Cover for No Agenda Show 1659: ungreen
May 12th • 2h 58m

1659: ungreen


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.

Big Pharma
What to Know About New Covid Variants, ‘FLiRT’: Symptoms, Vaccines and More - The New York Times
For most of this year, the JN.1 variant of the coronavirus accounted for an overwhelming majority of Covid cases. But now, an offshoot variant called KP.2 is taking off. The variant, which made up just one percent of cases in the United States in mid-March, now makes up over a quarter.
KP.2 belongs to a subset of Covid variants that scientists have cheekily nicknamed “FLiRT,” drawn from the letters in the names of their mutations. They are descendants of JN.1, and KP.2 is “very, very close” to JN.1, said Dr. David Ho, a virologist at Columbia University. But Dr. Ho has conducted early lab tests in cells that suggest that slight differences in KP.2’s spike protein might make it better at evading our immune defenses and slightly more infectious than JN.1.
Big Tech
Climate Change
Israel vs Hamas
Prohibition Against Conspiracy While Wearing a Disguise Law
Ohio AG warns student protesters could face felony charges under little known anti-KKK law
The "Prohibition Against Conspiracy While Wearing a Disguise Law" took effect in Ohio back in 1953. It was meant to address acts of violence by the KKK, but now the law could be used to target protesters on college campuses.
Lindsay Graham correction
Listening to Lindsey Hop on 1659. The correct answer the generals should have said was "It is not the job of a general to support or oppose a policy. Our job is to follow the constitutional orders of the Command in Chief"
The fact they they hemmed and hawed speaks to that they don't belong in the positions that they currently occupy
Ministry of Truthiness
Canadian Bill C-63 Creates a Kangaroo Court | Francis Crescia
The commission can appoint an investigator who can enter a residence without a warrant and search for information, taking away one’s computer and documents—you don’t even need to commit a crime. If a judge believes there are “reasonable grounds” to fear a future hate crime, the yet-to-be-charged person can be sentenced to house arrest with electric tagging and communication bans. If the person does not cooperate, they go to jail.
Season of Reveal
Boeing vs Airbus
Replacement Migration
Ukraine vs Russia
Trump / Biden etc
FBI Brought Props To Stage Infamous Trump Crime Scene Photo | The Daily Caller
Sun, 12 May 2024 17:26
The FBI brought props to its raid of former President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago for classified documents that were pictured in an infamous photo taken at the alleged crime scene, according to court documents.
Jay Bratt, the lead Department of Justice (DOJ) prosecutor now assigned to special counsel Jack Smith's team, admitted in a recent court filing that FBI agents brought cover sheets reading ''top secret'' to the raid of Mar-a-Lago to use as placeholders in their gathering of classified documents. The classified documents, however, now appear to be out of order following their seizure, both Trump's defense attorney and the special counsel have admitted, according to court documents first reported by Declassified with Julie Kelly.
The crime scene photo of classified documents allegedly found at Mar-a-Lago, complete with the bright red ''classification'' cover sheets, went viral in the weeks after the raid. Corporate media outlets breathlessly reported on the photo and the cover sheets as proof that Trump had been storing classified documents at his Florida property.
''[If] the investigative team found a document with classification markings, it removed the document, segregated it, and replaced it with a placeholder sheet. The investigative team used classified cover sheets for that purpose,'' Bratt wrote in a recent filing.
In a May filing, defense attorneys for Trump c0-defendant Waltine Nauta wrote that the placeholders which the FBI brought to the scene to mark classified documents in stacks were out of place.
''Following defense counsel's review of the physical boxes'...and the documents produced in classified discovery, defense counsel has learned that the cross-reference provided by the Special Counsel's Office does not contain accurate information,'' the attorneys wrote, according to Kelly.
DOJ and the media have lied about the infamous photo of alleged classified documents seized during FBI raid of Mar-a-Lago.
New court filings prove the FBI used cover sheets depicted in the photo during the raid.
That's not how the records were found:
'-- Julie Kelly 🇺🇸 (@julie_kelly2) May 6, 2024
''[Thirteen] boxes or containers contained documents with classification markings, and in all, over one hundred unique documents with classification markings'...were seized. Certain of the documents had colored cover sheets indicating their classification status. (Emphasis added.) See, e.g., Attachment F (redacted FBI photograph of certain documents and classified cover sheets recovered from a container in the '45 office'),'' Bratt wrote in an August 2022 court filing.
Kelly writes that Bratt's original filing did not explain where those classified document sheets had come from, though later he admitted that the sheets were in fact brought to the scene by FBI agents.
''In other words, in their zeal to stage a phony photo using official classified cover sheets, FBI agents might have failed to accurately match the placeholder sheet with the appropriate document. This is a potentially case-blowing mistake, particularly if the document in question is one of the 34 records that represents the basis of espionage charges against Trump,'' Kelly reported.
In response to Nauta's filing, Bratt admitted that the placeholders had been rearranged, and that not all of them had been properly matched with the right placeholder sheet, according to a court document.
''In many but not all instances, the FBI was able to determine which document with classification markings corresponded to a particular placeholder sheet,'' Bratt wrote in response to the defense attorney's request for more time.
While Trump is being charged for mishandling classified documents, President Joe Biden had a special counsel of his own investigate him for his handling of similarly classified documents. Despite the FBI seizing documents from Biden's Delaware home, the photo of the raid showed the president's documents in boxes, rather than sprawled out with ''top secret'' placeholders. (RELATED: Robert Hur Fends Off Attacks From Democrats, Trump Allies In Marathon House Hearing)
Special Counsel Robert Hur did not recommend bringing charges against Biden.
Leadership | Tides
Sun, 12 May 2024 14:14
Executive TeamJaniece Evans-PageChief Executive Officer
Janiece Evans-Page is the Chief Executive Officer of Tides, a nonprofit and philanthropic organization dedicated to advancing social justice. She leads Tides' work with doers and donors to center the leadership of changemakers from communities historically denied power, connecting them to operational and advisory services, capacity building, and resources to amplify their impact. Under her leadership, Tides has evolved its mission, vision, and strategic direction to center proximate leaders and their communities. The organization has also developed a new set of grantmaking best practices and revised its service model for supporting fiscally-sponsored projects to grow their capacity to effectively run their organizations and meet their missions.
Prior to joining Tides in 2021, Janiece served as the inaugural Chief Sustainability and Diversity Officer at Fossil Group and Head of Fossil Foundation. In this role, she launched Fossil Group's global philanthropy practice, leading the strategic development of its social impact investment portfolio and environmental sustainability framework. She was also the architect of Fossil Foundation's signature initiative, which empowers youth through innovative partnerships with social entrepreneurs. Previously, Janiece spent more than 20 years at Hewlett-Packard, serving as vice president and general manager of HP's Imaging and Printing Attach Organization, which she launched and grew into a $600M+ global enterprise. She also launched HP's global e-inclusion strategy, which included a global team that led digital inclusion investments in 20+ countries.
Janiece serves on several boards, including Southern New Hampshire University, Echoing Green, and St. Mary's College's School of Economics and Business, as well as numerous advisory councils. In May 2024, Janiece will receive an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Golden Gate University in recognition of her cumulative accomplishments and commitment to lead and serve, locally and globally. In 2021, she was honored at the 12th Annual Powerful Women of The Bay Awards luncheon and was selected as one of the San Francisco Business Times' 2021 Most Influential Women in Business. In 2018, she was honored by Ebony Magazine as one of its Power 100 awardees.
She holds a B.S. in Social Sciences/Organizational Behavior from the University of California at Berkeley, and an Executive M.B.A. from Golden Gate University in San Francisco. She is supported and inspired by her loving family '-- her husband, Mark, daughter, and son.
James LumChief Financial Officer
James Lum is the Chief Financial Officer at Tides, where he manages Tides' finance, accounting, investment, and real estate operations. Before joining Tides in April of 2023, he spent the past 20 years bridging the nonprofit and for-profit worlds, focusing on building sustainable and impactful organizations. James comes from Bridgespan, a global nonprofit consulting firm, where he was a Partner and served as Chief Financial and Information Officer. At Bridgespan, he oversaw the creation of an $80 million DEI focused investment fund for Bridgespan's education programs and the launch of a third international office in Singapore.
Previously, James served as the Chief Financial Officer for the National Community Reinvestment Coalition where he was responsible for financial planning across core programs, company-owned buildings, a CDFI, and a 501(c)(4). Prior to NCRC, James served as Chief Financial Officer for GuideStar where he introduced Impact Calls, modeled on earnings calls for publicly traded companies, and negotiated data deals with for-profits such as Google. His efforts were recognized by Association Trend's Nonprofit Transformational CFO of the Year award in 2014. James was also CFO for 270 Strategies, a grassroots advocacy consulting firm with clients across the political, corporate, and nonprofit sectors.
Earlier, James led financial and technology projects for national and international divisions of media companies including The Wall Street Journal, MTV International, John Wiley & Sons, SiriusXM, and Showtime Networks. James is active with a variety of organizations and currently serves on the boards of nonprofits Aeris Insight, Impact Network, and the National Asian Pacific Center on Aging. James graduated from the University of Virginia with a BA in Economics and Biology and holds an MBA from Columbia Business School.
Suneela JainChief Legal and Compliance Officer
Suneela Jain is Tides Chief Legal and Compliance Officer and Chief of Staff. In this capacity, Suneela oversees Tides' legal risk and compliance function, supporting organizational awareness and frameworks for risk management that center Tides' mission and values. Prior to joining Tides, Suneela worked as an attorney at Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton and Gunderson Dettmer, and as a pro bono attorney at The Nature Conservancy. In those roles, she advised individuals, non-profits, and a range of private and public actors about issues relating to corporate governance, shareholder relationships, investments, and structuring joint venture and other partnerships. At Cleary, she also advised small businesses as chair of the Microenterprise Project at Volunteers of Legal Services and served as a member of the Pro Bono, Diversity & Inclusion, and Mentoring Committees.
Suneela is a member of the Board of Directors of The New Left Accelerator, a member of the Investment Committee at Realize Impact, and a member of the Ethics Task Force of the Council on Foundations. Suneela received her JD from Yale University, and her BA from UCLA.
Dan ShannonChief Partnerships Officer
In his role as Chief Partnerships Officer, Dan leads the Client Services, Strategic Partnerships, Tides Collective, and Marketing & Communications departments. He's responsible for growing and deepening engagement with partners, including leading Tides' business development strategies and approaches as aligned with Tides' Impact Model.
In his most recent position as partner and Managing Director for Purpose, a leading social impact agency and consultancy, Dan collaborated with mission-driven organizations to design and implement strategies and campaigns aimed at mobilizing people to take action and create meaningful change. With a background in non-profit campaigns, communications, and organizing, Dan has led projects with U.S.-based civil rights organizations, including the ACLU and Anti-Defamation League, as well as INGOs focused on global poverty and human rights, including UNICEF and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Anucha BrowneChief Impact Officer
Anucha Browne, Tides' Chief Impact Officer, oversees the Strategy & Impact department. Dedicated to advancing justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion, Browne utilizes strategic planning and data-driven insights to enhance operational performance in alignment with Tides' goals. Previously, she served as Chief Advocacy and Engagement Officer for UNICEF USA, contributing to domestic programs, emergency response, and global resource mobilization.
Browne's impressive career includes roles such as NCAA's Vice President of Women's Basketball Championships and Senior Vice President of Marketing for the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden. As a student-athlete at Northwestern University, she was the first All-American women's basketball player, setting records and earning accolades. Recognized nationally, Browne serves on various boards, including the Women's Basketball Coaches Association and the DeVos Sport Business Management Program's Board of Advisors.
Sajit JosephChief Digital and Transformation Officer
Sajit Joseph is the Chief Digital and Transformation Officer at Tides, where he is responsible for technology, business operations, and transformation. Sajit is a C-Level executive with deep expertise in driving large-scale business transformation, building digital businesses, running business operations, and using innovation to transform organizations. The Fast Company magazine recognized him as one of the top 5 Innovative Leaders of 2022 and his team was recognized as the most Innovative team of 2023.
Before Tides, he was the Chief Innovation Officer and executive leader of the American Red Cross. During his 6+ year tenure as the Chief Innovation Officer, he led the transformation of the organization using innovation. Before that, he was with leading management consulting firms like Deloitte and Publicis Sapient where he held various management and technology consulting roles, working with companies ranging from Silicon Valley startups to Fortune 500 companies like Walmart, Sprint, Kohl's, Audi, and OfficeMax.
Sajit holds a Masters in International Business, a Post Graduate Diploma in Mass Communications, and a Bachelors in Engineering.
Board of DirectorsSulma Arias
Sulma Arias is an immigrant rights, voting rights, and economic justice organizer and advocate who has more than 20 years of experience working in close partnership with community-led organizations. As the executive director of People's Action, Sulma is building community power across the United States and applying her professional and lived experience as the organization's first Latina immigrant leader to help communities take control of their destinies.
Angela Chadwick
Angela Chadwick is an attorney, seasoned C-suite business executive, diversity and inclusion champion, and former public servant with expertise in corporate governance, commercial contracts, and regulatory compliance. Angela's involvement in professional, civic, and cultural activities has been recognized by Nation's Best Lawyers of Color, Fastcase 50 Leaders in Law, and Leadership Atlanta.
Lori Chatman
Lori Chatman is a visionary leader with more than three decades of experience in affordable housing and community development. As the president of Enterprise Community Partners' Capital Division, Lori manages a $18 billion affordable housing finance platform and is the architect and executive sponsor of Equitable Path Forward, Enterprise's $3.5 billion initiative to address racial inequities in the real estate industry.
Shelby Chestnut
Anti-violence and LGBTQ organizer and advocate Shelby Chestnut (Assiniboine) is the first Native trans executive director of Transgender Law Center, the largest national trans-led organization advocating for a world in which all people are free to define themselves and their futures. Shelby has more than 20 years of community organizing, policy advocacy, and leadership experience in the LGBTQ and anti-violence movements.
Elizer Darris
A dynamic speaker, trainer, executive coach, and changemaker, Elizer Darris serves on a number of boards, including the State Board of Public Defense of Minnesota, where he is the first formerly incarcerated person appointed to the position. Elizer is the founder and CVO of Darris Consulting Group, a consultancy renowned for its expertise in political, governmental, NGO, and business strategies and emphasis on community-centered solutions.
Michael Roberts With significant experience in community organizing, private equity, telecommunications, and venture capital, Michael Roberts (Tlingit) is the president and CEO of First Nations Development Institute, an American Indian economic development and economic justice organization, and one of the nation's highest-rated public charities. Michael's efforts to advance social justice have been recognized by Unboxed Philanthropy Advisors, the Mitchell Museum of the American Indian, the Center for Global Policy Solutions, and the Insight Center for Community Economic Development.
Jeffery Wallace
Named one of Fast Company's 100 Most Creative People in 2018 and one of Black Enterprise's 40 under 40 for Social Impact in 2022, Jeffery Wallace is a social entrepreneur engineering solutions to address social, economic, and racial disparities impacting America's most vulnerable workers: young adults of color. As president and CEO of LeadersUp, Jeffery leads a movement that empowers inclusive leaders to build an antiracist economy where safety is normalized, opportunity is equitable, and power is shared.
Cheryl D. Alston
Cheryl D. Alston is the executive director and chief investment officer of the Employees' Retirement Fund of the City of Dallas, a $3.6 billion pension fund, which she is the first African American and woman to lead. Former President Barack Obama appointed Cheryl to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation Advisory Committee, for which she served two terms. In 2016, she received Institutional Investor's prestigious Investor Intelligence Network Award for her significant contributions to the industry.
Brickson Diamond
With more than 25 years of experience in leadership advisory, financial services, entertainment, and philanthropy, Brickson Diamond is a consultant for Spencer Stuart, where he works to infuse diversity, equity, and inclusion principles and practices into executive search, leadership succession, and development. Brickson is also the founding chairperson of The Blackhouse Foundation, a nonprofit seeking to expand access and opportunity for Black creators and audiences across platforms like the Sundance, Tribeca, and Toronto International film festivals and beyond.
Marc Diaz
Marc Diaz is a leader in the impact investing field, focused on scaling sustainable businesses. As the chief commercial officer at Terviva, a food and agriculture technology company, he directs efforts to scale pongamia tree oilseed products and tree cultivation worldwide in a nature-based business. Marc is committed to helping farmers restore land into regenerative sources of food and energy in a manner that mitigates and adapts to climate change and nourishes communities.
Janiece Evans-Page
Janiece Evans-Page is a social scientist and social impact leader whose 20 years of experience in the tech sector and social impact ecosystem inform her innovative approach to driving social change. As chief executive officer of Tides, Janiece leads Tides' work with doers and donors to center the leadership of changemakers from communities historically denied power, connecting them to operational and advisory services, capacity building, and resources to amplify their impact . She serves on the boards of Southern New Hampshire University, Echoing Green, and St. Mary's College's School of Economics and Business, as well as numerous advisory councils.
Trista Harris
Bringing a unique blend of strategic leadership, operating expertise, and philanthropic vision, Trista Harris is the founder and president of FutureGood. The consultancy helps leaders build a better future through diversity, equity and inclusion, organizational change consulting, and strategic visioning. Trista was on the Host Committee for Super Bowl LII, which brought more than $450 million in economic activity to the state of Minnesota.
Regina Jackson
A global thought leader for youth development, TEDx and keynote speaker, and executive coach, Regina Jackson is the former chief executive officer for the Center for Environmental Health and the East Oakland Youth Development Center. Regina was appointed in 2017 to serve on Oakland California's inaugural police commission and was elected chair for three consecutive years. In 2023, she received the President's Volunteer Service Award in recognition for her illustrious career and lifelong dedication to volunteer service.
Antoinette Klatzky
Antoinette Klatzky is the vice president of Programs and Partnerships at the Eileen Fisher Foundation and host and co-producer of Women Together, a series of interactive, live-stream gatherings. At Eileen Fisher, Antoinette developed an emergency relief fund for employees affected by COVID-19; led Choose Handloom, a human rights initiative in the company's supply chain; created the Eileen Fisher Leadership Institute, a young women's leadership program; and supported the launch of Eileen Fisher Renew, a recycled clothing initiative. She has been recognized by the YWCA's Salute to Women and Racial Justice as a ''Person to Watch.''
Edward G. Lloyd
Edward G. Lloyd is a retired C-suite nonprofit finance executive with more than three decades of experience driving growth, ensuring compliance, and increasing sustainability. Prior to his retirement in 2020, he served for 18 years as the chief financial and operating officer at UNICEF USA, where he oversaw finance, budgeting, IT, strategic planning, revenue processing, donor management, investments, and building operations.
Jessica Carvalho Morris
Jessica Carvalho Morris is an international lawyer, scholar, and consultant in the areas of human rights, international law, rule of law, legal education, governance, and feminism, serving regions such as Latin and North America, Europe, North Africa, and Eurasia. Jessica has extensive experience leading not-for-profit organizations, working at top-tier law firms, and teaching in academia where she is currently part of the Feminist Research and Intervention Group at IIEG, Universidad de Buenos Aires (Argentina), and the Sexualities Research Group at CES, University of Coimbra (Portugal).
Dylan Orr Dylan Orr is the director of the Environmental Health Services division at Seattle and King County Public Health, where he oversees efforts to promote equitable, safe, and healthy environmental conditions. Previously, Dylan was the first openly transgender person appointed to a US presidential administration with service as Special Assistant and Chief of Staff at the US Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy, as well as the first openly transgender person appointed to serve on a Seattle Mayor's Cabinet with service as the first director of Seattle's Office of Labor Standards.
Roslyn Dawson Thompson
Roslyn Dawson Thompson is the chief executive officer of DAWSON Communications + Strategy + Governance, a consultancy serving corporate and nonprofit organizations. Having previously served for 11 years as president and chief executive officer of one of the world's largest women's foundations, Roslyn is a frequent and sought-after speaker on women's leadership, philanthropy, gender equity, and gender lens investing.
Tim Wang Tim Wang is a managing partner at The Westly Group, one of the largest climate-focused venture funds in North America with more than $700 million under management. He brings a passion for accelerating change toward a more sustainable world and helping entrepreneurs achieve their ambitions for scale and impact at the forefront of mobility, energy transition and healthy buildings.
Jacob Weldon
Jacob Weldon is a change management and brand reputation strategist for corporate and nonprofit organizations focused on social justice and next-gen leadership. He previously served as the global director of corporate affairs at Est(C)e Lauder Companies, where he aligned philanthropic investments across 30+ brands and six global regions, developed the company's inaugural corporate identity as a family of brands , conceived their next-gen leadership team, and served as founding chair of their LGBTQ+ employee resource group.
Ohio AG warns student protesters could face felony charges under little known anti-KKK law
Sun, 12 May 2024 13:35
COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX) '-- Sharp criticism has been aimed at Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost in response to a letter he sent to the state's public universities this week.
The letter warns that student protesters wearing face coverings could face felony charges under a little-known law to deter Ku Klux Klan demonstrations. The local president of the NAACP told WSYX that to connect current protests to a law meant to fight the Klan is disrespectful to African Americans.
The "Prohibition Against Conspiracy While Wearing a Disguise Law" took effect in Ohio back in 1953. It was meant to address acts of violence by the KKK, but now the law could be used to target protesters on college campuses.
For weeks, anti-Israel protesters have gathered on college campuses across the country, including Ohio State University.
A number of people have been arrested on the OSU campus and face misdemeanor trespassing charges.
In this letter sent to the state's public universities this week, Yost advised administrators that a law written to deter KKK demonstrations could be used to impose felony charges on those wearing face coverings while protesting.
