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  • Biden risks alienating young Black voters after race remarks

    Golocal247.com news

    Joe Biden's controversial remarks about race this week risk alienating young Black voters who despise President Donald Trump but are not inspired by his Democratic rival. In a later interview with National Public Radio's Lulu Garcia-Navarro, Biden seemed to draw distinctions between Black and Hispanic populations in the U.S. “Unlike the African American community, with notable exceptions, the Latino community is an incredibly diverse community with incredibly different attitudes about different things,” he told the Latina reporter. Black voters as a whole delivered the Democratic nomination to Biden, powering his commanding win in the South Carolina primary, which rescued his floundering campaign.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 01:20:03 -0400
  • Official's use of racial slur prompts calls for his resignation

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    "The Governor has been very clear — there’s no place for hate and racism in Michigan," Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said in a statement.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 11:15:00 -0400
  • The Russian owner who abandoned the ship full of ammonium nitrate that caused the Beirut explosion has been questioned by police in Cyprus, reports say

    Golocal247.com news

    Igor Grechushkin was questioned by Cyprus police on Thursday over the MV Rhosus, the ship that carried ammonium nitrate to Beirut, local reports say.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 06:47:13 -0400
  • Former US soldiers sentenced to 20 years for bungled Venezuelan coup plot

    Golocal247.com news

    A Venezuelan court sentenced two former US special forces soldiers to 20 years in prison for their part in a failed beach attack aimed at overthrowing President Nicolas Maduro, prosecutors announced late on Friday. Former Green Berets Luke Denman and Airan Berry admitted to taking part in the May 4 operation orchestrated by a third ex-US soldier who remains in the United States, Venezuelan's chief prosecutor Tarek William Saab announced on Twitter. "THEY ADMITTED THEIR RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE FACTS," Saab wrote, adding that the case will continue for dozens of other defendants. He did not offer details. "Operation Gideon" was launched from makeshift training camps in neighbouring Colombia and left at least eight rebel soldiers dead while a total of 66 were jailed. Former Green Beret Jordan Goudreau, who operated a private, Florida-based security firm called Silvercorp USA, claimed responsibility for the failed attack. Venezuelan prosecutors announced that Denman and Berry, both decorated former US service members, were found guilty of conspiracy, trafficking in illegal arms and terrorism.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 01:35:20 -0400
  • Woman confronting vandals covered in paint during renewed Portland protests

    Golocal247.com news

    Protesters in Portland allegedly threw white paint over a woman, as demonstrators clashed with police for a third consecutive day.On Friday, following two days of protests marred by vandalism, more than 200 people clashed with police, as two other Black Lives Matter protests marched peacefully through the city.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 17:21:23 -0400
  • Fact check: Sex crimes by public officials not connected to Ghislaine Maxwell

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    Posts say sex crimes by dozens of public officials are connected to Ghislaine Maxwell, an associate of Jeffrey Epstein. But they're not.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 13:23:47 -0400
  • Take a look inside the ‘most sophisticated’ smuggling tunnel found on US-Mexico border

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    Agents discovered a sinkhole near the tunnel in July.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 13:14:23 -0400
  • France sends aid after Mauritius declares oil spill emergency

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    France is sending specialist teams and equipment to help Mauritius deal with a fuel spill from a bulk carrier that ran aground on a pristine reef two weeks ago and threatens to become an ecological disaster. On Thursday, Mauritius said fuel was leaking for a crack in the vessel's hull and its prime minister, Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, declared a state of environmental emergency and pleaded for international help. "The sinking of the #Wakashio represents a danger for Mauritius," Jugnauth said in a tweet.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 08:21:44 -0400
  • A Sampling of Work From Mexico City’s Top Talents 

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    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 08:00:00 -0400
  • Judge dismisses Republican lawsuit seeking to block proxy voting

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    It was not immediately clear whether House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy planned to appeal the ruling.

    Thu, 06 Aug 2020 19:00:35 -0400
  • Fort Hood commander's transfer on hold amid investigations

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    Army leaders have delayed the planned transfer of the Fort Hood commander, as a team of independent investigators heads to the base to determine whether leadership failures contributed to the murder of a soldier earlier this year, and several other deaths. Maj. Gen. Scott Efflandt, commander of Fort Hood, Texas, was slated to go to Fort Bliss, which is near El Paso, and take over leadership of the 1st Armored Division. Command of a division is a key step in an Army officer's career.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 17:37:49 -0400
  • Trump claims Biden will 'hurt God. He's against God.'

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    At a speech to supporters in Cleveland on Thursday, President Trump said former Vice President Joe Biden is “against God.”

    Thu, 06 Aug 2020 15:27:58 -0400
  • George Floyd: US protesters charged as 'gang' face life sentence

    Golocal247.com news

    Black Lives Matter protesters in Utah were accused of acting as a gang to vandalise a building.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 10:57:27 -0400
  • New York is moving homeless people into luxury hotels to protect them against coronavirus and wealthy neighbourhoods aren't happy

    Golocal247.com news

    New York was in the midst of a record homelessness crisis even before the coronavirus hit. Some 60,000 people were filling municipal shelters across the city every night. Nearly a third of that number was living in dorm-style facilities for single adults, sharing bathrooms, dining areas and sleeping facilities.“When Covid struck, we recognised very quickly this was a recipe for disaster,” said Jacqueline Simone, of Coalition for the Homeless, a New York charity. The problem was only going to get worse, they warned, as the economic crisis caused by the pandemic deepened.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 16:29:00 -0400
  • Decades after they last saw each other, homecoming king and queen reunited by chance on a dating app

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    They were married on the 50-yard-line at Montclair State University's football stadium — where they were crowned homecoming royalty in 1992.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 06:00:33 -0400
  • Putin’s Got Big Problems in Russia’s Provinces

