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Westlake Legal Group > News Corporation (Page 353)

A Trump Policy ‘Clarification’ All but Ends Punishment for Bird Deaths

Westlake Legal Group 00cli-deadbirds02-facebookJumbo A Trump Policy ‘Clarification’ All but Ends Punishment for Bird Deaths Trump, Donald J Greenhouse Gas Emissions Global Warming Fish and Wildlife Service environment Birds Audubon Society, National Animals Animal Migration

WASHINGTON — As the state of Virginia prepared for a major bridge and tunnel expansion in the tidewaters of the Chesapeake Bay last year, engineers understood that the nesting grounds of 25,000 gulls, black skimmers, royal terns and other seabirds were about to be plowed under.

To compensate, they considered developing an artificial island as a haven. Then in June 2018, the Trump administration stepped in. While the federal government “appreciates” the state’s efforts, new rules in Washington had eliminated criminal penalties for “incidental” migratory bird deaths that came in the course of normal business, administration officials advised. Such conservation measures were now “purely voluntary.

The state ended its island planning.

The island is one of dozens of bird-preservation efforts that have fallen away in the wake of the policy change in 2017 that was billed merely as a technical clarification to a century-old law protecting migratory birds. Across the country birds have been killed and nests destroyed by oil spills, construction crews and chemical contamination, all with no response from the federal government, according to emails, memos and other documents viewed by The New York Times.

Not only has the administration stopped investigating most bird deaths, the documents show, it has discouraged local governments and businesses from taking precautionary measures to protect birds.

In one instance, a Wyoming-based oil company wanted to clarify that it no longer had to report bird deaths to the Fish and Wildlife Service. “You are correct,” the agency replied.

In another, a building property manager in Michigan emailed the Fish and Wildlife Service to note that residents had complained about birds being killed while workers put up siding and gutters around the apartment. Not to worry, the agency replied: “If the purpose or intent of your activity is not to take birds/nests/eggs, then it is no longer prohibited.”

And when a homeowners’ association in Arizona complained that a developer had refused to safely remove nesting burrowing owls from a nearby lot, Fish and Wildlife said that, because of the new legal interpretation, it could not compel the developer to act.

“Of course, we just got sued over that interpretation, so we’ll see how it ends up,” the enforcement officer wrote.

The revised policy — part of the administration’s broader effort to encourage business activity — has been a particular favorite of President Trump’s, whose selective view of avian welfare has ranged from complaining that wind energy “kills all the birds” to asserting that the oil industry has been subject to “totalitarian tactics” under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918.

Habitat loss and pesticide exposure already have brought on widespread bird-species declines. The number of adult breeding birds in the United States and Canada has plummeted by 2.9 billion since 1970.

Now, said Noah Greenwald, the endangered species director for the Center for Biological Diversity, the Trump administration has engineered “a fundamental shift” in policy that “lets industrial companies, utilities and others completely off the hook.” Even a disaster like the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of 2010, which killed or injured about a million birds, would not expose a company to prosecution or fines.

Gavin Shire, a spokesman for the Fish and Wildlife Service, the agency responsible for protecting migratory birds, said in a statement that other federal laws like the Endangered Species Act remain on the books. The Trump administration, he said, “will continue to work cooperatively with our industry partners to minimize impacts on migratory birds.”

The documents tell a different story.

In nearly two dozen incidents across 15 states, internal conversations among Fish and Wildlife Service officers indicate that, short of going out to shoot birds, activities in which birds die no longer merit action. In some cases the Trump administration has even discouraged local governments and businesses from taking relatively simple steps to protect birds, like reporting fatalities when they are found.

“You get the sense this policy is not only bad for birds, it’s also cruel,” Mr. Greenwald said.

The Migratory Bird Treaty Act was originally enacted to protect the birds from over-hunting and poaching at a time when feathered hats were all the rage and the snowy egret was hunted almost to extinction. It makes it illegal “by any means or in any manner” to hunt, take, capture or kill birds, nests or eggs from listed species without a permit.

Beginning in the 1970s, federal officials used the act to prosecute and fine companies up to $15,000 per bird for accidental deaths on power lines, in oil pits, in wind turbines and by other industrial hazards.

Kathleen Sgamma, president of the Western Energy Alliance, an oil and gas trade association, said fossil fuel companies had been unfairly targeted by the law, pointing to an Obama administration prosecution of seven oil companies in North Dakota for the deaths of 28 birds.

“It felt like it was weaponized against one industry,” she said.

Changes to the interpretation of the law topped the association’s wish list for the Trump administration. Six months after that list was released, the Interior Department ended prosecutions for bird deaths “when the underlying purpose of that activity is not to take birds.”