The law is summed up in one sentence: ''No person shall unite with two or more others to commit a misdemeanor while wearing white caps, masks, or other disguise.''
In his letter to the universities, Yost wrote that violating this ''anti-disguise'' law is punishable by a fourth-degree felony charge and up to $5,000 in fines.
Nana Watson, president of the Columbus branch of the NAACP, said she thinks the idea of using a law meant to address the violence of the Klan in the 1950s to deal with protesters in 2024 is out of line and out of touch.
"I think it's out of line. I think it's really insincere. I think it's extremely disrespectful to Black people," said Watson.
As far as OSU is concerned, a university spokesman told WSYX that they have received the letter and are reviewing it.
OSU president Ted Carter spoke about the letter earlier this week.
"Obviously, we'll take a look at it, but we're not doing anything or taking any particular action on it," Carter said.
In a Fox News appearance, Yost indicated the letter was simply legal advice.
"All the letter does is say, hey, don't become an accidental felon," he said. "Ohio has a law here, and incidentally, it's not even implicated unless you're committing a criminal act and another criminal act with two or more people while wearing a mask. I don't understand how advising someone not to become a law-abiding citizen is intimidating or disgusting."
At this point, all of those arrested at recent protests at OSU are not facing felony charges. Now that this law has come to the attention of university administrators and protesters it's unclear how this could impact any future demonstrations on college campuses statewide.
She was accused of faking an incriminating video of teenage cheerleaders. She was arrested, outcast and condemned. The problem? Nothing was fake after all | Deepfake | The Guardian
Sun, 12 May 2024 12:29
M adi Hime is taking a deep drag on a blue vape in the video, her eyes shut, her face flushed with pleasure. The 16-year-old exhales with her head thrown back, collapsing into laughter that causes smoke to billow out of her mouth. The clip is grainy and shaky '' as if shot in low light by someone who had zoomed in on Madi's face '' but it was damning. Madi was a cheerleader with the Victory Vipers, a highly competitive ''all-star'' squad based in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. The Vipers had a strict code of conduct; being caught partying and vaping could have got her thrown out of the team. And in July 2020, an anonymous person sent the incriminating video directly to Madi's coaches.
Eight months later, that footage was the subject of a police news conference. ''The police reviewed the video and other photographic images and found them to be what we now know to be called deepfakes,'' district attorney Matt Weintraub told the assembled journalists at the Bucks County courthouse on 15 March 2021. Someone was deploying cutting-edge technology to tarnish a teenage cheerleader's reputation.
The vaping video was just one of many disturbing communications brought to the attention of Hilltown Township police department, Weintraub said. Madi had been receiving messages telling her she should kill herself. Her mother, Jennifer Hime, had told officers someone had been taking images from Madi's social media and manipulating them ''to make her appear to be drinking''. A photograph of Madi in swimwear had been altered: ''Her bathing suit was edited out.''
Madi wasn't the only member of the Victory Vipers cheer team to have been victimised. In August 2020, Sherri Ratel had been sent anonymous texts accusing her teenage daughter, Kayla, of drinking and smoking pot. Noelle Nero had been sent images of her 17-year-old daughter in a bikini with captions about ''toxic traits, revenge, dating boys and smoking''. These, too, were ''all altered and shown as deepfakes'', Weintraub added.
The anonymous sender had used ''spoofing'' software to disguise their identity behind an unknown number. The police had managed to trace it to the IP address of Raffaella Spone, a 50-year-old woman with no previous criminal record. In her mugshot, she wears a lime green turtleneck with her hair scraped back in a tight ponytail. Her eyes, thickly lined in black, look up at the camera in a cold stare; her brightly painted lips are pursed with anger. She looks terrifying.
''It appears that her daughter cheers '' or did cheer '' with the victims at the Victory Vipers gym,'' Weintraub told the assembled journalists. Spone had taken it upon herself to smear her 16-year-old's rivals in an attempt to get them thrown off the team.
As microphone after microphone was placed before him on the podium, Weintraub didn't mince his words. ''This tech is now available to anyone with a smartphone '' your neighbour, somebody who holds a grudge,'' he said, waving his own phone in the air. ''Here in Bucks County, we have an adult with specific intent, preying on juveniles through the use of deepfake technology.''
This went further than cheerleader rivalry in suburban Pennsylvania. Anyone could be a victim of this new kind of crime, and anyone a perpetrator. ''All one needs to do is download an app and you're off to the races,'' Weintraub continued. ''Sometimes these deepfakes are so good, we can't even discern them with the naked eye.'' The authorities would always be on the back foot, he added: ''It takes minutes to make a deepfake video, but it takes us months to investigate.'' The woman in the mugshot was the canary in the coalmine: the era of believing your own eyes was officially over.
The police officer said, 'You know what you did. You created deepfakes.' I had never heard that term in my lifeIn 2021, a fresh wave of panic about deepfakes was crashing on a world that had spent far too much time locked down at home in front of screens. Deepfaked pornography '' with the faces of non-consenting people crudely superimposed on to others' bodies '' had been a concern for years, but now digitally manipulated videos were beginning to be eerily convincing.
The press conference came only a few weeks after a deepfaked video of Tom Cruise doing a magic trick went viral on TikTok. It was three months after Queen Elizabeth appeared deepfaked and twerking in Channel 4's alternative Christmas message, sparking outrage. But the cheerleader deepfake story was something else: an irresistible combination of wholesome all-American girls, nudity, teenage rivalry, underage partying and dystopian technology.
As soon as Weintraub stepped down from the podium, the story exploded. It made international headlines, from the BBC News to the Hindustan Times to the Sydney Morning Herald (and, yes, the Guardian). Trevor Noah mocked Spone on the Daily Show.
Madi Hime appeared alongside her mother on ABC's Good Morning America, the most watched morning show in the US. They shared the vaping footage '' the only imagery from the case to be made public '' and Madi described how she felt when one of her cheerleading coaches took them aside to tell them what they'd been sent. ''I went in the car and started crying, and was like, 'That's not me on video,''' Madi said. ''I thought if I said it, nobody would believe me, because there's proof '' there's a video. But it was obviously manipulated.''
Towards the end of the police press conference, a reporter had raised his hand. Given our first instinct is to believe our eyes, how did the police conclude the videos were deepfakes, he asked, ''versus saying: maybe this is teenagers lying, and the videos are real''?
''There's what's called metadata,'' Weintraub replied. ''We can look behind the curtain, as we were able to do in this case. We can't do it in every case because some providers are halfway across the world. Some don't cooperate. Others are just inundated with requests.''
He threw his hands up, as if overwhelmed by the scale of it all, adding, ''We take it as gospel that a picture is a picture, a video is a video, that they're unaltered, untainted. This is a setback.''
But a little over a year later, when Spone finally appeared in court to face the charges against her, she was told the cyberharassment element of the case had been dropped. The police were no longer alleging that she had digitally manipulated anything. Someone had been crying deepfake. A story that generated thousands of headlines around the world was based on teenage lies, after all. When the truth finally came out, it was barely reported '' but the videos and images were real.
I f the word ''cheerleader'' makes you think of girls with pompoms on the sidelines of high school American football games, think again. Competitive, ''all-star'' cheerleading is a sport in its own right. It demands jaw-dropping nerve and athleticism, a combination of gymnastic, circus and dance skills, as well as '' for female cheerleaders '' heavy makeup, backcombed hair and rhinestone-encrusted costumes. It's an overwhelmingly female sport, but it's not just for girls. Every year, four million Americans take part.
Each team is a delicate ecosystem. ''Tumblers'' perform stunning acrobatic feats on the mat. ''Stunters'' throw ''flyers'' vertiginously into the air to perform flips and somersaults. The pyramid is the centrepiece of any routine, where the entire squad comes together, with ''bases'' supporting tiers of teammates and a single flyer at the summit. Flyers need to be light, agile and athletically gifted; they are the focal point of any routine.
Cheerleading accounts for 65% of spinal or cerebral injuries across all female athletes in America. But, for some, the high stakes are worth it: all-star cheerleaders can win college scholarships, become social media influencers and gain lucrative branding deals. Simply making the team can be enough to bring young people status in their community: they become a symbol of local patriotism and clean-cut success.
Doylestown, an hour's drive north of Philadelphia, is a pretty American town within an excellent local school district; this is where parents with sharp elbows come to raise their families. The Victory Vipers gym is on its outskirts, in a huge, nondescript hangar. On any given day, the parking lot will be full of parents in SUVs, either dropping children off or waiting for them to finish practice. You can hear coaches counting beats over high-octane music inside, but other than that, there is little to suggest this is the home of a highly competitive and successful cheer squad. From the outside, at least, it doesn't look like a place that costs $4,950 (£4,000) a year to be part of (not including travel expenses for out-of-town competitions), if you're in the top team.
Spone in the March 2021 police mugshot that was to become the face of a moral panic. Photograph: Hilltown Township Police/The Mega AgencyNeither of the Victory Vipers co-owners responded to requests to speak to me for this article. When Spone was charged, they issued a statement, saying the team ''has always promoted a family environment'' and that ''this incident happened outside of our gym''.
Matt Weintraub became a judge in January; his office said that, given his new position, ''the ethical rules require him to decline'' my interview offer '' but he has been declining to comment on the case since May 2021.
In an email, Hilltown Township's chief of police, Chris Engelhart, said, ''This matter may still be subject to civil litigation and as such, we cannot make any comments.'' I have tried to contact Madi and Jennifer Hime for two years, over email and social media, and also Kayla Ratel and her parents, Sherri and George; none of them have responded. Of the three families, only the Neros have got back to me, to politely decline my request. Those who made the loudest noise when the cheerleader deepfake story broke have now gone quiet.
But Raffaella Spone has agreed to speak, in-depth, for the first time. She barely leaves her house now, she says, but is willing to meet me 20 minutes from the Victory Vipers gym, in a diner near where her lawyer is based, so long as he can join us. In person, Spone is tiny; she has a soft, warm face that looks almost nothing like her mugshot. She greets me with a hug. We spend four hours with bottomless sodas in a booth in a corner of the diner.
''Allie was my no-fear athletic child,'' she tells me of her youngest daughter (she has another, whose name she has managed to keep out of the press). ''I would catch her climbing the streetlamp in our neighbourhood. She was practising gymnastic flips in trees.''
Allie made the local gymnastics team at five years old, Spone tells me. ''She was talented and she loved what she did. And I loved watching her '' that was my excitement, just watching her and her teammates.''
In the summer of 2016, Allie decided she wanted to do competitive cheer and tried out for the Victory Vipers, their local all-star team. Allie was always a flyer, Spone says: ''She's five one, 100lb '' just tiny '' and naturally super-flexible.''
After we meet, she sends me videos of her daughter tumbling and cartwheeling before being caught in the splits and thrown high into the air. Allie was prepared to work hard, begging her mother to take her to practice even when she was injured. ''She felt her teammates were depending on her,'' Spone says. Cheerleading became Allie's world '' and hers. ''When your kids are in sports, you don't have a life sometimes because you're always driving somebody somewhere, dropping off, picking up. It becomes your life.''
Cheerleading depends on perfect synchronicity and complete trust: any mistake or misunderstanding could lead to a broken neck. Allie formed strong bonds with her teammates. Spone says, ''They were inseparable. If they weren't over at my house, she was over at theirs. Whether it was in the pool, at the beach, all they did was practise. They lived and breathed it.'' And Spone made friends with their parents. ''While we were waiting for our kids to practise, we would go to a local Mexican place and have dinners.'' They took each other's kids on their family holidays.
The way Spone describes it, there was no rivalry between the Vipers. But it's clear that in 2020 she had been checking the social media feeds of her daughter's cheerleading friends and had become concerned by what she saw. What happened next caused things in that cheerleading family unit to break down, irretrievably. ''They were my friends. They were people I cared about,'' Spone says, quietly. ''It broke every part of me.''
O n the evening of 18 December 2020, five male police officers banged on Spone's door with a search warrant. ''They took our phones. They took my daughter's Xbox, her school computer, my husband's work computer '' I don't own a computer, I never have,'' she tells me, pointedly. ''They took my husband's phone charger and my daughter's disposable camera. They took TVs out of every single room.''
She had no idea why the police were there, but she knew they were there for her, because they were asking for her by name. A male officer patted her down in a way that made her feel violated, she says. She was hysterical, hyperventilating.
The police had been in her home for several hours before officer Matthew Reiss told her what she was being charged with. ''He said, 'You know what you did. You created deepfakes.' I had never heard that term in my life,'' Spone tells me. She faced several counts of harassment, including three counts of cyberharassment of a child, but she wasn't charged until March 2021, when she came into the police station, had the mugshot taken, and became the face of a moral panic.
In the affidavit of probable cause '' the sworn police report outlining the basis for the charges against her '' Reiss writes that he and his colleagues had spent months speaking to the families of the three teenagers who said they had been receiving anonymous messages. The ''behind the curtain'' work he describes relates to how police determined that the spoofed texts had been sent from Spone's IP address. But when it comes to evidence that she was deepfaking images of minors, things get very vague. Reiss takes Jennifer Hime's word that ''an altered'' video of Madi vaping had been sent to the Vipers' coaches. He says he had ''reviewed the video and found it to be the work of a program that is or is similar to 'Deep Fakes'''. There is no detail on what this reviewing entailed, and how he could be certain it had been altered. Weintraub began the March 2021 press conference by thanking Reiss: ''He certainly deserves credit for a very thorough and lengthy investigation.''
Unlike his client, Spone's lawyer, Robert Birch, knew what a deepfake was. ''My first reaction was, how does a 50-year-old woman deepfake something on a phone? You need pretty sophisticated editing capabilities.''
How does a 50-year-old woman deepfake something on a phone? You need pretty sophisticated editing capabilitiesBirch argues that the press conference was a ploy by the district attorney to get some attention. ''He was running for re-election that year. He took a look at the criminal complaint and saw an opportunity.''
It is certainly true that Weintraub didn't shy away from the publicity it generated. He appeared on Good Morning America and The Today Show, and gave interviews to the Washington Post and the New York Times, warning that, ''This is something your neighbour down the street can use, and that's very scary.''
But anyone familiar with the technology at the time knew it would be virtually impossible for an amateur to make a convincing deepfake like the vaping video. Four days after Weintraub's press conference, generative AI and deepfake expert Henry Ajder expressed concerns that ABC was still running the footage under the caption ''DEEP FAKE VIDEO'' when it clearly was not. He tweeted that ''the vape pen/cloud/hand moving over the girl's face'', ''the awkward facial angles'' and other aspects of the video ''would likely require a huge amount of work by a deepfake expert, with editing in post''.
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One of the most widely reported claims from the press conference was that Spone had taken a photo from Madi's social media and altered it to make her appear naked. ''From day one after that press conference, I demanded that the district attorney's office send me the death threats and the nudes, and I never got them,'' Birch says, drumming his finger on the table. When he was finally allowed to see the evidence against his client, in November 2021 '' almost a year after she was charged '' he found the image that was the basis for the ''nude'' claim: a screen-grabbed snap from Snapchat sent by someone called Skylar, featuring Madi in a pink bikini that had been blurred so it blended in with her flesh tone, the sort of thing someone could do using basic photo editing software on their phone with a swipe of a finger, rather than any kind of sophisticated AI digital editing. It looked like a silly joke, rather than a serious attempt to make a nude out of an image of a child. Skylar is a real person '' a teenage girl in Madi's circle of friends, Spone and Birch tell me '' but the police had never contacted her to ask about the image.
Birch criticises what he calls ''a complete lack of investigation'' on the part of the Hilltown Township police. They didn't ask to see Madi's phone until a year after her mother told them she had been receiving disturbing messages, by which time Madi had got a new one and disposed of her old one. No death threats against Madi were ever recovered. Madi had also deleted several of her social media accounts, which her mother had claimed provided the source material for the manipulated images and video. The police had taken Madi at her word that images had been taken and altered to make her look as if she was drinking and vaping, but there was no way of finding the source videos and images, or seeing the supposed deepfakes that had been created out of them, apart from the video she had shared with Good Morning America.
'They were my friends, people I cared about. It broke every part of me.' Photograph: Kyle Kielinski/The GuardianEither a woman with no background in digital technology had made a sophisticated deepfake on her iPhone 8, or a 16-year-old had panicked and lied to her mother about vaping, or mother and daughter had decided together to explain away behaviour they knew would get Madi in trouble, with an elaborate story about digital manipulation. The police chose to believe the first explanation.
''They never understood deepfakes, and the implications of giving a press conference scaring people into thinking someone could take an image and turn it into something else so easily,'' Birch says. ''I don't think they ever thought this thing would spread like wildfire and become a worldwide phenomenon.''
A small police force made a mistake that became too big to fix. ''Once it blew up, the police couldn't extricate themselves without losing face.''
When The Daily Dot, a tech news website, looked into the deepfake claims in May 2021, and asked Reiss about the methods he had used to establish that the videos had been digitally altered, he admitted he had relied on his ''naked eye'', adding, ''We hope Mrs Spone during the course of the preliminary hearing or trial will enlighten us as far as what her source and intent was.''
These would be the last public comments Reiss made about the case. On 26 May 2021 he was arrested on suspicion of possessing images of child sexual abuse. Two images had been uploaded to his Gmail account, and detectives had traced them to his IP address. When they raided his home and seized his electronic devices, they found more than 1,700 images and videos depicting children, including 84 of toddlers and infants. Reiss pleaded guilty in March 2022, and was later sentenced to 11 and a half to 23 months in jail. To use Weintraub's language, if anyone was ''preying on juveniles'', it was the police officer who led the investigation.
''I had death threats over every social media platform,'' Spone says. ''Thousands. You can't even put a number on it.'' She had some fanmail, too: from a convicted murderer in a Wisconsin prison. ''A three-page letter, back and front, with a picture of himself,'' she adds. ''He wanted to get to know me better. That scared me '' this person has my address.''
Someone maliciously reported her to child protection officers who turned up at her home to interview her daughters. ''My kids had to go through this,'' she says.
The man who was renting the house next to hers approached her once, after she had just parked her car. ''He looked me dead in the eyes and said, 'I'm going to kill you. You're a disgusting paedophile.' I didn't know if he had a weapon on him. I thought, this is it, this is the way I'm going out.'' Her husband intervened and she called the police, who she says took no further action. ''I have to be aware of my surroundings 24/7. It's taken over my life.''
Spone used to be a crisis worker in a psychiatric unit, but says she has felt unable to return to work after the story broke. Her savings have all been spent on legal fees. ''I lost everything. Family, friends, people I've known my whole life. Nobody wanted to associate with me.'' Her eyes fill with tears. ''I did contemplate taking my life. It was too much, between the constant threats and knowing that's the legacy that I leave behind.''
''You can never scrub off the internet what's on the internet '' that's the thing,'' Birch says.
She was convicted of sending five text messages. All they said was, 'You should be aware of what your daughters are posting'In March 2022, Spone was found guilty of three counts of misdemeanour harassment for repeatedly sending anonymous messages about the three teenagers. A jury found that she had used secret phone numbers to send incriminating photos and videos. The messages '' sent to the Victory Vipers and to the teenagers' families '' accused the cheerleaders of drinking, smoking and posting revealing photos on social media. The anonymous numbers used to send the messages had been sent from an IP address belonging to Spone. She appealed against her conviction, but the superior court of Pennsylvania upheld it on 14 November 2023.
''She was convicted of sending five text messages,'' Birch sighs. ''There wasn't one threat in any of them. All the messages said was, 'You should be aware of what your daughters are posting.''' He claims that a fair trial was impossible, after all the publicity his client had received: ''Any jury would be poisoned.''
With unfortunate timing, the trailer for a schlocky TV movie ''inspired by'' the story, Deadly Cheer Mom, starring Mena Suvari, was released at the same time as the trial. But neither Birch nor Spone has made any official complaint about the jury.
I ask Spone if she sent the messages she has been found guilty over. She denies it, without looking up from her phone. Her phone has been a constant presence since we sat down; she illustrates everything she tells me with evidence stored on it. She has photos of Madi she says were taken the same night as the notorious vaping video: she's wearing the same clothes, sitting in the same spot. ''There are loads of videos. When anybody says, 'I don't do that' '' I've got proof. Yes, you do! Posted on public accounts, for everyone to see.''
Spone may not manipulate videos and images, but she definitely collects them. Still, she says she never sent them. ''The charges were that she directly sent messages to the minors,'' Birch adds. ''That never happened. That's the point.''
But did she send messages to the gym and the parents? There is a long pause. ''No,'' Spone eventually says.
I'm surprised to hear her say this, given Birch told the Washington Post Spone messaged the parents out of concern for what their daughters had put online. When I point this out, there's another long pause. ''If I said that, I said it,'' Birch says, with a shrug. ''It is what it is.''
Even if Spone is guilty of sending the five messages, she is innocent of the claims that made her notorious. Sending anonymous and unwelcome text messages is not the same as digitally manipulating images of minors.
She was sentenced to three years' probation and 70 hours of community service; she had to undergo a mental heath assessment and wear an ankle monitor for three months. The conditions of her probation bar her from making public statements about the three girls, so she can't give me an account of how they all came to fall out so badly. When the news first broke, Kayla's father, George Ratel, told the Philadelphia Inquirer he thought the problems started when he and his wife told Kayla to stop socialising with Allie ''due to concerns over [Allie's] behaviour''. Spone maintains she was never trying to get anyone kicked off the team '' her daughter was the flyer, she says, and already had the most eye-catching position '' but this doesn't explain why Victory Vipers coaches were among those who received anonymised messages sent from her IP address.