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    MOSCOW—The city of Khabarovsk, a sprawling, industrial metropolis about 5,000 miles east of the capital—the Bolsheviks turned it into a hub for serving Siberian prison camps, in the middle of nowhere by design—is about as far from the seat of Russian power as geographically possible. But it’s suddenly at the center of Russian politics these days. For the past three weeks, thousands of people have come out daily in Khabarovsk to protest the country’s top-down rule, what President Vladimir Putin once called his “vertical of power. “Wake up, cities, our Motherland is in trouble,” protesters chanted in the rain one Friday evening. Banners that read, “Putin, you lost my trust!” and “Down with the Tsar!” floated above people’s heads.Despite the Kremlin’s best efforts to hide them, problems have been bubbling up in Russia’s provinces, transforming local issues into the most dynamic arena for dissent, protest, and opposition in the country’s political system and fueling Russia’s version of post-lockdown unrest.   The arrest of Khabarovsk’s popular regional governor sparked the anti-Putin uprising that has drawn up to 60,000 people into the streets in this usually sleepy backwater. The arrested governor was a member of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia, which had for years been loyal to Putin. Yet even the party’s leader, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, told The Daily Beast that the provincial protests could spread, as people are fed up with the lies and media manipulation in the Putin system. “This is a genuine, wonderful, peaceful protest, but federal television channels do not cover them, and that offends people,” he said.Millions of Russians are still watching the Far East rallies online. People are outraged by unemployment, corruption, pollution, and failing government. “For as long as we have a one-party system, you will have the Khabarovsk protests,” Zhirinovsky recently declared from the tribune of the State Duma. “I have suggested to them a long time ago to have at least two parties, but they want to have the majority,” Zhirinovsky told The Daily Beast about Putin’s United Russia party. Putin continues the tradition of single-party system that began under Lenin, Zhirinovsky said.Two thousand miles away from Khabarovsk sits another provincial city, Norilsk, with its giant factory that is the source of a fifth of the world’s nickel and half of the precious metal palladium. Norilsk is the world’s northernmost city and also Russia’s most polluted; visitors stepping off a plane are greeted by air that leaves an unforgettable metallic taste in the mouth. But even by Norilsk’s own abysmal standards, this summer was a horrific one for the environment: Its factory, Norilsk Nickel, spilled hundreds of thousands of gallons of red-hued diesel fuel into what locals now call “rivers of blood.” The rain smells of chemicals. The diesel fuel spill was caused by the collapse of a rust-covered storage tank at a heat and power plant on May 29. Local bureaucrats and the factory kept quiet about the disaster for two days as the red, oily rivers spread pollutants through the fragile tundra environment in what Greenpeace would later call the “biggest environmental catastrophe in the history of Russia’s Arctic.” Authorities initially tried to hide the disaster, in the same way state television channels have attempted to ignore the protests in Khabarovsk. Russians only learned of the spill from social media. Six weeks later, with still no word of any official reprimand for the spill, the factory dumped another round of toxic waste—this time, intentionally—right onto the tundra.Two reporters from the independent paper Novaya Gazeta, Yelena Kostyuchenko and Yuri Kozyrev, had traveled to Norilsk after the spill to see the pollution with their own eyes. The reporters discovered a stream with orange bubbles and a lake covered in white foam, surrounded by dead trees. But it had nothing to do with the diesel spill. “Two large pipes were pumping and dumping white toxic waste with a sharp chemical smell onto the tundra when we arrived,” Kostyuchenko told The Daily Beast. Novaya Gazeta’s report raised the alarm with local prosecutors and police, so the factory sent a bulldozer to quickly dismantle the pipes. Then, the bulldozer accidentally crushed a police car while backing up. Environmentalists witnessed a wild scene: A huge number of Norilsk Nickel’s security services were demolishing their factory’s pipes in front of police and officials from the emergency ministry and Russia’s natural resources regulatory agency, Rospotrebnadzor.Meanwhile, some Russian politicians started to call for the Kremlin to take control of the factory—owned by the country’s richest oligarch, Vladimir Potanin—and nationalize it. Potanin, a former member of the Communist Party, obtained the Norilsk factory on the cheap during the privatization of the 1990s. Since then, he’s seemed untouchable. After all, according to Kremlin-watcher Mikhail Zygar, the billionaire has always paid up for problems at the factory in the only currency that counts: loyalty to the Russian president. “People like Potanin are happy to pay for all [Putin’s] projects, for anything he ever wants,” said Zygar, author of All the Kremlin’s Men: Inside the Court of Vladimir Putin. Soviet and post-Soviet bureaucrats have a long history of attempting to hide the truth about disasters from the public, no matter how deadly—most famously after the 1986 nuclear accident in Chernobyl. Last year, an experimental missile exploded in the Arctic, releasing radioactivity into the air, and the official reaction was silence. So, too, in the first days after the fuel spill. Officials were even reluctant to break the bad news to Putin himself. “One has to earn the right to report bad news to Vladimir Vladimirovich,” said Sergei Markov, a political analyst close to the Kremlin. “It must have taken a few days before the decision-makers on various steps of power figured out who would be the one to break the news.”On the fifth day after the fuel spill, four people lined up shoulder to shoulder to report the truth about the accident to Putin in an online meeting: the oligarch Potanin; Svetlana Radionova, the head of Rospotrebnadzor; Yevgeny Zinichev, the minister of emergency situations; and Viktor Uss, the Krasnoyarsk regional governor.Zinichev told the president that “the event itself, the emergency situation, was localized on June 1. We have installed booms, so there is no development.” Radionova, in contrast, talked about “unprecedented” pollution. “We registered an increase by dozens of thousands of times,” after the diesel fuel spilled into the rivers, she told Putin.Potanin was the last to speak. He promised to dip into his wealth and pay for the damage. The accident would cost “not a ruble from the state budget.” Putin wanted to know how much, exactly, the company was going to pay. The billionaire paused.Putin pressed Potanin on how much money he was willing to pay to compensate for the damage. “Billions and billions” of rubles, or tens of millions of dollars, the oligarch finally told the president. “And how much does one reserve tank cost that you are going to replace now? If you replaced it on time, there would not have been such damage and such cost to the environment,” the president replied.According to Forbes Real Time, which gauges wealth, in the weeks after the accident Potanin’s net worth dropped by more than $3.6 billion, but he is currently worth $23 billion, which still allows him the title of Russia’s richest man. The World Wide Fund for Nature has addressed an open letter to Potanin, calling him personally to “take the full responsibility” for polluting the Arctic.  But money for the clean-up aside, Potanin is unlikely to face real repercussions for the spill. Earlier this summer Putin’s inspector,  Radionova, flew to Norilsk to calculate fines for the factory—but, according to Transparency International, she flew there on Potanin’s own Bombardier Challenger private jet, instead of taking a regular flight. Radionova has also been accused of corruption by the foundation of opposition leader Alexei Navalny, which revealed documents for luxurious real estate in Moscow and Nice that suggest Radionova is the owner. “Such wealth cannot be explained. It is so outrageous,” Navalny said in his report on YouTube, viewed by more than 3 million people. Meanwhile, experts warn that Russia is ill-equipped to prevent another environmental disaster. After the diesel spill, a member of the board of directors at Norilsk Nickel, Yevgeny Shvarts, admitted on a television talk show that the storage tank that had collapsed was the newest piece of equipment at his company. “This is terrifying: One of Russia’s richest companies considers a tank made in 1985 their newest piece of equipment. That means things are much worse than we thought,” the show’s host, Vladimir Slivyak, told to The Daily Beast. He expressed concern that many other Russian factories are also storing diesel fuel in even older tanks: “Such accidents might take place any time.” Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 04:37:22 -0400
  • Homeland Security chief says department is reviewing complaints excessive force used in Portland

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    The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is reviewing "a number" of complaints that its agents used excessive force against anti-racism protesters in Portland, Oregon, though so far no one has been disciplined, the department's acting head said on Thursday. Acting Secretary Chad Wolf testified to the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs about the federal response to long-running protests in Portland, where state and city officials complained that the presence of federal officers inflamed protests.

