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With government funding running out soon, expect more brinkmanship despite public dismay at political gridlock

Laurel Harbridge-Yong, Northwestern University Much of the news coverage of the discussions and negotiations aimed at averting a government shutdown on Nov. 17, 2023, relies on pundits and their unnamed sources, on leaks, speculation, wishful thinking and maybe even the reading of tea leaves. The Conversation tapped an expert on congressional behavior, Northwestern University political scientist Laurel Harbridge-Yong, and asked her what she sees when she looks at the prolonged trouble Congress has had over the past few years coming to agreement on the debt ceiling and spending to keep the government open. Harbridge-Yong is a specialist in partisan conflict

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2 arrested, 1 at large in Orinda residential burglary

Orinda police are still searching for a residential burglary suspect. Two other suspects were arrested for the same incident.  Orinda Police officers were dispatched at around 8:23 a.m. Tuesday after receiving a report of a suspicious person on Knickerbocker Lane.  According to the Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office, police found a vehicle associated with the subject in a driveway at a residence on Lloyd Lane.  When officers came to check the vehicle, they found the three suspects exiting the residence with multiple stolen items at hand.  The suspects immediately dropped the items and fled.  One of the suspects was immediately

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Nextdoor to lay off 25% of its staff

San Francisco-based Nextdoor will lay off 25% of its staff.  According to Nextdoor’s financial report posted on Tuesday, the job cuts are part of a broader cost-reduction plan that aims to reduce the company’s personnel expenses by $60 million.  “This reduction in our team is the hardest decision we have had to make at Nextdoor,” said Nextdoor CEO Sarah Friar. “While our opportunity and belief in the transformative power of community remains unwavering, and our business is financially strong with a healthy balance sheet, we must follow through on our commitment to our shareholders.” “This means right sizing our business

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Vampire viruses prey on other viruses to replicate themselves − and may hold the key to new antiviral therapies

Ivan Erill, University of Maryland, Baltimore County Have you ever wondered whether the virus that gave you a nasty cold can catch one itself? It may comfort you to know that, yes, viruses can actually get sick. Even better, as karmic justice would have it, the culprits turn out to be other viruses. Viruses can get sick in the sense that their normal function is impaired. When a virus enters a cell, it can either go dormant or start replicating right away. When replicating, the virus essentially commandeers the molecular factory of the cell to make lots of copies of

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It’s not just about facts: Democrats and Republicans have sharply different attitudes about removing misinformation from social media

Ruth Elisabeth Appel, Stanford University Misinformation is a key global threat, but Democrats and Republicans disagree about how to address the problem. In particular, Democrats and Republicans diverge sharply on removing misinformation from social media. Only three weeks after the Biden administration announced the Disinformation Governance Board in April 2022, the effort to develop best practices for countering disinformation was halted because of Republican concerns about its mission. Why do Democrats and Republicans have such different attitudes about content moderation? My colleagues Jennifer Pan and Margaret E. Roberts and I found in a study published in the journal Science Advances

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Shooting victim in critical condition, OPD investigates

An Oakland shooting left a man in grave condition on Saturday.  According to the Oakland Police Department, the shooting occurred in the 2600 block of Montana Street on November 4 at around 1:15 a.m.  At the scene, officers found a male victim with a single gunshot wound.  The victim was transported to a local hospital where he is listed in critical and grave condition.  This is an ongoing investigation. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Oakland Police Robbery Unit at (510) 238-3426.

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Tenderloin dealer pleads guilty to six drug offenses

Oakland resident Melvin Alexis Diaz Arteaga pleaded guilty to six drug charges after he was accused of selling fentanyl, methamphetamine, heroin, and cocaine in the Tenderloin district of San Francisco.  Diaz’s guilty plea was accepted by the Hon. Charles R. Breyer, Senior United States District Judge, in October. 26. On November 16, 2022, Diaz was arrested outside an apartment in Berkeley, California.  At the time of his arrest, Diaz possessed 6.6 kilograms (15 pounds) of fentanyl, along with lesser quantities of methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, and other controlled substances – all of which he intended to sell.  According to the plea

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