Spone is now suing Weintraub, Reiss, Hilltown County police and the Himes for defamation and violating her civil rights. The lawsuit claims that, in ''a continuing pattern of intentional defamation to continue to falsely paint [Spone] as a child predator'', the then district attorney's office and the police ''allowed the false accusations'' of deepfakes ''to continue until the day of the plaintiff's trial in 2022, knowing that it had no evidence''.
''No amount of money can rectify what was wrong,'' Spone tells me, and I believe her: she seems consumed with the details of the case, nearly four years after the events. But Birch says she could receive substantial damages: ''The jury could award anything from nothing to $20m if they wanted to.'' It's a tough case, he concedes, a David and Goliath battle. ''We're suing the district attorney, who's now a judge.''
A ll four girls had left Victory Vipers by the time the story became public. Madi moved to another cheer squad. Since the story broke, she has achieved the kind of fame competitive cheerleaders dream of. There have been rumours about true crime documentaries and film deals; in February 2022, Madi posted on TikTok about ''when [cable channel] Lifetime sent me and my mom a script of their new movie''. She now has almost 100,000 followers and close to a billion views on her main TikTok account alone.
Allie stopped doing cheer altogether in 2020. Spone claims she had wanted her daughter to leave the Victory Vipers long before she did because she felt unhappy about the way it was run, but Allie had begged her to stay because of a tradition where seniors get to press their hands into cement on a wall in the back of the gym, leaving a permanent record. ''It was monumental to her. So I went against my intuition and let her stay.'' In the end, Allie never got to make her mark.
When I ask Spone how her relationship with Allie is now, there is another long pause. ''She knows about this interview. She is not happy. She's like, 'Mom, when will this ever be over?' She just wants to live her life '' I can't blame her, at 19. But I want the truth to be told. I will not rest until the truth is out.''
''Truth?'' Birch interjects. ''What is truth?''
He is half joking '' but only half. It's the day the US supreme court rules Trump was wrongly removed from the Colorado ballot, and the television set on the wall above where we've been sitting for hours has been tuned to CNN. Every so often, Birch has pointed a finger at the screen and said, ''Fake news.''
The cheerleader deepfake mom story is the ultimate fake news story. Lies can travel around the world for any number of reasons: crying deepfake is just the newest one. Both Spone and Birch tell me they never believe anything they see and hear any more. ''My whole world got turned upside down,'' Spone says, ''so it makes me question whether anything I'm seeing is true.''
In an age of conspiracy, to assume that anything truly is as it initially appears is perhaps a little quaint or naive. The existence of deepfake technology is useful for people who want to sow doubt and have something to gain by distancing themselves from their true words and actions. Lawyers for the first 6 January Capitol rioter to go on trial claimed in 2022 that video evidence against him had been deepfaked. Last year, Tesla's defence lawyers tried to claim that statements made by Elon Musk about the safety of the Model S and the Model X in a filmed interview might have been deepfaked. As the technology improves and becomes more widely available, more people will be crying deepfake when they are caught on camera. The cheerleader deepfake mom was a canary in the coalmine, after all.
The damage to Spone comes from going viral as the main character in a sensational but false story. ''I want to correct those facts,'' she repeats. ''I don't want anyone else to go through what I went through. If it can happen to me '' and I'm a nobody '' it can happen to you.''
What to Know About New Covid Variants, 'FLiRT': Symptoms, Vaccines and More - The New York Times
Sun, 12 May 2024 11:19
Symptoms and Treatment JN.1 Variant A New Drug Updated Shots Long Covid in Kids Paxlovid Masks Experts are closely watching KP.2, now the leading variant.
Credit... Getty Images For most of this year, the JN.1 variant of the coronavirus accounted for an overwhelming majority of Covid cases. But now, an offshoot variant called KP.2 is taking off. The variant, which made up just one percent of cases in the United States in mid-March, now makes up over a quarter.
KP.2 belongs to a subset of Covid variants that scientists have cheekily nicknamed ''FLiRT,'' drawn from the letters in the names of their mutations. They are descendants of JN.1, and KP.2 is ''very, very close'' to JN.1, said Dr. David Ho, a virologist at Columbia University. But Dr. Ho has conducted early lab tests in cells that suggest that slight differences in KP.2's spike protein might make it better at evading our immune defenses and slightly more infectious than JN.1.
While cases currently don't appear to be on the rise, researchers and physicians are closely watching whether the variant will drive a summer surge.
''I don't think anybody's expecting things to change abruptly, necessarily,'' said Dr. Marc Sala, co-director of the Northwestern Medicine Comprehensive Covid-19 Center in Chicago. But KP.2 will most likely ''be our new norm,''' he said. Here's what to know.
The current spread of CovidExperts said it would take several weeks to see whether KP.2 might lead to a rise in Covid cases, and noted that we have only a limited understanding of how the virus is spreading. Since the public health emergency ended, there is less robust data available on cases, and doctors said fewer people were using Covid tests.
But what we do know is reassuring: Despite the shift in variants, data from the C.D.C. suggests there are only ''minimal'' levels of the virus circulating in wastewater nationally, and emergency department visits and hospitalizations fell between early March and late April.
''I don't want to say that we already know everything about KP.2,'' said Dr. Ziyad Al-Aly, the chief of research and development at the Veterans Affairs St. Louis Healthcare System. ''But at this time, I'm not seeing any major indications of anything ominous.''
Protection from vaccines and past infectionsExperts said that even if you had JN.1, you may still get reinfected with KP.2 '-- particularly if it's been several months or longer since your last bout of Covid.
KP.2 could infect even people who got the most updated vaccine, Dr. Ho said, since that shot targets XBB.1.5, a variant that is notably different from JN.1 and its descendants. An early version of a paper released in April by researchers in Japan suggested that KP.2 might be more adept than JN.1 at infecting people who received the most recent Covid vaccine. (The research has not yet been peer-reviewed or published.) A spokesperson for the C.D.C. said the agency was continuing to monitor how vaccines perform against KP.2.
Still, the shot does provide some protection, especially against severe disease, doctors said, as do previous infections. At this point, there isn't reason to believe that KP.2 would cause more severe illness than other strains, the C.D.C. spokesperson said. But people who are 65 and older, pregnant or immunocompromised remain at higher risk of serious complications from Covid.
Those groups, in particular, may want to get the updated vaccine if they haven't yet, said Dr. Peter Chin-Hong, an infectious disease specialist at the University of California, San Francisco. The C.D.C. has recommended that people 65 and older who already received one dose of the updated vaccine get an additional shot at least four months later.
''Even though it's the lowest level of deaths and hospitalizations we've seen, I'm still taking care of sick people with Covid,'' he said. ''And they all have one unifying theme, which is that they're older and they didn't get the latest shot.''
The latest on symptoms and long CovidDoctors said that the symptoms of both KP.2 and JN.1 '-- which now makes up around 16 percent of cases '-- are most likely similar to those seen with other variants. These include sore throat, runny nose, coughing, head and body aches, fever, congestion, fatigue and in severe cases, shortness of breath. Fewer people lose their sense of taste and smell now than did at the start of the pandemic, but some people will still experience those symptoms.
Dr. Chin-Hong said that patients were often surprised that diarrhea, nausea and vomiting could be Covid symptoms as well, and that they sometimes confused those issues as signs that they had norovirus.
For many people who've already had Covid, a reinfection is often as mild or milder than their first case. While new cases of long Covid are less common now than they were at the start of the pandemic, repeat infections do raise the risk of developing long Covid, said Fikadu Tafesse, a virologist at Oregon Health & Science University. But researchers are still trying to determine by how much '-- one of many issues scientists are trying to untangle as the pandemic continues to evolve.
''That's the nature of the virus,'' Dr. Tafesse said. ''It keeps mutating.''
TIME100 Most Influential People in Health | TIME
Sun, 12 May 2024 11:14
Project creditsProject editors: Emma Barker Bonomo, Mandy Oaklander, Lily Rothman, Karl Vick
Editor-in-chief: Sam Jacobs
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Contributors: Charlie Campbell, Leslie Dickstein, Jamie Ducharme, Philip Elliott, Anna Gordon, Angela Haupt, Will Henshall, Jeffrey Kluger, Tara Law, Belinda Luscombe, Sanya Mansoor, Erin McMullen, Kelly Mickle, Alice Park, Nik Popli, Astha Rajvanshi, Dayana Sarkisova, Simmone Shah, Justin Worland, and Julia Zorthian
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How Much Damage Have Vaccines Done to Society?
Sun, 12 May 2024 11:10
Story at a Glance:
'A long history exists of a wave of severe injuries following new vaccinations being introduced to the market. In most cases, those injuries were swept under the rug to protect the business. 'In many cases, the severe ''mysterious'' injuries we see now are remarkably similar to those that were observed over a century ago. Unfortunately, a widespread embargo exists on ever allowing this data to come to light (as that would instantly destroy the vaccine program). 'A variety of independent studies (summarized below) have shown that vaccines cause a wide range of chronic illnesses. 'A 1990 book made a strong case that widespread vaccination was also causing an epidemic of widespread brain damage which was both lowering America's IQ and causing a massive rise in violent crime. 'In this article, we will also review exactly what in that 1990 book and the classic signs that can be used to determine if someone has a vaccine injury (along with the subtle more spiritual ones).
My mind often overlaps the past present and future onto themselves. Because of this, I will frequently recall events that happened in the past which perfectly mirror what is unfolding before us, and in turn, I've lost count of how many times I've witnessed humanity repeat its same mistakes. During COVID, I realized we were again reenacting the same tragedy humanity had ever experienced since the smallpox vaccine was brought to the market and I had a thought. If people became aware of what had happened before and ended our collective amnesia, perhaps this could at last stop.
As fate would have it, my wish came true, and without knowing me, Steve Kirsch g ave me the opportunity to begin introducing that forgotten history to the world. This happened after he chose to publish an article I wrote illustrating how the trucker protests were identical to smallpox protests that had happened more than a century before and then for reasons I still do not understand, encouraged his readers to subscribe to me so I would start writing here. Note: At the time I made this username (for the smallpox article), I did not put any thought into it as I was never expecting to use it again.
Because of this, I've effectively become a ''historian'' of vaccination. In turn, I've noticed again and again that a vaccine disaster happens which injuries many in a very similar way, it gets swept under the rug (often by officials who are quite conflicted in their decision to do so), and then the same thing happens again a few decades later.
Given that we give dozens of vaccines to each member of society, this raises an obvious question'--what is that doing to society?
Note: This list is incomplete.
In 1798, the smallpox vaccine hit the market. Once it hit the market, it was observed to frequently cause smallpox outbreaks (rather than prevent them) and to cause a wide range of debilitating and complex injuries that many of the doctors had never seen before (and many of which I believe were examples of ''blood stasis''). Curiously, rather than recognizing this was a mistake, most of the medical profession endorsed the smallpox vaccine, and governments around the world mandated it as cases kept on increasing (caused by the vaccine). Having looked at it extensively, I am of the opinion the smallpox vaccine reshaped the trajectory of humanity's health and ushered in the era of chronic illness. Note: the smallpox vaccine is discussed in further detail here . In the 1800s and early 1900s, a variety of early vaccines (e.g., rabies, typhoid, diphtheria, tuberculosis) and horse-generated antiserums (for most of the common infections at the time) entered the market. Since many of these vaccines were produced in small independent labs, there were a variety of quality control issues with these products, which frequently led to hot lots severely injuring or killing a group of people. Additionally, many of those vaccines had a high degree of toxicity. Because of this, a variety of new and severe medical conditions emerged, many of which were deemed to be due to brain inflammation (encephalitis) or brain damage (encephalopathy) and observed to occur in conjunction with cranial nerve damage. Most of these conditions in turn mirrored the myriad of injuries we now too see from modern vaccinations. Note: many of these forgotten cases can be found in this book which I am presently synopsizing into an article. The key point is that many doctors at the time could tell the vaccines were causing brain injuries and were willing report that throughout the medical literature.
In the 1940s-1950s, the original pertussis vaccine (DPT) entered the market. This vaccine excelled at causing brain inflammation and a variety of concerning differences were seen in the generations born after its mass adoption in America.Note: The rabies vaccine also excelled at causing encephalitis (around 1 in 750 injections, of which 20% were fatal), but it did not have as large an impact on society because far fewer people received it. Between the 1950s to 1970s, numerous instances happened where a rushed and poorly produced experimental vaccine (e.g., polio or the swine flu) was brought to market to address a non-existent ''emergency,'' and the government chose to ignore warnings from its scientists that it was not safe to give to America. Since the press was honest at this time, they reported the disaster, it became a national scandal and the government provided compensation to the victims. Note: I compiled those media reports here , the last of which happened in 2002 with Bush's smallpox vaccine. In 1986, enough public awareness existed of the dangers of the DPT vaccine that lawsuits were regularly being filed for the brain damage and sudden infant deaths it caused (discussed here ). This in turn led to the 1986 vaccine injury act being passed (discussed further here ), an act that both shielded vaccine manufacturers from product liability and was intended to help parents of vaccine injured children (even though it didn't). This act being passed led to an industry gold rush to bring experimental and liability free vaccines to the market, and before long the childhood vaccination schedule ballooned in parallel to chronic illnesses increasing as well.
Note: the 1986 Act also led to a much safer (but still dangerous) DPT vaccine being brought to market.
In 1990, an experimental anthrax vaccine was deployed upon the military to prepare them for invading Iraq. While the war was non-eventful (Saddam did not use anthrax and it was likely the most one-sided conflict in history), the anthrax vaccine severely injured over 100,000 servicemen (leading to what was known as Gulf War Syndrome). Despite these issues, individuals within the Department of Defense who were committed to funding their bioweapons defense program mandated it'--leading to severe injuries throughout the military and widespread rebellion against this edict. Note: the Anthrax disaster is discussed further here . In 2010, Merck convinced America's women they were at a high risk of dying from cervical cancer (which in reality only kills about 1/38,000 American women each year) so that everyone would buy their highly lucrative vaccine (which was never proven to reduce cervical cancer deaths). This vaccine had an extraordinarily high rate of causing autoimmune disorders, but nonetheless, despite a deluge of complaints, the CDC and FDA did everything they could to protect it, and to this day it is still mandated for children. Note: the Gardasil disaster is discussed here .
In 2021, the COVID vaccine hit the market. In my opinion, everything we witnessed with it mirrors what happened in each of the previously listed tragedies.
I mentioned this history because at the time each of these happened, the medical profession and public were struck by the explosion of these new diseases (and their immense social cost) but before long, became acclimated to them and forgot they had ever emerged in the first place. This in turn, I would argue is exactly what is now happening from the COVID-19 vaccines.
There is a large body of evidence suggesting vaccines are either solely responsible for, or one of the primary things responsible for the tsunami of chronic illness which has followed their ever-increasing adoption.
Unfortunately, while there is a great deal of evidence suggesting a problem exists, the effects of the vaccine schedule have never been formally studied in a clinical trial, nor will agencies like the CDC (which insist vaccines are safe and effective) make their data sets available which could answer the question. This in turn suggests that either: 'No evidence exists of the harms of vaccination and it has simply not been a priority to formally publish that data (which is odd given how much effort blocking all the lawsuits requesting them to takes). 'There is some evidence vaccines are harmful, and there are concerns this data could be misinterpreted to suggest vaccines are much more harmful than they are.
'The existing evidence shows (or would show) that vaccines are incredibly dangerous.
I personally believe the final point is the most likely explanation as: 1. Numerous clinical trials of individual vaccines (e.g., the HPV vaccine) show that vaccines cause many of the same disorders (e.g., a myriad of autoimmune conditions) that have increased in parallel to the number of doses of the vaccine one receives (e.g., the second shot is almost always more likely to cause a severe reaction than the first). This in turn suggests that taking a large number of vaccines (presently the ever increasing CDC schedule gives children 90 before they turn 18) puts them at risk for developing chronic disease. Note: there are numerous cases reports of children becoming permanently disabled after receiving a higher than normal number of vaccines simultaneously (e.g., at a visit where they also get caught up on missing doses), and conversely, many have observed spacing vaccines out rather than giving them all together lowers the likelihood of a severe reactions (e.g., autism) from vaccination.
2. Despite relentless attempts to keep them from emerging, there are numerous retrospective studies of large medical datasets which each show vaccination results in a significantly increased incidence of chronic disease results from vaccination (e.g., a recent study of 99 million people showed the COVID vaccines were 2-7 times more likely than a typical vaccine to cause a variety of life-threatening illnesses). 3. Established mechanisms exist to explain how many different vaccines could all cause similar injuries to their recipients (each of which are discussed here ).
4. Numerous independently conducted studies attempting to assess this question have all found childhood vaccination increases the rates of chronic illness.
5. I periodically learn of medical practices that have low rates of vaccination and also have much lower rates of chronic illness in their patients.
6. Many colleagues and I frequently observe what we believe to be the harms of vaccination in our patients. Note: I personally know many trained observers who can have a high degree of accuracy in identifying unvaccinated children. The approaches they use are discussed at the end of this article.
There is effectively an embargo on publishing any research critical of vaccinations (e.g., no one will give you permission to conduct a trial where some don't vaccinate because ''denying children life-saving vaccines is unethical,'' no one will give you data that already exists, and no one will ever publish a study that is critical of vaccination). Nonetheless, people find ways to get around this embargo. To illustrate, a study was recently conducted in which unvaccinated women were placed in the proximity of COVID vaccinated individuals, which demonstrated that COVID vaccine shedding (discussed further here ) was real as those women developed menstrual abnormalities. The group that conducted that study has been trying for months to get the study published in a peer-reviewed journal, but it is unclear if the embargo will ever be lifted for them.
For example, Paul Thomas MD, an Oregon pediatrician who had a practice with a large number of unvaccinated or under-vaccinated children, and (like many of the other practices with similar patient populations) noticed that the unvaccinated children had dramatically better health. So, he decided to compare their medical records to those of variably vaccinated children and published the data in a study (which, as you are not supposed to violate that embargo, cost him his medical license and resulted in the study being retracted for spurious reasons ). Note: Paul Thomas (now retired and offering coaching services to parents ) was also the author of The Vaccine Friendly Plan , an approach to vaccinating that encouraged spacing out vaccinations and resulted in a dramatically lower rate of vaccine injuries. Since his plan implied the current vaccination schedule promoted by the CDC was not safe, his plan was not popular with the medical authorities.
In his study, to compare the health of 2763 vaccinated children and the 561 unvaccinated children born into his practice, he plotted how many total visits each group had for a variety of issues as their age increased (e.g., how many visits for asthma in total had occurred in vaccinated children who were 1000 days old or younger) and then compared the two (with the unvaccinated group's visits being equalized by multiplying them by 4.9 [2763/561]). This data in turn suggested vaccinations were the primary agent responsible for the epidemic of chronic diseases in our society.
Likewise, when Thomas compared how likely a child was to come in for an office visit for a variety of health concerns, he found the greater the number of total vaccines a child received (which varied widely in his practice), the more likely they were to require an office visit for a variety of conditions.
Note: the full size version of this chart can be viewed here . In this chart, pay special attention to the fact these charts include ADHD (which was not found in any of the unvaccinated patients), behavioral issues, speech issues, social issues, learning delay and developmental autism.
Hooker and Miller performed a similar study to Paul Thomas. However, in their study , they evaluated data from 3 different pediatric practices, and analyzed the 2,047 who had been born within the medical practice between November 2005 to June 2015 that had not received one of the selected diagnoses prior to their 1 st birthday. They found:
Note: the above chart only compares the children within the sample who were at least 5 years old. When younger children were compared to each other, smaller increases were seen in the rates of each of these chronic diseases as there had been less time for the chronic effects of repeated vaccinations to manifest.
The stark differences in the rates of adverse injuries have also inspired a variety of independent surveys to be commissioned which assessed if this link indeed exists. It should also be noted that I can explain the mechanism that ties almost every condition listed in this section to vaccination (but will not do so for length considerations). Note: I reformatted most of the surveys that follow to make their data easier to see.
In 2007, Generation Rescue (GR), an organization that is trying to alert Americans that vaccines cause autism, hired a third party polling firm ( SurveyUSA ) and paid them $200,000 to do a survey of 17,674 children (991 of whom were completely unvaccinated). It found:
In 2017, a survey of mothers of homeschooled children from Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Oregon was carried out and then published . Since there are a significant number of unvaccinated children who homeschool, it was possible to compare 261 unvaccinated children to 405 fully or partially vaccinated children. Its results were as follows:
Note: since the three illnesses vaccination were supposed to prevent decreased (whereas the others increased), that data supports the validity of this survey.
Between April 2019 to June 2020, the Control Group attempted to locate as many unvaccinated as possible to survey their health. Ultimately, they received 1544 completed surveys (1482 were from the US and represented 48 states). Once this data was obtained it was published in an easy to read 21 page set of charts that compared the rates of these events to their general occurrence in the population and a more detailed 85-page report . Like the previous groups, they found a massive increase in chronic illness following vaccination, and additionally, demonstrated that vaccinating while pregnant or a newborn receiving the vitamin K shot ( about half of which contain aluminum ) is not entirely safe.
Many people in tech believe the solution to all of humanity's problems is more data. This echoes the belief of the founder of evidence-based medicine (which has become the current dogma of modern medicine), who argued that having medical practice guided by the best available scientific evidence was essential as it would eliminate bad medical practices that had become entrenched medical dogmas and replace them with evidence-based approaches that saved lives.
While he was correct, like those in Silicon Valley, this approach was also incredibly naive as it failed to account for the obvious loophole'--burying any data that provided inconvenient conclusions. As such, ''the best available evidence'' typically ends up being the best funded evidence, not the best evidence and at this point, trillions are spent each year to monopolize that evidence.
