1308: Swiss Cheese Model

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

3h 52m
December 31st, 2020
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Executive Producers: Sir Richard Bagwell, Sir Chris Eisbach, Sir Alex Van Der Hengst, Sir Don of the Canardians, Sir Sander from Zaandam Earl of the Swiss Alps, Sir Up and Down, Sir Lee Mofo, Sir Mo'Jay, Dame Bear of Bend & Night Ryan of Central OR, Sir David, Fresh Prince of Bellaire, Kevin Badinger, Sir Borislav Marinov, Dame MELODY FUGAZZOTTO, Sir Happy Pappy, Lady La-di-da, Jeremy Dixon, Andrew Greene, Dima Stelmakh, Jason Radak, Duke of the South Patrick Coble, Dave Matheu (Douchebag Dave), Dame, Damey of Sonoma Wine Country, Vessel for the truth, Bradley, Robert Sharp, Jackie Green, Christopher Sevigny, Sir Bradley Selsor, Keith Hausner

Associate Executive Producers: Rick Fawcett, Daniel Evans, Robert Rose, Jason D Howard, Stuart Walton, Jim Bennett, D Christopher Dale, Chris Stuart, David Belanger

Cover Artist: Sir Net Ned

Chapters

0:00
Start of Show
Woodstock
0:43
COVID Freudian slip
Guest producer
3:07
Austin Mayor Adler curfew order
Guest producer
5:03
LA no mask hero
Guest producer
7:51
The new COVID variant
Guest producer
10:04
John's beef with the Lib-Joes
Guest producer
12:31
The truth about ICU beds
Guest producer
14:17
Catherine Austin Fitts
Guest producer
27:19
"Overburdened hospitals"
Guest producer
36:32
There is no SARS-COV2 Isolate
Guest producer
43:28
Doctors for Truth
adominicci
52:37
John's witch cackle
Guest producer
56:30
Bill gates can't answer questions about vaccine injury
Guest producer
1:07:02
Greg Norman "chisel through brain" headache
Smitty16
1:33:15
Start of 1st donations segment
Guest producer
2:27:46
Shut Up Slave!
Guest producer
2:38:28
Laurence Fishburne - Death to 2020
Guest producer
2:39:47
Classics 2020
Guest producer
2:51:23
Stunning! Major western media outlets taking sponsored trips by CCP
Guest producer
2:59:01
GA Runoff - Allied Security - Voting Machines Online
wickedchicken68
3:28:28
Start of 2nd donations segment
Guest producer
3:43:40
End of 2nd donations segment and meetups pitch
Guest producer
3:46:29
Baldwins hit by Noodle Gun
Guest producer
Suggest a new chapter
Nashville
Test have concluded that the Nashville bomber died of Covid-19
Mark Anthony Warner's Dad
We have a producer that knows the father of the attacker and remembers him working at AT&T for 20+ years. There was a AT&T savings plan offered in the 80s that was used by many union members where AT&T would match a certain amount of money based on their pay grade. You pay 60 dollars they match 60 dollars based on your grade and service. Well in the mid 90s they removed this policy and it removed 50 percent of their match (as most only contributed monthly that matched amount) and then they removed 20% for the fee. People with 100k were then left with 30k. This may be part of the reason why the son had so much hatred of AT&T along with stock splits and other things that happened after Western Electric and the Bell Splits.
5G Quote 1308
"By March [2021], it will be, if not a federal offense, it will be certainly something not discussed in public is the dangers of 5G. This will be equated with radical nutjubs." — @adam #noagenda 1308 https://noagendasocial.com/@PhoneBoy/105456133267621222
The Motive for the Nashville Suicide Bomber Has Been Revealed | Dan Bongino
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 17:05
T he Nashville bombing was one of the most bizarre terrorist attacks in American history. An RV parked in downtown Tennessee. It played a message telling people there was a bomb inside and then, right before detonation, it switched to Petunia Clark's 1964 hit, ''Downtown.''
Luckily, no one was killed, but the damage was massive.
As per usual, people were speculating about the bomber's motive. My first thought was that since it went off on Christmas next to an AT&T data center and the bomber wasn't trying to inflict mass casualties, he may have been fired before Christmas at some point by AT&T. As it turns out, that was in the ballpark but wasn't quite on point.
Reportedly, the FBI now believes the bomber to be Anthony Quinn Warner. Quinn's father was an AT&T employee and died of dementia at 78. Reportedly, Quinn believed 5G technology was killing people and that it caused his father's condition. News reports are describing this as a ''conspiracy theory,'' but it really isn't. Studies have been inconclusive, but there certainly is enough scientific data out there about the potential negative effects of cell phone radiation to give people pause, even if it's not possible to definitively point to it as a significant danger. In fact, there has been a big health debate over the safety of 5G in nations like Switzerland. That should have happened here, too. Allegedly, Warner believed he would be hailed as a hero in the fight against 5G for setting off a bomb. Here a little pro tip: Unless you are a special forces operative fighting overseas, any time you start believing that you are going to be cheered as a hero for murdering people or blowing up a building, it's probably time to check in with a psychologist.
Additionally, the FBI believes Quinn was in the RV when it blew up. Reportedly, he had cancer and had given his home away and told the place he worked he was going to retire. Putting it all together, it appears that we had someone who believed he was coming to the end of his life that had a grudge against AT&T and may have been delusional enough to believe that people would support what he did. It's not a rational reason to do something so destructive, but rational people aren't the ones setting off bombs or committing mass murders.
John Hawkins is the author of 101 Things All Young Adults Should Know. You can find him on Parler here.
Nashville Bomber Anthony Quinn Warner Is Embraced by Conspiracy Theorists Like QAnon
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 22:52
No sooner had Anthony Quinn Warner been named as a person of interest in an apparent Christmas Day suicide bombing in Nashville, Tennessee, than conspiratorial circles began casting doubt on his identity, or else applauding his actions.
Warner, 63, is accused of setting off a bomb in downtown Nashville early Christmas morning, damaging more than 40 businesses, killing himself, and injuring several others. Investigators have not yet identified a motive for the attack. Nevertheless, a certain pro-Trump segment appears to have taken up the bomber's side, with another Tennessee man allegedly attempting a similar threat'--albeit without any actual explosives'--on Sunday.
Officials have not announced Warner's possible motives, or whether the incident is being treated as an act of terror. Early reports suggest the FBI is investigating whether Warner (who law enforcement officials say set off the bomb from a recreational vehicle outside an AT&T building) was influenced by conspiracy theories about 5G technology. A realtor who worked with Warner who was questioned by the FBI told Nashville's WSMV that agents asked about Warner's interest in the technology, but that they did not know whether he held any such beliefs.
Even before those potential motives came to light, however, some conspiracy movements were already looking to exonerate Warner. Moments after his name emerged in connection with the case, subscribers to the far-right QAnon conspiracy movement began flooding Twitter with absurd ideas, falsely claiming that Warner was an actor, partially because a different Anthony Quinn was a Hollywood star before dying in 2001. Other QAnon followers broke down his name to associate his initials with made-up clues, or to dissect parts of his name to display ''Q WARN.''
The theorizing didn't stop at anonymous Twitter accounts. Lin Wood, an attorney attempting to overturn the election in President Donald Trump's favor, appeared to cast doubt on the bombing in multiple tweets. In one, he included Warner's name in a tweet about false accusations. In another, he tweeted pictures of a ruined stretch of Nashville's downtown, noting that ''that RV sure packed a powerful punch. Or did it?''
Wood did not return a request for clarification on the tweets.
For his part, Trump, who has previously raged against acts of property damage, accusing leftists of terror, has been markedly muted on the bombing.
''President Trump has been briefed on the explosion in Nashville, Tennessee, and will continue to receive regular updates,'' White House spokesman Judd Deere told the Washington Post in a statement on Friday. ''The President is grateful for the incredible first responders and praying for those who were injured.''
Trump has not yet tweeted about the attack. Asked whether Trump had made or was planning a comment, Deere told The Daily Beast, ''I'm his spokesperson and I have, so yes he has.''
While QAnon supporters debated Warner's innocence, pro-terror channels on the messaging platform Telegram openly embraced his tactics. Some of those channels, which have called for civil war and violent attacks, cheered the possibility that Warner might have been a QAnon-influenced terrorist'--or, in the provenance of these groups that pray for violence from aged conspiracy theorists, a ''boomer bomber.''
On Sunday, another Tenneseean allegedly mimicked Warner's bomb threat, albeit without the bomb. James Turgeon, 33, is accused of driving a truck through Nashville-adjacent Rutherford County, while broadcasting a warning similar to the one Warner played from his RV before the bomb exploded. Although Turgeon was said to play similar audio, officials said Turgeon and Warner appeared unconnected.
Turgeon's motives are also unknown, although his digital footprint is larger than Warner's, who did not appear to have had public social media under his own name. On Facebook, Turgeon shared multiple memes about standing with Trump on November 7, after President-elect Joe Biden's victory became apparent.
Turgeon, who is being held on a $500,000 bond, was charged with two felony counts of filing a false report, and one count of tampering with evidence. It was not immediately clear whether he had a lawyer.
David Rausch, director of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, told media on Monday that Turgeon seemed to have grafted off Warner's bombing.
"There is no connection other than the individual taking advantage of the situation," Rausch said Monday.
Alleged Nashville Bomber Anthony Quinn Warner 'Hated Cops' and Loved Weed: Former Co-Worker
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 04:44
Tom Lundborg was a teenager in the late 1970s when he worked under accused Nashville bomber Anthony Quinn Warner, who was a technician for an alarm company.
Back then, Lundborg's father owned A.C.E. Alarms, a firm providing commercial and residential burglar systems, but was incapacitated in a car wreck. That left a young Lundborg and 20-something ''Tony'' Warner to run the business, and they drove to different sites to do burglar alarm installations and service calls.
''I worked with Tony as his helper. I kind of looked up to him. He was kind of a hippie. Had long hair, a Magnum, P.I. mustache,'' Lundborg told The Daily Beast. ''He was a smart cocky kind of guy. I rode around with him all day every day'--during the summers, at least for a couple years.''
Lundborg said Warner disliked authority, loved smoking weed and claimed he'd just gotten out of the Navy. (It's unclear whether Lundborg was ever in the U.S. Armed Forces, but records show he was arrested for marijuana possession in 1978.)
They drove around listening to 103 KDF, previously Nashville's main rock station, and if Warner spotted a police officer, he'd break his silence to lecture the teenage Lundborg.
''I hate cops. They're all corrupt,'' Warner would say. ''Never trust a cop.''
Lundborg said he spoke to the FBI about Warner, as authorities try to piece together a motive for the Christmas Day explosion which injured eight people and destroyed multiple buildings. Warner, 63, died in the blast.
Early that morning, a recreational vehicle registered to Warner detonated after playing a recording bearing a grim warning: a bomb would go off in 15 minutes. The RV also played the 1964 hit ''Downtown'' by Petula Clark, a song that opens with the words, ''When you're alone and life is making you lonely / You can always go downtown.''
''He was a little guy, the silent type, but nice-looking to girls ... My dad would go to dive bars with him. He was popular with the females in there, you could just tell.''
A motive for the bombing remains unclear, though investigators are reportedly looking into whether Warner bought into conspiracy theories about 5G technology. Warner parked his RV next to an AT&T building before the vehicle detonated.
''It does appear that the intent was more destruction than death. That's all still speculation at this point as we continue in our investigation with all of our partners,'' David Rausch, the director of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, said on Monday.
Authorities are also investigating why Warner, who was unmarried and didn't appear to have any children, had transferred two of his homes to Michelle Swing, a 29-year-old music executive in Los Angeles. One of the quitclaim deeds was filed on Nov. 25, while the other was in 2019.
One neighbor, Rick Laude, told the Associated Press that he and Warner chatted days before the bombing, and Laude asked, ''Is Santa going to bring you anything good for Christmas?''
''Oh, yeah, Nashville and the world is never going to forget me,'' Warner replied.
Laude said he didn't think anything was strange about their conversation and that ''nothing about this guy raised any red flags.''
Meanwhile, another neighbor, who declined to identify herself, told a Daily Beast reporter that when a peacock was roaming around last month, Warner came out of his house to feed it. ''My daughter was telling me that he was like 'I want this peacock,''' the neighbor claimed.
Warner was known to have dogs, and it's unclear whether they also perished in the RV explosion.
''I was extremely shocked,'' Lundborg said of Warner's apparently intentional bombing. ''You don't expect anybody you had normal thoughts about to do something so abnormal. My memories of him are very distant, but still, those were the memories I had.''
''I assume he was mad about something. You'd think he was, to do what he did,'' added Lundborg, whose family security business is now called Symspire.
Warner was the elder Lundborg's sole technician, and they worked out of the Lundborg family residence in Antioch, Tennessee, where Warner went to high school.
''He was a little guy, the silent type, but nice-looking to girls,'' Lundborg said. ''My dad would go to dive bars with him. He was popular with the females in there, you could just tell. He didn't flirt a lot, but you could tell they liked him.'' Lundborg said Warner had a girlfriend at the time.
Lundborg said Warner ''betrayed'' his parents and started his own alarm company, taking an A.C.E. client or two with him. But the business foundered, Lundborg said, because ''he didn't have the personality'' to deal with customers.
The last time Lundborg saw Warner was in 2007, when the technician handled IT work for a Chevrolet dealership in Downtown Nashville.
But most recently, Warner was handling technology for Fridrich & Clark Realty. The business's owner, Steve Fridrich, said he hired Warner four or five years ago as an independent contractor, and that Warner repaired the firm's computers and set up machines for new employees.
Fridrich said Warner had other clients in the area but he didn't know their names.
''Tony Warner has never been an employee of our company but occasionally came to our office to service our computers. Earlier this month, he advised us that he was retiring and Fridrich & Clark has not had any contact with him since that time,'' Fridrich said in a text message.
''Upon learning that Tony is a suspect in the bombing on 2nd Avenue on Christmas morning, Fridrich & Clark notified the authorities that he had provided IT services to our firm. The Tony Warner we knew is a nice person who never exhibited any behavior which was less than professional.''
'-- with additional reporting by Steven Hale
The Nashville Bombing Didn't Come From An RV | Libertarian News
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 06:23
My fat ass a bomb in an RV did this.
From a news helicopter flyover of the bomb site, we can determine some interesting facts:
No bomb crater at the RV parking spot but the interior floor of the ATT building is completely destroyed.No radial debris pattern from the parking spot of the RV.Blast pattern appears to be away from the building.Nothing about the hole in the second story makes any sense if it was caused by an RV parked 20'² away on the curb exploding.The smoke pattern on the second story hole doesn't line up, smoke rises, it doesn't spread out to the sides, which means those marks are charring from a blast that didn't come from a parked RV.As the helicopter flies over, you can see through the second story hole all the way into the sub basement where the interior floor and sub-floors of the building were blown out. It's almost as if something blasted out of the basement and through the second story hole.
You can see the full overhead video here.
In the video below, you can see something create a streak of smoke in the sky into/from the building one second before it explodes. The black and white video is contraindicated by this video, which does not show any streak in the sky before the explosion. I'm not sure what the cause of this streak is. It's possible the black and white video may be capturing more of the infrared spectrum, which is why it's showing up in one video but not the other.
Here is a street level view of the explosion. In this recently released high definition security camera, we can make out that an RV is parked in front of the white SUV on the left side of the street, adjacent to where the blast holes in the ATT building are located.
The RV was parked between these two sets of cars and its wreckage is not identifiable.
It's also worth noting that this ''AT&T'' building is entirely concrete with no windows and has huge roof-top ventilation systems designed to support a massive server farm. This is exactly the same kind of construction we see with known NSA data centers. Notice the lack of damage to the ATT building facade compared to the buildings across the street. The ATT building was reinforced; which again is something we would expect to see from a centrally located NSA data center.
My speculations: The RV may have been blown completely across the street into the 176 2nd street building, which is why we aren't seeing any wreckage of it in the street. To me, it seems obvious that the blast came from inside the ATT building itself.
This was obviously not an attack carried out by some lone suicidal nut who hated 5G networks. This was a state level attack carried out with professional precision in such a way as to minimize surrounding collateral damage and loss of life while simultaneously wiping out an (NSA? CIA?) data center.
Officially, we are supposed to believe some 63 year old dude rigged up an RV with a bomb that utilized a sophisticated automated countdown and PA warning system with an expert level of explosives engineering, completely destroying the sub-floors of the ATT building while leaving no crater in the road, perfectly taking out the communications servers with minimal collateral damage, while completely vaporizing the RV into oblivion.
And for the pi¨ce de r(C)sistance, ''authorities'' are now saying the bomber died in the blast '' because of course he did. I mean, who doesn't hate 5G providers so much they want to commit suicide in an act of martyrdom against 5G providers, while having no social media history of long standing protest against 5G providers? And of course, the FBI is triumphantly declaring no other individuals were involved.
Nothing to see here folks. Move along.
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Nashville bomber Anthony Quinn Warner reportedly hunted aliens
Wed, 30 Dec 2020 17:44
December 29, 2020 | 8:53pm | Updated December 30, 2020 | 5:51am
Authorities are looking into evidence that Nashville RV bomber Anthony Quinn Warner spent time hunting for aliens and was interested in ''lizard people,'' ABC News reported.
Law enforcement sources told the outlet that investigators found some of Warner's writings containing ramblings about various conspiracy theories.
Some of the notes were reportedly about the lizard or reptilian conspiracy '-- the idea that shape-shifting lizard creatures take on human form in an attempt at world domination.
Authorities believe the 63-year-old loner also spent time hunting for alien life forms in a nearby state park, the outlet reported.
It's unclear if any of these beliefs or behaviors are connected in any way to the Christmas morning suicide blast.
Investigators are also reportedly probing whether Warner, a local IT expert, was motivated to target an AT&T building over fears of 5G cellular technology and his paranoid suspicions that it is killing people and being used to spy on Americans.
The blast significantly hampered cell service in Tennessee and across the South.
It was preceded by an audio recording from the RV urging locals to evacuate the area, suggesting to investigators that his motive was destruction, but not death.
Warner also reportedly may have believed that the suicidal attack would lead him to be revered as a ''hero.''
Situation Update, Dec. 28th - Orbital weapons platforms reveal Trump is in a WAR much bigger than any election
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:12
Situation Update, Dec. 28th - Orbital weapons platforms reveal Trump is in a WAR much bigger than any election
By healthranger // 2020-12-28
It is now increasingly clear that the explosion in Nashville was not caused by an RV bomb, nor a conventional missile but rather a "Directed Energy Weapon."The evidence for this includes:
Former Defense Secretary Mark Esper warning in September that China possessed "killer satellites" and "directed energy weapons" that could threaten the United States.The apparent missile "trail" in the skyline video of Nashville, which is also consistent with a stream of ionized atmosphere and particular matter suspended in the air. (High-powered lasers can transform molecules into plasma.)The large blue "plasma flash" observed on a street-level video camera, an instant before the kinetic explosion. This blue plasma light is consistent with the use of an extremely high-powered, high-altitude laser system that instantly transforms solid matter into its plasma state. This same technology has been used in pilot programs to transform landfill waste into simple elements such as carbon. This process is called "plasma torch gasification" and is considered a "green" technology to eliminate landfill by transforming matter into carbon.Interestingly, this "plasma torch gasification" process, which can also be created by an extremely powerful laser burst, releases huge amounts of hydrogen gas, which is itself explosive in a conventional (chemical) sense. What an observer would see is first a bright blue plasma light, followed by a yellow fireball, followed by black carbon dust all over the ground, and this is what we observe in Nashville.The fact that no explosion crater appeared on the street under the RV, but rather a layer of charred carbon, which is consistent with the aftermath of a plasma state caused by an energy weapon (most likely a laser used for ablation of samples in the laboratory, which would typically be a laser in the 198nm range, or what is called "Deep-UV". Some ablation lasers also use 266nm.)The US State Dept. has warned that Russia is already testing an anti-satellite missile, which is part of Russia's defense against the orbital laser weapons possessed by China and the United States.This topic is covered in more detail in the December 28th Situation Update, embedded below.Here are the highlights from the podcast:
FBI claim of DNA matching from the scene of the explosion carried zero credibility.The explosion disabled the ZME air traffic control comms out of Nashville, blinding air traffic control to high-level aircraft on that day.The FAA issued a highly unusual "ground stop" order.Aftermath of the explosion reveals the AT&T building was hardened like an NSA bunker, with reinforced concrete and a fake public facade, with fake vents.The AT&T building carried an NFP warning sign which explains, "Flammability 4 = will vaporize or readily burn at normal temperature, or is readily dispersed in air and will burn readily."The materials warning sign also carried a "W" symbol: W = Reacts with water in an unusual or dangerous manner.The AT&T / NSA center had intercepted all the traffic of Dominion voting systems software updates and real-time remote manipulations from China and other countries.Data stored to magnetic tape, which was physically unharmed by the explosion but may have been subjected to electromagnetic interference sufficient to cause some data loss.The Nashville FirstNet comms system also served the Huntsville, Alabama FBI "second headquarters" which Trump was setting up as a "white hat" FBI campus. CNBC reported on the $1 billion FBI building there.CodeMonkeyZ shares tweet: I heard there was a BIG meeting last night discussing ''significant intel that is so much bigger than anyone can imagine''."Fairview" is the name of the NSA program to spy on Americans through AT&T data gathering.City Blue Imaging in Rochester burned down as part of a campaign to systematically destroy the evidence of voter fraud. This is the subcontractor involved in the printing of mail-in ballots. All equipment was destroyed in the three-alarm fire.Fake ballots in AZ arrived via a cargo plane from Korea, ballots were protected by AZ National Guard and transported to Maricopa County for counting in order to steal the election. This is the report from Stew Peters (see 2nd video below).Bobby Piton reveals new details of how "phantom voters" were used to rig the election, where people with common last names like Jones, Williams, Jackson were replaced with unique last name phantom voters who voted for Biden.Piton concludes, "a sophisticated State Actor was able to optimize a desired outcome for both the State of Georgia and the State of Pennsylvania."Far-left journalist charged in BLM firebombing attack on police cars.Texas says pregnancy is a "medical condition" and plans to prioritize all people with medical conditions for covid vaccines, starting with Black and Brown people, as part of a eugenics / depopulation program to eliminate Hispanics and Blacks.It appears that Trump is dealing with much more than an election war, but rather a global war against human beings as citizens of Earth.Listen to the full podcast here:
Brighteon.com/418bab7e-e43a-4bcc-a95f-be592a1a1867Catch each day's new Situation Update podcast at:
https://www.brighteon.com/channels/hrreportHere's the Arizona ballot fraud video from Stew Peters:
Let Us Out!
Austin curfew no way
New orders from the City of Austin and Travis County will halt dine-in food and beverage services starting Thursday, Dec. 31 at 10:30 p.m. and lasting through Sunday, Jan. 3 at 6 a.m.
Sad how tards walk around proud of how they violate or skirt covid rules
The ICU Beds hoax BOTG Report
Keep Anonymous
Boots on the ground breakdown of the constant lack of ICU beds, and the change in narrative behind the shortages. The local hospitals here in Richland and Kennewick Washington got into a big spat a few years ago. It was all over who was allowed to build more beds for their hospital. The long and the short of the lawsuit is that bed counts are controlled and awarded by the state Department of Health and you just can't get more beds of any type because you want more. There has to be a proven need in the area and can't take all the customers a neighboring hospital might have room for. So, if you slam every media outlet with "We don't have enough ICU beds" you can get the public opinion on your side and get more of the highly profitable beds you would not be allowed otherwise. You could also use pressure from the "shortage of beds" to say the standards of the Department of Health are not right and more beds should be allowed because of the unprecedented times has shown we were not prepared.
The other thing I have heard is a lot of Providence Health Systems owned hospitals in the reports coming out of Washington and California that have to do with bed shortages. Several of the reports you have used in the show to talk about the shortages were interviews from Providence Hospital's medical staff saying they are out of beds. Which makes sense because they are the largest chain of hospitals in the Pacific Northwest and one of the largest in California. Never let a good crisis go to waste.
Attached is an article that talks about the legal battle that the local hospitals had in court
https://www.tri-cityherald.com/news/local/article61541532.html
Doctors, nurses 'can't take much more' amid Covid-19 surge in Southern California
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 11:42
Dec. 31, 2020, 4:30 AM EST
By Alicia Victoria Lozano
LOS ANGELES '-- For Dr. Anita Sircar, an infectious disease specialist, there are no breaks and few days off.
An implacable surge of Covid-19 cases has overwhelmed Southern California hospitals and intensive care units for most of December after public health officials warned for weeks that people should refrain from gathering with those outside their households over the holidays.
Yet millions of Americans desperate to reconnect with loved ones and restore a sense of normalcy ignored the warnings on Thanksgiving. As a result, coronavirus cases spiked, and ICU capacity dwindled.
"It's relentless," Sircar said, speaking on the phone between patient rounds and doctor meetings at Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center in Torrance.
State public health officials recently extended modified stay-at-home orders for the regions hardest hit by the surge, including Southern California and the San Joaquin Valley, where ICU capacity has been at 0 percent for several weeks.
Hospitals have built makeshift ICUs, and they sometimes move patients into gift shops or pediatric wards to care for the sick and dying. At Providence, a tent has been erected in the parking lot to accommodate overflow patients when the time comes. And the time will come, said several medical professionals working on the front lines of the pandemic.
"We're on this wheel that just keeps turning," Sircar said. "It's a revolving door that doesn't stop."
Dr. Anita Sircar wears protective gear at Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center in Torrance, Calif. Courtesy Dr. Anita SircarThroughout Southern California, hospitals and their employees are forced to make difficult decisions as the Covid-19 surge continues to pummel the battered region.
California has recorded more than 2.2 million coronavirus cases and 25,000 deaths. In Los Angeles County, home to 10 million residents, public health officials have recorded about 756,100 confirmed cases and more than 10,000 deaths.
In Los Angeles County, a person dies every 10 minutes from Covid-19, public health officials say. More than 7,400 people were hospitalized with Covid-19 on Wednesday. The data were released just hours after Gov. Gavin Newsom revealed that a potentially more contagious variant of the coronavirus had been found in Southern California.
Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said in a statement, "Our healthcare workers are overwhelmed with Covid-19 patients and this current path of surging Covid-19 hospitalizations is not sustainable."
Yet medical professionals must press on even as the surge takes an emotional and mental toll on front-line workers.
For ICU nurse Lindsey Burrell, who works at Providence hospital with Sircar, trying to balance family life with work life sometimes means bottling up her pain and anxiety after having watched patients die day in and day out.
Often, Burrell turns on music in the car while driving home just to clear her mind and prepare for the transition from nurse to wife and mother. Before she enters her house, she sits in complete silence and tries to let go of whatever she saw that day.
Three years ago, Burrell underwent open-heart surgery and suffered a stroke shortly after the birth of her first child. Because of her comorbidities, Burrell maintains a strict regimen of stripping off her protective gear before she walks into her home, immediately throwing whatever she wore into the washing machine, taking a hot shower and gargling with Listerine as an added precaution.
"We suffer silently," she said. "I don't even know how to put into words sometimes what I see and what I feel. It's something you're not prepared for at any level."
Burrell knew when she became an ICU nurse that she would see death and families grieving unexpected losses. But she never expected to see the "inhumane" nature of Covid-19.
Many of her sickest patients are intubated, lying facedown on their stomachs with one arm stretched up and the other down to help clear breathing airways. Tubes and intravenous drips extend through their bodies while dialysis machines help filter blood. When a patient's heart stops, a team of doctors and nurses suit up in protective equipment before they enter the room. Sometimes Burrell must call loved ones to ask whether they would like to Zoom or FaceTime to say their goodbyes.
"Patients are scared to death," she said. "They plead for their lives. They know they're going to die. It tears us apart."
Burrell hasn't been able to shake the recent death of a beloved grocery store worker known to many in the beachside community where she works. The man had been weaned off a ventilator and appeared to be awake, giving Burrell hope that he might survive. One day shortly before Christmas, Burrell went into his room and held his hand. She begged him to keep fighting. He gave her a thumbs up.
Recommended"I could see the despair in his eyes," she said.
To cope with grief, Burrell leans on co-workers who understand what it is to fight for people's lives, only to hear about their deaths days later.
"We can't take much more," she said.
Dr. Anita Sircar wears protective gear at Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center in Torrance, Calif. Courtesy Dr. Anita SircarEarly in the pandemic, Sircar made the difficult decision to move out of the home she shared with her mother for fear that her mother would contract Covid-19 and not survive its ravages. Sircar has been living in a rental unit near the hospital ever since, one block from the Pacific Ocean. She hasn't made it to the beach once since she moved.
"I don't socialize outside of work," she said. "It's basically just apartment, hospital, apartment, hospital. After a while, you forget there is life outside of here."
Sircar typically works 12-hour shifts and takes only four days off a month. Before the pandemic, she would see about 12 patients a day. Now it's closer to 27, and many die.
"It has not stopped since Thanksgiving," she said. "The virus is not out of control. People are out of control."
Of those on her current patient list, Sircar estimates that more than half attended large Thanksgiving gatherings. A 31-year-old woman told Sircar that 30 people were at one dinner she attended. Seventeen people later tested positive for Covid-19, and at least one is fighting to survive.
Sircar's patient was discharged after several days and said she regretted attending the Thanksgiving dinner.
Across the county, in Los Angeles' Boyle Heights neighborhood, the emergency department at Adventist Health White Memorial Hospital is already at capacity but still accepting patients. Dr. Juan C. Barrio, director of the hospital's internal residency program, said residents are so overwhelmed that attending physicians are forced to add to their patient lists.
"This is completely unprecedented," he said. "We have enough ventilators, but patients in the ICU are coming in sicker and more critically ill."
Makeshift ICUs are springing up throughout Adventist Health to accommodate the increase in patients, including the former cardiac care unit. Barrio described the scene inside as a "mess of PPE and activity," with some emergency room patients being treated in the hallways.
On Tuesday, Dr. Mark Ghaly, the state secretary of health and human services, said some Los Angeles hospitals are turning to "crisis care" and bracing for a more dangerous coronavirus surge that is likely to worsen after Christmas and New Year's Eve. Ghaly said that while positivity rates from the Thanksgiving surge appear to be stabilizing, that doesn't appear to be the case in Southern California.
"We have not heard yet that any hospital is at the point where they need to make a decision between two patients who both need a ventilator and they only have one ventilator," he said, adding that some hospitals don't have space to unload ambulances or get oxygen to patients.
State officials notified hospitals this week that they should prepare for the possibility that they will have to resort to "crisis care" guidelines, which would allow for rationing of treatment when staff members, medicine and supplies are in short supply.
Cedars-Sinai Health System, arguably the most famous hospital in Los Angeles, issued a "crisis alert" Wednesday, imploring its patients not to gather for New Year's Eve.
"We know these recommendations are challenging, but it's important to remember the actions you take in the next few days can help protect you, your family and your loved ones '-- and those fighting for their lives in our hospital beds right now," the hospital said. "Compliance is crucial if we want to prevent what is already a public health emergency from becoming even worse."
Alicia Victoria Lozano Alicia Victoria Lozano is a Los Angeles-based digital reporter for NBC News.
Asymptomatic transmission of COVID-19 didn't occur at all, study of 10 million finds | News | LifeSite
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 15:23
LifeSiteNews has produced an extensive COVID-19 vaccines resources page.'¯ View it here.
ANALYSIS
WUHAN, China, December 23, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) '' A study of almost 10 million people in Wuhan, China, found that asymptomatic spread of COVID-19 did not occur at all, thus undermining the need for lockdowns, which are built on the premise of the virus being unwittingly spread by infectious, asymptomatic people.
Published in November in the scientific journal Nature Communications, the paper was compiled by 19 scientists, mainly from the Huazhong University of Science and Technology in Wuhan, but also from scientific institutions across China as well as in the U.K. and Australia. It focused on the residents of Wuhan, ground zero for COVID-19, where 9,899,828 people took part in a screening program between May 14 and June 1, which provided clear results as to the possibility of any asymptomatic transmission of the virus.
Asymptomatic transmission has been the underlying justification of lockdowns enforced all across the world. The most recent guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) still states that the virus ''can be spread by people who do not have symptoms.'' In fact, the CDC claimed that asymptomatic people ''are estimated to account for more than 50 percent of transmissions.''
U.K. Health Secretary Matt Hancock also promoted this message, explaining that the concept of asymptomatic spread of COVID-19 led to the U.K. advocating masks and referring to the ''problem of asymptomatic transmission.''
However, the new study in Nature Communications, titled ''Post-lockdown SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid screening in nearly 10 million residents of Wuhan, China,'' debunked the concept of asymptomatic transmission.
It stated that out of the nearly 10 million people in the study, ''300 asymptomatic cases'' were found. Contact tracing was then carried out and of those 300, no cases of COVID-19 were detected in any of them. ''A total of 1,174 close contacts of the asymptomatic positive cases were traced, and they all tested negative for the COVID-19.''
Both the asymptomatic patients and their contacts were placed in isolation for two weeks, and after the fortnight, the results remained the same. ''None of detected positive cases or their close contacts became symptomatic or newly confirmed with COVID-19 during the isolation period.''
Further evidence showed that ''virus cultures'' in the positive and repositive asymptomatic cases were all negative, ''indicating no 'viable virus' in positive cases detected in this study.''
Ages of those found to be asymptomatic ranged between 10 and 89, with the asymptomatic positive rate being ''lowest in children or adolescents aged 17 and below'' and highest rate found among people older than 60.
The study also made the realization that due to a weakening of the virus itself, ''newly infected persons were more likely to be asymptomatic and with a lower viral load than earlier infected cases.''
These results are not without precedent. In June, Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, head of the World Health Organization's (WHO) emerging diseases and zoonosis unit, shed doubt upon asymptomatic transmission. Speaking at a press conference, Van Kerkhove explained, ''From the data we have, it still seems to be rare that an asymptomatic person actually transmits onward to a secondary individual.''
She then repeated the words ''It's very rare,'' but despite her word choice of ''rare,'' Van Kerkhove could not point to a single case of asymptomatic transmission, noting that numerous reports ''were not finding secondary transmission onward.''
Her comments went against the predominant narrative justifying lockdowns, and at the time the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) highlighted that ''she undermined the last bit of rationale there could be for lockdowns, mandated masks, social distancing regulation, and the entire apparatus of compulsion and coercion under which we've lived for three months.''
Swift to act, the WHO performed a U-turn, and the next day Van Kerkhove then declared that asymptomatic transmission was a ''really complex question '... We don't actually have that answer yet.''
''I think that that's misunderstanding to state that asymptomatic transmission globally is very rare. I was referring to a small subset of studies,'' she added.
However, the new Wuhan study seems to present solid, scientific evidence that asymptomatic transmission is not just rare but nonexistent. Given that it found ''no evidence that the identified asymptomatic positive cases were infectious,'' the study raises important questions about lockdowns.
Commenting on the study, The Conservative Tree House noted that ''all of the current lockdown regulations, mask wearing requirements and social distancing rules/decrees are based on a complete fallacy of false assumptions.'' The evidence presented in the study shows that '''very rare' actually means 'never' asymptomatic spread just doesn't happen '' EVER.''
Such a large scientific study of 10 million people should not be overlooked, Jeffrey Tucker argued in the AIER, as it should be ''huge news,'' paving the way ''to open up everything immediately.'' Yet media reports have been virtually nonexistent and ''ignored,'' a fact that Tucker explained: ''The lockdown lobby ignores whatever contradicts their narrative, preferring unverified anecdotes over an actual scientific study of 10 million residents in what was the world's first major hotspot for the disease we are trying to manage.''
The recent findings should enable society to reopen once more, according to the AIER. Without asymptomatic transmission, ''the whole basis for post-curve-flattening lockdowns,'' life should resume and ''we could take comfort in our normal intuition that healthy people can get out and about with no risk to others.''
''We keep hearing about how we should follow the science,'' Tucker added. ''The claim is tired by now. We know what's really happening.''
He closed his commentary with the question: ''With solid evidence that asymptomatic spread is nonsense, we have to ask: Who is making decisions and why?"
NYC covid detention
So now, if passed, in NY you can be taken from your home and placed in "detention" bc you have been deemed a threat or "possible" threat to public health.
Southern California will likely face extended stay-at-home order after holiday surge in coronavirus cases - Los Angeles Times
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 00:04
A holiday surge in coronavirus cases may result in extended stay-at-home orders for Southern California and other areas.
The earliest date that Southern California could have become eligible to exit the existing order was Monday, but state officials said Sunday that the region and several other areas of the state would likely have to remain under the order for several more weeks as the recent surge pushes hospitals to the breaking point.
The restrictions include reduced capacity at retail stores; the closure of some businesses including hair salons, nail salons, card rooms, museums, zoos and aquariums; and a prohibition on most gatherings, hotel stays for tourism and outdoor restaurant dining.
For the stay-at-home orders to be lifted, regions are required to have ICU capacity projections to be 15% or above. In the Southern California and San Joaquin Valley regions, the current available ICU capacity stands at 0%.
Hospitalizations are expected to increase in the weeks following Christmas and New Year's Day.
''It is likely that the Regional Stay at Home Order will extend for many regions in California,'' the California Department of Public Health said in a statement Sunday.
The department reported that the state has 2,122,806 confirmed cases to date, with over 24,000 deaths. There were more than 50,000 newly recorded confirmed cases on Saturday.
On Saturday, Los Angeles County health officials reported 29,423 new coronavirus cases over Christmas Day and Saturday combined. Friday's numbers '-- 15,538 cases '-- were delayed because of an interruption with Spectrum internet service in the L.A. area.
Local health agencies also reported 136 deaths over the two-day period. The county averaged about 14,000 new coronavirus cases a day and 88 COVID-19 deaths daily over the past week.
Hospitals throughout the county are overwhelmed. Some are running dangerously low on their supplies of oxygen, critical to treating severely ill COVID-19 patients who have begun to suffocate on account of their virus-inflamed lungs. Emergency rooms are so overcrowded that ambulances have to wait as long as eight hours to drop off patients or are sometimes sent to hospitals farther away.
Officials are expected another surge due to the Christmas holiday.
Under one scenario, experts predict there could be a boost in new coronavirus cases by mid-January, a surge in hospitalizations by late January and early February, and another burst of deaths by early to mid-February.
The quick succession of holidays in the fall and winter months typically allows people to celebrate and spend time with loved ones in a brief period.
But that leaves little time for coronavirus cases to start falling before they spike again, creating surges on top of surges.
Dr. Robert Kim-Farley, a medical epidemiologist and infectious disease expert at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, said a person who is exposed to COVID-19 at a Christmas gathering could be infectious by New Year's Eve.
However, the individual may be asymptomatic, go to a New Year's Eve party and unknowingly spread the disease, he said.
Coupled with a high infection rate '-- about 1 in 95 in Los Angeles County are contagious with the virus, according to county estimates '-- the holidays are creating a ''viral wildfire,'' he said.
Fauci: US taking hard look at variant of coronavirus - ABC News
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 13:14
U.S. health officials believe the coronavirus mutation that set off alarms in parts of Britain is no more apt to cause serous illness or be resistant to vaccines than the strain afflicting people in the United States
December 27, 2020, 6:30 PM ET
' 2 min read
WASHINGTON -- U.S. health officials believe the coronavirus mutation that set off alarms in parts of Britain is no more apt to cause serious illness or be resistant to vaccines than the strain afflicting people in the United States but it still must be taken ''very seriously,'' the government's top infectious disease expert said Sunday.
Dr. Anthony Fauci endorsed the decision of U.S. officials to require negative COVID-19 tests before letting people from Britain enter the U.S. He declined to weigh in on whether that step should have been taken sooner. He said the variant strain is something ''to follow very carefully'' and ''we're looking at it very intensively now.''
He said: ''Does it make someone more ill? Is it more serious virus in the sense of virulence? And the answer is, it doesn't appear to be that way.'' British officials are telling their U.S. colleagues it appears that the vaccines being rolled out will be strong enough to deal with the new variant but, Fauci said, "we're going to be doing the studies ourselves.''
Fauci said the U.S. is at a critical phase of the pandemic, with the worst probably still ahead. He predicted the general population would be getting immunized widely by late March or early April '-- beyond the front-line workers, older people and certain other segments of the public given priority for the vaccines.
Fauci spoke on CNN's ''State of the Union.''
Victoria bans New Year's Eve kissing | Sky News Australia
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 13:36
28/12/2020 | 1min
Victoria has banned the New Year's Eve midnight kiss despite the state going 59 consecutive days with no locally acquired coronavirus cases.The state government has issued guidance for people not to kiss anyone outside their immediate family, to prevent celebrations becoming a super spreading event.Victorians are being advised to take hand sanitizer to parties on the night.
Vaccines and Such
Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine may cause swelling for people with fillers - Insider
Wed, 30 Dec 2020 17:05
As advisors of an FDA advisory committee heard, the Moderna coronavirus vaccine caused facial swelling in two study participants with recent dermal fillers. The swelling is an immunological response to the vaccine. Inflammation is part of the immune system kicking into gear, and it can momentarily reacts to foreign objects as well, including fillers. Experts say this should not prevent people who have had cosmetic fillers in the past from getting vaccinated for the coronavirus. Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.While reviewing the Moderna coronavirus vaccine, advisors at a US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) committee meeting were told the vaccine caused temporary facial swelling in two study participants. Both had recently got dermal fillers.
Dr. Litjen Tan, chief strategy officer of the Immunization Action Coalition, told Insider the response is nothing to be concerned about. It is simply evidence of the immune system kicking into action.
"This is reflected in the systemic reactions that we see such as a day or two with mild fever, etc.," Tan wrote to Insider in an email. "That same immune response can also react against the cosmetic fillings as these fillings would be seen as 'foreign' (immunologically speaking)."
The inflammation seen in these patients is a natural immune reaction to a substance that is not natural within the body.
This might sound intimidating, especially to people who contributed to the 64% jump in cosmetic procedures '-- primarily botox injections and lip fillers '-- in the early months of lockdown.
But experts say this should not deter patients from getting vaccinated.
"One thing to know is that the individuals with these responses after vaccination were easily treated by steroids and anti-inflammatories with no long-term deleterious outcomes," Dr. David Verhoeven, an expert in virology and professor of Vet Microbiology & Preventive Medicine at Iowa State University, told Insider.
If patients have had dermal fillers that have not fully dissolved, experts advise they should speak to their primary care physician about their options.
"I would definitely suggest that the individual inform their healthcare provider that they had a dermal injection so that the healthcare is aware of the potential for an adverse reaction," Verhoeven told Insider.
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Gates put backdoors in windows now he wants to do that for humans
AstraZeneca says coronavirus vaccine candidate should be effective against new strain in UK | TheHill
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 05:13
AstraZeneca chief executive Pascal Soriot said on Sunday that the British pharmaceutical company's vaccine is believed to be effective against the new coronavirus strain detected in the U.K.
"So far, we think the vaccine should remain effective. But we can't be sure, so we're going to test that," Soriot said when asked how the vaccine could hold up against the new variant of the virus.
The Associated Press reports Soriot told the Sunday Times that researchers for AstraZeneca had discovered a "winning formula" to make its formula just as effective as Pfizer's or Moderna's, both of which have already been approved. The AstraZeneca vaccine is expected to be approved this week, the AP notes.
"We think we have figured out the winning formula and how to get efficacy that, after two doses, is up there with everybody else," Soriot said.
AstraZeneca's vaccine, developed in partnership with Oxford University, was not initially believed to be as effective as its American counterparts, with partial results suggesting it is 70 percent effective at preventing illness, the AP reports.
This new strain of the virus has elicited alarm across the globe, with many countries limiting or banning travel from the U.K. The variant is believed to be significantly more contagious than the pre-existing coronavirus strain, though it not believed to be more deadly or cause more severe symptoms.
Moderna said last week it also believed its vaccine could effectively protect people against the new strain.
The U.K. was the first Western country to approve a coronavirus vaccine, granting Pfizer's vaccine approval early in December. As of Dec. 24, over 600,000 have been vaccinated in the U.K., the AP reports.
NYC vaccine scandal under criminal investigation, leaves hundreds in limbo for second dose | Fox News
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 22:42
Published December 28, 2020
The company vows it was given contrary information from the stateFor one New York-based single mother of young children, who suffers from respiratory problems, Christmas came early when she learned through word-of-mouth that '' despite conflicting information as to who was eligible to receive the coronavirus vaccine '' her underlying condition meant she could indeed be inoculated at a Brooklyn-based health clinic.
"I was so relieved and grateful," the mother and working professional, who requested anonymity for privacy reasons, told Fox News. "And shocked I could get it already."
A week ago, she filled out a brief form online and was later informed that she had an appointment at a ParCare clinic in Brooklyn for Tuesday, the very same week that Moderna was shipping its highly anticipated vaccines across the country.
"It all seemed normal, no different than going to any other urgent care and everything was by the book," the woman, who got the jab almost a week ago, continued, explaining that the clinic took some medical insurances for the shot, but not hers, charging her $150 out of pocket. "But the doctor didn't ask me which box I checked on form or why I qualified for the vaccine."
COVID-19 VACCINE ROLLOUT PLAGUED BY PROTESTS, FAILED TECHNOLOGY AND FRONT-LINE WORKERS MISSING OUT
Word had spread in the days leading up to the Moderna rollout that the prominent ParCare clinic was authorized to administer the shot.
"The vaccines will be made available on a first-come, first-served basis," the company's ad read. "We have set up a special system where you can reserve your slot."
The advertisement urged New Yorkers to go to parcarevaccine.com to submit information or scan the barcode featured on its posters.
The poster said the vaccine was for "high risk, the elderly, and those with underlying conditions," which New York state argues is not its decree at present.
The woman said a strange thing happened Friday when she received a seemingly automated email '' several days after the shot '' thanking her for submitting her form online and cautioning patients not to show up unless they were issued an appointment, although her date had since passed.
A day later, the New York Health Department (DOH) Commissioner Howard Zucker announced ParCare Community Health Network '' with five locations in Brooklyn and one in Manhattan '' was under criminal investigation over concerns it "may have fraudulently obtained" the coveted COVID-19 vaccine" and "transferred it to facilities in other parts of the state in violation of state guidelines and diverted it to members of the public," contrary to the state's plan to administer it first to front-line health care workers and first responders, as well as nursing home residents and staffers.
"We take this very seriously, and DOH will be assisting State Police in a criminal investigation into this matter," the statement concluded. "Anyone found to have knowingly participated in this scheme will be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law."
US COVID-19 VACCINATIONS LIKELY TO FALL SHORT OF 20M END-OF-YEAR GOAL
However, a spokesperson for ParCare told Fox News on Monday that the clinic was given contrary information by a DOH representative on Dec. 21, the day it received the Moderna shipment.
"There was nothing illegal here, no black markets transfer. The company was told '' over the phone '' it was allowed to re-distribute the doses to other clinics in its network," the rep said.
A ParCare spokesperson also affirmed on Monday it has since "proactively returned" its existing inventory of vaccines to the state "pending the department's review," leaving those who did receive it perplexed as to whether they will reap the full benefits and receive the follow-up jab. As it is formulated, the Moderna vaccine requires a booster shot 28 days after the first one.
The spokesperson also said it has provided the documentation regarding the proper receipt of the vaccines to the NYS DOH and has vehemently denied any wrongdoing in its bid to obtain vaccine doses.
"Our record of working hand-in-hand with the city and state of New York is second-to-none. ParCare followed all NYS DOH procedures for obtaining the Moderna vaccine and was approved by NYS DOH for distribution and by CDC as a network site," the representative said. "We are confident the end result of that review will show that ParCare at all times exerted best efforts to comply with all NYS DOH requirements and will allow us to continue to achieve our number one goal of providing these critical vaccines to the New Yorkers who need them most."
A copy of a packing slip given to Fox News clarifies that the vaccines were shipped directly to ParCare in Monroe, N.Y., from a McKesson pharmaceutical supply warehouse in Shepherdsville, Ky., according to the paper.
A copy of a packing slip given to Fox News clarifies that the vaccines were shipped directly to ParCare in Monroe, N.Y., from a McKesson pharmaceutical-supply warehouse in Shepherdsville, Ky., according to the paper, driving forth the company's claim that they were not illegally obtained as the state has speculated. (ParCare spokesperson)
Soon after the state announced the criminal probe, ParCare released a statement insisting it has "striven to provide critical healthcare services and administer COVID-19 vaccinations to those qualified to receive them under the New York State Department of Health's guidelines." The company also underscored that it "has a long history of partnering with the City of New York to provide vital healthcare services to New Yorkers who need them most."
