February 28, 2020

Iowa caucus recount completed, Iowa Democrats say Pete Buttigieg is still the winner by the slimmest of margins, Associated Press still refusing to declare a winner. “In the new results, Buttigieg has 562.954 state delegate equivalents and Sanders has 562.021 state delegate equivalents out of 2,151 counted. That is a margin of 0.04 percentage points.”   https://apnews.com/fc6777e93b8c50b2fd20e0d31fcc43b3   But Buttigieg will get 2 more delegates than Sanders, because… that’s how the rules are set up.

Some Republicans voted against or abstained from voting on anti-lynching bill, citing states’ rights. “…at least 4,742 people were reported lynched in the US between 1882 and 1968. In 99% of cases the perpetrators escaped punishment.”   https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-51663053

ICE reportedly using facial recognition program to search through Maryland driver’s license photos. “Maryland records show that ICE officials across the country can independently search without outside approval.”   https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2020/02/26/ice-has-run-facial-recognition-searches-millions-maryland-drivers/

Marine commander orders Confederate paraphernalia removed from all Marine bases world-wide. “The directive from Commandant Gen. David Berger came last week, shortly after a congressional hearing on the rise of the racist ideology of white nationalism in the military.”   https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/02/marine-general-orders-removal-confederate-flag-paraphernalia-bases-installations-white-nationalism.html   Meaning this has been allowed until now?

President Trump blames fears about Democratic presidential candidates for stock market tumble. “I think the financial markets are very upset when they look at the Democrat candidates standing on that stage, making fools out of themselves, and they say, ‘If we ever have a president like this,’” Trump said, referring to the most recent Democratic presidential debate held in South Carolina. “When they look at the statements made by the people standing behind those podiums, I think that has a huge effect.”   https://www.vox.com/2020/2/27/21155882/trump-coronavirus-news-conference-stock-market-democrats

Stock prices continue to fall. “The furious selling of the past week has brought the S&P 500 10% below the record high it set just a week ago.”   https://www.nj.com/business/2020/02/coronavirus-panic-on-wall-street-sends-dow-plummeting-1200-points.html

Comedian Jimmy Kimmel makes fun of Mike Pence as Virus Czar. “What is his plan to stop the virus? Abstinence?”   https://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/jimmy-kimmel-mocks-pence-coronavirus-abstinence

The more expensive your car, the less likely you are to yield to pedestrians, say researchers. “A new study has found that drivers of flashy vehicles are less likely to stop and allow pedestrians to cross the road — with the likelihood they’ll slow down decreasing by 3% for every extra $1,000 that their vehicle is worth.”   https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/26/world/expensive-car-drivers-study-scli-scn-intl/index.html

Some progressive New Yorkers saying #NeverBloomberg. “Activists on the left are targeting the billionaire Democratic hopeful over his use of stop-and-frisk policing, police surveillance of Muslims, a big spike in homelessness during his tenure and the unchecked gentrification of certain city neighborhoods on his watch.”   https://www.politico.com/states/new-york/albany/story/2020/02/27/nyc-progressive-groups-launch-neverbloomberg-campaign-with-weekend-march-1264007

Fifty former EU officials compare Trump administration’s Middle East peace plan to apartheid. “The plan envisages a formalization of the current reality in the occupied Palestinian territory, in which two peoples are living side by side without equal rights. Such an outcome has characteristics similar to apartheid – a term we don’t use lightly.”   https://www.reuters.com/article/us-israel-palestinians-plan-letter/former-european-leaders-say-trumps-middle-east-peace-plan-akin-to-apartheid-idUSKCN20L27A

Federal Communications Commission to fine four mobile phone companies for sharing customer location data with other companies. “It’s chilling to consider what a black market could do with this data,” (FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel) said. “It puts the safety and privacy of every American with a wireless phone at risk.”    https://www.theverge.com/2020/2/27/21156555/verizon-sprint-att-tmobile-fcc-fine-carriers-consumer-data-disclosure

Some beer drinkers allegedly avoiding Mexico’s Corona brand. “(A recent survey) found 38% of beer-drinking Americans would not buy Corona under any circumstances now and 16% said they were confused about whether Corona beer is related to the coronavirus.”   https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/food/2020/02/27/coronavirus-corona-beer-name-association-outbreak-fears/4894784002/   These are probably the same people who would be fooled by that shallowfake Obama ad criticizing Joe Biden.

Huge number of law enforcement agencies have used artificial intelligence-based Clearview facial recognition app, according to purported internal company documents. “Clearview’s software, which claims to match photos of persons of interest to online images culled from millions of (websites), has been used by people in more than 2,200 law enforcement departments, government agencies, and companies across 27 countries, according to the documents.”   https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/ryanmac/clearview-ai-fbi-ice-global-law-enforcement

Clearview app may include feature for scanning driver’s license barcodes and a ‘private search mode’. “Asked about the feature, (CEO Hoan) Ton-That responded: ‘It doesn’t scan drivers licenses.’ Gizmodo also inquired about the ‘private search mode’ described by the app but did not receive a response.”   https://gizmodo.com/we-found-clearview-ais-shady-face-recognition-app-1841961772

It’s more dangerous than ever to be a pedestrian. “In the past 10 years, the number of pedestrian fatalities on our nation’s roadways has increased by more than 50 percent.”   https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/pedestrian-deaths-are-soaring-suvs-drug-use-cellphones-may-be-n1144246   The article discusses several possible causes – my money is on pedestrians and drivers distracted by their mobile phones.

Plague management simulation game banned in China. “Plague Inc. saw a spike in popularity in China and other countries following initial reports of the coronavirus outbreak. In the wake of that surge, Ndemic issued a statement last month urging players not to treat the game as a ‘scientific model’ for the spread of any disease.”   https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2020/02/pandemic-simulation-game-plague-inc-pulled-from-ios-app-store-in-china/

Proposed legislation would require law enforcement and intelligence agencies to obtain warrants before collecting personal data (such as geolocation data, internet browsing and search history, phone records, text messages, emails, etc.) when investigating U.S. citizens or residents. “…the Safeguarding Americans’ Private Records Act (SAPRA) (is) a bi-partisan bill introduced in the Senate by Senators Wyden (D-OR) and Daines (R-MT), and in the House by Reps. Lofgren (D-CA), Davidson (R-OH), Gaetz (R- FL), Jayapal (D-WA), Blumenauer (D-OR), and Yoho (R-FL).”    https://rightsanddissent.org/news/defending-rights-dissent-backs-bill-to-rein-in-foreign-intelligence-surveillance/

