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Worth Thinking About

The Adventures of Life

Month: January 2024 (page 1 of 7)

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Mayorkas impeachment articles approved by committee, setting up full House vote

The House Homeland Security Committee on Tuesday approved, down party lines, two articles of impeachment against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas — teeing up a floor vote as early as next week to impeach the embattled Biden official.

The committee voted down party lines to approve the two impeachment articles, which accuse Mayorkas of having “repeatedly violated laws enacted by Congress regarding immigration and border security” and of having “made false statements to Congress” that the border is secure and closed and that DHS is in operational control of the border. The articles will now go to the House where they will be voted on on the House floor.

The vote came after a lengthy, and at times, fiery hearing in which Republicans outlined their case for why Mayorkas should be removed from office for allegedly mishandling the crisis at the southern border and Democrats accused Republicans of debasing the impeachment process for political purposes.


“Today is a grave day,” Chairman Mark Green said.  “We have not approached this day or this process lightly. Secretary Mayorkas’s actions have forced our hand. We cannot allow this border crisis to continue.”

Republicans spent the hearing emphasizing their case against Mayorkas, pointing to record high border crossings, with the record for monthly crossings having been broken in December, and mass releases of migrants into the interior along with narrowed interior enforcement. They accuse Mayorkas of not following immigration law, which they say demands the detention of illegal immigrants, and of failing to secure the border.

“My colleagues across the aisle, seem to say that it’s acceptable that we’ve had 10 million illegal crossings in three years and we’ve had pushing 300,000 Americans dead from opioid overdose. We’re losing our country down there. And the man responsible for executing that policy is Alejandro Mayorkas,” Rep. Clay Higgins, R-La., said.

Democrats pushed back, first attempting to adjourn the markup and then ripping into Republicans for the proceedings, accusing them of running a “sham” impeachment and of trying to impeach Mayorkas based purely on political motivations and policy disputes, and of interfering with Mayorkas’ efforts to solve the ongoing crisis.

“The extreme MAGA Republicans who are running the House of Representatives are deeply unserious people. They don’t want progress. They don’t want solutions,” Ranking Member Bennie Thompson said. “They want a political issue. And most of all, they want to please their disgraced former president.” 


“You do not have a right to demean this institution, to bastardize the impeachment clause of the Constitution, to belittle the standard of constitutional impeachment to such a degree that you can’t even produce a legal memo in support of your articles of impeachment that do not exist in history and do not exist in the law,” Rep. Dan Goldman, D-NY., said.

The hearing comes after a bitter months-long argument over the process. Green’s committee began investigating Mayorkas last year and House impeachment articles were referred to the committee in November. The committee held two impeachment hearings earlier this month. Mayorkas did not testify, despite expressing willingness to testify — a subject of finger-pointing between the two sides over who was responsible. But on Tuesday he sent a lengthy letter slamming the proceedings and defending his record in office.

“I assure you that your false accusations do not rattle me and do not divert me from the law enforcement and broader public service mission to which I have devoted most of my career and to which I remain devoted,” Mayorkas said.

The Biden administration has repeatedly said the crisis at the border has not been caused by policy, but is instead a Hemisphere-wide crisis combined with a “broken” immigration system that needs reform and comprehensive immigration reform. In his letter, Mayorkas declared that “problems with our broken and outdated immigration system are not new.” 


“Our immigration laws last received an overhaul in 1996. Our immigration laws were simply not built for 21st century migration patterns,” Mayorkas said.

He pointed to stats including half a million removals since May, and daily removals nearly double what they were compared to from 2014-2019. He also says that the apprehension rate has been 78%, the same as the prior administration, and there has been a significant increase in removal flights within the Western Hemisphere.

He also points to increased Border Patrol hiring, an anti-smuggling campaign and an intensified anti-fentanyl effort that has seen more seizures of the deadly drug.

“Instead you claim that we have failed to enforce our immigration laws. That is false,” he said.

He also pushed back on the criticism his department has faced over an alleged lack of responsiveness to oversight queries from Congress, claiming instead that he has been responsive to Congress with testimony, witnesses and documents.

“The allegations are baseless and inaccurate,” he said.

If the House votes to impeach Mayorkas, then the case will go to the Senate for a trial.

Fox News’ Tyler Olson, Elizabeth Elkind and Chad Pergram contributed to this report.