If landowners destroy a barn knowing it is filled with baby owls, they would not be liable, as long as the intent was not to kill owls, the opinion said. The illegal spraying of a banned pesticide would not be a legal liability either as long as the birds were not the “intended target.”

In the case of a bridge and tunnel project in Hampton Roads, Va., Stephen C. Birch, the commissioner of the Virginia Department of Transportation, said the agency was seeking an alternate solution for the seabirds. A spokeswoman for the agency said the Trump administration’s opinion “had no direct impact” on the decision to abandon the bird island.

But conservationists who had been working closely with the state to protect the seabirds’ nesting grounds said they had no doubt it had a chilling effect.

“The dynamics really changed,” said Sarah Karpanty, a professor of fish and wildlife conservation at Virginia Tech and a member of the team that had been working with the state. “They were basically conservation partners, and in 2017 all indications were that they were going to be a conservation partner again. Then the solicitor’s opinion changed everything.”

The loss of the Hampton Roads nesting area will devastate some bird species because it was the last they had. Other sites in the Chesapeake Bay have been lost to sea level rise and erosion.

The birds, now south for the winter, will return in March and April to land that has been paved. Construction crews may have to take aggressive measures to prevent the birds from nesting wherever they can, like in cracks in the asphalt.

“If there’s no new habitat construction, they will most likely not reproduce,” Ms. Karpanty said. “The frustrating thing is about this situation is, there is a solution, a relatively easy solution.”

In another case, the United States Coast Guard notified the Fish and Wildlife Service in January 2018 that it had identified a vessel responsible for an oil spill near Woods Hole, Mass., that killed about two dozen sea birds. Federal wildlife police replied that because the “birds protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act” were killed incidentally, “there’s currently no enforcement action plan.”

In other cases, states and companies are still acting voluntarily. In June 2018 a state official in Michigan alerted the Fish and Wildlife Service that a logger had spotted a great blue heron rookery in a red pine forest and wanted to know how to proceed. The federal agent replied that while the effort to minimize harm to the birds was appreciated, action was considered “strictly voluntary and not required in any way.”

In that instance, the company worked with the state to agree on a 300-foot buffer around the nests where no commercial activity would occur until after nesting season, said Dan Kennedy, an endangered species coordinator with the Michigan environment office.

Sarah Greenberger, senior vice president for conservation at the Audubon Society, said such voluntary actions cannot be counted on.

“I’m sure there are still conscientious actors who are taking steps,” she said. “But we don’t know that, and we don’t know how long they will continue to do that, especially if their competitors aren’t.”

Erik Milito, president of the National Ocean Industries Association, which represents offshore wind companies and drillers, said the Trump administration’s reinterpretation had given his industry more certainty.

“There’s a balance here as to what extent should something that happened to a bird be criminalized, versus how do we ensure that they’re protected,” he said.

Builders, developers and property managers are also benefiting. In Washington D.C., the district’s Department of Energy and Environment asked Fish and Wildlife in July 2018 to help resolve a puzzling issue: a condominium had installed netting to keep birds out of its insulation, but the net was instead trapping songbirds and migratory birds, “many who do not make it out and end up dying.”

The Trump administration replied that migratory birds that are killed “non-purposefully” are not subject to enforcement and offered voluntary guidelines.

“It’s part of a broader dirty blanket that the administration is using over the whole environment,” said Tommy Wells, director of the district’s energy program. He fears that administration policies could reverse a resurgence of wildlife in the city.

In Albuquerque, N.M., Alan Edmonds, an animal cruelty case manager with New Mexico’s animal protection agency, pushed back after the Fish and Wildlife Service gave only a verbal warning to a company that had trapped and killed a Cooper’s hawk. The agency replied that, without proof that the company wanted to kill the hawk, “we can’t do anything.”

Mr. Edmonds said the company received “not even a slap on the wrist.” He acknowledged the hawk was just one bird. But Ms. Greenberger of the Audubon Society said, “This is how we lose birds.”

“We don’t lose them a billion at a time,” she said. “We lose them from small incidents happening repeatedly over the vast geography of our country.”

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Joe Giudice responds to criticism he doesn’t ‘work’

Joe Giudice didn’t waste any time snapping back at a troll on social media who commented on his work habits.

The reality TV personality, 47, posted a video of himself working out at a gym in Italy, where he now lives full time, on December 19 and a commenter asked Joe, “Do you ever work? Your wife is raising you daughters,” referring to his wife, Teresa, and their four daughters: Gia, 18, Gabriella, 15, Milania, 13, and Audriana, 10.

Joe simply responded that he works “everyday,” according to Us Weekly.

