Cover for No Agenda Show 1310: Quiet Riot
January 7th, 2021 • 3h 27m

1310: Quiet Riot


Every new episode of No Agenda is accompanied by a comprehensive list of shownotes curated by Adam while preparing for the show. Clips played by the hosts during the show can also be found here.

Wild Protest and Jan 6
Pence: Constitution 'Constrains Me' From Rejecting Electoral Votes
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 02:17
Vice President Mike Pence speaks during a White House Coronavirus Task Force press briefing in the James S. Brady Briefing Room of the White House on Nov. 19, 2020. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images)
Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday said that he doesn't believe he has the ''unilateral authority'' to decide between competing slates of electors.
''It is my considered judgment that my oath to support and defend the Constitution constrains me from claiming unilateral authority to determine which electoral votes should be counted and which should not,'' Pence said in a statement released just before a joint session of Congress began.
As president of the Senate, Pence is presiding over the session. The purpose of the session is to count electoral votes.
Under the Electoral College system, voters choose electors. Those electors then vote, almost always for the candidate that received the most ballots in their state. Congress meets in the January after an election to tally the votes.
Typically a rote affair, this session has taken on heightened significance after seven states sent two certificates to Washington, one for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and one for President Donald Trump. Biden won the states but Trump has said he was cheated.
Trump and some Republicans argue that Pence has the ''exclusive authority'' to reject electoral votes for Biden and choose the ones for Trump. A lawsuit asking a court to support that view was rejected by a district judge. An appeal was dismissed, though the plaintiffs earlier Wednesday asked the Supreme Court to intervene.
President Donald Trump boards Air Force One while departing from Palm Beach International Airport in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Dec. 31, 2020. (Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images)Trump has repeatedly called on Pence to act. If Pence ''comes through for us, we will win the Presidency,'' Trump asserted in a tweet early Wednesday. He also said his vice president could send electoral results back to state legislatures.
Pence, though, described his role as presiding officer as ''largely ceremonial.''
But he noted that members of Congress can act by objecting to electoral votes. Over 100 Republicans plan to do so. They will contest at least three states, with the hope that a senator supports challenges to another three or four. Objections require signatures from a senator and a representative. They trigger a two-hour debate and a vote; a simple majority of each chamber would uphold an objection.
''Given the voting irregularities that took place in our November elections and the disregard of state election statutes by some officials, I welcome the efforts of Senate and House members who have stepped forward to use their authority under the law to raise objections and present evidence,'' Pence said.
He said he'd make sure that objections that meet the requirements ''are given proper consideration'' and criticized people who have described objections as improper or undemocratic, accusing them of ignoring ''more than 130 years of history'' and pointing out that Democrats raised objections in Congress the last three times a Republican candidate for president prevailed.
At 3:33am Joe Biden received the 271 votes needed
Trump Declassifies Documents to Expose Joe Biden and the Deep State Traitors
Sun, 03 Jan 2021 22:20
Today's Situation Update reveals how Trump appears to have chosen the ''declassification'' option to expose Joe Biden and the deep state traitors.
Here's what you'll learn in today's Situation Update:
More rumors of C-17 transport planes arriving in Nevada.Rumors that Trump will speak to America on Christmas Day.Trump appoints Ezra Cohen-Watnick [believed to be Q] to Chairperson of the Public Interest Declassification Board, which is responsible for deciding which documents get declassified. Watnick is known to be an ally of Gen. Michael Flynn and Trump. ( signs new memorandum to allow John Durham and any new special counsel to use classified documents with grand juries in order to seek new criminal indictments against deep state players. This order would also apply to Sidney Powell if she is appointed special counsel in the coming days. ( Biden was involved in the 2016 spygate / FISA warrant scandal and may be exposed in the coming document dumps.Wisconsin judge testifies that over 200,000 votes were illegal and invalid in that state.Join the march in D.C. on January 6th. Trump says, ''It's gonna be wild!''National File reports that the White House has released an internal memo essentially compelling VP Pence to act today, rejecting the electoral votes from states that carried out fraudulent, unconstitutional elections.Georgia lawmakers move to certify their own election.Arizona lawmakers are working to certify Trump as the true winner.Patrick Byrne reveals Trump is just one signature away from unleashing a powerful solution.Trump meets with multiple members of Congress to discuss a Jan. 6th solution.Giuliani says a big revelation is coming about fraud in Georgia.Listen to the full podcast here:
Dominion Italy
Georgia votes being deducted - Archive
32,400 votes taken from David Perdue live on ABC.
5,000 votes taken from David Perdue live on CNN and ABC.
How election night reporting works & why the above totals aren't human error. (I haven't vetted this.)
Reported number of outstanding ballots in DeKalb is changed from 117k to 171k, allowing a possible reversal in outcome. (scroll down to see reply tweet)
Columbia County had a programming error on security keys for some locations scanners & pollworker cards.
Former Mayor of Alpharetta served as a poll watcher today in DeKalb County. He was asked to sit out of view and threatened with calls to police.
"Technical issues" in DeKalb County (Altanta), 19,000+ ballots "must be manually scanned in order to be tabulated and added to the total vote count."
Fulton County Stops Counting Votes for the Night & Sends Workers Home
Chatham County Stops Counting for the Night & Sends Workers Home
Kanekoa on Twitter: "12/ AUDIO: The theft of the election was orchestrated by Stephan Serafini, a 20-year foreign service officer. Stephan coordinated with General Claudio Graziano, a board member of Leonardo. Italian intelligence provided us with documen
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 14:37
Kanekoa : 12/ AUDIO: The theft of the election was orchestrated by Stephan Serafini, a 20-year foreign service officer. Steph'...
Wed Jan 06 00:18:03 +0000 2021
Apple CEO Tim Cook: Hold Capitol insurrectionists accountable
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 11:35
Published Wed, Jan 6 2021 8:48 PM EST
Updated Wed, Jan 6 2021 8:57 PM EST
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Apple CEO Tim Cook said on Wednesday that the United States must complete the transition to a Joe Biden administration, and that rioters who participated in an "insurrection" in Washington D.C. must be held responsible. "Today marks a sad and shameful chapter in our nation's history," Cook tweeted. The comments are Cook's first public statement on the outcome of the presidential election. Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks at the TIME 100 Summit on April 23, 2019 in New York City.
Spencer Platt | Getty Images
Apple CEO Tim Cook said on Wednesday that the United States must complete the transition to a Biden administration, and that rioters who participated in an "insurrection" in Washington D.C. must be held responsible.
"Today marks a sad and shameful chapter in our nation's history. Those responsible for this insurrection should be held to account, and we must complete the transition to President-elect Biden's administration. It's especially when they are challenged that our ideals matter most," Cook tweeted.
The comments were made in a tweet late in the day that a pro-Trump mob invaded the U.S. Capitol, forcing Congress to suspend proceedings to confirm the election of Joe Biden as president.
The tweet is Cook's first public statement on the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. President Donald Trump has called Cook a friend and the two men have had an open line of communication over the past four years.
Other business leaders have also condemned the violence on Capitol Hill, including JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, Google CEO Sundar Pichai and the Business Roundtable, a group of major public companies, of which which Apple is a member.
View the full site
Let Us Out
Farce mask: it's safe for only 20 minutes
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 16:50
"There appears to be some debate about whether surgical masks are able to minimise the effects of SARS."
Ms Meagher said her department would investigate any complaints about false mask claims which concerned the public.
"Penalties can range from fines of up to $22,000 for an individual or $110,000 for a corporation," she said.
Health authorities have warned that surgical masks may not be an effective protection against the virus.
"Those masks are only effective so long as they are dry," said Professor Yvonne Cossart of the Department of Infectious Diseases at the University of Sydney.
"As soon as they become saturated with the moisture in your breath they stop doing their job and pass on the droplets."
Professor Cossart said that could take as little as 15 or 20 minutes, after which the mask would need to be changed. But those warnings haven't stopped people snapping up the masks, with retailers reporting they are having trouble keeping up with demand.
John Bell from the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia, who owns a pharmacy in Woollahra, Sydney, said mask supplies were running low.
"At the moment we don't have any because we haven't been able to get any in the last few days," MrBell said. "In the early stages it was unbelievable; we'd get people coming in all the time."
Mr Bell agreed with Professor Cossart's assessment regarding the effectiveness of the masks.
"I think they're of marginal benefit," he said. "In a way they give some comfort to people who think they're doing as much as they can do to prevent the infection."
That seems to be the mentality of travellers to Asian destinations, who are buying and wearing the masks while overseas.
Rosemary Taylor, of Kirribilli, arrived in Sydney from Shanghai last week after a two-week holiday in China. Ms Taylor and travelling companion Joan Switzer had worn the masks during the trip home, even though they had been warned they were of little value.
"We were told you need 16 layers on your mask for it to offer 95per cent protection," Ms Taylor said.
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Vaccines and such
FDA Opposes Diluting Coronavirus Vaccine Doses From Moderna and Pfizer to Boost Supply | The Motley Fool
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 22:10
The recent suggestion from the Operation Warp Speed task force has been rejected due to a lack of clinical evidence. On Monday evening, Dr. Stephen M. Hahn, director of the Food and Drug Administration, and Dr. Peter Marks, the director of the FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER), rejected a proposal from the U.S. government's Operation Warp Speed to dilute the current supply of coronavirus vaccines in order to boost supply.
During an interview on Sunday, Operation Warp Speed's chief, Dr. Moncef Slaoui, said his task force and Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) were in talks with the FDA about implementing the idea.
Image source: Getty Images.
There may be signs of effectiveness at half the dosage tested in trials leading to Emergency Use Authorization of vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) , but the companies didn't test those dosages specifically.
Generally speaking, the immune responses seen in blood samples from people who receive half-sized dosages fall in line with immune responses produced by the authorized dose. While the FDA might be willing to use biomarker data to approve new seasonal flu vaccines, the virus responsible for COVID-19 isn't nearly as well understood.
The FDA isn't going to authorize, or even condone, altered dosing of new COVID-19 vaccines without real-world outcome data. This includes suggestions that people injected once don't need to worry about coming back in a few weeks for their booster shot.
There were thousands of clinical trial participants who didn't show up for their booster shots, and they generally seem well protected. Since this wasn't a point that Pfizer or Moderna originally set out to prove, though, the FDA must insist that another clinical trial with the proposed dosing schedule be completed first.
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Is the Vaccine Halal? Indonesians Await the Answer - The New York Times
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 15:30
President Joko Widodo hopes to begin inoculations soon, but the vaccine from the Chinese company Sinovac still needs approval from safety regulators and an influential council of Muslim clerics.
An employee at the Global Halal Center near Jakarta, where the coronavirus vaccine made by the Chinese company Sinovac was analyzed to determine the drug's halal status in Indonesia. Credit... Ulet Ifansasti for The New York Times Jan. 5, 2021, 6:05 a.m. ET The one-sentence letter didn't say much. The coronavirus vaccine was ''manufactured free of porcine materials,'' Sinovac, the Chinese vaccine maker, wrote to Indonesia's state-owned vaccine manufacturer in July.
While the letter was promising, Indonesian clerics needed more details. A vaccine laced with the smallest amount of pork DNA could dissuade some followers of Islam from inoculation in Indonesia, the country with the world's largest Muslim population. Sinovac took months to provide more information, which came only this week.
The Chinese company's delayed response has been yet another challenge in Indonesia's already fragile vaccine rollout. With the highest number of coronavirus infections in Southeast Asia, the country is eager to drum up support for its goal of inoculating 181.5 million adults within 15 months. But looming questions about the safety of the Sinovac vaccine and whether it is halal, or allowed under Islam, are complicating the government's efforts.
''There shouldn't be any concern about whether this vaccine is halal or not halal,'' said President Joko Widodo. ''We are in an emergency situation because of the Covid pandemic.''
Indonesia has recorded nearly 800,000 infections and more than 23,000 deaths, staggering numbers in a region where virus cases have remained relatively low. Inoculations are set to begin with health workers, soldiers and police officers in the coming weeks, once health authorities are satisfied that the Sinovac vaccine is safe and effective.
Mr. Joko said he would go first to show there was nothing to fear.
Image A cemetery in Medan, North Sumatra, where victims of Covid-19 have been buried. Indonesia has the highest number of coronavirus infections in all of Southeast Asia. Credit... Dedi Sinuhaji/EPA, via Shutterstock The vaccine must also undergo a separate approval process by the Ulema Council, an influential group of Muslim clerics that decides which products are halal in Indonesia.
Islamic authorities in other countries where Muslims make up a sizable share of the population, including Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates, have already ruled that coronavirus vaccines are permissible, even if they contain pork gelatin, which is used to stabilize many inoculations.
Last month, the Vatican released a statement declaring coronavirus vaccines ''morally acceptable'' for Catholics who might be opposed to a vaccine developed with stem cells from fetuses aborted decades ago.
Indonesians are still waiting for religious leaders to weigh in.
''In pharmaceutical products, halal is one of the important elements after the safety, efficacy and quality of the vaccine itself,'' said Bambang Heriyanto, a spokesman for Bio Farma, Indonesia's state-owned vaccine manufacturer.
The Ulema Council is expected to issue a decree, or fatwa, authorizing the use of the Sinovac vaccine in the coming weeks, but the nature of its findings could affect how widely it is accepted in Indonesia, especially among the country's many conservative Muslims.
During a measles outbreak in 2018, the government, backed by the World Health Organization, undertook an ambitious vaccination program, but the only vaccine available in sufficient quantities contained pig products.
After analyzing the measles vaccine, the Ulema Council declared it haram, or forbidden under Islam, but said its use was allowed because the outbreak was an emergency.
In some parts of the country, however, local Muslim leaders opposed using a haram vaccine. The program fell well short of its 95 percent target and ended with nearly 10 million children unvaccinated. Only 72 percent of the target group was vaccinated.
Image Thousands of billboards and banners have been erected across Indonesia to promote the government's vaccination program. Credit... Ulet Ifansasti for The New York Times On billboards above the busy streets of Jakarta, the capital, a woman wearing a face mask and head scarf can be seen flexing her arm as images of the coronavirus float nearby. Thousands of such billboards and banners have been erected along high-traffic roadways across the country. The message: Vaccines protect you.
To encourage widespread vaccinations, some regional governments have also passed new laws allowing for the punishment of people who refuse to get inoculated against the coronavirus.
Covid-19 Vaccines 'ºAnswers to Your Vaccine QuestionsWith distribution of a coronavirus vaccine beginning in the U.S., here are answers to some questions you may be wondering about:
If I live in the U.S., when can I get the vaccine? While the exact order of vaccine recipients may vary by state, most will likely put medical workers and residents of long-term care facilities first. If you want to understand how this decision is getting made, this article will help.When can I return to normal life after being vaccinated? Life will return to normal only when society as a whole gains enough protection against the coronavirus. Once countries authorize a vaccine, they'll only be able to vaccinate a few percent of their citizens at most in the first couple months. The unvaccinated majority will still remain vulnerable to getting infected. A growing number of coronavirus vaccines are showing robust protection against becoming sick. But it's also possible for people to spread the virus without even knowing they're infected because they experience only mild symptoms or none at all. Scientists don't yet know if the vaccines also block the transmission of the coronavirus. So for the time being, even vaccinated people will need to wear masks, avoid indoor crowds, and so on. Once enough people get vaccinated, it will become very difficult for the coronavirus to find vulnerable people to infect. Depending on how quickly we as a society achieve that goal, life might start approaching something like normal by the fall 2021.If I've been vaccinated, do I still need to wear a mask? Yes, but not forever. Here's why. The coronavirus vaccines are injected deep into the muscles and stimulate the immune system to produce antibodies. This appears to be enough protection to keep the vaccinated person from getting ill. But what's not clear is whether it's possible for the virus to bloom in the nose '-- and be sneezed or breathed out to infect others '-- even as antibodies elsewhere in the body have mobilized to prevent the vaccinated person from getting sick. The vaccine clinical trials were designed to determine whether vaccinated people are protected from illness '-- not to find out whether they could still spread the coronavirus. Based on studies of flu vaccine and even patients infected with Covid-19, researchers have reason to be hopeful that vaccinated people won't spread the virus, but more research is needed. In the meantime, everyone '-- even vaccinated people '-- will need to think of themselves as possible silent spreaders and keep wearing a mask. Read more here.Will it hurt? What are the side effects? The Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine is delivered as a shot in the arm, like other typical vaccines. The injection into your arm won't feel different than any other vaccine, but the rate of short-lived side effects does appear higher than a flu shot. Tens of thousands of people have already received the vaccines, and none of them have reported any serious health problems. The side effects, which can resemble the symptoms of Covid-19, last about a day and appear more likely after the second dose. Early reports from vaccine trials suggest some people might need to take a day off from work because they feel lousy after receiving the second dose. In the Pfizer study, about half developed fatigue. Other side effects occurred in at least 25 to 33 percent of patients, sometimes more, including headaches, chills and muscle pain. While these experiences aren't pleasant, they are a good sign that your own immune system is mounting a potent response to the vaccine that will provide long-lasting immunity.Will mRNA vaccines change my genes? No. The vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer use a genetic molecule to prime the immune system. That molecule, known as mRNA, is eventually destroyed by the body. The mRNA is packaged in an oily bubble that can fuse to a cell, allowing the molecule to slip in. The cell uses the mRNA to make proteins from the coronavirus, which can stimulate the immune system. At any moment, each of our cells may contain hundreds of thousands of mRNA molecules, which they produce in order to make proteins of their own. Once those proteins are made, our cells then shred the mRNA with special enzymes. The mRNA molecules our cells make can only survive a matter of minutes. The mRNA in vaccines is engineered to withstand the cell's enzymes a bit longer, so that the cells can make extra virus proteins and prompt a stronger immune response. But the mRNA can only last for a few days at most before they are destroyed.''The government will ensure that the vaccine is safe and effective, has minimal side effects and is, of course, halal,'' said Wiku Adisasmito, spokesman for the national Covid-19 task force. ''Regional governments will have the authority to make people obey and participate in the vaccination program so that herd immunity can be achieved easily.''
With a population of 270 million, Indonesia hopes to achieve herd immunity by vaccinating roughly two-thirds of the population in just over a year. President Joko said Tuesday that he hoped it could be done even more quickly.
Indonesia has ordered vaccines from several companies, but plans to rely mostly on Sinovac, which has already delivered three million doses. It is the only vaccine to have arrived in the country so far.
Bio Farma plans to manufacture 122.5 million additional doses using raw materials provided by Sinovac.
Image Visitors wore masks at the Bogor Botanical Gardens on New Year's Eve. The government plans to vaccinate 181.5 million adults within 15 months. Credit... Ulet Ifansasti for The New York Times Like other countries, Indonesia is eagerly awaiting data from Stage 3 trials so that its Food and Drug Control Agency can evaluate the safety of Sinovac's inoculation. Months ago, China began administering the Sinovac vaccine and one made by a second company, Sinopharm, even though human trials were not completed.
Sinovac is expected to release the findings of its late-stage trials soon, with approval by the Chinese government to follow. But China has rarely been forthcoming about its vaccine data and has a history of producing faulty vaccines and tainted food products. In 2018, a scandal erupted over substandard doses of a vaccine for diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough, and over fabricated data for a rabies vaccine.
In Indonesia, a nationwide survey conducted in September by the health ministry, the World Health Organization and Unicef found that health issues were of even greater concern than whether a coronavirus vaccine was halal.
Dicky Budiman, an Indonesian epidemiologist at Griffith University in Australia, called on China to release scientific data from the inoculations so that Indonesia could evaluate the vaccines' safety and effectiveness.
''Transparency is one of the biggest challenges for China, especially with their vaccines,'' he said. ''This is a crucial time for China to show the world how they have improved the quality of their vaccines.''
The Ulema Council said it had asked Sinovac repeatedly for documentation on the materials in the vaccine in order to make its determination. It is prepared to announce its ruling after Indonesia determines that the vaccine is safe and effective.
Image Muti Arintawati, director of the Ulema Council's Food, Drug and Cosmetic Analysis Agency, at the Global Halal Center in Bogor, near Jakarta. Credit... Ulet Ifansasti for The New York Times At the Global Halal Center near Jakarta, the council operates laboratories in biotechnology, physics, chemistry and microbiology that it has recently used to test Sinovac's vaccine for pig products.
Its labs can test 500,000 product samples a year, said Muti Arintawati, director of the council's Food, Drug and Cosmetics Analysis Agency. The council, founded in 1975 by representatives of major Islamic groups, has the authority to certify whether products and medications meet Islamic standards in Indonesia. Companies pay from $180 to $780 for the certification.
Major Islamic groups such as Nahdlatul Ulama and Muhammadiyah, which together have some 140 million members, will join the effort to encourage the vaccine's acceptance once it has been deemed safe and a fatwa has been issued.
''We will give an explanation from the Islamic law perspective so that people are willing to be vaccinated,'' said Ahmad Ishomuddin, Nahdlatul Ulama's supreme leader. ''I think only a small number of people will reject it because protecting life is a major purpose of religion.''
Image A shipment of Sinovac's coronavirus vaccine was moved to the pharmacy storage room of a local health department in Semarang, Central Java province. Credit... Antara Foto, via Reuters Dera Menra Sijabat and Muktita Suhartono contributed reporting.
Peter Doshi: Pfizer and Moderna's ''95% effective'' vaccines'--we need more details and the raw data - The BMJ
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 12:06
Five weeks ago, when I raised questions about the results of Pfizer's and Moderna's covid-19 vaccine trials, all that was in the public domain were the study protocols and a few press releases . Today, two journal publications and around 400 pages of summary data are available in the form of multiple reports presented by and to the FDA prior to the agency's emergency authorization of each company's mRNA vaccine. While some of the additional details are reassuring, some are not. Here I outline new concerns about the trustworthiness and meaningfulness of the reported efficacy results.
''Suspected covid-19''
All attention has focused on the dramatic efficacy results: Pfizer reported 170 PCR confirmed covid-19 cases, split 8 to 162 between vaccine and placebo groups. But these numbers were dwarfed by a category of disease called ''suspected covid-19'''--those with symptomatic covid-19 that were not PCR confirmed. According to FDA's report on Pfizer's vaccine , there were ''3410 total cases of suspected, but unconfirmed covid-19 in the overall study population, 1594 occurred in the vaccine group vs. 1816 in the placebo group.''
With 20 times more suspected than confirmed cases, this category of disease cannot be ignored simply because there was no positive PCR test result. Indeed this makes it all the more urgent to understand. A rough estimate of vaccine efficacy against developing covid-19 symptoms, with or without a positive PCR test result, would be a relative risk reduction of 19% (see footnote)'--far below the 50% effectiveness threshold for authorization set by regulators . Even after removing cases occurring within 7 days of vaccination (409 on Pfizer's vaccine vs. 287 on placebo), which should include the majority of symptoms due to short-term vaccine reactogenicity, vaccine efficacy remains low: 29% (see footnote).
If many or most of these suspected cases were in people who had a false negative PCR test result, this would dramatically decrease vaccine efficacy. But considering that influenza-like illnesses have always had myriad causes '--rhinoviruses, influenza viruses, other coronaviruses, adenoviruses, respiratory syncytial virus, etc.'--some or many of the suspected covid-19 cases may be due to a different causative agent.
But why should etiology matter? If those experiencing ''suspected covid-19'' had essentially the same clinical course as confirmed covid-19, then ''suspected plus confirmed covid-19'' may be a more clinically meaningful endpoint than just confirmed covid-19.
However, if confirmed covid-19 is on average more severe than suspected covid-19, we must still keep in mind that at the end of the day, it is not average clinical severity that matters, it's the incidence of severe disease that affects hospital admissions. With 20 times more suspected covid-19 than confirmed covid-19, and trials not designed to assess whether the vaccines can interrupt viral transmission, an analysis of severe disease irrespective of etiologic agent'--namely, rates of hospitalizations, ICU cases, and deaths amongst trial participants'--seems warranted, and is the only way to assess the vaccines' real ability to take the edge off the pandemic.
There is a clear need for data to answer these questions, but Pfizer's 92-page report didn't mention the 3410 ''suspected covid-19'' cases. Nor did its publication in the New England Journal of Medicine. Nor did any of the reports on Moderna's vaccine. The only source that appears to have reported it is FDA's review of Pfizer's vaccine.
The 371 individuals excluded from Pfizer vaccine efficacy analysis
Another reason we need more data is to analyse an unexplained detail found in a table of FDA's review of Pfizer's vaccine: 371 individuals excluded from the efficacy analysis for ''important protocol deviations on or prior to 7 days after Dose 2.'' What is concerning is the imbalance between randomized groups in the number of these excluded individuals: 311 from the vaccine group vs 60 on placebo. (In contrast, in Moderna's trial , there were just 36 participants excluded from the efficacy analysis for ''major protocol deviation'''--12 vaccine group vs 24 placebo group.)
What were these protocol deviations in Pfizer's study, and why were there five times more participants excluded in the vaccine group? The FDA report doesn't say, and these exclusions are difficult to even spot in Pfizer's report and journal publication .
Fever and pain medications, unblinding, and primary event adjudication committees
Last month I expressed concern about the potential confounding role of pain and fever medications to treat symptoms. I posited that such drugs could mask symptoms, leading to underdetection of covid-19 cases, possibly in greater numbers in people who received the vaccine in an effort to prevent or treat adverse events. However, it seems their potential to confound results was fairly limited: although the results indicate that these medicines were taken around 3 '' 4 times more often in vaccine versus placebo recipients (at least for Pfizer's vaccine'--Moderna did not report as clearly), their use was presumably concentrated in the first week after vaccine use, taken to relieve post-injection local and systemic adverse events. But the cumulative incidence curves suggest a fairly constant rate of confirmed covid-19 cases over time, with symptom onset dates extending well beyond a week after dosing.
That said, the higher rate of medication use in the vaccine arm provides further reason to worry about unofficial unblinding. Given the vaccines' reactogenicity, it's hard to imagine participants and investigators could not make educated guesses about which group they were in. The primary endpoint in the trials is relatively subjective making unblinding an important concern. Yet neither FDA nor the companies seem to have formally probed the reliability of the blinding procedure, and its effects on the reported outcomes.
Nor do we know enough about the processes of the primary event adjudication committees that counted covid-19 cases. Were they blinded to antibody data and information on patients' symptoms in the first week after vaccination? What criteria did they employ, and why, with a primary event consisting of a patient-reported outcome (covid-19 symptoms) and PCR test result, was such a committee even necessary? It's also important to understand who was on these committees. While Moderna has named its four-member adjudication committee'--all university-affiliated physicians'--Pfizer's protocol says three Pfizer employees did the work. Yes, Pfizer staff members.
Vaccine efficacy in people who already had covid?
Individuals with a known history of SARS-CoV-2 infection or previous diagnosis of Covid-19 were excluded from Moderna's and Pfizer's trials. But still 1125 ( 3.0% ) and 675 ( 2.2% ) of participants in Pfizer's and Moderna's trials, respectively, were deemed to be positive for SARS-CoV-2 at baseline.
Vaccine safety and efficacy in these recipients has not received much attention, but as increasingly large portions of many countries' populations may be ''post-Covid,'' these data seem important'--and all the more so as the US CDC recommends offering vaccine ''regardless of history of prior symptomatic or asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection.'' This follows on from the agency's conclusions , regarding Pfizer's vaccine, that it had '‰¥92% efficacy and ''no specific safety concerns'' in people with previous SARS-CoV-2 infection.
By my count, Pfizer apparently reported 8 cases of confirmed, symptomatic Covid-19 in people positive for SARS-CoV-2 at baseline (1 in the vaccine group, 7 in the placebo group, using the differences between Tables 9 and 10 ) and Moderna, 1 case (placebo group; Table 12 ).
But with only around four to 31 reinfections documented globally, how, in trials of tens of thousands, with median follow-up of two months, could there be nine confirmed covid-19 cases among those with SARS-CoV-2 infection at baseline? Is this representative of meaningful vaccine efficacy, as CDC seems to have endorsed? Or could it be something else, like prevention of covid-19 symptoms, possibly by the vaccine or by the use of medicines which suppress symptoms, and nothing to do with reinfection?
We need the raw data
Addressing the many open questions about these trials requires access to the raw trial data . But no company seems to have shared data with any third party at this point.
Pfizer says it is making data available ''upon request, and subject to review.'' This stops far short of making data publicly available, but at least leaves the door open. How open is unclear, since the study protocol says Pfizer will only start making data available 24 months after study completion.
Moderna's data sharing statement states data ''may be available upon request once the trial is complete.'' This translates to sometime in mid-to-late 2022, as follow-up is planned for 2 years.
Things may be no different for the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine which has pledged patient-level data ''when the trial is complete.'' And the entry for the Russian Sputnik V vaccine says there are no plans to share individual participant data.
The European Medicines Agency and Health Canada , however, may share data for any authorized vaccines much earlier. EMA has already pledged to publish the data submitted by Pfizer on its website ''in due course,'' as has Health Canada .
Peter Doshi, associate editor, The BMJ
Competing interests: I have been pursuing the public release of vaccine trial protocols, and have co-signed open letters calling for independence and transparency in covid-19 vaccine related decision making.
Calculations in this article are as follows: 19% = 1 '' (8+1594)/(162+1816); 29% = 1 '' (8 + 1594 '' 409)/(162 + 1816 '' 287). I ignored denominators as they are similar between groups.
Producer Kelly CDC no full isolate
Hi again Adam, further to my last email about covid samples, it seems that the CDC may only have clinical specimens available. Sorry that I am working this out through emails to you, I should have been clear on it all before sending you the last email. It is confusing though and possibly, purposefully deceptive. This information is based on the paragraph below, which was extracted from page 40 of the linked CDC 2019-Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Real-Time RT-PCR Diagnostic Panel document. This is not to say it hasn't been isolated...or does it?
From page 40:
Since no quantified virus isolates of the 2019-nCoV were available for CDC use at the time the test was developed and this study conducted, assays designed for detection of the 2019-nCoV RNA were tested with characterized stocks of in vitro transcribed full length RNA (N gene; GenBank accession: MN908947.2) of known titer (RNA copies/μL) spiked into a diluent consisting of a suspension of human A549 cells and viral transport medium (VTM) to mimic clinical specimen.
VAERS Data - covid Vaccine damage
The latest data from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) shows there have now been 40,433 adverse events from the Covid-19 vaccinations in the USA.😱
This includes 127 deaths, along with 769 cases of abdominal pain, along with 1,410 cases of amnesia, dizziness, disorientation, vertigo, confusion, and delirium, along with 1,531 cases of fatigue, along with 1,117 cases of herpes zoster, along with 717 cases of headache and head injury from falls, along with 521 cases of influenza-like-illness, along with 57 cases of blindness and deafness, along with 175 cases of eye swelling, eye discharge, and eye pain, along with thousands of other ill effects.
The list at this link includes a wide variety of adverse events as can be seen in the spreadsheet provided:
Pfizer vaccine being diluted with Saline
The Moderna is not diluted, but the Pfizer is. . . . . . WITH SALINE!
Made me LOL after hearing the first segment of the show. (My take -
because it's ALL SALINE!).
What was funny to me was he said "The Pfizer is diluted with around 2ml
of NaCl after it thaws out" and I replied, "is that just SALINE?!" He
wasn't listening live so he didn't get it, but he will when the show is
posted. LOL.
He also says retail pharmacies aren't really giving it out to the
direct public yet (he is a nuclear pharmacist by license, but also does
some retail pharmacy work in-between).
And the Pfizer is the one with 6 actual doses per vial but is listed as
5. His comment was "'cause, you know, science is so precise. 🙂"
This whole thing is an amazing scam. Thank heavens for your show or I
would be sheeple too.
Derek explains the Mink
My apologies for not sending things your way lately – things have been a bit busy here in deep blue Massachusetts and I’ve been preoccupied with too many projects, but was never man overboard. I heard you grumbling about not hearing from some of your producers and wanted to answer your call.
Attached is a paper from 12/17/2020 in Veterinary Quarterly titled “SARS-CoV-2 infection in farmed minks, associated zoonotic concerns, and importance of the One Health approach during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.”
In it you may find answers you have regarding the Mink. It seems that they appear to be a reservoir for the virus and it can be transmittable from mink to human. On the top of page 5 the following is relevant in my opinion [emphasis mine]:
“The preliminary results indicated that the new mink-associated variant, identified in both minks and humans, has a moderately reduced sensitivity to neutralizing antibodies (WHO 2020A). However, following detailed analysis, it was confirmed that the mink-associated mutationsare not associated with rapid spread, nor with any changes in morbidity and mortality (Mallapaty 2020b). One mink-associated mutation, Y453F, was found to be associated with an amino acid change in the spike protein. The mutation was reported in the SARS-CoV-2 sequences obtained from people in Denmark and the Netherlands (Mallapaty 2020b). This mutant (Y453F) of SARS-CoV-2 is known to have spread widely among the humans (Hayashi et al., 2020b). An experimental study was conducted with the virus variant (Y453F mutation) using three-dimensional protein structural analysis. The findings suggest that the mink-associated mutant can partially escape from getting detected by four commercial neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (mAb) (CC12.1, CC12.3, COVA2-04 and CV07-250).”
Finally, on the last page, we find this [emphasis mine]:
“Since new SARS-CoV-2 variants can emerge from mink farms as a consequence of human-to-mink and mink-to-human transmission, preventative measures should be established to block the interaction between the two highly susceptible species. Furthermore, it is not clear whether SARS-CoV-2 can be transmitted to other animals such as feral/stray cats living in close proximity to the infected mink farms.”
I believe these two quick reads answer your two questions
What is it with the Mink?
Another reservoir for the virus to potentially mutate, potentially altering spike proteins in a way that treatments may not be as effective
Are they coming from the pets?
Maybe. It seems if a mink-variant can infect stray cats it could be another vector
Fact check: The SARS-CoV-2 virus has been identified and studied by scientists globally | Reuters
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 15:16
A video falsely claiming that COVID-19 does not exist has been shared online. The 12-minute clip shows Irish former journalist and activist Gemma O'Doherty standing outside Ireland's Department of Health with what she says is ''proof'' the novel coronavirus isn't real.
Reuters Fact Check. REUTERS
The video was posted to Facebook on Nov. 15 but the caption carries a dateline of Nov. 2, 2020 (here). O'Doherty herself has been blocked by Facebook and Twitter, according to Irish news reports (here , here) .
Various claims and opinions are expressed by O'Doherty. This article addresses some of the primary claims, but others made in the speech are outside the scope of this check.
O'Doherty says in the video: ''We now in Europe for the first time have scientific proof that it (the novel coronavirus) does not exist'' (here , skip to 02:18).
She holds an alleged response to a Freedom of Information Request (FOI) from the UK's Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and says: ''They confirmed, and I will read it out now to you, that the DHSC does not hold any information on the isolation of a SARS-CoV-2 virus. In other words, it does not exist'' (here, skip to 02:50).
Reuters confirmed that an FOI matching the contents described in the video was sent to the DHSC on Nov. 2 but could not find the response O'Doherty describes (here). The DHSC was not immediately available for comment.
However, SARS-CoV-2 does exist. The World Health Organisation (WHO) says that SARS-CoV-2 is the name of the virus that causes the disease COVID-19 (here). The virus was identified by Chinese authorities on Jan. 7, 2020 (here). It has since been studied by numerous researchers globally, just some of which are referred to here .
There have been over 60 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and over 1.4 million deaths globally as of Nov. 24 ( , here).
O'Doherty makes numerous other false claims about the pandemic that have been debunked by Reuters. These include:
VERDICTFalse. Researchers globally have studied SARS-CoV-2 since it was first identified. The virus is real and this video does not present proof that the COVID-19 pandemic is fake.
This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here .
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A team investigating the origins of Covid-19 in Wuhan have been denied entry to China | Yorkshire Evening Post
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 16:00
A team from the World Health Organization (WHO) that was due to investigate the origins of Covid-19 in the city of Wuhan have been denied entry to China.
Two members of the team were already on their way to the country, but failed to gain entry due to a lack of visa clearances, according to the WHO.
Sign up to our daily newsletter The i newsletter cut through the noiseThe impending probe was agreed by Beijing after months of negotiations with the WHO, but China said that details of the visit, including dates, were still in the process of being arranged.
'Very disappointed'
WHO chief, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said he was ''very disappointed'' that China had failed to finalise the permissions for the team's arrival in the country, particularly given that two members of the team were already in transit, and others were unable to travel at the last minute.
It was announced last month that the investigation would begin in January 2021, and two members of the international team departed for China early on Tuesday (5 Jan).
WHO emergencies chief, Mike Ryan, said that one had now turned back and one was in a third country, according to Reuters news agency.
Mr Ghebreyesus said that he has been assured that China is speeding up the procedure to allow the team entry and stressed that the visit ''is a priority for the WHO and the international team''.
Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson, Hua Chunying, told the BBC that "there might be some misunderstanding" and "there's no need to read too much into it".
She explained: "Chinese authorities are in close co-operation with WHO but there has been some minor outbreaks in multiple places around the world and many countries and regions are busy in their work preventing the virus and we are also working on this.
"Still we are supporting international co-operation and advancing internal preparations.
''We are in communication with the WHO and as far as I know with dates and arrangements we are still in discussions."
Investigation pending
The WHO is aiming to send a team of 10 international experts to China for several months in order to probe the animal origins of the Covid-19 outbreak, and determine how the virus first crossed over to humans.
The virus was first detected in the city of Wuhan in central Hubei province in late 2019, with the initial outbreak linked to a market selling exotic animals for meat.
It has been suggested it was there that the virus made the leap from animals to humans, although the origins of Covid-19 still remain highly contested, with some believing the market may have just amplified transmission.
Some research has suggested that coronaviruses capable of infecting humans may have been circulating undetected in bats for decades, but it is not yet known what intermediate animal host transmitted the virus between bats and humans.
NYSE Scraps Plan to Delist China Telcos in 'Bizarre' U-Turn - Bloomberg
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 13:15
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Build Back Better
Liam Young's Planet City could tackle climate change by housing 10 billion people in a single metropolis
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 12:43
The entire population of the earth could live in a giant sustainable city occupying a fraction of the earth's surface, freeing the rest of the world for rewilding and the return of stolen lands, according to a new movie by architect Liam Young.
Young's fictional Planet City movie proposes a hyper-dense, self-sufficient metropolis housing 10 billion people.
Built according to the principles of the circular economy, it could be built on 0.02 per cent of the planetary surface, taking up an area "roughly the size of an average US state".
Panorama of Planet CityYoung is the latest architect to suggest a design solution for the entire planet, following the "Masterplanet" proposal for a global masterplan by Bjarke Ingels Group and Winy Maas of MVRDV's call for architects to design new planets to help understand how to solve problems on earth.
Young's animated short film provocatively explores how "centuries of colonisation, globalisation and never-ending economic extraction and expansionism" could be reversed to solve climate change and the exploitation of both natural and human resources.
The film was commissioned by the National Gallery of Victoria for the NGV Triennial, which opened in Melbourne, Australia last month.
Food would be grown in vertical orchards"Planet City is a speculative narrative of what could happen if we were to radically reverse this planetary sprawl," Young told Dezeen.
"What if we reached a global consensus to retreat from our vast network of cities and entangled supply chains into one hyper-dense metropolis housing the entire population of the earth?"
"If we were to reorganise our world at the scale of our densest cities then Planet City could actually occupy as little as 0.02 per cent of the earth, [which is] roughly the size of an average US state," he said.
Planet City would be built of recycled materials"Planet City is a fiction shaped like a city," he added. "It doesn't pretend to be an executable proposal."
The idea stems from the Half Earth concept developed by biologist Edward O Wilson, which proposes that mass extinction can be averted by dedicating half of the surface of the earth to nature.
"The byproduct of this global park, however, is the necessity to redesign the realities of the present-day planetary city we all occupy," Young said.
"It is a microcosm of the planet that will afford us the space to rewild and return almost the entirety of the world to a global-scaled wilderness."
The proposal is based entirely on existing technologiesYoung highlighted the differences between his approach to that of Masterplanet, a recent proposal by architect Bjarke Ingels Group that treats the world as a design problem that requires planet-sized solutions.
"The imposition of singular visions by starchitects just repeats so many of the mistakes that have got us into this situation in the first place," said Young, who is an architect and film director based in Los Angeles.
Vertical solar fields would provide power"Such proposals are a continuation of the colonialist project that has already masterplanned the planet in its own image," he added.
"Plans of this scale have historically perpetuated forms of exclusion and reinforced existing systems of power. Most of these projects rarely engage with these root causes of climate change and, in fact, enable them."
Los Angeles "is now a live-action dystopia playing out in real time" says Liam Young
The sustainably designed Planet City would accommodate 10 billion people, which is the projected population of the earth in 2050. People would live in "residential mountains" constructed from recycled materials with food grown in "indoor mega-farms" and vertical orchards.
The ground between buildings would be occupied by mega-farmsThe city, which would operate as a closed-loop and generate no waste, would contain 221,367 square kilometres of buildings up to 165 storeys tall and 4,311,543, 982 bicycles. Power would come from 49,445,671,570 solar panels while 2357 algae farms would filter pollution and provide supplementary food.
"Planet City utilises only technologies that are either already available or currently in development and has been designed in consultation with a global network of scientists, theorists and economists," said Young.
"Through this process of grounded speculation Young sets out to demonstrate that climate change mitigation across the world is no longer a technological problem, but rather an ideological one, rooted in culture and politics."
The 15-minute film centres around a non-stop planetary festival that moves through the city, linking up celebrations held by different cultures throughout the year.
Algae lakes would act as filter beds while growing foodYoung collaborated with creatives including Ane Crabtree, the costume designer for The Handmaid's Tale, geoengineer Holly Jean Buck, science-fiction writer Kim Stanley Robinson and indigenous Australian writer and director Ryan Griffen.
Masterplanet is Bjarke Ingels' plan to redesign Earth and stop climate change
Young, who describes himself as a "speculative architect," was a keynote speaker at Dezeen's 2019 Dezeen Day conference in London, where he called on architects to increase their influence by applying their skills to popular digital media such as video games instead of designing "rich houses for rich people".
People would live in residential mountains up to 165 storeys highYoung, who is co-founder of urban futures think tank Tomorrows Thoughts Today and research studio Unknown Fields Division, also featured in Dezeen's 2018 movie Elevation, which explores how drones could transform architecture and cities.
He previously directed movies including In The Robot Skies, which was the first film to be shot entirely using drones.
National Gallery of Victoria Triennial runs from 19 December 2020 to 18 April 2021 at NGV International, 180 St Kilda Road, Melbourne, Australia. For details of more architecture and design events, visit Dezeen Events Guide.
Meet Melati Wijsen, the teenager with a plan to engage young people in saving the planet | World Economic Forum
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 21:22
YOUTHTOPIA is a new project from the teenage sisters behind Bye Bye Plastic Bags in Bali. It aims to train up a generation of changemakers and give them the tools to make a difference. Melati and Isabel Wijsen join the likes of Greta Thunberg and Felix Finkbeiner as young influencers addressing climate change and our human impact on the environment. It was a chance conversation in a school hall that gave Melati Wijsen and her sister Isabel the inspiration for their latest social venture.
The pair had already helped to bring about a ban on single-use plastics on their home island of Bali, with their Bye Bye Plastic Bags movement.
But after speaking at one high school, the then-15-year-old Melati realized there was more they could do.
''I remember coming off the stage and this line started to build up. One kid stayed until he was the very last person to talk to me. He said, 'What can I do to be like you? How can I start making a difference and take action?'"
''All I could say was, 'Use your voice', but even then it didn't feel like a good enough answer. So my mind started turning and thinking how we could actually create a place for young kids to understand from each other how we can build a world and a future that we want to be a part of.''
Building a Youthtopia
Melati told the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in January that a shake-up of education is needed: ''The education system is outdated. It is not keeping up with the changes in the real world. It is not preparing us for the real issues, the urgent issues that are happening.''
She left the audience with a clear message: ''You're never too young to make a difference, and it's not too late to take action.''
This outlook led to the creation of YOUTHTOPIA, which will host on-the-ground local workshops and training, and wants to become the global headquarters for a movement of young changemakers.
''Our philosophy is: don't wait to come to us in Indonesia, we'll come to you in pop-ups all around the world,'' says Melati, now 19, adding that online masterclasses and youth-led lesson plans will also be available.
''We wanted to help empower other young kids around the world to be able to find a tangible action that they could do,'' she says.
''We wanted to equip them with the right tools, the right skills and the right resources to look into where they could start making a difference and find their voice as a changemaker.''
Calling all changemakers
Melati and Isabel are part of a growing phalanx of young people determined to shape Earth's future, alongside Greta Thunberg, who started the Fridays for Future school climate strikes, and Felix Finkbeiner, who created Plant for the Planet more than a decade ago, aged nine.
At the heart of YOUTHTOPIA is a changemaker programme based on the sisters' belief that every young person can make a difference, even if they might not know how.
Young people are hungry to understand how they can get out there on the front lines, according to Melati. So their latest venture will teach basic skills such as public speaking, leadership and how to talk to government officials '' everything they have learned from Bye Bye Plastic Bags over the past six years.
''At our core is curiosity, the chance for us to ask the question: what if we could start from the very beginning? How would we changemakers create the world that we actually want to be a part of? We need to start today. Banning plastic bags should not have taken six years. So no more excuses, no more waiting for the regulations and the policies to be in place. Be brave enough to start taking action today.
''We're at the most important tipping point in human history, and we do not have the luxury of time. As young changemakers, we really embody this. We see this in our everyday work where we work with all levels of society to change behaviours and mindset. It's an everyday battle to challenge the comfort of the status quo.''
License and Republishing
World Economic Forum articles may be republished in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Public License, and in accordance with our Terms of Use.
The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum.
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Swedish teenage climate activist Thunberg turns 18 | Reuters
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 14:48
(Reuters) - Sweden's Greta Thunberg, who pioneered a global climate change campaign as a 15-year-old, turned 18 on Sunday and promised to celebrate by exposing ''dark secrets'' at her local pub.
''Thank you so much for all the well-wishes on my 18th birthday!,'' Thunberg said on Twitter.
''Tonight you will find me down at the local pub exposing all the dark secrets behind the climate- and school strike conspiracy and my evil handlers who can no longer control me! I am free at last!!.''
Thunberg began a climate change campaign that swelled from a one-person school strike to a worldwide movement, drawing in millions of school children, as well as adults.
She criticised world leaders over climate change in a speech to the United Nations in 2019, has clashed with U.S. President Donald Trump, and last month called for urgent action five years on from the Paris Accord.
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Out There
Earth Is Spinning Unusually Fast, And We Might Have To Delete A Second - GameSpot
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 12:28
2020 was a rough year for many of us, but there was another crisis going on that you probably weren't even aware of: a time crisis. Unfortunately, no light guns will save us here. According to, the Earth spun faster than in 2020 than in any other time in the past 50 years, with the 28 shortest days since 1960.
As reported in the Telegraph, experts and astronomers warn that timekeepers may need to introduce a negative leap second in order to stay accurate. Leap seconds--which are used to accommodate differences between atomic time and less-precise solar time--have previously been used to solve such issues. However, a leap second in 2012 wreaked havoc across the Internet, with Reddit, Yelp, Mozilla, and others reporting Y2K-esque crashes due to the shift.
Some experts have called for an end to leap seconds entirely, opining that they are a relic of a past age, since much of the world relies on atomic time today. The World Radiocommuncation Conference may end up abolishing the practice in 2023, though it's unclear how likely this is to happen. Earth's rotational speed varies considerably due to the motion of tides, the atmosphere, and the planet's core, as well as other factors, such as snowfall on mountains.
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WhatsApp gives users an ultimatum: Share data with Facebook or stop using the app | Ars Technica
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 12:18
WHATSUP, DOG? '-- The Facebook-owned messenger with 2 billion users revamps its privacy policy. Dan Goodin - Jan 6, 2021 8:29 pm UTC
WhatsApp, the Facebook-owned messenger that claims to have privacy coded into its DNA, is giving its 2 billion plus users an ultimatum: agree to share their personal data with the social network or delete their accounts.
The requirement is being delivered through an in-app alert directing users to agree to sweeping changes in the WhatsApp terms of service. Those who don't accept the revamped privacy policy by February 8 will no longer be able to use the app.
Share and share alikeShortly after Facebook acquired WhatsApp for $19 billion in 2014, its developers
built state-of-the-art end-to-end encryption into the messaging app. The move was seen as a victory for privacy advocates because it used the Signal Protocol, an open source encryption scheme whose source code has been reviewed and audited by scores of independent security experts.
In 2016, WhatsApp gave users a one-time ability to opt out of having account data turned over to Facebook. Now, an updated privacy policy is changing that. Come next month, users will no longer have that choice. Some of the data that WhatsApp collects includes:
User phone numbersOther people's phone numbers stored in address booksProfile namesProfile pictures andStatus message including when a user was last onlineDiagnostic data collected from app logsUnder the new terms, Facebook reserves the right to share collected data with its family of companies.
Advertisement ''As part of the Facebook family of companies, WhatsApp receives information from, and shares information with, this family of companies,'' the new privacy policy states. ''We may use the information we receive from them, and they may use the information we share with them, to help operate, provide, improve, understand, customize, support, and market our Services and their offerings.''
In some cases, such as when someone uses WhatsApp to interact with third-party businesses, Facebook may also share information with those outside entities.
A lack of transparencyThe move comes a month after Apple started requiring iOS app makers, including WhatsApp, to detail the information they collect from users. WhatsApp, according to the App Store, reserves the right to collect:
PurchasesFinancial informationLocationContactsUser contentIdentifiersUsage data andDiagnosticsA WhatsApp spokeswoman declined to speak on the record about the changes and precisely how or if it's possible for users to opt out of them. She agreed to email additional information on the condition it be kept on background, meaning none of the details can be quoted verbatim.
The move, the spokeswoman said, is part of a previously disclosed move to allow businesses to store and manage WhatsApp chats using Facebook's infrastructure. Users won't have to use WhatsApp to interact with the businesses and have the option of blocking the businesses. She said there will be no change in how WhatsApp shares provides data with Facebook for non-business chats and account data.
Together, the WhatsApp privacy policy and terms of service are more than 8,000 words long and are filled with legal jargon that makes it difficult for non-lawyers to understand. WhatsApp is doing its users a disservice by not agreeing to speak on the record so that reporters can fully understand the changes and explain them to readers.
People who object to the new terms and policy should consider using a different messenger. The Signal messenger provides the same robust encryption engine with a much more transparent privacy policy and terms of service. (Those documents are half the length of those from WhatsApp, too.) Besides providing encrypted chats, Signal also offers encrypted audio and video calls.
Post updated to add details in the third-to-last paragraph.
Grammy Awards Postponed '' Variety
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 22:12
Courtesy of CBS
The Grammy Awards are being postponed, a rep for the show confirms to Variety. Further details are expected shortly. Sources say the show may be moved to March, although no date was confirmed at the time of this article's publication.
Sources tell Variety that a combination of health and travel concerns '-- and not least the spike in coronavirus cases in the show's planned location of Los Angeles '-- led the Recording Academy and its network partner CBS to decide to postpone the show, which is scheduled to be hosted by ''The Daily Show'''s Trevor Noah, from its originally planned January 31st date. The move is not entirely unexpected, as Variety has heard several confusing reports in recent days around performances scheduled for the show.
For months, the Grammys have been contending with the countless complications involved in staging a major awards show that ordinarily has an audience of 18,000-plus people '-- self-billed as ''Music's Biggest Night'' '-- during a pandemic. While interim Grammy chief Harvey Mason, jr. told Variety in September that the initial general plan was to hold the event at its longtime home of the Staples Center in Los Angeles, with either a limited or no audience, late in November he said the show would be held ''in and around Downtown Los Angeles,'' opening the possibility that performances could be staged from multiple venues in that area. In a brief interview with Billboard published last month, new Grammys executive producer Ben Winston said he was ''looking to do something quite exciting with independent venues'' either in or around the 2021 show.
''I'm so struck by the independent music venues around the world, and I'm aware of how hard hit that side of the industry has been. I'm looking to do something quite exciting with the independent venues '-- supporting them and putting a spotlight on them in what has been a really tough year for them.'' The venues will receive aid as part of the Save Our Stages Act, which was passed into law along with the stimulus bill last month.
Popular on Variety
Mason told Variety late in November that the Grammys were looking at other shows for ideas, but ''It's gonna be a show that's different from the other awards shows that have happened at this point,'' he said. ''We're going to determine as we get a little bit closer what we're going to do with our audience, but we have some really cool and special things that are coming together for our show.''
The BET Awards, held early in the summer, was a essentially series of high-production music videos with a host in front of a green screen; several weeks later, the mostly pre-taped MTV VMAs were held in a variety of locations in and around New York; while the Country Music Association Awards were held in a small venue with a limited audience '-- leading to widespread criticism after 86-year-old singer Charley Pride, who was present at the event, died of complications from coronavirus just a month later, although he had tested negative for the virus before, at, and after the show. Last summer, the Academy Awards announced that their 2021 show would be moved from its usual February date to April.
The show, which has been plagued by controversies in three of the past four years '-- ranging from a lack of gender and racial diversity to the sudden ouster of Mason's predecessor, Deborah Dugan, just days before the 2020 show '-- stirred up another when nominations were announced late in November: In an unprecedented snub, the Weeknd, one of the year's most commercially and critically successful artists, received no nominations. Beyonc(C) leads the contenders with nine '-- an unexpectedly high profile, given that the superstar didn't even release a new album during the eligibility period '-- followed by six apiece for Taylor Swift, Roddy Ricch and Dua Lipa.
Brittany Howard, of Alabama Shakes fame, was close behind that grouping with five nominations for her solo debut. Earning four each were returning Grammy queen Billie Eilish, Megan Thee Stallion, DaBaby, Phoebe Bridgers, Justin Bieber, jazz pianist John Beasley and classical producer David Frost.
VIDEO - Federal inmates set to receive COVID-19 vaccines starting Friday | CTV News
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 14:54
KINGSTON, ONT. -- An intense debate was sparked online after CTV News Ottawa revealed hundreds of federal inmates will be receiving COVID-19 vaccines this week while provinces struggle to deliver inoculations to other vulnerable residents.
The Union of Canadian Correctional Officers (UCCO) said that the pilot project will begin Friday.
1,200 doses of the vaccine will be delivered to prisons across the country. In all, 600 inmates will be vaccinated, with each inmate getting the required two doses. It remains unclear which institutions in Canada will receive doses of the vaccine.
The story caught the attention of Opposition Leader Erin O'Toole, who said on Twitter Tuesday evening that "Not one criminal should be vaccinated ahead of any vulnerable Canadian or front-line health worker."
Sick and elderly prisoners will be prioritized, but prison officers and employees are not a part of the program.
Correctional Service Canada (CSC) says in a statement that they are following health guidelines for vaccinations.
''We have worked very closely with the Public Health Agency of Canada to respond to every aspect of the pandemic, including the provision of vaccines to inmates,'' says the CSC.
Prisons have been a significant source of outbreaks across the country. In eastern Ontario, the Joyceville Institution in Kingston has an ongoing outbreak where 150 inmates have tested positive for the virus.
Liberal MP for Kingston and the Islands Mark Gerretsen replied to O'Toole's comment Tuesday night.
"Here's a thought: how about we let health professionals decide who gets a vaccine and when," he wrote.
Gerretsen said Wednesday morning that he is not agreeing or disagreeing with the pilot project, but added "I prefer health care professionals deciding on the best way to slow down the spread, and eventually end, the pandemic. Not Erin O'Toole."
Justin Pich(C), associate professor in the criminology department at the University of Ottawa, says inmates are especially vulnerable.
''Even when they're in lockdown, their cells are right beside each other,'' he says. ''So, if someone gets COVID-19 and coughs, and that gets in the air, it doesn't have to travel very far for someone to get infected.''
Officers and prison employees will have to wait for the Province of Ontario's second vaccination phase, which is expected to begin in March, but there is no firm date yet.
National president of the UCCO, Jeff Wilkins, says prison officers should be vaccinated too.
''People are very close together in there, our members are going to work in there every single day,'' he says. ''They need to be protected.''
Here's a thought: how about we let *health professionals* decide who gets a vaccine and when. You know...instead of trying to politicize every single public health directive as you have since day one.
'-- Mark Gerretsen (@MarkGerretsen) January 6, 2021
VIDEO-Chilling threat sent to air traffic controllers vowing revenge for killing of Iranian general is under investigation - CBS News
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 12:44
Multiple air traffic controllers in New York heard a chilling threat Monday in audio obtained exclusively by CBS News: "We are flying a plane into the Capitol on Wednesday. Soleimani will be avenged."
The threat refers to Qassem Soleimani , the Iranian general killed last year in a U.S. drone strike ordered by President Trump. It was made on the one-year anniversary of Soleimani's death, for which Iranian officials have long vowed revenge.
It's unclear who sent the threat. While the government does not believe the warning of an attack is credible, it is being investigated as a breach of aviation frequencies, CBS News has learned.
Sources told CBS News that the Pentagon and other agencies were briefed Tuesday about the digitized voice recording. The sources said they believe the threat was designed to suggest hitting the Capitol on the same day Congress is set to count the Electoral College results.
Experts said the intrusion is concerning because it could affect the instructions pilots get about how and where planes fly.
Sources told CBS News a message was sent to air traffic controllers on Tuesday reminding them that any threat or a plane deviating from its flight path should be reported immediately.
The FBI is not commenting but said it takes "all threats of violence to public safety seriously." The Federal Aviation Administration said it is in contact with law enforcement.
(C) 2021 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.
VIDEO-Federal inmates set to receive COVID-19 vaccines starting Friday | CTV News
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 12:41
KINGSTON, ONT. -- An intense debate was sparked online after CTV News Ottawa revealed hundreds of federal inmates will be receiving COVID-19 vaccines this week while provinces struggle to deliver inoculations to other vulnerable residents.
The Union of Canadian Correctional Officers (UCCO) said that the pilot project will begin Friday.
1,200 doses of the vaccine will be delivered to prisons across the country. In all, 600 inmates will be vaccinated, with each inmate getting the required two doses. It remains unclear which institutions in Canada will receive doses of the vaccine.
The story caught the attention of Opposition Leader Erin O'Toole, who said on Twitter Tuesday evening that "Not one criminal should be vaccinated ahead of any vulnerable Canadian or front-line health worker."
Sick and elderly prisoners will be prioritized, but prison officers and employees are not a part of the program.
Correctional Service Canada (CSC) says in a statement that they are following health guidelines for vaccinations.
''We have worked very closely with the Public Health Agency of Canada to respond to every aspect of the pandemic, including the provision of vaccines to inmates,'' says the CSC.
Prisons have been a significant source of outbreaks across the country. In eastern Ontario, the Joyceville Institution in Kingston has an ongoing outbreak where 150 inmates have tested positive for the virus.
Liberal MP for Kingston and the Islands Mark Gerretsen replied to O'Toole's comment Tuesday night.
"Here's a thought: how about we let health professionals decide who gets a vaccine and when," he wrote.
Gerretsen said Wednesday morning that he is not agreeing or disagreeing with the pilot project, but added "I prefer health care professionals deciding on the best way to slow down the spread, and eventually end, the pandemic. Not Erin O'Toole."
Justin Pich(C), associate professor in the criminology department at the University of Ottawa, says inmates are especially vulnerable.
''Even when they're in lockdown, their cells are right beside each other,'' he says. ''So, if someone gets COVID-19 and coughs, and that gets in the air, it doesn't have to travel very far for someone to get infected.''
Officers and prison employees will have to wait for the Province of Ontario's second vaccination phase, which is expected to begin in March, but there is no firm date yet.
National president of the UCCO, Jeff Wilkins, says prison officers should be vaccinated too.
''People are very close together in there, our members are going to work in there every single day,'' he says. ''They need to be protected.''
Here's a thought: how about we let *health professionals* decide who gets a vaccine and when. You know...instead of trying to politicize every single public health directive as you have since day one.
'-- Mark Gerretsen (@MarkGerretsen) January 6, 2021
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 11:52
Thu Jan 07 10:14:47 +0000 2021
VIDEO-Washington lawmakers call for 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 11:39
Washington lawmakers call for 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office
Sen. Patty Murray (D-Washington). KOMO Image
Four Washington Representatives and a U.S. Senator are calling for Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment Wednesday in order to remove President Donald Trump from office.
U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01), Congressman Rick Larsen (WA-02), Congressman Derek Kilmer (WA-06) and Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (WA-07) voiced their support in invoking the 25th Amendment after a mob of pro-Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol before Congress voted to certify the results of the 2020 presidential election. Four people died during the insurrection.
The 25th Amendment allows for the president to be removed from office by the vice president and a majority of the cabinet.
''Congress is continuing the process of certifying the election, but only after a day of chaos and violent extremism in the Capitol where some of our worst fears about the harm this President is willing to incite were realized," Murray said in a statement. "We need questions answered about the profound breakdown in security and the stark difference in the treatment of this violent mob compared to legions of women, people with disabilities, members of the clergy, and activists of color who have peacefully protested in and around the Capitol complex.
The insurrectionists who stormed the Capitol today should be held fully accountable for their actions under the law. So should the President. The most immediate way to ensure the President is prevented from causing further harm in coming days is to invoke the 25th Amendment and remove him from office. As history watches, I urge Vice President Pence and the President's cabinet to put country before party and act.
To families in Washington state and nationwide, please know that as frightening as this has been, there is reason for hope because of your participation in the very same processes the President is seeking to undermine. Because of you, we will soon have a President and Senate determined to protect and strengthen rather than jeopardize our democratic institutions. Continue to have faith in yourselves, each other, and our democracy, and we will get through this together.''
DelBene called Wednesday's events one of the darkest days in American history.
''Yesterday was one of the darkest days in American history," DelBene said in a statement. "The President of the United States encouraged a violent mob to attack members of Congress to block the certification of the 2020 presidential election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris," DelBene said in a statement. "He failed to repudiate the violence he started and refused to activate security forces to protect the U.S. Capitol. Consequently, he violated his oath to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.
I couldn't have imagined the violence and lawlessness I saw around the United States Capitol. For the good of the country, the 25th Amendment should be invoked to remove President Trump from office immediately.''
Larsen tweeted his support Wednesday evening, saying "Trump has lost it."
Kilmer said in a tweet, "the president is manifestly unfit for office" before calling for Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment.
Jayapal urged Pence and the Cabinet to "put this country first and uphold their constitutional duty to invoke the 25th Amendment."
VIDEO-tk Computer Service on Twitter: "@THErealDVORAK @adamcurry ...pure gold. Take note, and I'm positive neither of you will miss it, to the phone sound that accidentally gets on mic three times. ðŸ‚🤪 Check Twatter Now! Now, now, now! Oh, the Presid
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 02:22
tk Computer Service : @THErealDVORAK @adamcurry ...pure gold. Take note, and I'm positive neither of you will miss it, to the phone sound'...
Thu Jan 07 01:31:29 +0000 2021
VIDEO-Flynn: Trump Will Remain President
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 02:16
President Trump will remain in the White House, according to Gen. Michael Flynn.
''My big message is that the truth is going to come out and that Donald Trump will continue to be the president of the United States for the next four years,'' he said in an interview with Alex Jones.
''There's no doubt in my mind. When I'm asked on a scale of 1 to 10 '' what's the scale that you would put Trump will be the next president '' I say 10, without a doubt.''
''That is the truth. Everybody in this country, everybody in this world knows that this election on the 3rd of November was a total rip-off,'' Flynn added. ''It was a fraudulent election, we have had foreign interference from multiple countries that I can rattle off here if you want to get into that.''
Accordingly, Flynn confirmed previous reports that the election was done under a state of national emergency due to reports of foreign actors penetrating the election system, particularly the Chinese.
''We have clear evidence of foreign interference, which is [what] the president's executive order describes, the executive order from 2018,'' he continued, referring to Executive Order 13848. ''He reinstituted it in 2019 and reinstituted again in 2020, so we are essentially in a national emergency that the president has already declared.''
''He just has to decide whether to execute some of those procedures that are well within his authority.''
VIDEO-Rep. Paul Gosar: DC riot had 'hallmarks of Antifa provocation'
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 01:06
PHOENIX - In a tweet made to his personal Twitter page, Arizona Congressman Paul Gosar appears to suggest that Antifa provocateurs had a role in the riots at the United States Capitol in Washington D.C.
On Jan. 6, supporters of Donald Trump gathered in Washington D.C. for a protest over baseless claims of electoral fraud. Eventually, people stormed the U.S. Capitol Building as Congress was counting the electoral votes from November 2020's election.
MORE: 'Un-American': Republican, Democrat lawmakers condemn Trump supporters who breached Capitol
At least one person was shot and killed, though it's not clear who pulled the trigger during the chaotic scene. Some in the crowd were shouting "traitors" as officers tried to keep them back.
PHOTOS: Pro-Trump protesters storm Capitol in DC
On his personal Twitter account, Rep. Paul Gosar, retweeted a video posted that claims some of the individuals who stormed the Capitol Building were "dressed up and had knee pads," made a claim that the incident has "all the hallmarks of Antifa provocation," without offering any evidence to support that claim.
Arizona Congressman Paul Gosar
In another tweet later on, Rep. Gosar appears to blame Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs for the riot at the Capitol.
"Is @katiehobbs (Twitter handle for Secretary of State Hobbs) satisfied with her obstruction now?" Rep. Gosar wrote. "For weeks the people have demanded transparency. Instead they got lies and cover up."
Paul Gosar objects the counting of the electoral votes in ArizonaCongress moved to debate Arizona's results on Jan. 6.
On his official Twitter, however, Rep Gosar struck another tone, saying, in a tweet, that protesters do not need to "get carried away," and that they are "beyond the line."
While some prominent Republicans in Arizona, including Arizona Republican Party Chair Kelli Ward and GOP state lawmaker Mark Finchem, blamed inaction to address the baseless electoral fraud accusations for the riot, most have condemned the rioters for the actions.
MORE: President Trump supporters rally at Arizona Capitol as DC protest turns violent
Continuing CoverageThe Associated Press contributed to this report.
VIDEO-Nethead on Twitter: "C-SPAN just got #NoAgenda ed @adamcurry @THErealDVORAK #ITM" / Twitter
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 00:48
Nethead : C-SPAN just got #NoAgenda ed @adamcurry @THErealDVORAK #ITM
Thu Jan 07 00:37:09 +0000 2021
VIDEO-ari'· on Twitter: "they didn't ''breach'' or ''storm'' the capitol building THEY WERE LET IN" / Twitter
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 21:30
ari'· : they didn't ''breach'' or ''storm'' the capitol building THEY WERE LET IN
Wed Jan 06 20:59:14 +0000 2021
stayintouchDB : @moonddng @TrinityMustache They were let in by Seditionists among the GOP and supporting factions.
Wed Jan 06 21:30:34 +0000 2021
andrea collucci : @moonddng @postsecret Exactly. Staged BLM and antifa
Wed Jan 06 21:30:33 +0000 2021
VIDEO-50 MIN-Dr. Carrie Madej with Dr. Andrew Kaufman On VX, Hydrogel, And Secret Government Programs
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 20:18
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VIDEO-The missing flu riddle: 'Influenza has been renamed COVID,' maverick epidemiologist says | Just The News
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 19:01
Rates of influenza have remained persistently low through late 2020 and into 2021, cratering from levels a year ago and raising the puzzling specter of sharply reduced influenza transmission rates even as positive tests for COVID-19 have shattered numerous records over the last several weeks.
Where have all the flu cases gone?
Epidemiologist Knut Wittkowski thinks he can answer the riddle.
"Influenza has been renamed COVID in large part," said the former head of biostatistics, epidemiology and research design at Rockefeller University.
"There may be quite a number of influenza cases included in the 'presumed COVID' category of people who have COVID symptoms (which Influenza symptoms can be mistaken for), but are not tested for SARS RNA," Wittkowski told Just the News on Thursday.
Those patients, he argued, "also may have some SARS RNA sitting in their nose while being infected with Influenza, in which case the influenza would be 'confirmed' to be COVID."
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's weekly influenza surveillance tracker reports that the cumulative positive influenza test rate from late September into the week of Dec. 19 stands at 0.2% as measured by clinical labs. That's compared to a cumulative 8.7% from a year before.
The weekly comparisons are even starker: This week one year ago, the positive clinical rate was 22%, where now it stands at 0.1%.
Those low numbers continue trends observed earlier in the year in which flu rates have remained at near-zero levels. The trend is not limited to the U.S. Worldwide, health authorities have all reported sharply decreased influenza levels throughout what is normally peak flu season in the northern hemisphere. Rates in the southern hemisphere were also low this year.
COVID mitigation measures cited even as COVID cases surge
Numerous experts have pointed to the ongoing COVID-19 mitigation measures '-- including mask-wearing, physical separation, and other anti-virus tactics '-- as an explanation for decreased flu levels.
Timothy Sly, an epidemiology professor at Ryerson University in Toronto, told Just the News that "the reduced incidence of seasonal influenza is almost certainly due to the protection that a large proportion of the population has been using for many months." Those measures, he said, are "designed to be effective against any airborne respiratory virus."
Holden Maecker, a professor of microbiology and immunology at Stanford University, echoed that assessment. "I feel pretty confident that the COVID-19 mitigation measures have caused the reduction in flu cases this year," he said. "Masks, social distancing, and hand washing are all effective counter-measures against colds and flu."
Speculating on why COVID levels have continued to soar if those measures have been so effective at stopping the flu, Maecker said: "I think it's because (1) there is less pre-existing immunity to SARS-CoV-2 in the population, whereas most of us have had vaccines and/or previous bouts with flu; and (2) the SARS-CoV-2 virus seems to spread more easily than influenza, including more aerosol transmission and 'super-spreader' events. Flu transmission is almost entirely close-range droplets and hand-to-nose or eyes contact."
Sly also argued that the different dynamics of COVID-19 and influenza transmission likely play a role.
Claiming that mask-wearing and social distancing are not universal, Sly said that "major transmission events" can result in explosive spread of the coronavirus
"All viral acute respiratory infections will be curtailed by distancing and masking: influenzas A and B, Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), common cold (more than 100 types of virus), and of course, CoV-19," he said. "But if the precautions are not universal, the transmissions that DO take place will have different consequences and rates of spread."
Wittkowski '-- who has been among the relatively few academics to consistently criticize widespread COVID mitigation measures '-- counters that there was "no evidence to support" the contention that masks would stop influenza while failing to stop COVID.
"I think that these viruses are more similar than people want to acknowledge," he continued. "People know everybody is wearing masks and distancing, and so people want to come up with things that are good about it."
Public health officials have at times struggled to explain why positive COVID tests have surged upward in places '-- such as California, Pennsylvania and elsewhere '-- where policies such as social distancing and mask mandates have been in place for months.
Data indicate that more than nine out of every ten Americans in most states are wearing masks in public regularly; those numbers have been above 80% since the early fall. Yet average positive COVID-19 tests have multiplied by nearly seven times since the spring peak.
Politicians and health experts have claimed at times that those surging numbers are being driven by individuals who are failing to wear masks and socially distance themselves from others, though such assertions are not often accompanied by much supporting evidence.
A 2019 World Health Organization study, meanwhile, found "no evidence that [wearing a mask] is effective in reducing transmission" of influenza, potentially suggesting that masks may not be playing much role in the currently reduced influenza levels being seen throughout the world.
Wittkowski, who has numerous times over the course of the pandemic called for an end to lockdowns, social distancing measures, and mask mandates, dismissed the idea that those policies could ultimately have much effect on the spread of COVID-19. He has argued that herd immunity, either through natural infections or through a vaccine, is the only way to blunt transmission of the virus."Pandemics end in the same way," he said, "whether we do something or not."
VIDEO-Ajaxfriend''Œ''Œ''Œ on Twitter: "Voor alle die echt werkelijk denken dat dit alleen om Cojona draait.. RUTTE zei het eerder al duidelijk 2030....tja de Agenda he!!" / Twitter
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 14:26
Ajaxfriend''Œ''Œ''Œ : Voor alle die echt werkelijk denken dat dit alleen om Cojona draait..RUTTE zei het eerder al duidelijk'...
Tue Jan 05 18:11:27 +0000 2021
Spungle&Nooky 🐷🐽🐷🐍ðŸš'ðŸš'ðŸš'ðŸðŸðŸ : @ajaxfriend Wil iemand m die stropdas op laten vreten zodat ie z,n kwek houdt.Slecht Engels ask Rutte for advise
Wed Jan 06 14:20:19 +0000 2021
Ajaxfriend''Œ''Œ''Œ : En zijn baas zegt het ook ..Exact het zelfde .....👇Nu wakker SLAPERS
Wed Jan 06 14:11:51 +0000 2021
Janny : @ajaxfriend Rutte de gluiperd laat hiermee horen wat wij al die tijd al vermoedden. Weg met het oude, bekende, geli'...
Wed Jan 06 12:59:48 +0000 2021
Mit : @ajaxfriend "Certainly a mayor crisis"En dat blijkt uit wat precies?
Wed Jan 06 12:58:44 +0000 2021
Frederik J Roebersen : @ajaxfriend
Wed Jan 06 12:50:40 +0000 2021
'' ''– ''' ¨ '' 🂠: @ajaxfriend Fuck the "build back better" crap, Rutte!!!!!
Wed Jan 06 12:47:08 +0000 2021
VIDEO-'Out Of Touch With Reality': Tulsi Gabbard Rips House Gender Neutral Terms Rules Change - AIR.TV
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 02:21
'Out Of Touch With Reality': Tulsi Gabbard Rips House Gender Neutral Terms Rules Change
Jan 5, 2021 03:37
VIDEO-Jason Maxwell on Twitter: "@adamcurry "science educator" on TikTok with 2.9 million followers promotes eating bugs. #itm" / Twitter
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 21:20
Jason Maxwell : @adamcurry "science educator" on TikTok with 2.9 million followers promotes eating bugs. #itm
Tue Jan 05 20:19:18 +0000 2021
VIDEO-Washington Examiner on Twitter: "A prayer opening the 117th Congress concluded, "Amen and a woman." "Amen" translates to "so be it."" / Twitter
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:47
Washington Examiner : A prayer opening the 117th Congress concluded, "Amen and a woman." "Amen" translates to "so be it."
Mon Jan 04 00:16:55 +0000 2021
christopher bertram : @dcexaminer USA is going mental or should I say womental.... ðŸ'
Tue Jan 05 00:46:20 +0000 2021
Zac Clark : @dcexaminer ðŸ‚ðŸ‚ðŸ‚ðŸ‚ðŸ‚🂠this is something that republicans and democrats should be able to laugh at lol
Tue Jan 05 00:45:45 +0000 2021
David Raisch : @dcexaminer God bless America 🇺🇸. AMEN
Tue Jan 05 00:44:43 +0000 2021
Kathy Stump : @dcexaminer That's Sounds stupid he don't even know what amen means !
Tue Jan 05 00:44:09 +0000 2021
VIDEO-30 MINS-FlashPoint : Hope Is Not Lost! Featuring Attorney Sidney Powell - YouTube
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 22:36
VIDEO-Acyn Torabi on Twitter: "Peter Navarro says Pence has the authority to give them a ten day window and also says the inauguration date can be rescheduled" / Twitter
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 22:01
Acyn Torabi : Peter Navarro says Pence has the authority to give them a ten day window and also says the inauguration date can be'...
Sun Jan 03 02:44:02 +0000 2021
VIDEO-Mike Pompeo Says...'It's A Live Exercise' In White House Briefing - YouTube
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 20:16
CAUGHT ON TAPE: Brad Raffensperger Begged For Chinese Votes - National File
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 20:10
Georgia Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger was placed into office in the Georgia House of Representatives in 2015 by a powerful network of Mandarin-speaking Chinese people in the United States of America. NATIONAL FILE has obtained video of Raffensperger speaking at an event with Mandarin-speaking Chinese people, begging the Chinese people to get him more than 100 votes to secure his victory in the election (which he ended up winning by 159 votes). A Mandarin-language newspaper that actively coordinates with United Front, a network controlled by the Chinese Communist Party, even explained the strategy to place Raffensperger into office by use of ''absentee ballots'' that could be obtained by one Chinese person and distributed to others. Raffensperger is trying to stop Communist China's geopolitical foe President Donald Trump from gaining a proper accounting of the votes in the 2020 presidential election.HERE IS A LINK TO RAFFENSBERGER MAKING A CALL IN MANDARIN CHINESE THANKING THE CHINESE FOR ELECTING HIM TO THE STATE LEGISLATURE IN 2015.
The article about Raffensperger's election in the United Front-linked newspaper can be translated into English via Google Translate, and states the following '-- emphasis added:
''One of the reasons why we did not participate in elections in the past was that ''one more vote, one less vote has no effect on the results of the election.'' This time is different. In the first round of election, there were only two candidates left in the 50th District of the House of Representatives where Johns Creek was located: Brad Raffensberger (sic) and Kelly Stewart. They are all conservative Republicans, with almost the same political opinions. Only 2,500 of the 25,000 voters in the first round voted: Brad was only 26 votes behind Kelley.
Brad took the initiative to approach the Asian community to understand and listen to our voices. He visited the Chinese Dance and Culture School in the city center the previous weekend. Last Saturday he visited the Atlanta Modern Chinese School with more than 500 students. On Sunday, he hosted 30 Chinese at home to talk about his ruling philosophy. As a city councillor, he also participated in the award ceremony of my boy scout team and spoke on behalf of the city government'...
According to statistical calculations, we only need 100 Chinese votes this time to determine the outcome of the election and make Brad a victory. He will represent our voice in the state legislature in the future. We have already boasted about Haikou with him and guaranteed 100 votes. This is an excellent opportunity for us Asians to show their strength. Your vote has never been so important. Election day is Tuesday, February 3. If you can't vote in person on the day of something, I can apply for an absentee ballet (sic) for you. After you receive it, you can fill in and send it out. Due to the tight mailing time, if you need, please email me [email protected]
In addition, in the municipal council election in September this year, Chinese people are likely to stand for election. Thank you for your attention'...Xiao Yu''
(NOTE: Georgia law forbids people applying for absentee ballots for other people except if the person is out of the county temporarily or if the person applying is a direct relative of the voter).
