Bugged! / ‘Vaccine rollout is a mess’ / National crisis averted

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Bugged! If you see one of these lanternfly nymphs or adults, newly discovered in Illinois …
… you have the Illinois Agriculture Department’s encouragement to take a photo, then squish it and then alert the state to the time and location at 815-787-5476 or lanternfly@illinois.edu …
 … because, eight years after it made its way from East Asia to Pennsylvania, it now threatens more than 70 types of fruit trees and other plants here.
 The 19th: “Climate change is destroying public housing and displacing women of color.”

‘What was the point of that?’ Wake Up to Politics proprietor Gabe Fleisher on last night’s Republican presidential debate: After two hours, none of Donald Trump’s rivals appeared any closer to cutting his apparent lead.
 Charlie Sykes at The Bulwark saw “a nonevent distinguished only by its embarrassing lack of substance and its utter pointlessness. Other than that, it was great.”
 Columnist Mark Jacob on Sen. Tim Scott: “Racists love it when a Black person says slavery wasn’t as bad as LBJ.”
 PolitiFact went to town on 20 of the candidates’ claims.
 The Washington Post’s graphed who attacked whom (gift link, courtesy of Square supporters):
 Pod Save America co-host Dan Pfeiffer: “None of these losers want to win.”
 Politico: Trump wasn’t at the debate—but his wardrobe was.
 USA Today’s Rex Huppke: The debate marked the Republican Party’s soul leaving its body.

‘You’ve helped … Republicans sow the discord they wanted in Chicago.’ A Sun-Times editorial sarcastically praises Ald. Anthony Beale’s push to reconsider the city’s Welcoming City ordinance for migrants.
 Columnist Eric Zorn to Republicans: “Keep our city’s name out of your fearmongering mouths.”
 The arrival in Chicago of seven new buses of asylum seekers brings the total since Saturday to 27 (update) 34.

Chicago’s new top cop. Larry Snelling, a 30-year veteran of the Chicago Police Department, has won confirmation from the city’s civilian oversight commission.
 Mayor Johnson calls him a “son of this city.”
 Oak Park’s police chief says the timeline for a rash of armed robberies there over the weekend suggests thieves traveling back and forth between the village and the city.

‘Vaccine rollout is a mess.’ Your Local Epidemiologist Katelyn Jetelina says people are being turned away at appointments for COVID-19 shots and some are being asked to pay—because vaccines are now commercialized and the government’s no longer responsible for buying or distributing them.

‘Gifts from controversial people may come with controversy.’ News watchdog Dick Tofel, who cofounded ProPublica, flags some concerns about the rise of nonprofit newspaper ownership.
 The Tribune’s Nina Metz: The Writers Guild of America’s victory over artificial intelligence tech in its new contract includes a provision that “AI can’t write or rewrite literary material, and AI-generated material will not be considered source material” …
 … a deal that media writer Tom Jones says may shape similar struggles in the nation’s newsrooms.
 CNN’s Oliver Darcy: “It’s difficult to see how every industry will not be dramatically affected by the spate of ever-learning machines … unleashed upon the world.”
 NewsGuard warns that a network of 17 TikTok accounts seems to be “leveraging hyper-realistic audio AI voice technology to gain hundreds of millions of views on conspiracy content that sounds authentically human.”
 Movie critic Richard Roeper says the AI thriller The Creator “suffers from schmaltzy dialogue and questionable dramatic choices.”

National crisis averted. The U.S. Senate has passed a resolution formalizing business attire as the chamber floor’s proper dress code—for men …
 …but it doesn’t spell out what female senators can or can’t wear.

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