Supporters of current surveillance programs may try to sneak reauthorization through in a coronavirus spending bill. “The Senate, said a Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, is ‘threatening to put that clean reauthorization into something like coronavirus funding which would make it impossible to defeat if we don’t come up with a bill here. Pelosi and Schiff will never allow it to expire.'”   https://theintercept.com/2020/02/27/coronavirus-spending-bill-surveillance-patriot-act/

Turkey says it has retaliated after a Syrian airstrike killed 33 of its soldiers in Idlib. “Defence Minister Hulusi Akar said that in addition to the (309) casualties inflicted, five Syrian government helicopters, 23 tanks, 23 howitzers, and two air defence systems had been destroyed.”   https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-51667717

CIA allegedly trained its interrogators in ‘enhanced interrogation’ techniques using real prisoners. “About five trainees took turns slapping Mr. al-Baluchi, spinning him around and slamming his head into a wooden or cement wall, so a supervisor could observe and ‘then certify class member as interrogators’, said a report on the training session read aloud during testimony in the war court.”   https://pulitzercenter.org/reporting/interrogation-program-worked-out-fly

Military to conduct Robin Sage ‘unconventional warfare’ training in 21 North Carolina counties. “Military service members from units across Fort Bragg will also support the exercise. These military members act as realistic opposing forces and guerrilla freedom fighters.”   https://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/local/article240651992.html

One Democratic Party super-delegate pushing to let delegates instead of voters choose the party’s presidential candidate is reportedly a lobbyist for the health care industry. “(William) Owen is a supporter of former Vice President Joe Biden’s presidential campaign, and has pushed to use super-delegates to make Biden the nominee.”   https://theintercept.com/2020/02/27/dnc-superdelegate-convention-gop-donor/

Three prominent pro-democracy activists arrested in Hong Kong. “(Jimmy Lai, Lee Cheuk-yan and Yeung Sum) were arrested on suspicion of taking part in an illegal assembly, reports said. Observers say their arrests indicate that the Hong Kong government is determined to step up revenge on influential pro-democracy figures who they see as having a leading role in the months-long anti-government movement…”   https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/28/hong-kong-media-tycoon-jimmy-lai-arrested-on-charges-of-illegal-assembly

Environmentalists joining indigenous Canadians at pipeline protests, to the consternation of their opponents. “Sylvia McAdam, a founder of the Idle No More resistance movement and a University of Windsor law professor, as well as a Cree from Big River First Nation in Saskatchewan, said the participation of so many non-Indigenous people was heartening.”   https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/28/canada-pipeline-protests-climate-indigenous-rights

Former Obama advisor throws cold water on the illusions of primary voters. “The party decides its nominee,” said (Anton) Gunn. “The public doesn’t really decide the nominee.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/27/public-doesnt-really-decide-msnbc-guest-under-fire-saying-voters-wont-choose-dem

Healthcare industry running South Carolina TV ads against Medicare for All. “The Partnership for America’s Healthcare Future (PAHCF), an insurance and pharmaceutical industry front group formed in 2018 to combat Medicare for All, bought more than $200,000 in television ads that began airing during Tuesday’s Democratic presidential debate in South Carolina and will run in Charleston and Columbia through Saturday.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/27/ahead-south-carolina-primary-grassroots-im-medicare-all-voter-campaign-faces-down

New poll shows 67% of respondents favor a wealth tax on billionaires. “Support for a wealth tax to combat persistent inequality in the U.S. is growing, according to a new poll released Wednesday by TheHill/HarrisX which found that just over two-thirds of Americans favor a tax on the wealthiest households.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/27/rich-people-have-profited-enough-new-poll-shows-two-thirds-americans-support-wealth

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February 28, 2020

February 27, 2020

President Trump contradicts U.S. health officials, claims risk of coronavirus epidemic in the U.S. is ‘very low’ and ‘not inevitable’. “A day earlier, federal health officials said the spread of the virus was ‘inevitable’.”   https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/26/trump-says-coronavirus-risk-to-the-american-people-remains-very-low.html

Life in a developed market economy: Milwaukee brewery employee kills five at his workplace after being fired and then commits suicide. “(Police) found a 51-year-old Milwaukee man, who was believed to be the gunman, dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, (Police Chief Alfonso) Morales said.”   https://chicago.cbslocal.com/2020/02/26/at-least-1-person-shot-at-millercoors-campus-in-milwaukee/

Congresswoman calls South Carolina debate ‘a circular firing squad’. “While some critics faulted the CBS News moderators for failing to tame the seven candidates during the debate that has been likened to a wrestling match, (Debbie) Dingell blamed the White House hopefuls.”   https://www.foxnews.com/politics/influential-house-democrat-south-carolina-debate

Five U.S. neo-Nazis arrested, accused of ‘SWATting’ journalists and then-Homeland Security director Kirstjen Nielsen. “(Atomwaffen) promotes what’s called (an) ‘accelerationist’ philosophy: the belief that neo-Nazis should engage in atrocities to spur the collapse of society and a race war in which white people will come out on top.”   https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/propublica-named-him-as-an-atomwaffen-leader-feds-say-he-struck-back/2020/02/26/c9548ac4-57e5-11ea-ab68-101ecfec2532_story.html   Also accused of making bomb threat to black church. “Prosecutors in Alexandria say the targets of the bogus bomb threats included a predominantly African American church in Alexandria, an unidentified cabinet official living in northern Virginia and Old Dominion University in Norfolk.”   https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/feb/26/us-neo-nazis-charged-atomwaffen-division-harassing-journalists-churches-cabinet-member

Houston district attorney reviewing 14,000 cases involving testimony of police officer suspected of lying. “According to District Attorney Kim Ogg, the ongoing investigation has now revealed that 69 people may have been convicted because of false evidence presented by the former narcotics officer.”   https://www.click2houston.com/news/local/2020/02/26/da-finds-nearly-70-people-may-have-been-convicted-on-false-evidence-given-by-gerald-goines/

Chris Matthews grills Elizabeth Warren over Mike Bloomberg pregnancy remark, even after she explains that she ‘believes the woman’. “That, however, did not stop Matthews from questioning Warren on whether she was sure of the story six times in a span of just over one minute during a post-debate interview.”   https://www.foxnews.com/media/msnbcs-chris-matthews-challenges-warren-6-times-bloomberg-accusation   Either Chris really likes Mike or else he really doesn’t believe women. “The (Washington) Post later corroborated the woman’s claim with another Bloomberg employee who said he witnessed the exchange — for which the woman sued Bloomberg in federal court.”

