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Monday's Mini-Report, 8.9.21

Today's edition of quick hits.

Today's edition of quick hits:

* Afghanistan: "The Taliban on Monday had seized control of at least five provincial capitals out of 34 in Afghanistan, as the militants pressed on in their offensive while American forces finalized their pullout from the war-torn country."

* Terrifying: "Climate change is changing Earth in ways that are 'unprecedented' in thousands of years — and in some cases, hundreds of thousands of years — according to a blistering report released Monday by the United Nations. The sobering assessment also found that some changes that are already playing out, such as warming oceans and rising sea levels, are 'irreversible for centuries to millennia.'"

* Dixie Fire: "On Monday, there were 107 active large fires burning across 13 states. The Dixie Fire in northwestern California is now the largest fire in the country, outpacing the massive Bootleg Fire in Oregon by more than 75,000 acres. The Dixie Fire, which is only 21 percent contained, also is the largest single fire ever to tear through California, scorching nearly a half-million acres as of Monday."

* On a related note, the images out of Greece are apocalyptic: "More than 2,000 people on the Greek island of Evia were forced to evacuate by boat over the weekend as raging wildfires continued to spread, wiping out homes, reducing once-picturesque landscapes to ashes and destroying entire villages."

* This will help improve wages: "In another drastic reminder of just how fundamentally the pandemic has distorted the labor market, the number of open jobs soared to a record 10.1 million in June, according to the latest monthly data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary."

* Belarus: "President Joe Biden on Monday said the United States is levying new sanctions against Belarus, marking the one-year anniversary of Alexander Lukashenko's election, which the U.S. and international community have said was fraught with irregularities."

* A sensible ruling: "Prolonging a showdown over proposed new voting restrictions, a Texas judge temporarily blocked the arrest of Democratic lawmakers who fled the state to stop the legislation, a move that will allow members of the group to return from Washington without the threat of being detained."

* The latest in Albany: "A top aide to embattled New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo resigned Sunday, saying in a statement that the last two years have been 'emotionally and mentally trying.'"

* The GOP talking point isn't true: "Public health experts say there is no evidence that migrants are driving the surge in coronavirus cases, as some conservatives, like the governors of Florida and Texas, have been claiming."

* Another preventable tragedy: "Dick Farrel, a former right-wing radio host in Florida and anchor on Newsmax TV, died Wednesday of complications from Covid-19, NBC affiliate WPTV of West Palm Beach reported.... Farrel was a vocal and staunch advocate against the coronavirus vaccines, which he posted about on social media, once calling them 'bogus.' He also railed against figures like Dr. Anthony Fauci, whom he called a 'lying freak.'"

See you tomorrow.