‘RHONJ’ STAR JOE GIUDICE BREAKS HIS SILENCE AFTER ARRIVING IN ITALY

The exchange occurred the same week that the couple announced they are separating after 20 years of marriage. A source close to the family told People magazine, “They are doing so amicably and very slowly,” the insider said. “Joe has been out on a few dates, Teresa has not. She has been too busy with the girls, with work obligations and taking care of her father.”

“They have been very friendly with one another and are very supportive of each other’s happiness,” explained the source. “They still love one another, but as Teresa told Andy Cohen on the ‘WWHL’ special, they are separated by the Atlantic Ocean. Neither is interested in a long distance relationship.”

‘REAL HOUSEWIVES’ STARS TERESA GIUDICE, JOE GIUDICE SEPARATE AFTER 20 YEARS OF MARRIAGE

The pair had been apart for four years after they pleaded guilty in 2014 to financial fraud. Teresa served her sentence first and was released in December 2015. Joe then started his 41-month prison term in March 2016.

Westlake Legal Group teresa-joe-giudice-display-image Joe Giudice responds to criticism he doesn't 'work' Jessica Napoli fox-news/shows/the-real-housewives fox-news/entertainment/genres/reality fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 1dbddf76-59da-5eee-8853-737ed4e8a5d2

Joe (L) and Teresa (R) separated after 20 years of marriage.  (WWHL/Bravo)

Joe was held by immigration officials after he completed his sentence. A judge ruled in October 2018 that Joe, who is not an American citizen, would be deported to his native Italy upon completion of his prison term. He is currently living in Italy while waiting for a ruling in his deportation case.

Giudice has said he came to the U.S. as an infant and wasn’t aware he wasn’t an American citizen and never applied for it while living in the States.

JOE GIUDICE AND FAMILY ‘EXTREMELY DISAPPOINTED’ AFTER DEPORTATION APPEAL DENIED

For Christmas, Joe’s kids traveled to Italy to celebrate there while Teresa stayed back in New Jersey.

He posted a video of them arriving at the airport, “They are so cute so Happy.”

The girls and Teresa first visited Joe in November. The family’s trip was documented by the Bravo cameras and will be featured in the current season of “The Real Housewives of New Jersey.”

Westlake Legal Group joe-giudice-ap Joe Giudice responds to criticism he doesn't 'work' Jessica Napoli fox-news/shows/the-real-housewives fox-news/entertainment/genres/reality fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 1dbddf76-59da-5eee-8853-737ed4e8a5d2   Westlake Legal Group joe-giudice-ap Joe Giudice responds to criticism he doesn't 'work' Jessica Napoli fox-news/shows/the-real-housewives fox-news/entertainment/genres/reality fox news fnc/entertainment fnc article 1dbddf76-59da-5eee-8853-737ed4e8a5d2

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US veteran finds note in mailbox saying his beloved dog was shot dead because she didn’t have a leash on

Westlake Legal Group Nymeria-dog-collar-new-2 US veteran finds note in mailbox saying his beloved dog was shot dead because she didn't have a leash on Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/mississippi fox-news/lifestyle/pets fox news fnc/us fnc article 1b957646-996d-54ee-83d9-4cb6b2dc058a

A U.S. veteran’s search for his beloved dog came to an end earlier this month after he found an anonymous note in his mailbox saying the pup had been shot dead after being caught on someone’s property without a leash.

Chad Stricker, of Pearl River County, Miss., spent days searching for his 10-month-old wolfdog named Nymeria when he found the typed note, along with her collar, in his mailbox. He shared a picture of the note and collar on Facebook in a now-viral post.

CONAN, THE ISIS RAID DOG, LEADS LIST OF MOST HEROIC DOGS OF 2019

“I’m sorry to inform you that your dog was shot and killed Saturday night while digging through my garbage,” the note said. “It did not suffer and I did not take pleasure in killing it. There is a county leash law which you should abide by so that I do not have to kill any more of your pets.”

Stricker, whose social media page says he served in the Army, was heartbroken.

“I was sick to my stomach,” he told the Biloxi Sun Herald. “To think that someone killed her while we had been out looking for her, for digging in the garbage … An animal is not worth more than your trash or the time to make a phone call?”

Nymeria’s large yellow collar had an attached tag that showed her photo and description of her personality, along with Stricker’s address and phone number, the paper reported. Stricker described Nymeria as “one of the sweetest dogs anywhere around and very loving” in his post.

However, he told the paper that there was nothing he or police could do because Nymeria had been off her leash while on another person’s property.

The leash law in Pearl River County requires all animals to be fenced in or restrained on a leash, or otherwise be considered a public nuisance, according to the outlet.