To illustrate: our electronic medical records which doctors are forced to spend a significant amount of each day entering data into collect an absolutely massive amount of medical data. Yet'--despite countless pleas to, we almost never mine that data to determine what constitutes the best medical practice (e.g., which drug produces a better outcome for a condition or which pharmaceuticals are more likely to harm than help a patient). This would be very easy to do, numerous people (including an acquaintance of mine) have tried to do this but got shut down (e.g., the government scrapped a system that in 2010 , showed 2.6% of recipients of vaccines had an injury within 30 days of vaccination). I in turn, would argue that suggests the data in those records greatly threatens the pharmaceutical industry (which is why I was so supportive of RFK Jr's VP nominee's call to make that data available to everyone).
Over the last two years, I've gotten to know Steve Kirsch and would argue the following traits hold true for him: 'He has a deep desire to help people (e.g., he's donated a lot of money to charity) and believes that better data and science are the keys to doing this. 'He believes things should be fair and it really bothers him when people violate the responsibilities they are entrusted with (e.g., the CDC monitoring for vaccine safety). 'When something bothers him, he often doesn't let it go and can be relentless in trying to rectify it (which is demonstrated by how much time he has put into the minute details of the COVID-19 injury data). 'He has no qualms about doing things you aren't supposed to do or creating an uncomfortable situation to get something done he believes is important. This includes directly confronting people he thinks are being dishonest or incompetent and full of it.
Note: I am sure many of you know someone like this. Steve however is unique because I don't know anyone else who has been anywhere near as successful in the professional sphere as he has, and I am hence incredibly grateful he decided to pick up the vaccine issue as we'd been waiting for decades for someone like him to do that (which is essentially why I've worked so hard to support him). Because of his personality, Steve in turn had a revelation'--if no one will give us the data we need about the vaccines I should just obtain it myself. In turn, beyond collecting every existing dataset demonstrating the harm of the vaccines (many of which I've reused here), he has also funded numerous professional surveys being conducted on the COVID vaccines (which all found between 8.6% to 16.4% of COVID vaccine recipients experienced significant harm from them, a rate similar to that of other independent surveys that were also conducted).
Additionally, he has also leveraged his large following to conduct numerous surveys on vaccine injury. While the initial ones were targeted at the COVID-19 vaccines, as he became aware of the scope of the problem we were facing, he also chose to do the same for the childhood vaccines.
From this, he found similar results to the previously mentioned parties. For example in his first survey of ~10,000 people, he again demonstrated the dose-response relationship between vaccination and chronic illness:
Recently, Kirsch completed a larger survey of ~13,000 people which had similar results to his previous survey and the ones mentioned above.
Note: Steve Kirsch recently had an outside statistician assess and affirm the validity of the above survey's data .
Hopefully, this shocking data provides some context to why many are so ardently opposed to vaccination and why there is such a strong embargo on ever letting any of this data get out. This is a shame as it has allowed an ever increasing number of vaccines to enter the market ( as the corrupt CDC consistently rubber stamps each new one ) which in turn has led to us needing to spend trillions of dollars each year ''treating'' the complications of those vaccines .
What I believe is the most important to understand about these statistics is that they only represent the tip of the iceberg, as the surveyors were only looking for the easy to observe conditions most obviously linked to vaccination (the ''significant reactions''). This in turn is reflective of a fundamental principle in toxicology'--extreme reactions to a toxin (sudden death) are much rarer than minor ones.
In the next section, we will consider the middle of this bell curve'--the moderate reactions that are rarely linked to vaccination.
A remarkable feature of encephalitis'--whether of epidemic origin or due to an infectious disease, traumatic injury, or vaccination '--is the multifarious diversity of its physical, neurologic, mental, and emotional symptom since any portion of the nervous system may be affected.
If autism is a manifestation of vaccine-induced encephalitis, the implications are very disturbing. The symptoms manifested with pathological intensity in a small group will of necessity appear in milder form in a much larger proportion of the population.
The 1985 Book, DPT: A Shot in the Dark is arguably the most influential book ever written for the vaccine safety movement (e.g., it was responsible for rallying Congress to do something about the epidemic of sudden deaths and brain damage being created by the original DPT vaccine). What is less known is that in 1990, one of its authors, Harris Coulter , then published a book that alleged that vaccines were responsible for the widespread increase in crime sweeping the nation.
Note: I consider this book to be one of the most eye opening and disturbing books I've ever read (e.g., I saw what it described happen in people very close to me). Since some of its content is quite graphic (and because the book is hard to find) I am including a copy of it at the end of this article for those who would like to read it (which I would strongly encourage you to do). As there are too many references to list here, to locate them, please consult the book's bibliography.
The author (who as his obituary shows was a lovely human being and gifted researcher) in this book argued that: 1. Many of the same complications seen after encephalitis (e.g., cranial nerve issues, seizures, paralysis, or permanent intellectual disability) also occurred after vaccination. He proved this by compiling extensive literature reports of each, which showed they overlapped and in many cases, showed the vaccine injuries were assessed to be ''encephalitis.'' This included over 400 references from the scientific literature (located prior to the internet existing), another 400-500 he reviewed but did not cite (which arrived at similar conclusions), interviews of approximately 150 families, where in many cases, he was able to show these childhood brain injuries progressed into a life of crime. Note: I believe ''encephalitis'' (or encephalopathy) is a combination of brain inflammation (autoimmunity is a common complication of vaccination ), brain swelling, microstrokes throughout the brain (discussed further here ) and an unresolved cell danger response (discussed further here ). Additionally, if you read the medical literature from roughly a century ago (summarized here ), its clear many doctors believed vaccines caused encephalitis based on the symptoms they observed (and in many cases the autopsies they later performed). 2. If the DPT vaccine can cause "acute encephalopathy" in a small number of cases ( which was acknowledged by the Institute of Medicine in 1991), it must cause a milder condition in a larger number of cases as the reactions of a group of individuals to a given biological stress are never "all or nothing," but fall along a continuum. Note: Coulter cited many different authors who observed a bell curve in post-encephalitis complications.
3. That it was very easy to miss that this was happening. For example, Coulter cited two different authorities on this subject who said:
Actually there is no correlation between the severity of the infectious disease and the cerebral involvement. In many cases with only a mild illness severe postencephalitic complications may arise months or even years later.
Even apparently uncomplicated attacks of infectious diseases of childhood (e.g., pertussis) may result in brain damage, which may then be the primary cause of subsequent behavior disorders
Researchers in the epidemiology of vaccine damage invariably assume that long-term sequelae will not occur in the absence of a severe acute reaction. This assumption was accepted by us in writing DPT: AShot in the Dark. Thus it was puzzling to find that about half of the new families interviewed for the present investigation could not remember any marked vaccine reaction, even though the child began to develop symptoms of autism or other severe neurology shortly after one of the shots.
4. Many of complications of encephalitis (e.g., a myriad of learning disabilities or psychiatric and neurologic illnesses such as autism) became dramatically more common in our society starting in the 1940s and 1950s, a rise which paralleled increased vaccinations and increased vaccine injuries (predominantly as a result of DPT) and could be directly observed rippling through society as these children grew up. For example:
Rimland and Larson have called attention to "the striking, almost mirror-image correlation, starting about 1963, between the curves showing the decline in SAT scores and the upsurge in violent crime [which was often psychotic in nature]," suggesting "the existence of one or more common causal factors."
The contrast between then and now was emphasized in a 1987 report on school discipline by the New Jersey Human Rights Commissioner. In the 1940s the most frequent school problems were: talking, chewing gum, making noise, running ni the halls, getting out of turn ni line, wearing improper clothing, and not putting paper in wastebaskets. In the 1980s they were: drug and alcohol abuse, rape, robbery, assault, burglary, arson, bombings, murder, absenteeism, vandalism, extortion, gang warfare, abortion, and venereal disease.
The murder rate doubled between 1960 and 1980, from four to eight per 100,000 inhabitants, for a total of more than 20,000 in 1987, giving the United States the highest incidence of homicide of any industrialized country. The largest increase occurred between 1960 and 1970.
A 1987 Washington Post-ABC News poll made a curious discovery'--that sixteen percent of Americans under thirty are left- handed or ambidexterous [this is a common consequence of encephalitis], as against only twelve percent of those over sixty. Another recent survey found an even greater disparity: thirteen percent of twenty-year olds were lefties, compared to five percent of persons in their fifties.
5. Autism (a condition which follows vaccination and first emerged after DPT entered the market), has a strong association with many of the consequences of encephalitis (e.g., cognitive disability and cranial nerve paralysis). 6. That sociopathic behavior being observed to cluster in families mirrors the observation sensitivity to vaccine injuries also clusters in families. Likewise, Coulter suggested the increased sensitivity African Americans have to vaccine injuries (best shown through the CDC's infamous decision to bury data that showed vaccines caused black boys to develop autism) might explain the criminal patterns seen in those demographics. Note: i n a recent article , I discussed how some patients (e.g., those with hypermobility) are also much more sensitive to vaccine injuries. 7. That a variety of conditions had been created by the American Psychiatric Association which spanned the range from how minor to severe brain damage manifested itself in behavioral disorders (e.g., minimal brain damage, oppositional defiance disorder, conduct disorder, sociopathy). Coulter emphasized that as the DPT encephalitis condition exploded across America, the psychiatric profession tried again and again to gaslight the population by blaming it on unresolved psychological conflicts or poor upbringings rather than providing treatments holistic doctors had consistently found could help these conditions. As far as I can tell, this psychological gaslighting continued until the newer psychiatric medications (e.g., the disastrous antidepressants ) entered the market, at which point psychiatric pivoted to mass-prescribing these lucrative products to the post-encephalitic patients. Note: this is a pattern that has persisted ever since Freud's original cases over a century ago which falsely attributed symptoms of mercury poisoning to unresolved sexual issues .
8. In the 1950s, a condition termed ''minimal brain damage'' [MBD] was coined (with the defining characteristic of it being hyperactivity), which before long became ''perhaps the most common, and certainly one of the most time-consuming problems in current pediatric practice''. The symptoms of MBD (as defined by America's Public Health Service and the American Psychiatric Association) have a significant overlap with what was seen after encephalitis, DPT injuries, and what was associated with autism.
A British physician in 1928 noted that "changes in morals and character" in patients who have had encephalitis reveal a "curious uniformity."' This same "curious uniformity" stamps the autistic, the minimally brain damaged, and the sociopath.
This encephalitis may produce an intellectual, tormented, and cruel monster out of a gentle girl or boy." "A child of previously responsible character may be so transformed as to seem adifferent person...cruel, destructive, abusive, indecent.
Note: as a point of clarification, autistic children typically do not demonstrate cruel or sadistic behaviors. However, they do share many of the other traits found in post-encephalitic individuals.
9. There was a wide range of consequences of encephalitis. Many of these were subtle and insidiously altered the child's personality, commonly making them hyperactive, hypersexual less empathetic, and generally uncomfortable with their environment. Many of these traits in turn were also seen in violent criminals and disruptive children (who frequently then went on to become violent criminals). 10. Coulter then collected numerous case histories of violent and sociopathic criminals demonstrating that they displayed many of the exact same signs (e.g., cranial nerve issues) seen in victims of encephalitis (be it from vaccination or a natural infection). This included detailed reviews of infamous criminals who precisely fit the post-encephalitic pattern such as Ted Bundy . 11. Coulter also provided numerous statistics and studies which showed violent criminals had dramatically higher rates of brain damage and neurologic dysfunction. Many of the studies he cited (e.g., one of 321 excessively violent individuals showed 90-100% had demonstrable brain dysfunction) found these defects occurred at 5-10 times the rates seen in the general population). Note: the associations shown in the papers Coulter compiled are also supported by modern research and hence are generally accepted. Additionally, newer research made possible by functional MRIs also show that violent or sociopathic criminals often have significant brain damage and lack the normal functions other humans have.
12. Coulter cited numerous statistics showing a small minority of the population committed a majority of the violent crimes that occurred and evidence showing the crimes in the post DPT era were often much more brutal and sociopathic.
The traits commonly associated with MBD in turn were as follows: Note: these were also frequently observed to be consequences of encephalitis and often clustered together . Additionally, quite a few of these are now known to occur more frequently in violent criminals.
'Hyperactivity (this was by far the most commonly associated trait with MBD). Note: there is a well-known association between hyperactivity and stimulant drug use or violent crime. Many authors (e.g., psychiatrist Gabor Mat(C) ) in turn have argued many people become drug addicts because they have untreated ADD (which we typically treat with pharmaceutical amphetamines'--which unfortunately, like the SSRI antidepressants , can cause violent psychosis). '
Frequent drug and alcohol use.
'Hypersexuality. Often this sexuality was detached from having any type of connection to the other person and sometimes gave rise to a variety of unusual sexual fetishes or preferences. Note: this goes hand in hand with the emotional blunting frequently observed after encephalitis. Additionally, one of the most common types of dementia (which results from poor blood flow to the brain) is characterized by hypersexual behavior . 'Feeling overwhelmed by and not in control of their environment. 'Having difficulty organizing their thoughts or remembering their past experience. Note: this includes a flattening of one's affect when remembering their questionable conduct from the past, an inability to empathize with those who were affected by it and in many of the case histories Coulter compiled, a complete amnesia of it. 'A very short attention span (and paradoxically in a few cases, instead an obsessive and greatly excessive attention span). 'Being impulsive and easily triggered into having violent outbursts (from both external stressors and internal ones such as a severe headache).
'Headaches (which sometimes necessitated banging their head against a wall). 'A high incidence of seizure disorders: epilepsy, tics, tremors, choreiform (twisting) movements, facial grimaces, infantile spasms, and others. There were also frequently overt signs (e.g., EEG abnormalities) and subtle signs (e.g., poor coordination) of these disorders. 'While some children with MBD had above average intelligence, on average their IQ was below average. 'Bed-wetting in childhood, typically occurring in conjunction with a sleep disorder (that often had features such as teeth-grinding, night sweats, nightmares, and night terrors). Sometimes this is also accompanied by loss of bowel control (e.g., ectopresis). 'Poor visual-motor coordination, clumsiness and a lack of grace to their movement (e.g., ''impaired hopping ability, and a tendency to walk on the toes''). 'Decreased sensation to external painful stimuli. 'Left-handedness or ambidexterity. Note: I know numerous people with DPT injuries this happened to.
'Various processing disorders. These include dyslexia (difficulty reading), dysgraphia (difficulty writing), dyscalcula (difficulty with numbers), impaired speech (e.g., stuttering or stammering), paucity of speech or mutism, hearing disorders (e.g., audiomotor incoordination, auditory imperceptions or deficits, developmental receptive language disorder, high-frequency hearing loss, or hypersensitivity to sound). Note: the perceptual disturbances often were accompanied with a difficulty telling left from right or up from down. 'Excessive sleepiness and a wide range of sleep disturbances (including new sleep disorders the medical community had not previously witnessed such as "delayed sleep phase syndrome," a condition where one cannot fall asleep until 3 or 4 in the morning). 'Frequent food allergies (along with conduct worsening when those foods were consumed). Note: other neurological diseases (e.g., schizophrenia and autism) have also been observed to improve after allergens such as gluten are completely eliminated from the diet.
'Appetitive disturbances (e.g., anorexia or bulimia). It was noted that this complication of encephalitis far more frequently affected females, whereas hyperactivity more frequently affected males. 'A strong desire to seek out music due to the rhythmicity and stability it provides.
'Being highly disruptive and violent from a very young age.
Note: in the second half of this series (which can be read here ), I discuss the changes in personality which specifically affect human relationships (e.g., the ability to emotionally connect with one's partner or one's gender identity) as there seems to be a fairly profound effect here that has real life data to substantiate it.
Assuming Coulter's thesis is correct, the implications are sobering, and it is specifically for this reason that I felt I had an ethical duty to help make his work available and to encourage you to consider reading his book.
As so much could be said about this subject, I will only share a few of my most pertinent thoughts. 'Like many of you, I often encounter people who me me think ''Why do you have to be so difficult?'' Becoming able to recognize how vaccine encephalitis manifests has allowed me to switch from being frustrated by their behavior to developing a great deal of compassion for them. Likewise, it's also made it much easier for me to understand how to effectively interact with them because I can recognize how their brains are misfiring and bypass those issues. 'Many of the cognitive changes described in post-encephalitic patients perfectly mirror the common frustrations women have with men who cannot emotionally connect to them. This in turn has made me realize the vaccine program has likely profoundly altered the dating dynamics of the country, and from the limited queries I've made so far, my older readers who witnessed this shift occur agree it is likely an issue. 'I believe the gravest violation of medical ethics is if the pharmaceutical harms those who never consented to taking it. This is why I have put such a heavy focus on both the COVID-19 vaccine shedding and the frequent tendency of SSRI antidepressants to cause episodes of mass violence (e.g., school shootings ). 'This whole concept really turns both the liberal and conservative notions of what should happen with criminal justice upside down. 'There has been a longstanding observation that the quality of American education has greatly declined (e.g., that what used to be taught in 8th grade was more difficult than what is now taught in college). I long thought this was due to education being massively mismanaged as it shifted to a profit focused (student retention) based model, but after I learned of Coulter's hypothesis, I realized that it could also instead be a symptom of the societal wide decline in cognitive function being created by mass vaccination. This may also be intentional, as too many intelligent and mentally healthy people would threaten any oppressive power structure, and in turn mirrors what a doctor who was mentored by Robert S. Mendelsohn M.D. (a renowned pediatrician and one of the most impactful dissidents against the medical cartel) shared with me:
Mendelsohn told me that during his appointment as Medical Director of Project Head Start's Medical Consultation Service in 1968, he was horrified by the discussions held privately in the White House with his medical colleagues. They were openly discussing how they could control the population of the poor by promoting infant formula , vaccinations, sadistic hospital birthing practices, deficient government schools, and neighborhood abortion clinics. This was just too much of an assault on his strong Jewish faith and his Hippocratic oath.
'There is presently no incentive to stop this as so much money can be made selling treatments for these diseases (which are often very harmful), while if the mistake is ever admitted, far too many people have too much to lose. This in turn is why we keep on having worse and worse vaccine tragedies inflicted upon the world.Note: while this position is controversial, I support providing some type of amnesty for the vaccine cartel, as I believe that is the only thing short of a revolution which would make them be willing to stop protecting the vaccine racket, since without it, it is quite literally a life or death battle for them to prove vaccines are ''safe and effective.''
When I first entered the medical field, a variety of holistic doctors (and other healers) told me they could typically tell if a child had been vaccinated. While I believe this is often possible to do, it requires utilizing a variety of more subtle signs most people would not agree with (excluding say the parents who noticed ''something'' changed in their child after vaccination).
Note: once you start becoming able to see how vaccine injuries are, it gets really depressing.
In turn, many have asked me what the signs of vaccine injury are. The challenge with this topic is that subtle injuries are dramatically more common than severe injuries (as reactions to toxins tend to follow a bell curve, with the most severe reactions being the rarest). Thus, the more subtle signs are harder to recognize (or prove resulted from vaccination) but simultaneously are by far the most common.
Some of the most common signs we use are: 'A new condition developing shortly after vaccination that is known to be linked to vaccination (e.g., those listed in the above surveys such as seizures or autism). Often, there is a fairly consistent pattern in how these injuries form (e.g., they are preceded by severe fevers and crying that immediately follow the vaccination). 'Overt changes in the cranial nerves (e.g., the eyes no longer track normally, or the facial muscles become asymmetrical). Note: in a recent article , I explained how vaccine induced microstrokes can commonly cause this to happen. 'A subtle change in function to any of the cranial nerves (many of which are detailed in the copy of Coulter's book included below and in Wilson's earlier compilation of our first century of forgotten vaccine disasters). Note: if you train yourself to spot these, they become more and more obvious as you become able to notice when something facilitated by a neurological process seems to glitch or misfire (e.g., the eyes lose their smoothness and jump as they move to either side). 'Overt (rarer) or subtle (more common) cognitive and neurological changes which can be indicative of brain inflammation or brain damage. Like the cranial nerve changes, they are also discussed in Wilson and Coulter's book (included below).
In addition to these changes, they are some more subtle ''spiritual'' changes, which are amongst the most frequent changes observed (and what many of my colleagues eventually default to using to identify vaccine injuries). Given that these signs, while very apparent, are ''spiritual'' in nature, I went back and forth on if I wanted to discuss them, and eventually felt it needed to be to a limited audience.
EI7GL....A diary of amateur radio activity: Notice: Upcoming HAARP ionospheric tests from Alaska - 8th to 10th May 2024
Sun, 12 May 2024 03:21
High-frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) is based in Alaska and it's a high-power, high frequency (HF) transmitter for studying the ionosphere.  The principal instrument is a phased array of 180 HF crossed-dipole antennas  capable of radiating 3.6 megawatts  into the upper atmosphere and ionosphere.  Transmit frequencies are selectable in the range of 2.7 to 10 MHz.
The research team have announced that they will be carrying out tests from the 8th to the 10th of May 2024.
The press release is shown below and I've added a map to show location and distance.
