Christina - Millennials grieving process over a death of life
My brother in law (anonymous) works for NYC. He told me they have 1200 bodies in a giant fridge in Brooklyn. They have no one to claim the bodies and potters field can't handle any more graves.
Just a quick email.
Melbourne is fucked
2 more weeks of stage 4 lockdown, and only coming out if we have 5 or less infections a day.
People are starting to turn against the government.
We had organised a protest this week on Sunday. Our premier Daniel Andrews conveniently scheduled his 'Roadmad' out of covid the day after the protest, so me and a few other people made sure the protest was cancelled so there was no ammo for ol' dan.
He made a dick out of himself today when he extended it for at least another 2 weeks when he didn't have the excuse of the protesters.
We would have had 10,000 show up, but only 200 ended up rocking up.
I'm getting a little pissed off with people saying Victorians are a bunch of pussies for not protesting. We are strategic. We see the game being played.
Main content starts here, tab to start navigatingWe Are OPEN. Our doors open at 5pm and we serve food till 10:30 Sunday thru Thursday and till 11:30 Friday and Saturday. We do curbside togo from 5pm to 8pm. You may order here on our website.
We hope to see you soon but most of all we hope you stay safe
JP on Twitter: "Can anyone explain why COVID-19 Diagnostic Test instruments were available in 2018? https://t.co/PHnd14NeAl Archived website in case this link goes down: https://t.co/rWuAsC6VsQ @adamcurry @FatEmperor @simondolan" / Twitter
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(Bloomberg) -- Movie executives will be on the edge of their seats this weekend to see a big thriller: how many people show up in theaters for director Christopher Nolan's new suspense film ''Tenet.''
The much-delayed $200 million film is the first really big-budget Hollywood picture to hit U.S. theaters since the Covid-19 pandemic shuttered cinemas in March. It opened internationally last week, began showing in some domestic theaters on Aug. 31, and will roll out to more than half of the nation's cinemas in time for the long Labor Day holiday.
(C) Bloomberg Choose Your 'Tenet' Forecast ''It was really important that somebody went first with a major blockbuster, to get the theater industry going again,'' said Rich Gelfond, chief executive officer of Imax Corp., which is showing the picture in at least 300 of its North American locations. ''This weekend will be a test of how many people feel safe going to the movies.''
The next few days will be significant for the film industry in a number of ways. Walt Disney Co. is releasing its highly anticipated ''Mulan'' remake on Friday as a $30 download for subscribers to its Disney+ streaming service. Although the family-friendly picture targets a different audience than Nolan's complex spy film, it still presents an alternative for some movie fans and a threat to theaters owners, who don't want to see big-budget movies debut online.
Meanwhile, the studio behind ''Tenet,'' AT&T Inc.'s Warner Bros., is taking some unusual marketing steps of its own. Big-budget movies normally debut in the U.S. first -- or at least on the same day worldwide. But Warner Bros. decided to release ''Tenet'' first in international markets where theaters have been back open longer.
Due to local virus-related shutdowns, ''Tenet'' won't be shown initially in Los Angeles and New York City, markets where films also tend to run first to generate a lot of buzz and ticket sales. Labor Day itself is usually a quiet weekend for new movies, as families are away on end-of-summer vacations or tied up with back-to-school plans.
Discounts, DistancingTheaters have been offering discounted tickets to entice customers back. They're also limiting seating capacity to reduce the Covid-19 exposure risk. Industry leader AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc., for example, is selling just 40% of the available seats at theaters it has reopened.
All this makes measuring success for ''Tenet'' very tricky. The film generated $53.6 million in revenue overseas last week. That was a surprisingly strong number given the pandemic and almost identical to the amount Nolan's last picture, ''Dunkirk,'' produced in its international debut in 2017. ''Dunkirk'' went on to take in a robust $527 million during its worldwide theatrical run.
North American sales estimates for ''Tenet'' vary from as little at $15 million to as much as $50 million. One analyst says $15 million in ticket sales from Friday to Sunday would be a success. Another says anything less than $50 million is a disaster.
''We would all love to see this movie do in the double-digit millions,'' said Rolando Rodriguez, CEO of Marcus Theatres, a Milwaukee-based chain with more than 1,100 screens. Sales of $25 million to $30 million ''certainly would be very nice to see.''
Some Hollywood observers -- such as Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at industry tracker Comscore Inc. -- think that after nearly six months of theater shutdowns, the real battle is over.
''Just to have it open, that's how I define success,'' Dergarabedian said. ''To me, that's the win.''
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How HBO Is Complicating WarnerMedia's Ad-Based HBO Max Plans '-- The Information
Photo: The actor Matthew Rhys, who plays the lead role in HBO's Perry Mason. Photo by HBO
As WarnerMedia plans the next phase of its streaming expansion'--a low-cost version of HBO Max that runs ads'--it is wrestling with an unusual challenge. It can't run ads in new episodes of HBO shows, the best known part of its programming lineup, according to several people familiar with the situation.
That's largely a result of agreements with cable companies that carry the HBO channel, although Warner executives are also reluctant to put ads on HBO shows because they're concerned about hurting the brand. Whatever the reason, the limitation threatens to reduce the money HBO Max could make from selling ads and, depending how Warner handles the issue, could shrink the number of people who sign up for the new version. That could be a problem for Warner and its parent company AT&T, which are betting on the streaming services to rescue Warner's TV business from a steady decline caused by cord cutting.
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A man has been charged with threatening behaviour and assaulting a police officer during a face mask row.
Police boarded a Merseyrail train at Liverpool Lime Street station on Wednesday afternoon in response to a report of a man coughing at two passengers.
An argument followed between a man not wearing a mask and a British Transport Police (BTP) officer who asked him to leave the train.
Mobile phone footage of the incident has been widely shared on social media and shows the man telling the officer: "You're not allowed to touch me by law.
"I do not have to wear a mask, end of, and you don't have to challenge me either."
The officer replies: "I'm not going to argue any more. You're getting off or we're taking you off."
The passenger refuses and a struggle ensues as the officer attempts to eject him from the train.
He is then warned to "get off the train or I'll get you locked up", before the officer says "I'll spray you, mate".
The spray is discharged and then more officers arrive and the man is taken off the train.
A complaint has since been made to BTP's Professional Standards Department, which is being assessed.
Anyone travelling on public transport in England must wear a face covering under Covid-19 regulations, apart from children under 11 and people with disabilities or certain health conditions.
Anthony Baldwin, 34, of Hawthorn Road, Little Sutton, will appear at Liverpool and Knowsley Magistrates' Court on January 6 accused of threatening behaviour and assault.
A spokesman for British Transport Police said: "A man has been charged with threatening behaviour and assaulting a police officer on a Merseyrail train to Liverpool Lime Street station. The incident happened at around 3.20pm on Wednesday 2 September.
"Officers had responded to a report of a man coughing at two passengers."
They added that Pava spray was drawn and discharged however it never connected with the man.
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When Dr. Zachary Sussman went to Physicians Premier ER in Austin for a COVID-19 antibody test, he assumed he would get a freebie because he was a doctor for the chain. Instead, the free-standing emergency room charged his insurance company an astonishing $10,984 for the visit '-- and got paid every penny, with no pushback.
The bill left him so dismayed he quit his job. And now, after ProPublica's questions, the parent company of his insurer said the case is being investigated and could lead to repayment or a referral to law enforcement.
The case is the latest to show how providers have sometimes charged exorbitant prices for visits for simple and inexpensive COVID-19 tests. ProPublica recently reported how a $175 COVID-19 test resulted in charges of $2,479 at a different free-standing ER in Texas. In that situation, the health plan said the payment for the visit would be reduced and the facility said the family would not receive a bill. In Sussman's case, the insurer paid it all. But those dollars come from people who pay insurance premiums, and health experts say high prices are a major reason why Americans pay so much for health care.
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Sussman, a 44-year-old pathologist, was working under contract as a part-time medical director at four of Physicians Premier's other locations. He said he made $4,000 a month to oversee the antibody tests, which can detect signs of a previous COVID-19 infection. It was a temporary position holding him over between hospital gigs in Austin and New Mexico, where he now lives and works.
In May, before visiting his family in Scottsdale, Arizona, Sussman wanted the test because he had recently had a headache, which can be a symptom of COVID-19. He decided to go to one of his own company's locations because he was curious to see how the process played out from a patient's point of view. He knew the materials for each antibody test only amounted to about $8, and it gets read on the spot '-- similar to an at-home pregnancy test.
He could even do the reading himself. So he assumed Physicians Premier would comp him and administer it on the house. But the staff went ahead and took down his insurance details, while promising him he would not be responsible for any portion of the bill. He had a short-term plan through Golden Rule Insurance Company, which is owned by UnitedHealthcare, the largest insurer in the country. (The insurance was not provided through his work.)
During the brief visit, Sussman said he chatted with the emergency room doctor, whom he didn't know. He said there was no physical examination. ''Never laid a hand on me,'' he said. His vitals were checked and his blood was drawn. He tested negative. He said the whole encounter took about 30 minutes.
This story is part of a collaboration between ProPublica and the Texas Tribune. Learn more
About a month later, Golden Rule sent Sussman his explanation of benefits for the physician portion of the bill. The charges came to $2,100. Sussman was surprised by the expense but he said he was familiar with the Physicians Premier high-dollar business model, in which the convenience of a free-standing ER with no wait comes at a cost.
''It may as well say Gucci on the outside,'' he said of the facility. Physicians Premier says on its website that it bills private insurance plans, but that it is out-of-network with them, meaning it does not have agreed-upon prices. That often leads to higher charges, which then get negotiated down by the insurers, or result in medical bills getting passed on to patients.
Sussman felt more puzzled to see the insurance document say, ''Payable at: 100%.'' So apparently Golden Rule hadn't fought for a better deal and had paid more than two grand for a quick, walk-in visit for a test. He was happy not to get hit with a bill, but it also didn't feel right.
He said he let the issue slide until a few weeks later when a second explanation of benefits arrived from Golden Rule, for the Physicians Premier facility charges. This time, an entity listed as USA Emergency sought $8,884.16. Again, the insurer said, ''Payable at: 100%.''
USA Emergency Centers says on its website that it licenses the Physicians Premier ER name for some of its locations.
Sussman's insurer, Golden Rule, agreed to pay 100% of Physicians Premier's $8,884.16 facility charges for a COVID-19 antibody test. According to Sussman, the materials to make each test cost about $8. (Redactions and highlights by ProPublica)Now Sussman said he felt spooked. He knew Physicians Premier provided top-notch care and testing on the medical side of things. But somehow his employer had charged his health plan $10,984.16 for a quick visit for a COVID-19 test. And even more troubling to Sussman: Golden Rule paid the whole thing.
Sussman was so shaken he resigned. ''I have decided I can no longer ethically provide Medical directorship services to the company,'' he wrote in his July 13 resignation email. ''If not outright fraudulent, these charges are at least exorbitant and seek to take advantage of payers in the midst of the COVID19 pandemic.''
Sussman agreed to waive his patient privacy so officials from the company could speak to ProPublica. USA Emergency Centers declined interview requests and provided a statement, saying ''the allegations are false,'' though it did not say which ones.
The statement also said the company ''takes all complaints seriously and will continue to work directly with patients to resolve issues pertaining to their emergency room care or bill. '...The allegations received pertain to a former contracted employee, and we cannot provide details or further comment at this time.''
Physicians Premier advertises itself as a COVID-19 testing facility on its website, with ''results in an hour.'' According to the claims submitted by Physicians Premier to Golden Rule, obtained by Sussman, the physician fee and facility fees were coded as emergency room visits of moderate complexity. That would mean his visit included an expanded, problem-focused history and examination. But Sussman said the staff only took down a cursory medical history that took a few minutes related to his possible exposure to COVID-19. And he said no one examined him.
The claims also included codes for a nasal swab coronavirus test. But that test was not performed, Sussman said. The physician's orders documented in the facility's medical record also do not mention the nasal swab test. Those charges came to $4,989.
The claims show two charges totaling $1,600 for the antibody test Sussman received. In a spreadsheet available on its website on Friday, Physicians Premier lists a price of $75 for the antibody test.
For comparison, Medicare lists its payment at $42.13 for COVID-19 antibody tests. That's because Medicare, the government's insurance plan for the disabled and people over 65, sets prices.
Complicating matters, Texas is the nation's epicenter for free-standing emergency rooms that are not connected to hospitals. Vivian Ho, an economist at Rice University who studies the facilities, said their business model is based on ''trying to mislead the consumer.'' They set up in locations where a high proportion of people have health insurance, but they don't have contracted rates with the insurers, Ho said. They are designed to look like lower-priced urgent care centers or walk-in clinics, Ho said, but charge much higher emergency room rates. (The centers have defended their practices, saying that they clearly identify as emergency rooms and are equipped to handle serious emergencies, and that patients value the convenience.)
The day after he resigned, Sussman texted an acquaintance who works as a doctor at Physicians Premier. The acquaintance said the facility typically only collects a small percentage of what gets billed. ''I just don't want to be part of the game,'' Sussman texted to him.
Shelley Safian, a Florida health care coding expert who has written four books on medical coding, reviewed Sussman's medical records and claims at ProPublica's request. The records do not document a case of a complex patient that would justify the bills used to code the patient visit, she said. For example, the chief complaint is listed as: ''A generic problem (COVID TESTING).'' Under ''final acuity,'' the medical record says, ''less urgent.'' Under the medical history it says, ''NO SYMPTOMS.''
Safian described the charges as ''obscene'' and said she was shocked the insurer paid them in full. ''This is the exact opposite of an employee discount,'' she said. ''Obviously nobody is minding the store.''
Physicians Premier in Austin, Texas. (Amna Ijaz/The Texas Tribune)Congress opened the door to profiteering during the pandemic when it passed the CARES Act. The legislation, signed into law in March, says health insurers must pay for out-of-network testing at the cash price a facility posts on its website, or less. But there may be other charges associated with the tests, and insurers generally have tried to avoid making patients pay any portion of costs related to COVID-19 testing or treatment.
The charges for Sussman's COVID-19 test visit are ''ridiculous,'' said Niall Brennan, president and CEO of the Health Care Cost Institute, a nonprofit organization that studies health care prices. Brennan wondered whether the CARES Act has made insurers feel legally obligated to cover COVID-19 costs. He called it ''well intentioned'' public policy that allows for ''unscrupulous behavior'' by some providers. ''Insurance companies and patients are reliant on the good will and honesty of providers,'' Brennan said. ''But this whole pandemic, combined with the CARES Act provision, seems designed for unscrupulous medical providers to exploit.''
It's illegal for medical providers to charge for services they did not provide. But ProPublica has previously reported how little insurers, including UnitedHealthcare, do to prevent fraud in their commercial health plans, even though experts estimate it consumes about 10% of all health care costs. For-profit insurance companies don't want to spend the time and money it takes to hold fraudulent medical providers accountable, former fraud investigators have told ProPublica. Also, the insurance companies want to keep providers in their networks, so they easily cave.
In mid-July, Sussman used the messenger system on Golden Rule's website to report his concerns about the case. Short-term health plans are typically less expensive because they offer less comprehensive coverage. Sussman said he appreciated that his plan covered the charges, and felt compelled to tell the company what had happened.
That led to a phone conversation with a fraud investigator. They went line by line through the charges and Sussman told him many of the services had not been provided. ''His attitude was kind of passive,'' Sussman said of the fraud investigator. ''There was no indignation. He took in stride, like, 'Yep, that's what happens.''' The investigator said he would escalate the case and see if the facility had submitted any other suspect claims. But Sussman never heard back.
Read More How a $175 COVID-19 Test Led to $2,479 in ChargesA global pandemic ravaging America is no time to forget the first rule of American health care: There is no set price. One out-of-network medical provider in Texas seeks permission from patients to charge fees as high as six-figures to their insurance.
Maria Gordon-Shydlo, a spokeswoman for UnitedHealthcare, which owns Golden Rule, would not provide anyone to be interviewed. She said in an emailed statement that the company's first priority during the pandemic ''has been to ensure our members get the care they need and are not billed for COVID testing and treatment. Unfortunately, there are some providers who are trying to take advantage of this and are inappropriately or even fraudulently billing.''
''Golden Rule has put processes in place to address excessive COVID-related billing,'' the statement said. ''We are currently investigating this matter and, if appropriate, will seek to recoup any overpayment and potentially refer this case to law enforcement.''
Golden Rule's 100% payment of the charges may simply come down to ''incompetence,'' said Dr. Eric Bricker, a Texas internist who spent years running a company that advised employers who self-fund their insurance. Insurance companies auto-adjudicate millions of claims on software that may be decades old, said Bricker, who produces videos to help consumers and employers understand health care. If bills are under a certain threshold, like $15,000, they may sail through and get paid without a second look, he said.
UnitedHealth Group reported net earnings of $6.6 billion in the second quarter of 2020. Bricker said the company may be paying bills without questioning them because it doesn't ''want to create any noise'' by saying no at a time its own earnings are so high, Bricker said.
Texas has a consumer protection law that's designed to prevent businesses from exploiting the public during a disaster. The attorney general's office has received and processed 52 complaints about health care businesses and billing or price gouging related to the pandemic, a spokeswoman from the office said in an email. The agency does not comment on the existence of any investigations, but has not filed any cases related to overpriced COVID-19 tests.
Sussman said he got one voicemail from a billing person at Physicians Premier, saying she wanted to explain the charges, but he did not call back. He said he spoke out about it to ProPublica because he opposes Medicare-for-all health care reform proposals. Bad actors in the profession could cause doctors to lose their privilege to bill and be reimbursed independently, he said. Most physicians are fair with their billing, or even conservative, he said. ''If instances like these go unchecked it will provide more ammo for advocates of a single-payer system.''
Katie Hall @Katie_StatesmanThursday Sep 3, 2020 at 8:38 PM Sep 4, 2020 at 6:21 PM
Gov. Greg Abbott is considering a proposal from former state lawmakers that would bring Austin police under the umbrella of the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Abbott described the plan in a Thursday tweet as a "proposal for the state to take over the Austin Police Department." Abbott has been critical of recent Austin City Council cuts to the Police Department's budget that have reinvested that money elsewhere in the city budget, and he has already offered a legislative proposal that would freeze the property tax revenue of any Texas city reducing a police department's budget.
Terry Keel, a former Travis County sheriff and former Republican state representative, and Ron Wilson, a former Democratic state representative from Houston, laid out the proposal in an August letter to Abbott.
"Austin politicians have overtly politicized local law enforcement to the detriment of all Texans and given state officials not only a reason, but a compelling duty to act," Keel told the American-Statesman.
Mayor Steve Adler compared Abbott to President Donald Trump and said it was "not surprising the president's rhetoric is finding its way to Texas as we get closer to November." In a memo this week, Trump directed federal officials to find ways to cut federal dollars from several cities run by Democrats, citing protests and decisions to cut police budgets. That memo did not mention Austin.
"What we're seeing happening, on the national stage in politics now, are efforts to scare people about their cities," Adler said. "I think it's really unfortunate, and I'm trying really hard not to get caught up in the politics. ... Austin is the safest big city in Texas, and one of the safest in the country. Public safety is our priority, and we support our police. We're also always looking for ways for everyone to be even more safe."
Adler has previously pointed to Abbott-mandated budget cuts to DPS two years ago as a sign that Abbott's comments were disingenuous.
Austin Police Chief Brian Manley did not respond to a request for comment.
State Sen. Sarah Eckhardt, D-Austin, who stepped down this year as Travis County judge to run for her legislative seat, said she believes the proposal violates the Texas Constitution.
"I think this is probably more in the realm of theater than in policy," Eckhardt said. "I don't think it's actionable."
Keel and Wilson's two-page letter says lawmakers should draw up legislation that allows the Legislature to consolidate police departments with the DPS in areas where the governor has determined that, "due to insufficient municipal resources being appropriated for public safety needs, the safety of the public is jeopardized."
The legislation should only apply to municipalities with populations of 1 million or more, their letter advises.
The act should create "a special municipal police department division answering to the director within the Texas Department of Public Safety," the letter says. The act should also control revenue from the municipality's taxes to continue operation of this police division, the letter says.
"Austin, as the capital city, belongs to all Texans '-- not just those of us who live here full time," Keel said in a YouTube video this summer. "In the last couple of years, Austin has descended into a haven for homelessness and related crime."
Keel sent the video to the Statesman in response to questions about the letter.
Gun crime, and not those who are homeless, is behind the uptick in violence downtown, Austin police officials told City Council members earlier this year.
Aggravated assaults, robberies and burglaries are up slightly in Austin in 2020 compared with year-to-date data from 2019. Simple assaults and vehicle burglaries are slightly down.
Austin tallied 41.2 crimes for every 1,000 people in 2019, according to the most recent DPS data. In Fort Worth, the ratio was 31 crimes; 41.8 crimes in Dallas; 50 crimes in San Antonio; and 53 crimes in Houston.
Austin has budgeted $444 dollars per resident on police in fiscal 2020, more than any of the four largest cities in Texas, according to an analysis from the Texas Tribune.
City Council members in August unanimously approved a $4.2 billion budget that includes plans to shift up to $150 million out of the Austin police budget.
About $21.5 million will be immediately removed from the department's funding. The city will cut the $21.5 million from the Police Department's funding by canceling three upcoming cadet classes. The council also cut about $3 million in overtime pay for officers.
An additional $128 million was shifted into two transitional funds. The Decouple Fund includes about $80 million, which would remove forensics, communications, support services, strategic support, community partnerships and victim services from the Austin police budget.
About $49 million was allocated to the Reimagine Safety Fund, which involves overtime, mounted patrol, canine services, explorers, traffic enforcement, intelligence, training, recruiting, park police, lake patrol and nuisance abatement.
The money that was moved into the two transitional funds is still being used for police functions, and the council has said it will work out more details on those changes in the coming year.
The budget's final approval came after the council heard months of outcries from community members who demanded police cuts in the wake of protests against police brutality.
Council Member Greg Casar said he believes Abbott's proposal is a political talking point that Republican lawmakers across the state can use as the election nears.
"It's clear that their intention is to take away the voices of Austinites from being able to run their own police departments. ... I think even more what they want is to fear-monger, lie about Austin and drum up support in the upcoming election to create some political fear," Casar said.
Ken Casaday, president of the Austin police union who has not supported the City Council's recent decisions, said he appreciates the governor's interest in the issue.
"We're looking at a lot of different options," Casaday said. "There are lots of bills being written by different individuals that the city probably doesn't even know about, that I probably don't even know about. It's going to take time to look at these things."
The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically disrupted the production of film and television and while different projects are taking different approaches to the safety of cast and crew as cameras slowly get back to rolling, soap operas have perhaps faced some of the biggest challenges in getting back to work. After all, with much of the drama of soap operas focused on love and relationships completely with lots of kissing and intimacy, production on soaps have the potential to be very problematic, pandemic-wise. To counter that, shows have taken a unique approach: using mannequins to stand in for intimate moments between characters and now, a clip from such a moment from The Bold and the Beautiful has gone viral.
On Twitter, one fan shared a clip from the long-running soap opera that featured a kissing scene between two characters and, well, it's hilariously obvious with the way the scene is edited and cut that the male actor is kissing a mannequin and not his co-star. Check it out below.
Generally speaking, the idea of using a mannequin stand-in is pretty ingenious. It allows soaps to continue their stories as written while also keeping their cast safe. Mannequins also aren't the only solution that the soaps have found. The Bold and the Beautiful is also utilizing actors' spouses where possible. The Bold and the Beautiful executive producer Bradley Bell told Fortune about one specific scene where actress Katrina Bowden's husband, musician ben Jorgensen, stood in for Bowden's co-star Darin Brooks for a scene that required physical contact.
"It really called for a big embrace and a kiss,'' Bell said. ''So, once she was freed, we stopped tape, Katrina's husband came in and they finished the scene. We see the back of his head, and I think it's very convincing it's really Darin.''
But for the scenes that require mannequins, well, fans are losing it over the situation. There were a lot of hilarious reactions to the tweet and you can check some of our favorites out for yourself below.
They better NOT try this with BatmanIt's a soap opera so they're allowed to do goofy shit and get away with this. But if I see something like this in Batman I'm demanding my money back.
'-- Magayla (@thiccy_smallz) September 5, 2020prevnext UP NEXT
Sniffer dogs are a valuable tool in medical diagnostics. Image: Anna Hielm-Bj¶rkmanK¶ssi the Spanish greyhound has been sniffing out medical samples for years.
He's a sniffer dog who gets a 'good boy!' and a sausage every time he manages to identify cancer in samples. Now he has a new task: finding coronavirus.
Researchers at the University of Helsinki say they have successfully gotten trained dogs to identify urine samples from coronavirus patients.
"This research has exceeded our expectations," said researcher Anna Hielm-Bj¶rkman. "The dogs have identified cancer and other diseases in the past, but we have been surprised at how much easier it is for the dogs to spot corona."
Story continues after photo
K¶ssi the sniffer dog, who may soon travel abroad to demonstrate his skills. Image:Anna Hielm-Bj¶rkmanAlthough Covid-19 is an infectious disease that can afflict mink and cats, among other mammals, Hielm-Bj¶rkman says that dogs do not have the receptors necessary for the virus to gain a foothold.
That means dogs can play a role in sniffing out the virus even when cases are mild or asymptomatic '-- and international demand for that service is high.
"We've had enquiries from doctors and other researchers, but also embassies, customs agencies and police dog trainers," said Hielm-Bj¶rkman.
K¶ssi might soon get to travel abroad to demonstrate his skill in differentiating samples, depending on the destination countries' quarantine rules.
Better than PCRCoronavirus is normally found through blood testing for antibodies or PCR testing of a nasal swab.
In the Helsinki research, dogs have identified urine samples from coronavirus patients who have tested positive via other means.
Hielm-Bj¶rkman says that the trained dogs have always managed to identify the coronavirus patient's sample when it's placed with four non-coronavirus samples.
According to the researcher, K¶ssi has found positive samples with greater reliability than the PCR tests and antibody tests.
"But we don't yet know everything about this disease," says the scientist. "For example, why do dogs identify someone as sick long after their recovery? Is there some form of chronic coronavirus?"
Kosovo and Serbia have signed separate documents rather an agreement at the White House on Friday.
The respective leaders of each country are the single signatory each to a separate document, with the same content but the point on Israel, each titled ''Economic Normalization'' and each prefaced by a congratulatory note by President Trump.
It is unclear whether leaders provided each other with a copy of their respectively signed document. It is also unclear what kind of powers these documents would hold, beyond an informal understanding between parties.
The White House Summit of Kosovo, Serbia and the United States, failed to produce any bilateral or trilateral agreement.
Speaking to journalists on Friday, President Trump's envoy for the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue Richard Grenell stated the US had signed no deal.
''[President Trump] signed a letter acknowledging that they are going to work together and do this agreement,'' he added.
The choice of this unusual type of document to be signed by the parties has avoided any implication or interpretation that Serbia has recognized Kosovo.
Fjal ky§e: Kosovo-Serbia Agreement
Serbia plays China Card against European Union - Belt & Road News
Serbia's President Alexander Vucic, in Brussels on Friday, expressed hope that his country may ''join the EU by 2026.'' However, Belgrade continues to increase economic cooperation with China while Russia, Serbia's traditional ally, upholds its support for Serbian claims of sovereignty over breakaway Kosovo.
Stressing a need to ''speed up dialogue'' between Belgrade and Brussels, Vucic indictated that one of the conditions for EU Membership '' Belgrade's recognition's of Kosovo as an Independent State could be discussed.
Quoted by Serbia's B92 news website, he ''indicated that he expects talks with Pristina to continue in two to three weeks.''
Vucic's visit to Brussels takes place one year after French President Emmanuel Macron visited Belgrade, when he vowed to help restart stalled talks between Serbia and Kosovo.
Relations between Serbia and its former province remain bitter, two decades after the Kosovo war led to Pristina seceding and declaring independence.
Belgrade refuses to recognise Kosovo's status, still considering it to be Serbia's southern province, despite a majority of European Union countries and the US recognising it as a sovereign nation.
Meanwhile, both Russia and China continue to support Serbia in its claim on Kosovo.
China and Serbia found common ground during the 1999 Nato bombing campaign of Belgrade, when Nato bombers attacked buildings of the Chinese embassy to Serbia.
Three journalists of China's Xinhua News Agency were killed during the raid which Nato said was carried out 'by accident,' a claim that has always been rejected by both Beijing and Belgrade.
In the aftermath of the Kosovo and Yugoslav wars of the 1990s, Serbia has tried to strengthen economic ties with the European Union, and started the process to become an EU member. But the Kosovo issue has always blocked deeper integration.
Belt & Road
China has quickly integrated Serbia in its Belt & Road Initiative and its ''17 + 1'' Partnership that encompasses massive infrastructural projects carried out by Beijing and 17 Countries in Europe and Central Asia.
To compensate for the lack of European investment and general reluctance from western tourists to visit the country, President Vucic was quick to capitalise on China's eagerness to make headway into Europe.
In 2017, Chinese citizens were granted visa-free access to Serbia and in the first half of 2019, the amount of Chinese visitors to the country had risen 36% over the previous year.
More visible is China's massive investment in telecoms, with the local Huawei headquarters overlooking the Danube from a high rise building and tyre maker Linglong investing almost '¬1 billion in its first European factory in the northern city of Zrenjanin, sponsoring the the country's top football league now re-christened the ''Linglong Superliga.''
The Financial Times reported that since 2012, the Serbia has received US$9.5 billion of publicly announced Chinese funding and investment, ''more than half of China's stated investment in the region.''
In 2019, Chinese companies announced 16 greenfield projects in Serbia, making China the country's biggest source of such investment, according to the Financial Times. Chinese companies made up for some 20% of all foreign direct investment into Serbia.
The EU is becoming increasingly wary of ties with China. In the EU '' China Strategic Outlook published in 2019, China was called a ''systemic rival'' of the European Union. More recent developments and worries about how China dealt with the Covid-19 Pandemic, have raised more doubts about the relationship between Beijing and Brussels.
Vucic's strong focus on doing unfettered business with China is in sharp contrast with Brussels, and may encourage EU policymakers to integrate Serbia into the EU more quickly than anticipated.
Author: Jan van der MadeEditor's note: The article reflects the author's opinion only, and not necessarily the views of editorial opinion of Belt & Road News.
Zak Doffman Contributor Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own. I write about security and surveillance.
The Trump versus Huawei pantomime is now in full swing, and the latest news to emerge from the Chinese giant's media machine is no less intended to find its mark than Trump's far-from throwaway ''Spywei'' barb last month. With Washington's warnings about the risks of election interference by America's two most dangerous adversaries'--Russia and China'--continuing, what better time for Huawei to up the stakes. You're pushing us into Russia's arms, appears to be the message, you might want to think that through.
These are desperate times for Huawei. Trump's latest attack has ripped the chipsets from Huawei's supply chain that the company needs to power its flagship smartphones and 5G equipment. And while company execs assure that a plan is being worked on, that investments in the company's own chipset development unit will be redoubled, that answers will be found, there's been deafening silence from Shenzhen when it comes to any of the details as to what mitigating options the company still has.
And so to that timely reminder as to unintended consequences. Hong Kong's South China Morning Post reports that Huawei CEO Ren Zhengfei dropped his Russia update during a recent visit to a Chinese university. ''After the U.S. included us on the entity list,'' he said, ''we transferred our investment in the U.S. to Russia, increased Russian investment, expanded the Russian scientist team, and increased the salary of Russian scientists.'' Russia and China have complementary technical skillsets but a traditional sense of mistrust between them. Those cracks are fast being papered over by an enemy's enemy realpolitik, though, as opportunist Moscow senses a win-win.
Russia has always figured in the shadows of the U.S. battle with Huawei. Last year, Vladimir Putin accused Washington of ''brazenly forcing Huawei from the global market,'' that, ''it is even called the first technological war of the coming digital era.'' Huawei sales have soared in Russia during its blacklist'--albeit Samsung still outsells the Chinese giant. The loss of Google, it seems, has not had the same impact on Russian consumers as in Huawei's other export markets.