    Thu, 06 Aug 2020 14:07:37 -0400
  • Should Judge Sullivan Be Disqualified from Flynn Case? An Appeals Court Is Asking

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    Maybe Judge Luttig was right all along.I had the misgivings you’d expect back in late May, when I disagreed with J. Michael Luttig, the stellar scholar and former federal appeals court judge, regarding how the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals should handle the Flynn case.At the time, that court’s three-judge panel had not yet heard oral argument on Michael Flynn’s mandamus petition — i.e., Flynn’s request that the panel find that federal district judge Emmet Sullivan was acting lawlessly. Sullivan had not only failed to grant the Justice Department’s motion to dismiss the criminal case against Flynn; he had appointed a former federal judge (the overtly anti-Trump John Gleeson) to posit the argument abandoned by DOJ — to wit, that Flynn should proceed to sentencing because he had pled guilty to a false-statements charge, waiving his right to contest the case any further in exchange for the government’s agreement not to file any other charges. Basically, Flynn was asking the appellate court to order Judge Sullivan to dismiss the case.In a Washington Post op-ed, Luttig contended that “there are ample grounds in the actions the district court has already taken for the appeals court to order that the government’s motion to dismiss be heard by a different judge, and it should so order.”It is interesting to revisit this assessment in light of an order issued by the D.C. Circuit on Wednesday. The Circuit directed that the participants in the dispute over Judge Sullivan’s actions, including Judge Sullivan himself, must address the question of whether Sullivan should either recuse himself or be disqualified by the Circuit. Arguments in the case will be heard this coming Tuesday, August 11, in a rare en banc review by the full Circuit (i.e., all active judges who have not taken senior status, minus one who has recused himself, so it will be a ten-judge panel).Let’s back up for a moment.Back in May, I disagreed with Luttig because I thought the more important issue was prejudice to Flynn, not the harm Sullivan’s apparent bias was causing to the court’s integrity. At the time, the D.C. Circuit had given Sullivan ten days to respond to Flynn’s mandamus petition. I argued that, rather than reassigning the case to another judge, the Circuit should give Sullivan a chance to explain himself. If he was unable to do that to the Circuit’s satisfaction, I posited that the Circuit should then order him to dismiss the case.After Luttig and I, among other commentators, weighed in on what the appellate court should do, a three-judge panel heard argument. The panel granted Flynn’s mandamus petition and ordered Sullivan to dismiss the case. The 2–1 majority reasoned that, with possible exceptions that do not apply in Flynn’s case, the Justice Department’s discretion to end a prosecution is unreviewable. A dissenting opinion countered that mandamus, which is an extraordinary remedy disfavored by courts absent truly egregious judicial lawlessness, was premature — i.e., that Sullivan should be permitted to conduct a hearing and, if he decided not to grant dismissal, Flynn could then appeal. That would be the normal route to appellate review in a criminal case.After the panel ruled for Flynn, Judge Sullivan asked the Circuit to rehear the case en banc. Sullivan’s petition was remarkable because he is not a party in the case. The only parties in a criminal prosecution are the government and the accused. The judge is the arbiter, not a litigant. The court is not supposed to have a stake in the outcome. It is unseemly for a judge to act as if he has become invested in the outcome of a case the way a party is. It strongly suggests a loss of judicial perspective.Nevertheless, the D.C. Circuit granted Judge Sullivan’s petition. It vacated the panel’s ruling and agreed to full-court review.At first blush, this seemed like doom for Flynn. After all, the full court skews heavily Democratic: seven of the ten judges who will hear the case were appointed by Democratic presidents. There are only four Republican appointees, and as noted above, one (appointed by President Trump) has recused himself. In modern times, there are enough blatantly politicized judicial decisions that people can be forgiven for assuming that partisanship always trumps law. Indeed, in the three-judge panel decision, the two majority judges who ruled in Flynn’s favor were Republican appointees, while the dissenter was a Democratic appointee.Nevertheless, the mandamus litigation in Flynn’s case is not a brute political matter. Anyone who listened to the oral argument could tell how reluctant the judges seemed about issuing a mandamus writ against Judge Sullivan, even if they were convinced that he was wrong on the law. Furthermore, the main Circuit precedent, United States v. Fokker Services B.V. (2016), which clearly indicates that the Justice Department’s dismissal motion should be granted, was written by Chief Circuit Judge Sri Srinivasan. He is often touted as a potential Supreme Court nominee in a future Democratic administration. For him, then, the case is a Catch-22: Walking away from his own reasoning in Fokker would be a bad look, while ruling in Flynn’s favor would be very unpopular among Democrats. In addition, we should note that any of the Circuit’s judges could have asked for en banc review by the full court. None did. The case is being heard because Sullivan himself pressed the issue.The complications presented by the mandamus dispute were evident in the Circuit’s initial order scheduling the rehearing en banc, which added an intriguing directive: “The parties should be prepared to address whether there are ‘no other adequate means to attain the relief’ desired” (quoting from the Supreme Court’s 2004 decision in Cheney v. U.S. District Court). I interpret this somewhat cryptic assertion to indicate that, while the Circuit judges have agreed to reconsider the panel’s ruling because courts are generally hostile to mandamus, that hardly means the judges approve of the circus that Sullivan has made of the Flynn proceedings.The judges seemed to be signaling that they know the case should be dismissed, but they’d prefer not to slam a longtime district judge if there is some way to avoid doing so. Perhaps they could deny the writ, but couch the denial in a way that reminded Judge Sullivan that a court must neither take over the prosecutor’s role nor probe the executive’s decision-making in a matter that the Constitution commits to executive discretion.That is what makes Wednesday’s subsequent order regarding the en banc proceeding so interesting. The Circuit instructs counsel for Flynn, the Justice Department, and Judge Sullivan to consider the effect of Congress’s disqualification statute (Section 455 of Title 28, U.S. Code). Specifically, the participants in the mandamus dispute are told to address the law’s mandate that a judge be disqualified “in any proceeding in which his impartiality might reasonably be questioned,” particularly if the judge “is a party to the proceeding.”Manifestly, at least some of the Circuit’s judges (I’d wager most of them) are disturbed by the degree to which Judge Sullivan has exhibited bias and become invested in Flynn’s case. This is exactly the problem on which Judge Luttig focused back in May.It could thus turn out that Luttig presciently homed in on the dispositive issue. I believe, though, that it’s more a matter of new developments breaking, perhaps inevitably, in favor of disqualification. At the time Luttig wrote his op-ed, I still think it would have been premature for an appeals court to jump in and disqualify Judge Sullivan. The parties were not pushing for Sullivan to be removed, just that he be directed to grant the dismissal motion. And even in making his disqualification argument, Luttig conveyed some hesitation. He said the Circuit panel should grant the mandamus but in a more limited way than Flynn was suggesting: Have Judge Sullivan pick a different adviser (someone other than the explicitly biased Gleeson), then promptly rule on the motion to dismiss, explaining his reasoning in full so the appellate court could review it.That is not consistent with Luttig’s other suggestion of having the case reassigned to another judge. But it was right: As things stood back in May, Sullivan should have been given an opportunity to do the right thing. Most of us were hoping he’d correct himself, rather than need to be corrected by a higher court.Plus, let’s put personalities aside, as well as the understandable distaste judges have for mandamus (which essentially asks them to dress down a colleague). A federal appeals court also has very practical reasons for discouraging mandamus. The regular appellate process calls for a criminal case to be appealed only at the end of the lower court proceeding. At that point, the trial or plea is over, sentence has been imposed, the judgment has been entered, and the appeals court can deal with all the claims of error at once, with finality. Courts do not want to encourage litigants to start viewing mandamus as a way to appeal to the higher court in the middle of the lower court proceedings, any time a party claims a judge has made an error. Chaos would reign and cases would never end.That said, things have significantly changed in the nearly three months since we analysts first opined on the mandamus dispute.For one thing, Judge Sullivan retained his own counsel to argue the case on his behalf before the panel, as if he were a party. Then, when the panel’s decision did not go the way he wanted it to go, he took the highly unusual step of seeking en banc review. As the Justice Department pointed out, Sullivan did not have standing to seek reconsideration; he is not a party and did not comply with the rules government officials are supposed to follow before seeking a rehearing.More to the point, by seeking full-court reconsideration of the mandamus matter when both the Justice Department and Flynn are seeking dismissal of the case, Sullivan is both causing prejudice to the defendant and stoking suspicion about the executive branch’s motives. How, then, could Sullivan continue to be considered a fair and impartial judge, fit to rule on the Justice Department’s dismissal motion?That question may signal something about the wisdom of the D.C. Circuit judges that I previously failed to appreciate. The Justice Department’s contention that Sullivan lacks standing seemed compelling to me. I was surprised when the Circuit appeared to ignore it in granting Sullivan’s request for full-court review; I thought they’d deny it and let the panel’s ruling stand. But is it possible that the Circuit saw this as a graceful off-ramp? When none of the Circuit’s judges asked for full-court reconsideration, that signaled to Sullivan that if he wanted it, he would have to ask for it himself. The Circuit judges probably calculated that if the irascible Sullivan made a formal application for rehearing en banc, it would be manifest that he had transformed himself into a party in the Flynn case. Then the Circuit could use the disqualification rule to nudge him aside for the sake of maintaining the judiciary’s reputation for objectivity. That would avoid all the downsides of issuing a mandamus writ while gently reminding lower court judges that they are supposed to remain umpires in these contests, not become one of the players.To sum up, whatever one may have thought about the gravity of Sullivan’s irregular behavior back in May, he has now clearly crossed the Rubicon. It is incumbent on him to recuse himself. If he can’t bring himself to do that — a failure that would further demonstrate a lack of judicial detachment — the D.C. Circuit should disqualify him. Either way, the case should be reassigned to a new judge, who should promptly grant the Justice Department’s motion to dismiss.I’ll conclude with a verity that seems sadly lost on Judge Sullivan: Granting the Justice Department’s dismissal motion would not be a judicial endorsement of the motion, much less a court ruling that Flynn is not guilty. Judge Sullivan is absolutely entitled to believe the Justice Department is wrong to dismiss the case, and that Flynn is as guilty as the day is long. What a judge is not entitled to do, however, is substitute his view for the prosecutor’s on the question of whether a prosecution should continue. In our system, separation of powers principles make that the Justice Department’s call.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 06:30:59 -0400
  • UN set for showdown over US Iran arms embargo push

