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  • Why a Black man from Louisiana is serving a life sentence for stealing hedge clippers news

    Louisiana's highest court won't review a life sentence for Fair Wayne Bryant, who was convicted of attempting to steal a pair of hedge clippers in 1997.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 19:42:26 -0400
  • Conspiracy-mongering Republican seeking John Lewis seat gets social media boost from Trump news

    Besides parroting many of President Trump’s talking points, Angela Stanton-King, a Republican congressional candidate, has frequently repeated ideas related to the conspiracy theory QAnon.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 11:47:02 -0400
  • A woman claiming to be from the 'Freedom To Breathe Agency' filmed telling a grocery employee that she could face legal action for making people wear face masks news

    The mask-less woman gave the employee a piece of paper claiming she could go to prison for up to five years for telling customers to wear a face mask.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 07:51:14 -0400
  • New Zealand has now gone 100 days with no new local COVID-19 cases — and it hasn't been on lockdown since June news

    Life has returned to normal for most New Zealanders, with bars, restaurants, and sporting events open for business.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 11:20:34 -0400
  • Litman: New York wants to dissolve the NRA; it will probably decapitate it instead news

    Even if the NRA survives New York's lawsuit, dethroning its CEO and heaping it with humiliation and penalties will be a victory.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 06:00:26 -0400
  • Should Judge Sullivan Be Disqualified from Flynn Case? An Appeals Court Is Asking news

    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
  • Coronavirus: Nine test positive at Georgia school where photo of crowded corridor went viral news

    Nine people have tested positive for Covid-19 at a Georgia high school just days after a photo of a packed hallway went viral.Six students and three staff members who were at North Paulding High School in Dallas, Georgia last week have tested positive, according to a letter sent to parents on Saturday.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 08:52:00 -0400
  • World donors demand change before money to rebuild Beirut news

    The money to rebuild Lebanon’s shattered capital will come only with the same change demanded by mourning protesters in Beirut, said world leaders and international organizations on Sunday after a global aid teleconference. Over 30 conference participants offered emergency humanitarian aid and pledged help for a “credible and independent” investigation into last week's Beirut explosion, another key demand of the Lebanese crowds who took to the streets Saturday and Sunday. In Beirut, a Lebanese Cabinet minister resigned amid signals that the embattled government may be unraveling in the aftermath of the devastating blast that ripped through the capital on Aug. 4 and raised public anger to new levels.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 06:23:24 -0400
  • Celebrate the VP nominee, not Biden's decision to pick a woman. It's the least he can do. news

    Our country has endured high opportunity costs for keeping white men in power for so long while ignoring the political contributions women could make.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 14:19:12 -0400
  • Police Officer Fired After Allegedly Mishandling Explicit Photos of Slain University of Utah Student news

    The Salt Lake Tribune had reported that the officer had downloaded, shared and bragged about the photos

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 13:22:15 -0400
  • Trump calls audience at his Bedminster golf club a 'peaceful protest' news

    President Trump said his audience of well-to-do supporters was involved in a “peaceful protest” and therefore did not need to adhere to state coronavirus guidelines prohibiting large gatherings.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 21:05:31 -0400
  • Hong Kong hits back at 'shameless' U.S. sanctions on leader Carrie Lam news

    The Hong Kong government said it was being used as a "pawn" in the U.S.-China relationship.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 07:29:47 -0400
  • A 17-year-old high school student developed an app that records your interaction with police when you're pulled over and immediately shares it to Instagram and Facebook news

    PulledOver is "like a community where you can share videos — you can see how other people are being treated," its creator told Business Insider.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 08:40:00 -0400
  • California pastor vows to hold indoor worship despite order news

    The pastor of a California church has vowed to continue holding indoor worship in defiance of coronavirus health orders after a judge issued a temporary restraining order barring the church from doing so. Get the full story in the video above.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 20:44:13 -0400
  • Head of US Christian college steps aside in flap over photo news

    Jerry Falwell Jr. has taken an indefinite leave of absence as president of a prominent US evangelical university amid a furor over an Instagram picture of him and a young woman, both with pants partly unzipped. The 58-year-old Falwell, whose father was one of the country's best-known televangelists and who founded Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, is stepping aside at the request of the school's trustees. A terse statement Friday from the Christian university said the trustees' executive committee had asked Falwell to "take an indefinite leave of absence from his roles as President and Chancellor of Liberty University, to which he has agreed, effective immediately."