One area on which Huawei is increasing its focus is cloud services. Its cloud business group appears to have escaped the impact of the latest chipset sanctions, and the high profits generated by such services will make for a much needed respite. Coincidentally, Huawei launched a major enterprise cloud offering in Russia back in March, further expanding its revenue base in Russia.
Huawei is also playing a pivotal role in Russia's 5G deployments and Putin is clearly looking to China's example as he adopts elements of the country's Great Firewall. Much more dangerously for the west, though, Huawei is intent on expanding its AI capabilities with Russian talent. As I reported in February, the company is recruiting thousands of developers in the country.
You don't need me to join the dots here. China's Huawei is linking Chinese and Russian AI through commercial development programs. And while on the surface this can all be painted as business as usual, Huawei is also recruiting cybersecurity expertise in Russia, and has advertised for offensive as well as defensive cyber skillsets. When I asked about this earlier in the year, Huawei told me that cybersecurity is its highest priority, ''we employ a qualified team of specialists worldwide to ensure the security of our products and services. That includes supporting our customers in Russia, as elsewhere.''
The most worrying scenario for Huawei is that it will need China to stand-up a silicon supply chain non-reliant on any U.S. tech'--this will take years and Huawei won't retain its current form until then. Its smartphone business will be irrevocably changed, its 5G business materially damaged. For its part, Huawei now says that it intends to invest in its own HiSilicon chipset development business to create a non-U.S. capacity of its own, within a few years from now.
Huawei analyst Dave Burstein suggests that, in reality, a Chinese chip maker will supply Huawei, regardless of American sanctions. ''I think it highly unlikely the U.S. can prohibit a Chinese foundry from selling to a Chinese company in China,'' he writes. ''I'd expect any rational American regime to avoid raising the issue.'' Given the level of those chipsets, this might fix its larger equipment issue, but not its smartphones.
It's fairly obvious that a China program to establish new supply chains and technical capabilities would be stronger for the support of Russia's own science and technology sectors. It's also fairly obvious that in pushing a block rather than monitoring or regulation, the U.S. leaves Huawei will little choice but to go this different route.
''No matter what,'' Ren said during that university visit, ''we will never hate the U.S. It is only the impulse of some politicians, and does not represent American companies, American schools, and American society.'' But with China and Russia representing the biggest cyber and physical security threat to the U.S., Huawei's investments and increasing presence in Russia will do little to abate any concerns over the company's risk factor and state links, even if a change in administration follows November's election.
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Twitter or LinkedIn. I am the Founder/CEO of Digital Barriers'--developing advanced surveillance solutions for defence, national security and counter-terrorism. I write about the intersection
'... Read More I am the Founder/CEO of Digital Barriers'--developing advanced surveillance solutions for defence, national security and counter-terrorism. I write about the intersection of geopolitics and cybersecurity, and analyze breaking security and surveillance stories. Contact me at email@example.com.
The Morrison government will introduce legislation to enable it to review and cancel agreements state, territory and local governments and public universities have entered with foreign governments.
The legislation, if passed, can be expected to lead to the Victorian government's ''belt and road'' agreement with China being quashed, and will put up in the air many university arrangements.
Scott Morrison has been highly critical of the Victorian deal, saying Belt and Road is not a program the federal government has signed up to and states should not be acting in ways inconsistent with Australian government policy.
The dramatic move reflects increasing concern about Chinese influence and interference, although the legislation would apply to agreements with any foreign government.
Under the legislation, the foreign minister will be given the power to stop proposed arrangements and cancel existing ones with foreign governments when they were considered against Australia's national interest.
There will also be a public register to make agreements transparent.
Current arrangements are prolific. They include agreements for co-operation on cultural matters, education, health, the public sector, science, tourism, environmental management, and trade and economics. There are also sister city and state relationships.
The move will further deepen the tension between Australia and China. It comes as the deputy head of mission at China's embassy in Australia, Wang Xining, accused Australia of hurting the feelings of the Chinese people in pressing for an inquiry into the origin of the coronavirus.
''All of a sudden, they heard this shocking news of a proposal coming from Australia, which is supposed to be a good friend of China,'' he told the National Press Club on Wednesday.
''We believe this proposal was targeted against China alone, because during that time Australian ministers claimed that the virus originated from Wuhan, from China, and they did not pinpoint any other places as a possible source,'' he said. ''We don't think it was fair.''
Morrison and Foreign Minister Marise Payne said in a statement: ''The Commonwealth government has exclusive responsibility for conducting Australia's foreign affairs. However, state and territory governments and their entities currently also enter into arrangements with foreign governments in a range of areas '' from trade and economic cooperation to cultural collaboration and university research partnerships '' without having to inform the Commonwealth.
"This legislation will support state and territory governments to ensure they are acting in a way that serves Australia's national interests, is consistent with our values and aligned with our foreign policy objectives.''
The legislation will be introduced next week and the government wants it passed this year.
Morrison said he had recently arranged for all premiers and chief ministers to receive a comprehensive briefing on national security.
''It is vital that when it comes to Australia's dealings with the rest of the world we speak with one voice and work to one plan,'' he said.
''Australians rightly expect the federal government they elect to set foreign policy. These changes and new laws will ensure that every arrangement done by any Australian government at any level now lines up with how we are working to protect and promote Australia's national interest.
"While many agreements and partnerships are of a routine nature, it is important that the federal government is notified of all and any agreements, be they state and local governments, or our universities.
"Where any of these agreements undermine how the federal government is protecting and promoting our national interests they can [be] cancelled.''
The legislation will cover written foreign arrangements that are legally binding under Australian law, legally binding under foreign law, or non-legally binding (such as a memorandum of understanding).
It will not apply to commercial corporations and state-owned enterprises. Nor will it apply to foreign universities, unless they are arms of a foreign government, such as government military universities.
The test the foreign minister will apply will ask:
Does the arrangement adversely affect Australia's foreign relations?
Is the arrangement inconsistent with Australian foreign policy?
Within six months of the legislation coming into force states, territories, councils and universities will have to notify the government of their arrangements with foreign governments.
The foreign affairs department will review existing and proposed arrangements, and advise the minister of their implications for foreign policy and foreign relations.
If the arrangement fails the national interest test, the foreign minister will be able to stop the entity from negotiating, entering, remaining in, or giving effect to the agreement.
The minister will be able to terminate private contracts related to the main arrangement '' for example an infrastructure construction contact resulting from the Victorian Belt and Road agreement.
If necessary the government could obtain an injunction in the Federal Court or High Court to enforce the foreign minister's decision.
Payne said: ''It is vital for Australia's prosperity, security and sovereignty that our foreign policy is driven by our national interest.
"There is currently no legislative requirement, nor clear understanding, that states and territories consult properly with the Commonwealth on arrangements with foreign governments.
"These changes will provide governments, institutions and the Australian people with confidence that due diligence is given to international arrangements to ensure they are consistent with our national interest and our values.''
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KDVR) '' A 12-year-old boy has been suspended for having a toy gun he never brought to school.
Isaiah Elliott attends Grand Mountain, a K-8 grade school in the Widefield District #3, just south of Colorado Springs.
On Thursday, Aug. 27, the seventh grader was attending on online art class when a teacher saw Isaiah flash a toy gun across his computer screen. The toy in question is a neon green and black handgun with an orange tip with the words ''Zombie Hunter'' printed on the side.
The teacher notified the school principal who suspended Isaiah for five days and called the El Paso County Sheriff's Office to conduct a welfare check on the boy without calling his parents first.
''It was really frightening and upsetting for me as a parent, especially as the parent of an African-American young man, especially given what's going on in our country right now,'' said Isaiah's father, Curtis Elliott, in an exclusive interview with FOX31.
Curtis' wife Dani Elliott was equally furious with the school's decision to notify her, only after deputies were on their way to the family's home.
''For them to go as extreme as suspending him for five days, sending the police out, having the police threaten to press charges against him because they want to compare the virtual environment to the actual in-school environment is insane,'' said Dani Elliott.
The Problem Solvers obtained the sheriff's report and it confirms the teacher ''said she assumed it was a toy gun but was not certain.''
''If her main concern was his safety, a two-minute phone call to me or my husband could easily have alleviated this whole situation to where I told them it was fake,'' said Dani Elliott.
Neither parent knew the school was recording their son's virtual class but said the district refused to provide the video to them when they requested it.
A sheriff's deputy recorded the video on his body cam and showed it to the boy's father. Curtis Elliott told FOX31 the video shows his son sitting at home on his sofa when he momentarily picks up the toy gun on the right side of where he's sitting and moves it to his left side, not realizing that in the process his teacher and fellow students saw him move the gun across the computer screen.
''Just flashed across the school computer screen for maybe one or two seconds at the most,'' said Curtis Elliott.
''It would've been a lot easier for me to understand if my son had made a threat,'' said Dani Elliott.
The Elliotts said their son was traumatized by deputies telling the 12-year-old his behavior could've led to criminal charges and might in the future if he were to do something similar again.
''He was in tears when the cops came. He was just in tears. He was scared. We all were scared. I literally was scared for his life,'' said Curtis Elliot, fearful that deputies might overreact to having the school principal tell them a young Black boy was potentially armed with a gun.
Administration with the school district refused an interview request from FOX31 but did email a statement:
''Privacy laws prevent us from sharing students' personal information which includes disciplinary action,'' the statement reads. ''We follow all school board policies whether we are in-person learning or distance learning. We take the safety of all our students and staff very seriously. Safety is always our number one priority.''
Isaiah's parents say safety was never a true issue and suspending their son, who has been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and has learning disabilities, in no way helps his education.
''I definitely feel they crossed the line,'' said Dani Elliot. ''They were extreme with their punishment, especially sending the police out and traumatizing my son and my family.''
The district is now receiving dozens of critical comments on its Facebook page. In response, the district denies its response was based on race or discrimination but seemed to acknowledge it recorded Isaiah Elliot's virtual class without parental permission.
The district wrote on its Facebook page, ''The platforms we use for distance learning have the feature to record classes for educational purposes. During our first week of school, we were still becoming familiar with the platform. It is not our current practice to record classes at this time. Parents will be notified if that changes. We will continue to support all families in our school to make sure they feel safe, respected, and educated.''
Isaiah's parents say if the district wants to respect families, it should show common sense and call parents if there is a concern with a child's behavior.
''The virtual setting is not the same as the school setting,'' said Curtis Elliot. ''He did not take the toy gun to school. He's in the comfort of his own home. It's a toy.''
It turns there was another student, a friend of Isaiah's, who was in the home at the time, who also handled the toy gun. According to the sheriff's report, that boy did point the toy gun at the computer screen and pulled the trigger, but it's unclear if the boy knew he was being recorded or could be seen by his teacher.
At the request of the school, deputies visited that boy and his mother as well. FOX31 reached out to the boy's mother, but she has not returned our phone call.
It's believed that boy received a five-day suspension as well.
Dani and Curtis Elliott told FOX31 their son could return to Grand Mountain School on Friday, Sept. 4, but they intend to transfer him to a charter or private school instead.
Vaccines and such
UN Forced To Admit Gates-Funded Vaccine Is Causing Polio Outbreak In Africa | Zero Hedge
This really should be one of the biggest scandals in public health, but it's given little attention '' mainly because of the high-profile nature of the people and organisations involved.
The United Nations has been forced to admit that a major international vaccine initiative is actually causing the outbreak of the very disease it was supposed to wipe-out.
While international organisations like the World Health Organization (WHO) will regular boast about supposedly 'eradicating polio' with vaccines, the opposite seems to be the case. Their decades-long campaign to eradicate polio is now killing scores of innocent young people living in poor countries.
Now it seems that health officials are beginning to admit that their plan to stop 'wild' polio is backfiring, as scores children are being paralyzed a deadly strain of the pathogen derived from a live vaccine '' causing a virulent of polio to spread.
Health officials administers polio vaccine to children at refugee camp in Maiduguri, Nigeria, Aug. 28, 2016 (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)
This latest pharma-induced pandemic has broken out in the African countries of Chad and Sudan, and the culprit has been identified: a vaccine-derived polio virus type 2. Officials now fear this new dangerous strain could soon 'jump continents,' causing further deadly outbreaks around the world.
Shocking as it sounds, this Big Pharma debacle is not new. After spending some $16 billion over 30 years to eradicate polio, international health bodies have 'accidentally' reintroduced the disease to in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and also Iran, as the central Asia region was hit by a virulent strain of polio spawned by the corporate pharmaceutical vaccine distributed there. Also, in 2019, the government of Ethiopia ordered the destruction of 57,000 vials of type 2 oral polio vaccine (mOPV2) following a similar outbreak of vaccine-induced polio.
It's important to note that the oral polio vaccine being pushed on to the African population by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), a consortium which is supported and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
All of this should be a cause for concern, especially with western governments and transnational pharmaceutical giant all rushing to roll-out their new Gates-funded experimental coronavirus vaccine for the global population.
Currently, the first experimental COVID-19 vaccine is being tested on the African population through GAVI Vaccine Alliance, another organization funded by the Gates Foundation. A large round of human trials will take place in South Africa, locally managed by the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg'--yet another Gates-funded institution.
This latest revelation from Africa should prompt media and health advocates to ask hard questions about the efficacy and safety of the much-hyped COVID 'miracle' vaccine.
AP News reports'...
The World Health Organization says a new polio outbreak in Sudan is linked to an ongoing vaccine-sparked epidemic in Chad - a week after the U.N. health agency declared the African continent free of the wild polio virus.
In a statement this week, WHO said two children in Sudan '-- one from South Darfur state and the other from Gedarif state, close to the border with Ethiopia and Eritrea '-- were paralyzed in March and April. Both had been recently vaccinated against polio. WHO said initial outbreak investigations show the cases are linked to an ongoing vaccine-derived outbreak in Chad that was first detected last year and is now spreading in Chad and Cameroon.
''There is local circulation in Sudan and continued sharing of transmission with Chad,'' the U.N. agency said, adding that genetic sequencing confirmed numerous introductions of the virus into Sudan from Chad.
WHO said it had found 11 additional vaccine-derived polio cases in Sudan and that the virus had also been identified in environmental samples. There are typically many more unreported cases for every confirmed polio patient. The highly infectious disease can spread quickly in contaminated water and most often strikes children under 5.
In rare instances, the live polio virus in the oral vaccine can mutate into a form capable of sparking new outbreaks.
Last week, WHO and partners declared that the African continent was free of the wild polio virus, calling it ''an incredible and emotional day.''
On Monday, WHO warned that the risk of further spread of the vaccine-derived polio across central Africa and the Horn of Africa was ''high,'' noting the large-scale population movements in the region.
More than a dozen African countries are currently battling outbreaks of polio caused by the virus, including Angola, Congo, Nigeria and Zambia.
Amid the coronavirus pandemic, many of the large-scale vaccination campaigns needed to stamp out polio have been disrupted..
Read more here...
The war on Hydroxychloroquine can be traced back to Gilead, the drug maker looking to profit big from Remdesivir '' NaturalNews.com
When President Donald Trump made the announcement that he was pulling out of the World Health Organization, his followers cheered the move, and rightly so. I even cheered that move, but I knew something was amiss, and lo and behold, it's because he's put our money into the Bill Gates founded GAVI Vaccine Alliance.
I've conducted a few interviews on GAVI, and GAVI is not part of the solution. It's part of the problem.
The Gavi Vaccine Summit, Mandatory Vaccines & Autism With Kerri RiveraThe Viral Video YouTube Took Down In Just Hours: Bill Gates, Gavi Global Vaccine Summit & Turning Your Kids Into Snitches With Kate ShemiraniDerrick Broze at The Last Vagabond has the story on the Trump deception when it comes to vaccines'... which only leads to my previous suspicions that, in the end, vaccines will eventually be mandated.
Trump DOJ Wants More Money To Take Guns As President Hints At Mandatory Vaccinations In mid-May US President Donald Trump announced that the US would be ending their financial support for the World Health Organization (WHO) and COVID-19 relief. The move was lambasted in the mainstream press as an out of touch politician pulling funding from a vital global health organization during the middle of a pandemic. To Trump's supporters the decision was met with the typical cheering and celebrated as another Trump victory against the ''globalists.'' To understand what is actually going on we need to examine Donald Trump's actions, not his tweets or media statements.
Let us start by looking at the funding provided by the US government to the WHO in previous years. The latest numbers from fiscal year 2018 (numbers are not available for 2019-20) show an estimated $281.6 million to the WHO from the US. The records indicate that after the US government, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance, are the 2nd and 3rd top financiers of the WHO. The US defunding the WHO actually tightens the technocrats already firm grip on another global institution.
This means when Donald Trump stated the US will no longer fund the WHO, the Gates Foundation and GAVI stepped into the top financial role. Additionally, GAVI was founded by and largely funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in 2000. Either way, Bill Gates is the top donor and will continue to expand his influence and dominance of global health policy. As reported in Part 2 of my Bill Gates investigation, in 2010 the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation launched the ''Decade of Vaccines'' and called for a ''Global Vaccine Action Plan.'' Since that time they have only grown their network and influence on WHO, GAVI and other organizations in order to shape public health policy in a way that reaps profits for the Gates themselves.
While Trump's supporters viewed the US withdrawal from WHO financing as a win for nationalism or a black eye to the globalists, the truth is a bit more nuanced.
In early June, the Trump administration declared support for GAVI to the tune of a $1.16 billion USD donation. Trump's support for GAVI came via the first ever virtual Global Vaccine Summit . At this summit GAVI surpassed the goal of $7.4 billion, instead raising $8.8 billion USD and securing commitments from most major nations around the world. GAVI even received a $5 million dollar donation from the Rockefeller Foundation . GAVI stated that the funding will go to ''routine immunization programs'' and will also help the public-private partnership ''play a major role in the rollout of a future Covid-19 vaccine.''
More than 25 heads of state and 50 leaders of international agencies, NGOs and private industry attended the fundraising event. Participants included Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel, UN Secretary General Ant"nio Guterres, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, and World Health Organization Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
UN Secretary Guterres stated that the vaccine would not be enough and instead called for '' global solidarity'...to ensure that every person everywhere gets access to the vaccine.'' Guterres also noted that ''our individual health depends on our collective health.''
Donald Trump, GAVI, and Bill Gates Trending: While Pedophile Faces Death By Firing Squad For Molesting Children In France, California Passes Bill To Reduce Penalties For Sex With ''Willing Children''
It was at this Global Vaccine Summit where a pre-recorded message from Donald Trump was played. In his video statement Trump said UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson asked him to record a message.
During his short speech, Donald Trump stated, ''It's great to be partnering with you. We will work hard, we will work strong.'' Trump also called COVID-19 ''mean'' and ''nasty'' and said it has shown ''there are no borders, it doesn't discriminate.''
Trump's support for GAVI was echoed on the twitter account for the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). ''USAID echo's @Realdonaldtrump 's words and is proud to be partnering with @Gavi by committing $1.16 billion to protect people through vaccines, because #VaccinesWork , '' the tweet reads. (It should be noted that USAID has also been accused of creating fake social media networks in an attempt to foment unrest in foreign nations.)
"As the Coronavirus has shown, there are no borders."
USAID echo's @Realdonaldtrump's words and is proud to be partnering with @Gavi by committing $1.16 billion to protect people through vaccines, because #VaccinesWork pic.twitter.com/btSLEEM4et
'-- USAID (@USAID) June 4, 2020
It was actually USAID who first announced the pledge of US $1.16 billion in February. The Trump administration included that $1.16 commitment as part of the budget for Fiscal Years 2020-2023. The budget for Fiscal Year 2021 included $290 million for GAVI. Remember that the records from fiscal year 2018 show an estimated $281.6 million to the WHO from the US. The Trump administration's announcement of an initial $290 million investment easily surpassed the US investment in the WHO. Over the next three years the US will give more than $800 million to GAVI for their vaccination programs.
Once again, this puts Bill Gates and his organizations at the top of the global health pyramid. So what did Mr. Gates have to say about the success of the Global Vaccine Summit?
''Since its inception GAVI has helped vaccinate more than three-quarters of a billion children '... And now, it's stepping up and saying it's willing to deliver a Covid-19 vaccine as soon as one is available to end the pandemic as soon as possible,'' he said at the Summit. ''We must also renew our commitment to delivering every life-saving vaccine there is to every child on earth.''
The Trump administration's support for the development of vaccines to fight COVID-19 is also visible in a more recent virtual event organized by Global Citizen and the European Commission. On June 27, Global Citizen hosted the ''Global Goal: Unite for Our Future '' The Concert'' which was supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome Trust, and Corporate Partners Citi, Procter & Gamble, SAP, Verizon and Vodafone. Once again, the funds raised at the event went to the Gates-founded GAVI.
During this event, Kelly Craft, United States Ambassador to the United Nations announced the US commitment of $545 million for GAVI towards COVID-19 relief efforts. ''Together, we must work in an open, transparent, and supportive manner to build a safer, more resilient world. We must be the true multilateralist in the best sense of the word, working toward the common good,'' Craft said .
At a May 2020 virtual summit , also organized by the European Commission, the Trump administration committed to giving another $775 million in emergency health, humanitarian, economic and development aid for governments, international organizations and charities fighting the pandemic. At this same event the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation contributed $125 million.
Either Way, Gates Wins Taken together '' the May payment of $775 million; the early June announcement of $1.16 billion; and the late June gift of $545 million '' these taxpayer funded investments will provide abundant resources for GAVI, and subsequently, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. These funds easily outweigh the paltry $281.6 million the US was giving to the WHO.
It is important to understand that the WHO is a part of the United Nations, which itself is an ''intergovernmental organization'' that is attempting to replace nation-states as we know them today in favor of global governance schemes. GAVI is a ''public-private partnership'' where governmental bodies and private organizations partner up to provide some sort of public service. Neither of these organizations has been elected by the free people of the nations in which they operate.
Despite this fact, the Trump administration is continuing to give billions to GAVI and in doing so, furthering Bill Gates' goal to vaccinate 7 billion people. Trump may have pulled funds from the WHO, but that decision allows Gates to take full control of WHO policy and continue to use US taxpayer dollars to fund vaccine projects, including a rushed vaccine for COVID-19. This was likely the plan the whole time.
As we have clearly demonstrated in previous reports, Gates has an outsized influence on the COVID-19 recovery and global health in general. A 2015 report titled, Philanthropic Power and Development: Who shapes the agenda? , examines the influence of global philanthropy and provides examples of the undue influence Gates and others can wield. The report noted that researchers have been critical of GAVI for following a ''Gates-approach'' on global health challenges, ''focusing on disease-specific vertical health interventions (through vaccines), instead of horizontal and holistic approaches (e.g., health system strengthening).''
Further, in May 2019, Gavi CEO Seth Berkley referred to ''anti-vaccine sentiment'' as a disease that needs to be censored from the internet. Berkley's statements are perfectly in line with Bill Gates' vision and the larger agenda of eugenics. The public cannot be allowed to question the safety of vaccines '-- no matter how rushed they are.
This is why the Trump administration appointed a Big Pharma lackey to head ''Operation Warp Speed,'' Trump's plan to fast track the development of vaccines for COVID-19. In May, Trump appointed Moncef Slaoui, a former executive with vaccine manufacturer GlaxoSmithKline, to serve in a volunteer position, assisted by Army Gen. Gustave Perna, the commander of United States Army Materiel Command. According to the Trump administration, Operation Warp Speed program is focusing on four vaccines, with the hopes of testing and producing 100 million doses by October 2020, 200 million by December, and 300 million doses by January. Slaoui has said he believes the goal of vaccines by January 2021 is a ''credible goal.''
Once again, Gates' fingerprints are all over the situation. Slaoui himself has a long history with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, sitting on the boards of companies that are connected to the organization.
It appears that despite the public pronouncements of divesting from the WHO or tweets about standing up to the globalists, the Trump administration continues to push the agenda to vaccinate every person on the planet.
By the way, Trump's announcement of pulling out of WHO also means it will take roughly a year to do so. So, at the current moment in time, it's a political move for votes since we really aren't out of WHO yet. You're being hoodwinked, again, America by the Apprentice.
Barr Ignores Lawyers' Calls to Go Slow on Google Antitrust Case - The New York Times
The attorney general is said to have set a deadline over the objections of career lawyers who say they need more time to build the case.
Attorney General William P. Barr, a former telecom industry executive who argued an antitrust case in front of the Supreme Court, has shown great interest in the Google case. Credit... Anna Moneymaker for The New York Times WASHINGTON '-- The Justice Department plans to bring an antitrust case against Google as soon as this month, after Attorney General William P. Barr overruled career lawyers who said they needed more time to build a strong case against one of the world's wealthiest, most formidable technology companies, according to five people briefed on internal department conversations.
Justice Department officials told lawyers involved in the antitrust inquiry into Alphabet, the parent company of Google and YouTube, to wrap up their work by the end of September, according to three of the people. Most of the 40-odd lawyers who had been working on the investigation opposed the deadline. Some said they would not sign the complaint, and several of them left the case this summer.
Some argued this summer in a memo that ran hundreds of pages that they could bring a strong case but needed more time, according to people who described the document. Disagreement persisted among the team over how broad the complaint should be and what Google could do to resolve the problems the government uncovered. The lawyers viewed the deadline as arbitrary.
While there were disagreements about tactics, career lawyers also expressed concerns that Mr. Barr wanted to announce the case in September to take credit for action against a powerful tech company under the Trump administration.
But Mr. Barr felt that the department had moved too slowly and that the deadline was not unreasonable, according to a senior Justice Department official.
A former telecom industry executive who argued an antitrust matter before the Supreme Court, Mr. Barr has shown a deep interest in the Google investigation. He has requested regular briefings on the department's case, taking thick binders of information about it on trips and vacations and returning with ideas and notes.
When Mr. Barr imposed a deadline on the investigation, some lawyers feared that the move was in keeping with his willingness to override the recommendations of career lawyers in cases that are of keen interest to President Trump, who has accused Google of bias against him.
The Google case could also give Mr. Trump and Mr. Barr an election-season achievement on an issue that both Democrats and Republicans see as a major problem: the influence of the biggest tech companies over consumers and the possibility that their business practices have stifled new competitors and hobbled legacy industries like telecom and media.
A coalition of 50 states and territories support antitrust action against Google, a reflection of the broad bipartisan support that a Justice Department case might have. But state attorneys general conducting their own investigations into the company are split on how to move forward, with Democrats perceived by Republicans as slow-walking the work so that cases can be brought under a potential Biden administration, and Democrats accusing Republicans of rushing it out under Mr. Trump. That disagreement could limit the number of states that join a Justice Department lawsuit and imperil the bipartisan nature of the investigation.
Some lawyers in the department worry that Mr. Barr's determination to bring a complaint this month could weaken their case and ultimately strengthen Google's hand, according to interviews with 15 lawyers who worked on the case or were briefed on the department's strategy. They asked not to be named for fear of retribution.
Brianna Herlihy, a Justice Department spokeswoman, declined to comment on the continuing investigation. Jose Castaneda, a spokesman for Google, said that the company would ''continue to engage with ongoing investigations'' and that its business practices enabled ''increased choice and competition.''
When the Justice Department opened its inquiry into Alphabet in June 2019, career lawyers in the antitrust division were eager to take part. Some within the division described it as the case of the century, on par with the breakup of Standard Oil after the Gilded Age. It also offered a chance for the United States to catch up to European regulators who had been aggressive watchdogs of the technology sector.
Alphabet was an obvious antitrust target. Through YouTube, Google search, Google Maps and a suite of online advertising products, consumers interact with the company nearly every time they search for information, watch a video, hail a ride, order delivery in an app or see an ad online. Alphabet then improves its products based on the information it gleans from every user interaction, making its technology even more dominant.
Image A coalition of 50 states and territories support antitrust action against Google. Credit... Christie Hemm Klok for The New York Times For nearly a year, dozens of Justice Department lawyers and other staff members worked in two groups, each overseeing a separate line of inquiry: Google's dominance in search and its control over many aspects of the ecosystem for online advertising.
Google controls about 90 percent of web searches globally, and rivals have complained that the company extended its dominance by making its search and browsing tools defaults on phones with its Android operating system. Google also captures about one-third of every dollar spent on online advertising, and its ad tools are used to supply and auction ads that appear across the internet.
The Justice Department amassed powerful evidence of anticompetitive practices, three people said.
But the lawyers also described internal politics that at times slowed down the department's work or drove a wedge among members of the team.
Makan Delrahim, the head of the Justice Department's antitrust division, had pushed the department to investigate Google but was recused from the case because he represented the company in a 2007 acquisition that helped it to dominate the online advertising market.
In an unusual move, Mr. Barr placed the investigation under Jeffrey A. Rosen, the deputy attorney general, whose office would not typically oversee an antitrust case. Mr. Barr and Mr. Delrahim also disagreed on how to approach the investigation, and Mr. Barr had told aides that the antitrust division had been asleep at the switch for decades, particularly in scrutinizing the technology industry.
Mr. Rosen does have a tech background: He was the lead counsel for Netscape Communications when it filed an antitrust complaint against Microsoft in 2002.
In October, Mr. Rosen hired Ryan Shores, a veteran antitrust lawyer, to lead the review and vowed to ''vigorously seek to remedy any violations of law, if any are found.''
Mr. Barr also had a counselor from his own office, Lauren Willard, join the team as his liaison. She met with staff members and requested information about the investigation. She also issued directives and made proposals about next steps.
The case seemed to have two leaders who were not always in sync about who was in charge, and one of them sat in the office of the attorney general.
As debates among the team arose over how best to move forward against Google '-- primarily over whether to file a complaint that included both the search and advertising elements, or to focus on one line of attack '-- lawyers wondered who would have the last word. Mr. Barr stepped in this spring to clarify that Mr. Shores was in charge. Ms. Willard still had a hand in Google, but she stepped back from the case to focus on other assignments.
State attorneys general also disagreed on whether to bring a narrow case that could be filed during Mr. Trump's presidency or to take more time to file a broader complaint. Attorney General Phil Weiser of Colorado, a Democrat who worked in the Obama Justice Department, drove the effort to bring a broad lawsuit, three people with knowledge of his plans said. But Attorney General Ken Paxton of Texas, a Republican, was in the advanced stages of a case focused on Google's advertising technology and felt that it could be brought quickly.
A spokesman for Mr. Weiser declined to comment. A spokeswoman for Mr. Paxton did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
When the Justice Department this summer shared a potential approach to the case, several state attorneys general viewed it as too narrow for them to support, said one person who was familiar with the presentation.
Google's lawyers hope to seize on Mr. Trump's politicization of the matter should the Justice Department sue the company. Republican lawmakers like Senator Ted Cruz of Texas and Representative Jim Jordan of Ohio, the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, have accused platforms like YouTube and Facebook of censoring conservative voices.
Data from the companies undermine their claims, showing that Republicans are among the most visible figures on their services. And few figures have as much reach on social media as Mr. Trump himself.
But the president had made the accusations personal. In 2018, he said that when searching for ''Trump News,'' Google's search engine turned up only reports from news organizations that he said were biased against him.
''Google search results for 'Trump News' shows only the viewing/reporting of Fake News Media,'' he said on Twitter. ''In other words, they have it RIGGED, for me & others.'' He also said Google had potentially violated the law.
Mr. Barr recently echoed the president's criticism and said that antitrust laws could be used to keep companies from restricting the spread of conservative views.
Many career staff members in the antitrust division, including more than a dozen who were hired during the Trump administration, considered the evidence solid that Google's search and advertising businesses violated antitrust law. But some told associates that Mr. Barr was forcing them to come up with ''half-baked'' cases so he could unveil a complaint by Sept. 30, according to three people with knowledge of the discussions.
Some lawyers who felt they needed more time laid out their concerns in the memo and left the case; about 20 lawyers remain on the team. Department lawyers said that Mr. Shores planned to slim down the team this summer. Some people also left because the coronavirus pandemic had made it hard for them to dedicate time to the case. A lawyer in the department's civil division joined the remaining members of Mr. Shores's team.