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    The UN Security Council is set next week to roundly reject a US resolution to extend an Iranian arms embargo, diplomats say, setting up a lengthy showdown with repercussions for the Iran nuclear deal. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Wednesday that the United States would put forward its long-awaited resolution despite ardent opposition from Russia and China. "The resolution takes a maximalist position on Iran," one diplomat told AFP.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 02:22:59 -0400
  • How Nicola Sturgeon has secretly massaged Scotland’s coronavirus record

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    Nicola Sturgeon spent much of July telling anyone who would listen that the prevalence of coronavirus in England was “five times” higher than in Scotland. The figure was deployed to justify her refusal to rule out effectively closing the border by imposing quarantine on travellers from England, and her highly controversial move to set her a Scotland-only policy on air bridges, which airports warned put livelihoods at risk. The day after she first made the claim, masked nationalists in hazmat suits descended on the border near Berwick-upon-Tweed, shouting abuse at English “plague carriers”.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 06:48:11 -0400
  • Robber snatches California man's life savings in front of bank

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    Francisco Cornejo walking to his car after making a hefty withdrawal from his account. He was carrying 200-thousand dollars when a robber attacked him and ripped away Conejo's bag of money. The thief escaped with the money and has yet to be arrested.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 14:23:43 -0400
  • American oil execs, held 2 years, go to trial in Venezuela

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    A Venezuela court has launched the trial of six American oil executives jailed well over two years after being lured to the South American nation and arrested on corruption charges, an attorney confirmed Friday. The lingering case appears to have taken a new sense of urgency, which defense attorney Jesus Loreto credited to former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson's recent meeting with President Nicolás Maduro in Caracas. Loreto said a positive sign was his ability to meet with his client, Tomeu Vadell, for the first time in six months.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 14:01:07 -0400
  • Jerry Falwell Jr to take leave of absence after racy photo

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    Jerry Falwell Jr will step down as president of Liberty University after posting the "weird" image.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 19:55:02 -0400
  • Sales of pricey New York City apartments plunge as the suburbs become cool again

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    Homes in Connecticut and Westchester's suburbs are flying off the market as wealthy New Yorkers flee to greener pastures.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 07:55:00 -0400
  • Christiane Lemieux and Anthropologie Team Up for the Launch of Her Newest Collection

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    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 14:06:15 -0400
  • How Is New York Having Crazy Parties With No COVID Surge?

