OUR TAKE ON THE NEWS IN NEW JERSEY
BEDMINSTER - The world's most powerful leaders may soon be standing behind you at your favorite suburban Starbucks, as the Washington Post reports that President Trump will be hosting global powers at his golf club in Somerset County next week, when the United Nations General Assembly converges in New York. Funny to watch your local barista attempt to spell "Xi Jinping" on the President of China's latte, or if Narendra Modi, the prime minister of India, will demand a warmer croissant at your local Panera Bread. But, hey, it is all part of life in a new, improved Trumpified world.
ON THE ROADS - For overprotective parents, here's some news to ensure you are driving your kids to school until college. More than half of school vehicles the state officials inspected in the 2016-17 school year failed inspection. We are talking 22,000 school buses or vans that were yanked from service or given 30 days to fix their flaws. State officials say they use stringent criteria, with an impressive-sounding 180-point checklist, to ensure brakes, headlights and all the other stuff is working properly. Now, if we can get at least one kid to use those nerdy seat belts...
ON THE CAMPAIGN TRAIL - Rep. Josh Gottheimer, as well as 35 other current and former members of Congress, should be lauded in their efforts to strike down the gerrymandering that has totally screwed up Congress, leaving it a festering partisan pit of career politicians who refuse to compromise. Gottheimer and others are trying to strike down the district lines drawn by Wisconsin Republicans that Democrats say are so absurdly tilted that they have zero chance of competing. It is all part of an effort to force more competitive districts and consensus, rather than what now exists: sleepy Congress members who know they will be overwhelmingly re-elected, no matter what.
AT HOME - The Star-Ledger has published an agonizing "special investigation" today about the dangers of adults sleeping in bed with infants. It is a practice known as "co-sleeping," which the non-profit Keeping Babies Safe organization has been fighting against for years. The newspaper tells the chilling story of how one Newark mother lost three children over the course of 11 years by co-sleeping. In the most recent case, state welfare officials warned the boy might be in danger, but no one took action. The child, named "JoJo," died 103 days later. The investigation, written by the intrepid Sue Livio, also details the steps the Christie administration has allegedly taken to keep the death hush-hush. Read about "The Last Goodnight" here.
IN THE MEDIA
OVER THE AIRWAVES - Shock jock Craig Carton is careening toward a career of cutting ribbons at low-end New Jersey sports bars, after announcing he must leave his lucrative gig as co-host of the "Boomer and Carton" morning sports show, a terrific job that lasted 10 years on CBS radio. It all stems from an alleged $5.6 million pyramid scheme and alleged gambling debts. Carton's attorneys are positioning him as the "victim." Whatever the case, when you shred people on the air for a living, it is hard to find much sympathy.
IN OTHER IMPORTANT NEWS
INDIANAPOLIS - First, the cops pulled him over on suspicion of drunk driving. Then, they started asking why he had all these body organs and brain and liver samples in the back of his pickup truck. A somewhat tipsy, 75-year-old pathologist had to start explaining how he has this "private autopsy practice" and, well, he was just bringing some work home Tuesday. But, y'know, maybe he needed to stop for a quick drink or two. And maybe there was a special drink deal for local pathologists. And maybe there was a trivia contest on anatomic and physiological deviations of the 1950s. And things happened, and well... y'know. The cops really didn't know, so they arrested the senior pathologist yesterday and will let a judge try to figure it out.
THIS DAY IN HISTORY
It was this day in 1981 that "Entertainment Tonight" premiered, somehow defining Olivia Newton John's wardrobe as "breaking news."
WORD OF THE DAY
Marginalia - [mar-juh-NAIL-ee-uh] - verb
Definition: Nonessential items
Example: Amazing to see how much marginalia can be found in a pre-teen's backpack.
WEATHER IN A WORD