Well, look, it’s the Daily Drip, Portland’s quick morning readup and comment platform, for Wednesday, January 9, 2019. We’re in for another day of breezy winds (the best kind), valley rain, mountain snow, and the dreaded wintry mix in the upper Hood River Valley and central Columbia River Gorge. Highs around 50, today, then 55 tomorrow—on the 40th anniversary of Portland’s memorable 1979 Silver Thaw. Sunrise 7:49 AM, sunset 4:46 PM.
It’d be shocking if anyone’s mind was changed last night by President Trump’s oval-office pitch for a border wall, or by the Democrats’ retort that “The symbol of America should be the Statue of Liberty, not a 30-foot wall.” Both sides scored points with their bases, nothing more. You didn’t hear anything you haven’t heard a thousand times, in thundering campaign speeches and the sound bite delivery mechanism we call the media. And you didn’t hear either side offer a way out. In the context of our times, negotiation looks weak.
Meantime, on this 19th day of the government shutdown:
–In hard numbers, there are 28,000 federal employees in Oregon, and two-thirds are still getting paychecks. But about 9,600 are not, according to the Oregon Employment Department, and Friday’s payday is when it’ll really start to bite.
–Their union says some of Portland’s TSA workers are selling plasma and going to food pantries to make ends meet. Oregon Democratic Rep.Suzanne Bonamici says it’s “completely unacceptable” that Trump shut down the government “in the name of safety at the southern border, losing sight of what our air traffic controllers and TSA do.”
–There’s temporary relief for food stamp recipients, as the government announced that benefits will be paid in February, shutdown or no. March? Unknown.
–The Oregon Humane Society opens a pet food pantry for furloughed and unpaid Federal workers to avail themselves of tomorrow.
Big screwup by lawyers for Paul Manafort, who failed to redact documents that show the former campaign chairman shared Trump polling data with an associate tied to Russian intelligence during the 2016 campaign. The NY Times puts the meaning of it this way: “Prosecutors and the news media have already documented a string of encounters between Russian operatives and Trump campaign associates … The new disclosure appeared to some experts to be perhaps most damning of all.”
Over 1 million ex-felons in Florida can register to vote starting this week, thanks to a ballot measure approved there in November. In case you’re wondering about Oregon: people who are in prison for a felony are ineligible to vote, but: voting rights are restored upon release. They do need to re-register. But they’re coming home. They did their time.
Fun new products unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas include a laundry folding machine, a fishing rod that tracks your location to create a map of where you’ve had the most luck, a toothbrush that tells you where to brush more, and a fragrance diffuser that lets you change how your home smells from a smartphone app, so you can go from Wet Dog to Cinnamon Rolls.
The Benton County Sheriff’s Office says it found the truck that missing Brownsville nurse Sue Durheim was driving Monday morning: the vehicle is in 20 feet of water in the Willamette River along Highway 20 near Corvallis. They haven’t been able to connect a tow.
Cops are still trying to find the pair who knocked over–literally–the Wells Fargo ATM on NE Butler in Hillsboro. They swiped a tractor from a nearby construction site, drove it over a fence, leveled the ATM, grabbed the cash and ran in a U-Haul that was later found abandoned in the woods. Something similar was attempted in McMinnville over Christmas.
A custodian discovered cracks in the wall of the gym at Madison High School. The gym is now closed TFN. It’s already scheduled to be torn down this summer under a renovation bond issue.
Cuts are coming in the Vancouver School District. The superintendent says they expect to be short over $11 million dollars in 2019-20, explaining that it’s because of a state cap on levies, and because of recent contract raises negotiated by teacher and other employee unions. Result: he will study the need for a “reduced education program.”
Three new nonstop flights out of PDX begin soon on no-frills Sun Country Airlines: to Nashville, so you can immerse in the blues one night and go to the Oprey the next; or San Antonio, to remember the best fajitas in the world, along with the Alamo, or St Louis, see the Cardinals lose to the Cubs.
Our favorite Reed dropout Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone on this day in 2007.
It’s Richard Nixon’s birthday (1913).
This day in 1984 is when Wendy’s “Where’s The Beef” commercials with Clara Peller hit our TV screens (in between “Dallas” and “Falcon Crest’).
Blazers vs Bulls tonight in the Moda Center.
On the bright side of the boulevard of news…
–“Delaware boy who defied mom to stay up and watch Netflix saves her from late-night fire”
–“‘Dear Beloved …’ Man leaves thousands of encouraging letters across Oregon town”
–“Second grader wins $30,000 college scholarship for dino Google Doodle”
–“Stranger drives 2,300 miles to reunite boy recovering from surgery with his dog”
–“Blue Light Reduces Blood Pressure as Effectively as Medication, according to UK Study”
Details at our famous Daily Drip Coffee Cup, below.