HERE IS A 2017 ARTICLE IN WHICH THE SAME CHINESE-LANGUAGE PUBLICATION BRAGS ABOUT HANDPICKING RAFFENSPERGER FOR OFFICE, stating, ''After a month of hard work and help from the Chinese, he finally won the final election'...Shun aroused fighting spirit, so I and Brad reported the number of Chinese votes every hour. In the end, Brad won the victory. The numbers we quoted are very close, obviously the Chinese votes played a key role in winning.''
Raffensperger discusses absentee ballots at 0:48, discusses the number of votes he needs to win specifically at 1:12, hints at trading political favors with the expression ''Out of little acorns, great trees grow'' at 1:27, and again begging for votes at 3:12.
VIDEO-Dr. Charles Morgan on Psycho-Neurobiology and War - YouTube
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 19:50
VIDEO-Dr. James Giordano: The Brain is the Battlefield of the Future - YouTube
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 16:40
VIDEO-Inflatable costume could be behind Covid outbreak at California hospital
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 16:24
A hospital in California is facing a coronavirus outbreak among its staff that might be tied to an inflatable costume worn on Christmas to cheer up patients.
At least 43 staff members tested positive for the virus between Dec. 27 and New Year's Day, according to a statement from Kaiser Permanente San Jose Medical Center on Saturday. The hospital's emergency department has been deep-cleaned, and all infected staff members are isolating.
The hospital is looking into whether the fan on an "air-powered costume" could have spread droplets after a staff member briefly wore it in the emergency department on Christmas Day.
''Any exposure, if it occurred, would have been completely innocent, and quite accidental, as the individual had no COVID symptoms and only sought to lift the spirits of those around them during what is a very stressful time,'' the hospital said.
Kaiser Permanente San Jose Medical Center will no longer allow such costumes in its facility, the statement said.
Kaiser Permanente Hospital in San Jose, Calif. Google MapsEmergency department employees at Kaiser Permanente San Jose Medical Center who were able to get a Covid-19 vaccine were only given their first inoculation days prior to Christmas Day and would not have reached immunity by the time of the incident.
None would have had their second booster shot by Christmas Day.
''During this period, even as vaccine is beginning to be provided in our communities, it is crucial that everyone continue to protect themselves and each other by continuing to use masks, hand washing, avoid gatherings, and practice social distancing,'' the hospital said.
None of the staff members who tested positive will return to work, though the hospital said it has been engaging additional staff as part of its preparations.
California hospitals have been overwhelmed with casesin recent weeks amid a new surge of the virus, which brought record numbers of daily deaths and hospitalizations.
The state's Bay Area has only 5.1 percent availability in its intensive care units. Southern California is beset with hospitalizations, with no available beds in many of its hospitals as staff create makeshift units in gift shops or pediatric wards.
California has recorded 2,345,909 confirmed coronavirus cases, with more than 26,000 deaths, according to numbers the state's public health department released Saturday.
Doha Madani Doha Madani is a breaking news reporter for NBC News.
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 15:25
VIDEO-Daily Congress Prayer, January 3, 2021, House guest chaplain Emanuel Cleaver: "A-man. And A-Woman." - YouTube
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 15:10
VIDEO-Scientists question is it the flu or COVID? - YouTube
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 15:01
VIDEO-The Media Always Fear-Mongers Over Hospitals: UK Headlines From 2012-2019! - YouTube
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 14:42
VIDEO-Improve the News - YouTube
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 14:39
VIDEO-Advanced Sci-fi Civilisations Too Stupid To Really Exist Ep.14 - San Angeles - YouTube
Sun, 03 Jan 2021 22:35
Techno Fog on Twitter: "Don Lemon assault lawsuit- Lemon is accused of rubbing his own genitalia before shoving his hand in a guy's face and making crude sexual comments. New letter to the Court: @donlemon refuses to answer questions on where he was that
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 13:02
Techno Fog : Don Lemon assault lawsuit- Lemon is accused of rubbing his own genitalia before shoving his hand in a guy's face'...
Tue Jan 05 22:59:22 +0000 2021
Epidemiologist Says Influenza Cases Are Being Counted as COVID-19 '' Summit News
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 12:21
Coronavirus ''Choose positions that aren't face-to-face during sex.''
nito100 via Getty ImagesThe BBC has published an article which amplifies advice that people should wear face masks during sex in order to stop the spread of coronavirus.
Yes, really.
The piece, titled 'Sex and Covid: What are the rules in lockdown?', details ''new guidance on having sex'' in the aftermath of Prime Minister Boris Johnson declaring a new national lockdown set to last for months.
The article says that ''meeting up for sex is off the cards'' under the new rules but goes on to offer recommendations on how couples can practice COVID-safe sex.
''Avoid kissing, wear a face covering and choose positions that aren't face-to-face during sex,'' states the piece, echoing advice given by the Terrence Higgins Trust.
Where, how and who you can have sex with is currently subject to different laws depending on where you live in the UK
Here's what you need to know
'-- BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) January 6, 2021
''Your best sexual partner during the Covid-19 pandemic is yourself,'' the article adds, encouraging people to engage in ''masturbation, sex toys or having phone or online sex,'' rather than the real thing.
As we highlighted earlier, police have demanded powers to force entry into people's homes if they suspect someone of engaging in behavior contrary to lockdown rules.
All of these rules, which are being brought in under a Conservative government, have been vehemently supported by the left who in decades gone by would have normally been aghast at the state literally dictating who you're allowed to have sex with.
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Coronavirus It went from ''just wear the mask'' to this.
Jeff J Mitchell via Getty ImagesPolice are demanding new powers to force entry into the homes of suspected lockdown violators after Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a new national lockdown in England.
The call was made by David Jamieson, the police and crime commissioner for the West Midlands police, England's second biggest force.
''For the small minority of people who refuse entry to police officers and obstruct their work, the power of entry would seem to be a useful tool,'' said Jamieson.
''I have raised this issue with the policing minister previously and clarity on the power of entry would help police officers enforce the new Covid regulations more easily,'' he added.
As we previously highlighted, police are already breaking into people's homes without warrants under the guise of enforcing lockdown restrictions, so any new law will just codify the process.
It went from "just wear the mask" to this in a hurry.
'-- Paul Joseph Watson (@PrisonPlanet) January 6, 2021
Since most of the country was already under a de facto full lockdown, the new national lockdown was announced by Boris Johnson primarily to hand police more draconian powers.
The government has already stated that the new measures will continue until the end of March at the earliest, meaning the next 3 months will be replete with examples of police abusing their powers to target people for simply trying to live their lives.
As we reported earlier, senior Scotland Yard officials have already said they will adopt more ''hardline'' measures to enforce the lockdown, including interrogating people on the street and handing out more fines.
This despite the fact that Brits were previously informed that police officers wouldn't be able to attend crimes such as burglaries due to budget cuts.
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Coronavirus ''There should be no negative consequences for those opting out of the vaccine''
24 hours ago
6 January, 2021
Steve Watson
Peter Zelei Images / Getty ImagesLawmakers in South Carolina have pre-filed a bill proposing a ban on mandatory coronavirus vaccines.
WCNC News reports that four state reps. have proposed the legislation to ensure that people may opt out of vaccination and not be discriminated against for doing so.
The proposal states that those refusing the vaccine would not face ''adverse employment action'' or any form of societal restrictions for doing so.
The legislation will also state that vaccines ''may be provided only to those individuals who agree to vaccination.''
Currently in the state it is legal for employers to mandate vaccinations. This legislation would overturn that.
The proposed bill, which has been referred to the Committee on Medical, Military, Public and Municipal Affairs, is being sponsored by one Democratic representative, and three Republicans. They are Reps. Steven Long, R-Spartanburg, Leola Robinson, D-Greenville, Mike Burns, R-Greenville, and Sandy McGarry, R-Lancaster.
Rep. Burns told reporters ''We want people to be able to go to their jobs, go to schools, go about their business, and not be mandated to do something that they feel is not in the best interest health-wise for themselves.''
''There should be no negative consequences for those opting out of the vaccine,'' Rep. Burns added.
Representative Stephen Long said that the legislation was proposed following concerns from multiple constituents that ''vaccine cards'' could be introduced, effectively segregating society.
''Taking a vaccine should be a personal, private choice, and requiring 'vaccine cards' to board planes, attend school, etc is a very dangerous idea,'' Rep. Long urged.
''I encourage everyone to speak with a physician about the benefits and risks of taking a vaccine, but it should never be mandatory,'' Long added.
The proposal could progress through to committee next week, according to reports.
There has been much hype around potential 'COVID passports', especially concerning the fact that employers are currently allowed to mandate vaccination in many states.
Last week, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases stated that mandatory vaccinations are still 'on the table', and that he is ''sure'' that institutions such as hospitals and schools will mandate all who work there to be vaccinated.
Has the 25th Amendment Basically Been Invoked?
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 12:19
Today, violent radicals stormed the U.S. Capitol Building after the conclusion of President Donald Trump's speech at what is likely to be the final rally he'll hold in the city. In the end, one woman was shot and killed, parts of the building were damaged, and a lot of morons made fools of themselves. Nothing of value was actually accomplished because that obviously wasn't the goal of the perpetrators. Instead, any possible debate on election integrity will be shelved for the foreseeable future. In fact, most of the elected officials who were set to object to the electoral college certification today have backed out. That line of pursuit is simply over.
In order to regain control of the Capitol, National Guard troops were called in, but it's who called them in and who wasn't consulted that makes that decision interesting. It turns out that VP Mike Pence made the call. In fact, the Department of Defense never even contacted the President, completely bypassing him.
This per The Daily Mail.
In an odd statement, acting Pentagon chief Christopher Miller '' installed by Trump after he pushed out Defense Secretary Mark Esper after the election '' said he had spoken to Pence '' not Trump '' about calling in the Guard.
''Chairman Milley and I just spoke separately with the Vice President and with Speaker Pelosi, Leader McConnell, Senator Schumer and Representative Hoyer about the situation at the U.S. Capitol,' Mark Milley said in a statement, referencing the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff and congressional leaders.
'We have fully activated the D.C. National Guard to assist federal and local law enforcement as they work to peacefully address the situation. We are prepared to provide additional support as necessary and appropriate as requested by local authorities. Our people are sworn to defend the constitution and our democratic form of government and they will act accordingly.'
Has the 25th Amendment basically been invoked, even if just in spirit?
It sure seems that way. The idea that a scene like this could be unfolding and that the President wouldn't even be consulted simply does not compute. In the past, Trump has been at the forefront of all these decisions. Also, I'm not sure a vice president has the power to mobilize the National Guard on his own.
This all leaves me to believe there's something serious going on behind the scenes, and that might not just be idle speculation. We are now getting reports from multiple outlets that Trump's cabinet is discussing removal.
JUST IN: ''This is not news we deliver lightly,'' @margbrennan says as she reports: Trump Cabinet secretaries are discussing invoking the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump. Nothing formal yet presented to VP Pence.
''I'm talking about actual members of the Cabinet,'' she says
'-- Ed O'Keefe (@edokeefe) January 7, 2021
To be frank, this would be an awful idea. If you want to quell tensions and try to stop any future violence, abusing the 25th Amendment isn't the way to do it. It simply was not created to unseat a president because a tiny number of that president's supporters did something bad. If this happens, it's going to be throwing gasoline on the fire, and further, there's no real justification for it. If the goal here is to protect the Constitution, you don't do that by violating it. Trump is still President for two weeks. That won't change because of what happened today.
Regardless, how in charge Trump really is remains to be seen. He doesn't seem very in charge anymore given the Department of Defense and the Vice President are making major calls without him. Perhaps the President has already checked out and is relinquishing this power voluntary? That's possible I suppose, though that seems unlikely given how upset Trump was with Pence earlier today.
We'll see how this all unfolds. I doubt it's over.
(Please follow me on Twitter! @bonchieredstate)
Denmark launches children's TV show about man with giant penis | Denmark | The Guardian
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 12:03
John Dillermand has an extraordinary penis. So extraordinary, in fact, that it can perform rescue operations, etch murals, hoist a flag and even steal ice-cream from children.
The Danish equivalent of the BBC, DR, has a new animated series aimed at four- to eight-year-olds about John Dillermand, the man with the world's longest penis who overcomes hardships and challenges with his record-breaking genitals.
Unsurprisingly, the series has provoked debate about what good children's television should '' and should not '' contain.
Since premiering on Saturday, opponents have condemned the idea of a man who cannot control his penis. ''Is this really the message we want to send to children while we are in the middle of a huge #MeToo wave?'' wrote the Danish author Anne Lise Marstrand-J¸rgensen.
The show comes just months after the TV presenter Sofie Linde kickstarted Denmark's #MeToo movement.
Christian Groes, an associate professor and gender researcher at Roskilde University, said he believed the programme's celebration of the power of male genitalia could only set equality back. ''It's perpetuating the standard idea of a patriarchal society and normalising 'locker room culture' '... that's been used to excuse a lot of bad behaviour from men. It's meant to be funny '' so it's seen as harmless. But it's not. And we're teaching this to our kids.''
Erla Heinesen H¸jsted, a clinical psychologist who works with families and children, said she believed the show's opponents may be overthinking things. ''John Dillermand talks to children and shares their way of thinking '' and kids do find genitals funny,'' she said.
''The show depicts a man who is impulsive and not always in control, who makes mistakes '' like kids do, but crucially, Dillermand always makes it right. He takes responsibility for his actions. When a woman in the show tells him that he should keep his penis in his pants, for instance, he listens. Which is nice. He is accountable.''
H¸jsted conceded the timing was poor and that a show about bodies might have considered depicting ''difference and diversity'' beyond an oversized diller (Danish slang for penis; dillermand literally means ''penis-man''). ''But this is categorically not a show about sex,'' she said. ''To pretend it is projects adult ideas on it.''
DR, the Danish public service broadcaster, has a reputation for pushing boundaries '' especially for children. Another stalwart of children's scheduling is Onkel Reje, a popular figure who curses, smokes a pipe and eschews baths '' think Mr Tumble meets Father Jack. A character in Gepetto News made conservatives bristle in 2012 when he revealed a love of cross-dressing. And Ultra Smider T¸jet (Ultra Strips Down) caused outrage in 2020 for presenting children aged 11-13 with a panel of nude adults, but, argues H¸jsted, such criticism was unjustified.
''What kind of culture are we creating for our children if it's OK for them to see 'perfect' bodies on Instagram '' enhanced, digitally or cosmetically '' but not 'real bodies'?'' she said.
DR responded to the latest criticism by saying it could just as easily have made a programme ''about a woman with no control over her vagina'' and that the most important thing was that children enjoyed John Dillermand.
Business Insider's top advertising and media stories for January 7 - Business Insider
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 11:34
Hi! Welcome to the Insider Advertising daily for January 7. I'm Lauren Johnson, a senior advertising reporter at Business Insider. Subscribe here to get this newsletter in your inbox every weekday. Send me feedback or tips at
Today's news: Marketers pull their ads amid the attack on the US Capitol while top business leaders speak out against the rioters.
Jake Angeli, the "Q Shaman," was one of several protestors to confront Capitol police officers at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, in Washington, DC. - Demonstrators breeched security and entered the Capitol as Congress debated the a 2020 presidential election Electoral Vote Certification. SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images Advertisers pull commercials around news coverage of attempted coup at US CapitolClaire Atkinson and Patrick Coffee report that a host of major brands asked their ad agencies to pause their advertising campaigns amid the unprecedented attack on the US Capitol.At least one TV network stopped running commercial breaks during news coverage of the coup attempt.Advertisers are seeking advice on what to do next, and the news coverage leaves a question mark over what will happen with campaigns set to air on inauguration day January 20.Read the full story here. Pro-Trump supporters storm the U.S. Capitol following a rally with President Donald Trump on January 6, 2021. Samuel Corum/Getty Images Business leaders including JPMorgan's Jamie Dimon and Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian condemn the rioters at the US Capitol: 'These are domestic terrorists'Business leaders also spoke out against the attack.Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian described the rioters as "domestic terrorists." JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon said in a statement that he strongly condemned Wednesday's violence, saying, "We are better than this."Jay Timmons, president and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers, issued a scathing rebuke of President Donald Trump and the rioters. He called on Vice President Mike Pence and the Cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment in order to remove Trump from office.Read the full story here. Business Insider/Jessica Tyler Ulta Beauty is pushing into advertising as it chases a piece of the $17 billion e-commerce ad businessIn other news, I reported that Ulta Beauty is rolling out an advertising arm to sell ads on its own platform, publisher sites, and social networks, according to two ad buyers with direct knowledge.The beauty retailer joins Walgreens, CVS, Target, and Walmart that are betting on advertising as a way to offset shrinking retail margins.In addition to selling ads on its own properties, Ulta Beauty is working with Epsilon to pitch co-branded programmatic ads that run on Facebook, YouTube, and ad networks. Read the full story here.More stories we're reading:Twitter has locked Trump's account and will keep it locked until he deletes tweets containing baseless claims of election fraud amid US Capitol siege (Business Insider)Sean Parker-backed Stageit is seeking funding as other self-serve celebrity platforms like Cameo and OnlyFans take off (Business Insider)A business owner who spent nearly $46 million on Facebook advertising says he's been booted from the platform without explanation (Business Insider)Sweden's Oatly is expected to IPO this year. Here's how its popularity soared on its quirky grassroots marketing. (Business Insider)What it's like working for a YouTube star and how to get a job in the influencer industry by networking, according to Alisha Marie's video editor (Business Insider)Roku tops 50 million active streaming accounts, growing 39% in 2020 (Variety)Wyndham Destinations buys Travel + Leisure from Meredith for $100 million (The Wall Street Journal)Thanks for reading and see you tomorrow! You can reach me in the meantime at and subscribe to this daily email here.
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Kim Kardashian and Kanye West 'prepare for $2.2bn divorce battle'
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 11:31
Kim Kardashian and husband Kanye West are headed to an 'imminent divorce' The duo share a combined fortune of $2.2 billion and have four children together: North, seven, Saint, five, Chicago, two, and Psalm, one One of the biggest question marks in their reported 'divorce' could be who gets the 15,667 square foot mansion in the exclusive Calabasas neighborhood of Hidden HillsThe reality star, 40, and the rapper, 43, purchased the home, which was once owned by Lisa Marie Presley, in 2014 for $20 million and spent three years and another $20 million on renovating it The power couple are said to be heading toward divorce, with Kim hiring celeb favorite lawyer Laura WasserKim and Kanye gave fans an inside look at their massive futuristic Los Angeles home in February 2020's Architectural Digest with the star also sharing many peeks at it via her social media Kim Kardashian and Kanye West share a combined $2.2 billion fortune that the duo could be fighting over amid reports of an 'imminent divorce.'
And one of the biggest question marks in their reported divorce appears to be who will get the 15,667 square foot mansion in the exclusive Calabasas neighborhood of Hidden Hills.
The reality star, 40, and the rapper, 43, purchased the home, which was once owned by Lisa Marie Presley, in 2014 for $20 million and spent three years and another $20 million on renovating it. It is now worth a reported $60 million.
The way they were: Kim Kardashian and Kanye West share a combined $2.2bn fortune that the duo could be fighting over amid reports of an 'imminent divorce;' seen together December 14, 2019 at Sean 'Diddy' Combs' 50th birthday party in LAThe power couple are said to be heading toward divorce, with Kim hiring celeb favorite lawyer Laura Wasser.
Us Weekly has even claimed that Kim has had the celebrity divorce attorney on a retainer for months.
'Kim wants the divorce settlement finalized before formally filing. Settlement talks are ongoing. Kim wants to control the PR campaign of the divorce and she was blindsided by leaks about divorce reports.'
'Kim is trying to get Kanye to turn over the Calabasas house to her, because that's where the kids are based and growing up. That is their home,' a source told Page Six.
The insider said that the 'divorce is happening because Kim has grown up a lot. She is serious about taking the bar exam and becoming a lawyer, she is serious about her prison reform campaign. Meanwhile Kayne is talking about running for president and saying other crazy s**t, and she's just had enough of it.'
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The enormous Calabasas home they own sits on three acres with two vineyards, according to TMZ; their renovations brought the value of the home to a reported $60 million value, the outlet said.
Kim and Kanye finally moved into their renovated home in December 2017, according to US Weekly; it was done in August of that year, but they delayed their move in by three months while smaller things were being finished up.
'The home is done in terms of the renovation but it's finishing up the smaller things - they don't want to move in with any construction still happening,' Us Weekly's insider dished.
The renovations included a larger master bedroom, bigger closet space, a spa, as well as a recording studio for Kanye plus a complete revamp of the landscaping and outdoor area.
Kim and Kanye, who wed in 2014, are parents to: daughters North, seven, and Chicago, who turns three on January 15, and sons Saint, five, and Psalm, one.
Kim and Kanye gave fans an inside look at their massive futuristic Los Angeles home in February 2020's Architectural Digest.
Their home: And one of the biggest question marks in their reported 'divorce' could be who gets the 15,667 square foot mansion in the exclusive Calabasas neighborhood of Hidden HillsFans first caught a glimpse of the minimalist Hidden Hills estate in 2013 with infant North on a walk; since then they embarked on total renovations before eventually moving into in 2017.
Family: Kim and Kanye are parents to: daughters North, seven, and Chicago, who turns three on January 15, and sons Saint, five, and Psalm, oneDuring their interview with the outlet, Kanye revealed that their eldest daughter had a big role in the design for the house: 'North was the inspiration for the design of our house.'
They revealed to AD that Kim discovered the home during a walk: 'We passed by this incredibly extravagant house while strolling through the neighborhood. I'd just had North, as we were doing a lot of walking so I could work off some of the baby fat.'
It was summer 2013 when she first saw it, and the star revealed that she thought the house was 'perfection' but didn't know about Kanye's style and if he liked it.
She revealed that his reaction was 'less enthusiastic' and had said to her it was 'workable.'
Kanye had described the home's transformation from suburban McMansion to futuristic Belgian monastery; for about 'ninety percent' of the house, they worked on the design with Belgian designer Axel Vervoordt.
Overall their home is a minimal, neutral toned palette.
He had revealed that he purchased an original Jean Roy¨re Polar Bear sofa in an interesting manner; the sofa is reportedly worth $600,000.
Kanye told AD: 'I sold my Maybach to get the Roy¨re. People told me I was crazy for what I paid for it, but I had to have it.'
Minimalist: Kanye had described the home's transformation from suburban McMansion to futuristic Belgian monastery; they worked with Belgian designer Axel Vervoordt to get their home styled to their taste - which is a minimal, neutral toned paletteViews: Kim and Kanye gave fans an inside look at their massive futuristic Los Angeles home in February 2020's Architectural Digest Wow: Kim is pictured reclining on one of their sofas, after Kanye admitted to selling Maybach to buy a Jean Roy¨re Polar Bear couch, which retails for around $600,000 Dancing through life: Kim shared another snap running around her sofa in an Instagram image; the table was designed by AxelThe home features a very long corridor with high, arched ceilings that is often seen on Kim's Instagram; during the holidays in 2019, they lined it with massive cotton-like decor.
The kitchen features a large light hued wooden breakfast table with the same wood featured as the cabinetry throughout the space; the counter tops are a neutral creamy taupe hue with off-white glassware.
In January 2020, Kim shared a detailed look at her well-stocked refrigerator after fans mocked her for having 'empty' shelves.
She later cleared up the false assumptions as she gave a tour of her very full multiple refrigerators.
Kim has often been seen in her home on her hit series Keeping Up With The Kardashians; she showed off her large theater room as well as her minimalist living room.
So cool: Kim has often been seen in her home on her hit series Keeping Up With The Kardashians; she showed off her large theater room as well as her minimalist living room Another: Kim seen sitting in her minimalist living room, which features off-white and wooden elements Contained clutter: Kim and Kanye are all minimalist - they just have play rooms to tidy things away; here Kim is seen with Scott Disick in a scene from her family's reality showThe bathrooms in their massive home features very little furniture with a modern bathtub and floor to ceiling windows that reveal the foliage outside.
The massive shower has the same floor to ceiling glass walls, leaving little privacy for anyone who uses it.
Her sinks were a source of questions for fans when she first showed them - with them appearing to have no sink since it was just a flat counter surface, versus the normal rounded sink placed into a counter top.
The flat sink took eight prototypes to get right and cost about $32,000.
'The bathroom is one of my favorite rooms,' Kanye admitted to AD. 'Its the one that's most similar to our houses in the future, even though it's square and our houses are more organic.
'I love how the whole side of the bathroom is just blown out. And that was Kris's [Kim's mother] idea, she was like, you guys need a bigger bathroom.'
Fancy: During Christmas 2019, Kim shared snap of the living area, which had a plaster fireplace and a low siting coffee table, all clutter freeCute: Another video showed the cream concrete style floors and little to no wall decorations More peeks: Kim has shared snaps from inside her mansion, including one during breakfast, showcasing the wooden breakfast table and neutral themed kitchen Day in the life of: The kitchen features a large light hued wooden breakfast table with the same wood featured as the cabinetry throughout the space; the counter tops are a neutral creamy taupe hue with off-white glassware Staff: She then walked up to the kitchen, 'where it all happens,' as she waved to one of her staff members, Marina, before opening the massive walk-in fridgeHigh tech: Kim showed off her stainless steel kitchen appliancesOn the move: Kim followed Marina around the kitchen as she showed off her dinner for the nightThe image that caused a stir: In January 2020, Kim shared a detailed look at her well-stocked refrigerator after fans mocked her for having 'empty' shelvesLooks amazing: After fans tweeted and commented about the lacking refrigerator, Kim shared a video as she toured her main walk in fridge as well as another fridge in her kitchenEverything has a place: Inside Kim's kitchen cabinets, which are designed so everything can be seen at onceMaking a point: Kim gave fans a glimpse into her very well-stocked fridge after she came under fire Throwback: This corridor is one of Kanye's favorite spots; and Kim showed off the sprawling space in an Instagram snap shared back in December 2019 with temporary holiday decor lining the wallsKim later took to her social media to show her baffled fans how the futuristic sinks worked; As she zoomed in on the sink, Kim explained how the sloping design allows the water emanating from the faucets to pool slightly and then drain.
For the outdoor area, the couple turned to Peter Wertz; Kanye had explained their backyard needs: 'In the backyard there were all these stairs and we needed the kids to be able to ride their skateboards around, so as many places as I could take the stairs out I did.
Kim has previously shown off another one of her favorite rooms, her sprawling walk in closet, but admitted that the way Kanye organizes his own wardrobe 'gives her anxiety'.
She explained: 'Because he completely took away the bars in the closet and you have like a whole new system for how you like to fold your clothes and how you like to organize your clothes.
'It gives me full anxiety, 'cause then you have to steam it instead of just being hung.'
According to their tour for AD magazine, one of the alterations they made was to dig up the already stunning two pools on there property and putting in one large new pool.
During the question and answer portion of the interview, Kim revealed that she has yet to swim in the new pool.
Kanye had looked visibly shocked when she said that, to which she said: 'Yeah, can you believe that? But I love our pool. You know we don't have a jacuzzi?'
Kanye had made the decision to not have one as he thought it would look 'weird.'
Kim revealed that as a compromise, they heated up the whole pool, joking to Kanye: 'It bothered you so much, but the kids love to swim in a Jacuzzi.
'So you said, 'No the whole pool will be a Jacuzzi, just make it really warm', like the whole pool all the time.'
Despite not getting her Jacuzzi she wanted, Kim confessed she did admire the way Kanye's pool looked, with it's 'really long front stair' where the children can play: 'It's not the deepest pool so the kids just love it.'
Stunning: The bathrooms in their massive home features very little furniture with a modern bathtub and floor to ceiling windows that reveal the foliage outsideThe massive shower has the same floor to ceiling glass walls, leaving little privacy for anyone who uses it Clever: Her sinks were a source of questions for fans when she first showed them - with them appearing to have no sink since it was just a flat counter surface, versus the normal rounded sink placed into a counter top Proof: As she zoomed in on the sink, Kardashian explained how the sloping design allows the water emanating from the faucets to pool slightly and then drain'There's a slit for the water. And it goes in' back splash will come up,' she told fans So lucky: Kim has previously shown off another one of her favorite rooms, her sprawling walk in closet, but admitted that the way Kanye organizes his own wardrobe 'gives her anxiety' Even more space: Her huge closet also features a large area where she has her multiple fittings; it has a large couch and floor-to-ceiling mirrors with clothes hanging along the walls like in a storeIn addition to their Calabasas property, Kim and Kanye purchased a nearby property for $2.9 million in November 2019; it is a 3,900 square foot four-bedroom home on 1.5 acres with equestrian facilities.
In September 2019, the duo bought a $14 million ranch spanning 1400 acres outside of Cody, Wyoming; the property, called Monster Lake Ranch, houses almost $300,000 worth of livestock, per TMZ.
In November 2019, it was reported that Kanye bought a second property, the $14.495 million Bighorn Mountain Ranch.
The property sits on 6,713 acres and is located under 100 miles away from the first ranch in Cody, Wyoming, according to TMZ.
KIM AND KANYE'S LOVE AFFAIR A look at Kim and Kanye's love story 2004 : First meeting
Kim and Kanye first met on a music video shoot when the KUWTK star was working as Brandy's stylist and Kanye was working on a song with the songstress.
At the time she was still married to Damon Thomas, who she wed in 2000, and Kanye was dating model Alexis Phifer.
Kanye was dating model Alexis PhiferSpeaking about their first meeting on the Keeping Up With The Kardashians 10 year anniversary special, Kim said: 'I met him I think in 2002 or 2003. He was recording a song with Brandy, and I was her friend...
'I vividly remember hanging out with him and then they did a video together, so I'd see him a few times...
'He was asking his friends: 'Who is this Kim Kardajan?' He didn't know what my name was'.
She later told Vogue Arabia in 2019: 'This was before you released your first album and you were known as a music producer. I was really shy...
'You thought I was Brandy's assistant, which I wasn't. Ever since you said that, it's everywhere'... like ''Kim is Brandy's assistant.'' I was her friend and stylist. [laughs]...
'I thought you were attractive, nice, very charming, really funny, powerful '' I was in awe of you, but I was really shy, quiet, and a little nervous, to be honest.'
Later on that year, Kim split from Damon, who she wed when she was just 19 after eloping. She attributed domestic violence for the split - a claim he has always staunchly denied .
Kim wrote in the divorce papers: 'Before we left out home, Damon hit me in the face and cut my lip open.. I fell into the bed frame and banged my knee hard. I was limping when we went skydiving.'
Sealing the deal: West's crush on Kardashian only grew over the years as the rising star began getting photographed next to her boss-turned-friend Paris Hilton; Paris and Kim pictured in 2006 2006: Heads turned further
Kanye's huge crush on Kim only grew over the years as the rising star began getting photographed next to her boss-turned-friend Paris Hilton.
In an interview with Ryan Seacrest in 2013, Kanye revealed that he truly fell for his future wife after he got a glimpse of a certain photo of her next to her pal Paris in Australia.
He said: 'I just knew I wanted her to be my girl for a long time. 'I remember I saw a picture of her and Paris Hilton, and I remember telling my boy, 'Have you seen that girl Kim Kardijon?''
Despite his growing attraction to Kim, Kanye went on to propose to longtime girlfriend Alexis in August of 2006.
The proposal was slightly more low-key than his eventual proposal to Kim many years later.
Kanye popped the question to Alexis over a lobster and pasta dinner during a vacation to Capri.
Tradgedy struck the following year however, when Kanye's beloved mother Donda passed away.
Following a number of procedures for liposuction, a tummy tuck, and a breast reduction, the following day she experienced a sore throat, pain and tightening in her chest, before collapsing. A friend who was with her called 911 and West was taken to the hospital, where she was pronounced dead in the emergency room.
After her death, Kanye seemed keen to honour her wishes of his marriage as he said of tying the knot to Alexis: 'I'm just going to go and get married '-- I'm not going to make a big deal out of it...
'I wouldn't get married to prove anything to anyone. It's for me, for stability in my life, and I'm so happy that I found someone that I really love, that challenges me, that keeps my life interesting, that's just as crazy as I am.'
Working together: Kanye asks Kim to appear in his infamous hip-hop puppet show Alligator Boots, where she would be playing the part of Star Wars' Princess Leia; Kim and Kanye pictured in 2008 2008: A split, Princess Leia and two new loves
In April, Kanye calls off his year-and-a-half engagement to Phifer, as confirmed by Phifer in a statement to People, in which she said: 'It's always sad when things like this end, and we remain friends'.
Shortly after, Kanye asked Kim to appear in his infamous hip-hop puppet show Alligator Boots, where she would be playing the part of Star Wars' Princess Leia.
Although the show was rejected by Comedy Central, Kardashian still had fond feelings for the project as she shared behind the scenes pictures from the set of Alligator Boots to social media in 2018.
Kim wrote on her website: 'We had met before this project (back in 2003), but I would say this is when we first really connected. These pics are SO funny!'
At the time of filming Alligator Boots, Kim was in a relationship with New Orleans Saints running back Reggie Bush, who she started dating in 2007.
Meanwhile, Kanye became involved with model Amber Rose in September of that year.
Future couple? In February, Kim and Kanye reunite with one another at the Y-3 show in New York City. Kim attended the show with boyfriend Reggie, while Kanye arrived solo and snagged a seat next to the couple and actress Milla Jovovich 2009: A fashionable meet and a mysterious mention
In February, Kim and Kanye reunite with one another at the Y-3 show in New York City. Kim attended the show with boyfriend Reggie, while Kanye arrived solo and snagged a seat next to the couple and actress Milla Jovovich.
In April, during his appearance on Keri Hilson's hit track Knock You Down, appears to reference his looming crush on Kim and his jealousy over her relationship with Reggie.
He rapped: ' You were always the cheerleader of my dreams / Seem to only date the head of football teams/...
'And I was the class clown that always kept you laughing / We were never meant to be, baby we just happened'.
Kanye and Amber also part ways in July of that year 2010: The end of two love stories
In March, after three years of dating, Kim and Reggie split up for good. Reports at the time blamed the pressures of fame.
They had briefly split in August 2009 before reuniting, however he was unable to reconcile himself to Kim's rising star.
An insider told e! online: 'They do truly love each other and there's no bad blood... They're even open to the idea of reconciling down the road, but need to be apart right now.'
Kanye and Amber also part ways in July of that year.
Following their split, Amber blamed Kim for the split, saying: 'Kim is one of the main reasons why me and Kanye are not together. She's a homewrecker!'
In the years after his split from Amber, Kanye has openly criticised the model - most famously saying in a 2015 interview that he had to take '30 showers' after dating her and reportedly branding her a 'prostitute'.
In December, as Kim filmed the music video for her single Jam (Turn It Up), Kanye was present on set. Famously, Kardashian's mother Kris Jenner snapped at him for checking out her daughter's famous derriere by bluntly saying, 'Don't be looking at her a**'.
The songwriter snapped back: 'I've never seen it actually.'
In August 2011, Kim and Kris wed during a lavish, televised ceremony in Montecito, CA 2011: A Hump(hries) in the road
In May 2011, Kim got engaged to her NBA star boyfriend Kris Humphries, who she started dating in October of 2010.
In August that year, Kim and Kris wed during a lavish, televised ceremony in Montecito, CA. The eye-popping nuptials were attended by 450 guests and cost approximately $10million,
In an explosive twist in the tale, after just 72 days of marriage, Kim filed for divorce on October 31.
Kim later revealed that she had misgivings about the marriage but felt she must go forward due to surrounding pressures.
She said: 'There was all this attention on the wedding, and I thought 'maybe it was just the pressure of the show giving me this anxiety.'
'The night before, my mom pulled me aside, off camera, and was like, 'This isn't it for you,''
'I felt like, if I pulled out now, everyone's going to think I just did it for the show. Then afterwards, people were saying, 'You have to stay married for a year,' but I physically couldn't do it. When I made the decision [to divorce], everyone said it was made up for the show. Everyone really wanted to take me down.'
Kris said of the split: ''It's never easy to go through the embarrassment of something like that '-- with your friends, with your family '.... But when it plays out so publicly, in front of the world, it's a whole other level. It was brutal'.
During his appearance on Kocktails with Khloe, Kanye revealed to Khloe that he tried to talk Kim out of moving forward with her marriage to Kris.
Shortly after, rumors began to swirl that Kim had taken her friendship with Kanye to the next level.
Early snap: Kim confirmed her romance with Kanye in June 2012 and they announced they were expecting their first child that December 2012: It's TRUE and there's a baby
They finally got together eight years after meeting.
In March, The rumored couple let it be known they were spending time with each other when Kim sat front row at Kanye's runway show during Paris Fashion Week.
The following month, after months of rumors and rumblings, Kim and Kanye made their relationship official as they held hands in New York City.
In May they took things a step further and make their red carpet debut at the Cannes Film Festival during the premiere for the film Cruel Summer.
In December, the Stronger rapper joyously reveals that his is expecting his first child with Kim during a New Year's Eve concert in Atlantic City.
The rapper said 'stop the music', then announced 'make noise for my baby mama right here,' with a wide smile. Kanye's announcement prompted a flurry of excited tweets from the audience
Taking to her official website, Kim also confirmed the pregnancy, writing: 'It's true!! Kanye and I are expecting a baby...
'We feel so blessed and lucky and wish that in addition to both of our families, his mom and my dad could be here to celebrate this special time with us. Looking forward to great new beginnings in 2013 and to starting a family.'
2013: A star is born... North West is here and a wedding on the way
Epic proposal: In October, Kanye made proposal history when he asked Kim for her hand in marriage with a sparkling 15-carat Lorraine Schwartz diamond ringOn June 15, Kim welcomed their daughter North West.
Weeks later, the KUWTK star showed off a picture of her and Kanye's baby girl, while appearing on her mother Kris' short lived talk show.
In October, Kanye made proposal history when he asked Kim for her hand in marriage with a sparkling 15-carat Lorraine Schwartz diamond ring.
The proposal was a total surprise and went down at the AT&T Park baseball park in San Francisco, which Kanye rented out for the occasion.
He had arranged for the words 'PLEEESE MARRY MEEE!!!' to flash up on the giant scoreboard at the ballpark.
Despite his bravado, Kanye admitted prior to the proposal he was nervous, saying: 'I was talking to a cousin, I said, 'What do you think she's gonna say?'...
'I'm not arrogant about love and feelings at all . . . I knew I wanted her to be my girl for a long time
In November, the couple then made headlines around the globe when shortly after their engagement, Kim famously appeared nude while straddling Kanye on a motorbike in his Bound 2 music video.
2014: The wedding
In May the following year, the couple tied the knot at the Renaissance fortress in Florence, ItalyIn May the following year, the couple tied the knot at the Renaissance fortress in Florence, Italy. The lavish affair saw 200 people in attendance and Kim walked down the aisle in a stunning Maison Margiela bridal gown.
They were wed under the direction of Rich Wilkerson Jr, a pastor from North Miami. Speaking moments after the ceremony to E! News, Kim's mum Kris said she was 'beyond bursting with happiness for Kim, Kanye and baby North'.
'Such a magical, romantic wedding!' she added. 'I feel blessed to have my new son and his family as part of ours.' And Kanye seemed equally ebullient, with a source telling MailOnline he gave an eight-minute speech to the gathered guests.
'I just wanna stop the music a second 'cos my baby's coming back with a new dress on. Here she is - Kim Kardashian West,' he said, introducing his bride.
After the ceremony, the guests broke bread together sitting family style on a 70-metre-long marble banquet table - a gift from master craftsman Gualtiero Vannelli who used marble from the Tuscan quarry in Carrara, according to Us Weekly.
During the ceremony Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli serenaded Kim and Kanye with several of his songs, including Con te Partiro. Among the stars at the nuptials were Steve McQueen, Lala Anthony, Jaden Smith and Joe Francis.
2015: Saint West
In December, Kim and Kanye welcomed their second child, son Saint West, on December 5, 2015.In May, in wake of her first wedding anniversary with Kanye, Kim confirmed to Glamour that she was expecting her second child with the Grammy winner.
'North has taught me patience. There's nothing I wouldn't do for her. And nothing I wouldn't do for my husband. She's empowered us to want to be the best parents and the best spouses,' said the star.
In December, Kim and Kanye welcomed their second child, son Saint West, on December 5, 2015.
Eager to share her newborn with her massive Instagram following, Kim shared a portrait of Saint to the platform.
Kim later discussed life with two young children, saying of North: 'I don't know if it's because she's the older sister. I don't know what it is. I thought it was a phase. She does not like her brother and it's so hard for me...
'She would get so jealous when I would breastfeed and all that kind of stuff. And now, the phase isn't going away.'
Famed and adored for her seeming diva ways, Kim continued to give insight into life with North, saying: 'She thinks she's outsmarting me.
'Like, she'll have a tea party and say, 'No boys allowed.' Dad can't come too then -- no boys. And she'll slam the door on her brother's face and he'll just start crying.'
2016: Kim's trauma and trouble in paradise
In 2016, Kim was left traumatised when burglars broke into her Paris apartment during Fashion Week, tied her up and stole $10million of jewellery in October 2016 (pictured before the raid)In 2016, Kim was left traumatised when burglars broke into her Paris apartment during Fashion Week, tied her up and stole $10million of jewellery in October 2016.
In 2018, she finally learning to be 'okay' with the horrifying experience because she has 'learned so much from it'.
The reality star was robbed by five armed men wearing ski masks and clothes with police markings in the ordeal.
At around 3am, the robbers entered the building after the concierge let them in.
Handcuffed and at gunpoint, the concierge led them to the starlet's flat.
Kim reportedly 'begged for her life' and told the gunmen she had children at home when two of them entered her room and held the gun to her head.
The men stole a jewellery box worth '‚¬6 million ($6.7 million/ £5.24 million) and a ring worth '‚¬4 million ($4.5 million/ £3.5 million), prompting fears that the valuables were personal ones, and not just jewellery Kim was borrowing for fashion week.
Kim also lost two of her prized smart phones '' ones that are likely to contain a great deal of personal information.
As she recovered from the trauma of the robbery, Kim faced further plight when later that year, the couple were faced with allegations of 'friction' due to Kanye's online behaviour.
After Kanye went on a number of Twitter tangents, insiders said: ' What causes friction in the marriage, however, is Kanye's compulsive tweeting.
'Kim can't stand it. She is all for self-promotion, but doesn't approve of Twitter drama'.
Despite this, they denied they were having issues with Kim saying 'there's just nothing to really report on'.
2017: Baby number three
The couple hired a surrogate to carry their third child. It was first reported in July that Kim opted to go the surrogate route due to health complications during her first two pregnanciesThe couple hired a surrogate to carry their third child. It was first reported in July that Kim opted to go the surrogate route due to health complications during her first two pregnancies.
Kim, who suffered with life threatening placenta accreta when carrying North and Saint, is said to have been referred 'by an agency' to find the right surrogate.
TMZ claimed the famous duo paid $45,000 for the surrogate to carry their third child, before revealing the lady in question is an African-American college graduate in her Twenties who has been married for five years with two children.
'The entire family is over the moon. Kim had been looking for a surrogate for months until recently when she found the perfect candidate,' a source told People.
The singer added: 'They want everything to be perfect and for the baby to be extremely healthy.
'They don't want any complications and Kim is providing an ideal eating regimen and diet so everyone knows what the baby is consuming before it's born.'
Prior to hiring their surrogate, Kim spoke to her sister Kourtney about the perks of surrogacy, saying: ''If you use a surrogate, nobody has to know the whole time...
'You could have a baby for a year and nobody would even know.'
2018: Chicago is here
In January, their daughter Chicago was bornIn January, their daughter Chicago was born.
Kim delightedly announced the news, confirming in a statement : 'We're so in love. Kanye and I are happy to announce the arrival of our healthy, beautiful baby girl'.
Three days after the birth, Kim revealed that the couple had decided to call their newborn daughter Chicago.
She shared a picture of the name, captioned with the date and time of the tot's birth, plus her weight '' 7lbs, 6oz.
She shared a post which explains how to pronounce the shortened version of Chicago's name.
The informative messages said: 'And to everyone who thinks it's literally pronounced as CHI. No. It's 'Shy'.'
When grilled on the unusual name: 'Everyone asks me where we came up with that,' Kim said about her baby girl, whom she regularly calls 'Chi.
'Kanye is originally from Chicago, and the city is really connected to his memory of his mom. So, we went with Chicago.'
2019: The brood continues to grow and Sunday Service arrives
In May, they then welcomed another son Psalm West by a surrogate and later renewed their wedding vowsIn May, they then welcomed another son Psalm West by a surrogate and later renewed their wedding vows.
She announced Psalm's arrival on Mother's Day with a picture of the baby asleep.
Kris later explained what the name meant, saying: 'The inspiration was the Book of Psalms in the Bible. I think it's just a wonderful way to celebrate how they feel. And he's such a blessing, so it's perfect. He's just adorable.'
Kim had spoken earlier about moving on to having four children.
She said: 'I think that, [for] anyone that has three, I do recommend going for the fourth. You're already there. You're so close. It feels so balanced. It feels like there's a partner for everyone'--no one's left out. Everyone gets along now.'
The biblical name came around the same time as the launch of Kanye's Sunday Service, in which he delivered his own religious service each Sunday at his home since the beginning of 2019.
The biblical name came around the same time as the launch of Kanye's Sunday Service, in which he delivered his own religious service each Sunday at his home since the beginning of 2019Kim discussed the services and detailed what they meant to Kanye, saying: ''Kanye started this, I think, just to heal himself. It was a really personal thing, and it was just friends and family...
'He has had an amazing evolution of being born again and being saved by Christ...
'For the most part, it's just a musical ministry. Kanye doesn't have his 501 [registered non-profit exempt from federal tax] yet to make it an official church, but it is for God and it is a Christian church. It started off healing for him and it's become something that he really wants to share for everybody else.'
Kanye himself spoke about Sunday Service, telling David Letterman: 'It was really an idea that we had to open up our hearts and make music that we felt was as pure and as positive as possible...
'And just do it for an hour every Sunday. And just have somewhere where people can come together and just feel good with their families.'
On July 4, Kanye announced he was entering the 2020 presidential race and Kim - as well as Elon Musk - backed him 2020: Kanye's troubles and Kim's birthday
On July 4, Kanye announced he was entering the 2020 presidential race and Kim - as well as Elon Musk - backed him.
Later that month, on July 19 he held a campaign rally in South Carolina, wearing a bullet-proof jacket marked 'security' and with '2020' shaved into his head.
In a rambling speech, he revealed he and Kim had considered aborting North and also claimed abolitionist Harriet Tubman 'never actually freed the slaves'.
On July 22, he fired off a series of tweets claiming Kim was trying to have him locked up on medical grounds, that he had been 'trying to get divorced' since Kim allegedly met rapper Meek Mill at the Waldorf Hotel and called mother-in-law Kris Jenner 'Kris Jong-Un'.
Kim subsequently released a statement saying Kanye was suffering a bi-polar episode at the time. It was later revealed he was holing up at his Wyoming ranch and Kim was seen in tears as she visited him,
In October, Kim and Kanye through the stunner an elaborate 40th birthday festivities, which included dinner at candlelight with her nearest and dearest on a private island.
After the event, Kim shed light on some of the precautions she had everyone take in order to safely celebrate her big day, which included a two week quarantine prior to the party.
She penned: '40 and feeling so humbled and blessed. There is not a single day that I take for granted, especially during these times when we are all reminded of the things that truly matter,' she wrote.
Virtual: Kim Kardashian revealed on Thursday that she received a hologram of her late father Robert from husband Kanye West , in celebration of her 40th birthday'For my birthday this year, I couldn't think of a better way to spend it than with some of the people who have helped shaped me into the woman I am today. Before COVID, I don't think any of us truly appreciated what a simple luxury it was to be able to travel and be together with family and friends in a safe environment...
'After 2 weeks of multiple health screens and asking everyone to quarantine, I surprised my closest inner circle with a trip to a private island where we could pretend things were normal just for a brief moment in time. We danced, rode bikes, swam near whales, kayaked, watched a movie on the beach and so much more.
'I realize that for most people, this is something that is so far out of reach right now, so in moments like these, I am humbly reminded of how privileged my life is. #thisis40.'
During the trip, she received a hologram of her late father Robert from husband Kanye.
Famed attorney Robert Kardashian, who tragically passed away from esophageal cancer in July of 2003 at the age of 59, was brought back to virtual life for the unconventional gift, which a number of fans have branded 'creepy'.
Among the statements made by the virtual incarnation of the late Kardashian patriarch were that his famous daughter was 'all grown up', while he also hailed Kanye, 43, as 'the most genius man in the whole world'.
The two-and-a-half minute video showed the late Kardashian wearing a beige suit jacket layered over a crisp white dress shirt as he seemingly spoke directly to Kim.
'Happy Birthday Kimberly,' greeted the hologram. 'Look at you! You're 40 and all grown up. You look beautiful just like when you were a little girl. 'I watch over you and your sisters and brother and the kids everyday. Sometimes I drop hints that I'm around,' noted hologram Robert, who made reference to something the Kardashians refer to as a 'big peefee'.
2021: The end?
The couple have been rocked by claims that their six-year marriage is over, with sources saying 'divorce is imminent' for the power couple.
Several sources have claimed that Kim is preparing to file for divorce from her rapper husband while he is said to be fed up with the whole Kardashian clan.
The rumors of a split follow a rocky year for the couple where they were spotted having 'crisis' talks after Kanye accused Kim of trying to 'lock me up' and said he wanted to divorce her in a series of rambling Twitter posts while he was said to be in the grips of a bipolar episode.
Kanye also made a failed run for the White House in 2020 and during his first presidential campaign rally told attendees that Kim had considered aborting daughter North.
Mike Pence on Twitter: "" / Twitter
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 02:19
Mike Pence :
Wed Jan 06 18:02:25 +0000 2021
Paul Sperry on Twitter: "BREAKING: Former FBI agent on the ground at U.S. Capitol just texted me and confirmed that at least 1 "bus load" of Antifa thugs infiltrated peaceful Trump demonstrators as part of a false Trump flag ops" / Twitter
Thu, 07 Jan 2021 00:52
Paul Sperry : BREAKING: Former FBI agent on the ground at U.S. Capitol just texted me and confirmed that at least 1 "bus load" of'...
Wed Jan 06 22:02:47 +0000 2021
lucas : @paulsperry_ lmao sure
Thu Jan 07 00:52:16 +0000 2021
Randy : @paulsperry_ They texted me too, the bus had votes in it and they were shredding them, put in to dominion machines'...
Thu Jan 07 00:51:52 +0000 2021
Jason Billingslea : @paulsperry_ You're a joke
Thu Jan 07 00:51:42 +0000 2021
Dougbeard 🇺🇸🗽ðŸ...… : @paulsperry_ @KyleKashuv Proof or GTFO
Thu Jan 07 00:51:35 +0000 2021
Rasta ðŸ : @paulsperry_ @SidneyPowell1 Look up @KatherineGarth2 she tweeted yesterday or the day before about what antifas pla'...
Thu Jan 07 00:51:25 +0000 2021
TIM 'š½¸'š¾¸ðŸ'🏠: @paulsperry_ Bullshit
Thu Jan 07 00:51:08 +0000 2021
IAmNotABotAndTryingToGetYourPointAcrossIsNotSpam : @paulsperry_
Thu Jan 07 00:50:59 +0000 2021
At The Highest Levels '' Part 1 of 3 '' Neon Revolt
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 16:52
This is the kind of series I'd hope I'd never have to write.
And yet, here we are. After three years of doing my best to serve the groundswell that is the Patriot movement in the United States, and six total, being on the total warpath for Trump, I must now bring to you what are possibly the most important articles I will ever have to write which will reveal corruption, and contempt for the American people at the highest levels. This will be a three part series, released over the next few hours, so please, pay close attention to everything I'm about to tell you, because the future of the Republic now hangs in the balance.
I also sincerely hope that everyone Marching and demonstrating in DC today takes the time to read this and inform everyone around them about this series, as you will not know what to do unless you read them. The information contained within will be that vital, and you must understand it.
But I need to set the stage first. To understand everything I'm about to tell you, we have to go back; back to the fateful night of July 10th, 2016, when the then 27-year-old Seth Rich was found with two gunshot wounds in his back in the Bloomingdale neighborhood in DC, near his favorite bar.
Rich would succumb to his wounds shortly thereafter, leading to rampant speculation as to the motive for his murder, and despite his family suing various individuals and corporations along the way, many were still left thinking that Rich was murdered by the the DNC and the Clinton Machine for, they speculated, leaking incriminating DNC files to Julian Assange and Wikileaks, eventually causing Hillary to lose the 2016 election, and to fuel the then-nascent Pizzagate investigations, as millions of concerned patriots became aware of just what exactly these leaked e-mails implied. After much research and deliberation, a large contingent of the community would go on to posit that two MS-13 gang members had been involved in the murder of Seth Rich, acting as guns for hire in a not-so-random hit. Two potential suspects would turn up dead in a nearby area shortly thereafter; perhaps the result of a kind of clean-up job.
So the emails were out in the wild, Hillary would lose, Pizzagate would take off, and Seth Rich would end up dead. That was how this series of events was understood by many, and for many, that's precisely where it all ended. Many would go on to honor Rich's memory, but the case was effectively dead and most of the world had moved on.
That is, until today.
Thanks to new whistleblower testimony, a connection has come to light.
A name, in fact:
Joseph Rosati
Joseph Rosati is a DEA agent, and according to the whistleblower, someone considered a ''cleaner'' by higher ups in Washington D.C.
According to whistleblower testimony I have now received, Joseph Rosati is, in fact, the man who hired two MS-13 agents to shake down Seth Rich that fateful night. The intention that night, according to the whistleblower, wasn't to murder Rich, but to scare him into submission and shake him down for a USB key he was supposedly still carrying on his person '' perhaps containing even more revelations, and destined for Wikileaks? Instead, what ended up happening was Rich fought back and then ran when confronted by the armed men, and was subsequently shot in the back by the panicked MS-13 goons.
Rosati was supposedly on the scene, overseeing the whole debacle.
The whistleblower would go on to say that they would take the USB key and flee the scene because they had never intended to kill Rich in the first place, and in a moment of panic, a young man's life was cut short.
And again, shortly after this, two MS-13 members would turn up dead.
According to this whistleblower, Joseph Rosati was the man responsible for orchestrating all of this.
If there's any doubt that this man actually exists, his name can be found alongside other DEA agents in a 2010 lawsuit, where he is cited as one of the defendants:
Abdulrazaaq v. Rosati et alMEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Richard D Bennett on 7/19/10. (mcb, Deputy Clerk) Disclaimer: Justia Dockets & Filings provides public litigation records from the federal appellate and district courts. These filings and docket sheets should not be considered findings of fact or liability, nor do they necessarily reflect the view of Justia.
And now the obvious question emerges'...
If Joseph Risoti was the one responsible for orchestrating the attack on Seth Rich, and potentially ''cleaning up'' the two MS-13 agents after the shakedown went south'... who put him up to it?
That's where things get interesting'...
Continued in part two:
Lame Cherry: Catch a shooting start and put it in your pocket
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 14:39
As another Lame Cherry exclusive in matter anti matter.
The matrix is foreshadowing a dark event on January 10th. Washington City.
Inquiry indicates what is trending is he number 9 is involved. Sulfur, salt peter, charcoal.
Jack Dorsey criticizes proposed US cryptocurrency regulation - Business Insider
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 14:18
Jack Dorsey published an open letter on Monday attacking proposed US government regulation that would require companies to collect names and addresses of people making large cryptocurrency transactions.The regulation is supposed to make it easier for law enforcement to track illicit transactions, but Dorsey says it will have the exact opposite effect.He also argued the regulation would unfairly target cryptocurrency over traditional payment methods and violate people's privacy.Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.Twitter founder Jack Dorsey has come out swinging against a recent attempt by the US government to regulate cryptocurrency.
In a 4,600-word open letter published Monday, Dorsey criticized new proposed regulation from the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). The proposed new law would require companies to collect the names and addresses of people if they make cryptocurrency transactions over $3,000, the idea being this would help law enforcement in tracking down any illicit transactions being conducted.
Dorsey, writing in his capacity as CEO at payments company Square, said the proposed rules would make law enforcement harder as well as resulting in privacy violations.
"Were the proposal to be implemented as written, Square would be required to collect unreliable data about people who have not opted into our service, or signed up as our customers," Dorsey wrote.
Dorsey also said the regulation unfairly targets cryptocurrency compared to traditional payment methods. "The incongruity between the treatment of cash and cryptocurrency under FinCEN's proposal will inhibit adoption of cryptocurrency and invade the privacy of individuals," Dorsey wrote.
He gave an example of how he thought cryptocurrency would be unfairly targeted.
"If a Square customer's mother gifts her daughter $4,000 in physical cash and the daughter deposits those funds in a bank, the bank would have no obligation to collect information on the customer's mother. Under the proposal, if this same transaction were completed in cryptocurrency, the bank would have to reach beyond its customer relationship and intrude upon the mother's private information in order for the daughter to successfully deposit and freely access her gift," Dorsey wrote.
Read more: $100 million blockchain startup BRD used this pitch deck to raise $750,000, helping it win over customers like Deloitte and KPMG
Dorsey argued the regulation would end up hindering, rather than helping, law enforcement because users would simply turn to offshore and possibly unregulated channels to escape it. "While it would be nonsensical for FinCEN to impose regulations that would result in less visibility into the activities it seeks to monitor, that is exactly what the proposal would do," he wrote.
Dorsey finished the letter by asking FinCEN to extend its comment period, allowing more industry experts to voice their opinion. "As written, these regulations will only result in undermining the stated goals of the proposal," he concluded.
Square bought up $50 million in Bitcoin in October last year. The popular cryptocurrency's worth soared by 305% in 2020 and hit a record high of $34,792.47 this Sunday, although it fell 17% on Monday '-- its biggest single-day decline since March.
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Square, Inc.'s Federal Comment Letter Regarding FinCEN's Proposed Rulemaking on Requirements for Certain Transactions Involving Convertible Virtual Currency or Digital Assets
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 14:08
Jan 04, 2021
Policy Division Financial Crimes Enforcement Network P.O. Box 39 Vienna, VA 22183
Re: FinCEN Docket No. FINCEN-2020-0020, RIN 1506-AB47. (Proposed Rulemaking on Requirements for Certain Transactions Involving Convertible Virtual Currency or Digital Assets.)
To whom it may concern:
Square, Inc. (''Square'') is a financial services company that was founded in 2009 to expand economic access for individuals and businesses underserved by the existing financial system. Since that time, we have provided tools to millions of entrepreneurs and individuals that have helped them run their small businesses, manage their finances, and grow in the economy.
One of our core principles is that people should have the ability to participate in financial systems easily and equitably. No one should be left out because the barriers are too high, the cost is too great, or the technology too complex. Because we believe that bitcoin can help deliver on this vision, Square has invested substantially in the health of its ecosystem from a product, leadership, innovation, and legal perspective. This includes initiatives such as Square Crypto, an independent team dedicated to contributing to and improving the open source ecosystem, and the Cryptocurrency Open Patent Alliance (COPA), a non-profit with the purpose of encouraging the adoption and advancement of cryptocurrency technologies and removing patents as a barrier to growth and innovation, and providing the ability for our customers to buy and sell bitcoin through our products.
The recently released Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Requirements for Certain Transactions Involving Convertible Virtual Currency or Digital Assets (the ''Proposal'') would require cryptocurrency service providers like Square to keep records of and report certain cryptocurrency transaction information far beyond what is required for cash transactions today.
With this rulemaking, FinCEN seeks to expand reporting and Know Your Customer (''KYC'') type obligations to parties who are not our customers. Instead of leveraging blockchain tracing with wallet addresses (which to date has proven effective in tracking the unlawful activity cited in the Proposal leading to indictments and convictions), FinCEN proposes a static requirement that would have us collect names and physical addresses from non-customers. To put it plainly '-- were the Proposal to be implemented as written, Square would be required to collect unreliable data about people who have not opted into our service or signed up as our customers.
This creates unnecessary friction and perverse incentives for cryptocurrency customers to avoid regulated entities for cryptocurrency transactions, driving them to use non-custodial wallets or services outside the U.S. to transfer their assets more easily (non-custodial, or ''unhosted'' wallets are a type of software that lets individuals store and use cryptocurrency, instead of relying on a third party). By adding hurdles that push more transactions away from regulated entities like Square into non-custodial wallets and foreign jurisdictions, FinCEN will actually have less visibility into the universe of cryptocurrency transactions than it has today.
The impact of the Proposal would not only hamstring law enforcement capabilities, but also limit American innovation by hindering our ability to create a competitive service that allows customers to seamlessly transfer and transact in cryptocurrency the way the technology was designed. The burdensome information collection and reporting requirements deprive U.S. companies like Square of the chance to compete on a level playing field to enable cryptocurrency as a tool of economic empowerment.
This is a critical moment in the development of cryptocurrencies and the associated regulations that govern their use. Delays in modernizing old regulations, or issuance of new regulations that are not risk-based and where the implementation fails to account for the incentives created, creates a drag on innovation, economic growth, and American competitiveness. FinCEN has an opportunity to lead at this moment with regulations that support American-grown innovation and the technologies that drive it. This Proposal, especially given the lack of proper time for meaningful review, falls short. Ultimately this will not only harm the economic empowerment of individuals and payments innovation more broadly, but also diminish FinCEN's fundamental responsibility to protect the financial system '-- a goal which we strongly share.
Why Cryptocurrency Presents an Opportunity for Empowerment
Square's focus is on improving payments systems, and our investments in bitcoin are aimed at better allowing this technology to be used by people around the world to make transfers efficiently, securely, and at a low cost. Square sees bitcoin as an instrument of economic empowerment '-- a way for the world to receive global financial services that impact and improve peoples' daily lives. The future of cryptocurrency should be as a routine, everyday tool that allows people to easily and equitably transact in their daily lives. In order for this to happen, cryptocurrency must be easy to understand, access, and use.
The current payments system in the United States is imperfect and contributes to economic inequality by driving underserved and underrepresented communities to expensive, riskier financial products and services. As Aaron Klein, Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, has written, ''The slow payment system is responsible for significant costs to those with lower income and assets, costs that are not borne by those with more.'' [FN1] We firmly believe that everyone benefits from faster, cheaper, and more secure transactions that are provided by a range of service providers '-- not just the largest financial institutions.
Regulations that unnecessarily restrict the future of cryptocurrency are deeply concerning, specifically in the case of this Proposal which places undue burdens on consumers who seek to use it in their daily life. The Proposal restricts how and when a consumer establishes a new relationship with a regulated institution, and by making it much more difficult to make transfers from one wallet to another, FinCEN is, in essence, limiting cryptocurrencies to investment vehicle use cases. In order for cryptocurrency to reach its potential to benefit everyone '-- including communities underserved by traditional financial institutions '-- it needs to serve as more than just an investment vehicle. It must be a transferable form of value that responsible and innovative companies in the U.S. can leverage to develop solutions that meet theneeds of people in every segment of economy.
The Importance of Cryptocurrency to Economic Growth and Global Competitiveness
Cryptocurrency technology is a game-changing innovation in the global economy. It is not going away, and American businesses should play a leading role in driving this technological advancement forward. This Proposal would have detrimental effects on the ability of responsible, regulated American providers to remain globally competitive, and on payments innovation more broadly. The Proposal imposes a set of requirements that are burdensome for regulated entities, as well as intrusive to both customers and non-customers of those regulated entities. When faced with these new hurdles, businesses and individuals will switch their activity to non-custodial wallets and entities outside the U.S., which are not subject to the same requirements, driving cryptocurrency innovation and related jobs outside our borders. From a policy standpoint, this creates a competitive imbalance between the U.S. and foreign nations who are already at the forefront of cryptocurrency development. For example, China, who has made blockchain adoption a national priority and is already ahead of the U.S. in developing and using the technology [FN2], or Singapore, whose government (among other progressive regulatory actions) is directly funding blockchain projects. [FN3]
We believe cryptocurrency to be one of the most important technological developments of our lifetimes. By rushing through a rulemaking with so broad an impact on both new technology and the people and businesses who use it, FinCEN risks setting up roadblocks to U.S. financial innovation.
Practical Implications and Consequences of the Proposal
A. The Proposal Creates an Unlevel Playing Field with Legacy Financial Institutions and a Double Standard for Cryptocurrency Transactions
The Proposal seeks to implement new recordkeeping, currency transaction reporting (''CTR''), and verification requirements for convertible virtual currencies (''CVC'') and digital assets with legal tender status (''LTDA'') transactions [FN4] involving non-custodial wallets or wallets in certain foreign countries. Specifically, for these transactions, the Proposal would require:
Collecting and keeping transaction information, including non-customer counterparty name and physical address, for cryptocurrency transactions over $3,000 (''recordkeeping requirement'') and
Reporting a CTR to FinCEN, that includes non-customer counterparty name and physical address, for cryptocurrency transactions above $10,000, including smaller transactions that exceed $10,000 when aggregated (''reporting requirement'').
Because cryptocurrency transactions function similarly to cash or negotiable instruments (e.g., checks), the recordkeeping requirement in the Proposal is unacceptable because it unfairly targets CVC transactions and creates a double standard between them and legacy cash transactions that occur between financial institutions and individuals. Cash CTR reporting and recordkeeping for transactions over $10,000 do not take the added, unprecedented step of requiring information about non-customers who have not consented to this data collection and sharing. Counterparty name and address collection/reporting should not be required for CVC CTRs or recordkeeping, as it's not required for cash today.
For example, under this Proposal '-- if a Square customer's mother gifts her daughter $4,000 in physical cash and the daughter deposits those funds in a bank, the bank would have no obligation to collect information on the customer's mother. Under the Proposal, if this same transaction were completed in cryptocurrency, the bank would have to reach beyond its customer relationship and intrude upon the mother's private information in order for the daughter to successfully deposit and freely access her gift.
The incongruity between the treatment of cash and cryptocurrency under FinCEN's Proposal will inhibit adoption of cryptocurrency and invade the privacy of individuals. Yet the rule fails to explain the difference in risk. As such, this low threshold and its extension of KYC obligations beyond customer relationships is arbitrary and unjustified.
There are also technological limitations that will make it difficult to identify and collect the counterparty information required and no guidance provided as to when additional diligence may be necessary. For example, wallet geolocation and addresses are not typically identifiable. As a result of these challenges, some institutions may apply the counterparty recordkeeping requirements to all incoming and outgoing cryptocurrency transactions above the $3,000 threshold, which will add to compliance burdens and create unnecessary friction for transactions. Unfortunately, due to the limited review and comment period it is difficult to provide an estimate as to the costs associated with these burdens.
As a number of Members of Congress recently noted in a letter to Secretary Mnuchin, ''With respect to AML/KYC requirements, there should be regulatory parity between the traditional financial system and the digital asset ecosystem.'' [FN5] The proposal, however, discriminates against new payments technologies in favor of legacy instruments by creating burdensome compliance obligations that impact only cryptocurrency transactions, with little in the way of a risk-based assessment as to why such special treatment is needed. The limited comment period provides no opportunity for us to conduct such analysis.
B. The Proposal Does Not Provide Adequate Risk-Based Justification for the Regulation
While it is important to encourage innovation, it is equally important to assess associated risks. The requirements of the Bank Secrecy Act are intended to be risk-based and focus on activities rather than technology. The Proposal fails to identify what specific risks it is addressing or how it will be effective in mitigating them. Specifically, we do not believe the risks presented by non-custodial wallets have been adequately analyzed in support of the Proposal, nor do we believe that the risks merit prescriptive rules that stray from the risk-based approach afforded to legacy cash reporting and recordkeeping.
Evidence suggests that cryptocurrency does not present a greater threat of money laundering than fiat currency (cash). As the independent nonprofit research and advocacy center Coin Center points out in their recent comment letter on the Proposal:
'''....the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) cites the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) estimates that some $1.9 trillion was laundered in 2009, well before most cryptocurrencies existed. In contrast, the blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis estimated that some $2.8 billion in Bitcoin was laundered through exchanges in 2019.'' [FN6]
At the very least, a much deeper examination of the issue is required to identify and quantify the risks and correlate the proposed rules with the particular risks identified. The Proposal fails to identify how regulated financial institutions handling cryptocurrency transactions fail to meet their AML obligations to identify suspected activity among their customers by leveraging technological differences between cryptocurrency and fiat currency.
C. The Recordkeeping Requirement Appears Arbitrary and Not Based on Evidence
The limited time for review and comment on the Proposal does not allow for robust data collection and analysis by individual industry participants, trade associations, or other working groups as to the need for the Proposal. This makes it difficult to determine the need for controls for cryptocurrency transactions as prescribed by the Proposal.
Instead of identifying clear data to support the need for this unprecedented new requirement to collect and share information about non-customers at a $3,000 threshold, the Proposal notes that the recordkeeping requirement ''is similar to the recordkeeping and travel rule regulations pertaining to funds transfers and transmittals of funds'', otherwise known simply as the ''travel rule''. [FN7] But the travel rule is categorically different. The travel rule only governs transfers of currency between two regulated financial institutions; it does not apply where one party is an individual. The Proposal also applies to transactions with individuals using non-custodial wallets. The magnitude of this difference cannot simply be brushed away. It necessitates further explanation and examination as to why a $3,000 threshold amount is appropriate.
This Proposal also begs the question as to what evidence there is that a $3,000 cryptocurrency transaction with an individual is riskier or poses a greater threat than a $3,000 cash transaction, as data collection and reporting requirements for cash are only imposed at a $10,000 threshold. Regulatory changes of this magnitude should be based on research, analysis, and industry collaboration. It is equally important to consider the differences between the intra-financial institution wire transfers subject to the legacy travel rule and cryptocurrency transactions. Although both are electronic transfers, they differ in substantial areas of customer and operational risk, and applying the same threshold simply because they both involve the electronic transfer of value is hasty.
D. The Proposal Does not Address the Inherent Nature of Cryptocurrency Transactions and Efficacy of Existing Compliance Protocols
Cryptocurrency networks, and the businesses and individuals that power them, have unique qualities and capabilities relative to their legacy finance counterparts. This Proposal places impractical burdens on these networks, creating existential threats to both protocols and the companies building upon them, and does not effectively monitor and address whatever risks they may present.
For example, blockchain technology is purposefully designed to create an immutable record of all transactions and not to use name and physical address for identification. This is a feature, not a bug. Instead, it relies on ''public key'' or alphanumerical addresses for each wallet. [FN8] Due to the inherent design of the technology, Square would not have the name or physical address of a party to a transaction unless that party is our customer. Implementing the Proposal would require Square to find means of acquiring counterparty information outside of the technology used to conduct the payments, for example, by putting the burden on our customers as senders or recipients to collect and share with us name and physical address information of the counterparty. This is impractical from a business perspective and likely to create little in the way of useful information for FinCEN or law enforcement, as discussed below.
Exchanges and other non-traditional, regulated firms have built comprehensive AML programs that have exceeded those of legacy institutions, including the use of ''regtech'' solutions and forensic tools that capture multiple data points and allow firms the ability to understand who their customers are, monitor transactions, and report suspicious activity. In the past, FinCEN has recognized and celebrated these industry efforts to address novel issues and risks. In a speech from May of last year discussing the industry's response to the travel rule, Director Blanco noted that, ''We are encouraged that so many creative solutions are being developed by industry to address these obligations. In particular, FinCEN is optimistic about the growth of various cross-sector organizations and working groups focusing on developing international standards and solutions addressing the travel rule.'' [FN9]
Flexible, risk-based regulation allows compliance programs to be more comprehensive and actually mitigate risk using tools that are compatible with blockchain technology. For example, Square and other regulated entities are able to use data that is available through blockchain analysis to identify signals of unlawful activity. Velocity controls and pattern detection of system abuse by machine learning have proven to be extreme boons to the performance of our programs to combat abuse of the system. These signals and wallet addresses are more effective at identifying unlawful activity/actors than customer-provided names and physical addresses, which may or may not be accurate as provided. This is because the CVC blockchain networks allow for open-source traceability and accountability of each transaction, regardless of the identity or location of the sender and recipient. These efforts have been recognized to be both useful and successful. As Director Blanco has noted, since 2013, FinCEN has received nearly 70,000 Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) involving virtual currency exploitation and just over half of these reports came from virtual currency industry filers. As Director Blanco further said, ''This reporting is incredibly valuable to FinCEN and law enforcement, especially when you include technical indicators associated with the illicit activity, such as Internet Protocol (IP) addresses, malware hashes, malicious domains, and virtual currency addresses associated with ransomware or other illicit transactions.'' [FN10]
The integrity of the system is best served by a plethora of private sector solutions and companies who perform regular analysis and tracking of these open networks. FinCEN and law enforcement regularly leverage these providers themselves to great success [FN11] as the Proposal details itself in the case of AlphaBay. [FN12] They have proved extraordinarily effective in identifying and stopping illicit activities. [FN13] Without evidence that current AML processes and blockchain analysis are insufficient, and without evidence that the burden of the recordkeeping requirements fulfill the goals of the proposal and outweigh the burden of implementation, and without time to properly assess all of these issues, it remains very unclear why the Proposal is required at this time.
E. The Proposal Does Not Help (and Could Hinder) Law Enforcement Efforts
FinCEN states that it is concerned that bad actors are increasingly using CVCs for unlawful activity. [FN14] At the same time, FinCEN, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and the U.S. Department of Justice have repeatedly noted the advantages CVCs possess when it comes to tracking illicit financial flows and the successful prosecutions that have led from their unique technical attributes. [FN15] While it would be nonsensical for FinCEN to impose regulations that would result in less visibility into the activities it seeks to monitor, that is exactly what the Proposal would do. This is because the inherent nature of cryptocurrency and the way the rules are structured would drive cryptocurrency (CVC) activity away from regulated entities, and push cryptocurrency transactions to offshore and other unregulated channels that are much more (if not entirely) opaque to FinCEN and law enforcement. Sujit Raman, Chair of the Attorney General's Cyber-Digital Task Force, cites this as a major area of concern for law enforcement in the DOJ's recent ''Cryptocurrency Enforcement Framework''. [FN16]
The Proposal would force someone to make one of four choices:
Use a U.S.-regulated entity to transfer cryptocurrency BUT only be allowed to send or receive cryptocurrency if you first collect and share name and physical address of the counterparty
Send or receive cryptocurrency using wallet addresses via non-custodial wallets
Send or receive cryptocurrency using an unregulated foreign exchange or service
Use cash or other legacy form of financial transfer
By adding the data collection and reporting requirements on #1, this Proposal will have the unintended consequence of driving more activity to the other options. None of those other options give FinCEN what it seeks to achieve; they do the exact opposite. Adding burdensome hurdles to regulated entities will drive customers to the alternatives which will deprive FinCEN and law enforcement of the visibility into the type of activity they want to catch.
III. The Comment Period is Inadequate and Violates the APA
The Proposal would impose substantial new requirements on CVC that would have an enormous impact on CVC users and market participants, and raises significant questions of both fact and policy for which the 15-day comment period provided is woefully inadequate. This comment period does not provide a meaningful opportunity to offer thoughts and analysis on the Proposal as required by the APA and compelled by the fundamental values of fairness, transparency, and due process in government policymaking.
While we have made our best attempt at gathering meaningful suggestions, analysis, and data, we believe this truncated 15-day comment period has not provided Square or other interested parties with sufficient time to perform the level of analysis required to understand the likely implications and potential consequences of the Proposal. [FN17] We note that the Proposal is one of substantial density and complexity, imposing an entirely new recordkeeping and verification framework on a complicated and rapidly evolving aspect of the global financial system. The magnitude of the factual questions and policy issues involved are underscored by FinCEN, where it notes that the Proposal has been under development and consideration since 2019. We value our relationships with FinCEN staff and particularly recognize the important work it has done in the past to support digital innovation through public/private sector dialogue. [FN18] The deliberative pace at which FinCEN has proceeded to date serves to underscore the extent to which quality of outcome, and not speed, is the more important regulatory objective. The comment period for this proposal is a sharp departure from that pace.
The APA establishes a range of procedural and substantive requirements that govern federal agency rulemaking, including the requirement under section 553 of the APA that agencies promulgate regulations through a notice-and-comment process that affords interested persons an opportunity to participate in the rulemaking through the submission of written data, views, and arguments. The Proposal falls well short of satisfying these requirements.
First, FinCEN asserts that the Proposal is exempt from the APA's notice-and-comment requirements because it involves a ''foreign affairs function'' and because it ''advances foreign policy and national security interests of the United States, using a statute that was designed in part for that purpose'' (emphasis added). It is not. As the Proposal notes, the foreign affairs exemption is ''not to be 'interpreted loosely,''' and ''[f]or the [foreign affairs exemption] to apply, the public rulemaking provisions should provoke definitely undesirable international consequences.'' [FN19] A mere conclusory assertion of foreign policy interests satisfies neither the spirit nor the text of the foreign affairs exemption, and FinCEN has not identified any definitely undesirable international consequences of engaging in a public rulemaking. [FN20] In addition, the exclusion only applies to the extent a foreign affairs function is involved '-- it would certainly not apply, for example, to all transactions covered by the Proposal, e.g., purely domestic transactions.
Second, FinCEN asserts that the ''good cause'' exception from the APA's notice-and-comment requirements applies on the premise that a delay in implementation could result in serious harm. It is difficult to understand precisely why, after spending over a year to develop the Proposal, an additional delay of 30 or 60 days would suddenly result in serious harm; there is no ''dramatic change in circumstance that would constitute an emergency justifying shunting off public participation in the rulemaking.'' [FN21] Moreover, the mere prospect of additional time in implementation does not make public rulemaking impracticable or contrary to the public interest; if it did, any agency would be entitled to invoke the good cause exception any time it promulgates a rule, rendering the APA's notice-and-comment requirement pointless. In addition, FinCEN asserts that the ''good cause'' exception applies on the premise that announcement of the rule could cause malicious actions. That assertion is directly contradicted by the fact that FinCEN has announced the rule in the Proposal and sought comment for a period of 15 days.
