Second Vessel From Doomed Franklin Expedition Found In The Arctic

A depiction of the HMS Terror, commanded by the British admiral George Back (1796-1878), trapped in the ice. De Agostini Picture Library/De Agostini/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption De Agostini Picture Library/De Agostini/Getty Images

A more than 160-year-old Arctic mystery has come to resolution: The HMS Terror, a vessel from a doomed Royal Navy exploration to chart an unnavigated portion of the Northwest Passage, has been found, Aleta Brooke, operations manager for the Arctic Research Foundation said.

The Guardian, which first reported the story, said the vessel is in “perfect condition.” The paper reports:

“On Sunday, a team from the charitable Arctic Research Foundation [maneuvered] a small, remotely operated vehicle through an open hatch and into the ship to capture stunning images that give insight into life aboard the vessel close to 170 years ago.

“‘We have successfully entered the mess hall, worked our way into a few cabins and found the food storage room with plates and one can on the shelves,’ Adrian Schimnowski, the foundation’s operations director, told the Guardian by email from the research vessel Martin Bergmann.

“‘We spotted two wine bottles, tables and empty shelving. Found a desk with open drawers with something in the back corner of the drawer.'”

The flagship vessel of British Capt. Sir John Franklin’s 1845 expedition, the HMS Erebus, was found back in 2014. According to the CBC, the HMS Terror was found just north of HMS Erebus wreck in Nunavut’s Terror Bay.

How researchers located the HMS Terror after all these years is also likely to become the stuff of legend.

According to The Guardian, a researcher heard an Inuit man say that about six years ago he saw a large piece of wood that looked like a mast sticking out of the ice near Terror Bay.

He took a picture but lost the camera. He kept quiet all these years because he thought losing the camera was a bad omen.

The researcher took the Inuit man’s story seriously and they found the wreck right where the man said he had seen it.

The Canadian government launched a formal search for the two vessels in 2008. It was a Parks Canada expedition that found the HMS Erebus and it is expected that Canada will attempt to confirm the HMS Terror find.

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Food fight: British sausage thrower wins Black Pudding championship

This year’s World Black Pudding Throwing Championships, a more than 100-year-old tournament centered around hurling blood sausage, was won by the first thrower.

The competition was held on Sunday in the northern English village of Ramsbottom, about 15 miles (24 km) north of Manchester. Each contestant had three chances to knock as many 6-1/2-pound (3-kg) Yorkshire puddings off a plinth as possible by throwing black pudding at them.

Gavin Ogden, a 50-year-old from nearby Rochdale, was first to throw and took home the title by knocking down three puddings.

The event draws thousands of people to the town, and the tradition of pudding throwing dates to a battle in the 15th century War of the Roses. According to local lore, troops who ran out of ammunition resorted to throwing Yorkshire and Black puddings at each other.

Yorkshire pudding is a British dish consisting of baked batter. Black pudding is congealed pigs’ blood, fat and rusk encased in pig intestine.

(Reporting by Reuters TV)

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Listen: Phish Share A Breezy New Rocker


Courtesy of the artist

There’s a new album from Phish coming on Oct. 7, the band’s 13th, titled Big Boat, and this news is always met with some conflicted opinions from fans. Throughout an impressive career that now spans 30 years (including a couple hiatuses -> breakups -> reunions along the way), Phish is still known best for its epic live performances rather than its albums. For at least a portion of the diehard concert-collecting fanbase, new songs are more of a refined framework for the lengthy improvisations to come. But for your more casual listeners, a new Phish album also means an introduction, and a more permanent statement from the Vermont quartet — Trey Anastasio, Page McConnell, Mike Gordon and Jon Fishman. So for those who caught Phish during its recent summer tour, many of Big Boat’s road-tested songs will sound familiar. For the rest of us, “Breath And Burning” is the first real taste of the record dropping in a few weeks.