Pro-Trump super PAC deploys ‘shallowfake’ ad against Joe Biden. “An attempt to sway black voters in the state, the ad begins with a narrator saying, ‘Joe Biden promised to help our community. It was a lie. Here’s President Obama.’ The ad then runs audio of Obama reading an unrelated passage from his book, Dreams from My Father, about a conversation he had with a barber in Chicago when he was a community organizer.”   https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/barack-obama-demands-south-carolina-stations-pull-misleading-ad-attacking-joe-biden/2020/02/26/45cc7012-58d6-11ea-9000-f3cffee23036_story.html   This is such a shoddy piece of work (see link in article) that it’s hard to believe that it would actually fool anyone, but the intent to fool people is obvious.

Trump campaign sues New York Times for libel over Russian collusion op-ed. “The opinion piece was headlined, The Real Trump-Russia Quid Pro Quo with a subhead adding, ‘The campaign and the Kremlin had an overarching deal: help beat Hillary Clinton for a new pro-Russian foreign policy’.”   https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/feb/26/trump-campaign-sues-new-york-times-for-libel-over-russia-story

Veteran ABC journalist suspended after conservatives record him at a bar dissing networks for not doing their jobs. “I feel like the truth suffers, the voters are poorly informed,” Wright says in the video. “Our bosses don’t see an upside in doing what we’re supposed to do, which is to speak truth to power and hold people to account…. The commercial imperative is incompatible with news.”   https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/02/26/abc-news-suspends-david-wright-project-veritas-video/4881734002/   Heresy! Stone him!

President Trump claims Roger Stone was never involved in his presidential campaign, despite Stone reportedly leaving 53 days after Trump announced he was running for president. “Roger was never involved in the Trump campaign for president. He wasn’t involved. I think early on, long before I announced, he may have done a little consulting work or something, but he was not involved when I ran for president.”   https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/25/politics/fact-check-trump-stone-campaign-2016/index.html

Yet another oil refinery explodes and burns, this time in Los Angeles. “Massive flames could be seen burning the Marathon Petroleum Corporation refinery located at South Main Street and East Sepulveda Boulevard.”   https://ktla.com/news/local-news/carson-refinery-catches-fire/

Washington Post releases compilation video of Bernie Sanders’ ‘naively’ praising leftist regimes, which they say has ‘gained currency online among Sanders’ critics’.   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Ad-v0qpB3A    Critics like The Washington Post! They seem strangely untroubled by right-wing feudalism in Latin American (which often involves the use of death squads to murder labor organizers and perceived leftists). The bigger threat for the Washington Post is apparently the left wing revolutions intended to improve the lives of the poor majority (at the expense of local oligarchs and, unfortunately, often at the expense of civil liberties). For example, they cite Ronald Reagan as an arbiter of who is a terrorist and who is a freedom fighter. Sanders clearly rejects Leninism in these videos, however.

At least thirty dead, hundreds injured after days of ethnic conflict in India. “Digital news portal The Wire showed a vandalized mosque in western Delhi, where a flag featuring the Hindu god Hanuman was placed on the minaret.”   https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-02-26/delhi-morgue-shows-carnage-after-riots-during-trump-s-india-trip

Hong Kong to give city residents $1,280 each to boost local economy. “(Financial Secretary Paul) Chan said that the (coronavirus) outbreak has ‘dealt a severe blow’ to the economy in Hong Kong, adding to the severe hits that the tourism industry faced due to the (pro-democracy) social unrest.”   https://www.cbsnews.com/news/hong-kong-is-handing-out-1200-to-7-million-people/

100,000 Chinese ducks to be deployed against locust swarms. “In other unusual tactics, Pakistan’s government urged its citizens to eat locusts too. People should take advantage of the situation and barbecue locusts or make a curry…”   https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-02-27/army-of-100-000-chinese-ducks-on-standby-to-combat-locust-swarms

Democratic Party insiders say they are willing to split the party by denying Bernie Sanders the nomination. “Jay Jacobs, the New York State Democratic Party chairman and a superdelegate, echoing many others interviewed, said that superdelegates should choose a nominee they believed had the best chance of defeating Mr. Trump if no candidate wins a majority of delegates during the primaries.”   https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/27/us/politics/democratic-superdelegates.html   How did going with the centrist candidate work out for you in 2016? Why do you think it will work this time?

Constitution says that states that engage in voter suppression should lose representation. “These forgotten words form Section 2 of the 14th Amendment, which was designed to guard against the infringement of voting rights (after the Civil War). The lost provision is simple: States that deny their citizens the right to vote will have reduced representation in the House of Representatives.”   https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/02/23/the-lost-constitutional-tool-to-protect-voting-rights-116612

NSA’s mass collection of U.S. phone records and text messages cost $100 million and prevented no terrorist attacks. “Politicians must now decide whether to allow the expiration of the legislation that makes the program possible. The USA Freedom Act of 2015 expires on March 15.”   https://sg.news.yahoo.com/nsas-controversial-100-million-phone-223214794.html

The military’s five year nuclear weapons upgrade plan will cost taxpayers an estimated $167 billion through 2025. “What you are seeing here is the beginning of a long overdue modernization of the U.S. nuclear triad (of land-based missiles, bombers and submarine-based missiles).”   https://time.com/5790901/pentagon-nuclear-weapons-spending/   Nuclear weapons treaties are a heck of a lot cheaper, and the incentives to negotiate one is that everyone saves a lot of money and we don’t risk destroying ourselves.

