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World News

German Farmers Block Hamburg in Revolt Against Globalist Environmental Regulations

Infowars – German farmers are blocking roads in Hamburg with their tractors to protest against environment regulations as the rural revolt against globalism spreads across Europe.

4,000 tractors arrived in Hamburg yesterday in a massive rebuke to what protesters assert is government bullying amidst efforts to impose Green New Deal-style control measures.

Regional environment ministers were meeting to discuss plans to ban certain weed killers and fertilizers, something that farmers insist will kill their livelihoods.

Placards displayed on the tractors included one that read, “No farm, no food, no future,” with farmers expressing their fury at being blamed while their contribution to the economy is ignored and ministers refuse to engage in dialogue with them.

“The rules, which are coming from the German government, are so hard for us that we can’t work on our farms,” Klaus-Peter Lucht, Vice President of the regional Farmers Association, told RT. “We can’t make good crops. We can’t have good fodder for the dairy [cows].”

The kilometer long convoys of tractors caused “considerable traffic disruption” across the city, according to authorities.

Hamburg is just the latest site of a rural revolt against globalism that is sweeping Europe.

Kissinger: Coming Conflict Between U.S. and China “Will Be Worse Than World Wars” 

Says “catastrophic outcome” is “inevitable” unless two sides sort out their differences.

Infowars – Former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger warns that a catastrophic conflict between America and China that will be “worse than world wars” is inevitable unless the two sides sort out their differences.

Kissinger made the comments at an event hosted by the National Committee on US China Relations in New York last night.

“We are in a difficult period now. I am confident the leaders on both sides will realise the future of the world depends on the two sides working out solutions and managing the inevitable difficulties,” said Kissinger.

A permanent conflict between Washington And Beijing would be unwinnable and lead to “catastrophic outcome,” he added.

“It’s no longer possible to think that one side can dominate the other…it will be worse than the world wars that ruined European civilisation,” said Kissinger.

The U.S. and China have been embroiled in a trade war since President Trump began imposing tariffs on thousands of Chinese-made products in a bid to end unfair trading practices.

Bishop chosen to investigate church sex abuse is himself accused

Fox – A bishop tapped by Pope Francis to investigate the Roman Catholic Church’s response to sex abuse allegations in Buffalo, N.Y., has himself been accused of sexually abusing a child decades ago.

Boston attorney Mitchell Garabedian notified the church officials in New Jersey this week of the allegations against Brooklyn Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio. The bishop was selected by Francis last month to investigate the church’s Buffalo Diocese, where Bishop Joseph Malone has come under fire for his handling of a clergy abuse scandal.

Garabedian said he is preparing a lawsuit on behalf of his client, Mark Matzek, 56, who said DiMarzio molested him in the mid-1970s as a priest in Jersey City, N.J. The lawsuit will ask for $20 million in compensation.

Maria Margiotta, the spokeswoman for the Newark Archdiocese, told Fox News that it received Garabedian’s letter and had sent a report of the allegations to law enforcement.

DiMarzio told The Associated Press there is no truth to the claims.

People Are Still Struggling to Survive in Greece 9 Years “After” the Economic Crisis

Activist Post – Being Greek always meant that any foreign person that you run into would be glad meeting you and he would mention things like the Acropolis, the Parthenon, Santorini, Mykonos, and maybe souvlaki or a common bad word.

But over the last 9 years the same foreign guy who met a fellow human Greek would mention some other issues such as: when the crisis started, what led to the crisis, who’s to blame for, did people starve to death, did they commit suicide, etc. etc.

Every Greek, of course, has his own version which is totally natural. Not even two persons share the same version of reality. Everyone has a view of his own which reflects his way of thinking, his economical and social status, his unique character and personality.

I’m not the exception to the rule and what you are about to read in this and all my other pieces is my point of view, my personal description, my feelings… I will not try to be objective, but I’m not going to take any political or social side. It’s my side only. the side of an ordinary guy who got in a dangerous situation for 9 years and counting…

Maybe someone will say: “Hey, man the Greek crisis is over. That’s what your politicians say for a couple of years now”.