However, what many experts find confusing is that despite the mandate that front-line health care workers and those in nursing homes and aged-care facilities that have weathered more than half the deaths in the state be the first to receive the vaccine, ParCare candidly advertised via social media ads and a big campaign that it was receiving a shipment of some 2,300 does from Moderna.
ParCare is said to have administered more than 850 initial shots to date. It remains unclear how many of those were given to individuals who qualify under the state's current guidelines.
While the issue is not clear, ParCare has stated that it will "do everything in (its) power to make sure that the state understands that our patients are our priority and that everyone receives their second dose accordingly."
"One person receiving the full vaccination dose could mean at least one more fatality averted," noted Kagya Amoako, an associate professor of biomedical engineering at the University of New Haven. "So it is highly recommended that the administration of their second doses be considered. However, it may be wise for the state to perform additional reviews of the medical records to make sure a second dose will not lead to adverse events."
CORONAVIRUS VACCINE DISTRIBUTION PLANS: STATE-BY-STATE BREAKDOWN
According to some legal experts, it may all amount to a mammoth misunderstanding.
"I doubt that ParCare Medical Center CEO would have advertised him receiving the COVID vaccination if he understood it was illegal," Amoako explained. "Stating that they administer vaccinations to those qualified to receive them under the state's DOH guideline, which includes front-line health care workers and first responders, is not the same as stating that the recommended sequence of vaccination by the group was adhered to.
"Teeth may need to be added the vaccination guideline language to clear up any confusion about consequences or lack thereof of not following the guidelines."
CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP
Yet others contend that New York state, amid the throes of another uptick in cases, may push the case in other directions.
"I don't believe that providing the vaccine itself to people who are not in the designated category is in itself a crime unless ParCare was being paid to allow some to 'skip the line' despite the guidelines or they lied to get the vaccine in the first place," added criminal defense attorney Troy Slaten. "Potential crimes could be in procurement under false pretenses, which is possibly criminal fraud. And if more than one person is a part of the scheme, then there is a conspiracy to commit fraud as well."
Thus, if ParCare obtained the vaccine promising to provide it only per the government guidelines and then took money to provide it to others who are not yet eligible due to the current scarcity of supply, then that would be fraud, he said.
"Each fraudulent incident (vaccination) could be charged as a separate felony," Slaten surmised.
The New York governor's office and biotech firm Moderna did not respond to a request for further comments on the matter.
Spain will keep register of those who refuse the coronavirus vaccine - CNN
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 21:32
Madrid(CNN) People in Spain who decline to be vaccinated against coronavirus will be listed in a new register that will be shared with other European Union nations, Spanish Health Minister Salvador Illa has said.
"What will be done is a registry ... of those people who have been offered it and simply rejected it," Illa told Spain's La Sexta TV channel.
Illa said Covid-19 vaccinations would not be made compulsory, and stressed that the information in the register would not be made public, in line with Spain's data protection laws.
But health care professionals have warned that the idea presents potential dangers.
"The most important thing is to know how the registry will be used," said Jose Luis Cobos, deputy direct of the Spanish General Council of Nursing.
"If it's for public health purposes, to better understand COVID, and it's anonymous, that's one thing," he said.
"But if it's 'I'm now on the list of the bad people,' that's another thing. We don't think a registry should be used to infringe on liberties, or for employers against people," he added.
Vaccine rollout underwaySpain began administering the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine to citizens on Sunday, after it was authorized by European Union regulators last week.
Hours after Illa's television interview on Monday, the head of Spain's Medicines Agency, Maria Jesus Lamas, told Spain's SER radio that the new registry would be used "to understand the causes behind declining the vaccination ... doubt or rejection."
"The registry is anonymous," she added. "There's no chance of identifying anyone in the registry."
Spain's 17 regional governments administer vaccines across the nation.
In the southern region of Andalusia, people currently appear in a registry if they are given a vaccine, including its batch number and who administered, it for quality control purposes, an Andalusia health department spokeswoman told CNN.
The spokeswoman also noted that there is no registry for members of the general public who decline vaccinations, although Andalusia health care workers must sign a document if they refuse a vaccination.
Spain has the world's ninth largest number of coronavirus cases, at more than 1.8 million, and the tenth highest number of deaths, at just over 50,000, according to Johns Hopkins University.
Immunization with SARS Coronavirus Vaccines Leads to Pulmonary Immunopathology on Challenge with the SARS Virus
Wed, 30 Dec 2020 15:17
AbstractBackgroundSevere acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) emerged in China in 2002 and spread to other countries before brought under control. Because of a concern for reemergence or a deliberate release of the SARS coronavirus, vaccine development was initiated. Evaluations of an inactivated whole virus vaccine in ferrets and nonhuman primates and a virus-like-particle vaccine in mice induced protection against infection but challenged animals exhibited an immunopathologic-type lung disease.
DesignFour candidate vaccines for humans with or without alum adjuvant were evaluated in a mouse model of SARS, a VLP vaccine, the vaccine given to ferrets and NHP, another whole virus vaccine and an rDNA-produced S protein. Balb/c or C57BL/6 mice were vaccinated IM on day 0 and 28 and sacrificed for serum antibody measurements or challenged with live virus on day 56. On day 58, challenged mice were sacrificed and lungs obtained for virus and histopathology.
ResultsAll vaccines induced serum neutralizing antibody with increasing dosages and/or alum significantly increasing responses. Significant reductions of SARS-CoV two days after challenge was seen for all vaccines and prior live SARS-CoV. All mice exhibited histopathologic changes in lungs two days after challenge including all animals vaccinated (Balb/C and C57BL/6) or given live virus, influenza vaccine, or PBS suggesting infection occurred in all. Histopathology seen in animals given one of the SARS-CoV vaccines was uniformly a Th2-type immunopathology with prominent eosinophil infiltration, confirmed with special eosinophil stains. The pathologic changes seen in all control groups lacked the eosinophil prominence.
ConclusionsThese SARS-CoV vaccines all induced antibody and protection against infection with SARS-CoV. However, challenge of mice given any of the vaccines led to occurrence of Th2-type immunopathology suggesting hypersensitivity to SARS-CoV components was induced. Caution in proceeding to application of a SARS-CoV vaccine in humans is indicated.
IntroductionSevere acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) emerged in Guangdong, People's Republic of China, in late 2002, and spread to other countries in Asia and to Canada in the ensuing months [1]''[3]. Infection control efforts brought the infection under control by mid-2003 [4]. More than 8000 cases, including almost 800 deaths, were reported during the outbreak period [4]. Increasing age and comorbidity were risk factors for severe disease and death [5], [6], [7]. Since 2003, only sporadic cases have been reported; however, the possibility that SARS outbreaks could reemerge naturally or be deliberately released is a public health concern.
SARS is caused by a Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) [8], [9]. Limited data are available about the ecology of SARS-CoV, but bats are thought to be the animal reservoir for the virus which may be transmitted to small mammals with exposure to these small animals as the source of human infections [10]. The clinical disease is similar to other severe acute respiratory infections, including influenza; the SARS case definition includes clinical, epidemiologic, and laboratory criteria [11], [12]. A number of therapeutic efforts were employed for the disease in Asia and in Canada; however, no treatment of clear value was identified. Animal models were developed using mice, hamsters, ferrets and nonhuman primates, and efforts to identify useful treatments and effective vaccines are ongoing.
Vaccine candidates for preventing SARS have been developed by various groups and include inactivated whole virus, spike (S) protein preparations, virus-like particles (VLPs), plasmid DNA and a number of vectors containing genes for SARS-CoV proteins [13]''[28]. Phase I studies in humans have been conducted with a whole virus vaccine and a DNA vaccine [29]''[30].
An early concern for application of a SARS-CoV vaccine was the experience with other coronavirus infections which induced enhanced disease and immunopathology in animals when challenged with infectious virus [31], a concern reinforced by the report that animals given an alum adjuvanted SARS vaccine and subsequently challenged with SARS-CoV exhibited an immunopathologic lung reaction reminiscent of that described for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) in infants and in animal models given RSV vaccine and challenged naturally (infants) or artificially (animals) with RSV [32], [33]. We and others described a similar immunopathologic reaction in mice vaccinated with a SARS-CoV vaccine and subsequently challenged with SARS-CoV [18], [20], [21], [28]. It has been proposed that the nucleocapsid protein of SARS-CoV is the antigen to which the immunopathologic reaction is directed [18], [21]. Thus, concern for proceeding to humans with candidate SARS-CoV vaccines emerged from these various observations.
The studies reported here were conducted to evaluate the safety, immunogenicity, and efficacy of different SARS-CoV vaccines in a murine model of SARS.
Materials and MethodsTissue Cultures and VirusVero E6 tissue cultures [obtained from The American Type Culture Collection (ATCC), CRL:1586] were grown in Dulbecco's modified minimum essential medium (DMEM) supplemented with penicillin (100 units/ml), streptomycin (100 µg/ml), 0.2% sodium bicarbonate and 10% fetal bovine serum (FBS). The Urbani strain of SARS-CoV was obtained from T.G. Ksiazek at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Atlanta, GA), and a working stock of this virus was prepared by serially passaging a portion of the seed virus three times (p3) in Vero E6 cultures. The culture fluid from infected cells was clarified by low-speed centrifugation, filtered through a 0.45 µm filter, aliquoted, and stored at ''80°C.
VaccinesFour different SARS-CoV vaccines were evaluated in these studies ( Table 1 ). Two whole virus vaccines were evaluated; one was prepared in Vero tissue cultures, zonal centrifuged for purification, and double-inactivated with formalin and UV irradiation, the DI vaccine (DIV); it was tested with and without alum adjuvant [16]. The other whole virus vaccine was prepared in Vero cells, concentrated, purified, inactivated with beta propiolactone and packaged with alum adjuvant (BPV) [13]. A recombinant DNA spike (S) protein vaccine (SV) was produced in insect cells and purified by column chromatography was tested with and without alum adjuvant [17]. The fourth vaccine (the VLP vaccine) was a virus-like particle vaccine prepared by us as described previously; it contained the SARS-CoV spike protein (S) and the Nucleocapsid (N), envelope (E) and membrane (M) proteins from mouse hepatitis coronavirus (MHV) [20].
Table 1Experimental Groups for Evaluation of SARS Coronavirus Vaccines.
GroupExp 11Vaccine ComparisonsExp 21Higher SV Dosage plus DIV and BPV ComparisonsExp 31,3Mouse and Vaccine Specificity1DIV/1 µg2PBSPBS-PBS2DIV/0.5 µgLive virusPBS3DIV/0.25 µgSV/9 µgLive virus4DIV/0.125 µgSV/3 µgFlu vaccine5DIV/1 µg + alumSV/1 µgDIV/1 µg6DIV/0.5 µg + alumSV/9 µg + alumDIV/1 µg + alum7DIV/0.25 µg + alumSV/3 µg + alumBPV/undil + alum8DIV/0.125 µg + alumSV/1 µg + alumPBS-PBS9SV/2 µg2DIV/1 µgPBS10SV/1 µgDIV/0.25 µg (50 µl)Live virus11SV/0.5 µgDIV/1 µg + alumFlu vaccine12SV/0.25 µgDIV/0.25 µg + alum (50 µl)DIV/1 µg13SV/2 µg + alumBPV/undil + alum2DIV/1 µg + alum14SV/1 µg + alumBPV/undil + alum (25 µl)BPV/undil + alum15SV/0.5 µg + alum16SV/0.25 µg + alum17VLP/2 µg218VLP/2 µg + alum19Alum20PBSAnimalsSix- to eight-week-old, female Balb/c and C57BL/6 mice (Charles River Laboratory, Wilmington, MA), were housed in cages covered with barrier filters in an approved biosafety level 3 animal facility maintained by the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) at Galveston, Texas. All of the experiments were performed using experimental protocols approved by the Office of Research Project Protections, Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC), University of Texas Medical Branch and followed National Institutes of Health and United States Department of Agriculture guidelines.
Study DesignThree different experiments, performed for comparing different vaccines, are reported here. Adjuvanted (alum) and non-adjuvanted (PBS) vaccines were obtained from the NIH/BEI resource. Groups of mice (N'Š='Š12''13 per group) were administered various dosages of each vaccine intramuscularly (IM) on days 0 and 28; mice given only PBS, alum, trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine or live SARS-CoV were included as controls in various experiments. On day 56, five mice from each group were sacrificed for assessing serum neutralizing antibody titers and lung histopathology; the remaining seven or eight mice in each group were challenged with 106TCID50/60 µl of SARS-CoV intranasally (IN). Challenged mice were euthanized on day 58 for determining virus quantity and preparing lung tissue sections for histopathologic examination.
Neutralizing Antibody AssaysMice were anesthetized with isoflurane and then bled from the retro-orbital sinus plexus. After heat inactivation at 56°C for 30 minutes, sera were stored at ''80°C until tested. Assays for virus-specific neutralizing antibodies were performed on serial 2-fold diluted samples of each serum using 2% FBS-DMEM as the diluent in 96-well tissue culture plates (Falcon 3072); the final volume of the serially diluted samples in each well was 60 µl after addition of 120 TCID50 of SARS-CoV in 60 µl into each well. The beginning dilution of serum was 1'¶20. The dilutions were incubated for 45''60 minutes at room temperature; then 100 µl of each mixture was transferred into duplicate wells of confluent Vero E6 cells in 96-well microtiter plates. After 72 hours of incubation, when the virus control wells exhibited advanced virus-induced CPE, the neutralizing capacity of individual serum samples were assessed by determining the presence or absence of cytopathic effect (CPE). Neutralizing antibody titers were expressed as the reciprocal of the last dilution of serum that completely inhibited virus-induced CPE.
Collection and Processing of Lungs for Histology and Virus QuantityTwo days post SARS-CoV challenge, mice were euthanized and their lungs were removed. Lung lobes were placed in 10% neutral buffered formalin for histological examination and immunohistochemistry (IHC), as described previously [34], [35]. For virus quantitation, the remaining tissue specimen was weighed and frozen to ''80°C. Thawed lung was homogenized in PBS/10% FBS solution using the TissueLyser (Qiagen; Retsch, Haan, Germany). The homogenates were centrifuged and SARS-CoV titers in the clarified fluids were determined by serial dilution in quadruplicate wells of Vero E6 cells in 96-well plates. Titers of virus in lung homogenates were expressed as TCID50/g of lung (log10); the minimal detectable level of virus was 1.6 to 2.6 log10 TCID50 as determined by lung size.
HistopathologyEvaluations for histopathology were done by pathologists masked as to the vaccine/dosage of each specimen source; numeric scores were assigned to assess the extent of pathologic damage and the eosinophilic component of the inflammatory infiltrates.
Statistical AnalysisNeutralizing antibody titers, lung virus titers, histopathologic lesion score and eosinophilic infiltration scores were averaged for each group of mice. Comparisons were conducted using parametric and nonparametric statistics as indicated.
ResultsExperimentsThe three experiments performed, vaccines and dosages used and controls for each experiment are shown in Table 1 . The vaccines were evaluated for immunogenicity and efficacy; however, because of the previous report of immunopathology on challenge of ferrets and nonhuman primates that had been vaccinated with a whole virus adjuvanted vaccine and mice that had been vaccinated with a VLP vaccine, the primary orientation was to assess for immunopathology among animals in relation to type of vaccine, dosage, serum antibody responses, and virus infection. The vaccine preparations were made for human trials so identifying a preparation that was likely to be both safe and protective in humans was desired. The rationale for each experiment is described.
Comparison of Vaccines (Experiment 1) To differentiate between vaccines, three vaccine preparations were simultaneously evaluated, the double-inactivated (formalin and UV) whole virus vaccine (DIV), the rDNA-expressed S protein vaccine (SV), and the previously evaluated chimeric viral-like particle vaccine (VLP) that had led to immunopathology with virus challenge [16], [17], [20].
Geometric mean serum neutralizing antibody titers for each group on day 56 are shown in figure 1A . Geometric mean titers for those given a nonadjuvanted or alum adjuvanted vaccine were not different for the double-inactivated whole virus vaccine (DIV), and the VLP vaccine, (p>0.05, student's t-test), but were different for the S protein vaccine (SV) (p'Š='Š0.001, student's t test). Geometric mean titers for the different dosage groups given the DI vaccine (DIV) with alum and those for the groups given the S protein vaccine (SV) with or without alum were significantly different (p'Š='Š0.007, p'Š='Š0.028, and p'Š='Š0.01, respectively, Kruskall-Wallis) while the geometric means for those dosage groups given the DI vaccine (DIV) without alum were not (p>0.05, Kruskall-Wallis). In a multiple regression analysis, postvaccination titers for the DI vaccine (DIV) were significantly increased by both alum and higher dosage (for alum, p'Š='Š0.012, for dosage, p <0.001); for the S protein vaccine (SV), only alum increased responses (p'Š='Š0.001).
Vaccine Comparisons of Three SARS-CoV Vaccines, Experiment 1.Serum neutralizing (neut) antibody and lung virus titers for each vaccine dosage group. A. Geometric mean serum antibody titer as log2 and standard error of the mean (S.E.) on day 56 for each vaccine dosage group. Seven to eight mice per group. Vaccines: double inactivated whole virus (DIV), recombinant S protein (SV), viral-like particle vaccine (VLP), with alum (+A). Five mice per group were given 0.1 ml of vaccine intramuscularly on days 0 and 28. B. Geometric mean virus titer (log10 TCID50/g) and standard error of the mean (S.E.) in lungs on day 58 (two days after SARS-CoV challenge) for each vaccine dosage group. Analyses: A. GMT with compared to without alum: DIV p>.05, VLP p>.05, SV p'Š='Š.001. GMT for different vaccine dosage: DIV with alum p'Š='Š.007, DIV without alum p>.05, SV with alum p'Š='Š.028, SV without alum p'Š='Š.01. Multiple regression: GMT increased for alum p'Š='Š.012 and dosage p<.001, for SV alum only p'Š='Š.001. B. GMT for all DIV groups not different p>.05, GMT for SV group without alum p .008 and with alum p .023. GMT for VLP group is not different p>.05.
Two days after challenge, lungs were obtained from all animals for virus quantitation and histology. CoV titers are shown in figure 1B . Geometric mean lung titers in the alum and PBS control groups were 107.3 and 106.3 TCID50/g, respectively. All vaccine groups exhibited lower titers or no detectable virus on day two after challenge. None of the animals given any of the alum-adjuvanted DI vaccine (DIV) dosages and only an occasional animal in the lower dosages of nonadjuvanted vaccine yielded virus (Kruskall-Wallis and Mann Whitney U tests, p>0.05 for all comparisons). All groups given the S protein vaccine (SV) yielded virus after challenge and the differences between groups were significant (p'Š='Š0.002 for all groups, p'Š='Š0.023 for alum and p'Š='Š0.008 for no adjuvant, Kruskall-Wallis); also, geometric mean titers were higher for the groups given lower vaccine dosages. Geometric mean titers for the VLP vaccine groups were similar (p>0.05).
In the vaccine comparison experiment, lung lesion scores for histopathology were graded for individual animals on a scale of 0 to 4 where 0''2 represented degree of cellular infiltration and 3''4 represented the degree of bronchiolar epithelial cell necrosis and airway cellular debris ( figure 2A ). As shown, all animals exhibited pathologic changes after challenge including those animals with no measurable virus on day two suggesting virus infection had occurred but was not detectable on day two because of a short duration of infection or neutralization of virus by antibody in the lung during processing. The higher scores (>3) in some groups related primarily to the fact that virus infection had induced inflammatory infiltrates and epithelial cell necrosis with desquamation of the epithelium and collection of cellular debris in airways of these animals. Mean score differences were noted among the various vaccines (p'Š='Š<0.001, Anova). Those groups given the DI vaccine (DIV) without alum had higher mean scores than did those given DI vaccine (DIV) with alum (p'Š='Š0.001, Mann-Whitney U); similarly, the group given the VLP vaccine without alum had a higher mean score than for those given VLP vaccine with alum (p'Š='Š0.008, Mann-Whitney U). Post hoc comparisons for the three different vaccines indicated that the DI vaccine (DIV) group overall had lower lesion scores than either the S protein vaccine (SV) group or the alum and PBS control groups (p'Š='Š0.001 comparing the DI and S protein vaccines (DIV and SV) and p<0.001 for DIV vs. control groups, Tukey HSD and Dunnett t, respectively), but not the VLP vaccine group (p>0.05, Tukey HSD). The S protein vaccine group (SV) was also lower overall than the control groups (p'Š='Š0.048, Dunnett t).
Vaccine Comparisons of Three SARS-CoV Vaccines, Experiment 1.Mean lung cellular infiltration/lesion pathology and percent eosinophils in infiltrates for each vaccine dosage group two days after challenge with SARS-CoV. A. Mean lesion score and standard error of the mean (S.E.) for each vaccine dosage group. All mice exhibited lung histopathology. Scores are mean of scores for seven to eight mice per group. Scoring. 0 '' no pathology, 1 and 2 '' (1) minimal (2) moderate peribronchiole and perivascular cellular infiltration, 3 and 4 '' 1 and/or 2 plus minimal (3) or moderate (4) epithelial cell necrosis of bronchioles with cell debris in the lumen. B. Mean percent eosinophils on histologic evaluation for seven to eight mice in each vaccine dosage group. Mean for each mouse is the mean percent eosinophils on five separate microscopy fields of lung sections. Analyses: A. Mean lesion scores were different p<.001. DIV without alum greater than with alum p'Š='Š.001, VLP without alum greater than with alum p'Š='Š.008. Posthoc comparisons: DIV lower than SV p'Š='Š.001 and controls p<.001 but not VLP p>.05. SV lower than controls p .048. B. Mean percent eosinophils were different p<.001. Mean percent eosinophils lower for DIV with alum than without alum p'Š='Š.049 and lower for SV with alum than without alum p'Š='Š.001. Mean percent eosinophils lower for SV than DIV p'Š='Š.002 or VLP. P'Š='Š<.001. Mean percent eosinophils greater than controls for DIV, SV and VLP, all three vaccines p<.001.
When the characteristics of the infiltrates were compared, animals given alum or PBS exhibited epithelial cell necrosis and peribronchiolar and perivascular mononuclear cell infiltrates consistent with epithelial cell infection and an inflammatory response seen in viral infections. In addition to mononuclear cells, however, infiltrates among vaccinated animals contained neutrophils and eosinophils that were not seen in the lesions of the animals that had been previously given PBS or alum only ( figure 2B ) suggesting a T helper cell type 2 hypersensitivity reaction; increased eosinophils are a marker for a Th2-type hypersensitivity reaction. Percent eosinophils was lower in these vaccinated animals (mean 1''3.2%) than had been seen in animals given VLP vaccines in the earlier study (mean 13.2±9.6% and 22±9.9% of cells for VLP with PBS or alum, respectively in that study) but no (0%) eosinophils were seen in the lung infiltrates of control animals in this experiment. This pattern of excess eosinophils in cellular infiltrates seen in lung sections from animals given vaccine and not in control animals was as seen in the earlier study with VLP vaccine and those later with other vaccines although the percent eosinophils was lower in this study.
The mean percent eosinophils differed between groups (p<0.001, Anova). Overall, the percent was lower for the groups given the DI and S protein alum adjuvanted vaccines than for the corresponding nonadjuvanted group (p'Š='Š0.049 for DIV and 0.001 for SV, Mann-Whitney U). For the vaccines, the eosinophil mean percentages were lower for the S protein vaccine (SV) than for either the DI vaccine (DIV) or VLP vaccine (DIV vs. SV, p'Š='Š0.002; VLP vs. SV, p'Š='Š<0.001, Tukey HSD). Additionally, eosinophil percentages for all three vaccines, including the S protein vaccine, were significantly greater than the controls (SV, DIV and VLP vaccine, p<0.001 for each, Tukey HSD).
Higher Dosages of the S Protein Vaccine Plus the bp Inactivated Whole Virus Vaccine, Experiment 2 This experiment was conducted to verify the findings in the initial experiment of a hypersensitivity immunopathologic-like reaction after SARS-CoV challenge of vaccinated animals, to determine if a higher dosage of the S protein vaccine (SV) would suppress infection and still exhibit a similar reaction, and whether the original β propiolactone inactivated whole virus vaccine (BPV) that had shown an immunopathologic-like reaction after challenge of vaccinated ferrets and nonhuman primates exhibited a similar immunopathologic reaction in the mouse model [13], [14]. Additionally, a live virus ''vaccination'' group was added in this experiment for comparison of challenge results following vaccinations with inactivated vaccines to those following earlier infection.
Serum neutralizing antibody responses are shown in figure 3A . The bp inactivated vaccine (BPV), was only available at one dosage with alum so a smaller volume (25 µl) was given to one group for a dosage comparison. Geometric mean titers for the groups given the alum adjuvanted version of the DI and the S protein vaccines were greater than for the unadjuvanted vaccine (DIV P'Š='Š0.014, SV p<0.001, student's t test). In multiple regression analysis, titers were also significantly increased after both the DI and S protein vaccines with use of alum (p'‰¤0.01); no dosage effect was noted. The geometric mean neutralizing antibody titers of the two bp inactivated vaccine groups (BPV) were different (p'Š='Š0.039, Mann-Whitney U).
Higher Dosages of SV Vaccine plus DIV and BPV Vaccine Comparisons, Experiment 2.Serum neutralizing (neut) antibody and lung virus titers for each vaccine dosage group. A. Geometric mean serum antibody titer and standard error of the mean (S.E.) on day 56 for each vaccine dosage group. Five mice per group given 0.1 ml of vaccine intramuscularly on days 0 and 28. B. Geometric mean virus titer (log10 TCID50/g) and standard error of the mean (S.E.) in lungs on day 58 (two days after SARS-CoV challenge) for each vaccine dosage group. Seven to eight mice per group. Vaccines: double inactivated whole virus (DIV), recombinant S protein (SV), β propiolactone inactivated whole virus (BPV) with alum (+A). Analyses: A. GMT with alum greater than without alum: SV p<.001, DIV p'Š='Š.014. GMT for the two BPV groups are different p'Š='Š.039. Multiple regression: DIV and SV increased with alum p'‰¤.01, no dosage effect p>.05.
Two days after challenge with 106 TCID50 of SARS-CoV, titers in mice given PBS varied between 107.0 and 108.0 TCID50 per g of tissue; one vaccinated animal in the group given the S protein vaccine (SV) at the 3 µg and the 1 µg dosage without alum yielded virus but all other animals in all other groups were culture negative for virus ( figure 3B ).
Shown in figure 4A are the mean lesion scores on histologic evaluations. The scoring system for experiments two and three were developed by a replacement pathologist who preferred a scale of 0 to 3 which corresponded to a judgment of mild, moderate or severe ( figure 4A ). Mean lesion scores for this grading system overall were significantly different from each other (p<0.001, Anova) and scores were lower for the S protein vaccine than for either of the whole virus vaccines (SV versus DIV and BPV, p<0.001 and p'Š='Š0.006, respectively, Tukey HSD). Of interest is that those given live virus and then challenged with live virus two months later exhibited an infiltrative disease severity comparable to the PBS and vaccinated groups despite no detectable virus on day two, again suggesting some degree of infection may have occurred earlier.
Higher Dosages of SV Vaccine plus DIV and BPV Vaccine Comparisons, Experiment 2.Mean lung cellular infiltration/lesion pathology and mean percent eosinophils in infiltrates for each vaccine dosage group two days after challenge with SARS-CoV. A. Mean lesion score and standard error of the mean (S.E.) for each vaccine dosage group. Scores are mean of scores for seven to eight mice per group. Scoring - 0 - no definite pathology, 1 - mild peribronchiole and perivascular cellular infiltration, 2 - moderate peribronchiole and perivascular cellular infiltration, 3 - severe peribronchiolar and perivascular cellular infiltration with thickening of alveolar walls, alveolar infiltration and bronchiole epithelial cell necrosis and debris in the lumen. Ten to 20 microscopy fields were scored for each mouse lung. B. Mean score and standard error of the mean (S.E.) for eosinophils as percent of infiltrating cells for each vaccine dosage group. Scores are mean of scores for seven to eight mice per group. Scoring: 0 - <5% of cells, 1 - 5''10% of cells, 2 - 10''20% of cells, 3 - >20% of cells. Ten to 20 microscopy fields were scored for each mouse lung. Analyses: A. Mean lesion scores were different p<.001. Mean scores were lower for SV than DIV p<.001 and less than BPV p'Š='Š.006. B. Mean eosinophil scores were lower for SV than DIV p<.001 and less than BPV p<.001. Eosinophil scores greater for SV than PBS or live virus p<.001.
The mean eosinophil scores for the lung infiltrations were lower for the S protein vaccine groups [SV vs. DIV p<0.001; SV vs. BPV, p<0.001, Tukey HSD]; however, they were clearly greater than seen in those given PBS or live virus earlier (p<0.001, Tukey HSD) ( figure 4B ).
Representative photo micrographs of lung sections from mice in this experiment two days after challenge with SARS-CoV are shown in figure 5 . The pathologic changes were extensive and similar in all challenged groups (H & E stains). Perivascular and peribronchial inflammatory infiltrates were observed in most fields along with desquamation of the bronchial epithelium, collections of edema fluid, sloughed epithelial cells, inflammatory cells and cellular debris in the bronchial lumen. Large macrophages and swollen epithelial cells were seen near lobar and segmental bronchi, small bronchioles and alveolar ducts. Necrotizing vasculitis was prominent in medium and large blood vessels, involving vascular endothelial cells as well as the tunica media, and included lymphocytes, neutrophils, and eosinophils in cellular collections. Occasional multinucleated giant cells were also seen. The eosinophil component of infiltrates was very prominent in animals vaccinated with the experimental vaccine preparations when compared to animals mock-vaccinated using PBS, or those exposed earlier to live virus ( figure 6 ); few to no eosinophils were seen in those lung sections. Thus, while pathology was seen in sections from the control mice, the hypersensitivity-type pathologic reaction with eosinophils was not seen. The morphological identification of eosinophils in H&E stains was supported by using Giemsa stain to highlight intracytoplasmic granules in selected lung sections (not shown), and confirmed by immunostaining with antibodies against mouse eosinophil major basic protein (provided by the Lee Laboratory, Mayo Clinic, Arizona) [36].
Photographs of Lung Tissue.Representative photomicrographs of lung tissue two days after challenge of Balb/c mice with SARS-CoV that had previously been given a SARS-CoV vaccine. Lung sections were separately stained with hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) and an immunohistochemical protocol using an eosinophil-specific staining procedure with a monoclonal antibody to a major basic protein of eosinophils. DAB chromogen provided the brown eosinophil identity stain. The procedure and antibody were kindly provided by the Lee Laboratory, Mayo Clinic, Arizona. The H&E stain column is on the left and eosinophil-specific major basic protein (EOS MBP) stain column is on the right. Vaccines: double inactivated whole virus (DIV), β propiolactone inactivated whole virus vaccine (BPV). As shown in the images, eosinophils are prominent (brown DAB staining) in all sections examined. Exposure to SARS-CoV is associated with prominent inflammatory infiltrates characterized by a predominant eosinophilic component.
Photomicrographs of Lung Tissue.Representative photomicrographs of lung tissue from unvaccinated unchallenged mice (normal) and from Balb/c mice two days after challenge with SARS-CoV that had previously been given PBS only (no vaccine) or live virus. H&E and immunohistochemical stains for eosinophil major basic protein were performed as described for figure 5 . The H&E column is on the left and the Eos MBP column is on the right. Shown are sections from normal mice (no vaccine or live virus) and mice given PBS (no vaccine) or live SARS-CoV and then challenged with SARS-CoV. As shown in the middle and bottom row images, although exposure to SARS-CoV elicits inflammatory infiltrates and accumulation of debris in the bronchial lumen, eosinophils in all groups remain within normal limits.
The different groups of vaccinated animals showed similar trends in severity of pathology and of eosinophils in inflammatory infiltrates; however, the DIV and BPV preparations at high dosage tended to produce a greater infiltration with eosinophils.
Mouse and Vaccine Specificity (Experiment 3) Experiment 3 was performed to evaluate vaccine and mouse strain specificity. SARS-CoV vaccines used were the DI vaccine (DIV) with and without alum and the bp inactivated vaccine (BPV), which contains alum, at the highest dosage. For mouse strain specificity, Balb/c mice were included for consistency between experiments; C57BL/6 mice were given the same vaccines and dosages as Balb/c mice for comparison as C57BL/6 mice do not exhibit a bias for Th2 immunologic responses as do Balb/c mice [37]''[39]. PBS and live virus controls were again included and trivalent 2010-11 formulation influenza vaccine at a dosage of 12 µg per component was given to assess vaccine specificity.
Neutralizing antibody titers are shown in figure 7A . Geometric mean titers for the highest dose of the DI vaccine were higher for those vaccine groups in the Balb/c mice than the C57BL/6 mice but only the nonadjuvanted DI vaccine group was significantly higher (p'Š='Š0.008, Mann Whitney U). The serum antibody responses after BPV and live virus administration were similar for the two mouse strains. After challenge, mean lung virus titers were similar for the PBS control challenged mice of both mouse strains (106.7''7.3 TCID50/g lung) ( figure 7B ). None of the Balb/c mouse groups given either vaccine or live virus earlier yielded virus after challenge but some virus was detected in C57BL/6 mice given the DIV without alum and the BPV with alum (C57BL/6 versus Balb/c, p'Š='Š0.004, Mann Whitney U).
Mouse and Vaccine Specificity, Experiment 3.Serum neutralizing (neut) antibody and lung virus titers for each vaccine dosage group. A. Geometric mean serum antibody titer and standard error of the mean (S.E.) on day 56 for each vaccine dosage group for each mouse strain (Balb/c or C57BL/6). Five mice per group given 0.1 ml of vaccine intramuscularly on days 0 and 28. B. Geometric mean virus titer (log10 TCID50/g) and standard error of the mean (S.E.) in lungs on day 58 (two days after SARS-CoV challenge for each vaccine dosage group for each mouse strain. Seven to eight mice per group. Vaccines: Double inactivated whole virus, (DIV), β propiolactone inactivated whole virus (BPV), with alum (+A). Analyses: A. GMT for highest DIV dosage without alum greater for Balb/c than C57BL/6 p'Š='Š.008 but not for alum p>.05. GMT for the BPV vaccine and live virus were not different for the two strains p>.05. B. GMT for PBS control mice were not different p>.05. GMT for DIV without alum and BPV with alum greater for C57BL/6 than Balb/c p'Š='Š.004.
Mean lung lesion scores two days after challenge were similar for all groups and indicated a moderate to severe degree of cellular infiltration (p>0.05 for each, Anova) ( figure 8A ). However, eosinophil scores were significantly different between groups (p<0.001, Anova) with significantly lower scores for nonvaccine groups than for vaccine groups of both mouse strains (p<0.001 for all comparable group comparisons, Tukey's HSD). Eosinophil scores for the vaccine groups were not different between the two mouse strains (p>0.05, t test) ( figure 8B ). Photomicrographs of the different vaccine and mouse strain groups are shown in figure 9 . Both vaccines in both mouse strains exhibited significant cellular infiltrations that included numerous eosinophils as shown in the MBP stained sections, a finding consistent with a hypersensitivity component of the pathology. Prior influenza vaccine did not lead to an eosinophil infiltration in the lung lesions after challenge.
Mouse and Vaccine Specificity, Experiment 3.Mean lung cellular infiltration/lesion pathology and percent eosinophils in infiltrates for each vaccine dosage group for each mouse strain (Balb/c or C57BL/6) two days after challenge with SARS-CoV. A. Mean lesion score and standard error of the mean (S.E.) for each vaccine dosage group. Scores are mean of scores for seven to eight mice per group. Scoring 0 - no definite pathology, 1 - mild peribronchiole and perivascular cellular infiltration, 2 - moderate peribronchiole and perivascular cellular infiltration, 3 - severe peribronchiole and perivascular cellular infiltration with thickening of alveolar walls, alveolar infiltration and bronchiole epithelial cell necrosis and debris in the lumen. Ten to 20 microscopy fields were scored for each mouse lung. B. Mean score and standard error of the mean (S.E.) for eosinophils as percent of infiltrating cells for each vaccine dosage group. Scores are mean of scores for seven to eight mice per group. Scoring: 0 - <5% of cells, 1 - 5''10% of cells, 2 - 10''20% of cells, 3 - >20% of cells. Ten to 20 microscopy fields were scored for each mouse lung. Analyses: A. Mean lesion scores were not different p>.05. B. Mean eosinophil scores were different p<.001. Mean scores for vaccine groups greater than non-vaccine groups for Balb/c and C57BL/6 p<.001 for all comparisons. Mean eosinophil scores for the same groups not different for Balb/c and C57BL/6 p>.05.
Photomicrographs of Lung Tissue.Representative photomicrographs of lung tissue two days after challenge of Balb/c and C57BL/6 mice that had previously been given a SARS-CoV vaccine. Lung sections were separately stained with H&E (pink and blue micrographs) or the immunohistochemical stain for eosinophil major basic protein (blue and brown micrographs). Balb/c mice lung sections are in the left column and C57BL/6 are in the right column; doubly inactivated whole virus vaccine is in the upper four panels and those from mice given the β propiolactone inactivated whole virus vaccine are in the lower four panels. Pathologic changes observed (inflammatory infiltrates) are similar in Balb/c and C57BL/6 and eosinophils are prominent in both groups.
DiscussionThe emergence of the disease SARS and the rapid identification of its severity and high risk for death prompted a rapid mobilization for control at the major sites of occurrence and at the international level. Part of this response was for development of vaccines for potential use in control, a potential facilitated by the rapid identification of the causative agent, a new coronavirus [8]''[9]. Applying the principles of infection control brought the epidemic under control but a concern for reemergence naturally or a deliberate release supported continuation of a vaccine development effort so as to have the knowledge and capability necessary for preparing and using an effective vaccine should a need arise. For this purpose, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases supported preparation of vaccines for evaluation for potential use in humans. This effort was hampered by the occurrence in the initial preclinical trial of an immunopathogenic-type lung disease among ferrets and Cynomolgus monkeys given a whole virus vaccine adjuvanted with alum and challenged with infectious SARS-CoV [14]. That lung disease exhibited the characteristics of a Th2-type immunopathology with eosinophils in the lung sections suggesting hypersensitivity that was reminiscent of the descriptions of the Th2-type immunopathologic reaction in young children given an inactivated RSV vaccine and subsequently infected with naturally-occurring RSV [32]''[33]. Most of these children experienced severe disease with infection that led to a high frequency of hospitalizations; two children died from the infection [33], [40], [41]. The conclusion from that experience was clear; RSV lung disease was enhanced by the prior vaccination. Subsequent studies in animal models that are thought to mimic the human experience indicate RSV inactivated vaccine induces an increased CD4+ T lymphocyte response, primarily of Th2 cells and the occurrence of immune complex depositions in lung tissues [32], [42], [43]. This type of tissue response is associated with an increase in type 2 cytokines including IL4, IL5, and IL13 and an influx of eosinophils into the infected lung; [32], [33], [42], [44]. Histologic sections of tissues exhibiting this type of response have a notable eosinophilic component in the cellular infiltrates. Recent studies indicate that the Th2-type immune response has both innate and adaptive immune response components [33], [43].
In addition to the RSV experience, concern for an inappropriate response among persons vaccinated with a SARS-CoV vaccine emanated from experiences with coronavirus infections and disease in animals that included enhanced disease among infected animals vaccinated earlier with a coronavirus vaccine [31]. Feline infectious peritonitis coronavirus (FIPV) is a well-known example of antibody-mediated enhanced uptake of virus in macrophages that disseminate and increase virus quantities that lead to enhanced disease [31], [45]. Antigen-antibody complex formation with complement activation can also occur in that infection and some other coronavirus infections in animals. Thus, concern for safety of administering SARS-CoV vaccines to humans became an early concern in vaccine development.
As a site proposed for testing vaccines in humans, we requested and were given approval for evaluating different vaccine candidates for safety and effectiveness. Two whole coronavirus vaccines, one rDNA-expressed S protein vaccine and a VLP vaccine prepared by us were evaluated in a Balb/c mouse model, initially described by others, of SARS-CoV [46], [47]. The concern for an occurrence of lung immunopathology on challenge of mice vaccinated with an inactivated virus vaccine, as reported by Haagmans, et al. for ferrets and nonhuman primates, was seen by us after challenge of mice vaccinated with a SARS VLP vaccine [20]. This finding was duplicated in an experiment reported here and was also seen in mice vaccinated with a range of dosages of a double-inactivated whole virus vaccine (DIV) and an rDNA S protein vaccine (SV) although the immunopathologic reaction appeared reduced among animals given the S protein vaccine when compared to those given the whole virus vaccine. In later experiments, these findings were confirmed and the vaccine utilized by Haagmans, et al. was also shown to induce the immunopathology in mice. Thus, all four vaccines evaluated induced the immunopathology; however, all four also induced neutralizing antibody and protection against infection when compared to control challenged animals.
The immunopathology in all experiments in the present study occurred in the absence of detectable virus in lungs of mice two days after challenge with infectious virus. In two experiments, a live virus group subsequently challenged with live virus was included. These challenged animals also exhibited similar histopathologic changes after challenge although no infectious virus was detected in lungs on day two; however, in the latter case, the infiltrates were nearly 100% monocytes and lymphocytes without the eosinophil component seen in the vaccinated challenged animals. In a separate test to assess the effects of the challenge inoculum, mice were given an IN challenge with 108TCID50 of inactivated whole SARS-CoV. Lungs of these animals revealed minimal or no histopathologic damage (data not shown). These findings suggest that virus replication probably occurred early after challenge, including in animals given live CoV earlier, and is required for development of pathology, including for the immunopathology. Infection would have been transient, below the limit of detection two days after challenge, or neutralized in lung homogenates before testing for virus.. Nevertheless, the Th2-type immunopathology pattern was seen only in animals given an inactivated vaccine earlier.
During the course of these experiments, a report appeared describing a similar immunopathologic-type reaction with prominent eosinophils in SARS-CoV challenged Balb/c mice that had been given Venezuelan equine encephalitis (VEE) vector containing the SARS nucleocapsid protein gene [18]. Those challenged animals exhibited infection similar to unvaccinated animals as well as Th2-type immunopathology. A similar experiment with a VEE vector containing only the S gene exhibited protection against infection and no immunopathology. More recently, this group has reported immunopathology with prominent eosinophil infiltration after SARS-CoV challenge in Balb/c mice vaccinated with the same double-inactivated whole virus vaccine used in our experiments [28]. They attribute the immunopathologic reaction following these SARS-CoV vaccinations to presence of the nucleocapsid protein (N) in the vaccine.
In another report, vaccinia was used as a vector vaccine for immunizing Balb/c mice with each of the SARS-CoV structural proteins (N, S, membrane, and envelope) and then challenged with SARS-CoV [21]. Virus infection was present in all groups after challenge but reduced in the S vector vaccine group. Histopathology scores were high for the N containing vector group and low for the S containing group and for the vehicle control group. Eosinophilic infiltrates and IL-5 were increased in the N vaccine group but only IL-5 was increased in the S vaccine group.
To be certain the Th2 type immunopathology was elicited by the S protein vaccine in our studies and in hopes a greater immune response would result from higher dosages of the vaccine and induce greater protection against infection as well as reduce or prevent the immunopathology, our experiment 2 used up to 9 µg of the S protein for immunization. While increased titers of serum antibody were induced and no virus was detected day two after challenge in most animals, the Th2-type immunopathology occurred after challenge, and the immunopathology seen earlier after vaccination with the DI whole virus vaccine was seen again. This experiment also included the whole virus vaccine tested earlier in ferrets and nonhuman primates where the Th2-type immunopathology was initially seen. That vaccine, the BPV in this report, exhibited a pattern of antibody response, protection against infection and occurrence of immunopathology after challenge similar to the DI whole virus vaccine (DIV).
A final experiment was conducted to evaluate specificity. The Balb/c mouse was compared to C57BL/6 mice which do not exhibit the Th2 response bias known to occur in Balb/c mice. C57BL/6 mice in that same experiment exhibited results on challenge similar to those seen in Balb/c mice. Challenge of animals given prior influenza vaccine were infected and exhibited histopathologic damage similar to animals given PBS earlier; neither group exhibited the eosinophil infiltrations seen in animals given a SARS-CoV vaccine.
In these various experiments alum was used as an adjuvant and this adjuvant is known to promote a Th2 type bias to immune responses [48]. However, the immunopathology seen in vaccinated-challenged animals also occurred in animals given vaccine without alum. In an effort to determine whether an adjuvant that induced a bias for a Th1-type response would protect and prevent the immunopathology, we initiated an experiment where the DI PBS suspended vaccine was adjuvanted with Freund's complete adjuvant, a Th1-type adjuvant. However, this experiment was aborted by the September, 2008, Hurricane Ike induced flood of Galveston, Texas. An experiment with a SARS-CoV whole virus vaccine with and without GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) adjuvant ASO1 in hamsters has been reported [25]. This adjuvant is thought to induce Th1-type immune responses [49]. The authors indicate no lung immunopathology was seen among animals after challenge, including the group given vaccine without adjuvant; however, whether the hamster model could develop a Th2-type immunopathology is uncertain. Finally, a number of other studies of vaccines in animal model systems have been reported but presence or absence of immunopathology after challenge was not reported.
A summary of the SARS-CoV vaccine evaluations in animal models (including the current report) that indicated an evaluation for immunopathology after challenge is presented in Table 2 . As noted all vaccines containing S protein induced protection against infection while the studies with VEE and vaccinia vector containing the N protein gene only did not. Also shown is that a Th2-type immunopathology was seen after challenge of all vaccinated animals when evaluation for immunopathology was reported except the study in hamsters with a GSK whole virus vaccine. Thus, inactivated whole virus vaccines whether inactivated with formalin or beta propiolactone and whether given with our without alum adjuvant exhibited a Th2-type immunopathologic in lungs after challenge. As indicated, two reports attributed the immunopathology to presence of the N protein in the vaccine; however, we found the same immunopathologic reaction in animals given S protein vaccine only, although it appeared to be of lesser intensity. Thus, a Th2-type immunopathologic reaction on challenge of vaccinated animals has occurred in three of four animal models (not in hamsters) including two different inbred mouse strains with four different types of SARS-CoV vaccines with and without alum adjuvant. An inactivated vaccine preparation that does not induce this result in mice, ferrets and nonhuman primates has not been reported.
Table 2Summary of Reported Protection and Immunopathology in Animal Model Studies with SARS Coronavirus Vaccines.
Animal ModelVaccine1Protection2Immunopathology3MiceWhole virustrw alumYesYesWhole virus25,trw alumYesYeswo alumYesYesVLP17,trw alumYesYeswo alumYesYesS Proteintrw alumYesYeswo alumYesYesVEE Vector15for N proteinNoYesfor S proteinYesNoVaccinia vector18for N proteinNoYesfor S proteinYes?NoFerretsWhole virus11w alumYesYesNonhuman Primate4Whole virus11w alumYesYesHamstersWhole virus22w ASO1YesNoThis combined experience provides concern for trials with SARS-CoV vaccines in humans. Clinical trials with SARS coronavirus vaccines have been conducted and reported to induce antibody responses and to be ''safe'' [29], [30]. However, the evidence for safety is for a short period of observation. The concern arising from the present report is for an immunopathologic reaction occurring among vaccinated individuals on exposure to infectious SARS-CoV, the basis for developing a vaccine for SARS. Additional safety concerns relate to effectiveness and safety against antigenic variants of SARS-CoV and for safety of vaccinated persons exposed to other coronaviruses, particularly those of the type 2 group. Our study with a VLP SARS vaccine contained the N protein of mouse hepatitis virus and Bolles, et al., reported the immunopathology in mice occurs for heterologous Gp2b CoV vaccines after challenge [25]. This concern emanates from the proposal that the N protein may be the dominant antigen provoking the immunopathologic reaction.