Mike Bloomberg’s claim that he released his federal tax returns when he was the Republican mayor of New York City is untrue, claims local journalist. “…we couldn’t actually make copies. And we were handed the tablet, which was like the equivalent of a Midwestern phonebook for a small city. And on each entry was not numbers, that you would assume with your tax form or my tax form, but letters in the alphabet, A through G. And G would symbolize more than $500,000. And everything was a G.”   https://www.democracynow.org/2020/2/26/bob_hennelly_michael_bloomberg

Chechen dissident living in Poland, Tumso Abdurakhmanov, survives apparent assassination attempt. “The injured man on the ground, whose voice is muffled, replies that he came ‘from Moscow’ and says, ‘They have my mother’.”   https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/27/chechen-blogger-escapes-assassination-bid-in-poland

Trump administration official tells Congress he can’t promise that a government-funded coronavirus vaccine will be affordable for everyone. “Members of Congress and advocacy groups are voicing outrage after Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar—a former pharmaceutical executive—repeatedly refused during House testimony Wednesday to guarantee that any coronavirus vaccine or treatment developed with taxpayer money will be affordable for all in the U.S., not just the rich.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/27/outrage-hhs-chief-azar-refuses-vow-coronavirus-vaccine-will-be-affordable-all-not

Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg join Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders in vowing not to attend Israel lobby conference. “Democrats as well as Republicans have for decades attended the annual policy conference led by AIPAC, which supports the Israeli military occupation of Gaza and the West Bank.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/26/watershed-moment-joining-warren-and-sanders-centrist-democrats-klobuchar-and

U.S. House passes anti-lynching bill. “While we cannot undo the abhorrent damage caused by decades of unjust lynching, today’s passage of the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act marks a meaningful step towards correcting our nation’s history with this racist act of violence.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/26/approximately-120-years-too-late-us-house-passes-law-make-lynching-federal-crime

CBS debate moderators criticized for not asking any climate change questions during South Carolina debate. “…not a single question was asked on climate change. This is unacceptable,” Sierra Club said Tuesday night. “The voters have demanded action, and the public deserves plans.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/26/horrifying-aoc-green-groups-criticize-debate-moderators-asking-zero-climate

Julian Assange’s attorney claims that Assange helped then-Bradley Manning hack a video and game download password, not the government’s classified database. “(Mark) Summers says Manning had legal access to classified material and did not need a user name or a password to get into the database.”   https://consortiumnews.com/2020/02/25/assange-extradition-assange-helped-manning-crack-password-to-download-video-games-not-state-secrets-court-is-told/

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February 27, 2020

February 26, 2020

Supreme Court rules that Mexicans killed in Mexico by U.S. law enforcement officers do not have standing to sue the U.S. government. “Lee Gelernt, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union, who argued the case said ‘border agents should not have immunity to fatally shoot Mexican teenagers on the other side of the border fence’.”   https://www.npr.org/2020/02/25/809401334/supreme-court-rules-border-patrol-agents-who-shoot-foreign-nationals-cant-be-sue   In at least two cases, Mexican teenagers have been fatally shot after throwing rocks across the border at CBP officers.

Bloomberg receives unexpected support from South Carolina debate audience. “At one point, and for what seems to have been the first time ever, an audience actively, aggressively booed because someone spoke ill of billionaires.”   https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/02/michael-bloomberg-had-very-enthusiastic-audience-support-at-the-debate-for-some-reason.html

Black Orlando 6 year-old handcuffed with zip tie and arrested after 1st grade school tantrum. “After Kaia (Rolle) was placed in a police SUV to be taken to the Juvenile Assessment Center, Officer (Dennis) Turner returned to the schools office and spoke to administrators, who were concerned about Kaia.”   https://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/crime/os-ne-orlando-police-body-camera-6-year-old-arrest-20200224-rlg2ukttdvhehpoj2ki7irqe74-story.html

Arizona Republican suspends his U.S. House campaign after being revived by paramedics due to heroine overdose. “I know that through the Grace of my loving savior Jesus Christ I will be restored to full health and bounce back from this and be stronger than ever.”   https://www.newsweek.com/army-veteran-suspends-congressional-campaign-heroin-overdose-1488960

Attorney General Barr presses Senators to re-authorize FISA surveillance programs. “Reps. Doug Collins and Devin Nunes, the top Republicans on the Judiciary and Intelligence committees respectively, warned in a letter sent last week to the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee that if the ‘historic abuses’ were not considered in the renewal of the expiring authorities it could undermine the public’s trust in the FBI.”   https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/25/politics/barr-republicans-fisa-lunch/index.html

Boston police admit they accidentally shot parking valet in the eye, not the mentally ill suspect they were after, who was brandishing a replica gun. “The investigation revealed that the weapon recovered on scene . . . was not a working firearm,” (Suffolk District Attorney Rachael) Rollins said… “We can, therefore, determine that the valet was struck by a bullet discharged by a Boston police officer.”   https://www.bostonglobe.com/2020/02/25/metro/officials-say-valet-wounded-brigham-womens-incident-was-struck-by-police-bullet/

Democratic Party insider Rahm Emanuel tells interviewer that the party is in a ‘panic’ over Bernie Sanders primary success. “I would say panic would be the adjective to describe the mood right now.”   https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/25/politics/rahm-emanuel-panic-democratic-party-cnntv/index.html

No arrests made by Boston police after they responded to call in which a Hispanic mother and daughter claimed they were attacked for speaking Spanish. “We were attacked, punched, kicked, and bitten,” she said in a release by the group. “I’m having nightmares. I’m afraid to take the train to work, and my family is afraid to speak Spanish in public.”   https://patch.com/massachusetts/boston/mom-daughter-brutally-attacked-speaking-spanish-lawyers

U.S. allegedly considered poisoning Julian Assange in Ecuadoran embassy in London, according to executive with company in charge of embassy security. “(UC Global security executive David Morales) said there was a suggestion the embassy door could be left open to make a kidnapping look like it could have been ‘an accident’, adding ‘even the possibility of poisoning had been discussed’.”   https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8041597/US-plotted-kill-Julian-Assange-make-look-like-accident.html

Digital watchdog groups says governments are shutting down the internet to control opposition and protests. “It seems more and more countries are learning from one another and implementing the nuclear option of internet shutdowns to silence critics, or perpetrate other human rights violations with no oversight.”   https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-51620158

U.S. stock markets have now fallen more than 6%. “Stocks plunged for a second day on Tuesday, with the Dow tumbling 879 points, bringing its two-day losses to nearly 1,900 points.”   https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/25/dow-futures-bounce-slightly-as-wall-street-attempts-comeback-from-monster-2-day-slide.html

National Labor Relations Board moves to protect companies from being sued by franchise and contractor employees. “(The new rule) requires that companies have direct control over the working conditions of franchise and contract workers in order to be considered their ‘joint employers’.”   https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-labor/u-s-labor-board-eases-companies-liability-for-franchisee-labor-law-violations-idUSKBN20J1TU

Julian Assange’s lawyers claim he never published unredacted classified material, and warned the U.S. when he discovered the documents were at risk of being leaked. “‘Far from being a reckless, unredacted release … what actually occurred is that one of the media partners published a book in February 2011, the password to the unredacted materials (was published) in a book, which then allowed the world to publish those unredacted materials,’ (Mark) Summers said at London’s Woolwich Crown Court on Tuesday.”   https://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/breaking-news/us-pondered-poisoning-assange-court-told/news-story/8d8c6baaacaee1722ba777bb55d227ce