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GREG GUTFELD: Mayorkas is a border czar only a cartel could love

So, America’s least popular reality show is still going strong. Yes, I’m talking about the Bachelor Southern Border. Millions of illegal, most of whom seem to be healthy young men, are walking away from all the other gals in the world to cozy up to the world’s most eligible bachelorette. That sexy lady in the long, flowing gown. Yeah, the Statue of Liberty. Or as I like to call her, a six. I mean, come on, we could have done better. So many hotter immigrants. So a migrant traveling from Venezuela will literally walk through six other countries before hitting the Texas border. How do they do that? I go five blocks and I’m exhausted. So is my driver. Now, if you’re so desperate that you have to flee your nation on foot without a visa or even a passport, aren’t you desperate enough not to be choosy? Wouldn’t you be satisfied with the first reasonable option? Not everyone gets to marry the prom queen. I mean, I was dumped by mine. Because she was too much into cheerleading practice and getting good grades. That, and I was 48. 


But why come here when there are so many places before us with people who speak the language and have better food? Well, it’s simple. Roughly six seconds after his saggy, dented ass hit the Oval Office chair, Joe threw out a welcome mat that stretched from Washington to Tierra del Fuego. He may as well put up signs in Mexico saying, “Don’t stop! In a few miles, you’ll get free meals and sex changes if you murder someone.” I know. On top of that, the UN just presented a plan giving $1.6 billion to 17 Latin American countries, partially in the form of prepaid debit cards for migrants. Now, the UN gets 20% of its budget from us, so we’re actually paying the migrants to come here. And what do you know? Suddenly, the U.S. had roughly 10 million new contestants that decided we’re the one. Which is why it’s about time to replace the Statue of Liberty’s torch with a can of pepper spray.

Metaphorically! It’s an analogy. Not literally. I don’t think they make them that big. Because the White House has turned the Statue of Liberty into a $10 waterfront hooker. No surprise it takes progressivism to its inevitable endpoint. You don’t get Paradise. You get chaos. No person is illegal. Everyone is welcome. That sounds great in my hot tub until the entire nation of Bolivia shows up, then it sounds great. So what’s the damage? Well, we got a tug of war over razor wire, an event verging on a constitutional crisis. There’s also the well-deserved impeachment hearings for DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, who looks like a cross between James Carville and a Kaiser roll. Mayorkas is a border czar only a cartel could love. So go ahead, impeach away. But let’s not get distracted. The administration has painted themselves into a corner, which is why they are now changing the rules. Suddenly, we’re being told we must negotiate, that we’re close to achieving bipartisan legislation. Bipartisan. Makes you wonder who they’re trying to buy. After all, why the hell do we have to negotiate a border? Wasn’t that part of the original deal? 

The truth is, we don’t need legislation. It’s not that hard. See, when the great orange wall known as Trump came into office, he instituted the policy called Remain in Mexico. Which, by the way, is exactly the same thing I told Menudo. And they did. But it was just that. An executive order, a policy issued by the president. All it took was a pen and a phone. Two things that Biden confuses all the time, which is why he has ink all over his face. So, like most brilliant ideas, Remain in Mexico, was simple and it worked. All it meant was that migrants traveling through Mexico to claim asylum here had to wait in Mexico for their cases to be heard in a U.S. court. Now, since progressives threw up every barrier to deportation they could think of, that could take three years. So, three years waiting around but now on the Mexican side of the border. Phony asylum claims would plummet when, instead of a luxury hotel, they get a motel six. No longer can you dream of trimming Nancy Pelosi’s hedges or screwing Arnold Schwarzenegger. 


And so, as expected, tent cities began to spring up down there. Mexico started looking as bad as downtown Seattle. And so quickly, Mexico started enforcing its own southern border to keep migrants out. Imagine that? Remain in Mexico was such a good idea, it created two different southern borders. But since this idea was Trump’s, it had to be undone. Which is like refusing to cash in a winning lottery ticket because you don’t like the cashier’s tie. The left hates Trump so much they come out against banging supermodels. Thank you. I think that deserves applause. So it’s not hard to see why the Republicans consider this supposed bipartisan border bill as dead on arrival as Joe himself. It should never have been alive to begin with. And to the horror of the media, Republicans aren’t falling for it. Which is why nutcases like Morning Joe now accuse Republicans and Trump of murder.

MSNBC’S JOE SCARBOROUGH: People, as Mitt Romney said, are suffering right now. Fentanyl flooding across the border, illegal immigrants streaming across the border, Democrats and Republicans in the Senate know how to stop it. And House Republicans and Donald Trump won’t do it. It is immoral. 

