National News, Monday, Sept. 30 – Whistleblower Will Testify Says House

The latest National News stories from around the nation, from

Monday, September 30, 2019

The Democrats in the House seem to have momentum and have put President Trump on the ropes in the neverending fight to remove him from office. 

Today, Representative Adam Schiff of California says the so-called  whistleblower at the center of the impeachment investigation of President Trump will testify in the House “very soon,” though in a way that will protect his identity.

The whistleblower, whose identity hasn’t been made public, is a man who works for the Central Intelligence Agency.  The House is waiting for the whistleblower’s attorneys to receive security clearances.

 “We’ll get the unfiltered testimony of that whistleblower,” Mr. Schiff said today.

A lawyer for the whistleblower said talks with lawmakers are ongoing. “We continue to work w/both parties in House & Senate and we understand all agree that protecting whistleblower’s identity is paramount,” the lawyer, Mark S. Zaid, wrote on Twitter.

It isn’t clear how the whistleblower would testify without risking exposure of his identity. Any meeting with lawmakers would likely need to take place in a secure room—known as a Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility, or SCIF—given the sensitivity of the information at issue, according to national security lawyers.

While those rooms are available on Capitol Hill, appearing there likely would pose additional challenges to protect the whistleblower’s anonymity given the number of people, especially reporters, in the halls of Congress.

The whistleblower’s complaint, released last week, focuses on a July 25 phone call between Mr. Trump and the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky. The complaint alleges that Mr. Trump sought to use the powers of his office to push Ukraine to investigate Democratic rival Joe Biden, and that White House officials acted to conceal evidence of the president’s actions.

China is snapping up stakes in private companies at a record rate, as the trade war, economic slowdown and credit squeeze heap pressure on entrepreneurs. And that’s private companies in China and abroad, particularly in the U.S.

The investments mark a reversal after decades in which state-owned enterprises have shrunk in importance, as reflected in measures such as their share of the workforce or asset ownership.  Since China’s public-sector companies are typically less efficient or innovative than their private rivals, the shopping spree could lead to a fresh drag on growth.

However, while President Xi Jinping has centralized control more than his predecessors, the purchases appear to be driven by the desire to maintain stability rather than a deliberate strategy to weaken the private sector.


So far, shopping for Halloween treats is down and consumers polled over the weekend show they may spend an average of $86.27 on Halloween this year, down slightly from last year.   Still, it works out to be around $8.8 billion on candy, costumes, decorations and supplies.

… Consumers plan to spend $3.2 billion on costumes, $2.6 billion on candy, $2.7 billion on decorations, and $390 million on greeting cards.

… Top kid costumes will be:

  1. Princess – 7.9 percent
  2. Superhero – 6 percent
  3. Spider-Man – 5.2 percent
  4. Avengers character (excluding Spider-Man) – 3.9 percent
  5. Batman – 3.5 percent
  6. Witch – 3.3 percent
  7. Ghost – 2.8 percent
  8. Vampire – 2.2 percent
  9. Frozen (Elsa, Anna) – 2.2 percent
  10. Pirate – 2.1 percent

Why put pickles on your sandwich when the pickles can BE the sandwich?

Elsie’s, in Haddon Township, New Jersey, is replacing the bread on a sandwich with thick pickles. They take a good-size pickle, carve out the middle and stuff if full of the usual sandwich fixings: turkey, cheese, etc. • IMAGE

Missing 70 lb. tortoise returns.

Pet owners know how alarming it can be to go out to your backyard and find your dog or cat missing. A Texas couple’s tortoise, Blossom, went missing. Pretty hard to believe since Blossom is a 70-pound tortoise. Blossom found a way to burrow her way out of the yard. But the story has a happy ending — a neighbor found Blossom and returned her.

True Confessions of a woman.

Fully 64% of women say that there are some things they confess only to their girlfriends and never to their significant others or their mothers.

… The survey (by Harris) also revealed that when girls gab, they enjoy talking most about relationships, personal issues, and sex.

A new survey (by YouGov) finds that most Americans aren’t bothered by seeing mothers breastfeeding in public places.

Majorities say that it is somewhat or completely acceptable for mothers to breastfeed in a public bathroom (80%), on a plane (75%), on a sidewalk bench in a park (70%), on public transit (65%), in a store (62%), in a restaurant (61%), and during a church service (56%).

Your kids allowance.  How much?  

Thinking of giving your young child an allowance? Experts say ages 5-8 are considered a good time for starting allowances. One rule of thumb suggests 50 cents for every year of age. A 6-year-old would get $3 each week or month, depending on your budget. Hand over the allowance the same time each week. To keep track through the year, give your child 52 homemade IOUs to exchange for the weekly allowance. Experts are divided over whether to tie allowances to household chores.

No respect for real estate.  

It’s not about money or celebrity. And it’s not even about getting your hands dirty. The job with the least prestige is: real estate broker. That’s the word from a nationwide Harris Poll of adults that measured Americans’ perception of the most and least prestigious professions.

… The professions with the greatest prestige: scientists; doctors; firefighters.

… The professions with the least prestige: accountant; stockbroker; real estate agent.

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