Date: May 2, 2024To: Amateur Radio & Radio Astronomy CommunitiesFrom: HAARP Program OfficeSubject: Notice of TransmissionThe High-frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) will be conducting a research campaign May 8-10 UTC, with operating times specified in the table below. Operating frequencies will vary, but all HAARP transmissions will be between 2.8 MHz and 10 MHz. Actual transmit days and times are highly variable based on real-time ionospheric and/or geomagnetic conditions. All information is subject to change.This campaign is being conducted in support of research proposals from the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and is studying mechanisms for the detection of orbiting space debris. Space debris poses a major risk to all space operations, including manned spacecraft and communications satellites. The experiments being performed at HAARP will help identify ways to improve collision detection on satellites. For more information on space debris, see the NASA Orbital Debris Program Office’s FAQ at For more information on research at HAARP, see the online HAARP FAQ at that these experiments will operate at frequencies based on the f0F2 frequency from the Gakona ionograms. In general, transmissions will be very close to the f0F2 frequency. There are no specific data collection requests from funded investigators, but reception reports are appreciated and may be submitted to uaf-gi-haarp AT alaska DOT edu or to: HAARP, PO Box 271, Gakona, AK 99586For updates on ionospheric conditions in Gakona, please consult ionograms from the HAARPDiagnostic Suite: Resources for Reading IonogramsUnderstanding HF Propagation and Reading Ionograms from Bootstrap Workbench: Your Ionogram-Keeping It Simple from John (VE6EY): image above is an annotated ionogram from HAARP that describes features that may be ofinterest. Note that f0F2 is calculated at the top left.f0F2 is the critical frequency of the F2 layer of the Earth’s ionosphere. This is the frequency atwhich radio signals stop refracting off the ionosphere and begin passing through to outer space.For certain HAARP experiments that deal with interactions in the ionosphere, transmissionfrequencies below f0F2 are desirable, while for other experiments (such as those involving high altitude satellites), staying above f0F2 is required.Supplement to HAARP Notice of TransmissionGeneral Information for HAARP Radio Enthusiasts: 1) The HAARP Ionospheric Research Instrument (IRI) transmits only in the frequency range 2.695 to 9.995 MHz,with certain frequencies blocked out as specified in the FCC license for call sign WI2XFX. The emission bandwidth may be up to 46 kHz wide, the actual value depending on the frequency and experiment;2) The lower frequency transmissions many times are based on a harmonic of the local ionosphere's gyro frequency, the actual frequency depending on the experiment. The fundamental gyro frequency above HAARP varies from roughly 1.5 MHz at lower altitudes to 1.2 MHz at higher altitudes.3) Higher frequency transmissions many times are based on the critical plasma frequency for the F2 region (foF2), which is determined by the Gakona ionosonde. These higher transmission frequencies may be above, below or at the critical frequency depending on the experiment. Mid-range frequencies often are used for artificial airglow experiments. The critical plasma frequency in the vicinity of HAARP varies widely depending on, among other things, time of day, season and sunspot cycle;4) One or two carriers are transmitted and one or both of the carriers are modulated. The types of modulation varies with the experiment requirements. Modulation may be AM, FM, LFM or a complex waveform or a time sequence of different modulations;5) Most experiments depend on ionospheric and geomagnetic conditions that are mostly unpredictable. The transmission frequencies for a given experiment may change to track changes in those conditions with little or no notice;6) A scheduled experiment that depends on certain ionospheric or geomagnetic conditions may be rescheduled or cancelled if the required conditions do not occur;7) To request a HAARP QSL card, send reception reports to: HAARP, P.O. Box 271, Gakona, Alaska 99586 USA;8) Additional information can be found on the HAARP webpage at: .Monitoring HAARP IRI transmissions with a Software Defined Radio Receiver:1) Listeners with an SDR receiver capable of 8 MHz bandwidth can monitor the entire frequency band noted above;2) Transmissions most often are programmed to Start at top of the minute, ie, HH:MM:00 but some start at 30seconds, ie, HH:MM:30. Transmissions usually Stop on the 30 second mark, ie, HH:MM:30 to allow time to retune the transmitter/antenna for the next experiment. There may be exceptions to the Start and Stop times;3) When a carrier is seen to pop up on the SDR’s displayed spectra, the listener can identify the centerfrequency using the SDR software and then reduce the bandwidth to further monitor, demodulate or analyze the signal;4) If two SDRs are available, one can be used in a wideband mode to locate the signals and the other can be used in a narrowband mode to analyze, demodulate or monitor the specific signals;File: HAARP Transmission Notice Supplement.docx, Revision 1.2, page 2 5) Since the maximum emission bandwidth is 46 kHz (±23 kHz), SDRs with a 50 kHz bandwidth setting are able to monitor the entire modulated signal after it is located. However, the center frequency may be stepped through a range of frequencies or may change according to experiment requirements to another, far removed frequency;6) Not all experiments use the full 46 kHz bandwidth, some use only a pure carrier and some use singlesideband;7) Some experiments require a transmitter On – transmitter Off cycle. The cycle times and On-Off ratios typically vary from experiment to experiment but Off times typically are minutes or fractions of a minute. Transmission On times can last from a couple minutes to a couple hours;8) Radio propagation conditions and the IRI beam direction will affect the reception of the IRI transmissions or cause a fadeout at the receiving antenna location. Propagation conditions and beam directions can change significantly and rapidly during an experiment;9) Some experiments require the IRI beam to be pointed along or near the local magnetic zenith. This means the beam is pointed parallel or nearly parallel to the local magnetic field lines. The magnetic zenith at the HAARP facility is approximately 75° elevation and 16° east of north;10) Although the HAARP IRI transmits only in the HF range (see above), the transmissions can and some experiments are designed to generate ELF, SLF, ULF, and VLF emissions in the D/E-regions of the ionosphere. Other experiments may not be designed to generate these low frequency emissions but the emissions are generated as a side effect. Modulated heating of the D/E-region electrons by the HF transmissions in turn modulates the plasma conductivity, which generates a virtual antenna at altitudes between 70 and 85 km. Emissions up to 20 kHz have been demonstrated but most are below a few kilohertz. These low frequency emissions can propagate in the Earth-Ionosphere Waveguide or by other mechanisms, depending on frequency, and conceivably can travel great distances. 
Canadian Bill C-63 Creates a Kangaroo Court | Francis Crescia
Sat, 11 May 2024 16:58
In Canada, Big Brother wants control of how citizens think and speak. Tragically, this Orwellian nightmare is becoming a reality. The government's trilogy of censorship bills'-- Bill C-11 empowered the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission to tell us what to watch, Bill C-18 extorted millions from big tech to help fund legacy media, and the recently introduced On-Line Harms Act Bill C-63 will impose authoritarian censorship laws the likes of which are found in places like Iran or China.
Bill C-63, which recently passed its first reading in the House of Commons, will create a ''Digital Safety Commission'' with nearly unlimited power to regulate online platforms. The tribunal will accept anonymous accusations and can punish wrongdoers with fines of upwards of $50,000 to the government and $20,000 to the complainant. The legal standard used is not beyond a reasonable doubt of proof but the lower standard of balance of probabilities.
The commission can appoint an investigator who can enter a residence without a warrant and search for information, taking away one's computer and documents'--you don't even need to commit a crime. If a judge believes there are ''reasonable grounds'' to fear a future hate crime, the yet-to-be-charged person can be sentenced to house arrest with electric tagging and communication bans. If the person does not cooperate, they go to jail.
Michael Geist, a law professor at the University of Ottawa, has pointed out that the commission is not even ''bound by any legal or technical rules of evidence.'' Canada's best-known writer, Margaret Atwood, is one of the few among the country's cultural elites to speak out against the bill. She warned that ''the definitions or lack of them in the law as to what constitutes punishable speech and or thought are so vague as to invite abuse.''
She referred to periods in history like the French Revolution, when the Law of 22 Prairial denied the accused the right to self-defense, or during the Salem witch trials of 1692-93, when ''spectral evidence'' led to 19 people hanged for practicing witchcraft. ''The possibilities for revenge false accusations and thought crime stuff are so inviting,'' she wrote on X.
On the surface, Bill C-63 purports to protect children from online bullying and victimization. But the 5,000 plus word bill is ladened with newspeak. The criminal code is amended so that any hate crime is punishable with life imprisonment. ''Advocating for genocide'' goes from 5 years in prison to life. The Trudeau Liberals are using the guillotine for speech violations and house arrest for career criminals roaming the streets exploiting a broken bail system .
Lawyer Olivier Sequin, who works with the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, believes the ''government's hate speech is so subjective and vague that just about anything from political opinion to criticism can fall into its net.'' Bill C-63 defines hate speech as any communication that expresses ''detestation or vilification'' of a person or group of people. Individuals and groups can complain to the Canadian Human Rights Commission that they have been offended by speech that discriminates against them. One must remember that the Human Rights Commission has deemed Christmas as ''racist.''
Trudeau vows that the bill is to protect Canadian youths from ''online harms,'' but the ''think of the children'' argument is spurious. There are already criminal laws on the books to deal with the publication of obscene material and child pornography, publishing intimate images without consent; section 319 (1) prohibits the public incitement of hatred towards a group that is identifiable by race, ethnicity, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression and criminalizes sedition.
And social media companies have their own set of robust rules and censor users for the slightest offense. Not to mention that a causal link between harm to adolescents and social media has not been demonstrated in the scientific literature (See here , here and here for robust studies).
How did Canada become so anti-free speech? Under the leadership of Justin Trudeau, the Liberal government has doubled down on its ideology that is intolerant of criticism, abhors debating controversial ideas, and is possessed of a tribal mentality that only cares about the needs of its own at the expense of liberty.
Even before the On-Line Harms Act, Canada suffered from heavy state censorship. By making it a criminal offense to speak one's mind, Bill C-63 will create a chilling effect . Citizens will avoid criticizing the government; social media companies will act reflexively by removing any content that the government wants to censor; journalists, writers, and commentators will not dare criticize gender, ethnicity, religion, or the indigenous file. We're already starting to see the effects of Bill C-18. Meta has already ''decided to block news content on Instagram and Facebook in order to avoid the law.'' The regulations of C-63 are likely to make matters worse.
The bill is a significant legal overreach by the current Liberal government. It appears that they are attempting to gain votes by catering to certain interest groups while making it simpler for police to detain individuals for free speech violations without following due process.
Scientists raise concerns as dangerous illness threatens over 1 billion people: 'We may see more frequent outbreaks'
Sat, 11 May 2024 16:49
Insect-borne diseases that were once confined to certain geographical areas are spreading, thanks to the continued overheating of our planet. One such disease is scrub typhus, which was recently detected for the first time in the mountainous country of Bhutan, Eco-Business reported.
What is happening?Scrub typhus is transmitted through the bite of larval mites of the Trombiculidae family, also known as chiggers.
The zoonotic illness causes symptoms including fever and chills, headaches, body aches and muscle pain, and mental changes ranging from confusion to coma, according to the CDC.
While it has historically been restricted to a geographic area in the Asia-Pacific called the "tsutsugamushi triangle," which has both intense humidity and scrub vegetation, that area is now expanding. Over 1 billion people are at risk of the disease, according to a scientific study from 2018, with that number only rising.
Why is this concerning?Scrub typhus is not the only vector-borne disease (one that is transmitted to humans by blood-feeding insects) that is on the rise, with its reach spreading due to our overheating planet. Dengue fever, babesiosis, Lyme disease, malaria, and more are all on the rise.
"As meteorological factors play a key role in creating a conducive environment for the chiggers to thrive," said Tandin Zangpo, a medical epidemiologist at Khesar Gyalpo University of Medical Sciences and the co-author of another study on the scrub typhus. "This also means climate change will have significant impacts on scrub typhus outbreaks. If changes in the climate lead to a scenario where the rainfall and the humidity is at a level just ideal for mites to proliferate, we may see more frequent outbreaks."
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What is being done about it?Zangpo advocated for a One Health approach to combat scrub typhus and other zoonotic disease outbreaks. Per the World Health Organization, "One Health is an integrated, unifying approach to balance and optimize the health of people, animals and ecosystems. It uses the close, interdependent links among these fields to create new surveillance and disease control methods."
More broadly speaking, we must stop the activities'--primarily the use of dirty energy sources like gas and oil'--that are causing our planet's overheating and turn instead to clean, renewable energy sources like wind and solar.
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(15) Letter from Salem, MA - Outspoken with Dr Naomi Wolf
Sat, 11 May 2024 16:48
From time to time, for family reasons, Brian and I visit the charming Massachusetts town of Salem. Yes, that Salem '-- home of the famous witch trials in 1692-1693, during which a contagious frenzy led to accusations against 200 people of practicing witchcraft, to mass hysteria, and eventually to executions, mostly by hanging, of over twenty people. Women and men accused of witchcraft were denied speedy trials and left to languish in prison, or were tortured. One man was pressed to death by stones.
When the frenzy had passed, almost no one took responsibility for the hysteria that had swept up the community, involving its leading citizens. Almost no one admitted that it was likely that innocent people had died due to these leaders' own inflamed and even crazed beliefs and actions. Just one judge, Samuel Sewall, five years later, publicly expressed remorse.
Salem today makes much of its storied past, for reasons mostly having to do with its modern tourism economy. This is mostly cute, and it gives Salem a sense of place, and an eccentricity, rarely found in modern American towns.
It bears reflecting, though, when you pass by the stores on Essex Street selling trinkets for tourists '-- tarot decks and pointy black witch hats, and crystal balls and ''scrying'' kits (scrying is the act of telling the future by gazing into a reflecting medium) '-- that the cuteness sanitizes a terrifying mass hallucination in the seaport town. It is easy to forget, as you pass the much-Selfie'd bronze statue of actress Elizabeth Montgomery in her role as Samantha Stephens, the ''good witch'' who married a mortal men, in the 1960s TV series ''Bewitched'' '-- or as you watch the throngs of young adults bar-hopping, dressed in Goth attire, black lipstick and white powder on both men and women, and the women in cobwebby black gowns '-- that all this festivity memorializes a madness that descended on a whole community, and that it was mostly the vulnerable members of the community who were called witches, and who were imprisoned or perished.
It is really important to know history, so that one is not destined to repeat it.
I kind of love Salem. I have come to love the sense of community in the solid middle-class neighborhoods, many of them settled by French Canadian immigrants. When we visit, we stay in one such neighborhood; one of our favorite neighbors is a descendent of this French-Canadian wave of immigration.
Thousands of Franco-Canadian immigrants settled in the Salem area, starting in about 1860, and continuing into the beginning of the 20th century; they came to work on the fishing boats, or at Pequot Mills, or at the Naumkeag Steam Cotton Mill. These families built, around an area called The Point, a vibrant community: with churches and social clubs; schools and small businesses. The community was devastated in 1914 by a massive fire, but the families and the town simply rebuilt. You can see, in the shift from single-family wooden Victorian structures in the streets that had been spared by the fire, to the red brick neo-Colonial apartments, the changes from the ''Before'' and the ''After'' of the fire.
This story '-- of a group of immigrants who kept their own traditions, heritage and language alive, even as they merged into the larger life of America '-- is, has been, the story of America.
When I talk to my French-Canadian neighbor now, we talk as Americans. The descendant of these immigrants is in no way set apart from the rest of the community by virtue of his French-Canadian ancestry. Our neighbor's family did not get extra assistance or revenue for the fact of their having been French-Canadian immigrants, and these immigrants indeed faced discrimination '-- throughout America. But they did not leave their grandchildren burdened with a story of oppression.
This paragraph from the essay ''Race, Privilege, and the Problem of the Subaltern Franco-American'', tells a familiar story '-- of a group that arrived in the US, was initially suspected or looked down upon, and yet that worked hard, formed resilient community structures and relationships, and went on to wield temendous political power. They did so, however, in the context of something that has been forgotten in our history: something called ''the naturalization movement''. It is a movement that maintained that we should all learn to be '-- Americans.
Speaking about a characteristic French-Canadian family, the Payettes, the author, Patrick LaCroix, writes:
''When the Payette family moved to northern New York some time around 1850, the mass migration of French Canadians to the United States was in its infancy. [1] This movement of people from the St. Lawrence River valley continued for the better part of a century, with brief interruptions in the 1870s and in the early part of the twentieth century. Whereas a high proportion of early migrants settled in the Midwest, the U.S. Northeast became the primary destination for those seeking to steady themselves financially. Faced with limited opportunities in agriculture and other sectors at home, they initially saw tiring work in the mills of New York and New England to be a short-term expedient. Families followed the economic cycle, relatives, and their own pocketbooks from one factory city to another and, very often, back to Quebec. Although the migrants were hardly rootless, early American observers nevertheless considered them as such. The proximity of the emigrants' homeland raised questions about their commitment to American civic life that did not necessarily arise with other immigrant groups. The Payette family crossed the border at a time when such concerns still prevailed, but Canadians' circumstances quickly changed. At the end of the nineteenth century, immigration from Quebec slowed, the naturalization movement gained traction, and the ''Little Canadas'' held firm. T hough continuously pressed to anglicize by nativists, Franco-Americans were, after 1900, in a position to assert political influence and assume positions of public trust. ''
Salem is still ten per cent French-Canadian, according to polls. But the out-group has become, simply, American.
That was our story, our method, till recently. It is a beautiful method and a beautiful story.
It's notable that the phrase, ''melting pot'', that was comfortingly popular in my childhood in the 1960s '-- a delicious notion, that we are all separate ingredients but we together become one new thing, one tasty culture '-- was replaced with the awkward ''salad bowl'' in the 1970s. This new phrase was explained as being less offensive a metaphor, as each element retained its individuality '-- ''melting'' into a new unity was not, it turned out, good, but bad.
This notion in turn by the 1980s was done away with; the salad bowl metaphor itself went out of the window; to be replaced by new hyphenizations '-- African-American, Asian-American, Italian-American; hyphenizations that obscured or erased or downgraded the formerly important fact that these people were all, in fact, Americans.
This change in language allowed for the taxing, endlessly stressful and reliably alienating prequel that started to appear on college campuses by the 1990s '-- ''Speaking as a'....'' As in: ''Speaking as an Asian-American.'' ''Speaking as a xxx'...''. That usage expanded to ''Speaking as a member of the working class'...'' ''Speaking as a lesbian'....'' As important as it is to understand racial, gender and class histories of oppression (and it is important), the end goal of these discussions now was no longer that of furthering understanding of one another as individuals. One no longer spoke as oneself.
With each label, we fragmented further.
New coinages arose in the context of speaking about people who still were, in fact, Americans, but by now the ''American'' element had simply been edited out: coinages such as ''BIPOC'', which stands for ''Black, Indigenous and People of Color''. The first time I heard this neologism I was genuinely confused, as I did not even understand the categories linguistically '-- did ''people of color'' mean other people of color than black people? Also, because the histories of indigenous people in this country are radically different from the histories of black people, it seemed to me like a callous, even insensitive, grouping of people together on the basis of '-- skin tone and ethnicity.
Which, as I was raised to believe, we are not supposed to do.
The newest neologisms in this arsenal now include ''Asian-American and Pacific Islanders,'' shortened to AAPI. This again is a weird and ahistorical lumping-together of people of diverse cultures and origins, who have very little in common historically. Asian-Americans, according to a website that celebrates a new month of commemoration, of a new thing - ''Asian-American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month'' '-- explains that:
''May was designated as AAPI Heritage month for two reasons: first, to commemorate the earliest documented arrival of Japanese immigrants to the U.S. on May 7, 1843, and second, to honor the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad on May 10, 1869, which upwards of 20,000 Chinese workers helped to construct.''
The website also has events celebrating Korean and Vietnamese cultures and communities. Which gives one that uneasy feeling: don't we have the longstanding cultural knowledge, which extends all the way into pop culture and even jokes, that only barbarians treat - all Asian people as if they are alike? Don't almost all of us by now know that this is the ultimate racist gaffe ?
But no '-- Chinese and Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese, are lumped together for ''AAPI Month.''
But that's not all! ''Pacific Islander'' has now been added to this ahistorical, seemingly purely ethnically-based potpourri.
What is an ''Asian American and Pacific Islander''? I actually had to look up the current definition: even this government document purporting to offer a definition, admits that there can be no definition:
''III. Asian Countries There is no official definition of the boundary between Asia and Europe (nor between continents for that matter) so the boundaries are merely traditional '' and some of the countries listed as Asian might not seem obvious. For example, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia lie south of the Caucasus Mountains which have traditionally divided the two continents. Turkey and Russia straddle both Europe and Asia (sometimes referred to as Eurasia); 80% of the latter is in Asia, but Russians are generally considered Europeans; in the former, east of Istanbul is customarily considered in Asia. These examples illustrate why a single factor cannot be used to describe ethnic identity or origin. National Geographic lists the following countries in Asia: Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, Georgia, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar (Burma), Nepal, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Qatar, Russia (parts in Europe and Asia), Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Timor-Leste (East Timor), Turkey (parts in Europe and Asia), Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Uzbekistan, Vietnam, and Yemen. Quick facts: IV. API Ethnicities and Regional Groupings Ethnic identities can be referenced in the aggregate e.g., Southeast Asians or disaggregated e.g., Cambodians. Asians and Pacific Islanders are generally grouped by regions although some of these can be politically controversial. There is tremendous diversity, with Asia having more than 40 countries, and there are more ethnicities than countries, e.g., the Hmong are an ethnic group from Laos. Also, Asian diasporas are extremely large and ethnic identity oversimplifications do not apply. For example, people of Japanese origin in Brazil culturally identify as Brazilians, those of Chinese origin in Guatemala identify as Guatemalans; whereas hyphenated identities are more common in the U.S. as evidenced by terms like Asian American, or Korean American. 2 | PageNotions of ethnic and national identity carry political, social and familial meanings too complex to analyze here. '– Central Asians Afghani, Armenian, Azerbaijani, Georgians, Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Mongolian, Tajik, Turkmen, Uzbek. '– East Asians Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Okinawan, Taiwanese, Tibetan. '– Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders (in the U.S. Jurisdictions & Territories) Carolinian, Chamorro, Chuukese, Fijian, Guamanian, Hawaiian, Kosraean, Marshallesse, Native Hawaiian, Niuean, Palauan, Pohnpeian, Samoan, Tokelauan, Tongan, Yapese. '– Southeast Asians Bruneian, Burmese, Cambodian, Filipino, Hmong, Indonesian, Laotian, Malaysian, Mien, Papua New Guinean, Singaporean, Timorese, Thai, Vietnamese. '– South Asians Bangladeshi, Bhutanese, Indian, Maldivians, Nepali, Pakistani, Sri Lankan. '– ['...]''