Because of well documented severity of the respiratory disease among infants given an inactivated RSV vaccine and subsequently infected with RSV that is considered to be attributable to a Th2-type immunopathologic reaction and a large number of studies in the Balb/c mouse model that have described and elucidated many components of the immunopathologic reaction to RSV vaccines, the similarity to the SARS-CoV vaccine evaluations in Balb/c mice supports caution for clinical vaccine trials with SARS-CoV vaccines in humans. Of interest are the similar occurrences in C57BL/6 mice and in ferrets and nonhuman primates that provide alternative models for elucidating vaccine-induced mechanisms for occurrences of Th2 immunopathologic reactions after infection. As indicated, strong animal model evidence indicates expression of the N protein by SARS-CoV vector vaccines can induce sensitization leading to a Th2''type immunopathology with infection. In contrast to our results, those studies did not find clear evidence of the Th2 type immunopathology on challenge of mice given a vector vaccine for the S protein. The finding of a Th-2-type pathology in our studies in animals immunized with an rDNA-produced S protein is unequivocal. In this regard, animal model studies with FIPV in cats and RSV in mice have indicated that viral surface proteins may be the sensitizing protein of inactivated vaccines for immunopathology with infection [32], [45]. This suggests that presentation of the S protein in a vector format may direct immune responses in a different way so that sensitization does not occur.
Limitations of the present studies include their performance in mice only and uncertainty of the relevance of rodent models to SARS-CoV vaccines in humans. Additionally, a more intense study for virus replication including quantitative RT-PCR assays might have confirmed the probability that virus replication is required for induction of the immunopathology after vaccination. Evaluations of mechanisms for the immunopathology, including immunoglobulin and cytokine responses to vaccines and tests for antigen-antibody complexes in tissues exhibiting the reaction, could have strengthened the Th2-type immunopathology finding. Finally, a successful study with a Th1-type adjuvant that did not exhibit the Th2 pathology after challenge would have confirmed a Th2 bias to immune responses as well as provide a potential safe vaccination approach for SARS.
AcknowledgmentsWe thank I. Darlene Kirk, CCRP, for aid in coordinating the study and preparing the manuscript. MBP antibodies were kindly provided by the laboratory of Drs. Jamie and Nancy Lee, Mayo Clinic Arizona; e-mail address:ude.oyam@eeljj
FootnotesCompeting Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.
Funding: Research performed by the authors and summarized in this report was supported by Public Health Service Contract NO1 AI 30039 from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. The content of this publication does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Department of Health and Human Services, nor does mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
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Physicians link severe psychotic symptoms to COVID-19
Wed, 30 Dec 2020 15:18
Mackenzie Bean -
Tuesday, December 29th, 2020
Print | Email A small number of COVID-19 patients with no history of mental illness are developing severe psychotic symptoms weeks to months after contracting the virus, reports The New York Times.
Physicians worldwide have described similar cases in which psychotic symptoms appear in adults in their 30s, 40s and 50s who had mild COVID-19 cases. Most patients had no respiratory issues, but neurological symptoms like headaches or diminished sense of smell. These anecdotal reports are backed by several studies detailing psychiatric complications in COVID-19, including a small U.K. study of 153 patients, which found 10 developed "new-onset psychosis."
Hisam Goueli, MD, a physician at Amityville, N.Y.-based South Oaks Hospital, said he first noticed a trend this summer. The first patient he treated at the psychiatric hospital was a 42-year-old mother of four who started hearing a voice several months after contracting the virus that told her to kill herself and her children.
"It's a horrifying thing that here's this well-accomplished woman and she's like 'I love my kids, and I don't know why I feel this way that I want to decapitate them,'" Dr. Goueli told the Times. "We saw a second case, a third case and a fourth case, and we're like, 'There's something happening.'"
Many questions still remain about the duration of patients' psychosis, how long recovery takes and whether they will be more susceptible to other psychiatric issues in the future, according to Dr. Goueli. In the mother's case, the drug risperidone proved effective and she was discharged after four weeks.
Health experts said such extreme cases of psychiatric dysfunction are likely rare, but offer yet another example of how COVID-19 can affect the brain.
More articles on patient safety and outcomes:Safety board halts high-dose blood thinner trial for severe COVID-19 patientsWhy healthcare leaders should stop overlooking nutrition in the quest for better outcomes: 4 insightsCOVID-19 viral load may predict patient outcomes, study suggests
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Nanovaccine Institute develops next-generation COVID-19 vaccine at ISU
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 13:36
Technology has been the lifeline for many of us to stay connected in this socially distanced world. Tech stores have been noticing some new trends.This year has been crazy for everyone. For Christine Ricci, it's been hectic."Technology has never been so critical as it has today because it's the main thing keeping everybody connected in an environment where everything is socially distanced," Ricci said.Her company, Phone Medic, operates about a dozen UBreakIFix stores across Kansas City."We really fix anything with a home button," she said.They've seen more types of technology pour into their doors than ever before as people have had to rely on it more than ever."We really saw an increase around the March time frame when COVID started hitting. More people were working from home and more people were doing schooling from home," Ricci said.At the UBreakIFix stores, many people are interested in finding new ways to make technology last longer."They're upgrading memory. They're improving the processing power, doing what they can with their current technologies to adapt them to meet their current needs in this environment," Ricci said.Technicians are offering a couple tips. First, make sure you protect your device with a case and screen protector. They also suggest letting your battery drain completely from time to time so the battery can run a full charge cycle.If something isn't working right, get it looked at by a professional."It doesn't take much to wear down your technologies," Ricci said.Ricci also said that people who have a lot of devices in their home should consider a home plus protection plan that will cover all of that technology for a monthly fee.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. '--Technology has been the lifeline for many of us to stay connected in this socially distanced world. Tech stores have been noticing some new trends.
This year has been crazy for everyone. For Christine Ricci, it's been hectic.
"Technology has never been so critical as it has today because it's the main thing keeping everybody connected in an environment where everything is socially distanced," Ricci said.
Her company, Phone Medic, operates about a dozen UBreakIFix stores across Kansas City.
"We really fix anything with a home button," she said.
They've seen more types of technology pour into their doors than ever before as people have had to rely on it more than ever.
"We really saw an increase around the March time frame when COVID started hitting. More people were working from home and more people were doing schooling from home," Ricci said.
At the UBreakIFix stores, many people are interested in finding new ways to make technology last longer.
"They're upgrading memory. They're improving the processing power, doing what they can with their current technologies to adapt them to meet their current needs in this environment," Ricci said.
Technicians are offering a couple tips.
First, make sure you protect your device with a case and screen protector. They also suggest letting your battery drain completely from time to time so the battery can run a full charge cycle.
If something isn't working right, get it looked at by a professional.
"It doesn't take much to wear down your technologies," Ricci said.
Ricci also said that people who have a lot of devices in their home should consider a home plus protection plan that will cover all of that technology for a monthly fee.
Variants
Yes, Super Gonorrhea Is Real and It's Gonna Get Worse
Wed, 30 Dec 2020 15:52
An illustration of Neisseria gonorrhoeae bacteria, the cause of gonorrhea.Illustration: Alissa Eckert/CDC Over the weekend, a particularly awful pair of words started trending on social media: super gonorrhea. That's because the World Health Organization recently warned that the pandemic is helping fuel the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, including the bacteria that cause gonorrhea. Unfortunately, the situation is only likely to get worse.
Antibiotic resistance has been a slow-brewing crisis for decades, but the effects are finally becoming hard to ignore. Currently, so-called superbugs are thought to kill around 35,000 Americans annually, as well as 700,000 people globally.
One of the more worrying superbug threats today is Neisseria gonorrhoeae, the namesake bacteria that cause gonorrhea. Gonorrhea isn't usually deadly and often has no symptoms, but if left untreated, it can lead to complications like arthritis, joint pain, and skin rashes, as well as infertility and chronic pelvic pain. The bacteria can also be passed from a mother to her baby during delivery, triggering an infection that can be fatal or cause serious problems like blindness. Notable symptoms include a green or yellow discharge from the genitals and pain while urinating.
These bacteria are scary because they're becoming impervious to the first-line antibiotics used to treat them. In 2018, UK doctors reported finding a man with the first known case of gonorrhea that was highly resistant to the combination therapy used in most countries as standard treatment: the antibiotics ceftriaxone and azithromycin. Though the man's gonorrhea was treatable with another antibiotic, the case confirmed experts' worst fears. Other cases of super gonorrhea , as well as other highly resistant sexually transmitted infections , have been documented since.
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Throughout this year, experts with the World Health Organization and elsewhere have been sounding the alarm over antibiotic resistance becoming worse due to the pandemic. For one, doctors have been routinely prescribing antibiotics to hospitalized patients with covid-19, a disease caused by a virus (antibiotics, as a rule, don't work against viruses). Ostensibly, this is done because hospitalized patients can develop secondary infections caused by bacteria. Early research had also suggested that the antibiotic azithromycin might have an added antiviral effect, possibly in combination with other drugs like hydroxychloroquine.
Since then, though, studies have found that azithromycin, taken alone or with hydroxychloroquine, hasn't had any lifesaving impact on covid-19 patients. Other research has found that doctors are usually prescribing antibiotics to patients without any evidence that they have bacterial infections.
That brings us to last week, when UK outlet The Sun reported on the WHO's warning about gonorrhea. In addition to the above issues, the WHO also noted that the pandemic is likely making people delay STI testing and medical care, raising the risk that people will either never find out about their gonorrhea or even try to improperly self-medicate. The misuse and overuse of antibiotics, particularly azithromycin, is only adding more dynamite to the powder keg that is super gonorrhea.
''Such a situation can fuel emergence of resistance in gonorrhea,'' a WHO spokesperson told The Sun.
What's worse is that rates of gonorrhea and other STIs have risen in many places recently. The U.S., for instance, had a record number of STIs reported in 2018, with cases of gonorrhea climbing for the fifth straight year. It's possible ( even likely ) that the pandemic has dampened many people's sexual activity this year. But antibiotic-resistant bacteria haven't gone away, and cases of super gonorrhea and other highly resistant infections will undoubtedly continue to increase in the years to come.
There is still hope that enough newer antibiotics and other therapies can be developed in time to avoid the worst-case scenario, where common bacterial infections become as dangerous as they were a century ago. Scientists are also working on vaccines for diseases like gonorrhea. But there's no one clear solution on the horizon, and the clock is running out. In 2014, a report commissioned by the UK government estimated that, if nothing was done, annual worldwide deaths from antibiotic-resistant infections would eclipse cancer deaths by 2050, with around 10 million dead a year. By then, super gonorrhea will be the least of our worries.
Stimulus
$2,000 Stimulus Checks, Section 230 Repeal Included in Mitch McConnell's Surprise COVID Relief Bill
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:23
Majority Leader Mitch McConnell introduced a bill Tuesday evening which would offer increased $2,000 direct payments to individuals sought by Democrats and President Donald Trump, but adds legislation pertaining to social media companies and election fraud studies.
McConnell introduced the parallel pandemic relief bill on Tuesday, S.5085, which would include the $600 to $2,000 increase in checks to individual Americans, but tacks on a repeal of section 230 of the Communications Act of 1996 and funding for a commission to investigate voter fraud. Both of these additions to McConnell's surprise bill are demands which have been made by Trump for months. The Section 230 repeal would pull back protections for internet companies and allow such media companies as Twitter and Facebook to be sued if users feel wronged by messages on the platform.
McConnell has for months said he opposes added weekly unemployment benefits and only last week agreed with Democrats to add the $600 direct deposits for Americans struggling amid the pandemic.
Trump appeared to have predicted what McConnell's move would be this week after the White House came out in support, alongside Democrats, of the $2,000 stimulus relief checks to individual Americans. "The Senate will start the process for a vote that increases checks to $2,000, repeals Section 230, and starts an investigation into voter fraud," the president wrote in a Sunday statement, days before McConnell introduced nearly identical legislation.
"Big Tech must not get protections of Section 230!" Trump stated Sunday, in a request which McConnell appears to have granted by tacking the freedom of speech issue onto the $2,000 check stipulation. "Voter Fraud must be Fixed! Much more money is coming. I will never give my fight for the American people!"
Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer responded to McConnell's introduction of the bill as a "cynical gambit." Unclear in what exactly McConnell's legislative motives are, Schumer said the GOP Senate leader is attempting to undermine the $2,000 by adding Trump's election fraud and Section 230 repeal demands.
Twitter is going wild with their flags, trying hard to suppress even the truth. Just shows how dangerous they are, purposely stifling free speech. Very dangerous for our Country. Does Congress know that this is how Communism starts? Cancel Culture at its worst. End Section 230!
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 24, 2020"Senator McConnell knows how to make $2,000 survival checks reality and he knows how to kill them. If Sen. McConnell tries loading up bipartisan House-passed CASH Act with unrelated, partisan provisions that will do absolutely nothing to help struggling families across the country, it will not pass the House and cannot become law," Schumer said in a statement Tuesday evening.
McConnell for months has rejected Democrats' push for increased weekly direct payments to unemployed and struggling Americans.
In a Tuesday tweet, Trump warned the GOP after McConnell blocked the Senate vote that afternoon. The president said Republicans would lose their Georgia Senate runoffs if incumbents Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue were forced to vote on the issue before the January 5 runoff.
This story is developing, check back with Newsweek shortly for additional information about McConnell's Tuesday stimulus measure.
Mitch McConnell talks to reporters. Tom Williams/Getty
Text of S. 5085: A bill to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to increase the additional ... (Placed on Calendar in the Senate version) - GovTrack.us
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:23
1. (a)Section 6428A of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (as added by the COVID-related Tax Relief Act of 2020) is amended'--
(1)in subsection (a)(1), by striking $600 ($1,200 and inserting $2,000 ($4,000,
(2)in subsection (g)(1), by striking $600 and inserting $2,000, and
(3)in subsection (g)(2)'--
(A)by striking $1,200 in the matter preceding subparagraph (A) and inserting $4,000, and
(B)by striking $600 in subparagraph (A) and inserting $2,000.
(b)The amendments made by this section shall take effect as if included in section 272 of the COVID-related Tax Relief Act of 2020.
2. (a)Section 230 of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 230 ) is repealed.
(b) (1)The Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 151 et seq.) is amended'--
(A)in section 223(h) (47 U.S.C. 223(h) ), by striking paragraph (2) and inserting the following:
(2)The term interactive computer service means any information service, system, or access software provider that provides or enables computer access by multiple users to a computer server, including specifically a service or system that provides access to the Internet and such systems operated or services offered by libraries or educational institutions.
; and
(B)in section 231(b)(4) (47 U.S.C. 231(b)(4) ), by striking or section 230.
(2)Section 45 of the Act entitled An Act to provide for the registration and protection of trademarks used in commerce, to carry out the provisions of certain international conventions, and for other purposes, approved July 5, 1946 (commonly known as the Trademark Act of 1946) (15 U.S.C. 1127 ) is amended by striking the definition relating to the term Internet and inserting the following:
The term Internet means the international computer network of both Federal and non-Federal interoperable packet switched data networks.
.
(3)Section 1401 of title 17, United States Code, is amended by striking subsection (g).
(4)Part I of title 18, United States Code, is amended'--
(A)in section 2257(h)(2)(B)(v), by striking , except that deletion of a particular communication or material made by another person in a manner consistent with section 230(c) of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 230(c) ) shall not constitute such selection or alteration of the content of the communication; and
(B)in section 2421A'--
(i)in subsection (a), by striking (as such term is defined in defined in section 230(f) the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 230(f) )) and inserting (as that term is defined in section 223 of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 223 )); and
(ii)in subsection (b), by striking (as such term is defined in defined in section 230(f) the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 230(f) )) and inserting (as that term is defined in section 223 of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 223 )).
(5)Section 401(h)(3)(A)(iii)(II) of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 841(h)(3)(A)(iii)(II) ) is amended by striking , except that deletion of a particular communication or material made by another person in a manner consistent with section 230(c) of the Communications Act of 1934 shall not constitute such selection or alteration of the content of the communication.
(6)Section 3(b)(1) of the Act entitled An Act divesting intoxicating liquors of their interstate character in certain cases, approved March 1, 1913 (commonly known as the Webb-Kenyon Act) (27 U.S.C. 122b(b)(1) ) is amended by striking (as defined in section 230(f) of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 230(f) ) and inserting (as defined in section 223 of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 223 )).
(7)Section 4102 of title 28, United States Code, is amended'--
(A)by striking subsection (c); and
(B)in subsection (e)'--
(i)by striking construed to and all that follows through affect and inserting construed to affect; and
(ii)by striking defamation; or and all that follows and inserting defamation..
(8)Section 5362(6) of title 31, United States Code, is amended by striking section 230(f) of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 230(f) ) and inserting section 223 of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 223 ).
(9)Section 157 of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration Organization Act (47 U.S.C. 941 ) is amended'--
(A)by striking subsection (e); and
(B)by redesignating subsections (f) through (j) as subsections (e) through (i), respectively.
3. (a)There is established within the Election Assistance Commission the 2020 Bipartisan Advisory Committee (referred to in this section as the Advisory Committee).
(b) (1)The Advisory Committee shall be composed of 18 members of whom'--
(A)nine shall be appointed by the leader of the Republican caucus in the Senate (in consultation with the minority leader of the House of Representatives), one of which shall be appointed as a Co-Chairperson of the Advisory Committee; and
(B)nine shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives (in consultation with the leader of the Democratic caucus in the Senate), one of which shall be appointed as a Co-Chairperson of the Advisory Committee.
(2)Individuals appointed to the Advisory Committee under paragraph (1) shall be geographically balanced and shall include representatives of Federal, State, and local governments and of the legal, cybersecurity, and election administration and technology communities.
(3)The appointments of the members of the Advisory Committee shall be made not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act.
(c) (1)Except as provided in paragraph (2), a member of the Advisory shall be appointed for the duration of the Advisory Committee.
(2)A member may be removed from the Advisory Committee at any time at the upon concurrence of both of the Co-Chairpersons of the Advisory Committee.
(3)A vacancy in the Advisory Committee'--
(A)shall not affect the powers of the Commission; and
(B)shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment.
(d) (1) (A)The Advisory Committee shall, consistent with applicable law, study the integrity and administration of the general election for Federal office held in November 2020 and make recommendations to Congress to improve the security, integrity, and administration of Federal elections.
(B)The matters studied by the Advisory Committee shall include'--
(i)the effects of the COVID''19 pandemic on the administration of the general election for Federal office held in November 2020;
(ii)the election practices adopted by Federal, State, and local governments in response to the COVID''19 pandemic, including'--
(I)practices that undermined the security and integrity of the election; and
(II)practices that strengthened the security and integrity of the election;
(iii)the laws, rules, policies, activities, strategies, and practices regarding mail-in ballots, absentee ballots, and vote-by-mail procedures, including'--
(I)measures that undermined the security and integrity of the election; and
(II)measures that strengthened the security and integrity of the election;
(iv)any laws, rules, policies, activities, strategies, and practices that would have allowed improper or fraudulent votes to be cast in such election and the scope of any improper and fraudulent votes that were cast in the election; and
(v)any laws, rules, policies, activities, strategies, and practices that would have allowed improper or fraudulent voter registration and the scope of any improper or fraudulent voter registration.
(2) (A)Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Advisory Committee shall submit to the Election Assistance Commission and the appropriate Congressional committees a report on the matter studied under paragraph (1). Such report shall include'--
(i)precinct-by-precinct data highlighting the number and incidence of any improper and fraudulent votes that were cast in the election; and
(ii)precinct-by-precinct data highlighting the number and incidence of any improper and fraudulent voter registrations.
(B) (i)Not later than 360 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Advisory Committee shall submit to the Election Assistance Commission and the appropriate Congressional committees recommendations on the following:
(I)The best practices that should be adopted by at each level of local, State, and Federal Government for administering elections for Federal office'--
(aa)during the COVID''19 pandemic; and
(bb)during other national emergencies.
(II)The best practices that should be adopted at each level of local, State, and Federal Government to mitigate fraud and increase the integrity and security of mail-in ballots, absentee ballots, and vote-by-mail procedures.
(III)The best practices that should be adopted at each level of local, State, and Federal Government to prevent improper or fraudulent votes from being cast.
(IV)The best practices that should be adopted at each level of local, State, and Federal Government to prevent improper voters from being registered.
(ii)In the case of any recommendation with respect to which one-third or more of the Committee does not concur, the report shall include a justification for why such members do not concur.
(C)For purposes of this paragraph, the term appropriate Congressional Committees means'--
(i)the Committee on Rules and Administration of the Senate;
(ii)the Committee on the Judiciary of the Senate;
(iii)the Committee on House Administration of the House of Representatives; and
(iv)the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives.
(e) (1)The members of the Advisory Committee may not receive pay or benefits from the United States Government by reason of their service on the Advisory Committee.
(2) (A)Each Co-Chairperson of the Advisory Committee may appoint not more than 5 subject matter experts to serve as staff to the Advisory Committee.
(B)The Co-Chairpersons of the Advisory Committee may fix the compensation of the staff of the Advisor Committee without regard to chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of title 5, United States Code, relating to classification of positions and General Schedule pay rates, except that the rate of pay for the staff may not exceed the rate payable for level V of the Executive Schedule under section 5316 of that title.
(f)The Advisory Committee shall terminate 90 days after the date on which the Advisory Committee submits the report required under subsection (d).
(g)The Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App.) shall not apply to the Advisory Committee.
4. (a)Title III of the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (52 U.S.C. 21081 et seq.) is amended by inserting after section 303 the following new section:
303A. (a)Each chief State election official shall disclose to the Commission the identity of any foreign national known by the chief State election official'--
(1)to have physically handled'--
(A)ballots used in an election for Federal office; or
(B)voting machines; or
(2)to have had unmonitored access to'--
(A)a storage facility or centralized vote tabulation location used to support the administration of an election for public office; or
(B)election-related information or communications technology, including voter registration databases, voting machines, electronic mail and other communications systems (including electronic mail and other systems of vendors who have entered into contracts with election agencies to support the administration of elections, manage the election process, and report and display election results), and other systems used to manage the election process and to report and display election results on behalf of an election agency.
(b)The chief State election official shall make the disclosure under subsection (a) not later than 30 days after the date on which such official becomes aware of an activity described in such subsection.
(c)The term foreign national has the meaning given that term in section 319 of the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 (52 U.S.C. 30121 ).
.
(b)Section 401 of such Act (52 U.S.C. 21111 ) is amended by striking sections 301, 302, and 303 and inserting subtitle A of title III.
(c)The table of contents of such Act is amended by inserting after the item relating to section 303 the following new item:
Sec. 303A. Disclosure of access to election infrastructure by foreign nationals.
.
Statement from the President | The White House
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 04:53
As President of the United States it is my responsibility to protect the people of our country from the economic devastation and hardship that was caused by the China Virus.
I understand that many small businesses have been forced to close as a result of harsh actions by Democrat-run states. Many people are back to work, but my job is not done until everyone is back to work.
Fortunately, as a result of my work with Congress in passing the CARES Act earlier this year, we avoided another Great Depression. Under my leadership, Project Warp Speed has been a tremendous success, my Administration and I developed a vaccine many years ahead of wildest expectations, and we are distributing these vaccines, and others soon coming, to millions of people.
As President, I have told Congress that I want far less wasteful spending and more money going to the American people in the form of $2,000 checks per adult and $600 per child.
As President I am demanding many rescissions under the Impoundment Control Act of 1974. The Act provides that, ''whenever the President determines that all or part of any budget authority will not be required to carry out the full objectives or scope of programs for which it is provided, or that such budget authority should be rescinded for fiscal policy or other reasons (including termination of authorized projects or activities for which budget authority has been provided), the President shall transmit to both Houses of Congress a special message'' describing the amount to be reserved, the relevant accounts, the reasons for the rescission, and the economic effects of the rescission. 2 U.S.C. § 683.
I will sign the Omnibus and Covid package with a strong message that makes clear to Congress that wasteful items need to be removed. I will send back to Congress a redlined version, item by item, accompanied by the formal rescission request to Congress insisting that those funds be removed from the bill.
I am signing this bill to restore unemployment benefits, stop evictions, provide rental assistance, add money for PPP, return our airline workers back to work, add substantially more money for vaccine distribution, and much more.
On Monday the House will vote to increase payments to individuals from $600 to $2,000. Therefore, a family of four would receive $5,200. Additionally, Congress has promised that Section 230, which so unfairly benefits Big Tech at the expense of the American people, will be reviewed and either be terminated or substantially reformed.
Likewise, the House and Senate have agreed to focus strongly on the very substantial voter fraud which took place in the November 3 Presidential election.
The Senate will start the process for a vote that increases checks to $2,000, repeals Section 230, and starts an investigation into voter fraud.
Big Tech must not get protections of Section 230!
Voter Fraud must be fixed!
Much more money is coming. I will never give up my fight for the American people!
[USC02] 2 USC Ch. 17B: IMPOUNDMENT CONTROL
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 04:54
CHAPTER 17B'--IMPOUNDMENT CONTROLSUBCHAPTER I'--GENERAL PROVISIONSSUBCHAPTER II'--CONGRESSIONAL CONSIDERATION OF PROPOSED RESCISSIONS, RESERVATIONS, AND DEFERRALS OF BUDGET AUTHORITY683.
Rescission of budget authority.
684.
Proposed deferrals of budget authority.
685.
Transmission of messages; publication.
686.
Reports by Comptroller General.
687.
Suits by Comptroller General.
688.
Procedure in House of Representatives and Senate.
SUBCHAPTER III'--LINE ITEM VETOSUBCHAPTER I'--GENERAL PROVISIONS§681. DisclaimerNothing contained in this Act, or in any amendments made by this Act, shall be construed as'--
(1) asserting or conceding the constitutional powers or limitations of either the Congress or the President;
(2) ratifying or approving any impoundment heretofore or hereafter executed or approved by the President or any other Federal officer or employee, except insofar as pursuant to statutory authorization then in effect;
(3) affecting in any way the claims or defenses of any party to litigation concerning any impoundment; or
(4) superseding any provision of law which requires the obligation of budget authority or the making of outlays thereunder.
(Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1001, July 12, 1974, 88 Stat. 332.)
Editorial NotesReferences in TextThis Act, referred to in provision preceding par. (1), means Pub. L. 93''344, July 12, 1974, 88 Stat. 297, as amended, known as the Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974, which enacted chapters 17, 17A, and 17B, and section 190a''3 of this title and sections 11a, 11c, 11d, 1020a of former Title 31, amended sections 11, 665, 701, 1020, 1151, 1152, 1153, and 1154 of former Title 31, section 105 of Title 1, General Provisions, sections 190b and 190d of this title, repealed sections 571 and 581c''1 of former Title 31 and sections 66 and 81 of this title, and enacted provisions set out as notes under sections 190a''1, 621, 632, and 682 of this title, section 105 of Title 1, and section 1020 of former Title 31. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 621 of this title and Tables.
CodificationSection was formerly classified to section 1400 of Title 31 prior to the general revision and enactment of Title 31, Money and Finance, by Pub. L. 97''258, §1, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 877.
Statutory Notes and Related SubsidiariesEffective DateChapter effective July 12, 1974, see section 905(a) of Pub. L. 93''344, formerly set out as a note under section 621 of this title.
Short Title of 1996 AmendmentPub. L. 104''130, §1, Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1200, which provided that Pub. L. 104''130 (enacting former subchapter III (§691 et seq.) of this chapter and provisions set out as a note under section 691 of this title and amending provisions set out as notes under section 621 of this title) could be cited as the "Line Item Veto Act", was omitted pursuant to section 5 of Pub. L. 104''130, set out as an Effective and Termination Dates note under section 691 of this title.
Short TitleFor short title of title X of Pub. L. 93''344, which enacted this chapter, as the "Impoundment Control Act of 1974", see section 1(a) of Pub. L. 93''344, as amended, set out as a note under section 621 of this title.
SUBCHAPTER II'--CONGRESSIONAL CONSIDERATION OF PROPOSED RESCISSIONS, RESERVATIONS, AND DEFERRALS OF BUDGET AUTHORITY§682. DefinitionsFor purposes of sections 682 to 688 of this title'--
(1) "deferral of budget authority" includes'--
(A) withholding or delaying the obligation or expenditure of budget authority (whether by establishing reserves or otherwise) provided for projects or activities; or
(B) any other type of Executive action or inaction which effectively precludes the obligation or expenditure of budget authority, including authority to obligate by contract in advance of appropriations as specifically authorized by law;
(2) "Comptroller General" means the Comptroller General of the United States;
(3) "rescission bill" means a bill or joint resolution which only rescinds, in whole or in part, budget authority proposed to be rescinded in a special message transmitted by the President under section 683 of this title, and upon which the Congress completes action before the end of the first period of 45 calendar days of continuous session of the Congress after the date on which the President's message is received by the Congress;
(4) "impoundment resolution" means a resolution of the House of Representatives or the Senate which only expresses its disapproval of a proposed deferral of budget authority set forth in a special message transmitted by the President under section 684 of this title; and
(5) continuity of a session of the Congress shall be considered as broken only by an adjournment of the Congress sine die, and the days on which either House is not in session because of an adjournment of more than 3 days to a day certain shall be excluded in the computation of the 45-day period referred to in paragraph (3) of this section and in section 683 of this title, and the 25-day periods referred to in sections 687 and 688(b)(1) of this title. If a special message is transmitted under section 683 of this title during any Congress and the last session of such Congress adjourns sine die before the expiration of 45 calendar days of continuous session (or a special message is so transmitted after the last session of the Congress adjourns sine die), the message shall be deemed to have been retransmitted on the first day of the succeeding Congress and the 45-day period referred to in paragraph (3) of this section and in section 683 of this title (with respect to such message) shall commence on the day after such first day.
(Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1011, July 12, 1974, 88 Stat. 333.)
Editorial NotesCodificationSection was formerly classified to section 1401 of Title 31 prior to the general revision and enactment of Title 31, Money and Finance, by Pub. L. 97''258, §1, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 877.
§683. Rescission of budget authority(a) Transmittal of special messageWhenever the President determines that all or part of any budget authority will not be required to carry out the full objectives or scope of programs for which it is provided or that such budget authority should be rescinded for fiscal policy or other reasons (including the termination of authorized projects or activities for which budget authority has been provided), or whenever all or part of budget authority provided for only one fiscal year is to be reserved from obligation for such fiscal year, the President shall transmit to both Houses of Congress a special message specifying'--
(1) the amount of budget authority which he proposes to be rescinded or which is to be so reserved;
(2) any account, department, or establishment of the Government to which such budget authority is available for obligation, and the specific project or governmental functions involved;
(3) the reasons why the budget authority should be rescinded or is to be so reserved;
(4) to the maximum extent practicable, the estimated fiscal, economic, and budgetary effect of the proposed rescission or of the reservation; and
(5) all facts, circumstances, and considerations relating to or bearing upon the proposed rescission or the reservation and the decision to effect the proposed rescission or the reservation, and to the maximum extent practicable, the estimated effect of the proposed rescission or the reservation upon the objects, purposes, and programs for which the budget authority is provided.
(b) Requirement to make available for obligationAny amount of budget authority proposed to be rescinded or that is to be reserved as set forth in such special message shall be made available for obligation unless, within the prescribed 45-day period, the Congress has completed action on a rescission bill rescinding all or part of the amount proposed to be rescinded or that is to be reserved. Funds made available for obligation under this procedure may not be proposed for rescission again.
(Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1012, July 12, 1974, 88 Stat. 333; Pub. L. 100''119, title II, §207, Sept. 29, 1987, 101 Stat. 786.)
Editorial NotesCodificationSection was formerly classified to section 1402 of Title 31 prior to the general revision and enactment of Title 31, Money and Finance, by Pub. L. 97''258, §1, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 877.
Amendments1987'--Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 100''119 inserted at end "Funds made available for obligation under this procedure may not be proposed for rescission again."
§684. Proposed deferrals of budget authority(a) Transmittal of special messageWhenever the President, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, the head of any department or agency of the United States, or any officer or employee of the United States proposes to defer any budget authority provided for a specific purpose or project, the President shall transmit to the House of Representatives and the Senate a special message specifying'--
(1) the amount of the budget authority proposed to be deferred;
(2) any account, department, or establishment of the Government to which such budget authority is available for obligation, and the specific projects or governmental functions involved;
(3) the period of time during which the budget authority is proposed to be deferred;
(4) the reasons for the proposed deferral, including any legal authority invoked to justify the proposed deferral;
(5) to the maximum extent practicable, the estimated fiscal, economic, and budgetary effect of the proposed deferral; and
(6) all facts, circumstances, and considerations relating to or bearing upon the proposed deferral and the decision to effect the proposed deferral, including an analysis of such facts, circumstances, and considerations in terms of their application to any legal authority, including specific elements of legal authority, invoked to justify such proposed deferral, and to the maximum extent practicable, the estimated effect of the proposed deferral upon the objects, purposes, and programs for which the budget authority is provided.
A special message may include one or more proposed deferrals of budget authority. A deferral may not be proposed for any period of time extending beyond the end of the fiscal year in which the special message proposing the deferral is transmitted to the House and the Senate.
(b) Consistency with legislative policyDeferrals shall be permissible only'--
(1) to provide for contingencies;
(2) to achieve savings made possible by or through changes in requirements or greater efficiency of operations; or
(3) as specifically provided by law.
No officer or employee of the United States may defer any budget authority for any other purpose.
(c) ExceptionThe provisions of this section do not apply to any budget authority proposed to be rescinded or that is to be reserved as set forth in a special message required to be transmitted under section 683 of this title.
(Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1013, July 12, 1974, 88 Stat. 334; Pub. L. 100''119, title II, §206(a), Sept. 29, 1987, 101 Stat. 785.)
Editorial NotesCodificationSection was formerly classified to section 1403 of Title 31 prior to the general revision and enactment of Title 31, Money and Finance, by Pub. L. 97''258, §1, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 877.
Amendments1987'--Pub. L. 100''119 amended section generally, substituting substantially similar provisions in subsecs. (a) and (c) and substituting subsec. (b) for former subsec. (b) which read as follows: "Any amount of budget authority proposed to be deferred, as set forth in a special message transmitted under subsection (a) of this section, shall be made available for obligation if either House of Congress passes an impoundment resolution disapproving such proposed deferral."
§685. Transmission of messages; publication(a) Delivery to House and SenateEach special message transmitted under section 683 or 684 of this title shall be transmitted to the House of Representatives and the Senate on the same day, and shall be delivered to the Clerk of the House of Representatives if the House is not in session, and to the Secretary of the Senate if the Senate is not in session. Each special message so transmitted shall be referred to the appropriate committee of the House of Representatives and the Senate. Each such message shall be printed as a document of each House.
(b) Delivery to Comptroller GeneralA copy of each special message transmitted under section 683 or 684 of this title, shall be transmitted to the Comptroller General on the same day it is transmitted to the House of Representatives and the Senate. In order to assist the Congress in the exercise of its functions under section 683 or 684 of this title, the Comptroller General shall review each such message and inform the House of Representatives and the Senate as promptly as practicable with respect to'--
(1) in the case of a special message transmitted under section 683 of this title, the facts surrounding the proposed rescission or the reservation of budget authority (including the probable effects thereof); and
(2) in the case of a special message transmitted under section 684 of this title, (A) the facts surrounding each proposed deferral of budget authority (including the probable effects thereof) and (B) whether or not (or to what extent), in his judgment, such proposed deferral is in accordance with existing statutory authority.
(c) Transmission of supplementary messagesIf any information contained in a special message transmitted under section 683 or 684 of this title is subsequently revised, the President shall transmit to both Houses of Congress and the Comptroller General a supplementary message stating and explaining such revision. Any such supplementary message shall be delivered, referred, and printed as provided in subsection (a). The Comptroller General shall promptly notify the House of Representatives and the Senate of any changes in the information submitted by him under subsection (b) which may be necessitated by such revision.
(d) Printing in Federal RegisterAny special message transmitted under section 683 or 684 of this title, and any supplementary message transmitted under subsection (c), shall be printed in the first issue of the Federal Register published after such transmittal.
(e) Cumulative reports of proposed rescissions, reservations, and deferrals of budget authority(1) The President shall submit a report to the House of Representatives and the Senate, not later than the 10th day of each month during a fiscal year, listing all budget authority for that fiscal year with respect to which, as of the first day of such month'--
(A) he has transmitted a special message under section 683 of this title with respect to a proposed rescission or a reservation; and
(B) he has transmitted a special message under section 684 of this title proposing a deferral.
Such report shall also contain, with respect to each such proposed rescission or deferral, or each such reservation, the information required to be submitted in the special message with respect thereto under section 683 or 684 of this title.
(2) Each report submitted under paragraph (1) shall be printed in the first issue of the Federal Register published after its submission.
(Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1014, July 12, 1974, 88 Stat. 335.)
Editorial NotesCodificationSection was formerly classified to section 1404 of Title 31 prior to the general revision and enactment of Title 31, Money and Finance, by Pub. L. 97''258, §1, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 877.
Executive DocumentsEx. Ord. No. 11845. Delegation of Certain Reporting Functions to Director of Office of Management and BudgetEx. Ord. No. 11845, Mar. 24, 1975, 40 F.R. 13299, as amended by Ex. Ord. No. 12608, Sept. 9, 1987, 52 F.R. 34617, provided:
By virtue of the authority vested in me by the Impoundment Control Act of 1974 (Public Law 93''344; 88 Stat. 332, (2 U.S.C. 681 et seq.), hereinafter referred to as the Act) [subchapters I and II of this chapter], and section 301 of title 3 of the United States Code, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget is hereby designated and empowered to exercise, as of October 1, 1974 without ratification or other action of the President (1) the functions required by sections 1014(b) and 1014(d) of the Act [subsecs. (b) and (d) of this section] of transmitting to the Comptroller General of the United States and to the Office of the Federal Register copies of special messages transmitted pursuant to section 1012 or 1013 (2 U.S.C. 683 and 684) of the Act; and (2) the function conferred upon the President by section 1014(e) of the Act (2 U.S.C. 685(e)) of submitting to the Congress cumulative reports of proposed rescissions, reservations, and deferrals of budget authority.
§686. Reports by Comptroller General(a) Failure to transmit special messageIf the Comptroller General finds that the President, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, the head of any department or agency of the United States, or any other officer or employee of the United States'--
(1) is to establish a reserve or proposes to defer budget authority with respect to which the President is required to transmit a special message under section 683 or 684 of this title; or
(2) has ordered, permitted, or approved the establishment of such a reserve or a deferral of budget authority;
and that the President has failed to transmit a special message with respect to such reserve or deferral, the Comptroller General shall make a report on such reserve or deferral and any available information concerning it to both Houses of Congress. The provisions of sections 682 to 688 of this title shall apply with respect to such reserve or deferral in the same manner and with the same effect as if such report of the Comptroller General were a special message transmitted by the President under section 683 or 684 of this title, and, for purposes of sections 682 to 688 of this title, such report shall be considered a special message transmitted under section 683 or 684 of this title.
(b) Incorrect classification of special messageIf the President has transmitted a special message to both Houses of Congress in accordance with section 683 or 684 of this title, and the Comptroller General believes that the President so transmitted the special message in accordance with one of those sections when the special message should have been transmitted in accordance with the other of those sections, the Comptroller General shall make a report to both Houses of the Congress setting forth his reasons.
(Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1015, July 12, 1974, 88 Stat. 336.)
Editorial NotesCodificationSection was formerly classified to section 1405 of Title 31 prior to the general revision and enactment of Title 31, Money and Finance, by Pub. L. 97''258, §1, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 877.
Statutory Notes and Related SubsidiariesReaffirmationPub. L. 100''119, title II, §206(c), Sept. 29, 1987, 101 Stat. 786, provided that: "Sections 1015 and 1016 of the Impoundment Control Act of 1974 [2 U.S.C. 686, 687] are reaffirmed."
§687. Suits by Comptroller GeneralIf, under this chapter, budget authority is required to be made available for obligation and such budget authority is not made available for obligation, the Comptroller General is hereby expressly empowered, through attorneys of his own selection, to bring a civil action in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia to require such budget authority to be made available for obligation, and such court is hereby expressly empowered to enter in such civil action, against any department, agency, officer, or employee of the United States, any decree, judgment, or order which may be necessary or appropriate to make such budget authority available for obligation. No civil action shall be brought by the Comptroller General under this section until the expiration of 25 calendar days of continuous session of the Congress following the date on which an explanatory statement by the Comptroller General of the circumstances giving rise to the action contemplated has been filed with the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President of the Senate.
(Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1016, July 12, 1974, 88 Stat. 336; Pub. L. 98''620, title IV, §402(35), Nov. 8, 1984, 98 Stat. 3360; Pub. L. 100''119, title II, §206(b), Sept. 29, 1987, 101 Stat. 786.)
Editorial NotesCodificationSection was formerly classified to section 1406 of Title 31 prior to the general revision and enactment of Title 31, Money and Finance, by Pub. L. 97''258, §1, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 877.
Amendments1987'--Pub. L. 100''119 substituted "If, under this chapter" for "If, under section 683(b) or 684(b) of this title".
1984'--Pub. L. 98''620 struck out provision requiring that the courts give precedence to civil actions brought under this section, and to appeals and writs from decisions in such actions, over all other civil actions, appeals, and writs.
Statutory Notes and Related SubsidiariesEffective Date of 1984 AmendmentAmendment by Pub. L. 98''620 not applicable to cases pending on Nov. 8, 1984, see section 403 of Pub. L. 98''620, set out as an Effective Date note under section 1657 of Title 28, Judiciary and Judicial Procedure.
ReaffirmationFor provision reaffirming this section, see section 206(c) of Pub. L. 100''119, set out as a note under section 686 of this title.
§688. Procedure in House of Representatives and Senate(a) ReferralAny rescission bill introduced with respect to a special message or impoundment resolution introduced with respect to a proposed deferral of budget authority shall be referred to the appropriate committee of the House of Representatives or the Senate, as the case may be.
(b) Discharge of committee(1) If the committee to which a rescission bill or impoundment resolution has been referred has not reported it at the end of 25 calendar days of continuous session of the Congress after its introduction, it is in order to move either to discharge the committee from further consideration of the bill or resolution or to discharge the committee from further consideration of any other rescission bill with respect to the same special message or impoundment resolution with respect to the same proposed deferral, as the case may be, which has been referred to the committee.
(2) A motion to discharge may be made only by an individual favoring the bill or resolution, may be made only if supported by one-fifth of the Members of the House involved (a quorum being present), and is highly privileged in the House and privileged in the Senate (except that it may not be made after the committee has reported a bill or resolution with respect to the same special message or the same proposed deferral, as the case may be); and debate thereon shall be limited to not more than 1 hour, the time to be divided in the House equally between those favoring and those opposing the bill or resolution, and to be divided in the Senate equally between, and controlled by, the majority leader and the minority leader or their designees. An amendment to the motion is not in order, and it is not in order to move to reconsider the vote by which the motion is agreed to or disagreed to.
(c) Floor consideration in House(1) When the committee of the House of Representatives has reported, or has been discharged from further consideration of, a rescission bill or impoundment resolution, it shall at any time thereafter be in order (even though a previous motion to the same effect has been disagreed to) to move to proceed to the consideration of the bill or resolution. The motion shall be highly privileged and not debatable. An amendment to the motion shall not be in order, nor shall it be in order to move to reconsider the vote by which the motion is agreed to or disagreed to.
(2) Debate on a rescission bill or impoundment resolution shall be limited to not more than 2 hours, which shall be divided equally between those favoring and those opposing the bill or resolution. A motion further to limit debate shall not be debatable. In the case of an impoundment resolution, no amendment to, or motion to recommit, the resolution shall be in order. It shall not be in order to move to reconsider the vote by which a rescission bill or impoundment resolution is agreed to or disagreed to.
(3) Motions to postpone, made with respect to the consideration of a rescission bill or impoundment resolution, and motions to proceed to the consideration of other business, shall be decided without debate.
(4) All appeals from the decisions of the Chair relating to the application of the Rules of the House of Representatives to the procedure relating to any rescission bill or impoundment resolution shall be decided without debate.
(5) Except to the extent specifically provided in the preceding provisions of this subsection, consideration of any rescission bill or impoundment resolution and amendments thereto (or any conference report thereon) shall be governed by the Rules of the House of Representatives applicable to other bills and resolutions, amendments, and conference reports in similar circumstances.
(d) Floor consideration in Senate(1) Debate in the Senate on any rescission bill or impoundment resolution, and all amendments thereto (in the case of a rescission bill) and debatable motions and appeals in connection therewith, shall be limited to not more than 10 hours. The time shall be equally divided between, and controlled by, the majority leader and the minority leader or their designees.
(2) Debate in the Senate on any amendment to a rescission bill shall be limited to 2 hours, to be equally divided between, and controlled by, the mover and the manager of the bill. Debate on any amendment to an amendment, to such a bill, and debate on any debatable motion or appeal in connection with such a bill or an impoundment resolution shall be limited to 1 hour, to be equally divided between, and controlled by, the mover and the manager of the bill or resolution, except that in the event the manager of the bill or resolution is in favor of any such amendment, motion, or appeal, the time in opposition thereto, shall be controlled by the minority leader or his designee. No amendment that is not germane to the provisions of a rescission bill shall be received. Such leaders, or either of them, may, from the time under their control on the passage of a rescission bill or impoundment resolution, allot additional time to any Senator during the consideration of any amendment, debatable motion, or appeal.
(3) A motion to further limit debate is not debatable. In the case of a rescission bill, a motion to recommit (except a motion to recommit with instructions to report back within a specified number of days, not to exceed 3, not counting any day on which the Senate is not in session) is not in order. Debate on any such motion to recommit shall be limited to one hour, to be equally divided between, and controlled by, the mover and the manager of the concurrent resolution. In the case of an impoundment resolution, no amendment or motion to recommit is in order.
(4) The conference report on any rescission bill shall be in order in the Senate at any time after the third day (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays) following the day on which such a conference report is reported and is available to Members of the Senate. A motion to proceed to the consideration of the conference report may be made even though a previous motion to the same effect has been disagreed to.
(5) During the consideration in the Senate of the conference report on any rescission bill, debate shall be limited to 2 hours to be equally divided between, and controlled by, the majority leader and minority leader or their designees. Debate on any debatable motion or appeal related to the conference report shall be limited to 30 minutes, to be equally divided between, and controlled by, the mover and the manager of the conference report.
(6) Should the conference report be defeated, debate on any request for a new conference and the appointment of conferees shall be limited to one hour, to be equally divided between, and controlled by, the manager of the conference report and the minority leader or his designee, and should any motion be made to instruct the conferees before the conferees are named, debate on such motion shall be limited to 30 minutes, to be equally divided between, and controlled by, the mover and the manager of the conference report. Debate on any amendment to any such instructions shall be limited to 20 minutes, to be equally divided between, and controlled by, the mover and the manager of the conference report. In all cases when the manager of the conference report is in favor of any motion, appeal, or amendment, the time in opposition shall be under the control of the minority leader or his designee.
(7) In any case in which there are amendments in disagreement, time on each amendment shall be limited to 30 minutes, to be equally divided between, and controlled by, the manager of the conference report and the minority leader or his designee. No amendment that is not germane to the provisions of such amendments shall be received.
(Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1017, July 12, 1974, 88 Stat. 337.)
Editorial NotesCodificationSection was formerly classified to section 1407 of Title 31 prior to the general revision and enactment of Title 31, Money and Finance, by Pub. L. 97''258, §1, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 877.
SUBCHAPTER III'--LINE ITEM VETO§§691 to 692. OmittedEditorial NotesCodificationSections were omitted pursuant to section 5 of Pub. L. 104''130, set out as an Effective and Termination Dates note below.
Section 691, Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1021, as added Pub. L. 104''130, §2(a), Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1200, provided line item veto authority.
Section 691a, Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1022, as added Pub. L. 104''130, §2(a), Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1201; amended Pub. L. 105''33, title X, §10121(a), Aug. 5, 1997, 111 Stat. 696, required special messages to Congress of cancellations made.
Section 691b, Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1023, as added Pub. L. 104''130, §2(a), Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1202, provided that cancellations were to be effective unless disapproved.
Section 691c, Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1024, as added Pub. L. 104''130, §2(a), Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1202; amended Pub. L. 105''33, title X, §10121(b), Aug. 5, 1997, 111 Stat. 696, related to deficit reduction.
Section 691d, Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1025, as added Pub. L. 104''130, §2(a), Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1203, related to expedited congressional consideration of disapproval bills.
Section 691e, Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1026, as added Pub. L. 104''130, §2(a), Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1207; amended Pub. L. 105''33, title X, §10122, Aug. 5, 1997, 111 Stat. 697, defined terms used in this subchapter.