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    Bikini-packed pool parties. Insane backyard blowouts. Unhinged prom bashes.Spectacular scenes of COVID-19 recklessness have emerged from New Jersey in recent weeks, alarming state leaders into implementing new restrictions to curb the tide of rising coronavirus cases and prompting plenty of snickering about the Jersey Shore. But a looming question has plagued experts as similar signs of non-compliance have been witnessed across the Hudson River in New York—without the same upticks.New Jersey and New York have had similar regulations, travel restrictions, and contact tracing efforts. Giant, raucous boat parties in New York are making headlines, too. So why aren’t infection rates following suit the same way? Why are two states that were both early coronavirus hot spots on seemingly divergent courses all these months later?As of Thursday, New Jersey’s case rate per 100,000 people was 30 over the past seven days, according to The New York Times. The state had a positivity rate of 1.77 percent on its tests over the past week, according to the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center. For the past month, that number was 1.52 percent. The state was testing 2.3 people per 1,000, a rate that was trending downward according to Johns Hopkins.Those figures might seem perfectly fine in the abstract, but they amounted to an ominous trend.“The numbers are setting off alarms,” New Jersey Gov. Philip Murphy said last Friday. “We are standing in a very dangerous place.”Meanwhile, New York’s case rate per 100,000 was 24 over the past seven days, according to the Times. This week, the state had a positivity rate of 0.97 percent on its tests, according to Johns Hopkins. For the past month, that number was 1.06 percent. The state was testing 3.5 people per 1,000, a rate that was trending upward according to Johns Hopkins.Conversations with a wide array of public health experts, local health officials, and disease modelers suggested the reasons for the split were still very much out of focus. But hypotheses ranged from subtle differences in pandemic restrictions to the perception of New York as being more inclined toward aggressive enforcement, deterring non-compliance and would-be spreaders from traveling there.‘Worse Than New York’: How Coronavirus Exploded in South Carolina“Up until this week the restrictions on indoor gatherings were way too high” in New Jersey, said Dr. David Rubin, the director of PolicyLab at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, which has modeled the pandemic in collaboration with the White House Coronavirus Task Force. “That was really problematic, particularly with people gathering on the Jersey Shore, which also has a long coastline and is a big vacation destination.”Of course, New Jersey’s cases and test positivity rates were nowhere near as concerning as those in hot zones like Texas or Florida. And New York is still finding more COVID-19-positive people on any given day than its neighbor, thanks to its much larger population. But the trendlines in Jersey have concerned state authorities, and last Friday, Murphy squarely placed the blame for new cases on residents not following the rules.“Everyone who walks around refusing to wear a mask, or who hosts an indoor house party, or who overstuffs a boat, is directly contributing to these increases,” Murphy told reporters. “This has to stop.”It didn’t.Just one day later, about 300 bikini-clad and maskless guests spilled out of a massive pool party in Alpine, New Jersey, when police showed up to break up the crowd, NBC New York reported. The party was advertised on social media and by DJs as “The Lavish Experience Pool Party,” and the unidentified host told local reporters that “it got out of control.”Promoters had posted about the party, and party buses pulled up outside. “It’s been happening all summer,” one neighbor told The New York Post. “The owner of the house doesn’t care, the mayor doesn’t care. There’s cursing, loud music, drugs.”Alpine Mayor Paul Tomasko, for what it’s worth, told the local NBC station that such parties were under investigation by local police, state officials, and the county prosecutor’s office.A few weeks earlier, a “BikiniPalooza” event was held at the same mansion, with some neighbors calling it “a night club.” It received the same promotional treatment, according to posts on Instagram.Murphy has said the event involved “close congregation and not a lot of face covering, if any.”In the aftermath, the governor announced on Monday that he would reduce the limit on indoor gatherings to 25 percent capacity, capped at 25 people total. Until this week, it had been capped at 100. By contrast, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s executive order on COVID-19 has for some time prohibited crowds of non-essential workers over 50 people indoors. The rate of transmission in New Jersey jumped from 0.87 a month ago to 1.48 on Monday, Murphy said, meaning that people were spreading the virus more readily.“This is no time for complacency, for selfishness, or for thinking that someone else can wear a mask but not you,” Murphy tweeted on Wednesday. “Do your part.”Carrie Nawrocki, executive director at the Hudson Regional Health Commission, which oversees a population of about 675,000 and includes Jersey City, said her area has seen “extensive delays with testing turnaround time,” making it “difficult to get an accurate picture of the daily cases we have.”Nawrocki said that there has not been a significant increase in case numbers among the 18-29 age group, but that she doesn’t “think that’s necessarily the age group that’s going to get tested as often, especially if they are not adhering to social distancing.”“We have enough contact tracers and disease investigators for every new case that comes in, so we are reaching out to everyone and we haven’t identified one specific reason why people are getting COVID,” said Nawrocki. “My guess would be that they have to do with travel.”That being said, NJ.com reported that state officials warned in recent weeks that the 18-29 age group was the fastest-growing in the state to test positive for COVID-19, and Murphy has certainly pointed the finger at large indoor parties hosted by younger people. Dozens of new cases have been traced to house parties in towns like Westfield and Middletown.Still, the same recklessness—yelling, cheering, drinking and singing without masks—has been reported in New York City. On bistro patios, on crowded boats, and in the middle of crowded streets.“We’re drinking to everyone’s health,” a 31-year-old consultant who was drinking a beer with running buddies at a sports bar told Bloomberg News last month. “We could’ve stopped the virus a long time ago if they gave us clear directions. Now, they want to blame it on us.”Last weekend, officials in New York City broke up an alleged sex party of about 30 people in Midtown on Friday and then, a day later, busted a party boat filled with 170 revelers. Authorities arrested the owners of the ship, the Liberty Belle, for allegedly violating the state's ban on large crowds and for running a bar without a license.On Sunday, the New York State Liquor Authority issued violations for 24 city establishments that violated social distancing guidelines, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office. The state has also reportedly opened an investigation into a July 25 outdoor charity concert in the Hamptons that was attended by more than 2,000 people. As of this weekend, the total number of pandemic-related charges in the state had hit 503, according to ABC News.“It’s disrespectful,” Cuomo said Monday. “It’s illegal. It violates public health. It violates public decency. What if one of the people on that cruise gets sick and dies?”Rubin posited that the main difference between both states could be a matter of enforcement. Or, just as important when it comes to deterrence in the context of disease containment, the perception of enforcement.“My impression of Gov. Cuomo is that kind of tough stance with anyone who might try to defy the rules,” said Rubin. At the very least, the two states’ travel advisory websites show a tonal difference on that score. That matters because, according to Dr. Brittany Kmush, an assistant professor at Syracuse University and expert on epidemiology and infectious diseases, “the biggest risk in both states is importation from higher risk areas.”“The self-quarantine is voluntary, but compliance is expected,” according to the New Jersey public health department website’s travel advisory page. The New York health department meanwhile, “expects all travelers to comply and protect public health by adhering to the quarantine.’ But, significantly, it also stipulates that it reserves “the right to issue a mandatory quarantine order” on any given individual, for which a violation is subject to a penalty of up to $10,000 or imprisonment up to 15 days, according to the state’s website. New York City also made a show of announcing checkpoints to enforce a quarantine on out-of-state travelers this week.“If people don’t believe there’s any penalty, they’re just going to defy orders,” said Rubin. “These are very important differences.”“Even though both states have the same travel restrictions, the perception of the consequences differ by the states,” Kmush added.New Jersey has made its own show of enforcement, too—or, at least, it did in the past.N.J. Gym Owners Drop F-Bombs in Off the Rails CNN InterviewFrom April through June, State Attorney General Gurbir Grewal and State Police Superintendent Patrick Callahan released regular round-ups of enforcement actions against violators of Murphy's executive orders. Just in the first weekend, they reported that officers had issued more than 200 summonses in Newark alone, each carrying a sentence of up to six months and a fine as large as $1,000. Local police also famously busted a party of 30 people at a house in the town of Rumson and arrested the homeowner and an allegedly unruly guest. Cops cuffed a Toms River man after crashing another party of 20 at his abode. Authorities in West Windsor took a 16-year-old year into custody who they accused of hacking on a 52-year-old in a Wegmans supermarket. And 13 people were charged with second-degree terroristic threats during an emergency in as many incidents in just the first half the month, after they reportedly coughed or spit on police and claimed to be carrying the virus. The round-ups went from daily to weekly in May, to ending entirely after June 5 as the state moved forward with reopening.Asked for comment, Murphy’s office deferred to Grewal’s team, who did not provide a response by press time. The New Jersey Department of Health did not respond to a request for comment for this story.“I got the sense that New Jersey was not enforcing things as strongly as New York is, where Cuomo has cracked down on bars and is wielding more penalties than other governors are, and that’s keeping people in line,” said Rubin. For guidelines and restrictions in other states, what will matter in case counts, he said, is: “Are these just empty threats? Or is there just more teeth to them?”In any case, Rubin said, “Our models are seeing sea levels rise everywhere around New York, but we don’t know exactly why New York has been insulated from the resurgences we’re seeing in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.” Or, as Kmush put it: “I really don’t think we’ll know the answer to this for years.”—With additional reporting by William BreddermanRead more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 04:36:14 -0400
  • Germany floats a new NATO spending yardstick: 10 percent

