The Daily Moth 6-27-17

June 28, 2017




Google Fined $2.7 Billion by EU, GOP Senators Delay Healthcare Vote, Pentagon Says Syria is Preparing Another Chemical Attack, California Says Main Ingredient in Roundup is Cancer-Causing, and CNN Controversy With Story Retraction and CNN Producer Recorded Criticizing Itself 




Hello, welcome to the Daily Moth! It is Tuesday, June 27. Ready for news? 




Google was fined $2.7 billion dollars by the European Union (EU) who accuse Google of abusing their power by pushing sponsored ads to the top of search pages whenever people search for things.


For example — if I wanted to buy a dog leash, you’d see images in boxes with the product, its price, and its rating. On the top right part you see the words, “Sponsored” — which means a company paid Google to push this to the top. This is Google’s comparison-shopping service. 


The EU’s antitrust regulator says this is anti-competitive — that Google is dominating business by “pushing” down other comparison-shopping websites that don’t pay Google to advertise. The EU said website traffic for other shopping websites in the UK and Germany has dropped dramatically, more than 80%, while Google’s increased by 45%. So the EU has fined them and ordered them to, within 90 days, to allow search results to equally show other comparison-shopping services. If Google doesn’t adjust, the EU said they would fine Google 5% of its average daily global revenue. 


Google has responded that they disagree with the EU and will consider appealing. They defended their search results saying people prefer to go straight to websites where they can buy products, rather than to be referred to other comparison shopping websites. 


This case will be debated in EU courts for the near future — the question is — can large technology companies favor their own services over others, and by how much? 


The $2.7 billion fine is the largest fine ever from the EU. 




The Senate Majority leader McConnell said they would delay the vote on the new health care bill until after the July 4 break. They had hoped to vote on it this week, but opposition against the bill from at least six Republican senators has forced it to be delayed.


All Republican Senators will met with President Trump at the White House afternoon today. 


The CBO Congressional Budget Office released their report yesterday afternoon, predicting that if this bill passes, 22 million more Americans would have no insurance by 2026. This is because of cuts to the Medicaid program, the end of the requirement to have insurance, and smaller subsidies to help low-income people buy insurance. 


The bill would save the federal government $321 billion over 10 years. 


We’ll see if Trump and the Senate Republicans can try to come to an agreement and get a vote passed after July 4. We remember that House Republicans tried to introduce a health bill in March, did not have enough support, revised the bill, and got it passed in April. 




The Pentagon said they’ve been tracking Syrian military air bases and thinks they will start using chemical weapons again. They’ve seen a plane in a shelter at the Shayrat air base that was getting ready, apparently with chemical weapons being put on it. 


This is the same air base that was bombed by U.S. military Tomahawk cruise missiles in April after the chemical attack 


Last night the Trump administration warned Syrian president al-Assad against using chemical weapons, saying they got information that they are preparing another chemical weapons attack that would murder innocent civilians and children. They said Syria would pay a heavy price if they did an attack. 


The Russian government said the Trump administration’s warning against Syria was unacceptable, that al-Assad’s government was lawful. 


Our UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, any attacks done to the people of Syria would be blamed on al-Assad but also on Russia and Iran for supporting al-Assad in killing his own people.

So it’s a continuing conflict between the U.S., Syria, Russia, and Iran. 




The state of California announced they would list a main ingredient in Roundup the weed killer as a chemical that is known to cause cancer. The ingredient is glyphosate. It is possible that California will require Roundup products to have a warning label on it. 


Roundup is owned by Monsanto — who says the product doesn’t cause cancer and has questioned the scientific studies. Roundup/glyphosate is used on over 250 different kinds of crops in California and is sold in more than 160 countries. 


Putting glyphosate on a warning list doesn't mean the product will be banned — it requires different officials to ban it, but they said Roundup is safe if people follow instructions when they spray it. 


Last year the EPA Environmental Protection Agency said glyphosate does not cause cancer. Other scientific groups disagree, saying it causes cancer. It’s a back-and-forth battle that seems like it’ll keep going on. In the meanwhile, Roundup will continue to be sprayed on crops. 




CNN is going through some controversy now. They recently retracted a story they published about a Senate investigation on “suspicious” links between a Trump advisor and a Russian investment fund. Three investigate journalists who were responsible for the story has resigned. 


CNN has apologized to the advisor, Anthony Scaramucci, and said the article did not meet CNN’s editorial standards. Anthony has accepted CNN’s apology and said CNN was classy to apologize, they did the right thing. 


President Trump ripped on CNN for this mistake — saying they were fake news and that they did many other phony stories. Trump said NBC, CBS, ABC, NY Times, and Washington Post were fake news as well. 


CNN was also embarrassed by the release of a secretly-recorded video of a CNN producer (John Bonifield, who works with CNN’s medical unit) — he said CNN’s coverage of the Trump-Russia connections was bull****, that it was because of ratings, that CNN didn’t have any big proof, and that Trump was probably right that there was a witch hunt against him. 


CNN has responded, saying they support the producer John — that it was his personal opinions and that CNN supports a diversity of opinions.  




That is all for today. See you tomorrow and stay with the light! 



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