A Beary Good Picnic

US Senator Diane Feinstein has died at the age of 90 while still serving in office. Also, Google is killing off even more products, a bear has a taste for quality food, the US government may shut down quite soon, and maybe you should avoid Lockheed-built aircraft.

A Beary Good Picnic

Dianne Feinstein Dies at 90

Sitting United States senator Dianne Feinstein—who once told a group of literal children to sit down and shut up about climate policy—has died in-office at the age of 90. She was most recently re-elected in 2018 despite her own state party no longer endorsing her campaign.

This is not particularly surprising to anyone who has been mildly aware of US politics, as Feinstein has been essentially in receiving hospice care in public while still actively serving in one of the highest positions of power in the United States.

Her political career is extensive and storied, and while she once seen as a progressive go-getter, she ultimately decided to retain power for as long as she possibly could, becoming one of the central figures in the increasingly loud conversation about aging politicians driving the future of the country.

Another example would be Mitch McConnell, who is the most powerful Republican party member in a current seat of power, and has become a literal meme after having multiple "mini strokes" televised on stage and in front of audiences. McConnell is 81 years old.

Google's Graveyard Needs More Room

Because Google cannot help itself, they have killed off yet more products this past week.

Starting off with Google Podcasts, which has been shitcanned since they decided to instead roll their podcast services into YouTube. Apparently YouTube has to absorb everything media related at Google, but do it half as well.

Next up, YouTube Premium Lite, which was a Europe-only subscription option which only removed ads from YouTube, is going away. The subscription was about 7 euros a month and did not include YouTube Music or other features.

After that, Gmail's "Basic HTML" variant is being axed. Many people may not have used or even known about this, but it was a version of Gmail that was super simplified, and did not have any fancy bells and whistles. It was great for slower computers or people who wanted a simpler experience. It also severely limited the amount of creeping that Google could do on you, which is why Google never wanted to put effort into updating it. They are citing that its so out of date that they're going to get rid of it, rather than, y'know, update it.

And lastly, Google Jamboard will be going bye-bye. The web app will be going away, AND any company who purchased a physical Jamboard device as a part of Google's enterprise office hardware is just up shit creek, as it will soon no longer be supported. Enjoy your $5,000 paperweight.

Bears Like Tacos, Turns Out

Footage has emerged of a black bear coming up to a family picnic in Mexico, slurping up a table full of tacos and enchiladas.

I truly cannot blame the black bear.

Now of course, that's also a bit spooky, if still kinda adorable. But bears are bears, and even if black bears are typically easy to scare off, the picnic was just a mother with her son, who has Down syndrome. Silvia Macías—the mother—can be seen holding her son into her chest and protecting his head, remaining shockingly calm and avoiding eye contact with the bear. She played the situation very well to avoid a possible devastating reaction from the wild animal as it just did a perfect reenactment of me when I get back from my local taqueria.

What Government?

The United States government may shut down as soon as tomorrow, October 1st, as Republicans in the House of Representatives continue to in-fight.

The far right flank of the party (which is hard to identify given the entire party's modern political leanings) is digging in their heels on large spending cuts as well as using the opportunity to shame House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.

If it feels like the US Government has been shutting down a lot recently, that's because it has been. We had shutdowns in 2013, 2018 and 2019. And while government shutdowns sound like a lovely ideal for people who want small government, it ultimately really only affects common people who are working lower level government jobs, increasing economic strain on the average person while also removing a litany of available services that people depend on.

This entire situation is pretty much just resting on the Republican party, and specifically resting on a handful of double-super-ultra radicals on the right wing side who are using their party's razor thin majority in the House to force the furthest-right wing policies they can, because otherwise the Republicans would have to make deals with Democrats to get things passed, and they don't want to do that because it would be a death blow to their chances of re-election.

The Senate has passed a bipartisan funding bill to keep the government open, so if the House can figure their shit out, it may be avoided. We shall see!

On This day…

On this day, I would recommend not flying in an aircraft built by Lockheed Martin.

Two completely separate instances of aircraft built by Lockheed crashing happened on this day in 1959 and 1981.

In 1959, a Lockheed L-188 Electra was described as having "disintegrated" mid-air, taking the life of the 34 people aboard.

In 1981, an Iranian Air force cargo plane built by Lockheed crashed into a firing range, killing 80 people including several high ranking military officials.

Here's the Weather

Source: VentuSky

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