“I wrote this song on the beach after our three-night run in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico last January,” Anastasio tells NPR Music in an email. “I loved watching the faces of all the people dancing and splashing in the ocean while we played. I kept thinking, ‘This will all end sooner or later, one way or another. So I’m gonna enjoy every last second of it while we’re still here. I’m not gonna wave away the dessert cart on the Titanic. I want to be like that string quintet that kept playing while it sank.”

Produced by Bob Ezrin, who also helmed 2013’s Fuego, arguably Phish’s most cohesive record since the ’90s, “Breath And Burning” is a breezy rocker punctuated by some classic soul horn lines and a joyful key-change in the chorus that hints at future jams. And while it highlights Phish’s trademark songcraft and knotty wordplay, Anastasio and the band are revealing more of themselves in the lyrics — a challenge to the band from Ezrin himself. As Anastasio sings about looming end times with celebration of life rather than with doom (“And what does it matter that the end’s in sight / We’re not going gently, we’re going to rage with Page at the dying of the light”), it feels like one of the more personally direct songs in Phish’s repertoire.

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India's War On Biryani Mixes Caste, Religion, Cow-Avenging Vigilantes

Biryani is a popular South Asian dish made with rice and meat, fish or vegetables. Though it is rarely made with beef, it has recently become the target of some Hindu activists in India who want to protect the holy cow. John S Lander/LightRocket via Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption John S Lander/LightRocket via Getty Images

A legendary South Asian dish has suddenly found itself in the midst of a war in India. Made up of layers of meat and rice and cooked with fragrant spices, the dish is the much-loved biryani. And the latest battlefield is in the northern Indian state of Haryana.

The police there have been collecting biryani samples from households and shops in Muslim districts like Mewat, to check if the meat in the biryani is beef – the consumption of which is anathema to many Hindus. It’s the most recent chapter in an ongoing battle over religious and caste identities playing out through food in India, sometimes with dark consequences.

“The battle around food is not just about eating,” says social scientist Shiv Viswanathan, professor at Jindal Global Law School in Haryana. “Food is essentially the grammar of society. You show hospitality through food. You can also insult someone through food.”

That’s why this biryani surveillance feels so loaded. Biryani, unlike other Indian favorites, has Muslim roots. It’s a one-pot dish that is thought to have come to the subcontinent centuries ago via the Mughals (old Muslim rulers from Persia and Central Asia) who gave India the Taj Mahal and also rich Mughlai cuisine.

“Everything is cooked together, rice and meat,” says Navid Amin, whose family has owned Aminia restaurant in Kolkata since 1929. “Perhaps that made it perfect to feed an army on the march.” Biryani, he says, became the dish of both the barracks and the royal courts. And while beef biryani isn’t common in India, Muslims do eat beef.

Many Hindus, on the other hand, do not eat beef, because cows are sacred in their religion. That’s long made beef-eating contentious in India.

The recent raids for beef biryani were ordered by Haryana’s Cow Service Commission, whose mission is to look after the welfare of cattle. There’s now a 24-hour helpline so people can report incidents of cow slaughter.

“Selling beef openly is difficult,” says Bhai Ram Mangla, the chair of the commission, told the Times of India. “According to the complaints we received, the vendors are mixing a little rice with the meat to camouflage it.”

Cow slaughter is illegal in Haryana: In 2015, the state government passed a law that punishes the slaughter of cows with up to 10 years in prison. Over 20 Indian states forbid either cow slaughter or beef eating or both. As a result, access to beef, which is consumed by Muslims, as well as Christians and lower-caste Hindus, is difficult in many states. Most of the biryani sold in India is goat (called mutton here) or chicken.

And yet, India has witnessed an uptick in cow vigilantism in the past couple of years. The ruling political party, the BJP, has as its ideological parent the right-wing activist group Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), which wants to unite the Hindu community and build a Hindu nation. And there’s a plethora of other civil society organizations that also want to enforce their idea of a Hindu state, cow protection and all, says Visvanathan. “The civil society behaves like the state,” he says. “Every time they misbehave, the state keeps quiet.”

