements his legacy of using unilateral executive authority to protect far more land and water as national monuments than any other president.

I reported that the rains that hit Louisiana last week produced a "500 year flood" of epic proportions. This week, the southern part of the state is still reeling from the storm's devastating impact.
Approximately 280,000 people live in the areas that flooded, according to an analysis released Friday by the Baton Rouge Area Chamber. In those flood-affected areas are 110,000 homes worth a combined $20.7 billion and more than 7,000 businesses — about one in every five businesses in the region — that together employ more than 73,000 people.
Now, after giving an inspiring and presidential campaign speech in North Carlonia, GOP presidential hopeful Donald Trump flew to the state to offer support, meet with officials, and hand-out supplies.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has reached out to President Barack Obama about extraditing Fethullah Gülen, who he blames for the failed coup on Friday. The White House said:
“The president made clear to President Erdogan that the United States doesn’t support terrorists and doesn’t support individuals who conspired to overthrow a democratically elected government,” according to White House spokesman Josh Earnest.

Given what we know about the Dallas sniper, it's clear to most of us what his motive was in shooting and killing five officers.  As Mary noted, not only did he tell the police negotiator that he wanted to kill "white people, especially white police officers," but he was also inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement and had a long history of not respecting authority.  He was also noted to have gone "all Black Panther" and to have been hording bomb-making materials and an assortment of weapons, presumably for some future plans he may have had. Nonetheless, one prominent progressive with a history of promoting the Black Lives Matter movement is completely confused by and uncertain about the sniper's motives.

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) has blamed due process as the reason why the government cannot pass more gun control. From The Washington Examiner:
"The problem we have, and really the firewall we have right now, is due process. It's all due process," he said Thursday on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." "We can all say we want the same thing," he continued, "but how do we get there?"
I wonder if he gets that THIS is why our awesome Founding Fathers put in the Fifth Amendment.

The House has voted to condemn a carbon tax as "detrimental to American families and businesses." The Hill reports:
The House voted Friday to condemn a potential carbon tax, closing the door on a climate change policy popular in some conservative circles. Lawmakers passed, by a 237-163 vote, a GOP-backed resolution listing pitfalls from a tax on carbon dioxide emissions and concluding that such a policy “would be detrimental to American families and businesses, and is not in the best interest of the United States.” Six Democrats voted with the GOP for the resolution. No Republicans dissented. The non-binding resolution is first and foremost a defensive measure, to get lawmakers on the record against a carbon tax, in case it’s part of a future proposal, perhaps part of a comprehensive tax reform package or in return for repealing certain regulations. President Obama has not proposed a carbon tax, and while many Democrats support the idea, it has not taken hold as a serious legislative proposal in years.
Obama has, in fact, proposed carbon taxes, the most recent being the $10 per barrel tax on oil; a fact noted in this Hill article: "The House also voted 253-144 to condemn Obama’s proposal from earlier this year to impose a $10.25 tax on each barrel of oil, an idea that never got much support in Congress."

In the past few weeks, concerns about the Zika virus have caused Today host Savannah Guthrie and U.S. cyclist Tejay van Garderen to cancel their plans to go to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. A new study may cause other athletes to reconsider their sports ambitions.
Scientists have found dangerous drug-resistant "super bacteria" off beaches in Rio de Janeiro that will host Olympic swimming events and in a lagoon where rowing and canoe athletes will compete when the Games start on Aug. 5. The findings from two unpublished academic studies seen by Reuters concern Rio's most popular spots for tourists and greatly increase the areas known to be infected by the microbes normally found only in hospitals. They also heighten concerns that Rio's sewage-infested waterways are unsafe.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest labeled the investigation into then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's emails as "criminal." From Fox News:
“That's why the president, when discussing this issue in each stage, has reiterated his commitment to this principle that any criminal investigation should be conducted independent of any sort of political interference,” Earnest said.
Fox News had asked Earnest if President Barack Obama's endorsement for Clinton for president "might apply pressure to investigators assigned" to her case.

In February, President Obama said we should not "panic over Zika." At the same time, he asked Congress for $1.8 billion in funding for the resources to combat the Zika virus, the pathogen spreading rapidly through the Americas that can cause birth defects and neurological problems. In a rare display of fiscal restraint, Congress granted $622 million (mainly from unused Ebola response money). However, as negotiations continue for even more Zika funding between these two branches of government, it seems that $500 million of those taxpayer dollars initially allotted now sits in the coffers of the United Nations.
The Obama administration siphoned $500 million that could have gone toward combating the Zika virus into a United Nations effort aimed at mitigating climate change. Sen. James Lankford (R., Okla.) wrote in an op-ed published in the Daily Signal that the Senate last year granted Obama the authority to pay for a response to Zika, but his administration chose instead to allocate those funds toward the U.N.’s Green Climate Fund.
As a reminder, that $500 million is the first installment of $3 billion that Obama agreed to turn over as part of the UN Paris climate conference deal.

President Barack Obama has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president after meeting with her opponent Sen. Bernie Sanders at the White House. https://twitter.com/HillaryClinton/status/740964361552941056 Clinton declared a victory in the Democratic primary on Tuesday after she won primaries in California, New Jersey, New Mexico, and South Dakota. The Associated Press announced she clinched after she captured the Puerto Rico primary, which propelled her to 2,383 delegates.

I am taking a few moments from my "Crazy California" and science coverage today to hit a topic that will be critically important in November: Jobs. Yesterday, the media coverage I followed was focused on San Jose. Interestingly, for those of us who have been following the Facebook trending news saga, San Jose completely failed to appear in the trending items. In fact, here is today's list: LI #53 Facebook Tredning And while I am grateful to see news about the Great Pyramid, I also noticed that another critical story is also absent:

First Lady Michelle Obama asked Anthony Mendez to attend the 2015 State of the Union with her since he overcame a tough childhood to advance to college. However, he never told her or anyone else that he didn't even make a 1.0 GPA at the University of Hartford and faced expulsion. Mendez admitted in a Vox op-ed that he accepted the invitation despite knowing the university would not accept him back for the spring semester. Unfortunately, though, his op-ed sounds like he wants to place some of the blame on the White House and the media that hounded him after the White House announced the invitations.

Apparently, the White House is bowing to pressure from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (yes, such a position actually exists) and is going to look for alternate ways to bring Syrian refugees into the country. Fox News reports:
The Obama administration appears to be bowing to international pressure and pursuing under-the-radar “alternative” ways to bring in more Syrian and other refugees -- as soon as this year. The latest indication that the administration is preparing to take in more than the 10,000 Syrians this year it already has committed to follows a March 30 “high-level meeting” on Syrian refugee admission in Geneva, Switzerland -- convened by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. At the meeting, attended by State Department officials, U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi called for countries to pursue “alternative avenues” for refugees – such as student and work visas, and expanded family reunification programs.
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