Section 691f, Pub. L. 93''344, title X, §1027, as added Pub. L. 104''130, §2(a), Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1210, related to identification of limited tax benefits.
Section 692, Pub. L. 104''130, §3, Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1211, provided for judicial review.
Statutory Notes and Related SubsidiariesConstitutionalityFor information regarding constitutionality of part C of title X of Pub. L. 93''344, as added by section 2(a) of Pub. L. 104''130, which was classified generally to this subchapter, see Congressional Research Service, The Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation, Appendix 1, Acts of Congress Held Unconstitutional in Whole or in Part by the Supreme Court of the United States.
Effective and Termination DatesPub. L. 104''130, §5, Apr. 9, 1996, 110 Stat. 1212, provided that: "This Act [enacting this subchapter and provisions set out as a note under section 681 of this title and amending provisions set out as notes under section 621 of this title] and the amendments made by it shall take effect and apply to measures enacted on the earlier of'--
"(1) the day after the enactment into law, pursuant to Article I, section 7, of the Constitution of the United States, of an Act entitled 'An Act to provide for a seven-year plan for deficit reduction and achieve a balanced Federal budget.'; or
"(2) January 1, 1997;
and shall have no force or effect on or after January 1, 2005."
Debate over stimulus checks jolts Senate Republicans as McConnell plans next step - The Washington Post
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 21:31
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Tuesday blocked consideration of a House bill that would deliver $2,000 stimulus payments to most Americans '-- spurning a request by President Trump even as more Senate Republicans voiced support for the dramatically larger checks.
McConnell's move was just the beginning of a saga that is likely to engulf the Senate for the rest of the week. Democrats are pushing for an up-or-down vote on the House bill, while more Republicans acknowledge a need for larger stimulus checks.
Proponents include Georgia's two embattled Republican senators '-- David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler '-- who find themselves in tough reelection battles that will decide the fate of the chamber next week. GOP Sen. Deb Fischer of Nebraska also lent support Tuesday, declaring that ''people are hurting and we need to get them more aid.''
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The House of Representatives on Dec. 28 voted on a bipartisan basis to boost stimulus checks set to go out to American households from $600 to $2,000. (The Washington Post)McConnell instead took note of Trump's Sunday statement that called for not only larger checks but also new curbs on large tech companies and an investigation into the November election, and he suggested they would be dealt with in tandem. That tech provision is commonly referred to as ''Section 230.''
''Those are the three important subjects the president has linked together,'' he said. ''This week the Senate will begin a process to bring these three priorities into focus.''
House votes to approve $2,000 stimulus checks
As pressure mounted on Tuesday, Trump weighed in again through Twitter, demanding that Senate Republicans immediately pass legislation that would authorize the larger checks. He said there would be consequences for the party if they didn't act.
''Unless Republicans have a death wish, and it is also the right thing to do, they must approve the $2000 payments ASAP,'' Trump wrote. ''$600 IS NOT ENOUGH! Also, get rid of Section 230 - Don't let Big Tech steal our Country, and don't let the Democrats steal the Presidential Election. Get tough!''
The shifting Senate winds come a day after the House passed a bill to increase stimulus checks with a bipartisan 275-to-134 vote. That proposal, called the Caring for Americans with Supplemental Help (Cash) Act, aims to boost the $600 payments authorized in the massive year-end spending-and-relief package that Trump signed Sunday by another $1,400 and expand eligibility for them.
After McConnell spoke Tuesday, Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) made a request to take up the House-passed bill.
''There's a major difference in saying you support $2,000 checks and fighting to put them into law,'' he said. ''The House bill is the only way to deliver these stimulus checks before the end of session. Will Senate Republicans stand against the House of Representatives, the Democratic majority in the Senate and the president of their own party to prevent these $2,000 checks from going out the door?''
McConnell objected without making further comment.
The addition of new Republican support further intensified the political pressure on the Republican leader, who now must navigate a path that addresses the president's concerns without exposing his party to additional political attacks one week before the pair of Georgia special elections determines the Senate majority.
Trump weighed in again Tuesday morning: ''Give the people $2000, not $600. They have suffered enough!'' he wrote in a tweet.
The debate has created strange political bedfellows, aligning Trump with his Democratic foes in Congress, who have sought larger stimulus payments for months amid signs that the economy has worsened.
The Georgia senators joined Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), one of the earliest GOP proponents for sizable checks, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who endorsed the idea on Monday, and Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.), who helped persuade Trump to sign the bill by backing a push for larger checks.
''Absolutely, we need to get relief to Americans now, and I will support that,'' Loeffler said on Fox News. Perdue, meanwhile, tweeted hours later that he backs ''this push for $2,000 in direct relief for the American people.''
Fischer would not say if she would vote for the House bill but said she opposes combining the question of larger payments with other issues: ''I don't like everything rolled in together. I think you end up with bad policy.''
A day on the golf course helped change Trump's mind on the stimulus bill
Both Loeffler and Perdue have taken public credit in their campaigns for delivering the $600 checks in the signed bill. But they had not weighed in on the $2,000 checks before Tuesday, while their Democratic opponents '-- Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, respectively '-- have both enthusiastically embraced the larger amounts for days.
The new wave of Republican support left Hawley convinced Tuesday that the Senate had the necessary 60 votes to advance the proposal, adding in a tweet: ''Let's vote today.''
But the Senate now appears to be in a holding pattern. An emboldened Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who pushed for bigger checks for weeks, issued his own ultimatum Tuesday, blocking a planned Wednesday vote to override Trump's veto of the annual defense policy bill unless McConnell relents and allows a stand-alone vote on the House checks bill.
''I don't know what he has in mind, but the House passed, to their credit, a simple straightforward bill,'' Sanders told reporters. ''Let's not muddy the waters: Are you for $2,000 or are you not?''
Sanders's threat scrambled a tight timeline for the final days of the current Congress, which will end on Sunday when the new class of lawmakers is sworn in. Without unanimous agreement, the Senate cannot vote on the veto override until Friday at the earliest '-- raising the prospect that the two Georgia senators would have to spend several unexpected days in Washington amid the closing week of their reelection campaigns.
The House voted overwhelmingly to override the veto Monday. Speaking on the floor Tuesday, McConnell left little doubt about the final outcome once the Senate vote is taken: ''Soon this important legislation will be passed into law,'' he said of the defense bill.
Acceding to Sanders and Democrats is not an easy choice for the majority leader: There is still major opposition to the larger checks among Senate Republicans, who insisted for months than any pandemic relief measure following on the March Cares Act cost taxpayers no more than $1 trillion.
Treasury rushes to try and send $600 stimulus checks by end of the week
Adding $2,000 checks to the roughly $900 billion package that Trump signed Sunday would add $464 billion to the cost of the legislation '-- a staggering price tag for many Republicans who have spent years fretting publicly about a growing national debt.
As McConnell acknowledged, Trump's demands are not limited to larger checks. In a Sunday statement released after he signed the massive stimulus bill, Trump said the Senate would ''start the process for a vote that increases checks to $2,000, repeals Section 230, and starts an investigation into voter fraud.''
''Section 230'' is a reference to a 1996 federal law that broadly indemnifies tech platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Google for the actions of their users. Trump has railed against the tech companies as they have started to crack down on his unfounded postings alleging voter fraud in the November election, as well as much more aggressive actions targeting postings made by his supporters containing threats and disinformation.
Graham said in an interview Monday that there would be a vote on the checks and on the law governing tech companies, but he did not know if those votes would be held before the current Congress adjourns.
He predicted that if there was a stand-alone vote on the $2,000 checks, it would pass the Senate with the necessary 60 votes.
''What drove [Trump's] thinking was, I'm not going to give in until I get a vote on the checks in the Senate, and I'm not going to sign this bill until we finally address section 230,'' he said. ''I don't know how Mitch is going to do it.''
Read more at PowerPost
Dems delay defense bill over stimulus check fight with McConnell
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 03:56
Sen. Bernie Sanders was slammed by Republicans for making the defense bill collateral damage in the stimulus fight. | Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images
Must-pass defense legislation is likely to slip into the new year as Senate Democrats hold firm on their demand that a vote first be held to boost stimulus payments to Americans, temporarily freezing some military pay and benefits that expire on Thursday.
After a series of procedural votes to move the annual National Defense Authorization Act forward, Democrats are objecting to a speedy vote to override President Donald Trump's veto of the bill after Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blocked a separate vote on legislation that would increase stimulus checks to $2,000.
Advertisement''The Senate will stay on this important bill until we complete it, one way or another," McConnell said of the defense bill on Wednesday.
McConnell in particular slammed progressive Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) for making the defense bill collateral damage in the stimulus fight. Sanders is leading the charge with conservative Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) for $2,000 stimulus checks, which were approved overwhelmingly in the House earlier this week at Trump's urging. Trump has derided the stimulus legislation, which he ultimately signed Sunday, that would only grant $600 stimulus checks to Americans.
''The Senate will not let our national security be shoved off course, certainly not be senators who have spent years, literally years, trying to gut America's capabilities while our adversaries continue ramping up," McConnell said of Sanders.
The majority leader, who effectively ruled out consideration of the House version stimulus check bill, has sought to couple the stimulus boost with unrelated provisions aimed at placating Trump's demands to address legal protections for tech companies and his unsubstantiated claims of voter fraud in the 2020 election.
Advertisement''The ball is in McConnell's court. All that he has to do is give us an up-or-down vote,'' said Sanders, who is joined by Hawley in the bipartisan push.
McConnell said the House bill on the stimulus checks ''has no realistic path to quickly pass the Senate,'' even as Trump continues to harangue McConnell and GOP leaders over their refusal to go along with his demands.
While delaying a final vote, top Democrats underscored their support for the defense bill on the Senate floor this week. But they added that the chamber should also address the issue of increasing stimulus checks '-- and indicated they will still try to push through the version the House passed this week on the stimulus checks.
''There is a very simple solution to this dilemma: Leader McConnell should bring both measures up for a vote and let the chips fall where they may,'' Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said. ''I believe both measures '-- the defense override and the $2,000 checks to American families '-- will both pass.''
AdvertisementSen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) predicted the Senate would follow the House and override Trump's veto of the defense bill, calling it a matter of ''how long people want to extend this out.''
''I think we know what the outcome is going to be,'' Cornyn told reporters. ''As I always say, we can do it the hard way or the easy way and frequently we choose the hard way.''
Trump vetoed the defense bill over his push to repeal those legal shields, even after the legislation cleared both chambers with bipartisan super-majorities earlier this month.
Despite the stimulus impasse, the veto override is still inching forward in the Senate. Senators easily voted 80 to 12 Wednesday evening to begin consideration of the measure.
McConnell then teed up votes on the veto override, with a final vote slipping into the new year and likely to come just hours before the new Congress is sworn in on Sunday. A number of special military pay and benefit measures would also temporarily expire after Dec. 31 if the bill isn't on the books by then.
Unless senators agree to hold the vote sooner, a procedural vote requiring 60 votes will occur on Friday followed by 30 additional hours of debate, pushing a final veto override vote into Saturday.
The president has also objected to provisions in the NDAA that would force the renaming of bases that honor Confederate leaders and limit his efforts to reduce U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan and Europe.
The House voted to override Trump's veto in a 322 to 87 blowout on Monday.
AdvertisementThe Senate is expected to follow suit. It's unclear how many Republicans may side with Trump and switch votes on the override, though a hefty number of GOP senators would have to reverse course to kill the bill.
If the Senate can muster a two-thirds majority to override Trump's veto, Congress will have delivered a rare legislative rebuke to the president '-- and the first and only veto override of his presidency. Trump has vetoed legislation to halt the use of Pentagon funding to build a border wall and quash expedited arms sales to the Middle East, but lawmakers have never come close to overturning his vetoes.
PCR
Post-lockdown SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid screening in nearly ten million residents of Wuhan, China | Nature Communications
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 21:44
AbstractStringent COVID-19 control measures were imposed in Wuhan between January 23 and April 8, 2020. Estimates of the prevalence of infection following the release of restrictions could inform post-lockdown pandemic management. Here, we describe a city-wide SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid screening programme between May 14 and June 1, 2020 in Wuhan. All city residents aged six years or older were eligible and 9,899,828 (92.9%) participated. No new symptomatic cases and 300 asymptomatic cases (detection rate 0.303/10,000, 95% CI 0.270''0.339/10,000) were identified. There were no positive tests amongst 1,174 close contacts of asymptomatic cases. 107 of 34,424 previously recovered COVID-19 patients tested positive again (re-positive rate 0.31%, 95% CI 0.423''0.574%). The prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 infection in Wuhan was therefore very low five to eight weeks after the end of lockdown.
IntroductionThe Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) was first reported in December 2019, and was classified as a pandemic by the World Health Organization on March 11, 20201. Following strict lockdown measures, the COVID-19 epidemic was generally under control in China, and the whole country has progressed into a post-lockdown phase. In this phase, countries face new problems and challenges, including how to accurately assess the post-lockdown risk of the COVID-19 epidemic, how to avoid new waves of COVID-19 outbreaks, and how to facilitate the resumption of economy and normal social life. As the city most severely affected by COVID-19 in China, Wuhan had been under lockdown measures from January 23 until April 8, 2020. During the first 2 months after city's reopening, there were only a few sporadic COVID-19 cases in Wuhan (six newly confirmed cases from April 8 to May 10, 20202). However, there was still concern about the risk of COVID-19 in Wuhan, which seriously affected the resumption of industrial production and social services, and hampered the normal lives of residents. In order to ascertain the current status of the COVID-19 epidemic, the city government of Wuhan carried out a comprehensive citywide nucleic acid screening of SARS-CoV-2 infection from May 14, 2020 to June 1, 2020.
The citywide screening of SARS-CoV-2 infection in Wuhan is a mass screening programme in post-lockdown settings, and provided invaluable experiences or lessons with international relevance as more countries and cities around the world entering the post-lockdown phase. In this study, we report the organisation process, detailed technical methods used, and results of this citywide nucleic acid screening.
ResultsThere were 10,652,513 eligible people aged '‰¥6 years in Wuhan (94.1% of the total population). The nucleic acid screening was completed in 19 days (from May 14, 2020 to Jun 1, 2020), and tested a total of 9,899,828 persons from the 10,652,513 eligible people (participation rate, 92.9%). Of the 9899,828 participants, 9,865,404 had no previous diagnosis of COVID-19, and 34,424 were recovered COVID-19 patients.
The screening of the 9,865,404 participants without a history of COVID-19 found no newly confirmed COVID-19 cases, and identified 300 asymptomatic positive cases with a detection rate of 0.303 (95% CI 0.270''0.339)/10,000. The median age-stratified Ct-values of the asymptomatic cases were shown in Supplementary Table 1. Of the 300 asymptomatic positive cases, two cases came from one family and another two were from another family. There were no previously confirmed COVID-19 patients in these two families. A total of 1174 close contacts of the asymptomatic positive cases were traced, and they all tested negative for the COVID-19. There were 34,424 previously recovered COVID-19 cases who participated in the screening. Of the 34,424 participants with a history of COVID-19, 107 tested positive again, giving a repositive rate of 0.310% (95% CI 0.423''0.574%).
Virus cultures were negative for all asymptomatic positive and repositive cases, indicating no ''viable virus'' in positive cases detected in this study.
All asymptomatic positive cases, repositive cases and their close contacts were isolated for at least 2 weeks until the results of nucleic acid testing were negative. None of detected positive cases or their close contacts became symptomatic or newly confirmed with COVID-19 during the isolation period. In this screening programme, single and mixed testing was performed, respectively, for 76.7% and 23.3% of the collected samples. The asymptomatic positive rates were 0.321 (95% CI 0.282''0.364)/10,000 and 0.243 (95% CI 0.183''0.315)/10,000, respectively.
The 300 asymptomatic positive persons aged from 10 to 89 years, included 132 males (0.256/10,000) and 168 females (0.355/10,000). The asymptomatic positive rate was the lowest in children or adolescents aged 17 and below (0.124/10,000), and the highest among the elderly aged 60 years and above (0.442/10,000) (Table 1). The asymptomatic positive rate in females (0.355/10,000) was higher than that in males (0.256/10,000).
Table 1 Characteristics of asymptomatic positive individuals.The asymptomatic positive cases were mainly domestic and unemployed residents (24.3%), retired older adults (21.3%), and public service workers (11.7%) (Fig. 1).
Fig. 1: The occupation distribution of asymptomatic positive cases (%).Note: Others included the self-employed, military personnel, and so on. (Source data are provided as s Source Data file.).
The asymptomatic positive rate in urban districts was on average 0.456/10,000, ranging from 0.317/10,000 in Hongshan to 0.807/10,000 in Wuchang district. A lower rate of asymptomatic positive cases was found in suburban districts (0.132/10,000), ranging from 0.047/10,000 in Xinzhou to 0.237/10,000 in Jiangan district (Fig. 2).
Fig. 2: The geographic distribution of the detection rate of asymptomatic positive cases.Note: 1 represents Jianghan district; 2 represents Qiaokou district. (Source data are provided as s Source Data file.).
Among the 7280 residential communities in Wuhan, asymptomatic positive cases were identified in 265 (3.6%) communities (only one case detected in 246 communities), while no asymptomatic positive cases were found in other 96.4% communities.
Testing of antibody against SARS-CoV-2 virus was positive IgG (+) in 190 of the 300 asymptomatic cases, indicating that 63.3% (95% CI 57.6''68.8%) of asymptomatic positive cases were actually infected. The proportion of asymptomatic positive cases with both IgM ('') and IgG ('') was 36.7% (95% CI: 31.2''42.4%; n'‰='‰110), indicating the possibility of infection window or false positive results of the nucleic acid testing (Table 2).
Table 2 Results of the detection of antibody in 300 asymptomatic positive persons.Higher detection rates of asymptomatic infected persons were in Wuchang, Qingshan and Qiaokou districts, and the prevalence of previously confirmed COVID-19 cases were 68.243/10,000, 53.767/10,000, and 100.047/10,000, respectively, in the three districts. Figure 3 shows that districts with a high detection rate of asymptomatic positive persons generally had a high prevalence of confirmed COVID-19 cases (rs'‰='‰0.729, P'‰='‰0.002).
Fig. 3: The prevalence of previously confirmed patients and the detection rate of asymptomatic positive cases of COVID-19 in each district in Wuhan.a The prevalence of previously confirmed patients of COVID-19 in each district in Wuhan. b The detection rate of asymptomatic positive cases of COVID-19 in each district in Wuhan. (Source data are provided as s Source Data file.).
DiscussionThe citywide nucleic acid screening of SARS-CoV-2 infection in Wuhan recruited nearly 10 million people, and found no newly confirmed cases with COVID-19. The detection rate of asymptomatic positive cases was very low, and there was no evidence of transmission from asymptomatic positive persons to traced close contacts. There were no asymptomatic positive cases in 96.4% of the residential communities.
Previous studies have shown that asymptomatic individuals infected with SARS-CoV-2 virus were infectious3, and might subsequently become symptomatic4. Compared with symptomatic patients, asymptomatic infected persons generally have low quantity of viral loads and a short duration of viral shedding, which decrease the transmission risk of SARS-CoV-25. In the present study, virus culture was carried out on samples from asymptomatic positive cases, and found no viable SARS-CoV-2 virus. All close contacts of the asymptomatic positive cases tested negative, indicating that the asymptomatic positive cases detected in this study were unlikely to be infectious.
There was a low repositive rate in recovered COVID-19 patients in Wuhan. Results of virus culturing and contract tracing found no evidence that repositive cases in recovered COVID-19 patients were infectious, which is consistent with evidence from other sources. A study in Korea found no confirmed COVID-19 cases by monitoring 790 contacts of 285 repositive cases6. The official surveillance of recovered COVID-19 patients in China also revealed no evidence on the infectiousness of repositive cases7. Considering the strong force of infection of COVID-198,9,10, it is expected that the number of confirmed cases is associated with the risk of being infected in communities. We found that asymptomatic positive rates in different districts of Wuhan were correlated with the prevalence of previously confirmed cases. This is in line with the temporal and spatial evolution (especially the long-tailed characteristic) of infectious diseases11.
Existing laboratory virus culture and genetic studies9,10 showed that the virulence of SARS-CoV-2 virus may be weakening over time, and the newly infected persons were more likely to be asymptomatic and with a lower viral load than earlier infected cases. With the centralized isolation and treatment of all COVID-19 cases during the lockdown period in Wuhan, the risk of residents being infected in the community has been greatly reduced. When susceptible residents are exposed to a low dose of virus, they may tend to be asymptomatic as a result of their own immunity. Serological antibody testing in the current study found that at least 63% of asymptomatic positive cases were actually infected with SARS-CoV-2 virus. Nonetheless, it is too early to be complacent, because of the existence of asymptomatic positive cases and high level of susceptibility in residents in Wuhan. Public health measures for the prevention and control of COVID-19 epidemic, including wearing masks, keeping safe social distancing in Wuhan should be sustained. Especially, vulnerable populations with weakened immunity or co-morbidities, or both, should continue to be appropriately shielded.
Findings from this study show that COVID-19 was well controlled in Wuhan at the time of the screening programme. After two months since the screening programme (by August 9, 2020), there were no newly confirmed COVID-19 cases in Wuhan. Further testing of SARS-CoV-2 in samples collected from market environment settings in Wuhan were conducted, and found no positive results after checking a total of 52,312 samples from 1795 market setting during June 13 to July 2, 202012.
This study has several limitations that need to be discussed. First, this was a cross-sectional screening programme, and we are unable to assess the changes over time in asymptomatic positive and reoperative results. Second, although a positive result of nucleic acid testing reveals the existence of the viral RNAs, some false negative results were likely to have occurred, in particular due to the relatively low level of virus loads in asymptomatic infected individuals, inadequate collection of samples, and limited accuracy of the testing technology13. Although the screening programme provided no direct evidence on the sensitivity and specificity of the testing method used, a meta-analysis reported a pooled sensitivity of 73% (95% CI 68''78%) for nasopharayngeal and throat swab testing of COVID-1914. Testing kits used in the screening programme were publicly purchased by the government and these kits have been widely used in China and other countries. Multiple measures were taken to possibly minimise false negative results in the screening programme. For example, standard training was provided to health works for sample collection to ensure the sample quality. The experiment procedures, including specimen collection, extraction, PCR, were according to official guidelines (Supplementary Note 1). For the real-time RT-PCR assay, two target genes were simultaneously tested. Even so, false negative results remained possible, particularly in any mass screening programmes. However, even if test sensitivity was as low as 50%, then the actual prevalence would be twice as high as reported in this study, but would still be very low. Around 7.1% of eligible residents did not participate in the citywide nucleic acid screening and the screening programme did not collect detailed data on reasons for nonparticipation, which is a limitation of this study. Although there were no official statistics, a large number of migrant workers and university students left Wuhan before the lockdown, joining their families in other cities or provinces for traditional Chinese New Year. Therefore, it is likely that most nonparticipants were not in Wuhan at the time of the screening. The main objective of the screening programme was to assess the risk of COVID-19 epidemic in residents who were actually living in the post-lockdown Wuhan. Therefore, the estimated positive rates are unlikely to be materially influenced by nonparticipation of residents who were not in Wuhan or some residents who did not participate in the screening for other reasons. Moreover, people who left Wuhan were the target population for monitoring in other provinces and cities and were required to take nucleic acid testing. Although there was no official statistics showing the positive rate of nucleic acid testing in this population, there was no report that shown a higher positive rate of nucleic acid testing than our findings.
In summary, the detection rate of asymptomatic positive cases in the post-lockdown Wuhan was very low (0.303/10,000), and there was no evidence that the identified asymptomatic positive cases were infectious. These findings enabled decision makers to adjust prevention and control strategies in the post-lockdown period. Further studies are required to fully evaluate the impacts and cost-effectiveness of the citywide screening of SARS-CoV-2 infections on population's health, health behaviours, economy, and society.
MethodsStudy population and ethical approvalsWuhan has about 11 million residents in total, with seven urban and eight suburban districts. Residents are living in 7280 residential communities (or residential enclosures, ''xiao-qu'' in Chinese), and each residential community could be physically isolated from other communities for preventing transmission of COVID-19.
The screening programme recruited residents (including recovered COVID-19 patients) currently living in Wuhan who were aged '‰¥6 years (5,162,960 males, 52.2%). All participants provided written or verbal informed consent after reading a statement that explained the purpose of the testing. For participants who aged 6''17 years old, consent was obtained from their parents or guardians. The study protocol for an evaluation of the programme based on anonymized screening data was approved by the Ethics Committee of the Tongji Medical College Institutional Review Board, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China (No. IROG0003571).
Organizational guarantee and community mobilizationA citywide nucleic acid screening group was formed, with specialized task teams contributing to comprehensive coordination, technical guidance, quality control, participation invitation, information management, communication, and supervision of the screening. The city government invested 900 million yuan (RMB) in the testing programme. From 14 May to 1 June 2020, in the peak time, up to 2907 sample collection sites were functioning at the same time in Wuhan. Each sample collection site had an assigned sample collection group, including several health professionals (staffed according to the number of communities' residents), 2''4 community managers, 1''2 police officers, and 1''2 inspectors. The sampling sites were set up based on the number and accessibility of local residents. Local community workers were responsible for a safe and orderly sampling process to minimise the waiting time. In addition, mobile sampling teams were formed by primary health care professionals and volunteers to conduct door-to-door sampling for residents who had physical difficulties or were unable to walk.
About 50,000 health professionals (mainly doctors and nurses from community health centers) and more than 280,000 person-times of community workers and volunteers contributed to sample collection, transport of equipment and samples collected, arrangement of participation process, and maintaining order of sampling sites. Public information communication and participant invitation were implemented through mass media, mobile messages, WeChat groups, and residential community broadcasts, so as to increase residents' awareness and the participation.
Acquisition, preservation, and transport of samplesAll sampling personnel received standard training for the collection of oropharyngeal swab samples. To minimise the risk of cross-infection, the sampling process strictly followed a disinfection process and environmental ventilation were ensured. The collected samples were stored in a virus preservation solution or immersed in isotonic saline, tissue culture solution, or phosphate buffer (Supplementary note 1). Then, all samples were sent to testing institutions within 4'‰h using delivery boxes for biological samples refrigerated with dry ice to guarantee the stability of nucleic acid samples.
Technical methods for laboratory testing of collected samplesA total of 63 nucleic acid testing laboratories, 1451 laboratory workers and 701 testing equipment were involved in the nucleic acid testing. Received samples were stored at 4'‰°C and tested within 24'‰h of collection. Any samples that could not be tested within 24'‰h were stored at ''70'‰°C or below (Supplementary note 1). In addition to ''single testing'' (i.e., separate testing of a single sample), ''mixed testing'' was also performed for 23% of the collected samples to increase efficiency, in which five samples were mixed in equal amounts, and tested in the same test tube. If a mixed testing was positive for COVID-19, all individual samples were separately retested within 24'‰h15.
Details regarding technical methods for sequencing and virus culture were provided in Supplementary note 1. Real-time reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assay method was used for the nucleic acid testing. We simultaneously amplified and tested the two target genes: open reading frame 1ab (ORF1ab) and nucleocapsid protein (N) (Supplementary Note 1). A cycle threshold value (Ct-value) less than 37 was defined as a positive result, and no Ct-value or a Ct-value of 40 or more was defined as a negative result. For Ct-values ranging from 37 to 40, the sample was retested. If the retest result remained less than 40 and the amplification curve had obvious peak, the sample was classified as positive; otherwise, it was reported as being negative. These diagnostic criteria were based on China's official recommendations16.
For asymptomatic positive cases, virus culture was carried out in biosafety level-3 laboratories. The colloidal gold antibody test was also performed for asymptomatic positive cases (Supplementary note 1). All testing results were double entered into a specifically designed database, and managed by the Big Data and Investigation Group of the COVID-19 Prevention and Control Centre in Wuhan, which was established to collect and manage data relevant to the COVID-19 epidemic.
Participant data collection and managementBefore sample collection, residents electronically (using a specifically designed smartphone application) self-uploaded their personal information, including ID number, name, sex, age, and place of residence. Then, the electronic machine system generated a unique personal barcode and stuck it on the sample tube to ensure the match between the sample and the participant. Then trained staff interviewed each individual regarding the history of COVID-19 and previous nucleic acid testing. There was a database of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Wuhan, which can be used to validate the self-reported previous COVID-19 infection. All information was entered into a central database. The testing results were continually uploaded to the central database by testing institutions. Contact tracing investigations were conducted on participants who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, to track and manage their close contacts. The pre-existing unique identification code for each resident was used as the programme's identification number, to ensure information accuracy during the whole process of screening, from sampling, nucleic acid testing, result reporting, the isolation of detected positive cases, and tracing of close contacts of positive cases. All screening information was kept strictly confidential and was not allowed to be disclosed or used for other purposes other than clinical and public health management. Personal information of asymptomatic positive cases was only disclosed to designated medical institutions and community health centres for the purpose of medical isolation and identification of close contacts. Researcher was blind to the study hypothesis during data collection.
Biological security guaranteeNucleic acid testing was performed in biosafety level-2 (BSL-2) laboratories, and virus culture was conducted in biosafety level-3 laboratories. Sampling and testing personnel adopted the personal protective measures according to the standard of biosafety level-3 laboratories. Participating laboratories implemented control measures to guarantee biological safety in accordance with relevant regulations17.
Result query and feedbackTwo to three days after sample collection, participants could inquire about their test results using WeChat or Alipay application by their unique ID numbers. The results included text descriptions of nucleic acid testing and coloured health codes. A green coloured health code refers to a negative result, and a red coloured health code indicates a positive result.
Definition and management of identified confirmed cases and close contactsIn this study, all confirmed COVID-19 cases were diagnosed by designated medical institutions according to National Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of COVID-19 (Supplementary Note 2). Asymptomatic positive cases referred to individuals who had a positive result during screening, and they had neither a history of COVID-19 diagnosis, nor any clinical symptoms at the time of the nucleic acid testing. Close contacts were individuals who closely contacted with an asymptomatic positive person since 2 days before the nucleic acid sampling16. Repositive cases refer to individuals who recovered from previously confirmed COVID-19 disease and had a positive testing again in the screening programme. All repositive cases, asymptomatic positive persons, and their close contacts were isolated for at least 2 weeks in designated hotels managed by primary health care professionals, and they were released from isolation only if two consecutive nucleic acid tests were negative.
Statistical analysisDetection rate of asymptomatic positive or repositive cases was calculated by dividing the number of individuals with a positive result of nucleic acid testing by the number of participants tested. Because of extremely low detection rates, we calculated 95% confidence intervals of estimated proportions using Pearson''Klopper exact method, implemented through R package ''binom'' version 1.1-118. SPSS version 22.0 was used for other statistical analyses. We analyzed the distribution of asymptomatic positive cases and assessed the Spearman correlation between the asymptomatic positive rate and the prevalence of previously confirmed COVID-19 cases in different districts of Wuhan. Differences in asymptomatic positive rates by sex and age groups were assessed using the χ2 test. ArcGIS 10.0 was used to draw a geographic distribution map of asymptomatic positive cases. A value of P'‰<'‰0.05 (two-tailed) was considered statistically significant.
Reporting summaryFurther information on research design is available in the Nature Research Reporting Summary linked to this article.
Data availabilityDetailed data directly used to generate each figure or table of this study are available within the article, Supplementary Information andsource data are provided with this paper.
Change history17 December 2020The original version of this Article was updated shortly after publication, because the Peer Review file was inadvertently omitted. The error has now been fixed and the Peer Review file is available to download from the HTML version of the Article.
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AcknowledgementsWe would like to thank all institutions and all citizens in Wuhan for their support for citywide nucleic acid screening work. We also would like to thank the Wuhan city government for this citywide nucleic acid testing, sampling and management, and thank the big data and investigation group of COVID-19 prevention and control institution in Wuhan (the data and investigation group of Wuhan Municipal Health Commission) for their efforts in the data collection. In addition, we would like to thank the National Social Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 18ZDA085) for supporting the fund.
Author informationAuthor notes These authors contributed equally: Shiyi Cao, Yong Gan, Chao Wang.
AffiliationsDepartment of Social Medicine and Health Management, School of Public Health, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, Hubei, China
Shiyi Cao, Yong Gan, Chao Wang, Yuchai Huang, Tiantian Wang, Yanhong Gong, Hongbin Xu, Xin Shen, Xiaoxv Yin & Zuxun Lu
Norwich Medical School, Faculty of Medicine and Health Science, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK
Max Bachmann & Fujian Song
Wuhan Municipal Health Commission, Wuhan, Hubei, China
Shanbo Wei
Wuhan Centre for Clinical Laboratory, Wuhan, Hubei, China
Jie Gong
Department of Management Science and Engineering, School of Economics and Management, Jiangxi Science and Technology Normal University, Nanchang, Jiangxi, China
Liqing Li
Tongji Hospital, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, Hubei, China
Kai Lu
Centre for Alcohol Policy Research, School of Psychology and Public Health, La Trobe University, Melbourne, VIC, Australia
Heng Jiang
Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC, Australia
Heng Jiang
School of Public Health, Zhengzhou University, Zhengzhou, Henan, China
Qingfeng Tian
Department of Emergency, Hainan Clinical Research Centre for Acute and Critical Diseases, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Hainan Medical University, Haikou, Hainan, China
Chuanzhu Lv
ContributionsS.Y.C., C.W., X.X.Y., and Z.X.L. conceived the study. C.W., Y.C.H., T.T.W., K.L., H.B.X., and X.S. participated in the acquisition of data. S.B.W. and J.G. were responsible for the on-site specimen collection, laboratory testing quality evaluation, and control. Y.C.H., T.T.W., and L.Q.L. analyzed the data. H.J., Y.H.G., and F.J.S. gave advice on methodology. Q.F.T. and C.Z.L. investigated the responses to the citywide nucleic acid testing among residents lived in outside of Wuhan city. S.Y.C., Y.G., C.W., and X.X.Y. drafted the manuscript, Y.G., M.B., and F.J.S. revised the manuscript, and M.B., C.Z.L., and F.J.S. critically commented and edited the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript. Z.X.L. is the guarantor of this study.
Corresponding authorsCorrespondence to Chuanzhu Lv or Fujian Song or Xiaoxv Yin or Zuxun Lu.
Ethics declarations Competing interestsThe authors declare no competing interests.
Additional informationPeer review information Nature Communications thanks Junxiong Vincent Pang and the other, anonymous reviewer(s) for their contribution to the peer review of this work. Peer review reports are available.
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About this articleCite this articleCao, S., Gan, Y., Wang, C. et al. Post-lockdown SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid screening in nearly ten million residents of Wuhan, China. Nat Commun 11, 5917 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-19802-w
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Received : 18 August 2020
Accepted : 27 October 2020
Published : 20 November 2020
DOI : https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-19802-w
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CDC reports record-low positive flu tests
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 06:25
| December 28, 2020 03:09 PM
As coronavirus cases surge nationwide, the flu has seen a remarkable dip. Reported cases of influenza reached record lows last week, with fewer than 40 diagnoses recorded during Dec. 13-19.
In week 51 of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's "FluView" data monitoring system, 36 positive flu tests were documented. This marks a steep decrease from last year's total of 7,703 cases during the same time frame. The positivity rate has sharply declined this calendar year as only 0.10% of tests taken this year came back positive. The five-year average is 15.80% positive.
The data comes in defiance of the "twindemic" concerns perpetuated by medical experts, or the idea that the raging coronavirus pandemic and the seasonal increase in reported flu cases would converge with catastrophic results. Dr. Brian Garibaldi, the medical director of Johns Hopkins University's Biocontainment Unit, told the Washington Examiner that ''we have to be concerned about the possibility of having a surge in flu at the same time as we're seeing a surge in COVID.''
''In any given winter, hospitals are taxed by the flu,'' Garibaldi said. ''There's always a concern that our emergency departments will be overwhelmed and ICU capacity will be strained [due to the concurrence of flu and COVID-19 outbreaks], particularly with people who have coexisting conditions that then get influenza.''
Some elected officials acknowledged the possibility of a so-called "twindemic" and laid out their proposals to combat a shortage of resources. In September, Gov. Doug Ducey of Arizona expressed concerns about dwindling supplies, vowing he was taking preventive action.
''The overlap of COVID-19 and flu season presents a perfect storm, and we aren't taking any chances,'' Ducey said. ''We are approaching this fall with a proactive mindset and plan of action to limit the impact of the flu and preserve hospital resources."
Other governors are taking disease containment plans a step further, shutting their states down for the second time since the COVID-19 pandemic began. States such as California and New York began their second rounds of heightened restrictions earlier this month.
According to the Johns Hopkins University coronavirus tracker, more than 19 million people in the United States have been diagnosed with the coronavirus to date, with more than 333,000 reported deaths attributed to the virus.
Freedom Pass
Los Angeles Vaccine Recipients Can Put the Proof in Apple Wallet - Bloomberg
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:58
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LA Plans to Issue Digital ''Passports'' With Coronavirus Vaccines
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:58
In order to track who's gotten one or both shots of a coronavirus vaccination, Los Angeles County plans to offer a digital proof of inoculation.
The digital system, which would be accessible by smartphone, is first and foremost an organizational tool to remind patients to get their second dose and help healthcare workers stay on top of the mountains of medical records and paperwork, Bloomberg reports. The idea resuscitates the notion of immunity passports, the controversial suggestion that those who are no longer susceptible to COVID-19 should be given documentation to prove it.
Experts first floated immunity passports as something to give people who had recovered from COVID-19, but the idea was laden with ethical and logistical concerns '-- especially since scientists weren't sure how long coronavirus antibodies lasted after a patient recovered.
But instead of the immune system's response to COVID-19, this new system built by the medical testing platform startup Healthvana would show whether someone had been vaccinated, likely a more robust indicator that they're no longer infectious.
After vaccination, you'd be able to take out your smartphone and show you'd been inoculated ''to prove to airlines, to prove to schools, to prove to whoever needs it,'' Healthvana CEO Ramin Bastani told Bloomberg.
Still, the plan leaves many questions, like how to accommodate and support those who don't use smartphones when society starts to creak back to life. But even aside from those issues, the platform could provide a much-needed tool to help officials keep the vaccination process itself organized.
''We're really concerned. We really want people to come back for that second dose,'' Claire Jarashow, director of vaccine-preventable disease control at LA county's Department of Public Health, told Bloomberg. ''We just don't have the capacity to be doing hundreds of medical record requests to find people's first doses and when they need to get their second.''
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If you want to travel next year, you may need a vaccine passport - CNN
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 04:48
By Rishi Iyengar, CNN Business
Updated 9:12 AM EST, Sun December 27, 2020
San Francisco(CNN Business) Now that coronavirus vaccines are starting to roll out in the US and abroad, many people may be dreaming of the day when they can travel, shop and go to the movies again. But in order to do those activities, you may eventually need something in addition to the vaccine: a vaccine passport application.
Several companies and technology groups have begun developing smartphone apps or systems for individuals to upload details of their Covid-19 tests and vaccinations, creating digital credentials that could be shown in order to enter concert venues, stadiums, movie theaters, offices, or even countries.
The Common Trust Network, an initiative by Geneva-based nonprofit The Commons Project and the World Economic Forum, has partnered with several airlines including Cathay Pacific, JetBlue, Lufthansa, Swiss Airlines, United Airlines and Virgin Atlantic, as well as hundreds of health systems across the United States and the government of Aruba.
The CommonPass app created by the group allows users to upload medical data such as a Covid-19 test result or, eventually, a proof of vaccination by a hospital or medical professional, generating a health certificate or pass in the form of a QR code that can be shown to authorities without revealing sensitive information. For travel, the app lists health pass requirements at the points of departure and arrival based on your itinerary.
"You can be tested every time you cross a border. You cannot be vaccinated every time you cross a border," Thomas Crampton, chief marketing and communications officer for The Commons Project, told CNN Business. He stressed the need for a simple and easily transferable set of credentials, or a "digital yellow card," referring to the paper document generally issued as proof of vaccination.
Large tech firms are also getting in on the act. IBM ( IBM ) developed its own app, called Digital Health Pass, which allows companies and venues to customize indicators they would require for entry including coronavirus tests, temperature checks and vaccination records. Credentials corresponding to those indicators are then stored in a mobile wallet.
IBM's Digital Health Pass app creates an online vaccine credential that can be stored in a mobile wallet.
In an effort to address one challenge around returning to normalcy after vaccines are distributed widely, developers may now have to confront other challenges, ranging from privacy issues to representing the varied effectiveness of different vaccines. But the most pressing challenge may simply be avoiding the disjointed implementation and mixed success of tech's previous attempt to address the public health crisis: contact tracing apps.
Early on in the pandemic, Apple ( AAPL ) and Google ( GOOG ) set aside their smartphone rivalry to jointly develop a Bluetooth-based system to notify users if they'd been exposed to someone with Covid-19. Many countries and state governments around the world also developed and used their own apps.
"I think where exposure notification ran into some challenges was more of the piecemeal implementation choices, lack of federal leadership ... where each state had to go it alone and so each state had to figure it out independently," said Jenny Wanger, who leads the exposure notification initiatives for Linux Foundation Public Health, a tech-focused organization helping public health authorities around the world combat Covid-19.
To encourage better coordination this time, The Linux Foundation has partnered with the Covid-19 Credentials Initiative, a collective of more than 300 people representing dozens of organizations across five continents and is also working with IBM and CommonPass to help develop a set of universal standards for vaccine credential apps.
"If we're successful, you should be able to say: I've got a vaccine certificate on my phone that I got when I was vaccinated in one country, with a whole set of its own kind of health management practices... that I use to get on a plane to an entirely different country and then I presented in that new country a vaccination credential so I could go to that concert that was happening indoors for which attendance was limited to those who have demonstrated that they've had the vaccine," said Brian Behlendorf, executive director of Linux Foundation.
"It should be interoperable in the same way that email is interoperable, the same way that the web is interoperable," he said. "Right now, we're in a situation where there's some moving parts that get us closer to that, but I think there's a sincere commitment from everybody in the industry."
Part of ensuring wide usage for vaccine passports is accounting for the large subset of the global population that still doesn't use or have access to smartphones. A few companies within the Covid-19 Credentials Initiative are also developing a smart card that strikes a middle ground between the traditional paper vaccine certificates and an online version that's easier to store and reproduce.
"For us it's [about] how that digital credential can be stored, can be presented, not only through smartphones but also in other ways for those people who don't have access to stable internet and also who don't own smartphones," said Lucy Yang, co-lead of the Covid-19 Credentials Initiative. "We're looking into it, and there are companies who are doing really promising work.
CommonPass has partnered with several airlines to start rolling out its health credential app on select international flights.
Once they build a vaccine passport, companies will need to make sure people are comfortable using it. That means confronting concerns about the handling of private medical information.
CommonPass, IBM and the Linux Foundation have all stressed privacy as central to their initiatives. IBM says it allows users to control and consent to the use of their health data and allows them to choose the level of detail they want to provide to authorities.
"Trust and transparency remain paramount when developing a platform like a digital health passport, or any solution that handles sensitive personal information," the company said in a blog post. "Putting privacy first is an important priority for managing and analyzing data in response to these complex times."
With vaccines manufactured by multiple companies across several countries in varying stages of development, there are a lot of variables that passport makers will need to account for.
"A point of entry '-- whether that's a border, whether that's a venue '-- is going to want to know, did you get the Pfizer vaccine, did you get the Russian vaccine, did you get the Chinese vaccine, so they can make a decision accordingly," said Crampton. The variance can be wide: the vaccine developed by Chinese state-owned pharmaceutical giant Sinopharm, for example, has an efficacy of 86% against Covid-19, while the vaccines made by Pfizer and Moderna each have an efficacy of around 95%.
It's also unclear how effective the vaccines are in stopping the transmission of the virus, says Dr. Julie Parsonnet, an infectious disease specialist at Stanford University. So while a vaccine passport app will show that you've received the shot, it may not be a guarantee that you safely attend an event or get on a flight.
"We still don't know if vaccinated people can transmit infection or not," she told CNN Business. "Until that is clarified, we won't know whether 'passports' will be effective."
Still, Behlendorf anticipates that the rollout and adoption of vaccine passports will happen rather quickly once everything falls into place and expects a variety of apps that can work with each other to be "widely available" within the first half of 2021.
"Rest assured, the nerds are on it," he said.
YELLOW CARD-Vaccinated? Show Us Your App - The New York Times
Wed, 30 Dec 2020 16:12
Covid-19 health pass apps could help reopen businesses and restore the economy. They could also unfairly exclude people from travel and workplaces.
Peter Vlitas, a travel industry executive, holding up the health passport app CommonPass. United and other airlines are preparing to use the app to confirm that passengers have negative coronavirus results. Credit... The Commons Project Foundation Published Dec. 13, 2020 Updated Dec. 14, 2020 Among all the tools that health agencies have developed over the years to fight epidemics, at least one has remained a constant for more than a century: paper vaccination certificates.
In the 1880s, in response to smallpox outbreaks, some public schools began requiring students and teachers to show vaccination cards. In the 1960s, amid yellow fever epidemics, the World Health Organization introduced an international travel document, known informally as the yellow card. Even now, travelers from certain regions are required to show a version of the card at airports.
But now, just as the United States is preparing to distribute the first vaccines for the virus, the entry ticket to the nation's reopening is set to come largely in the form of a digital health credential.
In the coming weeks, major airlines including United, JetBlue and Lufthansa plan to introduce a health passport app, called CommonPass, that aims to verify passengers' virus test results '-- and soon, vaccinations. The app will then issue confirmation codes enabling passengers to board certain international flights. It is just the start of a push for digital Covid-19 credentials that could soon be embraced by employers, schools, summer camps and entertainment venues.
''This is likely to be a new normal need that we're going to have to deal with to control and contain this pandemic,'' said Dr. Brad Perkins, the chief medical officer at the Commons Project Foundation, a nonprofit in Geneva that developed the CommonPass app.
The advent of electronic vaccination credentials could have a profound effect on efforts to control the coronavirus and restore the economy. They could prompt more employers and college campuses to reopen. They may also give some consumers peace of mind, developers say, by creating an easy way for movie theaters, cruise ships and sports arenas to admit only those with documented coronavirus vaccinations.
But the digital passes also raise the specter of a society split into health pass haves and have-nots, particularly if venues begin requiring the apps as entry tickets. The apps could make it difficult for people with limited access to vaccines or online verification tools to work or visit popular destinations. Civil liberties experts also warn that the technology could create an invasive system of social control, akin to the heightened surveillance that China adopted during the pandemic '-- only instead of federal or state governments, private actors like employers and restaurants would determine who can and cannot access services.
''Protecting public health has historically been used as a proxy for discrimination,'' said Professor Michele Goodwin, a law professor who directs the Center for Biotechnology and Global Health Policy at the University of California, Irvine. ''That is the real concern '-- the potential to use these apps as proxies for keeping certain people away and out.''
She added that tech developers often rush to deploy and scale innovations before governments have the chance to test and regulate them.
Image People in the United States who are vaccinated against the coronavirus will receive personal record cards noting the medical provider, vaccine maker, batch number and date of their inoculations. Credit... EJ Hersom/DOD In the U.S., for instance, the federal government plans to give out personal record cards to people receiving coronavirus vaccinations to remind them of their medical provider, vaccine manufacturer, batch number and date of inoculation. But federal health agencies have not yet issued guidance on third-party digital vaccination credentials, leaving it open for companies and nonprofits to introduce Covid-19 health pass apps. Neither the Department of Health and Human Services nor the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention responded to requests for comment.
Nonprofits and tech companies developing Covid-19 health pass apps say their aim is to create credentials as trustworthy as the W.H.O.'s paper yellow card. And they argue that the smartphone apps '-- which people may use to retrieve their virus test results and immunizations directly from their heath providers '-- are more reliable than paper health documents, which may be forged.
''To restart the economy, to save certain industries, I think you need a solution like this,'' said Eric Piscini, a vice president at IBM who oversaw the development of the company's new health passport app. IBM recently completed a pilot test of the app, called Digital Health Pass, with an employer, he said, and is in discussions with a major sports stadium. Without such apps, Mr. Piscini said, ''people will limit their engagement in travel and entertainment because of lack of confidence.''
Clear, a security company that uses biometric technology to confirm people's identities at airports and elsewhere, is already operating a Covid app. Called Health Pass, the app has been adopted by some professional sports teams and insurers, where employees may use it to confirm their coronavirus test results. Once vaccines become available, the company said, the app will be able to check users' immunizations as well.