The department approached litigators from at least three outside law firms to take on a potential case, according to two people with knowledge of the talks. But they all declined, citing conflicts of interest and other logistical obstacles created by the pandemic.
David McCabe contributed reporting.
You might, probably have this information already, but I thought I might write a note anyway to pique your curiosity.
This is a three-act play, as are all theater plays, I assume this is just another one..
Act one, Trump pushes Merkel several months (April visit) ago to stop relying on Russian Gas and the north stream Pipeline. Merkel is unimpressed but has to take action.
Act two: Russia decides to take action against Russian dissident Alexei Navalny in Siberia of all places, a little poison before his plane ride and he is gone in coma. Nothing new here...
Act Three: Germany has found the perfect excuse !! First the move Alexei Navalny via private plane to a German hospital. Second, they confirm the use of Military grade nerve agent in the poisoning. Now in the news yesterday they are lobbying the EU to cancel the North stream Pipeline to chastise Russians.
Belarusian State TV Releases 'Recording of Warsaw-Berlin Call' on Navalny - Sputnik International
Europe17:40 GMT 04.09.2020(updated 19:00 GMT 04.09.2020) Get short URL
Previously, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko claimed that his country had managed to intercept a call between Berlin and Warsaw, ostensibly proving that Chancellor Angela Merkel's claims about Navalny having been poisoned were a deliberate lie.
Belarusian state television has released a recording of a phone call regarding Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny that was allegedly made between German and Polish authorities and purportedly intercepted by Belarusian intelligence.
In the alleged recording, the two individuals, one of whom goes by the name "Nick" and the other by the name "Mike", discuss the documents on Navalny's "poisoning" that were about to be presented to Chancellor Angela Merkel's office. When an alleged Polish official asks if the poisoning was real, "Nick" says that this is not so important, adding that all methods are good in "war".The callers went on to discuss how the scandal over Navalny's poisoning could be used to dissuade Russia's President Vladimir Putin from continuing his purported attempts to influence the situation in Belarus, which is currently experiencing protests. At the same time, one of the speakers said that his alleged work in Belarus was not yielding results that were as good as expected, calling the country's president, Alexander Lukashenko, a ''tough nut to crack'' who is surrounded by ''loyal'' officials and the military. Lukashenko has repeatedly said that the protests in his country are orchestrated and backed from abroad, condemning foreign interference in Belarus' domestic affairs.
(C) REUTERS / CHRISTIAN MANG
Police officers are seen in front of an ambulance that allegedly transported Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny to Charite Mitte Hospital Complex where he will receive medical treatment in Berlin, Germany August 22, 2020.
The Belarusian broadcaster ONT said that the "recording" had been passed on to the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) for them to look into the contents.
Navalny's Alleged 'Poisoning'Russian political activist Alexei Navalny was rushed to hospital in Omsk after falling gravely ill during a flight to Moscow on 20 August. Despite initial claims by his spokeswoman that the opposition figure had been poisoned, local doctors failed to detect any poison in his blood or urine and ruled that he had suffered a sudden drop in glucose levels due to metabolism problems.
(C) Sputnik / Valeriy Melnikov
After fighting to stabilise Navalny's condition for 44 hours, the doctors in Omsk approved a request from his relatives to transfer him to a German clinic. A week and a half afterwards, German authorities claimed that they had detected traces of a military-grade nerve agent from the Novichok group in Navalny's blood, pointing to the Kremlin as the likely culprit behind the alleged poisoning. Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel demanded that Russia explain the situation and provide answers. Moscow has refused to comment on the matter without first receiving solid information about the incident from Berlin. President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, in turn, stated that his country's intelligence services had intercepted a call that could prove that the Germany's statements about Navalny were false.
life (laÉªf) n., pl. lives (lÄvz), adj. n. 1. the general condition that distinguishes organisms from inorganic objects and dead organisms, being manifested by growth through metabolism, a means of reproduction, and internal regulation in response to the environment.
2. the animate existence or period of animate existence of an individual: to risk one's life; a long life.
3. a corresponding state, existence, or principle of existence conceived of as belonging to the soul: eternal life.
4. the general or universal condition of human existence: Life is like that.
5. any specified period of animate existence: a couple in middle life.
6. the period of existence, activity, or effectiveness of something inanimate, as a machine, lease, or play.
7. a living being: Several lives were lost in the fire.
8. living things collectively: insect life.
9. a particular aspect of existence: an active sex life.
10. the course of existence or sum of experiences and actions that constitute a person's existence.
11. a biography: a life of Willa Cather.
12. animation; liveliness; spirit: The party was full of life.
13. resilience; elasticity.
14. the force that makes or keeps something alive; the vivifying or quickening principle.
15. a mode or manner of existence, as in the world of affairs or society.
17. anything or anyone considered to be as precious as life: She was his life.
18. a person or thing that enlivens: the life of the party.
19. effervescence or sparkle, as of wines.
20. pungency or strong, sharp flavor, as of substances when fresh or in good condition.
21. nature or any of the forms of nature as the model or subject of a work of art: drawn from life.
adj. 22. for or lasting a lifetime; lifelong: a life membership in a club; life imprisonment.
23. of or pertaining to animate existence: life functions.
24. working from nature or using a living model: a life drawing.
Idioms: 1. bring to life, a. to restore to consciousness.
b. to make animated.
c. to imbue with lifelike characteristics.
2. come to life, a. to recover consciousness.
b. to become animated.
c. to appear lifelike.
3. for dear life, with the most desperate effort possible.
4. for the life of one, even with the utmost effort.
5. get a life, to improve the quality of one's social and professional life: often used in the imperative to express impatience with someone's behavior.
6. not on your life, absolutely not.
7. take one's life in one's hands, to risk death knowingly.
8. to the life, in perfect imitation; exactly.
[before 900; Middle English
lif(e); Old English
lÄf, c. Old Frisian, Old Saxon, Old Norse
lÄf, Old High German
lÄb life, body; akin to
Poor people in flyover states vs the poor inner city who are looting but are represented by non poor
GWU staff note to students over faux black professor
Dear GW Community,
Many of you understandably have many questions in the wake of the Medium post by GW faculty member Jessica Krug. While the university reviews this situation, Dr. Krug will not be teaching her classes this semester. We are working on developing a number of options for students in those classes, which will be communicated to affected students as soon as possible.
We want to acknowledge the pain this situation has caused for many in our community and recognize that many students, faculty, staff and alumni are hurting. Students who have been affected are encouraged to seek support from our Office of Diversity, Equity and Community Engagement (ODECE), Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), or Office of Advocacy and Support (OAS). Assistance for faculty and staff is available through our Wellbeing Hotline. Please know that we are taking this situation seriously and are here to support our community.
M. Brian Blake, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs
Paul Wahlbeck, Dean, Columbian College of Arts and Sciences
George Washington University professor says she lied about being black | Daily Mail Online
A professor of African American history at George Washington University, who publicly identified as black, has now admitted she is a white woman from Kansas City and has been lying about her race for years.
Jessica Krug, 38, revealed on Thursday in a bombshell Medium post that she has lied about being black her entire career and admitted to deceiving her friends and colleagues.
She said in the blog post - titled 'The Truth, and the Anti-Black Violence of My Lies' -that she is white, Jewish and was raised in Kansas City. 'For the better part of my adult life, every move I've made, every relationship I've formed, has been rooted in the napalm toxic soil of lies,' she wrote.
'To an escalating degree over my adult life, I have eschewed my lived experience as a white Jewish child in suburban Kansas City under various assumed identities within a Blackness that I had no right to claim: first North African Blackness, then US rooted Blackness, then Caribbean rooted Bronx Blackness.'
In a video posted online in June of this year under her activist pseudonym, Jessica La Bombalera, Krug denounces 'all these white New Yorkers who waited four hours with us to be able to speak and then did not yield their time for Black and Brown indigenous New Yorkers'.
She adds: 'Much power to all my siblings who were standing up, my black and brown siblings who were standing.'
In an online bio Krug describes herself as an 'unrepentant and unreformed child of the hood'. Her book Fugitive Modernities includes the acknowledgement: 'My ancestors, unknown, unnamed, who bled life into a future they had no reason to believe could or should exist...Those whose names I cannot say for their own safety, whether in my barrio, in Angola, or in Brazil.'
Krug's online confession is reminiscent of the scandal involving Rachel Dolezal - a former NAACP leader in Washington state who was exposed in 2015 as a white woman pretending to be black.
Jessica Krug revealed on Thursday that she has lied about being black her entire career
In a video posted online under her activist pseudonym, Jessica La Bombalera, Krug denounces 'all these white New Yorkers who waited four hours with us to be able to speak and then did not yield their time for Black and Brown indigenous New Yorkers'
Krug, who has a Ph.D., described herself as a 'culture leech' and a 'coward'. She has taken financial support from the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, The Guardian reports.
In 2009 she is understood to have been award as Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad Fellowship.
Her neighbor in the Bronx, Anna Anderson, told the DailyMail.com that Krug would call her 'white trash' and tell Anderson she was 'gentrifying' the neighborhood by going running.
In her Medium post Krug said: 'I have thought about ending these lies many times over many years, but my cowardice was always more powerful than my ethics.
'I know right from wrong. I know history. I know power. I am a coward. There is no ignorance, no innocence, nothing to claim, nothing to defend. I have moved wrong in every way for years.
'You should absolutely cancel me, and I absolutely cancel myself.
'I have built my life on a violent anti-Black lie, and I have lied in every breath I have taken.
'I have not lived a double life. There is no parallel form of my adulthood connected to white people or a white community or an alternative white identity. I have lived this lie, fully, completely, with no exit plan or strategy. I have built only this life, a life within which I have operated with a radical sense of ethics, of right and wrong, and with rage, rooted in Black power, an ideology which every person should support, but to which I have no possible claim as my own.'
She acknowledged that it would be unlikely she could repair any relationship she has made given the extent of her lies.
'I have burned every bridge and have no expectation that any of my relationships are flame resistant. I would never ask for nor expect forgiveness.
'To everyone who trusted me, who fought for me, who vouched for me, who loved me, who is feeling shock and betrayal and rage and bone marrow deep hurt and confusion, violation in this world and beyond: I beg you, please, do not question your own judgment or doubt yourself. You were not naive. I was audaciously deceptive.
'I have a very clear, loud conscience, but I have acted as if I had none. I gaslit you. I begged for your compassion and love for my isolation and loneliness - real and raw feelings, but borne of the avalanche of deceit.
In her blog post, Krug said she has battled 'unaddressed mental health demons' her entire life and that she first assumed a false identity as a child.
She wrote that her mental health issues could never explain or justify why she pretended to be black.
Krug has been teaching classes on African history at GWU since 2012. She is pictured above during a panel discussion last year on African studies at Columbia University
Krug, pictured above at the Embassy of Haiti in Washington, DC in 2017, has written several books and essays related to black culture
'When I was a teenager fleeing trauma, I could just run away to a new place and become a new person. But this isn't trauma that anyone imposed on me, this is harm that I have enacted onto so many others. There is nowhere to run. I have ended the life I had no right to live in the first place,' she said.
Her scathing online confession is reminiscent of the scandal involving Rachel Dolezal - a former NAACP leader in Washington state who was exposed in 2015 as a white woman pretending to be black
'No white person, no non-Black person, has the right to claim proximity to or belonging in a Black community by virtue of abuse, trauma, non-acceptance, and non-belonging in a white community. The abuse within and alienation from my birth family and society are no one's burden but my own, and mine alone to address.
'Black people and Black communities have no obligation to harbor the refuse of non-Black societies. I have done this. I know it is wrong and I have done this anyway.'
Krug has been teaching classes on African American history at George Washington University since 2012.
Her biography page on the university website says she also specializes in subjects including Latin America, Africa, imperialism and colonialism.
She has a Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, according to the GWU page.
Krug has also written several books and essays on blackness and black culture. Some of the outlets who have published her work started deleting the posts on Thursday after the revelations.
A George Washington University spokesperson said they are 'aware of the post and are looking into the situation', adding: 'We cannot comment further on personnel matters.'
Krug has been teaching classes on African American history at George Washington University since 2012
Hari Ziyad, a black author and screenwriter, claimed that she had only penned the post because she had been 'found out'
Following the revelations in her post, Krug has since been slammed on Twitter by several black writers and scholars who she had contact with throughout her career.
Hari Ziyad, a black author and screenwriter, claimed that she had only penned the post because she had been 'found out'.
In a series of scathing tweets, Ziyad said he considered Krug to be a friend until she called him a few hours prior to the Medium post being published to confess.
'Jess Krug... is someone I called a friend up until this morning when she gave me a call admitting to everything written here. She didn't do it out of benevolence. She did it because she had been found out,' Ziyad tweeted.
'For years I defended her work, and her from her own self-loathing. I did it despite warnings from Black friends, from those who said she wasn't Black enough even if they could accept that she was Black, and from my own mind and body.
'I always knew there was something off. It was in her persistent negativity and jealousy, her always needing to prove her authenticity at the expense of everything else.
'I kept her at arm's length, but still close enough that she could harm Black people around me. I owe so many people apologies.'
Krug has also written several books and essays on blackness and black culture. Some of the outlets who have published her work started deleting the posts on Thursday after the revelations
The Truth, and the Anti-Black Violence of My Lies | by Jessica A. Krug | Sep, 2020 | Medium
For the better part of my adult life, every move I've made, every relationship I've formed, has been rooted in the napalm toxic soil of lies.
Not just any lies.
To an escalating degree over my adult life, I have eschewed my lived experience as a white Jewish child in suburban Kansas City under various assumed identities within a Blackness that I had no right to claim: first North African Blackness, then US rooted Blackness, then Caribbean rooted Bronx Blackness. I have not only claimed these identities as my own when I had absolutely no right to do so '-- when doing so is the very epitome of violence, of thievery and appropriation, of the myriad ways in which non-Black people continue to use and abuse Black identities and cultures '-- but I have formed intimate relationships with loving, compassionate people who have trusted and cared for me when I have deserved neither trust nor caring. People have fought together with me and have fought for me, and my continued appropriation of a Black Caribbean identity is not only, in the starkest terms, wrong '-- unethical, immoral, anti-Black, colonial '-- but it means that every step I've taken has gaslighted those whom I love.
Intention never matters more than impact. To say that I clearly have been battling some unaddressed mental health demons for my entire life, as both an adult and child, is obvious. Mental health issues likely explain why I assumed a false identity initially, as a youth, and why I continued and developed it for so long; the mental health professionals from whom I have been so belatedly seeking help assure me that this is a common response to some of the severe trauma that marked my early childhood and teen years.
But mental health issues can never, will never, neither explain nor justify, neither condone nor excuse, that, in spite of knowing and regularly critiquing any and every non-Black person who appropriates from Black people, my false identity was crafted entirely from the fabric of Black lives. That I claimed belonging with living people and ancestors to whom and for whom my being is always a threat at best and a death sentence at worst.
I am not a culture vulture. I am a culture leech.
I have thought about ending these lies many times over many years, but my cowardice was always more powerful than my ethics. I know right from wrong. I know history. I know power.
I am a coward.
I am a coward.
There is no ignorance, no innocence, nothing to claim, nothing to defend. I have moved wrong in every way for years.
I believe in restorative justice, where possible, even when and where I don't know what that means or how it could work. I believe in accountability. And I believe in cancel culture as a necessary and righteous tool for those with less structural power to wield against those with more power.
I should absolutely be cancelled. No. I don't write in passive voice, ever, because I believe we must name power. So. You should absolutely cancel me, and I absolutely cancel myself.
What does that mean?
I don't know.
Accountability works only when you are in community with people. How can I be in any type of meaningful community with those whom I have so harmfully and horrifically deceived for so long?
I don't believe that any anti-Black life has inherent value. I don't know what to build from here. I don't know that it is possible to repair a single relationship I have with another person, living or dead, and I don't believe I deserve the grace or kindness to do so.
My politics are as they have ever been, and those politics condemn me in the loudest and most unyielding terms.
I have built my life on a violent anti-Black lie, and I have lied in every breath I have taken.
There are no words in any language to express the depth of my remorse, but then again: there shouldn't be. Words are never the point.
The wrath of all whom I've harmed, individually and collectively, will never erase the harm I've done. Pain and trauma, injustice and violence, aren't algebra, and there's nothing to put on the other side of this equals sign but a big, bold void.
I don't know how to fix this. I am attempting to lay out a timeline of my deceit to better understand all whom I have violated and how, and to begin to imagine how to restore, to address, to redress'... But I can't fix this. I have burned every bridge and have no expectation that any of my relationships are flame resistant. I would never ask for nor expect forgiveness. I long to repair my relationships on whatever terms those whom I've harmed need, but only those whom I have harmed can decide if they are willing.
To everyone who trusted me, who fought for me, who vouched for me, who loved me, who is feeling shock and betrayal and rage and bone marrow deep hurt and confusion, violation in this world and beyond: I beg you, please, do not question your own judgment or doubt yourself. You were not naive. I was audaciously deceptive. I have a very clear, loud conscience, but I have acted as if I had none. I gaslit you. I begged for your compassion and love for my isolation and loneliness '-- real and raw feelings, but borne of the avalanche of deceit.
When I was a teenager fleeing trauma, I could just run away to a new place and become a new person. But this isn't trauma that anyone imposed on me, this is harm that I have enacted onto so many others. There is nowhere to run. I have ended the life I had no right to live in the first place.
I have no identity outside of this. I have never developed one. I have to figure out how to be a person that I don't believe should exist, and how, as that person, to even begin to heal any of the harm that I've caused.
No white person, no non-Black person, has the right to claim proximity to or belonging in a Black community by virtue of abuse, trauma, non-acceptance, and non-belonging in a white community. The abuse within and alienation from my birth family and society are no one's burden but my own, and mine alone to address. Black people and Black communities have no obligation to harbor the refuse of non-Black societies. I have done this. I know it is wrong and I have done this anyway.
I have not lived a double life. There is no parallel form of my adulthood connected to white people or a white community or an alternative white identity. I have lived this lie, fully, completely, with no exit plan or strategy. I have built only this life, a life within which I have operated with a radical sense of ethics, of right and wrong, and with rage, rooted in Black power, an ideology which every person should support, but to which I have no possible claim as my own.
There is no way for me to satisfactorily end this statement. This isn't a confession, it isn't a public relations move, and it damn sure isn't a shield. s
Binnen het bedrijf waar ik chief security officer ben woedt momenteel een felle 'discussie' over het diversiteitsbeleid. Onlangs hield de directie hun kwartaalpraatje en daarbij werd vanuit het publiek een vraag gesteld (diegene identificeert zich als non-binary, human met they/them...): "Wat gaan jullie doen aan het feit dat er alleen maar witte mannen in het MT zitten?". De CEO had er geen goed antwoord op (werd natuurlijk overvallen), maar beloofde spoedig een update over dit onderwerp.
Een maand later verscheen er een artikel van onze directie op de intranet-pagina: "Samen diverser". Er zou een diversiteitsbeleid gaan komen, personeel mocht wat surveys gaan invullen om hun mening te geven, en er komt een groep op intranet om te 'discussiëren'. Deze week had ik het genoegen om de survey in te vullen. Dit zou anoniem moeten zijn, dus ik gaf mijn ongezouten mening. Beleefd gebleven natuurlijk, maar wel duidelijk mijn bezwaren geuit. Er werd bijvoorbeeld gevraagd of ik voorstander ben van diversiteitsquota, sensitivity trainings en fast tracks naar management posities voor minderheden. Drie keer raden wat ik daarvan vind. (Oh ja, ik ben een blanke man).
In de discussie groep op intranet vindt momenteel alles behalve een discussie plaats. Men valt over elkaar heen om de 'witte man' (ik weiger hun taalgebruik aan te nemen) in een hoekje te drijven. Dit komt van 90% blanke mannen af overigens. Quota zouden een fantastisch middel zijn, we hebben allemaal impliciete vooroordelen (de drogreden van implicit bias), en hoe durft de meerderheid te bepalen wat een minderheid voelt.
Momenteel heb ik echt het gevoel dat mijn amygdalae op ontploffen staan. Rede en nuchterheid lijken volledig in de wind te zijn geslagen. Het voelt als een culturele revolutie. Ik durf zelf niet eens met die mensen in discussie te gaan, omdat ik hoogstwaarschijnlijk toch word teruggefloten. Genoeg munitie om ze compleet tegen te spreken natuurlijk, maar het enige resultaat zal zijn dat iemand een screenshot van mijn reactie op Twitter deelt en ik vervolgens gecanceled word. Wat is er toch aan de hand??
Gelukkig houdt de NoAgenda show me nog een beetje op de rails. Er is wel rede te vinden, zowel onder collega's die het met me eens zijn, als in filmpjes als deze https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQYFVw-s2t0. Ik heb zelfs de vertrouwenspersoon gemaild om aan te geven dat ik me nu eigenlijk enorm bezwaard voel binnen het bedrijf: er wordt een politieke discussie gehouden en de strategie van het bedrijf wordt erop aangepast. Kritiek geven kan echter niet, omdat ik niet de juiste mening heb. Zie hier het gevolg van het diversiteitsbeleid.
In a planned fifty-day standoff, an activist group will occupy the White House from September 17, the ninth anniversary of Occupy Wall Street, to November 3, day of the Presidential elections.
The group insists it was behind the Occupy Wall Street sit-in now they have concocted a new plan under the banner hashtag White House Siege: saying in their own words 'we will lay siege on the President's home in Washington'.
Adbusters is an online magazine and global network catering to the usual collection of artists, activists, writers, students and the like.
Branded as a social activist movement for the information age, a recent post called Tactical Briefing #1 sets out the schedule.
The raison d'ªtre is to trigger another groundswell grassroots movement funded and directed from the top down.
Basically a case of Wall Street vs Wall Street playing out in the Occupy movements.
The group bemoans the fact not one Wall Street CEO has spent a night in jail for the 2008 financial meltdown, while politicians and corporate criminals continue to savage the public trust with impunity as inequalities continue throughout society.
They ratchet it up to the next level saying ''all the while, ''this howling void of a president, his sins too many to name, sits smugly atop a corona death toll that may surpass two-hundred thousand Americans by Christmas.''
Apparently, they expect tens of thousands of fellow citizens to stream into Lafayette Square in Washington D.C. on the 17th.
They encouraging supporters to dig in and hold their ground as the atmosphere builds up to fever pitch hoping this event will eclipse that of the first occupy movement.
Adbusters draws inspiration from social movements like Me Too, BLM and Extinction Rebellion but most of all from the heat in the run-up to the much-anticipated 2020 elections, the most polarizing in the country's history to date.
Texas GOP members push back against Austin's vote to cut police fundingTexas Gov. Greg Abbott announced Thursday that he is reviewing legislation that would remove control of the Austin Police Department from the capital city, and place them under state authority.
Abbott's tweet is the latest attempt by the GOP to protect police from defunding as Austin became the first Texas city to vote in favor of shifting financial resources, in the wake to the Blake Lives Matter protests which have erupted across the nation in response to police brutality against Black Americans.
''This proposal for the state to takeover the Austin Police Department is one strategy I'm looking at,'' Abbott tweeted Thursday. ''We can't let Austin's defunding & disrespect for law enforcement to endanger the public & invite chaos like in Portland and Seattle.''
CAR DRIVES THROUGH BLACK LIVES MATTER PROTESTERS IN TIMES SQUARE
The legislation, which guides the governor on how to assert state authority in a specific locality that in some manner affects the entire state, was handed to Abbott last week by former state representatives Terry Keel and Ron Wilson.
The legislation put in front of Abbott by the former GOP state officials, dictates that a police force in a city that has a population of over one million, with less than two police officers per 1,000 residents -- a scenario Houston happens to fall under, would be able to be absorbed by the Texas Department of Public Safety.
A new police unit would then be formed under the state government in that city, if the governor were able to determine ''insufficient municipal resources being appropriated for public safety needs,'' according to the Texas Tribune, who received a copy of the letter sent to Abbott.
"That letter basically is a roadmap to how the legislature can address the problem in Austin," Keel reportedly told the Texas publication last week. "Because Austin opened the door to the legislature doing that, by defunding the police and by creating a public safety crisis."
Keel is also a former Travis County sheriff.
Austin's Mayor Steve Adler pushed back on the governor's announcement, and place blamed on President Trump's rhetoric against the protests.
"Austin is the safest big city in Texas and one of the safest in the country. Public safety is our priority and we support our police. We're also always looking for ways for everyone to be even more safe," Adler said in a statement tof Fox News.
"Not surprising the President's rhetoric is finding its way to Texas as we get closer to November," the mayor added.
BIDEN SPEAKS WITH JACOB BLAKE, HITS TRUMP'S 'LAW AND ORDER' PUSH DURING WISCONSIN VISITProtests against police brutality and racial injustices have occurred across the nation following the death of George Floyd, a Minneapolis Black man that died after a police officer knelt on his neck for nine minutes, in May.
New rounds of protests again broke out following the shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man who was shot in the back seven times by a Kenosha, Wisc., police officer in August.
But Austin residents have had their own experiences with what they believe is excessive police force on Black and Hispanic residents.
Austin police officers shot and killed an unarmed Black and Hispanic man, Mike Ramos, after he reportedly drove away from officers in April.
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During the protests that followed the incident, both a Black man and Hispanic boy were injured after police officers struck them in the head with bean bag rounds.
Calls to remove the police chief reportedly went unanswered, but the City Council issued a vote of no confidence in the Austin police leadership in June. A follow up vote in August cut the police budget by a third, according to the Texas Tribune.
The Austin mayor's office could not be immediately reached for comment.
Austin could 'decouple' victim services from APD. Here's what that would look like. - Austin MonitorAustin Monitor
Twenty years ago, trombones were echoing in Courtney Santana's ears '' trombones like the ones in Charlie Brown cartoons.
There she was, crumpled on parking lot asphalt. Austin police officers were holding her two kids, including her 8-month-old son, who had nearly been shot in the head after her partner's pistol fell out of a coat and discharged.
''I heard them cooing with them and laughing and bouncing them up and down, and they were like, 'Mommy's OK, Mommy's all right,''' she said. ''And I'm sitting there having a mental breakdown in front of the kids.''
Santana had seen the gun before; her partner had threatened her with it. But until that shot rang out, she said, the fighting and the threats and the violence seemed surmountable. It was like a dance that just kept going on and on and on.
Courtney Santana got out of an abusive situation and found shelter with the help of Austin police officers. Now she's an advocate for survivors. Credit Michael Minasi / KUT
''That day I was just like, if this is not something I should be doing, show me a sign right away,'' she said. ''And that gun shooting over my son's head was the sign I needed to get out and go to the shelter.''
She called 911, met those two officers and got connected with help. She says it saved her life.
Now an advocate for people going through similar situations, Santana works with police on a daily basis, mainly through the Austin Police Department's Victim Services Unit. The team of case managers and counselors helps survivors of domestic and family violence, child abuse and sexual assault get help when they're in crisis.
As Austin reconsiders its philosophy on policing, the unit '' which handles roughly 8,400 cases a year '' is slated to be moved out of APD.
Services ReimaginedVictim Services is one of a handful of units that are being ''decoupled'' from APD after city leaders decided to scale back the department's budget by roughly $21 million immediately '' and potentially as much as $150 million over the next year.
''Decoupling'' is a city-speak term with a lot of outcomes '' all of which are to be determined. Austin City Council pledged community input and another vote before anything is finalized. But the discussion right now is centered around moving that unit, and its 41 non-sworn officers, either out of APD and into a separate city office or out of its current chain of command within the department.
The decision was met with some skepticism, as it seemed the historically underfunded and understaffed unit could lose out on crucial resources. Those working in domestic violence response feared it could place Victim Services outside of the system, where advocates like Santana work.
Years after police helped her, Santana started Survive 2 Thrive, a nonprofit that helps people find shelter following domestic and family violence incidents. She works alongside counselors and investigators from Victim Services, and says there's an immeasurable benefit to their level of access within the department.
''They need those protections of the APD, so (decoupling) wouldn't be a good deal. '... Their effectiveness and their juice comes from their ability to be inside of APD and be a representative of what APD can do,'' she said. ''You take them out, then they become like us, and they'll be a little bit less effective than they are right now.''
Santana and other advocates worry about maintaining the level of access to 911 calls, criminal background searches and Versadex, APD's electronic records-management system.
Kachina Clark, who heads up Victim Services, says that digital access is crucial.
''If we were to be moved to another city department, I'm not sure that we could continue to legally have access '' or the full level of access that we have now,'' she said.
Council Member Greg Casar, who along with Council Member Alison Alter, pushed to separate the unit from APD, says it would happen only if that access were guaranteed.
Just after the city passed its budget, the Austin-Travis County Family Violence Task Force called on city leaders to reconsider the decision to move Victim Services '' especially because of an increase in reports of abuse during the pandemic.
''The pandemic has exacerbated the need for urgency in managing this issue,'' the task force said in a letter. ''We believe that the best way to do this is by keeping Victim Services housed at APD.''
Casar argues moving the unit would give it more autonomy over its budget and ''elevate'' its stature as far as budgetary and staffing discussions go. He said access to call data and everything else would be guaranteed.
''We want Victim Services to maintain the level of access that they have, but we also want to grow their influence,'' he said. ''And a lot of times, in a big organization like the city of Austin, if you are supervised by somebody else's middle-manager supervisor, then you have less autonomy and less power.''
'The Feather and the Sword'Physical proximity to police officers is just as crucial as that digital access.
Because they work in the same building as officers responding to calls, investigators and counselors can coordinate responses and interview survivors who may need housing assistance or are pursuing protective orders.
Clark says that assistance has proved essential for APD officers answering calls during the pandemic. Counselors are often better able to assist and calm down people who are in crisis, allowing them to recall details more clearly, which can lead to a more effective investigation overall.
As APD pared back some units at the start of Covid-19, the department had Victim Services employees working calls remotely. It didn't last long.
''Patrol officers very quickly requested they come back and respond in person,'' she said. ''(Officers) really have become, I think, very dependent on the counselors for getting better information.''
And Clark argues the counselors, in tandem with officers, leave a good first impression on abuse victims, which makes them more likely to engage with investigations and continue to seek services like shelter.
That first interaction is key, Clark says, and Santana agrees. She likens the tandem to a ''feather and a sword'' '' one offering protection, while the other offers services to get people out of potentially fatal situations.
If not for those officers who helped her 20 years ago, Santana says, she'd be dead. But that kind of assistance isn't what stands out in the minds of people focused on systemic inequities in policing right now.
''It sucks that there are some racist cops that ruin it for those good cops like I had that day,'' she said. ''I had an amazing experience. And then they're holding my kids who have recovered from seeing their mom lose it. And they were talking me into going to the shelter. And I called the shelter right after I left them.''
But as an advocate now, she said she's heard horror stories of how officers aren't all well-equipped to deal with these situations. She says she wants whatever reforms come to the department to involve more training, which was included in the City Council budget.
She hopes that training better incorporates techniques used by counselors, which she argues would free patrol officers of liability and connect people with services more quickly. Now, she says, it's a bit of a crap shoot: Some officers handle survivors' trauma better than others.
If people knew what to expect, they also might be more open to reaching out for help.
''If you can do that and move on, then that frees you of liability, the client is where they need to be, and you have done your job as an officer,'' she said. ''Because there's no uniform, systematic way that they deal with victims of domestic violence, (for victims) it's just kind of like, 'I don't know what I'm going to run into, so I would rather just not even call the cops at all.'''
Shelter In PlaceIn the fore of this debate is a very real concern over the increase in domestic violence and child abuse during the coronavirus pandemic.
Since the start of the pandemic, the SAFE Alliance, a nonprofit that serves as a countywide safety net for survivors of abuse, says it has seen a 30 percent increase over last year in calls to its hotline from people seeking help.
What's more, says Juliana Gonzales, the group's senior director for sexual assault and health services, the level of danger callers describe has increased as well. ''It just seems to be sort of igniting existing violence and taking it to another level that's much less safe,'' they said.