Perhaps the most shocking incident of violence came in September 2015, when an angry mob in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh set upon a Muslim ironsmith on the suspicion that he had slaughtered a calf. He and his son were dragged out of their homes and kicked and beaten. He died from his injuries; his son survived. The meat in their refrigerator was taken away for forensic analysis. The prime minister said nothing about the violence for weeks.

The biryani raids in the name of cow protection are often based on rumors and suspicion, says Shail Mayaram, a professor at the Center for the Study of Developing Societies in New Delhi, who has written extensively about the history of Mewat, Haryana. “The response in Mewat is fear and worry because [Muslims] have been hounded for cow killing since the ’80s, even though many of their [village societies] have banned cow slaughter.”

The irony is that Mewat’s community is majority Muslim, but it also has a history of rich plurality, says Mayaram. Some Muslims of Mewat claim they descended from the Hindu god Krishna. The women there follow many rituals associated with his worship. “Our current polarized discourse does not allow for the possibility that there can be Hindu-Muslim communities that are hyphenated in their belief and practice,” says Mayaram.

The beef hunt is not just affecting Muslims. Dalits, the communities once called India’s untouchables, are often responsible for disposing the carcasses of cows, selling their hides to tanners, their meat to butchers. They do it because upper caste Hindus are loath to take on that task – they consider the work impure. And yet, earlier this summer, four members of a Dalit family in Gujarat were stripped half-naked and attacked with iron rods and sticks for skinning a dead cow.

After the Dalit attacks caused a national uproar, the Indian prime minister finally spoke up in August against the latest round of vigilantism, saying states should take “stern action” against such vigilantes. He said 70 to 80 percent of them were just anti-socials, anyway, in the garb of cow protectors.

Cow protection is often about reminding minorities like Muslims that they live in a Hindu majority country, say critics. And that brings us to the biryani.

Hindu supremacist groups “actively seeking to make ‘biryani’ a signifying cuss word in reference to Muslims,” writes Shivam Vij, a well-respected Indian journalist. The very phrase “biryani eater” can be used as a loaded term, turning its Muslim pedigree into a signifier of dubious loyalty.

In Haryana, the latest raids are making biryani lovers nervous. “I always carried biryani back when I would go to a place like Hyderabad,” a city known for its version of biryani, says Visvanathan. “Now I would think twice before bringing it back to Haryana.”

But elsewhere in India, biryani lovers remain unperturbed. It’s a regular item on many restaurant menus. “Once, you could only get it in Mughlai restaurants like ours,” says Amin. “But in the last 20 years there are little shacks selling biryani everywhere. The quality is not good, but it’s convenient, a meal in a box.”

This week, Kolkata will celebrate Vishwakarma Puja, the Hindu festival worshipping the god of craftsmen and factory workers. Amin says his restaurants will sell boxes of biryani by the hundreds because it’s such a local favorite for a festive occasion, even a Hindu one.

Last week, when I went to a famous biryani restaurant in Kolkata, it was bustling, customers ordering without even glancing at the menu. Plates of fragrant biryani appeared within minutes. Cooks braised mutton on giant iron plates over an open fire, while waiters hollered orders: “Two biryanis, mutton! One chicken tikka kebab.”

It’s just another day in a biryani restaurant. But in some parts of India these days, it could be mistaken for a battle cry.

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Most Of This Year's Emmys Have Already Been Handed Out: Some Highlights

Gloria Steinem, left, and RuPaul Charles speak during night two of the Television Academy’s 2016 Creative Arts Emmy Awards on Sunday. Phil McCarten/Phil McCarten/Invision/AP hide caption

toggle caption Phil McCarten/Phil McCarten/Invision/AP

The 2016 Emmy Awards are 83% over.

Think about that next Sunday night, as some sudsy production number lumbers on, or yet another powerfully unnecessary montage/tribute — “A Salute To: The Laugh Track!” — brings the proceedings to a lurching halt.