But no Covid-19 health pass has received as much fanfare as the CommonPass app, developed by the Commons Project, a nonprofit focused on building technology for public use. The group began developing software to help people retrieve and use their medical data well before the start of the pandemic. But spikes in virus cases around the world this spring accelerated its work.
First, the group helped build a health pass app for some East African nations that aims to verify truck drivers with negative coronavirus test results, enabling them to pick up food shipments at ports and deliver them across borders to landlocked countries. A few months later, the group partnered with the World Economic Forum to build a more global digital health pass system for Covid-19. Their first target: international air travel.
The resulting app, CommonPass, notifies users of local travel rules '-- like having to provide proof of a negative virus test '-- and then aims to verify that they have met those rules, enabling them to board international flights. In October, United Airlines tested the app on a flight from Heathrow Airport in London to Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey.
Peter Vlitas, an executive at Internova Travel Group, a travel services company based in Manhattan, signed up for the United flight. He said he first downloaded the app, which informed him that he needed to test negative for the coronavirus before traveling. Next, he said, the app directed him to a rapid-testing center at the airport. Soon after he took the test, the app displayed his negative test results and generated a confirmation code.
United and four other airlines plan to start using the CommonPass app in the coming weeks on some international flights. Passengers may be asked to show their confirmation codes at airline check-in counters or departure gates.
Dr. Perkins said the Commons Project designed the app's credentialing system to work for a broad audience. If international air travelers who lack smartphones need to confirm their health status, he said, they could print their confirmation codes and show them at an airport much as they would a paper boarding pass.
Image During smallpox outbreaks more than a century ago, some schools began requiring students to show vaccination certificates, as this article in the The New York Times reported on Nov. 26, 1887. Credit... The New York Times '‹
But the great leap forward to 21st-century digital health credentials from 19th-century paper vaccination certificates represents much more than a technological shift. Some civil liberties experts say the vaccine passport apps signal a troubling privatization of public health practices and caution that the technology comes with privacy risks.
''The corporate part of it, the '‹extent to which this is going to be privatized is'‹ '‹quite new'‹,'' said Michael Willrich, a history professor at Brandeis University and the author of ''Pox: An American History,'' a book '‹on health control during 20th-century smallpox epidemics. ''It raises concerns about privacy, about the right to be free from everyday surveillance.''
App developers said they had seriously considered the privacy risks and designed their systems to help mitigate them.
The CommonPass, IBM and Clear apps, for instance, allow users to download their virus test results '-- and soon their vaccinations '-- to their smartphones. The apps can then check the medical data and generate unique confirmation codes that users can show at airports or other locations to confirm their health status.
But the health passes do not share specific details '-- like where and when a user was tested '-- with airlines or employers, developers said. The QR codes, they said, act merely as a kind of green light, clearing users for entry.
Even so, some tech executives are wary. Zac Cohen, the chief operating officer of Trulioo, an identity verification company, said society would be better off if app developers invested their considerable energy in pushing for the equitable distribution of coronavirus vaccines before pushing for apps to confirm that some people have been vaccinated.
''What we're seeing today is a jump forward to try to create pockets of safe environments while ignoring the broader ethical concerns that that creates,'' Mr. Cohen said.
He recently wrote an op-ed for an industry site warning that health passport apps could easily prevent people who cannot prove their identities or health status from accessing essential services.
''Until we figure out how to do that in a fair way,'' Mr. Cohen said, ''we really need to be cautious about deploying that technology.''
Want to travel and attend events in 2021? You may need a COVID-19 passport
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 22:41
Nexstar Media Wire and Addy Bink, KTVX
5 hours ago
(KTVX) '-- Looking to travel next year? You may need more than just the coronavirus vaccine.
Some companies and technology groups are working to create apps for your phone or systems for you to upload information about COVID-19 tests and vaccines that can, in turn, create a virtual pass that could be used to let you onto flights or into sporting events, concerts or movies.
The Commons Project, The World Economic Forum, and a coalition of public and private entities are reportedly collaborating to launch CommonPass, ''a trusted, globally-interoperable platform for people to document their COVID-19 status (health declarations / PCR tests/vaccinations) to satisfy country entry requirements while protecting their health data privacy.''
According to its website, CommonPass provides a place for individuals to access lab results, vaccination records, and consent to have that information used to validate their COVID-19 status without giving away any other underlying personal health information.
The platform can assess whether your lab results or vaccination records come from a trusted source and satisfy the health screening requirements of the country you want to enter.
The website says CommonPass can deliver a simple yes or no answer on whether or not you meet the entry criteria.
''The purpose of CommonPass and the Common Trust Network is to enable safer airline and cross border travel by giving both travelers and governments confidence in each traveler's verified COVID-19 status.''
This isn't the only digital COVID-19 pass that we could see in the near future.
IBM has also created its Digital Health Pass, which is designed to provide organizations with a way to bring people back into workplaces, schools, stadiums, and flights.
According to IBM, ''the solution is designed to enable organizations to verify health credentials for employees, customers, and visitors entering their site based on criteria specified by the organization.''
They added that the ''digital wallet'' can allow individuals to keep control over their information and share it securely.
Linux Public Health has begun deploying two COVID-19 exposure apps '-- COVID Green and COVID Shield '-- in Canada, Ireland, and multiple states, including Colorado and Wisconsin.
Apple and Google previously co-created ''exposure notification'' technology to alert phone users if they spent time near someone who tests positive for the coronavirus.
The technology relies on Bluetooth short-range radio signals to detect when two phones are nearby long enough for someone to transmit the virus likely. Most states measure that close contact as within 6 feet for at least 15 minutes at a time.
As the vaccine continues to be distributed across the nation, there haven't been any regulations requiring you to have a vaccine to enter venues, states, or countries. However, some states require you to test negative for COVID-19 or quarantine before or as you enter.
NVD - CVE-2020-35693
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 13:30
Undergoing Analysis This vulnerability is currently undergoing analysis and not all information is available. Please check back soon to view the completed vulnerability summary.
Description On some Samsung phones and tablets running Android through 7.1.1, it is possible for an attacker-controlled Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) device to pair silently with a vulnerable target device, without any user interaction, when the target device's Bluetooth is on, and it is running an app that offers a connectable BLE advertisement. An example of such an app could be a Bluetooth-based contact tracing app, such as Australia's COVIDSafe app, Singapore's TraceTogether app, or France's TousAntiCovid (formerly StopCovid). As part of the pairing process, two pieces (among others) of personally identifiable information are exchanged: the Identity Address of the Bluetooth adapter of the target device, and its associated Identity Resolving Key (IRK). Either one of these identifiers can be used to perform re-identification of the target device for long term tracking. The list of affected devices includes (but is not limited to): Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy S6 Edge, Galaxy A3, Tab A (2017), J2 Pro (2018), Galaxy Note 4, and Galaxy S5.
SeverityCVSS 3.x Severity and Metrics:NIST: NVD
NVD scorenot yet provided.
CVSS 2.0 Severity and Metrics: NIST: NVD
NVD scorenot yet provided.
References to Advisories, Solutions, and ToolsBy selecting these links, you will be leaving NIST webspace.We have provided these links to other web sites because theymay have information that would be of interest to you. Noinferences should be drawn on account of other sites beingreferenced, or not, from this page. There may be other websites that are more appropriate for your purpose. NIST doesnot necessarily endorse the views expressed, or concur withthe facts presented on these sites. Further, NIST does notendorse any commercial products that may be mentioned onthese sites. Please address comments about this page to nvd@nist.gov.
Change History 0 change records found show changes
China
Xi Jinping to undergo surgery due to worsening intracranial aneurysm
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 15:06
The supreme leader of the Chinese Communist Party Xi Jinping will undergo surgery due to a worsening intracranial aneurysm, reported by Mr. Lude during his evening YouTube live show on Dec 27.
The health condition of the Chinese Communist leader is a top-secret due to the totalitarian nature of the regime. The fact that such information could be ''leaked'' is an indication of the instability of Xi's dictatorship.
Xi's health crisis was revealed in an unusual way according to Mr. Lude. A Twitter account @martpunished tweeted: JUST IN: President of the People's Republic of China Xi Jinping to undergo surgery due to intracranial aneurysm.
Mr. Lude said this person is a friend of a famous surgeon in Hong Kong who has been involved in Xi's on-going medical treatment. The original tweet is ''protected''.
Mr. Miles Guo, a Chinese dissident living in the US, has verified this information with a person close to Xi Jinping.
Xi has already received multiple interventional treatments, but the condition is worsening and he could become unconscious at any moment, according to additional information provided by Mr. Lude on Monday morning.
Xi has established his own ''National Special Crisis Office'' for the transition of power in case he cannot rule the country due to his health condition. This newly created office is replacing the ''Standing Committee'' of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, abandoning the ''group-leadership'' of the CCP designed to avoid Mao Zedong's mistakes of one-person-to-bring-down-a-country. Xi's younger brother Xi Yuanping and Xi's loyalists like Xu Qiliang and Ding Xuexiang are in the special office to ensure the continuity of Xi's ''dynasty''. It is worth noting that none of the current members of the ''Standing Committee'' is in the special office. Wang Qishan, who is under house arrest, is not in the special office either.
Due to the lack of a transparent and seamless succession plan within the Chinese Communist Party, the health issue of a supreme leader can bring an end to a dynasty like what happened after Mao Zedong's death. Mao's political opponents eventually overthrew Mao's succession committee.
Mr. Lude also linked Xi's health issue to a recent letter to Xi from Wen Jiabao and Jia Qinglin who put Xi on the throne but now put Xi under enormous pressure. The secret letter combined with the ''leaked'' health issue of Xi sent a signal to the outside world that the CCP is undergoing internal power struggles.
This is a developing story. The Whistleblower Movement will provide the latest updates via GNews.org, GTV.org, and the Lude Show.
Ludepress
Can The US Reduce Its Dependency On Chinese Rare Earths?
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 05:21
Authored by Alex Kimani via OilPrice.com,
Since the days of President Jimmy Carter and the 1970s oil crisis, the United States has relentlessly pursued the utopia of energy independence. But persistent oil crises, severe oil price shocks, and the global shift to clean energy have made it glaringly obvious that Washington will never achieve true energy independence by relying solely on fossil fuels. Indeed, most Americans believe that the government should ''...focus on developing alternative sources of energy over expansion of fossil fuel sources'' in a bid to alleviate climate change.
But as the shift to clean and renewable energy gains serious momentum, the United States is now facing another conundrum: It's almost completely dependent on China for the minerals it uses to build clean energy systems.
China is a rare earth monopoly, supplying 80% of the rare earths elements (REE) used by the United States in the manufacture of solar panels, windmills, electric car batteries, cellphones, computers, national defense systems, medical equipment, and even in oil and gas technologies.
That leaves the country in a particularly precarious position, especially with the never-ending trade tensions between the two nations. Indeed, all it took was a simple visit to an obscure factory by Chinese President Xi at the height of the trade war last year to raise the specter of Beijing cutting off supplies of critical materials to the U.S. and potentially crippling large swathes of industries.
Further, the U.S. is about to start keenly feeling China's stranglehold on the industry now that Biden is about to ascend into the Oval Office and possibly implement his ambitious Green Deal.
Depending on ChinaRare earth minerals, also known as the ''vitamins of chemistry'', are a group of elements used in the manufacture of a wide range of equipment in small doses to produce powerful salutary effects. These minerals are extensively used in smartphones, batteries, turbines, lasers, electromagnetic guns, missiles, advanced weapon sensors, stealth technology, and jamming technology. For instance, lanthanum is used in lighting equipment and camera lenses; neodymium in hybrid vehicles; praseodymium in aircraft engines; europium in nuclear reactors and gadolinium in MRIs and X-rays. Oil refiners also use rare earth catalysts to process crude oil into gasoline and jet fuel.
China produced more than 90 percent of the world's supply of these critical elements over the past decade, though its share fell to 71.4 percent last year.
In 2018, the U.S. Geological Survey identified 35 minerals critical to the country's economy and national security. America is heavily dependent on imports of these minerals, producing less than a tenth of the world's supplies and importing half what it consumes. It clearly highlights the U.S.' soft underbelly.
And China's dominance might only increase going forward.
The global REE industry is expected to nearly double from $8.1 billion in 2018 to $14.4 billion in 2025, as demand for EVs, cell phones, and microchips skyrockets. Biden anticipates this wild growth and has pledged to install 500,000 new EV charging stations by 2030 from the current U.S. tally of 26,000.
Beating China at its own gameBut China's control of REE might not necessarily be ''an ace in Beijing's hand'' as the Global Times once claimed. On the contrary, the U.S. is actually in a strong position to dent China's control of the industry and move towards rare earth independence.
Biden clearly recognizes this challenge and opportunity and has pledged to support the increased exploration of lithium, copper, nickel, and rare earths, among other minerals, to ensure domestic sourcing of minerals critical to solar panels, wind turbines, and electric vehicles.
Indeed, the government of the United States has been ramping up efforts to expand domestic mineral research and development.
For example, the bipartisan Reclaiming American Rare Earths (RARE) Act that was introduced in the House in September offers a comprehensive framework of tax incentives to encourage more investment into the U.S.-based REE mining and production. Meanwhile, dozens of companies and startups from Alaska to Texas are advancing mining development, with a site in Colorado about to become the first non-China facility for refining rare earth ores.
The U.S. is not exactly lacking in REE resources, either. For instance, a mountain in Wyoming called Bear Lodge holds about 18 million tons of REE, enough to supply the country for years.
And if push comes to shove and Beijing suddenly bans REE exports to the United States, America might counter by building a new supply chain outside of China just like Japan did when a similar fate befell the country a decade ago.
Or we can simply start recycling more.
Currently, only around 1% of REE are recycled from end-products at the end of their life-cycles.
Yet, the potential for recycling rare earths is huge.
A 2013 paper says that simply boosting the collection rate of batteries, bulbs, and magnets could improve the recycling rate of REE from one percent up to 20-40%. That would amount to up to 5% of global REE mine production, or nearly half of the U.S. annual mine supply. But we could do even better. As Simon Jowitt, assistant professor at UNLV's Department of Geoscience, has told ArsTechnica, much more than 40% of REE could be recycled depending on adoption rates of technologies like EVs.
To be fair, recycling that amount of rare earths would not be a walk in the park
The diverse types of electronics being recycled would not necessarily contain enough rare earths and in the right proportions to make recycling those elements profitable. In many cases, the manufacturers usually are not responsible for running recycling operations, meaning they might not even be privy to which components contain what materials.
Here, the United States' REE industry needs to borrow a leaf from Europe.
The EU's Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment WEEE requires manufacturers of electronic devices to not only finance or perform the recycling of those devices but also requires sellers to offer free e-waste collection.
But ultimately, it might all boil down to political will--or lack thereof.
The permitting process in the U.S. is ridiculously long, and can take up to three decades compared to just two years in countries like Australia and Canada. Navigating a regulatory minefield of labyrinthine local, state, and federal rules stifle U.S. mining companies compared to their Chinese competitors.
But given recent bipartisan moves in the industry, legislators can hopefully look beyond party lines and affiliations and fashion a workaround.
STUNNING: All Major Western Media Outlets Take 'Private Dinners', 'Sponsored Trips' from Chinese Communist Propaganda Front
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 19:21
A host of corporate media outlets including CNN, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and MSNBC have participated in private dinners and sponsored trips with the China-United States Exchange Foundation, a Chinese Communist Party-funded group seeking to garner ''favorable coverage'' and ''disseminate positive messages'' regarding China, The National Pulse can reveal.Other outlets involved in the propaganda operation include Forbes, the Financial Times, Newsweek, Bloomberg, Reuters, ABC News, the Economist, the Wall Street Journal, AFP, TIME magazine, LA Times, The Hill, BBC, and The Atlantic.
The relationship is revealed in the Department of Justice's Foreign Agent Registration Act (FARA) filings, which reveal a relationship spanning over a decade between establishment media outlets and the China''United States Exchange Foundation (CUSEF).
'Neutralize Opposition.' CUSEF is a Chinese Communist Party-funded initiative founded by Tung Chee Hwa. The group also targets American universities with offers to fund policy research, high-level dialogues, and exchange programs.
Tung also serves as Vice-Chairman of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), identified by the U.S.-China Security and Economic Review Commission as a key component of the Chinese Communist Party's United Work Front.
The effort, according to the U.S. government report, aims to ''to co-opt and neutralize sources of potential opposition to the policies and authority of its ruling Chinese Communist Party.''
''The United Front strategy uses a range of methods to influence overseas Chinese communities, foreign governments, and other actors to take actions or adopt positions supportive of Beijing's preferred policies,'' it continues.
This strategy appears to have been deployed in conjunction with outlets such as CNN, New York Times, and the Washington Post.
Targeting Reporters, Journalism Students. A 2011 FARA filing highlighted by Axios detailed CUSEF's agreement with American lobbying firm BLJ. It outlines how CUSEF set out to ''effectively disseminate positive messages to the media, key influencers and opinion leaders, and the general public'' regarding China.
To do so, CUSEF targeted working journalists and journalist students:
In order to develop favorable coverage in key national media, BLJ will continue to organize and staff ''familiarization trips'' to China. This includes recruiting top journalists to travel to China, selected for effectiveness and opportunities for favorable coverage.
In 2009 alone, CUSEF generated 28 media placements as a result of its four journalist visits and BLJ secured ''the publication of 26 opinion articles and quotes within 103 separate articles'' on behalf of CUSEF.
Outlets included Newsweek, the National Journal, the Nation, Congressional Quarterly, U.S. News, World Report, The Chicago Tribune, and the Washington Note.
2009 journalist outreach results.''BLJ directly contributed to or influenced'' an average of three articles ''per week.''
Guilty. While universities, including the University of Texas at Austin, have divested from CUSEF in light of its Chinese Communist Party ties, the same cannot be said for dozens of Western media outlets.
FARA filings from CUSEF's American lobbying firm BLJ reveal American media organization participating in ''private dinners at BLJ's CEO's home on behalf of CUSEF,'' trips to China, and meetings with CUSEF officials.
A filing dated January 1st, 2012, show outlets including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Reuters, CNN, and more participating in ''private dinners'' at the home of CUSEF's American lobbying firm's CEO.
CUSEF private dinner attendees.The same filing reveals that outlets including National Public Radio (NPR), The Atlantic, MSNBC, and Reuters had journalists visit China to meet with CUSEF officials.
Since then, filings continue to reveal a host of Western outlets attending private dinners and visiting China. Most outlets are included more than once.
In 2013, The Washington Post joined a China-bound journalism delegation, in 2014 Harvard Business Review also joined a delegation, and in 2015, the Los Angeles Times and The Huffington Post also visited the communist country.
A 2014 filing reveals that lobbying firm BLJ ''arranged private dinners in New York and Washington DC on behalf of CUSEF'' with over 20 attendees including The New York Times, The Washington Post, Reuters, Associated Press, BBC, and more:
2014 CUSEF Dinner attendees.Images in CUSEF brochures shed light on the entities visited by journalists.
Between 2011 and 2013 images reveal journalist touring Huawei '' a telecommunications firm labeled a ''national security threat'' and military collaborator by the U.S. government '' along with Chinese military bases:
2011 Cusef brochure.2012 cusef brochure. Results. Following the ongoing pressure campaigns, CUSEF has escaped significant criticism in the corporate press. There have only been a few mentions in broader pieces concerning Chinese Communist Party influence operations on American college campuses.
Such behavior from news outlets implies a conflict of interest, or worse: that the ostensible news outlets have been bought off.
Even when CUSEF is criticized, such as in The Washington Post article ''China's reach into U.S. campuses,'' CUSEF's Executive Director Alan Wong was offered a rebuttal: something that even Americans on the political right fail to obtain from outlets such as the Post.
Vox, another outlet participating in CUSEF's journalism trips, prefaced an article on President Trump and North Korea by noting author Yochi Dreazen ''wrote it while on a trip to China sponsored by the China-United States Exchange Foundation (CUSEF)'':
The author of this article wrote it while on a trip to China sponsored by the China-United States Exchange Foundation (CUSEF), a privately funded nonprofit organization based in Hong Kong that is dedicated to ''facilitating open and constructive exchange among policy-makers, business leaders, academics, think-tanks, cultural figures, and educators from the United States and China.'' Vox.com's reporting, as always, is independent.
The article, which featured quotes from Chinese Communist Party officials, appeared to regurgitate the party line, noting ''Beijing won big.''
As Foreign Policy magazine noted, to its credit, CUSEF is scarcely a privately funded non profit but rather is ''a registered foreign agent bankrolled by a high-ranking Chinese government official with close ties to a sprawling Chinese Communist Party apparatus that handles influence operations abroad.''
SUPPORT THE NATIONAL PULSE
Wild Protest January 6th
Destiny confronts Mike Pence
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 15:51
Neon Revolt addresses Vice-President Pence's decision on January 6, 2021:
For the past four years, President Trump has been the most powerful man on earth.
For one day, on January 6th, you, Vice President Pence, will be the most powerful man on earth.
On that day, you and you alone will have the power to set not just America, but all of humanity free – or you will have the power to sentence us all to slavery.
Which side are you on, Mr. Vice President? The side of truth? The side of the people? Or the side of lies, and all those from which they emanate?
I do not envy your position, sir. This is not how I ever wanted this moment in history to ever play out, and I would give just about anything to have it go any other way.
But it seems to me that you have a rendezvous with destiny, Mr. Vice President. On that fateful day, Mr. Vice President, I expect you to rise to the occasion, and I suggest you start by throwing out the entire fraudulent tally from the Chicom-colony of California, and their 55 electoral votes.
And then you can work your way down the line, tossing out every other fraudulent state tally until the liars and thieves are all vanquished and wailing and deposed, and the rightful leader of this nation, who won without fraud or thievery and who wants the best for her citizens, sits for another 4 years.
You have a choice, Mr. Vice President. Either you will rise up with courage and become the hero who saved the Republic, or you will spend the rest of your days reviled in ignominy as your children, and your grandchildren, and their descendants end up as little more than chattel on the global plantation.
I don’t think I’m exaggerating the stakes. Go with God, Mr. Vice President. Fight for the people on that day. Strike the giants, and cut off all their heads. If you can be entrusted with this immense and Constitutional power – to safeguard the Republic on that day when our enemies would snatch it away from us – we, the people, will know beyond a shadow of a doubt that we can trust you in 2024 and beyond.
Steel yourself, Mr. Vice President.
Greatness awaits.
These are the times that try men's characters. These are the times when men are forced to declare, in public, whom they serve. I very much doubt that President Trump's next term depends upon the actions of the Vice-President, but certainly the future political viability of Mike Pence does.
From a game theory perspective, the decision is a no-brainer. Pence should throw out the electors from the fraudulent states and secure President Trump's victory. But the tentacles of the Deep State are insidious, and no few of its foolish servitors have already betrayed the President.
I make no predictions of what a single man will choose to do. But it is very clear what a loyal man, a logical man, or even a self-serving man, should do.
Labels: politics
Number of GOP Congress Members to Object to Electoral College Votes Grows
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 00:14
More House members have said they will object to the Electoral College vote on Jan. 6 as Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) announced he would join the effort.
Rep.-elect Ronny Jackson (R-Texas) said Tuesday that he will also object.
''I will vote on January 6th to CHALLENGE the Electoral College because the American people deserve a FREE and FAIR election! The FRAUD that DID take place on Election Day can't be allowed to stand!'' Jackson wrote.
On Wednesday, Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.) said he will join the effort, which is being led by Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.). President Donald Trump spoke with Brooks and several other Republican House members earlier this month and backs their effort.
''On January 6, 2021, I plan to object to the Electoral College certification from states that experienced these unprecedented issues like Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin,'' Duncan said in a statement. ''I plan to object for the people of the Third District of South Carolina and the millions of Americans who are demanding transparency into the 2020 election. We the People know this is a pivotal decision for our great country. May God bless the United States of America.''
Rep. Jeff Van Drew (R-N.J.) also said Tuesday he would object to Electoral Vote counts from states that did not abide by the rule of law.
Rep.-elect Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) said in an interview this week she has received word that even more lawmakers will join.
''We refuse to certify a stolen election,'' she told the Kyle Olson Show. ''As members of Congress, it's our duty to protect the integrity of our elections.''
Meanwhile, Hawley became the first senator to announce that he will object to the certification during the Joint Session of Congress.
''I cannot vote to certify the electoral college results on Jan. 6 without raising the fact that some states, particularly Pennsylvania, failed to follow their own state election laws,'' Hawley wrote in a statement on Wednesday. ''And I cannot vote to certify without pointing out the unprecedented effort of mega-corporations, including Facebook and Twitter, to interfere in this election, in support of Joe Biden,'' he added.
Other than Hawley, Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.), and Rand Paul (R-Ky.)'--as well as Sen.-elect Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.)'--have said they are open to the idea of objecting to electors. The move requires both a senator and a representative to carry out, which then triggers a two-hour debate and congressional vote on whether a state's electoral votes are valid.
But several GOP senators, including No. 2 Republican John Thune (R-S.C.), have said the bid will fail.
''The thing they've got to remember is, it's just not going anywhere. I mean, in the Senate, it would go down like a shot dog,'' Thune told reporters last week. ''And I just don't think it makes a lot of sense to put everybody through this when you know what the ultimate outcome is going to be.''
And House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), speaking to reporters Wednesday, said she is confident Joe Biden will be declared the victor in Congress next week.
''I have no doubt that'' it will happen, the California Democrat said.
We could wind up with two inauguration ceremonies
Green Beret charged with murder in Illinois bowling alley shooting - CBS News
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 17:28
The suspect in a deadly shooting Saturday night at an Illinois bowling alley is a Green Beret. Duke Webb, a 37-year-old Florida resident, allegedly killed three people and wounded three others at Don Carter Lanes in Rockford, Illinois.
He's been charged with three counts of first degree murder and three counts of attempted first degree murder, police announced Sunday.
Webb is being held at the Winnebago County Jail without bond, police said at a Sunday press conference. He is due in court Monday at 1:30 p.m.
His commander, Maj. Gen. John Brennan, with the 1st Special Forces Command (Airborne), issued a statement saying, "The alleged actions of Sgt. 1st Class Duke Webb are abhorrent and are absolutely not representative of the Special Forces Regiment. The vast majority of men and women Green Berets live up to their storied reputation and earn their beret every day. The actions described in reports are shocking and completely out of character with Webb's 12 years of honorable service. The Rockford Police Department has our complete cooperation. Our heavy hearts and prayers are with the families affected."
According to the Army, Webb is a Special Forces assistant operations and intelligence sergeant assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne), at Camp Bull Simons at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. He joined the Army in 2008 and was on leave Saturday.
The Army said it will provide assistance in the investigation.
Rockford Police Chief Dan O'Shea said the three people killed were a 73-year-old man, a 69-year-old man and a 65-year-old man. Two of those wounded were teenagers, O'Shea said. A 14-year-old boy was shot in the face and airlifted to a hospital in Madison, Wisconsin, where he is now in stable condition. A 16-year-old girl was shot in the shoulder and taken to a local hospital and later released after being treated for the wound. A 62-year-old man was also wounded and is in critical condition.
O'Shea said the shooting is believed to be a random act and "there is no prior meeting or any kind of relationship between the suspect and any of the victims in this case."
According to O'Shea, Webb was taken into custody without incident, although he allegedly tried to hide his weapons and obscure his identification. O'Shea also indicated most of the shooting was caught on surveillance cameras inside the building.
Mugshot of Duke Webb, 37. Webb is accused of killing three and wounding three others in a shooting at an Illinois bowling alley. WIFR-TV The bowling alley itself was closed due to the state's COVID-19 lockdown, however, a bar located above the bar was open, which is allowed under the current restrictions. The two teenagers were there to pick up food for a takeout order, O'Shea said.
"The Don Carter Lanes family and the entire bowling community is in shock by this act of pure evil," said bowling alley owner Brand Sommer, CBS affiliate WIFR-TV reports. "Our collective prayers go out to the families of the victims. God please help them all. So sad for one sick person to cause so many misery. We are grateful for the fast and professional actions of the law enforcement agencies that prevented further loss of life by apprehending the shooter so quickly."
Lame Cherry: What Will Shifty Mike Pence Do?
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 06:18
Get this wrong Mike and your New Year address will be Gitmo!
 
As another Lame Cherry exclusive in matter anti matter.
 I'm a bit puzzled about a Politico Mockingbird post which states that when Rep. Mo Brooks is seconded by a US Senator in Tommy Tuberville in contesting the Biden election theft, that this will all go down to defeat due to "expected rules"
Under the rules Gohmert is challenging, all it takes is a single member of each branch to challenge electors from multiple states to force a vote on the matter. But any challenge is likely to fail under the expected rules. The Democrat-led House will vote to uphold Biden's win, and numerous GOP senators have indicated they do not intend to support Trump's efforts.
 
This is not what the Constitution nor the governing Articles state. When members rise to challenge a Presidential election, both houses immediately adjourn, are mandated to debate for at least 2 hours, and only after this do the Senators ALONE vote for who will be Vice President, and the House votes BY EACH STATE, meaning ONE VOTE, who will be President.
Once the fail safe of contesting the election is begun, it plays out until there is a vote in seating a President and Vice President. There are no rules which override the Constitution
For the facts in this, Republicans control the number of votes in the House, as Republicans control the majority of States, even if the metro city states control the number of members for a slim majority.
So the lies that Politico produced and Yahoo was reposting are not what the reality it.
These lies are so blatant, that they must be aimed at dim wit Debra Messing types who have no idea of the law. This appears CIA and MI6 centered in the media too as Mosaad's Rupert Murdoch is calling for the President to stop the contesting of election fraud. Translate that as President Donald Trump must have something in what he is doing, as the election coup plotters are worried in posting absolute lies and are trying to leverage the President.
Business Insider New York Post editorial board tells Trump it's time to end the 'undemocratic coup' and secure his legacy by helping Republicans maintain control of the Senate"Stop the Insanity," the Post headline read. It had been among the president's most supportive media outlets.
 
 The reality is, this has moved out of the Senate's hands. John Thune does not know jack or shit about the US Constitution or Articles by the dictator things he is spewing for McConnell.  There are not challenges in plural but one CHALLENGE, a contesting by a growing number of House members, seconded by a US Senator, who is smart enough to glean the 100 million armed Trump supporters for future politics, and that one challenge is then debated and these Congress frauds will have to go on record before America in how they vote.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has worked to dissuade his caucus from participating in the challenges, and the second-ranking GOP leader, Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), drew a fierce attack from Trump after he told reporters that any challenges to the results were doomed to fail. 
I'm not saying that Pelosi and Thune may be in bed, and conspire to adjourn Congress due to Covid, and send them off to meet in telecom from their homes, but that is NOT CONSTITUTIONAL. the Articles plainly state that members MUST meet at the Capitol, to elect a Speaker on January 4th. The 6th is when this begins.
What Patriot Louis Gohmert is engaged in, is bringing the Constitutional issue of Vice President Mike Pence before the Courts. The fact in this is, that this suit declares exactly what this blog posted from the start. Mike Pence is the sole arbitrator, meaning the Founders rested in the Vice President the one power in a powerless job, in the Vice President alone opens the Electoral College Ballots, an the Vice President decides alone which ballots are to be received or rejected. The Vice President decides if fraud state ballots are counted or if Republican counter ballots are counted. These are the ballots then presented before Congress to be certified. That is absolute power in one area, and that is what Louis Gohmert is demanding the Courts hand down a ruling on, and this is a Constitutional Crisis, because the Courts would in voting against the Vice President be illegally taking power from the Vice President.
The Lame Cherry trusts Congressman Gohmert, he has proven to be a right wing Texan for years. In noting that, this suit which is being weighed by a Trump Judge in Texas, if ruled in the Vice President's favor before the certification, means that the Vice President holds this power.
Where this moves to next is the Federal Appeals, which honestly as corrupt as the courts have been, might strike down, and then the crooked Black Robes of the Supreme Court which could set it aside again causing more mayhem.
What you do not understand in this is, Gohmert and Trump have placed all this in jeopardy and lose nothing. If the courts uphold the Constitutional powers of the Vice President, no challenges can appear. If the courts abdicate as they have, then Mike Pence DOES NOT HAVE TO OBEY THAT RULING, because the Court has no way of enforcing it's orders. Congress can only impeach and when the reality is that Mike Pence was carrying out Constitutional authority he can not be impeached on that, nor on a court ruling against the Constitution.
There is method to this Trumpness, and by Murdoch and these other CIA Mockingbird absolute lies appearing, this is an indication that something is coming from this.
Mind you, the continuous statement from those on the inside has been the President will be inaugurated for his second term on this January. They are not placing hope on this Congress as it is full of crooks. I honestly have not been shown what the future is, but I return to Absalom in the coup against King David, and in that, the tribes asked for the King to return, that appears to be a State by State request.
The limelight of Mike Pence is people are now aware of his authority by the Constitution, no matter what the courts rule. The President has been red lining bills he signed to fix in a precursor to a line item veto.
This is just an update, but this one has consequences and all of this is exactly what this blog posted as exclusives just after the November 3rd election theft.
Nuff Said
agtG
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Walmart Inc. on Twitter: "@HawleyMO @Walmart The tweet published earlier was mistakenly posted by a member of our social media team. We deleted the post and have no intention of commenting on the subject of certifying the electoral college. We apologize t
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:02
Walmart Inc. : @HawleyMO @Walmart The tweet published earlier was mistakenly posted by a member of our social media team. We delet'... https://t.co/L2P84pbiPo
Wed Dec 30 19:21:59 +0000 2020
Wake Up Agent : @WalmartInc @HawleyMO @Walmart I ''¤¸ Dollar General
Thu Dec 31 12:02:35 +0000 2020
Tom : @WalmartInc @HawleyMO @Walmart Cowards
Thu Dec 31 12:02:16 +0000 2020
Bill Conover : @WalmartInc @HawleyMO @Walmart Uh oh! 🮠Looks like someone over at big ol' #WalmartInc opened up a Pandora's box. I'... https://t.co/lvBlBawG9m
Thu Dec 31 12:01:11 +0000 2020
RobBuchanan : @WalmartInc @HawleyMO @Walmart 🤣ðŸ†ðŸ¤£ lying about it, worse than saying it. smh
Thu Dec 31 11:59:21 +0000 2020
#YangGang #UBI #FactsMatter : @WalmartInc @HawleyMO @Walmart Absolutely should not have apologized. @HawleyMO is guilty of sedition and according'... https://t.co/P4WsrL4WYg
Thu Dec 31 11:53:38 +0000 2020
"You Have a Rendezvous with Destiny, Mr. Vice President" - On January 6th Vice President Pence Will Choose the Direction of the World for Years to Come - Like Thomas Jefferson Did Centuries Ago
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:15
VP Mike Pence has the unique opportunity in world history where he can keep the nation and its people free or he can sentence the world to generations of slavery in a matter of minutes on January 6th.Ron at CodeMonkeyZ tweeted this iconic article from NeonRevolt today:
''On [January 6], you and you alone will have the power to set not just America, but all of humanity free '' or you will have the power to sentence us all to slavery.''@Mike_Pence''@VP's Rendezvous with Destiny''https://t.co/jmofk412Ph
'-- Ron (@CodeMonkeyZ) December 28, 2020
TRENDING: BREAKING: "I Cannot Vote to Certify the Electoral College Results on January 6th" - MO Senator Josh Hawley Announces He Will Object to Electoral College Certification Process
Neonrevolt was all over the fraudulent Mueller investigation. He was so effective that Jack at Twitter censored him and kicked him off his site. But Neonrevolt did not go away. He now has written an excellent piece regarding VP Mike Pence's duties on January 6th. His efforts can save the country and the world or damn all of us and all future generations into slavery. Neonrevolt ends his piece on Pence's opportunity with this:
You have a choice, Mr. Vice President. Either you will rise up with courage and become the hero who saved the Republic, or you will spend the rest of your days reviled in ignominy as your children, and your grandchildren, and their descendants end up as little more than chattel on the global plantation.
I don't think I'm exaggerating the stakes. Go with God, Mr. Vice President. Fight for the people on that day. Strike the giants, and cut off all their heads. If you can be entrusted with this immense and Constitutional power '' to safeguard the Republic on that day when our enemies would snatch it away from us '' we, the people, will know beyond a shadow of a doubt that we can trust you in 2024 and beyond.
What Ron and Neonrevolt are talking about is related to Pence's unique opportunity coming up where he can save the world.
''Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, among the most revered founding fathers of our country, only became President because he used his unilateral power as President of the Senate to open and count the presidential ballots in his own favor.''
'-- Land of the Free (@trustrestored) December 28, 2020
In this epic piece, Alexander Macris summarizes legal arguments and notes that the President of the Senate is the only person who has the ability and authority to pick the electors from each state when there are more than one set of electors. Macris writes:
Now the President of the Senate is actually the Vice President of the United States '' Trump's running mate, Mike Pence. If Foley and Harrison are correct, then Mike Pence may be the most powerful man in America right now!
Macris, using sources on the issue, notes that the only way Thomas Jefferson won the Presidency was when he selected Georgia's electoral college votes in his favor. Had he not done that, he never would have become President:
Foley, also obviously unhappy with this situation, goes on to explain:
[Thus] Republicans [can] point to the historical pedigree of this position, observing that Republicans made the same argument during the disputed election of 1876 and that at least some recent law journal scholarship has supported this position. Unembarrassed by the apparent conflict of interest caused by Mike Pence simultaneously being a candidate for reelection and arbiter of the electoral dispute, these Republicans observe that Thomas Jefferson was in essentially the same position during the disputed election of 1800 and yet the Twelfth Amendment left this provision in place when Congress rewrote the procedures for the Electoral College afterwards.
Wait, Thomas Jefferson pulled this trick? Indeed he did. The 1800 Presidential election was a contest between Jefferson, Aaron Burr, John Adams, Charles Pinckney, and John Jay. Jefferson, as the current Vice President, was the President of the Senate when it came time to count the votes. And he counted them in his own favor! Bruce Ackerman and David Fontana explain what happened in their article ''Thomas Jefferson Counts Himself into the Presidency'' (90 Virginia Law Review 2004, 551-643):
Thomas Jefferson was remarkably aggressive as President of the Senate. Georgia's certificate '' granting four electoral votes to Jefferson '' was constitutionally defective on its face, a deficiency that was announced on the floor of Congress and reported by leading newspapers of the day. To resolve all doubts, we have located Georgia's certificate in the National Archives, and it does indeed reveal striking constitutional irregularities'...
Nevertheless, Jefferson failed to pause before counting George's four electoral votes into the Republican column, declaring the final vote as if nothing were amiss. Had Georgia's ballot been excluded, the vote count'...would have admitted all five candidates into a runoff in the House'... Without the decisive use of his power as President of the Senate, Jefferson might never have become President of the United States. (emphasis added)
Read that again: Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, the man whose face adorns Mt Rushmore, among the most revered founding fathers of our country, only became President because he used his unilateral power as President of the Senate to open and count the presidential ballots in his own favor.
Vice President Pence can place himself in the history books along side Thomas Jefferson by selecting electoral college votes from states with two sets of votes, by selecting votes that are beneficial to President Trump.
Steal the Vote
Stacy Abrams Sister is Federal Judge
Leslie Abrams Gardner, Stacey Abram's sister, and a Federal Judge intervened to prevent two Georgia counties from cleaning their voter rolls.
How she was assigned the case is very suspect and why she did not recuse herself is a mystery to me. This provides almost automatic grounds for an appeal
due to a conflict of interest.
Atlanta, GA
https://www.zerohedge.com/political/georgia-judge-sister-top-democrat-orders-end-voter-roll-clean
BobbyPiton on Twitter: "The Honorable @POTUS @realDonaldTrump I have some absolutely Stunning News to report regarding PA. I examined just over 9,008,753 records and have identified 521,879 unique Last Names. 245,033 or just under 47% of the total Last Na
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 03:07
BobbyPiton : The Honorable @POTUS @realDonaldTrump I have some absolutely Stunning News to report regarding PA. I examined jus'... https://t.co/P9EVkbgpQc
Sun Dec 27 00:51:25 +0000 2020
Sir Ryan : @BobbyPiton3 @POTUS @realDonaldTrump Second term for 45 and a good ol' 33 to drive it home
Mon Dec 28 03:03:48 +0000 2020
Judge blocks voter purge in 2 Georgia counties - POLITICO
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 17:36
The suit, brought by Majority Forward, represented by National Democratic Party attorney Marc Elias, followed an effort to challenge the lengthy roster of voters simply because their registrations appeared to match U.S. Postal Service change-of address records. Voting officials in the two counties agreed to remove the voters, despite warnings from Democrats that such postal data is not a reliable or conclusive indicator that a voter has given up their local residence.
After Gardner's ruling, Elias hailed the decision as a ''blow to GOP voter suppression.''
''We continue to monitor how other Georgia counties respond to the suppression scheme,'' he added. ''Where necessary, we will sue and we will win.''
The evidence to challenge the 4,000 registrations in Muscogee County was particularly sparse. The challenge was lodged Dec. 14 by a local voter named Ralph Russell who alleged that he had compared evidence from publicly accessible voter registration databases to prove that these voters had moved out of Georgia.
''I believe that each of the individuals named ... as a result of registering their name and change of address to a location outside of Muscogee County, removed to another state with the intention of making the new state their residence,'' Russell told the county board. ''Thus, each individual has lost their residence in Muscogee County, and consequently, each individual is ineligible to vote in Muscogee County.''
The Muscogee board met Dec. 16 and backed Russell's motion 3-1, even though he didn't attend the meeting and provided no additional evidence to support his challenge. Voters on Russell's list, per the board, would be required to vote by provisional ballot and present additional evidence of residency to vote.
In Ben Hill County, the board voted 2-1 to support a challenge lodged by Tommy Roberts, a member of the City Council in Fitzgerald, Ga. Roberts similarly relied on change-of-address data, and the board backed him despite evidence that the data could not be verified and would be inadmissible in court.
''Despite this advice from the County Attorney, the Ben Hill Board voted to find that there was probable cause to sustain the challenges,'' Gardner noted.
Gardner's 11-page ruling released Monday night noted that the removals of the voters appeared to violate federal law because they were not given proper notice and because they qualify as the type of systematic voter roll cleaning that is not permitted within 90 days of a federal election.
The Muscogee board filed a motion earlier Monday arguing that Gardner must remove herself from the case based on her relationship with her sister, Abrams.
Lawyers for the board, described Abrams as ''a Georgia politician and voting rights activist who was the Democratic candidate in the 2018 Georgia gubernatorial election and has since engaged in various highly publicized efforts to increase voter registration and turnout for the 2020 general election in Georgia.''
The motion requesting Gardner's recusal noted that a voter registration group affiliated with Abrams, Fair Fight, filed a suit in another federal court in Georgia last week complaining that a national organization dedicated to targeting voter fraud, True the Vote, is making unjustified challenges to Georgia voters in the lead-up to the Jan. 5 runoffs.
''Abrams' involvement in the Fair Fight Litigation ... is sufficient to satisfy the standard for mandatory judicial recusal,'' the board's attorneys wrote. ''Abrams has a clear interest in the outcome of this proceeding and other similarly situated litigation in Georgia due to her voting advocacy through projects such as Fair Fight and the New Georgia Project.''
Gardner, an appointee of President Barack Obama, noted the recusal request in her ruling granting the restraining order and said she is declining to step aside.
''The Court has reviewed the motion and finds no basis for recusal. An Order detailing the Court's reasoning is forthcoming,'' the judge wrote.
Great Reset
Welcome to Equiterra, where gender equality is real | UN Women '' Headquarters
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 06:34
Date : 03 March 2020
Originally published on Medium.com/@UN_Women
BREAKING NEWS: We found a country that has achieved gender equality!
In Equiterra all people have equal rights and opportunities, regardless of their gender. Women and girls feel safe when walking at night. They get paid equally as men, for work of equal value.
Men and women share chores and care duties at home, and they can access high quality care at affordable rates. Isn't that fabulous!
No one is talking about 'at least 30 per cent' quota for women in political leadership in Equiterra anymore'--men and women are equally represented in political offices, corporate boardrooms and factory floors. Women have equal say in decisions that affect their lives, their bodies, their policies, and their environment. Girls are as valued as boys are, and people of all gender and sexuality feel safe and equal.
This is what gender equality looks like. Join us for a tour of its bustling capital!
Credit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
Reality checkEquiterra exists only in our imagination, but it's a place that we can all aspire to build.
To date, no country in the world has achieved gender equality.
Twenty-five years ago, 193 countries came together at the Fourth World Conference on Women and promised to take measures that guaranteed gender equality. They signed on to the most comprehensive global roadmap to destination ''gender equality'', the Beijing Platform for Action. There has been a lot of progress since then, but many of the promises are yet to be fulfilled.
1. Unstereotype AvenueCredit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
If you ask a little girl walking along Unstereotype Avenue what she wants to be when she grows up, she could tell you I can be anything: a scientist, an engineer, a supreme court judge, an Olympic champion, an artist or astronaut'--not even the sky is the limit when it comes to dreaming big.
The word stereotype has lost its meaning in this country. People root for the girl who wants to be a professional football player, not question her capabilities. Teachers encourage all of their students to choose STEM fields instead of assuming that girls wouldn't be interested in them.
In Equiterra, diversity is celebrated, not feared, and a culture of acceptance dominates the hearts and minds.
Reality check
By the age 6, girls already consider boys more likely to show brilliance and more suited to ''really, really smart'' activities than their own gender. Only 30 per cent of the world's researchers are women2. Violence-Free AlleyCredit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
In Violence-Free Alley, two women are walking along, discussing their days at work.
''They were respectful, and I was fully heard in that meeting today,'' says one.
''Me Too,'' says the other.
In Equiterra, it is women's shared experiences of empowerment and equality that often bring them together, rather than shared experiences of sexual harassment and abuse.
They don't face persistent sexual harassment at work or when walking on the streets. They aren't taught to walk with their keys between their fingers in case they are attacked or worry about being judged for the clothes they wear. There is no such thing as femicide, women are valued and respected here.
Domestic violence is a rare occurrence, because there are strong laws against it and services to support victims. Since gender equality is the norm, the power dynamics between intimate partners are not oppressive or toxic.
Reality Check
Globally, 17.8 per cent of women have experiences physical or sexual violence at the hands of an intimate partner in the last 12 months, and in most countries with available data, less than 40 per cent of the women who experience violence seek help. In 2017, more than half (58 per cent) of all female victims of intentional homicide were killed by an intimate partner or family member'--that's 137 women each day.3. Equal pay streetCredit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
On Equal Pay Street (and everywhere else in Equiterra) there's no question that women and men are being paid equally for work of equal value. There are no systemic barriers that hold women back and since they are encouraged to pursue careers across all sectors, there is no 'women's work' or 'men's work'. Women stay in the pipeline and become leaders across industries.
With care work and household responsibilities shared equally, women don't have to worry about their family choices interfering with the way they are perceived at work and limiting their ability to progress.
There's unified parental leave across all sectors. Fathers take parental leave as mothers do and enjoy caring for their children. Employers allow flexible arrangements for those who have care responsibilities.
Also, in Equiterra minimum wages are set to provide decent income and there is quality and affordable care available for those who need it. As a result, men and women can equally contribute towards a thriving economy and children are happy and healthy.
4. Toxic Masculinity Recycling PlantCredit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
Just like in every civilization, citizens of Equiterra are affected by the human history, including patriarchal ideas of gender roles and what it means to be a boy or a girl, a woman or a man, a transgender person or a gender-nonconforming person.
Instead of conforming to these historical gendered stereotypes that have restricted men and women for generations, people of Equiterra question toxic masculinity. In the Toxic Masculinity Recycling Plant, through innovative dialogues and learning, toxic behaviours are transformed into attitudes that perpetuate gender equality.
For instance, expectations such as, men and boys shouldn't show emotion, or that they are naturally aggressive, have been transformed into healthier attitudes that respect every person's right to live as their true self, with their full range of emotions, dreams and capabilities. Binary definitions of gender turn into a spectrum of gender identity and expression.
Freed from oppressive gender roles, people of Equiterra are not held back by dominant forms of masculinity, and they are happier and mentally healthier than any other society.
5. Inclusion squareCredit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
Two men stand together, watching their son play on the jungle gym. He's made friends with a child in a wheelchair, and another little girl. They're playing pretend: they're all knights guarding their castle against imaginary enemies.
