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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