It will take host Jimmy Kimmel and company three hours and change to hand out 19 Emmy statues. If that sounds inefficient to you, consider this chilling fact: there are in fact 110 Emmy categories this year.

And in two ceremonies that took place last Saturday and Sunday night, awards in 91 categories were handed out. These are the Creative Arts Emmys, which many people think of the “technical” awards. That’s mostly fair, as they do include categories rife with specifications (“Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction for a Variety Series”) and dutifully punctuated caveats (“Outstanding Makeup for a Multi-Camera Series or Special (Non-Prosthetic)).”

But the Creative Arts Emmys are also where things like reality shows, animated series, and guest appearances get shunted. As such, they’re worth a closer look.

The complete list of Creative Arts Emmy winners is over on the Emmys site.

These awards will be broadcast (in greatly truncated form) on FXX this Saturday, September 17, at 8:00 pm ET.

Herewith, some interesting winners — and losers.

Category: Outstanding Animated Program

Nominees: Archer, Bob’s Burgers, Phineas & Ferb Last Day of Summer, The Simpsons, South Park

Winner: Archer

Takeaway: This is Archer‘s first Animated Series win (it won the “Multiplatform Storytelling” Emmy last year). Bob’s Burgers had a particularly strong year, but this season saw Archer switching up its premise a second time (originally, spy show; then, Miami Vice spoof; now, L.A.-based private detective agency) and the Emmy voters rewarded that eagerness to innovate.

This award, like many, is awarded based upon the specific episodes submitted by the show’s producers. In this case, “The Figgis Agency,” — the seventh season opener, which introduced the latest format change — took the gold.

Category: Outstanding Short-Form Animated Program

Nominees: Adventure Time, Powerpuff Girls, Robot Chicken, SpongeBob Squarepants, Steven Universe

Winner: Robot Chicken

Takeaway: This marks Robot Chicken‘s fifth win. Steven Universe has been nominated twice, and lost both times. It may take Emmy voters another year or two to wake up to Steven Universe‘s bright, breezy and ferociously smart sensibility, but Steven‘s day is coming, mark my words.

Category: Outstanding Production Design for a Variety, Nonfiction, Event or Award Special

Nominees: Grease: Live, He Named Me Malala, Lemonade, The Oscars, The Wiz Live

Winner: Grease: Live

Takeaway: Two things.

A. Grease: Live — an arch, stagey, faux-naughty love-letter to the 50s written in the 70s — beat Beyonce’s Lemonade, a visually stunning work that’s about as fiercely of-the-moment as it gets. That sound you hear is one hundred “What’s Wrong With the Emmys?” thinkpieces being written.

B. What in heaven’s name is last year’s lugubrious Oscars ceremony doing on this list?

Category: Casting for a Limited Series, Movie or Special

Nominees: Fargo, Grease: Live, The Night Manager, The People vs. OJ Simpson, Roots

Winner: The People vs. OJ Simpson

Takeaway: In the end, the astonishing work of Sarah Paulsen, Courtney B. Vance, Sterling K. Brown and, yes, John Travolta served to distract Emmy voters from the fact that Cuba Gooding, Jr. was woefully miscast as OJ.

Which is to say: Fargo was robbed, yo.

Category: Outstanding Choreography (note the lack of specifics — dance transcends format!)

Nominees: America’s Best Dance Crew, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Dancing With the Stars, So You Think You Can Dance

Winner: A Tie! Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and America’s Best Dance Crew

Takeaway: It’s notable that each show submits specific routines for Emmy consideration. (It’s also notable that two different choreographers from So You Think You Can Dance were nominated, and neither won.)

America’s Best Dance Crew‘s Quest Crew won with the routines “Runaway Baby,” “Take U There,” and “Summer Thing.”