Third, as described above, a 15-day comment period falls well short of the meaningful opportunity for interested parties to comment that is required under the APA. The purpose of the APA's notice-and-comment requirement is to ensure that a proposed rulemaking is sufficient to ''fairly apprise interested parties of the issues involved, so that they may present responsive data and argument.'' [FN22] The 72-page Proposal includes 24 questions for commenters to address, including 14 that request commenters to evaluate the costs and benefits of different aspects of the Proposal under various factual scenarios. For example, the Proposal asks commenters to ''[d]iscuss the costs and benefits of modifying the aggregation requirement to require aggregation for the purposes of the proposed CVC/LTDA transaction reporting requirement across both fiat and CVC/LTDA transactions.'' Commenting on this question alone requires commenters to undertake a collection and analysis of data that would take well beyond the 15-day period, but could be more meaningfully analyzed with the proper 30- or 60-day period. The comment deadline simply does not provide sufficient time for us to perform the level of analysis that the Proposal warrants or to form a thorough understanding of the implications of the Proposal on the cryptocurrency and larger financial services industry.
We believe the haste of this rulemaking is not only detrimental to payments innovation and accessibility, but to FinCEN's established mission to protect the global financial system from illicit activity. We support this mission and thus express serious concern that a rush to finalize the Proposal, for the reasons stated above, will leave the financial system more vulnerable. This limits both industry and FinCEN's abilities to accomplish our shared goals of protecting citizens and customers from unlawful activity.
IV. Conclusions and Recommendations
Cryptocurrency has the ability to transcend the limitations of traditional financial systems and provide benefits to individuals and businesses that are currently underserved. This type of innovation should be encouraged '-- and encouraged within U.S. borders. While it is important to identify and mitigate associated risks, regulation must be tailored to address issues that pose actual harm, and take into account the practical implications and consequences associated with implementation.
This Proposal will inhibit financial inclusion, present practical problems, is arbitrary and unduly burdensome, and will drive innovation and jobs outside of the U.S. and regulated institutions. We believe the work that industry and law enforcement have done and continue to do together has been effective and should be supported and strengthened. Evidence shows that current AML monitoring and existing tools are effective at achieving the goals of this rule. Instead of bolstering the fight against unlawful activity, this Proposal will have the unintended consequence of driving cryptocurrency activity to unregulated corners and thereby undermine law enforcement's efforts to combat illicit activity.
While we appreciate FinCEN's desire to enact a final rule, more time and consideration is needed to review the consequences of the proposed rule. We would ask that FinCEN extend the comment period to provide for expanded comments from the industry and allow for additional, formal collaboration with all stakeholders, including law enforcement. Industry, regulators and law enforcement should also continue to collaborate through other avenues, such as working groups, 314(a) information sharing, and developing best practices to achieve the policy goals associated with the proposed rules. We believe that any rules implemented should account for the unique technology associated with cryptocurrency innovations.
Finally, we appreciate the difficulty in developing regulations for emerging technology and therefore would encourage FinCEN to consider principle-based regulations that provide the ability to develop risk-based programs that leverage the technology to achieve the Proposal's goals without extending arbitrary and burdensome recordkeeping and collection requirements to non-customers of financial institutions. As written, these regulations will only result in undermining the stated goals of the Proposal.
Thank you for your consideration of this comment. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.
Sincerely, Jack DorseySquare, Inc.
Klein, Aaron. ''America's Poor Subsidize Wealthier Consumers in a Vicious Income Inequality Cycle.'' Brookings Institution, February 6, 2018.
Wood, Miranda. ''China 'likely to be the first' to issue central bank digital currency, says official.'' Ledger Insights, October 28, 2019.
Shu, Catherine. ''Singapore's Government Launches Blockchain Innovation Program with $8.9 Million in Funding.'' TechCrunch, December 7, 2020.
For the purposes of this comment letter, we will discuss CVC transactions and not LTDAs.
Office of Congressman Warren Davidson. (December 9, 2020). Davidson Pens Letter to Treasury on Self-Hosted Wallet Regs [Press Release].
Brito & Van Valkenburgh. ''Comments to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network on Requirements for Certain Transactions Involving Convertible Virtual Currency or Digital Assets.'' Coin Center, December 22, 2020.
FinCEN. ''Requirements for Certain Transactions Involving Convertible Virtual Currency or Digital Assets,'' 85 Fed. Reg. 83,841, December 23, 2020.
Van Valkenburgh, Peter. ''What's a Blockchain, Anyway?'' Coin Center, April 25, 2017.
Blanco, Kenneth. ''Prepared Remarks of FinCEN Director Kenneth A. Blanco, Delivered at the Consensus Blockchain Conference.'' (Consensus Blockchain Conference, Virtual, May 13, 2020.)
Chainalysis. ''Chainalysis in Action: DOJ Announces Shutdown of Largest Child Pornography Website.'' October 16, 2019.
Supra note 7.
Turner, Adam & Irwin, Angela. (2017). Bitcoin transactions: a digital discovery of illicit activity on the blockchain. Journal of Financial Crime. 25. 00-00. 10.1108/JFC-12-2016-0078; M¶ser, Malte & Soska, Kyle & Heilman, Ethan & Lee, Kevin & Heffan, Henry & Srivastava, Shashvat & Hogan, Kyle & Hennessey, Jason & Miller, Andrew & Narayanan, Arvind & Christin, Nicolas. (2018). An Empirical Analysis of Traceability in the Monero Blockchain. Proceedings on Privacy Enhancing Technologies. 2018. 143-163. 10.1515/popets-2018-0025.
Supra note 7, Pg. 83841.
Beyond Silk Road: Potential Risks, Threats, and Promises of Virtual Currencies: Hearing before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, 113th Cong. 156 (2013). Pg 16 (testimony of Jennifer Shasky Calvery, Dir., FinCEN); See also U.S. Dept. of Justice, ''Report of the Attorney General's Cyber-Digital Task Force, Cryptocurrency: An Enforcement Framework,'' Pg. 48. (Oct. 8, 2020).'‹ag/'‹page/'‹file/'‹1326061/'‹download; 67 DOJ J. FED. L. & PRAC., no. 1, 2019 ; Illicit Use of Virtual Currency and the Law Enforcement Response: Hearing before the Subcommittee on Terrorism and Ilicit Finance of the House Committee on Financial Services, 115th Cong. 102 (2018). Pg 8. (testimony of Gregory Nevano, Deputy Asst. Dir, Illicit Trade, Travel, and Finance Division, Homeland Security Investigations).
''Report of the Attorney General's Cyber-Digital Task Force, Cryptocurrency: An Enforcement Framework'', supra note 15 at ix.
We'd further note the Proposal creates several additional compliance challenges because of ambiguities and open issues. For example, there is a lack of clarity around definitions such as ''hosted wallet'' or ''access'' to an account. Further, critical components of the Proposal's potential implementation remain unknown, such as the foreign jurisdictions list and the form as required by the reporting requirement.
While the Proposal notes that there has been ongoing engagement between FinCEN and interested parties over time, that engagement does not serve to replace a chance to formally review the Proposal, which was never presented during these discussions.
See Proposal (citing Mast Indus., Inc. v. Regan, 596 F. Supp. 1567, 1581 (Ct. Int'l Trade 1984) (quoting H.R.Rep. No. 79''1980, at 23 (1946), H.R.Rep. No. 79''1980, at pp. 23 (1946)).
Yassini v. Crosland 618 F2d 1356, 1360 n.4 (9th Cir. 1980). We note that it may well be the case that the international consequences of the rule itself may be undesirable, but that is not the relevant test for purposes of the foreign affairs exclusion. Indeed, the fact that notice-and-comment rulemaking on the subject can be conducted without disrupting foreign affairs is made clear by the fact that the FinCEN has used a notice-and-comment rulemaking '' albeit one with a truncated comment period '' to promulgate the rule.
Am. Acad. of Pediatrics v. Heckler, 561 F. Supp. 395, 401 (D.D.C. 1983).
Administrative Procedure Act: Legislative History, S. Doc. No. 248 79-258 (1946).
New York Times praises China's communist society as 'freedom' that Americans should envy | The Post Millennial - News, Politics, Culture, and Lifestyle
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 03:44
China unleashed a deadly virus upon the world, told us to protect ourselves from it by destroying our economies, now redefines freedom without natural rights, and tells us to envy their servitude. Li Yuan writes in The New York Times that, in the aftermath of the pandemic, China is freer than the US, and Americans are right to envy that "freedom." In short, The New York Times is printing bold-faced propaganda to boost the communist way of life over American and western liberty. It is a shameful lie.
In the latest New York Times op-ed to decry western values and culture, Li Yuan writes that China is in fact a more free nation than the US or her western allies. It is a ploy that, if effective, will make Americans more aligned with being enslaved to government than with the fight for natural rights and freedoms.
Li writes: "The pandemic has upended many perceptions, including ideas about freedom. Citizens of China don't have freedom of speech, freedom of worship, or freedom from fear'--three of the four freedoms articulated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt'--but they have the freedom to move around and lead a normal day-to-day life. In a pandemic year, many of the world's people would envy this most basic form of freedom."
But these are not freedoms, they are the illusion of freedom. These are the kinds of freedoms granted by government, not originating with our free will. Freedoms that can be taken away with the stroke of a pen or the stomp of a boot are not freedoms. This freedom of movement that Li writes about only exists as long as the communist government allows it to exist. That's not freedom.
During the early days of the pandemic, before the west foolishly took China's advice and tanked our economies, societies, and nations, China was already implementing lockdown measures so extreme that, from the accounts available, people were locked into their homes where they waited to die. Their intensive lockdown strategy, which arguably led to their freedom of movement now, was a violation of human rights. The Chinese government, however, is comfortable violating human rights'--they do it all the time.
The Uyghurs, which so many in the west seem to think are a fictional people conjured out of full cloth by China's detractors, are a prime example of the CCP's comfort at abandoning human rights in favour of order.
"While many countries are still reeling from Covid-19, China'--where the pandemic originated'--has become one of the safest places in the world," Li writes. "The country reported fewer than 100,000 infections for all of 2020. The United States has been reporting more than that every day since early November."
This is a drastic misunderstanding of what freedom is. Freedom is not freedom from danger, it is the freedom to assess danger and risks for one's self and behave as you see fit, not simply as the government permits.
Li notes that "China's freedom of movement comes at the expense of nearly every other kind. The country is about the most surveilled in the world. The government took extreme social-control measures at the beginning of the outbreak to keep people apart'--approaches that are beyond the reach of democratic governments."
But the message is that these things don't impact the average person, the person who lives within the lines, accepts their small luxuries in exchange for their liberty and rights, and doesn't worry their pretty little heads about surveillance or social-control. The compliant citizen is rewarded with trinkets, while those who fight back against the oppression are simply removed.
Li quotes a businessman who is overjoyed at spending time in China after a stint in the west, saying "China 'feels a bit like the Epcot Center at Disney... It's like the microcosm of the West is still here, but the West is shut down at the moment.'"
Apparently having a nation feel like an intentionally constructed amusement is a good thing. This should not be what any nation is striving for. Instead, nations that are founded on freedom and the right of every individual toward self-determination would not be closed, intentionally designed spaces, but places where a person can achieve, grow, and strive on their own terms, without the limits of the amusement park gates.
"It isn't clear whether this shift in perception can be sustained after the pandemic ends," Li writes. "But the West may find it has to work harder to sell its vision of freedom after China has made its model seem so attractive."
The New York Times has been intent on publishing op-eds and articles that demean and belittle the American thirst for freedom, equality, and limited government interference. But this is a step too far. The New York Times has called communism freedom in an effort to undermine democracy and American values.
The question becomes why The New York Times is capitulating to the communist government, a government that commits human rights abuses against its own people, knowingly allowed a virus to spread around the world before altering international health organizations, and will only benefit from the decline of American liberty and power.
Did the Coronavirus Escape From a Lab?
Wed, 06 Jan 2021 03:28
For decades, scientists have been hot-wiring viruses in hopes of preventing a pandemic, not causing one. But what if '...? Illustration: Illustration by Robert Beatty for New York Magazine
Illustration: Illustration by Robert Beatty for New York Magazine
Illustration: Illustration by Robert Beatty for New York Magazine
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What happened was fairly simple, I've come to believe. It was an accident. A virus spent some time in a laboratory, and eventually it got out. SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, began its existence inside a bat, then it learned how to infect people in a claustrophobic mine shaft, and then it was made more infectious in one or more laboratories, perhaps as part of a scientist's well-intentioned but risky effort to create a broad-spectrum vaccine. SARS-2 was not designed as a biological weapon. But it was, I think, designed. Many thoughtful people dismiss this notion, and they may be right. They sincerely believe that the coronavirus arose naturally, ''zoonotically,'' from animals, without having been previously studied, or hybridized, or sluiced through cell cultures, or otherwise worked on by trained professionals. They hold that a bat, carrying a coronavirus, infected some other creature, perhaps a pangolin, and that the pangolin may have already been sick with a different coronavirus disease, and out of the conjunction and commingling of those two diseases within the pangolin, a new disease, highly infectious to humans, evolved. Or they hypothesize that two coronaviruses recombined in a bat, and this new virus spread to other bats, and then the bats infected a person directly '-- in a rural setting, perhaps '-- and that this person caused a simmering undetected outbreak of respiratory disease, which over a period of months or years evolved to become virulent and highly transmissible but was not noticed until it appeared in Wuhan.
There is no direct evidence for these zoonotic possibilities, just as there is no direct evidence for an experimental mishap '-- no written confession, no incriminating notebook, no official accident report. Certainty craves detail, and detail requires an investigation. It has been a full year, 80 million people have been infected, and, surprisingly, no public investigation has taken place. We still know very little about the origins of this disease.
Nevertheless, I think it's worth offering some historical context for our yearlong medical nightmare. We need to hear from the people who for years have contended that certain types of virus experimentation might lead to a disastrous pandemic like this one. And we need to stop hunting for new exotic diseases in the wild, shipping them back to laboratories, and hot-wiring their genomes to prove how dangerous to human life they might become.
Over the past few decades, scientists have developed ingenious methods of evolutionary acceleration and recombination, and they've learned how to trick viruses, coronaviruses in particular, those spiky hairballs of protein we now know so well, into moving quickly from one species of animal to another or from one type of cell culture to another. They've made machines that mix and mingle the viral code for bat diseases with the code for human diseases '-- diseases like SARS, severe acute respiratory syndrome, for example, which arose in China in 2003, and MERS, Middle East respiratory syndrome, which broke out a decade later and has to do with bats and camels. Some of the experiments '-- ''gain of function'' experiments '-- aimed to create new, more virulent, or more infectious strains of diseases in an effort to predict and therefore defend against threats that might conceivably arise in nature. The term gain of function is itself a euphemism; the Obama White House more accurately described this work as ''experiments that may be reasonably anticipated to confer attributes to influenza, MERS, or SARS viruses such that the virus would have enhanced pathogenicity and/or transmissibility in mammals via the respiratory route.'' The virologists who carried out these experiments have accomplished amazing feats of genetic transmutation, no question, and there have been very few publicized accidents over the years. But there have been some.
And we were warned, repeatedly. The intentional creation of new microbes that combine virulence with heightened transmissibility ''poses extraordinary risks to the public,'' wrote infectious-disease experts Marc Lipsitch and Thomas Inglesby in 2014. ''A rigorous and transparent risk-assessment process for this work has not yet been established.'' That's still true today. In 2012, in Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Lynn Klotz warned that there was an 80 percent chance, given how many laboratories were then handling virulent viro-varietals, that a leak of a potential pandemic pathogen would occur sometime in the next 12 years.
A lab accident '-- a dropped flask, a needle prick, a mouse bite, an illegibly labeled bottle '-- is apolitical. Proposing that something unfortunate happened during a scientific experiment in Wuhan '-- where COVID-19 was first diagnosed and where there are three high-security virology labs, one of which held in its freezers the most comprehensive inventory of sampled bat viruses in the world '-- isn't a conspiracy theory. It's just a theory. It merits attention, I believe, alongside other reasoned attempts to explain the source of our current catastrophe.
Seeking Ebola strains in Sierra Leone's wild-animal population for USAID's Predict project in 2018. Photo: Simon Townsley
From early 2020, the world was brooding over the origins of COVID-19. People were reading research papers, talking about what kinds of live animals were or were not sold at the Wuhan seafood market '-- wondering where the new virus had come from.
Meanwhile, things got strange all over the world. The Chinese government shut down transportation and built hospitals at high speed. There were video clips of people who'd suddenly dropped unconscious in the street. A doctor on YouTube told us how we were supposed to scrub down our produce when we got back from the supermarket. A scientist named Shi Zhengli of the Wuhan Institute of Virology published a paper saying that the novel coronavirus was 96 percent identical to a bat virus, RaTG13, found in Yunnan province in southern China. On March 13, I wrote in my journal that there seemed to be something oddly artificial about the disease: ''It's too airborne '-- too catching '-- it's something that has been selected for infectivity. That's what I suspect. No way to know so no reason to waste time thinking about it.''
This was just a note to self '-- at the time, I hadn't interviewed scientists about SARS-2 or read their research papers. But I did know something about pathogens and laboratory accidents; I published a book last year, Baseless, that talks about some of them. The book is named after a Pentagon program, Project Baseless, whose goal, as of 1951, was to achieve ''an Air Force''wide combat capability in biological and chemical warfare at the earliest possible date.''
A vast treasure was spent by the U.S. on the amplification and aerial delivery of diseases '-- some well known, others obscure and stealthy. America's biological-weapons program in the '50s had A1-priority status, as high as nuclear weapons. In preparation for a total war with a numerically superior communist foe, scientists bred germs to be resistant to antibiotics and other drug therapies, and they infected lab animals with them, using a technique called ''serial passaging,'' in order to make the germs more virulent and more catching.
And along the way, there were laboratory accidents. By 1960, hundreds of American scientists and technicians had been hospitalized, victims of the diseases they were trying to weaponize. Charles Armstrong, of the National Institutes of Health, one of the consulting founders of the American germ-warfare program, investigated Q fever three times, and all three times, scientists and staffers got sick. In the anthrax pilot plant at Camp Detrick, Maryland, in 1951, a microbiologist, attempting to perfect the ''foaming process'' of high-volume production, developed a fever and died. In 1964, veterinary worker Albert Nickel fell ill after being bitten by a lab animal.His wife wasn't told that he had Machupo virus, or Bolivian hemorrhagic fever. ''I watched him die through a little window to his quarantine room at the Detrick infirmary,'' she said.
In 1977, a worldwide epidemic of influenza A began in Russia and China; it was eventually traced to a sample of an American strain of flu preserved in a laboratory freezer since 1950. In 1978, a hybrid strain of smallpox killed a medical photographer at a lab in Birmingham, England; in 2007, live foot-and-mouth disease leaked from a faulty drainpipe at the Institute for Animal Health in Surrey. In the U.S., ''more than 1,100 laboratory incidents involving bacteria, viruses and toxins that pose significant or bioterror risks to people and agriculture were reported to federal regulators during 2008 through 2012,'' reported USA Today in an expos(C) published in 2014.In 2015, the Department of Defense discovered that workers at a germ-warfare testing center in Utah had mistakenly sent close to 200 shipments of live anthrax to laboratories throughout the United States and also to Australia, Germany, Japan, South Korea, and several other countries over the past 12 years. In 2019, laboratories at Fort Detrick '-- where ''defensive'' research involves the creation of potential pathogens to defend against '-- were shut down for several months by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for ''breaches of containment.'' They reopened in December 2019.
High-containment laboratories have a whispered history of near misses. Scientists are people, and people have clumsy moments and poke themselves and get bitten by the enraged animals they are trying to nasally inoculate. Machines can create invisible aerosols, and cell solutions can become contaminated. Waste systems don't always work properly. Things can go wrong in a hundred different ways.
Hold that human fallibility in your mind. And then consider the cautious words of Alina Chan, a scientist who works at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. ''There is a reasonable chance that what we are dealing with is the result of a lab accident,'' Chan told me in July of last year. There was also, she added, a reasonable chance that the disease had evolved naturally '-- both were scientific possibilities. ''I don't know if we will ever find a smoking gun, especially if it was a lab accident. The stakes are so high now. It would be terrifying to be blamed for millions of cases of COVID-19 and possibly up to a million deaths by year end, if the pandemic continues to grow out of control. The Chinese government has also restricted their own scholars and scientists from looking into the origins of SARS-CoV-2. At this rate, the origin of SARS-CoV-2 may just be buried by the passage of time.''
I asked Jonathan A. King, a molecular biologist and biosafety advocate from MIT, whether he'd thought lab accident when he first heard about the epidemic. ''Absolutely, absolutely,'' King answered. Other scientists he knew were concerned as well. But scientists, he said, in general were cautious about speaking out. There were ''very intense, very subtle pressures'' on them not to push on issues of laboratory biohazards. Collecting lots of bat viruses, and passaging those viruses repeatedly through cell cultures, and making bat-human viral hybrids, King believes, ''generates new threats and desperately needs to be reined in.''
''All possibilities should be on the table, including a lab leak,'' a scientist from the NIH, Philip Murphy '-- chief of the Laboratory of Molecular Immunology '-- wrote me recently. Nikolai Petrovsky, a professor of endocrinology at Flinders University College of Medicine in Adelaide, Australia, said in an email, ''There are indeed many unexplained features of this virus that are hard if not impossible to explain based on a completely natural origin.'' Richard Ebright, a molecular biologist at Rutgers University, wrote that he'd been concerned for some years about the Wuhan laboratory and about the work being done there to create ''chimeric'' (i.e., hybrid) SARS-related bat coronaviruses ''with enhanced human infectivity.'' Ebright said, ''In this context, the news of a novel coronavirus in Wuhan ***screamed*** lab release.''
The new disease, as soon as it appeared, was intercepted '-- stolen and politicized by people with ulterior motives. The basic and extremely interesting scientific question of what happened was sucked up into an ideological sharknado.
Some Americans boycotted Chinese restaurants; others bullied and harassed Asian Americans. Steve Bannon, broadcasting from his living room, in a YouTube series called War Room, said that the Chinese Communist Party had made a biological weapon and intentionally released it. He called it the ''CCP virus.'' And his billionaire friend and backer, Miles Guo, a devoted Trump supporter, told a right-wing website that the communists' goal was to ''use the virus to infect selective people in Hong Kong, so that the Chinese Communist Party could use it as an excuse to impose martial law there and ultimately crush the Hong Kong pro-democracy movement. But it backfired terribly.''
In The Lancet, in February, a powerful counterstatement appeared, signed by 27 scientists. ''We stand together to strongly condemn conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 does not have a natural origin,'' the statement said. ''Scientists from multiple countries have published and analyzed genomes of the causative agent, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), and they overwhelmingly conclude that this coronavirus originated in wildlife, as have so many other emerging pathogens.''
The behind-the-scenes organizer of this Lancet statement, Peter Daszak, is a zoologist and bat-virus sample collector and the head of a New York nonprofit called EcoHealth Alliance '-- a group that (as veteran science journalist Fred Guterl explained later in Newsweek) has channeled money from the National Institutes of Health to Shi Zhengli's laboratory in Wuhan, allowing the lab to carry on recombinant research into diseases of bats and humans. ''We have a choice whether to stand up and support colleagues who are being attacked and threatened daily by conspiracy theorists or to just turn a blind eye,'' Daszak said in February in Science magazine.
How Did It Get Out? 1. The Tongguan Mine Shaft in Mojiang, Yunnan, where, in 2013, fragments of RaTG13, the closest known relative of SARSCoV-2, were recovered and transported to the Wuhan Institute of Virology; 2. The Wuhan Institute of Virology, where Shi Zhengli's team brought the RaTG13 sample, sequenced its genome, then took it out of the freezer several times in recent years; 3. The Wuhan Center for Disease Control and Prevention, which first reported signs of the novel coronavirus in hospital patients; 4. The Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market, an early suspected origin of the pandemic, where the first major outbreak occurred. Illustration: Map by Jason Lee
Vincent Racaniello, a professor at Columbia and a co-host of a podcast called This Week in Virology, said on February 9 that the idea of an accident in Wuhan was ''complete bunk.'' The coronavirus was 96 percent similar to a bat virus found in 2013, Racaniello said. ''It's not a man-made virus. It wasn't released from a lab.''
Racaniello's dismissal was seconded by a group of scientists from Ohio State, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of North Carolina, who put out a paper in Emerging Microbes and Infections to quiet the ''speculations, rumors, and conspiracy theories that SARS-CoV-2 is of laboratory origin.'' There was ''currently no credible evidence'' that SARS-2 leaked from a lab, these scientists said, using a somewhat different argument from Racaniello's. ''Some people have alleged that the human SARS-CoV-2 was leaked directly from a laboratory in Wuhan where a bat CoV (RaTG13) was recently reported,'' they said. But RaTG13 could not be the source because it differed from the human SARS-2 virus by more than a thousand nucleotides. One of the paper's authors, Susan Weiss, told the Raleigh News & Observer, ''The conspiracy theory is ridiculous.''
The most influential natural-origin paper, ''The Proximal Origin of SARS-CoV-2,'' by a group of biologists that included Kristian Andersen of Scripps Research, appeared online in a preliminary version in mid-February.''We do not believe any type of laboratory-based scenario is plausible,'' the scientists said. Why? Because molecular-modeling software predicted that if you wanted to optimize an existing bat virus so that it would replicate well in human cells, you would arrange things a different way than how the SARS-2 virus actually does it '-- even though the SARS-2 virus does an extraordinarily good job of replicating in human cells. The laboratory-based scenario was implausible, the paper said, because, although it was true that the virus could conceivably have developed its unusual genetic features in a laboratory, a stronger and ''more parsimonious'' explanation was that the features came about through some kind of natural mutation or recombination. ''What we think,'' explained one of the authors, Robert F. Garry of Tulane University, on YouTube, ''is that this virus is a recombinant. It probably came from a bat virus, plus perhaps one of these viruses from the pangolin.'' Journalists, for the most part, echoed the authoritative pronouncements of Daszak, Racaniello, Weiss, Andersen, and other prominent natural-originists. ''The balance of the scientific evidence strongly supports the conclusion that the new coronavirus emerged from nature '-- be it the Wuhan market or somewhere else,'' said the Washington Post's ''Fact Checker'' column. ''Dr. Fauci Again Dismisses Wuhan Lab As Source of Coronavirus,'' said CBS News, posting a video interview of Anthony Fauci by National Geographic. ''If you look at the evolution of the virus in bats, and what's out there now,'' Fauci said, ''it's very, very strongly leaning toward 'This could not have been artificially or deliberately manipulated' '-- the way the mutations have naturally evolved.''
Everyone took sides; everyone thought of the new disease as one more episode in an ongoing partisan struggle. Think of Mike Pompeo, that landmass of Cold War truculence; think of Donald Trump himself. They stood at their microphones saying, in a winking, I-know-something-you-don't-know sort of way, that this disease escaped from a Chinese laboratory. Whatever they were saying must be wrong. It became impermissible, almost taboo, to admit that, of course, SARS-2 could have come from a lab accident. ''The administration's claim that the virus spread from a Wuhan lab has made the notion politically toxic, even among scientists who say it could have happened,'' wrote science journalist Mara Hvistendahl in the Intercept.
Even so, in January and February of 2020, there were thoughtful people who were speaking up, formulating their perplexities.
One person was Sam Husseini, an independent journalist. He went to a CDC press conference at the National Press Club on February 11, 2020. By then, 42,000 people had gotten sick in China and more than a thousand had died. But there were only 13 confirmed cases in the U.S. Halfway through the Q&A period, Husseini went to the microphone and asked the CDC's representative, Anne Schuchat, where the virus had come from. His head was spinning, he told me later.
''Obviously the main concern is how to stop the virus,'' Husseini said; nonetheless, he wanted to know more about its source. ''Is it the CDC's contention,'' he asked, ''that there's absolutely no relation to the BSL-4 lab in Wuhan? It's my understanding that this is the only place in China with a BSL-4 lab. We in the United States have, I'¯think, two dozen or so, and there have been problems and incidents.'' (A BSL-4 laboratory is a maximum-security biosafety-level-four facility, used to house research on the most dangerous known pathogens. New York has confirmed there are at least 11 BSL-4 facilities currently operating in the U.S.) Husseini hastened to say that he wasn't implying that what happened in Wuhan was in any way intentional. ''I'm just asking, Is it a complete coincidence that this outbreak happened in the one city in China with a BSL-4 lab?''
Schuchat thanked Husseini for his questions and comments. Everything she'd seen was quite consistent with a natural, zoonotic origin for the disease, she said.
That same month, a group of French scientists from Aix-Marseille University posted a paper describing their investigation of a small insertion in the genome of the new SARS-2 virus. The virus's spike protein contained a sequence of amino acids that formed what Etienne Decroly and colleagues called a ''peculiar furin-like cleavage site'' '-- a chemically sensitive region on the lobster claw of the spike protein that would react in the presence of an enzyme called furin, which is a type of protein found everywhere within the human body, but especially in the lungs. When the spike senses human furin, it shudders, chemically speaking, and the enzyme opens the protein, commencing the tiny morbid ballet whereby the virus burns a hole in a host cell's outer membrane and finds its way inside.
The code for this particular molecular feature '-- not found in SARS or any SARS-like bat viruses, but present in a slightly different form in the more lethal MERS virus '-- is easy to remember because it's a roar: ''R-R-A-R.'' The letter code stands for amino acids: arginine, arginine, alanine, and arginine. Its presence, so Decroly and his colleagues observed, may heighten the ''pathogenicity'' '-- that is, the god-awfulness '-- of a disease.
Botao Xiao, a professor at the South China University of Technology, posted a short paper on a preprint server titled ''The Possible Origins of 2019-nCoV Coronavirus.'' Two laboratories, the Wuhan Center for Disease Control and Prevention (WHCDC) and the Wuhan Institute of Virology, were not far from the seafood market, which was where the disease was said to have originated, Xiao wrote '-- in fact, the WHCDC was only a few hundred yards away from the market '-- whereas the horseshoe bats that hosted the disease were hundreds of miles to the south. (No bats were sold in the market, he pointed out.) It was unlikely, he wrote, that a bat would have flown to a densely populated metropolitan area of 15 million people. ''The killer coronavirus probably originated from a laboratory in Wuhan,'' Xiao believed. He urged the relocation of ''biohazardous laboratories'' away from densely populated places. His article disappeared from the server.
And late in the month, a professor at National Taiwan University, Fang Chi-tai, gave a lecture on the coronavirus in which he described the anomalous R-R-A-R furin cleavage site. The virus was ''unlikely to have four amino acids added all at once,'' Fang said '-- natural mutations were smaller and more haphazard, he argued. ''From an academic point of view, it is indeed possible that the amino acids were added to COVID-19 in the lab by humans.'' When the Taiwan News published an article about Fang's talk, Fang disavowed his own comments, and the video copy of the talk disappeared from the website of the Taiwan Public Health Association. ''It has been taken down for a certain reason,'' the association explained. ''Thank you for your understanding.''
In the spring, I did some reading on coronavirus history. Beginning in the 1970s, dogs, cows, and pigs were diagnosed with coronavirus infections; dog shows were canceled in 1978 after 25 collies died in Louisville, Kentucky. New varieties of coronaviruses didn't start killing humans, though, until 2003 '-- that's when restaurant chefs, food handlers, and people who lived near a live-animal market got sick in Guangzhou, in southern China, where the shredded meat of a short-legged raccoonlike creature, the palm civet, was served in a regional dish called ''dragon-tiger-phoenix soup.'' The new disease, SARS, spread alarmingly in hospitals, and it reached 30 countries and territories. More than 800 people died; the civet-borne virus was eventually traced to horseshoe bats.
Later, smaller outbreaks of SARS in Taiwan, Singapore, and China's National Institute of Virology in Beijing were all caused by laboratory accidents. Of the Beijing Virology Institute, the World Health Organization's safety investigators wrote, in May 2004, that they had ''serious concerns about biosafety procedures.'' By one account, a SARS storage room in the Beijing lab was so crowded that the refrigerator holding live virus was moved out to the hallway. ''Scientists still do not fully understand exactly where or how SARS emerged 18 months ago,'' wrote Washington Post reporter David Brown in June 2004. ''But it is clear now that the most threatening source of the deadly virus today may be places they know intimately '-- their own laboratories.''
I'm just asking, Is it a complete coincidence that this outbreak happened in the one city in China with a BSL-4 lab?MERS arose in 2012, possibly spread by camels that had contracted the disease from bats or bat guano, then passed it to human drinkers of raw camel milk and butchers of camel meat. It was an acute sickness, with a high fatality rate, mostly confined to Saudi Arabia. Like SARS, MERS ebbed quickly '-- it all but disappeared outside the Middle East, except for an outbreak in 2015 at the Samsung Medical Center in South Korea, where a single case of MERS led to more than 180 infections, many involving hospital workers.
In January 2015, the brand-new BSL-4 lab in Wuhan, built by a French contractor, celebrated its opening, but full safety certification came slowly. According to State Department cables from 2018 leaked to the Washington Post, the new BSL-4 lab had some start-up problems, including ''a serious shortage of appropriately trained technicians and investigators needed to safely operate this high-containment laboratory.'' The staff had gotten some training at a BSL-4 lab in Galveston, Texas, but they were doing potentially dangerous work with SARS-like viruses, the memo said, and they needed more help from the U.S.
In November or December of 2019, the novel coronavirus began to spread. Chinese scientists initially named it ''Wuhan seafood market pneumonia virus,'' but soon that idea went away. The market, closed and decontaminated by Chinese officials on January 1, 2020, was an amplifying hub, not the source of the outbreak, according to several studies by Chinese scientists. Forty-five percent of the earliest SARS-2 patients had no link with the market.
Now let's take a step back. AIDS, fatal and terrifying and politically charged, brought on a new era in government-guided vaccine research, under the guidance of Anthony Fauci. A virologist at Rockefeller University, Stephen S. Morse, began giving talks on ''emerging viruses'' '-- other plagues that might be in the process of coming out of nature's woodwork. In 1992, Richard Preston wrote a horrific account of one emergent virus, Ebola, in The New Yorker, which became a best-selling book in 1994; Laurie Garrett's The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance appeared that same year and was also a best seller. The idea seemed to be everywhere: We were on the verge of a wave of zoonotic, emergent plagues.
This new, useful term, emerging, began to glow in the research papers of some coronavirologists, who were out of the spotlight, working on common colds and livestock diseases. The term was useful because it was fluid. An emerging disease could be real and terrifying, as AIDS was '-- something that had just arrived on the medical scene and was confounding our efforts to combat it '-- or it could be a disease that hadn't arrived, and might never arrive, but could be shown in a laboratory to be waiting in the wings, just a few mutations away from a human epidemic. It was real and unreal at the same time '-- a quality that was helpful when applying for research grants.
Where Did It Come From? This chart measures the genetic similarity of known viruses to the novel coronavirus (which appears in yellow). By far the closest is the bat virus RaTG13, which appears in blue, and which was recovered in 2013 and brought to the Wuhan Institute of Virology. The first SARS, marked in red, is a much more distant relative. Graphic: Zhou, P., Yang, XL., Wang, XG. et al. A pneumonia outbreak associated with a new coronavirus of probable bat origin. Nature 579, 270''273 (2020)
Take, for instance, this paper from 1995: ''High Recombination and Mutation Rates in Mouse Hepatitis Viruses Suggest That Coronaviruses May Be Potentially Important Emerging Viruses.'' It was written by Dr. Ralph Baric and his bench scientist, Boyd Yount, at the University of North Carolina. Baric, a gravelly voiced former swim champion, described in this early paper how his lab was able to train a coronavirus, MHV, which causes hepatitis in mice, to jump species, so that it could reliably infect BHK (baby-hamster kidney) cell cultures. They did it using serial passaging: repeatedly dosing a mixed solution of mouse cells and hamster cells with mouse-hepatitis virus, while each time decreasing the number of mouse cells and upping the concentration of hamster cells. At first, predictably, the mouse-hepatitis virus couldn't do much with the hamster cells, which were left almost free of infection, floating in their world of fetal-calf serum. But by the end of the experiment, after dozens of passages through cell cultures, the virus had mutated: It had mastered the trick of parasitizing an unfamiliar rodent. A scourge of mice was transformed into a scourge of hamsters. And there was more: ''It is clear that MHV can rapidly alter its species specificity and infect rats and primates,'' Baric said. ''The resulting virus variants are associated with demyelinating diseases in these alternative species.'' (A demyelinating disease is a disease that damages nerve sheaths.) With steady prodding from laboratory science, along with some rhetorical exaggeration, a lowly mouse ailment was morphed into an emergent threat that might potentially cause nerve damage in primates. That is, nerve damage in us.
A few years later, in a further round of ''interspecies transfer'' experimentation, Baric's scientists introduced their mouse coronavirus into flasks that held a suspension of African-green-monkey cells, human cells, and pig-testicle cells. Then, in 2002, they announced something even more impressive: They'd found a way to create a full-length infectious clone of the entire mouse-hepatitis genome. Their ''infectious construct'' replicated itself just like the real thing, they wrote.
Not only that, but they'd figured out how to perform their assembly seamlessly, without any signs of human handiwork. Nobody would know if the virus had been fabricated in a laboratory or grown in nature. Baric called this the ''no-see'm method,'' and he asserted that it had ''broad and largely unappreciated molecular biology applications.'' The method was named, he wrote, after a ''very small biting insect that is occasionally found on North Carolina beaches.''
In 2006, Baric, Yount, and two other scientists were granted a patent for their invisible method of fabricating a full-length infectious clone using the seamless, no-see'm method. But this time, it wasn't a clone of the mouse-hepatitis virus '-- it was a clone of the entire deadly human SARS virus, the one that had emerged from Chinese bats, via civets, in 2002. The Baric Lab came to be known by some scientists as ''the Wild Wild West.'' In 2007, Baric said that we had entered ''the golden age of coronavirus genetics.''
''I would be afraid to look in their freezers,'' one virologist told me.
Baric and Shi Zhengli of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, the two top experts on the genetic interplay between bat and human coronaviruses, began collaborating in 2015.
Virologist Shi Zhengli at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in 2017. Photo: Feature China / Barcroft Studios / Future Publishing / Getty Images
Early in the pandemic, Scientific American profiled Shi Zhengli, known in China as the ''bat woman.'' Shi trapped hundreds of bats in nets at the mouths of caves in southern China, sampled their saliva and their blood, swabbed their anuses, and gathered up their fecal pellets. Several times, she visited and sampled bats in a mine in Mojiang, in southern China, where, in 2012, six men set to work shoveling bat guano were sickened by a severe lung disease, three of them fatally. Shi's team took the samples back to Wuhan and analyzed whatever fragments of bat virus she could find. In some cases, when she found a sequence that seemed particularly significant, she experimented with it in order to understand how it might potentially infect humans. Some of her work was funded by the National Institutes of Health and some of it by the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency of the Department of Defense via Peter Daszak's EcoHealth Alliance.
As Shi explained to Scientific American, late in December 2019, she heard from the director of the Wuhan Institute that there was an outbreak of a new disease in the city. Medical samples taken from hospital patients arrived at her lab for analysis. Shi determined that the new virus was related to SARS but even more closely related to a bat disease that her own team had found on a virus-hunting trip: the now-famous RaTG13. Shi was surprised that the outbreak was local, she said: ''I had never expected this kind of thing to happen in Wuhan, in central China.'' The bat hiding places that she'd been visiting were, after all, as far away as Orlando, Florida, is from New York City. Could this new virus, she wondered, have come from her own laboratory? She checked her records and found no exact matches. ''That really took a load off my mind,'' she said. ''I had not slept a wink for days.''
If one of the first thoughts that goes through the head of a lab director at the Wuhan Institute of Virology is that the new coronavirus could have come from her lab, then we are obliged to entertain the scientific possibility that it could indeed have come from her lab. Right then, there should have been a comprehensive, pockets-inside-out, fully public investigation of the Virology Institute, along with the other important virus labs in Wuhan, including the one close by the seafood market, headquarters of the Wuhan CDC. There should have been interviews with scientists, interviews with biosafety teams, close parsings of laboratory notebooks, freezer and plumbing and decontamination systems checks '-- everything. It didn't happen. The Wuhan Institute of Virology closed down its databases of viral genomes, and the Chinese Ministry of Education sent out a directive: ''Any paper that traces the origin of the virus must be strictly and tightly managed.''
Shi made some WeChat posts early in 2020. ''The novel 2019 coronavirus is nature punishing the human race for keeping uncivilized living habits,'' she wrote. ''I, Shi Zhengli, swear on my life that it has nothing to do with our laboratory.'' She advised those who believed rumors, and gave credence to unreliable scientific papers, to ''shut their stinking mouths.''
It wasn't only AIDS that changed the way the NIH funded research. The War on Terror also influenced which diseases got the most attention. In the late '90s, under Bill Clinton and then George W. Bush, biodefense specialists became interested '-- again '-- in anthrax. The Defense Threat Reduction Agency built a small anthrax factory in Nevada, using simulants, to demonstrate how easy it would be for a terrorist to build a small anthrax factory. And in the first year of the Bush presidency, the Defense Intelligence Agency wrote up plans to create a vaccine-resistant form of anthrax using state-of-the-art gene-splicery. A front-page article describing these initiatives, ''U.S. Germ Warfare Research Pushes Treaty Limits,'' appeared in the New York Times on September 4, 2001, one week before 9/11. ''Pentagon Says Projects Are Defense, Is Pressing Ahead,'' was the subtitle.
After the 9/11 attacks, and the mysterious anthrax mailings that began a week later (which said, ''TAKE PENACILIN [sic] NOW'‰/'‰DEATH TO AMERICA'‰/'‰DEATH TO ISRAEL'‰/'‰ALLAH IS GREAT''), the desire for biopreparedness became all consuming. Now there were emerging biothreats from humans as well as from the evolving natural world. Fauci's anti-terror budget went from $53 million in 2001 to $1.7 billion in 2003. Setting aside his work toward an AIDS vaccine, which was taking longer than he'd foreseen, Fauci said he would be going all out to defend against a suite of known Cold War agents, all of which had been bred and perfected in American weapons programs many years before '-- brucellosis, anthrax, tularemia, and plague, for instance. ''We are making this the highest priority,'' Fauci said. ''We are really marshaling all available resources.''
I would be afraid to look in their freezers.Vaccine development had to progress much faster, Fauci believed; he wanted to set up ''vaccine systems'' and ''vaccine platforms,'' which could be quickly tailored to defend against a particular emergent strain some terrorist with an advanced biochemistry degree might have thrown together in a laboratory. ''Our goal within the next 20 years is 'bug to drug' in 24 hours,'' Fauci said. ''This would specifically meet the challenge of genetically engineered bioagents.'' The first Project BioShield contract Fauci awarded was to VaxGen, a California pharmaceutical company, for $878 million worth of shots of anthrax vaccine.
By 2005, so much money was going toward biothreat reduction and preparedness that more than 750 scientists sent a protest letter to the NIH. Their claim was that grants to study canonical biowar diseases '-- anthrax, plague, brucellosis, and tularemia, all exceptionally rare in the U.S. '-- had increased by a factor of 15 since 2001, whereas funds for the study of widespread ''normal'' diseases, of high public-health importance, had decreased.
Fauci was firm in his reply: ''The United States through its leaders made the decision that this money was going to be spent on biodefense,'' he said. ''We disagree with the notion that biodefense concerns are of 'low public-health significance.''‰''
In 2010, by one count, there were 249 BSL-3 laboratories and seven BSL-4 laboratories in the U.S., and more than 11,000 scientists and staffers were authorized to handle the ultralethal germs on the government's select pathogen list. And yet the sole bioterrorist in living memory who actually killed American citizens, according to the FBI '-- the man who sent the anthrax letters '-- turned out to be one of the government's own researchers. Bruce Ivins, an eccentric, suicidal laboratory scientist from Ohio who worked in vaccine development at Fort Detrick, allegedly wanted to boost the fear level so as to persuade the government to buy more of the patented, genetically engineered anthrax VaxGen vaccine, of which he was a co-inventor. (See David Willman's fascinating biography of Ivins, Mirage Man.) Fauci's staff at NIH funded Ivins's vaccine laboratory and gave $100 million to VaxGen to accelerate vaccine production. (The NIH's $878 million contract with VaxGen, however, was quietly canceled in 2006; Ivins, who was never charged, killed himself in 2008.)
''The whole incident amounted to a snake eating its own tail,'' wrote Wendy Orent in an August 2008 piece titled ''Our Own Worst Bioenemy'' in the Los Angeles Times. ''No ingenious biowarrior from Al Qaeda sent the lethal envelopes through the U.S. postal system. An American scientist did.'' What confirmed Ivins's guilt, according to the FBI, was that there was a genetic match between the anthrax used in the killings and the strain held at Fort Detrick.
After SARS appeared in 2003, Ralph Baric's laboratory moved up the NIH funding ladder. SARS was a ''dual use'' organism '-- a security threat and a zoonotic threat at the same time. In 2006, Baric wrote a long, fairly creepy paper on the threat of ''weaponizable'' viruses. Synthetic biology had made possible new kinds of viral ''weapons of mass disruption,'' he wrote, involving, for example, ''rapid production of numerous candidate bioweapons that can be simultaneously released,'' a scattershot terror tactic Baric called the '''‰'survival of the fittest' approach.''
Baric hoped to find a SARS vaccine, but he couldn't; he kept looking for it, year after year, supported by the NIH, long after the disease itself had been contained. It wasn't really gone, Baric believed. Like other epidemics that pop up and then disappear, as he told a university audience some years later, ''they don't go extinct. They are waiting to return.'' What do you do if you run a well-funded laboratory, an NIH ''center of excellence,'' and your emergent virus is no longer actually making people sick? You start squeezing it and twisting it into different shapes. Making it stand on its hind legs and quack like a duck, or a bat. Or breathe like a person.
Baric's safety record is good '-- although there was a minor mouse-bite incident in 2016, uncovered by ProPublica '-- and his motives are beyond reproach: ''Safe, universal, vaccine platforms are needed that can be tailored to new pathogens as they emerge, quickly tested for safety, and then strategically used to control new disease outbreaks in human populations,'' he wrote in a paper on public health. But the pioneering work he did over the past 15 years '-- generating tiny eager single-stranded flask monsters and pitting them against human cells, or bat cells, or gene-spliced somewhat-human cells, or monkey cells, or humanized mice '-- was not without risk, and it may have led others astray.
In 2006, for instance, Baric and his colleagues, hoping to come up with a ''vaccine strategy'' for SARS, produced noninfectious virus replicon particles (or VRPs) using the Venezuelan-equine-encephalitis virus (another American germ-warfare agent), which they fitted with various SARS spike proteins. Then, wearing Tyvek suits and two pairs of gloves each, and working in a biological safety cabinet in a BSL-3-certified laboratory, they cloned and grew recombinant versions of the original SARS virus in an incubator in a medium that held African-green-monkey cells. When they had grown enough virus, the scientists swapped out one kind of spike protein for a carefully chosen mutant, and they challenged their prototype vaccine with it in mice.
The scientists also tried their infectious SARS clones in something called an air-liquid interface, using a relatively new type of cell culture developed by Raymond Pickles of the University of North Carolina's Cystic Fibrosis Center. Pickles had perfected a method of emulating the traits of human airway tissue by cultivating cells taken from lung-disease patients '-- nurturing the culture over four to six weeks in such a way that the cells differentiated and developed a crop of tiny moving hairs, or cilia, on top and goblet cells within that produced real human mucus. In fact, before infecting these HAE (human airway epithelial) cells with a virus, the lab worker must sometimes rinse off some of the accumulated mucus, as if helping the lab-grown tissue to clear its throat. So Baric was exposing and adapting his engineered viruses to an extraordinarily true-to-life environment '-- the juicy, sticky, hairy inner surface of our breathing apparatus.
SARS-2 seems almost perfectly calibrated to grab and ransack our breathing cells and choke the life out of them. ''By the time SARS-CoV-2 was first detected in late 2019, it was already pre-adapted to human transmission,'' Alina Chan and her co-authors have written, whereas SARS, when it first appeared in 2003, underwent ''numerous adaptive mutations'' before settling down. Perhaps viral nature hit a bull's-eye of airborne infectivity, with almost no mutational drift, no period of accommodation and adjustment, or perhaps some lab worker somewhere, inspired by Baric's work with human airway tissue, took a spike protein that was specially groomed to colonize and thrive deep in the ciliated, mucosal tunnels of our inner core and cloned it onto some existing viral bat backbone. It could have happened in Wuhan, but '-- because anyone can now ''print out'' a fully infectious clone of any sequenced disease '-- it could also have happened at Fort Detrick, or in Texas, or in Italy, or in Rotterdam, or in Wisconsin, or in some other citadel of coronaviral inquiry. No conspiracy '-- just scientific ambition, and the urge to take exciting risks and make new things, and the fear of terrorism, and the fear of getting sick. Plus a whole lot of government money.
Project Bioshield began to fade by the end of the Bush administration, although the expensive high-containment laboratories, controversial preservers and incubators of past and future epidemics, remain. By 2010, some BioShield projects had dissolved into Obama's Predict program, which paid for laboratories and staff in 60 ''risky areas for spillover'' around the world. Jonna Mazet, a veterinary scientist from the University of California, Davis, was in charge of Predict, which was a component of USAID's ''Emerging Pandemic Threats'' program. Her far-flung teams collected samples from 164,000 animals and humans and claimed to have found ''almost 1,200 potentially zoonotic viruses, among them 160 novel coronaviruses, including multiple SARS- and MERS-like coronaviruses.'' The fruits of Predict's exotic harvest were studied and circulated in laboratories worldwide, and their genetic sequences became part of GenBank, the NIH's genome database, where any curious RNA wrangler anywhere could quickly synthesize snippets of code and test out a new disease on human cells.
Baric, Jonna Mazet, and Peter Daszak of EcoHealth worked together for years '-- and Daszak also routed Predict money to Shi Zhengli's bat-surveillance team in Wuhan through his nonprofit, mingling it with NIH money and money from the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency. In 2013, Mazet announced that Shi Zhengli's virus hunters, with Predict's support, had, for the first time, isolated and cultured a live SARS-like virus from bats and demonstrated that this virus could bind to the human ACE2, or ''angiotensin-converting enzyme 2,'' receptor, which Baric's laboratory had determined to be the sine qua non of human infectivity. ''This work shows that these viruses can directly infect humans and validates our assumption that we should be searching for viruses of pandemic potential before they spill over to people,'' Mazet said.
Daszak, for his part, seems to have viewed his bat quests as part of an epic, quasi-religious death match. In a paper from 2008, Daszak and a co-author described Bruegel's painting The Fall of the Rebel Angels and compared it to the contemporary human biological condition. The fallen angels could be seen as pathogenic organisms that had descended ''through an evolutionary (not spiritual) pathway that takes them to a netherworld where they can feed only on our genes, our cells, our flesh,'' Daszak wrote. ''Will we succumb to the multitudinous horde? Are we to be cast downward into chthonic chaos represented here by the heaped up gibbering phantasmagory against which we rail and struggle?''
There are, in fact, some helpful points of agreement between zoonoticists '-- those who believe in a natural origin of the SARS-2 virus '-- and those who believe that it probably came from a laboratory. Both sides agree, when pressed, that a lab origin can't be conclusively ruled out and a natural origin can't be ruled out either '-- because nature, after all, is capable of improbable, teleological-seeming achievements. Both sides also agree, for the most part, that the spillover event that began the human outbreak probably happened only once, or a few times, quite recently, and not many times over a longer period. They agree that bat virus RaTG13 (named for the Rinolophus affinus bat, from Tongguan, in 2013) is the closest match to the human virus that has yet been found, and that although the two viruses are very similar, the spike protein of the bat virus lacks the features the human spike protein possesses that enable it to work efficiently with human tissue.
Zoonoticists hold that SARS-2's crucial features '-- the furin cleavage site and the ACE2 receptor '-- are the result of a recombinant event involving a bat coronavirus (perhaps RaTG13 or a virus closely related to it) and another, unknown virus. Early on, researchers proposed that it could be a snake sold at the seafood market '-- a Chinese cobra or a banded krait '--but no: Snakes don't typically carry coronaviruses. Then there was a thought that the disease came from sick smuggled pangolins, because there existed a certain pangolin coronavirus that was, inexplicably, almost identical in its spike protein to the human coronavirus '-- but then, no: There turned out to be questions about the reliability of the genetic information in that diseased-pangolin data set, on top of which there were no pangolins for sale at the Wuhan market. Then a group from China's government veterinary laboratory at Harbin tried infecting beagles, pigs, chickens, ducks, ferrets, and cats with SARS-2 to see if they could be carriers. (Cats and ferrets got sick; pigs, ducks, and most dogs did not.)
In September, some scientists at the University of Michigan, led by Yang Zhang, reported that they had created a ''computational pipeline'' to screen nearly a hundred possible intermediate hosts, including the Sumatran orangutan, the Western gorilla, the Olive baboon, the crab-eating macaque, and the bonobo. All these primates were ''permissive'' to the SARS-2 coronavirus and should undergo ''further experimentational investigation,'' the scientists proposed.
Despite this wide-ranging effort, there is at the moment no animal host that zoonoticists can point to as the missing link. There's also no single, agreed-upon hypothesis to explain how the disease may have traveled from the bat reservoirs of Yunnan all the way to Wuhan, seven hours by train, without leaving any sick people behind and without infecting anyone along the way.
The zoonoticists say that we shouldn't find it troubling that virologists have been inserting and deleting furin cleavage sites and ACE2-receptor-binding domains in experimental viral spike proteins for years: The fact that virologists have been doing these things in laboratories, in advance of the pandemic, is to be taken as a sign of their prescience, not of their folly. But I keep returning to the basic, puzzling fact: This patchwork pathogen, which allegedly has evolved without human meddling, first came to notice in the only city in the world with a laboratory that was paid for years by the U.S. government to perform experiments on certain obscure and heretofore unpublicized strains of bat viruses '-- which bat viruses then turned out to be, out of all the organisms on the planet, the ones that are most closely related to the disease. What are the odds?
In July, I discovered a number of volunteer analysts who were doing a new kind of forensic, samizdat science, hunched over the letter code of the SARS-2 genome like scholars deciphering the cuneiform impressions in Linear B tablets. There were the anonymous authors of Project Evidence, on GitHub, who ''disavow all racism and violent attacks, including those which are aimed at Asian or Chinese people,'' and there was Yuri Deigin, a biotech entrepreneur from Canada, who wrote a massive, lucid paper on Medium, ''Lab-Made?,'' which illumined the mysteries of the spike protein. Jonathan Latham of the Bioscience Resource Project, with his co-author Allison Wilson, wrote two important papers: one a calm, unsparing overview of laboratory accidents and rash research and the other a close look at the small outbreak of an unexplained viral pneumonia in a bat-infested copper mine in 2012. I corresponded with Alina Chan (now the subject of a nicely turned piece in Boston magazine by Rowan Jacobsen) and with the pseudonymous Billy Bostickson, a tireless researcher whose Twitter photo is a cartoon of an injured experimental monkey, and Monali Rahalkar, of the Agharkar Research Institute in Pune, India, who wrote a paper with her husband, Rahul Bahulikar, that also sheds light on the story of the bat-guano-shoveling men whose virus was remarkably like SARS-2, except that it was not nearly as catching. I talked to Rossana Segreto, a molecular biologist at the University of Innsbruck, whose paper, ''Is Considering a Genetic-Manipulation Origin for SARS-CoV-2 a Conspiracy Theory That Must Be Censored?,'' co-authored with Yuri Deigin, was finally published in November under a milder title; it argued that SARS-2's most notable features, the furin site and the human ACE2-binding domain, were unlikely to have arisen simultaneously and ''might be the result of lab manipulation techniques such as site directed mutagenesis.'' Segreto is also the person who first established that a bat-virus fragment named BtCoV/4991, identified in 2013, was 100 percent identical to the closest known cousin to SARS-CoV-2, the bat virus RaTG13, thereby proving that the virus closest to the SARS-2-pandemic virus was linked back not to a bat cave but to a mine shaft, and that this same virus had been stored and worked on in the Wuhan Institute for years. This made possible the first big investigative piece on SARS-2's origins, in the Times of London, in July: ''Nobody can deny the bravery of scientists who risked their lives harvesting the highly infectious virus,'' the Times authors write. ''But did their courageous detective work lead inadvertently to a global disaster?''
In 2011, a tall, confident Dutch scientist, Ron Fouchier, using grant money from Fauci's group at NIH, created a mutant form of highly pathogenic avian influenza, H5N1, and passaged it ten times through ferrets in order to prove that he could ''force'' (his word) this potentially fatal disease to infect mammals, including humans, ''via aerosols or respiratory droplets.'' Fouchier said his findings indicated that these avian influenza viruses, thus forced, ''pose a risk of becoming pandemic in humans.''
This experiment was too much for some scientists: Why, out of a desire to prove that something extremely infectious could happen, would you make it happen? And why would the U.S. government feel compelled to pay for it to happen? Late in 2011, Marc Lipsitch of the Harvard School of Public Health got together with several other dismayed onlookers to ring the gong for caution. On January 8, 2012, the New York Times published a scorcher of an editorial, ''An Engineered Doomsday.'' ''We cannot say there would be no benefits at all from studying the virus,'' the Times said. ''But the consequences, should the virus escape, are too devastating to risk.''
These gain-of-function experiments were an important part of the NIH's approach to vaccine development, and Anthony Fauci was reluctant to stop funding them. He and Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health, along with Gary Nabel, NIAID director of vaccine research, published an opinion piece in the Washington Post in which they contended that the ferret flu experiments, and others like them, were ''a risk worth taking.'' ''Important information and insights can come from generating a potentially dangerous virus in the laboratory,'' they wrote; the work can ''help delineate the principles of virus transmission between species.'' The work was safe because the viruses were stored in a high-security lab, they believed, and the work was necessary because nature was always coming up with new threats. ''Nature is the worst bioterrorist,'' Fauci told a reporter. ''We know that through history.''
Soon afterward, there followed some distressing screwups in secure federal laboratories involving live anthrax, live smallpox, and live avian influenza. These got attention in the science press. Then Lipsitch's activists (calling themselves the Cambridge Working Group) sent around a strong statement on the perils of research with ''Potential Pandemic Pathogens,'' signed by more than a hundred scientists. The work might ''trigger outbreaks that would be difficult or impossible to control,'' the signers said. Fauci reconsidered, and the White House in 2014 announced that there would be a ''pause'' in the funding of new influenza, SARS, and MERS gain-of-function research.
Baric, in North Carolina, was not happy. He had a number of gain-of-function experiments with pathogenic viruses in progress. ''It took me ten seconds to realize that most of them were going to be affected,'' he told NPR. Baric and a former colleague from Vanderbilt University wrote a long letter to an NIH review board expressing their ''profound concerns.'' ''This decision will significantly inhibit our capacity to respond quickly and effectively to future outbreaks of SARS-like or MERS-like coronaviruses, which continue to circulate in bat populations and camels,'' they wrote. The funding ban was itself dangerous, they argued. ''Emerging coronaviruses in nature do not observe a mandated pause.''
Hoping to smooth over controversy by showing due diligence, the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity, founded in the BioShield era under President Bush, paid a consulting firm, Gryphon Scientific, to write a report on gain-of-function research, which by now was simply referred to as GoF. In chapter six of this thousand-page dissertation, published in April 2016, the consultants take up the question of coronaviruses. ''Increasing the transmissibility of the coronaviruses could significantly increase the chance of a global pandemic due to a laboratory accident,'' they wrote.
The Cambridge Working Group continued to write letters of protest and plead for restraint and sanity. Steven Salzberg, a professor of biomedical engineering at Johns Hopkins, said, ''We have enough problems simply keeping up with the current flu outbreaks '-- and now with Ebola '-- without scientists creating incredibly deadly new viruses that might accidentally escape their labs.'' David Relman of Stanford Medical School said, ''It is unethical to place so many members of the public at risk and then consult only scientists '-- or, even worse, just a small subset of scientists '-- and exclude others from the decision-making and oversight process.'' Richard Ebright wrote that creating and evaluating new threats very seldom increases security: ''Doing so in biology '-- where the number of potential threats is nearly infinite, and where the asymmetry between the ease of creating threats and the difficulty of addressing threats is nearly absolute '-- is especially counterproductive.'' Lynn Klotz wrote, ''Awful as a pandemic brought on by the escape of a variant H5N1 virus might be, it is SARS that now presents the greatest risk. The worry is less about recurrence of a natural SARS outbreak than of yet another escape from a laboratory researching it to help protect against a natural outbreak.'' Marc Lipsitch argued that gain-of-function experiments can mislead, ''resulting in worse not better decisions,'' and that the entire gain-of-function debate as overseen by the NIH was heavily weighted in favor of scientific insiders and ''distinctly unwelcoming of public participation.''
Nariyoshi Shinomiya, a professor of physiology and nano-medicine at the National Defense Medical College in Japan, offered this warning: ''Similar to nuclear or chemical weapons there is no going back once we get a thing in our hands.''
But in the end, Baric was allowed to proceed with his experiments, and the research papers that resulted, showered with money, became a sort of Anarchist's Cookbook for the rest of the scientific world. In November 2015, Baric and colleagues published a collaboration paper with Shi Zhengli titled ''A SARS-like Cluster of Circulating Bat Coronaviruses Shows Potential for Human Emergence.'' Into a human SARS virus that they had adapted so that it would work in mice, Baric and Shi et al. inserted the spike protein of a bat virus, SHC014, discovered by Shi in southern China. They dabbed the mice nasally with virus and waited, looking for signs of sickness: ''hunching, ruffled fur.'' They also infected human airway cells with the mouse-adapted bat-spike-in-a-human-virus backbone. In both mice and human airway cells, the chimeric virus caused a ''robust infection.''
This proved, Baric and Shi believed, that you did not need civets or other intermediate hosts in order for bats to cause an epidemic in humans and that therefore all the SARS-like viruses circulating in bat populations ''may pose a future threat.'' Peter Daszak, who had used Predict funds to pay Shi for her work on the paper, was impressed by this conclusion; the findings, he said, ''move this virus from a candidate emerging pathogen to a clear and present danger.''
Richard Ebright was trenchantly unenthusiastic. ''The only impact of this work,'' he said, ''is the creation, in a lab, of a new, non-natural risk.''
Early in 2016, Baric and Shi again collaborated. Shi sent Baric a fresh bat virus spike protein, and Baric inserted it into the backbone of a human SARS virus and then used that infectious clone to attack human airway cells. ''The virus readily and efficiently replicated in cultured human airway tissues, suggesting an ability to potentially jump directly to humans,'' reported the UNC's website. This time, they also used the bat-human hybrid virus to infect transgenic humanized mice that grew human ACE2 protein. The mice, young and old, lost weight and died, proving, again, that this particular bat virus was potentially ''poised to emerge in human populations.'' It was ''an ongoing threat,'' Baric wrote. But was it? Civets and camels that are exposed to a lot of bat-guano dust may be an ongoing threat and a manageable one. But the bats themselves just want to hang in their caves and not be bothered by frowning sightseers in spacesuits who want to poke Q-tips in their bottoms. This 2016 ''poised for human emergence'' paper was supported by eight different NIH grants. In 2015, Baric's lab received $8.3 million from the NIH; in 2016, it received $10.5 million.
Gain-of-function research came roaring back under Trump and Fauci. ''The National Institutes of Health will again fund research that makes viruses more dangerous,'' said an article in Nature in December 2017. Carrie Wolinetz of the NIH's office of science policy defended the decision. ''These experiments will help us get ahead of viruses that are already out there and pose a real and present danger to human health,'' she told The Lancet. The NIH, Wolinetz said, was committed to a leadership role with gain-of-function research internationally. ''If we are pursuing this research in an active way, we will be much better positioned to develop protection and countermeasures should something bad happen in another country.''
A reporter asked Marc Lipsitch what he thought of the resumption of NIH funding. Gain-of-function experiments ''have done almost nothing to improve our preparedness for pandemics,'' he said, ''yet they risked creating an accidental pandemic.''
In April, four months into the coronavirus emergency, a deputy director at the NIH wrote an email to EcoHealth Alliance. ''You are instructed to cease providing any funds to Wuhan Institute of Virology,'' it said. In response, Daszak and the chief scientific officer of New England Biolabs (a company that sells seamless gene-splicing products to laboratories, among other things) got 77 Nobel Prize winners to sign a statement saying that the cancellation deprived the ''nation and the world of highly regarded science that could help control one of the greatest health crises in modern history and those that may arise in the future.'' Later, as a condition of further funding, the NIH wrote to say it wanted Daszak to arrange an outside inspection of the Wuhan lab and to procure from Wuhan's scientists a sample of whatever they'd used to sequence the SARS-2 virus. Daszak was outraged (''I am not trained as a private detective''), and again he fought back. He was reluctant to give up his own secrets, too. ''Conspiracy-theory outlets and politically motivated organizations have made Freedom of Information Act requests on our grants and all of our letters and emails to the NIH,'' he told Nature. ''We don't think it's fair that we should have to reveal everything we do.''
But Daszak has survived '-- even prospered. Recently, The Lancet made him the lead investigator in its inquiry into the origins of the pandemic, and the World Health Organization named him to its ten-person origins investigation. (''We're still close enough to the origin to really find out more details about where it has come from,'' Daszak told Nature.)
The NIH has also set up an ambitious new international program, called CREID, which stands for Centers for Research in Emerging Infectious Diseases, and it has put Daszak's EcoHealth in charge of trapping animals and looking for obscure bat viruses in Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand. Baric is one of Daszak's partners in CREID. The virus hunting and collecting, which Richard Ebright likens to ''looking for a gas leak with a lighted match,'' will continue and widen with U.S. funding. ''We're going to work in remote parts of Malaysia and Thailand to get to the front line of where the next pandemic is going to start,'' Daszak told NPR.
In May, an interviewer from the People's Pharmacy website asked Baric if he had any thoughts on whether the coronavirus began with a natural bat-to-human transfer. ''Or was there something a little bit more, perhaps, insidious involved?''
''Well, of course the answers to those questions are in China,'' Baric replied. ''Exactly how they work in that facility is something that would be very difficult for a Westerner to know,'' he said. ''The main problems that the Institute of Virology has is that the outbreak occurred in close proximity to that Institute. That Institute has in essence the best collection of virologists in the world that have gone out and sought out, and isolated, and sampled bat species throughout Southeast Asia. So they have a very large collection of viruses in their laboratory. And so it's '-- you know '-- proximity is a problem. It's a problem.''
Over the course of the fall, and especially after the election muffled Donald Trump's influence over the country's public-health apparatus, that proximity problem '-- and the uncomfortable questions of origins it raised '-- began to grow somewhat more discussable. The BBC, Le Monde, and Italy's RAI have all recently taken seriously the scientific possibility of a lab leak. In late October, the World Health Organization convened the first meeting of its second inquiry into the origins of the disease. The WHO's effort is perhaps the world's best chance to satisfy its curiosity about goings-on at the Wuhan Institute of Virology and at the Wuhan CDC's virus lab near the Wuhan seafood market. But, as the New York Times has reported, the WHO's information gathering has been hindered by Chinese secretiveness since February, when an initial investigative team sent to Beijing was told its members' access to scientists would be restricted and that it couldn't visit the seafood market, then considered a hub of the pandemic.
When a BBC video team tried to inspect the Yunnan mine shaft, they found the road to the mine blocked by a strategically parked truck that had ''broken down'' shortly before they arrived. Reporter John Sudworth asked Daszak, one of the ten members of the second WHO investigative team, whether he would push for access to the Wuhan Institute of Virology. ''That's not my job to do that,'' Daszak replied.
In November, David Relman, the Stanford microbiologist, one of the most thoughtful of the voices warning against gain-of-function research, published a paper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on the urgent need to unravel the origins of COVID-19. ''If SARS-CoV-2 escaped from a lab to cause the pandemic,'' he wrote, ''it will become critical to understand the chain of events and prevent this from happening again.'' Conflicts of interest by researchers and administrators will need to be addressed, Relman wrote; to reach the truth, the investigation must be transparent, international, and, as much as possible, unpolitical. ''A more complete understanding of the origins of COVID-19 clearly serves the interests of every person in every country on this planet.''
''The world is sitting on a precedent-setting decision right now,'' wrote Alina Chan on December 8. ''It is unclear if SARS2 is 100 percent natural or emerged due to lab/research activities. If we walk away from this, demonstrating that we cannot effectively investigate its origins, it will pave the way for future COVIDS.''
Just before this issue of New York went to press, I reached Ralph Baric by phone and asked him where he now believed SARS-2 came from. (Anthony Fauci, Shi Zhengli, and Peter Daszak didn't respond to emails, and Kristian Andersen said he was busy with other things.) Baric said he still thought the virus came from bats in southern China, perhaps directly, or possibly via an intermediate host, although the smuggled pangolins, in his view, were a red herring. The disease evolved in humans over time without being noticed, he suspected, becoming gradually more infectious, and eventually a person carried it to Wuhan ''and the pandemic took off.'' Then he said, ''Can you rule out a laboratory escape? The answer in this case is probably not.''
So how did we actually get this disease?
Here's what I think happened. In April 2012, in a copper mine in Mojiang, China, three men were given an awful job '-- they were told to shovel bat guano out of a mine shaft. They went to work and shoveled guano for seven hours a day in the confined, insufficiently ventilated space of the mine shaft, and by the end of the week, they were sick with a viral pneumonia of unknown etiology. Three more, younger shovelers were hired to replace the ones who were out sick.
The viral load in their lungs was so huge, because of all the guano dust, that their lungs became a kind of accelerated laboratory passaging experiment, as Jonathan Latham and Allison Wilson have written, forcing the virus to switch its allegiance from bats to humans. SARS experts were consulted, and the disease was judged to be SARS-like but not SARS. It was something new. (Shi Zhengli told Scientific American that the guano shovelers had died of a fungal disease, but, as Monali Rahalkar pointed out, they were treated with antivirals, and their symptoms were consistent with viral pneumonia with attendant secondary fungal infections.)
Although it was a severe disease, and in the end three of the shovelers died, there was no resultant epidemic. It was actually a case of industrial overexposure to an infectious substance '-- what we might call a massive OSHA violation. The bat disease that the men encountered wasn't necessarily all that dangerous except in an environment of immunosuppressive overload.
Peter Daszak and Shi Zhengli were interested, of course, because this unidentified coronavirus disease involved bats and people. Of the fragmentary bits of virus Shi retrieved from the mine shaft, one was SARS-like, and Shi sequenced it and called it BtCoV/4991 and published a paper about it. Several times '-- in 2016 and 2018 and 2019 '-- this most interesting sample, a portion of what we now know as RaTG13, was taken out of the freezers in Shi's lab and worked on in undisclosed ways. (Peter Daszak claims that these samples have disintegrated and can't be validated or studied.) Samples of the nameless human disease also traveled back to the Wuhan Institute of Virology '-- few specifics about these valuable specimens have been released by Chinese sources, however.
This is the period in the story that demands a very close investigation, when chimeric assemblages may have been created and serially passaged, using BtCoV/4991, a.k.a. RaTG13, and other bat viruses, perhaps along with forms of the human virus. It's when Shi and Baric both published papers that were about what happened when you hot-swapped mutant spike proteins between bat viruses and human viruses.
The link, via the renamed sample BtCoV/4991, to the copper mine is of exceptional importance because of the one huge difference between the unnamed guano shovelers' virus and the SARS-2 virus that is now ravaging, for example, California: transmissibility. Airborne human-to-human transmissibility '-- the kind of thing that gain-of-functioneers like Ron Fouchier and Ralph Baric were aiming at, in order to demonstrate what Baric called ''lurking threats'' '-- is COVID-19's crucial distinguishing feature. If six men had gotten extremely sick with COVID-19 back in 2012 in southern China, doctors and nurses in the hospital where they lay dying would likely have gotten sick as well. There might have been hundreds or thousands of cases. Instead, only the shovelers themselves, who had breathed a heavy concentration of guano dust for days, got it.
The existence of bat virus RaTG13 is therefore not necessarily evidence of a natural bat origin. In fact, it seems to me to imply the opposite: New functional components may have been overlaid onto or inserted into the RaTG13 genome, new Tinkertoy intermolecular manipulations, especially to its spike protein, which have the effect of making it unprecedentedly infectious in human airways.
This is where the uniquely peculiar furin insert and/or the human-tuned ACE2-receptor-binding domain may come in '-- although it's also possible that either of these elements could have evolved as part of some multistep zoonotic process. But in the climate of gonzo laboratory experimentation, at a time when all sorts of tweaked variants and amped-up substitutions were being tested on cell cultures and in the lungs of humanized mice and other experimental animals, isn't it possible that somebody in Wuhan took the virus that had been isolated from human samples, or the RaTG13 bat virus sequence, or both (or other viruses from that same mine shaft that Shi Zhengli has recently mentioned in passing), and used them to create a challenge disease for vaccine research '-- a chopped-and-channeled version of RaTG13 or the miners' virus that included elements that would make it thrive and even rampage in people? And then what if, during an experiment one afternoon, this new, virulent, human-infecting, furin-ready virus got out?
For more than 15 years, coronavirologists strove to prove that the threat of SARS was ever present and must be defended against, and they proved it by showing how they could doctor the viruses they stored in order to force them to jump species and go directly from bats to humans. More and more bat viruses came in from the field teams, and they were sequenced and synthesized and ''rewired,'' to use a term that Baric likes. In this international potluck supper of genetic cookery, hundreds of new variant diseases were invented and stored. And then one day, perhaps, somebody messed up. It's at least a reasonable, ''parsimonious'' explanation of what might have happened.
This may be the great scientific meta-experiment of the 21st century. Could a world full of scientists do all kinds of reckless recombinant things with viral diseases for many years and successfully avoid a serious outbreak? The hypothesis was that, yes, it was doable. The risk was worth taking. There would be no pandemic.
I hope the vaccine works.
*This article appears in the January 4, 2021, issue of New York Magazine. Subscribe Now!
One Great Story: A Nightly Newsletter for the Best of New YorkThe one story you shouldn't miss today, selected by New York's editors.
By submitting your email, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Notice and to receive email correspondence from us. The Lab-Leak Hypothesis georgia
Hope for Democrats in Very Close Race: Georgia Election Updates
By Intelligencer Staff
With more than 75 percent of returns in, the race remains tight, but Kelly Loeffler is in danger.
8:31 p.m.intelligencer chats
intelligencer chats
Where Things Stand in Georgia
By Gabriel Debenedetti and Benjamin Hart
Democrats are guardedly optimistic as vote-counting proceeds at a faster pace than in November.
Police Officer Who Shot Jacob Blake Will Not Be Charged
By Matt Stieb
Kenosha, Wisconsin DA determined that the officer could reasonably argue self-defense in front of a jury.
How on Earth Are They Going to Pull Off the Olympics?
By Will Leitch
Almost a year after their postponement, the pandemic is still raging. Maybe giving up altogether wouldn't be such a bad thing.
Pennsylvania Republicans Just Refused to Seat a Democratic Lawmaker
By Sarah Jones
The GOP's problem with democracy is intensifying.
How New York Plans to Fix Its Sluggish Vaccine Rollout
By Charlotte Klein
Officials are attempting to ramp up the pace by opening pop-up clinics and clearing a wider range of health care workers for vaccination.
New COVID Strain Spreading Across U.S.: What We Know
By Matt Stieb
The new strain of the virus has forced the United Kingdom back into lockdown and is popping up across the United States and dozens of other countries.
3:43 p.m.georgia senate runoffs
georgia senate runoffs
4 Big Questions About Post-Trump Politics That the Georgia Runoffs May Answer
By Eric Levitz
Today's election will provide our first clues about what American politics will look like in the post-Trump era.
Washington, D.C., Targets February 1 to Vaccinate Restaurant Workers
By Chris Crowley
Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, food-industry workers have been among those who have borne the brunt of the pandemic.
Where in the World Is Jack Ma?
By Eve Peyser
One of China's richest men hasn't been seen or heard from since he criticized Beijing in a speech two months ago.
Trump Makes Georgia Senate Runoffs All About Himself
By Ed Kilgore
Narcissistic to the very end, Trump has ensured that whatever happens in Georgia, the heaviest consequences will involve his own political future.
12:29 p.m.contested election
contested election
How the January 6 Electoral-Vote Count Will Work
By Ed Kilgore
It will be a tedious day full of bogus election-fraud claims, placing Pence in a tight spot '-- but Congress will affirm Biden's win in the end.
12:01 p.m.
Bad trends in New York
@NYGovCuomo, the latest positive testing rate for
#COVID19 in New York State was 8.31%. 149 people lost their lives to the virus in the last 24 hours. And there are now 8,590 people hospitalized, a sizable increase from the day before.
'--@ZackFinkNews 11:12 a.m.
The Vice President has the power to reject fraudulently chosen electors.
'--@realDonaldTrump 10:09 a.m.the group portrait
the group portrait
The Beleaguered Chroniclers of the Trump White House
By Olivia Nuzzi
Four years of history, day after day after day.
7:00 a.m.the national interest
the national interest
Unlearning an Answer
By Jonathan Chait
Just as charter schools have begun to deliver extraordinary results, their political support among Democrats has collapsed. What will Biden do?
1:10 a.m.georgia senate runoffs
georgia senate runoffs
The Strangest Moments From the Last Meaningful Trump Rally
By Matt Stieb
In a speech to boost support for Republican candidates in Georgia, Trump frequently went after other GOP figures for not supporting his coup attempt.
that's rich
Whole Foods CEO to America: You Don't Need Health Care, Just Eat Better
By Sarah Jones
There's a pandemic, but the wealthy can afford to pretend it isn't happening.
England Forced Into Lockdown by Spike of New COVID Strain
By Matt Stieb
The National Health Service is in danger of being overrun by a surge of patients coming with a tsunami of new cases.
House GOP Admits It Opposes Democracy, Not Voter Fraud
By Eric Levitz
House Republicans claimed that they object to affirming Biden's victory out of concern for voter fraud. A colleague just called their bluff.
1/4/2021intelligencer chats
intelligencer chats
Why Georgia Republicans Are So Worried About Trump's Phone Call
By Gabriel Debenedetti and Benjamin Hart
As the special Senate elections approach, the president is making things more difficult for Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue.
The UK locks down again
'--@StevenTDennis all the answers
A New Yorker's Guide to Cannabis Legalization in New Jersey
By Kayla Levy
When will you be able to smoke in New Jersey? Where, specifically? And what does this mean for legalization in New York?
Mike Lee also not down with overturning the election
Punchbowl reports: Republican Sen. Mike Lee is circulating a letter opposing the Electoral College challenge.
'--@kylegriffin1 1/4/2021
A major diplomatic breakthrough in the Middle East
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) '-- Kuwait says Saudi Arabia to lift embargo on Qatar, opening its air and land borders in first steps to end Gulf crisis.
'--@JonLemire 1/4/2021the national interest
the national interest
The Trump Era Could Only End in a Final Attack on Democracy
By Jonathan Chait
Four years of mainstream Republican denial have come crashing down.
silicon valley
Google Workers Are Unionizing
By Sarah Jones
The news follows years of bad press for the tech giant.
Ohio Senator Rob Portman not down with overturning the election
Portman, up In '22, ''swearing to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States. I plan on honoring that oath by supporting the state certifications and the will of the people. I will vote to certify in accordance with my duty under the Constitution.''
'--@burgessev 1/4/2021
DC braces for January 6
NEW: DC Police chief at a briefing with Mayor Bowser on Jan. 5-6 protests:
''We have received some information that there are individuals intent on bringing firearms into our city. That just will not be tolerated.''
'--@kyledcheney 1/4/2021contested election
contested election
Tom Cotton Breaks With Trump on Coup Attempt in Congress
By Ed Kilgore
The Arkansan split with other presidential wannabes in warning that Trump is undermining an Electoral College that has served Republicans well.
Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter won't attend Biden's inauguration
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 23:28
ATLANTA (AP) '-- Former President Jimmy Carter and former first lady Rosalynn Carter will not attend President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration. It marks the first time the couple, 96 and 93, will have missed the ceremonies since Carter was sworn in as the 39th president in 1977.
A spokeswoman at The Carter Center in Atlanta said the Carters have sent Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris their ''best wishes'' and ''look forward to a successful administration.''
Biden was a young Delaware senator and Carter ally during the Georgian's term in the White House.
The Carters have spent the coronavirus pandemic mostly at their home in Plains, Georgia, where both were raised and where they returned after leaving the White House in 1981.
Carter, a Democrat, became the longest-lived American president in March 2019, surpassing former President George H.W. Bush, who died the previous November. Carter survived a melanoma diagnosis that spread to his brain in 2015. He has since had several falls and hip replacement surgery. He no longer teaches Sunday School at Maranatha Baptist Church in Plains, as he had for decades, but still participates in church activities via video amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Carter was the first former president to confirm his plans to attend President Donald Trump's inauguration in 2017. The Carters were seated on the aisle, next to former President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton, and former President George W. Bush and Laura Bush. The elder Bush was the lone former president at the time who did not attend Trump's inauguration. The Carters did travel to Washington for the elder Bush's funeral.
Kamala Harris repeatedly told 'fweedom' story now facing plagiarism accusations | Fox News
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 22:06
Published January 05, 2021
Harris also detailed her younger self demanding 'Fweedom!' in her 2019 bookVice President-elect Kamala Harris has previously told the anecdote about her younger self crying out for "Fweedom!" '-- which has sparked accusations of plagiarism '-- in her books.
"My mother used to laugh when she told the story about a time I was fussing as a toddler: She leaned down to me and asked, 'Kamala, what's wrong? What do you want?' And I wailed back, 'Fweedom,'" Harris wrote in her 2010 book "Smart on Crime."
Harris also detailed her younger self demanding "Fweedom!" in her 2019 book "The Truths We Hold: An American Journey."
Harris apparently appropriated an anecdote first told by civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr. when she was interviewed by Elle Magazine for a feature that was published in October, at the height of the 2020 presidential election race.
Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, accompanied by her husband Doug Emhoff, talks to the media after dropping off Toys for Tots items at a District of Columbia Fire House, Tuesday Dec. 22, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
Harris has repeatedly boasted of her parents' involvement in the civil rights movement of the 1960s. In the Elle interview, she recalled accompanying them to marches as a toddler in a stroller.
"Senator Kamala Harris started her life's work young," writer Ashley C. Ford led off the piece. "She laughs from her gut, the way you would with family, as she remembers being wheeled through an Oakland, California, civil rights march in a stroller with no straps with her parents and her uncle. At some point, she fell from the stroller ... and the adults, caught up in the rapture of protest, just kept on marching. By the time they noticed little Kamala was gone and doubled back, she was understandably upset."
"My mother tells the story about how I'm fussing," Harris told the magazine. "And she's like, 'Baby, what do you want? What do you need?' And I just looked at her and I said, 'Fweedom.'"
After the interview resurfaced Monday, Twitter user @EngelsFreddie and Andray Domise, contributing editor of the Canadian publication Maclean's, noted that Harris' story resembled one told by King in a 1965 interview published in Playboy.
"I will never forget a moment in Birmingham when a White policeman accosted a little Negro girl, seven or eight years old, who was walking in a demonstration with her mother," King said at the time. "'What do you want?' the policeman asked her gruffly, and the little girl looked at him straight in the eye and answered, 'Fee-dom.' She couldn't even pronounce it, but she knew. It was beautiful! Many times when I have been in sorely trying situations, the memory of that little one has come into my mind, and has buoyed me."
Fox News' Joseph A. Wulfsohn contributed to this report.
UK scientists worry vaccines may not protect against ...
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 17:00
* UK says worried about S.African variant
* Mutations include extensive alterations to spike protein
* Changes could lead to "escape from immune protection"
* Vaccine makers are testing shots against new variants (Recasts with quotes, details from scientists)
LONDON, Jan 4 (Reuters) - UK scientists expressed concern on Monday that COVID-19 vaccines being rolled out in Britain may not be able to protect against a new variant of the coronavirus that emerged in South Africa and has spread internationally.
Both Britain and South Africa have detected new, more transmissible variants of the COVID-19-causing virus in recent weeks that have driven a surge in cases. British Health Secretary Matt Hancock said on Monday he was now very worried about the variant identified in South Africa.
Simon Clarke, an associate professor in cellular microbiology at the University of Reading, said that while both variants had some new features in common, the one found in South Africa "has a number additional mutations ... which are concerning".
He said these included more extensive alterations to a key part of the virus known as the spike protein - which the virus uses to infect human cells - and "may make the virus less susceptible to the immune response triggered by the vaccines".
Lawrence Young, a virologist and professor of molecular oncology at Warwick University, also noted that the South African variant has "multiple spike mutations".
"The accumulation of more spike mutations in the South African variant are more of a concern and could lead to some escape from immune protection," he said.
Scientists including BioNTech CEO Ugur Sahin and John Bell, Regius Professor of Medicine at the University of Oxford, have said they are testing the vaccines against the new variants and say they could make any required tweaks in around six weeks.
Public Health England said there was currently no evidence to suggest COVID-19 vaccines would not protect against the mutated virus variants. Britain's health ministry did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The world's richest countries have started vaccinating their populations to safeguard against a disease that has killed 1.8 million people and crushed the global economy.
There are currently 60 vaccine candidates in trials, including those already being rolled out from AstraZeneca and Oxford, Pfizer and BioNTech, Moderna, Russia's Sputnik V and China's Sinopharm .
Scientists say both the South African and UK variants are associated with a higher viral load, meaning a greater concentration of virus particles in patients' bodies, possibly contributing to increased transmission.
Oxford's Bell, who advises the UK government's vaccine task force, said on Sunday he thought vaccines would work on the British variant but said there was a "big question mark" as to whether they would work on the South African variant.
BioNTech's Sahin told Germany' Spiegel in an interview published on Friday that their vaccine, which uses messenger RNA to instruct the human immune system to fight the virus, should be able to protect against the UK variant.
"We are testing whether our vaccine can also neutralise this variant and will soon know more," he said. (Reporting by Kate Holton, Kate Kelland, Guy Faulconbridge and Alistair Smout; Editing by Mike Collett-White)
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
LeBron James' voting rights group converting arenas into polling places
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 14:43
ATLANTA (AP) '-- If basketball icon LeBron James gets his way, NBA arenas and other sports venues around the country will be mega polling sites for the November general election.
James and his voting rights group, formed this spring with other black athletes and entertainers, are joining with other professional basketball leaders and Michigan's top elections official to push for mega voting sites to accommodate in-person balloting amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
More Than A Vote, the James organization dedicated to maximizing Black turnout in November, shared its plans with The Associated Press on Wednesday after the Detroit Pistons became the second NBA franchise to announce plans to use its arena for voting later this year. In Georgia, Fulton County elections officials this week approved the Atlanta Hawks' proposal to use State Farm Arena as a polling site. Plans call for the arena to serve as a countywide early voting site ahead of Election Day.
The idea, which comes after Kentucky used large facilities in its June 23 primary, is to use large spaces that allow for in-person voting while still enforcing social distancing guidelines. It also underscores the attention on the mechanics of voting amid the pandemic, with the intensity already reflected in both President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden warning that state and local officials have the power to ''corrupt'' the election.
Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson called her ''partnership'' with the Pistons an ''blueprint for other teams and leagues seeking to advance our common goal of protecting access to the vote for all.''
Lloyd Pierce, head coach of the Atlanta Hawks, said the arrangement in his city ensures ''high turnout'' in a safe environment. Benson, Pierce and David Fizdale, former New York Knicks head coach, will advise NBA franchises and arena management entities around the country on how to replicate the existing deals.
The Milwaukee Bucks also confirmed they are willing to use their home arena as a voting site in the most populous city in the key battleground of Wisconsin.
The coordinated push is a turnabout, of sorts, in the often-partisan jousting over voting procedures.
Some Democrats panned Kentucky elections officials for limiting in-person June primary voting in the state's two most populous counties to Louisville's Exposition Center and the University of Kentucky football stadium in Lexington. Voting rights advocates argued in federal court that the plan, part of culling voting sites statewide amid coronavirus concerns, would harm minority voters.
A federal judge rejected their claims, and voting proceeded without the melee that some advocates had forecast.
Now, Benson, a Democrat, is pushing the arena model not as an example of potential voter suppression, but a way to fight it. ''One of our greatest challenges in protecting voters' access to democracy this November is identifying accessible locations where citizens can safely vote in person,'' she said.
Amid COVID, that could outweigh potential logistical difficulties of large sites. Lines for such venues can still be long '-- just as with normal polling locations '-- as was seen in Lexington at some points on primary day. Voters also could face traffic jams or public transit hiccups given the number of people involved. General elections also have considerably larger turnout than primaries.
Nonetheless, there's a growing bipartisan push for large-venue voting. NFL executive Scott Pioli last week presented the National Association of Secretaries of State a plan for widespread use of professional and college sports facilities.
James' group is officially nonpartisan. But the NBA star has been open about its emphasis on the Black community, where Trump faces intense opposition for his white identity politics. James has not endorsed Biden, but he endorsed Hillary Clinton over Trump in 2016.
In Milwaukee, meanwhile, the Bucks owners, the Lasry family, are major Democratic Party donors. Bucks executive Alex Lasry helped lead the effort that landed the Democratic National Convention in the city.
'Double Consciousness and the Veil' by W.E.B. Du Bois: Summary and Analysis - Penlighten
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 14:42
W.E.B. Du Bois' most famous work, his treatise 'The Souls of Black Folk', was a seminal work in the African-American literature. The two terms he incessantly used 'double consciousness' and the 'veil' couldn't have been put in a better set of words to explain his situation and what he felt about belonging to a looked-down-upon race. Our endeavor is to put forth a summary and analysis of W.E.B. Du Bois' 'Double Consciousness and the Veil'.
History repeats the injustice!This is the 21st century we are living in, so to say! An unarmed 18-year-old African-American was gunned down by a police officer on August 9, 2014, in Ferguson city in Missouri, United States. The final verdict of this case was on November 24, 2014, with the guilty officer not being indicted. This horrible occurrence has caused many riots and protests in the city, and has left a mourning family crying for justice for their departed teenager.
'Double Consciousness' and the 'Veil' are terms used by William Edward Burghardt (W.E.B.) Du Bois in his classic work, 'The Souls of the Black Folk'. This book contains heart-touching essays on the black race, based on his African-American life experiences. It is known as an influential piece of work in the history of African-American literature. Apart from this, the book is acknowledged as one of the early works in sociology and holds an important place in social science.
SummaryIntroductionIn 'The Souls of the Black Folk', published in 1903, W.E.B. Du Bois writes about the struggle of the African-Americans that has been there since the time of slavery and continues to endure even after emancipation. He believes that one question most of his white men want to ask the black people is ''How does it feel to be a problem?''. This although is never asked directly, but is stated in their actions and made known by what they say.
The RealizationW.E.B. Du Bois was made to realize that he was the problem, when he was studying in an elementary school in Massachusetts. As a part of their class project, they were supposed to exchange visiting cards. A girl who was newly admitted to the school refused to give him one, and that is when he understood the difference of his being. As a result of this incident, he decided to educate himself far more than any of his white mates and prove that his existence mattered.
Double Consciousness and the VeilInsightfully, W.E.B. Du Bois used the terms 'double consciousness' and the 'veil' describing the double lives a black has to live in order to survive in his country'•the life of a black, and the life of an American. He cites that a Negro is 'sort of a seventh son born with a veil', seeing himself through the eyes of the whites. He also calls the veil a gift, making the black stronger day by day, striving 'to merge his double self into a better and truer self'. A black struggles every day to claim his identity among a majority of whites. He doesn't wish to change America, and neither does he want to change himself to an American. All he wishes is to be both, a black and an American, to be called even, and given equal dignity and respect from his fellow countrymen.
AnalysisThe Story of W.E.B. Du BoisThe struggle of an African-American boy, who was as innocent as any other white kid, to understand what was really going on around him, had his first encounter with the truth about 'racism' that a white kid of his age had revealed to him. W.E.B. Du Bois was in school when in a card exchanging class project, a new girl student of his class refused to give him one, because of the color of his skin. He realized there was a problem, and it dawned upon him at that very moment, that the problem was nothing else other than himself. He was the problem. His existence in a country of whites was a problem, and so was that of the realm of African-Americans living in America. Meandering around the actual point, the whites would insinuate into the minds of every black, how downtrodden they were.
A young W.E.B. Du Bois, with all the questions about his prejudiced permanence, was adamant on liberating himself and his people. He decided not to be oppressed by this imbecile discrimination based on the color of a man, and take further education, proving that it is justice in receiving equal rights as a citizen of America.
Meaning of the VeilW.E.B. Du Bois writes about seeing the world from under the ''veil'', a misfortune every black is born with. The veil is a metaphor used for the restricted frame of mind that always thinks from within the walls of injustice. It is like an imaginary barrier that surrounds a black and separates him from the white'•the barrier that is made by the whites for the blacks. Americans run circles around them making them feel guilty of faults that don't exist. They question their quiet existence. They make them live with the sense of dwelling under the power of someone else.
Meaning of Double ConsciousnessContemplating themselves through the eyes of others, they are forced to live double lives'•the life of a black and as an American, both of which are not liberal to them. Hence, the term 'double consciousness'. They know what the Americans feel about them, and everything even remotely related to them. But the whites know not what racism is. They have never experienced it after all. They have never felt what it is to be suppressed by people of their own country. They have never felt that pain or misery, that the blacks have been breathing like air since their birth.
The question arises that after two centuries of slavery and 40 years of emancipation, why is there still so much injustice in the 20th century? The answer lies in this sentence by W.E.B. Du Bois: ''Herein lie buried many things which if read with patience may show the strange meaning of being black here in the dawning of the Twentieth Century. This meaning is not without interest to you, Gentle Reader; for the problem of the Twentieth Century is the problem of the color-line.''
But as readers, we wonder if the hearts of this era have still not been able to accept the difference in color. Behind that skin is the same race'•mankind. Is it so hard to understand?
Mike Tyson had to stop his daughter from knocking out Boosie Badazz
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 14:41
Mike Tyson (L) and Boosie Badazz. (Screen captures via YouTube)
Apparently, Mike Tyson isn't the only punching powerhouse in the family '' he had to stop his daughter from knocking out a transphobic rapper who appeared on his podcast.
Indeed, Tyson's daughter flew from New York City to Los Angeles, California, to confront Boosie Badazz over his slew of transphobic statements against Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union's trans daughter, he told Zab Judah on VLAD TV.
He explained that she ''wanted to physically grab'' him during the podcast. Tyson, 54, ended up roasting Badazz himself during the show which he did in a very, er, let's just say, Mike Tyson kinda way.
Wade, a retired NBA player, and Union, an actor, have been vocally supportive and accepting of their trans daughter Zaya since she came out.
But for some weird reason, Badazz became obsessed this year with the teenager and the loving way she is being raised by her parents. He has reportedly made disturbing remarks about her, beginning in February when he said: ''Don't cut [her] f**king d**k off, Dwyane Wade.''
''Some of my best friends are gay,'' Tyson said in the interview published Saturday (19 December), ''and ['...] that's just who [they] are as human beings. I'm not saying Boosie was gay, I just said you haven't any kind of empathy about that.
''My daughter lived that life,'' he continued, ''and she came from New York to this office to confront this guy and she's violent. I thought she came to see me!
''I thought she came all the way down to come and see her father and stepmother [Lakiha Spicer]. She came to confront him physically.
''So I had to take care of that before,'' Tyson said. ''I was watching her, she wanted to physically grab this guy, and started attacking this guy.
''I had to come in, I was watching her. She explained herself, then he explained himself and it didn't go as bad as I thought it was going to go.''
Boxer suspected rapper might be 'gay' for attacking Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union's trans daughter.During Badazz's appearance on Tyson's show, Hotboxin' With Mike Tyson, the eponymous host asked why the musician is attacking Zaya in the way he is.
''Why do you say things about people who might be homosexual?'' Tyson asked, clearly misunderstanding that being trans is not the same thing as being gay.
''Why do you say that about them? Do you feel there's a possibility that you're a homosexual and by disrespecting them you further yourself from being a homosexual?
''I'm thinking you may like homosexuals.''
Badazz responded: ''No, I'm straight as an arrow.''
''If you're straight, then why do you offend people?'' Tyson replied.
Boosie Badazz Turned Away at Planet Fitness Over Transphobic Comments |
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 14:41
Dwyane Wade first revealed Zaya's new name during an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Feb. 11
Rapper Boosie Badazz says he was ''refused'' entry at a Planet Fitness in Georgia over transphobic comments he made about Dwyane Wade's daughter Zaya.
Boosie, 37, spoke out about the incident on Instagram Thursday, sharing a video, which shows him pulling out of the gym's parking lot.
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''Do not go to Planet Fitness, they racist. They haters. They just put me out Planet Fitness for what I said about Dwyane Wade son,'' Boosie explained. ''And they said I said in a video one of they employees was f'--'-- or some s'--'... They got roaches in that bitch.''
Boosie also addressed Planet Fitness in the caption of the post writing, ''Manager who was gay refused to let me n planet fitness because of my past actions on social media about gender etc.''
''Do not support planet fitness,'' Boosie continued, sharing the facility's address. ''They have roaches, n they shower water don't get hot! Get out ya feelings lil bitch.''
Boosie then went on to insult the manager using homophobic slurs.
McCall Gosselin, a spokesperson for Planet Fitness, tells PEOPLE, ''Planet Fitness does not tolerate harassment or discrimination of any kind. In this instance, a guest was asked to leave after refusing to comply with gym policies and harassing club staff. We are the home of the Judgement Free Zone and as such, we have policies in place to ensure that we maintain a non-intimidating, welcoming environment for all of our members where everyone feels accepted.''
The Louisiana-born rapper has been under fire after he condemned Wade's decision to support Zaya's transition earlier this month.
Boosie Badazz, Dwyane Wade
| Credit: Carmen Mandato/Getty Images; John Sciulli/Getty Images
During an interview with Good Morning America this week, Wade revealed that his 12-year-old, whom he shares with ex-wife Siohvaughn Funches, knew from an early age she was different and had long been aware of her gender identity '-- it just took her father a little longer to catch up.
RELATED: Gabrielle Union Introduces 12-Year-Old Zaya to the World: 'She's Whip Smart and We Are So Proud'
''She's known it for nine years. She's known since she was 3 years old,'' Wade, 38, said. ''Along this way we've asked questions and we've learned. But she's known.''
''I knew early on that I had to check myself,'' he explained to GMA. ''That's what I knew. I knew early on that I had to ask myself questions.''
''I've been a person in a locker room that has been a part of the conversation that has said the wrong phrases and the wrong words myself,'' Wade continued. ''As I got older and I watched my daughter grow, I had to go and look at myself in the mirror and say, 'Who are you? What are you going to do if your child comes home and says, ''Dad, I'm not a boy '... I'm a trans girl.'' What are you going to do?' That was my moment of real.''
Part of the reason why Wade turned inward was because he hadn't ever had anyone else in his life come out ''as gay, as trans, as anything.''
Dwyane Wade, Gabrielle Union with their daughter Kaavia James and Zaya
| Credit: Gabrielle Union-Wade/Instagram
''My daughter was my first interaction when it comes to having to deal with this conversation,'' Wade said to GMA. ''Hopefully I'm dealing with it the right way. Some people feel that I'm not. But inside our home, we see the smile on her face. We see the confidence that she's able to walk around and be herself. And that's when you know you're doing right.''
The athlete told Roberts that Zaya actually helped educate Wade and his wife Gabrielle Union, 47, on what it means to be transgender, after doing the research herself.
''She is our leader,'' Wade said to GMA. ''I think when the conversation we had '-- the one thing about it, for parents, is have conversations with your kids. Zaya, early on, knew two things. She knew straight and she knew gay. But Zaya started doing more research.''
He continued, ''She is the one who sat down with us as a family and said, 'Hey, I don't think I'm gay.' And she went down the list. 'This is how I identify myself, this is my gender identity, I identify myself as a young lady. I think I'm a straight trans because I like boys.' So it was a process for us to sit down with our daughter and find out who she is and what she likes, and not put something on her.''
RELATED: Dwyane Wade's Son Zaire Pens Sweet Tribute to 'Best Friend' Zaya: 'I Love You Kid'
Wade first revealed Zaya's new name during an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Feb. 11.
''So once Zaya, our 12-year-old, came home '-- first Zion, I don't know if everyone knows, originally named Zion, born as a boy '-- came home and said, 'Hey, I want to talk to you guys. I think going forward I'm ready to live my truth. I want to be referenced as she and her, I would love for you guys to call me Zaya,' '' Wade shared.
An Analysis of the Rhoades Father-Son Snogging in 'Billions' - The Ringer
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 14:40
Billions, the beloved Frankenstein's monster of a show that it is, stuffs every episode to the brim with pop culture references and unsubtle winks to current events. (Todd Krakow is a Dragon Ball Z fusion of Steve Mnuchin and Ted Cruz, just so we're clear.) Like dollar-slice pizza with caviar, Billions is an over-the-top indulgence, but we love it anyway.
With that in mind, please observe this climactic scene from Sunday night's Billions episode, ''Hell of a Ride'''--an all-timer'--involving Chuck Rhoades and Chuck Rhoades Sr. Specifically, look at this passionate exchange. (I would provide a spoiler warning, but this demands to be seen by the American public.)
Showtime That is Emmy winner Paul Giamatti and Emmy nominee Jeffrey DeMunn sharing an on-screen mouthing that has reverberated through my mind for the entire weekend and possibly will for the rest of my life. If you watch it more than 20 times (!), you start to notice little physical cues that make the sort-of-Oedipal overtones of the scene even more unsettling, if that's even possible. Chuck Sr. grasps Chuck Jr.'s head and puts him in a death grip; the father-son lip lock will be over only when Chuck Sr. wants it to be over. (Chuck appears to briefly resist, but that effort is soon quelled when his right ear is twisted like a pretzel.)
Showtime The power dynamics'--and the 50-year-old Giamatti and 70-year-old DeMunn osculating for several seconds'--notwithstanding, the kiss scene is complicated to unpack because of the events that precede it. At this point in the story, Chuck has figuratively pinned his father into a corner, forcing him to refuse immunity from Oliver Dake and Bryan Connerty if he wants the land he purchased upstate to eventually be turned into a casino rather than a conservation area, which would render it financially worthless. And remember: This isn't long after after Chuck betrayed his dad at the end of last season with his epic Ice Juice trap.
Chuck Sr. should be pissed, then, but in the moments before locking lips with the star of Universal Pictures' Big Fat Liar, he also says he's proud of his son. And he probably means it. Chuck Sr. has a twisted sense of standard for success; as Chuck told Wendy earlier in the episode, the first time he can recall his father being proud of him was after he returned from losing his virginity at a brothel at 14. While he was taken there by his uncle, Chuck says it was his father who picked out the woman for him. (With the Rhoades family, we all should've seen this virginity story coming, no pun intended.)
Thus, Chuck Sr. might be looking at (and smooching) his son with a sense of genuine pride. Chuck was willing to do something loathsome to his father as a means of self-preservation, but he has proved once again he's cut from the same insidious cloth. Still, Chuck Sr. is effectively screwed by this ordeal. It's Rhoades: Infinity War moving forward, in other words.
The pop culture moment that immediately comes to mind after watching this antagonistic mouth-to-mouth is from The Godfather: Part II, when Michael Corleone plants a kiss on his traitorous brother Fredo.
Given the hostility between the Chucks, the Godfather undertones check out, but are there any recent events'--specifically mouthing between a father and a son'--that also come to mind? Yes, it seems there are:
ET Canada Tom Brady loves a good family smooch, though credit where it's due: When his Brady lips make contact with other Brady lips, the embrace doesn't appear to be laced with malice. Just love. (I know what you're wondering: which kiss lasted longer: the one between the Chucks, or the one between Brady and his son? The Rhoades kiss was about 3.5 seconds, to the Bradys' 1.7. You're welcome.)
Do other people kiss their fathers/sons on the lips? Yes, but considering the first three pages of Google results for ''father son mouth kissing'' are all Tom Brady''related, it's possible that Billions was poking a bit of fun at the Patriots quarterback. Series creator Brian Koppelman is a New York Jets fan, after all.
And maybe'--just maybe'--the New England Patriots''Billions comparisons have been staring us right in the face this whole time. If Chuck is Tom Brady'--a man with a way cooler wife that is nonetheless very good at what he does, which is political slithering, not throwing deflated footballs'--then Chuck Sr. is Bill Belichick. Chuck Sr. wouldn't be caught dead in a hoodie, but he is ruthlessly good at what he does, even in his old age. Also, Belichick is also known to mouth other Belichicks.
What does this make Bobby Axelrod? I'll say this: Damian Lewis does have a big forehead, and Axe is a big fan of cheap pizza.
It started out with a kiss, and, halfway through Billions' third season, the father-son dynamic is on the verge of implosion. How did it end up like this? We can probably blame a 14-year-old's unnecessary visit to a brothel, as a start. Knowing both Chucks, they'll probably weasel their way out of any legal trouble and emergence victorious, like a lawyer's version of Deflategate. And if that happens, their triumph will be no less controversial than that of the Patriots men who also mouth-kiss their offspring.
Boosie Badazz claims he paid for sex for 14-year-old son
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 14:40
May 13, 2020 | 2:43pm | Updated May 13, 2020 | 2:52pm
Boosie Badazz bragged about allegedly orchestrating a sexual assault on his own family.
The Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based rapper took to Instagram Live to deliver a disturbing, expletive-filled rant. ''Hell yeah, I got my f''king son d''k sucked,'' says Boosie, whose real name is Torrence Hatch Jr., in a 57-second clip that has since been posted to Twitter.
''I'm training them boys right,'' Boosie, 37, says in the video. ''Ask any of my nephews, ask any of them, ask my son. Yeah, when they was 12, 13, they got [oral sex] .'‰.'‰. That's how it's supposed to be.''
This is the latest in a series of shocking statements made by the father of eight, which have some calling for his kids to be taken away, citing child sex abuse.
In 2017, the ''Set It Off'' rapper posted a birthday message to his son, also named Torrence, then 14. The caption in part read, ''got a bag for you n a bad bitch to give u some h''d.''
In Louisiana, it is illegal to solicit sex workers, and for anyone over the age of 17 to engage in sex, including oral sex, with anyone under that age. But Boosie, who referred to the sex workers he hired as ''super grown,'' seems to admit to these crimes. ''They should call CPS on this foolish man,'' wrote one Twitter user in the comments.
Earlier this year, Boosie came under fire for attacking Dwyane Wade's 12-year-old daughter, Zaya, who is transgender. ''Don't cut his d''k off, bruh,'' fumed Hatch to Wade in an Instagram video, adding, ''You've gone too f''king far.'' Boosie, who was released from prison in 2014 after doing time for drug charges, filmed the video in a Planet Fitness in Georgia. He was later kicked out of the gym for harassing staff.
He's made homophobic statements in interviews, too. In 2015 he bemoaned ''gay s''t'' on television in a since-deleted Instagram post, according to Complex.
One claim he denies? The rumor that he beat up George Zimmerman '-- the man acquitted of the 2012 killing of Trayvon Martin, 17 '-- in a Walmart parking lot, a bizarre idea that circulated last year.
''Service announcement from Boosie. I never seen George [Zimmerman] in my life [except] on TV,'' he said in a video on Instagram. ''This is a lie. Leave me alone.''
Health Ministry releases demo of COVID-19 green passport app - The Jerusalem Post
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 14:06
The purpose of the green passport initiative is to enable the opening of different sectors of society. Minister of Health Yuli Edelstein speaks during a press conference about the coronavirus COVID-19, in Airport City on September 17, 2020.
(photo credit: FLASH90)
A demo of the proposed design for the green passport app was presented today by coronavirus commissioner Prof. Nachman Ash at a meeting of the Knesset Constitution, Law and Justice Committee on Monday. The app will allow those who have received two doses of the coronavirus vaccine to enter halls for cultural and sports events, travel abroad without having to quarantine and give access to many other perks once the country begins to reopen. It looks like many other apps, with a colorful design and pictures. The home screen, in the demo version released on Monday, includes options for Hebrew, Arabic, Russian and Amharic. There will be a separate travel document in English for those traveling abroad and a chart released along with the demo says the app will be available in English as well, although the demo is not. The colorful design features a drawing of a child holding what looks like a container of popcorn facing two adults on a couch, presumably his parents. The message on the home screen says that the app will tell you if there is any risk to you nearby. The next screen shows a list of 12 different activities or sectors and asks you to pick which are important, although with the demo when you click on one, all are activated. They include culture, sports, events, work, shopping, tourism and religion. You are then asked if you are in a risk group: the elderly, if you have a chronic illness or work in a medical field. It then asks your permission to send you warnings and to ask your location and gives you information about where you are, notably where the city you are in falls in the traffic-light plan, and tells you how many people have been vaccinated today. cnxps.cmd.push(function () { cnxps({ playerId: '36af7c51-0caf-4741-9824-2c941fc6c17b' }).render('4c4d856e0e6f4e3d808bbc1715e132f6'); });
You are asked next about your coronavirus status, whether you have been vaccinated or have been ill and are invited to fill in a screen that asks your personal information, including identification number and name. You are then sent a code to your phone. Entering the code will verify your coronavirus status, such as whether you have been vaccinated or tested recently and will show whether you are indeed ''green.''Operating this app will not be simple for those who are not technologically proficient, but several participants in the meeting said that there would be a non-digital version of it as well. During the meeting in the committee, headed by MK Yakov Asher, which met Monday to discuss the details of the green passport for those who have been vaccinated, Health Minister Yuli Edelstein reassured the public that, "At no stage will there be a time when we don't have enough vaccines in the refrigerator for the second vaccination, not in an agreement on paper, not on the way but in the refrigerator.'' Edelstein added, ''The people of Israel are getting vaccinated! And this is the way to fight coronavirus. The green passport is also our way of encouraging more and more people to get vaccinated and also true in its essence. Those who are vaccinated are not dangerous." Ash said it was possible that the rapid testing will be used for those who cannot get vaccinated for various reasons (including allergies or having recovered from the virus) instead of the green passport. Technology experts working on the green passport presented options for apps, smart cards and other innovations that might be used in the program and said that they were keeping in mind those who, like the elderly and the ultra-Orthodox, who may not own smartphones and may be uncomfortable with technology.
Ash said that green passports could be used once the morbidity decreases and long before Israel reaches herd immunity due to vaccinations of approximately 70% of the population. The purpose of the green passport initiative is to enable the opening of different sectors of society, he said.
Edelstein said, "I talked to my counterparts in other countries and they were very enthusiastic about the idea of the green passport, working to create an international alliance that would allow the movement of citizens to have a green passport. The potential for issuing it is huge." He also reiterated his support for a full closure due to the rising morbidity which he pointed out is greater than during. He noted that ''the heads of authorities and many in the public support me... Enough with this sort-of lockdown.''
A representative of the Foreign Ministry said the ministry was speaking to organizations and governments around the world to create a document that would be internationally recognized and would spare those who hold it from having to quarantine when they go abroad.
The green passport will be accessible on an app and there will also be an actual card. Those holding the passport would be exempt from mandatory quarantine and could be downloaded from either the Health Ministry or health funds' websites. There will be an English version available for download in English that can be used in international travel.
According to the proposal presented, the green passport will not be needed in the education system, workplaces, street shops, public transport and places of worship. It will be valid, however, at cultural and sporting events, conferences, restaurants, cafes, malls, hotels, gyms and swimming pools.
Culture and Sport Minister Chili Tropper joined the discussion via Zoom to praise the green passport plan. "The halls of culture and sports are set to be the first to come back and they really need it. I'm glad it's part of the by the outline and I wanted emphasize the importance of this plan.''MK Yulia Malinovsky was one of the MKs in the meeting who raised concerns about the possibility that the green passport app could be used to invade people's privacy. After the meeting, she posted on her Facebook page a statement relating to many unanswered questions about the green passport: ''I want to share what I felt and understood from the discussion on the green passport in the Constitution Committee. If we put aside the problematic issue of everything related to privacy, the personal rights of the citizens and other ethical questions, my feeling in the discussion is that there are more holes in the whole screen. This issue has not been considered, we do not yet know exactly how long the vaccine is effective, how it affects us, whether it prevents infection, it is far from certain. There will be many more discussions about the green passport with a great many questions and I hope the representatives of the Health Ministry will come prepared with answers."var cont = ` Sign up for The Jerusalem Post Premium Plus for just $5 Upgrade your reading experience with an ad-free environment and exclusive content Join Now >
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''Russian Hacking'': NATO PsyOp Revealed '' Swiss Policy Research
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 12:53
CrowdStrike founder Dmitri Alperovitch (center) at the US-NATO Atlantic Council, 2014 (AC)Published: December 2020Share on: Twitter / Facebook
The ''Russian hacking'' NATO psyop has finally been solved.
To professional analysts, it has long been clear that the ''Russiagate'' saga '' including the ''Russian hacking'' claims, the Trump-Russia collusion claims, as well as the ''Skripal poisoning incident'' and the more recent ''Navalny poisoning incident'' '' has been a US and NATO psychological operation aimed at containing a resurgent Russia and a somewhat unpredictable US President.
Several aspects of the ''Russian hacking'' psychological operation had already been uncovered by independent researchers like Stephen McIntyre, ''Adam Carter'' and ''The Forensicator''. In early November, however, British researcher David J. Blake essentially solved the ''Russian hacking'' psyop, down to the operational level, as described in his new book ''Loaded for Guccifer 2.0''.
US/NATO-controlled IT used for ''Russian'' hacking and phishing operations (DJB)Blake shows how the ''Russian hacking'' psyop was initiated by the US and NATO in 2014 in response to Russia's reaction to the US regime change in Ukraine, when Russia retook control of the Crimean Peninsula and supported the de-facto secession of Russian-speaking eastern Ukraine.
The US/NATO psyop was inspired by the actual amateur hackers ''CyberBerkut'' in Ukraine and ''Guccifer'' in Romania. Blake shows how in 2014, NATO created a ''Cyber Defence Trust Fund'' and used this entity to initiate false-flag ''hacking operations'' against the US and other NATO members that would then be falsely ''attributed'' to alleged Russian ''state-sponsored hacking groups''.
Regarding the most prominent such case, the alleged ''hacking'' of the US Democratic Party (DNC) and the 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign, Blake shows how the emails and documents in question were in fact exfiltrated by the FBI and FBI cybersecurity contractor CrowdStrike, whose founder, Dmitri Alperovitch, is a Senior Fellow at the US-NATO think tank Atlantic Council. (1)
Blake shows how the mysterious persona of Guccifer 2.0, who claimed the hack, was played by none other than Alperovitch himself, while the technical infrastructure, including the notorious website, was provided by US and NATO intermediaries in NATO member Romania.
Later, former FBI director Robert Mueller would pretend to ''investigate'' the cyber operation, attributing it to alleged ''Russian hacking groups'' named ''Cozy Bear'' and ''Fancy Bear'' based on information provided by FBI and DNC contractor CrowdStrike and its CTO Dmitri Alperovitch. (2)
Blake also shows how other alleged ''Russian hacks'', including the ''hacking'' of the German parlia­ment in 2015, relied on the very same NATO-controlled technical infrastructure. Blake was able to show this based on archived information about previous owners of IP addresses, name servers, and SSL security certificates '' all pointing to the US military, NATO, and the Ukrainian government. (3)
Archived IP and SSL data tying covert operations to NATO and the Ukrainian government (DJB)In the case of the staged hack of the US Democratic Party, Blake shows how FBI cybersecurity contractor CrowdStrike added false ''Russian fingerprints'' by embedding the documents into previously published CyberBerkut documents and inserting additional false signatures. However, CrowdStrike made a few technical mistakes that ultimately revealed their US time zone.
Blake highlights the important fact that in all of these false-flag ''Russian hacks'', originating from NATO-controlled infrastructure, either no data or only trivial data was released to the public. Some questions continue to remain open, however, such as the role of murdered DNC employee Seth Rich and the actual source of Wikileaks, whose founder Julian Assange is still in British custody.
In the wake of the 2014 US regime change in Ukraine, the family of then Vice President Joe Biden exfiltrated millions of dollars from Ukraine, protected against corruption investigations by Joe Biden himself, as leaked phone recordings confirmed. As of 2021, the professionals behind the Ukraine regime change and the ''Russiagate'' pysop will once again be in full control of the US government.
Most US and European media have promoted the ''Russiagate'' and ''Russian hacking'' psyops and will continue to do so. This is because most US and European media, both liberal and conservative, are themselves embedded in networks linked to NATO and the US Council on Foreign Relations. It is only some independent media that have been seriously investigating these topics.
Are there real Russian state-sponsored hacks against Western targets? Yes. Blake argues that, for instance, the hacking operation against the British Institute for Statecraft and its ''Integrity Initiative'' '' itself deeply involved in the ''Russiagate'' psyop '' was likely a professional Russian operation. The problem is that such real operations are much harder to ''attribute'' than fake ones.
Book: Loaded for Guccifer2.0: Following A Trail of Digital Geopolitics (2020) by David J. Blake
(1) Another well-known Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council is Eliot Higgins, founder of the Bellingcat group, which appears to serve as a civilian front organization of British military intelligence and was involved in psychological operations both in Ukraine and the Syria war.
(2) Blake was even able to show, based on archived IP address and SSL certificate data, that the FBI prepared its ''Russia Special'' operation on an ''off-the-books'', inofficial web-based email system that was created by or for Robert Mueller during his time as FBI director (2001-2013).
(3) The alleged ''Russian hacking'' of the Swiss Ministry of Defense and Swiss arms manufacturer RUAG, in January 2016, may also have been a NATO false-flag operation.
CrowdStrike founder and Atlantic Council Senior Fellow, Dmitri Alperovitch, in 2016 (Esquire)See alsoWikipedia: A Disinformation OperationThe Propaganda MultiplierThe CIA and the MediaShare on: Twitter / Facebook
Who is Bean Dad?: Ken Jennings defends John Roderick over controversy - Deseret News
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 12:42
John Roderick is the first ''canceled'' person of 2021 '... and it all started with a debate about baked beans.
What's going onRoderick '-- who co-hosts the podcast ''Omnibus'' with Ken Jennings '-- recently shared a story on Twitter about his 9-year-old daughter learning how to use a can opener.
In a nutshell: His daughter was hungry, so Roderick told her to make some baked beans. He was surprised to learn his daughter didn't know how to use a can opener, and believed this would be a good ''teaching moment,'' according to the Hollywood Reporter.
Through a 23-post thread that has since been deleted, Roderick described how the scenario unfolded, The Wrap reported.
''I said, 'The little device is designed to do one thing: open cans. Study the parts, study the can, figure out what the can-opener inventor was thinking when they tried to solve this problem,'' Roderick wrote, according to The Wrap. ''I went back to my jigsaw puzzle. She was next to me grunting and groaning trying to get the thing. I should say that spatial orientation, process visualization and order of operation are not things she'... intuits. I knew this would be a challenge. But it was a rainy weekend.''
According to The Wrap, Roderick also told his daughter they wouldn't eat until she opened the can.
She did manage to get it open '-- six hours later. Roderick recounted how his daughter cried and collapsed ''in a frustrated heap'' during that time, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The tone of the story sent Twitter users into a rage. Roderick became known as ''bean dad,'' and the phrases ''She's 9,'' ''Apocalypse Dad'' and ''SIX HOURS'' all trended on Sunday, Mashable reported. Several users criticized Roderick's parenting style, with some even referring to it as ''child abuse,'' according to the Hollywood Reporter.
''Somehow my story about teaching my daughter how to work out how to use a can opener and overcome her frustration got over onto a version of twitter where I'm being accused of child abuse,'' Roderick tweeted, according to THR. ''It's astonishing. My kid is fine everybody.''
But the controversy didn't end there.
Ken Jennings' defenseSome people began digging into Roderick's Twitter history, discovering tweets from years past that include racist and homophobic slurs, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
Roderick, who founded the band The Long Winters and was a one-time candidate for Seattle City Council, deleted his Twitter account Sunday afternoon, CNET reported (by Monday afternoon, Roderick's account had returned). The podcast ''My Brother, My Brother and Me'' '-- which uses Roderick's music for its theme song '-- announced it would be finding new music, according to Entertainment Weekly.
Some people did come to Roderick's defense, though. According to BBC News, one Twitter user praised Roderick for teaching his child ''independence and personal growth.''
Jennings '-- the upcoming guest host of ''Jeopardy!'' who just a few days ago apologized for ''insensitive'' tweets in his past '-- also came to his friend's defense.
''Extremely jealous and annoyed that my podcast co-host is going to be a dictionary entry and I never will,'' Jennings joked, according to Entertainment Weekly.
If this reassures anyone, I personally know John to be (a) a loving and attentive dad who (b) tells heightened-for-effect stories about his own irascibility on like ten podcasts a week. This site is so dumb.
'-- Ken Jennings (@KenJennings) January 3, 2021''If this reassures anyone, I personally know John to be (a) a loving and attentive dad who (b) tells heightened-for-effect stories about his own irascibility on like ten podcasts a week,'' he continued. ''This site is so dumb.''
Jennings' first episode as ''Jeopardy!'' host airs Jan. 11. Closing out 2020, the ''Jeopardy'' legend tweeted: ''Sometimes I said dumb things in a dumb way and I want to apologize to people who were (rightfully!) offended. It wasn't my intention to hurt anyone, but that doesn't matter: I screwed up, and I'm truly sorry.
''If 2020 has taught us anything, it's that we should be kinder to one another,'' he continued. ''I look forward to heading into 2021 with that in mind.''
talkRADIO on Twitter: "YouTube - A statement from talkRADIO. Listen live on DAB or online '–º Watch live on Facebook '–º Watch live on Twitter '–º" / Twitter
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 12:35
talkRADIO : YouTube - A statement from talkRADIO.Listen live on DAB or online '–º live on Faceboo'...
Tue Jan 05 12:17:13 +0000 2021
Alessandro Ciambella | 🌊 | 🇬🇧🇪🇺 : @talkRADIO
Tue Jan 05 12:35:18 +0000 2021
Alison : @talkRADIO First hand experience of the dictatorship, it's appalling! Surely this should make people wake up to what is actually going on!
Tue Jan 05 12:35:11 +0000 2021
Glenn Ashbrooke : @talkRADIO Just wish to offer you my full support for the best live news programme
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Lewis reynolds : @talkRADIO No sympathy for talk radio I'm afraid. You were not interested few years back when the purge on YouTube'...
Tue Jan 05 12:34:39 +0000 2021
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Official plane used by Trump will fly to Scotland just before Biden inauguration '' report | Donald Trump | The Guardian
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 05:41
Show caption Speculation has mounted over what Donald Trump will do as Joe Biden is inaugurated in Washington. Photograph: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images
Donald TrumpArrival of military plane president has occasionally used fuels questions over Trump's plans for 20 January
The murk surrounding Donald Trump's likely whereabouts on his last day as president has thickened considerably with news that an official plane he has used in the past is due to fly to Scotland the day before Joe Biden's inauguration.
Trump himself is sticking to his refusal to accept his decisive electoral defeat. He has been caught cajoling election officials to ''find'' thousands of extra votes and is encouraging his supporters to gather for a ''wild'' day of protest on Wednesday when Congress is due to ratify the result.
The White House has refused to say what he will do when Biden is inaugurated on 20 January, raising the question of whether Trump will even leave the building voluntarily.
Most Trump-watchers expect him to dodge any event that would involve acknowledging his election loss. They predict he will stage a spectacular diversion to detract from Biden's first day on the job.
Many versions of that scenario have the outgoing president flying to his private club in Florida, Mar-a-Lago. But Scotland's Sunday Post has reported that Prestwick airport, near Trump's Turnberry golf course resort, has been told to expect a US military Boeing 757 that has occasionally been used by Trump, on 19 January.
The report said that speculation over a possible inauguration day drama has been fuelled by sightings of US military surveillance aircraft circling Turnberry for a week in November, doing possible advance work.
''It is usually a sign Trump is going to be somewhere for an extended period,'' the Post quoted an unnamed source as saying.
The 757 is a smaller, narrower plane than the Boeing 747-200Bs that are normally designated Air Force One. It is more often used by the vice-president and first lady, Melania Trump, than the president.
There was no immediate response to requests for comment from the White House or Prestwick airport.
Leaving the country before formally leaving office would be unprecedented for a US president.
Flying to Scotland before 20 January would be a way to get US taxpayers to pay for the first leg of a post-presidential holiday. It is also possible the flight was booked as a contingency by a candidate surprised by defeat and unsure what to do.
Trump's Scottish golf courses post another year of losses Multiple reports suggest he will face severe difficulties in his heavily indebted business empire.
New accounts published on Monday showed Trump's array of golf properties in Scotland lost £3.4m in 2019, though Trump Turnberry showed a modest profit.
Meanwhile his neighbours at Mar-a-Lago have launched a legal effort to stop him moving there full-time, saying he is precluded by an agreement he signed in the early 1990s converting the estate from a private residence to a club.
Wherever Trump goes on 20 January, it is unlikely the exit will be quiet or particularly dignified. But it will be unlike any presidential departure the country has ever witnessed.
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Google News - Official plane used by Trump will fly to Scotland just before Biden inauguration '' report
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 05:40
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Trump Presents 'The Real Numbers' At Georgia Election Eve Rally | ZeroHedge
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 05:33
President Trump is speaking from Dalton Regional Airport in Georgia ahead of tomorrow's special runoff election, a race that will decide the fate of who controls the United States Senate. Earlier in the day, Trump teased what he called "the real numbers" from the November general election, after he called the state's official tally "verifiably WRONG."
The speech comes on the heels of fresh controversy, Saturday phone call between Trump and Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger leaked to the Washington Post. In it, Trump demanded that Georgia 'recalculate' the November 3. election, and 'find' enough ballots to overcome the widespread allegations of fraud, including video evidence.
Watch Live:
Earlier in the day, Georgia official Gabriel Sterling attempted to upstage Trump's rally going through election fraud claims point by point and 'debunking' them. Sterling at one point said that the president's continuing claims of election fraud were 'undermining Georgians' faith in the election system."
* * *
President Trump on Monday suggested that the election results can't be certified due to "verifiably WRONG" numbers, and teased the release of "the real numbers" during a speech in Dalton, Georgia set for 8:30p.m. eastern time tonight.
How can you certify an election when the numbers being certified are verifiably WRONG. You will see the real numbers tonight during my speech, but especially on JANUARY 6th. @SenTomCotton Republicans have pluses & minuses, but one thing is sure, THEY NEVER FORGET!
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 4, 2021Trump's Monday night rally is intended to boost Republican Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, however it's clear that he'll focus on his ongoing challenges to the 2020 election, which has the support of at least 140 House Republicans and nearly a dozen GOP Senators led by Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.
''We've seen in the last few months, unprecedented amounts of Voter Fraud.'' @SenTedCruz True!
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 4, 2021In a contentious phone call secretly recorded by Georgia Secretary of State Ben Raffensperger and leaked to the Washington Post, Trump warns the Republican official that "The people of Georgia are angry, and these numbers are going to be repeated on Monday night, along with others that we're going to have by that time, which are much more substantial."
Later Monday morning, Trump attacked the "Surrender Caucus" of Republicans who want to accept the results of the election and move on with life under a Biden administration.
The ''Surrender Caucus'' within the Republican Party will go down in infamy as weak and ineffective ''guardians'' of our Nation, who were willing to accept the certification of fraudulent presidential numbers!
'-- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 4, 2021
Report: White House Planning to Refer Brad Raffensperger to Secret Service for Investigation Under the Espionage Act
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 05:30
President Trump held a one-hour long phone call on Saturday with crooked Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and state election officials on the 2020 election in his state that was wrought with fraud.
It's not clear if Ruby Freeman or Ralph Jones, Sr. were on the call.
In the one-hour phone call on Saturday, President Trump insisted he won the state and threatened vague legal consequences. Trump attorneys and Georgia attorneys were on the call.
Raffensperger's team later leaked the call to the far-left Washington Post.It took 24 hours for the Washington Post to publish a hit piece, using edited audio clips, on the president's phone call.
TRENDING: Proud Boys Leader Enrique Tarrio Arrested Leaving D.C. Area Airport on Way to Stop the Steal Rallies ...Update: Charged With Burning Black Lives Matter Banner and then Possessing Two Gun Magazines
Georgia Republican chairman David Shafer later announced that President Trump and his team filed two lawsuits against Secretary of State Raffensperger.
David Shafer: President Donald Trump has filed two lawsuits '' federal and state '' against Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger. This was after Raffensperger secretly recorded the ''confidential settlement discussion'' of that litigation that is still pending. The audio published by the Washington Post is heavily edited and omits the stipulation that all discussions were for the purpose of settling litigation and confidential under federal and state law.
Dirtbag Brad Raffensperger is in serious trouble.
What is with this guy? Why is he so determined to defend the massive fraud in his state?
The audio published by @TheWashingtonPost is heavily edited and omits the stipulation that all discussions were for the purpose of settling litigation and confidential under federal and state law.
'-- David Shafer (@DavidShafer) January 3, 2021
Now this'...
According to reporter Jack Posobiec the White House is planning to refer Brad Raffensperger to Secret Service for investigation under national security grounds of the Espionage Act.
Via Jack Posobiec:
New: White House planning to refer Brad Raffensperger WaPo leak to Secret Service for investigation under national security grounds of the Espionage Act
'-- Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) January 4, 2021
Business Leaders Call on Congress to Accept the Electoral College Results - Partnership for New York City
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 04:35
This presidential election has been decided and it is time for the country to move forward. President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris have won the Electoral College and the courts have rejected challenges to the electoral process. Congress should certify the electoral vote on Wednesday, January 6. Attempts to thwart or delay this process run counter to the essential tenets of our democracy.
The incoming Biden administration faces the urgent tasks of defeating COVID-19 and restoring the livelihoods of millions of Americans who have lost jobs and businesses during the pandemic. Our duly elected leaders deserve the respect and bipartisan support of all Americans at a moment when we are dealing with the worst health and economic crises in modern history. There should be no further delay in the orderly transfer of power.
William D. Abramson, Director of Brokerage, Buchbinder & Warren Realty Group LLC
Lee S. Ainslie, III, Managing Partner, Maverick Capital
Ellen Alemany, Chairman & CEO, CIT Group Inc.
Simon Allen, Chief Executive Officer, McGraw-Hill Education, Inc.
Leo Argiris, Principal & Chief Operating Officer, Americas Region, Arup
Jeffrey H. Aronson, Managing Principal, Centerbridge Partners
Ajay Banga, Executive Chairman, Mastercard
Neil Barr, Managing Partner, Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
Erin Barringer, Director, Dalberg Americas
Candace K. Beinecke, Senior Partner, Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP
Charles R. Bendit, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Taconic Investment Partners LLC
Stephen Berger, Chairman, Odyssey Investment Partners, LLC
William H. Berkman, Co-Chairman & CEO, Radius Global Infrastructure, Inc.
Seth Bernstein, President & CEO, AB
David Beveridge, Senior Partner, Shearman & Sterling, LLP
Michael W. Blair, Presiding Partner, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
Jeff T. Blau, Chief Executive Officer, The Related Companies, L.P.
Henry Blodget, CEO and co-founder, Insider Inc.
Kathy Bloomgarden, Chief Executive Officer, Ruder Finn, Inc.
Adam M. Blumenthal, Managing Partner, Blue Wolf Capital Partners
Neil Blumenthal, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Warby Parker
John Borthwick, Founder & CEO, Betaworks
Albert Bourla, Chairman & CEO, Pfizer Inc.
John Bruckner, President, NY, National Grid
Ari Buchalter, President & CEO, Intersection
Martin S. Burger, Chief Executive Officer, Silverstein Properties, Inc.
Donald A. Capoccia, Principal, BFC Partners
Richard M. Cashin, Managing Partner, One Equity Partners
Timothy Cawley, President & CEO, Con Edison, Inc.
Rodgin Cohen, Senior Chairman, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
David Coleman, Chief Executive Officer, College Board
Anthony R. Coscia, Partner and Executive Committee Member, Windels Marx Lane & Mittendorf, LLP
Cromwell Coulson, President & CEO, OTC Markets Group
Todd C. DeGarmo, Chief Executive Officer, STUDIOS Architecture
Toby Dodd, President, New York Tri-State, Cushman & Wakefield, Inc.
William R. Dougherty, Chairman, Executive Committee, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
Brian Duperreault, Chief Executive Officer, American International Group, Inc.
Douglas Durst, Chairman, Durst Organization Inc.
Richard Edelman, President & CEO, Edelman
Scott A. Edelman, Chairman, Milbank LLP
Blair W. Effron, Co-Founder, Centerview Partners
Joel S. Ehrenkranz, Partner and Co-Founder, Ehrenkranz Partners L.P.
Douglas F. Eisenberg, Founder and CEO, A&E Real Estate, LLC
Catherine Engelbert, Commissioner, WNBA
Alexander Farman-Farmaian, Vice Chairman, Portfolio Manager, Edgewood Management LLC
Rob Fauber, President & Chief Executive Officer, Moody's Corporation
Laurence D. Fink, Chairman & CEO, BlackRock
Peter Finn, Founding Partner, Finn Partners
John Fish, Chairman & CEO, Suffolk
Winston C. Fisher, Partner, Fisher Brothers
Alan H. Fishman, Founder, Willow Holdings, Inc.
William E. Ford, Chief Executive Officer, General Atlantic LLC
Paul Fribourg, Chairman & CEO, Continental Grain Company
Eric J. Friedman, Executive Partner, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
Jeff Gennette, Chairman & CEO, Macy's, Inc.
Dave Gilboa, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Warby Parker
MaryAnne Gilmartin, Founder & CEO, MAG Partners LP
Dan Glaser, President & CEO, Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc.
Dexter Goei, Chief Executive Officer, Altice USA
Timothy Gokey, Chief Executive Officer, Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc.
Perry Golkin, Chief Executive Officer, PPC Enterprises LLC
Barry M. Gosin, Chief Executive Officer, Newmark Knight Frank
Jonathan D. Gray, President & COO, Blackstone
Jonathan N. Grayer, Chairman & CEO, Weld North LLC
Logan Green, Co-Founder & CEO, Lyft
David J. Greenwald, Chairman, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP
Kelly Grier, US Chair & Managing Partner and Americas Managing Partner, Ernst & Young LLP
Stewart KP Gross, Managing Director, Lightyear Capital
Robin Hayes, Chief Executive Officer, JetBlue Airways Corporation
Dale Hemmerdinger, Chairman, Atco Properties & Management, Inc.
Donna Imperato, Chief Executive Officer, BCW
Frederick J. Iseman, Chairman & CEO, CI Capital Partners LLC
Kenneth M. Jacobs, Chairman & CEO, Lazard Ltd
John Josephson, Chairman & CEO, Sesac
Roberta Kaplan, Founding Partner, Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP
Harry Kargman, Founder & CEO, Kargo Global, Inc.
Brad S. Karp, Chair, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP
Charles R. Kaye, Chief Executive Officer, Warburg Pincus LLC
Anthony S. Kendall, Chairman & CEO, Mitchell & Titus, LLP
Richard A. Kennedy, President & CEO, Skanska USA Inc.
Michel A. Khalaf, President & CEO, MetLife, Inc.
Brian Kingston, CEO of Real Estate, Brookfield Asset Management
Paul Knopp, U.S. Chair & CEO, KPMG LLP
Henry R. Kravis, Co-Chairman & Co-CEO, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.
Philip Krim, Co-Founder & CEO, Casper
Barbara Armand Kushner, President, Armand Corporation
Christopher Larsen, Chief Executive Officer, Halmar International, LLC
William P. Lauder, Executive Chairman, The Est(C)e Lauder Companies, Inc.
Rochelle B. Lazarus, Chairman Emeritus, Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide
Kewsong Lee, Chief Executive Officer, The Carlyle Group
Rich Lesser, President & CEO, Boston Consulting Group
Joey Levin, Chief Executive Officer, IAC
Allan Levine, Chairman & CEO, Global Atlantic Financial Company
Jeffrey E. Levine, Chairman, Douglaston Development
Robert A. Levine, Chief Executive Officer, RAL Companies & Affiliates, LLC
Martin Lipton, Senior Partner, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
Alex Liu, Managing Partner & Chairman, Kearney
Robert P. LoCascio, Founder & CEO, LivePerson, Inc.
Roger Lynch, Chief Executive Officer, Cond(C) Nast
Mehdi Mahmud, CEO & President, First Eagle Investment Management, LLC
Anthony Malkin, Chairman, President & CEO, Empire State Realty Trust
Anthony E. Mann, President & CEO, E-J Electric Installation Co.
Theodore Mathas, Chairman & CEO, New York Life Insurance Company
Sandeep Mathrani, Chief Executive Officer, WeWork
Peter W. May, President & Founding Partner, Trian Partners
Charles R. McCall, Chief Executive Officer, Astoria Energy II LLC &, Astoria Energy LLC
Kevin J. McCarty, Chairman & CEO, West Monroe Partners
Andrew McMahon, President & CEO, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America
Avner Mendelson, President & CEO, Bank Leumi USA
Heidi Messer, Co-Founder & Chairperson, Collective[i]
Keith Mestrich, President & CEO, Amalgamated Bank
Marc Metrick, President & CEO, Saks Fifth Avenue
Edward J. Minskoff, Chairman & CEO, Edward J. Minskoff Equities, Inc.
Greg Mondre, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Silver Lake
Tyler Morse, Chief Executive Officer & Managing Partner, MCR Development LLC
Deanna M. Mulligan, Chief Executive Officer, DM Mulligan, LLC
Oscar Munoz, Executive Chairman, United Airlines, Inc.
Daniel Nardello, Chief Executive Officer, Nardello & Co. LLC
Liz Neumark, Chair & Founder, Great Performances
Mark Pearson, President & CEO, Equitable
Michael A. Peterson, Chairman & CEO, Peter G. Peterson Foundation
Michael Phillips, President, Jamestown Properties LLC
Charles E. Phillips, Jr., Chairman, Infor
Deirdre Quinn, Co-Founder & CEO, Lafayette 148 New York
Daniel Ramot, Co-Founder & CEO, Via
Steven L. Rattner, Chairman & CEO, Willett Advisors LLC
Scott H. Rechler, Chairman & CEO, RXR Realty LLC
Christiana Riley, Chief Executive Officer, Deutsche Bank Americas
John Romeo, Managing Partner, Oliver Wyman
James A. Rosenthal, Chief Executive Officer, BlueVoyant
Evan Roth, Co-Chief Executive Officer, BBR Partners, LLC
Michael I. Roth, Chairman & CEO, Interpublic Group
Steven Rubenstein, President, Rubenstein Communications, Inc.
Mitchell E. Rudin, Chairman & CEO, Savills Inc.
William C. Rudin, Co-Chairman & CEO, Rudin Management Company, Inc.
Kevin P. Ryan, Founder & CEO, AlleyCorp
Philip K. Ryan, Chairman, Swiss Re Americas
Timothy Ryan, U.S. Chair & Senior Partner, PwC
Faiza Saeed, Presiding Partner, Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
Scott Salmirs, President & CEO, ABM Industries Inc.
Ralph Schlosstein, Co-Chairman & Co-CEO, Evercore Partners Inc.
Michael Schmidtberger, Partner & Chair of the Executive Committee, Sidley Austin LLP
Alan D. Schnitzer, Chairman & CEO, The Travelers Companies, Inc.
Alan D. Schwartz, Executive Chairman, Guggenheim Partners, LLC
Kathleen Shanahan, Chief Executive Officer, Turtle & Hughes, Inc.
Suzanne Shank, President & CEO, Siebert Williams Shank & Co., LLC
Joseph C. Shenker, Chair, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
Tarek Sherif, Co-Founder & CEO, Medidata Solutions, Inc.
Jonathan Silvan, Chief Executive Officer, Global Strategy Group, LLC
Adam Silver, Commissioner, National Basketball Association
Joshua Silverman, Chief Executive Officer, Etsy, Inc.
Brad Smith, President, Microsoft
David M. Solomon, Chairman & CEO, Goldman Sachs
Jeffrey Solomon, Chair & CEO, Cowen
Rob Speyer, President & CEO, Tishman Speyer
Stephen J. Squeri, Chairman & CEO, American Express Company
Robert K. Steel, Chairman, Perella Weinberg Partners
Douglas C. Steiner, Chairman, Steiner Studios
Alan Suna, Chief Executive Officer, Silvercup Studios
Rajat Suri, Founder & CEO, Presto
Sanjay Swani, Managing Partner, Tailwind Capital
Steven R. Swartz, President & CEO, Hearst
Michael J. Sweeney, Executive Vice President; Eastern U.S. President, HNTB Corporation
Julie Sweet, Chief Executive Officer, Accenture
Paul J. Taubman, Chairman & CEO, PJT Partners Inc.
Owen D. Thomas, Chief Executive Officer, Boston Properties
Wayne Ting, Chief Executive Officer, Lime
Gary M. Tischler, Founder & Managing Partner, Vanbarton Group LLC
Daniel R. Tishman, Vice Chairman, AECOM & Principal, Tishman Realty
Paul Todd, Chief Executive Officer, GLG
Jean-Marie Tritant, Chief Executive Officer, Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield
William B. Tyree, Managing Partner, Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.
Joseph Ucuzoglu, Chief Executive Officer, Deloitte
Robert Vecchio, Chief Executive Officer, LPI, Inc.
Ellis Verdi, President, DeVito/Verdi
James R. Wacht, President, Lee & Associates NYC
George H. Walker, Chairman & CEO, Neuberger Berman Group LLC
Robert E. Wankel, Chairman & CEO, The Shubert Organization, Inc.
Pamela S. Wasserstein, President, Vox Media
Charles Weinstein, Chief Executive Officer, EisnerAmper LLP
David Winter, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Standard Industries Inc.
Robert Wolf, Chief Executive Officer, 32 Advisors LLC
Kathryn S. Wylde, President & CEO, Partnership for New York City
Nina Zagat, Co-Founder, Zagat
Tim Zagat, Co-Founder, Zagat
Strauss Zelnick, Partner, ZMC
James Zelter, Co-President, Apollo Global Management, Inc.
John Zimmer, Co-Founder & President, Lyft
DIVEST: 150+ Multinational CEOs '' Saks, Macys, Pfizer, United Airlines, Lyft '' Demand Biden is Made President Despite Fraud - The National Pulse
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 04:34
A press release from New York, liberal CEOs of the largest multinational corporates has demanded that the rampant election fraud in the United States be ignored and Joe Biden be made President. The list, published below, represents a list of companies 75 million Trump voters could now divest their business from in retaliation for the corporate attack on free and fair elections.
The release states:
''This presidential election has been decided and it is time for the country to move forward. President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris have won the Electoral College and the courts have rejected challenges to the electoral process. Congress should certify the electoral vote on Wednesday, January 6. Attempts to thwart or delay this process run counter to the essential tenets of our democracy.''
It goes on:
''The incoming Biden administration faces the urgent tasks of defeating COVID-19 and restoring the livelihoods of millions of Americans who have lost jobs and businesses during the pandemic. Our duly elected leaders deserve the respect and bipartisan support of all Americans at a moment when we are dealing with the worst health and economic crises in modern history. There should be no further delay in the orderly transfer of power.''
The full list of signatories:
William D. Abramson, Director of Brokerage, Buchbinder & Warren Realty Group LLC
Lee S. Ainslie, III, Managing Partner, Maverick Capital
Ellen Alemany, Chairman & CEO, CIT Group Inc.
Simon Allen, Chief Executive Officer, McGraw-Hill Education, Inc.
Leo Argiris, Principal & Chief Operating Officer, Americas Region, Arup
Jeffrey H. Aronson, Managing Principal, Centerbridge Partners
Ajay Banga, Executive Chairman, Mastercard
Neil Barr, Managing Partner, Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
Erin Barringer, Director, Dalberg Americas
Candace K. Beinecke, Senior Partner, Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP
Charles R. Bendit, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Taconic Investment Partners LLC
Stephen Berger, Chairman, Odyssey Investment Partners, LLC
William H. Berkman, Co-Chairman & CEO, Radius Global Infrastructure, Inc.
Seth Bernstein, President & CEO, AB
David Beveridge, Senior Partner, Shearman & Sterling, LLP
Michael W. Blair, Presiding Partner, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP
Jeff T. Blau, Chief Executive Officer, The Related Companies, L.P.
Henry Blodget, CEO and co-founder, Insider Inc.
Kathy Bloomgarden, Chief Executive Officer, Ruder Finn, Inc.
Adam M. Blumenthal, Managing Partner, Blue Wolf Capital Partners
Neil Blumenthal, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Warby Parker
John Borthwick, Founder & CEO, Betaworks
Albert Bourla, Chairman & CEO, Pfizer Inc.
John Bruckner, President, NY, National Grid
Ari Buchalter, President & CEO, Intersection
Martin S. Burger, Chief Executive Officer, Silverstein Properties, Inc.
Donald A. Capoccia, Principal, BFC Partners
Richard M. Cashin, Managing Partner, One Equity Partners
Timothy Cawley, President & CEO, Con Edison, Inc.
Rodgin Cohen, Senior Chairman, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
David Coleman, Chief Executive Officer, College Board
Anthony R. Coscia, Partner and Executive Committee Member, Windels Marx Lane & Mittendorf, LLP
Cromwell Coulson, President & CEO, OTC Markets Group
Todd C. DeGarmo, Chief Executive Officer, STUDIOS Architecture
Toby Dodd, President, New York Tri-State, Cushman & Wakefield, Inc.
William R. Dougherty, Chairman, Executive Committee, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
Brian Duperreault, Chief Executive Officer, American International Group, Inc.
Douglas Durst, Chairman, Durst Organization Inc.
Richard Edelman, President & CEO, Edelman
Scott A. Edelman, Chairman, Milbank LLP
Blair W. Effron, Co-Founder, Centerview Partners
Joel S. Ehrenkranz, Partner and Co-Founder, Ehrenkranz Partners L.P.
Douglas F. Eisenberg, Founder and CEO, A&E Real Estate, LLC
Catherine Engelbert, Commissioner, WNBA
Alexander Farman-Farmaian, Vice Chairman, Portfolio Manager, Edgewood Management LLC
Rob Fauber, President & Chief Executive Officer, Moody's Corporation
Laurence D. Fink, Chairman & CEO, BlackRock
Peter Finn, Founding Partner, Finn Partners
John Fish, Chairman & CEO, Suffolk
Winston C. Fisher, Partner, Fisher Brothers
Alan H. Fishman, Founder, Willow Holdings, Inc.
William E. Ford, Chief Executive Officer, General Atlantic LLC
Paul Fribourg, Chairman & CEO, Continental Grain Company
Eric J. Friedman, Executive Partner, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
Jeff Gennette, Chairman & CEO, Macy's, Inc.
Dave Gilboa, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Warby Parker
MaryAnne Gilmartin, Founder & CEO, MAG Partners LP
Dan Glaser, President & CEO, Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc.
Dexter Goei, Chief Executive Officer, Altice USA
Timothy Gokey, Chief Executive Officer, Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc.
Perry Golkin, Chief Executive Officer, PPC Enterprises LLC
Barry M. Gosin, Chief Executive Officer, Newmark Knight Frank
Jonathan D. Gray, President & COO, Blackstone
Jonathan N. Grayer, Chairman & CEO, Weld North LLC
Logan Green, Co-Founder & CEO, Lyft
David J. Greenwald, Chairman, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP
Kelly Grier, US Chair & Managing Partner and Americas Managing Partner, Ernst & Young LLP
Stewart KP Gross, Managing Director, Lightyear Capital
Robin Hayes, Chief Executive Officer, JetBlue Airways Corporation
Dale Hemmerdinger, Chairman, Atco Properties & Management, Inc.
Donna Imperato, Chief Executive Officer, BCW
Frederick J. Iseman, Chairman & CEO, CI Capital Partners LLC
Kenneth M. Jacobs, Chairman & CEO, Lazard Ltd
John Josephson, Chairman & CEO, Sesac
Roberta Kaplan, Founding Partner, Kaplan Hecker & Fink LLP
Harry Kargman, Founder & CEO, Kargo Global, Inc.
Brad S. Karp, Chair, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP
Charles R. Kaye, Chief Executive Officer, Warburg Pincus LLC
Anthony S. Kendall, Chairman & CEO, Mitchell & Titus, LLP
Richard A. Kennedy, President & CEO, Skanska USA Inc.
Michel A. Khalaf, President & CEO, MetLife, Inc.
Brian Kingston, CEO of Real Estate, Brookfield Asset Management
Paul Knopp, U.S. Chair & CEO, KPMG LLP
Henry R. Kravis, Co-Chairman & Co-CEO, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.
Philip Krim, Co-Founder & CEO, Casper
Barbara Armand Kushner, President, Armand Corporation
Christopher Larsen, Chief Executive Officer, Halmar International, LLC
William P. Lauder, Executive Chairman, The Est(C)e Lauder Companies, Inc.
Rochelle B. Lazarus, Chairman Emeritus, Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide
Kewsong Lee, Chief Executive Officer, The Carlyle Group
Rich Lesser, President & CEO, Boston Consulting Group
Joey Levin, Chief Executive Officer, IAC
Allan Levine, Chairman & CEO, Global Atlantic Financial Company
Jeffrey E. Levine, Chairman, Douglaston Development
Robert A. Levine, Chief Executive Officer, RAL Companies & Affiliates, LLC
Martin Lipton, Senior Partner, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
Alex Liu, Managing Partner & Chairman, Kearney
Robert P. LoCascio, Founder & CEO, LivePerson, Inc.
Roger Lynch, Chief Executive Officer, Cond(C) Nast
Mehdi Mahmud, CEO & President, First Eagle Investment Management, LLC
Anthony Malkin, Chairman, President & CEO, Empire State Realty Trust
Anthony E. Mann, President & CEO, E-J Electric Installation Co.
Theodore Mathas, Chairman & CEO, New York Life Insurance Company
Sandeep Mathrani, Chief Executive Officer, WeWork
Peter W. May, President & Founding Partner, Trian Partners
Charles R. McCall, Chief Executive Officer, Astoria Energy II LLC &, Astoria Energy LLC
Kevin J. McCarty, Chairman & CEO, West Monroe Partners
Andrew McMahon, President & CEO, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America
Avner Mendelson, President & CEO, Bank Leumi USA
Heidi Messer, Co-Founder & Chairperson, Collective[i]
Keith Mestrich, President & CEO, Amalgamated Bank
Marc Metrick, President & CEO, Saks Fifth Avenue
Edward J. Minskoff, Chairman & CEO, Edward J. Minskoff Equities, Inc.
Greg Mondre, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Silver Lake
Tyler Morse, Chief Executive Officer & Managing Partner, MCR Development LLC
Deanna M. Mulligan, Chief Executive Officer, DM Mulligan, LLC
Oscar Munoz, Executive Chairman, United Airlines, Inc.
Daniel Nardello, Chief Executive Officer, Nardello & Co. LLC
Liz Neumark, Chair & Founder, Great Performances
Mark Pearson, President & CEO, Equitable
Michael A. Peterson, Chairman & CEO, Peter G. Peterson Foundation
Michael Phillips, President, Jamestown Properties LLC
Charles E. Phillips, Jr., Chairman, Infor
Deirdre Quinn, Co-Founder & CEO, Lafayette 148 New York
Daniel Ramot, Co-Founder & CEO, Via
Steven L. Rattner, Chairman & CEO, Willett Advisors LLC
Scott H. Rechler, Chairman & CEO, RXR Realty LLC
Christiana Riley, Chief Executive Officer, Deutsche Bank Americas
John Romeo, Managing Partner, Oliver Wyman
James A. Rosenthal, Chief Executive Officer, BlueVoyant
Evan Roth, Co-Chief Executive Officer, BBR Partners, LLC
Michael I. Roth, Chairman & CEO, Interpublic Group
Steven Rubenstein, President, Rubenstein Communications, Inc.
Mitchell E. Rudin, Chairman & CEO, Savills Inc.
William C. Rudin, Co-Chairman & CEO, Rudin Management Company, Inc.
Kevin P. Ryan, Founder & CEO, AlleyCorp
Philip K. Ryan, Chairman, Swiss Re Americas
Timothy Ryan, U.S. Chair & Senior Partner, PwC
Faiza Saeed, Presiding Partner, Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP
Scott Salmirs, President & CEO, ABM Industries Inc.
Ralph Schlosstein, Co-Chairman & Co-CEO, Evercore Partners Inc.
Michael Schmidtberger, Partner & Chair of the Executive Committee, Sidley Austin LLP
Alan D. Schnitzer, Chairman & CEO, The Travelers Companies, Inc.
Alan D. Schwartz, Executive Chairman, Guggenheim Partners, LLC
Kathleen Shanahan, Chief Executive Officer, Turtle & Hughes, Inc.
Suzanne Shank, President & CEO, Siebert Williams Shank & Co., LLC
Joseph C. Shenker, Chair, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
Tarek Sherif, Co-Founder & CEO, Medidata Solutions, Inc.
Jonathan Silvan, Chief Executive Officer, Global Strategy Group, LLC
Adam Silver, Commissioner, National Basketball Association
Joshua Silverman, Chief Executive Officer, Etsy, Inc.
Brad Smith, President, Microsoft
David M. Solomon, Chairman & CEO, Goldman Sachs
Jeffrey Solomon, Chair & CEO, Cowen
Rob Speyer, President & CEO, Tishman Speyer
Stephen J. Squeri, Chairman & CEO, American Express Company
Robert K. Steel, Chairman, Perella Weinberg Partners
Douglas C. Steiner, Chairman, Steiner Studios
Alan Suna, Chief Executive Officer, Silvercup Studios
Rajat Suri, Founder & CEO, Presto
Sanjay Swani, Managing Partner, Tailwind Capital
Steven R. Swartz, President & CEO, Hearst
Michael J. Sweeney, Executive Vice President; Eastern U.S. President, HNTB Corporation
Julie Sweet, Chief Executive Officer, Accenture
Paul J. Taubman, Chairman & CEO, PJT Partners Inc.
Owen D. Thomas, Chief Executive Officer, Boston Properties
Wayne Ting, Chief Executive Officer, Lime
Gary M. Tischler, Founder & Managing Partner, Vanbarton Group LLC
Daniel R. Tishman, Vice Chairman, AECOM & Principal, Tishman Realty
Paul Todd, Chief Executive Officer, GLG
Jean-Marie Tritant, Chief Executive Officer, Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield
William B. Tyree, Managing Partner, Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.
Joseph Ucuzoglu, Chief Executive Officer, Deloitte
Robert Vecchio, Chief Executive Officer, LPI, Inc.
Ellis Verdi, President, DeVito/Verdi
James R. Wacht, President, Lee & Associates NYC
George H. Walker, Chairman & CEO, Neuberger Berman Group LLC
Robert E. Wankel, Chairman & CEO, The Shubert Organization, Inc.
Pamela S. Wasserstein, President, Vox Media
Charles Weinstein, Chief Executive Officer, EisnerAmper LLP
David Winter, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Standard Industries Inc.
Robert Wolf, Chief Executive Officer, 32 Advisors LLC
Kathryn S. Wylde, President & CEO, Partnership for New York City
Nina Zagat, Co-Founder, Zagat
Tim Zagat, Co-Founder, Zagat
Strauss Zelnick, Partner, ZMC
James Zelter, Co-President, Apollo Global Management, Inc.
