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Senate Overturns Ajit Pai’s Net Neutrality Repeal

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The US Senate today voted to reverse the Federal Communications Commission’s repeal of net neutrality rules, with all members of the Democratic caucus and three Republicans voting in favor of net neutrality.

The Senate approved a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution that would simply undo the FCC’s December 2017 vote to deregulate the broadband industry. If the CRA is approved by the House and signed by President Trump, Internet service providers would have to continue following rules that prohibit blocking, throttling, and paid prioritization.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai has scheduled his repeal to take effect on June 11. If Congress doesn’t act, the net neutrality rules and the FCC’s classification of ISPs as common carriers would be eliminated on that date.

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Kentucky’s Workforce Took A Deep Dive Due To The Opioid Crisis

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As businesses struggle to find and retain workers, the opioid crisis is making their challenges even greater.

The Kentucky Chamber, in a 2017 report, took a deep dive into Kentucky’s low workforce participation rate and found that the opioid epidemic, and incarceration due to drug charges, are leading factors in Kentucky’s lack of workers.

Five state chamber presidents sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other members of Congress, encouraging them to find a policy solution that focuses on treatment with a specific goal: getting people on the path to recovery and back into the workforce.

Following the business community’s recommendation, Sen. McConnell introduced the CAREER Act, which will ensure patients in recovery have the resources they need to return to healthy, productive lives and reenter the workforce.

The CAREER Act proposes a five-year pilot program in five states that have been hit hardest by the opioid epidemic to offer wrap-around support services for individuals transitioning out of treatment programs and back into the workforce. These services will include workforce training and transitional housing.

U.S. Rep. Brett Guthrie, R-Ky., is also championing a critical piece of legislation, the Comprehensive Opioid Recovery Centers Act, to make sure people have access to all the available treatments they need to beat opioid addiction. Together, these forward-thinking policies will help address the opioid epidemic from treatment through recovery and reintroduction into the workforce.

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Workforce Shortage due To Opioid Addiction

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First there’s a shortage due to lack of technological skills now it’s opioid addiction.

A provision in a bipartisan Senate package, the Opioid Crisis Response Act, addressing the workforce shortage created by the addiction crisis was secured Tuesday.

The provision is based on legislation U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) introduced earlier this month called the Collectively Achieving Recovery and Employment (CARE) Act. The bipartisan package passed out of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Tuesday.

The Opioid Crisis Response Act is a wide-ranging, bipartisan package aimed at stemming the tide of the nationwide opioid crisis. The bill includes a provision based on Brown and Capito’s CARE Act that targets federal workforce training grants to address the workforce shortages and skill gaps caused by the opioid epidemic.

Number Of People Employed In The Cannabis Industry Triples 20 630,000

 

 

Image result for employment of people in cannabis industryThe number of people employed by the cannabis industry is set to triple from 200,000 to 630,000 people by the year 2025, according to New Frontier Data.

These workers are entry-level hires are experienced growers overseeing hundreds of plants. They’re chefs concocting pot-infused candies and pastries.

Marijuana proponents believe pot businesses can employ workers that are being laid off as the nation’s manufacturing and retail employment shrinks. Unions like the Teamsters see the marijuana industry as a promising source of new recruits.

President Donald J. Trump signaled his approval of the industry in April, marijuana employment seems poised for even more growth. While Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded Obama-era policies protecting state-legal marijuana companies in January, earlier this month Trump assured a Colorado lawmaker that the federal government will respect state law on pot – easing fears of a federal crackdown. Jobs in the marijuana business comprises about half of all the U.S. California leads the nation in marijuana employment, with fellow western states that have also legalized adult-use of the drug – Colorado, Washington and Oregon –

Between 2017 and 2021, the reefer industry is expected to create almost 1 job for every 1,000 people in the U.S. That figure includes occupations like budtenders that work directly with marijuana, ancillary occupations like lawyers that are hired by cannabis companies and induced jobs like coffee shop baristas in a city experiencing weed-fueled economic growth. The potential for job creation is highest in Massachusetts, where more than 3 jobs per 1,000 people will be added during that period as a result of the reefer industry.

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The Portraits Of Brack & Michelle Obama

Kehinde Wiley, Barack Obama, 2018. © 2018 Kehinde Wiley. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, Washington D.C.

Kehinde Wiley, Barack Obama, 2018. © 2018 Kehinde Wiley. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, Washington D.C.

Amy Sherald, Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama, 2018. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, Washington D.C.

Amy Sherald, Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama, 2018. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, Washington D.C

© 2018 Pete Souza. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, Washington D.C.

 

The unveiling of the portraits of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama has created an unprecedented surge of interest in both portraitists, especially Amy Sherald, whose work was relatively new to the market before her commission.

For Sherald, a 44-year-old Baltimore painter who produces roughly a dozen works a year, the demand is so strong it’s basically blown up the waitlist for her paintings, which had been growing ever since demand spiked for the artist’s limited number of works, following her first solo show at Monique Meloche Gallery in Chicago in 2016.

© 2018 Pete Souza. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, Washington D.C.

© 2018 Pete Souza. Courtesy of the National Portrait Gallery, Washington D.C.

“The ability to be the first African American painter to paint the first African American president of the United States,” said Wiley, “It doesn’t get any better than that.”

The Obamas were the first African American family in the White House, now they are  the first African Americans in the National Portrait Gallery’s collection of presidential portraits. The National Portrait Gallery was established in 1962, and is housed in the Old Patent Office Building in Washington’s Chinatown.

CIA, FBI, and NSA Chiefs Say You Shouldn’t Use Huawei or ZTE phones

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Top officials from major U.S. intelligence agencies including the CIA, the FBI, and the National Security Agency (NSA) have suggested people should not use phones made by Chinese manufacturers Huawei or ZTE. They have“Deep concerns,” over potential security risks claimed to come from using telecoms devices made by companies, “beholden to foreign governments.

There was a discussion at an annual meeting about various threats to the United States from around the world.  A wide range of subjects, including and primarily Russian influence on U.S. politics and North Korea’s nuclear program, right down to drugs entering the U.S. from Mexico. Cyber security and the use of technology in espionage, however, repeatedly permeated talks.

Director of national intelligence, Dan Coats, made the opening remarks. He said the United States is under attack from, “Entities using cyber to penetrate virtually every major action that takes place in the United States,” and called cyber threats one of his greatest concerns and top priorities. Coats singled out Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea as posing the greatest threats.

 

Huawei’s new flagship phone, the Mate 10 Pro, is available for pre-order in the US despite not having any deals with US carriers — so to get some attention, it seems the company has stooped to having fake reviews for the new phone planted online, as spotted by 9to5Google.

The fake reviews, are hosted on the Best Buy website, probably  the result of a contest Huawei ran on Facebook. On January 31st, the company posted to a Facebook group with over 60,000 members, asking for people to leave comments on the Best Buy pre-sale page in exchange for a chance to beta test a Mate 10 Pro. The original post has been deleted, but 9to5Google obtained a screenshot before it went down. “Tell us how to why (sic) you WANT to own the Mate 10 Pro in the review section of our pre-sale Best Buy retail page,” the post states.

 

United States Library Of Congress-Carla Hayden

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