What’s immoral, you gasbags, is your phony display of outrage now, after three years of this crap. Either those two are stupid or they’re plain stupid. But they’re not smart enough to pretend to be this dumb. It is deep. Thankfully, unlike those bozos, we’re not falling for it. The point is, Remain in Mexico still works, and just as easily as Trump did it and Biden undid it, Biden can redo it. I mean, it’s not like we’re asking him to tie his shoes or acknowledge his own grandkid. No negotiations, no legislation. We don’t need to spend more millions on the border. That’s b*****. Hell, if you need money, take what you made from selling off the border wall and buy yourself a nice new pen. Then practice signing your name if you can remember it.


6 easy ways to live more sustainably (that you still refuse to do)

An illustration of a recycling symbol with people walking on top of it.

We all claim to love the planet, but do we really? It’s easy to love something when it’s lavishing you with refreshing hikes, clear lakes, and gorgeously glowing sunsets. It’s much harder when the object of your affections asks for something in return — such as your toilet paper.

It isn’t news that pollution and climate change are threatening our planet. Scientists have been screaming that our lifestyles are unsustainable for decades, begging people to be more mindful in their consumption. Yet habit and convenience has caused us to largely ignore these dire warnings, continuing to use paper coffee cups and burn fossil fuels like there’s no tomorrow. At this rate, there might not be.

There are of course limits to individual action (and carbon footprints are a sham). Wider policy changes and changing company behaviour are essential to achieving true sustainability, with a 2019 report finding that just 20 companies were responsible for a third of all greenhouse gas emissions. A 2017 study found that 71 percent of global emissions were generated by just 100 companies, highlighting the importance of pressuring companies to go green. Sadly, almost no progress had been made in the years since.

Even so, if you’re looking for tiny ways to show big companies that people do actually care about not destroying the planet, we can help. Here are six embarrassingly simple ways you can dial up your own sustainable lifestyle and lessen your personal impact, but which you still won’t do because they’re bothersome.

1. Use a bidet

Many of us are comfortable wiping our asses with toilet paper, smearing our feces across tissue like disgusting abstract expressionists. However, if we are open and willing to learn, there is a better way. Muslims, Asians, and Europeans have been way ahead on bathroom hygiene for ages, and it’s time everyone else caught up — for both the environment and our buttholes.

Not only do bidets give you a more thorough, hygienic clean than toilet paper, they’re also more sustainable. Exactly how much water is used to manufacture toilet paper depends upon the method, with estimates ranging from six to 37 gallons for a single roll. However, most conclude that bidets consume significantly less, at around one eighth of a gallon per use.

Further, toilet paper requires plant matter and chlorine, a negative environmental impact bidets don’t share. As of 2010, the equivalent of roughly 270,000 trees were being turned into toilet paper every day, significantly contributing to deforestation. Growing demand for softer roll has since seen the number of trees cut down for our butts grow, as manufacturers use less recycled paper.

Overall, bidets seem like a much less wasteful choice. However, Prof. Tommy Wiedmann, professor of sustainability research at UNSW Sydney, noted that the positive impact of the bidet would depend on how people use it. Blasting your anus like a fire hose for an hour is unlikely to do anyone any good.

2. Turn off the tap when you brush your teeth

As a citizen of perpetually drought-stricken Australia, learning that people leave the tap running while brushing their teeth was like learning people fertilise their lawns with wagyu beef. The EPA states that leaving the faucet on can waste eight gallons of water per day. That’s a ridiculous amount of precious liquid literally going down the drain.

It’s hard to break habits, but there’s absolutely no reason to continue this one. Both Wiedmann and sustainability researcher Dr. Lisa Heinze told Mashable you should definitely turn off the tap while taking care of your dental hygiene. Though water is technically a renewable resource, there’s a limited amount that’s fresh and unpolluted, and it isn’t always available everywhere. Saving what we have is important.

With U.S. groundwater being depleted, climate change prompting less rainfall and more evaporation, and population growth increasing demand, an American water crisis is an impending reality. The EPA predicted at least 40 U.S. states would experience water shortages by the mid-2020s, while Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Nebraska, California, and Idaho continue to use more water than they receive every year. Half the global population will be under severe water stress by 2030, so it’s vital to conserve what’s available now.

Saving water will save you money, too, in case you need a more capitalist motivation to care about the world.

3. Use public transportation

Complaining about public transportation is a universal experience that unites us all. Buses are always late, trains are unspeakably filthy, and both are packed with coughing strangers who don’t believe in personal space. We jump at the chance to avoid public transport whenever we can. Unfortunately, embracing that contemptible subway is one of the best things you can do to save the planet.