The SAFE Alliance says it's seen a 30 percent increase in domestic violence calls to its hotline over the past year. Credit Julia Reihs / KUT
But that spike isn't necessarily translating into more protective orders, calls to police or cases filed in court.
According to the Travis County Attorney's Office, the County Court at Law No. 4, which handles these cases, saw a 30 percent drop in cases between March 1 and Aug. 20, 2019, and the same period in 2020. Protective orders have largely kept pace with last year, though fewer were filed during the months Austin and Travis County's lockdown orders were in effect.
In short, Gonzales said, law enforcement isn't being engaged, because people are trapped in the homes in which they're experiencing violence.
But even those who do call may not be comfortable taking the risk of leaving their homes because of Covid-19 concerns.
''We've been cautioned against going into the public, if you can avoid it,'' Gonzales said. ''So that the messaging in our city has been very much: Stay home and be safe. But for so many of our survivors, home is not a safe place to stay.''
On top of that, SAFE Alliance and other shelters have reduced their shelter beds because of the need to limit capacity and keep distance during the pandemic.
Looking ForwardDuring discussions on the future of Victim Services, City Council committed to expanding shelter capacity, including by purchasing a 70- to 100-room hotel that could shelter survivors of family violence.
That strategy was adopted from outside-the-system advocates like Santana, whose Survive 2 Thrive project began connecting people on shelter waiting lists with hotel rooms in 2013.
During the pandemic, she helped set up a 24/7 hotline and is rolling out an app to better reach survivors. She has also taken advantage of the glut of vacancies in Austin's typically full hotels by negotiating with them to rent rooms to folks seeking shelter.
''We had two partner hotels in total and there was about 295 rooms leading up to Covid-19,'' Santana said. ''And then when Covid hit, we got instant access to about 1,600 rooms across the Austin area, and we're adding more every day.''
Those rooms have helped shelter 136 families since April, a quarter of whom are on the path to getting permanent housing, Santana says. The lion's share of those families found shelter through S2T within an hour.
While she'd like to see more investment in out-of-system advocates and nonprofits, Santana says Austin desperately needs systemic investment in shelter and in counselors at Victim Services.
The unit has 13 crisis counselors on staff who deal with the entire spectrum of cases in a city with a population that's nearly a million.
''Thirteen in a city our size '' and growing every day '' is really not enough,'' she said.
The city's budget added three more full-time counselors this year, but Santana said Victim Services needs at least 25 full-time crisis counselors to properly address calls.
Historically, Casar said, the unit's positioning within APD has left it to the will and whim of higher-ups who have not fought to expand it.
''It has been a real struggle over the course of years to get to where they are,'' he said.
He said City Council has tried to rectify that, expanding the number of crisis counselors from just three in 2018.
Though the idea of decoupling Victims Services from APD may have seemed out of left field, it's been on the Council's radar for a while.
''I know for some people it seems really fast,'' Casar said, ''but we're trying to be really deliberate and have a conversation over the next 12 months about how to best do that.''
That could include taking Victim Services out of its current chain of command, allowing the unit to directly answer to the Austin police chief or the city manager.
Whatever is decided, Clark said, she's open to trying out a new system as long as it benefits Austinites who come to Victim Services for help.
''For us, if it's a benefit for victims and survivors, then I'm open to hearing about it,'' she said. ''I mean, I'm open to hearing about anything, but we'd be open to doing something different. We just want to make sure we're able to serve survivors in the most effective way possible.''
This story was produced as part of the Austin Monitor's reporting partnership with KUT.
The Austin Monitor's work is made possible by donations from the community. Though our reporting covers donors from time to time, we are careful to keep business and editorial efforts separate while maintaining transparency. A complete list of donors is available here, and our code of ethics is explained here.
Michael Forest Reinoehl, an antifa supporter, died when law enforcement went to arrest him. He was being investigated in the fatal shooting of a member of the far-right group Patriot Prayer.
Emergency workers attending to Aaron J. Danielson after he was shot during protests in Portland, Ore., on Saturday night. Credit... Mason Trinca for The New York Times Sept. 3, 2020, 11:26 p.m. ET SEATTLE '-- A man being investigated for the fatal shooting of a right-wing activist who was part of a pro-Trump caravan in Portland, Ore., was killed on Thursday night when authorities moved to arrest him, according to three law enforcement officials familiar with the investigation.
The officials said the suspect, Michael Forest Reinoehl, 48, was killed during the encounter in Lacey, Wash., southwest of Seattle, when a federal fugitive task force moved to apprehend him.
An arrest warrant had been issued by the Portland police earlier Thursday, on the same day that Vice News published an interview with Mr. Reinoehl in which he appeared to admit to the shooting, saying, ''I had no choice.''
The Portland police had been investigating Saturday's shooting death of Aaron J. Danielson, one of the supporters of Mr. Trump who came into downtown Portland and clashed with protesters demonstrating against racial injustice and police brutality.
Mr. Reinoehl had been a persistent presence at the demonstrations in Portland over recent weeks, helping the protesters with security and suggesting on social media that the struggle was becoming a war where ''there will be casualties.''
''I am 100% ANTIFA all the way!'' he posted on Instagram in June, referring to a loose collection of activists that have mobilized to oppose groups they see as fascist or racist. ''I am willing to fight for my brothers and sisters! Even if some of them are too ignorant to realize what antifa truly stands for. We do not want violence but we will not run from it either!''
Image Michael Forest Reinoehl was being investigated in the fatal shooting of Mr. Danielson, a member of a far-right group. Credit... Beth Nakamura/The Oregonian In the Vice interview, Mr. Reinoehl said he acted in self-defense, believing that he and a friend were about to be stabbed. ''I could have sat there and watched them kill a friend of mine of color, but I wasn't going to do that,'' he said.
On July 5 during the protests, Mr. Reinoehl was charged with resisting arrest and possession of a loaded firearm, but the case was later dropped. At the end of July, he showed a bloodied arm to a journalist with Bloomberg QuickTake News and said he had been shot while intervening in a fight.
Reese Monson, a leader in the local protest movement who also helps organize security, said all the people who helped with security in Portland, including Mr. Reinoehl, were trained on de-escalation.
''He was excellent at that,'' Mr. Monson said.
Mr. Monson said the security designees have been trained to approach potential agitators and politely ask them to leave. They have also been trained on how to conduct physical removals but are cautioned to try to avoid such measures because they can cause things to escalate. Mr. Monson said Mr. Reinoehl would often come over to discuss how to appropriately handle potential agitators.
The night of the shooting began with a large crowd of supporters of Mr. Trump gathering in the suburbs. They planned to drive hundreds of vehicles carrying flags around the highways of Portland, but many of them eventually drove downtown, where protesters have been congregating regularly. Once there, some Trump supporters shot paintballs into the crowd, while people on the streets threw objects back at them. Some fistfights broke out.
As evening turned into night, video appears to show Mr. Danielson, who was wearing a hat with the insignia of the far-right group Patriot Prayer, and Mr. Reinoehl on a street along with a few other people. One person was shouting, ''We've got a couple right here.''
The man who captured video of the shooting, Justin Dunlap, said it appeared that Mr. Danielson reached to his hip.
''He pulled from his side, just like he was pulling a gun,'' Mr. Dunlap said.
But in other video shot during the encounter, someone can be heard flagging that Mr. Danielson was pulling out a can of mace. ''He's macing you, he's pulling it out,'' the person warned.
It appeared from the video that Mr. Danielson sprayed mace just as two gunshots could be heard, and Mr. Danielson went down.
Portland has seen escalating conflicts involving guns over the past few weeks. On Aug. 15, a person allied with right-wing demonstrators fired two shots from his vehicle, the authorities said. A week later, during open clashes on the streets, another right-wing demonstrator pulled out a gun.
Mr. Reinoehl said in his social media posts that he was once in the Army, and hated it, although an Army official said no record of service could be found under his name. In the Bloomberg interview, Mr. Reinoehl described himself as a professional snowboarder and a contractor.
His daughter was on scene during the July interview, and he said she had also been present during the encounter that left his arm bloodied.
''The fact is that she is going to be contributing to running this new country that we're fighting for,'' Mr. Reinoehl said. ''And she's going to learn everything on the street, not by what people have said.''
Mr. Reinoehl's sister, who asked to remain anonymous because the family has received numerous threatening phone calls in recent days, said police officers asked if screenshots from videos from the night of the shooting looked like her brother. She said they did, but she said she has not seen him since three years ago, when she said family members broke off contact with Mr. Reinoehl after escalating conflicts.
At the beginning of June, in the days after the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis triggered nationwide protests, Mr. Reinoehl began posting about the need for change.
''Things are bad right now and they can only get worse,'' he posted on June 3. ''But that is how a radical change comes about.''
A few days later, authorities in eastern Oregon reported that Mr. Reinoehl was apparently racing his 17-year-old son as the two were driving in separate vehicles at over 100 miles per hour. Among other violations, authorities cited Mr. Reinoehl with driving under the influence, unlawful possession of a firearm and driving while uninsured.
Charging Documents Reveal "100% ANTIFA" Portland Fugitive Michael Reinoehl Had Been Charged With Second Degree Murder - Big League Politics
A raucous mob of Black Lives Matter rioters ran amok throughout the city of Rochester, New York on Friday night, inflicting considerable property damages on the city's commercial downtown and even targeting residential areas of the city for mob action.
The mob was set off by the release of video footage detailing the arrest of Daniel Prude. Prude, a 41-year old black man, was arrested by Rochester Police while publicly naked and high on PCP. Police used a mask to prevent him from assailing them with saliva. Prude became incapacitated in a state of delirium, and later died at a hospital. The arrest is currently under investigation.
In response to release of video footage of the arrest, the Rochester mob stormed an area restaurant, destroying tables and property and terrorizing the public present at the business, ordering them to go home.
#HappeningNow the protesters in Rochester NY are "shutting down restaurants", tables are broken, people running off scared #rochesterprotests pic.twitter.com/oxmlZp526w
'-- @SCOOTERCASTER (FNTV) (@ScooterCasterNY) September 5, 2020
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As riotous looters ransacked various small community businesses, they ordered anyone documenting the scene to cease filming their criminal activities.
lmao "don't record our criminal actions plz" ðð¥´ð¤· pic.twitter.com/6r0TVuDCtF
'-- Chad of the CHAZ (@ChadoftheChaz) September 5, 2020
Rioters would go on to target residential homes directly. Residents inside must have been terrified as they assailed, climbed on, and damaged people's homes.
Black Lives Matter activists are now climbing onto people's homes in Rochester. pic.twitter.com/JffhYf4nzf
'-- Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) September 5, 2020
The mob would go on to attempt to break into apartment buildings, with agitators confirming they were specifically seeking to target white people for violence. Police were extremely slow to confront the violent and riotous mob, although they finally dispersed the dangerous crowd.
Rochester police move on the Black Lives Matter "shield line" in Rochester. pic.twitter.com/NwytKvyWjQ
'-- Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) September 5, 2020
The riotous crimes of Black Lives Matter are showing no signs of coming to a halt as the nation comes closer to the November area. New York is a reliably blue state, but the state's upstate area(Rochester located in the state's west on Lake Ontario) is considerably more conservative, and the criminal activity of the mob could be enough to swing it reliably Republican in the upcoming election.
Early on in ''Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass,'' the first of three autobiographies Douglass wrote over his lifetime, he recounts what happened'--or, perhaps more accurately, what didn't happen'--after his master, Thomas Auld, became a Christian believer at a Methodist camp meeting. Douglass had harbored the hope that Auld's conversion, in August, 1832, might lead him to emancipate his slaves, or at least ''make him more kind and humane.'' Instead, Douglass writes, ''If it had any effect on his character, it made him more cruel and hateful in all his ways.'' Auld was ostentatious about his piety'--praying ''morning, noon, and night,'' participating in revivals, and opening his home to travelling preachers'--but he used his faith as license to inflict pain and suffering upon his slaves. ''I have seen him tie up a lame young woman, and whip her with a heavy cowskin upon her naked shoulders, causing the warm red blood to drip; and, in justification of the bloody deed, he would quote this passage of Scripture'--'He that knoweth his master's will, and doeth it not, shall be beaten with many stripes,' '' Douglass writes. Douglass is so scornful about Christianity in his memoir that he felt a need to append an explanation clarifying that he was not an opponent of all religion. In fact, he argued that what he had written about was not ''Christianity proper,'' and labelling it as such would be ''the boldest of all frauds.'' Douglass believed that ''the widest possible difference'' existed between the ''slaveholding religion of this land'' and ''the pure, peaceable, and impartial Christianity of Christ.''
Yet, a hundred twenty-five years after Douglass's death, the American church is still struggling to eradicate the legacy of the slaveholding religion he loathed. In a 2019 nationwide survey, eighty-six per cent of white evangelical Protestants and seventy per cent of both white mainline Protestants and white Catholics said that the ''Confederate flag is more a symbol of Southern pride than of racism''; nearly two-thirds of white Christians over all said that killings of African-American men by the police are isolated incidents rather than part of a broader pattern of mistreatment; and more than six in ten white Christians disagreed with the statement that ''generations of slavery and discrimination have created conditions that make it difficult for blacks to work their way out of the lower class.'' In his new book, ''White Too Long'' (Simon & Schuster), Robert P. Jones, the head of the Public Religion Research Institute, a nonpartisan polling and research organization, marshals this and other data to lay out a startling case that ''the more racist attitudes a person holds, the more likely he or she is to identify as a white Christian.'' The correlation is just as pronounced among white evangelical Protestants as it is among white mainline Protestants and white Catholics'--and stands in stark contrast to the attitudes of religiously unaffiliated whites. Jones's findings make for some wrenching inferences. ''If you were recruiting for a white supremacist cause on a Sunday morning, you'd likely have more success hanging out in the parking lot of an average white Christian church'--evangelical Protestant, mainline Protestant, or Catholic'--than approaching whites sitting out services at the local coffee shop,'' he writes.
Much has been made of white evangelicals' support for Donald Trump in the 2016 election. (According to exit polls, eighty-one per cent of white evangelical Protestants voted for him.) Less attention has been paid to the fact that sizable majorities of white Catholics (sixty-four per cent) and white mainline Protestants (fifty-seven per cent) also backed him. In November, President Trump will once again be reliant upon the white Christian vote if he hopes to defeat his Democratic opponent, former Vice-President Joe Biden. Trump's racism has defined his Presidency'--driving his exclusionary immigration policies, his Twitter tirades, his reluctance to condemn white-nationalist protesters in Charlottesville, and his scapegoating of China for the coronavirus pandemic. Yet polls show that most white Christians continue to approve of his job performance. It is a perplexing, distressing trend, one that may be irrevocably damaging to the church, as increasing numbers of people, particularly millennials, leave Christianity. In December, when Mark Galli, who was then the editor-in-chief of Christianity Today, the flagship publication of evangelicalism, wrote an editorial calling for Trump to be removed from office, he urged Christians to consider how their support of Trump influenced their ''witness'''--the degree to which their lives point to the example of Jesus Christ. ''Consider what an unbelieving world will say if you continue to brush off Mr. Trump's immoral words and behavior in the cause of political expediency,'' he wrote. ''If we don't reverse course now, will anyone take anything we say about justice and righteousness with any seriousness for decades to come?''
In some sense, Trump's Presidency has merely given modern form to racist attitudes that have long festered in American Christianity. In his book ''The Color of Compromise'' (Zondervan), published last year, the historian Jemar Tisby traces the revivalist origins of evangelicalism in America, and notes how the movement's emphasis on individual conversion and piety constrained its social vision. The evangelist George Whitefield, who was instrumental in the Great Awakening, in the early eighteenth century, condemned the cruelty of slaveowners but campaigned for slavery's legalization in the colony of Georgia. The theologian Jonathan Edwards pressed for the evangelization of the enslaved but owned several slaves; he believed the practice could be countenanced as long as they were treated humanely. ''Within this evangelical framework, one could adopt an evangelical expression of Christianity yet remain uncompelled to confront institutional injustice,'' Tisby writes.
In the early nineteenth century, the Second Great Awakening, which brought with it a moral fervor to perfect human society, helped spark abolitionism and other reform movements. Even outspoken critics of slavery, however, remained committed to the entrenched racial hierarchy. Charles Finney, an influential revivalist preacher and abolitionist, barred slaveholders from taking communion in his churches, but he opposed the intermingling of races and prohibited Black congregants from holding church office. For Finney, social reform was always secondary to the ministry of the Gospel. ''When I first went to New York, I had made up my mind on the question of slavery, and was exceedingly anxious to arouse public attention to the subject,'' he writes in his memoir. ''I did not, however, turn aside to make it a hobby, or divert the attention of the people from the work of converting souls.'' In the South, church leaders developed an elaborate system of scriptural justifications for slavery. A Baptist pastor in Alabama, the Reverend Dr. Basil Manly, Sr., became the country's leading religious voice in support of the institution, playing a central role in the establishment of the Southern Baptist Convention'--formed in the aftermath of the Baptists' schism over slavery'--and delivering the invocation when Jefferson Davis was inaugurated as President of the Confederacy.
After the South's defeat in the Civil War, Southern church leaders struggled to help their congregants make sense of their loss. The result was the religion of the Lost Cause, a mythology that ennobled the Confederacy and idealized the antebellum South as a bastion of Christian piety and morals. This fusion of religious and cultural values, delivered from the pulpit, helped to legitimize a social order that continued to subjugate Black people. Later, as evangelical Christianity, anchored in the South, grew to become the dominant expression of Christianity in America, its cultural scaffolding, rooted in white supremacy, spread as well. During the era of Jim Crow, when Southern statutes enforced the strict separation of races and restricted the rights of Black people, Northern Protestant churches remained largely segregated and muted in their criticism. Many white Christians saw segregation as simply part of God's plan for humanity.
During the civil-rights era, even as Black clergy became prominent leaders in the movement, few white church leaders fully embraced it. The Reverend Billy Graham held racially integrated revivals and criticized segregation at his meetings, but the primacy of his evangelistic mission'--and his desire for the widest possible audience for it'--made him cautious. During a crusade in Jackson, Mississippi, in the summer of 1952, he told the audience that segregation had no place in the church. ''There is no scriptural basis for segregation,'' he said. ''The ground at the foot of the cross is level.'' But when his remarks drew the ire of white Southerners, he equivocated. ''I came to Jackson to preach only the Bible and not to enter into local issues,'' he told the local newspaper. Graham would later invite the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., to deliver the opening prayer at a crusade in Madison Square Garden, but he refrained from a full-throated endorsement of King's movement. In April, 1963, shortly after King wrote his ''Letter from Birmingham Jail,'' Graham declined to characterize himself in an interview with the Times as a ''thoroughgoing integrationist,'' and said that the civil-rights protesters ought to ''put the brakes on a little bit.'' In his autobiography, ''Just as I Am,'' Graham writes that King encouraged him to ''stay in the stadiums, Billy,'' because his impact would be greater there. King also told Graham that ''if a leader gets too far out in front of his people, they will lose sight of him and not follow him any longer.'' Graham wrote that he followed King's advice.
A Black man who had run naked through the streets of a western New York city died of asphyxiation after a group of police officers put a hood over his head, then pressed his face into the pavement for two minutes, according to video and records released Wednesday by the man's family.
Daniel Prude died March 30 after he was taken off life support, seven days after the encounter with police in Rochester. His death received no public attention until Wednesday, when his family held a news conference and released police body camera video and written reports they obtained through a public records request.
''I placed a phone call for my brother to get help. Not for my brother to get lynched,'' Prude's brother, Joe Prude, said at a news conference. ''How did you see him and not directly say, 'The man is defenseless, buck naked on the ground. He's cuffed up already. Come on.' How many more brothers gotta die for society to understand that this needs to stop?''
The videos show Prude, who had taken off his clothes, complying when police ask him to get on the ground and put his hands behind his back. Prude is agitated and shouting as he sits on the pavement in handcuffs for a few moments as a light snow falls. ''Give me your gun, I need it,'' he shouts.
Then, they put a white ''spit hood'' over his head, a device intended to protect officers from a detainee's saliva. At the time, New York was in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic.
Prude demands they remove it.
Then the officers slam Prude's head into the street. One officer, who is white, holds his head down against the pavement with both hands, saying ''calm down'' and ''stop spitting.'' Another officer places a knee on his back.
''Trying to kill me!'' Prude says, his voice becoming muffled and anguished under the hood.
''OK, stop. I need it. I need it,'' the prone man begs before his shouts turn to whimpers and grunts.
The officers appear to become concerned after he stops moving, falls silent and they notice water coming out of Prude's mouth.
''My man. You puking?'' one says.
One officer notes that he's been out, naked, in the street for some time. Another remarks, ''He feels pretty cold.''
His head had been held down by an officer for just over two minutes, the video shows.
The officers then remove the hood and his handcuffs and medics can then be seen performing CPR before he's loaded into an ambulance.
Spit hoods have been scrutinized as a factor in the deaths of several prisoners in the U.S. and other countries in recent years.
A medical examiner concluded that Prude's death was a homicide caused by ''complications of asphyxia in the setting of physical restraint.'' The report lists excited delirium and acute intoxication by phencyclidine, or PCP, as contributing factors.
Prude was from Chicago and had just arrived in Rochester for a visit with his brother. He was kicked off the train before it got to Rochester, in Depew, ''due to his unruly behavior,'' according to an internal affairs investigator's report.
Rochester police officers took Prude into custody for a mental health evaluation around 7 p.m. on March 22 for suicidal thoughts -- about eight hours before the encounter that led to his death. But his brother said he was only at the hospital for a few hours, according to the reports.
Police responded again after Joe Prude called 911 at about 3 a.m. to report that his brother had left his house.
The city halted its investigation into Prude's death when state Attorney General Letitia James' office began its own investigation in April. Under New York law, deaths of unarmed people in police custody are often turned over to the attorney general's office, rather than handled by local officials.
James said Wednesday that investigation is continuing.
''I want everyone to understand that at no point in time did we feel that this was something that we wanted not to disclose,'' Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren said at a press briefing. ''We are precluded from getting involved in it until that agency has completed their investigation.''
One officer wrote that they put the hood on Prude because he was spitting continuously in the direction of officers and they were concerned about coronavirus.
Activists demanded that officers involved be prosecuted on murder charges and that they be removed from the department while the investigation proceeds.
''The police have shown us over and over again that they are not equipped to handle individuals with mental health concerns. These officers are trained to kill, and not to deescalate. These officers are trained to ridicule, instead of supporting Mr. Daniel Prude,'' Ashley Gantt of Free the People ROC said at the news conference with Prude's family.
Calls to the union representing Rochester police officers, and to the organization's attorney, rang unanswered Wednesday.
Protesters gathered Wednesday outside Rochester's Public Safety Building, which serves as police headquarters. Free the People ROC said several of its organizers were briefly taken into custody after they entered the building while Warren was speaking to the media.
They were released on appearance tickets, said Iman Abid, regional director of the NYCLU, who was among those taken into custody.
Demonstrators later gathered at the spot where Prude died, chanting, dancing and praying. They stayed late into the night.
Prude, known to his big Chicago-based family by the nickname ''Rell,'' was a father of five adult children and had been working at a warehouse within the last year, said his aunt Letoria Moore.
''He was just a bright, loving person, just family-oriented, always there for us when we needed him,'' she said, and ''never hurt or harmed anybody.''
Prude had been traumatized by the deaths of his mother and a brother in recent years, having lost another brother before that, Moore said. In his last months, he'd been going back and forth between his Chicago home and his brother's place in Rochester because he wanted to be close with him, she said.
She knew her nephew had some psychological issues. Still, when he called two days before his death, ''he was the normal Rell that I knew,'' Moore said.
''I didn't know what was the situation, why he was going through what he was going through that night, but I know he didn't deserve to be killed by the police,'' she said.
The fatal encounter happened two months before the death of George Floyd in Minnesota prompted nationwide demonstrations. Floyd died when an officer put his knee on his neck for several minutes during an arrest.
Hill reported from Albany. Associated Press writers Mary Esch, Michael R. Sisak, Jennifer Peltz and Dave Collins contributed to this report.
Protests erupt after Daniel Prude died of asphyxiation when cops put HOOD on him & pressed face down for 2mins in vid
PROTESTS erupted in upstate New York after shocking video emerged of cops putting a hood over a black man's head before pressing his face into the ground for two minutes.
Daniel Prude - who later died as a result of asphyxiation - was detained by police on March 23 after he was spotted running naked through the streets of Rochester.
Disturbing body camera footage shows a black man suffocating while in police custody Credit: Rochester PDAfter being taken to the ground, the 41-year-old demanded officers remove the spit hood pleading "trying to kill me!".
He passed away after being taken off life support seven days later on March 30 but details of the incident have only just emerged.
The news of the tragedy sparked protests on the streets of Rochester overnight with demonstrators calling for justice outside the Police HQ.
Prude's death was ruled a homicide caused by complications with asphyxiation "in the setting of physical restraint."
Excited delirium and acute intoxication by phencyclidine, or PCP, were also listed as contributing factors by the medical examiner, CBS Chicago reported.
On Wednesday, Prude's family released police body camera footage that showed the moments leading to his eventual death.
Police responded to a 911 call from Prude's brother who said Prude was experiencing a mental health issue.
Prude was originally from Chicago and was visiting Rochester at the time of the incident.
Prude had left his brothers home moments earlier wearing only long underwear, a tank top and socks.
He then began making his way down West Main Street and started taking off his clothes.
A crowd of protesters gather in the streets on Rochester 8
Prude's death was ruled a homicide caused by complications with asphyxiation "in the setting of physical restraint" Credit: GoFundMe 8
An officer put a white hood over Prude's head Credit: AP:Associated PressThe body camera footage shows Prude, unclothed, complying with police to put his hands behind his back and get on the ground.
The scene in the video appears to escalate as Prude yells and spits at officers while he was on the ground.
A white hood is seen on Prude's head as he demands to have it taken off.
One officer wrote that the hood was put on Prude as he was spitting in the direction of the officers and they were concerned about coronavirus.
An officer is seen pushing Prude's head into the pavement for over two minutes.
He told Prude to stop spitting while another officer places a knee on the naked man's back.
While Prude is restrained, his shouts appear to turn into grunts before water comes out of his mouth.
Two people were reportedly arrested during the demonstration Credit: AP:Associated Press A makeshift memorial near where Daniel Prude was restrained 8
The protest was held outside the local police headquarters Credit: AP:Associated Press"You puking?" One of the officers asked.
Another officer is seen saying "He feels pretty cold."
During his detainment, Prude remained naked and on the street before being loaded into an ambulance.
On Wednesday, Prude's family criticized the officer's actions during a news conference.
Prude was visiting family when they contacted the police because they feared he was suffering mental health issues.
"I placed a phone call for my brother to get help, not for my brother to get lynched," said Joe Prude.
"That was a full-fledged, ongoing murder. Cold blooded," he told reporters.
Prude's family wish the officers to be fired and charged Credit: CBS2 Chicago"How many more brothers gotta die for society to understand that this needs to stop?"
According to CBS Chicago, the officers involved had not been suspended as of Wednesday afternoon.
The city investigation into the incident was halted in April after the Attorney General's office started their own investigation.
Attorney General Letitia James said it is ongoing.
"The death of Daniel Prude was a tragedy, and I extend my deepest condolences to his family," James said.
"I share the community's concerns about ensuring a fair and independent investigation into his death and support their right to protest."
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Protests were held in upstate New York after the video was revealed.
Locals gathered Wednesday outside Rochester's Public Safety Building, which also serves as its police headquarters.
Three activists were taken into custody with one reportedly taken to hospital to be treated for injuries sustained during their arrest.
Prude's family wishes the officers to be fired and charged as well, CBS Chicago reported.
The Trump administration is halting ''critical race theory'' training in federal agencies, with White House officials calling it ''anti-American propaganda."
"This is a sickness that cannot be allowed to continue,'' President Trump tweeted. ''Please report any sightings so we can quickly extinguish!''
TRUMP ADMINISTRATION WANTS TO END RACE-BASED TRAININGS FOR FEDERAL EMPLOYEES, OFFICIAL CLAIMS
Russ Vought, director of the Office of Management and Budget, wrote a memo informing agencies of Trump's instruction to stop using controversial forms of training on ''critical race theory,'' ''white privilege'' and ''any other training or propaganda effort that teaches or suggests either...that the United States is an inherently racist or evil country or...that any race or ethnicity is inherently racist or evil.''
''It has come to the President's attention that Executive Branch agencies have spent millions of taxpayer dollars to date "training" government workers to believe divisive, anti-American propaganda,'' Vought wrote in the memo to heads of federal agencies and offices.
Vought cited reports of executive branch employees being taught in the classes -- designed to educate employees about ''white privilege'' and other concepts -- that ''virtually all White people contribute to racism'' and that it is racist to believe that America is a land of opportunity.
''These types of 'trainings' not only run counter to the fundamental beliefs for which our Nation has stood since its inception, but they also engender division and resentment within the Federal workforce,'' Vought said.
CHRIS RUFO CALLS ON TRUMP TO END CRITICAL RACE THEORY 'CULT INDOCTRINATION' IN FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
The move comes after Discovery Institute researcher Christopher Rufo told "Tucker Carlson Tonight" that "critical race theory" had become the default ideology of the federal government.
Rufo pointed to several of his own findings, including that Sandia National Laboratories -- which designs nuclear weapons -- held a mandatory retreat titled, "White Men's Caucus on Eliminating Racism, Sexism, and Homophobia in Organizations.''
A training document obtained by Rufo listed a series of "examples of white male culture." Those included "golf," "quick decisions," "self-confident," "risk taking," "brave," and other attributes that the document notes were "generated by participants."
In July, the federally-created National Museum for African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) faced a wave of backlash for publishing a graphic that linked things like the nuclear family and "decision-making" to whiteness. The museum later removed the graphic.
Rufo claims to have found instances of similar trainings across a long list of federal agencies, including the FBI.
Proponents of the training say it can help the government eliminate bias in areas such as the awarding of federal contracts. M.E. Hart, an attorney who has conducted diversity training sessions for businesses and the federal government, told The Washington Post that it also can improve morale, cooperation and efficiency.
''If we are going to live up to this nation's promise -- 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal' -- we have to see each other as human beings, and we have to do whatever it takes, including taking whatever classes make that possible,'' Hart told the Post. ''These classes have been very powerful in allowing people to do that, and we need them more than ever. There's danger here.''
In his memo, Vought warned that the training ''seeks to undercut our core values as Americans and drive division within our workforce.''
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''The President has directed me to ensure that Federal agencies cease and desist from using taxpayer dollars to fund these divisive, un-American propaganda training sessions,'' he said.
Vought told managers that OMB will soon be issuing more guidance, but in the meantime agencies are to identify all spending on such training, the avenues to cancel contracts and move money away from them.
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Director, Dornsife Global Development Scholars ProgramGlobal Engagementidris@drexel.edu267.359.6058
Idris Robinson, MPH is the Director of Global Health Programs and the Dornsife Global Development Scholars Program. His research has focused on social justice and global health disparities, specifically in understanding systems that impact health outcomes for underrepresented communities of the African diaspora. Idris has experience leading intensive courses abroad throughout the Global South, facilitating culturally sensitive pre-departure field training, and managing a nationally and internationally recognized capacity-building program related to promoting and improving health and development outcomes in low- to middle-income countries.
A Florida sheriff's department has been accused of surveilling and harassing residents for years under a sprawling 'intelligence program'.
Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco implemented the program after he took office in 2011 and promised that it would make communities safer by relying on data to reduce and prevent crime.
But a bombshell investigation by the Tampa Bay Times revealed that the program is rife with harassment, intimidation and flagrant use of force against residents who are not suspected of committing crimes.
Nearly two dozen people targeted under the program detailed their experiences in interviews with the Times, sharing how deputies swarmed their houses in the middle of the night, ticketed them for tiny offenses like overgrown grass, and stalked their loved ones for information.