Anderson Cooper worked at the CIA while in college, has claimed he was just curious and that it wasn’t ‘James Bond’ enough for him. “(In the 70s, Carl) Bernstein obtained CIA files that showed that more than 400 American journalists in the previous 25 years had ‘secretly carried out assignments for the Central Intelligence Agency’.”   https://thegrayzone.com/2020/02/25/vanderbilt-anderson-cooper-cia-college/

Acting director of national intelligence, Richard Grenell, accused of lobbying on behalf of a Hungarian-government funded entity, failing to report it and failing to register as a lobbyist representing a foreign government. “In 2016, the Magyar Foundation of North America paid Grenell’s consulting firm, Capitol Media Partners, $103,750 for “public relations” services, according to the foundation’s tax filing.”   https://www.defenseone.com/threats/2020/02/trumps-new-spy-chief-failed-report-100000-group-funded-hungary/163301/

Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin tweets that Bernie Sanders is ‘digging his own grave’ by pointing out that the U.S. has a history of overthrowing foreign governments. “Bernie now digging his grave, blaming America for overthrowing govts.”   https://mobile.twitter.com/JRubinBlogger/status/1232493987614740482   I hope that’s not a threat.

California judge rules that Instacart grocery shopping and delivery contractors are probably actually employees, grants preliminary injunction against the company. “San Diego City Attorney Mara Elliott, on behalf of the People of California, sued Instacart last year, claiming the company misclassifies its workers as independent contractors to avoid paying employees benefits and reimbursing them for costs associated with the job, including vehicle insurance and registration, gas and cellphone to use the mobile app to fill grocery orders and deliveries.”   https://www.courthousenews.com/judge-rules-instacart-misclassifies-its-california-workers/

U.S. Rep. from Illinois Bobby Rush introduces an anti-lynching bill, after an estimated 200 previous attempts have failed. “Lynching has been used as a pernicious tool of radicalized violence, terror and oppression and is a stain on the soul of our nation,” (Cory) Booker said in a statement last week. “While we cannot undo the irrevocable damage of lynching and its pervasive legacy, we can ensure that we as a country make clear that lynching will not be tolerated.”   https://www.courthousenews.com/tragedies-mark-path-to-anti-lynching-up-for-house-vote/

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February 26, 2020

February 25, 2020

With 100% of precincts finally tallied, Bernie Sanders wins Nevada Democratic Party caucuses in a landslide! But since this story has dropped out of the news after two days, it’s not being widely reported. “Sen. Bernie Sanders more than doubled his delegate haul from 21 to 45 pledged delegates with a blowout victory over his rivals in the February 22 Nevada caucuses.”   https://www.businessinsider.com/bernie-sanders-more-than-doubles-delegate-haul-with-nevada-win-2020-2

Casino capitalism: Stock markets plunge, billions of dollars in market capitalization vanish, likely over fears of economic slowdown due to coronavirus. “We fall into that behavioral trap where we say, ‘OK, it’s down 3% but it could go down 5% or 10% and I need to wait until the dust settles,” Ware said. “But of course, by the time the dust settles you’ve missed the bounce back up. That’s what makes timing and jumping in and out of the market so difficult.”   https://www.latimes.com/business/story/2020-02-24/stocks-drop-as-coronavirus-fears-grow   You have to know when the dice are hot, and when to walk away from the table.

Improved electronic voting machines not as safe as paper ballots say experts, and much more expensive. “Called ballot-marking devices, the (new) machines have touchscreens for registering voter choice. Unlike touchscreen-only machines, they print out paper records that are scanned by optical readers…. Some of the most popular ballot-marking machines, made by industry leaders Election Systems & Software and Dominion Voting Systems, register votes in bar codes that the human eye cannot decipher.”   https://apnews.com/ec2374b3f4aa6d8e628b75724cb4caeb

London court hears arguments for and against extradition of Julian Assange to the United States. “(Lawyer representing the U.S. government, James) Lewis told the court that the charges against Assange were not linked to his publication of evidence of any war crimes, but instead related to ‘publishing specific classified documents that contained unredacted names of innocent people who risked their safety and freedom to aid United States and its allies’.”   https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/24/europe/assange-extradition-hearing-intl-gbr/index.html   Note that it’s about the publication of the documents, not the methods used to acquire them, that they object to (although they are  also alleging that he acquired them through ‘hacking’, which Assange denies).

Assange’s lawyer claims his client is being mistreated in connection with his extradition hearing. “Julian Assange was handcuffed 11 times, stripped naked twice and had his case files confiscated after the first day of his extradition hearing, according to his lawyers, who complained of interference in his ability to take part.”   https://www.theguardian.com/media/2020/feb/25/julian-assange-handcuffed-stripped-naked-claim-lawyers

Jury finds Harvey Weinstein guilty of committing unreported sexual assaults. “More than 80 women, including famous actresses, accused Weinstein of sexual misconduct stretching back decades.”   https://www.reuters.com/article/us-people-harvey-weinstein/weinstein-found-guilty-of-sexual-assault-rape-in-victory-for-metoo-movement-idUSKCN20I159

Mike Bloomberg accused of lying about undercover surveillance of Muslims in New York City. “We only went into mosques when they asked us to come in.”   https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/24/politics/fact-check-bloomberg-nypd-muslim-surveillance/index.html

Abducted Chinese-Swedish man sentenced to 10 years in prison in China for ‘providing intelligence to foreign entities’. “Mr (Minhai) Gui, 55, was one of five Hong Kong-based booksellers known for publishing salacious titles about the Communist Party…. He was then reportedly preparing to publish a book about (President) Xi’s love life. Such books are banned in mainland China, but are legal in Hong Kong under freedoms promised when the former British colony was returned to Chinese rule in 1997.”   https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2020/02/25/gui-minhai-sentenced-10-years-china-disappeared-2015/

Life in a developed market economy: Some airlines are reportedly charging families extra to sit together. “Requiring families to pay for upgraded tickets to sit with their children is a deliberate tax on families,” the passenger said in the complaint. “It was one thing to separate the parents but to separate children from parents is nothing short of disgraceful.”   https://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/airline-news/2020/02/24/american-delta-united-airline-family-seating-consumer-reports-starts-petition/4823602002/   What a socialist cry-baby! Greed is good! (sarcasm)