“Transport is still the second largest emitter of greenhouse gases globally, after the electricity and energy sector, representing 15 percent of the world’s total greenhouse gas emissions,” Dr. Chris De Gruyter told Mashable. De Gruyter is a research fellow at RMIT University’s Centre for Urban Research in Melbourne.

“In the United States, half of all trips are three miles or less, but 72 percent of these are by car; for trips of one mile or less, 60 percent are by car,” De Gruyter said.

Wiedmann considers using public transport “the most beneficial to help with curbing climate change” out of all the actions on this list, “especially when combined with having no car at all.” Research published in 2020 found living car-free has some of the highest potential to mitigate a person’s carbon emissions, even better than switching to a vegan diet. According to the EPA, the average car emits around 4.6 metric tons of carbon dioxide every year.

If you absolutely must drive, Heinze advised using a car-share program rather than owning your own. Babet de Groot, a Ph.D. candidate studying ocean governance and waste management at the University of Sydney, further suggested carbon offsetting when such travel is unavoidable.

“Carbon-offsetting is the purchase of compensation for emissions generated, which is used to fund emissions-reduction elsewhere,” de Groot said. “Plant trees to offset your carbon emissions via Offset Earth [now known as Ecologi] or Carbon Neutral Charitable Fund.”

4. Stop buying bottled water

Filling a bottle with tap water and carrying it with you only requires a tiny bit of forethought and prep. Even so, countless people still refuse to do this bare minimum, preferring to buy single-use plastic bottles of water they’ll throw in the trash by nightfall. This is the type of hedonism that will doom humankind, and we will deserve it.

“Annual production of plastic bottles is projected to reach 600 billion by 2021,” de Groot told Mashable. “That is 600 billion bottles, in addition to almost all plastic produced to date, that will virtually persist in the environment forever.”

According to de Groot, humans produced over 7,800 million tons of new plastic by 2015. Of that, approximately 79 percent has gone into landfill or the natural environment. It takes over 500 years for plastic to degrade into smaller particles, but it continues to destroy the environment even then. “These microplastics risk being ingested by wildlife and transferred up the food chain where their effects on human health are yet to be known,” de Groot told Mashable.

You don’t need plastic bottles of Himalayan spring water blessed by a 108-year-old monk who doesn’t use YouTube. If you’re really concerned about purity, just boil and filter your tap water.

5. Ignore ‘best before’ dates on food

Eating food past its manufacturer mandated “best before” date feels like dancing with the devil in the pale moonlight. Food poisoning is never fun, and defying those authoritatively stamped numbers may seem too close to spitting at the gastrointestinal gods. However, strict adherence to these dates is actually unnecessary, and only serves to create equally unnecessary food waste.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture states that, with the exception of infant formula, food is still safe to consume after the provided date passes — as long as it shows no signs of spoilage such as “an off odor, flavor or texture.” Eat, drink, and be merry. There is no uniform standard regarding product dating in the U.S., so the numbers largely mean nothing. “Use by” and “best before” dates only indicate when food is at its best quality, not when it is safe to eat.

“Confusion over the meaning of dates applied to food products can result in consumers discarding wholesome food,” says the USDA.

“The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation estimated that industrialised countries generate approximately 95 to 115 kgs [209-254 lbs] of consumer food waste per capita,” de Groot told Mashable. “This contributes to climate change in the form of methane emissions emanating from landfills and carbon emissions associated with production, processing and transport.”

Learn to trust your senses rather than uncritically obey “best before” dates, and you can help reduce some of that waste.

6. Vote

Voting is a chore, and not one that feels particularly rewarding in the moment. Standing in line for hours just to tick a few little boxes might seem irritating, like lost time that might have been spent working or binging the latest Korean drama. However, just like any other chore, it’s important that you do it anyway — especially if you want to keep your environment habitable.

“If we want the right conditions, policies, rules, and support structures to be able to live sustainably, we need our leaders to be part of the solutions,” Dr. Simon Lockrey told Mashable. A sustainable design researcher at RMIT University, Lockery is also a board member of the International Sustainable Development Research Society. “Our votes matter, so we should be using that mechanism to send them a message. The old way is not necessarily the best way. By voting, or when we really need to, protesting, we can send these types of messages.”

“[Individual changes] should be a starting point to increased action in our communities, governments, schools and workplaces.”