In one example, deputies targeted a 15-year-old boy and visited his home 21 times in three months merely because he'd been convicted of trespassing and theft a year earlier.
In another case, a teenage target's father was arrested after deputies spotted his son's 17-year-old friend smoking a cigarette inside his house. Deputies continued regular visits at the home after that incident, ultimately prompting the father to move out of Pasco County.
Sheriff Nocco has repeatedly touted the success of the program, under which his office has kept tabs on nearly 1,000 people in five years - including at least 10 under the age of 18, according to an analysis by the Times.
But locals and experts have decried the agency's practices as 'morally repugnant', gang-like and wholly undemocratic.
The Pasco County Sheriff's Office in Florida has been accused of surveilling and harassing residents for years under a sprawling 'intelligence program' (file photo)
An investigation by the Tampa Bay Times revealed that the program is rife with harassment, intimidation and flagrant use of force against residents who are not suspected of committing crimes. Pictured: Deputies perform a check on a person targeted under the program
Nocco's Intelligence Led Policing program, which launched in 2011, operates with a staff of 30 people and a budget of $2.8 million budget, run by a former senior counterrorism analyst who was assigned to the National Counterterrorism Center.
The program works by generating lists of people considered likely to break the law by examining arrest histories, 'unspecified intelligence' and 'arbitrary decisions by police analysts', according to the Times.
The Sheriff's Office said that an initial list of targets is compiled by a computer every 90 days, before analysts go through it and determine which 100 people should be on the final list.
Deputies are charged with going out and interrogating people whose names appear on the list - often without evidence of a specific crime, probable cause or a search warrant.
Former officers who worked under the program described how they were expected to continue making those visits until they found some reason to make an arrest or issue a citation.
One former deputy told the Times that the goal was to 'make their lives miserable until they move or sue'.
Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco (pictured) implemented the program after he took office in 2011 and promised that it would make communities safer by relying on data to reduce and prevent crime
Nocco described the check-in practice as 'bothering criminals' during remarks in front of the Council of Neighborhood Associations in 2012.
Targets identified on the list are deemed by the department to be 'prolific offenders'. The program's manual states that the individuals have 'taken to a career of crime' and are 'not likely to reform'.
'If the offender does not feel the pressure, if the offender is not arrested when they commit their next crime, or if the offender is left to feel their punishment is menial, the strategy will have no impact,' the manual states.
After each check, deputies record new information into the data system - both about the people on the list and about their family members, friends and any other acquaintances.
Records showed that the Sheriff's office has performed more than 12,500 checks since September 2015.
One of the most alarming cases outlined in the Times report was that of 15-year-old Rio Wojtecki, whose name was added to the list of targets last fall, almost a year after he was arrested for sneaking into car ports with a friend and stealing motorized bicycles.
Between September 2019 and January 2020, Pasco County deputies visited Rio's home at least 21 times, according to dispatch logs - even though he was also being monitored by a state-issued juvenile probation officer.
The deputies also stopped by the car dealership where Rio's mom worked, as well as his friend's houses and the gym he frequented.
Body camera footage from some of the checks, obtained by the Times, showed deputies acknowledging that Rio wasn't getting into trouble on more than one occasion and asking questions about his friends.
The deputies were heard telling Rio that they had to keep checking on him because he was a target on the list.
One of the most alarming cases outlined in the Times report was that of 15-year-old Rio Wojtecki (pictured), whose name was added to the list of targets last fall, almost a year after he was arrested for sneaking into car ports with a friend and stealing motorized bicycles
Bodycam footage shows deputies stopping by Rio's house on one of the 21 occasions
The Times found that the program focused heavily on juvenile offenders like Rio.
Out of the 20 addresses that were visited most by deputies, more than half were home to middle or high school-age targets.
In one instance, the mother of one a teenage target was slapped with a $2,500 fine because she had five chickens in her backyard.
In another, a woman named Tammy Heilman was arrested during a traffic stop in September 2016 after deputies noticed that she and her daughter weren't wearing seatbelts.
The deputies had gone to Heilman's house earlier in the day to ask questions about her 16-year-old son, whom they believed had purchased a dirt bike with stolen money.
Heilman declined to speak to the deputies without an attorney present and left the house to take her seven-year-old daughter to a Girl Scouts meeting.
One of the deputies, Andrew Denbo, then followed her down the street and pulled her over because of the seatbelt violation, according to a police report.
Bodycam footage showed Denbo opening Heilman's car door and ordering her to step out, at which point she refused and called 911 to report that a deputy had hurt her.
Deputies were then seen dragging Heilman out of the car before she was arrested on charges of resisting an officer, battery on an officer and providing false information about her son.
While she sat in the back of a squad car on her way to the police station, Denbo explained his department's objectives to Heilman in frank terms.
'Here's the policy of the agency. I'll explain it to you so it makes sense,' he said on the bodycam footage.
'If people themselves or people that live at a house are committing crimes and victimizing the community, then the direction we receive from our Sheriff's Office, from the top down, is to go out there and for every single violation that person commits, to come down and enforce it upon them.'
Tammy Heilman (pictured with her children) was arrested during a traffic stop in September 2016 after deputies noticed that she and her daughter weren't wearing seatbelts. The deputies had gone to Heilman's house earlier in the day to ask questions about her 16-year-old son, whom they believed had purchased a dirt bike with stolen money
Heilmain's confrontation with police was captured on bodycam footage (pictured)
The Times presented its findings to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office six weeks prior to publishing its full report on Thursday.
The agency responded with 30 pages of statements defending the program and praising how it had managed to reduce property crime in the county.
'This reduction in property crime has a direct, positive impact on the lives of the citizens of Pasco County and, for that, we will not apologize,' one of the statements read.
'Our first and primary mission is to serve and protect our community and the Intelligence Led Policing philosophy assists us in achieving that mission.'
The Times noted that Pasco County's decline in property crimes matched similar declines seen in seven surrounding jurisdictions since 2011. During the same period, Pasco was the only county out of those eight jurisdictions that saw an increase in violent crimes.
In response to criticism over the program and incidents that occurred by its hand, the Sheriff's Office accused the Times of 'cherry-picking' bad examples and painting 'basic law enforcement functions' as harassment, the outlet reported.
Nocco declined to be interviewed when approached by the Times on six separate occasions.
He was appointed to the position by then-Governor Rick Scott in 2011 when his predecessor resigned and was formally elected in 2012.
Nocco was 35 years old and had far less experience than the previous sheriff when he took over the post but had deep ties to Republican politics which may have influenced Scott's decision.
Immediately after taking office, Nocco presented his initiative for intelligence-led policing, stating: 'Instead of being reactive, we are going to be proactive.'
He later said the approach to crime prevention was not unlike the way the federal government targets terrorists.
Three former top officials within the Pasco County Sheriff's Office spoke to the Times about how the were driven to resign because the agency didn't tolerate criticism, including about the program.
The outlet brought their findings to the attention of 15 experts who widely condemned the agency's practices.
One of those experts was David Kennedy, a criminologist at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice whose research on crime prevention is referenced in Pasco County's policies.
Kennedy called the program 'one of the worst manifestations of the intersection of junk science and bad policing '-- and an absolute absence of common sense and humanity '-- that I have seen in my career'.
Matthew Barge, an expert in police practices and civil rights, called the practices 'morally repugnant'.
The experts noted that two other major US police departments - in Los Angeles and Chicago - have scrapped similar programs following public concerns that they infringed on citizens' rights.
Despite backlash in Pasco County - which is likely to heighten in the wake of the Times report - Nocco's department has continued to expand the program.
Alex Berenson on Twitter: "1/ Hoo boy. Dr. Anthony Fauci has some advice for us. #Sars-Cov-2 is just the beginning. We're in a "pandemic era" now, friends. What's the solution? "Living in greater harmony with nature." Ooh. I like harmony. I like nature. T
Black history in Charleston sits at the water's edge. On the same spot where thousands of enslaved Africans took their first steps on South Carolina's shore, a monument to their endurance and their descendants is under construction. The International African American Museum (IAAM), set to open in 2022, faces the Cooper River just over a mile from where it pours into the Atlantic Ocean.
The museum will stand in defiance of centuries of Black South Carolinians' erasure from the historic record. But even as IAAM's pillars are being poured, climate change threatens to uproot the people and heritage the museum represents. Those Black communities in South Carolina's Lowcountry region are searching for ways to ensure their culture outlasts ever-strengthening storms and the economic losses that could follow in their wake.
Black South Carolinians have a long history of surviving disasters, natural and unnatural. The Lowcountry'--a stretch of counties and islands where most of the land sits just above sea level'--has always been prone to hurricanes and flooding. And like much of the American South, the Lowcountry has historically had high proportions of Black residents.
It's a reality born of slavery: Hundreds of thousands of people were enslaved on the rice and indigo plantations that stretched down the state's marshy coast, and some of their descendants have passed family homes and land from generation to generation.
''Climate change really is a Black issue,'' said Bernard Powers, interim CEO of IAAM. ''People who live close to the coast as we do, we're the ones who are going to be affected by potential damage from increasingly devastating hurricanes.''
But natural disasters are not the only force threatening to unseat Black South Carolinians from their homes. In the last 60 years, as politicians and developers sought to turn the region into a tourism powerhouse, rising costs have displaced many Black residents. Those economic realities make it far more likely that a storm will turn temporary dislocations into permanent ones'--threatening the Black Lowcountry's cultural survival.
How will history remember the cities that adapt to climate migration? Visit the museum exhibition for Leeside, climate haven of the future.
The land is the cultureThe tension between the Black Lowcountry's cultural riches and existential threats is especially apparent to the Gullah/Geechee'--a nation of people whose customs and language draw from the west African traditions of their enslaved ancestors.
The nation, which declared itself independent in 2000, stretches from the coast of southern North Carolina all the way down to northern Florida, and casts out to each state's small islands. In 2009, the 12,800-square-mile national heritage area the nation inhabits was home to just over 3 million people, 24% of whom were Black or African American, compared with 14% of the US as a whole.
Gullah/Geechee people, who live in rural, agricultural communities as well as the region's cities, are united by their language, a creole of west African languages and English. Other elements of the culture, from spiritual practices to natural crafts, maintain and celebrate ties to west Africa. But it is also deeply connected to the southern US coast that finds itself threatened by encroaching seas.
Gullah/Geechee community and culture is place-based. It's family-based.
Queen Quet, born Marquetta Goodwine, is marking her twentieth year as the elected queen mother and head of state of the Gullah/Geechee nation. ''Gullah/Geechee culture is inextricably tied to the land and to the waterways from Jacksonville, NC to Jacksonville, FL,'' she wrote in an email. The nation prizes its fisheries, which support employment and food sovereignty. Gullah/Geechee artisans, who make intricate baskets for community use and tourist sales, rely on sweetgrass gathered from sand dunes and brackish marshlands. Rice and seafood are central to the nation's cuisine.
''Gullah/Geechee communities and culture is place-based. It's family-based,'' said Dionne Hoskins-Brown, a marine biologist who chairs the Gullah Geechee Heritage Corridor Commission. (Hoskins-Brown noted that she herself is not Gullah/Geechee.)
Such place-based cultures share certain traits, said Todd LeVasseur, a visiting assistant professor of religious studies and environmental and sustainability studies at the College of Charleston. ''These are largely isolated communities using what we would call a traditional ecological knowledge, ethical knowledge,'' he said. ''That is a knowledge that is accumulated over time through trial and error.''
What happens to generations-old knowledge as the land it is built on becomes uninhabitable is a question tugging at the roots of many place-based cultures threatened by a changing climate. For peoples whose history, traditions, and livelihood have been inextricable from their forebears' lands for centuries, it is difficult to imagine what, if anything, would remain after the land is gone.
As Queen Quet wrote: ''To harm [our waterways] means you are harming us!''
Out of placeThe Gullah/Geechee land is being ripped away slowly, as the waters creep up, and all at once, as storms devastate homes and push the barriers between saltwater and freshwater further inland. ''Climate change has not only contributed to rapidly eroding the shoreline of the Gullah/Geechee Nation, it has also started ocean acidification which is affecting our fisheries, ['...] and increased the intensity and quantity of tropical storms and hurricanes that we deal with annually,'' wrote Queen Quet.
A great deal of Gullah/Geechee land, though, has been taken not by storms but by the coastal development that threatens the Black Lowcountry as a whole. Entire islands that were once refuges for the Gullah/Geechee and other Black Carolinians have been converted into white-owned condos, resorts, and golf courses.
That gentrification disproportionately impacts Gullah/Geechee families, many of whom purchased their land and homes generations ago, at the end of the US Civil War. Shut out from court systems, this first generation of landowners often passed their land down to descendants without a will. As their heirs multiply, each is given an interest in the property. Land passed down this way is called heirs' property, and ProPublica reports that the legal loopholes associated with it are the leading cause of involuntary land loss among Black Americans.
Where am I going? I have nowhere else to go.
Josh Walden, an attorney and chief operating officer of the Center for Heirs' Property, a nonprofit legal advocacy firm based in Charleston, breaks it down this way: ''If there were 10 heirs in a scenario, and one heir sold their interest to a developer, now that developer owns a one-tenth interest in that property. He has the same rights afforded to the rest of the tenants, which include forcing a sale.''
That hypothetical, Walden said, is reality for many families, and it has wide-reaching consequences.
''Without our family on this land, depression and heart disease would likely kill the majority of us, as it has done to many others taken away from the island due to displacement,'' Queen Quet wrote. By providing community, food, and employment, the land supports both spiritual and physical health.
Queen Quet emailed on an August weekend, as she prepared for Hurricane Isaias, the first major storm of the season.
''What I have heard repeatedly while we prepare for the storm that is getting ready to head past us as I write this to you'--'Where am I going? I have nowhere else to go.'''
A culture of survivalAs communities face down displacement from a commodified and vulnerable coast, they have come to different conclusions about whether cultures so rooted in place can survive being replanted'--or whether they will be uprooted at all.
''We WILL NOT be displaced from our land!,'' Queen Quet insisted. ''We da binya and ain gwine nowhey! Those narrating our demise are telling lies.'' It is a sentiment many share. The Gullah/Geechee Heritage Corridor Commission and Center for Heirs' Property Preservation said they work with people who are serially displaced by storms, who whenever possible, return and rebuild.
Not all Black Lowcountry residents are as certain of a future in the region. A 2013 report released by the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources said rising temperatures and sea levels and increasingly frequent and severe floods and storms could endanger the state's natural resources, which at the time generated $30 billion and 230,000 jobs. More recently, in 2016, the US Environmental Protection Agency said that coastal South Carolina land is sinking, leading to observed sea level rise that outpaces the global average.
Experts who spoke with Quartz said that long before these forces make the Lowcountry unlivable, they will weaken its economy, which relies heavily on its natural resources and coastal tourism. The first to be forced out, they said, will be Black residents already grappling with other forms of economic displacement.
It's the systemic and institutionalized racism that is pervasive against communities of color. It's environmental injustice.
''[Displacement] is going to be subtle, and it's going to be economic,'' said Hoskins-Brown. Gentrification in cities. Development in rural areas. Blows to the tourism, agriculture, and fishing industries as storm damage intensifies. Financial barriers to rebuilding after storms hit, thanks in part to the limited relief available to people who cannot prove traditional property ownership. ''There's some people who cannot recover from disaster,'' Hoskins-Brown said.
South Carolina native Bakari Sellers said government neglect has left Black communities like his hometown of Denmark to ''vanish.''
''Because of government basically turning their back on them, [these towns] are disappearing, are dwindling,'' said Sellers, who served for eight years as a South Carolina state representative. ''It's bad policy and an inaction on global climate change. It's the systemic and institutionalized racism that is pervasive against communities of color. It's environmental injustice. Probably most glaring is the economic inequality.''
Preserving a peopleRegardless of when they believed mass displacement would occur'--now or in one lifetime or never'--advocates who spoke with Quartz agreed that investments in people, not just the land they live on, is crucial to the Black Lowcountry's cultural survival.
''The culture's in the soil, in the food,'' Sellers said. ''But as long as we're sharing our stories, no matter where we are in the world'...the culture is still there. We just have to make sure it doesn't die.''
Hoskins-Brown said sharing those stories depends on economic empowerment. ''Cultural preservation is connected to economic resilience among families,'' she said. ''If people can have a good job, a good education, healthcare or a roof over their heads, they will take care of themselves and their culture.''
At the International African American Museum, Bernard Powers is trying to walk the line between preserving Black history and helping protect Black futures. ''One of our goals as a museum is to show the extent to which African people are even today still connected to one another,'' he said.
Powers envisions hosting climate change exhibits and events that bring Caribbean and Southern Black communities together to share their knowledge of the water and land. He also knows historians like him are racing against a clock, trying to unearth Black coastal artifacts before rising waters swallow them whole.
He pointed to the example of traditional cemeteries: ''For historic reasons, they were placed in these [waterfront] areas, so the spirits would return across the water by which the people came.''
IAAM, a new waterfront memorial, will stand on 13-foot pilings meant to protect it from the rising river and coming storms. It is a site designed to keep stories of Black survival just above the water's grasp'--and just within its reach.
Rotating blackouts could be imminent and more power shutoffs might be needed Tuesday and Wednesday due to extreme heat and high winds, energy officials warned.
The California Independent System Operator (ISO) declared a Stage 2 emergency order Saturday around 6 p.m., meaning that rotating blackouts throughout the state could be expected if people didn't conserve energy from 3 to 9 p.m. The grid operator had previously issued a Flex Alert, asking customers to conserve energy from Saturday to Monday during a statewide heat wave in order to not overpower the grid system. The conservation of energy helps the power grid maintain reliability during the heat wave, according to ISO.
The ISO said the grid system is strained due to a loss of 1,600 megawatts of power '-- roughly equivalent to the amount electricity to power 1.2 million homes. The loss of power was from a combination of fires, high temperatures and load on the system. After 9 p.m., the ISO reported there were no blackouts.
PG&E also warned customers Saturday that a ''Public Safety Power Shutoff,'' might be needed Monday and Tuesday to help prevent wildfire danger. The warning is due to an offshore wind event expected late Monday night through Wednesday morning, the public utility announced Saturday afternoon. The conditions could require a power shutoff since high temperatures, extreme dryness and record-high winds throughout the state could cause sparks that can lead to major wildfires.
''We only use PSPS as a last resort when weather is so severe,'' said Katie Allen, PG&E spokesperson on Saturday.
The shutoffs are used to reduce public safety risks in specific geographic areas when a combination of adverse weather and dry fuel conditions are present, she said.
The shutoffs are different than rolling blackouts, or rotating outages, as those are called by the state grid operator, ISO, when there is too much demand for energy statewide, and not enough resources to meet that demand, Allen said.
Since moving to Stage 2 Saturday night, ISO said it could no longer provide expected energy requirements, meaning blackouts could be imminent throughout the state.
Labor Day weekend temperatures are up 15 to 25 degrees above normal for the state during this time. The grid operator is expecting an increase in electricity demand, mostly from air conditioning use.
''Consumers should always be prepared for potential power outages, both planned and unplanned during heat waves, especially in high temperatures that last multiple days,'' the ISO said in an advisory Saturday.
Several wildfires throughout the state are also a concern as the fires themselves can take out transmission lines or cause lines to be shut down for the safety of firefighters in the area.
Zones that are under a warning for the power shutoff Tuesday and Wednesday include the Bay Area, although PG&E did not specify which areas would be affected and to what extent. Customers affected would be notified 48 hours before the event via formal notification via text, email or phone calls, Allen said.
Hot and dry conditions are expected throughout the state, with a peak in the heat on Sunday, PG&E said. Temperatures during the holiday weekend are expected to reach triple digits, within the 105 to 112 degrees Fahrenheit range.
The offshore winds are expected around Monday, directly on the heels of the weekend heat wave, which could exacerbate fuel dryness to critical levels, according to PG&E.
How to check if your home will lose power during PG&E blackouts
The National Weather Service issued several fire weather watches across the state, which are likely to be upgraded to red flag warnings, according to the utility.
PG&E's public safety power shutoff could occur as a result of several factors: including a red flag warning, low humidity, forecasted sustained winds above 25 mph and wind gusts in excess of 45 mph, and dry material.
A ''Spare the Air'' alert in the Bay Area was also extended through Monday, due to the unhealthy smog.
My Smoking Hot Girlfriend works at, let's call it a large orange home improvement store. The fall decor is coming in and there was a large display that read "Spookify your yard!" And the word "Spookify" has been covered with tape and the word "decorate" written on the tape, this appears to have preemptively.
Signing off- Boogity, Boogity, Boogity, AMEN!
-Sea Rock of the Land Lock
Tucker Beats The Boycott..Brings In Most Money In Ad Revenue
Tucker Carlson has officially beaten the boycotts by the left-wing hate mob.
Tucker brought in more money than any other Cable News host.
So how's that boycott of Tucker's advertisers working out?Cable TV news networks have seen 30%-plus prime-time advertising revenue growth '-- Tucker Carlson Tonight pulled in $37.2 million as the best prime-time ad revenue performer on cable news'...https://t.co/J48hp9N6ug pic.twitter.com/yyCf3Jn2lL
'-- johnny dollar (@johnnydollar01) September 3, 2020
Mediapost:In the most recent three-month period '-- May through July '-- prime-time ad revenues rose 31.5% to $158.7 million (8 p.m. to 11 p.m.) versus the previous three-month period (February through April), according to Standard Media Index's Accu-TV.
Fox News Channel posted the best results, rising 44.3% to $79.7 million for May through July, while CNN gained 28.4% to $45.7 million and MSNBC was 11.8% higher to $33.3 million.
Looking at the entire six-month period, SMI says ''Tucker Carlson Tonight'' pulled in $37.2 million as the best Fox News prime-time performer. Right behind was ''The Ingraham Angle'' ($36.6 million) and ''Hannity'' ($36.2 million)
He crushed the Fake News Media:
MSNBC's top show was ''The Rachel Maddow Show'' '-- $20.8 million, while CNN's ''Cuomo Prime Time'' and ''Anderson Cooper 360'' tied with $19.1 million.
Tucker Carlson has faced organized boycotts from left-wingers who have bullied his advertisers into leaving his show:
UPDATE: This morning, I reported that @Disney was still advertising on Tucker Carlson, who is using his platform to trash the Black Lives Matter movement
A few minutes ago, Disney told me it will no longer run ads on the programhttps://t.co/bjUXjkl30U
'-- Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) June 10, 2020
This is the power of independent accountability journalism
You can make more of this work possible by subscribing to my newsletter, Popular Information ''> https://t.co/TfpCItdVSo
'-- Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) June 10, 2020
UPDATE: This AM, I reported @PapaJohns was still advertising on Tucker Carlson
It sent me a statement last nite indicating it had no plans to stop
In a new statement, sent to me moments ago, the company said it will no longer advertise on Tucker Carlsonhttps://t.co/bjUXjkl30U
'-- Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) June 10, 2020
Good work Tucker!
The Palmieri Report is a Pro-America News Outlet founded by Jacob Palmieri two years ago at the age of 19. Since its founding, it has gotten over 2M pages views and over 20k followers. The Palmieri Report is dedicated to giving people the truth so that they can form their own informed political opinions.
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The U.S. Agency for Global Media and the media organizations that it supports can now make their content available in broadcast quality upon request within the United States. This is due to a law that went into effect on July 2, 2013, amending the U.S. Information and Educational Exchange Act of 1948, known as the Smith-Mundt Act. Amending Smith-Mundt for this purpose was part of the strategic plan adopted in 2011 by the governing board overseeing the then BBG.
Congressman Adam Smith (D-WA) and Congressman Mac Thornberry (R-TX), co-sponsored the Smith-Mundt Modernization Act, which was introduced in 2010 and made part of a larger piece of legislation in 2012.
The new law will let people across America see and hear the valuable news reported by the Agency's accomplished journalists. It takes into account modern content platforms that are not restricted by national boundaries, such as the Internet, mobile delivery and satellite broadcasting.
The modernization of Smith-Mundt will facilitate global connectivity and audience engagement and will provide greater transparency into publicly-funded broadcasting.
Here are some Frequently Asked Questions about the new law.
Can USAGM focus its broadcasting on the United States?So what does the new law allow that wasn't allowed before?How can these materials be requested?Wasn't this content already available in the United States via the Internet or other means, and isn't it still available without having to be requested?Do you intend to target your programming to (C)migr(C) communities in this country?Is this an attempt to influence or propagandize US citizens?But won't the Defense Department now be at liberty to spread propaganda in the United States thanks to this new legislation?What guarantees that USAGM content is balanced and accurate?Q. Can the USAGM focus its broadcasting on the United States?
A. No. There has been no change to the Agency's enabling statute, the U.S. International Broadcasting Act of 1994, which authorizes the agency to create programs for foreign audiences. The Agency is not authorized to begin broadcasting or to create programming for audiences in the United States. We do not seek to change that. USAGM continues to focus on overseas audiences.
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Q. So what does the new law allow that wasn't allowed before?
A. The new legislation eases Smith-Mundt restrictions and allows the agency and its broadcasters to respond positively to requests from within the United States for their content. Much, but not all, of this programming is now available online. Additionally, the Agency can consider domestic requests for ongoing subscriptions if doing so falls within the agency's mission and other statutory authorities.
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Q. How can these materials be requested?
A: Requests for use of program content should be made through individual broadcasters. Please see this fact sheet for detailed instructions.
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Q. Wasn't this content already available in the United States via the internet or other means, and isn't it still available without having to be requested?
A. It is true that some, but not all, of our broadcasters' content has been and will continue to be accessible on the Internet, via shortwave radio (depending on signal quality and availability) or on TV outlets where the international footprint for our programs is accessible in this country. However, that makes up only a fraction of the content created by our broadcasters each year. Now our broadcasters can make this material available upon request in broadcast quality. Requesters are obliged to secure U.S. broadcast rights and permissions for any third-party copyrighted content that may be contained in USAGM programming.
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Q. Do you intend to target your programming to (C)migr(C) communities in this country?
A. No. Existing law does not allow the Agency to create programs for audiences in the United States, nor do we seek to do that. But the new law does allow interested U.S. residents to access USAGM content, upon request. Historically, organizations operating internationally and representatives of (C)migr(C) communities '' some from areas in conflict '-- have sought out this reliable news of their home countries and in their native languages.
The modernization of Smith-Mundt will facilitate global connectivity and audience engagement and will provide greater transparency into publicly-funded broadcasting.
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Q. Is this an attempt to influence or propagandize US citizens?
A. No. Our journalists must abide by legally mandated broadcasting standards and principles to present accurate and objective news and information. They do so in 62 languages for audiences in more than 100 countries countries where it is often difficult or impossible to receive locally-produced, uncensored or unbiased programs. They provide responsible discussion and open debate in places where it is rare in the media. To call these efforts ''propaganda'' is an affront to those journalists, many of whom work in some of the roughest spots in the world, putting themselves and their loved ones at great risk.
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Q. But won't the Defense Department now be at liberty to spread propaganda in the United States thanks to this new legislation?
A. No. The U.S. Information and Educational Exchange Act of 1948 does not apply to the Defense Department, and neither do the subsequent amendments.
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Q. What guarantees that content from USAGM is balanced and accurate?
A. USAGM networks are legally mandated to present accurate and objective news and information. The mission statements of our networks reinforce the commitment to high-quality journalism and serving as a model of free press. All of the networks''Voice of America, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Radio Free Asia, the Office of Cuba Broadcasting, and the Middle East Broadcasting Networks (Alhurra TV & Radio Sawa) '' are considered vital, objective news sources and are frequently cited by major media, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Miami Herald, and CNN, for their high-quality reporting on topics ranging from the tragic self-immolations in Tibet to human rights issues in Iran. This is testament to the quality and range of reporting that our journalists produce.
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Build the Wall
S.25 - 116th Congress (2019-2020): EL CHAPO Act | Congress.gov | Library of Congress
Sponsor: Sen. Cruz, Ted [R-TX] (Introduced 01/03/2019) Committees: Senate - Judiciary Latest Action: Senate - 01/03/2019 Read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary. (All Actions) Tracker:This bill has the status Introduced
Passed SenatePassed HouseTo PresidentBecame Law Summary (1) Text (1) Actions (1) Titles (3) Amendments (0) Cosponsors (5) Committees (1) Related Bills (1) Go to: Summary: S.25 '-- 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)There is one summary for S.25. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.
Shown Here: Introduced in Senate (01/03/2019) Ensuring Lawful Collection of Hidden Assets to Provide Order Act or the EL CHAPO Act
This bill requires the forfeited profits of Joaquin Archivaldo Guzman Loera (El Chapo) from his illicit drug trafficking enterprise to be reserved for border security measures between the United States and Mexico, including the completion of a wall.
Additionally, it requires the forfeited funds from the felony conviction of a member of a drug cartel to be reserved for border security measures between the United States and Mexico, including the completion of a wall.
U.S. | At Least 4 Boats Sink During 'Trump Boat Parade' in Texas, Officials SayNo injuries were immediately reported at the event, which was taking place on Lake Travis.
Owners of boats of ''all shapes and sizes'' were encouraged to participate and to decorate their craft with ''as many Trump flags'' as possible at the event in Lake Travis in Texas, a Facebook page said. Credit... Bob Daemmrich The authorities rescued numerous people from the waters of Lake Travis in Texas on Saturday after at least four boats sank at an event promoted as a Trump Boat Parade, officials said.
The Sheriff's Office in Travis County received ''multiple'' calls of boats in distress starting at 12:15 p.m. local time, a spokeswoman, Kristen Dark, said.
Christa Stedman, a spokeswoman for Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services, said no injuries had been reported.
Firefighters pulled ''numerous'' people out of the water, said Braden Frame, president of the Lake Travis Fire Fighters Association. It was not clear how many had needed rescuing, he said.
The number of boats participating in the gathering was not immediately clear. Ms. Dark said there were ''too many variables'' to say for sure what exactly happened.
''We had an exceptional number of boats on the lake today,'' she said. ''When they all started moving at the same time, it generated significant waves.''
With winds around 10 miles an hour, and gusting to as much as 15 m.p.h., the weather conditions in and around the lake most likely would not have caused the boats to sink, Aaron Treadway, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in the Austin/San Antonio office, said.
Mr. Frame praised the work of emergency responders, noting that the rescuers had faced ''significant challenges due to the amount of waves and chop on the water today.''
''We train for water rescues regularly, but this is the first multi-vessel, multi-incident water rescue that we've responded to not precipitated by a collision,'' he said.
Steve Salinas, 42, said that the water had been choppy and the swells had been high when he went to launch his 22-foot boat, decorated with eight-foot-tall flagpoles.
Mr. Salinas, who helped organize the event, which was called the Lake Travis Trump Boat Parade and was organized on Facebook, said the boat parade was ''one way that Trump supporters can get out and express themselves without causing too much trouble or congestion in streets.''
Mr. Salinas said he had seen boats of all sizes Saturday '-- from 60-foot yachts to eight-foot boats. Mixed with the number of boats headed in the same direction, their various sizes and the choppy water, Mr. Salinas said, accidents were bound to happen.
''You can have really great water one second, and it could get some pretty heavy swells in a matter of minutes,'' he said. ''Once boats get on a lake, mother nature has its own plans.''
Boaters were set to travel around the lake, which is about 15 miles northwest of Austin, at 10 miles per hour, according to the event's page.
Other boat parades to display support for President Trump have taken place this summer.
In Oregon, a boat sank after it was swamped by waves from a passing boat parade, The Oregonian reported. The people on the boat, which was not involved in the parade, were not injured.
Another parade, the Nation's Capital Trumptilla Boat Parade and Rally, is planned for Sunday on the Potomac River.
Christina Morales contributed reporting.
Several boats sink and multiple are in 'distress' at Trump Boat Parade on Lake Travis, Texas | Daily Mail Online
Several boats have sunk and multiple are 'in distress' at a Trump Boat Parade on Lake Travis, Texas, authorities said.
The Travis County Sheriff's Office on Saturday said it's responding to 'many boats in distress' at a massive flotilla on the lake located 20 miles northwest of Austin.