Congress to decide whether to reauthorize, amend or end domestic mass surveillance programs. “After punting late last year to give themselves more time to negotiate, lawmakers now have 15 working days to figure out whether and how to reauthorize expiring provisions of the USA Freedom Act by the March 15 deadline.”   https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/484150-congress-set-for-clash-over-surveillance-reforms

Former Starbucks employee claims he was fired for union organizing. “I was fired three hours after another union organizer was fired.”   https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/feb/25/starbucks-worker-labor-unions-organizing

British intelligence official asks tech companies to provide encryption ‘back door’ for law enforcement agencies, privacy groups say that would be a really bad idea. “The reality is that these big tech platforms are international companies: providing access to UK police would mean establishing a precedent that police around the world could use to compel the platforms to monitor activists and opposition, from Hong Kong to Honduras.”   https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/feb/25/mi5-chief-asks-tech-firms-for-exceptional-access-to-encrypted-messages

Bernie Sanders hands town hall moderator a fact sheet showing how he’ll pay for his proposed programs. “This is a list, which will be on our website tonight, of how we pay for every program that we have developed.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/25/how-does-bernie-pay-his-major-plans-sanders-campaign-releases-detailed-answer   And here is the direct link to Bernie’s web page:   https://berniesanders.com/issues/how-does-bernie-pay-his-major-plans/

Federal appeals court upholds Trump administration’s ‘gag rule’ that denies funding to clinics that help patients access abortion services. “‘This government overreach and interference demands that physicians violate their ethical obligations—prohibiting open, frank conversations with patients about all their healthcare options—if they want to continue treating patients under the Title X program,’ said (American Medical Association) president Patrice A. Harris.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/24/unconscionable-fury-federal-appeals-court-upholds-trumps-anti-women-anti-choice-gag

Sanders critics condemn his praise of Cuban revolution, but overlook Barack Obama’s similar comments. “Every child in Cuba gets a basic education,” Obama said. “Life expectancy of Cubans is equivalent to that in the United States because they have access to healthcare.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/24/amid-right-wing-effort-smear-sanders-over-cuba-comments-campaign-issues-reminder

Canadian police raid indigenous protest camp, arrest an estimated 10 Tyendinaga Mohawk protesters. “Dozens of officers moved in hours after protesters declined to comply with a midnight deadline from the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) to clear the camp.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/24/protesters-arrested-after-police-raid-mohawk-railway-camp-constructed-solidarity

Immigrants reportedly afraid to apply for benefits after ‘public charge’ rule upheld by Supreme Court. “With new rules taking effect Monday that disqualify more people from green cards if they use government benefits, droves of immigrants, including citizens and legal residents, have dropped social services to which they or their children may be entitled out of fear they will be kicked out of the United States, said Velazquez and other advocates.”   https://www.courthousenews.com/new-crackdown-on-immigrants-takes-effect/

Protesters march in response to video of violent Long Beach, California arrest. “The video of the arrest shows one Long Beach officer on top of (Eugene) Martindale, who was lying on the ground. A second officer swings at Martindale’s legs with a baton.”   https://www.presstelegram.com/2020/02/24/protesters-demonstrate-outside-long-beach-police-headquarters-over-arrest/   The video can also be viewed here:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VVC35u92vug

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February 25, 2020

February 24, 2020

Final Nevada caucus results still not released as of midnight Sunday evening. “By late afternoon Sunday, the Nevada Democratic Party had only reported around half of the results.”   https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2020-election/buttigieg-campaign-claims-irregularities-nevada-caucus-results-n1141431   “Now, 87.55% of precincts are reporting out of Nevada: Sanders: 47.1%, Biden: 20.1%, Buttigieg: 13.6%, Warren: 9.7%, Steyer: 4.7%, Klobuchar: 3.9%”   https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/02/nevada-results-2020-live-updates.html

Biden blames Russians for his lack of primary election success. “Former Vice President Joe Biden said Sunday that Russians have worked to block him from winning the Democratic nomination while favoring Sen. Bernie Sanders, though he admitted his claims were not based on anything he had been told by intelligence officials.”   https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2020/02/23/joe-biden-russians-election-interference/4851853002/

Supreme Court justice Sonia Sotomayor accuses colleagues of doing special favors for Trump administration. “Claiming one emergency after another, the Government has recently sought stays in an unprecedented number of cases,” Sotomayor said. “It is hard to say what is more troubling,” she said, pointing to the case at hand (the ‘public charge’ immigration restriction), “that the Government would seek this extraordinary relief seemingly as a matter of course, or that the Court would grant it.”   https://edition.cnn.com/2020/02/23/politics/sotomayor-dissent-supreme-court/index.html

Rash of bomb threats at Jewish community centers in New York. “The threats, first reported at 11 a.m. local time Sunday morning, were emailed to members belonging to 18 JCC’s across the state.”   https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/02/23/jcc-bomb-threats-new-york-18-jewish-community-centers-threatened/4851937002/

Hours long gun battle between striking Haitian police officers and troops outside National Palace. “As the afternoon wore on, uniformed officers joined their (plainclothes) colleagues in the street outside the palace, firing at the military base with semi-automatic pistols and rifles.”   https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/haiti-police-exchange-fire-troops-national-palace-69162334

New post-Brexit UK passports were reportedly designed by a French/Dutch company and manufactured in Poland. “The UK competitor for the production of the passport, De La Rue, lost the bid to make it last year, which led to a reported loss of up to 170 jobs in the UK. Gemalto will continue to hold a contract to make UK passports for 10 years.”   https://qz.com/1806959/britains-new-passport-was-designed-in-france-and-made-in-poland/

18 Greenpeace activists arrested during media stunt at ageing French nuclear facility. “About 50 Greenpeace militants broke into the grounds of the Tricastin power station in southern France armed with jackhammers made from foam for a mock dismantling of the plant.”   https://www.reuters.com/article/us-edf-nuclearpower-greenpeace/greenpeace-activists-break-into-edfs-tricastin-nuclear-power-plant-in-france-idUSKBN20F0WB   “Militants”?