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend‘s Kathryn Burns won her first Emmy for the Bollywood pastiche “I’m So Good At Yoga,” the hilarious and uncannily precise “A Boy Band Made Up of Four Joshes,” and the Astaire/Rogers sendup “Settle for Me.”

Category: Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics

Nominees: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Empire, Galavant, Garfunkel and Oates: Trying to be Special, The Hunting Ground

Winner: The Hunting Ground

Takeaway: There’s a lot of talent, and even more good songs (“Settle for Me” from Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Galavant‘s “Season Two/Suck It, Cancellation Bear”) on this list. But there’s also “‘Til it Happens to You,” a searing cri de coeur inspired by campus rape, written by Diane Warren, performed by Lady Gaga. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’s lovely ditty of romantic self-loathing never stood a chance. Next year!

Category: Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music

Nominees: Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Jessica Jones, Narcos, Night Manager, Sense8, The Whispers

Winner: Jessica Jones

Takeaway: Nooooooope. Come ON, Emmy voters. This was Crazy Ex-Girlfriend‘s to lose. Which, um … it did. But Jessica Jones‘ aimless noir-inflected faux-jazz tootlings? Noooope.

Category: Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series

Nominees: Bob Newhart, Big Bang Theory; Peter Scolari, Girls; Tracy Morgan, SNL; Bradley Whitford, Transparent; Martin Mull, Veep.

Winner: A true, and welcome surprise: Peter Scolari, Girls.

Takeaway: I wouldn’t have bet against sentimental favorites like Newhart and Morgan — or, for that matter, dependable vets like Whitford and Mull. So it’s a bit of a shock that Scolari took home the Emmy, despite the fact that he’s been doing such great, nuanced work as Hannah’s struggling, newly out father. His fourth nomination overall, his first for Girls. If you’ve been rooting for this guy since Bosom Buddies, this feels like a personal victory.

Category: Outstanding Host for a Reality or Reality-Competition Series

Nominees: Ryan Seacrest, American Idol; Tom Bergeron, Dancing with the Stars; Jane Lynch, Hollywood Game Night; Steve Harvey, Little Big Shots Starring Steve Harvey; Heidi Klum and Timm Gunn, Project Runway; RuPaul Charles, RuPaul’s Drag Race

Winner: RuPaul Charles, Rupaul’s Drag Race

Takeaway: Wooooooooooooooooooooooooo.

Category: Outstanding Variety Special

Nominees: Adele: Live in New York City, Amy Schumer: Live at the Apollo, Lemonade, The Kennedy Center Honors, The Late Late Show Carpool Karaoke Primetime Special

Winner: The Late Late Show Carpool Karaoke Primetime Special

Takeaway: Ok well look I didn’t agree with Lemonade losing the Production Design award, yet I accepted it. I didn’t understand it, but I accepted it, ast that is what adults do. But this? Celebrities winkingly aping the singular visions of various artists beating out … one artist’s singular vision? I refuse to accept it, and I’m going to get my binky and hold my breath until the Emmy voters come to their damn senses.

Category: Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special

Nominees: Becoming Mike Nichols; Everything is Copy – Nora Ephron: Scripted & Unscripted; Listen to Me Marlon; Mapplethorpe: Look at the Pictures; What Happened, Miss Simone?

Winner: What Happened, Miss Simone?

Takeaway: HBO’s Nora Ephron doc took a satisfyingly nuanced look at its subject’s tendency to use her family as fodder for storytelling, and no one would blame you for betting on it to take home the Emmy. But there was no stopping Netflix’s deep dive into the life and work — and politics — of the fascinating Nina Simone.

Category: Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Series

Nominees: American Masters, Chef’s Table, Making a Murderer, The Seventies, Woman with Gloria Steinem

Winner: Making a Murderer

Takeaway: Likely the one you’d be certain to have won in your Emmy pool, if your Emmy pool included all 110 categories, which admittedly would be a very aggressive stance to take.