Greek politicians and their handling of THE truth is a bit “flexible,” to express it in a moderate way…

The crisis isn’t over.

For starters, my opinion is that the economic crisis in Greece hasn’t ended. Here’s why :

  1. Salaries are still almost -50% down than the years before the crisis.
  2. The pensions of retirees have suffered the biggest cutbacks. They had the biggest survival issues as they were the least capable to find alternative sources of income. They were the big victims, especially those with the basic pensions…
  3. No matter what you hear about annual excess, base rates, foreign investors, etc., the real everyday economy in which an average Greek lives is still in deep crisis. And excuse me but no matter what politicians, bankers, high ranked EU officials say. my life is still on the edge as is the life of 95% of the Greek population.

Maybe what you listen to and read in mass media is more optimistic, but I walk the same streets where for the past years the number of out-of-business stores still remains the same and I meet the same miserable, struggling people. The number of homeless people in the center of Athens didn’t decrease. Many work two and three jobs.

French Police Ratchet Up Evidence Search in Epstein Probe

Newsmax – French police are launching a fresh appeal for witnesses and victims to come forward to aid their probe of Jeffrey Epstein and allegations that one of the financier’s associates drugged and raped young models.Police hope the new appeal issued Friday will have a broader.

U.S. News, Politics & Government

Breaking News: Roger Stone Found Guilty in Federal Case

USA Today – Roger Stone, an ally of President Donald Trump, was found guilty Friday of lying to Congress and obstructing its investigation into Russia to protect Trump and his campaign.

The jury’s verdict, which came after about eight hours of deliberation, marks a remarkable downfall for the longtime fixture in GOP politics, who has worked on campaigns stretching back to Richard Nixon’s. Stone is the latest Trump ally to be found guilty of crimes that sprouted from the special counsel investigation on Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.

The verdict, reached by a jury of nine women and three men, comes in the middle of an impeachment inquiry fueled by allegations that Trump sought to have another country interfere in the 2020 presidential election. Witnesses have testified in closed-door sessions that the White House dangled critical military aid and an official visit in order to pressure Ukraine to conduct investigations that would help Trump politically. Those hearings went public this week, with witnesses testifying Wednesday and Friday.

White House releases memo of Trump’s April call with Ukraine’s Zelenskiy

NBC – The White House on Friday released a rough transcript of President Donald Trump’s first phone call with then-Ukrainian President-elect Volodymyr Zelenskiy, but the text does not confirm the Trump administration’s previous summary about the conversation.

The call was made on April 21, three months before their July 25 conversation, which sparked the House impeachment inquiry.

In a previous readout of the call, the White House claimed that Trump had expressed a commitment to work with Ukraine to “implement reforms that strengthen democracy, increase prosperity, and root out corruption.” But the description at the time from the White House is not matched by memorandum. Trump also did not underscore the “unwavering support of the United States for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity — within its internationally recognized borders,” as the White House had claimed.

In the April call, Trump invited Zelenskiy to the White House, according to the four-page memo, which says in a footnote that it is “not a verbatim transcript of a discussion.” Zelenskiy had just won the election that day, defeating incumbent Petro Poroshenko by about 75% to 25%.

“I’d like to invite you to the White House. We’ll have a lot of things to talk about, but we’re with you all the way,” Trump said.

Trump also told Zelenskiy, “When I owned Miss Universe, they always had great people. Ukraine was always very well represented.” Trump owned the beauty pageant from 1996 to 2015.

The conversation lasted 16 minutes, according to the memo.

Trump Attacks Marie Yovanovitch in Real Time During Hearing

Mediate – President Donald Trump attacked former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch in real time as she testified in the Trump impeachment inquiry, denigrating her career as a diplomat and asserting his “absolute right to appoint ambassadors.”

As Yovanovitch testified before the House Intelligence Committee Friday morning, Trump was busy getting his Twitter rage on.