Turkish troops and equipment reportedly pouring into Syria. “As many as 2,700 Turkish military vehicles have been sent into Syria over the past 19 days…. Additionally, over 7,400 Turkish soldiers have been deployed in Idlib and Aleppo in the same period, said the (Syrian Observatory for Human Rights).”   http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2020-02/22/c_138808877.htm

200 opposition party protesters reportedly arrested in Kazakhstan. “Currently, activists risk arrest if they hold demonstrations without permission from the authorities, which is almost never granted for political demonstrations.”   https://sg.news.yahoo.com/kazakhstan-detains-around-200-opposition-protesters-largest-city-105851705.html

U.N. says 100,000 Afghan civilians killed or wounded over last 10 years. “The announcement came just hours after the U.S. and Afghan militaries began a weeklong period of reduced violence with the Taliban, which could lead to a peace agreement being signed between the U.S. and the insurgents next week and an eventual withdrawal of American forces from the country.”   https://www.military.com/daily-news/2020/02/23/100000-civilians-killed-or-injured-afghanistan-10-years-un-says.html

Socialists and Greens win big in Hamburg, Germany election, Christian Democrats drop to third place with only 11.2% of the vote. “Preliminary results put the SPD (Socialist Democratic Party of Germany)… down about six points from the previous vote in 2015 but on 39.1 per cent, still by the far the biggest party in Hamburg…. (The Greens) almost doubled their vote to 24.1 per cent.”   https://www.theglobeandmail.com/world/article-angela-merkels-conservatives-far-right-afd-punished-in-german-state/

Media watchdog compares U.S. news coverage of New York and Hong Kong protesters. “Corporate media that appeared so alarmed with New Yorkers wearing masks (during the city’s subway protests) glorified their counterparts in Hong Kong doing the same thing…. Reuters (10/5/19) and the BBC (10/4/19) also described thousands of masked (Hong Kong) activists shutting down the entire subway network, by bombing stations and setting fire to trains, as part of a ‘pro-democracy’ protest.”   https://fair.org/home/cop-hating-vandals-or-pro-democracy-activists/

Satirical website The Onion lampoons media coverage of New Hampshire primary. “Bernie Sanders loses to Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg in key battle for second and third place.”   https://politics.theonion.com/takeaways-from-the-new-hampshire-primaries-1841642729

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February 24, 2020

February 23, 2020

As Nevada Democratic caucus results slowly trickle in, Bernie Sanders on track to win by a landslide:  With 50% of precincts reporting: Sanders 46.6%, Biden 19.2%, Buttigieg 15.4%, Warren 10.3%, Klobuchar 4.5%.   https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/02/22/us/elections/results-nevada-caucus.html   Reports of difficulties calculating the results. “Nevada caucus officials and voters at multiple sites on Saturday reported voting rules confusion, calculation glitches and delays in reporting tallies – despite efforts to avoid the issues that plagued Iowa’s caucuses earlier this month. ”   https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election/broad-based-support-powers-sanders-to-big-win-in-nevada-democratic-vote-idUSKCN20H078

Sanders supporters take a victory lap. “Bernie’s staunch anti-establishment outsider appeal and his platform focused on workers’ issues is winning non-partisans, new voters, young voters, and working-class immigrants,” (Dustin Guastella and Connor Kilpatrick) wrote. “That’s not just a savvy coalition for winning the Nevada caucuses, it’s how Bernie Sanders becomes president. Face it, establishment Democrats—it’s his party now.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/22/thats-called-electability-diverse-coalition-propels-bernie-sanders-big-win-nevada

Former Clinton strategist credits Russians for Sanders’ win. “James Carville, a longtime Democratic strategist who advised Sen. Michael Bennet’s failed 2020 bid, argued that Sanders’ success thus far in the primary is attributable to Russian’s reported interference campaign.”   https://www.businessinsider.com/cable-news-hosts-pundits-freak-out-bernie-sanders-wins-nevada-2020-2

MSNBC anchor muses that maybe letting Trump say in office for four more years might be better than letting Bernie Sanders ‘take over the Democratic Party’. “I’m wondering if Democratic moderates want Bernie Sanders to be President?” said (Chris) Matthews. “Maybe that’s too exciting a question to raise. Do they want Bernie to take over the Democratic Party in perpetuity? Maybe they’d rather wait 4 years and put in a Democrat that they like.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/22/msnbcs-chris-matthews-suggests-four-more-years-trump-might-be-better-democratic

CNN’s Van Jones wonders aloud if there isn’t any way the Democratic Party can sabotage the Sanders campaign. “Something could happen to stop him. Somebody may have some marbles to throw at the stairs or banana peel, they better find it.”   https://www.thedailybeast.com/chris-matthews-likens-bernies-strong-nevada-showing-to-france-falling-to-nazi-germany-in-wwii

Calls for MSNBC anchor Chris Matthews to resign after he compares Sanders primary victories to the Nazi invasion of France. “I was reading last night about the fall of France in the summer of 1940 and the general, Reynaud, calls up Churchill and says, ‘It’s over.’ And Churchill says, ‘How can that be? You’ve got the greatest army in Europe. How can it be over?’ He said, ‘It’s over.'”   https://www.newsweek.com/chris-matthews-sanders-nazi-france-1488613

Suicide of Faye Swetlik murder suspect was reported ‘in person’ by the man’s roommate. “(Cayce DPS spokesperson Evan) Antley also confirmed that Taylor’s roommate first alerted police about the suspect’s self-inflicted injuries. He said the roommate gave investigators an ‘in-person notification’ about finding Taylor, who reportedly died of a self-inflicted stab wound to the neck.”   https://www.crimeonline.com/2020/02/20/we-were-definitely-going-to-that-house-new-information-in-apparent-suicide-of-faye-swetlik-murder-suspect-coty-taylor-exclusive/

Amazon criticized for selling Nazi hate books. “The e-commerce company did not respond to criticism from the Holocaust Education Trust (HET) about antisemitic books on sale, including Der Giftpilz (“The Poisonous Mushroom”), published in 1938 by (Nazi publisher) Julius Streicher…. The children’s book uses an offensive metaphor comparing Jews to toadstools, which it says are dangerous but hard to distinguish from harmless mushrooms.”   https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/amazon-nazi-propaganda-antisemitic-book-der-giftpilz-a9351471.html

Documentary on slaying of journalist Jamal Khashoggi reportedly having trouble finding a distributor. “(Fans) worry that the film (The Dissident), which was independently financed by the Human Rights Foundation, could now suffer the fate of an episode of Hasan Minhaj’s Netflix comedy, Patriot Act, that also dealt with the Khashoggi killing. A Saudi complaint led to the removal of the episode.”   https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/22/film-distributors-shy-away-from-hard-hitting-khashoggi-documentary

Camera on International Space Station shows ‘UFO’ flying along with it. “I believed if it was a capsule it would have gone into low earth orbit then lower to land. But when this object shot upward into deep space, it literally blew my mind.”   https://sputniknews.com/viral/202002231078386697-ufo-hunter-spots-suspected-alien-craft-near-iss-mulls-coronavirus-threat-to-extraterrestrials/

