Texas Sen. Angela Paxton files bill to expand power of Texas AG Ken Paxton | The Texas Tribune

Today’s “Politics as usual” story.

Billed as a consumer protection effort, the proposal would allow approved individuals to serve as investment advisers without registering with the state board — a felony under Texas law that Ken Paxton was charged with in 2015.

— Read on www.texastribune.org/2019/02/16/ken-paxton-angela-securities-regulations-texas-attorney-general-power/amp/

The National Emergencies Act Is Not a Blank Check | Constitutional Accountability Center

Some have suggested that the biggest problems the President will face are the limitations imposed in the other statutes that are triggered once a national emergency is declared.  And they’re not wrong to point to those limitations: many of those statutes do significantly limit what the President can ultimately do.

But there may be a problem that comes before that.  The National Emergencies Act provides that “[w]ith respect to Acts of Congress authorizing the exercise, during the period of a national emergency, of any special or extraordinary power, the President is authorized to declare such national emergency.”  This provision raises an important question: must there actually be facts on the ground that support the existence of a “national emergency”?  Or, as some have suggested, does the National Emergencies Act give the President essentially unlimited power to declare a national emergency even if none exists?
— Read on www.theusconstitution.org/blog/the-national-emergencies-act-is-not-a-blank-check/

Shifting Gears on Automation

Rural residents, who make up about 20% of the U.S. population, are more vulnerable than urban counterparts to job change and potential job loss due to automation, artificial intelligence, and technological change. According to a new report, America at Work, released today by Walmart, the 190 million Americans who live outside of major metro areas find themselves at a disadvantage to urban centers when it comes to capacity for resilience in the face of automation. Yet rarely are residents of rural areas, small cities or towns seeing their needs addressed in efforts and discussions around the future of work. The reasons for their vulnerability are diverse — ranging from lags in postsecondary attainment to an occupational mix heavily weighted towards high-risk jobs in manufacturing, agriculture, and retail — but they aren’t simple. The solutions required are equally as diverse, reflecting the varied history, demographics, vision, and needs of rural communities and small towns across the country. How should communities prepare for these coming disruptions?
— Read on www.newamerica.org/work-workers-technology/shiftlabs/blog/new-america-launches-rural-shiftlabs-initiative/

Fyre Festival Was a Huge Scam. Is Netflix’s Fyre Documentary a Scam, Too? | The New Republic

Now, documents show that the CEO of FuckJerry, Mick Purzycki, who was a producer of Fyre, also claimed to have “final cut” over the documentary while it was being put together. Though his editing authority was later “superseded by the distribution agreement where the final cut was with the director,” according to Netflix, the way the movie was produced suggests that FuckJerry used the film to launder the troubled company’s reputation. And what appeared to be a story of competing films turns out to be something else: A genuine investigative documentary struggling for attention against a shadow public relations campaign.
— Read on newrepublic.com/article/153095/fyre-festival-huge-scam-netflixs-fyre-documentary-scam-too

2019 WGI Troy Percussion Regional Photos

I am back home after a great day spent at Troy Athens High School in Troy, Michigan and Winter Guard International’s Troy Percussion Regional!

While I posted many photos for WGI on their various social media platforms, I took many more photos and have uploaded them to my SmugMug account. These photos are free for you to check out and share. All I ask is that you give me credit if you share any photos from my collection.

Troy Percussion Prelims:

Troy Percussion Finals: