News and Headlines.9/17/2020

St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter unveils the Minnesota Timberwolves 2019-20 City Edition uniform at a press conference on Nov. 20, 2019, at Target Center in Minneapolis.

News and Headlines: In The News, Politics, World News, Commentary/Opinion.

In The News:

Nashville Mayor, Health Department Covered Up Data Showing Bars And Restaurants Weren’t Spreading COVID-19

City officials in Nashville are under fire after a thread of emails were released by Fox 17 News on Thursday demonstrating that Mayor John Cooper and Metro Health Department hid the COVID-19 contact tracing results for bars and restaurants from the public.

In June, the city began a contact tracing initiative for certain “coronavirus clusters.” While the tracing results showed that more than a thousand cases of COVID-19 were discovered to be highly transmissible for people on construction sites and in nursing homes, bars and restaurants combined only had 22 cases.

According to emails obtained by the local news station, the mayor’s senior advisor and a health department employee, however, decided not to release the information.

“This isn’t going to be publicly released, right? Just info for Mayor’s Office?” health department employee Leslie Waller asked.

Cheer star Jerry Harris charged with producing child sex images

GETTY IMAGES

Prosecutors say Jerry Harris could face up to 30 years in prison.
GETTY IMAGES
Prosecutors say Jerry Harris could face up to 30 years in prison.

Mr Harris, 21, allegedly enticed an underage boy to produce sexually explicit videos and photos of himself, the US attorney’s office said.

According to court records, Mr Harris admitted to soliciting and receiving explicit images from the minor.

But a spokesperson for the star denied the allegations.

A criminal complaint says the victim informed Mr Harris during their initial online encounter that he was 13 years old.

Constitution Day: Donald Trump Announces ‘1776 Commission’ to Fight Left-Wing Indoctrination

SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images
SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

“The legacy of 1776 will never be erased,” Trump said in a speech at the National Archives building to celebrate Constitution Day.

The “1776 Commission” will promote patriotic education in America’s schools and oppose reductionist partisan historical narratives.

The president’s speech was the sharpest criticism to date of critical race theory in education and media.

“Whether it is the mob on the street or the cancel culture in the board room, the goal is the same,” Trump said. “To silence dissent, to scare you out of speaking the truth and to bully Americans into abandoning their values, their heritage, and their very way of life.”

BLM Leaders in Their Own Words

Commentary/Opinion:
How could any decent person still support the BLM movement (particularly after seeing this video)?

Deported Sex Offenders, Gang Members Arrested Arrested in Texas near Border

File Photo: Larry Smith/Getty Images
File Photo: Larry Smith/Getty Images

A further search confirmed Jimenez-Chaires is a member of the violent transnational criminal gang known as Sureños.

That same day, Del Rio Sector agents assigned to the Eagle Pass Station arrested a man after he illegally entered the U.S. from Mexico.
the agents identified the man as 33-year-old Jose Ernesto Villalta-Arevalo, a Salvadoran citizen. Court records indicate the Salvadoran man for aggravated sexual assault of a child in 2018, officials reported.

Rio Grande Valley Sector agents September 14 arrested a group of migrants who illegally crossed the border near La Joya, Texas. agents identified one of the men as Hector Granados-Calales, a Salvadoran national, A criminal background for “rape-strong arm.”

FBI Director Wray: ‘Antifa is a real thing,’ FBI has cases against people identifying with movement

“Antifa is a real thing. It’s not a group or an organization. It’s a movement, or an ideology may be one way of thinking of it,” Wray said. 

“And we have quite a number — and I’ve said this quite consistently since my first time appearing before this committee — we have any number of properly predicated investigations into what we would describe as violent anarchist extremists and some of those individuals self-identify with Antifa.”

Wray’s words were in response to Rep. Debbie Lesko, R-Ariz., who claimed prominent Democrats have called Antifa a “fantasy.” In July, Rep. Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., had dismissed the idea of Antifa violence in Portland as “a myth that’s being spread only in Washington, D.C.”

Later in the hearing, Rep. Donald Payne, D-N.J., asked for clarification about the nature of Antifa, and Wray explained further.