KANSAS DOG THAT LIVED AT SHELTER FOR MORE THAN 400 DAYS FINALLY GETS ADOPTED AFTER HUMAN MOVES IN

Shooting a so-called “nuisance animal” isn’t uncommon, Elizabeth Treadaway, the shelter manager Pearl River County SPCA, told the paper.

“Unfortunately we see that a lot,” Treadaway said. “This dog lost its life over an invisible line it can’t see. As soon as an animal goes onto someone else’s property, that leash law goes into effect. But just because it’s law, doesn’t make it right what this person did.”

Stricker wrote a lengthy note of his own to the anonymous “coward” who claimed to have shot the dog.

“It’s sad to think I have a neighbor of your moral character living so close to me that would do this,” it read in part. “Do I hate you, no, I pity the person you are and those who have to tolerate you.”

Stricker said Nymeria’s body wasn’t returned to him. He asked to be told where the body was or for it to be left on his driveway so he could give his beloved dog a proper burial.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

“I pray one day you come to realize what you have done and teach those in your household to be better,” he wrote.

Westlake Legal Group Nymeria-dog-collar-new-2 US veteran finds note in mailbox saying his beloved dog was shot dead because she didn't have a leash on Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/mississippi fox-news/lifestyle/pets fox news fnc/us fnc article 1b957646-996d-54ee-83d9-4cb6b2dc058a   Westlake Legal Group Nymeria-dog-collar-new-2 US veteran finds note in mailbox saying his beloved dog was shot dead because she didn't have a leash on Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/mississippi fox-news/lifestyle/pets fox news fnc/us fnc article 1b957646-996d-54ee-83d9-4cb6b2dc058a

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US veteran finds note in mailbox saying his beloved dog was shot dead because she didn’t have a leash on

Westlake Legal Group Nymeria-dog-collar-new-2 US veteran finds note in mailbox saying his beloved dog was shot dead because she didn't have a leash on Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/mississippi fox-news/lifestyle/pets fox news fnc/us fnc article 1b957646-996d-54ee-83d9-4cb6b2dc058a

A U.S. veteran’s search for his beloved dog came to an end earlier this month after he found an anonymous note in his mailbox saying the pup had been shot dead after being caught on someone’s property without a leash.

Chad Stricker, of Pearl River County, Miss., spent days searching for his 10-month-old wolfdog named Nymeria when he found the typed note, along with her collar, in his mailbox. He shared a picture of the note and collar on Facebook in a now-viral post.

CONAN, THE ISIS RAID DOG, LEADS LIST OF MOST HEROIC DOGS OF 2019

“I’m sorry to inform you that your dog was shot and killed Saturday night while digging through my garbage,” the note said. “It did not suffer and I did not take pleasure in killing it. There is a county leash law which you should abide by so that I do not have to kill any more of your pets.”

Stricker, whose social media page says he served in the Army, was heartbroken.

“I was sick to my stomach,” he told the Biloxi Sun Herald. “To think that someone killed her while we had been out looking for her, for digging in the garbage … An animal is not worth more than your trash or the time to make a phone call?”

Nymeria’s large yellow collar had an attached tag that showed her photo and description of her personality, along with Stricker’s address and phone number, the paper reported. Stricker described Nymeria as “one of the sweetest dogs anywhere around and very loving” in his post.

However, he told the paper that there was nothing he or police could do because Nymeria had been off her leash while on another person’s property.

The leash law in Pearl River County requires all animals to be fenced in or restrained on a leash, or otherwise be considered a public nuisance, according to the outlet.

KANSAS DOG THAT LIVED AT SHELTER FOR MORE THAN 400 DAYS FINALLY GETS ADOPTED AFTER HUMAN MOVES IN

Shooting a so-called “nuisance animal” isn’t uncommon, Elizabeth Treadaway, the shelter manager Pearl River County SPCA, told the paper.

“Unfortunately we see that a lot,” Treadaway said. “This dog lost its life over an invisible line it can’t see. As soon as an animal goes onto someone else’s property, that leash law goes into effect. But just because it’s law, doesn’t make it right what this person did.”

Stricker wrote a lengthy note of his own to the anonymous “coward” who claimed to have shot the dog.

“It’s sad to think I have a neighbor of your moral character living so close to me that would do this,” it read in part. “Do I hate you, no, I pity the person you are and those who have to tolerate you.”

Stricker said Nymeria’s body wasn’t returned to him. He asked to be told where the body was or for it to be left on his driveway so he could give his beloved dog a proper burial.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

“I pray one day you come to realize what you have done and teach those in your household to be better,” he wrote.