Practically all government policies impact the environment in some way, but Lockery notes some of the most significant issues concern energy, waste, forestry, water, and agriculture. These affect “big ticket items for living sustainably,” such as climate change, threats to habitats or certain species, and environmental toxicity.

“What we should be pressuring governments to support are policies that build energy systems that are clean; that drive less greenhouse gas production in industry; that protect flora and fauna; and eradicate toxic materials/chemicals from our biosphere,” said Lockery.

“Policies need to do this internationally, at an industry level, as well as support us as individuals to contribute, such as supporting household renewable energy, or enabling a waste system that goes beyond household recycling to being regenerative or truly circular,” he added.

Of course, voting isn’t easy for everyone. Voter suppression remains a widespread problem in the U.S., with many potential voters unable to access polling booths on election day (which isn’t even a national holiday). However, if you’re privileged enough that you can cast your ballot with ease, it’s one of the most important things you can do to save the planet.

“Voting and protesting are benefits of a democracy, and thus are good ways to call for change,” said Lockery. “We should cherish these activities, as many don’t have these options available to them.”

“Overall, we in the developed world are simply consuming too much; too many products we don’t really need, too many holiday flights, et cetera,” Wiedmann told Mashable. “Therefore, in addition to doing these ‘easy’ things, we should generally look at reducing our overall consumption, by buying less stuff, flying less, living in smaller houses, maybe growing our own food.”

Of course, not everyone will find these suggestions feasible. As Heinze notes, “You can’t realistically take public transportation if your commute will take three-times as long.”

“This does not mean we should not embrace individual changes, but that they should be a starting point to increased action in our communities, governments, schools and workplaces,” Heinze continued. “If you’re looking to make the biggest impact on the climate for the least amount of effort, a great place to start is divesting your [retirement fund] from fossil fuels, and encouraging your institutions to do the same.”

UPDATE: Jan. 29, 2024, 4:27 p.m. AEDT This article was originally published in July 2020, and has since been updated in Jan. 2024.


One of Disney’s own stars could return company to its former glory

Major Disney stockholder Nelson Peltz is waging a massive proxy fight against Disney for mismanagement and non-accountability. He is not only correct to do so, but has the support of millions of “Disney Kids” like myself who are shocked at what the far-left leadership has done to the iconic company.

As for me, in some real and lasting ways, the “Wonderful World of Disney” and Disney movies helped to keep me sane by providing moments of escape and happiness during a childhood which saw me evicted from 34 homes by the time I was 17 years of age. 

Aside from the seemingly never-ending evictions, my older brother Jay, younger sister Janice, and I also found ourselves frequently without electricity. Just one of the many bills our alcoholic and highly dysfunctional parents never seemed to pay. 


As the evictions, lack of electricity and accompanying sadness and humiliation were a regular and predictable occurrence, I came up with something to distract our minds in the midst of the literal darkness and despair. 

That was to use the battery-operated tape recorder my grandmother had given me to record the audio from the Disney shows on television – when we did have electricity – as well as sneak it into the occasional movie theater to tape the audio from a Disney movie. 

The idea being that when our electricity was turned off or when we were living in the back of a car, I would play the Disney movies on my tape recorder to both distract us from the constant misery while also providing much needed entertainment. 

The very first Disney movie I recorded – after a few Disney shows on television – was “The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes” starring Kurt Russell as “Dexter Riley.” As I was in Little League at the time and knew Russell was an excellent baseball player, I gravitated toward him as an actor and as an escape. 

I literally lost count of how many times my brother, sister, and I would listen to “The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes” or “The Barefoot Executive” in the dark. Russell will likely never know it, but in a very real way, we will always be in his debt. 

Now, flash ahead to today. In my mind, and certainly the minds of tens of millions of Americans, the Disney of now is far removed from the company envisioned, created and nurtured by Walt Disney 100 years ago.

The company took a left turn politically years ago and has progressively moved from the liberal lane to the far-left lane to the woke lane while driving away those tens of millions of former fans. 

In some real ways, I was the “poster child” of a Disney kid. Its programming in the late ’60s gave me the escape needed to decompress my mind and fight another day. I loved Disney then and love the idea of that Disney now. 

Except, Disney of today seemingly wants to politicize every single thing it creates or controls. Its leadership is deeply political and now continually pushes the agenda of the Democratic Party as well as divisive “identity politics.” 

As someone who tries to espouse common sense and pragmatic thoughts and solutions – I don’t want any politics from any party in Disney entertainment. I would argue just as loudly if Disney was trying to insert conservative dogma into its programming and movies while bashing those who sided with the Democratic Party. 

