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TODAY: Bah, Humbug

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Why This Shitting Peasant Is the Christmas Symbol We Need Today 
https://www.currentaffairs.org/2018/12/why-this-shitting-peasant-is-the-christmas-symbol-we-need-today

The 2019 IPO class headlined by Uber will create a ton of new wealth. Will the billions go to mansions or missions?
https://www.recode.net/2018/12/20/18145644/ipo-uber-lyft-slack-wealth-philanthropy-real-estate-startups-silicon-valley

Jeff Bezos Got So Rich in 2018 That He Now Makes More Per Minute Than You Do in a Year
http://time.com/money/5481695/jeff-bezos-net-worth-amazon-2018/

Zuckerberg has lost more money than many countries make in a year
https://www.abc.net.au/triplej/programs/hack/zuckerberg-lost-more-money-than-many-countries-make-in-one-year/10647496

$1.3 million: the average bonus Juul employees get after a deal with a cigarette maker
https://www.vox.com/2018/12/20/18150202/juul-altria-deal

Trump gives Paul Ryan a going-away gift, kicks 800,000 people off food stamps
https://thinkprogress.org/trump-honors-paul-ryans-retirement-by-kicking-800000-people-off-of-food-stamps-eb39a0aa6bc4/

Mattis Is Out As Defense Secretary In Wake Of Trump's Sudden Syria Withdrawal Order
http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/25617/mattis-is-out-as-defense-secretary-in-wake-of-trumps-sudden-syria-withdrawal-order

‘We need time’: Incredulous US officials hustled to alert ‘shocked’ allies about Trump’s Syria withdrawal
https://thedefensepost.com/2018/12/21/us-officials-shocked-allies-trump-syria-withdrawal/

Trump made the right decision to quit Syrian conflict
http://www.atimes.com/article/trump-made-the-right-decision-to-quit-syrian-conflict/

‘Fox & Friends’ co-host Kilmeade: Trump just ‘refounded ISIS’ by pulling troops out of Syria
https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/422426-fox-friends-co-host-trump-just-refounded-isis-by-pulling-troops-out

US withdrawal from Syria might provide exactly the anarchic conditions in which Isis has always flourished
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/trump-syria-isis-military-withdrawal-turkey-sdf-russia-iran-resurgence-a8693426.html

Trump’s Syria Withdrawal Policy Is Correct, But Communicated Horribly
http://thefederalist.com/2018/12/21/trumps-syria-withdrawal-policy-is-correct-but-communicated-horribly/

U.S. to Withdraw About 7,000 Troops From Afghanistan, Officials Say
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/20/us/politics/afghanistan-troop-withdrawal.html

U.S. Air Strike Data from Afghanistan Takes Step Back in Transparency
https://www.justsecurity.org/61965/u-s-air-strike-data-afghanistan-takes-step-transparency/

Pentagon Moves Ahead With New Low-Yield Nuclear Weapon, Amid Resurgent Debate
https://defensemaven.io/warriormaven/future-weapons/pentagon-moves-ahead-with-new-low-yield-nuclear-weapon-amid-resurgent-debate-hOi4n_IFS0q1I8oJwrQJKQ/

Lockheed Martin scores a big win in new Missile Defense Agency radar contract
https://www.c4isrnet.com/land/2018/12/18/lockheed-martin-scores-a-big-win-in-new-radar-missile-defense-agency-radar-contract/

US Troops Getting Plenty of New Toys in 2019
https://special-ops.org/48595/us-troops-getting-plenty-of-new-toys-in-2019/

US durable goods orders up 0.8 pct., led by defense spending
https://www.apnews.com/65d3582dc557478aae22aaf9079345a6

2018 Is Officially "The Worst Year On Record" With 93% Of All Assets Down
https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-12-21/2018-officially-worst-year-record-93-all-assets-down

Santa Rally fails to materialize as markets head south again
https://www.apnews.com/69d5bd62376345b082d355bbc8b0aacf

Millennials Strike Again: This Time We Are Killing Cash And 'Merry Christmas'
https://www.npr.org/2018/12/21/678148112/millennials-strike-again-this-time-we-are-killing-cash-and-merry-christmas

The Economists Who Stole Christmas
https://americanconsequences.com/the-economists-who-stole-christmas/

POLITICS and FLEAS

Trump Shutdown Drama Over Long-Promised Wall Goes To Season Finale
https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/turmp-shutdown-finale-border-wall_us_5c1c19ffe4b0407e9078d6ab