This repulsive catch-all based on ''Asian-ness'' '-- which seems super racist to me, frankly '-- lumps together people who have nothing at all historically in common except perhaps, and only to a very benighted person who has lived under a rock in Kansas his or her whole life, ''Asian'' features or skin tones, whatever that may mean.
But isn't categorizing people on the basis of their features and skin tones - the essence and definition of racism? Here are Japan and Korea, lumped together weirdly on this right-on ''May is AAPI Heritage Month'' website.
But '-- Japan twice occupied Korea, denied Korea's people free speech or liberties, and systematically trafficked Korean women as ''comfort women'' to its own Japanese soldiers. Japan sought to incorporate Korea and to ''obliterate'' it as a separate nation:
''In 1931 the Japanese imposed military rule once again. After the outbreak of the second Sino-Japanese War (1937) and of World War II in the Pacific (1941), Japan attempted to obliterate Korea as a nation: Koreans were forced to worship at Japanese Shintō shrines and even to adopt Japanese-style names, and academic societies devoted to Korean studies as well as newspapers and magazines published in Korean were banned. The Japanese desperately needed additional manpower to replenish the dwindling ranks of their military and labor forces. As a consequence, hundreds of thousands of able-bodied Koreans, regardless of gender, were drafted to fight for Japan and to work in mines, factories, and military bases. In addition, after the start of the Pacific war, the Japanese forced thousands of Korean women to provide sexual services (as '' comfort women '') for the military.
When Shanghai fell to the Japanese, the Korean provisional government moved to Chongqing in southwestern China. It declared war against Japan in December 1941 and organized the Korean Restoration Army, composed of independence fighters in China. This army fought with the Allied forces in China until the Japanese surrender in August 1945, which ended 35 years of Japanese rule over Korea.''
Similarly, Japan and China have histories that reveal that these nations and cultures have often been hostile to one another. Here is just one day:
''Seventy years ago this December 13th, the Japanese Imperial Army began its seizure of Nanjing, the capital of the Republic of China. Japanese troops killed remnant Chinese soldiers in violation of the laws of war, murdered Chinese civilians, raped Chinese women, and destroyed or stole Chinese property on a scale that will never be known. The violence and destruction was extensive, despite the efforts of some Japanese to minimize the scale. '' This Pew Research Center essay, ''Hostile Neighbors: China Vs. Japan'', points out that only ten per cent of Chinese citizens feel that Japan has apologized enough for its actions during the 1930s and 1940s.
Not only are many of the ''Asians'' lumped together under the woke coinage ''AAPI'' from regions with histories of mortal antagonism to one another, but there is just nothing beyond a broad and crude definition of ethnicity, that is experientially the same, in America, for many of these groups.
There is literally nothing the same in the Japanese arrival in the US in the mid-19th century to work in Hawaiian sugar cane fields, and the experiences of a completely different group of people, Chinese laborers, from a completely different geographical area, with a completely different language and culture, who arrived essentially as slaves in the 1860s, to build the US' railroads, especially in the Western United States. Again, only racism declares that these groups are the ''same'' or that they belong in a crude ethnic meta-category.
The effect of all of this ethnic and racial revisionism, is to erase the histories of these various groups of people in America. And it is certainly to erase what is American in them, and to undo what unites us all as Americans.
Is that the true intention? It looks that way to me.
I bring this up because of what I experienced on my most recent visit to Salem. I saw the establishment of two Americas, in the making, and the destruction, via new institutions and policies, of American ideals and ways of life and thought.
There is a superstructure of new illegal immigrants' housing being institutionalized, not far from us in Salem. These arrivals are mostly from Honduras, Venezuela and Panama. I reported earlier on how a beautiful set of dormitories on Salem State University's campus has been appropriated to house these ''newcomers'' '-- all together, which is, as I mentioned earlier, anomalous in the history of US immigration. The state never did that before, for any immigrant group, legal or illegal.
Here is the State, providing housing '-- but nothing is truly free.
On each trip to Salem, we see more of this alternative, fragmenting, new Marxist America being built out, by what is a fairly Marxist municipal government.
There is a gleaming new supermarket, run in part by the FDA, on Lafayette street. It is called Daily Table, and it looks like a Whole Foods, probably because one of its founders was a Whole Foods executive.
It seems, on the surface, like an amazing idea. The prices are 20-30% lower than other supermarkets. The offerings are almost entirely healthful. Fruits and vegetables are abundant. To-go meals that are nutritious, cost as little as $2.99. There is almost no junk food. The entire shopping experience is bilingual, Spanish and English. SNAP and other benefits can be used there. This is the fifth such supermarket to open in the Salem/Boston area. It is a ''nonprofit grocery model.''
Sounds fantastic, right?
But here's the catch:
''[Rob] Twyman [CEO] said the store's nonprofit model is based on covering two-thirds of costs through sales and the other one-third through corporate partnerships, private donations and government funding.''
So you undercut your competition in the free market, and pretty soon, the for-profit supermarkets are forced to close. So then, more and more people will rely on Daily Table for their groceries. Meaning that '-- people will increasingly have to rely on the government and on other even more opaque stakeholders.
And then '-- almost anything can be asked of you.
And then '-- the state can decide who eats and who does not.
And then '-- the state can decide how much information you need to yield, in order to eat.
These models of Marxist food sources, in effect, are proliferating. There is a new outlet, called the Salem Pantry , closer to where we stay. This store also offers tempting shelves full of gorgeous produce; lovely fresh dairy; healthful grocery staples.
We stay, when in Salem, in a true food desert; working-class and middle-class elderly Americans in that neighborhood, struggle to stay well fed, especially if they cannot drive. But '-- they can't shop at the Salem Pantry.
The Salem Pantry is '-- though it is rather hard to tell '-- in fact, a food pantry. The food is free. (The offerings include a service of Doordashing your grocery selection, for which you have ''paid'' with your benefits, to your apartment.)
The food is free, I say again. But is it? Some of the struggling American elders who are homebound, who live all around this location, may not be allowed to go in.
Why not?
Because the food is not free. Because you are asked how much you make, even when you try to buy something with money '-- and if you make more than a certain amount, you are literally barred from entry.
You need to say how many people are in your household, in order to enter.
You need to enlist online, and yield personal information, in order to be allowed to ''shop'' there.
(Sure enough, a voter registration table was situated '-- blue trappings '-- outside the Salem Pantry, harvesting voters.)
This situation '-- free, but not free; a shopping experience that pretends to be Utopian, but which in fact creates hierarchy and exclusion and shame '-- reminded me of a new model of grocery store that has been launched in Hudson, New York. You can opt to get a discount off of the prices if you are oppressed in various ways. But the same items will cost you more money if you confess to certain markers of privilege and opt into your privilege category '-- privileges such as having a higher degree, or being a ''privileged'' race. I am not kidding.
Facing that set of conditions, when I had been in Hudson, had led me immediately into Marxist math, as it was no doubt intended to do: I am a'...woman. So shouldn't I opt to get a discount? But I also have a'...higher degree. So I should opt to join the more expensive tier? But '-- I was a broke single mom when I got my higher degree! Discount? No - doesn't matter. My hard work should be economically punished rather than rewarded.
Again, all of this personal information is sought by Rolling Grocer.
''Factors, including income and family size, help to determine which level of the three tiers of pricing a shopper pays based on the honor system. At the lowest level, people pay the wholesale price meaning the store doesn't make money off the sale, but instead, provides a vital service.''
This seems really lovely. Supporting farmers. Making produce affordable. What is not to love?
What is not to love, is that this is literally not the American social contract.
As with the hyphenization I explored above '-- the current trend of lumping-together disparate groups with unique histories, under a superficial banner of ''race'' '-- this methodology remaking our grocery supply (and it is interesting to me that these new efforts at grocery store re-envisioning, are incredibly attractive, as if they are pilot programs) is also a remaking of our system, our core beliefs about what America is.
Both approaches remake us from being a union, a unity, in which different races and classes are all American, into being a splintered, demoralized regime in which labels and tribes define us.
These ''Marxized'' (we need a new verb) food shopping experiences, all tethered ultimately to the intrusive and potentially withholding hand of the State, remake our relationships to one another.
We are not Americans, albeit differently situated and with different struggles and advantages. Rather we are now being remade into Marxist relationships that consist of pure class war, in which we are being redefined only as the oppressed versus the oppressors; in which even our relationships to the market are redefined.
Your money is no good here.
This crude, neo-Marxist itemization of one's personal status '-- the struggle session you are encouraged to have within yourself before you reach for the arugula at Rolling Grocer; the privileging of immigrants who have broken the laws to get here, with gorgeous housing and luscious produce and solid benefits, while American elders and veterans languish, and fill their grocery baskets with '-- I've seen this; Saltines '-- is designed to splinter us apart as Americans; and remake us as Marxist subjects of a Marxist regime.
Even as Marxist Salem is being built, American Salem remains. These two cultures and worldviews still live side by side. It just depends on where you are.
Brian and I visited our new favorite haunt, the VFW. We tried the delicious omelets and the stinging Bloody Marys on a Sunday morning, and in that time and place, we were in '-- the Before culture.
It was not about a demographic. It was about a vibe.
I had been there first by myself one night when Brian had to work, and when I came home I had tried to describe how good it had felt to hang out there. Though I was a stranger, I was calmly welcomed. There was easy camaraderie around me. People shot pool. They talked about how to get rid of squirrels. I even danced, at one point, because the oldies were just too tempting not to, and no one made fun of me.
The old individuality, the old unity, the old hopefulness '--- America '-- was in that cozy hall.
I tried to describe to him that relaxing feeling of being not the same as the group, but still accepted. (That, I realized later, was the essence of the ''America'' I am seeking to describe).
''That's my military,'' Brian said with a smile.
''I feel'... like they believe in something larger than themselves,'' I said further, not very eloquently.
''Soldiers are not necessarily more patriotic than other people,'' explained Brian. ''They believe in each other.''
I wanted that America back '-- not just in pockets, not just in byways, but everywhere.
Back in the area where we stay, I heard from one of the American elders who live nearby, that the City was redoing the lovely local park that faced the blue harbor.
She said that the city wanted to ''bring the Point'' '-- once the home of French Canadian immigrants, and now the location where thousands of illegal immigrants from Latin America and, weirdly, Afghanistan, were being housed '-- closer into the park, via this renovation.
She added that the city managers planned to build, within the park, a series of statues of women '-- with no faces.
As she spoke, I felt this elderly lady's frustration and rage.
''Why can't we have faces?'' she asked.
I had no answer for her.
The city was not listening any longer to people like her.
The thoroughly Marxist message of a Marxist work of public art, would reimagine what was now a beautiful, open, green, American public space.
It would impose something ugly and dehumanizing upon us all, on purpose, and further obliterate our culture and values.
It was going to roll out no matter what she said, or how she felt.
''Why can't we have faces?''
Why, indeed.
From Dinner Parties to Restaurants, Cicadas Are Landing in the Kitchen | Smithsonian
Sat, 11 May 2024 16:25
Cicada salad, roasted cicadas and cicada casseroles are among the insect-based dishes on offer at restaurants across the country. Getty ImagesOver the next few months, more than one trillion cicadas will appear in a rare occurrence as two broods of the insect emerge from their 13- or 17-year underground slumber in parts of the Southeast and Midwest.
While some view this once-every-221-year event as a noisy nuisance, others see it as an opportunity to expand their culinary options.
In Greenwood, South Carolina, a couple hosted a dinner party last week featuring cicadas prepared in various fashions: in a blanket, bacon-wrapped, cajun fried, and praline. In Chicago, Bar S"tano is ready to add cicadas to the menu once they find ''somebody that could guarantee the utmost respect to the animal itself and to the cleanliness that we have in the restaurant,'' said chef de cuisine Jackie Hernandez to Block Club Chicago. And in New Orleans, Bug App(C)tit, the Audubon Insectarium's restaurant, is preparing dishes like cicada salad and roasted cicadas that may join the already insect-infested menu.
Rest assured, the Food and Drug Administration says cicadas are safe to eat. As long as they are appropriately prepared, the soft-shelled insects can be enjoyed in seemingly endless ways, including raw, grilled, boiled, deep-fried and air-fried.
''Cicadas have a nutty flavor and shrimp-like quality,'' Toby Amidor, a nutrition consultant for Food Network, tells Food Network's Samantha Leffler.
Recipes that incorporate cicadas as a key ingredient are plentiful online, with professional and amateur chefs crafting creative concoctions like cicada cookies, spicy popcorn cicadas and crispy cicada salad.
Bar S"tano is considering grinding up cicadas instead of ants to put a spin on their salsa de chicatanas because of the two insects' similar flavor profiles.
Would you like a cicada salad? The monstrous little noisemakers descend on a New Orleans menu
However, those with shellfish allergies should steer clear, as cicadas are biologically related to shrimp and lobsters. Additionally, cicadas may lead to gout flare-ups and mercury accumulation in the insect means pregnant or lactating women and young children should avoid eating them, Amidor says.
If you can safely enjoy the arthropod, the nutritional and environmental benefits are bountiful.
''They are literally a superfood,'' Chef Elise Harris told FOX 5. ''They are full of antioxidants'...Not only that, but they're a complete source of protein, meaning that they contain all nine essential amino acids.''
According to Inverse, cicadas contain the same amount of protein per pound as red meat.
Cicadas may be more affordable than many other meats, require less land to cultivate, and because they emerge in the billions, eating them usually doesn't harm their existence. Still, the thought of eating cicadas may make you squirm. A 2021 YouGov poll found that 58 percent of Americans were not interested in eating cicadas. But the protein-packed arthropod has been enjoyed across cultures for centuries.
Evidence exists ''from Aristotle in the Historia Animalium that cicadas were harvested and considered a delicacy in ancient Greece,'' according to research by Andrea M. Liceaga published in Advances in Food Nutrition and Research in 2002. Indigenous peoples in the Americas ate various arthropods, such as cicadas.
Today, cicadas are a popular street food and ingredient in countries like Thailand and Mexico, among others. In China, catching and selling cicadas as food is highly profitable, with local cicada catchers making 10,000 yuan ($1,410) a month.
''Don't be afraid of trying something new,'' Bar S"tano's Hernandez said. ''Insects have always been here. If anything, they've been here longer than we have. So the trend just has to move with how times are changing, and hopefully people open themselves up to trying new things. At the end of the day, you may fall in love with it.''
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Filed Under: Bugs, Cooking, Food, Insects, Nature, Recipes
Novavax and Sanofi to commercialize Covid vaccine, develop combo shots
Sat, 11 May 2024 16:22
A health worker prepares a dose of the Novavax vaccine as the Dutch Health Service Organization starts with the Novavax vaccination program on March 21, 2022 in The Hague, Netherlands.
Patrick Van Katwijk | Getty Images
Novavax on Friday said it has signed a multibillion-dollar deal with French drugmaker Sanofi to co-commercialize the company's Covid vaccine starting next year and develop combination shots targeting the coronavirus and the flu, among other efforts.
Shares of Novavax closed nearly 100% higher on Friday from their previous day close of $4.47 apiece.
The licensing agreement will allow Novavax to lift its "going concern" warning, which it first issued in February 2023 due to having doubts about its ability to continue operating, Novavax CEO John Jacobs told CNBC in an interview.
It marks a turning point for the struggling vaccine maker and its protein-based Covid shot. Health officials view the vaccine as a valuable alternative for people who don't want to take messenger RNA jabs from Pfizer and Moderna .
Part of the deal allows Sanofi to use Novavax's Covid shot and flagship vaccine technology, Matrix-M adjuvant, to develop new vaccine products. Sanofi will pay Novavax an upfront payment of $500 million and up to $700 million in payments for development, regulatory and launch milestones.
Novavax is also entitled to royalty payments on Sanofi's sales of its Covid vaccine and combination shots targeting coronavirus and the flu. Novavax will also receive additional launch and sales milestone payments of up to $200 million, along with royalties, for each product Sanofi develops with Matrix-M adjuvant.
Under the deal, Sanofi will also take a less than 5% stake in Novavax.
"It really does help our business. It keeps us well capitalized, it takes the going concern off, it gives us the chance to pivot our strategy more towards what we're best at '-- to bring additional value to all of our stakeholders, including our shareholders," Jacobs told CNBC.
The deal also will help the company fulfill its mission of improving global public health with its vaccine technology platform "at a pace and a scale that we could have never done if we kept it all to ourselves" due to a lack of resources, capital and scope, Jacobs said.
Stock Chart IconStock chart iconNovavax shares spike on Sanofi deal.
Deal termsNovavax will lead the commercialization of its Covid shot for the rest of this year and will transfer most of that responsibility to Sanofi in 2025. Sanofi won't oversee commercialization in countries that Novavax has existing partnership agreements with, including India, Japan and South Korea, along with nations with advanced Covid vaccine purchase agreements with the company.
Jacobs said Sanofi, as a large pharmaceutical company, could increase the market share and presence of Novavax's Covid vaccine, which will broaden patient access to the shot.
The deal also allows Sanofi to develop products that combine its flu shot or other in-house vaccines with Novavax's Covid jab. Sanofi can also use Novavax's Matrix-M adjuvant to develop new vaccine products.
Notably, Sanofi will be solely responsible for the development and commercialization of any combination shot containing its flu vaccine and Novavax's Covid shot.
"Through this agreement with a world leader like Sanofi, not only in commercialization but also in development, we believe that this multiplies immensely the opportunity to bring forth multiple new vaccines much more quickly," Jacobs said.
Outside of the deal, Novavax expects to start a late-stage trial on its own combination vaccine targeting Covid and the flu and its stand-alone flu shot later this year. Previously, Novavax said that trial would only include the combination vaccine.
"Now our phase three trial, that we're on track to initiate in the second half of this year, won't just have one potential licensable vaccine should we succeed, but it will have two," Jacob said, noting the deal "frees up costs" and "opens up our own organic pipeline."
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US announces a new $400 million package of weapons for Ukraine to try to hold off Russian advances - ABC News
Sat, 11 May 2024 15:11
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. announced a new $400 million package of military aid for Ukraine on Friday, as Kyiv struggles to hold off advances by Russian troops in the northeast Kharkiv region.
This is the third tranche of aid for Ukraine since Congress passed supplemental funding in late April after months of gridlock. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy had warned Thursday that his country was facing ''a really difficult situation'' in the east, but said a new supply of U.S. weapons was coming and ''we will be able to stop them.''
The package includes High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) and rockets for them, as well as munitions for Patriot and National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems, artillery, anti-aircraft and anti-tank munitions, and an array of armored vehicles, such as Bradley and Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles.
It will also provide a number of coastal and riverine patrol boats, trailers, demolition munitions, high-speed anti-radiation missiles, protective gear, spare parts and other weapons and equipment. The weapons are being sent through presidential drawdown authority, which pulls systems and munitions from existing U.S. stockpiles so they can go quickly to the war front.
Also on Friday, the State Department approved a proposed emergency sale of HIMARS to Ukraine for an estimated $30 million. State said Ukraine has asked to buy three of the rocket systems, which would be funded by the government of Germany.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken determined that an emergency exists that supports the ''immediate sale'' to Ukraine. The systems will come from Army inventory.
White House national security spokesman John Kirby said Friday that the latest package of military aid was intended, in part, to help Ukraine fend off the surging Russian effort to capture Kharkiv, Ukraine's second largest city.
Kirby noted that Russia has already launched initial incursions into areas around the towns of Vovchansk and Lyptsi, near Kharkiv.
''It is possible that Russia will make further advances in the coming weeks, but we do not anticipate any major breakthroughs,'' Kirby said. ''And over time, the influx of U.S. assistance will enable Ukraine to withstand these attacks over the course of 2024.''
The U.S. has now provided about $50.6 billion in military assistance to Ukraine since Russia invaded in February 2022.
Almost immediately after President Joe Biden signed the $95 billion foreign aid package, the Pentagon announced it was sending $1 billion in weapons through that drawdown authority,. And just days later the Biden administration announced a $6 billion package funded through the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative, which pays for longer-term contracts with the defense industry and means that the weapons could take many months or years to arrive.
Russia has sought to exploit Ukraine's shortages of ammunition and manpower as the flow of Western supplies since the outbreak of the war petered out while Congress struggled to pass the bill. Moscow has assembled large troop concentrations in the east as well as in the north and has been gaining an edge on the battlefield, Zelenskyy said.
Officials did not say if the latest package includes more of the long-range ballistic missiles '-- known as the Army Tactical Missile System '-- that Ukraine has repeatedly requested. The U.S. secretly sent a number of the missiles to Ukraine for the first time this spring and the White House has said it would send more. In one case, Ukraine used them to bomb a Russian military airfield in Crimea.
The new missiles give Ukraine nearly double the striking distance '-- up to 300 kilometers (190 miles) '-- than it had with the mid-range version of the weapon that it received from the U.S. in October.
___ Associated Press writer Aamer Madhani contributed to this report.
World's Oldest Central Bank Keeps Sounding Alarm On Fragility Of Cashless Economies | ZeroHedge
Sat, 11 May 2024 15:03
Authored by Nick Corbishley via naked capitalism,
At a time when the dominant narrative around cash is that its demise is all but inevitable, as well as broadly desirable, the 2024 payment report by Sweden's Riksbank may offer a cautionary tale.