Inclusion square is where families and friends meet to relax and spend time outside. Anyone and everyone can enjoy the space: It's accessible for those living with disability; people don't feel judged or discriminated against on the basis of their sexual orientation, race, religion or socioeconomic standing. Here, everyone feels welcome and included. Here, everyone is safe and able to enjoy themselves.
Reality check
Some 68 countries have laws that explicitly criminalize by law consensual sexual relations between partners of the same sex, and in 11 of these such relations are punishable by death. Less than 5 per cent of children and young persons with disabilities have access to education and training; and girls and young women face with disability face additional barriers to participating in social life and development.6. Climate Action StreetCredit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
In Equiterra there are no deniers of climate change. Everyone does their part to protect the earth and takes action to stop rising temperatures and the destruction of resources. Along Climate Action Street, you'll see recycling and compost bins. There is sustainable and safe public transport that reduces the need for everyone to own and use cars. Sustainable, recycled fashion is the rage here, limiting waste.
And, you see women leading the charge, in equal footing with men. Women leaders in business and government have been key actors in making the policies that are protecting the environment. With the inclusion of women's experiences, talent and perspectives, Equiterra has found new ways of sustainably reducing the country's carbon footprint and food waste.
7. Equal Representation AvenueCredit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
Along Equal Representation Avenue are some of the most important institutions: government headquarters, leading businesses, and a major newspaper office and TV station.
They all have gender balanced leadership. The Parliament has equal representation of women and men, and the boardrooms show women and men of diversity working towards common goals. In the media, you don't see harmful stereotypes and sexism.
8. Education BoulevardCredit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
In Equiterra, education is a top priority. On the school grounds, you see young girls and boys reading history books that include stories of both women and men who have shaped their communities and culture.
Children attend school without worrying about their safety, and girls and boys share chores at home. They have access to all the books and technology they need to learn and grow.
Girls are taught science and math without the presumption that it's not for them. Boys learn humanities and art and learn the importance of gender equality. There's no such thing as child marriage that pulls girls out of school to become brides.
9. Freedom AvenueCredit: UN Women/Ruby Taylor
Freedom is one of the guiding principles of life in Equiterra. Freedom of expression and movement, freedom to choose your identity, and freedom to choose how many children you have and to have control over your own body.
Along Freedom Avenue are the resources to guide some of these choices. Here, you will find access to safe, voluntary family planning information. Comprehensive education about sexuality and sexual and reproductive health and rights is part of the school curricula and available to everyone.
In Equiterra since everyone is empowered to access such information and services, couples and individuals can plan if and when and how many children they want to have, women can complete their education, pursue their careers and enjoy better health. They are leaders in shaping health policies and budgets that affect their lives.
Every woman or girl, whether young or old, can get HIV testing and treatment without stigma or discrimination. In Equite rra, public health systems are fully funded and staffed, user-fees are a thing of the past.
Now that you have seen Equiterra join #GenerationEquality to make this a reality in your family, community and country
James Cooper: That Decoupling Sound: China, the US and a Year of CBDCs - CoinDesk
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 15:49
Dec 28, 2020 at 3:00 p.m. UTC
President Xi and President Trump(Creative Commons)
That Decoupling Sound: China, the US and a Year of CBDCsDuring the second presidential debate in 1992, candidate Ross Perot warned of a ''giant sucking sound'' of jobs leaving the United States for Mexico if the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was to enter into force. This past year, you may have heard a giant decoupling sound as the economies of the United States and the People's Republic of China went their separate ways. It is no secret that after two years of a trade war, ongoing bans on certain U.S. exports to Chinese technology companies with links to China's military, bans on the use of Chinese social media like WeChat and TikTok in the U.S., and denials of Chinese investments in U.S. companies, the two countries are at economic and geopolitical loggerheads.
The Chinese authorities, through the country's Made in China 2025, have invested in a number of leading Chinese technology companies to dominate the future of 5G, artificial intelligence, genomics, robotics and semiconductor chips. The Chinese have used state-owned enterprises to bet on winners to directly take on U.S. big technology companies. One area of overt competition is in the creation of a central bank digital currency (CBDC).
This post is part of CoinDesk's 2020 Year in Review '' a collection of op-eds, essays and interviews about the year in crypto and beyond. James Cooper is Associate Dean, Experiential Learning and Professor of Law at California Western School of Law in San Diego.
For years, China has banned cryptocurrency projects, outlawed exchanges and even blocked industry meetings, while figuring out how to use the disruptive technology for a sovereign-backed central bank digital currency to further centralize power in Beijing. This past year, the People's Bank of China has rolled out its Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP) initiative with a major pilot implementation project underway. Several lottery efforts to promote the DCEP were undertaken and a business-friendly, blockchain-services network was added.
The U.S. government did little to compete. In March, the U.S. government considered creating digital wallets for stimulus payments to the 17 million unbanked households in the United States. An early House of Representatives bill for the Payment Protection Program had provided for such a distribution, to the delight of many advocates for a digital dollar, only to see the final legislation forgo such a visionary step.
And so it was generally for the year 2020: Lots of traction for the Chinese version of a CBDC and plenty of retreat for a United States version of the same. Even Facebook changed its plan (and name) for its own digital token, the libra (now diem). In making his case for the libra back in 2019 in front of U.S. lawmakers, Zuckerberg threw China under the bus, stating that if the U.S. government did not let Facebook go forward China would develop and deploy a cryptocurrency backed by a sovereign yuan, scaled at global proportions. Zuckerberg's testimony forced the world to wake up to the challenges that would come with central bank digital currencies. His testimony was also the catalyst for the Chinese authorities to speed up its deployment of the DCEP.
The decoupling has begun.This year saw a distribution of the DCEP to all commercial banks affiliated with China's central bank, namely the four government-owned banks (Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Agriculture Bank of China, Bank of China and China Construction Bank). Three telecommunication operators (China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom) are partnering. After the initial distribution to commercial banks, the commercial banks will then distribute the DCEP to consumers.
Different banks are choosing different issuing/distributing modes. Some banks may independently experiment DCEP through smart phone apps, or collaborate with telecom operators and put it within SIM cards. The People's Bank of China is testing the best way for DCEP so as to encourage different banks to try out different methods of use. With Shenzhen and Suzhou as the experimental sites, the testing is underway. Once the Chinese export the DCEP through its One Belt One Road initiative, it will be used globally, potentially ending the U.S. dollar's reign as the world's reserve currency. It was no surprise that at the Group of 20 Meeting on Nov. 21, Chinese President Xi Jingping advised the assembled countries with the most developed economies they should embrace CBDCs and they should ''discuss developing standards and principles for central bank digital currencies with an open and accommodating attitude.''
While the G20 met, U.S. President Donald Trump was hitting the links on one of his golf courses, ignoring the raging coronavirus pandemic stateside and not taking the initiative to provide for a much-needed further stimulus package, let alone one that rolled out a digital dollar and smart apps to make the distribution simpler. Could it be that such a digitization does not involve the president's signature on the check?
See also: James Cooper '' The New US-Mexico-Canada Trade Pact Holds Opportunity for Distributed Tech
And so the United States is still hesitant to move forward with a sovereign-backed digital currency. Plenty of others, however, are trying out the idea. We saw the SOV from the Marshall Islands, the sand dollar of the Bahamas, the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank's project and a whole host of other states moving toward this new era of sovereign-backed digital currencies. While Venezuela's petro and Iran's own digital currency project were doomed attempts at getting around U.S. sanctions against their regimes, a number of international institutions have used the year to develop technologies for digital assets.
The most surprising of these was the Bank of International Settlements (BIS), the central bank for central banks, which was caught flatfooted when the excitement over private cryptocurrencies filtered up to CBDCs. In March 2018, the BIS undertook a survey of 63 countries around the globe and analyzed trends of potential CBDCs. It concluded''that each jurisdiction considering the launch of a CBDC should carefully and thoroughly consider the implications before making any decision.'' Not exactly cutting-edge stuff.
The BIS moved from naysayer to adopter in 2020. And while in early 2020 some 80% of central banks (up from 70%) were investigating some form of CBDC, about 70% of central banks still see themselves as unlikely to issue any type of CBDC in the foreseeable future. But 10% of those surveyed did report they would be issuing a general purpose CBDC in the ''short term.'' It is looking like the U.S. will not be among those early pioneers.
See also: Marcelo Prates '' Central Banks Had to Up Their Money Game This Year '' And They Did
In the wake of the abdication of a greenback version of a CBDC, other countries' central banks, the BIS and Facebook have all attempted the equivalent of digital asset mulligans this past year. That some central banks are now moving forward from study to deployment demonstrates the power that states have mustered in their attempts to re-centralize power. After the U.S. government, and just about every other Western government, went to the mattresses over Facebook's plan to roll out the libra, it turns out that Mark Zuckerberg was right: The Chinese are going to be the major force in sovereign-backed digital currencies. The decoupling has begun.
Great Awakening
Bitcoin pest control guy
Value we are the bitcoin of podcasts
Are You Ready for Real-Time Inflation? | by Justin Honse | Data Driven Investor | Dec, 2020 | Medium
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 15:38
A Cashless SocietyThe Fed's next move is to take money directly out of your walletIt's been said that inflation is a ''hidden tax'', as an increase in the circulating money supply causes the value of our currency to drop. Consumers dislike inflation when it causes grocery prices to increase, but this same force also has the ability to increase asset prices such as homes and investments, just as we're seeing today.
Human beings strive for efficiency, and combined with technology, the result is deflationary. However because the debts of nations are significant, central banks such as the Fed seek inflation '-- as it causes the future payback value of governmental debts to decrease. As civilization is entering a time of exponentially increasing technological innovation, the tools of the Fed have lost much of their power to trigger inflation.
Typically low interest rates stimulate borrowing and aid in inflation, but this is no longer working as the US interest rate has been low, even zero, for quite some time now. But the Fed has another trick up its sleeve: negative interest rates.
Negative interest rates at the central bank level are not a new idea. In October 2015, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) published a working paper titled ''Breaking Through the Zero Lower Bound'' which starts out quite boldly:
''There has been much discussion about eliminating the ''zero lower bound'' by eliminating paper currency.''
The zero lower bound, of course, is referring to central banks' ability to take interest rates below zero. Appendix I (pg. 38) of this paper is titled ''Potential steps in the transition from paper currency standard to digital currency''.
Negative rates are already in use in some countries today. The Bank of Japan (BoJ) instituted negative interest rates in January 2016, and since then Germany and several other European countries have followed suit. Recently, the Bank of England (BoE) instructed banks in the UK to prepare for implementation of negative rates from an accounting perspective.
The Federal Reserve (the Fed) actually has a fairly limited toolset with which to influence the US economy today. Aside from setting the Federal Funds Rate (i.e., the interest rate for bank borrowing), and performing open market operations via the FOMC (the Federal Open Market Committee), such as with QE (Quantitative Easing), there's not a hell of a lot the Fed can actually do to stimulate the economy.
When the Fed ''creates money'', what they are essentially doing is providing a larger credit line to commercial banks. However, when we are in a higher risk environment such as the current economic downturn, banks' appetite for risk is greatly diminished, and thus only businesses and organizations with the highest quality credit are able to actually borrow for any economic stimulation.
Typically when the Fed's interest rate is lower, the purpose is to increase borrowing and stimulate the economy with the hope of causing inflation. But because the Fed's actions still count on the commercial banks to lend, and because it takes approximately 18 months for this new ''money'' to filter down to the real economy, their influence is often subpar.
There are a few things you may have seen in the headlines in recent months, one is that the Fed has been struggling to cause the desired inflation (PCE measure), and another is the fact that they have been working on a central bank digital currency (CBDC).
In reality, the Fed can't effectively cause economic growth and inflation because they can't control how often regular consumers are willing to spend, and they can't control whether people will save money or spend it. If they could do so, they believe they *could* in fact stimulate economic growth and inflation.
In a world where economic growth is threatened '-- such as was happening long before the pandemic, these tools '-- as well as QE and other buying programs, have been shown to be inadequate to stimulate the 'official' PCE inflation measure. These interventions prop up parts of the market '-- but that's about it.
And so, the Fed and the economists want you to spend, they want you to avoid saving, and they desperately want you to go into more and more debt, because that means an increase in the circulating money supply, and more economic activity in hopes to trigger inflation.
But what is a central bank to do when interest rates are already at zero, after a long period of being at record-low interest rates?
As mentioned, several countries have already moved to negative rates but with limited success. The problem is that a $20 bill appears to be worth $20 even if it has been devalued behind the scenes by inflation. If this face/par value could be bypassed, then the value of the money itself would physically change instead of consumers seeing an increase in consumer prices.
So the Fed and the IMF believe that moving to a digital currency would eliminate that hindrance. And they are correct. However as long as physical money with its bothersome face value exists, their efforts would still be limited.
So the Fed will move to a CBDC, and get rid of physical cash, which is exactly what they are planning to do. Some of the coronavirus stimulus bills, such as the Banking For All Act mentioned the idea of paying stimulus directly from the Fed as a ''Digital Dollar'' and opening bank accounts for all US citizens directly with the Federal Reserve.
Aside from not yet addressing the issue of obtaining consumer credit in the future, a move toward consumers banking directly with the Fed places commercial banks in jeopardy. This is referred to as ''bank disintermediation'', and leading up to CBDC's, this concern has been widely discussed in many papers from the Fed, the IMF, and other economic institutions.
The implementation of a CBDC/Digital Dollar, and having consumers bank directly with the Fed should raise questions. For example, If you hold CBDC in your Fed-based digital wallet account instead of physical dollars (or today's digital US dollars), what happens when the Fed declares a move to a negative interest rate?
I'll tell you what it means:
The money in your Fed digital wallet will go down in value completely outside of your control '-- like a pickpocket snagging some of your money. We will have real-time inflation via real-time currency devaluation.
If you own crypto or shares of stocks, you're familiar with the concept that checking your investment account or crypto wallet will show you the value of what your assets are worth right at that moment.
So how do you feel about that happening with the hard-earned money in your wallet?
It's coming.
The Fed may sugarcoat it, they may offer us discounts for paying with CBDC instead of USD until cash is completely phased out '-- but it is coming. The Fed's goal is to increase monetary velocity by getting you to spend, and disinhibiting your desire to save.
Will this make you spend it more quickly, they are wondering? Yes, that is exactly what they are hoping '-- that you will acknowledge your $1,000 is going to magically become $993 by the end of the week, and so you'd rather spend it sooner than later.
Understand '-- there will be no way to withdraw CBDC, just as you cannot withdraw bitcoin. You can only spend CBDC or save it '-- it cannot live outside of the financial system. You can't grab it from an ATM, and you can't hide it under your mattress (where it would at least seem to keep its face value!)
If interest rates go negative, part of your money will go with it, with no escape.
And so we start to see how the Fed is hoping to control monetary velocity '-- the number of times a given dollar changes hands. If your digital dollar is going to become worth less and less over time, you become incentivized to retain as much purchasing power as possible by spending that money as quickly as possible.
They will be able to do this because CBDC is programmable currency, not unlike Ethereum smart contracts.
So you're thinking, I won't use CBDC, I'll use the existing money we already have. That will be fine, until CBDC is the only game in town. Not long from now, you'll start hearing about plans to get rid of the $100 bill, and the $50 bill. Ultimately we'll be down to coins and maybe one dollar bills '-- if we're lucky.
80% of the world's central banks are already working on CBDC, and countries like China and Sweden have already made great strides toward reducing the use of physical cash. This trend of more and more digital payments will only increase from here on out.
There are other concerns we should have over moving to a national digital currency. Because CBDC is programmable, there are more aspects beyond the aforementioned devaluation that central banks will have much more control over. I've written several articles about CBDC already, but a basic list of capabilities we should be concerned about with CBDC is as follows
Placing expiration dates on fundsPlacing a cap on savings or even balancesAll transactions being tracked with no anonymityDictating what can and cannot be purchased using CBDC, not unlike the SNAP/EBT Food Stamp program in the US today.As you can surmise, all of the above are designed to place controls on spending and to give the Fed the ability to influence monetary velocity and prevent you from saving. I think they will find that ultimately their efforts do not work nearly as well as they hope, but nonetheless it is a significant level of control that we will not be able to avoid.
Heading into the future, we are given hope with the advent of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, as they provide a way to break out of what will soon be a closed-loop financial system.
In the meantime, consumers should pay special attention to any legislation that appears to indicate movement toward CBDC, or any removal of physical bills, and we should raise our voices to our legislators with all we have left of democracy.
Brexit
It's Not Over: Major Issues the Brexit Deal Leaves Unresolved - Bloomberg
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 12:55
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Brexit deal mentions Netscape browser and Mozilla Mail - BBC News
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 13:05
By Cristina CriddleTechnology reporter
Published duration 1 day ago
image copyright Getty Images
image caption James Barksdale was the CEO of Netscape from 1995 until the company merged with AOL in March 1999References to decades-old computer software are included in the new Brexit agreement, including a description of Netscape Communicator and Mozilla Mail as being "modern" services.
Experts believe officials must have copied and pasted chunks of text from old legislation into the document.
The references are on page 921 of the trade deal, in a section on encryption technology.
It also recommends using systems that are now vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
The text cites "modern e-mail software packages including Outlook, Mozilla Mail as well as Netscape Communicator 4.x."
The latter two are now defunct - the last major release of Netscape Communicator was in 1997.
The document also recommends using 1024-bit RSA encryption and the SHA-1 hashing algorithm, which are both outdated and vulnerable to cyber-attacks.
"It's clear that something is amiss in the drafting of this treaty, and we'd go so far as to venture the opinion that a tired civil servant simply cut-and-pasted from a late-1990s security document," news site Hackaday commented.
Several people have suggested the words were copied from a 2008 EU law, which includes the same text.
'Little excuse'
Prof Bill Buchanan, a cryptography expert at Edinburgh Napier University, said there was "little excuse" for the outdated references.
"I believe this looks like a standard copy-and-paste of old standards, and with little understanding of the technical details.
"The text is full of acronyms, and it perhaps needs more of a lay person's explanation to define the requirements."
Although SHA-1 and 1024-bit RSA "were a good selection a decade or so ago, they are no longer up to modern security standards," he added.
media caption A round-up of the Brexit trade agreementThe Brexit negotiations finally ended on Christmas Eve, with a deal which was more than 1,200 pages long.
Ambassadors from the 27 EU member states have unanimously approved the EU-UK post-Brexit trade deal.
The UK Parliament is expected to approve it on Wednesday, paving the way for it to take effect provisionally on 1 January ahead of a European Parliament vote.
The Home Office said the paragraphs "set out the legally prescribed measures for cooperation."
"We currently use the latest technology to share this data, which is properly protected and in line with the guidance from the National Cyber Security Centre," a spokesman added.
Noodle Gun
The Hilaria Baldwin accent controversy, explained, from Instagram joke to Alec Baldwin rant - The Washington Post
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 22:51
Hilaria Baldwin with husband Alec. (Evan Agostini/Invision/AP)
The holiday season has been unusual, to say the least, but we can always rely on celebrities to chime in with some last-minute drama before the new year.
Perhaps you noticed ''Baldwin'' trending on Twitter over the weekend and decided you couldn't handle any more of that guy after his countless appearances on ''Saturday Night Live'' as President Trump. Can't say we blame you! The 2020 twist of it all, however, is that the trending Baldwin wasn't Alec, but his wife, Hilaria.
Before this past week, Hilaria Baldwin (nee Hilary Hayward-Thomas) was only known to most as the yoga instructor and lifestyle podcaster who wed the ''30 Rock'' actor back in 2012. The pair met the previous year at a Manhattan restaurant, where, as Hilaria once told the New York Times, Alec ''walked up and took my hand and said, 'I must know you.' '' They now share five young children who frequently appear on Hilaria's personal Instagram account.
Then last Monday, the Twitter user @lenibriscoe tweeted, ''You have to admire Hilaria Baldwin's commitment to her decade long grift where she impersonates a Spanish person.'' The thread documented several instances of Baldwin speaking with a Spanish accent and seemingly claiming heritage, despite having spent most of her childhood in Massachusetts with seemingly non-Spanish parents.
A controversy was born '-- and only made worse when Baldwin eventually responded on Instagram. Here's how it all unfolded.
How did this all start?
It started, as it often does, with an Instagram post. The comedian Amy Schumer reposted an image of Baldwin wearing a bra and underwear as she holds her months-old son, Eduardo Pau Lucas, and jokingly passed it off as a photo of herself and her own young son, Gene.
''Gene and I wanted to wish everyone a happy holiday season,'' Schumer wrote in the since-deleted post, according to People magazine. Baldwin took offense to the conversations that ensued in the comments section, claiming they were ''getting into a place of body shaming'' and calling for ''body inclusivity.''
''There's the whole thing of, 'Oh, moms don't look like that,' '' Baldwin said in a video. ''Some moms do. This mom does. I am included in the inclusivity.''
The Twitter thread popped up around the time of this back-and-forth, drawing attention to Baldwin's explicitly American accent in some older videos.
And then it started trending?
Yup! With festivities over, it seems everyone returned to Twitter to share negative reviews of ''Wonder Woman 1984'' and express general confusion over Baldwin's accent. Vulture's Jackson McHenry killed two birds with one stone: ''Hilaria Baldwin whispers, 'I renounce my wish' and turns back into Hilary.''
What's the actual story?
The Twitter thread painstakingly details how Baldwin has long spoken with a vaguely Spanish accent '-- as demonstrated in a ''Good Morning America'' interview following her wedding to Alec, as well as a ''Today'' show appearance where she struggled to recall the English word for ''cucumber.''
In her first Instagram video addressing the confusion, Baldwin blamed members of the press for routinely flubbing details of her ancestry and background. News archives indeed show that reporting around her upbringing is all over the place: A 2012 Vanity Fair article cited her ''mixed Yankee and Spanish stock.'' A New York Post dispatch from the couple's wedding reported that the ceremony was ''conducted in English with readings in Spanish'' and that ''the bride's family is from Spain.'' A New York Times column about the ceremony mentioned that Baldwin was raised in Boston and Spain and that ''her parents now reside on Mallorca.''
This is where we remind you to support local news organizations: A Boston Herald item about the Baldwins' lavish wedding noted that ''the blushing bride grew up in Spain and Beacon Hill, where she attended the Advent School,'' and where '-- according to the paper's unnamed source '-- ''she was known as Hilary, not 'Hilaria.' ''
An even clearer picture emerges from a 2003 Beacon Hill Times story about Baldwin's father, David Thomas. The paper described Thomas, a former lawyer then serving as treasurer of the Beacon Hill Civic Association, as a Nebraska native who grew up in Upstate New York.
The article detailed Thomas's long-standing presence in Beacon Hill, noting he had ''lived in the same home on Pinckney Street'' for nearly three decades. He had been married to Baldwin's mother, internist Kathryn Hayward, for 24 years by that point. The paper briefly mentioned their two children: ''Jeremy, who is a sophomore at New York University, and Hilary, who lives on Beacon Hill and plans to start college at New York University in the fall.''
So is she actually Spanish?
Well, the Beacon Hill Times article did confirm the family's connection to Spain '-- but as a summer destination, not a motherland. It noted that David Thomas, who studied Spanish literature at Pennsylvania's Haverford College, ''speaks fluent Spanish and enjoys vacationing in Spain and Mexico.''
Thomas's father, David Lloyd Thomas Sr., was an Iowa native who frequently traveled to Argentina as an auditor for General Electric. According to Thomas Sr.'s obituary, published earlier this year, the family's travels there ''instilled in his children a curiosity about the wider world and inspired them to become proficient in the Spanish language.''
Baldwin's mother, meanwhile, grew up in Springfield, Mass., according to local news reports from 2017, when she gave a speech at her alma mater, Bay Path University, in western Massachusetts. That doesn't speak to ancestry, of course '-- Baldwin told her Instagram followers that her ethnic background is ''a mix of many, many, many things'' '-- but it does make it odd that she would forget the English word for a vegetable in a cooking segment, or that she would say, as she reportedly did on a podcast this year, that she moved to the United States at 19 to attend NYU.
Has Alec addressed this at all?
In addition to making a brief off-screen appearance in Hilaria's second Instagram address, Alec posted his own video online with the caption, ''Consider the source'... ''
He began the eight-minute clip sitting in eerie silence, eventually whispering, ''Hope you had a nice holiday.'' After several minutes of railing against Facebook and its founders, Alec pivots to calling Twitter a ''swap meet'' and likens tweets to trashy secondhand goods: ''used coasters with the rings on them,'' ''vintage bottle openers from some bar,'' ''empty coffee cans'' and so on.
''You have to hack your way through the debris,'' he says of the platform before mentioning Pizzagate and Jeffrey Epstein. Ironically, it takes him more than six minutes to get to the point: ''There's things that have been said lately about people I love and care about deeply which are ridiculous. I mean, just ridiculous. Consider the source. Consider the source.''
So what if she fabricated her bio?
Some on social media have wondered what the harm is in Baldwin passing herself off as Spanish '-- a layered question. As many of her critics (including the author of the thread that started it all) pointed out, her public image and statements about it evoke the otherness that people of immigrant backgrounds often feel.
Baldwin confessed to being ''a White girl'' in her video response, but it's her ethnicity, not her race, that is in dispute. There are people of all ethnic backgrounds in Spain, of course, and many of them are White. (Remember colonization?)
Baldwin's defense seems to cast the issue as ignorant backlash against her bicultural background. ''I'm proud that I speak two languages, and I'm proud that I have two cultures,'' she said in her Instagram. ''I'm proud that I'm raising my kids that way. I'm proud that my family is that way. And I don't really think that that's a negative thing.''
In another since-deleted post, Schumer seemed to agree with those who found the entire controversy as funny as it was frustrating. ''I get it. I went to Spain a couple times and loved it too,'' she wrote Sunday on Instagram alongside a cucumber emoji.
Read more:
How long can famous people get away with dismissing criticism as 'bullying' from 'haters'?
All the times Alec Baldwin has suggested he's done playing Trump on 'Saturday Night Live'
One more for the road! 2020's 'Race faker' trend peaks as Alec 'Trump' Baldwin's wife Hilaria is outed for having posed as Spanish '-- RT USA News
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 13:51
Hilaria Baldwin, the wife of late-night TV's 'Donald Trump', actor Alec Baldwin, appears to have been impersonating a Spanish person for years, potentially making her the highest-profile 'race faker' exposed in 2020.
A series of now-deleted Twitter posts went viral on Sunday, after a user by the name 'Lenibriscoe' shed some light on Baldwin's curious media appearances.
In one of the clips Baldwin seems to be having some trouble maintaining a Spanish accent while giving an interview on Good Morning America. Another video from the show Today has the 36-year-old Bay-Stater say she could not remember the English word for ''cucumber.''
As Lenibriscoe's tweets spread on social media, more evidence of Baldwin claiming Spanish heritage surfaced.
The influencer's CAA speaker page says she was born on Mallorca, a Mediterranean island off the cast of Spain, despite her actually having been born in Boston. While on a podcast earlier this year, Baldwin herself reiterated this claim, saying that that she moved to America from Mallorca, even adding she ''knew no pop culture'' in the US.
In 2018 Hola! magazine identified Baldwin as Spanish in their story. Her celebrity husband also regularly refers to his wife as Spanish on social media.
Unfortunately for Baldwin, her claims seem to go completely against two presumably credible sources. The first one would be her mother, Kathryn Hayward, who says that they moved to Mallorca in 2011, when Baldwin was about 27 years old.
The second source would be none other than Se±ora Baldwin herself. The blogger responded on Instagram to the accusations of race fakery, saying that she was indeed born in Boston, yet claiming that sometimes she merely gets confused which language to use, due to being bilingual.
According to Baldwin's old Myspace page her real name appears to be Hillary Hayward-Thomas. Online commenters who claim to have been her classmates at a private school in Massachusetts describe her as ''archetypal northeastern prep schooled''.
I Deleted my previous tweet. I went to HS with Hillary Hayward Thomas in Boston and she had no accent, was archetypal northeastern prep schooler. we all mythologize ourselves, but her pretending to be ESL is a level of exaggeration that seems problematic.
'-- David Golann (@DavidGolann) December 25, 2020Perhaps unsurprisingly, Baldwin's unusual take on her own racial identity and the contradictory explanation on Instagram provoked some visceral backlash, with commenters mocking her behavior and calling it 'nonsense'. Quite a few commenters wondered if her husband was ''in on the con''.
Alec Baldwin also responded to the story, saying that he didn't believe the ''ridiculous'' allegations made against his wife.
The 'Hilaria' Baldwin reveal seems to be very appropriate for the end of 2020. Besides quite a few disasters, this year also has seen a strange trend of white women in the US being exposed as pretending to be someone else.
Arguably it was professor Jessica Krug of George Washington University who kickstarted it a few months ago. Unlike Baldwin, the African studies scholar admitted to having faked being black much of her adult life after.
Also on rt.com 'I absolutely cancel myself': African studies professor says she FAKED BEING BLACK most of her adult life, admits she is white Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!
In Virginia teenager N-word story, where are the adults?
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 06:28
| December 28, 2020 04:23 PM
It is one thing for maladjusted activists to behave as villains.
But what excuse is there for our institutions to do the same?
The New York Times published a grotesque report this weekend cheering an 18-year-old named Jimmy Galligan, a biracial Virginia resident who targeted a white girl for destruction after he obtained a years-old video of her using the N-word.
The white girl, Mimi Groves, used the racial slur jokingly in 2016 in reference to having just acquired her learner's permit. Groves, who was a freshman in high school at the time, said specifically in a Snapchat video, "I can drive, n-----s."
Three years later, Galligan obtained a copy of the video.
"He tucked the video away, deciding to post it publicly when the time was right," reports the New York Times.
And by ''when the time was right,'' the paper of record means the aggrieved 18-year-old waited until Groves, who spent her years in high school competing successfully as a cheerleader, had been accepted into the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, as a member of its prestigious cheer team.
The New York Times reports, ''Mr. Galligan, who had waited until Ms. Groves had chosen a college, had publicly posted the video that afternoon. Within hours, it had been shared to Snapchat, TikTok and Twitter, where furious calls mounted for the University of Tennessee to revoke its admission offer."
The University of Tennessee bowed to the mob, first by removing Groves from its cheer squad and then by pressuring her into rescinding her application for enrollment. Groves, who is both contrite and embarrassed for what she said as a freshman in high school, took the hint. She withdrew her acceptance and ended up attending community college online.
Galligan, whom the New York Times treats as some sort of tortured, noble soul, believes his actions were both righteous and even heroic.
"I'm going to remind myself,'' he tells the New York Times, ''you started something. You taught someone a lesson.''
Galligan is outrageously misguided. That much is clear. But he is not even the most disturbing thing about this wretched story. That dubious distinction goes to both the New York Times and the University of Tennessee.
It is one thing if Galligan is a bitter, vindictive young man suffering from personal hang-ups, but what good reason does the New York Times have to run his story? What public interest is served? Are we to believe now that the private remarks of children, remarks, by the way, for which they have apologized, merit attention from the most powerful media organizations in the United States? Surely, the New York Times is not serious when it says of this incident that it paints a "complex portrait of behavior that for generations had gone unchecked in schools in one of the nation's wealthiest counties, where Black students said they had long been subjected to ridicule." Next up, I suppose the paper will dispatch a team of reporters to investigate the mean-girl table.
And what about the University of Tennessee? It arguably looks worse than the New York Times. Groves said a bad word. She also said it years ago when she was just a teenager, and she has repented for it. Groves also never directed the word at anyone, much less in hate. She certainly did not direct anything at Galligan. Yet, the university decided anyway that the best course of action would be to remove Groves from the cheer team before eventually pressuring her into withdrawing her application.
Galligan's personal rage is his own problem. But what is going on at the New York Times and the University of Tennessee? Whose idea was it to elevate Galligan as some sort of racial-justice hero? Likewise, does the university have a policy whereby the years-old social media activity of its applicants decides enrollment? Perhaps it is as many fear. Perhaps it is that these establishments are overrun now with activists who mirror closely the bitter resentment and sense of moral superiority embodied by Galligan's smug comments to the New York Times.
The self-anointed Torquemadas of "social justice" are on the prowl, looking for victims to punish. The only thing scarier than that is that our institutions are playing along for some reason.
Where are the adults?
PolitiFact | Fact-checking the myth that the word picnic is racist
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 15:21
A south Florida politician said that the word picnic shouldn't be used to describe an annual gathering of city employees.
Fort Lauderdale City Commissioner Robert McKinzie said the word has racist origins, referring to hangings of African Americans.
"It is a very racially insensitive word if you look at it," he said during a Feb. 19 commission meeting.
McKinzie elaborated: "You can Google it. I don't want it to be printed in the paper, but it's racially insensitive. It is a tradition that was used to celebrate the hanging of black folks back in the days, so just, we need to change it to 'family outing, cookout, barbecue,' but I would never use that word."
(Hat-tip to South Florida Sun Sentinel reporter Brittany Wallman who tweeted McKinzie's statement.)
We wanted to know if McKinzie's point was accurate, so we interviewed professors of language and African-American history.
They said it does not refer to lynchings.
Instead, picnic has French roots and refers to a social gathering where people eat. (Snopes long ago debunked a similar claim.)
McKinzie, a Democrat and owner of a general contracting firm, was appointed by the commission to fill a vacancy in 2014 and has since won election twice. He represents a district that includes most of the city's historically black neighborhoods.
We asked McKinzie and his assistant to provide evidence to support his claim and did not get a response by our deadline.
Origin of the word 'picnic'
Claims have circulated for at least two decades that the word "picnic" has racist connotations.
In 2002, Yohuru R. Williams, then an associate professor of history at Delaware State University, wrote an article for the Black History Bulletin, "Anatomy of an untruth: the controversy over 'picnic' and the true cause of lynching."
Williams wrote the article a couple years after he heard a presentation by Ron Wallace, president of Dularon Entertainment. Wallace said the word picnic was short for "pick a n-----' to lynch."
We found the same statement by Wallace in the Oakland Post in 1997.
But Williams, who is now a dean at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul told us that "picnic" is not a racially insensitive term.
However, McKinzie would have been on more solid ground if he had said that many lynchings had a picnic-like atmosphere.
The term historians use is "spectacle lynchings," Williams said. These were large public gatherings where people took photographs and looked for souvenirs, he said.
Other writers and experts have also debunked the idea that the word picnic has racist origins, including David Pilgrim, founder and curator of the Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia at Ferris State University in Michigan.
Pilgrim told us in an interview that it's possible someone used the word picnic to refer to lynchings, but "what we know for a fact is that's not where the word picnic came from."
Other historians have also documented the picnic-like atmosphere of lynchings.
Philip Dray, who wrote a book, At the Hands of Persons Unknown: The Lynching of Black America, wrote that crowds consumed food or drink.
"Lynching was an undeniable part of daily life, as distinctly American as baseball games and church suppers," he wrote. "Men brought their wives and children to the events, posed for commemorative photographs, and purchased souvenirs of the occasion as if they had been at a company picnic."
University of North Carolina history professor W. Fitzhugh Brundage told us that the term "negro barbecue" was used to describe instances in which whites burned their victims.
"Such extreme mutilation happened in fewer than a quarter of the lynchings, but of course the horror of the events and the publicity surrounding them meant that they left a lasting impression," Brundage said. "So if someone has a problem with words associated with lynching, it should arguably be barbecue and not picnic."
Joseph T. Acquisto, professor of French who chairs the department of romance languages and linguistics at the University of Vermont, said the word picnic has French origins. It is a composite of two French words: the verb piquer and the noun nique (pronounced: pea-kay and neek).
Acquisto said the term dates back to 1694, according to the Tr(C)sor de la langue fran§aise, an extensive dictionary of 19th and 20th century French.
"It notes that the original meaning was a meal where everyone paid their share or brought their own food, and then later became an outdoor meal," he said.
Kevin Rottet, an associate professor of French linguistics at Indiana University, told us that the first appearance of the word picnic in English was in 1748.
"From a linguistic point of view, the accusation of racial insensitivity does not at all accord with the facts in the history of this word," Rottet said. "I would categorically reject the claim of racist connotations here."
Our ruling
McKinzie said that the word picnic is a "racially insensitive word."
There is no evidence that the origin of the word traces back to lynchings of African-Americans. The word has French origins and refers to a gathering with food.
During lynchings, the settings were sometimes social occasions where white people ate food. While that was a picnic-like atmosphere, it doesn't mean that the word "picnic" is a racist word.
We rate this statement False.
Audubon Society hit by claims of 'intimidation and threats' - POLITICO
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 13:55
Trotter accused Yarnold, a former newspaper editor who has led the organization since 2010, of fostering a workplace that concentrates decision-making among a tight group of mostly white male allies.
''No one investigates. There's no accountability. My complaints would just fall on deaf ears and into the hands of David Yarnold,'' Trotter said. ''There was no real avenue for recourse.''
Trotter told POLITICO that Yarnold's behavior crossed a line when he suggested Trotter's job was at stake if he did not reveal who participated in a survey that showed widespread dissatisfaction among employees. The survey was taken by 121 women, people of color, members of the LGBTQ community, people with disabilities and early career professionals with the understanding that their names would not be revealed. According to Trotter, who oversaw the survey, 66 percent of the respondents agreed that ''Audubon doesn't create an environment where diverse staff can thrive,'' and 40 percent said they have seen team members or superiors ''stall, de-prioritize or ignore'' efforts to promote equity, diversity and inclusion.
"He said I'm going to get what I want and I am your employer," Trotter said, describing the statements allegedly Yarnold made on an April 17 call as "a direct threat to my employment and a way to try to intimidate and coerce me into providing the data that was provided to me in confidence."
Yarnold, in an emailed response to POLITICO questions, denied threatening Trotter or insisting that he turn over the names of the employees who participated in the survey.
"I did say to Devon that I could insist he turn over the complaints he'd received but that I wasn't going to do so because that's not how I manage,'' Yarnold wrote [emphasis original].
Yarnold rejected the notion that the Audubon community is unfriendly to people of diverse backgrounds, while acknowledging that the organization is on a multi-year path to improving its work environment to ensure everyone has the same chance to succeed and feel at home.
"Audubon is in the throes of growth and change, and we're eagerly becoming an Audubon for all," Yarnold said. ''We're several years into a deep transformation around equity and inclusion, in an environmental field that's been white-dominated for decades.''
He said staff members have "multiple avenues" to report discrimination and that Audubon is conducting equity, diversity and inclusion training for all managers and staff; working to further diversify a workforce that's currently one-quarter people of color; adding Human Resources staff; and expanding field programs in communities serving Black residents, indigenous populations and other people of color.
Yarnold said he and Trotter were "both trying to do the right thing'' in their handling of the diversity survey but that as CEO he was "legally and morally bound" to address workplace harassment and discrimination, which is why he sought more specific information about employees' complaints.
''Our staff has been apart for eight months, and the world feels very upside down right now '-- all of that strains our senses of community and security,'' Yarnold added. ''Managing staff amid Covid-19, a national reckoning on race equity, and a contentious election, and driving cultural change at the same time is an epic challenge, but we don't have the right to give up '-- we have to keep going, and that's what we're doing.''
Audubon is being forced to confront its own record on diversity at a time when the world of environmental activism is facing the same pressure for self-examination as media, tech and other industries. The issue is especially sensitive in the heavily white conservation field, which occupies a cultural space prioritizing organizations that lift up women and people of color. While Audubon diversified its top ranks '-- its executive team this year expanded from seven to nine members to boost women and people of color '-- current and former employees say white men remain disproportionately in control.
Trotter outlined his experience in his goodbye email to staff, some board members and outside consultants. Trotter said he faced ''intimidation and threats'' from a ''white male hegemony'' for raising concerns to higher-ups about systemic problems that had been reported to him by employees.
Trotter's email alluded to the April 17 incident '-- though he did not directly reference it '-- regarding the anonymous staff survey. The email also cited the departure of Ferris, the former head of diversity and inclusion, saying the behavior of senior Audubon officials ''broke down a powerful leader.'' Ferris left the organization in March.
A former senior official, speaking on the condition of anonymity to avoid reprisals, said Yarnold's relationship with Ferris soured after she publicly questioned Audubon's hiring practices at a state leadership meeting last year. She argued that Audubon needed to do more to properly integrate and financially support equity and diversity efforts, which she claimed were funded by securing her own grants, the former senior official said. The official said Yarnold's attitude toward Ferris changed after her presentation at the meeting, becoming hostile.
Two people familiar with the circumstances of Ferris' departure say another employee leaked her copies of an email that Audubon Human Resources Vice President Chermia Hoeffner sent to Yarnold and Chief Network Officer David Ringer suggesting ''talking points'' for Yarnold to bring up in a future meeting with Ferris. They included sharp criticism of her performance.
''There is a clear disconnect between what she seeks to deliver and what you want to see from her,'' Hoeffner wrote in an email to Yarnold, on which Ringer is copied, preparing for a Sept. 23, 2019, meeting. ''Despite her protestations, you are unable to see clearly what successes her efforts have brought.''
The leaking of the emails prompted Ferris to hire a lawyer and negotiate a severance agreement, which included a non-disparagement agreement, the two people said. Ferris, who is now CEO of the Institute for Sustainable Communities, did not respond to a request for comment.
Yarnold, in his emailed responses to POLITICO questions, said Ferris resigned of her own volition.
Emails shared by an Audubon spokesperson showed that Ringer also offered qualified praise for Ferris, noting that when delivering feedback to her they ''can and should acknowledge'' that Ferris had ''inspired staff to take action'' and that ''she has challenged managers to want to do more.'' Ringer said he wanted to ''Agree on work ahead of us for the next 6-8 months and enshrine those activities in Deeohn's goals.''
Hoeffner and Ringer declined to comment through Audubon spokespeople.
Morning EnergyThe latest news in energy and environmental politics and policy.
POLITICO conducted interviews with 13 current and former employees and reviewed internal communications, video conferences, messages to staff and letters from staff to management outlining concerns about racial and gender inequity.
One employee reported being rebuffed by superiors after complaining about being on the receiving end of a racist comment by a contractor, according to a copy of the complaint obtained by POLITICO. (An Audubon spokesperson shared an email from Yarnold that disputed that account, in which Yarnold said the Society contacted the partner organization and that the person who made the comment was fired; Yarnold further discussed the matter in the email to the staff, emphasizing that employees can leave any venue where they feel ''attacked or uncomfortable.'') Another employee said she began raising concerns about not having received a pay raise like her male colleagues, but was discouraged from pursuing the matter through Human Resources.
''Frankly, if you want to keep your job, you don't want to raise any flags,'' that employee said, requesting anonymity to avoid retaliation.
''We have a real culture of retribution and punishment and fear,'' another woman employee said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to protect her job.
One former senior employee said Yarnold retaliated against her after she raised concerns that the organization was using restricted grant money for unintended purposes. She filed a whistleblower complaint to Human Resources about those practices. The filing alleged that Yarnold made disparaging comments about her to an outside headhunter in what the former employee contended was an attempt to tarnish her reputation.
Yarnold, in response, said he ''had a discussion with two funders, who both affirmed the use of funds was consistent with their intent and was entirely appropriate. At that point, this former employee confirmed in writing that the concern had been addressed. Our board leadership was fully aware of these conversations every step of the way.''
As to the alleged retaliation, Yarnold acknowledged that the society's executive search consultant ''reached out for feedback'' on the employee who had made the whistleblower complaint, and ''I gave my honest evaluation so that our search partner could better evaluate candidates for us in the future. We try to have a pretty direct relationship with our partners.''
The board did not take action on the complaint, though audit committee chair Cynthia Pruett noted in an email to the complainant's attorney that Yarnold's actions "might be considered ill advised."
Pruett declined to comment through an Audubon spokesperson.
A crucial backdrop for the tensions at Audubon was a diversity discussion conducted in August by a consulting firm which had a past connection with Yarnold, in which many employees were offended by what they saw as stereotypes expressed during a slide show.
In a note to the staff, Yarnold and Hoeffner acknowledged that while Audubon officials had reviewed the presentation, no one in the organization had cleared the slides.
''As many of you know, about 60 Audubon team members attended a session last week to set the stage for a series of employee-centered focus groups on Audubon's workplace culture,'' the note, posted on Aug. 25, began. ''Things did not go as planned. We've heard from many attendees who viewed the consultants' slides and reported a litany of inappropriate and harmful stereotypes about people. Audubon staff were hurt and shocked by some of the language, concepts, assumptions, and the facilitation approach used by the consultants.
''There is clear intersectionality between gender and race and ethnicity that should be explored and that was intended to be an important point of discussion with KMA. But, in preparation for the introductory conversation, we didn't take the obvious step of looking at the seminar materials '' a mistake given the importance and sensitivity of these conversations. We won't do that again. We are deeply sorry. We disavow the hurtful stereotypes and characterizations that were presented last week and in the follow-up materials. None of those materials represent the views of the National Audubon Society or its management team, including the two of us.''
Yarnold said in his emailed response to POLITICO questions that KMA was hired through a competitive bidding process, and that he ''had a professional relationship with the firm more than 20 years ago in a different job.''
Throughout the period of discord, Yarnold said, he has kept the Audubon board informed of all complaints and his efforts to handle them.
''I've been telling our staff, our board, and our constituents that this is deeply difficult culture-change work, but the path leads only forward,'' he said. ''We're taking on issues that many for-profits and non-profits duck. Few organizations have the courage to take on change of this magnitude and see it through. This is some of hardest and riskiest transformation an institution could attempt, but we're fully committed to meeting this American moment.''
A Drone Again
FAA brings commercial drone deliveries one step closer with new rules | Fox Business
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 05:02
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration announced on Monday that it will issue a long-awaited rule to allow for small drones to fly over people and at night, bringing the technology's use for widespread commercial deliveries one step closer to becoming a reality.
In addition, the FAA is also requiring remote identification for most drones in order to address security concerns.
''The new rules make way for the further integration of drones into our airspace by addressing safety and security concerns,'' FAA Administrator Steve Dickson said in a statement. ''They get us closer to the day when we will more routinely see drone operations such as the delivery of packages.''
THE APPLE CAR COULD ARRIVE IN 2021, REPORT SAYS
Under the Operations Over People and at Night rule, drones will be required to have flashing anti-collision lights that can be seen up to three miles away and no exposed rotating parts that could potentially lacerate human skin. The final rule also requires drone operators to carry their remote pilot certificate and identification at all times and to complete special training.
Meanwhile, the Remote ID rule will require all drones registered with the FAA to broadcast identification, location, and take-off information via radio frequency. The final rule also eliminates the requirement that drones be connected to the internet to transmit location data.
Remote ID will be required for drones weighing 0.55 pounds or more and for smaller drones under certain circumstances, such as flights over open-air assemblies. Drone manufacturers will have 18 months to begin making drones with remote ID, and operators will have one year after that to start using drones with remote ID.
The final rules also allow operations over moving vehicles in some circumstances. Both rules will become effective 60 days after publication in the Federal Register.
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Drones represent the fastest-growing segment in the entire transportation sector, with over 1.7 million drone registrations and 203,000 FAA-certificated remote pilots. However, drones being used for commercial delivery has developed much slower than expected.
The United Parcel Service became the first company in America to obtain governmental approval to operate a drone airline in October 2019. A similar approval was also given to Alphabet's Wing, a sister unit of Google, last year.
TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %UPSUNITED PARCEL SERVICE INC.171.36-0.83-0.48%GOOGLALPHABET INC.1,773.96+39.80+2.30%AMZNAMAZON.COM INC.3,283.96+111.27+3.51%Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos told "60 Minutes" in December 2013 that the company would use drones to deliver goods to customers' doorsteps within five years. However, that prediction is already off by two years. Amazon Prime Air received approval by the FAA in August to deliver packages using drones, but a timeline as to when the drones would begin to make deliveries for customers has not been specified.
Representatives for UPS, Amazon and Wing did not immediately return FOX Business' requests for comment on the new rule.
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The Associated Press contributed to this report.
U.S. to allow small drones to fly over people and at night | Article [AMP] | Reuters
Wed, 30 Dec 2020 00:46
Tue Dec 29, 2020 / 1:40 PM EST
WASHINGTON WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Small drones will be allowed to fly over people and at night in the United States, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said on Monday, a significant step toward their use for widespread commercial deliveries.
The FAA said its long-awaited rules for the drones, also known as unmanned aerial vehicles, will address security concerns by requiring remote identification technology in most cases to enable their identification from the ground.