Westlake Legal Group Nymeria-dog-collar-new-2 US veteran finds note in mailbox saying his beloved dog was shot dead because she didn't have a leash on Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/mississippi fox-news/lifestyle/pets fox news fnc/us fnc article 1b957646-996d-54ee-83d9-4cb6b2dc058a   Westlake Legal Group Nymeria-dog-collar-new-2 US veteran finds note in mailbox saying his beloved dog was shot dead because she didn't have a leash on Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/southeast/mississippi fox-news/lifestyle/pets fox news fnc/us fnc article 1b957646-996d-54ee-83d9-4cb6b2dc058a

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Tony Hawk announces mom, 94, dies after battle with Alzheimer’s and dementia

Westlake Legal Group 9f2f00ef-Tony-Hawk Tony Hawk announces mom, 94, dies after battle with Alzheimer's and dementia Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports fox-news/health/nervous-system-health/alzheimers fox news fnc/sports fnc c145a44b-0305-5cb4-a7ec-0b0b47d40ccc article

Legendary skateboarder Tony Hawk announced Monday his mother Nancy Hawk died after a battle with dementia. She was 94.

Hawk, 51, made the announcement in an Instagram post, which included several photos of himself with his mother and a heartfelt message about the toll the agonizing battle with the disease took on her and his family.

EXPERIMENTAL ALZHEIMER’S DRUG LEAVES SCIENTISTS SPLIT OVER EFFECTIVENESS

“We watched helplessly as she slid away – mentally and physically – in rapid decline over the last few years. With each visit it became less likely that there would be any signs of recognition. Instead of dwelling on the painful disease that took her away from us,” Hawk wrote.

Hawk shared that his mother grew up during the Great Depression and was working two jobs by the time she was 14. She married her husband, Hawk’s father, during World War II and the star credited her with raising four kids “on a meager budget while providing us with plenty of encouragement and confidence to follow our passions.”

Hawk praised her for encouraging him to continue skateboarding despite her worries about injuries.

TOM BRADY TROLLED OVER PHOTO OF HIMSELF BLOCKING BUFFALO BILLS CORNERBACK

“She taught me to treat everyone equally, to embrace diversity and help those in need. She was constantly smiling, had a quick wit and made everyone around her feel special. She adored her grandchildren, and they adored her back. She knew the value of gathering people together, and often planned or hosted big parties for our extended friends and families. She touched many lives with her kindness and I believe she left the world a better place for countless others.”

Hawk had been very open about his mother’s battle with Alzheimer’s and dementia. He shared a heartfelt message in September 2018 about his mother’s battle.

He detailed in an appearance at an Alzheimer’s Association event in October how he knew that his mother was losing the ability to do everyday tasks, according to the Detroit Free Press.

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS’ MICHAEL THOMAS DELIVERS GIFTS TO CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL DAY AFTER SETTING CATCH RECORD

“She is 94 now … I think it was about 15 years ago when you could tell that she was not remembering very basic information,” he said. “Her driving was the first thing to go … It was just clear she wasn’t really safe on the road and she was a danger to others.

“My siblings and I offered to get her transportation. That was a battle because she didn’t want to lose that freedom. And then she started losing touch with reality in certain aspects, where the things she would say were more concerning. They were … I can’t explain it. She would mention things that were not real, and we knew that something was off.”

Hawk has said he’s been proactive about being tested to catch any early signs of the disease.

CLICK HERE FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COM

“I’ve been proactive in trying to see if I am more susceptible,” he said. “It seems that I am taking the right steps, being aware of my own situation, and hopefully, being proactive in helping to … fend it off as much as I can.”

Westlake Legal Group 9f2f00ef-Tony-Hawk Tony Hawk announces mom, 94, dies after battle with Alzheimer's and dementia Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports fox-news/health/nervous-system-health/alzheimers fox news fnc/sports fnc c145a44b-0305-5cb4-a7ec-0b0b47d40ccc article   Westlake Legal Group 9f2f00ef-Tony-Hawk Tony Hawk announces mom, 94, dies after battle with Alzheimer's and dementia Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports fox-news/health/nervous-system-health/alzheimers fox news fnc/sports fnc c145a44b-0305-5cb4-a7ec-0b0b47d40ccc article

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Boeing Can’t Fly Its 737 Max, but It’s Ready to Sell Its Safety

Westlake Legal Group 24boeing-slide1-facebookJumbo Boeing Can’t Fly Its 737 Max, but It’s Ready to Sell Its Safety Muilenburg, Dennis A Boeing Company Boeing 737 Max Groundings and Safety Concerns (2019) Aviation Accidents, Safety and Disasters Airlines and Airplanes

Since Boeing’s 737 Max jet was grounded in March, after two crashes that killed 346 people, a question has loomed for the company: Would passengers be too scared to fly on the plane once it returns to the air?