Category: Outstanding Informational Series or Special

Nominees: Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown; Inside the Actors Studio; StarTalk with Neil deGrasse Tyson; The Story of God with Morgan Freeman; Vice

Winner: Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown

Takeaway: Bourdain racked up his fourth win, beating out God. Hope it doesn’t go to his head.

Category: Outstanding Structured Reality Program

Nominees: Antiques Roadshow; Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives; Lip Sync Battle; MythBusters; Shark Tank; Undercover Boss

Winner: Shark Tank

Takeaway: Would’ve been great to have seen the final season of MythBusters take home an Emmy at last, having previously been nominated seven times without a win. But Emmy voters decided instead to reward a show that doubles down on the myth of the marketplace as meritocracy.

(Also, the reality show categories — “Structured Reality” “Unstructured Reality” — get weirdly existential.)

Category: Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program

Nominees: Born This Way, Deadliest Catch, Gaycation with Ellen Page, Intervention, Project Greenlight, United Shades of America

Winner: Born This Way

Takeaway: The A&E series, which features individuals with Down syndrome making their way in the world, now adds an Emmy statue to its growing list of accomplishments.

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Texas Prisoners Sue Over 'Cruel' Conditions, Citing Extreme Heat

Keith Cole is one of the Texas inmates in the federal lawsuit challenging extreme heat in Texas prisons. John Burnett/NPR hide caption

toggle caption John Burnett/NPR

A group of inmates in Texas is suing the state prison system, the nation’s largest, arguing that extreme heat is killing older and infirm convicts. They allege it constitutes “cruel and unusual punishment” and they’re asking the courts for relief.

The six plaintiffs are doing time in the Wallace Pack Unit, located in the humid pasturelands between Austin and Houston. Daily measurements taken by the National Weather Service show that since the beginning of this summer, the peak heat index has averaged 104 degrees. That’s outside where you might catch a breeze. Inside, inmates say the poorly ventilated, steel and concrete cell blocks are like ovens.

“A lot of times it gets so hot in our dorms that we have to strip down to our boxers, and we’ll just lay on the floor because it’s a little bit cooler on the floor than it is trying to sit up in our bunks,” says plaintiff Keith Cole, 62, who is serving life for murder. “We try to stay in front of our fans. But in reality, there’s really not too much that we can really do in our living areas to alleviate the heat.”

Cole talks from behind a wire screen in the visitors’ room. He says he has heart disease, diabetes and hypertension, and there are lots of older prisoners like him in the Pack Unit.

“My age, with the medical conditions that I have, the medications that I’m on, extreme heat can kill me,” he says. “So, it’s not a comfort issue with me. It has nothing to do with that. This is a serious medical issue.”

Since 1998, autopsies reveal that 20 inmates have died from heat stroke or hyperthermia in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, according to plaintiffs’ lawyers. Ten of the victims died in the brutal summer of 2011. It’s likely that more heat-related deaths occur in prison but inmates say the cause of death is often listed as heart attack.

The lawsuit is slowly making its way through the federal courts. At present, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans is deciding whether to certify all the inmates in the Pack Unit as part of a class action challenging extreme heat in their living quarters.

Lawyers point out that Texas county jails and federal prisons are cooled, so why not state prisons?

“All of the people that tend to die are the sickest and the most fragile among the inmates,” says lead counsel Jeff Edwards. “What makes what’s going on reprehensible is that the department knows this. We’re asking the court to force the Texas Department of Criminal Justice to reduce the temperatures to a safe and livable amount.”

The conservative Fifth Circuit is listening. Last year, it ruled on a similar heat lawsuit filed by death-row inmates in Louisiana. While the court didn’t go so far as to order air conditioning in Louisiana prisons, it did agree with the underlying issue. “Housing these prisoners in very hot cells without sufficient access to heat-relief measures, while knowing that each suffers from conditions that render him extremely vulnerable to serious heat-related injury, violates the Eighth Amendment,” Judge Edith Jones wrote.