Don’t Call it a ‘Shutdown’ — Call it a Presidential Filibuster!
https://spectator.org/dont-call-it-a-shutdown-call-it-a-presidential-filibuster/

Trump Rages Over Border Wall, Sees Shutdown for ‘Very Long Time’
http://www.rollcall.com/news/politics/trump-rages-over-border-wall-sees-shutdown-for-very-long-time

Most Americans don't support building the wall
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/cbs-news-poll-americans-dont-support-building-the-wall/

Battle of the GoFundMe campaigns: Critics of Trump’s wall raise money for ladders
https://www.fastcompany.com/90285496/battle-of-the-gofundme-campaigns-critics-of-trumps-wall-raise-money-for-ladders

The border wall GoFundMe page sums up the Trump presidency
https://www.cnn.com/2018/12/20/opinions/gofundme-border-wall-trump-deception-kohn/index.html

FOREIGN ENTANGLEMENTS

Venezuela may reach a 10 million percent inflation rate — and 10 million refugees. Can the region handle that?
https://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/andres-oppenheimer/article223388025.html

I’ll be drone for Christmas: London airport closed for day by drone harassment
https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2018/12/ill-be-drone-for-christmas-london-airport-closed-for-day-by-drone-harassment/

'Combat Proven': Israel's thriving war business in Europe
https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/proven-israel-thriving-war-business-europe-181219131852124.html

PANDORA'S BOXCUTTER

If you think Americans are getting fatter, the feds say: 'You're right, all of us are'
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/health/2018/12/20/all-americans-getting-fatter-men-getting-shorter-u-s-report/2363150002/

Abundance has made fat an enemy, but it’s been a friend to humans for millennia
https://aeon.co/videos/abundance-has-made-fat-an-enemy-but-its-been-a-friend-to-humans-for-millennia

Human ancestors weren’t fussy when eating plants
https://cosmosmagazine.com/biology/human-ancestors-weren-t-fussy-when-eating-plants

Gene-edited farm animals are coming. Will we eat them?
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/national/wp/2018/12/17/feature/gene-edited-farm-animals-are-coming-will-we-eat-them/

THE MEDIA SCRUM

Welcome to Marwen is Robert Zemeckis’ most revealing movie — and his worst
https://www.theverge.com/2018/12/20/18150216/welcome-to-marwen-review-steve-carell-robert-zemeckis

‘Aquaman’ Review: Jason Momoa’s Sexiness Can’t Save This Bonkers, Tone-Deaf Mess
https://www.thedailybeast.com/aquaman-review-jason-momoas-sexiness-cant-save-this-bonkers-tone-deaf-mess

I’m Obsessed With Julie Andrews Voicing a Racist Sea Monster in Aquaman
https://www.vulture.com/2018/12/julie-andrews-aquaman-mary-poppins.html

My Painful Quest to Find the Worst Christmas Movie Ever Made
https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/3k94mj/whats-the-worst-christmas-movie-on-amazon-or-netflix

Okay, 20th Century Fox Convinced Me: “Die Hard” Is A Christmas Movie
https://hotair.com/archives/2018/12/18/okay-20th-century-fox-convinced-die-hard-christmas-movie/

ODDS, ENDS

‘Hand yourself over to human justice’: Pope Francis tells priests guilty of abuse that the church won’t shield them
https://www.washingtonpost.com/religion/2018/12/21/hand-yourself-over-human-justice-pope-francis-tells-priests-guilty-abuse-that-church-wont-shield-them/

Billionaire Jeffrey Epstein settles lawsuit brought by woman who claimed he recruited her as a sex slave and 'directed' her to have sex with lawyer Alan Dershowitz
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6519789/Jeffrey-Epstein-accuser-settles-lawsuit-against-disgraced-billionaire.html

Scientology Attorney Demands Jezebel Remove Our Story on Shelly Miscavige's Alleged Disappearance 
https://jezebel.com/scientology-attorney-demands-jezebel-remove-our-story-o-1831229261

Mormon Women Rejoice As LDS Church Lifts Ban on Female Missionaries Wearing Pants
https://www.newsweek.com/mormon-women-rejoice-lds-church-lifts-ban-female-missionaries-wearing-pants-1267791

Polyamorous sex is the most quietly revolutionary political weapon in the United States
https://qz.com/1501725/polyamorous-sex-is-the-most-quietly-revolutionary-political-weapon-in-the-united-states/

The Ethics of Paternalism
https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/the-ethics-of-paternalism/

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