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 12:54:24 -0400
  • Nasa to change 'harmful' and insensitive' planet and galaxy nicknames news

    Space agency says ‘certain cosmic nicknames are insensitive’ and vows to drop any reference to themNasa has signaled it is joining the social justice movement by changing unofficial and potentially contentious names used by the scientific community for distant cosmic objects and systems such as planets, galaxies and nebulae.In a statement last week, the space agency said that as the “community works to identify and address systemic discrimination and inequality in all aspects of the field, it has become clear that certain cosmic nicknames are not only insensitive, but can be actively harmful”.Nasa added that it is “examining its use of unofficial terminology for cosmic objects as part of its commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion”.One of the steps Nasa would immediately take would be to drop references to planetary nebula NGC 2392 known as the “Eskimo Nebula”, a dying Sun-like star that is blowing off its outer layers. “Eskimo”, the agency said, “is widely viewed as a colonial term with a racist history, imposed on the indigenous people of Arctic regions.”It will also cease to refer to a pair of spiral galaxies, NGC 4567 and NGC 4568, in the Virgo Galaxy Cluster referred to as the “Siamese Twins Galaxy”, as part of its effort to align cosmic objects with current thinking and conventions.“These nicknames and terms may have historical or culture connotations that are objectionable or unwelcoming, and Nasa is strongly committed to addressing them,” said Stephen Shih, associate administrator for diversity and equal opportunity at Nasa. “Science depends on diverse contributions, and benefits everyone, so this means we must make it inclusive.”In future, Nasa said it will use only the official, International Astronomical Union designations in cases where nicknames are inappropriate. Cosmic objects, such as Barnard 33, nicknamed “the Horsehead Nebula” would be retain their names.The “Siamese Twin Galaxy” was so-named by Frederick William Herschel, the British, German-born astronomer and composer. Herschel also identified and named the “Eskimo Nebula” which he described in January 1787 as “a star 9th magnitude with a pretty bright middle, nebulosity equally dispersed all around. A very remarkable phenomenon.”Herschel then spent nine years surveying the heavens for double stars, publishing catalogues of nebulae in 1802 (2,500 objects) and in 1820 (5,000 objects). Among Herschel’s achievements was to note a new object in the constellation of Gemini.It was confirmed to be a new planet, named Uranus, and considered to be the first planet to be discovered since antiquity. He also identified the planet’s moons, Titania and Oberon, as well as Enceladus and Mimas, both moons of Saturn.But his nomenclature will now fall from official use at the US agency, said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator of Nasa’s science mission directorate in Washington.“Our goal is that all names are aligned with our values of diversity and inclusion, and we’ll proactively work with the scientific community to help ensure that. Science is for everyone, and every facet of our work needs to reflect that value,” Zurbuchen said.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 15:01:27 -0400
  • Woman confronting vandals covered in paint during renewed Portland protests 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
  • GOP appeals after Judge dismisses lawsuit over House's proxy voting system established due to COVID-19 news

    A federal judge tossed out a GOP-led lawsuit aiming to halt an unprecedented proxy voting system established by the House due to the COVID pandemic.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 18:19:43 -0400
  • Iran asks UN to hold US accountable for plane interception

    No description related. Click here to go to original article.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 23:46:19 -0400
  • Bars over schools: Why your kids will probably learn from home this fall news

    Lawmakers and educators battle over how to reopen schools safely this fall amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 17:43:52 -0400
  • Kerala plane crash: 'Black boxes' from Air India jet found news

    The Air India plane skidded off the runway and broke apart during bad weather in Kerala state.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 17:34:35 -0400
  • After Elon Musk criticized Bernie Sanders' brand of socialism, Sanders took him to task for taking billions of dollars in government support news

    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
  • It is the state’s largest PPP loan scheme. Three from South Florida have been charged news