As one who did grow up in abject poverty, I am here to remind current Disney CEO Bob Iger and his leadership team that tens of millions of Americans are fighting every single day of their lives to overcome the worst that life has to offer. A nightmare often foisted upon them by partisan politics. 

Those deeply hurting and continually frightened Americans don’t want to be lectured or talked down to by “entertainment” companies. They want – and desperately need – to be entertained. Unless you have walked in the shoes of some of these people, you have no idea the mental struggle it takes simply to make it to the next day. 

According to news reports, Iger – who is already worth hundreds of millions of dollars – was paid almost $32 million in total compensation by Disney in 2023. Good for him. 

But as he thinks of all the ways he can spend that money, he should remember that for much of his core customer base, $3,000 can be a life-changing or lifesaving amount. For decades, Disney was in the business of serving that customer base. It can be again. 


I am quite serious when I say this, but if he ever were to be open to it, I believe Russell could not only save Disney, but restore it to its core mission of entertaining children and adults. 

For years, Russell’s name was synonymous with the Disney brand. He was just 15 when Walt Disney passed away at the age of 65. Prior to that moment, the two did have numerous conversations as Disney felt his young star had a real future. And, as has become a bit of an urban myth, two of the last words Disney did write in his notebook before passing on were in fact: Kurt Russell. 

All of that to say that in many ways, Russell did – and does – know the mindset of Walt Disney as well as his values. More than that, Russell is a libertarian who would bring common sense, pragmatic and non-political thinking and creativity back to Disney. 

If ever there was a time for the baseball-loving Kurt Russell to step up to the plate and swing for the fences to save Disney, it is now. I truly believe he could do it. 

*** Douglas MacKinnon is a former White House and Pentagon official and author of the book: The 56 – Liberty Lessons from those who risked all to sign The Declaration of Independence. 



NYT Connections today: See hints and answers for January 28

A phone displaying the New York Times game 'Connections.'

Connections is the latest New York Times word game that’s captured the public’s attention. The game is all about finding the “common threads between words.” And just like Wordle, Connections resets after midnight and each new set of words gets trickier and trickier—so we’ve served up some hints and tips to get you over the hurdle.

If you just want to be told today’s puzzle, you can jump to the end of this article for January 28’s Connections solution. But if you’d rather solve it yourself, keep reading for some clues, tips, and strategies to assist you.

What is Connections?

The NYT‘s latest daily word game has become a social media hit. The Times credits associate puzzle editor Wyna Liu with helping to create the new word game and bringing it to the publications’ Games section. Connections can be played on both web browsers and mobile devices and require players to group four words that share something in common.

Each puzzle features 16 words and each grouping of words is split into four categories. These sets could comprise of anything from book titles, software, country names, etc. Even though multiple words will seem like they fit together, there’s only one correct answer. If a player gets all four words in a set correct, those words are removed from the board. Guess wrong and it counts as a mistake—players get up to four mistakes until the game ends.

Players can also rearrange and shuffle the board to make spotting connections easier. Additionally, each group is color-coded with yellow being the easiest, followed by green, blue, and purple. Like Wordle, you can share the results with your friends on social media.

Here’s a hint for today’s Connections categories

Want a hit about the categories without being told the categories? Then give these a try:

  • Blue – Trophies for a robot, a cat, a mannequin and a young girl

  • Green – Babysit

  • Yellow – Ow

  • Purple – Dubya not talking

Here are today’s Connections categories

Need a little extra help? Today’s connections fall into the following categories:

  • Blue – NOT BIG


  • Yellow – GOING UP


Looking for Wordle today? Here’s the answer to today’s Wordle.

Ready for the answers? This is your last chance to turn back and solve today’s puzzle before we reveal the solutions.

Drumroll, please!

The solution to Connections #231 is…

What is the answer to Connections today





Don’t feel down if you didn’t manage to guess it this time. There will be new Connections for you to stretch your brain with tomorrow, and we’ll be back again to guide you with more helpful hints.

Is this not the Connections game you were looking for? Here are the hints and answers to yesterday’s Connections.


On this day in history, January 28, 1986, space shuttle Challenger explodes, shocking the nation

On this day in history, Jan. 28, 1986, the space shuttle Challenger — scheduled for a routine launch from Cape Canaveral in Florida — exploded after just 73 seconds in flight, killing all seven Americans on board.