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Gulf Coast braces for 2nd round of flooding in Sally’s wake

Storm damaged boats sit at the dock in a marina, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2020,
Storm damaged boats sit at the dock in a marina, Thursday, Sept. 17, 2020, in Pensacola, Fla. Rivers swollen by Hurricane Sally’s rains threatened more misery for parts of the Florida Panhandle and south Alabama on Thursday, as the storm’s remnants continued to dump heavy rains inland that spread the threat of flooding to Georgia and the Carolinas.(AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) — Rescuers along the Gulf Coast used high-water vehicles Thursday to reach people cut off by flooding in the aftermath of Hurricane Sally, even as the region braced for a delayed, second round of floods in the coming days from rivers and creeks swollen by the storm’s heavy rains.

Across southern Alabama and the Florida Panhandle, homeowners and businesses began cleaning up, and officials inspected bridges and highways for safety, a day after Sally rolled through with winds up to 105 mph (165 kph) and more than a foot of rain in many places before it began to break up.

EXCLUSIVE: Fed up with YouTube ‘crushing conservative voices,’ Dan Bongino acquires part-ownership of video-sharing competitor

Dan Bongino
Dan Bongino 

Conservative radio host Dan Bongino has acquired an equity stake in the online video-sharing platform Rumble with hopes of competing with YouTube by establishing a platform where free speech is protected.

“We need a home,” Bongino told the Washington Examiner in an exclusive interview.

“We need somewhere to go where conservative views won’t be discriminated against.”

Bongino, who has 600K subscribers on YouTube, says 80% of his daily episodes of The Dan Bongino Show have been demonetized for its conservative content.

“I’m sick of it, and I wanted to do something about it.”

Launched in 2013, Rumble “provides video creators a way host, manage, distribute, create over-the-top feeds and monetize their content,” according to its website.

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California firefighters face ‘wall of flames’ in dramatic video, 250 Marines and sailors to battle Creek Fire

Flames tear through homes in a California neighborhood in a shocking video released by firefighters from one of the largest wildfires currently scorching the state as officials announced Wednesday that hundreds of service members are joining the firefight.

The Pentagon said Thursday that 250 Marines and sailors are now assisting firefighting efforts against the Creek Fire burning in central California.

According to Cal Fire, the Creek Fire has reached 228,025 acres and is only 18% contained as of Wednesday night.

Kentucky man accused of dismembering ex-girlfriend, taking body parts in suitcases to Illinois

Melvin Martin Jr., 30, was arrested after dismembered body parts of his ex-girlfriend were found in his suitcases.
Melvin Martin Jr., 30, was arrested after dismembered body parts of his ex-girlfriend were found in his suitcases. (Markham Police)

Authorities believe the woman in the suitcase was killed in Kentucky more than a month ago.

She was dismembered allegedly by an ex-boyfriend who then carried her rotting body parts on a Greyhound bus to visit family in Markham, about 20 miles outside of Chicago.

According to authorities, Melvin Martin Jr., 30, went to visit relatives with multiple bags in tow.

His family became suspicious when he wouldn’t open them up and seemed to be guarding them.

“There were some early reports of a foul odor coming from the bags,” Police Chief Terry White told WBBM-TV.

Ex-Texas deputy sheriff gets 18 years in prison for sexually exploiting, cyberstalking two Massachusetts girls

Pasquale T. Salas, 26, a former sheriff deputy from Texas, pleaded guilty in May to sexual exploitation and cyberstalking of young Massachusetts girls from the time they were 12 years old.
Pasquale T. Salas, 26, a former sheriff deputy from Texas, pleaded guilty in May to sexual exploitation and cyberstalking of young Massachusetts girls from the time they were 12 years old. (Galveston County Jail)

Pasquale T. Salas, 26, a former deputy sheriff with the Matagorda County Sheriff’s Office, was sentenced to 220 months in prison and five years of supervised release, the U.S. District Attorney’s Office for Massachusetts said in a statement Tuesday.

He pleaded guilty in May to one count of sexual exploitation of a minor and one count of cyberstalking.

“The defendant was an online predator disguised in a law enforcement uniform,” said U.S. Attorney Andrew E. Lelling.

“He used the internet to gain the trust of vulnerable children and then turned around and exploited their innocence and played on their fears.