In October last year, in More Good News for Cash in Europe, More Bad News for Digital Dollar in US, we reported that recent developments suggest that the trend away from cash and toward purely digital-only payment systems may not be quite as smooth or as seamless as some may have wished or expected. One of the developments we highlighted in that report was growing concern among central bankers and politicians in Sweden, one of Europe's most cashless economies, about the unintended consequences of driving cash out of the economy:
Even by late 2020, Sweden had less cash in circulation than just about anywhere else in the world, at around 1% of gross domestic product, according to the latest available data. That compares with 8% in the U.S. and more than 10% in the euro area. As a recent piece in Interesting Engineering notes, Sweden is already ''officially cashless'':
Cash is never needed, not even for small purchases like hot chocolate at a Christmas market in Stockholm. All vendors have a mobile payment chip-and-PIN card reader like the one offered by Stockholm-based mobile payments company iZettle, or they accept payments through the mobile application Swish. Swishing is perhaps the easiest way of payment for everyone.
The Risks of Going Fully Cashless
But now the country is beginning to realise that an almost exclusively digital payments system comes with significant risks, especially at a time of heightened geopolitical tensions. In time-honoured fashion, the article in the UK Telegraph began with a spot of fearmongering about Vladimir Putin.
''People started to realise that it is very easy for Vladimir Putin to switch everything off,'' Bj¶rn Eriksson, a retired police chief, former head of Interpol and leading cash advocate, told the Telegraph. ''At first we were arguing for vulnerable people, the elderly, women in abusive relationships who rely on cash'... Now we are talking about national security. And it's not only Putin, it could also be organised crime.''
In 2021, the Riksbank, Sweden's central bank (and the world's oldest), introduced a new directive obliging the country's six largest credit institutions to continue providing their customers with certain basic cash services.
But while that may have meant that people in Sweden can continue to access cash from their local branch, it is becoming increasingly difficult to use it as fewer and fewer retail businesses accept notes and coins.
This is partly due to the greater convenience of handling digital payments while the card processing fees are substantially lower than the US. But it is also because most Swedes, including many pensioners, prefer to use cards or mobile payments. As a baker in Stockholm told the Telegraph, ''the only people who bring cash to the shop are tourists. I feel bad for them because they just take the krona home, where it is useless.''
But even that trend may be reversing. According to Eriksson, a growing number of young people are joining the pro-cash movement '-- and mainly over privacy concerns.
Rediscovering the Benefits of Cash
Earlier this week, Heise Online, a German online news service that covers IT, telecommunications, and technology sectors, published a long, in-depth report about the Riksbank's apparent rediscovery of some of the benefits of cash. The article also explores some of the Riksbank's concerns about the potential fragility of a fully cashless payment system, as outlined in its 2024 Payments Report, published in March.
At a time when the dominant narrative around cash '-- as espoused by senior bankers, central bankers, big tech and fintech executives, politicians and economists, and of course, their ever-faithful servants in the media '-- is that its demise is all but inevitable, even in countries where cash is still King (Germany, Spain, Austria, Mexico, Thailand, Japan'...), the Riksbank's report may offer a cautionary tale. From the Heise Online piece (machine translated):
''The Swedish payments market has been digitized rapidly,'' states the Riksbank. Cash and manual payment services have been replaced by cards, mobile phones and internet services. ''As a result, payments have become faster, smoother and cheaper overall,'' which the institute points out is ''a positive development.'' However, there are groups in society ''who do not have access to digital payment services or find it difficult to use them and are therefore marginalized''. There are also ''serious fraud problems that could undermine trust in the payment system.''
Digitalization also makes payments ''more vulnerable to cyber attacks and disruptions to the power grid and data communication,'' the bank points out. At the same time, the geopolitical developments of the past few years required ''Sweden to have strong civil defense.'' The developments suggested ''that we should concentrate more than before on the challenges of digitalization.''
Put another way, cash does not crash. It does not fail in a power cut or seize up during a cyber attack (though, of course, ATMs might). By contrast, digital payment systems need a stable and continuous internet connection to process transactions. When these connections fail, the result is often chaos. Digital payment outages have caused significant disruption in a host of countries in recent years, including the US, the UK, Australia, Indonesia, Germany, Canada, Spain and Norway. Generally speaking, the more cashless the country, the greater the disruption.
Sweden's Cashless Journey
Sweden is one of the world's most cashless economies. In large part, its abandonment of cash was the result of technological and generational shifts. As payment technologies began to change in the first two decades of this century, most Swedish citizens began to prefer the speed, ease and convenience of digital payments.
They were also nudged heavily in that direction by commercial banks, which by 2016 had made 60% of their branches cashless, as a 2019 Riksbank working paper documents. This made it much more difficult for citizens to access cash and for businesses to deposit it, which in turn accelerated the uptake of digital payments and the abandonment.
Sweden's legal tender laws also made it possible for the Riksbank to withdraw many of Sweden's large denomination notes in circulation. For instance, the value of 1,000-krona notes (worth just over $90) in circulation declined gradually from SEK 48.4 billion in 2001 to SEK 21.4 billion in December 2012. Beginning in 2013, this decline accelerated, plunging to SEK 9.7 billion by December 2013.
After playing a part in the wholesale removal of cash from Sweden's economy, the Riksbank is now trying to reverse some of the damage it has caused. It is not the only Scandinavian central bank to have flagged up the fragility risks of exclusively digital payment systems. In 2022, the Bank of Finland recommended that the use of cash payments be guaranteed by law. Like all Nordic countries, Finland is a largely cash-free economy. But like Sweden, it has begun to see the risks of going too far, too soon.
In March 2022, the central bank initiated a proposal for legislation to ensure a minimal level of cash-paid services. In October of that year, the Head of the Payment Systems Department and Chief Cashier at the Bank of Finland, P¤ivi Heikkinen, even advised households to make sure they have some cash on hand, just in case the country's payments system were to go down. At the time, Finland had just applied to become a NATO member and the government was fretting about the risk of cyber attacks from Russia. In an interview with the national broadcaster, Heikkinen said her intention was not to ''fabricate catastrophic scenarios'' '-- before saying that in the worst case scenario, the payments system could go down for a period of weeks.
In Sweden, the Riksbank is already taking countermeasures to try to guarantee a steady supply of cash, the Heise Online article notes:
It is improving the cash supply by setting up new offices where companies can collect and deposit cash. Having such cash depots in more locations across the country would reduce both the costs for businesses and the risk that cash would no longer be usable in the event of a disruption.
This is the only way to ensure ''that everyone can pay''. In general, ''stronger legal protection for cash'' is necessary. Banks should be required to ''accept cash deposits, including coins, from individuals.''
The Riksbank supports its demands with reference to an annual representative survey on the payment habits of Swedes. According to this, ''cash is being used more frequently than before''. Almost half of respondents reported using cash in the past month, an increase of 15 percentage points compared to 2022.
This pro-active approach to bolstering the cash system contrasts sharply with what some central banks and governments are saying and doing in other Western or Western-adjacent countries. As we reported in August, Brazil's Chamber of Deputies is mulling a number of legislative proposals calling for an end to the printing, minting and circulation of physical notes and coins. As the World Economic Forum trumpeted in 2022, Brazilians are adopting digital payments faster than anyone else.
In Australia, the government refuses to legally protect the use of cash in retail settings. The Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia, Michele Bullock, has even warned that as the running costs of processing cash for banks and businesses mount as a result of the declining share of consumer payments made using cash, it may become necessary to begin charging people for using cash in retail settings.
Granted, Australia is significantly larger and more sparsely populated than Sweden, making it much harder and more costly to transport money securely to all parts of the country, including remote parts of Queensland, Northern Territory and Western Australia. But whereas the Riksbank is talking about taking on a proactive role, together with other authorities and banks, to ensure that cash can be transported to and from retail outlets at reasonable prices, the RBA is talking about making consumers pay for the privilege of using cash. Meanwhile, Armaguard, Australia's largest currency transport business, servicing around 90% of the cash-in-transit market, is warning of bankruptcy '-- unless the banks agree to pay more for its services.
Predictably, Bullock's suggestion that citizens may one day have to fork over extra fees for the privilege of paying with cash '-- to protect the banks and retailers from the exorbitant costs of maintaining cash infrastructure '-- did not go down well with many Australians. While most citizens are using digital payments for most, if not all, of their purchases, millions still depend on cash in their daily lives.
What's more, the very same Big Four banks Bullock wants to protect from having to part with extra money to fortify Australia's cash network have posted record or near-record profits in recent times, in part because of surging interest rates but also because of the rising fees they charge on card payments. Those same banks received huge sums of cheap debt to tide them over during the COVID-19 pandemic while at the same time closing hundreds of branches and ATMs across the country.
In Sweden, as Heisse Online notes, more and more Swedes see the decline in cash consumption as a negative development '-- 44 percent in 2023 compared to 36 percent in the previous year:
The proportion of respondents who believe that they cannot get by without cash in today's society has also increased compared to 2022. This could also be ''an effect of increased crisis awareness due to the war in Ukraine,'' the bankers speculate.
The need to pay in cash in certain situations such as at clubs, in corner shops and at flea markets is also mentioned, the report goes on to say. Some also emphasized that using cash made it easier for them to keep track of their finances. Older people generally find it much more difficult to get by without cash than younger people. In the 2023 survey, half of respondents said they wanted to pay cash but the store did not accept it. In 2022 the corresponding value was only 37 percent'...
These numbers suggest that cash may be experiencing a mini-renaissance in Sweden, which would echo similar trends seen in other heavily cashless economies. For example, a recent survey down under by fintech company Waave revealed that as many as 71% of Australians are worried about the economy becoming completely cashless. Those most concerned include Baby Boomers (82%), regional Australians (77%), and lower income households earning less than $100k (75%) '-- a reminder of the oft-ignored class-war element of the War on Cash.
It's not hard to see why concerns about the future of cash are on the rise down under. In recent months, three of Australia's Big Four banks have removed over-the-counter cash withdrawals from some of their branches while increasing numbers of businesses, both large and small, are choosing to reject cash payments altogether. In Australia, it is perfectly legal for businesses to refuse to accept cash as long as they inform consumers of their stance before any ''contract'' for the supply of goods or services is entered into.
Aussie cash lovers recently expressed their displeasure with these trends through a ''Draw Out Some Cash Day'' on April 2. According to, hoards of people were seen lining up to withdraw cash:
The movement, led by the Cash is King Facebook group, aimed to show banks and retailers there is still a demand for cash amid warnings the country will be ''functionally cashless'' by 2025.
Social media posts show ''massive queues'' of people, both young and old, lining up at various banks around the country, with one woman sharing she waited for up to an hour to get her hands on bank notes.
''All banks I passed today had queues out the door,'' one person wrote on Facebook alongside a picture of people lining up outside a Commonwealth Bank branch.
Governments in other countries, including Ireland, Spain, Slovakia and Austria, are taking pro-active steps to protect the use of cash. Even the European Central Bank has called for a regulatory crackdown on all businesses and public bodies in the Euro Area that refuse to accept cash. At the same time, the ECB is proceeding in its digital euro project from the ''investigation phase'' to the ''preparation phase.''
As I noted at the time, cash is still the most frequently used payment method in the Euro Area, though it is losing ground to cards. Even if, or when, the digital euro is launched, it will presumably coexist with cash for some time, at least until the digital euro gains a strong enough foothold. ECB President Lagarde has said that ''cash is here to stay,'' adding that European citizens ''will have both options: cash and digital cash.'' How long it stays that way will remain to be seen. My guess is that if the digital euro does gain a strong foothold, the ECB will begin financially incentivising its use while decentivising the use of cash.
In the UK, meanwhile, cash may even be staging a comeback of sorts after ten consecutive years of falling use. According to both UK Finance, the country's largest bank association, and the British Retail Consortium Group, the most influential retail lobbying group, cash use increased in 2022, for the first time in a decade. Whether this rebound represents a genuine trend reversal or merely a dead cat bounce (apologies, as always, to feline lovers) remains to be seen. But the mere fact that cash use is growing at all despite concerted efforts by the government, banks and retailers to reduce its use is noteworthy.
So, too, is the fact that Sweden's Riksbank is expressing reservations about the resilience of a fully cashless society. After all, the Riksbank was one of the first central banks in Europe to begin aggressively undermining the role of cash in the economy. That said, its U-turn on cash it is not as novel a development as is suggested by the Heise Online article. The Riksbank, the article claims in its introduction, ''is suddenly emphasising the indispensable role of cash in secure, widely available payment systems. This is a change in strategy.''
That is somewhat misleading. As the German financial journalist Norbert H¤ring notes (in German) on his blog, while there has definitely been a sea change in strategy at the Riksbank, that change did not begin just now but rather eight years ago, ''after the central bank, together with Sweden's commercial banks, had done everything they could to undermine the use of cash.'' Since early 2016 Sweden's central bank has slowed the march towards a cashless society, as H¤ring reported at the time.
Now, the Riksbank is not just questioning the wisdom of moving to a fully cashless economy at this current moment in time; it is explicitly warning about the potential risks such a move might entail. At the same time, it is working on developing a CBDC '-- the so-called e-krona, now in its fourth and final pilot phase, looking at ''how an e-Krona can be used offline for payments if electricity and telecommunications are not working.'' Which begs the question: once the e-krona is ready to launch, which will presumably be sooner than most other CBDCs in the West, how will it co-exist with cash? That will have to be the subject of a future article, though readers' suggestions are more than welcome in the meantime.
Panama's New President Vows to Shut Down Dari(C)n Gap Migration Route | The Epoch Times
Sat, 11 May 2024 13:59
In a surprise victory with potential implications for the Biden administration, Jos(C) Mulino was elected president of Panama May 5 on a platform that included closing the Dari(C)n Gap to migrants on their way to the U.S. southern border.
During a May 6 interview with a Colombian
radio program, the populist president-elect reiterated his vow to repatriate migrants coming into Panama while shutting down what has become a major route for illegal migration.
''When repatriation begins here, those who try to arrive will think twice because they will not have an easy destination because they will be transferred to their countries of origin,'' Mr. Mulino said.
''At no point do I say that this will be an easy action, but it will be a firm decision, with the purpose of making it known that we are not sponsoring that [migration] here and that we are going to put a stop to it.''
Click here to watch the full documentary ''Weapons of Mass Migration''Todd Bensman, senior national security fellow at the Center for Immigration Studies, believes Mr. Mulino's promise to shut down the Dari(C)n Gap could become embarrassing for President Joe Biden, who rescinded Trump-era policies meant to curtail illegal immigration in favor of open borders.
''The thing to watch here, I think, is how the administration manages to oppose something good for America and that most Americans would love to see happen,'' Mr. Bensman told The Epoch Times.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken congratulated Mr. Mulino on his victory, adding that controlling migration is one of the countries' shared goals.
''I look forward to continuing our strategic partnership and advancing our shared goals of democratic governance and inclusive economic prosperity,'' Mr. Blinken said in a May 6 statement.
''Looking ahead, the United States will continue to work with Panama on our common goals of inclusive, sustainable economic growth, bolstering citizen security, and cooperatively curbing irregular migration through the Dari(C)n.''
media outlets reported that Mr. Mulino joked on the campaign trail about getting help with some ''cement'' for a wall in the Dari(C)n Gap should former President Donald Trump return to the White House.
The Trump campaign declined to comment, citing the need to first see a full transcript of Mr. Mulino's comments.Panama's Cinderella CandidateMr. Mulino won nearly 35 percent of the votes in a four-way race with more than 92 percent of the votes counted, giving him a nine-point lead over his nearest competitor.
He takes office July 1 for a five-year term.
He faced off against Ricardo Lombana, an anti-corruption candidate who trailed in second, as well as former President Mart­n Torrijos and former foreign minister R"mulo Roux.
Outgoing President Laurentino Cortizo called Mr. Mulino to offer congratulations and pledged to work with him for an orderly transition. Constitutional term limits prohibited President Cortizo from serving a second consecutive term.
In an unusual turn of events, Mr. Mulino, who ran under the Achieving Goals and Alliance parties, replaced candidate and former president, Ricardo Martinelli, late in the race.
Panama's President-elect Jose Raul Mulino (R) and President Laurentino Cortizo wave to the media after their first official meeting at the Presidential Palace in Panama City on May 7, 2024. (Martin Bernetti/AFP via Getty Images)
Mr. Mulino had been tapped as Mr. Martinelli's running mate, but took his place after the latter was sentenced to a decade in prison for money laundering and barred from running.
Mr. Martinelli backed Mr. Mulino from the Nicaraguan Embassy, where he has been living since early February when he was granted asylum.
Mr. Mulino, a 64-year-old attorney, served as minister of security in President Martinelli's 2009 to 2014 administration.
He first served as minister of the interior and justice; eventually taking the reins of the public security office.
One of his achievements during that time was to ''recover'' a section of the Dari(C)n Gap that ''was in the hands of the narco-guerrillas'' of neighboring Colombia.
Besides mass migration, Panama's new president must deal with a lackluster economy, a drought impacting the Panama Canal, and the economic impact surrounding the shutdown of a copper mine for environmental reasons.
As president, Mr. Mulino will have the power to stop a massive flow of migrants streaming through the treacherous jungle passage.
''It's a bottleneck, so the Panamanians actually have tremendous control over the volumes of people coming through there,'' Mr. Bensman said.
He likened the situation to the showdown between the Biden administration and Texas, with the state trying to curtail hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants crossing from Mexico.
The Biden administration filed lawsuits to cut the razor wire installed by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott on the Texas side of the Rio Grande River meant to deter illegal immigrant crossings.
Likewise, it has sued Texas over a law allowing state lawmen to arrest and deport illegal immigrants that remains tied up in court.
Similar optics aimed at Panama's efforts to shut down the Dari(C)n Gap could prove awkward, Mr. Bensman said.
''What are they going to say?'' he asked. ''We don't want you to do it?''
Migrants, most from Haiti, break camp before trekking into the Darien Gap enroute to the United States near Acandi, Colombia, on Oct. 5, 2021. (John Moore/Getty Images)
Dari(C)n Gap DebacleLast year alone, 500,000 migrants made the trek through the dangerous jungle terrain to arrive in migrant camps in Panama run by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and the United Nations (U.N.).
Panama's former border director, Oriel Ortega, told The Epoch Times in February that the NGOs and the U.N. should educate and help migrants in their own countries instead of facilitating mass migration.
The Epoch Times visited all four migrant camps in the Dari(C)n Gap in February, speaking with migrants from China, Somalia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Colombia, and others who hiked out of the passage leading from Colombia into Panama.
At the Lajas Blancas camp, migrants have access to a number of large maps provided by NGOs and U.N. agencies that display detailed migration routes heading to the United States.
One map from HIAS showed the migration route from Colombia to Costa Rica, including bus stops, temperatures, altitudes, and ''migration kiosk'' locations.
HIAS was founded as the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society but now assists all migrants.
One poster prominently displayed the U.S. and European flags, along with the U.N.'s Unicef symbol.
''Thanks to the support of the United States Government co-financed by the European Union Humanitarian aid,'' the Spanish-language sign said when translated to English.
Left-wing groups see the camps and helping migrants on their route as a humanitarian venture.
Groups such as Human Rights Watch have cast doubt on Panama's ability to completely close the Gap and fear it would force migrants to find alternative, more dangerous routes.
''Whatever the reason for their journey, migrants and asylum-seekers crossing the Dari(C)n Gap are entitled to basic safety and respect for their human rights along the way,'' Juanita Goebertus, Americas director of Human Rights Watch, told The Associated Press.
A Venezuelan migrant suffers from sore feet after crossing the Darien Gap, at Lajas Blancas, Panama, on Feb. 17, 2024. (Bobby Sanchez for The Epoch Times)
Former Border Patrol chief Rodney Scott is now a senior fellow for border security at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.
He served as the chief of the U.S. Border Patrol at the end of the Trump administration through the first eight months of the Biden administration in 2021.
He told The Epoch Times that while the Biden administration and others on the left may see helping migrants on their journey to the United States as compassionate, it has proven to be just the opposite.
By making it easier to migrate, millions of people have been exposed to the ugly consequences, he said.
Death, rape, murder, human trafficking, and illicit drugs make up the dark underbelly of the illegal immigration crisis, he said.
Shutting down the Dari(C)n Gap could be a game changer in stopping illegal migration and saving thousands of lives, Mr. Scott said.
He said even if Panama's new president can't totally shut down the migration route, his vow to do so could deter migration.
''Just like at the beginning of the Trump administration, cross-border illegal activity dropped tremendously just on the rhetoric,'' Mr. Scott said.
It's not surprising that mass illegal immigration isn't popular in Panama, just as it's not popular in the United States, where people want to feel safe and expect immigration laws to be upheld, he said.
Americans living along the U.S.''Mexican border generally support border security regardless of ethnicity, he said.
''That this is a big issue for people [in Panama] does not come as a surprise to me, just like here in the United States,'' Mr. Scott said.Powerful NGOsBut the massive infrastructure built by the NGOs in Panama, along with the billions of U.S. tax dollars given to these organizations, could prove it difficult to stop, Mr. Bensman said.
''You have NGOs that have become fat with riches on this crisis,'' he said. ''Those NGOs have become politically influential in Panama because this is just great for [their] business.''
The Epoch Times knocked on multiple U.N. agency doors at the City of Knowledge complex while in Panama in an unsuccessful attempt to interview officials with the U.N. and HIAS concerning their operation in the camps.
United Nations refugee agency personnel arrive at San Vicente migrant camp in the Darien Gap, Panama, on Feb. 20, 2024. (Bobby Sanchez for The Epoch Times)
Amy Pope, director general for the U.N.'s International Organization for Migration (IOM) served as President Biden's senior adviser on migration and as deputy Homeland Security adviser to President Barack Obama.
''The evidence is overwhelming that migration, when well-managed, is a major contributor to global prosperity and progress,'' Ms. Pope said during an appeal for money earlier this year to assist migration efforts.