Police have received calls for help all along the parade route including on Paradise Cove, West Beach, Point Venture and Hurst Creek, according to KVUE.
No injuries or deaths have been reported.
Multiple boats had to be towed in Lake Travis, Texas after they sank during a Trump Boat Parade on Saturday
Hundreds of boats turned out for a massive flotilla in support of the president on Lake Travis, on the western edge of Austin
Police said several boats have sunk and multiple are 'in distress' all along the parade route
Rescuers were seen bringing passengers to safety near Emerald Point after their boat became flooded with water.
Lake Travis, a reservoir on the Colorado River, is known for its hazardous sailing conditions at times and has been the site of dozens of boating accidents over the years.
A total of 29 boating deaths were reported on the 65-mile long lake in 2018, according to Texas Parks & Wildlife.
Authorities said they have been unable to confirm how many boats are in need of help or have sunk due to the overwhelming amount of calls they've received.
The Austin-Travis County EMS also confirmed it has not received any calls regarding medical emergencies and therefore is not assisting at the lake.
'ATCEMS has not been requested to respond to any of them. If this changes, we'll provide an update', they said in a statement on Twitter.
Boats flying flags honoring President Donald Trump crowd Lake Travis during a boat parade Saturday that attracted hundreds of watercraft of all sizes
Several boats capsized in the huge wakes from hundreds of boats in the Trump Boat Parade in Texas, Lakeway
The Travis County Sheriff's Office on Saturday said it's responding to 'many boats in distress' at a massive flotilla on the lake located 20 miles northwest of Austin
Police have received calls for help all along the parade route including on Paradise Cove, West Beach, Point Venture and Hurst Creek, according to KVUE . Problems in Trump Boat Parade in Texas, Lakeway
The multiple boats created high, powerful waves that sunk some of the smaller boats
A large gold boat with flags is seen battling against the waves
The Travis County Sheriff's department said it has received multiple calls of boats sinking, but no injuries have been reported
The boat parade was one of several held by Trump supporters across the country over Labor Day Weekend
Organizers of the event had invited boats of 'all shapes and sizes' to participate in Saturday's flotilla and encouraged people to decorate their boats in patriotic colors and Trump flags
A life-sized cut-out of the president was seen aboard a pontoon boat on Lake Travis during the parade
Organizers of the event had promoted the parade on Facebook, inviting Trump supporters and boats of 'all shapes and sizes' to participate.
'Decorate your boats in patriotic colors and fly as many Trump flags as she can handle,' the post read.
More than 2,500 people planned to attend and more than 5,800 were interested, according to the event page.
It is unclear how many boats turned out for the parade however, social media photos showed large crowds gathering along the route to watch what appeared to be hundreds of vessels sail by.
Hundreds of boats are believed to have gathered on the lake on Saturday in support of the president
IOWA: A Trump Boat Parade was also held on the Mississippi River near Bettendorf, Iowa on Saturday
NEW JERSEY: Several Trump supporters also gathered together for a flotilla on Barnegat Bay, NJ
The parade was scheduled to kick off at 11.30am and end at Emerald Point at 2pm.
The sheriff's office said it received the first call around 12.15pm, minutes after the parade began.
Meanwhile, similar boat parades in support of the president unfolded across the country including in New Jersey and Iowa for Labor Day Weekend.
An estimated 2,000 to 2,500 boats were expected to set off from Barnegat Bay, near Toms River, in a massive flotilla paying tribute to law enforcement and the president, The New York Post reported.
A group of Democratic Party insiders and former Obama and Clinton era officials as well as a cadre of ''Never Trump'' neoconservative Republicans have spent the past few months conducting simulations and ''war games'' regarding different 2020 election ''doomsday'' scenarios.
Per several media reports on the group, called the Transition Integrity Project (TIP), they justify these exercises as specifically preparing for a scenario where President Trump loses the 2020 election and refuses to leave office, potentially resulting in a constitutional crisis. However, according to TIP's own documents, even their simulations involving a ''clear win'' for Trump in the upcoming election resulted in a constitutional crisis, as they predicted that the Biden campaign would make bold moves aimed at securing the presidency, regardless of the election result.
This is particularly troubling given that TIP has considerable ties to the Obama administration, where Biden served as Vice President, as well as several groups that are adamantly pro-Biden in addition to the Biden campaign itself. Indeed, the fact that a group of openly pro-Biden Washington insiders and former government officials have gamed out scenarios for possible election outcomes and their aftermath, all of which either ended with Biden becoming president or a constitutional crisis, suggest that powerful forces influencing the Biden campaign are pushing the former Vice President to refuse to concede the election even if he loses.
This, of course, gravely undercuts the TIP's claim to be ensuring ''integrity'' in the presidential transition process and instead suggests that the group is openly planning on how to ensure that Trump leaves office regardless of the result or to manufacture the very constitutional crisis they claim to be preventing through their simulations.
Such concerns are only magnified by the recent claims made by the 2016 Democratic presidential candidate and former Secretary of State under Obama, Hillary Clinton, that Biden ''should not concede under any circumstances.'' ''I think this is going to drag out, and eventually I do believe he will win if we don't give an inch, and if we are as focused and relentless as the other side is,'' Clinton continued during an interview with Showtime a little over a week ago. The results of the TIP's simulations notably echo Clinton's claims that Biden will ''eventually'' win if the process to determine the election outcome is ''dragged out.''
The Uniparty's ''war games''Members of the TIP met in June to conduct four ''war games'' that simulated ''a dark 11 weeks between Election Day and Inauguration Day'' in which ''Trump and his Republican allies used every apparatus of government '-- the Postal Service, state lawmakers, the Justice Department, federal agents, and the military '-- to hold onto power, and Democrats took to the courts and the streets to try to stop it,'' according to a report from The Boston Globe. However, one of those simulations, which examined what would transpire between Election Day and Inauguration Day in the event of a ''clear Trump win,'' shows that the TIP simulated not only how Republicans could use every option at their disposal to ''hold onto power'', but also how Democrats could do so if the 2020 election result is not in their favor.
While some, mostly right-leaning media outlets, such as this article from The National Pulse, did note that the TIP's simulations involved the Biden campaign refusing to concede, the actual document from TIP on the exercises revealed the specific moves the Biden campaign would take following a ''clear win'' for the Trump campaign. Unsurprisingly, these moves would greatly exacerbate current political tensions in the United States, an end result that the TIP claims they were created to avoid, gravely undercutting the official justification for their simulations as well as the group's official reason for existing.
In the TIP's ''clear Trump win'' scenario (see page 17), Joe Biden '' played in the war game by John Podesta, Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign manager and chief of staff to former President Bill Clinton '' retracted his election night concession and subsequently convinced ''three states with Democratic governors '' North Carolina, Wisconsin and Michigan '' to ask for recounts.'' Then, the governors of Wisconsin and Michigan ''sent separate slates of electors to counter those sent by the state legislature'' to the Electoral College, which Trump had won, in an attempt to undermine, if not prevent, that win.
Next, ''the Biden campaign encouraged Western states, particularly California but also Oregon and Washington, and collectively known as ''Cascadia,'' to secede from the Union unless Congressional Republications agreed to a set of structural reforms. (emphasis added)'' Subsequently, ''with advice from [former] President Obama,'' the Biden campaign laid out those ''reforms'' as the following:
Give statehood to Washington, DC and Puerto RicoDivide California into five states ''to more accurately represent its population in the Senate''Require Supreme Court justices to retire at 70Eliminate the Electoral CollegeIn other words, these ''structural reforms'' involve the creation of what essentially amounts to having the U.S. by composed 56 states, with the new states set to ensure a perpetual majority for Democrats, as only Democrat-majority areas (DC, Puerto Rico and California) are given statehood. Notably, in other scenarios where Biden won the Electoral College, Democrats did not support its elimination.
Also notable is the fact that, in this simulation, the TIP blamed the Trump campaign for the Democrats' decision to take the ''provocative, unprecedented actions'' laid out above, asserting that Trump's campaign had ''created the conditions to force the Biden campaign'' into taking these actions by doing things like giving ''an interview to The Intercept in which he [Trump] stated that he would have lost the election if Bernie Sanders had been nominated'' instead of Biden as the Democratic presidential candidate.
The TIP also claimed that the Trump campaign would seek to paint these ''provocative, unpredecented actions'' as ''the Democrats attempting to orchestrate an illegal coup,'' despite the fact that that is essentially what those actions entail. Indeed, in other simulations where the Trump campaign behaved along these lines, the TIP's rhetoric about this category of extreme actions is decidedly different.
Yet, the simulated actions of the Biden campaign in this scenario did not end there, as the Biden campaign subsequently ''provoked a breakdown in the joint session of Congress [on January 6th] by getting the House of Representatives to agree to award the presidency to Biden,'' adding that this was ''based on the alternative pro-Biden submissions sent by pro-Biden governors.'' The Republican party obviously did not consent, noting that Trump had won the election through his Electoral College victory. The ''clear Trump win'' election simulation ended with no president-elect being inaugurated on January 20, with the TIP noting ''it was unclear what the military would do in this situation.''
Of course, some TIP members, including its co-founder Rosa Brooks '' a former advisor to the Obama era Pentagon and currently a fellow at the ''New America'' think tank, have their preference for ''what the military would do in this situation.'' For instance, Brooks, writing less than 2 weeks after Trump's inauguration in 2017, argued in Foreign Policythat ''a military coup, or at least a refusal by military leaders to obey certain orders'' was one of four possibilities for removing Trump from office prior to the 2020 election.
Who is behind the TIP?The TIP was created in late 2019, allegedly ''out of concern that the Trump Administration may seek to manipulate, ignore, undermine or disrupt the 2020 presidential election and transition process.'' It was co-founded by Rosa Brooks and Nils Gilman and its current director is Zoe Hudson. Brooks, as previously mentioned, was an advisor to the Pentagon and the Hillary Clinton-led State Department during the Obama administration. She was also previously the general counsel to the President of the Open Society Institute, part of the Open Society Foundations (OSF), a controversial organization funded by billionaire George Soros. Zoe Hudson, who is TIP's director, is also a former top figure at OSF, serving assenior policy analyst and liaison between the foundations and the U.S. government for 11 years.
OSF ties to the TIP are a red flag for a number of reasons, namely due to the fact that OSF and other Soros-funded organizations played a critical role in fomenting so-called ''color revolutions'' to overthrow non-aligned governments, particularly during the Obama administration. Examples of OSF's ties to these manufactured ''revolutions'' include Ukraine in 2014 and the ''Arab Spring,'' which began in 2011 and saw several governments in the Middle East and North Africa that were troublesome to Western interests conveniently removed from power.
Subsequent leaked emails revealed the cozy ties between Soros and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, including one email where Soros directed Clinton's policy with respect to unrest in Albania, telling her that ''two things need to be done urgently,'' which were to ''bring the full weight of the international community to bear on Prime Minister Berisha'' and ''appoint a senior European official as mediator.'' Both ''urgent'' tasks were subsequently performed by Clinton, presumably at Soros' behest.
In addition to her ties to the Obama administration and OSF, Brooks is currently a scholar at West Point's Modern War Institute, where she focuses on ''the relationship between the military and domestic policing'' and also Georgetown's Innovative Policing Program. She is a currently a key player in the documented OSF-led push to ''capitalize'' off of legitimate calls for police reform to justify the creation of a federalized police force under the guise of defunding and/or eliminating local police departments. Brooks' interest in the ''blurring line'' between military and police is notable given her past advocacy of a military coup to remove Trump from office and the TIP's subsequent conclusion that the military ''may'' have to step in if Trump manages to win the 2020 election, per the group's ''war games'' described above.
Brooks is also a senior fellow at the think tank New America. New America's mission statement notes that the organization is focused on ''honestly confronting the challenges caused by rapid technological and social change, and seizing the opportunities those changes create.'' It is largely funded by Silicon Valley billionaires, including Bill Gates (Microsoft), Eric Schmidt (Google), Reid Hoffman (LinkedIn), Jeffrey Skoll and Pierre Omidyar (eBay). In addition, it has received millions directly from the U.S. State Department to research ''ranking digital rights.'' Notably, of these funders, Reid Hoffman was caught ''meddling'' in the most recent Democratic primary to undercut Bernie Sanders' candidacy during the Iowa caucus and while others, such as Eric Schmidt and Pierre Omidyar, are known for their cozy ties to the Clinton family and even ties to Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign.
The Never TrumpersAside from Brooks, the other co-founder of TIP is Nils Gilman, the current Vice President of Programs at the Berggruen Institute and, prior to that, worked for Salesforce, a major tech company and government contractor. Gilman is particularly focused on artificial intelligence and transhumanism, recently telling the New York Times that his work at the Berggruen Institute is focused on ''building [a] transnational networks of philosophers + technologists + policy-makers + artists who are thinking about how A.I. and gene-editing are transfiguring what it means to be human.'' Nicholas Berggruen, for whom the Berggruen Institute is named, is part of the billionaire-led faction, alongside Blackstone's Steve Schwarzman and Eric Schmidt, who seek to develop A.I. and the so-called ''Fourth Industrial Revolution'' in conjunction with the political leaders and economic elite of China.
They are critics and rivals of those in the ''nationalist'' camp with respect to A.I. and China, who instead prefer to aggressively ''leapfrog'' China's A.I. capabilities in order to maintain U.S. global hegemony as opposed to a ''new order'' promoted by Berggreun, Schmidt, Schwarzman and Henry Kissinger, another key member of the ''cooperation'' faction. The battle over the U.S.' future A.I. policy with respect to China appears to be a major yet widely overlooked reason for some of the antipathy towards Trump by those in the ''cooperation'' faction, including those who employ TIP's founders, given Trump's tendency to, at least publicly, support ''America First'' policies and increased tensions with China. In contrast, the Biden family is invested in Chinese A.I. companies, suggesting that Biden would be more willing to pursue the interests of the ''cooperation'' faction than Trump.
While the identities of the TIP's founders and current director have been made public, the full member list of the TIP has not. However, the TIP's ''sister'' organization, called The National Task Force on Election Crises (NTFEC), does have a public membership list and several of its members are also known to be part of the TIP. Some of these overlapping members include Michael Chertoff, former head of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Michael Steele, former chairman of the RNC and Lawrence Wilkerson, chief of staff to former Secretary of State, Colin Powell. Chertoff, Steele and Wilkerson, though Republicans, are part of the so-called ''Never Trump'' Republican faction, as are the TIP's other known Republican members. Thus, while the ''bipartisan'' nature of TIP may be accurate in terms of party affiliation, all of known TIP's members '' regardless of party '' are united in their opposition to another term for the current president.
Other known members of the TIP include David Frum (the Atlantic), William Kristol (Project for a New American Century, The Bulwark), Max Boot (the Washington Post), Donna Brazile (ex-DNC), John Podesta (former campaign manager '' Clinton 2016), Chuck Hagel (former Secretary of Defense), Reed Galen (co-founder of the Lincoln Project) and Norm Ornstein (American Enterprise Institute).
Of their known members, the most outspoken is Lawrence Wilkerson, who has fashioned himself the group's ''unofficial'' spokesperson, having done the majority of media interviews promoting the group and its ''war games.'' In an interview in late June with journalist Paul Jay, Wilkerson notes that the TIP lacks transparency and that, aside from their ''war games,'' their other activities are largely confidential.
He specifically stated that:
''There is some confidentiality about what we agreed to, and what we've put out publicly, and who's responsible for that, and other aspects of our doing that. The Transition Integrity Project is to this point very, very close, whole, and confidential.''
In that same interview, Wilkerson also noted that the current ''combination of events'' involving the recent unrest in several U.S. cities, the coronavirus crisis, the national debate over the future of policing, the economic recession and the 2020 election was the foundation for a revolution in the U.S. He told Jay that:
''I want to say this is how things like 1917 and Russia, like 1979 and Tehran, and like 1789 in France. This is how these sorts of things get started. So we've got to be very careful about how we deal with these things. And that worries me because we don't have a very careful individual in the White House.''
Pre-planned chaos '' who benefits?While it certainly is possible that, in the event of a clear Biden win, President Trump could refuse to leave the White House or take other actions that would challenge the faith of many Americans in the national election system. However, while the TIP claims to be specifically concerned about this eventuality and about ''safe guarding'' democracy without favoring either candidate, that is clearly not the case, as their simulation of a clear Trump win shows that extreme, ''undemocratic'' behavior, in their view, is permissible if it prevents another four years of Trump. Yet, this clear double standard reveals that an influential group of ''bipartisan'' insiders are intent on creating a ''constitutional crisis'' if Trump wins and are planning for such a crisis regardless of the 2020 election's results.
Well before the TIP or any of their affiliated groups emerged to conduct these doomsday election simulations, other groups were similarly engaged in ''war games'' that predicted complete chaos in the U.S. on election day as well as the imposition of martial law in the U.S. following the emergence of unprecedented unrest and disarray in the country.
Several of these I detailed in a series earlier this year, which mainly focused on the ''Operation Blackout'' simulationsconducted by the U.S.-Israeli company, Cybereason. That company has considerable ties to the U.S. and Israeli intelligence and its largest investor is Softbank. Notably, Softbank is named by the Eric Schmidt-led National Security Commission on AI (NSCAI) as forming the ''backbone'' of a global framework of A.I.-driven companies favored by the ''cooperation'' faction as a means of enacting the ''Fourth Industrial Revolution'' in cooperation with China's economic and political elite.
In addition to Cybereason, several mainstream media reports and a series of suspect ''predictions'' from U.S. intelligence and other federal agencies released last year had seeded the narrative that the 2020 election would not only fail spectacularly, but that U.S. democracy ''would never recover.'' Now, with the TIP's simulations added to the mix and the advent of the previously predicted chaos throughout the country with the 2020 election just two months away, it is clear that the November 3rd election will not only be a complete disaster, but a pre-planned one.
The question then becomes, who benefits from complete chaos on and following the 2020 election? As the TIP suggested in several of their simulations, the post-election role of the military in terms of domestic policing, incidentally the exact expertise of the TIP's co-founder Rosa Brooks, looms large, as most of the aforementioned doomsday election simulations ended with the imposition of martial law or the military ''stepping in'' to resolve order and oversee the transition.
The domestic framework for imposing martial law in the U.S., via ''continuity of government'' protocols, was activated earlier this year under the guise of the coronavirus crisis and it remains in effect. Now, a series of groups deeply tied to the Washington establishment and domestic and foreign intelligence agencies have predicted the exact ways in which to engineer a failed election and manipulate its aftermath.
Who would stand to benefit the most from the imposition of martial law in the United States? I would argue that one need look no further than the battle within Washington power factions over the future of AI, which has been deemed of critical importance to national security by the public sector, the private sector and prominent think tanks. The Schmidt-led NSCAI and other bodies determining the country's AI policy plan to implement a series of policies that will be deeply resisted by most Americans '' from the elimination of individual car ownership to the elimination of cash as well as the imposition of an Orwellian surveillance system, among other things.
All of these agendas have advanced under the guise of combatting coronavirus, but their advance can only continue to use that justification for so long. For groups like the NSCAI, Americans must welcome these AI-driven advances or else, even if it means Americans face losing their jobs or their civil liberties. Otherwise, these groups and their billionaire backers argue, the U.S. will be ''left out'' and ''left behind'' when it comes time to set the new global standards for AI technology, as the U.S. will then be left in the dust by China's growing AI industry, which is fed by its own implementation of these technologies.
By keeping Americans angry and distracted by the partisan divide through pre-planned election chaos, a ''New America'' waits in the wings '' one that is coming regardless of what happens on election day. That is, of course, unless Americans quickly wake up to the ruse.
Joe Biden's town hall event in Kenosha, Wisconsin, Thursday was marred by a number of controversial and eyebrow-raising incidents, including the Democratic candidate claiming that the light bulb was not invented by Thomas Edison, and a questioner refusing to adhere to a pre-written script she was ''told to go off.''
Biden said during the event that a black man invented the light bulb '-- and ''not a white guy named Edison.''
Biden, 77, made the claim while speaking Thursday at Grace Lutheran Church, where he met residents following a 90-minute private session with Jacob Blake's family, a meeting that Blake joined by phone, according to attorney Ben Crump.
''I cannot guarantee everything gets solved in four years, but I guarantee you one thing: It will be a whole heck of a lot better'' if he's elected in November, Biden promised. ''We will move a lot further down the road.''
Joe Biden speaks during a town hall event at Grace Lutheran Church in Kenosha, Wisconsin. JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty ImagesBiden then insisted that ''people fear'' anything that's different before launching into a critique of the American education system.
''We gotta, for example, why in God's name don't we teach history in history classes?'' he told the crowd through a mask. ''A black man invented the light bulb, not a white guy named Edison. OK? There's so much. Did anybody know?''
Lewis Howard Latimer Alamy Stock PhotoAmerican inventor Thomas Edison is credited with patenting the first commercially successful incandescent light bulb in 1879, using a paper filament that burned out quickly. Three years later, Lewis Howard Latimer, a black inventor who worked as one of Edison's researchers, patented a light bulb using a carbon filament, which was much more durable, according to a Massachusetts Institute of Technology profile.
Latimer also holds patents for the electric lamp in 1881, four years before he teamed up with Edison to begin ''improving upon his boss's invention,'' Grist magazine reported in a 2015 profile of Latimer, who first worked as an assistant to inventor Alexander Graham Bell.
Some accused Biden of trying to ''rewrite history.''
At another point, while talking about law enforcement, Biden said that while a ''significant portion'' of police officers are ''decent people,'' there's ''a lot of bad folks'' in every organization, before abruptly cutting himself off to introduce his wife.
''And so we gotta give a chance to change things, and we can,'' Biden said. ''There is not a single solitary reason in the world why, why, as I said, we shouldn't be in a position that everybody '-- and that's my wife Jill, hey Jilly '... I'm Jill's husband, actually.''
While talking about potential tax plans if elected, Biden promised not to raise rates on anyone making less than $400,000, but stopped short of divulging specifics, saying ''they'll shoot me.''
Thomas Edison Bettmann ArchiveBiden was assailed by critics for that turn of phrase, which was slammed as inappropriate in the aftermath of Blake's Aug. 23 shooting in Kenosha.
Participants at the event, meanwhile, appeared to have been screened prior to the town hall, where they were ''told to go off'' a prepared script, according to one woman's remarks.
''My name is Portia Bennett. I'm just going to be honest, Mr. Biden, I was told to go off this paper but I can't. You need the truth, and I'm part of the truth. I was born here, raised here,'' the woman said. ''I have to give you the truth of the people.''
Judicial Watch announced on Thursday that it filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security for records that were allegedly destroyed by the Secret Service regarding a 2009 incident between then-Vice President Joe Biden and a Secret Service agent.
Their original FOIA request was made back on May 12, 2020, and sought ''all records related to a reported incident in 2009 in which a United States Secret Service Agent reportedly was involved in an altercation with, or attempted to strike, then Vice President Joe Biden'' during a photo opportunity.
According to Judicial Watch, the lawsuit was filed after the Secret Service ''failed to respond to a July 14, 2020 administrative appeal challenging its claim that all files related to the 2009 altercation 'ha[d] been destroyed' due to 'retention standards.'''
According to the report, an unidentified Secret Service agent was suspended for a week after the incident for shoving the vice president ''after he cupped his girlfriend's breast while the couple was taking a photo with him.''
''The situation got so heated '... that others had to step in to prevent the agent from hitting the then-Vice President,'' according to the report.
The Secret Service did not deny the incident occurred.
RELATED: Kamala Harris Said She Believes Joe Biden's Accusers''[T]here are no responsive records or documents pertaining to your request in our files'' because ''the above mentioned file(s) has been destroyed'' due to ''retention standards,'' the Secret Service claimed in response to Judicial Watch's request. ''No additional information is available,'' they added. Judicial Watch is looking to verify their claim that all records about the incident were destroyed and determine the veracity of the agent's claim.
''We had not been able to confirm whether the report about the alleged altercation might be true until the Secret Service itself suggested it destroyed records about the incident,'' said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.
Matt Margolis is the author of Airborne: How The Liberal Media Weaponized The Coronavirus Against Donald Trump and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis
Court Docs From 1996 Confirm Tara Reade Told Her Husband About the Sexual Harassment in Biden's OfficeRemember When Michelle Obama Praised Harvey Weinstein?
Joe Biden has a problem. Silicon Valley billionaires think they have a solution.
Election Day is less than six months away, and Democrats are scrambling to patch the digital deficits of their presumptive nominee. And behind the scenes, Silicon Valley's billionaire Democrats are spending tens of millions of dollars on their own sweeping plans to catch up to President Donald Trump's lead on digital campaigning '-- plans that are poised to make them some of the country's most influential people when it comes to shaping the November results.
These billionaires' arsenals are funding everything from nerdy political science experiments to divisive partisan news sites to rivalrous attempts to overhaul the party's beleaguered data file. They are pushing their favored, sometimes peculiar, fixes to a political ailment just like they might if on the board of a struggling startup.
This is all unfolding as the pandemic forces campaigns to pivot away from door-knocks and packed rallies and toward data mining and influencer marketing '-- which in many ways play to the strengths of these tech titans, making them even more influential at a time when many in the Democratic Party are uneasy with just how powerful some in tech have become.
Their investments matter all the more because of the candidate they inherited. Biden is rushing to hire more aides, create more engaging content, and build better ties with the Silicon Valley donors and talent that evaded him during the primary.
''Because the Biden campaign is the Biden campaign,'' said one Democratic operative involved in these efforts, ''what we are doing on the independent side matters a hell of a lot more than it would previously.''
''Because the Biden campaign is the Biden campaign, what we are doing on the independent side matters a hell of a lot more than it would previously''
What makes this all the more difficult is that Democrats have long struggled to coordinate their big-money spending like Republicans have, and that atomization has been exacerbated by the arrival of Silicon Valley money, whose hubristic entrepreneurs often prefer to do things their own way.
In Silicon Valley's new political moment, four billionaires in particular '-- LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman, Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz, philanthropist Laurene Powell Jobs, and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt '-- have the most ambitious plans, according to Recode's interviews with over 20 donors and operatives. The chess moves of this power set are instrumental to fulfilling Democrats' '-- and much of Silicon Valley's '-- four-year quest to oust Donald Trump.
And yet each of these billionaires is moving their pieces with varying levels of secrecy, and often with minimal disclosure, scrutiny, or accountability.
Inside the Democratic data warFour years after the Democratic Party's data was described by Hillary Clinton as ''bankrupt'' and ''on the verge of insolvency,'' tech billionaires are regrouping and pouring millions into the party's digital infrastructure, even to the point of building competing power centers that threaten the Democratic establishment.
Republicans have invested far more steadily as of late than have Democrats in the data that powers modern campaigns. And so, a decade after a generation of tech wizards helped usher in a new era of digital campaigning that helped elevate Barack Obama to the presidency, it is Democrats who are left playing catch-up. Even if it was self-identifying progressives that created today's digital tools, it was conservatives who mastered how to use them, and none more than Donald Trump.
''My problem is when Silicon Valley folks think that they know how to do our jobs better. I would never walk into Google or anywhere else and say, 'Your model sucks.'''
Now, some tech leaders, particularly Hoffman and Schmidt, are racing to master a sphere that, theoretically, is firmly in their bailiwick. But this determination has fueled competing, even rivalrous approaches from multiple tech billionaires. Some Democrats are concerned that both efforts, for all their urgency, are indeed too little, too late '-- at least for November.
The data wars are a stand-in for the broader tensions between the party and this quartet of Silicon Valley billionaires. While Democratic megadonors on Wall Street tend to route their donations to the party, tech billionaires like to claim they are offering more than just a check '-- and they want to be more in control.
''My problem is when Silicon Valley folks think that they know how to do our jobs better. I would never walk into Google or anywhere else and say, 'Your model sucks,''' Jane Kleeb, the chair of the Nebraska Democratic Party, told Recode. ''I don't second-guess them, and I'm asking them not to second-guess us.''
Kleeb and others in Democratic politics have been particularly incensed by a political startup that Hoffman has invested about $18 million, his single-biggest bet this cycle, in called Alloy. The startup is attempting to build a warehouse to store the data that various progressive groups collect on voters and use it to try to get them to the polls. As part of its data acquisition, Alloy has bought some lists of voters' cellphone numbers, a data source that people say Hoffman's team, like other donors, sees as key this year due to the new need for digital campaigning.
But Alloy, despite all its promises to revitalize the left's voter file, has had an at-times frosty relationship with party officials like Kleeb, who have their own voter file that they'd prefer to improve rather than circumvent. And some of the party's most senior digital operatives consider Alloy to be an underachievement, saying that it has produced few tangible accomplishments, no publicly announced clients, and, most importantly, squandered significant time and money as it struggled to figure out its role in Democratic politics.
''We're already putting data into the hands of Democrats and progressives on the front lines of this critical election cycle,'' said Luis Miranda, an Alloy spokesperson. ''We're proud of our work, and we're just getting started.''
And it's not as though all tech billionaires on the same team are backing Alloy as the singular solution. Some are funding other rival revisions to the party's data deficit. Where Hoffman sees a product to be replaced, Schmidt '-- a technocrat's technocrat '-- sees a product that can be tweaked, perhaps with some executive coaching.
Sources say he has sunk money into the Democratic Data Exchange, a modest, competing effort by the Democratic National Committee to encourage data sharing by state parties to improve the party's beleaguered digital backbone. Somehow, despite the somewhat duplicative efforts, Democrats still broadly fear that they're at a disadvantage compared to the rival efforts of the GOP, which were created a decade ago.
Schmidt, a longtime Democratic powerbroker, may be working more closely with the party than Hoffman. But he is still critical of the party's operatives and so is doing things his own way with his own skunk-works projects.
In 2016, Schmidt effectively funded and embedded a group of technologists within the Clinton campaign. Many Silicon Valley hands, including some Biden allies, think the Schmidt effort was largely unsuccessful.
Eric Schmidt interviewing Barack Obama at a town hall meeting at Google headquarters on November 14, 2007. Kimberly White/Getty Images Four years later, Schmidt is as interested as ever in improving the party's poor data and infrastructure '-- but now he has a new strategy: teaching its operatives how to use it.
Schmidt has quietly started a new division called OneOne Ventures to do this, in an already sprawling political empire stretching across a vast number of groups. OneOne has invested in more than 20 different political startups, according to a person familiar with its work, even though it has no public profile and its existence hasn't been previously reported.
OneOne is essentially an attempt to serve as a bridge between traditional political operatives and technical teams. That's why one of Schmidt's key projects is heavily funding a never-publicized group called STAC Labs, created in late 2019 to train state parties on how to use data, according to a job posting, including what the Schmidt-backed Democratic Data Exchange gathers. STAC assigns team members to state parties that serve as consultants, of sorts, to help them model their voters and use data effectively.
Even Kleeb, who found Hoffman and Alloy ''arrogant,'' told Recode she finds her team's weekly calls with STAC to be a ''real value add.''
Why liberal billionaires envy what conservative billionaires builtJust as is true in the data wars, the funding of ideological news sites is another battlefield where Democratic megadonors are mimicking Republicans. Democratic donors outside of tech tend to fund television ads. But the Silicon Valley set is uniquely seeking to build a digital world optimized for 2020, drawing lessons from the right-wing media ecosystem that conservatives built and Trump capitalized upon in 2016.
''For far too long right-wing media has dominated our discourse and Facebook news feeds,'' said Tara McGowan, the founder of Acronym, a political group backed by Powell Jobs and Hoffman. ''We can't sit by another cycle and watch a one-sided battle play out online.''
Behind this, more than anyone else, has been Hoffman, whose team has funded projects that defenders say are a savvy way to take advantage of how information is distributed in the 21st century. Critics say they exacerbate political divides and sometimes push misinformation.
But that hasn't deterred Hoffman: His aides have indicated that setting up partisan news sites that masquerade as journalism is one of the priorities of its group of allied donors.