    Three South Florida people have been charged with collaborating in a $24 million loan scheme to bilk a federal program meant to aid businesses ailing from the coronavirus pandemic, authorities said. It is the state’s largest alleged fraud case involving the Small Business Administration’s relief program.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 08:42:26 -0400
  • New 'threat' against former Saudi spy in Canada: media news

    A former senior Saudi intelligence official who has accused Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of trying to have him assassinated in 2018 has been placed under heightened security after a new threat on his life, a Canadian newspaper reported. The Globe and Mail said Canadian security services had been informed of a new attempted attack on Saad Aljabri, who lives at an undisclosed location in the Toronto region. Aljabri served as a counterespionage chief under a rival prince, Mohammed bin Nayef, who was ousted in 2017 by Prince Mohammed.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 16:53:34 -0400
  • Japan's Abe to avoid visit to war-linked shrine on 75th war anniversary: Jiji news

    Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will refrain from visiting the Yasukuni shrine for war dead on the 75th anniversary of Japan's defeat in World War Two, Jiji news agency said on Sunday, but will make an offering on the emotive day, as he has done in the past. The shrine, dedicated to Japanese who have died during past wars including World War Two, is seen as a potent symbol of the controversy that persists over the conflict's legacy in East Asia. "He will make a ritual offering to the shrine out of his personal expenses as the leader of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, as he has done in previous years," sources close to the matter said, according to the report.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 01:59:42 -0400
  • New York is moving homeless people into luxury hotels to protect them against coronavirus and wealthy neighbourhoods aren't happy 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
  • President Trump says Joe Biden is no longer worthy of the Black vote following diversity remark news

    Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden compares diversity of Blacks and Latinos; reaction on 'The Five.'

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 17:40:51 -0400
  • A father, a sister, a son: Beirut blast takes a heavy toll news

    A close twin sister, now separated forever. Tuesday's enormous explosion that killed scores of people, injured thousands and caused widespread destruction across Lebanon's capital touched off widespread mourning for the victims.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 03:03:50 -0400
  • 'We have to reach an agreement': Dems, White House open to deal on COVID relief despite Trump's orders news

    Pelosi said Trump's executive orders failed to accomplish the administration's own stated goals.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 14:54:56 -0400
  • Niger: French tourists among eight killed by gunmen news

    They were in a region which attracts visitors who want to see the last herds of giraffe in West Africa.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 12:36:24 -0400
  • How Nicola Sturgeon has secretly massaged Scotland’s coronavirus record news

    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
  • Georgia Police Officers Investigated After Shooting at Minors During Traffic Stop news

    The children's father said they had been driving home from a Walmart to pick him up

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 12:29:40 -0400
  • Sales of pricey New York City apartments plunge as the suburbs become cool again news

    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
  • U.S. sanctions branded 'clowning actions' as Hong Kong vows it won't be intimidated news

    Beijing's top representative office in Hong Kong said on Saturday that sanctions imposed by Washington on senior Hong Kong and Chinese officials were "clowning actions" that would not frighten or intimidate Chinese people. Separately, the Hong Kong government said the sanctions were "shameless and despicable" and represented "blatant and barbaric" interference in China's internal affairs. The United States on Friday imposed sanctions on Luo Huining, the head of China's Liaison Office, as well as Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam and other current and former officials that Washington accuses of curtailing political freedoms in the global financial hub.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 00:06:55 -0400
  • Injured cruise ship worker ‘forgotten’ after seven months in South Florida hotels news

    From behind the locked window of his 10th-floor hotel room, Paúl Córdova watches dozens of airplanes take off and land each day at Miami International Airport.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 07:00:00 -0400
  • Ireland has a new coronavirus fear: Americans on vacation news

    With little to no quarantine enforcement on visitors, some Irish business owners say they have had to take matters into their own hands.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 04:59:00 -0400
  • Mexico sets up justice commission for Yaqui Indians news

    The Mexican government on Friday set up a Justice Commission for the Yaqui People, looking to solve the land, water and infrastructure problems of what President Andrés Manuel López Obrador calls Mexico’s most persecuted Indigenous group. The Yaquis were attacked and temporarily evicted from their homeland in northern Mexico’s Sonora state over 100 years ago. “All the original inhabitants suffered robbery, but no people suffered as much as the Yaqui,” López Obrador said Thursday in a meeting with Indigenous leaders.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 19:35:27 -0400
  • Intelligence official says Russia and China are lining up on opposite sides of the U.S. election news