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    Officials are pushing for a new yardstick to measure Berlin's contributions to NATO, suggesting the country could shoulder 10 percent of alliance requirements.

    Thu, 06 Aug 2020 13:39:49 -0400
  • US Postal Service announces cost-saving changes amid vote-by-mail fears

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    Measures will not result in immediate reduction of workforce, USPS said amid reports of severe mail delays across USThe United States Postal Service (USPS) is implementing cost-saving measures, including a management hiring freeze , the US postmaster general, Louis DeJoy, announced on Friday, amid reports of severe mail delays across the US and concern that Donald Trump is maneuvering to weaken the agency to make it difficult to accommodate an expected influx of mail-in votes.The changes will not result in an immediate reduction of the USPS workforce, the agency said in a statement. USPS added, however, that “to prepare for future changes” it was seeking approval to allow some non-union employees to take a voluntary early retirement. DeJoy, a major Republican donor without any prior USPS experience, said the changes were needed to address the postal service’s “dire” financial situation.Last month, USPS employees were told the agency was prohibiting overtime and employees were instructed to leave mail behind if it delayed them on their routes, according to documents obtained by the Washington Post.In recent weeks, places across the US have reported long delays; some neighborhoods in Philadelphia, for example, reported some residents were going longer than three weeks without receiving mail, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.There are worries mail delays could leave many Americans disenfranchised in the November election. Dozens of states – including key swing states like Ohio, Wisconsin, Michigan, Florida and Pennsylvania – all require ballots to arrive by election night in order to be counted. More than 65,000 mail-in votes have been rejected during the 2020 primaries and observers are worried that slower mail could lead to more people getting disenfranchised this fall.Senator Gary Peters, a Democrat from Michigan, announced on Thursday he was investigating the delays and the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, and Chuck Schumer, the Senate Democratic leader, sent a letter to DeJoy urging him to reverse the changes. Democrats have also asked the USPS inspector general to look into the changes.DeJoy disputed on Friday that the changes at USPS were motivated by partisanship.“While I certainly have a good relationship with the president of the United States, the notion that I would ever make decisions concerning the Postal Service at the direction of the president, or anyone else in the administration, is wholly off-base,” he said Friday. “Despite any assertions to the contrary, we are not slowing down election mail or any other mail.”DeJoy said the postal service had “ample” capacity to deliver election mail and deflected responsibility for any mail delays that could potentially occur. He noted USPS had long had delivery standards in place.“We cannot correct the errors of the election boards if they fail to deploy processes that take our normal processing and delivery standards into account,” he said.USPS has long advised voters to put their ballots in the mail at least a week before election day. But many states allow voters to continue to request ballots within that window, making it unlikely that they can get their ballot delivered in time. While DeJoy seemed to blame local election officials for that problem, state legislators are actually the ones who bear the responsibility for changing the deadlines, said Tammy Patrick, a senior adviser at the Democracy Fund who is an expert in vote-by-mail procedures.In the past, USPS has “bent over backwards” to deliver ballots in a timely way close to election deadlines, Patrick said. But now, she said, the postal service was sending mixed messages about whether or not they would go to such lengths to ensure delivery this fall.“They haven’t said, ‘We are dedicated to election mail, even if it means overtime,’” she said.USPS officials have also signaled recently that they are going to more strictly enforce the delivery times guaranteed by the different classes of mail election officials choose to use for their mailings, Patrick said.Some states, particularly those in the western US that automatically mail ballots to every voter, send their election mail as marketing mail, which allows them to send it at a lower cost. Marketing mail had a guaranteed delivery time of three to 10 days, but USPS has traditionally given prioritized attention to ballots that have an official election mail logo. More recently, Patrick said, USPS officials have emphasized officials will get speed for the delivery they pay for.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 15:22:57 -0400
  • Fauci warns COVID-19 vaccine may be only partially effective, public health measures still needed

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    "But the chances of it being 98% effective is not great, which means you must never abandon the public health approach." The novel coronavirus has infected nearly 5 million people in the United States and killed more than 160,000. As infections have spiked around the country after states started to open up, public health experts, including Fauci, have stressed the importance of steps that each American can take, including social distancing, washing hands and wearing masks.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 15:54:20 -0400
  • The National Rifle Association faces its worst nightmare: accountability

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    The NRA is facing lawsuits and investigations for possible financial misconduct while losing the influence it once had on American leadership.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 09:20:20 -0400
  • Linda Collins: Ex-aide confesses to murder of Arkansas state senator

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    A woman in Arkansas has been sentenced to 50 years in prison after accepting a plea deal connected to the murder of former state lawmaker.Court records show that Rebecca Lynn O'Donnell, 49, pleaded guilty to first-degree murder as well as the abuse of the corpse of Arkansas state Senator Linda Collins.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 11:42:39 -0400
  • Trump ‘is so much anti-life,’ Kentucky Catholic bishop says in abortion discussion

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    “He is only concerned about himself,” the church leader said.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 11:53:38 -0400
  • AP PHOTOS: In flash, Beirut blast tore up thousands of homes

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    The gigantic explosion in Beirut on Tuesday tore through homes, blowing off doors and windows, toppling cupboards, and sent flying books, shelves, lamps and everything else. Within a few tragic seconds, more than a quarter of a million people of the Lebanese capital’s residents were left with homes unfit to live in. The sisters were both knocked unconscious for a few moments, before they woke up again to an apocalyptic scene.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 08:12:45 -0400
  • Ningaloo Reef: Second woman injured by whale at Australia tourist hotspot

