Early Warning for 23 January 2019

Good morning. Here’s your Early Warning for Wednesday, 23 January 2019.

 

Federal Courts: According to the Administrative Office of U.S. Courts, court systems across the country are expected to begin running out of funding on 01 February. While some courts have already postponed some civil cases, all courts are expected to run on a mission-critical basis under the Anti-Deficiency Act after the end of this month. Criminal cases will continue. [source]

SCOTUS: In addition to staying President Trump’s bar of transgender service members (most of them) in a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court is expected to hear a case on a gun law in New York that could pave a victory for gun rights activists.

Venezuela: Mass protests are expected today after the president of its National Assembly declared the Maduro regime illegitimate. Today’s protests follow a thwarted coup attempt on Monday and already sustained anti-government protests. Vice President Mike Pence said that protestors had America’s “unwavering support”. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) goes farther: “The next logical step is to recognize the president of the National Assembly as the rightful president.” (AC: Between the right wing governments in neighboring Colombia and Brazil, growing unrest in Venezuela, and support for regime change by the U.S. government, Maduro’s time in office seems to be limited.)

Entertainment: Los Angeles-based trial lawyer Robert Barnes is representing the Covington Catholic High School kids in forthcoming lawsuits against major media outlets for libel.

 

White House

The President is scheduled to host a briefing call on his immigration proposal with state, local, and community leaders. Later in the day, he’ll meet with conservative leaders on immigration.

Shutdown: Day 33. Two spending measures are being considered for a Senate vote tomorrow. One offers full border wall funding and the other is a short-term spending bill without a wall. Neither is expected to be passed, but it gives some hope that the two sides are working towards a solution. The White House remains adamant that President Trump will not sign a bill that doesn’t include border wall funding.


 

State Department

Secretary Pompeo is scheduled to meet with the German foreign minister at the Department of State.


 

Defense Department

Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan has no publicly scheduled events.

 

These are the last publicly reported locations of these ships. Conflict requiring an aircraft carrier/carrier strike group does not appear imminent.

The Carl Vinson (CVN-70) was last reported as arriving at its new home port in Kitsap-Bremerton, Washington.

The Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) was last reported as having returned to Norfolk.

The John Stennis (CVN-74) was last reported as in the North Arabian Sea.

The Harry Truman (CVN-75) was last reported as having returned to Norfolk.

The Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) was last reported as having returned to home port in Yokosuka, Japan.

The George H. W. Bush (CVN-77) was last reported as having returned to Norfolk.

 

Bold indicates significant changes to last reported location or other amplifying information.


 

Congress

Significant House Activity:

  • Nothing significant to report.

Significant Senate Activity:

  • Nothing significant to report.

* Only events pertinent to national security are listed. Significant reporting will appear in this week’s Strategic and National Intelligence reports


 

Economy/Finance

According to new data from real estate brokerage firm Redfin, the affordability of homes for middle-class earners is decreasing, and the availability of those affordable homes is down 86 percent in the largest metro areas. (AC: Housing affordability has been an issue since then-Fed chair Ben Bernanke committed himself and the Fed to re-inflating home prices following the housing bubble. Sustained low interest rates drive home prices up.)

According to a new report from the World Economic Forum, “re-skilling” workers whose jobs will be lost due to automation may end up costing $34 billion. The report also said that around 250,000 workers will not be economically viable to re-skill, leaving the government on the hook for economic assistance.


 

What I’m Looking at this Morning

DHS issues emergency order to disrupt hacking of government systems

U.S. and British Navy conduct joint training in South China Sea

China may be bugging American subways


 

Notable Quotable

“At least the first two years of college or university or apprenticeship program should be tuition free — and preferably four years. We’re going to work toward that.” – Democratic presidential contender Julian Castro, who adds Medicare of all and free universal preschool to his platform. The Left is undoubtedly leaning farther Left for 2020.

Samuel Culper is a former military intelligence NCO and contract Intelligence analyst. He spent three years in Iraq and Afghanistan and is now the intelligence and warfare researcher at Forward Observer.

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