It turns out that even as Boeing continues to work on technical fixes to the plane that are needed for regulatory approval, it has repeatedly surveyed thousands of passengers around the world to try to find out the answer. The latest results, from this month, found that 40 percent of regular fliers said they would be unwilling to fly on the Max.

So, in a series of conference calls with airlines and in 40 pages of accompanying presentation materials that were reviewed by The New York Times, Boeing laid out strategies for airlines to help win back the public’s trust and convince travelers the company’s most popular plane was safe.

For instance, if a traveler doesn’t want to fly after buying a ticket, getting to the airport gate or even after boarding the plane, Boeing says that the airline could offer to rebook a flight, have flight attendants or pilots talk to the concerned passenger or hand out 3-by-5 inch information cards detailing why the Max is safe.

“Every interaction with an anxious passenger, whether face-to-face or online, is an opportunity to demonstrate our care and concern,” the presentation said. “This is as simple as recognition of a passenger’s state of mind. Research shows that emotions drive decision-making, so a human connection will be more effective than rational appeals.”

In the most extreme cases, Boeing suggests using “techniques related to an inflight medical emergency to de-escalate.”

The calls and documents underscore the enormous challenges Boeing faces in the coming months as it tries to restore its reputation. The Max remains grounded, and there is no timetable for when regulators will deem it safe to return to the air. In just the last week and a half, Boeing fired its chief executive and said it would temporarily shut down the factory that makes the Max.

Boeing has queried thousands of travelers around the globe four times since May, and found that the skepticism surrounding the Max had improved only marginally. Among United States travelers, just 52 percent said they would be willing to fly on the plane, according to the survey.

“Overall awareness of issues surrounding the 737 Max remains very high in all countries,” Boeing wrote.

The conference calls, which lasted about 30 minutes each and were held over three days last week, are part of Boeing’s attempts to win back the trust of airlines, which have lost billions of dollars and had to cancel thousands of flights because of the Max grounding. The effort was led by Bernard Choi, a member of the company’s communications team.

Some United States airline executives bristled at the presentation and materials, according to four people familiar with the matter, believing that Boeing has lost credibility and that the company’s involvement would only hurt their efforts to win back the trust of passengers. But dozens of airlines around the world have ordered the Max, and many of them, especially the smaller ones, could find the materials helpful.

“We routinely engage with our airline customers’ communications teams to seek their feedback and brief them on our latest plans,” Gordon Johndroe, a Boeing spokesman, said in a statement on Monday. “Each airline is different in their needs, so we provide a wide range of documents and assistance that they can choose to use or tailor as they see fit.”

Boeing has faltered badly in its public response to the crashes. The ousted chief executive, Dennis A. Muilenburg, who was fired Monday, repeatedly made overly-optimistic projections about when the Max might return to service, upsetting regulators and airlines. He drew the ire of lawmakers at Congressional hearings, where the families of crash victims winced at his name. The hiring of the top crisis communications firms Sard Verbinnen and Edelman did little to improve the company’s reputation.

On Monday, Boeing said that Niel Golightly, the chief communications officer at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and a former Navy fighter pilot, would become its head of communications next year.

During its presentation to airlines, the company also distributed a set of infographics, reference cards, videos and frequently asked questions.

One of the videos was an animated explanation of the new software on the Max, called MCAS, which was intended to make the plane handle more predictably but played a role in both accidents. In the video, watermarked “Draft — Advanced Copy, Pending Certification,” a narrator explains that in the accidents, MCAS activated repeatedly after a sensor on the plane’s fuselage malfunctioned, causing the airplane to crash. The video goes on to explain the changes Boeing is making to MCAS.

“Lives depend on the work that we do,” Boeing’s chief commercial pilot, Jim Webb, says in another video. “We know that when you step on board, you place your trust in us.”

At times, the material is startlingly self-critical. In a draft memo Boeing prepared for airlines to share with employees such as flight attendants, the company suggests that airlines say: “Boeing understands that it fell short and let us down, as well as the flying public, and it has committed to continuous improvement and learning.”

In another memo, Boeing says airlines could tell their pilots this: “We have told our Boeing partners that they did not communicate enough about MCAS — and they have heard us. Going forward, they are committed to doing a better job communicating with us.”

Boeing did not fully inform pilots about how MCAS functioned until after the first accident, off the coast of Indonesia in October 2018.

The materials also show that Boeing would try to push back on the narrative that the Max was developed under intense deadline pressure as the company faced heated competition from its European rival, Airbus.