Mr. Bensman said Panama's president-elect could theoretically ''boot them out of the country'' and shut down the NGO-run migrant camps.
Trying to deport hundreds of thousands of migrants would be expensive and probably not possible without U.S. help, he said.
But if the United States redirected the billions of dollars currently funneled to the NGOs and the U.N., it would likely fund a massive deportation, Mr. Bensman said.
Mr. Bensman, who has written two books on the border crisis, said airlifts using U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) could probably get the job done using the migrant camps as bases.
''In an ideal, normal world, Americans would find this as an incredible twist of fortune,'' he said.Chaos and ControlExperts have said hostile regimes are using illegal immigration to collapse the U.S. border and create chaos.
Mass migration is being ''weaponized'' to overwhelm and destabilize the United States and ultimately break it apart, according to Joseph Humire, who studies unconventional warfare and is the executive director of the Center for a Secure Free Society.
Mr. Scott said the different outcomes of border policies set under presidents Trump and Biden offer a sharp contrast.
In fiscal year 2023, border authorities apprehended a record 3.2 million illegal immigrants, far exceeding any volume in the past.
As Border Patrol chief under President Biden, Mr. Scott said he and his staff briefed the new administration on which policies worked to slow illegal immigration. Still, he said, Biden's team was only interested in how to speed up the processing of illegal immigrants before releasing them.
Texas National Guard look on as illegal immigrants board a bus after surrendering to Border Patrol agents on the U.S.''Mexico border in El Paso, Texas, on May 12, 2023. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)
''We explained to them that you're literally pulling your finger out of the dike. We warned them all this was going to happen,'' he said.
''Every one of those conversations got shut down in seconds anytime we talked about protecting America.''
During a May 7 visit to Guatemala, Mr. Blinken discussed the Los Angeles Declaration on Migration and Protection, which was signed by the United States and Latin American countries in 2022 to ''create the conditions for safe, orderly, humane, and regular migration and to strengthen frameworks for international protection and cooperation.''
''Since then, together, we have partnered to transform our hemisphere's approach to this truly historic challenge,'' Mr. Blinken said during a speech.
''We've taken meaningful steps to expand lawful migration pathways as an alternative to irregular migration, to improve enforcement efforts, to support host communities, to strengthen protections for vulnerable populations.''
Meanwhile, on May 8, the Republican-led House passed The Equal Representation Act along party lines that would require the Census to include a checkbox to indicate whether the respondent and each household member is a U.S. citizen.
bill mandates that only citizens be counted for apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives and Electoral College votes.
President Trump signed an executive order for the 2020 Census to include only American citizens, but it was blocked after left-wing civil rights groups sued, arguing the order violated the Census Act, the Enumeration Clause, and the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments of the U.S. Constitution.
Counting noncitizens skews the representative form of government, Mr. Scott said.
''Only Americans should be determining the future of America,'' he said.
Epoch Times reporter Janice Hisle and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Netherlands' Eurovision entry disqualified from song contest | Eurovision 2024 | The Guardian
Sat, 11 May 2024 12:24
The Netherlands' entry has been disqualified from the grand final of the Eurovision song contest due to an incident involving a female member of the production crew, the competition's organisers have announced.
The Dutch singer and rapper Joost Klein, 26, had qualified for the contest's main event but was absent from Friday's dress rehearsals.
It's the first time in Eurovision's 68-year history that a contestant has been disqualified after the start of the five-day event.
''Swedish police have investigated a complaint made by a female member of the production crew after an incident following his [Klein's] performance in Thursday night's semi-final,'' Eurovision's organisers said in a statement.
''While the legal process takes its course, it would not be appropriate for him to continue in the contest. We maintain a zero-tolerance policy towards inappropriate behaviour at our event and are committed to providing a safe and secure environment''.
The organisers said the incident did not involve any other performer or delegation member.
The Dutch broadcaster Avrotros said the decision was ''disproportionate''.
''We have taken note of the disqualification by the EBU [European Broadcasting Union],'' the radio and TV broadcaster said in a post on X. ''Avrotros finds the disqualification disproportionate and is shocked by the decision. We deeply regret this and will come back to it later.''
Friction between Klein and Israel's delegation at a press conference on Thursday night had fuelled speculation the incident that led to his absence was of a political nature.
When Klein, who was due to perform just before Israel's entry Eden Golan on Saturday night, was asked if his entry Europapa could live up to the competition's motto ''United by music'', he said pointedly: ''I think that's a good question for the EBU.''
In March, the association of broadcasters ruled that Israel was allowed to compete as long as it changed the lyrics to its entry, then called October Rain, about the trauma of the Hamas massacre on 7 October.
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The EBU has defended its decision by saying Eurovision is ''a non-political music event'' and ''not a contest between governments''.
When another journalist asked Golan if she had considered that her presence at the contest might be endangering the other acts and the attending fans, the host intervened to say she did not have to answer the question if she did not want to. Klein, who sat next to her, interjected with: ''Why not?''
Europapa, a pop hymn to European free movement wrapped into a story of parental loss, had received frenetic applause at the semi-final and was seen as one of the frontrunners to win Eurovision's 68th edition.
In 1974 France withdrew its entry due to the death of President Georges Pompidou in the week of the contest, but it did so before the singer Dani had appeared on stage.
Swedish school ordered to pay student £12,000 after teacher refused to use gender-neutral pronoun Daily Mail Online
Sat, 11 May 2024 12:19
A Swedish school has been ordered to pay a non-binary student £12,000 in compensation after a teacher refused to refer to them using gender-neutral pronouns.
The teacher said she could not use the gender-neutral pronoun 'hen', prompting the student's guardians to tell the headteacher about the teacher's refusal and the pupil's gender identity.
Despite the headteacher of the school in central Sweden promising to speak with the teacher, the student was referred to with the wrong pronouns for at least one school term, The Local reported.
'Hen' is Sweden's gender-neutral pronoun, replacing 'hon', meaning she, or 'han', meaning he. The English equivalent is using the single-person pronoun 'they'.
A Swedish school was ordered to pay a non-binary student £12,000 damages after the teacher refused to use the Swedish gender-neutral pronoun 'hen' (stock image)
After the Equality Ombudsman (DO) investigated the case, it was ruled that the student was subject to discrimination and the school were ordered to pay £12,000 (150,000 Swedish kronor) in damages, local media said.
DO's Isabelle Arsova said in a statement that students should feel 'safe and respected' in schools, adding that teachers should 'reflect these values'.
She said: 'A situation where a teacher consciously refuses to use the pronouns a student identifies with represents a serious form of harassment and something a headteacher must put a stop to.'
The educational provider, the organisation in charge of running the school, told the DO that the student was discriminated against and said it went on for too long.
The teacher who repeatedly refused to use gender-neutral pronouns was later fired by the school, according to reports.
In Sweden, the educational provider is legally responsible for discriminatory actions carried out by staff or representatives of the school.
'Hen' is Sweden's gender-neutral pronoun, replacing 'hon', meaning she, or 'han', meaning he. The English equivalent is using the single-person pronoun 'they' (stock image)
Under Swedish rules, the provider has to investigate any incidences of alleged harassment as soon as possible and take appropriate steps to stop any reoccurrences.
Sweden added the gender neutral pronoun 'hen' to its dictionary in 2015. The pronoun is used to refer to a person without revealing their gender, for example if they are non-binary, transgender, or their gender is unknown.
Earlier this month, it was confirmed the pronoun 'hen' will officially enter dictionaries in Norway. The gender-neutral pronoun 'hen' is the same in Swedish and Norwegian.
The Language Council of Norway confirmed that the term, which is an alternative to the feminine pronoun 'hun' and the masculine pronoun 'han', would likely enter official Norwegian language within a year.
Study Finds 'Significant Increase' In Cancer Mortality After 3rd COVID Dose | NewsRadio 740 KTRH KTRH Local Houston and Texas News
Sat, 11 May 2024 12:18
A new study out of Japan found a significant increase in cancer deaths after taking a 3rd Covid vaccine shot. The data showed that cancer deaths started rising again in Japan in 2021.
"Once we go to the 3rd dose, cancers started to go up" said renowned Texas based doctor, Peter McCullough, "It's very disturbing, and the Japanese data has shown that the mRNA Covid-19 vaccine's could cause cancer through multiple mechanisms."
The numbers are alarming, because they came after a decade of decline for cancer deaths.
"As we sit here today, all of the evidence suggests that the Covid-19 vaccines actually may cause cancer" McCullough told KTRH, "Every cancer registry in the world is up right now."
But not the release of the post Covid-19 vaccine data, which continues to be censored and suppressed.
"There's roughly 4,000 papers showing vaccine complications and deaths" noted Dr. McCullough, "What we're seeing is just the tip of the iceberg, it's a giant human experiment. We can't possibly know what's going to happen because things weren't properly researched ahead of time."
In Japan, 86.5% took a 3rd Covid vaccine jab, compared to just 15% here in the U.S.
Photo: SilverV / iStock / Getty Images
ASCD and HHS/CDC Announce Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child Model | National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments (NCSSLE)
Fri, 10 May 2024 22:09
ASCD, a global community dedicated to excellence in learning, teaching, and leading, announced today the new Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child (WSCC) model that is recommended as a strategy for improving students' health and learning in our schools. Developed by ASCD and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in collaboration with key leaders from education, public health, and school health fields, the new model combines and builds on elements of the traditional coordinated school health approach and the whole child framework to strengthen a unified and collaborative approach to learning and health.
A whole child approach, which ensures that each student is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged, sets the standard for comprehensive, sustainable school improvement and provides for long-term student success. The new WSCC model responds to the call for greater alignment, integration, and collaboration between education and health to improve each child's cognitive, physical, social, and emotional development.
The model incorporates the components of an effective school health program and the tenets of the whole child approach to education to address the symbiotic relationship between learning and health. In doing so, the model continues the focus of the traditional coordinated school health approach but aligns it with the structure, framework, and objectives of education. This is showcased by the expanded components focusing additional attention on the social and emotional climate of the school and classroom environments and the pivotal role that community involvement plays in the growth and development of our youth.
The Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child model focuses its attention on the child, emphasizing a schoolwide approach and acknowledging learning, health, and the school as being a part and reflection of the local community. Because they have contact with 95 percent of U.S. children ages 5''17, schools are the primary institution responsible for childhood development, after the family. It is essential that schools have an effective and comprehensive school health model in place during these critical years of social, psychological, physical, and intellectual development.
Whereas the traditional coordinated school health model contained eight components, the WSCC contains 10, expanding Health and Safe School Environment and Family/Community Involvement into four distinct components:
Social and Emotional ClimatePhysical EnvironmentFamily EngagementCommunity InvolvementThis change marks the need for greater emphasis on both the psychosocial and physical environment as well as the ever-increasing roles that community agencies and families must play. Finally, this new model also addresses the need to engage students as active participants in their learning and health.
CDC will be integrating this new model into its school health initiatives, placing ASCD's whole child framework at the center of health and education alignment in school settings. For more information about CDC's school health initiatives, visit
For more information about ASCD's Whole Child Initiative, visit To find out about ASCD's focus on integrating learning and health visit You can also find out more about ASCD's other programs, products, services and memberships at
The Whole Child Approach to Education
Fri, 10 May 2024 22:08
Sinclair explores selling 30% of broadcast stations
Fri, 10 May 2024 21:49
Signage stands outside the Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc. headquarters in Cockeysville, Maryland, U.S., on Friday, Aug. 10, 2018.
Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Sinclair , one of the largest owners of broadcast stations in the U.S., is looking to sell more than 30% of its footprint, according to people familiar with the matter.
The company has hired Moelis as its investment banker and has identified more than 60 stations in various regions of the U.S. that it would be willing to sell, said the people, who asked not to be named because the discussions are private. Sinclair owns or operates 185 TV stations in 86 markets.
The stations are a mix of affiliates including Fox, NBC, ABC, CBS and the CW. If sold together, their average revenue for 2023 and 2024 is an estimated $1.56 billion, the people said. Sinclair is willing to sell all or some of the stations, which are in top markets like Minneapolis; Portland, Ore.; Pittsburgh; Austin, Texas and Fresno, Calif., among others.
Sinclair CEO Chris Ripley said Wednesday that the company is open to offloading parts of its business, without providing specifics.
"As we've always stated, we have no sacred cows," Ripley said during his company's earnings conference call. "We want to unlock the sum of the parts valuation that we think we're grossly undervalued for. And to the extent that asset sales makes sense in order to unlock that value and help us de-lever, then that's something that we'd be open to as well."
The company began officially shopping them in February, one of the people said.
Spokespeople for Sinclair and Moelis declined to comment.
Sinclair is also exploring options for its Tennis Channel, a cable TV network that features the sport and pickleball matches, the people said. Bloomberg earlier reported that development.
Broadcast TV station groups have suffered in the past five years as millions of Americans have canceled traditional pay TV. Most stations make money from so-called retransmission fees, paid on a per-subscriber rate by traditional TV distributors, such as Comcast, DirecTV, and Charter, for the right to carry the stations.
Sinclair has lost more than 70% of its market value in the last five years. The company's market capitalization is about $975 million with an enterprise value of about $4.7 billion.
Sinclair changesLast year, Sinclair rebranded and reorganized, splitting the company into two operating units '-- Local Media, which focuses on the stations, and Ventures, which houses Tennis Channel but can also act as an investment vehicle.
The split in the company divisions, and the recent sale process for some of its stations, stems from tension within the Smith family, the shareholders and the board directors who helped build Sinclair, some of the people said.
The stations are up for sale in the months before the 2024 election, which usually draws high political advertising revenue for broadcast TV companies. Sinclair said during earnings on Wednesday that it pre-booked $77 million in political advertising for the second half of the year through Election Day, compared with $21 million at the same point in 2020, the last time former President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden were on the ticket.
The company's overall revenue and advertising revenue both rose slightly during the first quarter. Sinclair's stock was up 12% on Thursday.
Sinclair's broadcast stations have been known for having a conservative editorial voice, and the company faced backlash in 2018 after requiring some of its stations to read promos criticizing the media about "fake stories."
Diamond woesThe process also comes after Sinclair faced headaches in the regional sports networks business.
Sinclair acquired the largest portfolio of regional sports networks from Disney in 2019 for $10.6 billion, including $8.8 billion in debt. Between ramped-up cord-cutting and the hefty debt load, Diamond Sports, the independently run and unconsolidated subsidiary of Sinclair, sought bankruptcy protection last year.
Diamond later sued parent Sinclair, and the litigation was settled in January. Sinclair made a $495 million payment to settle lawsuits related to Diamond.
VIDEO - Panamanian Election Immigration Impacts - YouTube
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VIDEO - Report: Trump may face a $100 million-plus tax bill if he loses IRS audit fight over Chicago tower - YouTube
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VIDEO - Asylum seekers in limbo as Seattle grapples with hotel payments and relocation plans - YouTube
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VIDEO - More high school graduates are turning to trades instead of college - YouTube
Sun, 12 May 2024 11:40
VIDEO - Tens of thousands protest in Malmo as Israel competes in Eurovision final ' FRANCE 24 English - YouTube
Sun, 12 May 2024 11:26
VIDEO - Hundreds evacuated from Ukraine border after Russian offensive ' FRANCE 24 English - YouTube
Sun, 12 May 2024 11:25
VIDEO - CDC raises concerns about new "Flirt" COVID variants - YouTube
Sun, 12 May 2024 11:17
VIDEO - EU marks Europe Day one month ahead of crucial bloc elections - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:26
VIDEO - TikTokers call for a mass block on celebrities - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:25
VIDEO - UK students join campus protests, demand change in policy - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:25
VIDEO - Thousands join Gaza war protest against Israel's Eurovision participation ' FRANCE 24 English - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:22
VIDEO - Boeing plane carrying 85 people catches fire and skids off the runway in Senegal ' FRANCE 24 - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:21
VIDEO - Suspected cybersecurity attack at Ascension Health impacting Chicago hospitals - YouTube
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VIDEO - Second potential Bird Flu outbreak in Colorado - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:20
VIDEO - Senate passes FAA bill designed to improve air safety, customer service - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:18
VIDEO - Hospital hit by suspected cybersecurity attack - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:17
VIDEO - Dutch Eurovision act Joost Klein barred from dress rehearsal as investigation launched | ITV News - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:15
VIDEO - Hundreds in Sweden protest Israel's Eurovision participation - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:14
VIDEO - Hungary and China sign strategic cooperation agreement during visit by Chinese President Xi - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:14
VIDEO - OpenAI set to announce search engine, one day before Google conference ' FRANCE 24 English - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:13
VIDEO - Polish farmers march in Warsaw against EU climate policies and the country's pro-EU leader - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:12
VIDEO - 'Extreme' solar storm hits Earth, bringing spectacular auroras ' FRANCE 24 English - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:12
VIDEO - UN assembly approves resolution granting Palestine new rights, reviving its membership bid - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:11
VIDEO - Israel's use of US arms likely violated international law, Biden admin says ' FRANCE 24 English - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 17:11
VIDEO - The UN's Secret Plan to Erode US Sovereignty - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 16:34
VIDEO - Michael Hudson: Marxism, Economic Parasites, and Debt Cancellation - YouTube
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VIDEO - Disney, Hulu, Max to join forces - YouTube
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VIDEO - What is Kona Blue? The proposed Las Vegas UFO technology program unveiled - YouTube
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VIDEO - War Propaganda: Why We Need to Stop Fearing the Wrong Enemy? - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 16:05
VIDEO - Day 216 - Biden drops bombshell, Hamas's duplicitous 'deal' | Castamatic
Sat, 11 May 2024 15:54
Welcome to The Times of Israel's Daily Briefing, your 20-minute audio update on what's happening in Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world.
It is day 216 of the war with Hamas. Times of Israel founding editor David Horovitz joins host Jessica Steinberg for today's episode.
Horovitz discusses US President Joe Biden's "bombshell" series of comments regarding withholding weaponry for Israel to attack Rafah in Gaza, and how the Israeli mainstream and right-wing politicians are reacting.
He talks about Israeli dependence on American weaponry and how Israel and the US need to find a way to resolve this latest issue.
Horovitz then tackles Hamas' counter-proposal to the hostage situation, calling it a "deceitful" offer that will not bring home most of the hostages, and which aims to free many of their high-level security prisoners, bringing some home to the West Bank, in order to inflame that region and open a second front.
For the latest updates, please see The Times of Israel's ongoing live blog.
Discussed articles include:
Biden accused of helping Hamas as Israel outraged by threatened weapons freeze
Biden: I won't give Israel offensive weapons to attack in populated parts of Rafah
Sinister Hamas terms would let it keep most hostages, win the war, inflame the West Bank
Visiting CIA chief said to tell Netanyahu he still sees chance for deal with Hamas
THOSE WE HAVE LOST: Civilians and soldiers killed in Hamas's onslaught on Israel
THOSE WE ARE MISSING: The hostages and victims whose fate is still unknown
Subscribe to The Times of Israel Daily Briefing on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, YouTube, or wherever you get your podcasts. This episode was produced by the Pod-Waves.
IMAGE: President Joe Biden meets with campaign volunteers at the Dr. John Bryant Community Center, Wednesday, May 8, 2024, in Racine, Wis. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
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VIDEO - Owner of Hyundai plug-in hybrid shocked by $15,000 cost to replace battery - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 15:24
VIDEO - UN votes to back Palestinian membership, prompting Israeli envoy to shred charter - YouTube
Sat, 11 May 2024 15:12
VIDEO - "The CDC Is Infiltrating Public Schools" - DailyClout
Sat, 11 May 2024 03:03
''The CDC Is Infiltrating Public Schools''Melissa Blasek discusses the importance of creating a movement at the state and local levels. Ann Marie Banfield, an education and parent rights activist, joins Blasek to reveal the details of the CDC program infiltrating public schools across the country and how to fight back.
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Melissa Blasek is an American politician in the state of New Hampshire. She was a member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, sitting as a Republican from the Hillsborough-21 multi-member district from 2020 to 2022. She is the host of The Liberty Lobbyist, where she shares political lessons and news from the purple state of New Hampshire and explains how to effect change and safeguard liberty no matter where you live.
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CBS M - Dr. John LaPook (4) bird flu -how worried should we be.mp3
CDC raises concerns about new Flirt COVID variants.mp3
celebrity boycott NPR.mp3
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celebrity boycott TOKER.mp3
China climate envoy in USA 1.mp3
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Chip Roy on number of illegals.mp3
COVID H5N1 Concerned 3.mp3
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COVID H5N1 Concerned TWO.mp3
David Horowitz Times of Israel Hamas' Duplicitous deal 1.mp3
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F24 with lastes Boeing mishap and overview of all mishaps.mp3
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GAZA report PBS.mp3
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More high school graduates are turning to trades instead of college.mp3
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NBC NN - George Solis - spectacular northern lights seen across much of the US.mp3
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NBC NN - Richard Engel - US report criticizes israel's war conduct.mp3
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NPR Dissects Trump Rallies.mp3
NPR Up First - gaza pier is JOKE.mp3
NYPost - BLM Global Network files $33 million lawsuit against group helping fund college protests.mp3
OpenAI set to announce search engine, one day before Google conference F24.mp3
Polish farmers march in Warsaw against EU climate policies and the country's pro-EU leader F24.mp3
Reuters - bird flu questions 1.mp3
Reuters - bird flu questions 2.mp3
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Reuters - Steve Holland - biden under pressure 2.mp3
Reuters - the olympic flame begins its 11 week journey.mp3
Russia Oil bypass 1 CBC.mp3
Russia Oil bypass 2.mp3
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UN assembly approves resolution granting Palestine new rights, reviving its membership bid F24.mp3
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