Welcome to the program.  Today we look at the “Best Four Days in Gaming,” GenCon.  What once was a small convention at Lake Geneva has become a mammoth event with tens of thousands of attendees, costumed and not, with an untold number of vendors providing amazing games to try.

Right Now w/ Ben DeClue (Twitter / LinkedIn)

What I’m watching: Inspector Lewis on PBS- the Final Season

What I’m reading: My mail (hey I was gone for 4 days)

What I want to know from you: Do you play games?  If so which ones?  Have you ever been to a con?

We’re Buzzin’

Public Health: Obamacare Appears to Be Making People Healthier: A new survey of low-income people isn’t perfect, but it suggests that new health insurance options have improved people’s health.

Why Is Hillary Clinton Courting Republican Foreign-Policy Heavyweights?: Of all the arguments Hillary Clinton has made against Donald Trump, the charge that he cannot be trusted with America’s nuclear codes may prove most memorable. Invoking the threat of nuclear warfare frames the race in the starkest possible terms. But as the Clinton campaign courts Republicans as it makes its national-security case, will it alienate progressive Democrats along the way?

The Storefronts That Survive: On Avenue A in New York City’s East Village, a two-headed cow stands guard over a Ouija board. Obscura Antiques and Oddities has been holding court in the neighborhood since the early ‘90s, when its slice of storefront real estate commanded just $250 a month. Since then, many neighboring businesses have closed up shop; others have fled to reaches of the city where they can still find a better deal.

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50 Nifty

Poll: Young Americans favor LGBT rights on adoption, more: Young people in America overwhelmingly support LGBT rights when it comes to policies on employment, health care and adoption, according to a new survey. The GenForward survey of Americans ages 18-30 found that support for those policies has increased over the past two years, especially among young whites.

Black Pastors Are Breaking the Law to Get Hillary Clinton Elected: It is illegal for clergy to support or oppose political candidates from the pulpit. Houses of worship can host candidate forums and voter-registration drives; pastors and rabbis and imams can even bend the rules a little to advocate “as individuals” at conventions or other events. But for more than 60 years, religious groups have been forbidden from electioneering.

How Not to Plan for ‘The Day After’ In Libya: On August 1, the Obama administration announced a series of airstrikes against Islamic State positions in the Libyan city of Sirte, in coordination with a ground assault by Libya’s internationally recognized, Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA). The new mission marks a significant escalation: while the United States has carried out targeted air strikes against ISIS leaders and training camps in Libya over the past year, it has now picked a side in the country’s civil war—the GNA.

Donald Trump’s Big-Spending Infrastructure Dream: Donald Trump, builder of hotels, casinos, luxury apartment buildings, and golf courses, now wants to rebuild America. He wants to, as he said on Monday in Detroit, “build the next generation of roads, bridges, railways, tunnels, sea ports, and airports.”

Michigan’s ‘firebird’ continues its ascent from near extinction: The Kirtland’s Warbler is an icon of northern Michigan. With a brilliant yellow breast and distinctive song, the bird makes its home in young jack pine trees. Once on the verge of extinction, a long-running conservation program is helping to restore the Kirtland’s Warbler population.

Rare butterfly rests its wings in unique SE Michigan ecosystem: A rare butterfly that once thrived on the Great Plains is fighting for its survival in Michigan. Current State’s Kevin Lavery braves the backcountry in search of the Poweshiek Skipperling.

To Cut Down Poverty, Cut Down the Cost of Living: Proportionally speaking, Americans living in poverty pay more for basic necessities. On energy bills, the poorest 20 percent of Americans spend more than seven times the share of their income than do the wealthiest. Dividing American incomes into three, households in the bottom third spend twice the portion of their incomes on transportation than the top third. High housing costs are hurting everyone—but they’re hurting poor Americans the

Local Gov Confidential

Nixon hit again over cuts to state workforce: The governor has boasted of cutting 5,000 state jobs; the Department of Higher Education says low staffing levels have left it unable to collect $5 million in outstanding student loans.

Taxi commission’s suit against Uber moved to St. Louis County Circuit Court: Uber wanted it heard in federal court

Separate marches mark anniversary of Michael Brown’s death: 18-year-old died Aug. 9, 2014

Messenger: Two years after Ferguson, the movement breathes and grows: Two years after Ferguson, the movement lives, but its important work has barely begun.

O’Fallon, Mo., council overrides mayoral veto of waste transfer deal: Mayor Bill Hennessy objected to council’s decision to pick the most expensive of three bids; council members say other factors also are involved.

Lake Bluff Board OKs Block 2, 3 Planning Principles: Recognizing there may be further refinement ahead, the Board of Trustees unanimously approved an ordinance adding 10 planning principles for downtown Lake Bluff’s Blocks 2 and 3 to the village’s comprehensive plan on August 8 at Village Hall.  The principles are one part of a contentious process going on more than 18 months in which several residents have lobbied against adding the density of three-story buildings to the blocks bounded by Scranton, North, Evanston and Walnut Avenues.