CBS News’ Norah O’Donnell says ‘mostly peaceful’ protests caused $1B to $2B in damage from looting and arson

Axios reported earlier in the day that damage caused by “riots and civil disorders” from May 26 through June 8 would cost insurance companies between $1-2 billion.

When O’Donnell reported the overwhelming figure, she made sure to insist the protests were mostly peaceful.

Media Research Center analyst Nicholas Fondacaro pointed out that NBC’s “Nightly News” and ABC’s “World News Tonight” didn’t bother to report the alarming statistic.

While O’Donnell at least informed viewers of the damage, Fondacaro doesn’t understand why she needed to add the disclaimer.

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Tucker Carlson slams Facebook and Instagram for censoring his Dr. Li-Meng Yan interview

The interview gained over 970,000 views on Facebook and more than 750,000 views on Instagram within a day of being published.

But Facebook and Instagram have since flagged the interview with three fact-checks from January, February, and March.

In April, it was discovered that one of Facebook’s supposedly independent fact-checkers who flagged an article as “false” for suggesting that the coronavirus may have originated in the Wuhan Institute of Virology was a former employee of the lab.

And in August, it was revealed that the Gates Foundation has provided millions of dollars in funding to Facebook’s fact-checkers.

In fact, the media company Gannet, which owns USA Today, has received $499,651 from the Gates Foundation and one of the three fact-checks applied to the Dr. Yan interview was from USA Today.

Tucker Carlson criticizes Facebook for censoring interview with Chinese virologist

Facebook and other tech giants have engaged in a troubling pattern of censoring speech surrounding major issues in the coronavirus debate, Fox News host Tucker Carlson argued during his Wednesday night monologue.

Carlson’s comments came after Facebook slapped a warning label on video of his Tuesday interview with Chinese virologist Dr. Li-Meng Yan, who claimed to have evidence showing China “intentionally” released COVID-19 onto the general population.

“Instagram, which Facebook also owns did the same thing. Twitter suspended Dr. Yan’s account entirely.

It did not explain why. Nor did the tech companies explain how they would know more about disease transmission than an MD, PhD virologist like Dr. Li-Meng Yan.

Instead, Facebook and Instagram linked to three so-called fact checks which supposedly proved Yan was lying.

FOX NEWS VIDEO: Tucker Carlson: US health officials ignored evidence coronavirus was intentionally created

Commentary/Opinion:
“They believe in censorship. Censorship does not make us wiser. It does not make us better informed.

If it did, we’d be speaking Russian right now, the Soviet Union would run the world. It would have worked.

But instead the Soviet Union is extinct.

It collapsed under the weight of its own absurdities — absurdities abetted by censorship.

And that’s the most basic lesson of dictatorships, all of them.

Anything built on lies falls apart over time.”

FOX NEWS VIDEO: Dr. Scott Atlas: US witnessing the ‘near destruction of objective journalism’

“Dr. Atlas did what you can absolutely not do ever in this brave new world they’ve created,” Tucker Carlson said on his show Wednesday.

“He pointed out that statistical models, the technocrats use to justify their’s existence have been catastrophically wrong.”

Atlas said the move represents a push from Big Tech to dangerously censor science, something he thought was limited to “third world countries.”

“It’s a disaster,” he told Carlson. “We’ve already seen the near obstruction of journalism.

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Politics:

Ocasio-Cortez: ‘We can likely push’ Biden ‘in a more progressive direction’ if he’s elected

“Of course I do,” said Ocasio-Cortez.

“We’re different people, and clearly I, in the primary, one of the reasons why I was supportive of Senator Sanders was because of how progressive his stances are, but, you know, the primaries are over, and right now what is most important is to make sure that we ensure a Democratic victory in November and that we continue to push Vice President Biden on issues from marijuana to climate change to foreign policy.”

Ocasio-Cortez is optimistic that her party’s progressive wing can push Biden to the left.

“I think, overall, we can likely push Vice President Biden in a more progressive direction across policy issues,” she told Just the News in an interview Tuesday on Capitol Hill.