In a private 12-page memo written by Hoffman's top political adviser, Dmitri Mehlhorn, and distributed to prominent donors late last month, Mehlhorn said the key to ''beating Trump's brand machine'' was in part to build an equivalent content machine on the left, ''building trusted media channels with peer-to-peer elements'' and ''content that has a journalistic flavor.''
''When truth is tribal, traditional media and advertising can't reach voters''
''When truth is tribal, traditional media and advertising can't reach voters,'' Mehlhorn says in his manifesto obtained by Recode. ''But people still listen to their friends and members of their communities.''
That explains why, largely during the 2018 cycle, sources say Hoffman sank $15 million into MotivAI, a digital advertising firm that has promulgated what critics say was misinformation in the 2018 midterm elections. Hoffman has also indirectly invested in several other digital media companies through an incubator he backs called New Media Ventures.
Reid Hoffman has become one his party's most controversial, and ambitious, megadonors. Kelly Sullivan/Getty Images for LinkedIn And most of all, it explains why Hoffman put around $10 million into Acronym, one of the Democratic Party's most controversial, and well-funded, outside groups that is also betting on partisan media.
Acronym aims to raise $25 million to set up seven of its own media properties in swing states, creating local news sites that portray moderate Democratic candidates in a favorable light, but appear to be objective, homespun outlets. Democratic operatives see what one calls an ''Upworthy model'' as an effective way to mobilize their base voters who are reluctant to turn out.
Steven Brill, a prominent journalist who now runs a center focused on combating misinformation called NewsGuard, deemed Acronym's strategy both ''really smart and really terrible.''
''One of the things that really bothers me is the hypocrisy of people who say that they favor liberal values. And one of the most basic American values is the democratic process,'' Brill told Recode. ''When you undermine that process by posing as journalists '-- when you're just out to make a partisan hit on someone or a partisan support of someone on the left '-- I think that is so hideous that it really needs to be called out.''
Acronym says that its work is ''factual and transparently progressive.''
This focus on ''information distribution'' has also led many Silicon Valley donors, directly or indirectly, to fund projects like Pulso and PushBlack, which are quasi-journalistic plays focused on the Hispanic and African American communities, respectively. They are seemingly not as partisan as Acronym efforts, but are, similarly, news publications with political objectives. For instance, PushBlack, which has also been independently backed by Hoffman, delivers a daily text message to its 4 million subscribers with calls to action on issues like criminal justice reform.
Two things both Pulso and PushBlack also do? Register voters who are likely to be Democrats.
The nerdy push to revamp the Democratic turnout machineThese tech billionaires, particularly Moskovitz and Powell Jobs, are also pouring millions into some of the country's most ambitious voter-registration programs '-- almost all of it behind the scenes '-- hoping to emulate what worked for Democrats in 2018.
The core voter-registration group that is raking in Silicon Valley money is called the Voter Participation Center. Along with a linked political group called the Center for Voter Information, it is in the process of trying to raise $56 million by June 30 thanks in part to a secretive group of donors called Mind the Gap, according to two donors who have been told about the fundraising goal in writing by Mind the Gap. That $56 million is in addition to the tens of millions that these groups raised from Mind the Gap donors earlier this cycle. VPC CEO Tom Lopach said these figures were ''grossly inflated'' but didn't provide alternatives. (Political nonprofits typically try to not let rivals know about their fundraising.)
Pulso and PushBlack are also indirectly being funded by Mind the Gap, which has already helped lead a recent $12 million fundraising drive to the media outlets' incubator, Accelerate Change.
With almost no public footprint, Mind the Gap, which is on track to route over $140 million this cycle, has established itself as one of the most powerful groups in Democratic politics.
''Our mandate is simple: to identify all efforts that will be more cost-effective than giving directly to candidate campaigns or SuperPACs, and fund them up to the point of maximal impact,'' Mind the Gap wrote to its donors earlier this month.
That's why Mind the Gap is heavily backing VPC. The group has been around for years, but VPC has recently become one of the hottest investment opportunities in Silicon Valley because its test-everything, measure-anything approach resonates with the tech set. It carried cachet before the coronavirus hit, and especially so now, given the new attention that every donor is placing on strategies like vote-by-mail, a new focus of VPC.
''You had the organizations that were nice-to-haves that, all of a sudden, are integral,'' said one adviser to a major donor.
VPC, whose bread-and-butter program is registering voters through direct mail, has used testing, for instance, to learn that an official-looking plain white envelope with a registration application is more likely to be completed than one with an ideological appeal or eye-catching color. It sent 12 million of these no-frills mailers to unregistered voters last month. The group also learned that sending postcards to people on their 18th birthday encouraging them to register to vote is an effective, low-cost tactic.
And now they are using that expertise '-- and their ballooning scale '-- to try and conquer the vote-by-mail challenge.
That scalability, in the parlance of Silicon Valley, is key to its appeal in the industry: more tech money, more Democratic votes.
VPC's backers include Powell Jobs, who sources say is in the process of paring back the volume of her political bets to double down on a smaller number of groups, particularly those like VPC that focus on voter turnout.
Laurene Powell Jobs is among the Democratic Party's most coveted donors. Rebecca Smeyne/Getty Images About a dozen of these groups, including VPC, PushBlack and Stacey Abrams's FairFight, gathered at Powell Jobs's Emerson Collective headquarters in mid-March to raise money for their 2020 plans, sources told Recode. Powell Jobs invited a dozen other deep-pocketed Silicon Valley donors for the intimate, theater-style pitch meeting, including Twitter co-founder Biz Stone and billionaire venture capitalist Ron Conway.
Some activists do have concerns that this relentless Silicon Valley push for efficiency can ignore the irreplaceable value of inherently inefficient work like person-to-person conversation, especially to turn out lower-propensity voters. Other operatives fret that while the experiments and mailers might eject Trump, it is a myopic approach, leaving next-generation, newly elected Democrats and long-term movement groups out to dry '-- just because they don't meet the overly numerical tire-kicking from groups like Mind the Gap.
Still, this approach has its high-powered fans, perhaps none more than Moskovitz, a major Mind the Gap donor who is seeking to apply its strategy ''to an ever bigger extreme,'' said one person familiar with his thinking. Moskovitz's North Star is a desire to nail the lowest ''cost-per-net-Democratic-vote.'' That's largely led his team toward the funding of mail and voter-registration work, such as the millions that sources say he has put into the VPC this cycle.
Moskovitz, like VPC, is drawn to randomized, controlled experiments, so much so that he took the unusual step last year of hiring a newly minted MIT PhD to bring that rigor to his political work. He is single-focusedly driven by what this experimental design '-- which some other major donors find alienating '-- can teach him about partisan politics that can then be scaled. For example, Moskovitz's team recently backed Voto Latino, a group focused on registering Hispanic voters, to fund a small experiment on whether certain pre- or post-roll videos encourage low-propensity Latino voters to search for voter-registration keywords on Google.
On calls with other prospective grantees, aides to Moskovitz, who observers feel largely got burned after coming from nowhere in 2016 to spend millions on late TV ads, have drilled operatives this time around on how they can empirically justify their effectiveness.
It amounts to a more premeditated, professional approach from Moskovitz compared to four years ago, when he has said he was ''slow to act, which I regret deeply.''
Dustin Moskovitz is trying to bring to politics what he has brought to philanthropy: a focus on data. Horacio Villalobos - Corbis/Getty Images Coronavirus or politics?For all these billionaires' best-laid plans to help-desk the Democratic Party's digital woes before Election Day, Democrats fret that the coronavirus is dividing their attention and convincing some of them to reroute funds from political causes to charitable ones. Leaders of some Democratic groups, too, say privately they are concerned that the coronavirus could impact how much money their groups raise, either due to pinched net worths or endowments for the billionaire class, or because the rich feel a greater obligation to spend whatever money they do have on charitable work rather than on politics.
''You're prioritizing your time to think right now, and the money follows your time. How much time do you have to think about Joe Biden?''
One fundraiser close to the Biden campaign said he worried about the ''distraction'' faced by people like Schmidt and Hoffman, who have both dedicated significant energy to pandemic relief efforts.
''You're prioritizing your time to think right now, and the money follows your time,'' said one Biden fundraiser. ''How much time do you have to think about Joe Biden?''
Powell Jobs's team has also suggested to some political groups that the coronavirus has made budgets tight and caused the Emerson Collective to rethink what precise efforts they will fund in 2020, sources say. Schmidt's political aides, by contrast, have indicated that they are prepared to spend more money on political causes than they initially planned to.
The coronavirus has also, of course, put pressure on the Biden campaign, too. Asking donors to pay $2,800 for a Zoom call isn't always an easy sell, fundraisers say. One Silicon Valley billionaire described the nascent Biden-tech relationship so far as ''birds chirping.'' And so tech leaders have been flooding Biden officials with their digital suggestions for how to campaign during the coronavirus '-- even inviting his digital director to appear on the hot new app for Silicon Valley insiders, Clubhouse.
Other outreach comes more formally. On a call last Thursday organized by the Biden campaign, a group of major tech leaders was greeted by a special guest: Hoffman. The megadonor, who could spend as much as $100 million this cycle, told those on the line that politics would be his No. 1 priority through Election Day '-- he'd even step out of board meetings for it.
But he had an exhortation to Silicon Valley product minds, one brimming with irony.
''We don't need you to go and build anything new,'' a person on the call recalled Hoffman saying. ''There's no time for that.''
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Could the debates do for President Donald Trump what the conventions didn't?
A USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll indicates many voters think that's possible.
A greater share '' 47% '' predicted Trump will win the debates than the 41% who said Democratic candidate Joe Biden will.
That's despite the fact that only 33% of respondents who watched at least some of the conventions said the political events made them more likely to support Trump; 37% said the conventions made them less likely.
Independents picked Trump over Biden as the likely winner of the debates by 10 percentage points: 47%-37%.
"Trump is gonna run all over Biden," said Curtis Saffi, 38, an independent from Hampton, Georgia, who plans to vote for Biden. He expects a different outcome, however, in the vice presidential debate.
"Kamala Harris," Saffi added, "she is gonna be all over (Mike) Pence."
While 79% of Democrats predicted their presidential nominee will come out on top in the debates, 87% of Republicans said Trump will.
''I feel like it's just gonna be a one-sided show," said David Brockman, 38, a Trump supporter from Columbus, Indiana, who was among those polled.
Dana Carbonell, 35, a Democrat from Weehawken, New Jersey, said Biden will win if he "does a good job of factchecking Trump."
Trump, she said, has "got his broken record of lies that he just keeps repeating."
The first of the three presidential debates will be held Sept. 29.
The first 2016 debate between Trump and Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton attracted 84 million viewers, the record for a presidential debate.
Large shares of voters have told Pew Research Center over the years that the debates were very or somewhat helpful in deciding who to vote for. But only 10% of those who voted in 2016 said they had definitely made up their minds ''during or just after'' the debates. Almost two-thirds said they had decided around the time of the conventions or even before.
Election 2020: Chris Wallace, Susan Page among moderators for presidential and vice presidential debates
Biden leads Trump by 50%-43% nationally in a USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll conducted in the days following the conventions. It was one of a number of post-convention polls showing either a small bump for Trump or no bounce at all.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the parties conducted most of their conventions online rather than in the packed arenas of prior years.
Four out of 10 respondents to the USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll who had viewed the conventions thought this year's version worked better. Three out of 10 thought the format was worse. The rest saw it as the same or had no opinion.
The poll of 1,000 registered voters, taken Aug. 28-31 by landline and cell phone, has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 points.
Facebook is working with outside researchers to study how its apps influence "key political attitudes and behaviors during the US 2020 elections," the company announced Monday.As part of the study, it will pay Facebook and Instagram users '-- possibly between $10 and $20 per week '-- to stop using the app, The Washington Post's Elizabeth Dwoskin reported Thursday.The company expects between 200,000 and 400,000 users to participate in the study, which will run through December but likely won't produce results until mid-2021.Facebook has had a rocky history with academic researchers, who have complained the company has been slow to provide them with data and that what they receive often falls far short of what they asked for.Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.Facebook will pay users of its main app and Instagram as part of a study it's conducting ahead of the 2020 US elections, The Washington Post's Elizabeth Dwoskin reported on Thursday.
On Monday, Facebook announced its plans for the study, a partnership with 17 outside academic researchers that hopes to "better understand the impact of Facebook and Instagram on key political attitudes and behaviors."
"It will examine the impact of how people interact with our products, including content shared in News Feed and across Instagram, and the role of features like content ranking systems," the company said. The study will involve asking some Facebook and Instagram users to deactivate their accounts or agree to "targeted changes" to their experiences ahead of the November elections and running through December.
Dwoskin collected screenshots of notifications sent to some Instagram users this week asking them how much they'd have to be compensated to deactivate their accounts, giving them options of $10, $15, or $20 per week. Facebook expects between 200,000 and 400,000 people to eventually participate.
'--Elizabeth Dwoskin (@lizzadwoskin) September 3, 2020"Anyone who chooses to opt-in '-- whether it's completing surveys or deactivating FB or IG for a period of time '-- will be compensated. This is fairly standard for this type of academic research," Facebook spokesperson Liz Bourgeois said in a tweet replying to Dwoskin.
Facebook is not paying the researchers behind the study. The company said it has taken a number of steps to ensure they are able to conduct their work independently. It said it wouldn't restrict the questions researchers ask or what they publish. Facebook also said it would publish the study's initial hypotheses once the findings were public so that other researchers could check for errors and confirm that findings haven't been withheld.
However, Facebook said it could take researchers "many months to properly analyze all the data" and that it didn't expect them to publish findings until "mid-2021 at the earliest."
The company has faced criticism from researchers in the past '-- including some of those involved with the study '-- for its reluctance to release data.
The 2020 election study builds on an initiative Facebook began in 2018 on the heels of the Cambridge Analytica scandal to share more information with academics.
But last fall, BuzzFeed News and The New York Times reported researchers involved in the partnership had grown frustrated with Facebook's delays in getting them data and complained that the company consistently provided them with less than what they had asked for, citing data privacy concerns.
"[Facebook has] definitely thrown major talent at the issue; but ultimately, the proof is in whether we ever get to eat the pudding," David Lazer, a professor of political and computer science at Northeastern University who is now working on the 2020 election study, told BuzzFeed News at the time.
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Keiko ð¯ð² on Twitter: "FB just told me they'll pay me $25 per week to deactivate my account until after the election. I'm insulted by the low offer. This was the first question. Who else received this? https://t.co/XFPh7ceL5u" / Twitter
Keiko ð¯ð² : FB just told me they'll pay me $25 per week to deactivate my account until after the election.I'm insulted by the'... https://t.co/EdgYoNVFDU
Sat Sep 05 15:26:37 +0000 2020
Krissy E : @GolferGirl305 I just went on and I got it too!!! Wtf
Sun Sep 06 12:02:28 +0000 2020
Pascal - Instagram Masteryð§ð>>''¸ : @GolferGirl305 @FrazzleDazzzled This is fucked up on so many levels
Sun Sep 06 10:03:19 +0000 2020
Wealth Cartelð'² : @GolferGirl305 If it wasn't for Instagram and WhatsApp, Facebook would've been dead by now
Sun Sep 06 08:47:59 +0000 2020
Albert Lanier : @GolferGirl305 @JudgeJoeBrownTV Personally Id rather Facebook Pay me to keep my account active...
Sun Sep 06 04:35:31 +0000 2020
'ð'ð'ð'--ð' ''ð''ð'¨ð'' 'ð'£ð'ð'ð'--ð'ð'¤ð'¤ ðºð¸'¥¸ð¤ð'ðºð¸ : @GolferGirl305 Wow!!! So they want to silence your voice? This is penny's to Facebook for YOUR VOICE!! I hope you s'... https://t.co/SQ6v8GvE7n
Sun Sep 06 04:06:30 +0000 2020
Carucci : @GolferGirl305 I got it, but didn't take the offer.
Sun Sep 06 04:02:20 +0000 2020
Wali Tha Scot Bey : @GolferGirl305 https://t.co/gNsOk9ljq7
Sun Sep 06 03:50:52 +0000 2020
Kwame : @GolferGirl305 What ð¤--ð¤--ð¤--
Sun Sep 06 01:38:52 +0000 2020
Camwise : @GolferGirl305 That's messed up
Sun Sep 06 01:21:10 +0000 2020
18 out of 20 members on Facebook's fact-checking board have ties to George Soros
Facebook claims its new oversight board, which has the authority to allow or remove content from the platform, is diverse in thought and opinion, but an investigation has determined that 18 out of the 20 members of the board have ties to liberal billionaire George Soros or groups he supports.
Sheryl Attkisson's investigation for RealClearInvestigations revealed that 18 out of 20 members of the "independent" board "collaborated with or are tied to groups that have received funding from George Soros' Open Society Foundations."
The Open Society Foundation is perhaps the foremost and most well-funded progressive organization in the world. Soros has donated billions to various left-wing causes for decades, and most recently donated over $200 million to Black Lives Matter and another $50 million to elect former Vice-President Joe Biden in the United States.
A recent New York Times op-ed from the oversight board claimed, ''The board members come from different professional, cultural and religious backgrounds and have various political viewpoints."
''Some of us have been publicly critical of Facebook; some of us haven't," the authors of the op-ed wrote, adding that "Facebook committed to creating an independent oversight body that will review Facebook's decisions about what content to take down or leave up. Over the past 18 months, more than 2,000 experts and other relevant parties from 88 countries have contributed feedback that has shaped the development of this oversight board, which will have 20 members (ultimately growing to 40) and is scheduled to become operational this year.''
Other news articles have played up the diversity and global reach of the board, but the revelation that 90 percent of its members have ties to Soros or his organizations appears to bolster complaints from conservatives that they are being censored by Big Tech.
As an example, the RealClearInvestigations report notes that Evelyn Aswad, a U.S. law professor, is a recipient of a grant from a Knight Foundation that has partnered with Open Society Foundations. Furthermore, Aswad once said that corporations should align their ''speech codes with international human rights law'' and be guided by ''international law on freedom of expression.''
One of the four co-chairs of the board, Columbia University law school professor Jamal Greene, used to be an aide to Senator Kamala Harris. Both Columbia University and Harris have financial ties to the Soros family. On his Twitter, Greene also posted several anti-Trump tweets.
Another co-chair, Helle Thorning-Schmidt, is the former socialist Prime Minister of Denmark, and is a trustee at the International Crisis Group funded by the Open Society Foundation. Moreover, both Soros and his son Alexander are members of the International Crisis Group board.
Other members have received substantial sums of money from the Open Society Foundation.
Catalina Botero-Marino, a co-chair of the Facebook oversight board, is a dean of a Colombian law school that received $1.3 million over two years from Soros' Open Society Foundations. Botero-Marino also serves as an expert on the panel of Inter-American Dialogue, which receives partial funding by Soros' Open Society Foundations. As RealClearInvestigations notes, Botero-Marino serves as an expert for Columbia University's Global Freedom of Expression Project, also funded in part by Open Society Foundations. Finally, Botero-Marino Served was on the board of Article 19, which obtained $1.7 million from Open Society Foundations.
Board member Maina Kiai is the director of Human Rights Watch's Alliances and Partnerships Initiative, which received $100 million from Open Society Foundations. Kiai was also a founding member of the Kenya Human Rights Commission, which has taken $615,000 from Soros.
Nighat Dad, the founder and executive director of the Digital Rights Foundation, also receives money from Soros' Open Society Foundations. The Digitls Rights Foundations is a project of Artists at Risk Connection, which in turn is a project of Pen America, which is sponsored in part by Soros' Open Society Foundations.
Dad was also on the "board of the Soros-funded Dangerous Speech Project" and an "adviser on Amnesty International's Technology and Human Rights Counsel, funded in part by Soros' Open Society Foundations."
Title image: George Soros, Founder and Chairman of the Open Society Foundations, looks before the Joseph A. Schumpeter award ceremony in Vienna, Austria, Friday, June 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)
Please keep me anonymous. I am boots on the ground, doing the work, and an executive working in the payment and banking industry for over 15 years and have responsibilities for over seeing the payments programs of over 400 community banks performing Wire, ACH, Check, Cash, and Card Payments.
I am privately consulting with the Federal Reserve and publicly serving on the FedNow ISO 20022 Working Group developing the standards for the deployment of FedNow. Like any industry the media doesn't understand and reporting about payments is shit.
FedNow is not live and wont be till 2023. As a part of the FedNow, the Fed would be standing up what is called a universal directory or a federated directory. A universal directory would give an awareness of every account in the banking system of the United States and a much easier disbursement mechanism for government benefits and bailouts. A federated directory would leverage the banking system infrastructure through delegated standards and APIs.
The federated model wont work because it is too complicated because we will be using things like biometrics, email, device ids, etc to link back to the directory and people will have multiple accounts that span multiple federated directories each claiming they are primary. So it will eventually resolve to a single universal directory where the banks will manage credentials remotely via APIs.
The Fed was getting pressure from international governments and organizations like SEPA and UK Faster payments to adopt Real Time Payments (RTP) based on the ISO 20022 standard for interoperability. It will eventually replace the Wire payments and ACH from a technology perspective.
We are years away. Couple points I think that have made payments easier to understand.
Money only actually moves one of 3 ways, everything else is making things look Realtime using credit and debit holds till settlement actually occurs.
FYI, Checks clear via ACH
FedNow isn't even the first RTP system in the United States. The big banks already have RTP through TheClearingHouse where the big banks own and cross clear settlement with each other.
RTP will speed up the backend settlement processes. The universal directory which really is a separate piece of technology if done right will make disbursements easier but the Fed is going to fuck this up going Federated with players who don't want to make it work or want paid for access.
This is the tech but the market politics are incredible with competing motivations. This is separate from the socialist/Marxist effort to make the Post Office a national bank for all citizens. Which I can go deep on.
If you want to talk where payments is heading. You are right, cash is the enemy and your identity will be your access mechanism for banking and payments. Biometrics and when possible device finger printing will be used to authenticate you and allow you to perform transactions. We are more than 20+ years out from that being mainstream. We still have checks and the industry has been trying to kill those for over 20 years.
sorry if this is too long -there are a few things I'd like to share.
1. My "local" bank, is called Amtrust. It's a subsidiary of New York Community Bank.
Last month I received written notice that they were going to shut down operations for the weekend of August 21st, to "upgrade their systems" to include the new and exciting online payment system called "Zelle". I smelled BS. Great. I never use this kind of thing. I pulled out cash in case this was the big bank reset. The next Monday I tried logging on to online banking, and was presented with 2 new "agreements" I had to agree to, in order to access my accounts.
Being suspicious, I actually read the agreements.
I've attached the interesting wording (section 1.3, "prohibited payments") I found in both the agreements.
I refuse to be told how I can use my money, so haven't agreed to either. My banking life has become much more difficult. Thought it might be of interest for the show
Federally Chartered Banks and Thrifts May Provide Custody Services For Crypto Assets | OCC
WASHINGTON'--The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today published a letter clarifying national banks' and federal savings associations' authority to provide cryptocurrency custody services for customers.
National and state banks and thrifts have long provided safekeeping and custody services, including both physical objects and electronic assets. The OCC has specifically recognized the importance of digital assets and the authority for banks to provide safekeeping for such assets since 1998. In the letter published today, the OCC concludes that providing cryptocurrency custody services, including holding unique cryptographic keys associated with cryptocurrency, is a modern form of traditional bank activities related to custody services. Crypto custody services may extend beyond passively holding "keys."
"From safe-deposit boxes to virtual vaults, we must ensure banks can meet the financial services needs of their customers today," said Acting Comptroller of the Currency Brian P. Brooks. "This opinion clarifies that banks can continue satisfying their customers' needs for safeguarding their most valuable assets, which today for tens of millions of Americans includes cryptocurrency."
The OCC also recognizes that, as the financial markets are increasingly digitized, the need will increase for banks and other service providers to leverage new technology and innovative ways to serve their customers' needs. By doing so, banks can continue to fulfill the financial intermediation function they have historically played in providing payment, lending, and deposit services.
Today's opinion applies to national banks and federal savings associations of all sizes and is consistent with a number of states which have already authorized state banks or trust companies to provide similar functions.
The Goldback is the world's first voluntary, complementary currency to be made of a spendable, beautiful, small denomination, physical gold. Learn how to purchase the Goldback with this Guide: The Goldback project truly began in spirit with the passage of the Utah Legal Tender Act in 2011 which recognized certain types of Gold as currency within the state. Since that time the technology to mint gold into a spendable form for small transactions has come to fruition. Goldbacks may be used almost anywhere in the world for barter transactions. Goldback Inc. is using cutting edge vacuum deposition technology to circulate gold as it never has before. A more complete history of the Goldback can be found here:
We are working to make it possible for an anyone to have a choice on whether or not they want their regular spending money to be subject to inflation. The Goldback is meant to be the best physical complementary currency for retaining value. Our goal is for people to be able to pay for anything with the Goldback whether it is a new home or a lemonade. Each Goldback is at least valued at the current rate on Goldback.com by businesses. You can purchase the Goldback by following this guide.
The Utah series was the first Goldback series available in 2019. Nevada and New Hampshire are scheduled to be done in 2020. There are many projects in the works. Goldbacks may be used anywhere people chose to accept gold.
''The Goldback solves a 2,600 year old problem in that gold can be spent in small, interchangeable increments.'''-- dr. Mark Voelker, United Precious Metals Association Board Member
If nothing else Covid-19 showed just how unprepared many people were for a disruptive event. It pays to prepare for a crisis in advance and to try to be at least a little bit ready for whatever that crisis ends up being.
Over half of all Goldbacks produced are of the 'one' denomination.
Our team has been working in the precious metals industry since our General Counsel, Lawrence Hilton, authored and championed the passage of the Utah Legal Tender Act in 2011. The Utah Precious Metals Association formed in 2012 from the ''Citizens for Sound Money'' and began offering legal tender gold accounts that same year. We have been innovating in the space ever since.
Read the full history of the creation of the Goldback here:
Acceptance rate for Goldbacks at small businesses that take cash payments when speaking to the business owner.
More Information Here:
The talk about the digital dollar, while disturbing on it's own, triggered me over the 16 decimal places! In my work we deal with people sick time balances, like you having 8 hours of sick leave. We calculate that out to the 15th decimal place, or the femtosecond. Due to how scientific math calculates (which I can never explain to a customer) an employee might take one hour of sick leave and end up with not 7 hours, but 6.999~ hours. Customers lose their minds over this. The 15th decimal for whatever reason loses an unimaginably small value that would eventually be recaptured the next time someone uses or gains sick time. ANYWAYS I finally found a way to explain this to a customer in a way to truly measure the impact of this decimal, and that way is explaining the femtosecond. A femtosecond is the amount of time it takes light travel the diameter of a virus. I would explain this to the customer on the hopes that they will realize how trivial this value is to hopefully calm them down.
However, if you start measuring my money in femtopennies, I'll be counting every flippin' decimal!
People Hate This Common Habit, But It's Actually a Sign of High Emotional Intelligence | Inc.com
I'm going to ask you to consider your reaction to a very common verbal habit that many other people have -- and that they get pilloried for, unfairly.
People say they lack confidence. They say they're weak or unsure of themselves. They say they're opening the door to not be taken seriously.
But people who react like this are wrong. At the very least, they're missing a tremendous opportunity because of their own insecurities.
The speaking habit I'm talking about here is what's known as "high rising terminal."
It has other names too, like "uptalk," "rising inflection," or "high rising intonation."
Practically, it's the phenomenon that results in people speaking declarative sentences with a rising pitch that is more commonly applied to asking a question. Sometimes, they wind up dividing declarative sentences into shorter phrases, each with its own rising pitch.
You'll understand what I mean with a quick example. A person who does not speak with a voice marked by a high rising intonation might offer the following suggestion:
"Looking at all the variables, and the uncertainty in the world right now, I think we should reach out to existing customers so we know where we stand. At the same time, we can figure out which future opportunities to double down on, and which to delay pursuing."
But for a person whose speaking style tends toward uptalk, the rising inflection sounds a bit more like this:
"Looking at all the variables? And the uncertainty in the world right now? I think we should reach out to existing customers. So we know where we stand? At the same time, we can figure out which future opportunities to double down on. And which to delay pursuing?"
Those are intentionally generic examples. You can replace the specific statements with things that would be more relevant to your business to make it more familiar.
Now, there are some studies that suggest women are more likely to speak with this kind of uptalk in their voices, although most of those analyses are at least a few years old. Other studies suggest it's more common in younger people.
My siblings and I used to call it "speaking Canadian," as it's a bit of a common inflection in Canada. (We were attuned to this since our mom was from Montreal.)
But as I've grown older and more experienced, and as I've gotten to know colleagues who have this tendency in their voices--but who are neither insecure, nor lacking in confidence, nor less competent than their peers--I've realized something important.
Rather than suggesting a lack of confidence, people who naturally speak in this style may be extraordinarily tuned in with their audiences.
Doing so--focusing on the effects your words actually have on people, and what they understand, as opposed to what you intend to say--are in turn signs of very high emotional intelligence.
So, let's return to the generic example above, in which the speaker acknowledges a dynamic situation and proposes a strategic course of action.
I'm not sure there's anything intrinsically wrong with the initial iteration, in which the declarative sentences are spoken declaratively. But when you think about why the high rising terminal speaker's sentences can sound like a string of questions, it makes a lot more sense.
In short, the question marks in that string of sentences don't signal insecurity. Instead, they signal: "Are you with me? Are my words reaching you? Do you understand the concepts I'm explaining?"
When the phrases "looking at all the variables," and "the uncertainty in the world right now" end with an uptick, the implied message is: "Do you understand that the course of action I'm about to suggest is informed by some big changes in the world?"
And when the speaker proposes reaching out to existing customers to find out where we stand (?), and figuring out which opportunities to delay (?), with a high rising intonation, I think they're applying one of the most insightful, effective methods of making tough decisions.
It's one I've written about that Jeff Bezos advocates: acknowledging that hard decisions will always have multiple, reasonable solutions, and so deciding is less about reaching consensus, and more about encouraging commitment.
Back to the example, would it be a good idea to focus on existing customers? Well, it's a hypothetical, so who knows?
But it's probably not a 100 percent right-or-wrong decision, right?
So the speaker's goal here is not just to advocate for an outcome, but to get buy-in from others. (It's also likely he or she doesn't have the practical power to insist simply: Here's what we're going to do.)
Instead, it's: "I know there's another argument, but I think we should double down on existing customers. Are you with me? Can we do this? Can I get your support?"
It's a lot to pack into an implied question mark. And I'm not saying it's intentional, as much as instinctive.
But it's also highly emotionally intelligent.
So what do you think?
Do you understand the argument?
And do you understand that if you dismiss people because they sometimes talk like this, maybe you're missing out on some smart contributions?
And maybe you're the one who needs to reassess?
DOD Reaffirms Original JEDI Cloud Award to Microsoft > U.S. DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE > Release
The Department has completed its comprehensive re-evaluation of the JEDI Cloud proposals and determined that Microsoft's proposal continues to represent the best value to the Government. The JEDI Cloud contract is a firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract that will make a full range of cloud computing services available to the DoD. While contract performance will not begin immediately due to the Preliminary Injunction Order issued by the Court of Federal Claims on February 13, 2020, DoD is eager to begin delivering this capability to our men and women in uniform.
Did Mueller Prosecutors Know of Problems With Carter Page FISA, Approved It Anyway, and Later ''Recreated'' The ''Woods File'' To Cover Up The Misconduct?
Former special counsel Robert Mueller arrives to testify on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, July 24, 2019, before the House Judiciary Committee hearing on his report on Russian election interference. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)I've watched this story for 72 hours to see if anything new might develop.
On September 1, 2020, journalist Sarah Carter broke a story based on confidential sources that in a briefing of the Senate Intelligence Committee, the FBI and Department of Justice informed the committee that the ''Woods File'' for the Carter Page FISA application had been somehow ''lost'' at some unknown point in time. She reported that the Committee was told that the contents of the file had been ''recreated'' by the Robert Mueller's Special Counsel office by ''reverse engineering'' '-- my words '-- through examining the application and determining what factual allegations would have required supporting documentation normally contained in a ''Woods File''.