    A top intelligence official says Russia is using a "range of measures" to take down former Vice President Joe Biden ahead of the 2020 presidential election, while China prefers that President Trump doesn't win.William Evanina, director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, released a statement on Friday detailing the "intentions and activities" of U.S. adversaries in the presidential election, which describes how intelligence officials are "concerned" primarily about China, Russia, and Iran.By the U.S. assessment, China "prefers that President Trump — whom Beijing sees as unpredictable — does not win re-election," Evanina wrote. Additionally, Russia is "using a range of measures to primarily denigrate" Biden, and "some Kremlin-linked actors are also seeking to boost President Trump's candidacy on social media and Russian television," the statement said.Finally, Evanina said that Iran seeks to "undermine U.S. democratic institutions, President Trump, and to divide the country in advance of the 2020 elections," driven by its belief that Trump being re-elected would "result in a continuation of U.S. pressure."Senate Intelligence Committee Acting Chair Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Vice Chair Mark Warner (D-Va.) on Friday said this statement "highlights some of the serious and ongoing threats to our election." They also said that additional information has been provided to members of Congress in recent weeks and that more of it "can, and at the appropriate time should, be shared with the voting public."More stories from 5 scathing cartoons about Trump's 'it is what it is' COVID response QAnon goes mainstream 4 surprising reasons scientists think asymptomatic coronavirus cases are so common

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 16:28:00 -0400
  • Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tested positive, then negative for COVID-19: 7 questions you might have about testing news

    Not all tests work the same way, nor do they always provide identical results. Even the same test — taken twice — can show contradictory outcomes.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 13:14:28 -0400
  • Sen. Cotton: TikTok is like a Trojan horse on American phones news

    Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton weighs in on U.S. National Security concerns involving TikTok with ‘Sunday Morning Futures.’

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 11:16:24 -0400
  • Canada 'knows the root cause': China hints at Huawei retaliation as it sentences two Canadians to death news

    A Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson said Canada “knows the root cause” behind recent death sentences for Canadians facing drug charges, the latest escalation in conflict between both countries following the arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou.Foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin reportedly said the judicial system in China “handles cases independently” while discussing the recent death sentences for two Canadian nationals charged in separate cases with transporting and manufacturing drugs in China.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 15:16:04 -0400
  • India landslide: Dozens feared dead after flooding in Kerala news

    Up to 20 houses are buried under debris in the state of Kerala, with rescue efforts under way.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 03:17:45 -0400
  • Eleven killed in Czech apartment block fire including 5 who fell to their deaths news

    Three children were among 11 people killed in a fire on Saturday at an apartment block in the Czech Republic that police believe was set deliberately. Police said one person was detained in connection with the blaze that saw five people jump to their deaths in the eastern city of Bohumin near the Polish border. Regional police chief Tomas Kuzel told public Czech Television that police suspected arson was the cause and that they had detained one person in the case. "I think we are good when it comes to the culprit," Mr Kuzel said without specifying whether the detained person would be charged with arson. He likened the fire to a case in 2013 when a man caused a gas explosion and fire that killed three children and two other people as well as himself. He reportedly hated his fellow tenants.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 22:31:10 -0400
  • Ecuador navy surveils large Chinese fishing fleet near Galapagos news

    Ecuador's navy is conducting surveillance of a large Chinese fishing fleet that is operating near the protected waters of the Galapagos Islands, amid concerns about the environmental impact of fishing in the area of the ecologically sensitive islands. The fishing fleet has since 2017 been arriving in the summer months and fishing just outside the Galapagos territorial waters, drawn by marine species such as the endangered hammerhead shark. Such fishing is not illegal because it takes place in international waters.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 11:04:45 -0400
  • A stranded tanker carrying 4,000 tons of fuel has breached and is leaking oil into the pristine, azure waters of the Indian Ocean news

    The MV Wakashio ran aground off Mauritius on July 25. Cracks emerged in the hull on Friday after the ship was battered by strong winds.