In Texas, the issue is not whether inmates are suffering, but what kind of remedy is appropriate. Prison officials have balked at installing air-conditioning equipment in the 79 prisons that don’t currently have it. They say the Pack Unit alone would cost $22 million to retrofit.

Prison officials acknowledge that summer heat is extremely dangerous and they note that 30 of its units are already air-conditioned. Moreover, they say that all of the system’s medical, psychiatric and geriatric units, as well as solitary confinement, have chilled air.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice “takes numerous precautions to help reduce heat-related illnesses such as providing water and ice to staff and offenders in work and housing areas. We restrict offender activity during the hottest parts of the day, and we train staff to identify those that may have heat-related illnesses and refer them to medical staff for treatment,” according to a TDCJ statement provided to NPR.

Texas prisons are by no means unique. Across the sweltering South, only Arkansas cools its penitentiaries.

“I don’t think they deserve air conditioning,” says Jim Willett, who worked for 30 years in the Texas prison system, including eight years as a warden. “I don’t think it’s too hot. I’ve worked in those cell blocks for many years, for over a decade. When I was growing up I lived for 20 years without air conditioning. I went to public schools [without] air conditioning. I see absolutely no reason why we should air-condition the prisons in Texas.”

There’s an old saying that prison guards do time, too. But they’re not allowed to strip down to their boxers and stand in front of a fan. In fact, they wear long-sleeved shirts, and heavy vests to protect them from stabbings.

“It’s hot, it’s humid, the walls hold heat. It gets pretty bad,” says correctional officer Sgt. Anthony Williams. “If it was 100 degrees outside, it’s about 115, 120 on the inside. And offenders may get more violent.”

He continues, “It would definitely be nice to have air-conditioned units. It’d be better for us and the offender population.”

This issue is not going away. A study published last year by the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia Law School points out that heat waves are becoming more severe, the U.S. inmate population is getting older and most of the nation’s 1,700 state prisons are wholly unprepared. Expect more “cruel and unusual punishment” lawsuits focused on hot prisons.

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All Songs +1: A Devastating New Film About Nick Cave

Nick Cave during the filming of “One More Time With Feeling” Kerry Brown/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption Kerry Brown/Courtesy of the artist

There’s a new film about Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds directed by Andrew Dominik called One More Time With Feeling. The setting of the film is a recording studio for a performance of songs from Skeleton Tree, the band’s 16th studio album. But the backdrop to the film is tragic. In the summer of 2015, Nick Cave’s 15-year-old son Arthur fell from a cliff while hallucinating on LSD. The film was made about five months later. Cave has not spoken at any length about his son, and this film is, in a way, his statement and thoughts on Arthur’s death.

I spoke with Andrew Dominik last week, just after his film opened. The beauty of One More Time With Feeling is in the way it tackles such a devastating event without a straightforward narrative. Dominik said that the film was a “collection of fleeting moments and these moments would be confusing and contradictory, and I wanted to create an experiential space so they can wash over you.” He shot the band in the studio using beautiful 3D black and white photography as it put the finishing touches on Skeleton Tree. Dominik felt that “3D is enveloping, and black and white is distancing and I thought the two things would go well together.” And that feeling is essential to the experience of the film as a voyeur, a viewer listening in to these very personal thoughts and emotional expression.

One early conversation in the film centers around the prophetic nature of the songs on the new album, all written before Arthur died. One of the first songs in the film — and the opening track to the new album — begins with the line, “You fell from the sky, crash-landed in a field near the River Adur.”


Much of the film goes on to delve into how making art, in this case performing the songs from Skeleton Tree, was a way for Nick Cave to deal with his son’s sudden death — not always successfully. It’s a powerful original portrait of grief without the usual close-ups, flashing cameras and manufactured drama.

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As News About 'Deplorables' And Pneumonia Raged, Trump Blasted Janet Yellen

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a rally in Florida on Friday. Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images

The tables turned for Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton over the weekend. For much of the campaign, Clinton has been sitting back, staying quiet and allowing Trump’s gaffes, offensive statements and flip-flops to take up the news cycle.