Previously, small drone operations over people were limited to operations over people who were directly participating in the operation, located under a covered structure, or inside a stationary vehicle - unless operators had obtained a waiver from the FAA.
The rules will take effect 60 days after publication in the federal register in January. Drone manufacturers will have 18 months to begin producing drones with Remote ID, and operators will have an additional year to provide Remote ID.
There are other, more complicated rules that allow for operations at night and over people for larger drones in some cases.
"The new rules make way for the further integration of drones into our airspace by addressing safety and security concerns," FAA Administrator Steve Dickson said. "They get us closer to the day when we will more routinely see drone operations such as the delivery of packages."
Companies have been racing to create drone fleets to speed deliveries. The United States has over 1.7 million drone registrations and 203,000 FAA-certificated remote pilots.
For at-night operations, the FAA said drones must be equipped with anti-collision lights. The final rules allow operations over moving vehicles in some circumstances.
Remote ID is required for all drones weighing 0.55 lb (0.25 kg) or more, but is required for smaller drones under certain circumstances like flights over open-air assemblies.
The new rules eliminate requirements that drones be connected to the internet to transmit location data but do that they broadcast remote ID messages via radio frequency broadcast. Without the change, drone use could have been barred from use in areas without internet access.
The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International said Remote ID will function as "a digital license plate for drones ... that will enable more complex operations" while operations at night and over people "are important steps towards enabling integration of drones into our national airspace."
One change, since the rules were first proposed in 2019, requires that small drones not have any exposed rotating parts that would lacerate human skin.
United Parcel Service Inc said in October 2019 that it won the government's first full approval to operate a drone airline.
Last year, Alphabet's Wing, a sister unit of search engine Google, was the first company to get U.S. air carrier certification for a single-pilot drone operation.
In August, Amazon.com Inc's drone service received federal approval allowing the retailer to begin testing commercial deliveries through its drone fleet.
Walmart Inc said in September it would run a pilot project for delivery of grocery and household products through automated drones but acknowledged "it will be some time before we see millions of packages delivered via drone."
(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Nick Zieminski and Howard Goller)
Green New Dill
Bill Gates' Savior Complex Spirals Out of Control, Funds Sun-Dimming Plan To Save the Human Race
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 17:08
Bill Gates is now best known as a philanthropist, not the guy who started Microsoft or was the avatar for everyone's annoyance with Windows 95.
He's also known for wanting to save us from ourselves.
Now, apparently, he wants to save us from the sun.
Gates, for those of you who don't follow these things, has been big on both vaccination and pandemic prevention. Fair enough. That certainly means his moment has arrived.
However, he's about as much of a lockdown guy as you can get '-- which is just fine if you're a billionaire who can afford to hide away as if this were Poe's ''The Masque of the Red Death,'' but the real-world consequences for the rest of us can be, ahem, problematic.
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However, while you may have been paying attention to his efforts on vaccination and lockdowns, you may not have noticed that one of Gates' most controversial causes just got a go-ahead: A project that would help block out the sun.
This sounds a bit like the plot to ''Highlander 2: The Quickening,'' but it's nothing near that science fiction-y.
According to Reuters, a Harvard University project plans to test out a controversial theory that global warming can be stopped by spraying particles into the atmosphere that would reflect the sun's rays.
The project represents one of the most controversial aspects of what's known as ''geoengineering'' '-- the idea that, to tackle issues like climate change, massive aspects of our ecosystem can be played with or changed. In this case, it would involve reflecting some of the sun's rays to stop them from reaching Earth.
Do you think this Gates-backed plan is dangerous?
''Open-air research into spraying tiny, sun-reflecting particles into the stratosphere, to offset global warming, has been stalled for years by controversies '' including that it could discourage needed cuts in greenhouse gas emissions,'' Reuters reported.
''In a small step, the Swedish Space Corporation agreed this week to help Harvard researchers launch a balloon near the Arctic town of Kiruna next June. It would carry a gondola with 600 kg of scientific equipment 20 km (12 miles) high.''
The Harvard team, whose project is known as SCoPEx, is funded in large part by Gates, according to an August report in the U.K. Daily Mail. (Which gave the subject the wordy title: ''Could dimming the sun save the Earth? Bill Gates wants to spray millions of tonnes of dust into the stratosphere to stop global warming'... but critics fear it could trigger calamity'')
The journal Nature was less judgmental.
''The idea is simple: spray a bunch of particles into the stratosphere, and they will cool the planet by reflecting some of the Sun's rays back into space. Scientists have already witnessed the principle in action,'' Nature already reported in 2018. (Headline: ''First sun-dimming experiment will test a way to cool Earth'')
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''When Mount Pinatubo erupted in the Philippines in 1991, it injected an estimated 20 million tonnes of sulfur dioxide into the stratosphere '-- the atmospheric layer that stretches from about 10 to 50 kilometres above Earth's surface. The eruption created a haze of sulfate particles that cooled the planet by around 0.5'‰°C. For about 18 months, Earth's average temperature returned to what it was before the arrival of the steam engine.''
There are several problems with this plan, not the least of which is that we don't know what the unintended consequences might be. But to environmentalists, the problem is that it doesn't solve global warming the way they want to do it.
''There is no merit in this test except to enable the next step. You can't test the trigger of a bomb and say 'This can't possibly do any harm,''' said Niclas H¤llstr¶m, director of the Sweden-based environmentalist think-tank WhatNext?
And while H¤llstr¶m is worried about some of the same things that other people are '-- the potential to change rain patterns or crop yields '-- he's also concerned that people aren't concerned enough about the solution he wants, which is a transition to a zero-carbon society.
''Swedish society is increasingly calling for real, immediate solutions to climate change,'' he said.
Right.
He's not the only one, either.
''This is as much an experiment in changing social norms and crossing a line as it is a science experiment,'' said Jim Thomas, co-executive director of Canadian-based environmentalist organization ETC Group, which opposes the idea.
But then again, Gates lives in this dream world where his advice on pandemics and global warming is given equal weight as his time developing Windows.
When it comes to the pandemic, Gates has said that he expects businesses and restaurants to remain shuttered for some time:
''Bars and restaurants '-- in most of the country '-- will be closed as we go into this wave, and I think, sadly, that's appropriate,'' he said during an interview with CNN's Jake Tapper in an interview earlier this month.
''The next four to six months really call on us to do our best, because we can see that this will end and you don't want somebody that you love to be the last to die of coronavirus.''
He's also called out fellow billionaire Elon Musk for his statements questioning the science behind mask-wearing.
''Elon's positioning is to maintain a high level of outrageous comments,'' Gates said in a July CNBC interview.
''He's not much involved in vaccines. He makes a great electric car. And his rockets work well. So he's allowed to say these things. I hope that he doesn't confuse areas he's not involved in too much.''
However, when it came to outrageous comments, keep in mind that in that same interview, Gates said that when it came to the coronavirus, ''China did a lot of things right at the beginning, like any country where a virus first shows up. They can look back and say they missed some things.''
Again. Right.
In short, Bill Gates doesn't have a particularly great handle on COVID, much less the current vaccine process. He panders to China. His work on the vaccine has been desultory at best. And now, what he wants us all to believe is that he's got a handle on everything '-- including blotting out the sun to make the world cooler.
Get the economics on business-killing lockdowns together, Bill. Then we'll see about your geoengineering gambit.
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.
Out There
180-Day Countdown To UFO Disclosure Hidden In Government Funding 'Committee Comment' | The Daily Caller
Wed, 30 Dec 2020 17:02
A 180-day countdown for the release of government information on UFO's began Sunday after President Donald Trump signed the $2.3 trillion COVID-19 relief and government funding bill.
Hidden as a ''committee comment'' attached to the annual Intelligence Authorization Act '-- which was part of the spending bill '-- the provision directs spy agencies to unveil their declassified knowledge about UFO's.
The Senate Intelligence Committee, chaired by Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, wrote the provision requires ''a detailed analysis of unidentified aerial phenomena data and intelligence reporting collected or held by the Office of Naval Intelligence'' be submitted within 180 days to the congressional intelligence and armed services committees.
The report must include a ''detailed analysis of data of the FBI, which was derived from investigations of intrusions of unidentified aerial phenomena data over restricted United States airspace'' along with an ''assessment of whether this unidentified aerial phenomena activity may be attributed to one or more foreign adversaries.''
It is unclear how much information can actually be declassified and made public. (RELATED: US Officials Received Classified Briefings On 'Off-World Vehicles Not Made On This Earth')
Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence and Former Staff Director of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee Christopher Mellon told The Debrief that the provision''which is not law''is long ''overdue.''
''It's now fair to say that the request for an unclassified report on the UAP phenomenon enjoys the support of both parties in both Houses of Congress,'' he said, according to the report. ''Assuming the Executive Branch honors this important request, the nation will at long last have an objective basis for assessing the validity of the issue and its national security implications. This is an extraordinary and long overdue opportunity.''
The Pentagon formally declassified and authenticated three leaked U.S. Navy videos of ''unexplained aerial phenomena'' in April, with a Pentagon spokesperson noting the objects that appeared in the video were ''unidentified,'' according to ABC News.
Pentagon declassifies three previously leaked top secret U.S. Navy videos of ''unexplained aerial phenomena'''--and that some believe could show UFOs. https://t.co/SgE0JDGtej pic.twitter.com/yhv8ZBDR0p
'-- ABC News (@ABC) April 27, 2020
The Department of Defense also announced in August a new task force designed to detect, analyze and catalog any unidentified objects, such as UFO's.
Vape Wars
To Protect 'Children' From E-Cigarettes, Congress Imposes New Restrictions on Everything Related to Vaping of Any Kind '' Reason.com
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 17:13
Buried in the enormous spending/COVID-19 relief package that Congress approved this week is a bill that imposes new restrictions on the distribution of all vaping equipment, parts, and supplies, including a ban on mailing them. The provision illustrates not only how utterly irrelevant legislation can be slipped into unread, must-pass bills but also how Congress warps reality through legal fictions and uses save-the-children rhetoric to justify restricting adults' choices.
Title VI of the 2021 Consolidated Appropriations Act, which appears on page 5,136 of the 5,593-page bill, is called the Preventing Online Sales of E-Cigarettes to Children Act. The bill was introduced last April by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D''Calif.), joined by seven original cosponsors: six Democrats plus Sen. John Cornyn (R''Texas). It includes two changes aimed at complicating and obstructing online sales of vapes and e-liquid.
Feinstein's bill amends the Jenkins Act of 1949, which requires that vendors who sell cigarettes to customers in other states register with the tax administrators in those states and notify them of all such sales so they can collect the taxes that the buyers are officially obligated to pay. In 2002, the General Accounting Office (now the Government Accountability Office) found that online cigarette sellers routinely flouted the Jenkins Act and that the federal government had done virtually nothing to enforce it. Nine years later, Congress amended the law, beefing up its reporting requirements and extending it to cover roll-your-own tobacco.
The Feinstein bill further expands the Jenkins Act, redefining cigarette to include "electronic nicotine delivery systems," which are not cigarettes. It also counterintuitively defines electronic nicotine delivery system to include products that do not deliver nicotine: "any electronic device that, through an aerosolized solution, delivers nicotine, flavor, or any other substance to the user inhaling from the device" (emphasis added). That category includes e-cigarettes, e-hookahs, e-cigars, electronic pipes, vape pens, and refillable vaporizers, plus "any component, liquid, part, or accessory" used with those devices, whether shipped together with them or sold separately.
In other words, every product related to vaping, whether of nicotine, THC, CBD, lavender, or anything else, will now be subject to the Jenkins Act's burdensome requirements. According to Feinstein, a bottle of e-liquid is a cigarette; so is a bottle of herbal essential oil if you plan to vape it. A coil or pod cartridge for a nicotine vaporizer is now also a cigarette; so is a vaporizer designed for THC or CBD oil.
Feinstein's bill also requires the U.S. Postal Service to "clarify" that the ban on mailing cigarettes covers all of those products, which are not actually cigarettes and may not even have anything to do with nicotine. The new ban, disingenuously presented as a clarification of the existing ban, will take effect within 120 days of the law's passage.
These reality-defying redefinitions ostensibly are aimed at preventing the sale of e-cigarettes to anyone younger than 21, the minimum age set by federal law. "Buying e-cigarettes online is one of the easiest ways for children and teens to get their hands on these harmful products," Feinstein said when she introduced the bill. But the new burdens and restrictions go far beyond what is necessary to enforce the minimum purchase age. Requiring robust age verification for orders or an adult signature for deliveries, for example, would prevent sales to consumers younger than 21 without the expensive disruptions this law will cause.
"While there is no shortage of talk in Congress about the importance of small businesses and social distancing, the decision to shove this ban in the middle of a pandemic relief package reveals how hollow that rhetoric is," says Gregory Conley, president of the American Vaping Association, an advocacy group that supports vaping as a harm-reducing alternative to smoking. "Many Americans at risk of COVID-19 complications have been staying home and ordering their supplies online, but Congress just decided they should either pay much more for shipping or go to a retail store that may not stock the product they use to stay off deadly cigarettes."
Conley notes that shipping vaping products to minors is already illegal, and "the Food and Drug Administration has repeatedly enforced this law against bad actors in the industry." While law-abiding vendors for years have been using the postal service's ID-at-delivery option to comply with the age limit, "this will no longer be permitted."
In short, a bill presented as a commonsensical effort to enforce the minimum purchase age is actually an assault on the vaping industry and its adult customers. "If the increase in shipping costs wasn't enough, the bill also imposes huge paperwork burdens on small retailers, and backs it up with threats of imprisonment for even innocent mistakes," Conley notes. "This is not a law designed to regulate the mail-order sale of vaping products to adults; it's an attempt to eliminate it."
Thanks to Feinstein's sweeping and arbitrary definition of electronic nicotine delivery systems, the impact extends far beyond nicotine vaping. On its face, the law requires companies that sell cannabis vaping devices to comply with the Jenkins Act. It also prohibits them from mailing their products to customers. Although that is already arguably prohibited by federal law, the issue hinges on whether vaping equipment sold without any reference to cannabis nevertheless qualifies as "drug paraphernalia." As written, the Feinstein bill also imposes these burdens on federally legal products such as CBD oil and herbal extracts used for aromatherapy.
"This could have a significant effect on cannabis vaping products, even if the intent is clearly to curb nicotine products," Aaron Smith, CEO of the National Cannabis Industry Association, told Marijuana Moment. "We're making sure that Congress and the incoming administration understand that it would be a misguided waste of resources to apply this to the already heavily regulated cannabis industry. In the long run, it's important that cannabis is descheduled so it can be appropriately regulated at the federal level, clearing up ambiguities like this."
Biden Crime Syndicate
UKRAINE RELEASES BOMBSHELL INFORMATION ON BIDEN TODAY! MIRROR THIS ASAP - YouTube
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 03:10
Kanekoa on Twitter: "Ukrainian Parliament member, Andrii Derkach, held a press conference yesterday implicating the Biden family in an international money laundering scheme involving Burisma Holdings, Rosemont Seneca, Franklin Templeton Investments, &
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 15:17
Kanekoa : Ukrainian Parliament member, Andrii Derkach, held a press conference yesterday implicating the Biden family in an i'... https://t.co/N38OnTYWjq
Mon Dec 28 16:35:22 +0000 2020
Hollywood
'Wonder Woman 1984' debuts with pandemic-best $16.7M - Chicago Tribune
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 13:57
By JAKE COYLE
Associated Press |
Dec 28, 2020 at 6:38 AM
NEW YORK '-- Despite premiering simultaneously by streaming service, ''Wonder Woman 1984'' managed the best box office debut of the pandemic, opening with $16.7 million over the Christmas weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday.
That's only a faint glimmer of typical business during the holiday season, when cinemas are usually packed and box-office receipts are among the best of the year. Last year, ''Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker'' exceeded $32 million on Christmas Day alone. According to data firm Comscore, 35% of North American theaters are currently open.
But Warner Bros. nevertheless celebrated the performance of ''Wonder Woman 1984,'' which landed in 2,150 theaters and bettered the approximately $10 million launch of Warner Bros.' ''Tenet'' in North America. (Universal Pictures' ''The Croods: A New Age'' opened similarly in late November.) ''Wonder Woman 1984'' grossed an additional $19.4 million in international markets where it began playing a week earlier. The Patty Jenkins-directed sequel, starring Gal Gadot, has made $85 million globally to date.
''This is a very weak theatrical opening,'' said David Gross, who runs the movie consultancy FranchiseRe. ''With more than half of North American theaters closed and the pandemic surging, the majority of moviegoers and fans have little choice but to watch the film on television. Early foreign openings have been weak as well.''
Warner Bros. has come under criticism throughout Hollywood on its plans to divert ''Wonder Woman 1984'' and all of its 2021 titles to HBO Max through a hybrid release plan intended to boost subscribers. ''Tenet'' director Christopher Nolan called the strategy ''a mess.'' Earlier this month, AT&T chief executive John Stankey said the service has 12.6 million activated users, up from 8.6 million on Sept. 30.
In 2017, ''Wonder Woman'' opened with more than $100 million in ticket sales from 4,100 theaters, setting a record for biggest opening by a female filmmaker. It ultimately grossed $822 million worldwide. The sequel, made for about $200 million, had been expected to approach $1 billion in box office before the pandemic but is on course to make about $180 million, according to Gross's projections.
But WarnerMedia is counting on ''Wonder Woman 1984'' to matter more to HBO Max, which wobbled in its initial rollout. Reports circulated over the weekend of some users having technical difficulties streaming ''Wonder Woman 1984,'' particularly when playing the film through Roku. HBO Max went live on Roku in mid-December after months of negotiations.
Gal Gadot, left, and Kristen Wiig in a scene from "Wonder Woman 1984." (Clay Enos/AP)
Warner Bros. nevertheless seized on the returns for ''Wonder Woman 1984'' as the best as could be expected, given the circumstances. The studio on Sunday announced that it would fast-track a third ''Wonder Woman'' film, with Jenkins and Gadot returning.
''Wonder Woman 1984 broke records and exceeded our expectations across all of our key viewing and subscriber metrics in its first 24 hours on the service, and the interest and momentum we're seeing indicates this will likely continue well beyond the weekend,'' said Andy Forssell, executive vice president and general manager for WarnerMedia's direct-to-consumer operations. ''During these very difficult times, it was nice to give families the option of enjoying this uplifting film at home, where theater viewing wasn't an option.''
''Wonder Woman 1984'' wasn't the only big movie that detoured into homes over Christmas. The Walt Disney Co. steered the latest Pixar release, ''Soul,'' to Disney+. It opened theatrically in some international markets, most notably in China where it earned $5.5 million.
Streaming numbers weren't provided for ''Soul'' or ''Wonder Woman 1984.'' WarnerMedia said nearly half of HBO Max's subscribers watched ''Wonder Woman 1984'' on its first day on the streaming platform, though it didn't say how long constituted a watch.
Universal Pictures also released ''News of the World,'' a Western starring Tom Hanks and directed by Paul Greengrass, only in theaters. The Comcast-owned studio has pursued a different approach during the pandemic, cutting deals with exhibitors to radically shorten the exclusive theatrical window to as little as 17 days, before then moving movies to premium video-on-demand. ''News of the World'' grossed an estimated $2.4 million domestically
Emerald Fennell's acclaimed ''Promising Young Woman,'' starring Carey Mulligan, debuted in 1,300 theaters, making $680,000 for Focus Features.
Recommended on Chicago Tribune
Portal - Fish
Space Force
Ashes of Star Trek's Scotty Smuggled Aboard Space Station
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 13:09
Photo: CBS via Getty Images
It's not exactly where no man has gone before, but it's just about the closest humanity has to it. According to Deadline, video game developer Richard Garriott has revealed to the Sunday Times that, while traveling to the International Space Station in 2008, he allegedly brought with him ashes belonging to actor James Doohan, best known for his turn as Montgomery ''Scotty'' Scott, the harried engineer of Star Trek's USS Enterprise. Doohan passed away in 2005 at the age of 85.
According to Garriott, he was contacted by the actor's son Chris Doohan while preparing to visit the International Space Station via Russia's Soyuz TMA-13 mission, for a self-funded 12-day stay, making him one of the first private citizens to do so. Garriott received the cremains, but claims there wasn't enough time to put them through the official process needed to bring objects aboard the flight. Subsequently, he secreted several laminated photos of Doohan, which contained some of his ashes, onboard, and covertly slipped one of the cards behind the cladding in the floor of the station's Columbus module.
''It was completely clandestine,'' Garriott told the Sunday Times, which also published video of him with the card on the station. ''His family were very pleased that the ashes made it up there but we were all disappointed we didn't get to talk about it publicly for so long. Now, enough time has passed that we can.'' A second card was reportedly jettisoned into space by Garriott, and a third returned to Chris Doohan. A separate sample of the actor's ashes was launched on a SpaceX rocket in 2012.
''Richard said, 'We've got to keep this hush-hush for a little while,' and here we are 12 years later,'' said the late actor's son. ''What he did was touching - it meant so much to me, so much to my family, and it would have meant so much to my dad. My dad had three passions: space, science and trains. He always wanted to go to space.''
Situation Update, Dec. 28th - Orbital weapons platforms reveal Trump is in a WAR much bigger than any election
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:12
Situation Update, Dec. 28th - Orbital weapons platforms reveal Trump is in a WAR much bigger than any election
By healthranger // 2020-12-28
It is now increasingly clear that the explosion in Nashville was not caused by an RV bomb, nor a conventional missile but rather a "Directed Energy Weapon."The evidence for this includes:
Former Defense Secretary Mark Esper warning in September that China possessed "killer satellites" and "directed energy weapons" that could threaten the United States.The apparent missile "trail" in the skyline video of Nashville, which is also consistent with a stream of ionized atmosphere and particular matter suspended in the air. (High-powered lasers can transform molecules into plasma.)The large blue "plasma flash" observed on a street-level video camera, an instant before the kinetic explosion. This blue plasma light is consistent with the use of an extremely high-powered, high-altitude laser system that instantly transforms solid matter into its plasma state. This same technology has been used in pilot programs to transform landfill waste into simple elements such as carbon. This process is called "plasma torch gasification" and is considered a "green" technology to eliminate landfill by transforming matter into carbon.Interestingly, this "plasma torch gasification" process, which can also be created by an extremely powerful laser burst, releases huge amounts of hydrogen gas, which is itself explosive in a conventional (chemical) sense. What an observer would see is first a bright blue plasma light, followed by a yellow fireball, followed by black carbon dust all over the ground, and this is what we observe in Nashville.The fact that no explosion crater appeared on the street under the RV, but rather a layer of charred carbon, which is consistent with the aftermath of a plasma state caused by an energy weapon (most likely a laser used for ablation of samples in the laboratory, which would typically be a laser in the 198nm range, or what is called "Deep-UV". Some ablation lasers also use 266nm.)The US State Dept. has warned that Russia is already testing an anti-satellite missile, which is part of Russia's defense against the orbital laser weapons possessed by China and the United States.This topic is covered in more detail in the December 28th Situation Update, embedded below.Here are the highlights from the podcast:
FBI claim of DNA matching from the scene of the explosion carried zero credibility.The explosion disabled the ZME air traffic control comms out of Nashville, blinding air traffic control to high-level aircraft on that day.The FAA issued a highly unusual "ground stop" order.Aftermath of the explosion reveals the AT&T building was hardened like an NSA bunker, with reinforced concrete and a fake public facade, with fake vents.The AT&T building carried an NFP warning sign which explains, "Flammability 4 = will vaporize or readily burn at normal temperature, or is readily dispersed in air and will burn readily."The materials warning sign also carried a "W" symbol: W = Reacts with water in an unusual or dangerous manner.The AT&T / NSA center had intercepted all the traffic of Dominion voting systems software updates and real-time remote manipulations from China and other countries.Data stored to magnetic tape, which was physically unharmed by the explosion but may have been subjected to electromagnetic interference sufficient to cause some data loss.The Nashville FirstNet comms system also served the Huntsville, Alabama FBI "second headquarters" which Trump was setting up as a "white hat" FBI campus. CNBC reported on the $1 billion FBI building there.CodeMonkeyZ shares tweet: I heard there was a BIG meeting last night discussing ''significant intel that is so much bigger than anyone can imagine''."Fairview" is the name of the NSA program to spy on Americans through AT&T data gathering.City Blue Imaging in Rochester burned down as part of a campaign to systematically destroy the evidence of voter fraud. This is the subcontractor involved in the printing of mail-in ballots. All equipment was destroyed in the three-alarm fire.Fake ballots in AZ arrived via a cargo plane from Korea, ballots were protected by AZ National Guard and transported to Maricopa County for counting in order to steal the election. This is the report from Stew Peters (see 2nd video below).Bobby Piton reveals new details of how "phantom voters" were used to rig the election, where people with common last names like Jones, Williams, Jackson were replaced with unique last name phantom voters who voted for Biden.Piton concludes, "a sophisticated State Actor was able to optimize a desired outcome for both the State of Georgia and the State of Pennsylvania."Far-left journalist charged in BLM firebombing attack on police cars.Texas says pregnancy is a "medical condition" and plans to prioritize all people with medical conditions for covid vaccines, starting with Black and Brown people, as part of a eugenics / depopulation program to eliminate Hispanics and Blacks.It appears that Trump is dealing with much more than an election war, but rather a global war against human beings as citizens of Earth.Listen to the full podcast here:
Brighteon.com/418bab7e-e43a-4bcc-a95f-be592a1a1867Catch each day's new Situation Update podcast at:
https://www.brighteon.com/channels/hrreportHere's the Arizona ballot fraud video from Stew Peters:
Podcasting 2.0
China's podcasters wary of censors as popularity grows | South China Morning Post
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 14:07
Chinese podcasters cover a range of niche topics, from hi-fi sound systems to user interface design'No one is making podcasts for the mainstream audience. Everyone just does what they're interested in,' one producer says Published: 11:00am, 28 Dec, 2020
Updated: 1:45pm, 28 Dec, 2020
Amazon Buys Wondery as Podcasting Race Continues - The New York Times
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 00:17
DealBook | Amazon Buys Wondery as Podcasting Race ContinuesThe deal, valued at $300 million, is the latest in a string of acquisitions as streaming platforms expand beyond music and video.
Hernan Lopez, the founder of Wondery, aimed to bring Hollywood's production value and flair to the podcast industry. Credit... JC Olivera/Getty Images Dec. 30, 2020, 5:01 p.m. ET Amazon is acquiring Wondery, the company behind podcasts such as ''Dirty John,'' ''Dr. Death'' and ''The Shrink Next Door,'' as the race to grab parts of the audio market continues.
The deal, announced on Wednesday, is the latest bet that media companies are placing on audio '-- podcasts in particular '-- as they search for new ways to distinguish themselves in an increasingly crowded streaming video market.
The deal values Wondery, which began in 2016, at roughly $300 million, a person briefed on the matter said. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the deal terms were not disclosed.
Amazon called the Wondery deal a ''pivotal moment to expand the Amazon Music offering beyond music as listener habits evolve.''
Podcasts have been exploding in popularity, with nearly a third of Americans saying at the beginning of 2019 that they listened to at least one monthly. They offer media companies a fast-growing medium and an opportunity to build out their offerings without having to go through powerful interests, like publishers and labels, when licensing music, and studios when licensing films.
Efforts to turn podcasting into its own celebrity universe have attracted the likes of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. Wondery's founder, Hernan Lopez, a former Fox executive, has added Hollywood treatment to its podcasts, replete with tag lines, trailers and billboards. ''Dr. Death'' is set to be developed into a television series on NBCUniversal's Peacock streaming service.
Mr. Lopez told The New York Times last year that he had ''set out to create a company that could build on bringing to podcasting the skill set of television and movies, both in storytelling and production, as well as marketing.''
Mr. Lopez will step down as chief executive when the deal with Amazon closes, and Jen Sargent, Wondery's chief operating officer, will take over management, according to an Amazon spokeswoman. In April, Mr. Lopez pleaded not guilty to federal charges accusing him of bribing soccer officials in South America in exchange for broadcasting rights when he was an executive at Fox Sports.
Amazon would not ''predict'' when the Wondery deal was expected to close, the Amazon spokeswoman said, noting it is subject to ''customary closing conditions.''
The Times announced a deal this year to acquire Serial Productions, the company behind the hit podcast ''Serial.'' Spotify has announced a string of deals to expand beyond its streaming music business, including an acquisition of the Ringer, the podcast company started by the former ESPN journalist Bill Simmons. That deal is valued at about $250 million.
The investment bank LionTree served as financial adviser to Wondery.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's first episode of their £30m podcast ranked below whale noises
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 11:57
Prince Harry and Meghan's first episode of their £30m podcast ranked lowlyIt came in at 17th place on the UK Spotify podcast chart, before moving to 7th Beating the Royals was a podcast called Deep Sleep Sounds, with whale noises The UK Spotify chart's top 20 podcasts1. The Joe Rogan Experience
2. Sh**ged Married Annoyed
3. JaackMaate's Happy Hour
4. Times news briefing
5. Off Menu with Ed Gamble and James Acaster
6. Grounded with Louis Theroux
7. Archewell Audio
8. talkSPORT Hit
9. The Smart 7
10. The Adam Buxton Podcast
11. Happy Place
12. Call Her Daddy
13. tinpotradio.org: XFM The Ricky Gervais Show
14. Deep Sleep Sounds
15. Rob Beckett and Josh Widdicombe's Lockdown Parenting Hell
16. My Dad Wrote A Porno
17. No Such Thing As A Fish
18. The Eboys Podcast
19. The Receipts Podcast
20. Today in Focus
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's first 33-minute episode of their £30million podcast has climbed the UK Spotify charts to seventh place.
The programme, a Christmas special featuring Sir Elton John, initially charted in 17th place - below a podcast designed to send people to sleep with whale noises, called Deep Sleep Sounds - after being released on Tuesday afternoon.
However the episode slowly climbed through the ranks reaching 7th place today in the UK Spotify podcast charts, and 26 in the US.
The Duke, 36, and Duchess of Sussex, 39, called on a number of their famous friends to appear during the first episode, which feature a range of prominent British and American artists, activists and musicians.
These included Sir Elton John, Bren(C) Brown, Deepak Chopra, Stacey Abrams and James Corden, who they invited to review 2020.
Discussions focused on mental health and mindfulness in the first episode before sweetly concluding with the gospel song This Little Light of Mine.
The royal couple promised their podcast will 'uplift and entertain audiences around the world' as they spoke with a range of people who 'inspire us'.
PR guru James Henderson said that calling on their friends had been a wise move for the Royal couple.
He told The Sun: 'Access to very well-known people willing to talk out about issues and their thoughts and experiences will always command interest.'
He added that their inclusion of their 19-month-old son Archie's voice during the podcast - in which they encouraged him to say Happy New Year - seemed not to fit with their continued plea for privacy.
The Duke, 36, and Duchess of Sussex, 39, called on a number of their famous friends to appear during the first episode. Pictured during a visit to Reprezent FM, in Brixton, south London The couple's newly-formed Archewell Audio project promises to produce programming that 'uplifts and entertains audiences Archie wishes listeners a 'Happy New Year' in first words in public Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have featured their 19-month-old son Archie in their first Spotify podcast and got him to say his first four words in public - wishing people a 'Happy New Year' in his American accent and saying it was 'fun' to speak into a microphone.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex today released their first podcast, calling on famous friends including Sir Elton John, Bren(C) Brown, Deepak Chopra, Stacey Abrams and James Corden to reflect on 2020 and their hopes for 2021 with the couple signing off with the words: 'Love always wins'.
The couple's first 33-minute show as part of the deal with the streaming giant worth an estimated £30million ($40million) is a 'holiday special' that concludes with the gospel song This Little Light of Mine, which was played at the end of their wedding at Windsor Castle in May 2018, before Archie is introduced.
Harry and Meghan, who have fiercely defended Archie's privacy since his birth in May 2019 and filed a lawsuit this year to fight to protect it, encourage their son to talk into the microphone, with Harry telling him: 'You can speak into it.' Meghan also asks: 'Archie, is it fun?'
Archie then replies: 'Fun.' Harry then says: 'After me, ready? Happy.' Archie says: 'Happy.' Meghan and Harry both then say 'New', and Archie says: 'New Year'.
Archie - in his first public words - wished listeners a 'Happy New Year' in his American accent and said it was 'fun' to speak into a microphone.
Harry and Meghan, who have fiercely defended Archie's privacy since his birth in May 2019 and filed a lawsuit this year to fight to protect it, encourage their son to talk into the microphone, with Harry telling him: 'You can speak into it.' Meghan also asks: 'Archie, is it fun?'
Archie then replies: 'Fun.' Harry then says: 'After me, ready? Happy.' Archie says: 'Happy.' Meghan and Harry both then say 'New', and Archie says: 'New Year'.
Judi James, a leading TV expert in social behaviour and body language, likened the double act to TV pairings Richard and Judy and Holly and Phil.
She claimed Prince Harry has dropped the Queen's English accent in favour of a more 'slurring mid-Estuary' twang in his new podcast.
Judi observed: 'Describing the podcast as 'Our tweny-tweny holiday special', Harry drops the second 't' in 'twenty' in a verbal slurring that sounds either American or South London, although the 'holiday special' wording probably places it in the US.
'He says they 'wanna' honour rather than 'want to' and he pronounces the word 'look' more like 'luck', both of which would probably sound right in the Queen Vic in EastEnders.
'Although his 'meaningful our connections' appears to have more of a US twang.'
The Sussexes called on many of their most famous friends to appear on their first Archewell Audio podcast, which they promise will 'uplift and entertain audiences around the world'.
Meghan said they asked people who 'inspire us' to appear on the podcast and give 'their thoughts on what they learned from 2020'.
Sir Elton was a friend of Harry's mother Diana, Princess of Wales and has regularly supported her son over the years.
The couple called on famous friends including Sir Elton John, Bren(C) Brown, Deepak Chopra, Stacey Abrams and James Corden to review 2020 Click here to resize this module
'It's been a lifesaver': Elton John credits Zoom for helping him stay connected with his Alcoholics Anonymous meetings as he appears on Meghan and Harry's first podcast Sir Elton John has credited Zoom for preserving his sobriety by allowing him to stay connected with the Alcoholics Anonymous fellowship during lockdown.
The legendary musician entered his 30th year of abstinence in 2020 after giving up alcohol and illegal substances in 1990 following decades of sustained abuse.
Now 73 years of age and a father to young sons Elijah and Zachary with husband David Furnish, Sir Elton says video conferencing software Zoom helped keep him engaged with the AA community while isolating at home with his family.
Speaking to Prince Harry and Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle's first Archewell Audio podcast on Tuesday, the pianist insisted he didn't know what he would have done had it not been for the increasingly popular piece of technology.
He said: 'I'm a recovering alcoholic so I have an AA meeting from this house every Sunday. I connect with friends who I've known for over 30 years in the programme, and that's great.
'If it hadn't have been for Zoom I don't know what we would've done, I really don't. Without Zoom'... it's been a lifesaver.'
Sir Elton has been very open about his battle with alcohol and cocaine addiction, a habit which nearly derailed his career and cost him his life.
Corden was a guest at Harry and Meghan's wedding and was asked by the duke to perform at the couple's evening celebration.
Other guests include Democrat activist Stacey Abrams, tennis star Naomi Osaka, American filmmaker and actor Tyler Perry, wellness icon Deepak Chopra and teenage activist Christina Adane from London, who campaigns on food issues.
Experts have called the couple's Spotify tie-up as another big step towards building what experts believe could become a $1billion business empire in the US after a super-deal with Netflix to make documentaries about their pet projects.
But the podcast received a mixed response on social media yesterday. While some praised the podcast, one Twitter user commented, 'Pass me the sick bucket'.
Meghan quotes Martin Luther King as she tells the audience that: 'Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that'. The couple end the podcast - the first of a series thought to be worth £30m ($40m) - by saying, 'love always wins'.
Many Twitter users criticised the show, with one calling it 'dull and preachy' while another wrote 'I'd rather watch concrete [set]'.
However, fans called it 'heartwarming' and praised Archie's appearance as 'adorable'.
Other social media users suggested it was ironic that the couple had decided to feature their one-year-old son in the multi-million dollar podcast shortly after having moved to the US to protect their family's privacy.
Simon Oakden tweeted: 'I hope others will join me in respecting the wishes of these people and decide not to invade their privacy by listening to it.'
Nigel Roberts agreed, adding: 'Great to see you getting the privacy is so craved for before leaving the United Kingdom...'
Other listeners gushed over Archie, the couple's one-year-old son, as he made a brief appearance to giggle while trying to say 'Happy New Year' at the end of the podcast.
One person commented: 'What a cute, pleasant surprise from little Archie. His laughter '' so infectious.'
What would Granny say? Prince Harry drops Queen's RP accent for 'slurring Estuary English' and adopts a 'newly seductive' delivery in his 'tweny-tweny holiday special' Spotify podcast with Meghan Markle, behaviour expert claims Prince Harry has dropped the Queen's English accent in favour of a more 'slurring mid-Estuary' twang in his new podcast with wife Meghan Markle, a British behaviour expert has claimed.
The Duke, 36, and Duchess of Sussex, 39, today released their first Spotify podcast, calling on famous friends including Sir Elton John, Bren(C) Brown, Deepak Chopra, Stacey Abrams and James Corden to review 2020 - or 'tweny-tweny', as Harry pronounced it.
Their debut show as part of the £30million ($40million) deal with the streaming giant is a 'holiday special', with the couple entering 'a whole new world of branding as a double act' according to Judi James, who likened them to TV pairings Richard and Judy and Holly and Phil.
She added that Harry's 'new accent' is 'every bit as interesting as Tony Blair's infamous mockney', telling FEMAIL: 'It's pretty much mid-everything: mid-Atlantic, mid-London and mid-Estuary English.'
Estuary is an accent associated with the area along the River Thames and its estuary, including London.
Judi observed: 'Describing the podcast as "Our tweny-tweny holiday special", Harry drops the second "t" in "twenty" in a verbal slurring that sounds either American or South London, although the "holiday special" wording probably places it in the US.
Judi said Harry has gone from a 'tentative speaker' to a 'slicker, more rehearsed-sounding' podcast pro, and together with Meghan, the pair resemble a 'professional media double act' 'He says they "wanna" honour rather than "want to" and he pronounces the word "look" more like "luck", both of which would probably sound right in the Queen Vic in EastEnders. Although his "meaningful our connections" appears to have more of a US twang.'
Judi added that there's something ' newly seductive' about Harry's delivery at some points, suggesting 'the flirting with Meghan during their podcast trailer' might have 'brought out his sexier side'.
'His "I'm Harry" is full of na¯ve bounce and enthusiasm, but after Meghan purrs "And I'm Meghan" in a deeper, richer tone, Harry responds by saying "We're glad you're here" in a much more of a low purr himself,' she went on.
'To match his super-professional wife, Harry has changed his pace as well as his tone.
'He normally takes a more leisurely style of delivery with a few thoughtful pauses and verbal fillers, like most of the Windsor men, but here he has upped his pace to deliver crisper messages with no faltering or hesitation.
'In doing so he loses much of his authenticity and suggestion of speaking straight from his thoughts rather than a script. There is nothing natural about these clipped and scripted sentiments although the performer skills have clearly been worked on.'
Judi said Harry has gone from a 'tentative speaker' to a 'slicker, more rehearsed-sounding' podcast pro, and together with Meghan, the pair resemble a 'professional media double act'.
'Harry isn't just chatting here, he is presenting from a tightly timed and choreographed script and instead of the relaxed hand-overs to Meghan he is making timed cut-ins, some times just throwing in two words between her words in the style you would normally hear from professional media double-acts like Richard and Judy (Harry sounds incredibly like Richard Madeley in this clip) or Holly and Phil,' she explained.
'So far we have seen Harry marketed as a bit of a royal male on the loose, a tentative speaker who projected his personal brand of charm and charisma by looking and sounding like a keen amateur rather than a polished professional.
'Here, though, he has been fully launched as podcast Harry, a slicker, more rehearsed-sounding speaker who has even adopted a new style of accent to appeal to a demanding audience.'
A number of listeners also took to Twitter to comment on Harry's accent during the podcast, including royal historian Marlene Koenig.
She observed that the Duke 'spoke Estuary rather than RP [received pronunciation]'.
In response to a tweet which suggested Harry had adopted a mid-Atlantic accent, Marlene commented: 'He spoke estuary rather than RP.
'Few Brits speak RP. Living in CA would not mean a mid Atlantic accent. I speak with a mid Atlantic American Standard. American Standard is the equivalent of RP. See The story of English.'
BBC presenter Sangita Myska also made the observation, tweeting in response to a post by ITV royal correspondent Chris Ship: 'Hmm. He's gone a little Estuary English, no?'
A number of listeners took to Twitter to comment on Harry's accent, including royal historian Marlene Koenig Chris replied: 'And says "±ew year" rather than "noo year"!' referencing the moment Harry and Meghan encouraged little Archie to make an appearance at the end of the podcast and wish people a 'happy new year' in his distinctly American twang.
The couple, who have fiercely defended Archie's privacy since his birth in May 2019 and filed a lawsuit in the US this year to fight to protect it, urge their son to talk into the microphone, with Harry telling him: 'You can speak into it.' Meghan also asks: 'Archie, is it fun?' to which he replies: 'Fun!'
In a trailer for their Spotify podcast, body language expert Judi James claimed Meghan is copying the Queen's rhetorical style to make herself sound 'presidential'.
The Duchess said 'my husband and I' when referring to Harry on the recording, in a move reminiscent of the Queen and former First Lady Michelle Obama, who often use the same rhetorical technique.
Judi said: 'Despite the fact that "just Harry' has already introduced himself, Meghan switches to a regal-sounding formality when she then refers to "My husband and I..." as though he weren't actually present with her.
'This is a phrase famously used by the Queen and adds a royal air to their trailer.'
The Sussexes called on many of their most friends to appear on their first Archewell Audio podcast, which they promise will 'uplift and entertain audiences around the world'.
Meghan said they asked people who 'inspire us' to appear on the podcast and give 'their thoughts on what they learned from 2020'.
Sir Elton was a friend of Harry's mother Diana, Princess of Wales and has regularly supported her son over the years, while Corden was a guest at Harry and Meghan's wedding and was asked by the duke to perform at the couple's evening celebration.
Other guests include Democrat activist Stacey Abrams, tennis star Naomi Osaka, American filmmaker and actor Tyler Perry, wellness icon Deepak Chopra and teenage activist Christina Adane from London, who campaigns on food issues.
In an apparent nod to the stormy 2020 the couple have had after quitting as frontline royals and moving to Los Angeles via Vancouver, Meghan says: 'From us I'll say no matter what life throws at you guys, trust us when we say, love wins.'
The podcast ends with the gospel song This Little Light of Mine, which was played at the end of their wedding in May 2018.Experts have called the couple's Spotify tie-up as another big step towards building what experts believe could become a $1billion business empire in the US after a super-deal with Netflix to make documentaries about their pet projects.
From an 'explorer of consciousness' to a poet-cum-rapper: How Harry and Meghan lined up all-star cast including Sir Elton John, James Corden, Naomi Osaka and Tyler Perry for their podcast debut
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have released their first podcast and called on a number of their famous friends to appear.
The couple's first 33-minute show as part of the deal with the streaming giant worth an estimated £30million ($40million) is a 'holiday special' that concludes with the gospel song This Little Light of Mine.
The guests appearing on the first episode feature a range of prominent British and American artists, activists and musicians.
The royal couple promised their podcast will 'uplift and entertain audiences around the world' as they spoke with a range of people who 'inspire us'.
Sir Elton John Sir Elton John
Link : Sir Elton was friends with Harry's mother, Princess Diana, and he has remained a close friend of the prince since her death in 1997
Net worth : £360m ($485m)
Lives : Windsor, London, Nice and Los Angeles
One of Britain's most famous rock stars, Sir Elton has been in royal circles for years, from performing at Prince Andrew's 21st birthday party to Princess Diana's funeral in 1997.
The 73-year-old kept in touch with Harry, and has worked with him on AIDS charity work, a cause close to Diana's heart.
In 2019 he performed at the lunch reception when Harry tied the knot with Meghan, and even gifted them the use of his private jet and home in Nice for which they were heavily criticised.
When Harry and Meghan forfeited their royal duties to move to America, they rented a mansion close to Sir Elton's in a gated LA community.
After they move to their current mansion in Montecito, it was reported they even consulted Sir Elton's extravagant designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard for help choosing the decor.
James Corden James Corden
Link : He was a guest at Harry and Meghan's wedding and was asked by the duke to perform at the couple's evening celebration.
Net worth: £22m ($30m)
Lives : Los Angeles and London
A breakthrough star of several British comedies including Gavin and Stacey, Corden left the UK in search of Hollywood stardom in 2015, and now presents the Late Late Show for CBS.
On news of Harry and Meghan's engagement, the TV funnyman, 42, used his show to subtly plead for an invitation to the wedding, and was later invited.
It was reported Corden even managed to set up a 'dance-off' between Harry, William and their father Charles at the star-studded reception afterwards.
Corden is now one of the most prominent Britons in US showbiz - making him the perfect figure to generate publicity for the podcast on both sides of the Atlantic.
Tyler Perry Tyler Perry
Link : Through his mutual friend, Oprah Winfrey, Perry invited Harry, Meghan, and Archie to stay in his $18million Californian mansion while they searched for a permanent home
Net worth : £744m ($1bn)
Lives : Los Angeles, Atlanta, New York
Once-homeless Perry has earned a fortune through writing, developing and starring in dozens of films, TV series and stage plays, including as his most famous 'Madea' character.
In 2011, he was listed by Forbes magazine as the highest-paid man in entertainment.
The couple had been staying in Perry's £15m ($20m) 12-bedroom Los Angeles mansion before moving to their current home in Montecito.
The actor had previously posted images of the house on Instagram, which showed a sunken Grecian-style bath and a huge terrace with stunning views of LA.
Stacey Abrams Stacey Abrams
Link : Meghan spoke to Abrams in August to discuss voter suppression in the US and how it affects people of colour
Net worth : Unknown, but Abrams said she was $200,000 in debt in 2018, owing $54,000 in federal back taxes and holding $174,000 in credit card and student loan debt
Lives : Atlanta, Georgia
Abrams is a key political figure in Georgia who was catapulted on to the national arena in the wake of the contentious 2020 US election.
She served in the Georgia House of Representatives from 2007 to 2017 before becoming the country's first African American female nominee for a major party in a gubernatorial race.
She lost the 2018 vote to the Republican Governor Mike Kemp in an election which she accused her opponent of engaging in black voter suppression.
Abrams then founded Fair Fight Action to tackle the issue and register more voters from minority backgrounds.
In the 2020 Presidential election, Georgia was a crucial swing state, and many have credited Abrams and Fair Fight Action for turning it blue, along with many other states where she campaigned.
Christina Adane Christina Adane
Link : Campaigning
Net worth : N/A
Lives : South London
At the age of 17, Christina has already served as co-chair of a campaign tackling food injustice and launched one of the most successful petitions in recent UK political history.
The teenager from London serves on the youth board of Bite Back 2030 which is fighting for young people to be given equal access to a good diet.
The young trailblazer has also written poems about the Black Lives Matter movement and delivered speeches at global climate summits.
Christina, who received free school meals when she was younger, was at the forefront of Marcus Rashford's campaign to help poorer children be fed during the school holidays this year.
She started the petition which was later championed by the Manchester United footballer which forced the government into two U-turns.
The 17-year-old has made it her mission to ensure that no child in the UK goes hungry.
Jos(C) Andr(C)s Jos(C) Andr(C)s
Link : The royal couple announced earlier this month they had partnered with the chef for their new charitable venture
Net worth : £37million ($50million)
Lives : Maryland, US
The chef and restaurateur is credited with bringing small plates to US cuisine from his native Spain.
Arriving in the country in 1990 with $50 to his name, he has since gone on to earn three Michelin stars, owning dozens of restaurants.
But he famously pulled out of a restaurant deal at the Trump International Hotel in Washington DC in 2016 after the then Republican presidential candidate made disparaging comments about Mexicans.
The father-of-three has often featured on TV but later turned to more charitable work, starting the non-profit venture World Central Kitchen.
The organization provides free meals in the wake of natural disasters, starting in 2010 after the Haiti earthquake.
It has since helped deliver food to Americans during the Covid pandemic.