John Zimmer, Co-Founder & President, Lyft
Magic Johnson Enterprises - Wikipedia
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 04:02
American investment company
Magic Johnson Enterprises is an American investment company owned by retired NBA Hall of Fame legend Magic Johnson. In 1995, after some criticism that he only invested with other people's money, Johnson took an equity stake along with what was then the Loews chain in the 12-screen multiplex movie theater in Baldwin Hills (now owned by Cinemark). The Beverly Hills''based Magic Johnson Enterprises formerly owned Magic Johnson Theatres in four cities, 31 Burger King restaurants in the Southeast, and 13 24-Hour Fitness/Magic Johnson Sport health clubs. Over the years, Magic Johnson Enterprises has continually invested ownership in many lucrative businesses such as the Los Angeles Lakers, movie theaters and restaurants in the United States, including T.G.I. Friday's, Sodexo, and Burger King locations.
In March 2008, Johnson signed a multi-year marketing deal to help electronics retailer Best Buy Co. bolster sales in urban neighborhoods.[1] In October 2010, Johnson sold his interest in 105 Starbucks licenses back to the company.[2] The next day he sold his 4% interest in the Los Angeles Lakers for an estimated $27 million to Patrick Soon-Shiong.[2][3][4]
Johnson's urban investments were formed in 2001 as the Canyon-Johnson Urban Fund, an alliance with Canyon Capital. The alliance has financed 31 real estate developments in 13 states and the District Of Columbia. The first Canyon-Johnson Urban Fund struggled for two years to raise $300 million to invest in urban neighborhoods. A subsequent fund raised $600 million while the third and biggest investment fund was started in April 2008 and drew $1 billion from pension funds and other investors.[1] The Canyon-Johnson fund was involved in the $100-million purchase of the 32-story former Transamerica Center complex in downtown Los Angeles that subsequently was renovated and sold for $205 million. The fund also had a stake in Sunset+Vine in Hollywood, which was built for $125 million and sold for $160 millon.[1][5]
In the summer of 2006, the company made headlines for concluding a deal with Sodexo, one of the largest food services and facilities management companies in the world. The initiative includes a marketing agreement and the formation of SodexoMAGIC, LLC, a new joint venture that is 51 percent owned by Johnson.[6]
References [ edit ] ^ a b c Bresnahan, Mike; Johnson, Greg (June 30, 2008), "For Magic Johnson, the NBA was only halftime", Los Angeles Times, archived from the original ('' Scholar search) on August 4, 2008 ^ a b Turner, Brad (October 19, 2010). "Magic Johnson sells his 105 Starbucks franchises". Lakers Blog. Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on 20 October 2010 . Retrieved 24 September 2019 . ^ Bresnahan, Mike (18 October 2010). "Magic Johnson Sells His Ownership Stake in the Lakers". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved 24 September 2019 . ^ "Earvin 'Magic' Johnson Sells Share of Lakers to Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong" (Press release). NBA Media Ventures. 20 June 2011 . Retrieved 24 September 2019 . ^ Vincent, Roger (July 2, 2002). "Sunset Rising in Hollywood". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved November 1, 2019 . ^ "Magic Johnson Forms Deal With Food Service Vendor Sodexho". Fox News. December 7, 2011. Archived from the original on 2013-05-28 . Retrieved 2020-11-12 . External links [ edit ] Official website Canyon-Johnson Funds
Clippers Protest Owner by Turning Jerseys Inside Out Before Playoff Game (Video) | Hollywood Reporter
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 03:57
UPDATED: The players made a silent protest on Sunday at the Oracle Arena in Oakland by wearing their warm-up jerseys inside out to hide the team logo when they took to the court to take on the Golden State Warriors.The Los Angeles Clippers players have held a united front since audio allegedly of owner Donald Sterling making racist remarks was released on Friday.
On Sunday, they made a public show of solidarity in a silent protest against racism by coming out onto the court before the game against the Golden State Warriors at Oracle Arena with their warm-up jerseys on inside out to hide the team logo.
Rather than having the Clippers' logo emblazoned on the front, Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and their teammates wore plain red as they walked out before the tipoff for Game 4 in the first round of the NBA Playoffs.
In the crowd, Warriors fans held up signs that read: "Magic always welcome at Oracle," and "No racism here."
The statement comes after both TMZ and Deadspin obtained versions of audio remarks that see Sterling express displeasure to V. Stiviano, described as his girlfriend, about having "black people" attend Clipper games. Sterling, a Los Angeles real estate mogul, has been the subject of multiple housing discrimination lawsuits in years past.
Despite the protest, ABC and ESPN commentator Jeff Van Gundy expressed his wish that the players would do more. "The only action that is wrong is inaction or neutrality," he said at the beginning of ABC's broadcast of the game.
STORY: Clippers Respond to Donald Sterling Rant
"I would like the players to make a statement about how racism has no place [here], or for them to sit on the bench for 15 minutes before the game.
"There are some things that are bigger than pursuing a championship. Making a stand on something that impacts society is more important," he said.
Later in the first quarter Van Gundy went on to say: "I've heard some people say they can't speak to it because their team told them not to. Are you kidding me? You're a grown man, speak up for what you believe."
Sterling agreed not to attend the game but his estranged wife, Rochelle Sterling, was sat courtside. She told ABC off-camera that she didn't condone the statements or believe them, "I am not a racist and never have been." The team is the most important thing to my family."
She said she "didn't know" if that was her husband's voice on the tape but she does think there were parts cut out and plans to let the experts handle it.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver was also at the game. He has pledged that the league will move "extraordinarily quickly" in its investigation, and hopes to have the situation wrapped up "in the next few days."
With the Clippers down by 23 points at one stage of the game, analyst Jalen Rose said during the halftime show: "That's what happens when you have an owner like Donald Sterling who talks about his players like they are field workers that he allowed to live in the house."
Rose went on to encourage "socially-conscious fans" to follow their team's lead by turning their gear inside out. Love your team but despise your owners racist ways."
Fellow commentator Bill Simmons reflected: "This is a really sad weekend for the NBA. The baggage that the Clippers have as a franchise is just this owner, he has always been a shadow lingering around this franchise, and for him to rear his ugly head this weekend'... he might have changed this series. I think it is a disgrace and as a basketball fan, I feel sad."
Clippers point guard Paul, who is also the president of the NBA Players Association, said in a statement on Saturday, "On behalf of the National Basketball Players Association, this is a very serious issue which we will address aggressively.
"We have asked Mayor Kevin Johnson to expand his responsibilities with the NBPA, to determine our response and our next steps. As players, we owe it to our teams and our fans to keep our focus on our game, the playoffs, and a drive to the Finals."
Magic Johnson reiterated his opinion that Sterling shouldn't own a team when he appeared on ABC's NBA Countdown show on Sunday morning, saying: "He should stand up and say 'I don't want to own a team anymore,' especially when you have African-Americans renting his apartments, coming to his games, playing for him and coaching for him.
"This is bad for everybody. This is bad for America. I'm really upset about it."
The Clippers lost the game 97-118, making the series tied at 2-2. They will next play in Los Angeles on Tuesday night.
Donald Sterling - Wikipedia
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 03:55
American businessman
Donald T. Sterling (born Donald Tokowitz, April 26, 1934) is an American attorney and businessman who was the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers (initially San Diego Clippers) professional basketball franchise of the National Basketball Association (NBA) from 1981 to 2014.
In April 2014, Sterling was banned from the NBA for life and fined $2.5 million by the league after private recordings of him making racist comments were made public.[2] In May, Sterling's wife Shelly reached an agreement for the Sterling Family Trust to sell the Clippers for $2 billion to Steve Ballmer, which Sterling contested in court. The NBA Board of Governors approved the sale of the Clippers to Ballmer on August 12, 2014.[3][4] Sterling settled his lawsuit against the NBA in November 2016[5] and remains active in Los Angeles real estate.[6]
Early life [ edit ] Donald Sterling was born Donald Tokowitz on April 26, 1934, in Chicago, Illinois.[7][8][9][10] His family moved to the Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles when he was two years old. His parents, Susan and Mickey, were Ashkenazi Jewish immigrants.[7][11][12][13] He attended Theodore Roosevelt High School in Los Angeles, where he was on the school's gymnastics team and served as class president; he graduated in 1952. He next attended California State University, Los Angeles (Class of 1956) and Southwestern University School of Law (Class of 1960) in Los Angeles.[14]
When he was 25, he and his wife Shelly changed their surname to "Sterling", filing a formal petition to do so on December 9, 1959.[15] They cited the difficulty among his peers to pronounce "Tokowitz" and the belief that there would be financial benefits for the change.[15]
Legal and real estate career [ edit ] In 1961, Sterling started his career as a divorce and personal injury attorney, building an independent practice when Jews had fewer opportunities at prestigious law firms.[16] His biggest ventures were in real estate, which he began when he purchased a 26-unit apartment building in Beverly Hills.
In the 1960s, Sterling also purchased Lesser Towers, a pair of large apartment buildings in the Westwood area of Los Angeles,[17] and renamed them the Sterling Towers (now the Sterling International Towers). In 1976, he leased the California Bank Building on Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills, and renamed it Sterling Plaza. The Art Deco landmark was built in 1930 by MGM cofounder Louis B. Mayer. In 2000, Sports Illustrated senior writer Franz Lidz revealed that Sterling had a 99-year lease with the Mayer estate that required him to pay a relatively small annual fee and 15% of any rental income, which was why Sterling had remained the sole tenant. "With no other tenant," Lidz reported, "the Mayer estate faces another 75 years with virtually no income from its Sterling Plaza property. By sitting and waiting, Sterling may force a fire sale."[7][18] As of April 2014, he owned 162 properties in Los Angeles.[19]
NBA ownership [ edit ] Sterling and Los Angeles Lakers majority owner Jerry Buss were each indirectly responsible for the other owning his respective NBA franchise.[7] The first instance came in 1979, when Buss used the money he made from selling a portion of his apartment buildings to Sterling (worth $2.7 million), which covered the remaining balance in purchasing the Lakers, the Kings hockey team, and The Los Angeles Forum from Jack Kent Cooke for $67 million. Two years later, Buss suggested to Sterling that he could purchase his own NBA franchise, and Sterling bought the struggling San Diego Clippers for $12.5 million.
At his introductory news conference in San Diego, Sterling vowed to "spend unlimited sums" to build the Clippers into a contender, and he embarked on a county-wide marketing campaign featuring his smiling face on billboards and the backs of buses.[7][20][21][22] The seminal ads read: "My Promise: I will make you proud of the Clippers".[21] Unlike Buss' instant success with the Lakers (including winning an NBA championship in his first season as owner, 1979''80), Sterling and his Clippers struggled through many lackluster seasons, and they did not have their first winning season until the 1991''92 season, 11 years into his ownership. In Sterling's 33 years of owning the Clippers through 2013''14, the Clippers lost 50 or more games 22 times, 60 or more on eight occasions, and 70 games once. Their 9''41 record in the lockout-shortened 1998''99 season projected to another 60-loss season.[23]
The NBA in 1982 fined Sterling $10,000, the largest sum ever levied against an owner at the time, after he commented that he would accept the Clippers finishing in last place in order to draft an impact player like Ralph Sampson.[7][21][24] In June 1982, Sterling attempted to move the team to Los Angeles. This prompted an investigation of the Clippers by an NBA committee of six owners. In September, the group recommended that Sterling's ownership be terminated, having found that he was late in paying creditors and players.[21] Days before a league scheduled vote in October to remove Sterling, he agreed to sell the team, and the league sought buyers who would keep the franchise in San Diego. At the suggestion of David Stern, then the league's vice president, Sterling handed over operations of the team to Alan Rothenberg, who became the team's president. By February 1983, Stern called the Clippers a "first-class" franchise, and the ouster of Sterling was no longer pursued.[21][25]
Encouraged by friend Al Davis' victory over the National Football League in an antitrust lawsuit that allowed him to move his Oakland Raiders to Los Angeles without league approval, Sterling moved the Clippers from San Diego to Los Angeles in 1984.[26] However, the move was not approved by the NBA, which fined him $25 million. He sued the league for $100 million, but dropped the suit when the league agreed to decrease the fine to $6 million.[27] Sterling was widely criticized for his frugal operation of the Clippers, due in part to a consistent history of losing seasons. The club was long considered the laughingstock of the NBA.[28][29][30][31] With the Clippers' move into Staples Center in the 1999''2000 NBA season, the team began to become a contender, winning 47 games in the 2005''06 season. This was a record for the most victories in a single season since the franchise moved to California. It was also only the second winning season in Sterling's tenure as owner. In the lockout-shortened 2011''2012 season they made the playoffs with the best winning percentage in their history (.606) and they won their first round series against the Memphis Grizzlies, 4''3, before being swept by the San Antonio Spurs, 4''0, in the conference semi-finals. Led by Blake Griffin and Chris Paul, the Clippers posted two more winning campaigns in 2012''13 and 2013''14, setting new franchise records for regular-season wins with 56 and 57, respectively.
Sterling rebuffed numerous offers from other cities to relocate the Clippers and was steadfast in his refusal to move the team out of Los Angeles, let alone sell the team. While the team played a few games in Anaheim in the Arrowhead Pond (now the Honda Center) for a few years before the Staples Center opened, he was not willing to move the team there permanently. In later years, he showed an increased willingness to spend. In 2003, Sterling signed Elton Brand to a six-year, $82 million deal, the biggest contract in franchise history. He matched the contract the Utah Jazz offered restricted free agent Corey Maggette: a deal worth $45 million over six years. The Clippers signed higher-priced veteran free agents, such as Cuttino Mobley in 2005, Tim Thomas in 2006, and Los Angeles native Baron Davis in 2008. In another first during the Sterling tenure of Clippers ownership, the team gave a four-year contract extension to head coach Mike Dunleavy Sr., as well as a five-year extension to center Chris Kaman. Both extensions took effect starting in the 2007''08 NBA season.
Under Sterling's ownership, only Dunleavy and Bill Fitch (1994''1998) lasted four seasons or more as Clippers head coach; as of the 2009''10 NBA season, Dunleavy entered his seventh season as Clippers head coach, by far the longest tenure in franchise history, but was relieved of his coaching duties on February 4, 2010. Dunleavy was also the club's general manager, but was fired from that position a month later.[32] The Clippers accused Dunleavy of defrauding the team, and he sued the club for money owed on the remainder of his contract; an arbitrator ordered the Clippers to pay Dunleavy $13 million in 2011.[33] The Clippers also went to court with former head coaches Fitch and Bob Weiss.[34] Weiss, who signed a three-year contract but was fired in 1994 after one season, had to sue to receive money that was still owed him.[34][35][36] In 2001, the Clippers sued the 63-year-old Fitch, whom the team had fired in 1998, after they stopping paying him for failing to seek employment to reduce the team's obligation for payment.[34][36][37] The suit reached an undisclosed settlement before going to court.[36]
Sterling spent $50 million to build a state-of-the-art practice facility and team headquarters in Los Angeles' Playa Vista mixed-use development neighborhood. This followed the lead of several other NBA franchises, including the Lakers, Sacramento Kings, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Detroit Pistons, in having their own facility dedicated exclusively for team use. The facility was completed and opened in September 2008, in time for the start of the team's training camp. The team previously practiced at a local health club in suburban El Segundo, and before that at Los Angeles Southwest College.[citation needed ]
Sterling's ownership was viewed critically.[7] ESPN The Magazine in 2009 named the Clippers the worst franchise in professional sports.[38][39] Uncharacteristic for an owner, Sterling in 2010 heckled players on his own team'--with Baron Davis receiving the harshest treatment'--while the owner sat courtside during home games.[40][41]In late April 2014, following news of racial remarks, Sporting News described Sterling as "one of the worst owners in basketball for decades",[42] while The New York Times and Forbes called him the "worst owner" in sports,[38][43] and an analyst noted that under Sterling's ownership, from his purchasing the Clippers in 1981 through 2013-14, the Clippers achieved the worst winning percentage in all four major American sports leagues.[44]
Racist remarks and lifetime ban [ edit ] On April 25, 2014, TMZ Sports released a recording of a conversation between Sterling and his mistress, V. Stiviano (born Mar­a Vanessa Perez, also known as Monica Gallegos, Vanessa Perez, and Maria Valdez).[45][46] In the recording from September 2013, a man confirmed to be Sterling was irritated over a photo Stiviano had posted on Instagram, in which she posed with Basketball Hall of Fame player Magic Johnson.[47][48] Sterling told Stiviano, who herself was part African-American: "It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you're associating with black people," and, "You can sleep with [black people]. You can bring them in, you can do whatever you want," but "the little I ask you is ... not to bring them to my games."[49][50]
The recording received national media coverage[51] and Sterling retained Newport Beach-based attorney Bobby Samini as his lead counsel in litigation with the NBA, TMZ, and Stiviano.[52]
Clippers president Andy Roeser issued a statement the following day,[53] indicating that Stiviano was being sued by the Sterling family and had "told Mr. Sterling that she would 'get even ' " with him.[54] A month earlier, Sterling's wife had sued Stiviano for the return of a $1.8 million Los Angeles duplex, a Ferrari, two Bentleys, a Range Rover, and $200,000 cash she said her husband bought for Stiviano.[55][56]
Sterling's comments affected the NBA, a league with predominantly black players.[57] On April 26, the team held a meeting to discuss the incident. Both coaches and players expressed anger toward the comments, and they briefly raised the possibility of boycotting Game 4 of their series against the Golden State Warriors on April 27 before deciding against it.[58] Instead, players protested Sterling's remarks by wearing their shirts inside-out in order "to obscure any team logo" during their pre-game huddle.[59] On April 28, players of the Miami Heat wore their uniform tops inside-out to show solidarity with the Clippers. LeBron James commented on the situation, "There's no room for Donald Sterling in the NBA." The owner of the Miami Heat, Micky Arison, also called the allegations "appalling, offensive and very sad."[60] NBA's Kevin Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Charles Barkley, Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe Bryant, and Michael Jordan also condemned Sterling's remarks.[61][62] The Los Angeles chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) cancelled its plans for the following month to award Sterling for a second time with its lifetime achievement award.[63] President Barack Obama characterized the recording of Sterling as "incredibly offensive racist statements."[64] Chumash Casino, the Clippers' most visible sponsor during the prior four seasons, ended its relationship with the team, as did sponsors CarMax, Virgin America, and others.[65] On April 29, 2014, UCLA announced that it was rejecting a $3 million gift from Sterling.[66]
On April 29, NBA commissioner Adam Silver announced that Sterling had been banned from the league for life and fined $2.5 million, the maximum fine allowed by the NBA constitution.[47][67] Silver stripped Sterling of virtually all of his authority over the Clippers, and banned him from entering any Clippers facility. He was also banned from attending any NBA games.[47][68] The punishment was one of the most severe ever imposed on a professional sports team owner.[48] Moreover, Silver stated that he would move to force Sterling to sell the team, based on a willful violation of the rules, which would require the consent of three-quarters, or 22, of the other 29 NBA team owners.[69]
In his first public comments in nearly two weeks after his ban from the NBA, Sterling appeared on CNN with Anderson Cooper on May 11 to apologize, saying he was "not a racist", and ask for forgiveness.[70] He said he was "baited" by Stiviano into making the offensive comments.[70] In the interview, Sterling criticized Magic Johnson's character and his battle with HIV.[71] In response to Sterling, Silver apologized for the NBA to Johnson "that he continues to be dragged into this situation and be degraded by such a malicious and personal attack".[72]
Sterling's wife, Shelly, had co-owned the team with him since 1983, and she had served as one of the team's two alternate governors.[73] While she was not included in the NBA's ban on Sterling,[74] the league stated that "if a controlling owner's interest is terminated by a '‹ 3'4 vote, all other team owners' interests are automatically terminated as well".[75] In response to the NBA's decision, Sterling's attorney Bobby Samini called the NBA a "band of hypocrites," citing previous discriminatory conduct by the NBA, and suggested the organization "take a close reflection at their own conduct."[76] The NBA formally charged Sterling with damaging the league with his comments from both the TMZ recording and the CNN interview, and scheduled a hearing to begin on June 3, after which the league could vote to terminate the Sterlings' ownership.[77][78]
On May 23, Shelly Sterling said her husband had authorized her to negotiate the sale of the team.[79] On May 29, she reached a deal, pending NBA approval, to sell 100% of the Clippers to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer for $2 billion.[80] Shelly also agreed not to sue the NBA and to indemnify the league against other suits related to the case, including any initiated by her husband. The NBA responded by cancelling its hearing to consider stripping the Clippers from the Sterlings.
Sterling disavowed having given his wife authorization to sell the team, denied all charges, and refused to sell the Clippers. He called the penalties "draconian" and referred to the process as a "sham".[81] He then sued the NBA for $1 billion, alleging it had violated both antitrust laws and his constitutional rights.[82] On June 4, 2014, attorney Maxwell Blecher announced that Sterling had decided to drop the lawsuit against the NBA, and had agreed to allow the proposed $2 billion sale of the Clippers to Ballmer. The sale would be approved pending a majority vote of league owners.[83]
On June 9, Blecher said Sterling had withdrawn support for the sale, and would resume the lawsuit.[84] However, Shelly was granted a trial in probate court that began on July 7 to allow her to proceed with the sale as sole trustee; she contended that three doctors reported that Sterling was suffering from Alzheimer's disease and lacked the mental capacity to be a trustee.[85] Closing arguments were scheduled for July 28. The NBA was scheduled to vote on the sale to Ballmer on July 15, the same day the deal was set to expire unless Ballmer granted an extension.[86] On July 23, Sterling sued his wife, the NBA, and Silver for damages, alleging that they violated corporate law and defrauded him in order to sell the team to Ballmer. Sterling also sought an injunction to freeze the sale.[87] On July 28, the probate court ruled in Shelly's favor, and granted her request for an order to permit the sale to be completed regardless of any intervention by an appellate court.[88] Ballmer's $2 billion purchase of the team closed on August 12, and Shelly received the titles "Clippers Number One Fan" and "owner emeritus" as part of the sale agreement.[89] As of April 2015[update], half of the $2 billion paid by Ballmer was held in an escrow account controlled by the NBA pending the conclusion of Sterling's lawsuit over the sale of the team.[90]
One of Sterling's critics among the team owners, Atlanta Hawks majority stockholder Bruce Levenson,[91] also left the NBA in September 2014, as an indirect result of the incidents and lawsuits. Levenson reported a racially insensitive e-mail (sent two years prior) to the NBA, as the Sterling case made Levenson feel remorseful for behaving in a manner he described as similar.[92]
U.S. District Judge Fernando M. Olguin dismissed Sterling's 2014 lawsuit over the sale of the team in March 2016. The judge assailed it as "plainly insufficient" and "clearly implausible." Sterling appealed the decision but the 82-year-old's attorneys didn't file an opening brief by the deadline. The matter concluded with a three-page motion to voluntarily dismiss the case.[93]
In 2017, a judge ruled that two law firms could move forward with their lawsuit to collect more than $270,000 in legal fees allegedly owed by Donald and Shelly Sterling, stemming from the 2014 probate action that cleared the way for the sale of the Clippers.[94]
Discrimination lawsuits [ edit ] In February 2003, the Housing Rights Center of Los Angeles (HRC) filed a housing discrimination case against Sterling on behalf of 18 tenants. The lawsuit featured several racist statements allegedly made by Sterling to employees, such as that "black people smell and attract vermin" and "Mexicans that just sit around and smoke and drink all day",[95][96] as well as Sterling's alleged intent to rent only to Korean tenants because "they will pay the rent and live in whatever conditions I give them".[96] Part of the HRC case's resolution included U.S. District Judge Dale Fischer awarding the plaintiffs' attorney $4.9 million in attorneys fees. While the final terms for the plaintiffs were confidential, the judge said the fees were justified as the settlement obtained by the plaintiffs against Sterling was one of the largest of its kind and the public benefit terms were significant and wide-ranging.[citation needed ]
In 2006, the U.S. Department of Justice sued Sterling for housing discrimination for using race as a factor in filling some of his apartment buildings. The suit charged that Sterling refused to rent to non-Koreans in the Koreatown neighborhood and to African Americans in Beverly Hills. In November 2009, ESPN reported that Sterling agreed to pay a fine of $2.7 million to settle the lawsuit.[97]
In February 2009, the Clippers were sued in L.A. Superior Court by former longtime Clippers executive Elgin Baylor for wrongful termination and employment discrimination on the basis of age and race.[98][99][100] The lawsuit alleged that co-defendant Sterling told Baylor that he wanted to fill his team with "poor black boys from the South and a white head coach".[100] The suit also alleged that Mike Dunleavy Sr., the head coach, "was given a four-year, $22-million contract...[as he was a] Caucasian" while Baylor's salary had "been frozen at a comparatively paltry $350,000 since 2003".[98] Baylor later dropped the race accusation. The case went to trial in March 2011, with the jury ruling unanimously in favor of the Clippers and Sterling.[101]
Sexual harassment lawsuits [ edit ] In 1996, Christine Jasky, a property management consultant for Sterling who also did work for the Clippers, sued Sterling for sexual harassment, claiming she quit her job after he repeatedly offered her money for sex, and asked her to recruit sexual partners for him.[102][103] Sterling countersued, and the two eventually reached a confidential settlement in 1998.[103]
Sumner Davenport, a property supervisor for Sterling who was fired in 2002, sued him in 2003 for sexual harassment for "unwanted and offensive physical conduct".[104] She lost the case at a jury trial two years later.[103][105]Court documents indicate that Davenport was a property supervisor based in Sterling's Beverly Hills office, with the responsibilities of overseeing several of his apartment buildings. In her case, she asserted she was fired for her complaints against and refusing to comply with his racially discriminating and abusive behavior against tenants, his illegal eviction process, as well as his offensive physical conduct against her. Court records indicate Sterling's organization denies firing her.[106]
Personal life [ edit ] In 1955, Sterling married Rochelle ("Shelly") Stein, with whom he had three children: Scott, Chris, and Joanna. Joanna's husband, Eric Miller, served as the Clippers' director of basketball administration, voluntarily leaving after Sterling sold the team.[107]
Sterling had a relationship with a woman named Alexandra Castro. Seeking the return of a house she was living in, Sterling sued her in 2003 after their relationship ended.[43][108] Castro, in 1999, had signed a contract that gave Sterling protection from her seeking palimony, which divides assets between unmarried couples. Their agreement read that Sterling "is happily married, has a family and has no intention of engaging in any activity inconsistent with his domestic relationship".[109][110] In the proceedings, Castro stated that Sterling consulted her on Clippers personnel decisions.[43] Sterling and Castro reached a confidential settlement out of court in 2004.[108]
Sterling and Shelly became estranged at the end of 2012, when he moved to a mansion in Beverly Hills, California, after she kicked him out of their beach house in Malibu, California, following a family dispute during which he was arguing with a mistress on the phone.[26] A week later, Sterling's son Scott was found dead on New Year's Eve, having died of an accidental narcotic drug overdose at the age of 32.[26][111]
On August 5, 2015, Sterling's attorney Bobby Samini confirmed to KABC-TV that Sterling filed for divorce from his wife Shelly.[112][113] In March 2016, Samini informed the Los Angeles Times that "notwithstanding all the difficult events of the last two years, the Sterlings have resolved their differences" and decided not to proceed with their divorce.[114]
Health [ edit ] In 2012, Sterling began treatment for prostate cancer.[26][115] By May 2014, according to multiple doctors Sterling was in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease.[116] He was deemed mentally unfit to continue to lead the financial affairs of the Sterling Family Trust, clearing the way for his wife Shelly to sell the Los Angeles Clippers on his behalf despite his protests.[117]
References [ edit ] ^ Forbes: The World's Billionaires: "Donald Sterling" April 2014. ^ Gregory, Sean (April 29, 2014). "NBA Bans Donald Sterling 'For Life' After Racist Rant". Time . Retrieved April 29, 2014 . ^ (August 12, 2014). "Steve Ballmer new Clippers owner". . Retrieved August 12, 2014 . ^ "Ballmer officially becomes new owner of Clippers". 12 August 2014. Archived from the original on 15 August 2014 . Retrieved 12 August 2014 . ^ Vinton, Kate. "Billionaire Donald Sterling Settles Lawsuit With The NBA Over Clippers Sale To Steve Ballmer". ^ "Donald Sterling". ^ a b c d e f g Up and Down in Beverly Hills, 04.17.00 - Franz Lidz Sports Illustrated ^ Cruz, Daniel Joseph (2014-04-29). " ' LA Clippers' team owner Donald Sterling's bad 'karma' pile up after 'racist remarks ' ". International Business Times, A.U. Edition. Donald Sterling, born April 26, 1934... ^ Wharton, David; Pfeifer, Stuart; Hsu, Tiffany (April 29, 2014). "Donald Sterling has options to weigh after NBA ban". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on May 9, 2014. ...during the Depression in Chicago, where he was born Donald Tokowitz... ^ Bolch, Ben (April 26, 2014). "Clippers owner Donald Sterling in firestorm over alleged racist remarks". Los Angeles Times. ...the billionaire, who turned 80 on Saturday ^ Haaretz: "Jewish groups condemn Donald Sterling remarks" April 28, 2014. ^ Daily Jewish Forward: "NBA's Donald Sterling Tells Girlfriend, 'In Israel, Blacks Are Treated Like Dogs'" April 28, 2014. ^ Martinez, Michael. "L.A. Clippers' Donald Sterling sage turns on secret recordings, drama". CNN. ^ California, The State Bar of. "Attorney Search : The State Bar of California". ^ a b Peter, Josh (May 3, 2014). "Records reveal why Sterling, V. Stiviano changed names". USA Today . Retrieved May 3, 2014 . ^ Keating, Peter (June 1, 2009). "Uncontested: The life of Donald Sterling". ESPN The Magazine. Archived from the original on May 24, 2009. ^ "Los Angeles Times: Archives". ^ Marc Wanamaker, Beverly Hills: 1930-2005, Arcadia Publishing, 2006 ^ Adrian Glick Kudler, The Revealing Map of Donald Sterling's 162 Donald Sterling Properties, LA Curbed, April 29, 2014 ^ Canepa, Nick (May 16, 1984). "Sterling never belonged here, but his departed NBA team did". The Evening Tribune. p. D-1. 'I'm willing to spend unlimited sums to build a winner here,' Donald T. gushed at his introductory news conference. ^ a b c d e Goldaper, Sam (November 13, 1983). "Clippers Are Showing Signs of Revival". The New York Times. Archived from the original on July 15, 2014. ^ Newman, Bruce (November 1, 1982). "Can The Nba Save Itself?". Sports Illustrated. ^ Ryan, Bob (April 29, 2014). "Donald Sterling profile is not a pretty picture". The Boston Globe. Archived from the original on May 1, 2014. ^ "Sterling Fined $10,000". Reading Eagle. Associated Press. January 9, 1982. p. 10 . Retrieved April 27, 2014 . ^ Dohrmann, George (May 30, 2014). "Recently banned Donald Sterling has long history of clashing with NBA". ^ a b c d Shelburne, Ramona (June 19, 2014). "The sad last chapter of Sterling's life". Archived from the original on June 20, 2014. ^ Lidz, Franz (April 17, 2000). "Up And Down In Beverly Hills". Sports Illustrated. ^ Amick, Sam (November 1, 2012). "Clippers have leg up on Lakers to start NBA season". USA Today . Retrieved November 2, 2012 . ^ Abrams, Jonathan (February 11, 2011). "Confetti Falls as Cavaliers End Drought". New York Times . Retrieved November 2, 2012 . ^ Harris, Beth (May 10, 2012). "Grizzlies-Clippers Preview". Associated Press . Retrieved November 2, 2012 . ^ "Clippers look to build on start of something good". Associated Press. October 24, 2012 . Retrieved November 2, 2012 . ^ Shelburne, Ramona (March 10, 2010). "Dunleavy out as GM of Clippers". Archived from the original on March 12, 2010. ^ Fenno, Nathan (April 26, 2014). "Elgin Baylor lawsuit among Donald Sterling's past racial issues". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on April 27, 2014. ^ a b c Zillgitt, Jeff (April 30, 2014). "Donald Sterling 'tyrannical' in court, NBA will learn". USA Today. Archived from the original on May 1, 2014. ^ "Clippers Fire Weiss After A Season In Job". Philadelphia Inquirer. May 17, 1994. Archived from the original on May 2, 2014. ^ a b c May, Peter (January 26, 2003). "Clipped Answers '' Intriguing Owner Sterling Pleads Ignorance". The Boston Globe. Archived from the original on September 24, 2015 . Retrieved May 1, 2014 . (subscription required) ^ White, Lonnie (April 5, 2001). "Sterling Sues Former Coach". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on May 2, 2014. ^ a b Badenhausen, Kurt (April 26, 2014). "Donald Sterling Proves Once Again That He Is The Worst Owner In Sports". Forbes. Archived from the original on April 28, 2014. ^ Keating, Peter (July 2, 2009). "Ultimate Standings". ESPN The Magazine. Archived from the original on April 30, 2014. ^ Spears, Marc J. (January 13, 2010). "Shout it out: Sterling heckles Davis". Archived from the original on April 29, 2014. ^ "Cedric Maxwell: Can Doc Rivers Keep Clippers Focused Amid Donald Sterling Controversy?". CBS. April 28, 2014. Archived from the original on April 29, 2014. ^ Prince, DeAntae (April 28, 2014). "Report: Magic Johnson could present package to buy Clippers from Donald Sterling". Archived from the original on April 29, 2014 . Retrieved April 29, 2014 . ^ a b c Witz, Billy (April 27, 2014). "Vortex of Outrage Has Long Trailed Clippers' Owner". The New York Times. Archived from the original on September 5, 2014. ^ Pierce, Charles C. (April 28, 2014). "A Fan's Worst Nightmare". Archived from the original on April 28, 2014. ^ Joe Coscarelli (April 28, 2014). "Everything You Need to Know About V. Stiviano, the Woman Who Recorded Donald Sterling's Racism". New York. ^ Victoria Kim; Adolfo Flores; Cindy Chang (April 27, 2014). "V. Stiviano shies from public eye amid Donald Sterling controversy". Los Angeles Times. ^ a b c Clippers Owner Donald Sterling Admits His Voice Is On Recording, Banned For Life By NBA Archived April 30, 2014, at the Wayback Machine, The Beverly Hills Courier, April 29, 2014. ^ a b "Donald Sterling receives lifetime ban". April 29, 2014. Archived from the original on April 30, 2014. ^ Cacciola, Scott; Witz, Billy (April 26, 2014). "N.B.A. probing racial remarks tied to owner". The New York Times. ^ "L.A. Clippers owner to GF: Don't bring black people to my games ... including Magic Johnson". EHM Productions. April 25, 2014 . Retrieved April 26, 2014 . ^ "Sterling's offensive behavior was no secret for years, 04.30.14 Franz Lidz - Sports Illustrated ^ Fenno, Nathan (2014-08-12). "A timeline on the Donald Sterling saga". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035 . Retrieved 2017-04-17 . ^ "Statement from Clippers president Andy Roeser" (Press release). The Los Angeles Clippers, via April 26, 2014. Archived from the original on April 28, 2014. ^ Knoblauch, Austin (April 26, 2014). "Clippers release statement on alleged Donald Sterling racist comments". Los Angeles Times. ^ Joe Coscarelli (April 29, 2014). "Here's the Lawsuit Against V. Stiviano That May Have Set Off the Donald Sterling Mess". New York Mag. ^ "V. Stiviano, Rochelle Sterling legal battle at heart of scandal". Los Angeles Times. April 29, 2014. Archived from the original on April 30, 2014. ^ Bryan, Rebecca (May 11, 2014). "Clippers owner Sterling says he's sorry for racist remarks". Agence France-Presse. Archived from the original on May 12, 2014. ^ Markazi, Arash (April 26, 2014). "Clippers briefly consider boycott". ESPN Internet Ventures . Retrieved April 26, 2014 . ^ Greenberg, Chris (April 27, 2014). "Clippers Players Stage Silent Protest Against Donald Sterling With Inside-Out Shirts (PHOTOS)". Huffington Post . Retrieved April 30, 2014 . ^ Greenberg, Chris (April 29, 2014). "Heat Players Protest Donald Sterling In Show Of Solidarity With Clippers Players (PHOTOS)". Huffington Post . Retrieved April 30, 2014 . ^ "NBA owners align against Clippers' Donald Sterling after alleged racist remarks". April 29, 2014. Archived from the original on April 30, 2014. ^ Michael Jordan 'outraged' over reported Donald Sterling comments ^ Rovell, Darren (April 27, 2014). "NAACP won't award Donald Sterling". Archived from the original on April 27, 2014. ^ Branch, John (April 26, 2014). "With Uproar Around Sterling, Clippers Take the Court". The New York Times. ^ "Sponsors end Clippers sponsorship". April 28, 2014. Archived from the original on April 28, 2014. ^ "UCLA rejects Donald Sterling gift". UCLA newsroom . Retrieved 2014-04-29 . ^ Gittens, Hasani. "Clippers Owner Donald Sterling Fined $2.5M and Banned for Life by NBA". NBC News . Retrieved 2014-04-30 . ^ "Transcript: Commissioner Adam Silver news conference". Archived from the original on 2014-04-29 . Retrieved 2014-04-29 . ^ Michael Hiltzik (May 2, 2014). "Donald Sterling and the NBA: Your guide to the looming legal morass". Los Angeles Times. ^ a b "Donald Sterling: 'A terrible mistake ' ". May 12, 2014. Archived from the original on May 12, 2014. ^ Cacciola, Scott (May 13, 2014). "Silver Issues a Response After Sterling's Interview". The New York Times. Archived from the original on September 5, 2014. ^ Golliver, Ben (May 13, 2014). "Clippers' Donald Sterling attacks Magic Johnson, says he should be 'ashamed' of HIV". Archived from the original on May 13, 2014. ^ Shelburne, Ramona (May 8, 2014). "Doc: Tough if Shelly retains control". Archived from the original on May 9, 2014. ^ Steve Gorman (April 30, 2014). "NBA moves to expel Clippers owner from basketball for racist remarks". Reuters. ^ "Sterling's wife vows to keep Clippers share, NBA says no". USA Today. May 12, 2014. Archived from the original on May 12, 2014. ^ Wills, Kerry. "Donald Sterling attorney: The NBA is 'a band of hypocrites ' ". . Retrieved 2017-04-17 . ^ "Donald Sterling vote set for June 3". May 20, 2014. Archived from the original on May 20, 2014. ^ "Summary of Sterling Termination Charge" (PDF) (Press release). NBA. May 19, 2014. Archived (PDF) from the original on May 24, 2014. ^ "Shelly Sterling to negotiate sale". ESPN Internet Ventures. May 23, 2014 . Retrieved May 24, 2014 . ^ Schrotenboer, Brent (May 30, 2014). "Donald Sterling ruled mentally unfit, can't prevent Clippers sale". USA Today. Archived from the original on May 30, 2014. ^ Shelburne, Ramona (May 28, 2014). "Donald Sterling: Proceedings a sham". Archived from the original on May 28, 2014. ^ Benson, Ken (May 30, 2014). "With Sale Pending, Vote on Sterling Is Canceled". The New York Times. Archived from the original on September 5, 2014. ^ "Donald Sterling changes course, will sell Clippers to Steve Ballmer for $2 billion - NBA". Sporting News. 2014-06-04 . Retrieved 2014-06-22 . ^ Harper, Zach. "Donald Sterling pulls support from Clippers sale, suing NBA again". . Retrieved 2014-06-22 . ^ "Trial will decide D. Sterling's role". Associated Press. July 11, 2014. Archived from the original on June 11, 2014. ^ "Sterling trial put on hold until July 21". Associated Press. July 10, 2014. Archived from the original on July 11, 2014. ^ Shelburne, Ramona; Markazi, Arash (July 23, 2014). "Donald Sterling files a new lawsuit". Archived from the original on July 23, 2014. ^ Fenno, Nathan (July 28, 2014). "Donald Sterling loses court battle to prevent sale of Clippers". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on July 28, 2014. ^ Bolch, Ben; Fenno, Nathan; Rohlin, Melissa (August 12, 2014). "Steve Ballmer is officially new owner of Clippers, NBA says". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on August 31, 2014. ^ Fenno, Nathan (April 15, 2015). "Donald Sterling's attorney assails Shelly Sterling, V. Stiviano". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on April 22, 2015. ^ Joseph, Adi (28 April 2014). "Hawks owner Bruce Levenson would approve Donald Sterling ouster". USA TODAY . Retrieved September 1, 2014 . ^ Eliott C. McLaughlin (September 7, 2014). "Atlanta Hawks owner Bruce Levenson to sell team after racist email". CNN . Retrieved September 7, 2014 . ^ Nathan Fenno (November 18, 2016). "Donald Sterling settles lawsuit with NBA over sale of Clippers". Los Angeles times . Retrieved April 11, 2018 . ^ City News Services (March 28, 2017). "$270K lawsuit to move forward with Donald Sterling". 10 News . Retrieved April 11, 2018 . ^ "SEASON FIVE: THE STERLING AFFAIRS EPISODE 3". 30 for 30 Podcasts . Retrieved May 5, 2020 . And that he had also told his employees that 'black people smell and attract vermin' ... ^ a b Keating, Peter (May 21, 2009). "Uncontested: The life of Donald Sterling". . Retrieved May 5, 2020 . 'And it's because of all of the Mexicans that just sit around and smoke and drink all day.' ^ "Sterling settles housing bias lawsuit". ESPN. Associated Press. November 3, 2009. ^ a b Lisa Dillman, Elgin Baylor sues Clippers, claiming racism, Los Angeles Times, February 12, 2009. Retrieved February 13, 2009. ^ Lisa Dillman, Mention of David Stern is an error in Elgin Baylor's lawsuit, Los Angeles Times, February 14, 2009. Retrieved February 13, 2009. ^ a b Bill Plaschke, There are no winners in Elgin Baylor's lawsuit against Clippers, Los Angeles Times, February 13, 2009. Retrieved February 13, 2009. ^ Pugmire, Lance (30 March 2011). "Jury rejects Elgin Baylor's wrongful-termination lawsuit against the Clippers". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved 10 December 2018 . ^ "Torrid Clippers Go Afoul in End". Los Angeles Times. Associated Press. April 4, 1996. Archived from the original on June 2, 2014. ^ a b c Fish, Mike (June 1, 2014). "OTL: NBA lax in Sterling oversight". Archived from the original on June 1, 2014. ^ "Sterling Is Sued for Harassment". Los Angeles Times. Associated Press. July 20, 2003. Archived from the original on June 2, 2014. ^ Kristensen, Kim; Fenno, Nathan (May 28, 2014). "Outcry over Sterling's remarks renew focus on housing bias lawsuits". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on June 2, 2014. ^ Superior Court of the State of California for the County of Los Angeles, Case #BC299818 ^ Bolch, Ben (September 24, 2014). "Donald Sterling's son-in-law voluntarily leaves Clippers organization". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on December 29, 2014. ^ a b Hill, James; Murray, Rheana (April 30, 2014). "Donald Sterling's 2002 Battle With an Ex-Mistress Has Similarities to Today". Archived from the original on May 2, 2014. ^ Dockterman, Eliana (May 9, 2014). "Donald Sterling's 'Friendship Agreements' Explained". Archived from the original on May 9, 2014. ^ Ryan, Harriet; Kim, Victoria (May 6, 2014). "The women in Donald Sterling's life". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on May 6, 2014. ^ Blankstein, A. and Stevens, M., Death of Scott Sterling, Son of Clippers Owner, Ruled Accidental, Los Angeles Times, April 22, 2013. ^ "DONALD STERLING FILES FOR DIVORCE FROM WIFE SHELLY STERLING, ATTORNEY CONFIRMS". KABC-TV. August 5, 2015 . Retrieved August 5, 2015 . ^ "Former Clippers owners Donald and Shelly Sterling file for divorce". Orange County Register. August 5, 2015 . Retrieved August 5, 2015 . ^ Times, Los Angeles. "Former Clippers owner Donald Sterling and wife decide not to divorce". . Retrieved 2016-07-16 . ^ Bresnahan, Mike; Turner, Broderick (May 2, 2014). "Clippers owner Donald Sterling has prostate cancer, source says". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on May 6, 2014. ^ "Donald Sterling diagnosed with Alzheimer's symptoms". USA Today . Retrieved 13 November 2015 . ^ "Donald Sterling ruled mentally unfit, can't prevent Clippers sale". External links [ edit ] Donald T. Sterling's Skid Row Mirage, LA Weekly, Feb. 19, 2008
More Than A Vote | More Than A Vote
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 03:32
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Marijuana Legalization Is a Racial Justice Issue | American Civil Liberties Union
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 03:15
Marijuana has been a key driver of mass criminalization in this country and hundreds of thousands of people, the majority of whom are Black or Latinx, have their lives impacted by a marijuana arrest each year. But the tide is turning against the remnants of a drug war targeted at Black and Brown people that was never meant to increase public safety in the first place. Legalization is an important step towards ending the war on drugs, and it cannot come soon enough.
Legalizing marijuana must come with expungement, with reinvestment in the communities most harmed by enforcement, with limitations on how police can interact with people who they suspect of a marijuana offense, with legal nonpublic spaces for smoking marijuana for those who cannot smoke in their residence, with a prohibition on deportation for people with marijuana convictions, and with full inclusion of those most impacted by criminalization of marijuana in the new marijuana industry.
Currently, nine states and the District of Columbia allow for recreational use among adults, while 31 states allow for medical use of marijuana. The laws reflect growing public support. Two out of three Americans are in favor of legalization, which has majority support in all age groups and political affiliations.
While progress in reforming our nation's drug laws is vital, we must remember that if we legalize without righting the wrongs of past marijuana enforcement, we risk reinforcing the decades of disproportionate harm communities of color have faced and endured. People in the United States use and sell marijuana at roughly the same rate regardless of their race, yet a Black person is almost four times more likely than a white person to be arrested for marijuana possession nationwide. In addition, roughly 13,000 people were deported or separated from their communities and families in 2013 alone for drug-related offenses.
While it is not a panacea for past harms, thoughtful legalization can help us forge a more equitable future.
Today, overcriminalized communities continue to suffer from the fallout our nation's drug laws, even in states that have legalized marijuana and seen dramatic drops in the number of people arrested for marijuana crimes. That's because legalization has not eradicated the indefensible rate at which Black and Latinx people are arrested for marijuana offenses in these states. In fact, many states have seen an even steeper rise in the percentage of Black and Latinx people having their lives impacted by a marijuana arrest. Two years after decriminalization in the nation's capital, a Black person is 11 times more likely than a white person to be arrested for public use of marijuana.
This is one of the main reasons enforcement is key to reform. When it comes to drug law reform, policing, which more rightly can be titled over-policing, is at the headwaters of the injustices communities of color suffer. We must address, combat, and eventually eliminate discriminatory policing practices and the structural racial bias at every step of our criminal legal system. Legalization measures must have equity as a vital component to avoid continuing to harm certain and to address the years of hardship and stigma that criminalizing marijuana has wrought.
Along with the harm of incarceration and conviction, a simple marijuana charge has a negative ripple effect.
Having a marijuana conviction on your record can make it difficult to secure and maintain employment, housing, or secure government assistance for the rest of your life. This is why clearing people's records of marijuana convictions is a necessary addition to any legalization measure. If we believe that marijuana is not worthy of criminal intervention, then it is only right we stop the suffering inflicted on people by a marijuana prosecution. Especially since we know this disproportionately falls on the shoulders, and families, of low-income communities and communities of color.
Such efforts to extend racial justice must explicitly be tied to a program of economic justice.
People who have been harmed by the enforcement of marijuana must have a place in the bourgeoning marketplace created by legalization. Indeed, any legalization bill should include provisions that enable people who have struggled to find employment due to a marijuana conviction to participate meaningfully in the marijuana industry. Excluding people directly impacted by marijuana criminalization from the industry further entrenches the outsized impact that the war on drugs has had on communities of color.
If we legalize without mindfulness of the full ecosystem of the criminal legal system and how it impacts people, then corporate and industry-backed legalization efforts will lead us away from what is right and just. That is why we must support legalization legislation that truly help roll back overcriminalization, end the failed war on drugs once and for all, and usher in a more equitable future through drug law reform nationwide.
folx - Google Search
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 03:15
Folx - Urban Dictionary 'º define 'º term=Folx
17th century spelling of the word "folks" used by Shakespeare impersonators, pirates, highwaymen, crossbowmen, and vagabonds. Some account of sir Robert ...
Our Black Party - UNLIMITED '-- Donate via ActBlue
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 03:10
Black people deserve candidates that will address their needs and respect their vote. Our Black Party is a manifestation of our community united towards a common goal: fairer representation, stronger communities.
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Leadership '-- Our Black Party
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 03:09
HOn. CANDACE HOLLINGSWORTHNational Co-Chair, Mayor, Hyattsville, MDTwitter: @justlikecandace Instagram: @justlikecandaceEmail:
+ More on CandaceCandace Hollingsworth is the mayor of Hyattsville, Maryland where she is the youngest, and first African American mayor in the city's 134-year history. She is a passionate advocate for great cities, youth, and stronger democracies. As mayor, Candace has championed policies and programs that improve outcomes for young people, expand opportunities for marginalized communities, and chart a path toward shared prosperity. As national co-chair of Our Black Party, Candace will help lead a national agenda to create lasting change in the everyday lives of Black people nationwide. A native Memphian, Candace holds a Bachelor of Arts in African American Studies from Emory University and a Master of Public Policy from Georgetown University. She is a board member for the Prince George's County African-American Museum and Cultural Center, a Sisters on the Planet Ambassador for OxFam America, and a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Dr. Wes BellamyNational Co-Chair, Vice-Mayor, Charlottesville, VA (Ret.)Twitter: @DrWesBellamy Instagram: @dr.wesbellamyEmail:
+ More on WesDr. Wes Bellamy, Author of ''Monumental: It Was Never About a Statue'' is a former Vice-Mayor and City Councilman in Charlottesville, Virginia, the Political Science Department Chairman at Virginia State University, and one of the Global thought leaders of the Millennial Generation. Dr. Bellamy is the Managing Partner of New Emergence Consulting, an Equity and Policy consulting firm, and the National Public Policy Chairman of the 100 Black Men of America. He is the youngest individual ever elected to the Charlottesville City Council post, and he came into the national spotlight after helping to lead the effort to remove statues of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson from City Parks.
He developed a comprehensive plan, the ''Equity Package'', which included nearly $4 million in aid fir marginalized communities, and pushed it through city council. He is the founder of the Black Millennial Political Convention, a Convention focused on bringing together African American millennials from across the country to collectively use their power to create change. He has been featured in the New York Times. Washington Post, USA Today, Huffington Post, and has made appearances, on CNN, MSNBC, PBS News Hour, NPR, and On One with Angela Rye.
HON. Stephanie MoralesSteering Committee, Commonwealth Attorney, Portsmouth, VA Twitter: @attystepmoralesInstagram: @attystepmoralesEmail:
+ More on StephanieOn February 10, 2015, Stephanie Morales was the first woman to be elected Commonwealth's Attorney in Portsmouth, VA. She is a mother of four, a wife and a fighter who has committed her office to restorative justice and correcting the wrongs to members of the community by the system.
Three months into CA Morales' first term an officer in her city killed an unarmed teen. CA Morales secured an indictment and led the prosecution at jury trial herself, leading to a voluntary manslaughter conviction of the officer, and resulting in police accountability in her city.
In 2015 she established the "Ctrl+Alt+Del Program'' which now enters prisons to ensure incarcerated community members are successful upon release.
To intentionally build the future leaders of the legal profession, Commonwealth's Attorney Morales has mentored over 200 students under her program called the ''Future Leaders Initiative'' which was also established in 2015. Under this program young people from elementary school all the way through law school come to shadow, intern or fellow during which they become ''Junior Commonwealth's Attorneys.'' To further extend youth engagement and to keep students poised for academic success and success in life, Commonwealth's Attorney Morales and her team formed the ''Social Media by the Statutes'' program where she and her team enter the public schools and engage students with scenarios that teach them how their behaviors online and through technology can affect them legally and permanently.
CA Morales advocates daily for those who can't fight for themselves and to end and disrupt racism and implicit bias in the legal system. She fights for reform in marijuana enforcement and for other legislative reform centered around providing restorative justice to our community members.
Commonwealth's Attorney Stephanie Morales is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., the Links, Inc., an appointee to the Virginia State Child Fatality Review Team and is a national board member of the Local Progress Organization.
HON. lea webbSteering Committee, Councilor, Binghamton, NY (Ret.)Twitter: @leaweb1014 Instagram: @leawebb1014Email:
+ More on LeaLea is an award-winning activist who works to bridge the gap between the community and government agencies to bring about positive and lasting change. One of her greatest achievement includes being elected as the first and youngest African-American representative in the Binghamton City Council.
She has 20 years of experience as a Community Organizer leading effort on various social justice issues; quality education, health care, and addressing food deserts. She has also served on community boards and created task forces whose goals are to address cultural competency and anti-racism. She has passed legislation supporting equal pay for women, the creation of a city based human rights commission, establishing a city-wide climate action plan, and other equity-based legislation.
She was recognized as one of tomorrow's leaders by Oprah magazine. She's an Alum and Trainer with Vote Run Lead, and the Young Elected Officials Network, where she serves as a member of the Steering Committee for the Black Caucus.
Rashaad LambertSteering Committee, Founder, For(bes) the CultureTwitter: @king_spit Instagram: @king_spitEmail:
+ More on RashaadRashaad Lambert is an award winning marketing architect (or marketect ®), educator and philanthropist hailing from West Philadelphia.Rashaad is the founder of Sporty Marketing Group, the world's only six sigma marketing agency. There, he has worked with multi-billion dollar companies such as Uber, JetSmarter, Adidas, the NBA, and the NFL as well as multi-million dollar companies Forbes, Villa, Club Corp, & Pink Label Beauty. Rashaad is also the founder of For(bes) The Culture an initiative of CultureMakers Inc & Forbes Media.For his business acumen Rashaad was given the 'Entrepreneurial Excellence' award by the Pennsylvania House Of Representatives.Rashaad is also the founder of Lambert Legacy Charities, a nonprofit organization that has served over 20,000 people over 10 years using experiential philanthropy in efforts to alleviate deep poverty in the Southeastern Pennsylvania area. For his community work through Lambert Legacy Charities, Rashaad has been awarded an NAACP Image Award (Hometown Champion), a Congressional Proclamation, and A US Senate Resolution.
Genocide - Wikipedia
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 03:00
The intentional destruction of all or a significant part of a racial, ethnic, religious or national group
Part of a series on Genocide IssuesList by death tollChronological listCultural genocideGenocidal rapeGenocidal massacreUtilitarian genocideIncitement to genocidePsychologyDenialRisk factorsPreventionEffects on youthStudiesPerpetrators, victims, and bystandersWar and genocide Genocide of indigenous peoples Dzungar genocide, 1750sCalifornia genocide, 1846''1873Circassian genocide, 1860sSelk'nam genocide, 1890s''1900sHerero and Namaqua genocide, 1904''1907 Late Ottoman genocides Greeks, 1914''1922Assyrians, 1914''1924Armenians, 1915''1923 World War II (1941''1945)The HolocaustRomani genocideNazi crimes against the Polish nationGenocide of Serbs by the UstashePopulation transfer in the Soviet UnionGenocide of Bosniaks and Croats by the Chetniks Cold War Bangladesh genocide (1971)East Timor genocide (1974''1999)Cambodian genocide (1975''1979)Guatemalan genocide (1981''1983)Anfal genocide (1986''1989) Genocides in postcolonial Africa Ikiza genocide (1972)Gukurahundi (1983-1987)Isaaq genocide (1988''1989)Rwandan genocide (1994)Massacres of Hutus during the First Congo War (1996''1997)Darfur genocide (2003'')Ethno-religious genocide in contemporary eraBosnian genocide (1995)Yazidi genocide (2014''2019)Uyghur genocide (2014'')Rohingya genocide (2017'')Related topicsDemocideEthnic cleansingEthnocideForced assimilationMass killings under communist regimesHolodomor genocide questionAnti-communist mass killingsAtrocities in the Congo Free StateCategoryGenocide is the intentional action to destroy a people'--usually defined as an ethnic, national, racial, or religious group'--in whole or in part. A term coined by Raphael Lemkin in his 1944 book Axis Rule in Occupied Europe,[1] the hybrid word geno-cide is a combination of the Greek word Î"ένÎς (genos, "race, people") and the Latin suffix -caedo ("act of killing").[3]
The United Nations Genocide Convention, which was established in 1948, defines genocide as "acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such" including the killing of its members, causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group, deliberately imposing living conditions that seek to "bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part", preventing births, or forcibly transferring children out of the group to another group.[4][5][6]
Prominent examples of genocides in history include the Holocaust, the Armenian Genocide, and the Rwandan genocide. The Political Instability Task Force estimated that, between 1956 and 2016, a total of 43 genocides took place, causing the death of about 50 million people.[7] The UNHCR estimated that a further 50 million had been displaced by such episodes of violence up to 2008.[7]
Origin of the term Before genocide was coined, there were various ways of describing such events. The Armenian Genocide was described by contemporary English-speaking observers as a "systematic" or "organized" "campaign of extermination" or "race extermination".[8] Some languages already had words for such killings, including German (V¶lkermord, lit. 'murder of a people') and Polish (ludob"jstwo, lit. 'killing of a people or nation').[9][10] In 1941, Winston Churchill, when describing the German invasion of the Soviet Union, spoke of "a crime without a name".[11]
In 1944, Raphael Lemkin created the term genocide in his book Axis Rule in Occupied Europe. The book describes the implementation of Nazi policies in occupied Europe, and cites earlier mass killings.[12] The term described the systematic destruction of a nation or people,[13] and the word was quickly adopted by many in the international community. The word genocide is a combination of the Ancient Greek word g(C)nos (Î"ένÎς, meaning "race" or "people") with the Latin caedere ("to kill"). The word genocide was used in indictments at the Nuremberg trials, held from 1945, but solely as a descriptive term, not yet as a formal legal term.[15] The so-called Polish Genocide Trials of Arthur Greiser and Amon Leopold Goth in 1946 were the first trials in which judgments included the term genocide.[16]
According to Lemkin, genocide was "a coordinated strategy to destroy a group of people, a process that could be accomplished through total annihilation as well as strategies that eliminate key elements of the group's basic existence, including language, culture, and economic infrastructure".Lemkin defined genocide as follows:
Generally speaking, genocide does not necessarily mean the immediate destruction of a nation, except when accomplished by mass killings of all members of a nation. It is intended rather to signify a coordinated plan of different actions aiming at the destruction of essential foundations of the life of national groups, with the aim of annihilating the groups themselves. The objectives of such a plan would be the disintegration of the political and social institutions, of culture, language, national feelings, religion, and the economic existence of national groups, and the destruction of the personal security, liberty, health, dignity, and even the lives of the individuals belonging to such groups.
The preamble to the 1948 Genocide Convention (CPPCG) notes that instances of genocide have taken place throughout history.[17] But it was not until Lemkin coined the term and the prosecution of perpetrators of the Holocaust at the Nuremberg trials that the United Nations defined the crime of genocide under international law in the Genocide Convention.[18]
Lemkin's lifelong interest in the mass murder of populations in the 20th century was initially in response to the killing of Armenians in 1915[19][1][20] and later to the mass murders in Nazi-controlled Europe. He referred to the Albigensian Crusade as "one of the most conclusive cases of genocide in religious history".[21] He dedicated his life to mobilizing the international community, to work together to prevent the occurrence of such events.[22] In a 1949 interview, Lemkin said "I became interested in genocide because it happened so many times. It happened to the Armenians, then after the Armenians, Hitler took action."[23]
As a crime Pre-criminalization view Before genocide was made a crime against national law, it was considered a sovereign right.[24] When Lemkin asked about a way to punish the perpetrators of the Armenian Genocide, a law professor told him: "Consider the case of a farmer who owns a flock of chickens. He kills them and this is his business. If you interfere, you are trespassing."[25] As late as 1959, many world leaders still "believed states had a right to commit genocide against people within their borders", according to political scientist Douglas Irvin-Erickson.[24]
International law After the Holocaust, which had been perpetrated by Nazi Germany prior to and during World War II, Lemkin successfully campaigned for the universal acceptance of international laws defining and forbidding genocides. In 1946, the first session of the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution that "affirmed" that genocide was a crime under international law and enumerated examples of such events (but did not provide a full legal definition of the crime). In 1948, the UN General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (CPPCG) which defined the crime of genocide for the first time.[26]
Genocide is a denial of the right of existence of entire human groups, as homicide is the denial of the right to live of individual human beings; such denial of the right of existence shocks the conscience of mankind, results in great losses to humanity in the form of cultural and other contributions represented by these human groups, and is contrary to moral law and the spirit and aims of the United Nations. Many instances of such crimes of genocide have occurred when racial, religious, political and other groups have been destroyed, entirely or in part.
'--'‰UN Resolution 96(1), 11 December 1946
The CPPCG was adopted by the UN General Assembly on 9 December 1948[4] and came into effect on 12 January 1951 (Resolution 260 (III)). It contains an internationally-recognized definition of genocide which has been incorporated into the national criminal legislation of many countries and was also adopted by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, which established the International Criminal Court (ICC). Article II of the Convention defines genocide as:
... any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:
(a) Killing members of the group;(b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;(c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;(d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;(e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.The first draft of the convention included political killings, but these provisions were removed in a political and diplomatic compromise following objections from some countries, including the USSR, a permanent United Nations Security Council member.[27][28] The USSR argued that the convention's definition should follow the etymology of the term,[28] and may have feared greater international scrutiny of its own mass killings.[27][29] Other nations feared that including political groups in the definition would invite international intervention in domestic politics.[28] However leading genocide scholar William Schabas states: "Rigorous examination of the travaux fails to confirm a popular impression in the literature that the opposition to inclusion of political genocide was some Soviet machination. The Soviet views were also shared by a number of other States for whom it is difficult to establish any geographic or social common denominator: Lebanon, Sweden, Brazil, Peru, Venezuela, the Philippines, the Dominican Republic, Iran, Egypt, Belgium, and Uruguay. The exclusion of political groups was in fact originally promoted by a non-governmental organization, the World Jewish Congress, and it corresponded to Raphael Lemkin's vision of the nature of the crime of genocide."[30]
Incitement to genocide is recognized as a separate crime under international law and an inchoate crime which does not require genocide to have taken place to be prosecutable.[31]
Genocidal intent Under international law, genocide has two mental (or mens rea) elements '' the general mental element and the element of specific intent (dolus specialis). The general element refers to whether the prohibited acts were committed with intent, knowledge, recklessness, or negligence. For most serious international crimes, including genocide, the requirement is that the perpetrator act with intent. The Rome Statute defines intent as meaning to engage in the conduct and, in relation to consequences, as meaning to cause that consequence or being "aware that it will occur in the ordinary course of events".[32]
The specific intent element defines the purpose of committing the acts: "to destroy in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such". The specific intent is a core factor distinguishing genocide from other international crimes, such as war crimes or crimes against humanity.
"Intent to destroy" In 2007, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) noted in its judgement on Jorgic v. Germany case that, in 1992, the majority of legal scholars took the narrow view that "intent to destroy" in the CPPCG meant the intended physical-biological destruction of the protected group, and that this was still the majority opinion. But the ECHR also noted that a minority took a broader view, and did not consider biological-physical destruction to be necessary, as the intent to destroy a national, racial, religious or ethnic group was enough to qualify as genocide.[33]
In the same judgement, the ECHR reviewed the judgements of several international and municipal courts. It noted that the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia and the International Court of Justice had agreed with the narrow interpretation (that biological-physical destruction was necessary for an act to qualify as genocide). The ECHR also noted that at the time of its judgement, apart from courts in Germany (which had taken a broad view), that there had been few cases of genocide under other Convention states' municipal laws, and that "There are no reported cases in which the courts of these States have defined the type of group destruction the perpetrator must have intended in order to be found guilty of genocide."[34]
In the case of "Onesphore Rwabukombe", the German Supreme Court adhered to its previous judgement, and did not follow the narrow interpretation of the ICTY and the ICJ.[35]
"In whole or in part" The phrase "in whole or in part" has been subject to much discussion by scholars of international humanitarian law.[36] The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia found in Prosecutor v. Radislav Krstic '' Trial Chamber I '' Judgment '' IT-98-33 (2001) ICTY8 (2 August 2001)[37] that Genocide had been committed. In Prosecutor v. Radislav Krstic '' Appeals Chamber '' Judgment '' IT-98-33 (2004) ICTY 7 (19 April 2004)[38] paragraphs 8, 9, 10, and 11 addressed the issue of in part and found that "the part must be a substantial part of that group. The aim of the Genocide Convention is to prevent the intentional destruction of entire human groups, and the part targeted must be significant enough to have an impact on the group as a whole." The Appeals Chamber goes into details of other cases and the opinions of respected commentators on the Genocide Convention to explain how they came to this conclusion.
The judges continue in paragraph 12, "The determination of when the targeted part is substantial enough to meet this requirement may involve a number of considerations. The numeric size of the targeted part of the group is the necessary and important starting point, though not in all cases the ending point of the inquiry. The number of individuals targeted should be evaluated not only in absolute terms but also in relation to the overall size of the entire group. In addition to the numeric size of the targeted portion, its prominence within the group can be a useful consideration. If a specific part of the group is emblematic of the overall group or is essential to its survival, that may support a finding that the part qualifies as substantial within the meaning of Article 4 [of the Tribunal's Statute]."[39][40]
In paragraph 13 the judges raise the issue of the perpetrators' access to the victims: "The historical examples of genocide also suggest that the area of the perpetrators' activity and control, as well as the possible extent of their reach, should be considered. [...] The intent to destroy formed by a perpetrator of genocide will always be limited by the opportunity presented to him. While this factor alone will not indicate whether the targeted group is substantial, it can'--in combination with other factors'--inform the analysis."[38]
"A national, ethnic, racial or religious group" The drafters of the CPPCG chose not to include political or social groups among the protected groups. Instead, they opted to focus on "stable" identities, attributes that are historically understood as being born into and unable or unlikely to change overtime. This definition conflicts with modern conceptions of race as a social construct rather than innate fact and the practice of changing religion, etc.[41]
International criminal courts have typically applied a mix of objective and subjective markers for determining whether or not a targeted population is a distinct group. Differences in language, physical appearance, religion, and cultural practices are objective criteria that may show that the groups are distinct. However, in circumstances such as the Rwandan genocide, Hutus and Tutsis were often physically indistinguishable.[42]
In such a situation where a definitive answer based on objective markers is not clear, courts have turned to the subjective standard that "if a victim was perceived by a perpetrator as belonging to a protected group, the victim could be considered by the Chamber as a member of the protected group".[43] Stigmatization of the group by the perpetrators through legal measures, such as withholding citizenship, requiring the group to be identified, or isolating them from the whole could show that the perpetrators viewed the victims as a protected group.
Genocidal acts The Genocide Convention establishes five prohibited acts that, when committed with the requisite intent, amount to genocide. Although massacre-style killings are the most commonly identified and punished as genocide, the range of violence that is contemplated by the law is significantly broader.[44]
Killing members of the group While mass killing is not necessary to commit genocide, it has been present in every recognized genocide. A near-uniform pattern has emerged throughout history in which men and adolescent boys are singled out for murder in the early stages,[citation needed ] such as in the genocide of the Yazidis by Daesh,[45] the Ottoman Turks' attack on the Armenians,[46] and the Burmese security forces' attacks on the Rohingya.[47] Men and boys are typically subject to "fast" killings, such as by gunshot.[48] Women and girls are more likely to die slower deaths by slashing, burning, or as a result of sexual violence.[49] The jurisprudence of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), among others, shows that both the initial executions and those that quickly follow other acts of extreme violence, such as rape and torture, are recognized as falling under the first prohibited act.[50]
A less settled discussion is whether deaths that are further removed from the initial acts of violence can be addressed under this provision of the Genocide Convention. Legal scholars have posited, for example, that deaths resulting from other genocidal acts including causing serious bodily or mental harm or the successful deliberate infliction of conditions of life calculated to bring about physical destruction should be considered genocidal killings.[44]
Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group Article II(b) This second prohibited act can encompass a wide range of non-fatal genocidal acts.[51] The ICTR and International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) have held that rape and sexual violence may constitute the second prohibited act of genocide by causing both physical and mental harm. In its landmark Akayesu decision, the ICTR held that rapes and sexual violence resulted in "physical and psychological destruction".[52] Sexual violence is a hallmark of genocidal violence, with most genocidal campaigns explicitly or implicitly sanctioning it.[44] It is estimated that 250,000 to 500,000 women were raped in the three months of the Rwandan genocide, many of whom were subjected to multiple rapes or gang rape.[53] In Darfur, a systemic campaign of rape and often sexual mutilation was carried out[54] and in Burma public mass rapes and gang rapes were inflicted on the Rohingya by Burmese security forces.[55] Sexual slavery was documented in the Armenian Genocide by the Ottoman Turks and Daesh's genocide of the Yazidi.[56] These acts are ordinarily, but not exclusively committed against women.[citation needed ]
Torture and other cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, when committed with the requisite intent, are also genocide by causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group. The ICTY found that both experiencing a failed execution and watching the murder of one's family members may constitute torture.[57] The Syrian Commission of Inquiry (COI) also found that enslavement, removal of one's children into indoctrination or sexual slavery, and acts of physical and sexual violence rise to the level of torture, as well. While it was subject to some debate, the ICTY and, later, the Syrian COI held that under some circumstances deportation and forcible transfer may also cause serious bodily or mental harm.[58]
Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction The third prohibited act is distinguished from the genocidal act of killing because the deaths are not immediate (or may not even come to pass), but rather create circumstances that do not support prolonged life.[3] Due to the longer period of time before the actual destruction would be achieved, the ICTR held that courts must consider the duration of time the conditions are imposed as an element of the act.[59] The drafters incorporated the act to account for the horrors of the Nazi concentration camps and to ensure that similar conditions never be imposed again. However, it could also apply to the Armenian death marches, the siege of Mount Sinjar by Daesh, the deprivation of water and forcible deportation against ethnic groups in Darfur, and the destruction and razing of communities in Burma.
The ICTR provided guidance into what constitutes a violation of the third act. In Akayesu, it identified "subjecting a group of people to a subsistence diet, systematic expulsion from homes and the reduction of essential medical services below minimum requirement"[60] as rising to genocide. In Kayishema and Ruzindana, it extended the list to include: "lack of proper housing, clothing, hygiene and medical care or excessive work or physical exertion" among the conditions.[59] It further noted that, in addition to deprivation of necessary resources, rape could also fit within this prohibited act.
Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group The fourth prohibited act is aimed at preventing the protected group from regenerating through reproduction. It encompasses acts with the single intent of affecting reproduction and intimate relationships, such as involuntary sterilization, forced abortion, the prohibition of marriage, and long-term separation of men and women intended to prevent procreation.[3] Rape has been found to violate the fourth prohibited act on two bases: where the rape was committed with the intent to impregnate her and thereby forcing her to carry a child of another group (in societies where group identity is determined by patrilineal identity) and where the person raped subsequently refuses to procreate as a result of the trauma.[61] Accordingly, it can take into account both physical and mental measures imposed by the perpetrators.
Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group The final prohibited act is the only prohibited act that does not lead to physical or biological destruction, but rather to destruction of the group as a cultural and social unit.[44] It occurs when children of the protected group are transferred to the perpetrator group. Boys are typically taken into the group by changing their names to those common of the perpetrator group, converting their religion, and using them for labor or as soldiers.[62] Girls who are transferred are not generally converted to the perpetrator group, but instead treated as chattel, as played out in both the Yazidi and Armenian genocides.[44] The measures used to forcibly transfer children may be imposed by direct force or psychological coercion, such as threats, duress, or detention.[3]
Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (CPPCG) coming into force The convention came into force as international law on 12 January 1951 after the minimum 20 countries became parties. At that time however, only two of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council were parties to the treaty: France and the Republic of China. The Soviet Union ratified in 1954, the United Kingdom in 1970, the People's Republic of China in 1983 (having replaced the Taiwan-based Republic of China on the UNSC in 1971), and the United States in 1988. This long delay in support for the convention by the world's most powerful nations caused the convention to languish for over four decades. Only in the 1990s did the international law on the crime of genocide begin to be enforced.[citation needed ]
UN Security Council on genocide UN Security Council Resolution 1674, adopted by the United Nations Security Council on 28 April 2006, "reaffirms the provisions of paragraphs 138 and 139 of the 2005 World Summit Outcome Document regarding the responsibility to protect populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity".[63] The resolution committed the council to action to protect civilians in armed conflict.[64]
In 2008 the UN Security Council adopted resolution 1820, which noted that "rape and other forms of sexual violence can constitute war crimes, crimes against humanity or a constitutive act with respect to genocide".[65]
Municipal law Since the Convention came into effect in January 1951 about 80 United Nations member states have passed legislation that incorporates the provisions of CPPCG into their municipal law.[66]
Criticisms of the CPPCG and other definitions of genocide William Schabas has suggested that a permanent body as recommended by the Whitaker Report to monitor the implementation of the Genocide Convention, and require states to issue reports on their compliance with the convention (such as were incorporated into the United Nations Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture), would make the convention more effective.[67]
Writing in 1998, Kurt Jonassohn and Karin Bj¶rnson stated that the CPPCG was a legal instrument resulting from a diplomatic compromise. As such the wording of the treaty is not intended to be a definition suitable as a research tool, and although it is used for this purpose, as it has international legal credibility that others lack, other definitions have also been postulated. Jonassohn and Bj¶rnson go on to say that none of these alternative definitions have gained widespread support for various reasons.[68]
Jonassohn and Bj¶rnson postulate that the major reason why no single generally accepted genocide definition has emerged is because academics have adjusted their focus to emphasise different periods and have found it expedient to use slightly different definitions to help them interpret events. For example, Frank Chalk and Kurt Jonassohn studied the whole of human history, while Leo Kuper and R. J. Rummel in their more recent works concentrated on the 20th century, and Helen Fein, Barbara Harff and Ted Gurr have looked at post World War II events. Jonassohn and Bj¶rnson are critical of some of these studies, arguing that they are too expansive, and conclude that the academic discipline of genocide studies is too young to have a canon of work on which to build an academic paradigm.[68]
The exclusion of social and political groups as targets of genocide in the CPPCG legal definition has been criticized by some historians and sociologists, for example, M. Hassan Kakar in his book The Soviet Invasion and the Afghan Response, 1979''1982[69] argues that the international definition of genocide is too restricted,[70] and that it should include political groups or any group so defined by the perpetrator and quotes Chalk and Jonassohn: "Genocide is a form of one-sided mass killing in which a state or other authority intends to destroy a group, as that group and membership in it are defined by the perpetrator."[71] In turn some states such as Ethiopia,[72] France,[73] and Spain[74][75] include political groups as legitimate genocide victims in their anti-genocide laws.
Barbara Harff and Ted Gurr defined genocide as "the promotion and execution of policies by a state or its agents which result in the deaths of a substantial portion of a group ... [when] the victimized groups are defined primarily in terms of their communal characteristics, i.e., ethnicity, religion or nationality".[76] Harff and Gurr also differentiate between genocides and politicides by the characteristics by which members of a group are identified by the state. In genocides, the victimized groups are defined primarily in terms of their communal characteristics, i.e., ethnicity, religion or nationality. In politicides the victim groups are defined primarily in terms of their hierarchical position or political opposition to the regime and dominant groups.[77][78] Daniel D. Polsby and Don B. Kates, Jr. state that "we follow Harff's distinction between genocides and 'pogroms', which she describes as 'short-lived outbursts by mobs, which, although often condoned by authorities, rarely persist'. If the violence persists for long enough, however, Harff argues, the distinction between condonation and complicity collapses."[79][80]
According to R. J. Rummel, genocide has 3 different meanings. The ordinary meaning is murder by the government of people due to their national, ethnic, racial, or religious group membership. The legal meaning of genocide refers to the international treaty, the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (CPPCG). This also includes non-killings that in the end eliminate the group, such as preventing births or forcibly transferring children out of the group to another group. A generalized meaning of genocide is similar to the ordinary meaning but also includes government killings of political opponents or otherwise intentional murder. It is to avoid confusion regarding what meaning is intended that Rummel created the term democide for the third meaning.[81]
Highlighting the potential for state and non-state actors to commit genocide in the 21st century, for example, in failed states or as non-state actors acquiring weapons of mass destruction, Adrian Gallagher defined genocide as 'When a source of collective power (usually a state) intentionally uses its power base to implement a process of destruction in order to destroy a group (as defined by the perpetrator), in whole or in substantial part, dependent upon relative group size'.[82] The definition upholds the centrality of intent, the multidimensional understanding of destroying, broadens the definition of group identity beyond that of the 1948 definition yet argues that a substantial part of a group has to be destroyed before it can be classified as genocide.