In a draft of a frequently-asked-questions document intended to help airlines communicate with their employees, Boeing included the question, “Is it true that the 737 Max was rushed into service?”

Boeing suggests the airlines answer this way: “No. Over a six-year period, Boeing worked through a disciplined methodical development process that culminated with a robust test program that validated the airplane’s safety and performance.”

In a section of the presentation focused on social media and marketing, the company said it planned to “amplify any positive stories reported,” and that it intended to buy ads to promote the plane’s return to service. It said a company website dedicated to updates on the Max was being designed with “improved usability” and “stickiness” to “encourage more time on site and repeat visits,” phrases commonly used in the communications business.

The presentation said Boeing’s “digital and media team” would be “monitoring social conversations around the clock.”

The company also indicated that it was preparing responses in the event that a Max encountered difficulty even after it restarts service, which could happen given that more than 500 are already built and about 5,000 have been ordered. The scenarios Boeing was preparing for included engine failures and smoke in the cabin and “significant” events on flights by Lion Air or Ethiopian Airlines, which operated the two planes that crashed.

In the presentation, Boeing promoted its ability to get industry analysts and some pilots to make encouraging public statements about the company. It identified dozens of aerospace trade shows in 2020 at which it planned to make its case. And it pledged to work with airlines during early flights to bolster consumer confidence, including offering to have Boeing executives onboard.

“We know we have work to do to restore confidence in Boeing and the Max,” Mr. Johndroe said Monday. “We are working closely with airlines, their pilots and flight attendants to make sure they have the information they need to provide to the traveling public to reassure them that once the certification process is complete, the Max will be one of the safest airplanes flying today.”

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LA Times acknowledges ‘#BernieBlackout,’ publishes letters slamming paper for not covering California rally

The Los Angeles Times shed light on its own error of skipping coverage of a massive rally held by Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., but only with the help of its own readers.

Over the weekend, an estimated 14,000 people attended a campaign rally in Venice, Calif., where Sanders was joined by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., actor Tim Robbins, and academic Cornel West. But the LA Times didn’t offer any coverage of the rally that had taken place in its own backyard.

However, the paper published multiple letters to the editor calling out the “#BernieBlackout.”

“A growing number of voters is seeking out alternative media on the left, and the Los Angeles Times’ lack of coverage of the Dec. 21 rally in Venice serves as a salient example of why this trend has no sign of abating,” Fred Siegel wrote. “More than 10,000 people showed up to an iconic Los Angeles location to hear a top contender for president, along with the international political and media phenomenon [Ocasio-Cortez], and there’s no article about it in our local newspaper? While the L.A. Times is to be commended for recognizing the changes in political media, it must also be brought to task for the disregard it has shown Sanders’ candidacy.”

CNN SLAMMED BY SANDERS CAMPAIGN OVER USE OF ‘OUTDATED’ IOWA POLL SHOWING HIM IN FOURTH

Westlake Legal Group LAtimesBernie LA Times acknowledges '#BernieBlackout,' publishes letters slamming paper for not covering California rally Joseph Wulfsohn fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 06d587bf-dec7-5c30-b174-3845415cafe2

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., waves to supporters as he arrives at a rally at Santa Monica High School Memorial Greek Amphitheater in Santa Monica, Calif., Friday, July 26, 2019. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

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“I wish to express my concern about the political bias shown by the L.A. Times in its coverage of leading presidential candidates, and the disrespect for the voters of Los Angeles that this demonstrates,” Nuna Teal began. “Sanders’ rally here on Dec. 21. was attended by a diverse and passionate crowd of more than 14,000 people, yet your paper did not consider it worth covering. On Sunday, there was instead a news column about former Vice President Joe Biden’s ‘electability.'”

She later added, “In its failure to fairly cover the Democratic race, the outcome of which will decide the fate of both our democracy and our planet, the L.A. Times is abdicating its responsibility as one of the nation’s leading newspapers.”

Westlake Legal Group LAtimesBernie LA Times acknowledges '#BernieBlackout,' publishes letters slamming paper for not covering California rally Joseph Wulfsohn fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 06d587bf-dec7-5c30-b174-3845415cafe2   Westlake Legal Group LAtimesBernie LA Times acknowledges '#BernieBlackout,' publishes letters slamming paper for not covering California rally Joseph Wulfsohn fox-news/politics/2020-presidential-election fox-news/person/bernie-sanders fox-news/media fox news fnc/media fnc article 06d587bf-dec7-5c30-b174-3845415cafe2

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Obama Insider Confirms Former President Ready to Back Whoever Wins 2020 Nomination—Even Bernie Sanders | “Whoever emerges from the primary process, I will work my tail off to make sure that they are the next president.”