I have not seen any other news outlet report this story, so all I have at this point is Carter's story which she attributes to ''sources familiar with the proceedings'' before the Intelligence Committee.
As a refresher readers should understand that the ''Woods File'' is a process by which the FBI case agent on a FISA application documents a source for every factual allegation set forth in the application. It is named after a member of the FBI General Counsel's Office who first devised the validation process as part of reforms to the FISA process put in place by Robert Mueller when he was Director of the FBI.
Here is what Carter reports based on her sources familiar with the hearing:
The original Woods file on former campaign advisor Carter Page went missing more than two years ago, and according to sources who spoke to SaraACarter.com, those documents had to be recreated by the FBI and former Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team in 2018 from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Application used by the bureau to obtain the warrant on Page.
The woods file procedure, which was overseen by FBI Supervisory Special Agent Joe Pientka, and ultimately former FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok, was used to verify the contents in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act application that was used to obtain a warrant to spy on Page.
Moreover, during Pientka's numerous interviews with investigators from the DOJ's Inspector General's office, who likely have worked for both Michael Horowitz and Connecticut prosecutor John Durham '' the fact that it was a recreated Wood's file was never disclosed.
Where to begin?
How about with the ''disappearance'' of an electronic file in a system where nothing disappears. The Woods File is a subfile in the investigation's case file. It is created by the Case Agent by scanning in the documentary sources used as the basis to make factual allegation in the affidavit.
The purpose of having the file is so that when third parties '-- supervisors, subsequent case agents, other agencies '-- who review the affidavit and have questions about a particular allegation, they can go to the Woods File and find the specific documents from which the allegation was sourced. The file is not intended to ''prove'' the allegation true '-- only that the allegation has a source, and what that source is.
A question that has never received enough scrutiny is the role of the Special Counsel's office in seeking the third extension of the Page FISA warrant. That extension was requested on June 29, 2017. That is six weeks after Mueller was appointed Special Counsel, and responsibility for Crossfire Hurricane was transferred to the Special Counsel's Office.
The IG Report on Four FISAs pirouettes around this question on Page 219 in the following fashion:
On June 29, 2017, a day before FISA coverage on Carter Page was going to expire, and at the request of the FBI, the Department filed an application with the FISC requesting an additional 90 days of FISA coverage targeting Carter Page.
Well, that was stating the obvious '-- to say the least. Of course, the FBI requested it '-- the FBI obtained the original FISA and the FBI had been accessing records and other information on Page through the FISA. And saying ''the Department filed an application'' is equally unenlightening because only the ''Department'' can file such an application. But the Report does have the following ''pregnant'' footnote:
On May 17, 2017, the Crossfire Hurricane cases were transferred to the Office of the Special Counsel. Although agents and analysts were working with the Special Counsel, the FISA application was still subject to Department approval and notification requirements.
What that footnote suggests but doesn't make explicit is that the FBI agents who sought the third extension were working for the SCO when the decision was made to seek the third extension '-- i.e., if the SCO had not wanted the third extension, no such effort would have been made. There is NO suggestion that anyone at FBI HQ or DOJ '-- separate from the SCO '-- commanded that the third application be made to extend the FISA warrant.
And this brings us to a critical issue '-- did SCO review the original application and first two extensions, compare the allegations in the applications against the Woods File, and realize the scope of the problems? Were these problems known before the third extension was sought under the authority of the SCO?
How does the Woods File '-- stored electronically in the FBI's Sentinel database '-- get ''lost''? And at what point in time did the SCO decide it was necessary to ''reconstruct'' a replacement Woods File by reverse engineering it through analyzing the applications to determine the specific factual allegations needed source documentation '-- other than the Steele Memos '-- in order to justify their inclusion in the third application to extend.
Was the ACTUAL Woods File so lacking '-- or so dependent on the allegations of the Steele Memos '-- that someone in the SCO realized it was a ''ticking time bomb'' waiting to be uncovered once an authorized investigator was given the responsibility to sort things out?
We learn on page 220 of the IG Report that when time arrived for the third application, there were already concerns among the FBI personnel involved that the FISA warrant was ''going dark'' '-- it was yielding little of value in May and June, 2017. In addition, Carter Page had been interviewed multiple times at that point, telling Agents who did the interview that he suspected he was under surveillance. Yet ''Case Agent 6'' and ''Supervisory Special Agent 5'' decided to proceed with the third extension according to the IG Report at page. 220.
Let's take a moment to focus on Case Agent 6. At Page 211 of the Report it reads as follows:
Following the interviews with Carter Page and review of the FISA collections, agents working on the Carter Page investigation discussed and had differing opinions about seeking a second renewal. Case Agent 6 told us that although he reviewed the FISA collections when he was assigned to the Carter Page investigation in February 2017, he had not reviewed enough information to make a determination as to whether seeking a renewal was necessary.
But Case Agent 6 learned much more about Carter Page after becoming responsible for the Page investigation in February 2017:
Further, in March 2017, Case Agent 1 and Case Agent 6 conducted five voluntary interviews with Carter Page. During those interviews, Carter Page provided the following: information about his July and December 2016 trips to Moscow; individuals he denied meeting to include Igor Sechin and Paul Manafort; a trip to Singapore in February 2017 for Gazprom Investor Day; and his lack of involvement in the Republican National Committee's (RNC) platform change on assistance to Ukraine. Carter Page also discussed his contacts with Gazprom, his assumption that he was under FBI surveillance, and he denied that anyone from Russia asked him to relay any messages to anyone in the campaign.
When it came time for the second extension of the Page FISA warrant in April 2017, Case Agent 6 had a substantial body of knowledge concerning Page, as well as information calling into question the allegations about Page being a Russian ''agent'' as alleged in the Steele Memos.
[Case Agent 6] told us that he reviewed [REDACTED] in which Carter Page [REDACTED]. Case Agent 6 told us that although this email and Page's statements in an interview caused him to question whether it was worth seeking Renewal Application No. 2, he ultimately did not disagree with Case Agent 1 and SSA 5 who told him they wanted to continue the surveillance of Page. He also said that he discussed seeking the renewal with his NYFO Special Agent in Charge and did not recall any disagreement about seeking a second renewal from anyone working on the investigation.
Those are critical redactions in December 2019 when the IG Report was issued. The redactions hide the subject of ''this email'' which follows in the next sentence concerning what Case Agent 6 understood about Page and his interview statements. What critical email on this question exists? Without question it is almost certainly this email:
Additionally, Case Agent 1 received an email on August 10, 2016, containing an attachment titled ''Carter Page-Profile,'' which had been prepared by a Crossfire Hurricane Staff Operations Specialist (SOS). The profile, dated August 1, 2016, quoted the 2009 EC regarding Page's statements to the FBI about his contact with the other U.S. government agency.
As noted in the IG Report, Case Agent 6 and SSA 2 sought the third renewal of the FISA warrant. At the time, the investigation was the responsibility of the SCO. SSA 2, the Affiant on the third renewal, is the person who tasked OGC Attorney Kevin Clinesmith to get confirmation from the CIA that Page had not been a ''source'' for the CIA as claimed by Page in the media and to the FBI.
Clinesmith has now pled guilty to altering the email he received back from the CIA, making it state definitively that Page ''was not a source'' when the CIA had not said that '-- in fact, the CIA said the opposite.
Clinesmith worked with Case Agent 6 and SSA 2 on the third renewal application '-- while the investigation was with the SCO '-- which DOJ later told the FISA Court was not supported by probable cause.
The Special Counsel's Office later included the following footnote in the March 2019 Mueller Report at p. 13:
1. FBI personnel assigned to the Special Counsel's Office were required to adhere to all applicable federal law and all Department and FBI regulations, guidelines, and policies. An FBI attorney worked onFBI-related matters for the Office, such as FBI compliance with all FBI policies and procedures, including the FBI's Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide (DIOG). That FBI attorney worked under FBI legal supervision, not the Special Counsel's supervision.
And now we have Sara Carter's report that the ''Woods File'' for the Page FISA application was at some undetermined point in time ''recreated'' by the Special Counsel's Office after the original file was ''lost'' in an electronic database that doesn't ''lose'' things.
Mueller's prosecutors supervised the application for the third extension of the Page FISA warrant. They knew that Clinesmith worked hand-in-hand with Case Agent 6 and SSA 2 on putting together that extension application. Mueller's prosecutors knew of Page's denials about having been involved with Russian intelligence agents '' which he made in interviews with Case Agent 6, and which were well documented in the Crossfire Hurricane files.
Case Agent 6 had interviewed Page multiple times in March 2017, had reviewed the Page Profile prepared by the FBI about Page's prior reporting TO THE FBI about his contacts with the CIA, and had reviewed the CIA memorandum from August 2016 in which the CIA explained to the Crossfire Hurricane team the nature and extent of Page's history with the CIA.
Case Agent 6 knew the problems with respect to the ''sourcing'' in the Steele Memos because he was fully briefed, and had read the 57 page EC on the January 2017 interview with Steele's primary sub-source, Igor Danchenko, who had undermined much of the information in the Memos that Steele attributed to him.
To COVER ALL THIS UP after the Mueller Prosecutors had signed off on seeking the third extension, the cut loose Clinesmith in the Report because they knew by that time of his falsification of the CIA email, the Mueller Prosecutors then ''reverse engineered'' the Woods File so it would appear to have been much more complete than it had been when the third extension was approved by the Mueller Prosecutors. It is impossible to know now whether the ''recreated'' Woods File is a ''fair and accurate'' representation of the Woods File as it existed in June 2017 when the Mueller Prosecutors approved the third application for a FISA extension.
VIDEO-Dr David Katz - Covid-19 Science and Policy Symposium, 17 August 2020 - YouTube
By and September 4, 2020, 7:01 AM EDT Updated on September 4, 2020, 8:09 AM EDT
Shot produces antibody response, no adverse effects: Lancet
Publication is first time Russia data has been peer-reviewed
Russia Registers First Covid-19 Vaccine as Trials Continue
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Russia's proposed Covid-19 vaccine induced an antibody response in all participants in early trials and found no serious adverse effects, according to the first vetted data on the controversial project.
The vaccine also produced a response in T-cells -- a type of white blood cell that helps the immune system destroy infection -- according to preliminary results from phase 1 and 2 trials that were published Friday in the Lancet medical journal. Russian officials had previously made broadly similar statements about the shot, prior to review by outside experts.
Despite limitations in the trials, the peer-reviewed data bolster Russia's prospects in the race with the U.S., China and Europe to secure a vaccine, following widespread skepticism. Health officials elsewhere criticized the country's regulatory approval of the shot last month, before it had gone through wider phase 3 trials. Concerns about so-called vaccine nationalism were fueled by allegations that Russian intelligence services orchestrated the hacking of western development programs -- which the Kremlin denied.
The 'Gam-COVID-Vac' at the Gamaleya National Research Center in Zelenograd, Russia.
Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg
The Drugs and Vaccines That Might End the Coronavirus Pandemic
Friday's publication marks a ''turning point'' following ''attacks'' on the project, said Kirill Dmitriev, chief executive officer of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, which is backing the vaccine.
''Russia has answered the questions that have been asked about it,'' he said on a conference call. ''And we are convinced that we have the best vaccine in the world.''
No PlaceboThe trials took place in two Russian hospitals and involved 76 healthy adults aged 18 to 60. The vaccine uses two different human adenoviruses -- relatively harmless germs that normally cause common colds -- that were altered to carry coronavirus proteins that induce an immune response.
All participants were given the vaccine and there was no placebo group -- one of several limitations to the trials that were cited in the report.
What Bloomberg Intelligence Says''Data for Russia's Covid-19 vaccine show it's active with acceptable side effects, but this doesn't change the fact that it was approved way too early, based on data from a 76-subject trial.''
-- Sam Fazeli, pharma analyst
First Blush at Russia's Covid-19 Vaccine
The investigators took convalescent plasma from 4,817 people who had recovered from mild or moderate Covid-19 to compare post-vaccination immunity with natural immunity. Antibody responses were higher in those vaccinated, according to the data.
The government has announced plans to begin administering the shot more widely to medical personnel and teachers in the coming weeks, ahead of a broader national campaign slated for late this year. The move has led to concerns that political pressure could prevail over safety considerations and risk public health as the world seeks an end to the pandemic.
Two FormsThe Russian investigators tested two forms of the vaccine - frozen and freeze-dried. Phase 1 participants were given one of the two-part shots, while phase 2 groups also received a second shot 21 days after the first. All 40 participants in the phase 2 trial produced antibodies, with higher levels found in those who had received the frozen vaccine. Neutralizing antibody responses were found in all phase 2 subjects, while only 61% of phase 1 participants produced them from the single shot.
All phase 2 participants showed T-cell responses within 28 days of vaccination, with the frozen shots again proving more effective than the freeze-dried.
The investigators said limitations to the study include its size, the short follow-up time of 42 days and the fact that some parts of the phase 1 trial used only male volunteers. The trial also largely focused on people in their 20s and 30s.
Russia has also been giving the vaccine to officials and other prominent people outside the trial groups for months without waiting for the full study results. On Friday, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin, 62, told Russian President Vladimir Putin in a televised video conference that he'd had the shot and felt only minor discomfort at the time. Putin said last month that one of his daughters also had the inoculation and was feeling fine. The Kremlin hasn't disclosed whether Putin has been vaccinated.
Phase 3 TrialA phase 3 trial was approved on Aug. 26 for 40,000 volunteers from different age and risk groups.
''The immunogenicity bodes well, although nothing can be inferred on immunogenicity in older age groups, and clinical efficacy for any Covid-19 vaccine has not yet been shown,'' said Naor Bar-Zeev, an associate professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, in a linked commentary in The Lancet. ''Showing safety will be crucial with Covid-19 vaccines, not only for vaccine acceptance but also for trust in vaccination broadly.''
'-- With assistance by Gregory White
Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.
VIDEO-DOJ plans to file antitrust charges against Google in coming weeks - YouTube
(C) Provided by Indy 100 Attorney General William Barr plans to press ahead with a Justice Department antitrust case against Google, perhaps by the end of September.
Mr Barr has reportedly overruled the objections of career lawyers in the department who say that they need more time to build a case against the tech giant, The New York Times reports.
Department officials have told lawyers involved in the antitrust inquiry into Google's parent company Alphabet to finish their work this month.
Most of the legal team opposed such a pressing deadline arguing in a lengthy memo that they would be unable to prepare a strong case in such a short period of time. They worry that a weak case could strengthen Google's position.
There is disagreement within the team as to how broad an antitrust case should be, and how Google could act to resolve issues turned up by the case.
Career lawyers fear the September deadline is designed to show action against the tech giant ahead of the 2020 election in November. President Donald Trump has accused Google and other tech companies of having a bias against him and conservative voices.
"Trump signs controversial executive order that could allow federal officials to target Twitter, Facebook and Google"
A senior DoJ official counters that Mr Barr feels the department has been moving too slowly and the deadline is reasonable, The New York Times reports.
Antitrust action against Google enjoys broad bipartisan support, but there is little consensus on how to move forward. Democrats are accused of dragging out the process so that action might come during a potential Biden administration.
Alphabet is an obvious target for an antitrust case given the broad suite of companies and products that consumers use either actively or passively multiple times a day.
The company harvests data from consumer interactions to improve its products, making it difficult for others to compete.
The Justice Department inquiry is split into two working groups, one focused on the dominance of Google in search, and the other on online advertising and the technology that sits behind it.
It is unclear if any case would cover the company's dominance in both sectors or focus on just one. There is also disagreement among state attorneys as to whether to bring a focused case quickly or a broader case later.
To date, Europe has led the way in reining in the tech giants in terms of antitrust issues, while the US has lagged behind.
Video: Exam algorithm was 'fundamental mistake' (Sky News)
Exam algorithm was 'fundamental mistake'
VIDEO-Joe Biden: 'A Black Man Invented the Light Bulb, Not a White Guy Named Edison'
Former Vice President Joe Biden lamented the fact that American schools teach that a white man invented the light bulb during a meeting Thursday with residents of Kenosha, Wisconsin.
''Why in God's name don't we teach history in history classes?'' Biden said during the event at Grace Lutheran Church. ''A black man invented the light bulb. not a white guy named Edison. Okay? There's so much. Did anybody know?''
The Democratic presidential nominee is wrong about this facet of history. While historians argue over whether Thomas Edison can claim sole credit for creating the incandescent light bulb, his invention took shape in 1879, he patented it in 1880 '-- before Lewis Latimer, a black man, came up with an improvement on the design.
Latimer, an accomplished scholar and inventor, designed a carbon light bulb filament in 1881 and patented it in 1882. According to History.com, his iterative contribution to the technology greatly improved each bulb's durability:
Latimer, the son of runaway slaves, began work in a patent law firm after serving in the military for the Union during the Civil War. He was recognized for his talent drafting patents and was promoted to head draftsman, where he co-invented an improved bathroom for railroad trains.
His successes would garner him further attention from the the U.S. Electric Lighting Company, putting him at a company in direct competition with Edison, in 1880. While there, Latimer patented a new filament for the light bulb, using carbon instead of more incendiary materials, like bamboo, that were commonly used for filaments. The addition of the carbon filament increased the life span and practicality of light bulbs, which had previously died after just a few days. In 1884, he went on to work with Edison at the Edison Electric Light Company.
According to fact-checking site LeadStories.com, this false meme became popular thanks to an article from ''LibertyWritersAfrica.com,'' a race-obsessed blog which has seen many more of its headlines disputed, such as:
' ''Meet The Black Family Who Produced Cars For 100 Years Before Henry Ford''' ''Research Shows That Chemicals in Foods Are Making Young Men Gay In The U.S.''' ''How Black Female Prisoners Are Sterilized To Cut Welfare Costs In California''' ''The First American President Was A Black Man '-- Not George Washington''
Biden did not indicate what sources had convinced him of this claim.
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VIDEO-Richard Grenell UNLOADS on Media to their Face: ''People Aren't Listening to You'' - YouTube
U.S. Postal Service police barred Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz from entering two mail sorting facilities in Florida in the early morning hours on Friday, threatening to escort her from the property if she didn't leave.
The Florida Democrat, who sits on the House Oversight Committee, said she aimed to inspect a mail plant in Opa-locka and Northwest Miami-Dade. Wasserman Schultz said union members told her about conditions at the processing centers and shared pictures that showed pallets of undelivered mail marked with a receipt date of "July 23."
Her office said those photos were sent to them earlier this week and raise further questions about how the Postal Service is being run under the leadership of Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a close ally of President Donald Trump. NBC News was not able to independently verify the photo of the reportedly undelivered mail.
''If DeJoy thinks he can just throw a bed sheet over what's going on behind these doors, he is sadly mistaken. It looked like the post master had something to hide,'' Wasserman Schultz said in a statement. ''Without access to these public facilities, the public is blindfolded to the problems or fixes taking place there. DeJoy cannot delay the mail and delay oversight of these facilities.''
The hold up of mail has come under intense scrutiny as millions failed to receive everything from prescription drugs to financial documents and online orders in recent months. The drop in service led to two tense Congressional hearings. At the House hearing last week, Wasserman Schlutz and her colleagues questioned whether DeJoy had intentionally hamstrung the federal agency.
The Postal Service maintained Wasserman Schultz was stopped from entering because she did not provide enough notice of her visit.
Let our news meet your inbox. The news and stories that matters, delivered weekday mornings.
Kim Fuller, a spokeswoman for the Postal Service, said Friday that the agency welcomes visits from members of Congress, but that they only "learned late yesterday afternoon that Representative Wasserman Schultz wanted to arrange" a tour.
"We spoke with her staff to explain that we were unable to set up the tour on such short notice, but would be happy to accommodate her at another time," Fuller said. "We look forward to working with the Congresswoman and her staff to arrange a visit in the near future."
Wasserman Schultz's office pushed back against that characterization.
A congressional aide told NBC News that they alerted the Postal Service at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday that they intended to make the visit. Because of the photos and the fear of what might be hidden from the congresswoman's view, the short notice was intentional.
"We weren't asking for permission,'' the aide said.
Rep. Brenda Lawrence and Sen. Gary Peters, both Michigan Democrats, visited a similar facility in Michigan last month. An aide to Peters said Friday that local union leaders had told the two members of Congress that the plant had been intentionally cleared of delayed mail because of their impending arrival.
Wasserman Schultz did not want the Postal Service to have the same opportunity with the plants in Florida.
But when Wasserman Schultz went to the Royal Palm Processing and Distribution Center in Opa-Locka, Florida, for a 4 a.m. tour of the facility, the entrance to the parking lot was blocked by caution tape and a Postal Service police car. Her visit to the Miami Processing and Distribution Center a couple hours later was blocked by two Postal Service police officers in the lobby.
Caution tape and a U.S. Postal Inspection Service police cruiser blocked the entrance of the Royal Palm Processing and Distribution Center in Opa-Locka, Fla., when Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a Democrat, attempted to enter the facility in the early morning hours of Friday Sept. 4. Debbie Wasserman Schultz's office''Hours ago, that tape wasn't there," Nick Mosezar, a member of the National Postal Mail Handlers Union, told NBC News' Miami affiliate. "All of a sudden today security is a priority, yet this is one of the worst secured facilities in this state."
As a member of the Oversight Committee, Wasserman Schultz said it is her job to inspect the Postal Service and its facilities. She said DeJoy has already "obstructed the committee" by not providing documents and data her committee has requested.
Sudden new requirements for "lengthy visitation protocols" that she did not have to follow when visiting facility earlier this year, she said, only served as further obstruction.
''There are no children, defense secrets or sick patients behind those doors," Wasserman Schultz said. "I'm perfectly capable of observing the work being done at a safe social distance, which I did without a lengthy delay or incident earlier this year. Denying Congress access to the facilities, is denying the vital public oversight of our mail system.''
Phil McCausland Phil McCausland is an NBC News reporter focused on rural issues and the social safety net.
VIDEO-The City of Portland Houses #RoseCityAntifa (#TrumpetMan) - Portland's #CHAZ/#CHOP??: 39 #heydan - YouTube
September 4, 2020 2020-09-04T12:55:32-04:00 https://images.c-span.org/Files/89d/20200904125608001_hd.jpg 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden delivered remarks in Wilmington, Delaware on the August 2020 jobs report released by the Department of Labor.2020 Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden delivered remarks in Wilmington, Delaware on the August 2020 jobs report released by the Department of Labor.
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*This transcript was compiled from uncorrected Closed Captioning.
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VIDEO-HopeReport '''¸ ðºð¸ on Twitter: "@JusticeTristan @adamcurry @THErealDVORAK is this really Joe talking? The cadence seems off with his body motions." / Twitter
HopeReport '''¸ ðºð¸ : @JusticeTristan @adamcurry @THErealDVORAK is this really Joe talking? The cadence seems off with his body motions.
Fri Sep 04 10:39:40 +0000 2020
VIDEO-Cabot Phillips on Twitter: "I cannot believe this is real, but it is. This USC Professor is on leave after students were offended that a Chinese word he used during a lecture on foreign languages sounded like an english racial slur. Watch the video
Washington D.C. police have released bodycam footage showing the moment officers shot dead an 18-year-old black man after he allegedly brandished a gun during a police chase - sparking further protests across the city.
Deon Kay died on Wednesday after he was shot in the chest by a Metropolitan Police officer identified on Thursday as Alexander Alvarez.
Authorities said Kay was one of two people who fled on Wednesday afternoon when approached by uniformed cops investigating reports of a man with a gun near the 200 block of Orange Street.
Police Chief Peter Newsham said officers had seen a livestream video on social media showing the suspect with a gun and recognized him from 'previous contacts'.
He said Kay was 'validated gang member' from the area and had had multiple brushes with the law in the past.
During the foot pursuit, Kay pulled out a weapon, prompting the officer to open fire in response, the MPD said.
Body camera footage released on Thursday has shed light on the events leading up to the fatal shooting which comes amid nationwide protests and calls for sweeping police reform.
Body camera footage released on Thursday shows the moment a Metropolitan Police officer shot dead 18-year-old Deon Kay (pictured) in southeast Washington D.C. on Wednesday. The officer opened fire after Kay brandished a gun (left) police said
In an 11-minute video, cops are seen chasing Kay near an apartment complex before cornering him with their weapons drawn. The officer then opens fire, striking the teenager in the chest once and causing him to collapse
The officer is heard telling the teen, 'Don't move! Don't move!' multiple times as Kay runs towards them with a gun in his hand before tossing the weapon '98 feet away' in the grass
In an 11-minute video clip, cops are seen chasing Kay near an apartment complex in southeast D.C. before encountering him with their weapons drawn.
The officer can be heard telling the teen, 'Don't move! Don't move!' multiple times as Kay runs towards them with a gun in his hand. He then tossed the weapon '98 feet away', according to police.
Deon Kay, 18, was shot dead by police on Wednesday afternoon. Cops say they opened fire on the teen after he 'brandished a gun'
The footage shows the officer firing one round, striking Kay in the chest, causing him to collapse on the ground.
The cop is then seen searching for the gun near a grassy area where it was thrown, as he explains what happened to two other cops as they arrive at the scene.
It marks the first fatal police-involved shooting in D.C. since new police reform laws went into effect earlier this year.
The incident is currently under investigation and the officers involved have been placed on administrative leave, per MPD policy.
During a press conference on Thursday, Newsham said Kay was known to officers by name and had been involved in a number crime-related incidents as a juvenile.
'I know he's a validated gang member from the area and I know that he has had multiple touches with the criminal justice system,' he said.
'This is a tragedy... to have any young person killed in the District of Columbia.
'I'm pretty sure Deon Kay fell through multiple safety nets before yesterday afternoon,' Newsham added.
The police chief declined to elaborate on Kay's previous offenses when asked by a reporter.
He also said the other man who fled during the incident escaped from police and remains at large.
Two other men, Marcyelle Smith, 19, and Deonte Brown, 18, were arrested and charged in Wednesday's incident. Smith was charged with carrying a pistol without a license and Brown was charged with no permit.
Two firearms were collected as evidence, including one 'ghost gun', according to Newsham.
A ghost gun is a term for an unregistered firearm that cannot be traced with serial numbers or other identifying marks. The ghost gun recovered by officers did not belong to Kay, Newsham said.
In the wake of the fatal shooting, friends of Kay paid tribute to the teen on social media, sharing photos of him posing with weapons
Kay had just turned 18 and had recently gotten into a high school equivalency program. He is pictured above with a friend
A police statement on Wednesday included pictures of the handgun they say Kay had been carrying, as well of the gun of another of his companions who was arrested.
In the wake of the fatal shooting, friends of Kay paid tribute to the teen on social media, sharing photos of him posing with weapons.
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser addressed the shooting for the first time on Thursday after protesters gathered outside her home earlier this morning.
'We know how tragic any loss of life is in our city and I'd like to offer my condolences to the family of Deon Kay,' Bowser said, adding that the city is 'still gathering all the facts.'
She said Kay's mother has been offered counseling support and was able to view the footage of the shooting before it was released.
Earlier in the day, protesters gathered outside Bowser's Colonial Village home following a night of unrest in the District over the police-involved shooting.
At least a dozen members of the Sunrise Movement DC gathered at daybreak holding signs reading, 'Defund or Resign' and 'No justice, no sleep', demanding Bowser fire Metropolitan Police Chief Peter Newsham and defund the police department.
Video shared on Twitter showed one protester speaking into a megaphone saying: 'If you don't defund the police then you shouldn't bother running for re-election.'
It came hours after protesters staged a rally outside the mayor's home and the MPD's 7th District headquarters overnight.
Activists from the Sunrise Movement rallied outside DC Mayor Muriel Bowser's home at daybreak on Thursday following overnight protests over the police shooting of Deon Kay
At least a dozen protesters gathered outside the Colonial Village home holding signs reading, 'Defund or Resign' and 'No justice, no sleep', demanding Bowser fire MPD Chief Peter Newsham and defund the police
DC Mayor Muriel Bowser (left) who has backed the BLM movement is yet to speak publicly on Wednesday's shooting. MPD Chief Peter Newsham (right) on Wednesday said it would be 'improper' to speculate on what prompted the officers to open fire, but he said two firearms were recovered from the scene. Body cam footage is expected to be released later today
The demonstrators can be heard in a video posted by N2Sreports chanting: 'If we don't get no justice, you don't get no sleep.'
They spent around an hour outside the property, arguing with cops who arrived at the request of a neighbor, before a larger police presence drove to the scene and they left.
Police said Kay had been in possession of this gun
Following the shooting, the local Black Lives Matter affiliate called for immediate protests outside the MPD's 7th District headquarters, stating in a tweet, 'DC police murdered a black man today.'
Earlier Kay's mother Natasha told The Washington Post: 'They took my baby, they just took my baby from me. I need my son back, I want my son back.'
Kay, who had just turned 18, had recently gotten into a high school equivalency program, youth mentor Omar Jackson told the Post.
He said the teen 'was trying to navigate through this chaotic situation out here' and 'get himself together.'
'I feel bad. My job is to keep him out of situations like this,' Jackson said.
The shooting comes as police killings of black people have sparked nationwide protests and calls for sweeping police reform.
Black Lives Matter D.C. on Wednesday tweeted: 'Don't let MPD control the narrative! Police lie! We're on our way.' Footage from the scene shows protesters confronting officers outside a police precinct.
DC Council members reacted to the shooting on Twitter, demanding officials release bodycam footage to ensure 'accountability'
Protesters confronted police officers outside of the 7th precinct to express their anger after Washington Metropolitan Police Department shot and killed a young black man in southeast DC
The shooting prompted a late-night face-off between police and dozens of protesters outside a city police station
The shooting happened Wednesday afternoon and comes amid nationwide unrest over police violence
Black Lives Matter protesters have gathered outside a police precinct in Washington DC after police shot and killed an 18-year-old black man Wednesday afternoon
Washington D.C. saw violent protests in the weeks following police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota back in May, and the chaos re-erupted last Thursday, the final night of the Republican National convention, when six officers were hospitalized in demonstrations across the city.
The unrest continued into Sunday night, with a group of heavily armored officers seen moving in on a hundred-strong crowd of protesters gathered at Black Lives Matter Plaza shortly before midnight.
Last week, a large crowd of Black Lives Matter protesters also accosted white diners outside several Washington, D.C. restaurants, demanding that they raise their fists to show solidarity with the movement.
Footage showing the demonstrators aggressively yelling at one woman in the Adams Morgan neighborhood went viral on social media and sparked a widespread backlash.
Metropolitan Police Department Chief Peter Newsham said of the shooting Wednesday afternoon that uniformed officers approached a vehicle, acting on information that there were weapons in a car in the area.
The incident happened at around 4pm and comes amid nationwide unrest over police violence. The victim has been named Deon Kay, who just turned 18
Relatives identified the person killed as Deon Kay, who turned 18 years old last month
Kay's aunt Marie McNeil, 57, said her nephew had told her he loved her when she last saw him Wednesday morning.
Police had earlier tweeted: 'Preliminary information in reference to an MPD Officer Involved Shooting in the 200 blk of Orange St SE. An adult male was taken to a local hospital.
A firearm has been recovered on the scene. Chief Newsham will provide an update momentarily.'
The shooting comes a day after Washington DC Mayor Muriel Bowser said she fears the US is 'descending into a race war'. Donald Trump on Sunday told Bowser to start arresting people or have the National Guard sent in.
'Mayor Bowser should arrest these agitators and thugs! Clean up D.C. or the Federal Government will do it for you. Enough!!' he tweeted.
It also comes in the wake of new police reform legislation in Washington, designed to bring greater transparency to such incidents.
In June, amid nationwide protests over the killing of George Floyd by police officers in Minneapolis, the D.C. Council passed emergency legislation requiring the MPD to release any body camera footage from any fatal shootings or use-of-force incidents within five days.
The department must also release the names of the officers involved.
In July, the city released body camera footage from three separate fatal incidents dating back to 2018.
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