International prosecution of genocide By ad hoc tribunals All signatories to the CPPCG are required to prevent and punish acts of genocide, both in peace and wartime, though some barriers make this enforcement difficult. In particular, some of the signatories'--namely, Bahrain, Bangladesh, India, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, the United States, Vietnam, Yemen, and former Yugoslavia'--signed with the proviso that no claim of genocide could be brought against them at the International Court of Justice without their consent.[83] Despite official protests from other signatories (notably Cyprus and Norway) on the ethics and legal standing of these reservations, the immunity from prosecution they grant has been invoked from time to time, as when the United States refused to allow a charge of genocide brought against it by former Yugoslavia following the 1999 Kosovo War.[84]
It is commonly accepted that, at least since World War II, genocide has been illegal under customary international law as a peremptory norm, as well as under conventional international law. Acts of genocide are generally difficult to establish for prosecution because a chain of accountability must be established. International criminal courts and tribunals function primarily because the states involved are incapable or unwilling to prosecute crimes of this magnitude themselves.[citation needed ]
Nuremberg Tribunal (1945''1946) The Nazi leaders who were prosecuted shortly after World War II for taking part in the Holocaust, and other mass murders, were charged under existing international laws, such as crimes against humanity, as the crime of "genocide' was not formally defined until the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (CPPCG). Nevertheless, the recently coined term[85] appeared in the indictment of the Nazi leaders, Count 3, which stated that those charged had "conducted deliberate and systematic genocide'--namely, the extermination of racial and national groups'--against the civilian populations of certain occupied territories in order to destroy particular races and classes of people, and national, racial or religious groups, particularly Jews, Poles, Gypsies and others."[86]
International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (1993''2017) The term Bosnian genocide is used to refer either to the killings committed by Serb forces in Srebrenica in 1995,[87] or to ethnic cleansing that took place elsewhere during the 1992''1995 Bosnian War.[88]
In 2001, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) judged that the 1995 Srebrenica massacre was an act of genocide.[89] On 26 February 2007, the International Court of Justice (ICJ), in the Bosnian Genocide Case upheld the ICTY's earlier finding that the massacre in Srebrenica and Zepa constituted genocide, but found that the Serbian government had not participated in a wider genocide on the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina during the war, as the Bosnian government had claimed.[90]
On 12 July 2007, European Court of Human Rights when dismissing the appeal by Nikola Jorgić against his conviction for genocide by a German court (Jorgic v. Germany) noted that the German courts wider interpretation of genocide has since been rejected by international courts considering similar cases.[91][92][93] The ECHR also noted that in the 21st century "Amongst scholars, the majority have taken the view that ethnic cleansing, in the way in which it was carried out by the Serb forces in Bosnia and Herzegovina in order to expel Muslims and Croats from their homes, did not constitute genocide. However, there are also a considerable number of scholars who have suggested that these acts did amount to genocide, and the ICTY has found in the Momcilo Krajisnik case that the actus reus of genocide was met in Prijedor "With regard to the charge of genocide, the Chamber found that in spite of evidence of acts perpetrated in the municipalities which constituted the actus reus of genocide".[94]
About 30 people have been indicted for participating in genocide or complicity in genocide during the early 1990s in Bosnia. To date, after several plea bargains and some convictions that were successfully challenged on appeal two men, Vujadin Popović and LjubiÅa Beara, have been found guilty of committing genocide, Zdravko Tolimir has been found guilty of committing genocide and conspiracy to commit genocide, and two others, Radislav Krstić and Drago Nikolić, have been found guilty of aiding and abetting genocide. Three others have been found guilty of participating in genocides in Bosnia by German courts, one of whom Nikola Jorgić lost an appeal against his conviction in the European Court of Human Rights. A further eight men, former members of the Bosnian Serb security forces were found guilty of genocide by the State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina (See List of Bosnian genocide prosecutions).
Slobodan MiloÅević, as the former President of Serbia and of Yugoslavia, was the most senior political figure to stand trial at the ICTY. He died on 11 March 2006 during his trial where he was accused of genocide or complicity in genocide in territories within Bosnia and Herzegovina, so no verdict was returned. In 1995, the ICTY issued a warrant for the arrest of Bosnian Serbs Radovan Karadžić and Ratko Mladić on several charges including genocide. On 21 July 2008, Karadžić was arrested in Belgrade, and later tried in The Hague accused of genocide among other crimes.[95] On 24 March 2016, Karadžić was found guilty of genocide in Srebrenica, war crimes and crimes against humanity, 10 of the 11 charges in total, and sentenced to 40 years' imprisonment.[96][97] Mladić was arrested on 26 May 2011 in Lazarevo, Serbia,[98] and was tried in The Hague. The verdict, delivered on 22 November 2017 found Mladić guilty of 10 of the 11 charges, including genocide and he was sentenced to life imprisonment.[99]
International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (1994 to present) Victims of the 1994 Rwandan genocide
The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) is a court under the auspices of the United Nations for the prosecution of offenses committed in Rwanda during the genocide which occurred there during April 1994, commencing on 6 April. The ICTR was created on 8 November 1994 by the Security Council of the United Nations in order to judge those people responsible for the acts of genocide and other serious violations of the international law performed in the territory of Rwanda, or by Rwandan citizens in nearby states, between 1 January and 31 December 1994.
So far, the ICTR has finished nineteen trials and convicted twenty-seven accused persons. On 14 December 2009, two more men were accused and convicted for their crimes. Another twenty-five persons are still on trial. Twenty-one are awaiting trial in detention, two more added on 14 December 2009. Ten are still at large.[100] The first trial, of Jean-Paul Akayesu, began in 1997. In October 1998, Akayesu was sentenced to life imprisonment. Jean Kambanda, interim Prime Minister, pleaded guilty.
The Khmer Rouge, led by Pol Pot, Ta Mok and other leaders, organized the mass killing of ideologically suspect groups. The total number of victims is estimated at approximately 1.7 million Cambodians between 1975''1979, including deaths from slave labour.[101]
On 6 June 2003 the Cambodian government and the United Nations reached an agreement to set up the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) which would focus exclusively on crimes committed by the most senior Khmer Rouge officials during the period of Khmer Rouge rule of 1975''1979.[102] The judges were sworn in early July 2006.[103][104][105]
The genocide charges related to killings of Cambodia's Vietnamese and Cham minorities, which is estimated to make up tens of thousand killings and possibly more[106][107]
The investigating judges were presented with the names of five possible suspects by the prosecution on 18 July 2007.[103][108]
Kang Kek Iew was formally charged with a war crime and crimes against humanity and detained by the Tribunal on 31 July 2007. He was indicted on charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity on 12 August 2008.[109] His appeal against his conviction for war crimes and crimes against humanity was rejected on 3 February 2012, and he is serving a sentence of life imprisonment.[110]Nuon Chea, a former prime minister, who was indicted on charges of genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and several other crimes under Cambodian law on 15 September 2010. He was transferred into the custody of the ECCC on 19 September 2007. His trial started on 27 June 2011[106][111] and ended on 7 August 2014, with a life sentence imposed for crimes against humanity.[112]Khieu Samphan, a former head of state, who was indicted on charges of genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and several other crimes under Cambodian law on 15 September 2010. He was transferred into the custody of the ECCC on 19 September 2007. His trial began on 27 June 2011.[106][111] and also ended on 7 August 2014, with a life sentence imposed for crimes against humanity.[112]Ieng Sary, a former foreign minister, who was indicted on charges of genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and several other crimes under Cambodian law on 15 September 2010. He was transferred into the custody of the ECCC on 12 November 2007. His trial started on 27 June 2011, and ended with his death on 14 March 2013. He was never convicted.[106][111]Ieng Thirith, a former minister for social affairs and wife of Ieng Sary, who was indicted on charges of genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and several other crimes under Cambodian law on 15 September 2010. She was transferred into the custody of the ECCC on 12 November 2007. Proceedings against her have been suspended pending a health evaluation.[111][113]There has been disagreement between some of the international jurists and the Cambodian government over whether any other people should be tried by the Tribunal.[108]
By the International Criminal Court Since 2002, the International Criminal Court can exercise its jurisdiction if national courts are unwilling or unable to investigate or prosecute genocide, thus being a "court of last resort," leaving the primary responsibility to exercise jurisdiction over alleged criminals to individual states. Due to the United States concerns over the ICC, the United States prefers to continue to use specially convened international tribunals for such investigations and potential prosecutions.[114]
Darfur, Sudan A mother with her sick baby at Abu Shouk IDP camp in
North DarfurThere has been much debate over categorizing the situation in Darfur as genocide.[115] The ongoing conflict in Darfur, Sudan, which started in 2003, was declared a "genocide" by United States Secretary of State Colin Powell on 9 September 2004 in testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.[116] Since that time however, no other permanent member of the UN Security Council has done so. In fact, in January 2005, an International Commission of Inquiry on Darfur, authorized by UN Security Council Resolution 1564 of 2004, issued a report to the Secretary-General stating that "the Government of Sudan has not pursued a policy of genocide."[117] Nevertheless, the Commission cautioned that "The conclusion that no genocidal policy has been pursued and implemented in Darfur by the Government authorities, directly or through the militias under their control, should not be taken in any way as detracting from the gravity of the crimes perpetrated in that region. International offences such as the crimes against humanity and war crimes that have been committed in Darfur may be no less serious and heinous than genocide."[117]
In March 2005, the Security Council formally referred the situation in Darfur to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, taking into account the Commission report but without mentioning any specific crimes.[118] Two permanent members of the Security Council, the United States and China, abstained from the vote on the referral resolution.[119] As of his fourth report to the Security Council, the Prosecutor has found "reasonable grounds to believe that the individuals identified [in the UN Security Council Resolution 1593] have committed crimes against humanity and war crimes," but did not find sufficient evidence to prosecute for genocide.[120]
In April 2007, the Judges of the ICC issued arrest warrants against the former Minister of State for the Interior, Ahmad Harun, and a MilitiaJanjaweed leader, Ali Kushayb, for crimes against humanity and war crimes.[121]
On 14 July 2008, prosecutors at the International Criminal Court (ICC), filed ten charges of war crimes against Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir: three counts of genocide, five of crimes against humanity and two of murder. The ICC's prosecutors claimed that al-Bashir "masterminded and implemented a plan to destroy in substantial part" three tribal groups in Darfur because of their ethnicity.
On 4 March 2009, the ICC issued a warrant of arrest for Omar Al Bashir, President of Sudan as the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber I concluded that his position as head of state does not grant him immunity against prosecution before the ICC. The warrant was for war crimes and crimes against humanity. It did not include the crime of genocide because the majority of the Chamber did not find that the prosecutors had provided enough evidence to include such a charge.[122] Later the decision was changed by the Appeals Panel and after issuing the second decision, charges against Omar al-Bashir include three counts of genocide.[123]
Genocide in history Naked
Soviet POWs held by the Nazis in
Mauthausen concentration camp. "[T]he murder of at least 3.3 million Soviet POWs is one of the least-known of modern genocides; there is still no full-length book on the subject in English." '--Adam Jones
[124]The concept of genocide can be applied to historical events of the past. The preamble to the CPPCG states that "at all periods of history genocide has inflicted great losses on humanity."
Revisionist attempts to challenge or affirm claims of genocide are illegal in some countries. For example, several European countries ban the denial of the Holocaust or the Armenian Genocide, while in Turkey referring to the mass killings of Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians and Maronites as genocides may be prosecuted under Article 301.[125]
William Rubinstein argues that the origin of 20th-century genocides can be traced back to the collapse of the elite structure and normal modes of government in parts of Europe following the First World War:
The 'Age of Totalitarianism' included nearly all of the infamous examples of genocide in modern history, headed by the Jewish Holocaust, but also comprising the mass murders and purges of the Communist world, other mass killings carried out by Nazi Germany and its allies, and also the Armenian genocide of 1915. All these slaughters, it is argued here, had a common origin, the collapse of the elite structure and normal modes of government of much of central, eastern and southern Europe as a result of the First World War, without which surely neither Communism nor Fascism would have existed except in the minds of unknown agitators and crackpots.[126]
Stages, risk factors, and prevention For genocide to happen, there must be certain preconditions. Foremost among them is a national culture that does not place a high value on human life. A totalitarian society, with its assumed superior ideology, is also a precondition for genocidal acts.[127] In addition, members of the dominant society must perceive their potential victims as less than fully human: as "pagans," "savages," "uncouth barbarians," "unbelievers," "effete degenerates," "ritual outlaws," "racial inferiors," "class antagonists," "counterrevolutionaries," and so on.[128] In themselves, these conditions are not enough for the perpetrators to commit genocide. To do that'--that is, to commit genocide'--the perpetrators need a strong, centralized authority and bureaucratic organization as well as pathological individuals and criminals. Also required is a campaign of vilification and dehumanization of the victims by the perpetrators, who are usually new states or new regimes attempting to impose conformity to a new ideology and its model of society.[127]
In 1996 Gregory Stanton, the president of Genocide Watch, presented a briefing paper called "The 8 Stages of Genocide" at the United States Department of State.[130] In it he suggested that genocide develops in eight stages that are "predictable but not inexorable".[130][131]
The Stanton paper was presented to the State Department, shortly after the Rwandan Genocide and much of its analysis are based on why that genocide occurred. The preventative measures suggested, given the briefing paper's original target audience, were those that the United States could implement directly or indirectly by using its influence on other governments.
StageCharacteristicsPreventive measures1.ClassificationPeople are divided into "us and them"."The main preventive measure at this early stage is to develop universalistic institutions that transcend... divisions."2.Symbolization"When combined with hatred, symbols may be forced upon unwilling members of pariah groups...""To combat symbolization, hate symbols can be legally forbidden as can hate speech".3.Dehumanization"One group denies the humanity of the other group. Members of it are equated with animals, vermin, insects, or diseases.""Local and international leaders should condemn the use of hate speech and make it culturally unacceptable. Leaders who incite genocide should be banned from international travel and have their foreign finances frozen."4.Organization"Genocide is always organized... Special army units or militias are often trained and armed...""The U.N. should impose arms embargoes on governments and citizens of countries involved in genocidal massacres, and create commissions to investigate violations"5.Polarization"Hate groups broadcast polarizing propaganda...""Prevention may mean security protection for moderate leaders or assistance to human rights groups...Coups d'(C)tat by extremists should be opposed by international sanctions."6.Preparation"Victims are identified and separated out because of their ethnic or religious identity...""At this stage, a Genocide Emergency must be declared. ..."7.Extermination"It is 'extermination' to the killers because they do not believe their victims to be fully human"."At this stage, only rapid and overwhelming armed intervention can stop genocide. Real safe areas or refugee escape corridors should be established with heavily armed international protection."8.Denial"The perpetrators... deny that they committed any crimes...""The response to denial is punishment by an international tribunal or national courts"In April 2012, it was reported that Stanton would soon be officially adding two new stages, Discrimination and Persecution, to his original theory, which would make for a 10-stage theory of genocide.[132]
In a paper for the Social Science Research Council Dirk Moses criticises the Stanton approach, concluding:
In view of this rather poor record of ending genocide, the question needs to be asked why the "genocide studies" paradigm cannot predict and prevent genocides with any accuracy and reliability. The paradigm of "genocide studies," as currently constituted in North America in particular, has both strengths and limitations. While the moral fervor and public activism is admirable and salutary, the paradigm appears blind to its own implication in imperial projects that are themselves as much part of the problem as they are part of the solution. The US government called Darfur a genocide to appease domestic lobbies, and because the statement cost it nothing. Darfur will end when it suits the great powers that have a stake in the region.
Other authors have focused on the structural conditions leading up to genocide and the psychological and social processes that create an evolution toward genocide. Ervin Staub showed that economic deterioration and political confusion and disorganization were starting points of increasing discrimination and violence in many instances of genocides and mass killing. They lead to scapegoating a group and ideologies that identified that group as an enemy. A history of devaluation of the group that becomes the victim, past violence against the group that becomes the perpetrator leading to psychological wounds, authoritarian cultures and political systems, and the passivity of internal and external witnesses (bystanders) all contribute to the probability that the violence develops into genocide.[134] Intense conflict between groups that is unresolved, becomes intractable and violent can also lead to genocide. The conditions that lead to genocide provide guidance to early prevention, such as humanizing a devalued group, creating ideologies that embrace all groups, and activating bystander responses. There is substantial research to indicate how this can be done, but the information is only slowly transformed into action.[135]
Kjell Anderson uses a dichotomistic classification of genocides: "hot genocides, motivated by hate and the victims' threatening nature, with low-intensity cold genocides, rooted in victims' supposed inferiority."[136]
See also Research References ^ a b William Schabas (2000). Genocide in international law: the crimes of crimes. Cambridge University Press. p. 25. ISBN 9780521787901. Lemkin's interest in the subject dates to his days as a student at Lvov University, when he intently followed attempts to prosecute the perpetration of the massacres of the Armenians. ^ a b c d Stanton, Gregory H., What is genocide?, Genocide Watch . ^ a b "Legal definition of genocide" (PDF) . United Nations . Retrieved 22 February 2017 . ^ News, VOA. "What Is Genocide?". Voice of America . Retrieved 22 October 2017 . ^ Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide art. 2, 78 U.N.T.S. 277, 9 December 1948. ^ a b Charles H. Anderton, Jurgen Brauer, ed. (2016). Economic Aspects of Genocides, Other Mass Atrocities, and Their Prevention. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-937829-6. ^ Ihrig, Stefan (2016). Justifying Genocide: Germany and the Armenians from Bismarck to Hitler. Harvard University Press. p. 9. ISBN 978-0-674-50479-0. ^ Tomaszewski, Irene (2006). Inside a Gestapo Prison: The Letters of Krystyna Wituska, 1942-1944. Wayne State University Press. ISBN 978-0-8143-3887-2. In a letter dated October 3, 1943, Krystyna Wituska described the German atrocities in Poland '... Wituska used the German word Volksmord, in Polish ludobojstwo. Both words had been in use long before the war, and, while not endowed with the full meaning Lemkin was to give it, the meaning went beyond "mass murder." The root word, lud, can mean "people" but also "nation." In one angry passage, Wituska specifically wrote about Poles and Jews; it is clear she meant not just the murder of many people but the murder of a people. ^ Huttenbach, Henry R (2005). "Lemkin Redux: in quest of a word". Journal of Genocide Research. 7 (4): 443''445. doi:10.1080/14623520500349837. S2CID 216141999. ^ Churchill, Winston (24 August 1941). Prime Minister Winston Churchill's Broadcast to the World About the Meeting With President Roosevelt (Speech). British Library of Information '' via ibiblio. ^ "Coining a Word and Championing a Cause: The Story of Raphael Lemkin". United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM), Holocaust Encyclopedia. Lemkin's memoirs detail early exposure to the history of Ottoman attacks against Armenians (which most scholars believe constitute genocide), antisemitic pogroms, and other histories of group-targeted violence as key to forming his beliefs about the need for legal protection of groups. ^ Taylor, Telford (28 March 1982). "When people kill a people". The New York Times . Retrieved 12 December 2016 . "In 1943, in the course of his monumental study Axis Rule in Occupied Europe, the late Raphael Lemkin coined the word genocide '' from the Greek genos (race or tribe) and the Latin cide (killing) '' to describe the deliberate 'destruction of a nation or of an ethnic group'." ^ "What Is Genocide?", Holocaust Encyclopedia, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, 24 June 2014 . ^ Reassessing the Nuremberg Military Tribunals: Transitional Justice, Trial Narratives, and Historiography (War and Genocide) page 110 edited by Alexa Stiller and Kim C. Premiel Berghahn Books 2012 ^ "Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights". Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. 2 May 2008. Archived from the original on 2 May 2008 . Retrieved 22 October 2008 . ^ "Coining a Word and Championing a Cause: The Story of Raphael Lemkin". . Retrieved 22 October 2017 . ^ Yair Auron (2004). The Banality of Denial: Israel and the Armenian Genocide. Transaction Publishers. p. 9. ISBN 9781412817844. "... when Raphael Lemkin coined the word genocide in 1944 he cited the 1915 annihilation of Armenians as a seminal example of genocide ^ A. Dirk Moses. Genocide and settler society: frontier violence and stolen indigenous children in Australian history. Berghahn Books, 2004, p. 21: "Indignant that the perpetrators of the Armenian genocide had largely escaped prosecution, Lemkin, who was a young state prosecutor in Poland, began lobbying in the early 1930s for international law to criminalize the destruction of such groups." ^ Raphael Lemkin (2012). Steven Leonard Jacobs (ed.). Lemkin on Genocide. Lexington Books. p. 71. ISBN 978-0-7391-4526-5. ^ Rothenberg, Daniel. "Genocide". Encyclopedia of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity. Ed. Dinah L. Shelton. Vol. 1. Detroit: Macmillan Reference US, 2005. 395''397. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 4 March 2015. ^ Stanley, Alessandra (17 April 2006). "A PBS Documentary Makes Its Case for the Armenian Genocide, With or Without a Debate". The New York Times . Retrieved 7 August 2012 . ^ a b Irvin-Erickson, Douglas (2016). "Introduction". Raphael Lemkin and the Concept of Genocide. University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN 978-0-8122-9341-8. ^ Goldsmith, Katherine (2010). "The Issue of Intent in the Genocide Convention and Its Effect on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide: Toward a Knowledge-Based Approach". Genocide Studies and Prevention. 5 (3): 238''257. doi:10.3138/gsp.5.3.238. ^ Rubinstein, W.D. (2004). Genocide: a history. Pearson Education. p. 308. ISBN 978-0-582-50601-5. ^ a b Robert Gellately & Ben Kiernan (2003). The Specter of Genocide: Mass Murder in Historical Perspective . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 267. ISBN 978-0-521-52750-7. where Stalin was presumably anxious to avoid his purges being subjected to genocidal scrutiny. ^ a b c Staub, Ervin (31 July 1992). The Roots of Evil: The Origins of Genocide and Other Group Violence. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 8. ISBN 978-0-521-42214-7. ^ "USSR '' Genocide and Mass Murder". . Retrieved 30 August 2018 . ^ William A. Schabas (2009), Genocide in International Law: The Crime of Crimes, 2nd Ed., p. 160 ^ "Incitement to Genocide in International Law". United States Holocaust Memorial Museum . Retrieved 9 May 2020 . ^ "Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court" (PDF) . International Criminal Court. July 1998. ^ European Court of Human Rights Judgement in Jorgic v. Germany (Application no. 74613/01) paragraphs 18, 36, 74 ^ European Court of Human Rights Judgement in Jorgic v. Germany (Application no. 74613/01) paragraphs 43''46 ^ BGH, Urteil v. 21 May 2015 '' 3 StR 575/14, analysed with respect to genocidal intent in La Revue des Droits de l'Homme by Natascha Kersting (La poursuite p(C)nale du g(C)nocide rwandais devant les juridictions allemandes: L'intention de d(C)truire dans l'affaire "Onesphore Rwabukombe"), ^ "What is Genocide?" Archived 5 May 2007 at the Wayback Machine McGill Faculty of Law (McGill University) ^ "Prosecutor v. Dario Kordic & Mario Cerkez '' Trial Chamber III '' Judgment '' en IT-95-14/2 [2001] ICTY 8 (26 February 2001)". ^ a b "The Prosecutor v. Limaj et al. '' Decision on Prosecution's Motion to Amend the Amended Indictment '' Trial Chamber '' en IT-03-66 [2004] ICTY 7 (12 February 2004)". . Retrieved 22 October 2017 . ^ Prosecutor v. Radislav Krstic '' Appeals Chamber '' Judgment '' IT-98-33 (2004) ICTY 7 (19 April 2004) See Paragraph 6: "Article 4 of the Tribunal's Statute, like the Genocide Convention, covers certain acts done with "intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such". ^ Statute of the International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991, U.N. Doc. S/25704 at 36, annex (1993) and S/25704/Add.1 (1993), adopted by Security Council on 25 May 1993, Resolution 827 (1993). ^ Agnieszka Szpak, National, Ethnic, Racial, and Religious Groups Protected against Genocide in the Jurisprudence of the ad hoc International Criminal Tribunals, 23 Eur. J. Int'L L. 155 (2012). ^ William A. Schabas, Genocide in International Law: The Crime of Crimes 124''129 (2d. ed. 2009). ^ Prosecutor v. Bagilishema (Case No. ICTR-95-1A-T), Judgment, 7 June 2001, para. 65. ^ a b c d e Sareta Ashraph, Beyond Killing: Gender, Genocide, & Obligations Under International Law 3 (Global Justice Center 2018). ^ UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), "They Came to Destroy: ISIS Crimes Against the Yazidis", paras. [32''41], A/HRC/32/CRP.2, 15 June 2016. ^ Vahakn Dadrian, "The Secret Young Turk Ittihadist Conference and the Decision for World War I Genocide of the Armenians", Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Vol. 7, Issue 2, 173, at [164], 1994 ^ Amnesty Int'l, '''We Will Destroy Everything:' Military Responsibility for Crimes Against Humanity in Rakhine State, Myanmar", June 2018; Fortify Rights & US Holocaust Memorial Museum, '''They Tried to Kill Us All' Atrocity Crimes against Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine State, Myanmar", Nov. 2017. ^ Prosecutor v. Karadžić, Case No. IT-95-5/18-T, Trial Judgment, Int'l Crim. Trib. for the Former Yugoslavia, 24 March 2016 ^ HRW, "Leave None to Tell the Story", at [215]; HRW, "Shattered Lives", at [39]. ^ Prosecutor v. Semanza, Case No. ICTR-97-20-T, Trial Judgment, para. [320], 15 May 2003; Prosecutor v. Ntagerura, Case No. ICTR-99-46-T, Trial Judgment, para. [664], 24 February 2004, ^ "Direct Killing is Not the Only Way to Commit Genocide ... : Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group...The drafters appreciated that there is more than one way (i.e. killing) to perpetuate genocide." (45''46) Samuel Totten and Henry Theriault, "The Complexities Inherent in the UNCG", in The United Nations Genocide Convention: An Introduction (Toronto: Univ. of Toronto Press, 2019), 37''68. ISBN 1487524080 In practice, this could include deaths from the deliberate infection of Tutsi women with HIV/AIDS through rape in the Rwandan genocide or from the abuse and denial of food inflicted by ISIL on Yazidi sex slaves by ISIL's use of sexual slavery. To date, neither has been prosecuted as such. ^ Prosecutor v. Akayesu, Case No. ICTR-96-4-T, Judgment, 2 September 1998, para. 731. ^ Stephanie K. Wood, A Woman Scorned for the "Least Condemned" War Crime: Precedent and Problems with Prosecuting Rape as a Serious Crime in the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, 13 Colum. J. of Gender & L. 274, at 299''301 (2004). ^ HRW, Darfur in Flames: Atrocities in Western Sudan, at 26''29 (2004). ^ Grant Shubin, Elena Sarver and Kristin Smith, Discrimination to Destruction: A Legal Analysis of Gender Crimes Against the Rohingya, Global Justice Center (2018), available at ^ UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), They Came to Destroy: ISIS Crimes Against the Yazidis, paras. 32''41, U.N. Doc. A/HRC/32/CRP.2, 15 June 2016. ^ Prosecutor v. Karadžić, Case No. IT-95-5/18-T, Trial Judgment, para. [545], Int'l Crim. Trib. for the Former Yugoslavia, 24 March 2016, para. 5664; Patricia Viseur Sellers, "Genocide Gendered: The Srebrenica Cases", The Fifth Annual Katherine B. Fite Lecture, Proceedings of the Ninth International Humanitarian Law Dialogs, 30 Aug. '' 1 September 2015. ^ Popović, Case No. IT-05-88-T, para. [846]; Tolimir, IT-05-88/2-A, para. [209]; Karadžić, IT-95-5/18-T, para. [545]; UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), They Came to Destroy: ISIS Crimes Against the Yazidis, paras. 32''41, U.N. Doc. A/HRC/32/CRP.2, 15 June 2016. ^ a b Kayishema and Ruzindana, (Trial Chamber), 21 May 1999, para. 548 ^ Prosecutor v. Akayesu, Case No. ICTR-96-4-T, Judgment, 2 September 1998, para. 506. ^ Prosecutor v. Akayesu, Case No. ICTR-96-4-T, Judgment, 2 September 1998, para. 507. ^ See, e.g., Antonie Holslag, Exposed Bodies: A Conceptual Approach to Sexual Violence during the Armenian Genocide, in Genocide and Gender in the Twentieth Century: A Comparative Study, 96''97(Bloomsbury 2015). ^ Resolution Resolution 1674 (2006) Archived 2 March 2011 at the Wayback Machine ^ "Security Council passes landmark resolution '' world has responsibility to protect people from genocide" (Press release). Oxfam. 28 April 2006. Archived from the original on 12 October 2010. ^ "Security Council Demands Immediate and Complete Halt to Acts of Sexual Violence Against Civilians in Conflict Zones, Unanimously Adopting Resolution 1820 (2008)". United Nations . Retrieved 22 October 2017 . ^ "The Crime of Genocide in Domestic Laws and Penal Codes". Website of Prevent Genocide International. ^ William Schabas War crimes and human rights: essays on the death penalty, justice and accountability, Cameron May 2008 ISBN 1-905017-63-4, 978-1-905017-63-8. p. 791 ^ a b Kurt Jonassohn & Karin Solveig Bj¶rnson, Genocide and Gross Human Rights Violations in Comparative Perspective: In Comparative Perspective, Transaction Publishers, 1998, ISBN 0-7658-0417-4, 978-0-7658-0417-4. pp. 133''135 ^ M. Hassan Kakar Afghanistan: The Soviet Invasion and the Afghan Response, 1979''1982 University of California press 1995 The Regents of the University of California. ^ M. Hassan Kakar 4. The Story of Genocide in Afghanistan: 13. Genocide Throughout the Country ^ Frank Chalk, Kurt Jonassohn The History and Sociology of Genocide: Analyses and Case Studies, Yale University Press, 1990, ISBN 0-300-04446-1 ^ Court Sentences Mengistu to Death BBC, 26 May 2008. ^ "Code P(C)nal (France); Article 211-1 '' g(C)nocide" [Penal Code (France); Article 211-1 '' genocide] (in French). Prevent Genocide International . Retrieved 31 January 2017 . ^ Daly, Emma (30 June 2003). "Spanish Judge Sends Argentine to Prison on Genocide Charge". The New York Times . Retrieved 30 January 2017 . ^ "Profile: Judge Baltasar Garzon". BBC. 7 April 2010 . Retrieved 30 January 2017 . ^ What is Genocide? Archived 5 May 2007 at the Wayback Machine McGill Faculty of Law (McGill University) source cites Barbara Harff and Ted Gurr Toward empirical theory of genocides and politicides, International Studies Quarterly, 37:3, 1988 ^ Origins and Evolution of the Concept in the Science Encyclopedia by Net Industries. states "Politicide, as [Barbara] Harff and [Ted R.] Gurr define it, refers to the killing of groups of people who are targeted not because of shared ethnic or communal traits, but because of 'their hierarchical position or political opposition to the regime and dominant groups' (p. 360)". But does not give the book title to go with the page number. ^ Staff. There are NO Statutes of Limitations on the Crimes of Genocide! Archived 28 July 2015 at the Wayback Machine On the website of the American Patriot Friends Network. Cites Barbara Harff and Ted Gurr "Toward empirical theory of genocides and politicides", International Studies Quarterly 37, 3 [1988]. ^ Polsby, Daniel D.; Kates, Don B., Jr. (3 November 1997). "Of Holocausts and Gun Control". Washington University Law Quarterly. 75 (Fall): 1237. Archived from the original on 20 July 2011 . Retrieved 21 February 2011 . (cites Harff 1992, see other note) ^ Harff, Barbara (1992). Fein, Helen (ed.). "Recognizing Genocides and Politicides". Genocide Watch. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. 27: 37, 38. ^ "Democide Verses Genocide: Which is What?". . Retrieved 22 October 2017 . ^ Adrian Gallagher, Genocide and Its Threat to Contemporary International Order (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013) p. 37. ^ "". . Retrieved 22 October 2017 . ^ (See for example the submission by Agent of the United States, Mr. David Andrews to the ICJ Public Sitting, 11 May 1999 Archived 17 August 2007 at the Wayback Machine) ^ Oxford English Dictionary: 1944 R. Lemkin Axis Rule in Occupied Europe ix. 79 "By 'genocide' we mean the destruction of a nation or of an ethnic group." ^ Oxford English Dictionary "Genocide" citing Sunday Times 21 October 1945 ^ Staff. Bosnian genocide suspect extradited, BBC, 2 April 2002 ^ "Fifth Section: Case of Jorgic v. Germany: Application no. 74613/01". European Court of Human Rights. 12 July 2007 . Retrieved 5 February 2017 : see § 47. ^ The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia found in Prosecutor v. Radislav Krstic '' Trial Chamber I '' Judgment '' IT-98-33 (2001) ICTY8 (2 August 2001) that genocide had been committed. (see paragraph 560 for name of group in English on whom the genocide was committed[who? ][clarification needed ]). It was upheld in Prosecutor v. Radislav Krstic '' Appeals Chamber '' Judgment '' IT-98-33 (2004) ICTY 7 (19 April 2004) ^ "Courte: Serbia failed to prevent genocide, UN court rules". The San Francisco Chronicle. Associated Press. 26 February 2007. ^ ECHR Jorgic v. Germany. § 42 citing Prosecutor v. Krstic, IT-98-33-T, judgment of 2 August 2001, §§ 580 ^ ECHR Jorgic v. Germany Judgment, 12 July 2007. § 44 citing Prosecutor v. Kupreskic and Others (IT-95-16-T, judgment of 14 January 2000), § 751. On 14 January 2000, the ICTY ruled in the Prosecutor v. Kupreskic and Others case that the killing of 116 Muslims in order to expel the Muslim population from a village amounted to persecution, not genocide. ^ ICJ press release 2007/8 Archived 13 February 2010 at the Wayback Machine 26 February 2007 ^ ^ Staff (5 November 2009). "Q&A: Karadzic on trial". BBC News . Retrieved 28 January 2010 . ^ Simons, Marlise (24 March 2016). "Radovan Karadzic, a Bosnian Serb, Gets 40 Years Over Genocide and War Crimes". The New York Times . Retrieved 24 March 2016 . ^ "Karadzic sentenced to 40 years for genocide". CNN . Retrieved 26 March 2016 . ^ Staff (26 May 2011). "Q&A: Ratko Mladic arrested: Bosnia war crimes suspect held". BBC News . Retrieved 28 May 2011 . ^ Bowcott, Owen; Borger, Julian (22 November 2017). "Ratko Mladić convicted of war crimes and genocide at UN tribunal". The Guardian . Retrieved 22 November 2017 . ^ These figures need revising they are from the ICTR page which says see ^ Cambodian Genocide Program, Yale University's MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies ^ "A/RES/57/228B: Khmer Rouge trials" (PDF) . United Nations Assistance to the Khmer Rouge Trials (UNAKRT). 22 May 2003. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 July 2007 . Retrieved 11 December 2010 . ^ a b Doyle, Kevin. "Putting the Khmer Rouge on Trial", Time, 26 July 2007 ^ MacKinnon, Ian "Crisis talks to save Khmer Rouge trial", The Guardian, 7 March 2007 ^ The Khmer Rouge Trial Task Force Archived 17 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine, Royal Cambodian Government ^ a b c d "Case 002". The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia. 2014. Archived from the original on 23 December 2016 . Retrieved 6 February 2017 . ^ "Former Khmer Rouge leaders begin genocide trial". BBC News. 30 July 2014 . Retrieved 6 February 2017 . ^ a b Buncombe, Andrew (11 October 2011). "Judge quits Cambodia genocide tribunal". The Independent. London. Archived from the original on 14 October 2011. ^ Munthit, Ker (12 August 2008). "Cambodian tribunal indicts Khmer Rouge jailer". USA Today. Associated Press. Archived from the original on 30 May 2010. ^ "Kaing Guek Eav alias Duch Sentenced to Life Imprisonment by the Supreme Court Chamber". Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia. 3 February 2012 . Retrieved 6 February 2017 . ^ a b c d "Case File No.: 002/19-09-2007-ECCC-OCIJ: Closing Order" (PDF) . Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia. 15 September 2010 . Retrieved 6 February 2017 . ^ a b McKirdy, Euan (9 August 2014). "Top Khmer Rouge leaders found guilty of crimes against humanity, sentenced to life in prison". CNN . Retrieved 6 February 2017 . ^ "002/19-09-2007: Decision on immediate appeal against Trial Chamber's order to release the accused Ieng Thirith" (PDF) . Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia. 13 December 2011 . Retrieved 16 February 2017 . ^ "Statement by Carolyn Willson, Minister Counselor for International Legal Affairs, on the Report of the ICC, in the UN General Assembly" (PDF) . (123 KB) 23 November 2005 ^ Jafari, Jamal and Paul Williams (2005) "Word Games: The UN and Genocide in Darfur" Jurist ^ Powell Declares Killing innn Dafur 'Genocide', The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, 9 September 2004 ^ a b "Report of the International Commission of Inquiry on Darfur to the United Nations Secretary-General" (PDF) . (1.14 MB) , 25 January 2005, at 4 ^ "Security Council Resolution 1593 (2005)" (PDF) . Archived from the original (PDF) on 29 May 2005. (24.8 KB) ^ Security Council Refers Situation in Dafur, Sudan, to Prosecutor of International Criminal Court, UN Press Release SC/8351, 31 March 2005 ^ "Fourth Report of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, to the Security Council pursuant to UNSC 1593 (2005)" (PDF) . Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 June 2007. (597 KB) , Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, 14 December 2006. ^ Statement by Mr. Luis Moreno Ocampo, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, to the United Nations Security Council pursuant to UNSCR 1593 (2005) Archived 13 August 2008 at the Wayback Machine, International Criminal Court, 5 June 2008 ^ ICC issues a warrant of arrest for Omar Al Bashir, President of Sudan Archived 27 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine (ICC-CPI-20090304-PR394), ICC press release, 4 March 2009 ^ ^ Adam Jones (2017), Genocide: A Comprehensive Introduction (3 ed.), p. 377 '' " ' " Next to the Jews in Europe," wrote Alexander Werth', "the biggest single German crime was undoubtedly the extermination by hunger, exposure and in other ways of [...] Russian war prisoners." Yet the murder of at least 3.3 million Soviet POWs is one of the least-known of modern genocides; there is still no full-length book on the subject in English. It also stands as one of the most intensive genocides of all time: "a holocaust that devoured millions," as Catherine Merridale acknowledges. The large majority of POWs, some 2.8 million, were killed in just eight months of 1941''42, a rate of slaughter matched (to my knowledge) only by the 1994 Rwanda genocide." ^ Pair guilty of 'insulting Turkey', BBC News, 11 October 2007. ^ Rubinstein, W.D. (2004). Genocide: a history. Pearson Education. p. 7. ISBN 0-582-50601-8 ^ a b M. Hassan Kakar Chapter 4. The Story of Genocide in Afghanistan Footnote 9. Citing Horowitz, quoted in Chalk and Jonassohn, Genocide, 14. ^ M. Hassan Kakar Chapter 4. The Story of Genocide in Afghanistan Footnote 10. Citing For details, see Carlton, War and Ideology. ^ M. Hassan Kakar, Afghanistan: The Soviet Invasion and the Afghan Response, 1979''1982, University of California Press, 1995. ^ a b Gregory Stanton. The 8 Stages of Genocide, Genocide Watch, 1996 ^ The FBI has found somewhat similar stages for hate groups. ^ "GenPrev in the News [19 April 2012]". 19 April 2012 . Retrieved 22 October 2017 . ^ Moses, Dirk (22 December 2006). "Why the Discipline of ''Genocide Studies'' Has Trouble Explaining How Genocides End?" Archived 18 October 2017 at the Wayback Machine. Social Science Research Council. ^ Staub, Ervin (1989). The Roots of Evil: The Origins of Genocide and Other Group Violence. New York: Cambridge University Press.[page needed ] ^ Staub, Ervin (2011). Overcoming Evil: Genocide, Violent Conflict, and Terrorism. New York: Oxford University Press.[page needed ] ^ p. 9. Anderson, Kjell. (2015) Colonialism and Cold Genocide: The Case of West Papua. Genocide Studies and Prevention Vol. 9: Iss. 2: 9''25. Further reading Articles (in Spanish) Aizenstatd, Najman Alexander. "Origen y Evoluci"n del Concepto de Genocidio". Vol. 25 Revista de Derecho de la Universidad Francisco Marroqu­n 11 (2007). ISSN 1562-2576 [1](in Spanish) Marco, Jorge. "Genocidio y Genocide Studies: Definiciones y debates", en: Ar"stegui, Julio, Marco, Jorge y G"mez Bravo, Gutmaro (coord.): "De Genocidios, Holocaustos, Exterminios...", Hispania Nova, 10 (2012). V(C)ase [2]Krain, M. (1997). "State-Sponsored Mass Murder: A Study of the Onset and Severity of Genocides and Politicides." Journal of Conflict Resolution 41(3): 331''360.Books Andreopoulos, George J., ed. (1994). Genocide: Conceptual and Historical Dimensions. University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN 978-0-8122-3249-3. Bloxham, Donald & Moses, A. Dirk [editors]: The Oxford Handbook of Genocide Studies. [Interdisciplinary Contributions about Past & Present Genocides]. Oxford University Press, second edition 2013. ISBN 978-0-19-967791-7Chalk, Frank; Kurt Jonassohn (1990). The History and Sociology of Genocide: Analyses and Case Studies. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-04446-1. Charny, Israel W. (1999). Encyclopedia of Genocide. ABC-Clio Inc. ISBN 978-0-87436-928-1. Conversi, Daniele (2005). "Genocide, ethnic cleansing, and nationalism". In Delanty, Gerard; Kumar, Krishan (eds.). Handbook of Nations and Nationalism. 1. London: Sage Publications. pp. 319''33. ISBN 978-1-4129-0101-7. Gellately, Robert; Kiernan, Ben (July 2003). The Specter of Genocide: Mass Murder in Historical Perspective . Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-52750-7. Harff, Barbara (August 2003). Early Warning of Communal Conflict and Genocide: Linking Empirical Research to International Responses. Westview Press. ISBN 978-0-8133-9840-2. Horowitz, Irving (2001). Taking Lives: Genocide and State Power (5th ed.). Transaction Publishers. ISBN 978-0-7658-0094-7. Horvitz, Leslie Alan; Catherwood, Christopher (2011). Encyclopedia of War Crimes & Genocide (Hardcover). 2 (Revised ed.). New York: Facts on File. ISBN 978-0-8160-8083-0. ISBN 0-8160-8083-6Jonassohn, Kurt; Karin Bj¶rnson (1998). Genocide and Gross Human Rights Violations. Transaction Publishers. ISBN 978-1-56000-314-4. Jones, Adam (2010). Genocide: A Comprehensive Introduction. Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-48619-4. Kiernan, Ben (2007). Blood and Soil: A World History of Genocide and Extermination from Sparta to Darfur . Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-10098-3. Laban, Alexander (2002). Genocide: An Anthropological Reader. Blackwell Publishing. ISBN 978-0-631-22355-9. Lemkin, Raphael (2008). Axis rule in occupied Europe : laws of occupation, analysis of government, proposals for redress. Clark, NJ: Lawbook Exchange. ISBN 978-1-58477-901-8. Levene, Mark (2005). Genocide in the Age of the Nation State. New York, Palgrave Macmillan.Lewy, Guenter (2012). Essays on Genocide and Humanitarian Intervention. University of Utah Press. ISBN 978-1-60781-168-8.Rosenfeld, Gavriel D. (1999). "The Politics of Uniqueness: Reflections on the Recent Polemical Turn in Holocaust and Genocide Scholarship". Holocaust and Genocide Studies. 13 (1): 28''61. doi:10.1093/hgs/13.1.28. Rotberg, Robert I.; Thomas G. Weiss (1996). From Massacres to Genocide: The Media, Public Policy, and Humanitarian Crises. Brookings Institution Press. ISBN 978-0-8157-7590-4. Rummel, R.J. (1994). Death by Government: Genocide and Mass Murder in the Twentieth Century. Transaction Publishers. ISBN 978-1-56000-927-6. Sagall, Sabby (2013). Final Solutions: Human Nature, Capitalism and Genocide. Pluto Press. p. 309. ISBN 978-0-7453-2653-5. Sands, Philippe (2016). East West Street : on the origins of "Genocide" and "Crimes Against Humanity". New York: Alfred A. Knopf. ISBN 978-0-385-35071-6. Schabas, William A. (2009). Genocide in International Law: The Crime of Crimes (second ed.). Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-71900-1. Schabas, William A. (2016). Cambridge Companion to International Criminal Law. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-1-107-05233-8. Schmid, A.P. (1991). Repression, State Terrorism, and Genocide: Conceptual Clarifications. State Organized Terror: The Case of Violent Internal Repression. P.T. Bushnell. Boulder, Colo.: Westview Press. 312 p.[ISBN missing ]Shaw, Martin (2007). What is Genocide?. Cambridge: Polity Press. ISBN 978-0-7456-3182-0. Staub, Ervin (1989). The roots of evil: The origins of genocide and other group violence. New York: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-42214-7Staub, Ervin (2011). Overcoming Evil: Genocide, violent conflict and terrorism. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-538204-4Totten, Samuel; William S. Parsons; Israel W. Charny (2008). Century of Genocide: Critical Essays and Eyewitness Accounts (3rd ed.). Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-99085-1. Valentino, Benjamin A. (2004). Final Solutions: Mass Killing and Genocide in the 20th Century. Cornell University Press. ISBN 978-0-8014-3965-0. Weitz, Eric D. (2003). A Century of Genocide: Utopias of Race and Nation . Princeton University Press. p. 360. ISBN 978-0-691-12271-7. External links Wikiquote has quotations related to: GenocideLook up genocide in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.Wikimedia Commons has media related to Genocide .Documents "Voices of the Holocaust". British Library. "Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide] (1948) '' full text". Genocide Convention. "Whitaker Report". Gregory H. Stanton. "8 Stages of Genocide". Research institutes, advocacy groups, and other organizations "Institute for the Study of Genocide". "International Association of Genocide Scholars". "International Network of Genocide Scholars (INoGS)". "United to End Genocide". merger of Save Darfur Coalition and the Genocide Intervention Network "Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide]". United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. "Auschwitz Institute for Peace and Reconciliation". "Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies". Amsterdam, the Netherlands. "Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies". University of Minnesota. "Genocide Studies Program". Yale University. "Montreal Institute for Genocide Studies". Concordia University. "Minorities at Risk Project". University of Maryland. "Budapest Centre for Mass Atrocities Prevention".
Black People Will Get Superpowers on December 21, Explained
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 02:40
Photo: Yurakrasil (Shutterstock) Dear Prospective SuperNegroes,
By now you should have received your certified letter informing you that people of African descent will receive superpowers on Dec. 21, when Jupiter and Saturn align for the first time in nearly 400 years. According to researchers at the University of Twitter, this will unlock the melanated magic in Black people, granting them never-before-seen gifts beyond the ability to clap on beat and resist dumping artichokes into potato salad.
Before this occurs, we wanted to prepare you for this glorious day, as well as spell out a few best practices for this operating system update. To do this, the National Institute for Genetic Gifts and Astronomic Superpowers (N.I.G.G.A.S) assembled a panel of experts, which includes:
Jerome Jamaal Jenkins Jr.: JJ-Squared became the first documented time traveler in 1943 when his mother Earlene actually slapped him into next week.Yasmine James: A former McDonald's employee who became an instructor at the Dora Milaje School of Wishing a Motherfucker Would.Adrienne Banfield Norris: The Red Table Talk co-host is either an immortal goddess or an ageless vampire. Either way, we needed her advice.Dr. Gregg Carr: The law professor, history scholar and chair of Howard University's Afro American Studies Department is just smart AF. Raven the Science Maven: We commissioned the scientific spitter and self-proclaimed '' Big ole Geek '' to freestyle a scientific explanation.Marshawn Lynch: We have long suspected that '' Beast Mode '' is an actual superhero. However, he claimed he only joined our panel so he wouldn't get fined.G/O Media may get a commission
The first thing you must be aware of is that you won't be able to choose which superhuman gift you will obtain. The powers will be determined by your previous work for resistance and liberation. For instance, Iesha Evans may become a telepath with the ability to read minds, while Candace Owens may only become a bowelpath'--finally gaining the capacity to know when she's full of shit. Civil rights hero Claudette Colvin may gain the ability to teleport through time and space while Lil' MAGA Wayne could earn his status as a ''real G'' with the ability to ''move in silence like lasagna.''
Secondly, all Black people will receive these powers, regardless of religion, class or political affiliation, which necessarily presents some problems. Although our Caucasian counterparts will still retain the ultimate gift of white privilege, they will undoubtedly gain access to our unprecedented abilities through subterfuge and brainwashing. Ben Carson has already agreed to lend his super senses to Donald Trump, meaning Trump might actually become a '' very stable genius .'' Although the Negro Solstice will not affect transracial icon Rachel Dolezal, the Kardashians will undoubtedly find a way to succubus the superpowers from a naive-but extra-gifted Black man.
We must protect Zion Williamson from Kendall Jenner at all costs.
Once your talents are downloaded we ask that you practice extreme caution. If you think white people are terrified of regular Black people jogging , sleeping in their own beds or armed with Skittles and Arizona Iced Tea , imagine how terrified they will be of bulletproof NIGGAS. Thankfully, we know the police won't treat us any differently...
They already treat us like we're all bulletproof niggers.
This leads me to my third point: No revenge.
I know it will be tempting to go smite all the white people who have caused us harm but, trust me, it will not work. It's easy to use your X-ray vision to go searching for the cops who killed Breonna Taylor or get one of your super-strength homeboys to slap the shit out of Daniel Cameron , but what will it solve?
Sure, it might make you feel good (OK, ''might'' may be understating it a little) but'--unless there's a defund-the-police superpower, it really won't make a difference. Instead of pointing your laser vision at that kangaroo pouch under Mitch McConnell's chin, you should ask your telepathic cousin to read white people's minds and figure out why they continue to vote against their own interests. I know the answer will be racism. (The answer is always racism.) But at least we'd have proof when they try to present that bullshit ''economic anxiety'' narrative. It might be fun to use your electromagnetic gift to shock the shit out of Donald Trump every time he says something racist, stupid or patently untrue but come on man, you're gonna wear yourself out. That's enough electricity to light up a small Eastern European country.
And finally, you should be prepared for the outrage when white people find out that Black people have superpowers.
First of all, you should be aware of the phenomenon of economic gentrification'--when white people move into Black neighborhoods because we have a homegirl who can harness lightning. (I already know what you're thinking: Yes, her Black superhero name will be ''The Plug.'' They'll never give her credit for solving global warming, though.)
White people will surely be mad. For the first time, Black privilege and reverse racism will actually exist, which means we have to enact a set of new millennium white codes . Of course, we will probably need officers to enforce these new Karen Crow rules. Given the fact that our powers are relatively new, combined with white people's historical craftiness, who can blame a heat vision-enabled supercop for accidentally torching an unarmed white person?
Immortals fear for their lives, too!
To make sure our criminal justice system works, we will only hire cops who are empaths and can look at the whites and tell if they're guilty. Accordingly, there won't be a need for that ''fair trial'' bullshit. We should also decrease funding to historically white colleges and majority-white school districts. Or maybe we can send their kids to their own schools. Why should we have to spend resources teaching them their history just because they can't time travel and see it for themselves? If they would just focus harder and concentrate on family, they might get superpowers one day. It's not up to us to even the playing field.
Speaking of playing fields, they bet' not kneel during the playing of ''Back Dat Azz Up'' before every football game. Voter ID won't work for us because many of us will become shapeshifters. However, just to be safe, we should purge the regular human beings' names off the voter rolls and make them wait in long lines while we vote telekinetically. I know there's no evidence of widespread white voter fraud but you can't be too careful.
Of course, we will save a lot of money by paying them lower wages. Why should employers shoulder that financial burden just because whites can't take lunch breaks by shifting the space-time continuum? You know what? Why do we have to pay them at all when we are the ones with all the power? It's not racist to round them up and use them for free labor; it's about economics.
This may sound like I have either traveled to the future or have lost my mind, but I am neither a crazy person nor am I a soothsayer. If the idea of Black people having some kind of genetic disposition that gives them the ability to control everyone else sounds the least bit preposterous...
Think of how insane the idea of white supremacy sounded 400 years ago.
Merry NIGGApower Day.
Yours truly,
black people super pwer - Google Search
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 02:39
Bonkers meme claiming 'black people will get superpowers on ... 'º lifestyle 'º tech 'º black-people-super-powers-december...
Dec 17, 2020 · It says: "As black people, genetically we are stronger and smarter than everyone else, we are more creative, on December 21 our Real DNA will ...
Jake Paul vs. Nate Robinson fight results, highlights: Paul scores scary knockout in second round -
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 01:56
Internet star Jake Paul proved experience matters in his return to pro boxing on Saturday in the co-main event of the Mike Tyson-Roy Jones Jr. pay-per-view.
Paul (2-0, 2 KOs) scored a trio of knockdowns en route to a brutal second-round knockout of former NBA star Nate Robinson in their cruiserweight bout inside Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Although he held advantages of four inches in height and 13 years in age, it was Paul's significant edge in boxing training that proved to be the difference. Along with having made his pro debut in January when he finished fellow YouTube star AnEsonGib in two rounds, Paul has done nothing but train this calendar year.
The 36-year-old Robinson (0-1), on the other hand, started boxing for the first time in August after calling Paul out and the results showed.
Can't get enough boxing and MMA? Get the latest in the world of combat sports from two of the best in the business. Subscribe to Morning Kombat with Luke Thomas and Brian Campbell for the best analysis and in-depth news, including instant analysis of Tyson vs. Jones and Paul vs. Robinson below.
"I have been training my ass off for the past year. I am taking this seriously," Paul said. "There is a long list of opponents I want, like Conor McGregor and [fellow MMA fighter] Dillon Danis. I want to knock both of them out. I want to be in this sport for a long time. I'm in love with this so why not?"
The 23-year-old Paul did well early to hold off Robinson's advantage in athleticism by avoiding the three-time NBA Slam Dunk champion's leaping attacks as the fight largely devolved into a clinch fest featuring plenty of grappling.
Paul began to time Robinson's forward attack and caught him with a right hand to the side of the head that dropped him in Round 1. Robinson regained his feet but held the back of his head with his left hand trying to sway referee Thomas Taylor that the blow was a rabbit punch.
The second round saw Paul continue to land clean shots as a looping counter right hand dropped Robinson for the second time and left him pinned under the ropes. Although Robinson was able to regain his feet again, the end would come shortly after in violent fashion.
Paul landed a three-punch combination that finished with a short right hand to the chin that knocked Robinson out cold and dropped him face first. Taylor instantly waved off the fight at 1:35.
"It was an overhand right [that finished the fight] but he was better than I expected," Paul said. "He was athletic and super strong. I just want to say thank you to Nate. He was the one who originally called him out and I respect him. His basketball career was great and I don't want to take anything away from him. He stepped into the ring and it takes a lot of balls to do that."
The final punch stats saw Robinson outland Paul 10-8 in total although it was Paul who was more efficient scoring a trio of knockdowns off the eight shots he landed.
"For me, my whole life has been a fight so fighting is something I'm great at," Paul said. "Being from Ohio in a small town and just fighting for success. People hating on me, I'm one of the most hated people in the world. It's not easy."
Paul, the younger brother of fellow internet star and aspiring boxer Logan Paul, talked after the fight about continuing his music and acting hopes, along with his fighting career. He also revealed that he broke his nose weeks ago during training camp after passing out onto a concrete floor while meditating.
Robinson's 10-year NBA career ended with the New Orleans Pelicans in 2015. Originally drafted by the Phoenix Suns in 2005, Robinson last played professional basketball in Lebanon in 2018.
Some of Robinson's teammates and rivals took to social media in reaction to the stunning knockout on Saturday, with most in disbelief as to what had happened. Robinson was awake and alert once he was taken back to the locker room after the fight, according to reports.
Paul and Robinson may have provided the most last memory from the PPV card, which featured Tyson and Jones fighting to an unofficial split draw on the WBC-apppointed judges' scorecards. The pair of legends duked it out over eight, two-minute rounds in the main event and still looked competent while never seriously injuring the other person.
CBS Sports was with you throughout the entire way on Saturday, so be sure to follow along with the live results and highlights below.
Fight card, resultsMike Tyson vs. Roy Jones Jr. -- WBC Frontline Championship (8 rounds)Jake Paul def. Nate Robinson via second-round TKOBadou Jack def. Blake McKernan via unanimous decision (80-72, 80-72, 80-72)Jamaine Ortiz def. Sulaiman Segawa via seventh-round TKOPaul vs. Robinson scorecard, live coverage See New Posts
Robinson is awake but he is having trouble sitting up.
That was absolutely brutal. Domination from Jake Paul.
R2: Robinson regains his feet but he's in bad shape. Right uppercut from Logan and now a right hand and Robinson is out cold. That's it. KO2.
R2: Good feint and stiff jab from Paul. He comes right back and drops Robinson again with a right hand.
ROUND 2: Good flurry from Robinson with short hooks before the clinch. Both fighters crashing into each other time and again to force the tie up. Lots of shoulders landing.
Robinson still seems shaken up. He's going to need to collect himself and stop running in. Replays show the punch that dropped him was clean to the side of the head.
R1: Paul throws Robinson down after a brief clinch. Robinson runs back in to grab Paul around the waist and wait out the end of the round.
R1: Robinson stands up but he's holding the back of his head and claiming it was a rabbit punch that got him.
R1: Right hand catches Robinson leaping in and he is down and hurt.
R1: Referee warns both fighters for too much holding. "What are we going to do here? Are we going to box?"
R1: Paul misses another right cross as they clinch again. Leaping jab from Robinson lands.
R1: The clinching continues and a front headlock breaks out from Robinson. Lots of sloppy grappling in close.
R1: Paul badly misses a straight right and Robinson forces the clinch smartly. Lots of infighting going on in the clinch.
ROUND 1: Left hook from Robinson lands as he rushed forward. Paul was quick to backstep.
Referee Thomas Taylor is the third man in the ring.
Paul will have a four-inch height advantage at 6-foot-1.
Robinson enters the ring. He last played professional basketball in Lebanon in 2018.
The fight marks the pro boxing debut for the 36-year-old Robinson, a 14-year NBA veteran. This will be the second time Paul (1-0, 1 KO) takes the ring this calendar year after stopping AnEsonGib to open 2020.
Up next is the co-main event of the Tyson-Jones pay-per-view as YouTube star Jake Paul takes on NBA veteran and three-time Slam Dunk champion Nate Robinson in a six-round cruiserweight bout.
Dallas rapper Mo3 believed to have been killed in shooting on Dallas highway, reports say
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 01:33
Image taken from the rapper's Instagram page @hotboymo3. (Copyright 2020 by KSAT - All rights reserved.)DALLAS '' Dallas-area rapper Mo3 is believed to be dead following a highway shooting on Wednesday.
Several area media outlets and personalities have said that the man who died in the attack is Melvin Noble A.k.a Mo3.
WFAA-TV in Dallas reported that an investigation followed the shooting on Interstate Highway 35 near Clarendon Drive.
''A man was shot and killed Wednesday afternoon on a Dallas highway. A bystander was also struck but is expected to be OK,'' WFAA reported Wednesday. ''No arrests have been made.''
A report by KDFW-TV in Dallas said that Mo3 was approached on the highway by an assailant on foot while the two vehicles were stopped.
''Both men stopped their vehicles, the victim got out and started running but was shot several times on the highway,'' KDFW reported.
The Dallas Police Department has not commented publicly on the death.
Fans have been reacting to the rapper's apparent sudden passing since rumors of his death circulated online.
Rip Mo3. A truly talented, respectful and humble guy. I'm Blessed to have had the opportunity to share talents with him in the studio while he was alive ''¤¸ you'll be missed 🕊
'-- BNYX® 🇭🇹 (@BNYX) November 11, 2020What Mo3 said '' everybody ain't yo friend everybody ain't yo partna '' RIP MAN 🕊
'-- King Dee''¨ðŸ''¸ (@__harperboyy) November 11, 2020Related: Rapper Tory Lanez charged with shooting Megan Thee Stallion
Copyright 2020 by KSAT - All rights reserved.
Ramsey Tyson Wants You to Stop Making Assumptions About Trans Kids | them.
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 01:31
Ever since basketball icon Dwyane Wade revealed that his pre-teen daughter Zaya is gender non-conforming in February, the family has been the center of endless public discourse '-- including a now-viral conversation between Mike Tyson and Boosie Badazz.
The Louisiana rapper received backlash earlier this year for his transphobic comments about Zaya made in an Instagram live session, in which he misgendered her repeatedly and made derogatory remarks about gender-confirmation surgery. In an October episode of his podcast ''Hot Boxin' With Mike Tyson,'' the retired boxer confronted Boosie about the retorts through a bizarre line of questioning. It started out with Tyson asking the rapper, "Why do you say things about people who might be a homosexual?'' '-- despite the comments being about Zaya's gender identity and not her sexuality '-- and ended up with him implying that Boosie was actually closeted and struggling with internalized homophobia.
The exchange didn't really get anywhere meaningful. Boosie doubled down on his views and never issued an explicit apology, though he did say that he sometimes needs to ''shut the f*ck up.'' But Tyson was generally praised for the exchange, and clips of it went viral on social media, with the original YouTube video now at nearly three million views.
Since then, Tyson told TMZ that his ''daughter'' was the one who inspired him to take Boosie to task in the first place. He said that ''she flew all the way from New York City to LA'' to confront the rapper and even came into the room to engage in a dialogue with him. Numerous publications have picked up this alleged factoid, but it's not exactly true.
The boxer's 24-year-old child did bring Boosie's statements about Zaya to his attention. But Ramsey Tyson, a transmasculine and nonbinary individual who uses they/them pronouns, tells them. that some of their dad's claims about the interaction were false.
Ramsey says they were visiting Los Angeles with a friend in February for reasons unrelated to the podcast (''I can't stress enough how I would never fly across the country to talk to Lil Boosie, ever''), when they decided to stop by the studio to see their dad and stepmom, Lakiha Spicer. By the time they were already ''super high'' from quite literally hot boxing the studio, Ramsey found out that Boosie would be the guest that day. Since the rapper's comments about Zaya were still fresh at the time of the taping, Spicer asked Ramsey if they should disinvite him. They advised their family to not cancel, because they thought it might be ''a good opportunity to educate someone about trans issues.''
''I can't stress enough how I would never fly across the country to talk to Lil Boosie, ever,'' Ramsey Tyson says.
When Boosie finally showed up, Ramsey had just ''briefly'' explained to their dad about what the rapper had said about Zaya. ''He went into it with such little information,'' they explain. ''I decided I wasn't going to intervene or step on any toes unless the conversation was completely out of hand.''
Very quickly into the episode, the conversation got out of hand. Ramsey felt ''fed up,'' so they ran into the studio in the middle of the interview and ''then realized that was a really weird thing to do,'' they explain. They sat in the corner for about two hours until they were able to speak with Boosie afterwards, and pulled up the them. article ''What Critics of Dwyane Wade's Daughter Get Wrong About Trans Children,'' to mentally prepare for the conversation ahead.
''Part of the reason why I wanted to talk to Boosie about it is because I'm a nonbinary person who's socially transitioned amongst my friends and started a medical transition,'' they explain. ''I felt like I couldn't not say something.''
Study Says Trans and Cisgender Children Have Equally Strong Gender IdentitiesThe results point to a simple, though undeniably significant, conclusion: Believe trans kids.
View Story After the podcast finished taping, they went up to him and started lobbing basic facts about trans children, like that studies have shown that trans kids have a strong sense of gender identity from an early age and that families who reject their children's gender identity significantly increase that child's risk of suicidality. ''[Zaya] has a very supportive family,'' Ramsey adds, ''but that doesn't mean there weren't other people reading those comments that he and Young Thug were saying.''
''I ended up having to explain to him, even, that sexuality and gender are two different things, and he was blown away by that,'' they say. ''He and his friends were like, 'I never heard that before.' And then I was like, 'Oh, got it.' He really has no idea what he was saying.''
Boosie responded by claiming ''he was talking for the straight community'' and justified his views by saying that's how he ''was raised,'' Ramsey says. ''I think he definitely got that he was out of line and shouldn't have said anything,'' they add, ''but I don't think his opinions changed.''
The rapper addressed his conversation with Ramsey in a recent interview, saying that the two ultimately ''didn't see eye to eye,'' but he has ''no ill will'' toward the Tyson family.
''This might be the first time that [people are] hearing about [trans issues]. I think it's much more important to listen to trans people.''
In terms of being misgendered by their father and the media, Ramsey says that they know ''he didn't mean it maliciously.'' They went on to explain that while they haven't come out to all of their family members as nonbinary, they did talk to their dad ''about gender identity very briefly'' in the past. They added that they weren't ''super close'' and they didn't really expect him to ''be perfect at pronouns.''
''It's very sweet to say that I inspired him in some way,'' they add. ''But yeah, it's always a little weird to be misgendered, let alone in Complex.''
Ramsey urged others who viewed the situation as a success to seek out trans people's perspectives. ''I understand a lot of people are gonna come across this, and this might be the first time that they're hearing about [trans issues],'' they add. ''I think it's much more important to listen to trans people.''
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Mike Tyson - Wikipedia
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 01:28
American boxer
Mike Tyson
Tyson in 2019
BornMichael Gerard Tyson
( 1966-06-30 ) June 30, 1966 (age 54) Spouse(s) Monica Turner
m. 1997;
div. 2003)
Lakiha Spicer
m. 2009)
Children8Boxing careerStatistics Nickname(s) Iron MikeKid DynamiteThe Baddest Man on the Planet Weight(s) HeavyweightHeight5 ft 10 in (178 cm)[1][2]Reach71 in (180 cm)StanceOrthodoxBoxing recordTotal fights58Wins50Wins by KO44Losses6No contests2Website Michael Gerard Tyson (born June 30, 1966) is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1985 to 2005. Nicknamed "Iron Mike"[3] and "Kid Dynamite" in his early career, and later known as "The Baddest Man on the Planet",[4] Tyson is considered one of the best heavyweight boxers of all time.[5] He reigned as the undisputed world heavyweight champion from 1987 to 1990. Claiming his first belt at 20 years, four months, and 22 days old, Tyson holds the record as the youngest boxer to win a heavyweight title.[6]
Tyson won his first 19 professional fights by knockout, 12 of them in the first round. He won the WBC title in 1986 after stopping Trevor Berbick in the second round, and added the WBA and IBF titles after defeating James Smith and Tony Tucker in 1987. He was the first heavyweight boxer to simultaneously hold the WBA, WBC and IBF titles, as well as the only heavyweight to unify them in succession. The following year, Tyson became the lineal champion when he knocked out Michael Spinks in 91 seconds of the first round.[7] He successfully defended his titles nine times, including victories over Larry Holmes and Frank Bruno. In 1990, Tyson lost the titles to underdog Buster Douglas, who knocked him out in the tenth round. Attempting to regain the titles, Tyson defeated Donovan Ruddock twice in 1991, but pulled out of a fight with then-undisputed heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield (who had defeated Douglas in 1990 to win the titles) due to a rib injury.
In 1992, Tyson was convicted of rape and sentenced to six years in prison, although he was released on parole after three years.[8][9][10] After his release in 1995, he engaged in a series of comeback fights. He regained the WBC and WBA titles in 1996, after stopping Frank Bruno and Bruce Seldon. With his defeat of Bruno, Tyson joined Floyd Patterson, Muhammad Ali, Tim Witherspoon, Evander Holyfield and George Foreman as the only men in boxing history to have regained a heavyweight championship after losing it. After being stripped of the WBC title in the same year, Tyson lost the WBA title to Evander Holyfield by an eleventh round stoppage. Their 1997 rematch ended when Tyson was disqualified for biting Holyfield's ears, one bite notoriously being strong enough to remove a portion of his right ear.
In 2002, Tyson fought for the world heavyweight title again at the age of 35, losing by knockout to Lennox Lewis. Tyson retired from professional boxing in 2006, after being stopped in consecutive matches against journeymen Danny Williams and Kevin McBride. Tyson declared bankruptcy in 2003, despite having received over $30 million for several of his fights and $300 million during his career. At the time the media reported that he had approximately $23 million in debt.[11]
Tyson was known for his ferocious and intimidating boxing style as well as his controversial behavior inside and outside the ring. He holds the sixth longest unified championship reign in heavyweight boxing history at 8 consecutive defenses. BoxRec ranked him as the world's top 10 heavyweight 12 times, and placed him at No.1 from 1986 to 1989.[12] His victory over Larry Holmes received a 5-Star rating from BoxRec. He was ranked 16th on The Ring magazine's list of 100 greatest punchers of all time,[13] and first on ESPN's list of "The Hardest Hitters in Heavyweight History".[14] Sky Sports described him as "perhaps the most ferocious fighter to step into a professional ring".[15] He has been inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame and the World Boxing Hall of Fame.
Early life Michael Gerard Tyson was born in Brownsville, Brooklyn, New York on June 30, 1966.[16] He has an older brother named Rodney (born c. 1961)[17] and an older sister named Denise, who died of a heart attack at age 24 in February 1990.[18] Tyson's biological father is listed as "Purcell Tyson" (who was from Jamaica) on his birth certificate,[19][20] but the man Tyson had known as his father was Jimmy Kirkpatrick. Kirkpatrick was from Grier Town, North Carolina (a predominantly black neighborhood that was annexed by the city of Charlotte),[21] where he was one of the neighborhood's top baseball players. Kirkpatrick married and had a son, Tyson's half-brother Jimmie Lee Kirkpatrick, who would help to integrate Charlotte high school football in 1965. In 1959, Jimmy Kirkpatrick left his family and moved to Brooklyn, where he met Tyson's mother, Lorna Mae (Smith) Tyson. Kirkpatrick frequented pool halls, gambled and hung out on the streets. "My father was just a regular street guy caught up in the street world", Tyson said. Kirkpatrick abandoned the Tyson family around the time Mike was born, leaving Tyson's mother to care for the children on her own.[22] Kirkpatrick died in 1992.[23]
The family lived in Bedford-Stuyvesant until their financial burdens necessitated a move to Brownsville when Tyson was 10 years old.[24] Tyson's mother died six years later, leaving 16-year-old Tyson in the care of boxing manager and trainer Cus D'Amato, who would become his legal guardian. Tyson later said, "I never saw my mother happy with me and proud of me for doing something: she only knew me as being a wild kid running the streets, coming home with new clothes that she knew I didn't pay for. I never got a chance to talk to her or know about her. Professionally, it has no effect, but it's crushing emotionally and personally."[25]
Throughout his childhood, Tyson lived in and around neighborhoods with a high rate of crime. According to an interview in Details, his first fight was with a bigger youth who had pulled the head off one of Tyson's pigeons.[26] Tyson was repeatedly caught committing petty crimes and fighting those who ridiculed his high-pitched voice and lisp. By the age of 13, he had been arrested 38 times.[27] He ended up at the Tryon School for Boys in Johnstown, New York. Tyson's emerging boxing ability was discovered there by Bobby Stewart, a juvenile detention center counselor and former boxer. Stewart considered Tyson to be an outstanding fighter and trained him for a few months before introducing him to Cus D'Amato.[22] Tyson dropped out of high school as a junior.[28] He would be awarded an honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from Central State University in 1989.[29] Kevin Rooney also trained Tyson, and he was occasionally assisted by Teddy Atlas, although Atlas was dismissed by D'Amato when Tyson was 15. Rooney eventually took over all training duties for the young fighter.[30]
Amateur career As an amateur, Tyson won gold medals at the 1981 and 1982 Junior Olympic Games, defeating Joe Cortez in 1981 and beating Kelton Brown in 1982. Brown's corner threw in the towel in the first round. He fought Henry Tillman twice as an amateur, losing both bouts by decision. Tillman went on to win heavyweight gold at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.[31]
Professional career Rise to stardom Tyson made his professional debut as an 18-year-old on March 6, 1985, in Albany, New York. He defeated Hector Mercedes via first-round TKO.[22] He had 15 bouts in his first year as a professional. Fighting frequently, Tyson won 26 of his first 28 fights by KO or TKO; 16 of those came in the first round.[32] The quality of his opponents gradually increased to journeyman fighters and borderline contenders,[32] like James Tillis, David Jaco, Jesse Ferguson, Mitch Green, and Marvis Frazier. His win streak attracted media attention and Tyson was billed as the next great heavyweight champion. D'Amato died in November 1985, relatively early into Tyson's professional career, and some speculate that his death was the catalyst to many of the troubles Tyson was to experience as his life and career progressed.[33]
Tyson's first nationally televised bout took place on February 16, 1986, at Houston Field House in Troy, New York against journeyman heavyweight Jesse Ferguson, and was carried by ABC Sports. Tyson knocked down Ferguson with an uppercut in the fifth round that broke Ferguson's nose.[34] During the sixth round, Ferguson began to hold and clinch Tyson in an apparent attempt to avoid further punishment. After admonishing Ferguson several times to obey his commands to box, the referee finally stopped the fight near the middle of the sixth round. The fight was initially ruled a win for Tyson by disqualification (DQ) of his opponent. The ruling was "adjusted" to a win by technical knockout (TKO) after Tyson's corner protested that a DQ win would end Tyson's string of knockout victories, and that a knockout would have been the inevitable result.
In July, after recording six more knockout victories, Tyson fought former world title challenger Marvis Frazier in Glens Falls, New York on another ABC Sports broadcast. Tyson won easily, charging at Frazier at the opening bell and hitting him with an uppercut that knocked Frazier unconscious thirty seconds into the fight.