    Sat, 08 Aug 2020 10:23:00 -0400
  • Joe Arpaio loses sheriff’s race in 2nd failed comeback bid news

    Joe Arpaio on Friday was narrowly defeated in his bid to win back the sheriff’s post in metro Phoenix that he held for 24 years before being voted out in 2016 amid voter frustrations over his taxpayer-funded legal bills, his penchant for self-promotion and a defiant streak that led to his now-pardoned criminal conviction. Arpaio lost by more than 6,200 votes in the Republican primary for Maricopa County sheriff to his former top aide, Jerry Sheridan.

    Fri, 07 Aug 2020 20:30:47 -0400
  • 'Unconstitutional slop': Pelosi slams Trump's executive actions on coronavirus relief news

    The Speaker and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer didn't say if they will challenge the president in court.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 12:23:00 -0400
  • Despite federal guidance, schools cite privacy laws to withhold info about COVID-19 cases news

    Federal guidance say those laws don't bar disclosure. Schools can publicly share coronavirus case counts as long as they don’t identify individuals.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 07:08:38 -0400
  • The Bizarre Story of a Far-Right Activist Taking COVID Trutherism to Mexico news

    On April 22, American Gavin Seim caused a minor media firestorm in Mexico when he posted a video on social media showing him flouting COVID-19 restrictions in the city of Santiago de Querétaro. The maskless Seim insisted that the government had no right to close a plaza he was visiting as part of its efforts to limit large gatherings, nor to manage his health. Several media outlets and commentators brushed him off as a disgruntled tourist. The American ambassador to Mexico, Christopher Landau, called him “a spoiled brat and an embarrassment to our country… a perfect example of the ‘Ugly American.’” But this was not an isolated incident. Seim is an anti-government activist and coronavirus truther. He falsely claims the coronavirus is a normal flu and that there is no evidence that masks work. Last month, he posted two more accounts of willful violations of mask policies in Mexican stores, part of an effort to push his followers online not to be “sheep” following mask “bullies.”The weirdest part: He insists that he’s not just a visitor being a jerk, but a political refugee from American injustice. ‘I’m Not Scared’: She Faces Life in Prison After Allegedly Buying Red Protest Paint Seim, a 35-year-old photographer from Ephrata, Washington, was involved with the patriot movement that rallied around the Bundy Family, members of which were criminally charged after an armed standoff with the feds over cattle grazing fees, in the mid 2010s. He seems to share many of their utopian libertarian beliefs, as well as their concerns about the erosion of American freedoms, and indulges in conspiracies about the machinations of shady elites. But even some fellow Bundy supporters view him as uniquely absolutist, aggressive, and hyperbolic. For example, he calls all cops “Blue ISIS” and has argued that “not one person in the U.S. prison system is there lawfully. Every trial has been botched and every prisoner abused.”“When you put out 20 percent truth and the rest is fake, it comes off as fact,” Greg Whalen, a Bundy supporter, told The Daily Beast of Seim’s grandiose and extreme rhetoric. “He can’t see it for himself, right? But he’s a cross between antifa and a sovereign citizen.” Sovereign citizens, of course, are unified mainly by the beliefs that most, if not all, law enforcement is thuggery—and legal systems sophistry meant to keep citizens confused and oppressed. Seim responded briefly to an initial query, but as of publication had not actually addressed any issues raised in messages sent by The Daily Beast seeking comment for this story.Starting in at least 2014, Seim made it his business to challenge cops sitting in unmarked vehicles or making traffic stops, mostly by lecturing them on the supposed unconstitutionality of their actions. But in August 2017, a cop arrested him for allegedly interfering in a traffic stop, and the local court ordered him to open his phone so they could access his video of the encounter. Rather than contest the order in court, Seim packed his wife and kids into an RV and drove 18 straight hours to Mexico, fleeing a misdemeanor charge because he insisted local authorities wanted to plant evidence on his phone to put him away for good. “You might be facing charges that are really minimal, but you still end up dead” in America’s justice system, he said in a recent video about the incident. Seim has claimed that he applied for political asylum in Mexico City. But that was only after he started filming his confrontations with Mexican police officers, within weeks of arriving in the country. By January 2018, he was already attempting to challenge their activities, in English, by citing articles of the Mexican constitution. He says the videos show they are less thuggish than American cops, but insists that he still