The disaster shocked the nation — and led to an immediate pause in the space shuttle program.

The cause of the disaster was found to be the failure of the primary and secondary redundant O-ring seals in a joint in the shuttle’s right solid rocket booster (SRB).


While the mission on that fateful day in 1986 was supposed to be like any other routine mission, unusually cold temperatures caused the external tank to explode seconds into takeoff — causing the orbiter to disintegrate and the spacecraft to explode, according to NASA. 

In addition to highly experienced astronauts, the Challenger carried a special passenger on board: teacher Christa McAuliffe. 

She was a social studies teacher from Concord, New Hampshire, chosen from among 10,000 others who applied to be the first private citizen in space, according to Britannica. 


In her application, McAuliffe said she would keep a journal about her experience — and would include sections about her training, the flight experience and her feelings about returning to Earth.

One of the reasons McAuliffe was chosen, apparently, was her teaching experience — and the way she would be able to connect with children across the country. 

And that is why, on the day of the launch, scores of students in schools across the country watched as a teacher launched into space for the first time ever. 


It was unfortunate timing for young children to watch this particular launch — something President Reagan was worried about when he was deciding how to address Americans later that evening.

Americans had been visiting space for decades before that — the first time in 1961, with U.S. Navy test pilot Alan Shepard. 

Shepard was the second man in space following the Soviet Union’s Yuri Gagarin just a mere weeks before. 

By 1969, space travel had progressed to visiting the moon — something the U.S. successfully completed with Apollo 11 that year.


However, with this success, Americans began to fear the government was spending too much on space, according to NASA. 

A reusable manned spacecraft then became a focus by the Nixon administration, and the space shuttle program was born.

The Challenger’s first mission was in April 1983 — and it quickly became one of the most popular spacecrafts to be used in the following three years, according to NASA.

The annual State of the Union address for early 1986 had been scheduled to take place on the evening of the Challenger’s launch — but given the tragedy, President Reagan chose to delay the address by a week. 

Instead, that night, Reagan did address the nation but from the familiar Oval Office instead. 

Reagan began by saying, “Ladies and gentlemen, I’d planned to speak to you tonight to report on the State of the Union, but the events of earlier today have led me to change those plans.”

He went on, “Today is a day for mourning and remembering. Nancy and I are pained to the core by the tragedy of the shuttle Challenger. We know we share this pain with all of the people of our country. This is truly a national loss.”

In his speech, Reagan also expressed a willingness to remain steadfast in the pursuit of space flight — but also, he focused on the families of those who were aboard the Challenger and on the children who were watching the flight from their classrooms or homes.


“I know it is hard to understand, but sometimes painful things like this happen,” Reagan told the country that night.

“The future doesn’t belong to the fainthearted; it belongs to the brave,” Reagan also said.

“The Challenger crew was pulling us into the future — and we’ll continue to follow them.”

The next mission launch was over two-and-a half years later, in September 1988 — named the “Return to Flight” mission. 

The mission lasted for four days and included 64 orbits around the planet.

It ended with a successful landing at Edwards Air Force Base in California, according to NASA. 

For more Lifestyle articles, visit www.foxnews.com/lifestyle


How to watch NC State vs. Syracuse basketball livestream

DJ Burns, Jr. of the NC State Wolfpack shoots over Jordan Minor of the Virginia Cavaliers in the first half during a game at John Paul Jones Arena on January 24, 2024, in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Wondering how to watch college basketball this season? Here are your best options:

Most affordable

Sling TV Orange + Sports Extra

$31 for the first month, then $51/month
(save $20 )

Sling logo


FuboTV Elite

7-day free trial, then $89.99/month

FuboTV logo

The North Carolina State and Syracuse men’s basketball teams are scheduled to meet in an Atlantic Coast Conference contest at JMA Wireless Dome in Syracuse, New York, on Saturday, Jan. 27. The game is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. ET. 

NC State comes into the matchup 13-6 overall and 5-3 in the ACC. Most recently, Virginia beat NCSU 59-53 on Wednesday. DJ Horne leads the NC State scoring after 19 games with 14.8 points per game. 

Syracuse enters the contest 13-6 overall and 4-4 in the ACC. On Tuesday, Florida State defeated Syracuse 85-69. Through the first 19 games, SU’s Judah Mintz is scoring a team-high 18.4 points per contest.

Kevin Keatts is the NC State men’s basketball head coach. Adrian Autry is the Syracuse men’s basketball head coach. 