Bren(C) Brown Bren(C) Brown
Link : The Duke and Duchess of Sussex said they 'adore' self-help guru Bren(C) Brown in August. Her other celebrity fans include Oprah Winfrey, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Jennifer Aniston.
Net worth : £2.2million ($3million)
Lives : Texas, US
Bren(C) Brown has had a varied career, working as a professor, author, podcast host and self-help guru.
She has spent two decades studying courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy and imparts her wisdom to students, readers and listeners.
Previously struggling with addictions to smoking, alcohol and emotional eating, she has since transformed her life and now helps others.
She has penned five New York Times bestselling books and her TED Talk on The Power of Vulnerability further propelled her in the public eye, going viral with millions of views on YouTube.
Brown also hosts two hit pocasts, Unlocking Us and Dare to Lead, where she recently interviewed Barack Obama.
Rachel Cargle Rachel Cargle
Link : Meghan and Harry hosted a virtual discussion featuring Cargle in October for a special episode of the Time100 Talks
Net worth: £2.2million ($3million)
Lives : New York
Cargle came to prominence after a photo of her at the 2017 Women's March against Donald Trump's presidency went viral.
She held aloft a placard reading 'If You Don't Fight for All Women You Fight for No Women', in front of the Capitol.
The activist has since then used her platform to speak out on issues of race, gender and inequality on her ever growing social media accounts.
She is an advocate of intersectional feminism, which means different inequalities such as class, gender or race are treated as intersecting rather than separate issues.
Cargle tours a lecture, Unpacking White Feminism, and regularly appears in the media speaking out on issues of inequality.
The author has also founded the Loveland Foundation which helps provide therapy to black women and girls.
Deepak Chopra Deepak Chopra
Link : Meghan's lifestyle blog The Tig, which she wrote before meeting Prince Harry, cited the works of Chopra
Net worth : £110million ($150million)
Lives : New York
The Indian-American author is one of the best-known figures in alternative medicine and the New Age movement.
Chopra, who calls himself an 'explorer of consciousness', believes the human body can attain perfect health, avoiding ageing, disease and pain.
His claims have been heavily disputed by scientists who have dismissed his beliefs as 'pseudoscience'.
The doctor and prolific author shot to fame with his appearances on Oprah Winfrey's show where he discussed his views that someone's mental health can affect their physical reality.
Chopra and his wife currently live in a 'health-centric' condominium in Manhattan.
Matt Haig Matt Haig
Link : Meghan is one of the author's high profile fans and included his poem in her guest edit of British Vogue last year
Net worth : £3million ($4million)
Lives : Brighton, UK
Matt Haig has been very open about his battles with mental health and has fed the subject into his successful books.
The author, 45, has written a number of bestsellers including Reasons To Stay Alive, How To Stop Time and Notes on a Nervous Planet.
Haig, who is married with two children, struggled with depression and anxiety in his 20s and nearly took his own life.
In the September issue of British Vogue, Meghan hailed his poem, which is an ode from a beach telling swimmers not to be body-conscious.
Matt added that Meghan's choice to include his piece is a 'surreal honour' and that he is glad she 'digs my stupid humour.'
Hussain Manawer Hussain Manawer
Link : Before Meghan met Harry, Manawer revealed the Suits actress approached him backstage at an event where they discussed mental health work
Net worth : N/A
Lives : Essex, UK
Hussain Manawer is a poet and campaigner who teaches about the importance of mental health.
His success has seen him share stages with global popstars, reciting poems alongside Ed Sheeran, Cher and Ellie Goulding.
He has even performed with Justin Trudeau and Kofi Anan.
The poet holds the record for the world's largest mental health lesson and is also an ambassador for mental health charity Samaritans.
His poem The Sound of Support opened the FA Cup final in England this year, cheered on by Prince William and Kate Middleton.
Naomi Osaka Naomi Osaka
Link : Not known, but Meghan is close friends with fellow tennis star Serena Williams
Net worth : £19m ($25m)
Lives : Beverly Hills
At 23, Naomi Osaka, has already made a huge name for herself on the tennis court.
The Haitian-Japanese former World Number One became the first Asian player to hold the top ranking in singles tennis.
Osaka has already won three Grand Slam titles and is the reigning US Open champion.
She famously defeated Serena Williams in 2018 to win the US Open, her first Grand Slam.
The match is also remembered for Williams's on field dispute with the umpire, causing her to receive a game penalty.
Osaka has become increasingly outspoken and this year attended Black Lives Matter protests and wore face masks bearing the names of black people killed by police to her tennis matches.
George the Poet George the Poet
Link : Harry and Meghan have had a long association with the British spoken-word artist. Prince Harry shared one of his poems to mark World AIDS Day in 2016, before George The Poet performed on the couple's wedding day in 2018.
Net worth : N/A
Lives : London, UK
George the Poet is a man of many talents, performing as a spoken-word artist, rapper, poet and podcaster.
The artist uses hip hop influences to discuss social and political issues.
His influences range from Maya Angelou, Tupac Shakur, Nas, Dizzee Rascal and George Watsky.
Last year, he was offered an MBE but turned down the award because the British Empire's treatment of his ancestral homeland of Uganda.
Could you be paying for email in 2021? Here are our tech predictions.
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:57
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VIDEO-If you want to travel next year, you may need a vaccine passport - CNN
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 13:34
San Francisco (CNN Business)Now that coronavirus vaccines are starting to roll out in the US and abroad, many people may be dreaming of the day when they can travel, shop and go to the movies again. But in order to do those activities, you may eventually need something in addition to the vaccine: a vaccine passport application.
Several companies and technology groups have begun developing smartphone apps or systems for individuals to upload details of their Covid-19 tests and vaccinations, creating digital credentials that could be shown in order to enter concert venues, stadiums, movie theaters, offices, or even countries.
The
Common Trust Network, an initiative by Geneva-based nonprofit The Commons Project and the World Economic Forum, has partnered with several airlines including Cathay Pacific, JetBlue, Lufthansa, Swiss Airlines, United Airlines and Virgin Atlantic, as well as hundreds of health systems across the United States and the government of Aruba.
The
CommonPass app created by the group allows users to upload medical data such as a Covid-19 test result or, eventually, a proof of vaccination by a hospital or medical professional,
generating a health certificate or pass in the form of a QR code that can be shown to authorities without revealing sensitive information. For travel, the app lists health pass requirements at the points of departure and arrival based on your itinerary.
"You can be tested every time you cross a border. You cannot be vaccinated every time you cross a border," Thomas Crampton, chief marketing and communications officer for The Commons Project, told CNN Business. He stressed the need for a simple and easily transferable set of credentials, or a "digital yellow card," referring to the
paper document generally issued as proof of vaccination.
Large tech firms are also getting in on the act.
IBM
( IBM ) developed its own app, called
Digital Health Pass, which allows companies and venues to customize indicators they would require for entry including coronavirus tests, temperature checks and vaccination records. Credentials corresponding to those indicators are then stored in a mobile wallet.
In an effort to address one challenge around returning to normalcy after vaccines are distributed widely, developers may now have to confront other challenges, ranging from privacy issues to representing the varied effectiveness of different vaccines. But the most pressing challenge may simply be avoiding the disjointed implementation and mixed success of tech's previous attempt to address the public health crisis: contact tracing apps.
Early on in the pandemic,
Apple
( AAPL ) and
Google
( GOOG ) set aside their smartphone rivalry to jointly
develop a Bluetooth-based system to notify users if they'd been exposed to someone with Covid-19. Many countries and state governments around the world also developed and used their own apps.
"I think where exposure notification ran into some challenges was more of the piecemeal implementation choices, lack of federal leadership ... where each state had to go it alone and so each state had to figure it out independently," said Jenny Wanger, who leads the exposure notification initiatives for
Linux Foundation Public Health, a tech-focused organization helping public health authorities around the world combat Covid-19.
To encourage better coordination this time, The Linux Foundation has partnered with the
Covid-19 Credentials Initiative, a collective of more than 300 people representing dozens of organizations across five continents
and is also working with IBM and CommonPass to help develop a set of universal standards for vaccine credential apps.
"If we're successful, you should be able to say: I've got a vaccine certificate on my phone that I got when I was vaccinated in one country, with a whole set of its own kind of health management practices... that I use to get on a plane to an entirely different country and then I presented in that new country a vaccination credential so I could go to that concert that was happening indoors for which attendance was limited to those who have demonstrated that they've had the vaccine," said Brian Behlendorf, executive director of Linux Foundation.
"It should be interoperable in the same way that email is interoperable, the same way that the web is interoperable," he said. "Right now, we're in a situation where there's some moving parts that get us closer to that, but I think there's a sincere commitment from everybody in the industry."
Part of ensuring wide usage for vaccine passports is accounting for the large subset of the global population that still
doesn't use or have access to smartphones. A few companies within the Covid-19 Credentials Initiative are also developing a smart card that strikes a middle ground between the traditional paper vaccine certificates and an online version that's easier to store and reproduce.
"For us it's [about] how that digital credential can be stored, can be presented, not only through smartphones but also in other ways for those people who don't have access to stable internet and also who don't own smartphones," said Lucy Yang, co-lead of the Covid-19 Credentials Initiative. "We're looking into it, and there are companies who are doing really promising work.
Once they build a vaccine passport, companies will need to make sure people are comfortable using it. That means confronting concerns about the handling of private medical information.
CommonPass, IBM and the Linux Foundation have all stressed privacy as central to their initiatives. IBM says it allows users to control and consent to the use of their health data and allows them to choose the level of detail they want to provide to authorities.
"Trust and transparency remain paramount when developing a platform like a digital health passport, or any solution that handles sensitive personal information," the company said in a
blog post. "Putting privacy first is an important priority for managing and analyzing data in response to these complex times."
With vaccines manufactured by multiple companies across several countries in varying stages of development, there are a lot of variables that passport makers will need to account for.
"A point of entry '-- whether that's a border, whether that's a venue '-- is going to want to know, did you get the Pfizer vaccine, did you get the Russian vaccine, did you get the Chinese vaccine, so they can make a decision accordingly," said Crampton. The variance can be wide: the vaccine developed by Chinese state-owned pharmaceutical giant Sinopharm, for example,
has an efficacy of 86% against Covid-19, while the vaccines made by Pfizer and Moderna
each have an efficacy of around 95%.
It's also unclear how effective the vaccines are in stopping the transmission of the virus, says Dr. Julie Parsonnet, an infectious disease specialist at Stanford University. So while a vaccine passport app will show that you've received the shot, it may not be a guarantee that you safely attend an event or get on a flight.
"We still don't know if vaccinated people can transmit infection or not," she told CNN Business. "Until that is clarified, we won't know whether 'passports' will be effective."
Still, Behlendorf anticipates that the rollout and adoption of vaccine passports will happen rather quickly once everything falls into place and expects a variety of apps that can work with each other to be "widely available" within the first half of 2021.
"Rest assured, the nerds are on it," he said.
VIDEO-Musician Keyon Harrold says his 14-year-old son was falsely accused of stealing an iPhone - CNN
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 13:19
(CNN)Prosecutors in New York City are investigating an incident in which a jazz musician said his 14-year-old son was attacked by a woman who falsely accused him of taking her iPhone.
Trumpeter Keyon Harrold posted
a video taken with his phone that shows the woman making claims against his son on Saturday at the Arlo SoHo boutique hotel.
Harrold and his son are Black and were guests at the hotel in lower Manhattan. The ethnicity of the woman in the video is not clear, although New York police described her as White.
His video of the encounter has been widely shared on social media, prompting an outcry about what many felt was yet another incident of racial profiling against Black men. The hotel apologized and called the woman's behavior a "baseless accusation, prejudice and assault against an innocent guest."
The prominent jazz trumpeter spoke Wednesday at a news conference and rally near the steps of New York's City Hall, where he was accompanied by civil rights attorney Ben Crump and the Rev. Al Sharpton. He also followed a rendition of "America the Beautiful" with "We Shall Overcome" in the late December chill.
"If I wasn't who I was ... this wouldn't even be an issue," he said before a meeting with the district attorney that was -- according to Crump -- arranged by Sharpton.
Harrold, who is from Ferguson, Missouri, said he had been racially profiled himself throughout his life. He noted that the hotel episode could have ended "wrongly" had he not been with his son at the moment.
"I want my son to grow up whole. That's all we want. ... I come from Ferguson and this has been my passport to the world," Harrold said, pointing to his trumpet. "And I can't even come downstairs in New York City ... and just go get brunch without being attacked and wrongfully accused of something."
Kat Rodriguez, the teen's mother, said hotel management was equally culpable for not de-escalating the situation and for allowing the accuser to leave before police arrived. She demanded that the woman be charged with assault.
"This fight is not only for our son. It's for all of our sons and daughters," said Rodrigruez, who's a musician and a teacher. "If we were a family that didn't have these connections ... if I was a maid, this story wouldn't have hit the news. What about those people that don't get to get heard?"
Rodriguez, growing emotional at times, added, "I want to thank God because this incident could have ended very different. We have seen this ... I pray for the mothers and fathers who have lost their sons to racial injustice."
Rodriguez and others at the news conference asked what would have happened if a Black man or woman assaulted a White child and tried to take their phone.
Rodriguez told CNN's Don Lemon on Wednesday that her son was "traumatized and confused about why this happened to him."
A spokesman for Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance said his office "is thoroughly investigating" the incident, and the New York Police Department told CNN that a complaint for harassment at the Arlo SoHo hotel has been filed.
After viewing surveillance video of the incident, investigators are considering charging the woman with assault and possibly grand larceny or attempted robbery, said Rodney Harrison, chief of detectives for the New York Police Department, on Tuesday.
The woman disputes the accusations against her
The woman has not come forward, but CNN on Tuesday was the first news organization to talk to her by phone, and she disputed Harrold's account of what happened.
While the 22-year-old woman claimed she was assaulted during the altercation, CNN hasn't been able to corroborate her account with investigators or with the hotel where the incident took place.
In a 20-minute phone interview, she said the incident unfolded after she first demanded to see the hotel's surveillance video to try to pinpoint who may have taken her phone. She says she then asked someone else in the hotel lobby to "empty their pocket," before ultimately confronting Keyon Harrold Jr., who she maintained had her phone in his pocket.
"That's when everything got a little bit more serious," the woman said referring to the interaction.
Throughout the phone call, the woman's account of the incident was rambling at times. She provided additional information of events preceding and unrelated to the incident that CNN has been unable to confirm.
When asked whether she's concerned about possibly facing charges and overall how she is portrayed in the video, she said, "Of course I worry. That's not who I am. I actually ... try very hard to make sure that I am always doing the right thing."
The woman told CNN that she is willing to cooperate with the ongoing investigation, but she hasn't received a call from the NYPD yet nor has she reached out herself. She also said she'd be willing to talk to the Harrolds.
After she agreed to provide evidence that could help confirm her claim that she was assaulted, she stopped responding to CNN's phone calls and text messages.
CNN is not naming her at this time because she said she has concerns for her safety unrelated to this incident.
CNN also requested a police report from the NYPD, but it declined to provide one, saying it typically does not in such situations.
Many who have seen Harrold's video, including New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, have alleged racism. But there are no plans "at this time" to charge the woman with a bias crime, Harrison said.
"The investigation is still preliminary, a lot of work still needs to be done," he said. "The complainants are cooperating and I'm confident that the investigators from the first precinct will make an arrest on this case sooner than later."
Harrold says the encounter happened on the way to breakfast
Harrold said in
an Instagram post that he and his son had left their hotel room to get breakfast when they encountered the woman. It's not clear what occurred before he started filming, but '‹in the video, the woman can be heard telling Harrold's son, Keyon Harrold Jr., to show her his phone.
'‹The teen tells her "this is my phone" and '‹his father tells him he doesn't have to explain anything to the woman. The woman comes closer to them, demanding the case be taken off the phone.
She then taps a male hotel employee on the shoulder and asks him to bring the phone to her. "Literally get it back for me, please," she says.
The elder Harrold responds, "Are you kidding me? You feel like there's only one iPhone made in the world?" A man who identifies himself as the hotel manager asks to see the phone but the teen's father refuses. "I'm trying to settle this situation," the manager says.
In the video, when Harrold and his son attempt to leave the woman approaches them, saying, "I'm not letting him walk away with my phone." The video then shows her on the floor, but it's unclear how she landed there. She approaches them again and the teen's father '‹is heard shouting for her to get '‹her hands off before the video cuts out.
In
his Instagram post, Harrold said the woman scratched him and grabbed his son. He told NBC that after the video cut off, the woman, "tackled my son, you know, trying to reach in his pockets, reach in my pockets."
Harrold suffered slight injuries but his son was not injured, the NYPD said. His son
told ABC's "Good Morning America" that he's '‹"shell-shocked'‹.'‹"
"I don't know what would have happened if my Dad wasn't there, honestly," '‹the teen said. '‹Asked what he would say if he got the opportunity to speak to the woman, he said he'd expect an apology. Then he said he'd ask her, "why would she do something like this to a kid who has never met you at all?"
The woman's phone was returned to her at the hotel moments after the incident by a ride-share vehicle she used to try to check into the hotel, Harrison said.
Hotel says 'more could have been done' to defuse the dispute
De Blasio
on Twitter Monday called the incident "racism. Plain and simple."
"It would be horrific at any age, but it's especially offensive that it happened to a child," he said. "To Keyon Harrold Jr. and his family: I am so sorry this happened to you."
In a statement, Arlo Hotels said "more could have been done to de-escalate the dispute."
"We're deeply disheartened about the recent incident of baseless accusation, prejudice and assault against an innocent guest of Arlo hotel," the statement said. "In investigating the incident further, we've learned that the manager on duty promptly called the police regarding the woman's conduct and that hotel security intervened to prevent further violence .... No Arlo guest -- or any person -- should be subject to this kind of behavior."
Crump accused the hotel of empowering the woman's accusations by asking Harrold's son to prove his innocence and
called for charges against her.
"As this year of racial awareness is drawing to a close, it's deeply troubling that incidents like this one, in which a Black child is viewed as and treated like a criminal, continue to happen," Crump said in a statement.
"We strongly urge Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. to bring assault and battery charges against this woman to send the message that hateful, racially motivated behavior is unacceptable," Crump added. "This is what it will take to drive change. We also call for a civil rights investigation into the Arlo Hotel for its implicit bias in its treatment of Keyon."
CNN's Ray Sanchez, Melanie Schuman, Tina Burnside, Sonia Moghe and Kristina Sgueglia contributed to this report.
VIDEO-Hilaria Baldwin: 7 Times Her Spanish Accent Slipped on Camera (Videos)
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:25
Hilaria Baldwin, wife of actor Alec Baldwin, has been the subject of controversy this week as she faces accusations from across the internet that she's been faking a Spanish accent and falsely claiming to have been born in Mallorca, Spain.
In the wake of all this drama, the author, yoga instructor, and podcaster has clarified that she was, in fact, born in Boston, Massachusetts, and that she does identify as ''a white girl'' '-- with the caveat that ''Europe has a lot of white people'' and ''ethnically I am a mix of many, many, many things.'' She has also copped to the fact that she was born Hilary Thomas, but says she decided to ''consolidate'' the two names when she married Alec.
Over the years, Baldwin has also said that she first moved to the U.S. from Spain when she was 19 to study at NYU, and that she has Spanish parents. But others claim to have gone to high school with her in Massachusetts, and her parents appear to have only moved to Spain as recently as 2011.
Also Read: Alec Baldwin Still Defending Wife Hilaria's Accent: 'She Lived in Spain for Many Years'
As Oprah once asked, ''So what is the truth?'' For your viewing pleasure, we've compiled a collection of seven times Baldwin slipped out of her Spanish accent and into regular American white-girl-speak.
One of the most circulated clips is this ABC interview from 2012, shortly after her wedding to Alec Baldwin. In the clip, she lays the Spanish accent on pretty thick but seems to slip in and out of it at the start of sentences.
This ''Extra'' interview from earlier that same year also features a lot of confusing back-and-forth accent switching. Listen to how she says, ''And I don't remember the rest because I started crying'' at the 16-second mark, and then how different she sounds at the 50-second mark when she says ''With us, everything is '-- we talk about everything. We don't have secrets.''
Also Read: 'SNL': Maya Rudolph Moderates Last Debate With Jim Carrey and Alec Baldwin as a Drinking Game (Video)
Then, of course, there is the infamous ''Today'' cooking segment in which she sports an even heavier Spanish accent and seems to forget how to say the word ''cucumber'' in English.
But in this 2018 ''Today'' interview with Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager, she ditches the accent altogether and sounds like just another suburban mom from Massachusetts.
Also Read: 'SNL' Cold Open Gives Alec Baldwin's Trump Town Hall the Wrestlemania Treatment (Video)
Here she is again in 2016 with husband Alec and two of their children, Carmen Gabriela and Rafael Thomas, discussing what they should name their third child (they ended up going with Leonardo Angel Charles, and later added Romeo Alejandro David and Eduardo Pau Lucas). But in the clip, her Spanish accent is, again, nowhere to be found.
In this Elle video from 2019, she mostly favors the American accent but occasionally throws in some slight Spanish pronunciations.
Even in her Instagram video from this Sunday, in which she attempts to explain herself, she speaks predominantly with an American accent but still annunciated words like ''really'' with noticeably Spanish diction.
VIDEO-Feds probing whether Nashville bomber believed in lizard people conspiracy
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 12:00
Dec. 30, 2020, 11:58 AM EST / Updated Dec. 30, 2020, 12:35 PM EST
By Tom Winter, Michael Kosnar and Wilson Wong
Investigators are exploring several conspiracy theories as potential motives behind the Christmas Day bombing outside an AT&T building in Nashville, Tennessee, including evidence that the bomber believed in lizard people and a so-called reptilian conspiracy, two senior law enforcement officials said Wednesday.
Investigators are expected to conclude their crime scene work this week, but it could take several more weeks until they determine the motive of the bomber, Anthony Quinn Warner, who died in the blast.
Since Saturday, authorities have been examining Warner's digital devices '-- which an official said includes a significant trove of pictures, videos and writings '-- looking for any clues to what drove the man to set off a powerful bomb inside his recreational vehicle, which took down communications networks and injured several people in downtown Nashville.
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Specifically, investigators are looking into the suspect's previous trips to an undisclosed location in Tennessee where he would camp out in his recreational vehicle and, according to the suspect's statements to others, hunt possible aliens, the officials said.
In addition, investigators are aware of statements the suspect made about an internet conspiracy that powerful politicians and Hollywood figures are actually lizards or other reptiles who have extraterrestrial origins and are taking over society, the officials said.
Adherents of the unfounded conspiracy theory believe that politicians and other prominent people, including the Clintons and the comedian Bob Hope, who died in 2003, are actually lizard-like creatures sent to Earth and are responsible for a number of historic tragedies. Justin Bieber and the Obamas have also been named in the conspiracy theory.
Federal investigators have also asked associates and acquaintances of Warner whether he believed in equally unfounded conspiracy theories about AT&T and 5G mobile service and whether that was a motive for choosing the AT&T building as the site of the bombing.
A senior law enforcement official said investigators have cast a wide net that includes family, friends, neighbors, acquaintances and businesses where he may have bought bomb-making supplies.
Metropolitan Nashville Police Chief John Drake acknowledged that the department had no officers on the Nashville Joint Terrorism Task Force, a group of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies whose primary mission is to investigate potential terrorist threats.
Drake said he would rectify the issue and assign an officer to the task force, which would allow his department to get the latest briefings from the FBI around the world.
More than a year before the bombing, Warner's girlfriend warned police that he was building bombs in an RV parked at his home, according to police reports.
On Aug. 21, 2019, an attorney for Warner's girlfriend told officers that Warner ''frequently talks about the military and bomb making,'' according to an incident report released by police.
The lawyer's call prompted officers to visit Warner's house, where they knocked on the front door to no avail, according to the report. Officers wrote that they spotted ''several security cameras and wires attached to an alarm at the front door,'' the report said.
Officers said they spotted an RV parked behind a fence in the backyard, but they said they could not see inside the vehicle. Authorities identified an RV linked to Warner as the source of the Christmas Day explosion.
Police said Wednesday that the officers saw no evidence of a crime and had no authority to enter the property or the fenced-in backyard. They also determined that the girlfriend was in need of ''psychological evaluation,'' and she was taken to a hospital, according to police.
RecommendedThe day after officers visited Warner's house, an incident report was forwarded to the FBI by the police, which said they had asked the agency and the Defense Department to run a records search on Warner. Police said a search from both databases found no results.
Nashville police did not say they had asked the FBI to open an investigation into Warner, but they said their Hazardous Devices Unit followed up on the incident report with the lawyer. According to police, the lawyer told them that Warner ''did not care for the police'' and that he would not allow a visual inspection of the RV.
David Rausch, director of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, told reporters this week that Warner was not on the agency's radar before the bombing, except for one arrest for marijuana possession in 1978.
A spokesperson for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said Wednesday they it was previously unaware of the incident involving Nashville police and Warner's girlfriend.
The spokesperson said in a statement: ''To be clear, the remarks our Director made about him 'not being on our radar' were specific to our agency and not all of law enforcement.''
The FBI said that unlike in other cases, such as those of the Boston Marathon bomber, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, or Omar Mateen, the shooter at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, it was asked only to run a database search on Warner and was not asked to open an investigation.
Police did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday.
Warner, 63, who was described as a ''loner'' by people who knew him, had recently retired as an information technology consultant, NBC News reported Monday.
Officers were responding to reports of gunfire in the area on Christmas morning when, instead, they heard a warning of an explosion coming from an RV parked outside an AT&T building. Authorities said the blast, which authorities believe was set off by Warner, went off at 6:30 a.m. Friday, rippling across several blocks downtown.
The explosion injured at least three people and damaged more than 40 businesses. Warner was the only person killed in the blast.
Tom Winter Tom Winter is a New York-based correspondent covering crime, courts, terrorism and financial fraud on the East Coast for the NBC News Investigative Unit.
Michael KosnarMichael Kosnar is a Justice Department producer for the NBC News Washington Bureau.
Wilson Wong Wilson Wong is a breaking news reporter with NBC News.
VIDEO-🇺🇸🇺🇸 Miguelifornia on Twitter: "ðŸ'¥ðŸ'¥BOOOOMðŸ'¥ðŸ'¥ Georgia electronic voting machines hacked into... live in real timeðŸ--¥ðŸ--¥ END THE FRAUD #StopTheSteal @realDonaldTrump @SidneyPowell1 @LLinWood https://t.co/IauppSJb7t" / Twitter
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 11:58
🇺🇸🇺🇸 Miguelifornia : ðŸ'¥ðŸ'¥BOOOOMðŸ'¥ðŸ'¥Georgia electronic voting machines hacked into...live in real timeðŸ--¥ðŸ--¥END THE FRAUD#StopTheSteal'... https://t.co/AiX1bc8PS6
Wed Dec 30 18:32:09 +0000 2020
Adonis John Karmiotis : @michaelbeatty3 @realDonaldTrump @SidneyPowell1 @LLinWood Tue truth is couragous and the truth always have to be pr'... https://t.co/ZXIqcDLoXi
Thu Dec 31 11:53:35 +0000 2020
VIDEO-Rod Phillips on Twitter: "It's #ChristmasEve. To my constituents in #Ajax & people across Ontario, all the best during this special time of year. Even as COVID-19 changes how we celebrate, we should reflect on what makes Christmas so special to
Thu, 31 Dec 2020 05:36
Rod Phillips : It's #ChristmasEve. To my constituents in #Ajax & people across Ontario, all the best during this special time of y'... https://t.co/d5qMtwBOYX
Thu Dec 24 15:32:49 +0000 2020
Michelle Plant : @RodPhillips01 You're not at home
Thu Dec 31 05:35:49 +0000 2020
Rednirus : @RodPhillips01 https://t.co/klCNQIqJYV
Thu Dec 31 05:34:07 +0000 2020
Rednirus : @RodPhillips01 https://t.co/TGy6igceGU
Thu Dec 31 05:29:30 +0000 2020
J Delbert Tarkanian : @RodPhillips01 Don't think you need a fire in St. Barts.Pro tip: Don't go to the Justin Trudeau School of Politic'... https://t.co/1iwTM6KYA9
Thu Dec 31 05:26:27 +0000 2020
VIDEO-Minnesota state lawmakers call for audit of COVID-19 death certificates | Fox News Video
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VIDEO-Anthony Warner's girlfriend warned police he was building bombs in his RV last year
Wed, 30 Dec 2020 15:19
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) '-- Police were warned Anthony Warner was making bombs in his RV more than a year before his Christmas morning attack in downtown Nashville.
The tip came from Warner's distraught girlfriend in August of 2019.
SEE THE FULL POLICE REPORT HERE
Police went to Warner's home the day of the complaint, but were unable to make contact with him.
The case was later closed as unfounded.
The police report from August 21, 2019, shows police responded to the home of a woman who had threatened to kill herself.
She told officers that her boyfriend - Anthony Warner - "was building bombs in the RV trailer at his residence."
The police report states that an attorney who was also there and represented both the woman and Warner - told police that Warner "frequently talks about the military and bomb making."
Attorney Ray Throckmorton told police that Warner "knows what he is doing and is capable of making a bomb."
"I made a report on the spot for him to get checked out and I did all that I knew I could do," Throckmorton said.
Throckmorton said he had represented Warner in the past on various real estate issues, but he believed what Warner's girlfriend was saying.
"She was so convincing that morning, and so distraught, that I decided in the front yard in the middle of all those police officers on the spot, that even though it was a former client of mine, that somebody needed to go check it out right then," Throckmorton said.
The police report reveals officers went to Warner's home on Bakertown Road.
It states "Police observed that there was an RV trailer in the backyard but the yard was fenced off and police could not see inside the RV."
Police noted there were several security cameras wired to an alarm sign on the door.
The report states, "Police attempted several times but could not get the suspect to open the door and police did not have contact with him."
"I am floored the report says that," Throckmorton said. "And to find that out now."
Metro police spokesman Don Aaron told NewsChannel 5 Investigates that officers "saw no evidence of a crime and had no authority to enter his home or fenced property."
Aaron said Metro police forwarded the report and Warner's information to the FBI, but the agency found no records on Warner.
And no additional information came to the department's attention after August 2019.
"It's pretty obvious to me that somebody didn't do what they were supposed to do," Throckmorton said.
Police said an officer with the bomb squad called Throckmorton days after the initial report and asked to search Warner's RV - because they believed Throckmorton still represented Warner.
Police claimed Throckmorton would not allow his client to consent to a search - but Throckmorton insists that is not true.
"He was not a current client of mine at that point in time," Throckmorton told NewsChannel 5 Investigates Tuesday.
"I certainly would never have told them not to check it out when I'm the one who said go the hell over there and find out what's going on," Throckmorton said.
Police officers notified supervisors and detectives about the tip on Warner, but it's unclear if detectives ever followed up with Warner's girlfriend, who was not in a good mental state, or asked for search warrant.
"If somebody had checked Tony out and gotten him the help that he needed this would never have happened," Throckmorton said.
Here is an outline of events Metro Police Department spokesman Don Aaron sent via email in response to our questions - with the girlfriend's name redacted:
"South Precinct officers went to Ms. ---- home on the morning of Wednesday, August 21, 2019, on a report from Mr. Throckmorton that Ms. ---- had made suicidal threats to him via telephone and was sitting on her front porch with firearms. Officers arrived and saw that Ms. ---- did have two pistols on the porch next to her, but they were not in her possession and they were not loaded. She related that the guns belonged to a ''Tony Warner'' and that she did not want them in the house any longer. ''Tony Warner'' was not on the scene. As a result of their interview with Ms. ----, and out of concern for her safety, Mobile Crisis was contacted and Ms. ----- spoke with them via telephone. They determined she was in need of psychological evaluation and she voluntarily went with an NFD ambulance for that purpose. While at ----- home, as the report reflects, officers also spoke with Throckmorton, who, they were told, represented both ---- and Warner.
On the morning of August 21, 2019, officers also went to Warner's address on Bakertown Lane (see report). No contact was made. They saw no evidence of a crime and had no authority to enter his home or fenced property.
The attached report was sent to the Hazardous Devices Unit for follow up.
On August 22, 2019, the narrative from the report and Warner's identifying information were sent to the FBI to check their databases and also determine whether Warner had any prior military connections.
Later in the day on August 22, 2019, the FBI reported back that they checked their holdings and found no records on Warner at all. On August 28, 2019, the FBI reported that Department of Defense checks on Warner were all negative.
During the week of August 26, 2019, the Hazardous Devices Unit made contact with attorney Throckmorton. The recollection of that call is that Warner did not care for the police, and that Throckmorton would not allow his client to permit a visual inspection of the RV.
At no time was there any evidence of a crime detected and no additional action was taken.
No additional information about Warner came to the department's or the FBI's attention after August 2019. The ATF also had no information on him. The 1 arrest of Warner occurred in January 1978 for marijuana possession."
After this report was initially published, the FBI released the following statement:
On August 22, 2019, the FBI received a request from the Metro Nashville Police Department to check our holdings on Anthony Warner and subsequently found no records at all. Additionally, the FBI facilitated a Department of Defense inquiry on Warner at the request of the Metro Nashville Police Department which was also negative.
The FBI regularly assists our law enforcement partners seeking additional information to further their investigations.
The FBI will continue to work closely with our federal, state, and local law enforcement partners to assess intelligence around any known or potential threats to public safety.
Copyright 2020 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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VIDEO-Police chopper deployed in busting three-man rooftop party (Video) | New York Post
Tue, 29 Dec 2020 15:01
Police in Australia went to the extreme to catch three guys having a drink on a rooftop in the country's Gold Coast region. ''The building is surrounded,'' Queensland police said to the men over the PolAir helicopter loudspeaker as two additional officers with a police dog led them off the premises. The suspects were allegedly in breach of social distancing restrictions and trespassing on the property.
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VIDEO-elena ilana alana alina elana (not) on Twitter: "Where did your accent go Hmm https://t.co/U9DLc5VnSg" / Twitter
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 22:51
elena ilana alana alina elana (not) : Where did your accent go Hmm https://t.co/U9DLc5VnSg
Mon Dec 21 19:31:22 +0000 2020
VIDEO-WATCH: Woman defends her right to remain maskless in what used to be the land of the free and the home of the brave | Not the Bee
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 21:40
We now live in the twilight zone. Here's a video of a young woman in a store, bravely defending her right to show her face in public from a mob of fellow Americans harassing her and threatening to call the police.
Also, note how the blue checkmark who recorded this video refers to her:
"I'm not saying COVID's not real," said the woman in the video after CVS employees refused her service. "I'm just saying, I'm not sick. I'm not sick and asymptomatic spread has been shown to be a myth, so why am I going to be treated like a sick person?"
She then went on to discuss how the overall mortality rate in the U.S. has remained unchanged this year from past years and expressed concern at the overall narrative being sold:
"Do you know that there have been fewer deaths in [2020] than in [2019]? All they've done is recategorize all the deaths. This is not what they're telling us it is. It's a lie. This is a lie, I'm telling you. It's a lie and everyone's buying it. And it will go on and on and on as long as they feed us this lie and we comply with it, and I am done. Tonight, I've reached a breaking point, I'm done. I know I'm not reaching any of you in here, I don't care."
After another shopper threatened to call the police, the woman ended by saying we are treating each other like we all have a disease, and reiterated that she's no longer complying with the insanity of endless mask mandates, social distancing guidelines, and lockdowns.
Eventually, police officers did reportedly arrive and the woman left the store.
Before continuing, let me note again: this clip is from the United States of America.Without entering into the much-debated science of the efficacy of masks, let's get something straight: we are now at a point in our society where we view everyone with suspicion, report our neighbors, and refuse service for failing to cover their faces '' and then pretend this is good and normal and will lead to good things in our culture.
If you've lived in the Middle East as I have, these scenes may seem familiar. I just never thought I'd see them in America.
Take this example of Iranians harassing women for not wearing a compulsory head covering while in their car:
The argument of the man in this video is scarily similar to the first video. He tells the woman that she needs to follow Islamic law and that she can go without a hijab in the privacy of her own home.
Regardless of your opinion on masks, when our cultural mandates begin looking like living under strict Sharia law, perhaps something has gone amiss.What's worse, at least the Iranian people have more of a backbone than the Americans in the video. We haven't just lost some backbone '' we've become invertebrate. Check out another video where an Iranian woman is harassed for not covering her hair. Notice how people cheer in support for her as she confronts a man telling her to cover her head:
Now go back to the first video in America, where not a single person came to the woman's aid '' instead glaring at her or outright accusing her of attempted murder-by-breathing.
What are we becoming?
Are we still the land of the free, and where are the brave?
VIDEO-Doctors Around the World Issue Dire WARNING: DO NOT GET THE COVID VACCINE!!
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 21:22
by Brian ShilhavyEditor, Health Impact News
In an effort to combat Big Pharma Corporate Media and Big Tech censorship, doctors around the world are frantically trying to warn the masses of the devastating effects of the experimental COVID vaccines about to be mass injected into the unsuspecting public assisted by military forces around the world.
What could possibly motivate these doctors, nurses, scientists, and other health professionals to make such an impassioned plea? What do they have to gain by taking the time to educate the public on the hidden dangers of a new class of vaccine about to be inflicted upon the citizens of countries around the world?
They have NOTHING TO GAIN, and much to lose, including their careers, and possibly even their lives.
So why are they doing this? Why are these doctors and professionals being censored so much if the new COVID vaccines are in fact ''safe and effective''? What is it that the media and the government are hiding that they don't want the public to know?
They are doing this because they are doctors and scientists who actually understand the REAL science here, and who know the devastating potential consequences of those who choose to get this very toxic and dangerous vaccine, and they are trying to save as many people as possible from the carnage this vaccine is going to cause, which will include DEATH, brain injuries, life-long autoimmune disease, infertility, and more.
Please watch this video and their urgent pleas, and then share it with as many people as you can, because time is short!
From our Bitchute Channel:
See Also:
Doctors for Truth: Tens of Thousands Medical Professionals Suing and Calling for End to COVID TyrannyCOVID Vaccines ''Biological Weapons of Mass Destruction'' says Wyoming Medical Doctor and Manager for Wyoming's State Public Health Department (Trending!)Dr. Northrup Discusses ''Worst Case Scenarios'' with New COVID Vaccine DangersDr. Judy Mikovits and Dr. Sherri Tenpenny: A New COVID Vaccine Could Kill 50 Million People in the U.S.Censored Dr. Kaufman: ''They Want To Genetically Modify Us With COVID-19 Vaccine'' '' Loses his Job and Willing to go to Jail to ResistHaving problems receiving our newsletters? See:
How to Beat Internet Censorship and Create Your Own NewsfeedWe Are Now on Parler, MeWe, and Gab!If our website is seized and shut down, find us on Parler, MeWe and Gab for further instructions about where to find us.
Is God's Judgment About to Fall on America? What is the ''Mark of the Beast''?
Unmasking Who is Behind the Plandemic and Rioting to Usher in the New World OrderPublished on December 8, 2020
VIDEO-Nashville mayor says Trump hasn't called since bombing | TheHill
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 21:04
Nashville, Tenn., Mayor John Cooper (D) on Monday said that he has not spoken directly to President Trump since the intentional detonation of an RV in the city's downtown on Christmas.
"No, I haven't," Cooper told CNN when asked if he had heard from the president since the bombing.
However, Cooper credited Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) for lobbying the president for a federal disaster declaration in the wake of the blast.
"Our senior senator I know talked to him yesterday, she said, and he apparently had been following the news very closely and was committing help from the federal government aspect for which we are grateful and we'll need that," he told CNN.
Cooper added that the damage to the city's 2nd Avenue would compound the economic toll of the coronavirus pandemic on local businesses.
"You've got facades that are in danger, windows shattered. People are going to have to expect it's going to be months before it's back to normal," he said.
Cooper was cagey on possible motivations behind the bombing. Authorities have identified the suspected bomber as Anthony Quinn Warner, who they say died in the blast.
"It's going to be some time before motive can be established. I don't think anybody has a deep insight into that."
Asked if he believed it was domestic terrorism, Cooper responded that "everybody ... has been careful not to use the t-word here," noting that no political manifesto or statement in connection with the bombing has surfaced thus far.
He also confirmed reports that Petula Clark's "Downtown" had been audible from the recreational vehicle before it exploded, calling the detail "surreal."
In a statement, White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere said the president "has been briefed on the explosion in Nashville, Tennessee, and will continue to receive regular updates."
"The President is grateful for the incredible first responders and praying for those who were injured," Deere added.
The Hill has reached out to the White House for comment.
VIDEO-Disclose.tv 🚨 on Twitter: ""I don't believe we have the evidence on any of the vaccines to be confident that it's going to prevent people from actually getting the infection and therefore being able to pass it on'', says WHO Chief Scientist @doc
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 20:26
Disclose.tv 🚨 : "I don't believe we have the evidence on any of the vaccines to be confident that it's going to prevent people from'... https://t.co/bF7adM6UHD
Mon Dec 28 18:09:27 +0000 2020
Joe Giumento : @disclosetv @doctorsoumya Then it is not a vaccine and we need to stop calling it one. Also we need the pharma comp'... https://t.co/sttDJj5oVX
Mon Dec 28 20:26:02 +0000 2020
VIDEO-Chris Cuomo Says Biden Should Use Inauguration To Publicly Shame Trump | The Daily Caller
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 12:09
CNN anchor Chris Cuomo said Wednesday that President-elect Joe Biden should us the inauguration to publicly shame President Donald Trump.
Cuomo spoke briefly with former Trump ally Anthony Scaramucci, who said that he didn't think the president would be able to resist attending Biden's inauguration. (RELATED: 'Does This Look Like A Couple Of Guys Taking It Seriously?': Tim Murtaugh Mocks 'Cuomo Brothers Comedy Hour')
WATCH:
''He's making a decision to go to the inaugural or not,'' Scaramucci explained, saying that he had spoken with friends who were still on speaking terms with the president. ''I predict he goes, Chris. I don't see how he misses that. He's an attention hog. He will try to make it about himself. And so my guess is he'll end up at the inaugural and he'll leave a lot of wreckage.''
Scaramucci went on to say that he thought the Trump presidency would likely necessitate talk about a constitutional amendment that could limit the power of the White House.
''We're gonna need something to check his power or to check a president like him, god forbid we get another disaster like this,'' Scaramucci said.
''If he goes to the inauguration, Biden should point at him and speak to Republicans and say, 'You deserved better than this,''' Cuomo replied. ''He has left your party in shambles. I know the GOP. I know Republicans. I know what they're about at their best, and I will be there for you restoring those virtues. I would point at his ass the whole time..''
Scaramucci suggested that might be a possibility, but Cuomo was not so sure.
''I don't think Biden will do that because he's better than I am,'' Cuomo said. ''He's going to try to move past that and the best way to do that is to ignore Trump.''
''Sometimes you need people like you and me to get in there and tell the truth and rough people up like this,'' Scaramucci concluded, calling Trump a ''disaster'' and claiming that he had not only hurt Republicans and the country but that he had damaged the United States' reputation around the world.
VIDEO-Meteorite or comet falling down in West Virginia, USA - YouTube
Mon, 28 Dec 2020 05:06

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LA Woman at CVS refuses to comply anymore.mp3
South Africa Hospitals Covid Crisis hype BBC segment epic fail.mp3
ABC Nightly News nashville bomber 5G motive theory (35sec).mp3
CNN nashville bomber neighbor rick laude (1min4sec).mp3
I know what he is doing says Anthony Warner's former girlfriend in chilling voice mail.mp3
warner lizard people space aliens.mp3
ABC America This Morning ' anchor Will Ganss ' alec baldwins wife has been faking spanish heritage (1min37sec).mp3
ABC America This Morning ' anchor Megan Tevrizian ' facial recognition lawsuit (1min43sec).mp3
Georgia election fraud hearing - announcement that white hats are in the machines wjile voting is going on.mp3
Russell James Ramsland Jr.Allied Security Operations Group - Thermostat voting machine connection.mp3
Bernie Slams Mitch KY.mp3
CBS pressures Bill Gates on Moderna Vaccine and he waffles.mp3
Discarded COVID-19 vaccine incident was intentional.mp3
Doctors for Truth- Tens of Thousands Medical Professionals Suing and Calling for End to COVID Tyranny.mp3
Fauci now says 85% is herd immunity criterion for vaccine.mp3
Matt Hancock - health minister UK Virus gaffe.mp3
Prof Semple -#10 health advisor Virus gaffe.mp3
Team Halo - Dr Kat Doubles Down y'all.mp3
  • 0:00
    Stand here.
  • 0:00
    Stand here.
  • 0:01
    Adam Curry
  • 0:01
    Adam Curry
  • 0:02
    Jhansi devora
  • 0:02
    Jhansi devora
  • 0:03
    Thursday December 31 2020. This is your award winning
  • 0:03
    Thursday December 31 2020. This is your award winning
  • 0:06
    combination media assassination Episode 1300.
  • 0:06
    combination media assassination Episode 1300.
  • 0:10
    This is no agenda
  • 0:10
    This is no agenda
  • 0:13
    2020 and broadcasting live from opportunity's own 33 here in the
  • 0:13
    2020 and broadcasting live from opportunity's own 33 here in the
  • 0:17
    frontier of Austin, Texas capital of the drone Star State
  • 0:17
    frontier of Austin, Texas capital of the drone Star State
  • 0:20
    in the morning, everybody. I'm Adam Curry,
  • 0:20
    in the morning, everybody. I'm Adam Curry,
  • 0:23
    and from Northern Silicon Valley where they're turning off the
  • 0:23
    and from Northern Silicon Valley where they're turning off the
  • 0:26
    simulation. We're done. I'm Jesse devorah.
  • 0:26
    simulation. We're done. I'm Jesse devorah.
  • 0:34
    Okay, what simulation? What did they do to you?
  • 0:34
    Okay, what simulation? What did they do to you?
  • 0:38
    2020
  • 0:38
    2020
  • 0:39
    the 2020 Sim. Yeah, insert the new ROM cart boys. We're ready
  • 0:39
    the 2020 Sim. Yeah, insert the new ROM cart boys. We're ready
  • 0:44
    for it. Alright, let's just go straight forward. Let's just go
  • 0:44
    for it. Alright, let's just go straight forward. Let's just go
  • 0:47
    straight forward. JOHN. Just got to get it out of the way. It's
  • 0:47
    straight forward. JOHN. Just got to get it out of the way. It's
  • 0:50
    my collection. I'm archiving. I'm happy people are sending him
  • 0:50
    my collection. I'm archiving. I'm happy people are sending him
  • 0:53
    in. It's spreading. It doesn't just happen here in the United
  • 0:53
    in. It's spreading. It doesn't just happen here in the United
  • 0:57
    States. It's now spread in the opposite direction of the new
  • 0:57
    States. It's now spread in the opposite direction of the new
  • 1:00
    variant. The virus is being spread now by the government of
  • 1:00
    variant. The virus is being spread now by the government of
  • 1:05
    the United Kingdom, health minister of the UK, Matt
  • 1:05
    the United Kingdom, health minister of the UK, Matt
  • 1:09
    Hancock. I'm really really pleased because this is a big,
  • 1:09
    Hancock. I'm really really pleased because this is a big,
  • 1:13
    big moment. It's a it's good news for British science who've
  • 1:13
    big moment. It's a it's good news for British science who've
  • 1:17
    done a magnificent job in developing this virus. This
  • 1:17
    done a magnificent job in developing this virus. This
  • 1:21
    vaccine. Oh, he can't close. He came close. He came close. But
  • 1:21
    vaccine. Oh, he can't close. He came close. He came close. But
  • 1:25
    maybe we can get Professor sample the health advisor to 10
  • 1:25
    maybe we can get Professor sample the health advisor to 10
  • 1:31
    Downing Street, maybe he can help us spread the virus in the
  • 1:31
    Downing Street, maybe he can help us spread the virus in the
  • 1:34
    UK Pfizer vaccine has to even be handled carefully. You're not
  • 1:34
    UK Pfizer vaccine has to even be handled carefully. You're not
  • 1:38
    you can't shake it or drop it. So the the Oxford AstraZeneca
  • 1:38
    you can't shake it or drop it. So the the Oxford AstraZeneca
  • 1:42
    virus is robust. It's going to be forming the AstraZeneca virus
  • 1:42
    virus is robust. It's going to be forming the AstraZeneca virus
  • 1:48
    is robust. It's the one