needs to keep them honest. Far-right movement scholar Matthew Sweeney says he’s never heard of someone in these circles leaving to live in Mexico before. Seim’s decision has confused and amused some fellow Bundy circle members, who sometimes see trials as a welcome opportunity to grandstand for their beliefs. But even stranger than Seim’s choice is the fact that Mexico may actually—as Seim claimed earlier this year—have granted him and his family asylum. Daniel Berlin of Asylum Access, a group that helps asylum seekers navigate the country’s immigration system, told The Daily Beast that Seim’s description of the asylum process matches his group’s case experiences, and that papers he has brandished on camera, while not definitive, appeared to be valid at first glance. Neither the Mexican Commission for Aid to Refugees, which vets and approves asylum claims for the nation, nor the U.S. Embassy in Mexico responded to requests for comment. But Maureen Meyer of the human rights group WOLA pointed out that the Mexican National Institute of Migration’s data indicates it has issued 12 permanent residence permits to Americans based on refugee status attainment so far this year—and issued seven of them in January, when Seim claims he, his wife, and their five kids received said documents.Regardless of his status, there is no evidence that Seim’s provocations in Mexico have attracted much local support, either before or since the pandemic began. Sure, Mexico has its own brands of anti-state activists. And sure, as Sweeney notes, the economic strain and the chafe of personal restrictions stemming from COVID-19 responses are leading to a surge in beliefs and protests that mirror Seim’s in a number of countries across the world. But American far-right, patriot-type rhetoric appears relatively absent in Mexico. “There tend to be too many barriers—everything ranging from political and cultural differences to personality differences—that make folks unlikely” to jump onto Seim’s bandwagon in Mexico, explained far-right movement researcher Amy Cooter.  Instead, after largely ignoring him for his first couple of years in the nation, Mexican news outlets have started accusing Seim of distorting their constitution, and a number of locals have suggested deporting him, citing an article of their constitution to justify the idea. They seem more attentive to, and irked by, his pretensions to authority and his flouting of local laws when doing so actively disrupts efforts to control a raging pandemic, rather than avoid a traffic stop. But Seim may not need to bring locals into his activist protests to have an impact on his new home. Over the last couple of years, he’s published materials actively encouraging his fellow Americans to flee to Mexico, and offering guidance on seeking asylum and settling in. One of his recent Facebook posts went so far as to suggest others may be trying to follow his lead: “This must be how it felt to help slaves escape!! I love reports from the people who saw my warning, jumped bail and escaped the USA.” As of now, Mexican authorities don’t seem to care about Seim’s exploits. He didn’t get arrested, or even face any serious official pushback, for his stunt in the plaza in April. The cops in his videos usually seem bemused or exasperated by his lack of language skills and his insistent, aggressive demeanor, but ultimately brush him off. And José Antonio “Toño” Mejía Lira, the municipal president of Tequisquiapan, in Querétaro State, where Seim has filmed several videos, told The Daily Beast that Seim wasn’t on his radar. Whatever this American gets up to, Mejía Lira explained, “does not concern the municipality.” This may reflect the fact that Querétaro State has not suffered nearly as much from the pandemic as some other states in Mexico. Government figures showed just 387 active cases in the state as of Thursday evening, out of 30,010 nationwide, and one of the nation’s lowest per capita caseloads, as well. According to the latest U.S. Embassy information, most businesses there remain open, if operating at limited occupancy and with relatively mild masking and distancing restrictions in place. But Seim does run risks if he pushes his luck. Not because, as online commentators often imply, there’s a serious chance of corrupt cops killing him. But instead because the Mexican government might get tired of his antics.“If Seim were to commit a serious crime,” explains Meyer, while stressing that in some states there are now strict regulations in place to control COVID-19 and legal responses to infractions of those rules, “he could have his status revoked.” Read 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.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 04:49:53 -0400
  • The Perseid meteor shower, which NASA says is the best of the year, peaks on Tuesday. Here's how to catch it in the night sky. news

    The Perseids meteor shower, considered the year's best, peaks on August 11. Here's how to watch the show.

    Sun, 09 Aug 2020 06:19:00 -0400
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