NC State vs. Syracuse basketball game time and network

The NC State vs. Syracuse men’s basketball game is scheduled to be broadcast on ACC Network at 7 p.m. ET on Saturday, Jan. 27. ACCN broadcasters are scheduled to be Wes Durham (play-by-play) and Dan Bonner (analyst). 

If you don’t have cable or satellite TV, here are some options to watch the game via online live stream, and those options include FuboTV and Sling. 

Best streaming services for the SU vs. NCSU basketball game

When you’re choosing a streaming service to be able to watch college basketball, here are your best streaming options to check out the Syracuse vs. North Carolina State men’s basketball game on ACC Network.

Most affordable: Sling TV

Sling Orange + Sports Extra

$31 for the first month, then $51/month

To watch the NC State vs. Syracuse basketball game on ACC Network with Sling TV requires the Sports Extra package, which costs $11/month for 20 channels. 

The Sports Extra package cannot be purchased alone, and you’ll also need the Orange plan, which is $20 for the first month and $40/month in subsequent months. Combined with the Sports Extra package, the cost would be $31 for the first month and $51 for subsequent months. The Orange plan comes with 32 channels, so with Sports Extra, there are 52 channels in the combined plan. 

Sling TV’s sports channel offerings include ABC, ACC Network, Big Ten Network, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPNews, ESPNU, Fox, FS1, FS2, NBC, NFL Network, Pac-12 Network and SEC Network.

Best for single game: FuboTV

FuboTV Elite

7-day free trial, then $89.99/month

FuboTV provides a week-long trial at no charge. For access to the ACC Network after this period, subscribers need to opt for the Fubo Elite plan, which is $89.99/month. The Elite plan gives you 248 channels, 1,000 hours of DVR space, and the ability to watch on 10 screens simultaneously.

FuboTV’s sports channel offerings include ABC, ACC Network, Big Ten Network, CBS, CBS Sports Network, ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNews, Fox, FS1, FS2, Golf Network, Marquee Sports Network, Monumental Sports, NBC, NBCSN, NFL Network, Pac-12 Network, and SEC Network. 


Border rancher praises Abbott for standing up to feds to protect Texans: ‘We don’t have a choice’

A Texas rancher is applauding Republican Gov. Greg Abbott for “holding the line” as the state continues to push back against the federal government over protecting its border. 

Every state has the right to self-defense if there is an invasion or an imminent danger occurs to the citizens,” rancher and Kinney County attorney Brent Smith told “Fox & Friends” Friday.

“Texas is holding the line. We have to. We don’t have a choice at this point. This has gone way beyond a policy issue of immigration. This is about safety and security of Texans and the United States.”


The latest Supreme Court decision in Texas’ battle with the Biden White House has sparked a showdown over the Lone Star State’s constitutional authority to defend itself with the federal government seemingly getting in its way. 

On Monday, in a 5-4 decision on an emergency appeal, the Supreme Court ruled to temporarily overturn a lower court’s injunction that banned the federal government from cutting razor fencing Texas had installed along the border near Eagle Pass while litigation continues. 

Late Wednesday night, Abbott declared his constitutional authority to reserve the right of his state to self-defense against an invasion, adding that the executive branch had broken its constitutional pact with the states by failing to enforce federal immigration laws. 

 “Texas has a right as a state to stop criminals from coming into our state. There’s really only one person in America not doing their job, and that’s the president of the United States,” he told “America’s Newsroom” Thursday.

Smith argued Abbott is “not in defiance” of the federal government and is upholding his oath as governor.

“I believe he has all the authority he needs to secure the state and, more importantly, the safety and security of his citizens,” he said. 

“Every day there’s enough people that die from fentanyl, that a 747 goes down every day. Could you imagine in America [if] a 747 airplane crashed every single day? There’d be hearings, there’d be congressional oversight, you know, all kinds of things. But today, no one’s blinking an eye, or we’re going to wait until 200,000 die or 300,000 before we do something?” 

A growing number of Republican governors are throwing their support behind Texas as the high court’s ruling sends the case back to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals on Feb. 7. 

Legal experts told Fox News Digital Texas is well within its constitutional rights and within the Supreme Court’s order to keep building the razor-wire fence even if the feds continue to cut it before the appeals court addresses the matter.

“So what does this come to?” Smith asked. “Are we in the death pact, where we don’t have a choice but to be invaded and lose our state? Surely not. That’s not what the founders would have ever wanted, or ever agreed to, nor would the states.”

Fox News’ Brianna Herlihy contributed to this report.

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