The U.S. House of Representatives, lead by its Speaker Nancy Pelosi, voted 232 to 196 to begin the next phase of its impeachment inquiry.
Impeachment proceedings against the president of the United States were authorized to formally begin. This marked the third time in modern history of the country.
Republican minority leader, Kevin McCarthy, as per The New York Times, quoted Alexander Hamilton warning against impeachment being used as a partisan tool.
On the other hand, the Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, according to the Times, declared “What is at stake in all of this is nothing less than all of our democracy.”
The severe disregard for law and national interests by the president in his dealings with the Ukraine continued to come to light in private hearings.
Witness after witness have testified in closed-door committee hearings, confirming the withholding of almost $400 million of congressionally approved security/military aid until the Ukrainian President Zelinskiy agreed to a suspect deal to investigate Trump’s political opponents former V.P. Joe Biden and his son Hunter.
The congressional hearings to be in public view will now allow both Republicans and Democrats to call and question witnesses and the president’s lawyers to be present.
The House vote could well lead to –depending on the conclusion of upcoming proceedings– the judiciary committee’s drafting of formal articles of impeachment against President Trump.
WORLD VEGAN DAY
Friday November 1st is World Vegan Day!
The Vegan Society, on its website, explains November is World Vegan Month “a time to recognize how far the vegan movement has come, to highlight how accessible and beneficial a vegan lifestyle is and to encourage the vegan-curious to adopt veganism by sharing advice, recipes and ideas.
The annual event, by design, coincides with Halloween and the Day of The Dead. The occasion is to build awareness of the numerous benefits for both individual health and global environment.
The celebration emphasizes how veganism helps cut green house emissions and offers an economically viable method of confronting the climate crisis.
CNN cites “Raising animals for food is resource-intensive, requiring the production of feed and fertilizers that result in green-house gases – not to mention the methane that comes from cows.”
According to the World Wildlife Foundation: “Beef and soy are the leading contributors to global deforestation, while the production of meat, dairy, poultry and seafood also contributes to habitat loss and water use.”
According to CNN, plant-based diets reduce diabetes risk and can lead to a longer life with a 16% lower risk of heart attack.
An August, United Nations climate-change report said “eating less meat and reducing food waste could slash global greenhouse gas emissions and benefit our health and the environment.”
LEBANESE PM RESIGNS
Bowing to the impact of massive protests by hundreds of thousands, the Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri has resigned.
But the protests, if slightly diminished in numbers, continued the next day as the entire economy continued on a path seemingly headed for collapse.
The government regardless of intentions had been largely dysfunctional. Basic necessities such as power, water and sanitation had ceased being delivered to the people on a regular basis.
The government has always operated from a partial state of paralysis due to the forced divisions: the president a Maronite Christian, the prime minister a Sunni Muslim and the speaker of parliament a Shiite.
Enacting any change presents endless challenge. Replacing Hariri will be no easy task. But satisfying protestors presents an impossible standoff at best.
Protesters hope to displace the elite from controlling the government and have more representation of the people, who began their demonstrations in protest against a proposed tax on Whatsapp calls.
The country has remained under virtual lock down. Banks and schools remain closed.
CNN quotes Karim Makdisi of the American University of Beruit: “There’s a lot of unknowns. We’ve moved from a phase of celebration where people were coming together and showing solidarity in one where we don’t know what’s going to happen.”