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    She is the second person in less than a week to be injured by a humpback whale at Ningaloo Reef.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 17:23:20 -0400
  • CNN’s Poppy Harlow Confronts Larry Kudlow With All the Times He’s Been Wrong About the Coronavirus

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    White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow doesn’t have the best track record when it comes to predictions. And CNN anchor Poppy Harlow was more than ready with the receipts when he came on her show to talk about the coronavirus fallout Friday morning. Harlow began her interview by asking Kudlow if he and President Donald Trump are “worried” about the slowdown in the recovery. “I don’t know that there’s a slowdown. These job numbers will go up and down,” Kudlow replied. When Harlow noted that only 1.8 million jobs were added in July compared to 4.8 million in June, he said, “That is true, and it's going to be uneven as it always is.” Kudlow continued to push the administration’s argument that a $600 weekly federal unemployment benefit has been a “disincentive” for Americans to go back to work. And when Harlow asked for evidence, he pointed to a University of Chicago study that supposedly supports that claim. “But, Larry, the University of Chicago survey, it doesn’t conclude what you’re arguing,” Harlow said. “I know you don’t want to incentivize people to go to work when it’s a dangerous situation for them to go because the virus is not under control,” she added, noting that she talked to the author of that study who said “it’s a mistake to draw the conclusion as you have been and the White House has been that right now it’s a disincentive to go back to work.” All Kudlow could say in response was, “We can argue one academic versus another, I think history shows this is probably not sustainable in the long term.” > Asked to explain why he's been wrong about the coronavirus at every turn -- he said the virus was "contained" in February, for instance -- Kudlow takes umbrage with Poppy Harlow for "nitpicking" pic.twitter.com/bNvNP8Qj4r> > -- Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) August 7, 2020But the most contentious moment of the interview came later when Harlow confronted Kudlow for his rhetoric over the past several months about the pandemic itself. “I’m wondering why you have consistently downplayed the severity of the pandemic,” she said. “Back on February 25th you said ‘it’s pretty close to airtight.’ February 28th, ‘It’s not going to sink the American economy,’ March 6th, ‘Let’s not overreact, America should stay at work.’ And just on June 12th, ‘There is no emergency, there is no second wave,’ but since June 12th, 45,978 Americans have died from COVID.”Kudlow attempted to defend his consistent downplaying of the virus’ severity but after a few moments he just resorted to attacking his interviewer. “I kind of resent your little nitpicking here because I don’t know what that has to do with today’s job numbers,” he said.“I’m not nitpicking, Larry,” Harlow replied. “I think people listen to you and the president when you say things about the pandemic.” Ultimately, he may have been chastened enough to acknowledge his own fallibility when it comes to predicting the future. “I think, again, the health guidelines that we have put out are in fact working, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed, maybe prayerfully, that we’ve seen the worst of this extension so we’ll see what happens.” “We all are, Larry,” Harlow said. CNN’s Brianna Keilar Comes at Trump Campaign’s Mercedes Schlapp for Falsely Smearing Her Military HusbandRead more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 11:49:40 -0400
  • Kasich and Sanders to join forces for a night of unity at Democratic convention

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    The roster for the event is taking shape, with a few notable additions — and omissions.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 04:30:17 -0400
  • Dispatch: 'How can I rebuild my home?' Life-long Beirutis become displaced in their own city

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    When Yusef Karam rushed back to the building that has been in his family for the past 70 years, he found destruction: his cousin had died when glass lodged into his face, the tenants of his 20 apartments were fleeing the ruins of their homes and the building that his father built was destroyed. “It is a complete disaster,” he said. Three days after the blast, 60 volunteers were still working to remove the debris that was piled high outside the building. Just 250 metres from the blast site, Mr Karam said his family home and business looked like “an atomic bomb had gone off,” when he rushed there after the explosion. His cousin was dead, another tenant was blinded and others were severely injured. As the dust settles in Beirut and the mass volunteer-led clean-up mission continues, Mr Karam is among the hundreds of thousands who cannot conceive of how they will rebuild their lives. The governor of Beirut estimates that up to 300,000 people have been left homeless by the explosion that brought the Lebanese capital to its knees on Tuesday.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 13:16:33 -0400
  • Pentagon chief expresses concern to Chinese counterpart about Beijing's activity in South China Sea

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    U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper expressed concerns about Beijing's "destabilizing" activity near Taiwan and the South China Sea in a call with Chinese Defense Minister Wei Fenghe, the Pentagon said on Thursday, the first time the two are believed to have spoken since March. The call came as U.S.-China ties have rapidly deteriorated this year over a range of issues, including Beijing's handling of the coronavirus, telecommunications equipment maker Huawei [HWT.UL], China's territorial claims in the South China Sea and its clamp-down on Hong Kong. "Secretary Esper also communicated the importance that the PRC (People's Republic of China) abide by international laws, rules and norms and meet its international commitments," Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman told reporters, adding that the call lasted for an hour and a half.

    Thu, 06 Aug 2020 14:17:32 -0400
  • Bodies of 8 U.S. service members recovered after assault vehicle sank off California

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    A total of eight Marines and a Navy sailor died after the amphibious assault vehicle they were in sank off San Clemente Island in California last week.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 09:53:13 -0400
  • Exclusive: Dallas Cowboys Quarterback Dak Prescott Calls for Release of Black Death Row Inmate Julius Jones

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    'Current events are shining a much-needed light on deep-seated prejudices and systemic mistreatment of black people,' Prescott writes

    Thu, 06 Aug 2020 11:55:03 -0400
  • Trump's latest fundraising attempt is reportedly a Facebook scam against his own supporters

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    President Trump would love to have dinner with you, for the low, low price of a $10,000 fine.The Trump campaign blitzed supporters this week asking for donations in exchange for the chance to attend a "VIP dinner" with the president in Southampton, New York on Aug. 8, but Popular Information's Judd Legum, who investigated the contest, says the fundraising attempt is a pretty blatant "scam."The ads, which reportedly cost the campaign $100,000 to run on Facebook, failed to mention that anyone residing in one of 35 states is legally barred from attending the fundraiser (or any event in the state of New York, for that matter).Since late June, visitors to New York who are coming from states with surging COVID-19 numbers have been told they need to undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine to help prevent the virus' spread. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has since doubled down on that requirement, imposing fines and installing checkpoints for visitors.It's unlikely that Trump, who has gone head-to-head with Cuomo throughout the pandemic, has forgotten these restrictions. Still, that didn't stop the campaign from advertising its one-of-a-kind deal to those very people."In one heavily promoted version of the ad, 73 percent of the impressions were targeted at users in states subject to New York's quarantine order," Legum writes.The Trump campaign seems to have advertised the fundraiser knowing much of its targeted audience wouldn't be in a position to actually attend, as the contest rules give the campaign permission "to suspend or cancel the Promotion" if any "viruses, bugs, unauthorized human intervention or other causes beyond Sponsor's control" interfere.Essentially, anything from the mandatory quarantine order to a fruit fly infestation could give Trump reason to bail.More stories from theweek.com Biden campaign reportedly making 'ruthless cuts' to convention speaking list Gates Foundation donates $150 million to push coronavirus vaccine doses below $3 The case against American truck bloat