Joe Biden: ‘No Deportations’ for Illegal Aliens Until They Commit a Felony

During an interview with Noticias Telemundo, Biden reiterated his plan to end deportations for at least 100 days, saying that only illegal aliens who commit felonies will be deported.

After the deportation freeze, Biden has said he will prioritize convicted illegal alien felonies, indicating that illegal aliens would have to commit felonies and be convicted before they are ever deported from the United States.

“There are going to be no deportations in the first 100 days of my [administration] … freeze deportations for the first 100 days and the only people who will be deported are people who committed a felony while here,” Biden said.

Comey To Testify Sept 30 On Crossfire Hurricane

Graham said, “The day of reckoning is upon us when it comes to Crossfire Hurricane,” Graham said.

“Former FBI Director James Comey has agreed to appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 30th, without a subpoena. I appreciate Mr. Comey coming before the committee.

He will be respectfully treated, but asked hard questions. I look forward to this hearing. I think it will be important to the American people.”

While US Attorney Jon Durham may be wrapping up his own investigation, the Senate Homeland Security has issued subpoenas to top Obama officials and Justice Department officials  in their own probe into Crossfire Hurricane’s origins. 

CHALKBOARD: Here is the Obama Administration’s PLAN FOR REVOLUTION, and it’s ALL coming true now

Commentary/Opinion:
The former ambassador to Russia under the Obama Administration wrote the “7 Pillars of Color Revolution.”

They comprise the seven steps needed in order to enact the kinds of revolutions that have successfully been implemented in places like Georgia and Ukraine over the past two decades.

But, now, those steps are coming true here, too…and everything is coming together just weeks before Donald Trump takes on Joe Biden in the November election.

So, what’s REALLY going on?

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Twitter ‘Fact Checks’ Another Trump Tweet About Mass-Mail Voter Fraud

Olivier DOULIERY/AFP
Olivier DOULIERY/AFP

Trump linked to a tweet posted by True the Vote, an organization working to ensure that the votes of members of the military serving overseas are counted.

In response, Twitter added a label to Trump’s tweets, encouraging users to “learn how voting by mail is safe and secure.” The link takes users to a page with links to stories highlighting “experts” defending vote-by-mail.

Twitter also added the label to a follow-up tweet from the President, stating “The big Unsolicited Ballot States should give it up NOW, before it is too late, and ask people to go to the Polling Booths and, like always before, VOTE. Otherwise, MAYHEM!!! Solicited Ballots (absentee) are OK.”

WH’s Navarro on Stalled Coronavirus Relief Talks: Nancy Pelosi ‘the Problem,’ ‘Appears to Be the Obstacle’ Here

Navarro said in an interview with Fox News Channel’s “America’s Newsroom” that Pelosi “appears to be the obstacle” because she is “gambling” on a bad economy, meaning President Donald Trump loses out in his reelection bid.

“The one thing I can tell you, Sandra — this is not news, but it should be repeated — Nancy Pelosi is the problem here,” Navarro told host Sandra Smith.

“There is a lot of people in her party who want to deal because they understand the pain and suffering of the people in this country, whether it’s not having a job or whether forcing eviction or foreclosure.

I’m not sure what’s going on with Pelosi, but there is definitely a deal to be done, whether it’s 1.5 or something else.”

St. Paul uses CARES Act money for mayor’s guaranteed income program for struggling families

St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter unveils the Minnesota Timberwolves 2019-20 City Edition uniform at a press conference on Nov. 20, 2019, at Target Center in Minneapolis.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter unveils the Minnesota Timberwolves 2019-20 City Edition uniform at a press conference on Nov. 20, 2019, at Target Center in Minneapolis. (David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images)

The program will divert $300,000 in CARES Act funding to give 150 families payments of $500 a month, the Twin Cities Pioneer Press reported.

The rest of the 18-month program will be funded by philanthropy, the mayor said, according to the Twin Cities Pioneer Press.

St. Paul has a poverty rate of 20.4%, well above the state’s average, according to Data USA. Other cities launching programs in conjunction with Mayors for a Guaranteed Income include Pittsburgh and Long Beach, Calif.

Also this week, Mayors for a Guaranteed Income announced it added 14 mayors who support such programs to its roster, including Mayors LaToya Cantrell of New Orleans, Jenny Durkan of Seattle, Jim Kenney of Philadelphia and Levar Stoney of Richmond, Va.