On November 22, 1986, Tyson was given his first title fight against Trevor Berbick for the World Boxing Council (WBC) heavyweight championship. Tyson won the title by TKO in the second round, and at the age of 20 years and 4 months became the youngest heavyweight champion in history.[35] Tyson's dominant performance brought many accolades. Donald Saunders wrote: "The noble and manly art of boxing can at least cease worrying about its immediate future, now [that] it has discovered a heavyweight champion fit to stand alongside Dempsey, Tunney, Louis, Marciano, and Ali."[36]
Tyson intimidated fighters with his strength, combined with outstanding hand speed, accuracy, coordination and timing.[37] Tyson also possessed notable defensive abilities, holding his hands high in the peek-a-boo style taught by his mentor Cus D'Amato[38][39] to slip under and weave around his opponent's punches while timing his own.[39] Tyson's explosive punching technique was due in large part to crouching immediately prior to throwing a hook or an uppercut: this allowed the 'spring' of his legs to add power to the punch.[40] Among his signature moves was a right hook to his opponent's body followed by a right uppercut to his opponent's chin. Lorenzo Boyd, Jesse Ferguson and Jos(C) Ribalta were each knocked down by this combination.[citation needed ]
Undisputed champion Expectations for Tyson were extremely high, and he was the favorite to win the heavyweight unification series, a tournament designed to establish an undisputed heavyweight champion. Tyson defended his title against James Smith on March 7, 1987, in Las Vegas, Nevada. He won by unanimous decision and added Smith's World Boxing Association (WBA) title to his existing belt.[41] "Tyson-mania" in the media was becoming rampant.[42] He beat Pinklon Thomas in May by TKO in the sixth round.[43] On August 1 he took the International Boxing Federation (IBF) title from Tony Tucker in a twelve-round unanimous decision 119''111, 118''113, and 116''112.[44] He became the first heavyweight to own all three major belts '' WBA, WBC, and IBF '' at the same time. Another fight, in October of that year, ended with a victory for Tyson over 1984 Olympic super heavyweight gold medalist Tyrell Biggs by TKO in the seventh round.[45]
During this time, Tyson came to the attention of gaming company Nintendo. After witnessing one of Tyson's fights, Nintendo of America president Minoru Arakawa was impressed by the fighter's "power and skill", prompting him to suggest Tyson be included in the upcoming Nintendo Entertainment System port of the Punch Out!! arcade game. In 1987, Nintendo released Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!, which was well received and sold more than a million copies.[46]
Tyson had three fights in 1988. He faced Larry Holmes on January 22, 1988, and defeated the legendary former champion by KO in the fourth round.[47] This was the only knockout loss Holmes suffered in 75 professional bouts. In March, Tyson then fought contender Tony Tubbs in Tokyo, Japan, fitting in an easy second-round TKO victory amid promotional and marketing work.[48]
On June 27, 1988, Tyson faced Michael Spinks. Spinks, who had taken the heavyweight championship from Larry Holmes via fifteen-round decision in 1985, had not lost his title in the ring but was not recognized as champion by the major boxing organizations. Holmes had previously given up all but the IBF title, and that was eventually stripped from Spinks after he elected to fight Gerry Cooney (winning by TKO in the fifth round) rather than IBF Number 1 Contender Tony Tucker, as the Cooney fight provided him a larger purse. However, Spinks did become the lineal champion by beating Holmes and many (including Ring magazine) considered him to have a legitimate claim to being the true heavyweight champion.[49] The bout was, at the time, the richest fight in history and expectations were very high. Boxing pundits were predicting a titanic battle of styles, with Tyson's aggressive infighting conflicting with Spinks's skillful out-boxing and footwork. The fight ended after 91 seconds when Tyson knocked Spinks out in the first round; many consider this to be the pinnacle of Tyson's fame and boxing ability.[50][51]
Controversy and upset During this period, Tyson's problems outside the ring were also starting to emerge. His marriage to Robin Givens was heading for divorce,[52] and his future contract was being fought over by Don King and Bill Cayton.[53] In late 1988, Tyson parted with manager Bill Cayton and fired longtime trainer Kevin Rooney, the man many credit for honing Tyson's craft after the death of D'Amato.[39][54] Following Rooney's departure, critics alleged that Tyson began to show less head movement and combination punching.[55] In 1989, Tyson had only two fights amid personal turmoil. He faced the British boxer Frank Bruno in February. Bruno managed to stun Tyson at the end of the first round,[56] although Tyson went on to knock Bruno out in the fifth round. Tyson then knocked out Carl "The Truth" Williams in the first round in July.[57]
By 1990, Tyson seemed to have lost direction, and his personal life was in disarray amidst reports of less vigorous training prior to the Buster Douglas match.[58] In a fight on February 11, 1990, he lost the undisputed championship to Douglas in Tokyo.[59] Tyson was a huge betting favorite; indeed, the Mirage, the only casino to put out odds for the fight, made Tyson a 42/1 favorite. Tyson failed to find a way past Douglas's quick jab that had a 12-inch (30 cm) reach advantage over his own.[60] Tyson did catch Douglas with an uppercut in the eighth round and knocked him to the floor, but Douglas recovered sufficiently to hand Tyson a heavy beating in the subsequent two rounds. After the fight, the Tyson camp would complain that the count was slow and that Douglas had taken longer than ten seconds to get back on his feet.[61] Just 35 seconds into the tenth round, Douglas unleashed a brutal uppercut, followed by a four-punch combination of hooks that sent Tyson to the canvas for the first time in his career. He was counted out by referee Octavio Meyran.[59]
The knockout victory by Douglas over Tyson, the previously undefeated "baddest man on the planet" and arguably the most feared boxer in professional boxing at that time, has been described as one of the most shocking upsets in modern sports history.[62][63]
After Douglas Despite the shocking loss, Tyson has said that losing to Douglas was the greatest moment of his career. ''I needed that fight to make me a better person and fighter. I have a broader perspective of myself and boxing.''[64]
After the loss, Tyson recovered with first-round knockouts of Henry Tillman[65] and Alex Stewart[66] in his next two fights. Tyson's victory over Tillman, the 1984 Olympic heavyweight gold medalist, enabled Tyson to avenge his amateur losses at Tillman's hands. These bouts set up an elimination match for another shot at the undisputed world heavyweight championship, which Evander Holyfield had taken from Douglas in his first defense of the title.[67]
Tyson, who was the number one contender, faced number two contender Donovan "Razor" Ruddock on March 18, 1991, in Las Vegas. Ruddock was seen as the most dangerous heavyweight around and was thought of as one of the hardest punching heavyweights. Tyson and Ruddock went back and forth for most of the fight, until referee Richard Steele controversially stopped the fight during the seventh round in favor of Tyson. This decision infuriated the fans in attendance, sparking a post-fight melee in the audience. The referee had to be escorted from the ring.[68]
Tyson and Ruddock met again on June 28 that year, with Tyson knocking down Ruddock twice and winning a twelve-round unanimous decision 113''109, 114''108, and 114''108.[69] A fight between Tyson and Holyfield for the undisputed championship was scheduled for November 8, 1991, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, but Tyson pulled out after sustaining a rib cartilage injury during training.[70]
Rape trial and prison Tyson was arrested in July 1991 for the rape of 18-year-old Desiree Washington, Miss Black Rhode Island, in an Indianapolis hotel room. Tyson's rape trial took place in the Marion County superior court from January 26 to February 10, 1992.[71]
Partial corroboration of Washington's story came via testimony from Tyson's chauffeur who confirmed Desiree Washington's state of shock after the incident. Further testimony came from the emergency room physician who examined Washington more than 24 hours after the incident and confirmed that Washington's physical condition was consistent with rape.[72]
Under lead defense lawyer Vincent J. Fuller's direct examination, Tyson claimed that everything had taken place with Washington's full consent and he claimed not to have forced himself upon her. When he was cross-examined by lead prosecutor Gregory Garrison, Tyson denied claims that he had misled Washington and insisted that she wanted to have sex with him.[73] Tyson was convicted on the rape charge on February 10, 1992 after the jury deliberated for nearly 10 hours.[74]
Alan Dershowitz, acting as Tyson's counsel, filed an appeal urging error of law in the Court's exclusion of evidence of the victim's past sexual conduct (known as the Rape Shield Law), the exclusion of three potential defense witnesses, and the lack of a jury instruction on honest and reasonable mistake of fact.[75] The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled against Tyson in a 2''1 vote.[75] The Indiana Supreme Court let the lower court opinion stand due to a 2''2 split in its review. The tie vote was due to the fact that the then-Chief Justice of the Indiana Supreme Court recused himself from the case. The Chief Justice later revealed he did so because of a heated argument between his wife and Dershowitz at a Yale Law School reunion concerning the case.[76] On March 26, 1992, Tyson was sentenced to six years in prison along with four years of probation.[77] Despite being 25 years old at the time of the crime, he was assigned to the Indiana Youth Center (now the Plainfield Correctional Facility) in April 1992,[78] and he was released in March 1995 after serving less than three years of the sentence.[79]
It has been widely reported that while in prison, he converted to Islam and adopted the Muslim name Malik Abdulaziz[80] (though some sources report the adoption of a different Islamic name, Malik Shabazz).[81] However, Tyson has stated that he converted to Islam before entering prison, but made no efforts to correct the misinformation in the media.[82] Due to his conviction, Tyson is required to register as a Tier II sex offender under federal law.[83][84][85]
Comeback After being paroled from prison, Tyson easily won his comeback bouts against Peter McNeeley and Buster Mathis Jr.. Tyson's first comeback fight grossed more than US$96 million worldwide, including a United States record $63 million for PPV television. The viewing of the fight was purchased by 1.52 million homes, setting both PPV viewership and revenue records.[86] The 89-second fight elicited criticism that Tyson's management lined up "tomato cans" to ensure easy victories for his return.[87] TV Guide included the Tyson''McNeeley fight in their list of the 50 Greatest TV Sports Moments of All Time in 1998.[88]
Tyson regained one belt by easily winning the WBC title against Frank Bruno in March 1996. It was the second fight between the two, and Tyson knocked out Bruno in the third round.[89] In 1996, Lennox Lewis turned down a $13.5 million guarantee to fight Tyson. This would've been Lewis's highest fight purse to date. Lewis then accepted $4 million from Don King to step aside and allow Tyson to fight Bruce Seldon for an expected $30 million instead with the intention that if Tyson defeated Seldon, he would fight Lewis next.[90] Tyson added the WBA belt by defeating champion Seldon in the first round in September that year. Seldon was severely criticized and mocked in the popular press for seemingly collapsing to innocuous punches from Tyson.[91]
Tyson''Holyfield fights Tyson vs. Holyfield I Tyson attempted to defend the WBA title against Evander Holyfield, who was in the fourth fight of his own comeback. Holyfield had retired in 1994 following the loss of his championship to Michael Moorer. It was said that Don King and others saw former champion Holyfield, who was 34 at the time of the fight and a huge underdog, as a washed-up fighter.[92]
On November 9, 1996, in Las Vegas, Nevada, Tyson faced Holyfield in a title bout dubbed "Finally". In a surprising turn of events, Holyfield, who was given virtually no chance to win by numerous commentators,[93] defeated Tyson by TKO when referee Mitch Halpern stopped the bout in round eleven.[94] Holyfield became the second boxer to win a heavyweight championship belt three times. Holyfield's victory was marred by allegations from Tyson's camp of Holyfield's frequent headbutts[95] during the bout. Although the headbutts were ruled accidental by the referee,[95] they would become a point of contention in the subsequent rematch.[96]
Tyson vs. Holyfield II and aftermath Tyson and Holyfield fought again on June 28, 1997. Originally, Halpern was supposed to be the referee, but after Tyson's camp protested, Halpern stepped aside in favor of Mills Lane.[97] The highly anticipated rematch was dubbed The Sound and the Fury, and it was held at the Las Vegas MGM Grand Garden Arena, site of the first bout. It was a lucrative event, drawing even more attention than the first bout and grossing $100 million. Tyson received $30 million and Holyfield $35 million, the highest paid professional boxing purses until 2007.[98][99] The fight was purchased by 1.99 million households, setting a pay-per-view buy rate record that stood until May 5, 2007, being surpassed by Oscar De La Hoya vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr.[99][100]
Soon to become one of the most controversial events in modern sports,[101] the fight was stopped at the end of the third round, with Tyson disqualified[102] for biting Holyfield on both ears. The first time Tyson bit him, the match was temporarily stopped. Referee Mills Lane deducted two points from Tyson and the fight resumed. However, after the match resumed, Tyson bit him again, resulting in his disqualification, and Holyfield won the match. The first bite was severe enough to remove a piece of Holyfield's right ear, which was found on the ring floor after the fight.[103] Tyson later stated that his actions were retaliation for Holyfield repeatedly headbutting him without penalty.[96] In the confusion that followed the ending of the bout and announcement of the decision, a near riot occurred in the arena and several people were injured.[104] Tyson Holyfield II was the first heavyweight title fight in over 50 years to end in a disqualification.[105]
As a subsequent fallout from the incident, US$3 million was immediately withheld from Tyson's $30-million purse by the Nevada state boxing commission (the most it could legally hold back at the time).[106] Two days after the fight, Tyson issued a statement,[107] apologizing to Holyfield for his actions and asked not to be banned for life over the incident.[108] Tyson was roundly condemned in the news media but was not without defenders. Novelist and commentator Katherine Dunn wrote a column that criticized Holyfield's sportsmanship in the controversial bout and charged the news media with being biased against Tyson.[109]
On July 9, 1997, Tyson's boxing license was rescinded by the Nevada State Athletic Commission in a unanimous voice vote; he was also fined US$3 million and ordered to pay the legal costs of the hearing.[110] As most state athletic commissions honor sanctions imposed by other states, this effectively made Tyson unable to box in the United States. The revocation was not permanent, as the commission voted 4''1 to restore Tyson's boxing license on October 18, 1998.[111]
During his time away from boxing in 1998, Tyson made a guest appearance at WrestleMania XIV as an enforcer for the main event match between Shawn Michaels and Steve Austin. During this time, Tyson was also an unofficial member of Michaels's stable, D-Generation X. Tyson was paid $3 million for being guest enforcer of the match at WrestleMania XIV.[112]
1999''2005 "I'm the best ever. I'm the most brutal and vicious, the most ruthless champion there has ever been. There's no one can stop me.
Lennox is a conqueror? No! I'm
Alexander! He's no Alexander! I'm the best ever. There's never been anyone as ruthless. I'm
Sonny Liston. I'm
Jack Dempsey. There's no one like me. I'm from their cloth. There is no one who can match me. My style is impetuous, my defense is impregnable, and I'm just ferocious. I want your heart! I want to eat his children! Praise be to Allah!"
'--Tyson's post-fight interview after knocking out Lou Savarese 38 seconds into the bout in June 2000.[113]
In January 1999, Tyson returned to the ring for a match against the South African Francois Botha. This match also ended in controversy. While Botha initially controlled the fight, Tyson allegedly attempted to break Botha's arms during a tie-up and both boxers were cautioned by the referee in the ill-tempered bout. Botha was ahead on points on all scorecards and was confident enough to mock Tyson as the fight continued. Nonetheless, Tyson landed a straight right hand in the fifth round that knocked out Botha.[114] Critics noticed Tyson stopped using the bob and weave defense altogether following this return.[115]
Legal problems arose with Tyson once again. On February 5, 1999, Tyson was sentenced to a year's imprisonment, fined $5,000, and ordered to serve two years probation along with undergoing 200 hours of community service for assaulting two motorists after a traffic accident on August 31, 1998.[116] He served nine months of that sentence. After his release, he fought Orlin Norris on October 23, 1999. Tyson knocked down Norris with a left hook thrown after the bell sounded to end the first round. Norris injured his knee when he went down and said that he was unable to continue. Consequently, the bout was ruled a no contest.[117]
In 2000, Tyson had three fights. The first match in January was staged at the MEN Arena in Manchester, England against Julius Francis. Following controversy as to whether Tyson was allowed into the country, he took four minutes to knock out Francis, ending the bout in the second round.[118] He also fought Lou Savarese in June 2000 in Glasgow, winning in the first round; the fight lasted only 38 seconds. Tyson continued punching after the referee had stopped the fight, knocking the referee to the floor as he tried to separate the boxers.[119] In October, Tyson fought the similarly controversial Andrew Golota,[120] winning in round three after Gołota was unable to continue due to a broken cheekbone, concussion, and neck injury.[121] The result was later changed to no contest after Tyson refused to take a pre-fight drug test and then tested positive for marijuana in a post-fight urine test.[122] Tyson fought only once in 2001, beating Brian Nielsen in Copenhagen by TKO in the seventh round.[123]
Lewis vs. Tyson Tyson once again had the opportunity to fight for a heavyweight championship in 2002. Lennox Lewis held the WBC, IBF, IBO and Lineal titles at the time. As promising fighters, Tyson and Lewis had sparred at a training camp in a meeting arranged by Cus D'Amato in 1984.[124] Tyson sought to fight Lewis in Nevada for a more lucrative box-office venue, but the Nevada Boxing Commission refused him a license to box as he was facing possible sexual assault charges at the time.[125]
Two years prior to the bout, Tyson had made several inflammatory remarks to Lewis in an interview following the Savarese fight. The remarks included the statement "I want your heart, I want to eat your children."[126] On January 22, 2002, the two boxers and their entourages were involved in a brawl at a New York press conference to publicize the planned event.[127] A few weeks later, the Nevada State Athletic Commission refused to grant Tyson a license for the fight, and the promoters had to make alternative arrangements. After multiple states balked at granting Tyson a license, the fight eventually occurred on June 8 at the Pyramid Arena in Memphis, Tennessee. Lewis dominated the fight and knocked out Tyson with a right hand in the eighth round. Tyson was respectful after the fight and praised Lewis on his victory.[128] This fight was the highest-grossing event in pay-per-view history at that time, generating $106.9 million from 1.95 million buys in the US.[99][100]
Later career, bankruptcy, and retirement In another Memphis fight on February 22, 2003, Tyson beat fringe contender Clifford Etienne 49 seconds into round one. The pre-fight was marred by rumors of Tyson's lack of fitness. Some said that he took time out from training to party in Las Vegas and get a new facial tattoo.[129] This eventually proved to be Tyson's final professional victory in the ring.
In August 2003, after years of financial struggles, Tyson finally filed for bankruptcy.[130][131][132]
On August 13, 2003, Tyson entered the ring for a face-to-face confrontation against K-1 fighting phenom, Bob Sapp, immediately after Sapp's win against Kimo Leopoldo in Las Vegas. K-1 signed Tyson to a contract with the hopes of making a fight happen between the two, but Tyson's felony history made it impossible for him to obtain a visa to enter Japan, where the fight would have been most profitable. Alternative locations were discussed, but the fight ultimately failed to happen.[133]
On July 30, 2004, Tyson had a match against British boxer Danny Williams in another comeback fight, and this time, staged in Louisville, Kentucky. Tyson dominated the opening two rounds. The third round was even, with Williams getting in some clean blows and also a few illegal ones, for which he was penalized. In the fourth round, Tyson was unexpectedly knocked out. After the fight, it was revealed that Tyson was trying to fight on one leg, having torn a ligament in his other knee in the first round. This was Tyson's fifth career defeat.[134] He underwent surgery for the ligament four days after the fight. His manager, Shelly Finkel, claimed that Tyson was unable to throw meaningful right-hand punches since he had a knee injury.[135]
On June 11, 2005, Tyson stunned the boxing world by quitting before the start of the seventh round in a close bout against journeyman Kevin McBride. In the 2008 documentary Tyson, he stated that he fought McBride for a payday, that he did not anticipate winning, that he was in poor physical condition and fed up with taking boxing seriously. After losing three of his last four fights, Tyson said he would quit boxing because he felt he had lost his passion for the sport.[136]
In 2000 Tyson fired everyone working for him and enlisted new accountants, who prepared a statement showing he started the year $3.3 million in debt but earned $65.7 million.[137] In August 2007, Tyson pleaded guilty to drug possession and driving under the influence in an Arizona court, which stemmed from an arrest in December where authorities said Tyson, who has a long history of legal problems, admitted to using cocaine that day and to being addicted to the drug.[138]
Exhibition fights Mike Tyson's World Tour To help pay off his debts, Tyson announced he would be doing a series of exhibition bouts, calling it Tyson's World Tour. For his first bout, Tyson returned to the ring in 2006 for a four-round exhibition against journeyman heavyweight Corey Sanders in Youngstown, Ohio.[139] Tyson, without headgear at 5 ft 10.5 in and 216 pounds, was in quality shape, but far from his prime against Sanders, at 6 ft 6 in[140] who wore headgear. Tyson appeared to be "holding back" in the exhibition to prevent an early end to the "show". "If I don't get out of this financial quagmire there's a possibility I may have to be a punching bag for somebody. The money I make isn't going to help my bills from a tremendous standpoint, but I'm going to feel better about myself. I'm not going to be depressed", explained Tyson about the reasons for his "comeback".[141] After the bout was poorly received by fans the remainder of the tour was cancelled.[142]
Tyson vs. Jones It was announced in July 2020 that Tyson had signed a contract to face former four-division world champion, Roy Jones Jr., in an eight-round exhibition fight. Mixed martial arts coach Rafael Cordeiro was selected to be Tyson's trainer and cornerman.[143][144] The bout'--officially sanctioned by the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC)'--was initially scheduled to take place on September 12 at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California,[145] however, the date was pushed back to November 28 in order to maximize revenue for the event. The fight went the full 8 rounds, and was declared a draw.[146] The fight was a split draw and the three judges scored the fight as follows: Chad Dawson (76''76 draw), Christy Martin (79''73 for Tyson), and Vinny Pazienza (76''80 for Jones).[147]
Legacy Tyson was The Ring magazine's Fighter of the Year in 1986 and 1988.[148] A 1998 ranking of "The Greatest Heavyweights of All-Time" by The Ring magazine placed Tyson at No.14 on the list.[149] Despite criticism of facing underwhelming competition during his run as champion, Tyson's knockout power and intimidation factor made him the sport's most dynamic box-office draw.[150] According to Douglas Quenqua of The New York Times, "The [1990s] began with Mike Tyson, considered by many to be the last great heavyweight champion, losing his title to the little-known Buster Douglas. Seven years later, Mr. Tyson bit Evander Holyfield's ear in a heavyweight champion bout'--hardly a proud moment for the sport."[151]
He is remembered for his attire of black trunks, black shoes with no socks, and a plain white towel fit around his neck in place of a traditional robe, as well as his habit of rapidly pacing the ring before the start of a fight.[150][152] At his peak, Tyson rarely took a step back and had never been knocked down or seriously challenged.[152] According to Martial Arts World Report, it gave Tyson an Honorable Mention in its Ten Greatest Heavyweights of All Time rather than a ranking because longevity is a factor and the peak period of Tyson's career lasted only about 5 years.[153]
In The Ring magazine's list of the 80 Best Fighters of the Last 80 Years, released in 2002, Tyson was ranked at No. 72.[154] He is ranked No. 16 on The Ring magazine's 2003 list of 100 greatest punchers of all time.[155][156] Tyson has defeated 11 boxers for the world heavyweight title, the seventh-most in history.
On June 12, 2011, Tyson was inducted to the International Boxing Hall of Fame alongside legendary Mexican champion Julio C(C)sar Chvez, light welterweight champion Kostya Tszyu, and actor/screenwriter Sylvester Stallone.[157] In 2011, Bleacher Report omitted Tyson from its list of top 10 heavyweights, saying that that "Mike Tyson is not a top 10 heavyweight. He killed the fighters he was supposed to beat, but when he fought another elite fighter, he always lost. I'm not talking about some of those B-level fighters he took a belt from. I'm talking about the handful of good boxers he fought throughout his career."[158]
In 2013, Tyson was inducted into the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame and headlined the induction ceremony.[159][160] Tyson was inducted into the Southern Nevada Hall of Fame in 2015 along with four other inductees with ties to Southern Nevada.[161][162]
Tyson reflected on his strongest opponents in ten categories for a 2014 interview with The Ring magazine, including best jab, best defense, fastest hands, fastest feet, best chin, smartest, strongest, best puncher, best boxer, and best overall.[163]
In 2017, The Ring magazine ranked Tyson as No. 9 of 20 heavyweight champtions based on a poll of panelsts that included trainers, matchmakers, media, historians, and boxers, including:[164]
Trainers: Teddy Atlas, Pat Burns, Virgil Hunter, and Don TurnerMatchmakers: Eric Bottjer, Don Chargin, Don Elbaum, Bobby Goodman, Ron Katz, Mike Marchionte, Russell Peltz, and Bruce Trampler.Media: Al Bernstein, Ron Borges, Gareth A Davies, Norm Frauenheim, Jerry Izenberg, Harold Lederman, Paulie Malignaggi, Dan Rafael, and Michael RosenthalHistorians: Craig Hamilton, Steve Lott, Don McRae, Bob Mee, Clay Moyle, Adam Pollack, and Randy RobertsBoxers: Lennox Lewis and Mike Tyson participated in the poll, but neither fighter ranked himself. Instead, a weighted average from the other panelists was assigned to their respective slots on their ballots.In 2020, Bill Caplan of The Ring magazine listed Tyson as No. 17 of the 20 greatest heavyweights of all time.[165] Tyson spoke with The Ring magazine in 2020 about his six greatest victories, which included knockouts of Trevor Berbick, Pinklon Thomas, Tony Tucker, Tyrell Biggs, Larry Holmes, and Michael Spinks.[166] In 2020, CBS Sports boxing experts Brian Campbell and Brent Brookhouse ranked the top 10 heavyweights of the last 50 years and Tyson was ranked No. 7.[167]
Life after boxing Tyson in the ring at
Las Vegas in October 2006
In an interview with USA Today published on June 3, 2005, Tyson said, "My whole life has been a waste '' I've been a failure." He continued: "I just want to escape. I'm really embarrassed with myself and my life. I want to be a missionary. I think I could do that while keeping my dignity without letting people know they chased me out of the country. I want to get this part of my life over as soon as possible. In this country nothing good is going to come of me. People put me so high; I wanted to tear that image down."[168] Tyson began to spend much of his time tending to his 350 pigeons in Paradise Valley, an upscale enclave near Phoenix, Arizona.[169]
Tyson has stayed in the limelight by promoting various websites and companies.[170] In the past Tyson had shunned endorsements, accusing other athletes of putting on a false front to obtain them.[171] Tyson has held entertainment boxing shows at a casino in Las Vegas[172] and started a tour of exhibition bouts to pay off his numerous debts.[173]
On December 29, 2006, Tyson was arrested in Scottsdale, Arizona, on suspicion of DUI and felony drug possession; he nearly crashed into a police SUV shortly after leaving a nightclub. According to a police probable-cause statement, filed in Maricopa County Superior Court, "[Tyson] admitted to using [drugs] today and stated he is an addict and has a problem."[174] Tyson pleaded not guilty on January 22, 2007 in Maricopa County Superior Court to felony drug possession and paraphernalia possession counts and two misdemeanor counts of driving under the influence of drugs. On February 8 he checked himself into an inpatient treatment program for "various addictions" while awaiting trial on the drug charges.[175]
On September 24, 2007, Tyson pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine and driving under the influence. He was convicted of these charges in November 2007 and sentenced to 24 hours in jail. After his release, he was ordered to serve three years probation and undergo 360 hours community service. Prosecutors had requested a year-long jail sentence, but the judge praised Tyson for seeking help with his drug problems.[176] On November 11, 2009, Tyson was arrested after getting into a scuffle at Los Angeles International airport with a photographer.[177] No charges were filed.
Tyson has taken acting roles in movies and television, most famously playing a fictionalized version of himself in the 2009 film The Hangover.
In September 2011, Tyson gave an interview in which he made comments about former Alaska governor Sarah Palin including crude and violent descriptions of interracial sex. These comments were reprinted on The Daily Caller website. Journalist Greta van Susteren criticized Tyson and The Daily Caller over the comments, which she described as "smut" and "violence against women".[178]
After debuting a one-man show in Las Vegas, Tyson collaborated with film director Spike Lee and brought the show to Broadway in August 2012.[179][180] In February 2013, Tyson took his one-man show Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth on a 36-city, three-month national tour. Tyson talks about his personal and professional life on stage.[181] The one-man show was aired on HBO on November 16, 2013.
In October 2012, Tyson launched the Mike Tyson Cares Foundation.[182] The mission of the Mike Tyson Cares Foundation is to "give kids a fighting chance" by providing innovative centers that provide for the comprehensive needs of kids from broken homes.
In August 2013, Tyson teamed up with Acquinity Sports to form Iron Mike Productions, a boxing promotions company.
In September 2013, Tyson was featured on a six-episode television series on Fox Sports 1 that documented his personal and private life entitled Being: Mike Tyson.[183][184]
In November 2013, Tyson's Undisputed Truth was published, which appeared on The New York Times Best Seller list.[185] At the Golden Podium Awards Ceremony, Tyson received the SPORTEL Special Prize for the best autobiography.[186]
In May 2017, Tyson published his second book, Iron Ambition,[187] which details his time with trainer and surrogate father Cus D'Amato.
He hosts the podcast Hotboxin' with Mike Tyson.[188]
In February 2018, Tyson attended the international mixed martial arts (MMA) tournament in the Russian city of Chelyabinsk. Tyson said: "as I have travelled all over the country of Russia I have realised that the people are very sensitive and kind. But most Americans do not have any experience of that."[189]
On May 12, 2020, Tyson posted a video on his Instagram of him training again. At the end of the video, Tyson hinted at a return to boxing by saying, "I'm back".[190]
On May 23, 2020, at All Elite Wrestling's Double or Nothing, Tyson helped Cody defeat Lance Archer alongside Jake Roberts and presented him the inaugural AEW TNT Championship. Tyson alongside Henry Cejudo, Rashad Evans, and Vitor Belfort appeared on the May 27 episode of AEW Dynamite facing off against Chris Jericho and his stable The Inner Circle.[191]
Tiki Lau released a dance music single, Mike Tyson in October 2020 which includes vocals from Tyson.[192]
Personal life Tyson resides in Seven Hills, Nevada.[194] He has been married three times, and has seven children, one deceased, with three women; in addition to his biological children, Tyson includes his second wife's oldest daughter as one of his own.[195]
His first marriage was to actress Robin Givens from February 7, 1988 to February 14, 1989.[52] Givens was known at the time for her role on the sitcom Head of the Class. Tyson's marriage to Givens was especially tumultuous, with allegations of violence, spousal abuse, and mental instability on Tyson's part.[196] Matters came to a head when Tyson and Givens gave a joint interview with Barbara Walters on the ABC TV newsmagazine show 20/20 in September 1988, in which Givens described life with Tyson as "torture, pure hell, worse than anything I could possibly imagine."[197] Givens also described Tyson as "manic depressive" on national television while Tyson looked on with an intent and calm expression.[196] A month later, Givens announced that she was seeking a divorce from the allegedly abusive Tyson.[196] According to the book Fire and Fear: The Inside Story of Mike Tyson, Tyson admitted that he punched Givens and stated, "that was the best punch I've ever thrown in my entire life."[198] Tyson claimed that book was "filled with inaccuracies."[199] They had no children but she reported having had a miscarriage; Tyson claimed that she was never pregnant and only used that to get him to marry her.[196][200] During their marriage, the couple lived in a mansion in Bernardsville, New Jersey.[201][202]
His second marriage was to Monica Turner from April 19, 1997 to January 14, 2003.[203] At the time of the divorce filing, Turner worked as a pediatric resident at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, D.C.[204] She is the sister of Michael Steele, the former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland and former Republican National Committee Chairman.[205] Turner filed for divorce from Tyson in January 2002, claiming that he committed adultery during their five-year marriage, an act that "has neither been forgiven nor condoned."[204] The couple had two children; son Amir and daughter Rayna.
On May 25, 2009, Tyson's four-year-old daughter Exodus was found by her seven-year-old brother Miguel unconscious and tangled in a cord, dangling from an exercise treadmill. The child's mother untangled her, administered CPR and called for medical attention. Tyson, who was in Las Vegas at the time of the incident, traveled back to Phoenix to be with her. She died of her injuries on May 26, 2009.[206][207]
Eleven days after his daughter's death, Tyson wed for the third time, to longtime girlfriend Lakiha "Kiki" Spicer, age 32, exchanging vows on Saturday, June 6, 2009, in a short, private ceremony at the La Bella Wedding Chapel at the Las Vegas Hilton.[208] They have two children; daughter Milan and son Morocco.[195]
Tyson has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.[209]
In March 2011, Tyson appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show to discuss his new Animal Planet reality series Taking on Tyson. In the interview with DeGeneres, Tyson discussed some of the ways he had improved his life in the past two years, including sober living and a vegan diet.[210] However, in August 2013 he admitted publicly that he had lied about his sobriety and was on the verge of death from alcoholism.[211] In December 2013, during an interview with Fox News, Tyson talked about his progress with sobriety and how being in the company of good people has made him want to be a better and more humble person. Tyson also talked about religion and said that he is very grateful to be a Muslim and that he needs Allah.[212] He also revealed that he is no longer vegan, stating, "I was a vegan for four years but not anymore. I eat chicken every now and then. I should be a vegan. [No red meat] at all, no way! I would be very sick if I ate red meat. That's probably why I was so crazy before."[212] In 2013, Tyson stated "the more I look at churches and mosques, the more I see the devil".[213]
In 2015, Tyson announced that he was supporting Donald Trump's presidential candidacy.[214]
In popular culture At the height of his fame and career in the late 1980s and throughout the 1990s, Tyson was one of the most recognized sports personalities in the world. In addition to his many sporting accomplishments, his outrageous and controversial behavior in the ring and in his private life has kept him in the public eye and in the courtroom.[215] As such, Tyson has been the subject of myriad popular media including movies, television, books and music. He has also been featured in video games and as a subject of parody or satire. Tyson became involved in professional wrestling and has made many cameo appearances in film and television.
The film Tyson was released in 1995 and was directed by Uli Edel. It explores the life of Mike Tyson, from the death of his guardian and trainer Cus D'Amato to his rape conviction. Tyson is played by Michael Jai White.
Published in 2007, author Joe Layden's book The Last Great Fight: The Extraordinary Tale of Two Men and How One Fight Changed Their Lives Forever, chronicled the lives of Tyson and Douglas before and after their heavyweight championship fight.
In 2008, the documentary Tyson premiered at the annual Cannes Film Festival in France.
He is the titular character in Mike Tyson Mysteries, which started airing on October 27, 2014 on Adult Swim. In the animated series, Tyson voices a fictionalized version of himself, solving mysteries in the style of Scooby-Doo.[216][217][218]
In early March 2015, Tyson appeared on the track "Iconic" on Madonna's album Rebel Heart. Tyson says some lines at the beginning of the song.[219]
In late March 2015, Ip Man 3 was announced. With Donnie Yen reprising his role as the titular character, Bruce Lee's martial arts master, Ip Man, while Mike Tyson has been confirmed to join the cast.[220] Principal photography began on March 25, 2015, and was premiered in Hong Kong on December 16, 2015.
In January 2017, Tyson launched his YouTube channel with Shots Studios, a comedy video and comedy music production company with young digital stars like Lele Pons and Rudy Mancuso. Tyson's channel includes parody music videos and comedy sketches.[221][222]
In October 2017, Tyson was announced as the new face of Australian car servicing franchise Ultra Tune. He has taken over from Jean-Claude van Damme in fronting television commercials for the brand, and the first advert is due to air in January 2018 during the Australian Open.[223][224]
A joint Mainland China-Hong Kong-directed film on female friendship titled Girls 2: Girls vs Gangsters (Vietnamese: Girls 2: Nhá>>¯ng C´ Gi v Găng TÆ) that was shot earlier from July''August 2016 at several locations around Vietnam was released in March 2018, featuring Tyson as "Dragon".[225][226]
Professional boxing record Professional record summary58 fights50 wins6 lossesBy knockout445By decision50By disqualification11No contests2No.ResultRecordOpponentTypeRound, timeDateAgeLocationNotes58Loss50''6 (2) Kevin McBrideRTD6 (10), 3:00 Jun 11, 200538 years, 346 days MCI Center, Washington, D.C., U.S. 57Loss50''5 (2) Danny WilliamsKO4 (10), 2:51 Jul 30, 200438 years, 30 days Freedom Hall, Louisville, Kentucky, U.S. 56Win50''4 (2) Clifford EtienneKO1 (10), 0:49 Feb 22, 200336 years, 237 days The Pyramid, Memphis, Tennessee, U.S. 55Loss49''4 (2) Lennox LewisKO8 (12), 2:25 Jun 8, 200235 years, 343 days The Pyramid, Memphis, Tennessee, U.S. For WBC, IBF, IBO, and The Ring heavyweight titles 54Win49''3 (2) Brian NielsenRTD6 (10), 3:00 Oct 13, 200135 years, 115 days Parken Stadium, Copenhagen, Denmark 53NC48''3 (2) Andrew GolotaRTD3 (10), 3:00 Oct 20, 200034 years, 112 days The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S. Originally an RTD win for Tyson, later ruled an NC after he failed a drug test 52Win48''3 (1) Lou SavareseTKO1 (10), 0:38 Jun 24, 200033 years, 360 days Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland 51Win47''3 (1) Julius FrancisTKO2 (10), 1:03 Jan 29, 200033 years, 213 days MEN Arena, Manchester, England 50NC46''3 (1) Orlin NorrisNC1 (10), 3:00 Oct 23, 199933 years, 115 days MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. NC after Norris was unable to continue from a Tyson foul 49Win46''3Francois BothaKO5 (10), 2:59 Jan 16, 199932 years, 200 days MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. 48Loss45''3Evander HolyfieldDQ3 (12), 3:00 Jun 28, 199730 years, 363 days MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. For WBA heavyweight title;Tyson disqualified for biting 47Loss45''2Evander HolyfieldTKO11 (12), 0:37 Nov 9, 199630 years, 132 days MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. Lost WBA heavyweight title 46Win45''1Bruce SeldonTKO1 (12), 1:49 Sep 7, 199630 years, 69 days MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. Won WBA heavyweight title 45Win44''1Frank BrunoTKO3 (12), 0:50 Mar 16, 199629 years, 260 days MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. Won WBC heavyweight title 44Win43''1Buster Mathis Jr.KO3 (12), 2:32 Dec 16, 199529 years, 169 days CoreStates Spectrum, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S. 43Win42''1Peter McNeeleyDQ1 (10), 1:29 Aug 19, 199529 years, 50 days MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. McNeeley disqualified after his manager entered the ring 42Win41''1Donovan RuddockUD12Jun 28, 199124 years, 363 days The Mirage, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. 41Win40''1Donovan RuddockTKO7 (12), 2:22 Mar 18, 199124 years, 233 days The Mirage, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. 40Win39''1Alex StewartTKO1 (10), 2:27 Dec 8, 199024 years, 161 days Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. 39Win38''1Henry TillmanKO1 (10), 2:47 Jun 16, 199023 years, 351 days Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. 38Loss37''1Buster DouglasKO10 (12), 1:22 Feb 11, 199023 years, 226 days Tokyo Dome, Tokyo, Japan Lost WBA, WBC, and IBF heavyweight titles 37Win37''0Carl WilliamsTKO1 (12), 1:33 Jul 21, 198923 years, 21 days Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. Retained WBA, WBC, IBF, and The Ring heavyweight titles 36Win36''0Frank BrunoTKO5 (12), 2:55 Feb 25, 198922 years, 240 days Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S. Retained WBA, WBC, IBF, and The Ring heavyweight titles 35Win35''0Michael SpinksKO1 (12), 1:31 Jun 27, 198821 years, 363 days Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. Retained WBA, WBC, and IBF heavyweight titles;Won The Ring heavyweight title 34Win34''0Tony TubbsTKO2 (12), 2:54 Mar 21, 198821 years, 265 days Tokyo Dome, Tokyo, Japan Retained WBA, WBC, and IBF heavyweight titles 33Win33''0Larry HolmesTKO4 (12), 2:55 Jan 22, 198821 years, 186 days Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. Retained WBA, WBC, and IBF heavyweight titles 32Win32''0Tyrell BiggsTKO7 (15), 2:59 Oct 16, 198721 years, 108 days Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. Retained WBA, WBC, and IBF heavyweight titles 31Win31''0Tony TuckerUD12Aug 1, 198721 years, 32 days Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S. Retained WBA and WBC heavyweight titles;Won IBF heavyweight title 30Win30''0Pinklon ThomasTKO6 (12), 2:00 May 30, 198720 years, 334 days Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester Nevada, U.S. Retained WBA and WBC heavyweight titles 29Win29''0James SmithUD12Mar 7, 198720 years, 250 days Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S. Retained WBC heavyweight title;Won WBA heavyweight title 28Win28''0Trevor BerbickTKO2 (12), 2:35 Nov 22, 198620 years, 145 days Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S. Won WBC heavyweight title 27Win27''0Alfonso RatliffTKO2 (10), 1:41 Sep 6, 198620 years, 68 days Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S. 26Win26''0Jos(C) RibaltaTKO10 (10), 1:37 Aug 17, 198620 years, 48 days Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. 25Win25''0Marvis FrazierKO1 (10), 0:30 Jul 26, 198620 years, 26 days Civic Center, Glens Falls, New York, U.S. 24Win24''0Lorenzo BoydKO2 (10), 1:43 Jul 11, 198620 years, 11 days Stevensville Hotel, Swan Lake, New York, U.S. 23Win23''0William HoseaKO1 (10), 2:03 Jun 28, 198619 years, 363 days Houston Field House, Troy, New York, U.S. 22Win22''0Reggie GrossTKO1 (10), 2:36 Jun 13, 198619 years, 348 days Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S. 21Win21''0Mitch GreenUD10May 20, 198619 years, 324 days Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S. 20Win20''0James TillisUD10May 3, 198619 years, 307 days Civic Center, Glens Falls, New York, U.S. 19Win19''0Steve ZouskiKO3 (10), 2:39 Mar 10, 198619 years, 253 days Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, New York, U.S. 18Win18''0Jesse FergusonTKO6 (10), 1:19 Feb 16, 198619 years, 231 days Houston Field House, Troy, New York, U.S. Originally a DQ win for Tyson, later ruled a TKO 17Win17''0Mike JamesonTKO5 (8), 0:46 Jan 24, 198619 years, 208 days Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. 16Win16''0David JacoTKO1 (10), 2:16 Jan 11, 198619 years, 195 days Plaza Convention Center, Albany, New York, U.S. 15Win15''0Mark YoungTKO1 (10), 0:50 Dec 27, 198519 years, 180 days Latham Coliseum, Latham, New York, U.S. 14Win14''0Sammy ScaffTKO1 (10), 1:19 Dec 6, 198519 years, 159 days Felt Forum, New York City, New York, U.S. 13Win13''0Conroy NelsonTKO2 (8), 0:30 Nov 22, 198519 years, 145 days Latham Coliseum, Latham, New York, U.S. 12Win12''0Eddie RichardsonKO1 (8), 1:17 Nov 13, 198519 years, 136 days Ramada Hotel, Houston, Texas, U.S. 11Win11''0Sterling BenjaminTKO1 (8), 0:54 Nov 1, 198519 years, 124 days Latham Coliseum, Latham, New York, U.S. 10Win10''0Robert ColayKO1 (8), 0:37 Oct 25, 198519 years, 117 days Atlantis Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. 9Win9''0Donnie LongTKO1 (6), 1:28 Oct 9, 198519 years, 101 days Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. 8Win8''0Michael JohnsonKO1 (6), 0:39 Sep 5, 198519 years, 67 days Atlantis Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. 7Win7''0Lorenzo CanadyKO1 (6), 1:05 Aug 15, 198519 years, 46 days Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. 6Win6''0Larry SimsKO3 (6), 2:04 Jul 19, 198519 years, 19 days Mid-Hudson Civic Center, Poughkeepsie, New York, U.S. 5Win5''0John AldersonTKO2 (6), 3:00 Jul 11, 198519 years, 11 days Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. 4Win4''0Ricardo SpainTKO1 (6), 0:39 Jun 20, 198518 years, 355 days Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. 3Win3''0Don HalpinKO4 (6), 1:04 May 23, 198518 years, 327 days Albany, New York, U.S. 2Win2''0Trent SingletonTKO1 (4), 0:52 Apr 10, 198518 years, 284 days Albany, New York, U.S. 1Win1''0Hector MercedesTKO1 (4), 1:47 Mar 6, 198518 years, 249 days Plaza Convention Center, Albany, New York, U.S. Exhibition boxing record Professional record summary1 fight0 wins0 lossesDraws1Pay-per-view bouts Professional boxing PPV home television No.DateFightBillingBuysNetworkUnited States1June 27, 1988
Tyson vs. SpinksOnce and For All 700,000[227] King Vision2March 18, 1991
Tyson vs. RuddockThe Fight of the Year 960,000[228] King Vision3June 28, 1991
Tyson vs. Ruddock IIThe Rematch 1,250,000[229] King Vision4August 19, 1995
Tyson vs. McNeeleyHe's Back 1,600,000[230] Showtime/King Vision5March 16, 1996
Tyson vs. Bruno IIThe Championship Part I 1,400,000[230] Showtime/King Vision6September 7, 1996
Tyson vs. SeldonLiberation: Champion vs. Champion 1,150,000[231] Showtime/King Vision7November 9, 1996
Tyson vs. HolyfieldFinally 1,600,000[230] Showtime/King Vision8June 28, 1997
Tyson vs. Holyfield IIThe Sound and the Fury 1,990,000[231] Showtime/King Vision9Jan 16, 1999
Tyson vs. BothaTyson-Botha 750,000[231] Showtime10October 20, 2000
Tyson vs. GolotaShowdown in Motown 450,000[231] Showtime11June 8, 2002
Lewis vs. TysonLewis''Tyson Is On 1,970,000[231] HBO/Showtime12February 22, 2003
Tyson vs. EtienneBack to Business 100,000[232] Showtime13July 30, 2004
Tyson vs. WilliamsReturn for Revenge 150,000[233] Showtime14June 11, 2005
Tyson vs. McBrideTyson-McBride 250,000[234] Showtime15December 5, 2020 Tyson vs. JonesTyson vs Jones1,600,000 [235]Total sales15,920,000DateFightNetworkBuysSource(s)United KingdomMarch 16, 1996 Frank Bruno vs. Mike Tyson IISky Box Office600,000[236]June 28, 1997 Evander Holyfield vs. Mike Tyson IISky Box Office550,000[237]January 29, 2000 Mike Tyson vs. Julius FrancisSky Box Office500,000[237]June 8, 2002 Lennox Lewis vs. Mike TysonSky Box Office750,000[238]Total sales2,400,000Closed-circuit theatre TV Select pay-per-view boxing buy rates at American closed-circuit theatre television venues:
DateFightBuysRevenueRevenue (inflation)June 27, 1988 Mike Tyson vs. Michael Spinks800,000 [239]$32,000,000[239]$69,180,000June 28, 1997 Evander Holyfield vs. Mike Tyson II120,000 [240]$9,000,000[241]$14,330,000Total sales920,000$41,000,000$79,930,000Professional wrestling World Wrestling Federation All Elite Wrestling Awards and honors Humane letters The Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio, in 1989 awarded Tyson an honorary doctorate in humane letters: "Mike demonstrates that hard work, determination and perseverance can enable one to overcome any obstacles."[29]
Boxing Ring magazine Prospect of the Year (1985)2— Ring magazine Fighter of the Year (1986, 1988)2— Sugar Ray Robinson Award winner (1987, 1989)BBC Sports Personality of the Year Overseas Personality (1989)International Boxing Hall of Fame inductee (Class of 2011)"Guirlande d'Honneur" by the FICTS (Milan, 2010) [245]Professional wrestling WWE Hall of Fame (Class of 2012)[246]See also List of heavyweight boxing championsList of undisputed boxing championsReferences ^ Lewis, Darren (November 15, 2005). "Mike Tyson Exclusive: No More Mr Bad Ass". The Daily Mirror. Archived from the original on May 27, 2014 . Retrieved April 25, 2014 . ^ J, Jenna (August 22, 2013). "Mike Tyson: 'I always thought of myself as a big guy, as a giant, I never thought I was five foot ten ' ". Doghouse Boxing. Archived from the original on August 26, 2013 . Retrieved April 25, 2014 . ^ McIntyre, Jay (September 1, 2014). " " Iron," Mike Tyson '' At His Sharpest". Archived from the original on October 6, 2014 . 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"Former boxer Mike Tyson steers towards new controversy". The Daily Telegraph. News Corp Australia. Archived from the original on November 1, 2017 . Retrieved January 10, 2018 . ^ Kelly, Vivienne (January 4, 2018). "Ultra Tune begins promoting its Mike Tyson campaign with teaser trailer". Archived from the original on January 11, 2018 . Retrieved January 10, 2018 . ^ "Mike Tyson joins cast of Vietnamese film 'Girls 2 ' ". August 5, 2016. Archived from the original on December 8, 2020 . Retrieved September 19, 2019 . ^ "Mike Tyson Stars in Hong Kong Comedy About Female Friendship Set in Vietnam". Saigoneer. March 2, 2018. Archived from the original on December 8, 2020 . Retrieved September 19, 2019 . ^ Douglas-Holyfield Draws Record Pay-per-view Fans Archived March 16, 2014, at the Wayback Machine, Orlando Sentinel article, 1990-10-12, Retrieved on March 15, 2014 ^ "IRON MIKE IS UNDISPUTED PAY-PER-VIEW WORLD CHAMP". New York Daily News. January 21, 1998. Archived from the original on September 18, 2018 . Retrieved September 18, 2018 . Tyson's lowest buy rate was in his first fight with Donovan (Razor) Ruddock, which registered 960,000 buys. ^ Van Riper, Tom (November 24, 2008). "In Pictures: The 10 Biggest Pay-Per-View Fights". Archived from the original on September 22, 2017 . Retrieved September 21, 2017 . ^ a b c "Tyson's millions vanish with nothing to show". The Montgomery Advertiser. April 5, 1998. Archived from the original on September 18, 2018 . Retrieved September 18, 2018 . ^ a b c d e Emen, Jake (October 30, 2011). "Biggest boxing PPVs of all time '' UFC". Yahoo! Sports. Archived from the original on November 24, 2011 . Retrieved November 3, 2011 . ^ "525,000 Buys for Jones Bout". N.Y. Times article. March 5, 2003. Archived from the original on November 14, 2013 . Retrieved January 4, 2014 . ^ "Tyson Delivers (For PPV)". Multichannel News. June 17, 2005. Archived from the original on September 18, 2018 . Retrieved September 18, 2018 . ^ Tyson-McBride 250,000 PPV Buys Archived December 8, 2020, at the Wayback Machine, BoxingScene, Retrieved on January 8, 2014 ^ Peter, Josh (December 8, 2020). "Mike Tyson's return to boxing against Roy Jones Jr. generated more than $80 million in revenue". USA Today. Gannett . Retrieved December 9, 2020 . ^ Screen Digest. Screen Digest Limited. 1997. p. 66. Archived from the original on June 26, 2019 . Retrieved September 2, 2018 . BSkyB's third pay-per-view sports event '-- evening of boxing including world title fight involving 'Prince' Naseem Hamed '-- pulled in 650,000 subscribers (more than 600,000 who bought Tyson/Bruno fight, BSkyB's first). ^ a b Davies, Gareth A. (December 20, 2007). "Ricky Hatton shatters viewing record". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on June 27, 2018 . Retrieved September 2, 2018 . ^ Lalani, Zahid (June 29, 2011). "Haye looks for heavyweight payday". BBC News. Archived from the original on August 19, 2018 . Retrieved May 12, 2018 . ^ a b "PAY-PER-VIEW CAN DRIVE CLOSED-CIRCUIT OFF SCREEN". Washington Post. July 2, 1988. Archived from the original on August 30, 2018 . Retrieved August 30, 2018 . ^ Asher, Mark (July 5, 1997). "TYSON-HOLYFIELD PACKED A BIG FINANCIAL WALLOP". Washington Post. Archived from the original on June 30, 2018 . Retrieved August 30, 2018 . ^ "History of Prizefighting's Biggest Money Fights". Bloody Elbow. SB Nation. August 24, 2017. Archived from the original on October 23, 2018 . Retrieved August 30, 2018 . ^ "WWE PPV Pay-Per-View Buyrates". Archived from the original on October 20, 2018 . Retrieved October 20, 2018 . ^ Meltzer, Dave (May 28, 2020). "June 1, 2020 Observer Newsletter: Death of Hana Kimura" . Wrestling Observer Newsletter. Archived from the original on December 8, 2020 . Retrieved May 28, 2020 . ^ Lambert, Jeremy (May 13, 2020). "Mike Tyson To Present AEW TNT Title At AEW Double Or Nothing". Fightful. Archived from the original on May 18, 2020 . Retrieved May 13, 2020 . ^ " " Guirlande D'honneur FICTS" a Mike Tyson" (in Italian). International Sport Movies TV Federation. July 6, 2010. Archived from the original on August 28, 2017 . Retrieved May 25, 2017 . ^ "WWE Hall of Fame 2012 '' Mike Tyson induction: photos". WWE. Archived from the original on December 20, 2012 . Retrieved January 8, 2013 . External links Official website Boxing record for Mike Tyson from BoxRecBoxing Hall of '' additional informationHotboxin' with Mike '' Boxing Topics: Mike TysonMike Tyson amateur boxing becordMike Tyson on IMDbMike Tyson profile at Online World of Wrestling"Mike Tyson Film Takes a Swing at His Old Image", 2008 article at The New York Times"Mike Tyson Moves to the Suburbs", 2011 article at The New York TimesSporting positionsAmateur boxing titlesPrevious:Olian Alexander U.S. Golden Glovesheavyweight champion1984Next:Jerry GoffWorld boxing titlesPreceded by Trevor Berbick WBC heavyweight championNovember 22, 1986 '' February 11, 1990Succeeded by Buster Douglas Preceded by James Smith WBA heavyweight championMarch 7, 1987 '' February 11, 1990Preceded by Tony Tucker IBF heavyweight championAugust 1, 1987 '' February 11, 1990VacantTitle last held by
Leon Spinks Undisputed heavyweight championAugust 1, 1987 '' February 11, 1990Preceded by Michael Spinks The Ring heavyweight championJune 27, 1988 '' 1990Title discontinued until 2002VacantTitle next held by
Lennox LewisPreceded by Frank Bruno WBC heavyweight championMarch 16, 1996 '' September 24, 1996VacatedPreceded by Bruce Seldon WBA heavyweight championSeptember 7, 1996 '' November 9, 1996Succeeded by Evander Holyfield AwardsPrevious:Mark Breland The Ring Prospect of the Year1985Next:Michael WilliamsPrevious:Marvin HaglerDonald Curry The Ring Fighter of the Year1986Next:Evander HolyfieldPrevious:Marvin Hagler BWAA Fighter of the Year1986Next:Julio C(C)sar ChvezPrevious:Evander Holyfield The Ring Fighter of the Year1988Next:Pernell WhitakerPrevious:Julio C(C)sar Chvez BWAA Fighter of the Year1988Previous: Kelvin Seabrooks vs. Thierry Jacob Round 1 The Ring Round of the Year vs. Michael Spinks Round 1
1988Next: Lupe Gutierrez vs. Jeff Franklin Round 12 Previous:Steffi Graf BBC OverseasSports Personality of the Year1989Next:Mal MeningaPrevious: Saman Sorjaturong vs. Humberto Gonzlez The Ring Fight of the Year vs. Evander Holyfield 1996Next: Arturo Gatti vs. Gabriel Ruelas
Zocalo Public Square TMZ's Charles Latibeaudiere - Google Search
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 01:18
May 21, 2020 · Charles Latibeaudiere Bio, Net Worth, Married, & Wife. May 22, 2020 May 21, ... He grabbed huge popularity as a co-executive producer of TMZ, a famous tabloid news website. He previously ... Source: Zocalo Public Square.
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David Kulpa on Twitter: "@adamcurry @THErealDVORAK @NoAgendaNation In February my wife and I held the Delray Beach meetup that Adam and the Keeper attended, sadly my father passed away suddenly yesterday from cancer. It was the happiest time for him that
Tue, 05 Jan 2021 00:48
David Kulpa : @adamcurry @THErealDVORAK @NoAgendaNation In February my wife and I held the Delray Beach meetup that Adam and the'...
Mon Jan 04 23:42:07 +0000 2021
Space: Earth narrowly avoids being hit by London bus-sized asteroid | Daily Mail Online
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 22:34
Asteroid the size of a London bus missed the Earth by just 240 miles on Friday 13 in closest pass on record '-- but it wasn't spotted until the next dayThe rock '-- dubbed 2020 VT4 '-- was seen 15 hours after its whizzed on byIt was detected by the Asteroid Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System on Hawaii.The 16''33 feet wide body, had it come much closer, would have burnt upIt is the second asteroid to break the record for closest approach this yearBy Ian Randall For Mailonline
Published: 07:22 EST, 19 November 2020 | Updated: 11:53 EST, 24 November 2020
An asteroid the size of a London bus missed the Earth by just 240 miles (386 km) on Friday 13th '-- but was not detected until the next day, astronomers have revealed.
The space rock, dubbed '2020 VT4', was only spotted 15 hours after its closest approach by the Asteroid Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System on Mauna Loa, Hawaii.
Had it come much closer, the 16''33 feet (5''10 m) wide body '-- as estimated from its brightness '-- would have burned up in the atmosphere over the South Pacific.
Its orbit brought it about the same distance from the Earth as the International Space Station, making it the closest asteroid to pass by Earth on record to date.
An asteroid the size of a London bus missed the Earth by just 240 miles (386 km) on Friday 13th '-- but was not detected until the next day, astronomers have revealed (stock image)
Asteroid 2020 VT4's orbit brought it about the same distance from the Earth as the International Space Station, making it the closest asteroid to pass by Earth on record to date
Prior to being named 2020 VT4, the asteroid was originally designated A10sHcN.
'Newly-discovered asteroid A10sHcN approached Earth yesterday, passing only a few hundred miles above the South Pacific Ocean,' wrote astronomer Tony Dunn '-- who runs the website 'Orbit Simulator' '-- on Twitter.
'This encounter shortened its orbit, ensuring that this Earth-crosser will make more frequent close approaches.'
According to experts, an asteroid would need to be at least 82 feet (25 metres) across in order to wreak localised damage on the Earth's surface '-- and some 0.6''1.2 miles (1''2 kilometres) in order to have global-level impacts.
For comparison, earth scientists believe that the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs 66 million years ago was around 7.5 miles (12.1 kilometres) wide.
Meanwhile, the Chelyabinsk meteor that exploded above Russia in 2013 '-- shattering windows of thousands of buildings over a large area and hospitalising 112 people '-- would have been some thirty times larger than 2020 VT4.
In contrast, an impactor would likely need to be some 60 miles (96 kilometres) wide in order to entirely eradicate the existence of life on our planet.
Had it come much closer, the 16''33 feet (5''10 m) wide body '-- as estimated from its brightness '-- would have burned up in the atmosphere over the South Pacific. Pictured, Asteroid 2020 VT4 (top), a London bus (middle) and the previous holder of the record for the closest-known asteroid pass of Earth, 2020QC (bottom)
2020 VT4's orbit (pictured in white) brought it about the same distance from the Earth (shown in blue) as the International Space Station, making it the closest recorded asteroid visitor
This is not the first time this year that a space visitor has broken the record for closest-passing asteroid.
Back in August, asteroid 2020 QG passed within just 1,830 miles of Earth '-- and NASA astronomers then also did not spot it until after it had passed on by.
The rock passed over the Indian Ocean the same distance away from the surface of the Earth as the drive from Copenhagen, in Denmark, down to Mlaga, in Spain.
Slightly smaller than 2020 VT4, 2020 QC was some 6''18 feet (1.8''5.5 m) in diameter. Objects of this size approach our planet every year.
2020 QG was similar in size to another asteroid which did enter the Earth's atmosphere '-- the 9''12 feet in diameter '2018 LA', which reached us on June 2, 2018.
This space rock burnt up over Africa '-- and if any tiny fragments did impact the ground, no damage or injuries were reported.
Coincidentally, 2020 VT4 is not the only asteroid to visit Earth on a Friday 13th '-- with the 984 feet (300 meters) wide body dubbed Apophis expected to pass close by us on Friday April 13, 2029.
Coincidentally, 2020 VT4 is not the only asteroid to visit Earth on a Friday 13th '-- with the 984 feet (300 meters) wide body dubbed Apophis expected to pass close by us on Friday April 13, 2029. Pictured, an artist's impression of Apophis approaching the Earth
Astronomers are hunting for asteroids larger than 450ft as they can cause 'catastrophic damage'Researchers have discovered most of the asteroids that are about a kilometers in size, but are now on the hunt for those that are about 459ft (140m) - as they could cause catastrophic damage.
Although nobody knows when the next big impact will occur, scientists have found themselves under pressure to predict - and intercept - its arrival.
Artist's impression pictured
'Sooner or later we will get... a minor or major impact,' said Rolf Densing, who heads the European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt
It may not happen in our lifetime, he said, but 'the risk that Earth will get hit in a devastating event one day is very high.'
'For now, there is little we can do.'
Source: AFP
Lin Wood on Twitter: "I have no idea extent of blackmail scheme of raping & killing children but given the number of agencies involved, the hundreds of thousands of missing children, & the otherwise inexplicable actions of many powerful officials,
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 22:32
Lin Wood : I have no idea extent of blackmail scheme of raping & killing children but given the number of agencies involved, t'...
Mon Jan 04 08:29:11 +0000 2021
Joe Biden's Inaugural Parade Cancelled, Citing Coronavirus Concerns - Big League Politics
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 22:02
On New Year's Eve Washington DC mayor Muriel Bowser wrote a letter to the commanding general of the DC National Guard, Major General William J. Walker, asking for the Guard's presence in her city from January 5th through January 7th.
A United States defense official has said that they will be used for ''traffic control and other assistance'' and will not be armed.
The letter, which was posted on The Last Refuge, reads in part:
''['...] First Amendment demonstrations permitted by the National Park Service are scheduled to occur in the District of Columbia on Tuesday, January 5, 2021 and Wednesday, January 6, 2021. As a result, District Government requests DC National Guard (DCNG) support, as these demonstrations follow similar events on November 14, 2020 and December 12, 2020, which resulted in a large influx of participants, violence and criminal activity.''
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''The District of Columbia is requesting personnel for the DCNG. Further, DCNG will support operations for both the Metropolitan Police Department and the DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services. Finally, no DCNG personnel shall be armed during this mission, and at no time, will DCNG personnel or assets be engaged in domestic surveillance, searches, or seizures of US persons.''
So Bowser has prepared to use the National Guard in advance for Stop the Steal protests yet dragged her feet in using the Guard to help stop violent Antifa and BLM riots over the summer? Funny how that works'...
Four months ago Bowser announced that she would consider recommendations from the DCFACES Working Group on which monuments to ''remove or relocate.'' The list included monuments of Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Christopher Columbus, Andrew Jackson, George Washington, Francis Griffith Newlands, and Albert Pike:
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser Announces Intent to Desecrate Jefferson, Washington Monuments
Jack Ma: Everything you need to know about the 'missing' Chinese billionaire | The Independent
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 21:57
Once the poster boy for a new generation of multi-billionaire Chinese business and tech leaders, Alibaba founder Jack Ma's fortunes have taken a serious dip in the last three months.
Since a controversial speech in China in October 2020, where he lamented the country's financial regulatory system and called for it to be reformed, the billionaire has been facing a series of actions from the Chinese authorities.
He has faced a number of business setbacks since, including a block on his plans for a stellar listing on the stock market, actions which have in turn left the market wary of his firms.
And he has now not been seen in public for more than two months - highlighted by his mysterious withdrawal from a scheduled appearance on his own reality TV show.
Who is Jack Ma?
Born in Hangzhou in eastern China, the 56-year-old came from a poor family and was once an English teacher.
Read more: Chinese billionaire Jack Ma missing weeks after criticising state financial system
He bought his first computer aged 33, and in the last two decades rose to become a shining star of China's booming economy through the success of his e-commerce giant Alibaba.
Ma stepped down as chairman of Alibaba in 2019, but has remained in the public eye through media appearances and philanthropic work. During the Covid-19 pandemic he has donated masks and ventilators to the US '' an effort that drew praise from several US politicians '' and he is the face of a talent show to support young entrepreneurs.
Where is Jack Ma?
Ma's removal from the good books of the Chinese authorities appears to have been even quicker than his rise to fame and fortune. The billionaire, who is known to speak freely, at a summit in October 2020 came down heavily on China's financial regulators.
He called for reforms in the financial system, speaking to an audience that included many officials of the regulatory organisations he was criticising.
The response was swift. In November, a planned IPO of Ma's Ant Group was suspended by the Chinese authorities and later, in December, the buyback plan of shares worth billions of pounds also failed to excite the investors. The authorities also opened an investigation against his firms.
After years as the outgoing face of his companies '' Ma once danced in front of tens of thousands of his company's employees dressed in an outfit inspired by Michael Jackson '' he is now conspicuously absent from the stage, without a public appearance in weeks or even a tweet in three months.
Jack Ma net worth
Jack Ma has various business interests. Apart from being the founder of Alibaba, he also has a stake in the online payment service Ant Group.
It's a dramatic change for a man who once taught English for $15 (£11) a month. He says he was rejected for 30 other jobs '' including one serving at KFC '' before he founded his own company.
At one point Ma became Asia's richest person '' though he was later supplanted by another Chinese businessman.
According to Bloomberg's Billionaires Index, his net worth is about $50.6bn (£37bn), making him the 25th richest person in the world.
Jack Ma and Alibaba
Ma has said he drew the inspiration to start Alibaba from a trip to the US in 1995. Subsequently, in 1999, Ma along with 18 people including many of his friends founded Alibaba Group from an apartment in Hangzhou, where they pooled in $60,000 (£44,000) for the venture.
The group struggled early on and by 2002 they only had enough cash coming in to support 18 months of operation. But then came a timely intervention to connect two big markets '' the US and China '' ensuring that American buyers could get easier access to Chinese manufacturers, and slowly steadying the business.
Over the years, the group became increasingly profitable and Ma and Alibaba became a force to reckon with. Ma started featuring on the covers of international business magazines '' something uncommon for Chinese businessmen at that time.
As a result, the reach of the Alibaba group, which was once rejected by funders, is now spread over 190 countries. It has become a leading platform for wholesale trade connecting millions of buyers and suppliers. It now has an estimated market cap of about $648.3bn (£474bn).
With an estimated 100,000 employees, Alibaba now has interests in e-commerce, cloud computing, cashless payment and even movies.
Ma stepped down from his role as chairman in 2019 and reports suggested he would focus his time and efforts on his philanthropic work.
But as with many firms, the founder's shadow looms large over Alibaba's fortunes '' something that the October 2020 controversy has shown. He remains an influential member of the Alibaba Partnership, for instance '' a group of 36 members who can influence the nomination of the company's board of directors.
The company state's that its vision is to be in operation for at least 102 years '' but if the current trajectory of the crackdown on Ma continues, the dream may end much more abruptly than that.
Asteroid As Big As Chelyabinsk Meteor Approaching Earth; Will It Cause An Airburst?
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 21:24
KEY POINTSAn asteroid is expected to approach Earth tomorrowThe approaching asteroid is as big as the Chelyabinsk meteorIt could cause a powerful mid-air explosion NASA's Center for Near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) has spotted an asteroid that's currently approaching Earth. Based on the data collected by the agency, the asteroid is as big as the meteor that caused a violent explosion over Russia in 2013.
The incoming asteroid has been identified as 2020 CF. It is classified as an Apollo asteroid, which means it follows a natural orbit that occasionally crosses Earth's path.
According to CNEOS, this asteroid is currently approaching the planet at a speed of almost 12,000 miles per hour. Compared to other asteroids that zip past the planet, 2020 CF is not moving very fast.
Also, the approaching asteroid is not that big. As indicated in the agency's database, 2020 CF has an estimated diameter of about 66 feet, which means it is as big as the meteor that detonated over the city of Chelyabinsk in Russia in 2013.
During this incident, the meteor exploded in the sky at a height of around 97,000 feet from the ground. The blast produced a bright flash and released energy equivalent to about 30 atomic bombs. Although the explosion happened mid-air, it still caused a lot of damage on the ground.
According to reports, the meteor's explosion damaged over 7,000 buildings in the city. About 1,500 people were also seriously injured by the effects of the blast.
Aside from the meteor's size, another factor that contributed to the intensity of its explosion is its atmospheric velocity, or its speed when it entered Earth's atmosphere. Reports indicated that the meteor went through the atmosphere at speeds of about 42,900 miles per hour.
Since 2020 CF is not as fast as the Chelyabinsk meteor, it most likely won't be as destructive when it hits Earth. Although it could still cause a powerful airburst, the explosion most likely won't happen near the ground.
According to CNEOS, 2020 CF is expected to approach Earth on Feb. 12 at 9:55 am EST. During this time, the asteroid will fly past Earth from a distance of 0.0376 astronomical units, which is equivalent to around 3.5 million miles away.
COVID-19 bill started a 180-day countdown for UFO disclosures
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 20:14
December 29, 2020 | 5:09pm | Updated December 30, 2020 | 9:59am
President Trump's signature Sunday on the $2.3 trillion COVID-19 relief and government funding bill started a 180-day countdown for the Pentagon and spy agencies to say what they know about UFOs.
The provision received very little attention, in part because it wasn't included in the text of the 5,593-page legislation, but as a ''committee comment'' attached to the annual intelligence authorization act, which was rolled into the massive bill.
The Senate Intelligence Committee, chaired by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), said in the comment that it ''directs the [director of national intelligence], in consultation with the Secretary of Defense and the heads of such other agencies '... to submit a report within 180 days of the date of enactment of the Act, to the congressional intelligence and armed services committees on unidentified aerial phenomena.''
The report must address ''observed airborne objects that have not been identified'' and should include a ''detailed analysis of unidentified phenomena data collected by: a. geospatial intelligence; b. signals intelligence; c. human intelligence; and d. measurement and signals intelligence,'' the committee said.
The report must also contain ''[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 '... and an assessment of whether this unidentified aerial phenomena activity may be attributed to one or more foreign adversaries.''
Former Pentagon and legislative officials confirmed Tuesday to the publication The Debrief that the package begins the clock on UFO disclosures.Defense Department spokesperson Sue Gough told The Post: ''We are aware that the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence committee report on the Intelligence Authorization Act for fiscal 2021 included a requirement for the Director of National Intelligence, in consultation with the Secretary of Defense, to submit a report on unidentified aerial phenomena (UAPs) within 180 days of enactment.''
Spokespeople for Rubio, who pushed for more UFO transparency, did not respond to The Post's multiple requests for comment.
The push for more information follows the Pentagon's April publication of three Navy videos showing unidentified objects.
Chris Mellon, former deputy assistant secretary of defense for intelligence, told The Debrief that ''the newly enacted Intelligence Authorization Act incorporates the Senate Intelligence Committee's report language calling for an unclassified, all-source report on the UAP phenomenon. This was accomplished in the Joint Explanatory Statement accompanying the bill.''
''Consequently, 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,'' said Mellon, who is also a former staff director of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
''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.''
Mellon added: ''I'm hopeful the new Administration will rigorously execute its oversight prerogatives because the concerns of the public and numerous U.S. military personnel have been ignored by a complacent national security bureaucracy for far too long.''
Nick Pope, who ran the ''UFO office'' of the UK's Ministry of Defence, told The Post, ''I welcome this move, which shows how seriously the phenomenon is being taken in the intelligence community.''
Pope said that ''the Pentagon's Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force is probably already drafting the report for DNI to send to the Senate Intelligence Committee. Questions remain about what the report will say and how much can ever be made public, given the highly classified nature of some of the material, but this is a step in the right direction.''
Trump as commander-in-chief has brushed off questions about UFOs and possible alien life. ''I'm not a believer, but you know, I guess anything is possible,'' he said in an interview last year.
Near Earth Objects (NEO): Earth's Upcoming Close Approaches with Asteroids
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 17:47
NEOs (Near Earth Objects) are a category of Asteroids whose orbit is very close to intersecting Earth's orbit. These objects are tracked carefully by astronomers because of potential risk of impact.
The table below is updated multiple times per day and lists all the known upcoming close approaches between the Earth and NEO asteroids thatwill be closer than 5 Lunar Distances and will happen in the next 10 years.
Color coding:
close approach distance is less than 2 Lunar Distances; close approach distance is less than 1 Lunar Distances; close approach distance is less than 0.5 Lunar Distances; Asteroid Name Date and Time of Closest Approach (UT) Close Approach Distance Approach Relative Speed km/s Kilometers (km) Lunar Distance (LD) Astronomical Units (AU) 2020 YM1 2020-Dec-25 00:54 634,402 1.65008 0.00424 3.24 501647 2020-Dec-25 20:20 3,020,484 7.85630 0.02019 10.01 2020 YZ3 2020-Dec-25 21:46 620,239 1.61325 0.00415 9.36 2020 YA5 2020-Dec-26 01:41 2,653,521 6.90183 0.01774 10.36 2020 YG3 2020-Dec-26 02:02 747,288 1.94370 0.00500 8.06 2018 XE4 2020-Dec-26 04:03 2,150,294 5.59293 0.01437 9.43 2020 YC 2020-Dec-26 10:44 5,442,727 14.15657 0.03638 6.46 2020 YH1 2020-Dec-26 14:42 3,966,247 10.31624 0.02651 6.61 2020 XT2 2020-Dec-26 21:38 5,002,816 13.01236 0.03344 5.15 2016 AF2 2020-Dec-27 07:44 2,800,460 7.28402 0.01872 5.35 2020 YC4 2020-Dec-27 16:31 5,532,942 14.39122 0.03699 12.78 2020 YB5 2020-Dec-27 22:13 2,948,975 7.67030 0.01971 4.10 2020 YG4 2020-Dec-28 07:04 1,065,610 2.77166 0.00712 13.66 2011 CL50 2020-Dec-28 09:54 2,165,201 5.63170 0.01447 3.12 2020 YM3 2020-Dec-28 19:40 2,977,766 7.74519 0.01991 4.81 2020 YS4 2020-Dec-28 22:27 96,461 0.25090 0.00064 7.29 2020 XZ4 2020-Dec-29 11:10 2,071,038 5.38678 0.01384 8.72 2021 AE 2020-Dec-31 02:37 464,873 1.20914 0.00311 16.12 2021 AA 2021-Jan-01 13:16 237,228 0.61703 0.00159 22.21 2020 YA1 2021-Jan-03 10:03 1,555,488 4.04583 0.01040 3.70 2020 YP4 2021-Jan-03 12:00 2,192,961 5.70391 0.01466 6.83 2019 QW2 2021-Jan-03 20:50 3,367,747 8.75953 0.02251 4.89 2021 AB 2021-Jan-04 04:03 841,430 2.18857 0.00562 12.64 2012 BT1 2021-Jan-04 07:16 5,223,419 13.58615 0.03492 7.75 2021 AC 2021-Jan-06 03:27 3,507,155 9.12213 0.02344 14.07 2018 KP1 2021-Jan-06 13:21 3,147,396 8.18640 0.02104 4.43 332446 2021-Jan-06 21:52 3,676,158 9.56171 0.02457 10.99 2015 NU13 2021-Jan-09 09:16 5,650,244 14.69632 0.03777 15.08 2021 AD 2021-Jan-16 15:58 4,772,730 12.41390 0.03190 8.51 2020 YE5 2021-Jan-22 14:22 438,342 1.14013 0.00293 10.48 2020 XB7 2021-Jan-22 17:09 2,735,547 7.11517 0.01829 8.35 2018 BX 2021-Jan-22 21:20 3,414,268 8.88053 0.02282 6.13 2018 BA3 2021-Jan-25 10:28 566,394 1.47320 0.00379 8.08 2020 TB12 2021-Feb-01 05:49 2,593,883 6.74671 0.01734 8.88 2016 CL136 2021-Feb-01 22:26 5,286,772 13.75093 0.03534 18.06 2020 SO 2021-Feb-02 21:41 225,162 0.58565 0.00151 1.79 2020 CX1 2021-Feb-18 01:29 1,857,580 4.83158 0.01242 8.27 2016 DV1 2021-Mar-02 18:06 1,481,414 3.85317 0.00990 18.40 2013 VO11 2021-May-25 12:45 1,470,623 3.82510 0.00983 10.12 2018 LB 2021-Jun-01 16:56 1,103,922 2.87131 0.00738 7.69 2020 AD1 2021-Jul-04 06:45 1,085,083 2.82231 0.00725 4.85 2019 AT6 2021-Jul-13 07:34 1,620,782 4.21567 0.01083 5.15 2016 BQ 2021-Aug-14 14:14 1,674,716 4.35595 0.01119 4.69 2019 XS 2021-Nov-09 03:48 573,912 1.49275 0.00384 10.68 2020 AP1 2022-Jan-07 17:32 1,743,804 4.53565 0.01166 5.65 2018 CW2 2022-Feb-18 09:20 857,753 2.23102 0.00573 10.76 2020 DC 2022-Mar-06 09:18 1,487,369 3.86866 0.00994 4.94 2016 FZ12 2022-Mar-19 12:45 808,966 2.10413 0.00541 8.33 2020 SQ 2022-Mar-21 16:38 1,047,409 2.72432 0.00700 6.02 2017 UK52 2022-Apr-29 16:26 1,009,294 2.62518 0.00675 13.72 2019 JE 2022-May-11 03:56 1,886,149 4.90589 0.01261 7.22 2012 UX68 2022-May-15 13:49 1,161,930 3.02219 0.00777 8.16 2020 TO2 2022-Oct-16 08:35 993,586 2.58432 0.00664 12.44 2004 UT1 2022-Oct-29 07:56 1,325,778 3.44836 0.00886 6.40 2020 WD 2022-Nov-08 21:55 1,254,459 3.26286 0.00839 5.97 2018 WH 2022-Nov-16 19:47 978,828 2.54594 0.00654 7.74 2005 LW3 2022-Nov-23 10:06 1,139,729 2.96444 0.00762 13.49 2019 XY 2022-Dec-10 06:00 1,359,696 3.53658 0.00909 12.89 2015 RN35 2022-Dec-15 08:11 686,039 1.78439 0.00459 5.91 2013 YA14 2022-Dec-25 12:52 1,033,842 2.68903 0.00691 10.47 2010 XC15 2022-Dec-27 18:15 772,085 2.00820 0.00516 10.10 2014 LJ 2023-Jan-14 08:10 1,902,144 4.94749 0.01272 3.45 367789 2023-Feb-03 08:51 1,816,949 4.72590 0.01215 9.92 2020 OO1 2023-Feb-04 20:35 1,844,230 4.79685 0.01233 7.74 2020 DG4 2023-Feb-17 19:06 636,044 1.65436 0.00425 6.88 2017 SE12 2023-Mar-30 08:34 1,772,984 4.61154 0.01185 8.35 2020 UQ3 2023-Jul-18 11:01 1,200,455 3.12239 0.00802 9.29 2016 LY48 2023-Sep-17 21:38 1,665,548 4.33210 0.01113 11.05 2013 TG6 2023-Sep-28 21:30 1,367,038 3.55567 0.00914 4.15 1998 HH49 2023-Oct-17 00:33 1,173,965 3.05349 0.00785 14.79 2019 CZ2 2023-Nov-25 04:54 924,814 2.40545 0.00618 5.89 2020 YO3 2023-Dec-23 20:58 1,404,555 3.65326 0.00939 16.63 2017 SA20 2024-Apr-19 09:48 1,464,200 3.80840 0.00979 6.19 2020 GE 2024-Sep-24 04:25 659,589 1.71559 0.00441 2.22 2018 QE 2024-Oct-09 05:42 683,234 1.77710 0.00457 4.40 2016 VA 2024-Nov-01 23:03 520,102 1.35279 0.00348 21.16 2020 UL3 2024-Nov-12 15:22 1,318,428 3.42924 0.00881 10.42 2006 WB 2024-Nov-26 18:00 891,389 2.31851 0.00596 4.20 2007 XB23 2024-Dec-11 18:07 447,133 1.16300 0.00299 4.77 2012 PB20 2025-Feb-09 19:57 1,435,710 3.73429 0.00960 4.27 2015 XX168 2025-Dec-18 20:43 1,740,312 4.52656 0.01163 11.57 2015 VO142 2026-Mar-17 04:38 1,033,454 2.68802 0.00691 3.09 2010 RA91 2026-Mar-22 01:28 1,774,655 4.61589 0.01186 9.89 2013 GM3 2026-Apr-14 17:29 392,518 1.02094 0.00262 7.36 2003 LN6 2026-Jun-18 20:52 1,417,113 3.68592 0.00947 3.92 2015 TS238 2026-Oct-08 22:27 1,135,134 2.95249 0.00759 15.97 2019 XF2 2026-Dec-04 00:35 1,189,906 3.09495 0.00795 10.20 2010 VQ 2026-Dec-12 19:45 1,418,781 3.69026 0.00948 4.38 2015 DG200 2027-Jan-22 11:19 1,381,612 3.59358 0.00924 20.03 2016 VO1 2027-Feb-14 19:13 1,416,497 3.68432 0.00947 13.72 137108 2027-Aug-07 07:11 389,911 1.01416 0.00261 26.28 2019 DP 2027-Aug-30 08:30 631,925 1.64364 0.00422 8.96 2006 SB 2027-Sep-19 12:26 1,527,813 3.97385 0.01021 9.74 2018 FK5 2027-Oct-04 00:14 1,714,700 4.45995 0.01146 11.59 2020 SN6 2027-Oct-04 01:28 1,413,961 3.67772 0.00945 5.26 2019 WV 2027-Nov-14 00:16 1,690,259 4.39637 0.01130 5.18 2020 XF 2027-Dec-02 06:15 710,461 1.84791 0.00475 3.54 2020 AW 2028-Jan-19 04:48 1,623,281 4.22217 0.01085 4.95 2009 WR52 2028-May-21 13:29 1,801,754 4.68637 0.01204 5.13 153814 2028-Jun-26 05:23 248,714 0.64691 0.00166 10.24 2011 LJ19 2028-Jul-25 18:28 1,272,354 3.30940 0.00851 9.80 35396 2028-Oct-26 06:44 929,244 2.41697 0.00621 13.92 2015 VL64 2028-Nov-02 19:11 944,158 2.45576 0.00631 8.55 2017 VN2 2028-Nov-20 04:46 1,603,409 4.17048 0.01072 5.54 2012 XE133 2028-Dec-30 09:19 1,475,571 3.83797 0.00986 9.65 2016 EP84 2029-Jan-03 09:02 1,904,300 4.95310 0.01273 2.83 2019 BE5 2029-Jan-27 18:09 1,646,623 4.28288 0.01101 13.96 292220 2029-Jan-28 04:24 1,225,448 3.18740 0.00819 4.90 2007 WA 2029-May-13 12:06 1,776,727 4.62128 0.01188 5.12 2000 SL10 2029-May-14 17:09 1,642,850 4.27306 0.01098 8.33 2006 HE2 2029-Sep-29 22:58 1,708,479 4.44377 0.01142 4.74 2001 AV43 2029-Nov-11 15:25 313,066 0.81429 0.00209 4.00 2016 VY1 2029-Nov-12 18:46 1,002,800 2.60829 0.00670 6.11 2020 YB1 2029-Dec-24 23:06 785,546 2.04321 0.00525 11.70 2019 BE5 2030-Feb-17 23:36 1,604,493 4.17330 0.01073 13.88 2016 JD18 2030-May-18 12:24 1,824,790 4.74629 0.01220 14.60 2019 CL2 2030-Jul-02 00:23 991,835 2.57977 0.00663 7.96 2014 YN 2030-Nov-11 03:55 1,256,099 3.26712 0.00840 3.14 2015 XH55 2030-Nov-28 23:17 1,057,976 2.75180 0.00707 7.20This 3D diagram shows the orbits and the current positions of the Near Earth Asteroids passing close to Earth fromnot wo the next 180 days.