But then Clinton had a terrible few days. First, she declared that half of all Trump supporters belong to a “basket of deplorables” that includes racists, sexists, homophobic people and other broadly biased groups — a soundbite that Trump quickly made into an attack ad. Then she appeared weak and wobbly as she left early during a memorial ceremony commemorating the Sept. 11 attacks, emboldening Trump supporters who had been questioning her health for weeks.

While Clinton’s “deplorables” comment and pneumonia made the headlines and cable chyrons on Monday morning, Trump didn’t stay entirely quiet, as he made a bit of under-the-radar news himself. Here’s a roundup of what you may have missed:

Trump claims Janet Yellen should be “ashamed”

On Monday morning, Trump told CNBC that he thinks Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen is playing politics with monetary policy, trying to goose economic growth with low interest rates to help Obama’s legacy.

“Well it’s staying at zero because she’s obviously political, and she’s doing what Obama wants her to do,” he said.

(Trump hasn’t always been so opposed to Yellen; in an April interview, he said she was doing a “serviceable” job as Fed Chair.)

While it’s true that presidents can nominate Fed chairs who share their economic views, the president doesn’t control Fed policy.

One safeguard against this is that members of the Board of Governors are appointed for 14-year terms, meaning they will necessarily serve during multiple presidents’ administrations. In addition, the Chair’s terms don’t match up to the president’s terms. When President Obama took office, the George W. Bush-appointed Ben Bernanke was Fed Chair, whom Obama later reappointed. If elected, Trump couldn’t replace Janet Yellen as chair until early 2018.

Furthermore, Trump seemed to imply that the president can change interest rates. He said he believes that the Fed’s current policy is that “the new person that becomes president, let him raise interest rates or her raise interest rates, and watch what happens to the stock market when that happens.”

To be clear: The president does not and cannot set interest rates, which are determined by meetings of the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Markets Committee (of which the Fed Chair is a member). The next meeting of that committee is next week.

Washington Post Trump Foundation

Trump’s charitable foundation has already been facing scrutiny for a $25,000 donation that violated IRS rules and that some say was politically motivated. Now, the Washington Post has also found what it calls five “phantom donations.”

The Post further reported:

Five times, the Trump Foundation’s tax filings described giving a specific amount of money to a specific charity — in some cases, even including the recipient’s address. But when The Post called, the charities listed said the tax filings appeared wrong. They’d never received anything from Trump or his foundation.

The Post asked Trump’s staff to explain all five of these apparent errors.

So far, they have explained one.

Once again used Warren “Pocahontas” nickname

While he was on CNBC, Trump once again brought out his nickname for Sen. Elizabeth Warren, referring to her as “Pocahontas.”

The nickname refers to Warren’s claims that she is of Native American heritage. The Washington Post’s Fact Checker reported that they couldn’t find reliable documentation to confirm that fact.

Meanwhile, many have slammed Trump for his repeated use of the nickname.

“Make no mistake — these jabs were racist,” Simon Moya-Smith, culture editor at Indian Country Today, wrote in May.

Trump says his physical results are coming

Over the weekend, Trump had already said that he would go on Dr. Oz to discuss his “personal health regimen.” But then on Fox News Monday morning, he said he would release yet more health details from a physical he underwent last week.

“This last week I took a physical, and I’ll be releasing when the numbers come in, hopefully they’re going to be good. I think they’re going to be good. I feel great,” he said.

Clinton likewise revealed that she would be releasing more detailed health records this week.

A new “deplorables” ad


The Trump campaign made quick use of the “deplorables” comment, turning around a campaign advertisement that claims Clinton is “viciously demonizing” American voters.

In that remark, Clinton had taken aim at Trump’s supporters, and not Trump himself. In doing so, she gave him a soundbite that he will be able to use for the entire election.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)