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World News:

Israel to enter lock-down; U.S. resolved to thwart Iran’ access to new arms-TV7 Israel News 17.09.20

1) Israeli authorities are preparing to enforce a general nationwide lockdown, which is set to commence tomorrow afternoon, just several hours before the eve of the high-holiday of Rosh Hashana, the Hebrew calendar’s New Year.

2) U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reiterated the Trump Administration’s resolve to thwart Iranian access to weapons – and is determined to assure global compliance.

3) Iran insists that the United States wrongly assassinated Quds Force commander Qassem Suleimani – referring to the slain IRGC general as “a symbol for regional peace.”

Chinese Vaccine Plant Leaks Bacteria, Infects Thousands

Photo by Getty Images
Photo by Getty Images

According to health authorities on Tuesday, 3,245 people have tested positive for Brucella bacteria antibodies out of 21,847 people tested so far in Lanzhou, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported.

Local health authorities announced on December 26 that the Lanzhou Biopharmaceutical Plant, a unit of the state-run China Animal Husbandry Industry, “used expired sanitizers while producing Brucella vaccines between July 24 and August 20” last year.

“This resulted in the bacteria entering the factory’s exhaust and infecting people nearby,” officials said, according to Beijing-based news site Caixin Global.

Taliban Kills Dozens of Afghan Troops as Peace Talks Continue

KARIM JAAFAR/AFP via Getty Images
KARIM JAAFAR/AFP via Getty Images

Taliban representatives at the talks in Doha, Qatar — where the Taliban maintains its official headquarters — told various reporters in interviews that they hope the talks will result in the liberation of thousands of jihadis currently imprisoned in Afghanistan and the imposition of a strict sharia regime in the country.

Afghanistan’s Tolo News network reported on Thursday that multiple attacks resulted in the deaths of at least 32 Afghan security force troops and 25 injuries, totaling over 50 casualties. The attack reportedly occurred Wednesday night. Tolo documented attacks in four of the nation’s provinces overnight.

The largest, in Nangarhar province, resulted in 20 dead Afghan troops and 29 Taliban jihadis killed, according to a spokesman for the governor of Nangarhar. Smaller bombings and raids occurred in Herat, Badghis, and Uruzgan provinces.

NATO opens new Atlantic Command at Norfolk, Va.

Royal Navy Rear Adm. Andrew Betton, deputy commander of Joint Force Command Norfolk, (left) and U.S. Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis, commander of the command, cut the ribbon during an Initial Operational Capability ceremony on Thursday.
Royal Navy Rear Adm. Andrew Betton, deputy commander of Joint Force Command Norfolk, (left) and U.S. Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis, commander of the command, cut the ribbon during an Initial Operational Capability ceremony on Thursday. Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Theodore Green/U.S. Navy

NATO’s new Atlantic Command, Joint Force Command Norfolk, was declared operational at a ribbon-cutting ceremony in Norfolk, Va., Thursday.

The new command was established to protect sea lines between Europe and North America and is the first NATO headquarters dedicated to the Atlantic since 2003, according to NATO officials.

The new command will provide command arrangements for allied forces, maintain situational awareness, conduct exercises and draw up operational plans for areas from the East Coast past the Greenland-Iceland-Britain gap and into the Arctic.

The Atlantic Command will be co-located with the U.S. Second Fleet and led by U.S. Vice Admiral Andrew Lewis.

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Russia Is Building Up Its Military Presence On Its Shared Border With China

(Photo by Host photo agency / RIA Novosti via Getty Images)
(Photo by Host photo agency / RIA Novosti via Getty Images)

Russia’s preemptive reinforcements are being sent because of emerging tensions in the “eastern strategic direction” and be directed towards the country’s border with China, as well as other locations throughout the Asia-Pacific, according to Reuters.

New improvements and investment into the Russian navy’s Northern Fleet were also announced.

China has rapidly been building up its military capabilities, especially its nuclear arsenal and navy as it attempts to deepen influence over South Asia and expand its influence globally, something it has procured over the past decade using forms of soft power, like investments into developing countries via the Belt-And-Road Initiative.

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