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National League Champions

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Kiwi

Kiwi or kiwis are flightless birds native to New Zealand. At around the size of a domestic chicken, kiwi are by far the smallest living ratites (which also consist of ostriches, emus, rheas, and cassowaries), and lay the largest egg in relation to their body size of any species of bird in the world. The kiwi is a national symbol of New Zealand, and the association is so strong that the term Kiwi is used internationally as the colloquial demonym for New Zealanders. There are five recognized species, two of which are currently endangered, another two of which are vulnerable, and one of which is near-threatened. All species have been negatively affected by historic deforestation but currently the remaining large areas of their forest habitat are well protected in reserves and national parks. At present, the greatest threat to their survival is predation by invasive mammalian predators.

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washingtonpost.com
Perspective | I wrote ‘The Art of the Deal’ with Trump. His self-sabotage is rooted in his past.

The Trump I first met in 1985 had lived nearly all his life in survival mode. By his own description, his father, Fred, was relentlessly demanding, difficult and driven. Here’s how I phrased it in “The Art of the Deal”: “My father is a wonderful man, but he is also very much a business guy and strong and tough as hell.” As Trump saw it, his older brother, Fred Jr., who became an alcoholic and died at age 42, was overwhelmed by his father. Or as I euphemized it in the book: “There were confrontations between them. In most cases, Freddy came out on the short end.”

Trump’s worldview was profoundly and self-protectively shaped by his father. “I was drawn to business very early, and I was never intimidated by my father, the way most people were,” is the way I wrote it in the book. “I stood up to my father and he respected that. We had a relationship that was almost businesslike.”

To survive, I concluded from our conversations, Trump felt compelled to go to war with the world. It was a binary, zero-sum choice for him: You either dominated or you submitted. You either created and exploited fear or you succumbed to it — as he thought his older brother had. This narrow, defensive worldview took hold at a very early age, and it never evolved. “When I look at myself today and I look at myself in the first grade,” he told a recent biographer, “I’m basically the same.” His development essentially ended in early childhood.

Instead, Trump grew up fighting for his life and taking no prisoners. In countless conversations, he made it clear to me that he treated every encounter as a contest he had to win, because the only other option from his perspective was to lose, and that was the equivalent of obliteration. Many of the deals in “The Art of the Deal” were massive failures — among them the casinos he owned and the launch of a league to rival the National Football League — but Trump had me describe each of them as huge successes.

With evident pride, Trump explained to me that he was “an assertive, aggressive” kid from an early age and that he had once punched a music teacher in the eye and nearly been expelled from elementary school for his behavior.

Like so much about Trump, who knows whether that story is true? What’s clear is that he has spent his life seeking to dominate others, whatever that requires, and whatever collateral damage it creates along the way. In “The Art of the Deal,” he speaks with streetfighting relish about competing in the world of New York real estate: “They are some of toughest, and most vicious people in the world. I happen to love to go up against them, and I love to beat them.” I never sensed from Trump any guilt or contrition about anything he’d done, and he certainly never shared any misgivings publicly. From his perspective, he operated in a jungle full of predators who were forever out to get him, and he did what he must to survive.

Trump was equally clear with me that he didn’t value — nor even necessarily recognize — the qualities that tend to emerge as people grow more secure, such as empathy, generosity, reflectiveness, the capacity to delay gratification or, above all, a conscience, an inner sense of right and wrong. Trump simply didn’t traffic in emotions or interest in others. The life he lived was all transactional, all the time. Having never expanded his emotional, intellectual or moral universe, he has his story down, and he’s sticking to it.

A key part of that story is that facts are whatever Trump deems them to be on any given day. When he is challenged, he instinctively doubles down — even when what he has just said is demonstrably false. I saw that countless times, whether it was as trivial as exaggerating the number of floors at Trump Tower or as consequential as telling me that his casinos were performing well when they were actually going bankrupt. In the same way, Trump sees no contradiction at all in changing his story about why he fired Comey and then undermining the explanatory statements of his aides, or in any other lie he tells. His aim is never accuracy; it’s domination.

in case any of you get bored this summer with no men’s club football there’s this league called the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) that some of the best female footballers play in with 10 different teams (and hopefully more to come) situated all around the US:
Portland Thorns FC
FC Kansas City
Houston Dash
Seattle Reign FC
Sky Blue FC
Washington Spirit
Chicago Red Stars
Boston Breakers
Orlando Pride
North Carolina Courage

some of these women are World Cup winners and the best female footballer (Marta) now plays in this league as well. it’s entertaining as hell, just as entertaining as men’s football if not more, and it’d be great as fuck if more people would give women’s football a chance, especially women as talented as the ones in this league. it costs literally nothing to watch at least one game how wild is that lmao and there are games every weekend that get streamed on the go90 app and website, as well as the NWSL website. there’s also a game of the week that airs live on Lifetime every Saturday (usually at 4pm EST).