Westlake Legal Group 9J0tTVARj1P2xjCg8ungOIqTCeQocRaSVtsChGVMPJg Obama Insider Confirms Former President Ready to Back Whoever Wins 2020 Nomination—Even Bernie Sanders | "Whoever emerges from the primary process, I will work my tail off to make sure that they are the next president." r/politics

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New England Patriots’ Chase Winovich pays off lunch debts for Pennsylvania school district

Westlake Legal Group NFL-Chase-Winovich2 New England Patriots' Chase Winovich pays off lunch debts for Pennsylvania school district Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports/nfl/new-england-patriots fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/good-news fox news fnc/sports fnc article 80ac34bb-3ce6-58b3-af03-745aa4f6c8c7

New England Patriots rookie Chase Winovich spread some holiday cheer to his hometown last week.

Winovich attended school in the West Jefferson Hills School District in Pennsylvania and gave back to the students there. The district announced Friday that Winovich paid off the debt for students who receive subsidized lunches.

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“WJHSD expresses heartfelt thanks to TJ Alum and New England Patriots Chase Winovich for paying off all of our students’ free and reduced lunch debt! According to Chase, ‘Growing up in TJ, the community has always been so important to me. It’s great to be able to give back during the holidays!’ We are truly grateful for all you do for our students and schools!” the school wrote on Facebook.

On Twitter, he recalled playing Santa Claus in his grammar school’s holiday show.

PACKERS’ PRESTON SMITH TROLLS EX-TEAMMATE KIRK COUSINS WITH CATCHPHRASE AFTER VICTORY

Winovich graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School and attended the University of Michigan. He played four years at Michigan before the Patriots selected him in the third round of the 2019 draft. He signed a four-year, $3.8 million contract with New England.

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Winovich has played in 15 games with the Patriots this season. He has 19 combined tackles and 5 1/2 sacks.

Westlake Legal Group NFL-Chase-Winovich2 New England Patriots' Chase Winovich pays off lunch debts for Pennsylvania school district Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports/nfl/new-england-patriots fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/good-news fox news fnc/sports fnc article 80ac34bb-3ce6-58b3-af03-745aa4f6c8c7   Westlake Legal Group NFL-Chase-Winovich2 New England Patriots' Chase Winovich pays off lunch debts for Pennsylvania school district Ryan Gaydos fox-news/sports/nfl/new-england-patriots fox-news/sports/nfl fox-news/good-news fox news fnc/sports fnc article 80ac34bb-3ce6-58b3-af03-745aa4f6c8c7

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Cuomo vetoes bill letting all judges officiate weddings – because some were Trump-appointed

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6095814187001_6095814806001-vs Cuomo vetoes bill letting all judges officiate weddings – because some were Trump-appointed New York Post fox-news/politics/judiciary fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/andrew-cuomo fnc/politics fnc article 6affe624-0451-5b99-ae21-60870a7cf5c9

So much for reaching across the aisle.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo just vetoed a bill that would have allowed all federal judges to officiate at weddings in New York — saying he can’t stomach the idea that even some of the jurists might be President Trump appointees.

“I cannot in good conscience support legislation that would authorize such actions by federal judges who are appointed by this federal administration,” Cuomo said in a statement Friday as he shot down the bill — which was passed overwhelmingly by the Democratic-controlled state legislature.

AOC SAYS CUOMO PUNISHING THE POOR WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT PLAN

“President Trump does not embody who we are as New Yorkers,’’ the Democratic governor said. “The cornerstones that built our great state are diversity, tolerance, and inclusion. Based on these reasons, I must veto this bill.”

Under current New York law, all state judges can preside over weddings in their official capacity — as can the governor, mayors, former mayors, some city and deputy city clerks, local justices, clergy members and any member of the public ordained especially for the occasion.

But only certain federal judges in New York — from the second circuit court of appeals and Southern, Eastern, Northern and Western districts — are eligible to officially preside over the ceremonies. The bill would have expanded that to all New York federal judges, as well as those from out of state.

Click for more from The New York Post.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6095814187001_6095814806001-vs Cuomo vetoes bill letting all judges officiate weddings – because some were Trump-appointed New York Post fox-news/politics/judiciary fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/andrew-cuomo fnc/politics fnc article 6affe624-0451-5b99-ae21-60870a7cf5c9   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6095814187001_6095814806001-vs Cuomo vetoes bill letting all judges officiate weddings – because some were Trump-appointed New York Post fox-news/politics/judiciary fox-news/person/donald-trump fox-news/person/andrew-cuomo fnc/politics fnc article 6affe624-0451-5b99-ae21-60870a7cf5c9

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