Multiple victims accuse Belvidere, Illinois police officers of using excessive force. “He grabbed his pepper spray and he put his knee right here on my face onto the grass and held my mouth open and sprayed the pepper spray down my throat,” Anguiano told 13 Investigates when we went to visit him in prison…. I was already handcuffed. I was pretty helpless.”   https://wrex.com/2020/02/19/13-investigates-belvidere-police-accused-of-systemic-abuse-of-power-excessive-force/

Former Gwinnett, Georgia police officer found guilty of using excessive force, attorney claims showing jurors slow-motion video of the attack was prejudicial to his client. “(Robert) McDonald, captured on cellphone video stomping a handcuffed motorist following an April 2017 traffic stop, was convicted on charges of aggravated assault, battery and violation of oath of office.”   https://www.ajc.com/news/crime–law/former-gwinnett-cop-guilty-all-counts/s0qlzBrmyMNHeMI5tTtrpM/

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February 23, 2020

February 22, 2020

Bernie Sanders questions why allegations he is being boosted by Russia surfaced just before the Nevada primary. “How do you think it came out now if you had the briefing a month ago?”   https://freebeacon.com/politics/sanders-takes-aim-at-washington-post-for-timing-of-russia-story/   In contrast to the news stories reporting an alleged Russian preference for Donald Trump to win the election, which included a source (a known intelligence official) and a quote from the briefing, these allegations about Russian support for Sanders are completely unsourced and undescribed.

Portland, Oregon ‘patriot’ who stabbed three on train, killing two, is found guilty of murder. “In the days after the stabbing, photos and video surfaced showing that (Jeremy) Christian had recently attended — and spoken at — a rally hosted by a far-right group called Patriot Prayer, whose periodic political events were already causing tension in the city. He was captured on camera making the Nazi salute while wearing an American flag around his neck and holding a baseball bat.”   https://www.cbsnews.com/news/jeremy-christian-convicted-of-killing-men-who-intervened-in-his-hate-tirade-on-portland-train-2020-02-21/

Nevada caucus volunteers required to sign non-disclosure agreements. “…they’re being asked to sign a lengthy legal document prohibiting them from saying anything that might ‘impair or otherwise adversely affect the goodwill or reputation’ of the party, according to the document viewed by The Washington Post. The agreement also prevents volunteers from speaking to the press and requires them to report any (contact) with reporters to higher ups, threatening legal action for any lack of compliance.”   https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/02/21/nevada-ndas/

ACLU and leaked Border Patrol memo convince Greyhound to stop warrantless immigration screening on buses. “Greyhound had previously insisted that even though it didn’t like the immigration checks, it had no choice under federal law but to allow them.”   https://apnews.com/dc560c3581783c746aee1544c8ad1c85

Republican candidate running against Minnesota congresswoman Ilhan Omar is reportedly wanted for shoplifting. “We can confirm that she does have an active felony theft warrant in Hennepin County.”   https://www.yahoo.com/news/ilhan-omar-challenger-literally-run-093551996.html

Rumors circulating that Chinese authorities are killing people’s pets out of fear they can spread coronavirus. “Officers in the Sichuan Province are allegedly knocking on people’s doors and ordering residents to hand over their pets, while people beg for their companions to be spared, Metro UK reported. The group has accused Chinese authorities of killing the animals within minutes of getting their hands on them.”   https://www.businessinsider.com/disinfectant-control-coronavirus-triggers-mass-die-off-animals-china-2020-2

Wells Fargo will pay $3 billion to settle fake account scandal. “Employees forged signatures to open accounts, created PINs to activate unauthorized debit cards and moved millions of accounts. They altered customers’ contact information in order to prevent the victims from learning what happened.”   https://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/wells-fargo-settlement-fake-accounts   Managers were apparently ‘aware of the problem’ in 2002, but the bank seems to be suggesting that this illegal strategy for meeting sales goals was spontaneously hit upon by ‘thousands’ of individual employees located in different banks all over the country, and that bank executives were powerless to stop it, which seems pretty unlikely. It sounds like no one is going to jail, either.

Bloomberg index reveals where many of the 1% live. “Following Atherton (California) is Scarsdale, New York, which is less than 25 miles away from Manhattan; Hillsborough, California, about 20 miles south of San Francisco; Cherry Hills Village, Colorado, a Denver suburb; and Los Altos Hills, California, near Silicon Valley. Each has an average household income of over $400,000.”   https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/21/bloomberg-richest-places-in-america.html

Female radio personality murdered in Mexico. “She was known as Bárbara Greco on air. The 37-year-old had recently spoken out on violence against women and children in Mexico in response to the recent killing of a 7-year-old girl in Mexico City. Her friends and colleagues reported that her real name was Teresa Aracely Alcocer.”   https://www.democracynow.org/2020/2/21/headlines/mexican_radio_journalist_murdered_in_ciudad_juarez

Documentary Worth the Price? Joe Biden and the Launch of the Iraq War examines the candidate’s role in lead up to the invasion of Iraq. “…(Biden) was the most important elected official in this country, after George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, in enabling and allowing and getting the authorization for the war through Congress.”   https://www.democracynow.org/2020/2/18/worth_the_price_joe_biden_documentary

Leak reveals EU considering creating massive facial recognition database. “A report drawn up by the national police forces of 10 EU member states, led by Austria, calls for the introduction of EU legislation to introduce and interconnect such databases in every member state.”   https://theintercept.com/2020/02/21/eu-facial-recognition-database/

University of California president Janet Napolitano reportedly threatens to fire striking Santa Cruz teaching assistants. “All the graduate students have pledged not to take the teaching assistantships of anyone who has been fired, a move that will have an impact on the next quarter.”   https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/feb/21/university-california-santa-cruz-graduate-students-strike

Amnesty International calls on U.S. to drop extradition of Julian Assange. “The U.S. government’s unrelenting pursuit of Julian Assange for having published disclosed documents that included possible war crimes committed by the U.S. military is nothing short of a full-scale assault on the right to freedom of expression.”   https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/02/21/drop-charges-and-extradition-pursuit-assange-says-amnesty-international-denouncing

Federal judge rules in favor of timely press access to new court filings. “Plaintiff, and other members of the press and public, have historically enjoyed a tradition of court clerks making most newly filed civil complaints publicly available on the day that they are filed.”   https://www.courthousenews.com/press-has-first-amendment-right-to-see-new-court-complaints-on-day-of-filing/

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February 22, 2020