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 15:31:35 -0400
  • Hong Kong, Chinese officials jeer at US sanctions

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    Hong Kong's leader and China's top representative in the city took pot shots at the United States on Saturday after the Trump administration sanctioned them and nine other officials for allegedly cracking down on freedom and undermining the local autonomy of the former British colony. Chief Executive Carrie Lam took to Facebook to say that the U.S. got her address wrong, listing the official address of her chief deputy instead. The sanctions, announced Friday by the U.S. Treasury Department, block all property or other assets that the individuals have within U.S. jurisdiction.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 09:00:24 -0400
  • There are more problems with onions. Another brand pulls products at Walmart and Kroger

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    A nationwide onion recall has grown to include products from Taylor Farms Texas, a Dallas company that is voluntarily recalling products containing onions from its supplier. An onion recall was initiated by Thomson International last week.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 08:41:56 -0400
  • Fox News Host Sandra Smith Grills Kellyanne Conway on Trump’s COVID ‘Misinformation’

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    On Wednesday, Facebook finally took the long overdue step of removing a piece of Trump campaign content from its platform that pushed misinformation about COVID-19. That didn’t stop Kellyanne Conway from trying to defend it Thursday morning on Fox News. The claim in question came during the president’s appearance on Fox & Friends that morning, where he falsely stated, “If you look at children, children are almost—and I would almost say definitely—but almost immune from this disease.” “Of course there is a debate happening about whether Facebook and Twitter should be arbiters of truth and decide what is fact and fiction,” Fox host Sandra Smith began, before sharing the actual facts about confirmed coronavirus cases in children. According to the CDC, she told Conway, children under the age of 18 now make up 7.4% of total cases in the United States. “So kids are getting this disease, Kellyanne,” she said. “Yes, they are and thankfully most never make it to a hospital and very few have died,” Conway replied, hastening to add, “and every death is a tragedy.” As she tried to pivot to glimmers of good news about the spread of the virus overall, Smith brought her back to the issue at hand.“I want to stick to children though,” the host said. “Because the debate right now is over the spread of misinformation by the president about children being ‘nearly immune.’” Smith cited remarks from the Republican governor of Mississippi, who has just instituted a state-wide mask mandate, as further evidence that kids are transmitting the virus in large numbers before asking, “Is it helpful for the president to tell parents that children are ‘nearly immune’ from this and then have it factually spreading from child to child in places like Mississippi where they’ve opened the doors to their schools?” Seth Meyers Brutally Mocks Trump’s Kindergarten Coronavirus Death ChartInstead of defending Trump’s claim, all Conway could do in response was try to highlight other instances when the president didn’t spread misinformation about children’s susceptibility. “So I think the president is making clear that overall the average age of those who pass away from coronavirus is still about 78,” she said, a separate fact that does not mean children are “nearly immune.” After Conway attempted yet another pivot to attack Joe Biden, Smith again brought her back to Trump and his lies about the virus. “I get that Kellyanne and that’s another conversation,” the host said. “But the point is that the president said in that interview on Fox & Friends yesterday morning said it’s going to ‘go away, like things go away’ and that is something many people are taking issue with.” She quoted the White House’s own health expert Dr. Anthony Fauci, who said, “I do not believe that it will disappear because it’s such a highly transmissible virus.” “So is the president listening to the advice of the health experts that he has at his side?” Smith asked.“Yes he is, and they should be listening to him as well,” Conway replied ominously before accusing those experts of saying things on TV that they didn’t express in classified task force meetings.Conway had plenty to say after that about Twitter and Facebook, but she could not defend Trump’s claim that COVID-19 will magically disappear. Kellyanne Conway Loses It Over Mary Trump Book on Fox NewsRead more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

    Thu, 06 Aug 2020 11:33:14 -0400
  • After Elon Musk criticized Bernie Sanders' brand of socialism, Sanders took him to task for taking billions of dollars in government support

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    Elon Musk tweeted out a meme critical of Bernie Sanders in response to a bill Sanders introduced that would tax billionaires to pay for health care.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 20:56:28 -0400
  • Protesters and S.African police clash at Zimbabwe embassy

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    Close to 100 mainly Zimbabwean migrants in South Africa gathered to protest economic hardship and a recent crackdown on dissent and political opposition back home. Earlier this week Zimbabwe's President Emmerson Mnangagwa vowed to "flush out" critics who he described as "dark forces" and "terrorists" after the authorities thwarted anti-government protests. On Friday police were seen pushing and shoving the protesters from the front of the Zimbabwean embassy building, situated in a leafy Pretoria suburb not far from the Union Buildings, the seat of South Africa's government.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 12:19:59 -0400
  • German schools forced to close after teacher and pupil test positive for virus

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    Two of the first schools in Germany to reopen following the summer holidays were forced to close on Friday after a teacher and a pupil tested positive for the coronavirus. Authorities said there was no indication the infection had spread at either school but both were closed as a precaution. Pupils and staff at a primary school were ordered to self-isolate for two weeks after a pupil tested positive. Separately, a secondary school was closed for four days so staff could be tested after a teacher was found to be infected. “We said from the start that there would be suspected cases in schools,” Bettina Martin, the regional education minister for Mecklenburg-West Pomerania said. “As long as the coronavirus has not been eliminated and there is no vaccine, we have to deal with it. The protection of pupils and staff comes first.” Schools have been open across Germany since May, after the coronavirus lockdown was lifted. Although several have closed for short periods after individual infections were detected, so far there has been no serious outbreak. But many schools are returning to full class sizes for the first time following the summer holidays, and parents’ and teachers’ groups have expressed concern over the risk of transmission. Before the summer break, schools in most regions divided classes into smaller groups so social distancing could be observed, but parents complained after that left many children only able to attend classes for a few days a week, and the German authorities have now ordered full classes to resume.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 09:35:58 -0400
  • Letters to the Editor: Jackie Lacey's husband has a right to protect his home. Why charge him with assault?

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    David Lacey didn't hurt anyone when Black Lives Matter demonstrators showed up at his home shortly after 5 a.m. one morning.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 06:00:29 -0400
  • Chris Wallace: Biden, Trump both made ‘troubling’ comments towards Black community

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    ‘Fox News Sunday’ anchor Chris Wallace weighs in on Biden facing backlash over diversity comment on ‘America’s Newsroom.'

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 10:43:45 -0400
  • China sentences another Canadian to death on drugs charges

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    As relations between the countries remain fraught, the man has been accused of producing ecstasy.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 12:55:13 -0400
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