Center for a Stateless Society >> Tommy Raskin's Moral Example
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 16:32
Last week, Thomas ''Tommy'' Raskin died at the age of 25. Tommy was the son of Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD), whose office announced his death on Thursday, December 31st. Tommy was an anti-war activist, a vegan, a writer, and a student at Harvard Law School. As his family said in a statement , ''Tommy was pure magic. His brilliance and compassion knew no bounds. He passionately loved his family, friends, and animals, and was devoted to the cause of the global poor.'' I never met Tommy Raskin, but when I read his work, that brilliance and compassion shines through. He was a dedicated opponent of war and militarism. Just last week, he published a piece at the Libertarian Institute arguing that anti-war activists should strive to use the First Amendment to protect various forms of resistance to American militarism. And this essay was just the tip of the iceberg. He wrote various essays against war, militarism, imperialism, and colonialism at Foreign Policy in Focus , the Libertarian Institute , CounterPunch , , and the blog . Beyond writing, Tommy Raskin worked in a variety of capacities to advance the cause of peace. He was a former intern at He was also a former intern at the Cato Institute, whose foreign policy team strongly opposes war. Raskin also worked on Middle East policy at the Friends Committee on National Legislation , a Quaker activist group that lobbies for peace. While there, he facilitated lobbying visits to advocate against the U.S. government's disastrous wars in the Middle East. As Scott Horton notes , ''Tommy was active in recent efforts to lobby congressional opposition to US support of the Saudi war on Yemen.'' The US government's support for that war entails backing a variety of atrocities, human rights abuses, and war crimes . Tommy Raskin wrote and worked with a wide range of groups, all to stop the brutality and violence of America's wars abroad. He never confined himself to one political faction. He never stopped or relented simply because the party in power or the occupant of the White House changed. We should all strive to be such dedicated peacemongers . Raskin wrote on numerous other important issues, always centering the dignity and freedom of the most vulnerable. For example, in a recent piece here at C4SS, Raskin explored how Effective Altruism and anarchism can come together to help the global poor and challenge existing inequalities:
''In light of the state's failure to allocate resources properly, the EA takes matters into her own hands, donating to GiveDirectly and other vetted charities in order to reduce the incidence of hunger, disease, and blindness throughout the world. In so doing, the EA functions in the spirit of radicals past who have rendered services that governments have shown themselves ill-equipped or unwilling to provide. When the EA gives people money for food, for example, she does right by the Black Panthers, the latter of whom, we will recall, started the Free Breakfast Program for children who might have gone hungry otherwise. Like that of the Black Panther, the EA's activism stems from a well-founded sense that we should never allow government'--so often captive to the forces of tribalism, bellicosity, and wealth'--to be our sole source of relief in a world rife with suffering.''
This concern for the well-being of the poor and downtrodden can also be seen in his C4SS pieces ''Should We Give to Morally Imperfect People?'' , ''The Fight for Homeless Homesteading,'' and ''The Left-Libertarian Balancing Act.''
In addition to addressing war and poverty, Raskin challenged unjust enforcement and punishment practices. He wrote outstanding pieces challenging school suspensions , corporal punishment in schools, the death penalty , and police brutality .
His circle of care extended beyond just humans. He was a dedicated vegan , and he wrote thoughtfully about animal rights .
Our world is scarred by war, state violence, poverty, deprivation, and animal abuse. Too many people ignore these injustices. Others actively support them, often by shrouding them in euphemisms. Still others nominally oppose them, but treat them less like serious issues and more like bludgeons to prove the moral superiority of their own party or faction.
Tommy Raskin did none of this. He was willing to work with people across the political spectrum to advance liberty, justice, and the well-being of the least advantaged. He seriously examined, exposed, and resisted the most pressing injustices. I hope that we can advance his legacy and live up to his example.
South Korea's Hyper-Tube train reaches over 1,000 km/h in a test - Inceptive Mind
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 15:56
The Korean Railroad Research Institute (KORAIL) announced that its Hyper-Tube train achieved a speed of over 621 mph (1,000 km/h) during a test. This marks a major achievement in the race to create the world's fastest train system.
Hyper-tube is South Korea's version of the hyperloop. The country has been working on the Hyper Tube project since 2017. Last September, the concept has achieved 443 mph (714 km/h) in a full-fledged aerodynamic test in sub-vacuum condition. But according to KORAIL, they have now solved the problems with the friction created by rapid acceleration.
The team has developed new transportation technology that overcomes the speed limit caused by air and friction resistance of the existing high-speed railroad. Thanks to this, during a recent aerodynamic test, the model train reached a speed of 633 mph (1,019 km/h) at a pressure level of 0.001, which is close to a vacuum.
When compared to aircraft, for example, regular international flights from Europe to Asia fly at speeds of about 497 to 621 mph (800 to 1,000 km/h). You could say hyper-tube is a very fast train.
The institute is continuing to refine its technology and is moving towards the track and full-scale vehicle development by 2022. South Korea hopes to launch the first such hyperloop flight in 2024, reducing travel time from 3.5-hour to 30 minutes between Seoul and South Korea's second-largest city, Busan. The country already has high-speed trains running on the same route, but the government is working to make this flight much more supersonic as soon as possible.
KORAIL is not the only agency working on such trains. The aforementioned revolutionary technology was first proposed by Elon Musk, the founder of the space company SpaceX, in 2013. Since then, several companies and startups have taken on the challenge, with the most promising being Hyperloop TT and Virgin Hyperloop.
There are, of course, risks of traveling at such high speeds enclosed in a pipe. But perhaps KORAIL's confidence in the concept has increased now that Virgin Hyperloop has completed its first manned test. Recently, two people rode along the company's 500-meter test track in Nevada, reaching a speed of 100 mph (160 km/h) '' which is significantly slower than Virgin Hyperloop's theoretical maximum speed of 760 mph (1223 km/h).
Nashville Council Member Suggests Police Racism Prevented Them From Stopping Bombing - The Police Tribune
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 15:54
Nashville, TN '' The city of Nashville Council Member Bob Mendes criticized police for not following up on a tip about the Nashville bomber and said if the suspect was a black Muslim instead of a white man police would have had a different response.
In August of 2019, the Nashville bomber's girlfriend was allegedly making suicidal threats and transported by police for a psychological evaluation.
While they were transporting her, she told officers that her boyfriend talked frequently about the military and bomb making and was making explosives in his recreational vehicle, according to the Washington Post.
Anthony Warner would later die when he detonated a bomb in his recreational vehicle in downtown Nashville on Christmas morning, injuring eight people.
Police paid a visit to his home after receiving the tip from his girlfriend but were not able to investigate further after they were unable to develop probable cause for a warrant and Warner didn't respond to knocks on his door, the Washington Post reported.
''The guy's girlfriend called the cops, told them the house, told them what he was doing, said it was in the RV. Our criminal justice system didn't catch it,'' Mendes told The Washington Post. ''They let it go. Objectively, that's a failure. My biggest concern is to figure out how, god forbid, if that circumstance happens again there's a better result.''
''There's no getting around that if the girlfriend had said he's cooking meth in the RV maybe it would have driven a different response,'' Mendes said, according to the Washington Post. ''If it had been a 30-year-old African American Muslim man instead of a 63-year-old white man, it would have driven a different response.''
Warner's girlfriend, Pamela Perry, had told the police about Warner's bomb building at his residence.
The police did knock on Warner's door but got no answer. One police officer tried for more than a week to reach Warner but was not able to make any contact with the bomber, according to the Washington Post.
The officers contacted the FBI for background on Warner, but they had no information on him besides a marijuana arrest in the 1970s.
The police supervisors were informed, but police were unable to establish probable cause.
Metro Nashville Police Chief John Drake defended his department's response to the tip.
''If we had probable cause to get into the home with a search warrant, we would have,'' Chief Drake said. ''Maybe we could have followed up more. Hindsight is 2020.''
Chief Drake said the department routinely gets tips that don't ''pan out,'' according to The Tennessean.
''We don't get a lot of bomb tips like that, but you get a lot,'' Chief Drake said, according to The Tennessean. ''They followed up on it, officers didn't take it lightly, but they didn't have anything else to go on.''
Explainer: What do studies on new coronavirus mutations tell us? | Reuters
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 15:18
LONDON (Reuters) - A series of studies of the genomes of thousands of samples of the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 show that it is mutating and evolving as it adapts to its human hosts.
Here's what experts are saying about those findings and how they might affect the COVID-19 pandemic and efforts to develop vaccines and treatments.
WHAT HAVE THE STUDIES FOUND?* Using a database called the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GISAID), researchers at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in the United States tracked genetic changes, or mutations, in the ''spike'' of the new coronavirus - the part that gives it its distinctive shape.
Their preliminary research found 14 such mutations. The researchers said one, called D614G, was ''of urgent concern'' because it appeared to be emerging as dominant and may make the disease more infectious.
* Using the same GISAID database, a team at University College London in Britain screened the genomes of more than 7,500 viruses from infected patients around the world.
The UCL team found 198 mutations in the coronavirus genomes they analysed but said none appear at this stage to be particularly worrying.
* Another study by scientists at Britain's Glasgow University, which also analysed mutations in the genomes of SARS-CoV-2 virus samples, found that these changes did not signal that there are different strains.
That contradicted a previous preliminary study by Chinese researchers that suggested there had been two strains circulating in people at the start of the COVID-19 outbreak in China, and that one had been more ''aggressive''.
Health workers move a patient wearing a face mask at the at NYU Langone Hospital, during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., May 3, 2020. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz
WHAT DO THOSE FINDINGS TELL US?''This multiple strains idea has to be very much debunked,'' said Eric Topol, a cardiologist, geneticist and founder of the Scripps Research Translational Institute in La Jolla, California.
''We know there is only one strain.''
Jonathan Stoye, head of the division of virology at Britain's Francis Crick Institute, said that taken together, the studies offer ''fascinating'' insights in the evolution of the virus, and emphasise that it is ''a moving target''.
''The virus is evolving and is changing. And we don't yet know what the consequences of those changes are,'' Stoye said.
''This coronavirus mutates just like any good RNA virus should,'' said Mark Schleiss, a molecular genetics expert at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
Genetics and biology experts say it's still too early to know whether any of the mutations are meaningful.
Lawrence Young, a professor of molecular oncology at Britain's University of Warwick, said that while there is ''much speculation about the possible emergence of more aggressive strains'', studies so far show that is not the case.
''Overall the SARS-CoV-2 virus does not mutate at a high rate... and there is currently no compelling evidence that the mutations have had a significant effect,'' he said
Topol said scientists will have to conduct studies in functional genomics - examining precisely how a specific genetic mutation affects the behaviour of a virus - to find out more.
WILL THIS AFFECT THE SEARCH FOR VACCINES AND DRUGS?The mutations found by the UCL were not evenly distributed across the virus genome, with some parts of the genome less likely to mutate, and others more likely to vary.
Lucy van Dorp, who co-led the UCL work, said those more stable parts of the virus could be better targets for drug and vaccine development. ''We want to target the parts of the virus that, as far as we have observed, aren't changing. If they haven't changed much in the course of the pandemic so far, hopefully they won't change much in the future.''
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Google, Alphabet employees seek to form a union | TechCrunch
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 14:45
A group of more than 200 Google and Alphabet workers have announced their efforts to form a union. With the help of Communication Workers of America Union's Campaign to Organize Digital Employees (CODE-CWA), the Alphabet Workers Union seeks to be open to both employees and contractors.
Of the roughly 227 workers who have so far signed on to support the union, they have all committed to set aside 1% of the yearly compensation to go toward union dues. The bulk of the workers who have signed on are mostly based in offices in the San Francisco Bay Area and one in Cambridge.
''This is historic'--the first union at a major tech company by and for all tech workers,'' Dylan Baker, a software engineer at Google, said in a statement. ''We will elect representatives, we will make decisions democratically, we will pay dues, and we will hire skilled organizers to ensure all workers at Google know they can work with us if they actually want to see their company reflect their values.''
Efforts to unionize at Google and Alphabet come following the creation of unions at tech companies Kickstarter and Glitch early last year. Additionally, workers at HCL Technologies workers who contract for Google in Pittsburgh and tech company cafeteria workers in the Bay Area formed unions last year.
''You have an industry of workers '-- the new generation of workers and the industry, especially tech and games, has been growing exponentially with young people,'' CODE-CWA union organizer Wes McEnany previously told TechCrunch about why we're seeing more tech companies organize. ''Some of them make a lot of money and are working at companies that do really bad things. I think they're at a position socially where they're like enough is enough.''
Google has been at the center of a plethora of labor issues over the past few years. Between the the Google walkout, the reported retaliation against organizers of the walkout and the recent departure of Dr. Timnit Gebru, it should come as no surprise that folks at the company decided to make their organizing efforts more official.
In a press release, workers also pointed to how more than half of the people who work at Alphabet companies are contract workers and therefore lack many benefits. Additionally, workers take issue with hefty payout packages to executives accused of harassment, as well as with some of the company's government contracts, such a s the one around military drone targeting.
Meanwhile, just last month, the National Labor Relations Board filed a complaint against Google alleging the company violated parts of the National Labor Relations Act by surveilling employees, and generally interfered with, restrained and coerced employees in the exercise of their rights guaranteed by Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act.
The NLRB also alleges Google discouraged ''its employees from forming, joining, assisting a union or engaging in other protected, concerted activities,'' the complaint stated.
Those are just some of the reasons why workers want to unionize and gain the legal right to collectively bargain over workplace conditions. Still, there is a lot that needs to happen before Alphabet Workers Union fully comes into fruition. As of right now, the 227 or so workers still need to get other Google and Alphabet workers on board in order to reach a strong majority of people in favor the union. As of September 30, 2020, Alphabet employed 132,121 people. The next step is then seeking recognition from Alphabet.
That last part can be difficult. Case in point: Kickstarter. When workers asked for voluntary recognition from Kickstarter in 2019, the company's leadership refused to do so, despite workers having majority support. Instead, Kickstarter leadership forced workers to have a formal election with the National Labor Relations Board. It all worked out for Kickstarter workers in the end but it took about ten months from going public with its efforts to being recognized as the Kickstarter Union. Once official, Alphabet Workers Union will be part of CWA Local 1400.
''This union builds upon years of courageous organizing by Google workers,'' Nicki Anselmo, a program manager at Google, said in a statement. ''From fighting the 'real names' policy, to opposing Project Maven, to protesting the egregious, multi-million dollar payouts that have been given to executives who've committed sexual harassment, we've seen first-hand that Alphabet responds when we act collectively. Our new union provides a sustainable structure to ensure that our shared values as Alphabet employees are respected even after the headlines fade.''
The media are lying about Trump's phone call with Raffensperger - American Thinker
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 14:38
'); googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1455834208841-0'); }); } The mainstream media and Georgia's secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, are utterly disgraceful, dishonest, and manipulative people. Raffensperger released a private phone call that the media immediately claimed '-- falsely '-- showed Trump begging Raffensperger to fraudulently find enough votes for Trump to win. In fact, Trump called Raffensperger to get him to stop obstructing the fraud investigation. As Trump explained during the call, evidence proves Trump won Georgia by a massive margin, only to have victory stolen through equally massive fraud. Trump sought to avoid litigation forcing Raffensperger to do his job, which is to make at least a minimal effort to clear away enough fraud to allow Trump his actual and honest victory in Georgia.
'); googletag.cmd.push(function () { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1345489840937-3'); }); } Here are just two examples of the media's dishonest claim that Trump was trying to force Raffensperger to commit fraud. As you can see, their premise is that there is no evidence of fraud, so any action on Trump's part to claim victory is itself fraud. Theirs is a deliberate example of circular logic, where their premise and conclusion are the same thing.
Washington Post: "The Washington Post obtained a recording of the conversation in which Trump alternately berated Raffensperger, tried to flatter him, begged him to act and threatened him with vague criminal consequences if the secretary of state refused to pursue his false claims, at one point warning that Raffensperger was taking 'a big risk.'"
CNN: "In excerpts of the stunning one-hour phone call Saturday, Trump lambasted his fellow Republican for refusing to falsely say that he won the election in Georgia and repeatedly touted baseless claims of election fraud."
Here's what really happened on the phone call. First, Trump wasn't the only person on the phone. Also present were Mark Meadows, Mike Pompeo, and multiple attorneys. There isn't the slightest chance that they would have allowed Trump to beg Raffensperger for illegal votes or to threaten him.
Second, contrary to what the media implied, Trump was not operating off the premise that he lost Georgia. If that had been the case, it would indeed have been wrong for Trump to beg for Raffensperger to "find" votes for him.
Instead, Trump was operating from the assertion that he won Georgia. He opened the call with a strong recitation of the facts showing massive fraud on Raffensperger's watch. According to Trump's evidence, he didn't lose by 11,780 votes; he won by well over 300,000 votes, including votes for Trump that disappeared and illegal votes for Biden. Here are some of Trump's statements in that regard:
"I think it's pretty clear that we won. We won very substantially in Georgia."
"We have ... anywhere from 250''300,000 ballots were dropped mysteriously into the rolls."
"We think that if you check the signatures '-- a real check of the signatures going back in Fulton County you'll find at least a couple of hundred thousand of forged signatures. ..."
"[I]n the 50s of thousands ... that's people that went to vote and they were told they can't vote because they've already been voted for."
"It's 4,502 who voted but they weren't on the voter registration roll which they had to be. ..."
"You had 18,325 vacant address voters. The address was vacant and they're not allowed to be counted."
Trump alluded to the faked water main break that allowed Fulton County election workers to count votes for hours after having sent observers home. He noted that the video of that after-hours voting indicated that at "the minimum it was 18,000 ballots, all for Biden."
Trump pointed to 4,925 illegal out-of-state voters, 2,326 absentee ballots from vacant addresses, 5,000 dead people voting, and improperly handled drop boxes. And he brought up the allegations that Georgia is shredding evidence as fast as it can.
The bottom line, as Trump accurately said, is that these infractions were "many, many times the 11,779 margin [sic] that they said we lost by."
Trump hammered over and over that he won the state. No matter how you look at it, he said he won, and he's got the evidence to prove it.
At this point, Mark Meadows stated what Trump's team wanted '-- and it wasn't to fake votes for Trump. It was, instead, an honest investigation: "What I'm hopeful for is there some way that we can ... find some kind of agreement to look at this a little bit more fully." Thus, Meadows sought an agreement "that we can at least have a discussion to look at some of these allegations to find a path forward that's less litigious."
Raffensperger pushed back, saying he'd already had to deal with lawsuits (ignoring that the courts refused to hear evidence). He also huffed that "we gave our state Senate about one and a half hours of our time going through the election issue by issue and then on the state House, the government affairs committee, we gave them about two and a half hours of our time, going back point by point on all the issues of contention. And then just a few days ago we met with our U.S. congressmen, Republican congressmen, and we gave them about two hours of our time talking about this past election."
Did you get that? The biggest election fraud claim in American history, the president on the phone, massive amounts of evidence, and Raffensperger whines that he's already given up six and a half hours of his time to the issue.
Trump again chimes in to say, "We won the state." In response to Raffensperger's complaint that he sacrificed six and a half hours to the matter, Trump suggests that Raffensperger does not need to invest massive time in investigating all 300,000-plus problematic votes. He just needs to investigate 11,779 to give Trump his rightful victory. For, as Trump says, "Because, what's the difference between winning the election by two votes and winning it by half a million votes? I think I probably did win it by half a million."
When Raffensberger pushes back again, saying his office disproved the cemetery vote contention, Cleta Mitchell, a Trump attorney, makes an important point: Georgia has been withholding records from the White House.
There's more in the conversation (much more, including a debate about the video showing Ruby Freeman repeatedly scanning the same ballots), but you get the gist. Trump won. A lazy, entitled, arrogant, and corrupt Raffensperger won't work with the White House to look for fraud (or prove the absence of fraud). And the corrupt, dissolute, dishonest American media, unless brought to heel, will be the downfall of our constitutional republic.
Image: Donald Trump "I'm just in the way" meme.
Trump suing Georgia's sec of state over leaked call amid accusations he pressured him to 'find votes' for victory '' GOP chair '-- RT USA News
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 14:27
President Donald Trump has reportedly filed lawsuits against Georgia's secretary of state after a call was leaked to the media in which he seemingly demanded that officials ''find'' votes in his favor to flip the state.
''President @realDonaldTrump has filed two lawsuits '' federal and state '' against @GaSecofState. The telephone conference call @GaSecofState secretly recorded was a 'confidential settlement discussion' of that litigation, which is still pending,'' David Shafer, Georgia Republican Party chairman, tweeted on Sunday, shortly after the Washington Post, the New York Times, CNN and other media published a recording of Trump's wide-ranging call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and a host of other officials, as well as his campaign lawyers.
President @realDonaldTrump has filed two lawsuits - federal and state - against @GaSecofState. The telephone conference call @GaSecofState secretly recorded was a ''confidential settlement discussion'' of that litigation, which is still pending.
'-- David Shafer (@DavidShafer) January 3, 2021White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, conservative lawyer Cleta Mitchell, and Georgia-based attorney Kurt Hilbert were on Trump's end of the receiver, while Raffensperger was joined by his office's attorney Ryan Germany and Deputy Secretary of State Jordan Fuchs.
Shafer tweeted that the purportedly complete recording of the call, released by the Washington Post, was in effect ''heavily edited'' and failed to include the part where Meadows allegedly stated that it was ''for the purpose of discussing the settlement on pending litigation.''
Also on In call LEAKED to media, Trump 'pressures' Georgia sec of state to re-examine election results, 'FIND' votes to overturn Biden win The Washington Post, however, denied that they somehow tampered with the recording, insisting that they have published ''the entirety of the call, from start to finish.''
''There is no mention of it being a confidential settlement meeting. None,'' WaPo's political reporter Amy Gardner tweeted.
This is false. We published the entirety of the call, from start to finish. There is no mention of it being a confidential settlement meeting. None.
'-- Amy Gardner (@AmyEGardner) January 4, 2021The call lasted about one hour, and focused exclusively on the issue of election fraud, with Trump accusing Georgia electoral officials of not doing enough to uncover multiple alleged irregularities. The president has repeatedly referred to ''shredded ballots'' in Fulton County and elsewhere, and cited reports ''of dead people'' on voter rolls. He has also doubled down on his campaign claims that Dominion voting equipment was somehow involved in the plot to tip the vote in Biden's favor, alleging in the call that the company was ''moving fast to get rid of their machinery.'' Germany, however, rejected the assumption, answering ''No'' when asked if that was the case.
Throughout the conversation, Trump insisted that he had won the state by a large margin, in contrast to the 11,779 votes by which he officially lost.
''I'm just curious, why wouldn't, why do you keep fighting this thing? It just doesn't make sense. We're way over the 17,779, right?'' Trump told Raffensperger, saying that he ''just'' wants to ''find 11,780 votes'' '' as opposed to tens of thousands more he believes he received in Georgia.
Also on Ex-House speaker Paul Ryan takes heat from both sides after blasting GOP senators' effort to challenge Biden's victory Closer to the end of the discussion, Trump appeared to lay the blame on Raffensperger for a potential loss in the Senate Georgia runoffs, saying that people would not turn out at the polls because of what he ''did to the president.'' Trump then suggested Raffensperger takes into account his grievances and amends the ''faulty election results.''
''Well, under law, you're not allowed to give faulty election results, OK? You're not allowed to do that. And that's what you [have] done. This is a faulty election result,'' Trump said, noting that Raffensperger would be ''really respected'' if ''this thing could be straightened out before the election.''
''And I think that it is really important that you meet tomorrow and work out on these numbers,'' he added.
Since it was released, the call has sparked a flurry of accusations against Trump, with critics accusing him of arm-twisting Georgia's secretary of state into overturning the vote. Some suggested that Trump, who is set to leave the Oval Office in less than 20 days, should face another impeachment procedure over his alleged abuse of power.
Yes, Trump should be impeached again. But Republicans should actually remove him this time.
'-- Scott Dworkin (@funder) January 4, 2021Like this story? Share it with a friend!
Mystery as Chinese billionaire Jack Ma disappears from his own reality show after criticising regime
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 14:18
A BILLIONAIRE tech tycoon has mysteriously vanished from his own reality show after bravely criticising China's regime.
Super-rich Jack Ma - reported to be worth at least £35bn - has not been seen in public since late October, say reports.
Jack Ma is China's richest entrepreneur and one of the country's best-known figures Credit: AFP or licensorsThe 56-year-old made his fortune after creating Alibaba, dubbed Asia's Amazon, and was once a favourite of the communist regime.
However, the former English teacher was suddenly replaced as a judge on the final of Africa's Business Heroes, a Dragons' Den-style TV contest for budding entrepreneurs.
His photograph was then removed from the judging panel's webpage and he was later left out of a promotional video.
The father of three had earlier tweeted that he "couldn't wait" to meet all the contestants.
A spokesperson for Alibaba said: ''Due to a schedule conflict Mr Ma could no longer be part of the finale judge panel of Africa's Business Heroes earlier this year.''
The final took place just weeks after Ma made a speech slamming China's regulators and its state-owned banks.
He was once a poster boy for the country's communist regime Credit: Reuters 3
He performs on stage at an event to mark the 20th anniversary of Alibaba Credit: AFP or licensorsLast month the authorities suddenly announced an anti-monopoly investigation into his company.
Ma is one of China's wealthiest men and is also well known for his work with the UN and multiple global charities.
During the ongoing coronavirus pandemic he has donated tens of millions of face masks across the world.
However, in recent weeks there has been no activity on his Twitter account - which usually carried several tweets a day.
There is no suggestion so far that he has come to physical harm, reports MailOnline.
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But China has a no-nonsense approach to dealing with those that speak out against the regime.
In March, a property tycoon disappeared after he called President Xi Jinping a 'clown' for his handling of the coronavirus crisis.
Friends of Ren Zhiqiang say he was later sentenced to 18 years in prison after he apparently "voluntarily confessed" to various crimes of corruption.
Secret message in controversial horror game Devotion 'compares president of China to Winnie the Pooh'
Virus Numbers Are Surging. Why Is New York's Vaccine Rollout Sluggish? - The New York Times
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 14:09
With a new variant of the virus emerging elsewhere in the country, it's crucial to vaccinate New Yorkers quickly. But so far, only about 88,000 have received the shots.
Virus numbers were soaring in New York City as 2020 came to a close. Credit... James Estrin/The New York Times As the final hours ticked away in a harrowing year, New York City on Thursday once again found itself in a worrying position in the pandemic: Hospitalizations were climbing for the fourth consecutive month, the positive test rate in some areas had doubled and vaccinations that were supposed to bring normalcy had gotten off to a slow start.
Across the city, where the positive test rate over a seven-day average reached 8.87, the virus continued its winter surge.
In Sunset Park, Brooklyn, the positive test rate in the most recent seven-day average in one ZIP code had reached 14.71. A section of Ozone Park in Queens had a city-high 15.61 positive test rate. In the Bronx, the boroughwide rate had reached 9.56 '-- and yet that was still lower than Staten Island's 10.34 rate.
In all, 49 ZIP codes in the city had a positive test rate of 10 or higher in the latest seven-day average, and the city has averaged nearly 4,000 cases and about 40 deaths a day.
So far the second wave has climbed more slowly and has not reached anywhere near the magnitude of New York City's disastrous first wave in the spring '-- when more than 20,000 people died and 20 percent of city residents may have been infected. But public health experts say that there is urgent need to speed up the rollout of the vaccine to hasten the end of New York's epidemic before hospitals are overwhelmed or a new and more contagious variant of the virus makes inroads.
The variant, first identified in the United Kingdom and recently detected in Colorado and California, has not yet appeared in New York State, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said on Wednesday.
When the first vaccinations were given in New York earlier this month, doctors and nurses said they believed the end of the epidemic was in sight. But the pace of administering vaccinations has gone more slowly than anticipated in New York City.
Dr. Ronald Scott Braithwaite, a professor at N.Y.U. Grossman School of Medicine who has been modeling New York City's epidemic and is an adviser to the city, said that his team's analysis suggested that once 10 to 20 percent of the city was vaccinated, the number of new cases would begin to drop '-- so long as social distancing and mask wearing remained constant and the new variant did not find a foothold in New York.
''If the new variant replaces the existing variant and we don't vaccinate quickly, the second wave will start cresting again and will crest really high, and that's something to take really seriously,'' Dr. Braithwaite said.
Image Nursing home residents and staff are part of the Phase 1 of the vaccination rollout. Credit... James Estrin/The New York Times But achieving the goal of vaccinating 10 to 20 percent of the city is still a far way off. In the first 17 days of the vaccination rollout, about 88,140 people had received the first of two doses, the equivalent of about 1 percent of the city's population. Those vaccinated so far have overwhelmingly been hospital employees, residents and workers at nursing homes and the staff at certain health clinics.
The pace is worrying some experts. ''I do feel concern,'' said Dr. Wafaa El-Sadr, an epidemiology professor at Columbia University. Despite months to prepare, there still seemed to be a steep learning curve when it comes to ''the nitty-gritty of how do you get it from the freezer to the arm as quickly as possible,'' she said. ''I think there are growing pains as people are picking up how to do this.''
The first phase should have been the simplest, she added. ''We've started out with the easiest populations, an almost captive audience: nursing homes and hospital workers '-- you know who they are and where to find them.''
For now, the vaccination effort does not resemble the sort of mass mobilization many imagined. New York City has yet to open any large vaccination sites. Instead, hospitals administered many of the first vaccinations to their employees. Hospitals have been encouraged to use each shipment of vaccines within a week, and the operation does not always have a race-against-the-clock feel.
The number of vaccinations plummets on weekends and all but stopped for Christmas Day, when more planes landed at Kennedy International Airport than vaccine doses were administered in New York City.
Covid-19 Vaccines 'ºAnswers to Your Vaccine QuestionsWith distribution of a coronavirus vaccine beginning in the U.S., here are answers to some questions you may be wondering about:
If I live in the U.S., when can I get the vaccine? While the exact order of vaccine recipients may vary by state, most will likely put medical workers and residents of long-term care facilities first. If you want to understand how this decision is getting made, this article will help.When can I return to normal life after being vaccinated? Life will return to normal only when society as a whole gains enough protection against the coronavirus. Once countries authorize a vaccine, they'll only be able to vaccinate a few percent of their citizens at most in the first couple months. The unvaccinated majority will still remain vulnerable to getting infected. A growing number of coronavirus vaccines are showing robust protection against becoming sick. But it's also possible for people to spread the virus without even knowing they're infected because they experience only mild symptoms or none at all. Scientists don't yet know if the vaccines also block the transmission of the coronavirus. So for the time being, even vaccinated people will need to wear masks, avoid indoor crowds, and so on. Once enough people get vaccinated, it will become very difficult for the coronavirus to find vulnerable people to infect. Depending on how quickly we as a society achieve that goal, life might start approaching something like normal by the fall 2021.If I've been vaccinated, do I still need to wear a mask? Yes, but not forever. Here's why. The coronavirus vaccines are injected deep into the muscles and stimulate the immune system to produce antibodies. This appears to be enough protection to keep the vaccinated person from getting ill. But what's not clear is whether it's possible for the virus to bloom in the nose '-- and be sneezed or breathed out to infect others '-- even as antibodies elsewhere in the body have mobilized to prevent the vaccinated person from getting sick. The vaccine clinical trials were designed to determine whether vaccinated people are protected from illness '-- not to find out whether they could still spread the coronavirus. Based on studies of flu vaccine and even patients infected with Covid-19, researchers have reason to be hopeful that vaccinated people won't spread the virus, but more research is needed. In the meantime, everyone '-- even vaccinated people '-- will need to think of themselves as possible silent spreaders and keep wearing a mask. Read more here.Will it hurt? What are the side effects? The Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine is delivered as a shot in the arm, like other typical vaccines. The injection into your arm won't feel different than any other vaccine, but the rate of short-lived side effects does appear higher than a flu shot. Tens of thousands of people have already received the vaccines, and none of them have reported any serious health problems. The side effects, which can resemble the symptoms of Covid-19, last about a day and appear more likely after the second dose. Early reports from vaccine trials suggest some people might need to take a day off from work because they feel lousy after receiving the second dose. In the Pfizer study, about half developed fatigue. Other side effects occurred in at least 25 to 33 percent of patients, sometimes more, including headaches, chills and muscle pain. While these experiences aren't pleasant, they are a good sign that your own immune system is mounting a potent response to the vaccine that will provide long-lasting immunity.Will mRNA vaccines change my genes? No. The vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer use a genetic molecule to prime the immune system. That molecule, known as mRNA, is eventually destroyed by the body. The mRNA is packaged in an oily bubble that can fuse to a cell, allowing the molecule to slip in. The cell uses the mRNA to make proteins from the coronavirus, which can stimulate the immune system. At any moment, each of our cells may contain hundreds of thousands of mRNA molecules, which they produce in order to make proteins of their own. Once those proteins are made, our cells then shred the mRNA with special enzymes. The mRNA molecules our cells make can only survive a matter of minutes. The mRNA in vaccines is engineered to withstand the cell's enzymes a bit longer, so that the cells can make extra virus proteins and prompt a stronger immune response. But the mRNA can only last for a few days at most before they are destroyed.The vaccination program is now in its third week and has yet to accelerate dramatically, even as supply has begun to increase. More than 340,000 doses have been delivered to New York City so far.
On Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city planned to have administered doses to one million people by the end of January. He has suggested that the state is acting as a bottleneck by not authorizing the city to open up vaccinations to larger categories of people yet.
''If we're given the authorization, we can move very quickly,'' Mr. de Blasio said this week. ''We need the state guidance in terms of the categories of people, and the more that expands, the faster we can go.''
Image The Bronx's seven-day average positive rate has reached 9.56. Credit... John Minchillo/Associated Press State officials have expressed satisfaction with how the rollout is progressing, saying it makes sense to proceed with a few carefully delineated categories for now. ''I'm not here to do 5 percent of the hospital and 5 percent of physicians and 5 percent of home care workers,'' said Larry Schwartz, a member of Mr. Cuomo's coronavirus task force who is overseeing the rollout. ''We're going down the line, and we're only three weeks in.''
He added that the problem was the limited supply of the vaccine. ''If we had a greater allocation, we probably would have gone to other group categories,'' he said.
But already, there are growing complaints about fairness, with some doctors saying that hospital affiliation rather than risk has become decisive in determining who gets the vaccines.
Pediatricians who come into contact with Covid-19 patients daily have yet to be vaccinated for the most part if they do not work for a hospital. Yet some hospital employees who see fewer Covid-19 patients '-- such as radiologists '-- have been vaccinated.
''We feel forgotten,'' said Dr. Kerry Fierstein, a pediatrician and chief executive of a company that runs pediatrician offices, mainly on Long Island and in New York City. ''If you're owned by a hospital, you've probably been vaccinated, but if you're completely unaffiliated, you don't know when you'll get vaccinated.''
In recent weeks, the stakes have grown. The numbers across the state continue to rise, with concerning positive test rates in a seven-day average in the Mohawk Valley (9.5 percent), the Capital region (9.1) and the Finger Lakes (9.2) '-- and the new variant raises the risk that the epidemic could dramatically worsen in the weeks and months ahead.
The variant, known as B.1.1.7., is believed to be more than 50 percent more contagious. But surveillance of it is limited here. Less than half of a percent of confirmed virus cases in the United States are examined for variants, a far smaller fraction of cases than in a number of other countries, according to the Washington Post.
Mr. Cuomo said on Wednesday that more than 350 virus samples were recently tested for the new variant, and none were found to have it.
''That doesn't mean it's not here,'' Mr. Schwartz said in an interview. ''It doesn't mean it is here.''
Despite the surge in cases and delays in the vaccine rollout, there is a bright spot for New York City: For the moment, hospitals are not in crisis.
Image Cases are high on Staten Island, where Sary Quinones gave her daughter, Nyairah, 9, a Covid swab test. Credit... Justin Lane/EPA, via Shutterstock With hospitalizations rising gradually '-- rather than suddenly, as happened in the spring '-- hospital systems have been better able to transfer patients to prevent any one facility from being overwhelmed.
The city's public hospital system has moved around about 100 patients, mainly out of harder-hit hospitals in the Bronx and South Brooklyn and more recently Harlem, Dr. Mitchell Katz, head of the city's hospital system, said.
''As long as the numbers keep drifting upwards, but not jumping, I'll be fine,'' Dr. Katz said. Intensive-care units in the city's public hospitals were at 70 percent occupancy levels, he said.
Earlier in the month, Dr. Braithwaite thought it might take a shutdown of two or four weeks to prevent rising cases from overwhelming the health care system. But over the last few weeks, the case counts have climbed relatively slowly, with each case seeding about 1.2 new cases, he said. That is far below the more dire predictions he was considering at the start of winter.
''It's simmering along,'' he said of New York City's epidemic.
Things could change if the new variant begins to speed up infections.
''That's a reason to vaccinate really, really quickly,'' Dr. Braithwaite said.
Yet if the spread continues at its current pace, some public health experts say that vaccinations might begin to bring New York's epidemic under control before hospitals are overwhelmed '-- even without any additional government restrictions or stay-at-home orders. And neither Mr. Cuomo or Mr. de Blasio has shown much appetite for a full shutdown.
Dr. Jessica Justman, an infectious disease expert and epidemiology professor at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, said that the gradual increase of cases in recent months reflects the high level of social distancing and mask wearing in New York City.
''You could argue that the second wave represents a flattening of the curve,'' she said, ''that all the social distancing and mask wearing are doing what it's intended to do: flattening the curve so the health care system isn't overwhelmed.''
Biden inauguration will include 'presidential escort' to White House, virtual parade | TheHill
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 05:31
President-elect Joe Biden Joe BidenAppeals court dismisses Gohmert's election suit against Pence Romney: Plan to challenge election 'egregious ploy' that 'dangerously threatens' country Pence 'welcomes' efforts of lawmakers to 'raise objections' to Electoral College results MORE 's pared-down inauguration is slated to include a ''presidential escort'' to the White House and a virtual parade as the country continues to grapple with the coronavirus pandemic.
The Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC), a nonprofit tasked with planning the inauguration, announced Sunday that Biden's swearing-in ceremony on Jan. 20 will be followed by a "Pass in Review" at the Capitol and then the presidential escort and virtual parade.
''There are many grand traditions to the inaugural and we plan to honor them by highlighting more of our nation's people than ever before while keeping everyone safe,'' PIC CEO Tony Allen said in a statement.
Biden, incoming first lady Jill Biden, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris Kamala HarrisSenate Democrats rebuke GOP colleagues who say they'll oppose Electoral College results Sunday shows preview: Senate candidates brace for Georgia runoffs; government continues coronavirus vaccine roll out Are we allowed to whisper about the transition to President Harris? MORE and incoming second gentleman Doug Emhoff will participate in the Pass in Review '' a military tradition that represents the transition of power between administrations '' on the East Front of the Capitol.
During the Pass in Review, Biden reviews the readiness of the military troops, the committee said, noting that all branches will be represented while following COVID-19 safety regulations.
The president-elect will then be escorted from 15th Street to the White House in an event that will also feature every branch of the military, including The U.S. Army Band, a Joint Service Honor Guard and the Commander-in-Chief's Guard and Fife and Drum Corps from the 3rd U.S. Infantry ''The Old Guard.''
The virtual parade for Inauguration Day will feature performances from across the country and will be televised. The committee said it plans to announce the participants in the parade ''in the coming weeks.''
''The parade will celebrate America's heroes, highlight Americans from all walks of life in different states and regions, and reflect on the diversity, heritage, and resilience of the country as we begin a new American era,'' the PIC wrote in a release.
PIC Executive Director Maju Varghese said that the fact that the parade is virtual ''will keep people safe and use new ways to bring in Americans across the country '-- from rural towns and urban cities to younger and older Americans to everybody and everywhere in between.''
DC watchdog group calls for Trump to be impeached, again - Business Insider
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 04:15
US President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference in the James Brady Briefing Room of the White House July 30, 2020 in Washington, DC. Alex Wong/Getty Images President Trump should be impeached over his efforts to "rig a presidential election," the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington said on Sunday. The demand follows the release of an audio tape featuring Trump asking a Georgia election official to "find" more votes for him so he could claim victory in a state that he lost. "[I]f this isn't impeachable conduct, then literally nothing is," said CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. President Donald Trump should be impeached for a second time after being "caught on tape trying to rig a presidential election," the watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington said Sunday.
The demand comes after the release of a recording that features Trump pleading with Georgia elections official Brad Raffensperger to "find" more votes for him so that he could claim victory in a state that he lost by nearly 13,000 votes.
"There's nothing wrong with saying... that you've recalculated," Trump said on the Saturday call.
CREW, a self-styled crusader against "government officials who sacrifice the common good to special interests," said that is cause enough to remove Trump from office before President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on January 20.
"While the logistics of holding impeachment proceedings in the final two weeks of a presidency are admittedly hard to pull off, if this isn't impeachable conduct, then literally nothing is," CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder said in a statement. "Congress must act immediately."
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SolarWinds hack may be much worse than originally feared - The Verge
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 01:44
Some 250 government agencies and businesses may have been affected
By Kim Lyons on January 2, 2021 4:50 pm The Russia-linked SolarWinds hack which targeted US government agencies and private corporations may be even worse than officials first realized, with some 250 federal agencies and business now believed affected, the New York Times reported.
Microsoft has said the hackers compromised SolarWinds' Orion monitoring and management software, allowing them to ''impersonate any of the organization's existing users and accounts, including highly privileged accounts.'' The Times reports that Russia exploited layers of the supply chain to access the agencies' systems.
The Times reports that early warning sensors that Cyber Command and the NSA placed inside foreign networks to detect potential attacks appear to have failed in this instance. In addition, it seems likely that the US government's attention on protecting the November elections from foreign hackers may have taken resources and focus away from the software supply chain, according to the Times. And conducting the attack from within the US apparently allowed the hackers to evade detection by the Department of Homeland Security.
Microsoft said earlier this week it had discovered its systems were infiltrated ''beyond just the presence of malicious SolarWinds code.'' The hackers were able to ''view source code in a number of source code repositories,'' but the hacked account granting the access didn't have permission to modify any code or systems. However, in a small bit of good news, Microsoft said it found ''no evidence of access to production services or customer data,'' and ''no indications that our systems were used to attack others.''
Sen. Mark Warner (D-Virginia), ranking member on the Senate Intelligence Committee, told the Times the hack looked ''much, much worse'' than he first feared. ''The size of it keeps expanding,'' he said. ''It's clear the United States government missed it.''
No, Austin Won't Become Silicon Valley 2.0 '' Texas Monthly
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 01:36
On the heels of last month's remarkable migration of tech industry capital from California's Bay Area to Austin, including an official relocation by $180 billion software company Oracle Corporation and a more-than-likely move by $140 billion man and Tesla CEO Elon Musk, two popular narratives have taken shape. Both got Austinites of all sorts worked up, whether jolly or jittery, over the holiday season. The two stories, however, share the same flaw: a facile comparison of two sharply different contexts and cities.
The first emerging narrative, favored by champions of Austin's growth and fans of the state's dominant low-tax, anti-regulatory economic philosophy, holds that California's business environment has declined as a result of liberal mismanagement and intellectual conformism. Texas is swooping in to offer a new home for the global technology industry for the coming decades'--a back-to-its-libertarian-roots Silicon Valley 2.0 with a bright future. A partial version of this argument was made by recent California-to-Austin transplant Joe Lonsdale of venture capital firm 8VC in the Wall Street Journal: ''Our job as entrepreneurs and investors is to build the future, and I know of no better place to do so than Texas.''
The other tale, told by those appalled by the sky-high rents and wealth inequality of today's San Francisco region, is that the tech industry itself is the real villain, having eaten the Bay Area alive and now in the process of spitting out the bones of a once-dynamic city. The same rapacious billionaires are moving on to fresh prey in still-groovy Central Texas, which is destined to turn into another smoking cultural wasteland, this story goes. As an op-ed by a California writer in the Houston Chronicle put it, ''Thank you, Texas, for taking Elon Musk off our hands.''
Both stories have their truthful elements, but both fail to credit the vast differences between Austin and the Bay Area: in history, in industrial and social capital, in physical landscape, and in cultural horizons. There's no question that the pandemic-era ''Texodus'' from the Bay Area is big news and that Austin's post-Oracle trajectory should make residents excited'--or worried, depending on one's level of economic security and nostalgia for the city's laid-back, low-rent mystique. But it's lazy, chimerical thinking to graft global giant Silicon Valley's recent history onto upstart Austin's near future. Austin has its own unique story as a tech-industry town, and crucial chapters remain to be written.
For years, the Austin metro region has been trying to earn the self-anointed moniker ''Silicon Hills,'' with varying degrees of success. Like Silicon Valley's Hewlett-Packard garage, the 1939 spiritual birthplace of the U.S. tech industry, Austin's tech sector has a mythical origin point in Michael Dell's UT dorm room circa 1984. There are other similarities too, in the role of large universities as incubators and in the cross-pollination between entrepreneurs and the counterculture. But the history of Austin's tech sector is neither as long nor as storied as that of the Bay Area.
A 1990s upswelling of Dellionaires in Austin gave way to a burst dot-com bubble in the 2000s, with the concrete hulk of the Intel Shell reminding downtown visitors what dreams had failed to come. Meanwhile, mega-firms such as Google, Facebook, and Apple roared out of Silicon Valley to define a new, twenty-first century age of billionaire industrial barons starting in the second Bush administration. Austin was stuck in the relative bush leagues, with Dell hitting a rough patch.
Austin's current place on the tech-world map has lately been defined by its many secondary campuses for major tech companies'--most significantly Apple, IBM, and Samsung'--employing tens of thousands of people in the region. This trend has heated up in recent years, with more and more investment from outside firms, until one such secondary campus, Oracle's, was rechristened last month as a Fortune 500 corporate headquarters.
There's no question that the Oracle move is huge for Austin. Still, it's worth keeping in perspective what it means, both for the company and for its new home city. Oracle's revenues are on the decline. With no state income tax, salaries go notably further in Texas, creating an opportunity to cut payroll without cutting employees' take-home pay. The move is especially easy to make now, as a work-from-home ''new normal'' means there's no need for Oracle to force all its deeper-rooted California employees to make the move. Indeed, Oracle announced its relocation alongside a shift to a ''more flexible employee work location policy.'' The company seems to want to have its Texas cake and eat it in California too.
Oracle isn't choosing Austin because the city is poised to overtake the Bay Area as the capital of the U.S. tech industry anytime soon. In 2019, according to the Computing Technology Industry Association, the San Jose and San Francisco metro areas combined for over $333 billion in gross tech regional product in 2019. Austin managed just over $33 billion. That's an order-of-magnitude difference.
Nor is Austin known for producing high-flying, home-grown tech firms. The city's second most famous local tech company, after Dell, is now arguably SolarWinds, a business IT software company that reportedly outsourced its coding to Eastern European engineers and is now at the center of an embarrassing and catastrophic hack of U.S. government and corporate targets by the Russian government.
There's a built-in-a-day flavor to Austin's recent rise that, while a good starting place for future development, pales in comparison to the long record of success, relationships, and intertwined institutions in Silicon Valley. Decisions to move jobs here that depend on low tax rates or the preferences of young college graduates are fragile. Those same jobs could just as easily get up and leave Texas if another state undercuts us or another city seems hipper to Zoomers.
Furthermore, to the extent that more liberal white-collar workers move to Texas, the political tides may well continue to shift to the point where we are no longer willing to race other states to the bottom in terms of taxes and regulations. A balance will perhaps be reached in which Austin, like other prosperous cities, has a positive, reciprocal relationship with its biggest employers but is no longer enough of a magnet to ignite the idea of attracting an entire industry away from California. Likewise, losing a few businesses and billionaires may ultimately be good news for the Bay Area, allowing it some elbow room after a decade of uninterrupted growth.
In addition to building electric cars, Musk's abiding passion these days is sending rockets to Mars to build a human settlement there. It's useful to imagine his move to Austin in that context. A recent Guardian article on the Oracle move characterized Austin as a ''colony'' of Silicon Valley and quoted urban theorist Richard Florida: ''There is a satellite system that's developing, but the hub of technology and innovation in the United States is the San Francisco Bay Area.''
So if we think of Austin as less a tech-industry hub unto itself and more a colony for Bay Area billionaires, what does it mean for the Live Music Capital, the City of the Violet Crown? As the industry grows, will the music die, the slackers be forced to abandon their velvet rut, and the violet at dusk fade into a cloud of auto exhaust? Some of these things may already be coming to pass without Oracle's help, but these outcomes aren't inevitable. The San Francisco metro area's experience is a valuable lesson from which to learn, not a destiny to succumb to.
Yes, the Bay Area boasts the highest real estate costs in the U.S., with a years-long eviction crisis in San Francisco likely tied to tech-related gentrification. It is vital that Austin voters and policy makers bone up on these issues before they grow worse in what is already arguably the most expensive city in Texas. Median rent for a one-bedroom unit topped $2,000 per month in Oakland and San Jose, and $2,700 in San Francisco, this month, though rents are reportedly falling fast as a result of COVID-19 and perhaps the ''Texodus.'' In comparison, Austin's median one-bedroom rent is $1,290 and rising, occupying a dangerous zone that feels high to Texans but is still low enough to appeal mightily to priced-out Californians.
Affordability-wise, however, Austin's broad horizons give it options not available to San Francisco. For example, there's still plenty of room to sprawl. Austin is surrounded by cheap land that one can easily imagine filling with suburbs and exurbs as Greater Houston and Dallas''Fort Worth have. The Bay Area, on the other hand, is penned in by mountains and water.
Beyond resorting to sprawl, Austin also has the option to avoid repeating some of the worst planning decisions made in San Francisco and Silicon Valley, many related to restrictive zoning. The woes of Bay Area renters have led to a robust Yes in My Back Yard (YIMBY) movement, pushing back against homeowners who exercise outsized political power to prevent new and affordable housing in their neighborhoods. This YIMBY ethos has already come to Austin. In recent years, Austin voters have passed a $250 million bond for affordable housing and delivered a city council majority that favors increased housing density, though anti-density forces have been effective in dragging out the process of a comprehensive rewrite of city zoning.
Here's hoping Austin's majority political will prevails and affordability in the housing market is aggressively managed, because it is unaffordability'--not a strong local economy per se'--that endangers a lively arts and culture scene. A market where only 32 percent of creatives'--down from 42 percent in 2019, according to the City of Austin'--can afford enough space to make their art is a problem. An influx of new money that endows mature arts institutions like museums and professional performing arts ensembles, on the other hand, would be a good thing. If that's turning into San Francisco, Austinites should embrace it.
It's difficult to prove the prevalent notion that tech nerds have pushed out all the cool people who made the Bay Area's music scene interesting, but let's take as a given that this is true. If so, the Bay Area would be an outlier. Other metros defined by tech, including Austin and Seattle'--which as home to Microsoft and Amazon has a much stronger claim to being Silicon Valley 2.0 than Austin does'--are often recognized for their strong music scenes. Even today, as Seattle rents soar thanks to Amazon, the region is the origin of three acts in's top twenty albums of 2020. Other expensive cities, like Los Angeles and New York, have thriving music cultures. Here in Austin, Spoon, arguably our biggest musical export of the 2000s, was cofounded by semiconductor chip designer and erstwhile Motorola employee Jim Eno, who has also produced albums for local acts like Bill Callahan and Explosions in the Sky. Being a job magnet for young, employable people is by no means a recipe for a moribund music scene. In fact, the opposite is often true.
Of course, it's not just artists and musicians at risk of displacement when rents go up or newcomers arrive. The themes of recent arthouse film The Last Black Man in San Francisco will be all too familiar for many Austin-born people of color, who have seen their neighborhoods of origin gentrified beyond recognition during the past decade's tech boom. An influx of Silicon Valley transplants might bring a more globally diverse perspective to Austin's professional classes, but it will also put further pressure on local Black and Hispanic families who have suffered generations of exclusion. This seems, unfortunately, like an arena in which Austin is on track to parallel some of the Bay Area's recent inglorious history. Both Austin and San Francisco, for instance, have lost Black population this millennium'--though, to be fair, Austin's trend was established long before Oracle or Musk.
The bright spot for Austin is that, again, the city still has time to make better and more equitable decisions. Is it possible to manage drastic changes in the cityscape in a way that actually serves poor and minority stakeholders? Where did San Francisco go wrong, and where can Austin do better? Signs of changes in Austin city politics, like the pro-density majority on the city council, the affordable housing bond, and November's long-awaited passage of a $7 billion transit ballot proposition that includes urban rail, suggest that the citizenry is engaged with these questions.
If there's one reason to be confident that Austin will not turn into the next Bay Area, it's this: Austinites of all political types, from libertarian to social-justice-minded, have been warning each other for years that we don't want to turn into the next San Francisco. How the political fights of the future will go '--not to mention tomorrow's economy'--is anybody's guess. But there's no chance we are sleepwalking through a reenactment of the past few decades of California history. For better or worse, what gets built here will be something brand-new.
Feds may cut Moderna vaccine doses in half so more people get shots, Warp Speed adviser says
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 01:29
A vial of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is seen along with needles, bandages, swabs and alcohol prep pads at The Seattle Indian Health Board. | Karen Ducey/Getty Images
The federal government is in talks with Moderna about giving half the recommended dose of the company's Covid-19 shot to speed up immunization efforts, the head of the Trump administration's vaccine rollout said on Sunday.
Operation Warp Speed chief adviser Moncef Slaoui said there is evidence that two half doses in people between the ages of 18 and 55 gives ''identical immune response'' to the recommended one hundred micorogram dose, but said the final decision will rest with the FDA.
Advertisement''It will be based on facts and data to immunize more people,'' Slaoui said on CBS' "Face the Nation," adding, ''of course we continue to produce more vaccine doses.''
His remarks came amid intensifying concern that the Covid vaccine distribution has been slower than expected, with the Trump administration missing its initial goal of vaccinating 20 million Americans by the end of 2020. So far, just over 4 million Americans have received their first of two Covid shots, and another 13 million doses have been delivered to states, according to the CDC.
Federal officials have said the U.S. will need to vaccinate roughly 80 percent of the population to achieve herd immunity against the coronavirus and are looking for ways to quickly ramp up immunization efforts as cases continue to soar. The U.S. has reported more than 20.4 million cases and 350,000 deaths so far.
Earlier Sunday, top federal infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci cautioned that the government shouldn't deviate from the doses and schedules used in clinical trials on the vaccines, adding that distribution efforts need to be more efficient.
Advertisement"We know what the science tells us," Fauci said on NBC's "Meet the Press," without directly addressing Slaoui's suggestion. "So my feeling ... is let's do it the way the clinical trials have instructed us to do it. But let's get more efficient into getting it into people's arms."
Fauci and Surgeon General Jerome Adams said they are working with governors to ramp up vaccinations.
''We have to understand that this virus also occurred in the midst of a surge. And a lot of the local capacity to be able to vaccinate was being used for testing and responding to surges," Adams said on CNN's "State of the Union." ''But the good news is that we're seeing it quickly ramp up, thanks to our state partners. ''
The U.S., like most countries, has held back half of its supplies of Covid vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna, to ensure that everyone who received their first dose receives the second dose. Meanwhile, the U.K., last week shifted its guidance to get as many people as possible their first dose, while potentially delaying the second dose, sparking concern among scientists who say there is no evidence to suggest the vaccine is effective without completing the full regimen.
AdvertisementSlaoui balked at the idea of taking a similar approach in the U.S., saying it would not be responsible to give initial doses without ensuring people get their second dose without data to back it up.
Austin weighs next steps after Supreme Court blocked pandemic order
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 01:27
Blocked from their latest bid to contain the pandemic by government order, the leaders of Austin and Travis County are assessing their next steps with a depleted arsenal of options and a rising number of infections.
Mayor Steve Adler and County Judge Andy Brown, both Democrats, most recently ran afoul of the Republican governor and attorney general with orders barring food and beverage service after 10:30 p.m. during the New Year's weekend.
The all-GOP Texas Supreme Court blocked the orders Friday evening, just hours before the curfew was to begin for a second of three nights. The court gave no reasons for stepping in, merely saying the 3rd Court of Appeals should have halted enforcement of the curfew while it weighed Attorney General Ken Paxton's appeal challenging its legality.
It is unclear, however, whether the lower appeals court will issue such a ruling because the matter might be moot; the curfew order expired Sunday morning.
Without clear legal guidance, Adler and Brown said they will focus on public education to combat what medical professionals are calling the widespread, uncontrolled transmission of COVID-19 across Central Texas.
"From the very beginning in March, this has never been about enforcing our way into compliance," Adler said. "Because you can't enforce your way into the level of compliance necessary to keep the community safe, it's got to be something that the community wants to do."
That said, the mayor expressed frustration that Gov. Greg Abbott and Paxton chose to fight a limited order aimed at curtailing risky interaction '-- eating food and drinking alcohol without masks '-- even though takeout, delivery and curbside service were allowed to continue.
"Texans are struggling to get the vaccine while our state leadership is busy fighting to ensure that nightclubs stay packed, and I don't get it," Adler said.
Abbott and Paxton said they will adamantly oppose local orders that hurt businesses '-- and Texans' livelihoods '-- beyond the limits already set by the governor's emergency pandemic orders.
And when confronted with information that Paxton had not challenged a similar dine-in curfew in place for about a month in El Paso, an assistant attorney general said during a district court hearing last week that such a lawsuit would be filed "imminently."
Brown, recently sworn in as Travis County judge, presiding over the Commissioners Court, said the county and city orders were modeled almost word for word on El Paso's curfew.
"It was our understanding such an order would be acceptable to the state. It clearly wasn't," he said.
Despite the setback, Brown said, he will continue to focus on a science-based message about the coronavirus threat.
"The way we get through this is by everyone wearing their masks, staying home and going out only for essential travel," and limiting interaction with people outside their household, he said.
"We need people to do the right thing," he said.
Adler pushed back on a question about what can be done now that the curfew order has failed.
"I'm not sure this didn't work," he said. "I think the very visible public engagement helped heighten the public's awareness of the uncontrolled spread of the virus that we're facing."
Adler said last week's testimony from Dr. Mark Escott, the Austin-Travis County interim health authority, was widely highlighted despite it being an often repeated message, particularly the eye-opening statistics on pandemic-related hospital admissions rising 127% and ventilator use almost doubling since Dec. 1.
"It's our job to make clear, emphatic and unambiguous statements to the public, and I think we did that this weekend. Even with everything that went on, the city's voice was clear, the county's voice was in unison, and it was based on the science and the data and aimed at trying to save lives," he said.
"The overwhelming message is that each of us has the power to protect our neighbors and save lives," Adler said. "We have seen what it takes to shut it down; we've done it twice during peaks. It's not real complicated. You have to limit physical interactions, especially with those people outside of the home that we live in. People need to wear their masks when they're around anybody they don't live with. They need to avoid large groups. That's what works."
Brown said the legal fight won't affect the ability to partner with the state on efforts such as an infusion center set to open as early as Wednesday in Southeast Austin, a medically underserved part of the community.
Treatments designed to reduce the need for hospitalization will be provided to those with risk factors who have a doctor's referral during the first 10 days of a diagnosis of COVID-19, Brown said.
"If we reduce the number of people in the ICU, that will help tremendously," he said, adding that additional details about the treatment center will be released soon.
Blocked from their latest bid to contain the pandemic by government order, the leaders of Austin and Travis County are assessing their next steps with a depleted arsenal of options and a rising number of infections.
Mayor Steve Adler and County Judge Andy Brown, both Democrats, most recently ran afoul of the Republican governor and attorney general with orders barring food and beverage service after 10:30 p.m. during the New Year's weekend.
The all-GOP Texas Supreme Court blocked the orders Friday evening, just hours before the curfew was to begin for a second of three nights. The court gave no reasons for stepping in, merely saying the 3rd Court of Appeals should have halted enforcement of the curfew while it weighed Attorney General Ken Paxton's appeal challenging its legality.
It is unclear, however, whether the lower appeals court will issue such a ruling because the matter might be moot; the curfew order expired Sunday morning.
Fact check: Post falsely claims COVID-19 is another flu strain
Mon, 04 Jan 2021 01:24
The claim: A professor at Cornell University said 'COVID 19 does not exist'In attempts to push baseless and debunked claims that the coronavirus pandemic is a hoax, some social media users are sharing a lengthy statement that claims to be authored by a professor at Cornell University.
A viral post claims that Robert Oswald, a professor at Cornell University with a purported PhD in virology and immunology and clinical lab scientist, tested 1500 "supposed" COVID-19 samples in Southern California and found "not a single case of Covid" after testing them through a scanning electron microscope, and only found Influenza A and Influenza B in the samples.
The post then goes on to claim that Oswald said the virus "is just another flu strain like every year" and that COVID-19 "does not exist and is fictitious," adding that Cornell is allegedly suing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for fraud because it would not provide the university with a viable COVID-19 sample.
Searches show that the content in the statement has previously circulated on Facebook before being falsely attributed to Oswald.
The first version of the claim appears to be on Dec. 7, when a user shared the statement to Facebook and wrote that he "pulled it from the comments at a website" and did not attribute the information to Oswald. The user likely found the statement in the comment section of blog site In a message to USA TODAY, the user said his post is just "speculation" and "freedom of thought."
The post gained some of its virality in a Dec. 28 post by the Facebook page Kirk's Law Corner, which cites as its source. That is a conspiracy and pseudoscience website that routinely publishes false information, according to Media Bias/Fact Check.
Another viral version of the claim shared on Dec. 28 includes a screenshot of Oswald's faculty page.
USA TODAY reached out to the Facebook page and users for comment.
Fact check:Russian leader Vladimir Putin never made this viral speech about Muslims
Oswald did not write statementOswald works at the department of molecular medicine at Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine and does not have a "PhD in virology," as claimed in posts. He has a doctorate in biochemistry, according to his faculty page, where he has also issued a statement debunking the false information circulating online that is falsely attributed to him.
"COVID-19 is real. Any Facebook post that suggests otherwise is a hoax and is not true," Oswald's wrote. "Wear a mask, practice social distancing, and get the vaccine when it becomes available."
Oswald told USA TODAY via email that the entire post is false and that he had nothing to do with it.
He also noted to Snopes that his credentials are misstated in the post and he is "horrified by the contents."
"It lists the author as a virologist and immunologist living in southern California''neither of these descriptions fit me. Also, it mentions Cornell and a supposed lawsuit against the CDC," Oswald told Snopes. "Cornell has been at the forefront of COVID research and testing, committing huge resources into maintaining the spread of the virus. To attempt to link Cornell to the contents of this letter is disappointing to say the least."
Fact check: Pregnant women do receive vaccines, but more study needed on COVID-19 shot
COVID-19 is not a flu strainNot only is the statement misattributed, but claims that COVID-19 is a hoax or "just another flu strain" are false and have been previously debunked by USA TODAY.
SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, has also been isolated by researchers, USA TODAY has reported.
And the novel coronavirus has affected more people globally in cases and deaths than the average flu season, USA TODAY reported.
COVID-19 is caused by a new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, while the flu is caused by influenza A and B viruses. The coronavirus is more contagious and spreads more quickly than the flu, causes a loss of taste or smell and symptoms generally appear two to 14 days after exposure, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Further, the hospitalization rate in the U.S. for the 2019-2020 flu season was 69 hospitalizations per 100,000 people and for COVID-19, the rate is about 313 hospitalizatons per 100,000 people, as of Dec. 19, according to the CDC.
Lisa Lockerd Maragakis, a senior director of infection prevention and associate professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins, writes that doctors are still working to estimate the mortality rate of the coronavirus, but it is thought to be possibly 10 times more than most flu strains.
Virologists also note that more people are susceptible to COVID-19 because there is little preexisting immunity to SARS-CoV-2, while a portion of the population has some immunity to influenza, which limits yearly flu cases.
"First, little preexisting immunity to SARS-CoV-2 means that virtually everyone is susceptible to infection," Andrew Stanley Pekosz, a professor of Johns Hopkins' Bloomberg School of Public Health, explained in October. "Second, we don't have good treatments or vaccines for SARS-CoV-2 like we have for influenza. Third, COVID-19 causes more severe disease than influenza overall."
Pekosz also noted that COVID-19 survivors report more long-term effects than influenza survivors, that include lingering symptoms such as weakness, shortness of breath, and some cases of kidney and heart problems.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that between Oct. 1, 2019, and April 4, 2020, the flu resulted in 39 million to 56 million illnesses and 24,000 to 62,000 deaths in the U.S. By comparison, there have been approximately 19.5 million reported COVID-19 cases since Jan. 21, and approximately 340,000 deaths in the U.S. from the virus, according to the CDC.
The CDC notes that flu activity is "unusually low" at the time but could increase in the months ahead.
There are also no reports or evidence that Cornell University is suing the CDC for fraud. Oswald told USA TODAY that he has never heard of such a lawsuit and that the post is a "total fabrication from start to end."
USA TODAY reached out to Cornell University for further comment.
Fact check: 2020 has been more deadly in the US compared with recent years
Our rating: FalseThe claim that Cornell University professor Robert Oswald authored a statement that COVID-19 does not exist is FALSE on many counts, based on our research. Oswald did not write the text, and claims that the coronavirus is just another flu and that SARS-CoV-2 has not been isolated have been previously debunked.
Our fact-check sources:Cornell University, accessed Dec. 31, Robert Oswald, PhDEmail correspondence with Robert OswaldSnopes, Dec. 28, Did Dr. Rob Oswald Claim COVID-19 Was a Hoax?USA TODAY, Oct. 6, Fact check: Satirical post falsely claims COVID-19 is no worse than the flu and affects virtually no oneWorld Health Organization, Nov. 6, 2018, Influenza (Seasonal) World Health Organization, accessed Dec. 31, WHO Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) DashboardUSA TODAY, Dec. 23, Fact check: COVID-19 pandemic is not a simulationCenters for Disease Control and Prevention, Dec. 3, 2019-2020 Preliminary In-Season Burden EstimateCenters for Disease Control and Prevention, Dec. 28, Weekly U.S. Influenza Surveillance Report (FluView)Cornell University, accessed Dec. 31, Press ReleasesUSA TODAY, Oct. 19, Is it the flu or COVID-19? How to tell the differenceJohns Hopkins Medicine, accessed Dec. 31, Coronavirus Disease 2019 vs. the FluJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Oct. 20, No, COVID-19 Is Not the FluMayo Clinic, Dec. 22, Coronavirus vs. flu: Similarities and differencesThank you for supporting our journalism. You can subscribe to our print edition, ad-free app or electronic newspaper replica here.
Our fact check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.
Evidence of voter, ballot, and election irregularities and lawlessness in the presidential election of November 3, 2020 '' Got Freedom
Sun, 03 Jan 2021 23:39
The 2020 election witnessed an unprecedented and coordinated effort through public-private partnerships to improperly and unlawfully influence the election for Mr. Biden by: 1) creating a two-tiered election system in which state and local officials targeted Biden constituencies to turn out the vote while targeting Trump constituencies to depress the vote; 2) using private funds to pay election judges and officials who managed the way ballots were received, accepted, cured, and counted; 3) having private interests dictate or encourage local election officials to violate state laws protecting the integrity of the ballot; 4) consolidating counting centers to justify the delivery of hundreds of thousands of ballots to one location, removing Republicans from their lawful right to view the receipt, handling, and counting of ballots in the consolidated counting centers; 5) initiating scores of lawsuits as early as March of 2020 to undermine ballot integrity measures; 6) accepting and receiving more than $400 million from private interests to dictate terms in which the election would be managed in Democrat strongholds; 7) allowing private interests to gain special access and use of sensitive citizen information maintained by government; 8) benefiting from Big Tech monies and censorship of information; 9) training left-leaning poll workers in Democrat strongholds on how to commit fraud; 10) fighting transparency by resisting legitimate requests to audit and review ballots, ballot envelopes, and computer logs; 11) threatening legislators with criminal investigation and prosecution if they disagreed with blue state executive officials on the election result; 12) locking Republican legislators out of the state capitol to prevent them from meeting and challenging election certification; and 13) engaging in illegal ballot harvesting.
This conduct resulted in an election in which the American people cannot have faith, which violates state law and which should not be certified.
Below are several thousand pages of evidence and hours of video explaining this evidence for your review.
This evidence involves admissions by election officials, expert opinions, affidavits of witnesses, and dramatic evidence of the break in ballot chain of custody and the infusion of hundreds of thousands of fraudulent ballots into the counting stream.
This lawlessness was made possible by work stoppages, prohibiting bipartisan participation, and early morning ballot drops in consolidated counting centers, all of which undermined election integrity.
You deserve access to this information, and we are pleased to make it available to you.
Amistad Report exposes a dark money apparatus of 10 nonprofit organizations funded by five foundations whose intent was to fundamentally undermine the electoral system.
View the document
The Amistad Project released an authoritative research paper that breaks down the history of Electoral College deadlines and makes clear that this election's December 8 and December 14 deadlines for the selection of Electors, the assembly of the Electoral College, and the tallying of its votes, respectively, are not only elements of of a 72-year old federal statute with zero Constitutional basis, but are also actively preventing the states from fulfilling their constitutional '-- and ethical '-- obligation to hold free and fair elections. Experts believe that the primary basis for these dates was to provide enough time to affect the presidential transition of power, a concern which is fully obsolete in the age of internet and air travel.
View the document
The Amistad Project released a massive, 1,400-page super-appendix detailing extensive evidence of lawlessness allowing ballot and voter fraud affecting the election results in five key swing states.
Phill Kline, Director of the Amistad Project, testified at the WI Senate committee. Kline describes the irregularities and intentional violations of the law that were part of an orchestrated effort to improperly influence the election.
The Amistad Project hosted a of national press conference, releasing a groundbreaking report exposing a dark money apparatus of 10 nonprofit organizations funded by five foundations whose intent was to fundamentally undermine the electoral system.
The Amistad Project hosted national press conference featuring three whistleblowers who provided personal eyewitness accounts demonstrating significant potential election fraud, some of which affects hundreds of thousands of ballots.
Summaries of potentially fraudulent ballots, a link to the white pages that outlines the safe harbor dates and links to recent media.
Timeline of Electoral Policy Activities, Issues, and Litigation Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, Georgia, Arizona, and Nevada August 2003 to November 2020
View timeline document
Six Key Dimensions of Election Irregularities, by Peter Navarro
View the document
A group of state lawmakers performing extensive analysis of election data revealed troubling discrepancies between the numbers of total votes counted and total number of voters who voted in the 2020 General Election, and as a result are questioning how the results of the presidential election could possibly have been certified by Secretary of the Commonwealth Kathy Boockvar and Governor Tom Wolf. These findings are in addition to prior concerns regarding actions by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, the Secretary, and others impacting the conduct of the election.
View the document
Presentation to Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity: A suggestion and some evidence, by John Lott, Jr.
Georgia Chairman Ligon's report of the election law study subcommittee of the standing senate judiciary committee.
1. In Trump v. Wisconsin Elections Commission, the Supreme Court must address whether unelected Democrat bureaucrats in Wisconsin broke the law by authorizing illegal ballot harvesting through ''human drop boxes'' and over 500 unmanned drop boxes statewide. This case affects an outcome determinative number of illegal mail-in ballots: over 90,000 and the margin of difference is 20,000.
2. In Trump v. Biden, the Supreme Court must address whether the Wisconsin state Supreme Court allowed illegal absentee ballots to be counted during the recount without even considering the merits of challenges filed against them in violation of Article II of the U.S. Constitution. This case also affects an outcome determinative number of illegal mail-in ballots: over 50,000 and the margin of difference is 20,000.
3. In Trump v. Boockvar, the Supreme Court must address whether, in Pennsylvania, Democrat state Supreme Court judges and the Democrat Secretary of State broke the law by abolishing signature verification, counting illegal ballots cast after the deadline, and illegally fixing ballots Democrat ballots. This case also affects an outcome determinative number of illegal mail-in ballots: over 2.6 million and the margin of difference is 80,558.
4. In Georgia, the Trump v. Kemp case concerns signature matching rules which were illegally changed due to a consent decree without the Legislature's approval. In addition, this case addresses whether unelected Democrat election officials broke the law by illegally counting ballots in Fulton County after they sent Republican observers' home on election night.
5. In Wisconsin Voter's Alliance, et. al. v. The Electoral College, the election integrity group The Amistad Project of The Thomas More Society details the influence of a ''shadow government'' funded by tech giants, including Mark Zuckerberg's $400 million, to purchase local election offices and improperly influence the election for Biden. The plaintiffs ask the Court to allow state legislatures, which have the primary responsibility under the U.S. Constitution to certify presidential electors, to meet in their plenary power to investigate and certify the election despite arbitrary statutory deadlines on the electoral college. This suit would allow the time necessary to properly review the election prior to inauguration day.
Trump Speaks to State Legislators on Call About Decertifying Election
Sun, 03 Jan 2021 23:38
President Trump spoke to 300 state legislators from the battleground states of Arizona, Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Georgia on Saturday in a Zoom conference call hosted by Got Freedom? in which the 501 (c) (4) non-profit election integrity watchdog group urged those lawmakers to review evidence that the election process in their states was unlawful and consider decertifying the results of the November 3 presidential election.
President Trump addressed the call for 15 minutes at the invitation of former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who now serves as the president's personal attorney, and was one of the featured speakers on the call.
Other featured speakers included Chapman Law School Professor John Eastman, Dr. Peter Navarro, Assistant to the President for Trade and Manufacturing (appearing in his personal capacity), John Lott, Senior Advisor, U.S. Department of Justice (also appearing in his personal capacity), and Liberty University Law School Professor Phill Kline.
Kline, a former attorney general in Kansas, is a spokesperson for the 501 (c) (4) Got Freedom? non-profit, and also serves as director of the 501 (c) (3) Amistad Project of the Thomas More Society, an election integrity public interest law firm which is engaged in litigation regarding the 2020 election.
In a press statement released after the call, GotFreedom? said they conducted Saturday's ''exclusive national briefing . . . at the request of state legislators from Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin to review the extensive evidence of irregularities and lawlessness in the 2020 presidential election.''
''A similar briefing is being scheduled in Washington, D.C. at the request of Members of Congress,'' the group noted.
UPDATE: Representatives and senators' objections to Electoral College votes on Wednesday will allow Republicans to air allegations of vote fraud.
'-- Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) January 1, 2021
A joint session of the newly convened 117th Congress will meet in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday to determine if they will accept the results of the December 14 meeting of the Electoral College, in which Joe Biden received 306 Electoral College votes for president and Donald Trump received 232 Electoral College votes.
If at least one member of the House of Representatives and one member of the Senate object to certifying those votes on Wednesday, each chamber must then separately hold a debate on whether to accept those Electoral College votes.
More than 30 members of the House have already announced they will object to certification. Last week, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) announced he will publicly object to certification.
Then on Saturday, as Breitbart News reported, 11 Republican senators said they would vote not to certify on Wednesday and would instead recommend the establishment of a commission to review the lawfulness of the election process in the disputed states in a full election audit. That commission would have ten days to review the evidence and report back to the joint session of Congress.
''This information should serve as an important resource for state legislators as they make calls for state legislatures to meet to investigate the election and consider decertifying their state election results,'' Kline, who hosted the call on behalf of Got Freedom? said.
''The integrity of our elections is far too important to treat cavalierly, and elected officials deserve to have all relevant information at their disposal as they consider whether to accept the reported results of the 2020 elections, especially in states where the process was influenced by private interests,'' Kline added.
The statement continued:
The evidence discussed includes unprecedented public-private partnerships that created a two-tiered election system in the states that determined the winner of the Electoral College. Funded by over $400 million from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, these public-private partnerships sought to boost turnout in Democratic strongholds while depressing turnout in conservative areas, violating constitutional guarantees of due process and equal protection.
The private monies paid the salaries of election workers and funded the purchase of election equipment, but came with strict conditions on the conduct of elections in jurisdictions that accepted the money. These private interventions were aided by the actions of public officials, who sought to undermine transparency, fought efforts to audit the results, threatened legislators with investigation and prosecution for questioning the reported results, and in some cases even physically prevented state lawmakers from entering the Capitol Building in order to prevent them from challenging election certification.
A communication sent to participating state legislators after the call summarized Professor Eastman's argument during the call about the specific ''Constitutional imperatives'' of state legislators.
State legislators, Eastman stated, have both the right and duty to:
Assert your plenary powerDemand that your laws be followed as writtenDecertify tainted results unless and until your laws are followedInsist on enough time to properly meet, investigate, and properly certify results to ensure that all lawful votes (but only lawful votes) are counted.In that subsequent communication, Kline encouraged the state legislators to:
'... agree to sign on to a joint letter from state legislators to Vice President Mike Pence to demand that he call for a 12-day delay on ratifying the election, allowing the states the necessary time to further investigate the lawlessness with which the presidential election was conducted. We also request that you send this message out to fellow legislators to ask them to sign on to the letter as well.
He added that ''Representative Daryl Metcalfe (R-Pennsylvania), Senator Brandon Beach (R-Georgia), and Representative Mark Finchem (R-Arizona) already wrote a letter to Vice President Mike Pence for this narrow purpose. Coming together to sign a joint letter is a vital step'--one you should take confidently and in solidarity. We will send the joint letter to all legislators who contact us in reply to this message.''
The 1,400 pages of evidence presented to state legislators on the call can be seen at

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