“Everywhere Marie Yovanovitch went turned bad. She started off in Somalia, how did that go?” Trump claimed, adding “Then fast forward to Ukraine, where the new Ukrainian President spoke unfavorably about her in my second phone call with him. It is a U.S. President’s absolute right to appoint ambassadors.”

“….They call it “serving at the pleasure of the President,’” Trump continued, adding “The U.S. now has a very strong and powerful foreign policy, much different than proceeding administrations. It is called, quite simply, America First! With all of that, however, I have done FAR more for Ukraine than O.”

Yovanovitch was posted to Somalia early in her career as a diplomat, and received her first ambassadorship under Republican President George W. Bush. She was was recalled from her post in Ukraine following a reported pressure campaign from Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani.

Giuliani Faces U.S. Probe on Campaign Finance, Lobbying Breaches

Bloomberg – Rudy Giuliani, President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, is being investigated by federal prosecutors for possible campaign finance violations and a failure to register as a foreign agent as part of an active investigation into his financial dealings, according to three U.S. officials.

The probe of Giuliani, which one official said could also include possible charges on violating laws against bribing foreign officials or conspiracy, presents a serious threat to Trump’s presidency from a man that former national security adviser John Bolton has called a “hand grenade.”

A second official said Giuliani’s activities raise counterintelligence concerns as well, although there probably wouldn’t be a criminal charge related to that. The officials, who asked for anonymity to discuss a sensitive matter, provided the first indication of the potential charges under investigation.

Giuliani is a central figure in the U.S. House impeachment inquiry, which focuses on an effort led by the former New York City mayor to pressure Ukraine’s government to investigate the president’s political rivals. If Giuliani is charged or indicted, he could expose Trump to a new level of legal and political jeopardy, especially if he’s accused of committing a crime on the president’s behalf.

“I would not be surprised if he gets indicted,” said Mimi Rocah, a former federal prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. “It’s clear Giuliani is up to his ears in shady stuff and there’s tons of smoke.”

Judge slams feds over indecision on FBI’s McCabe

Politico – A federal judge excoriated Justice Department officials Thursday for their handling of potential criminal charges against former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe, saying the continued uncertainty over the prosecution was unfair to McCabe and the public.

“This is not a hard case,” U.S. District Court Judge Reggie Walton said. “I was a good prosecutor for a long time. Deciding whether or not you’re going to charge someone with false statements or perjury is not that hard, factually or legally — maybe politically, but not factually or legally.”

Walton, a George W. Bush appointee overseeing a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by a watchdog group to obtain records about McCabe’s firing, complained at a hearing Thursday afternoon that the Justice Department claims about an ongoing potential prosecution of McCabe may have been a “smoke screen” to persuade the judge to forestall the case demanding documents.

Story Continued Below

“Shouldn’t I know whether the wool was being pulled over my eyes?” Walton said. “I do have concerns about whether I was being manipulated into stopping this case from moving forward.”

“Your Honor, the wool was not being pulled over your eyes,” Justice Department attorney Justin Sandberg said. He insisted claims lawyers made in a secret court filing and closed-door audience with the judge in September were accurate.

Bloomberg Launching $100M Anti-Trump Ad Campaign

Newsmax – Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who has not yet officially announced his presidential campaign, is launching a $100 million digital campaign to attack President Donald Trump in the nation’s top battleground states.

The ad campaign, set to begin on Friday in Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, is to run until the primary season ends, even if Bloomberg ends up staying out of the race itself, reports The New York Times.

Trial ends for group charged with illegally recording Planned Parenthood officials who admitted selling aborted baby body parts

NaturalNews -A jury in San Francisco has begun deliberations in what is deemed the “blockbuster trial of the century” involving an undercover media operation that recorded Planned Parenthood officials admitting they allegedly sold aborted fetal parts and tissue while negotiating for higher fees.

As reported by Lifesite News, the federal trial “wrapped up” on Wednesday in a case involving the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and the Center for Medical Progress “which pits David Daleiden and his pro-life investigators against the abortion giant that receives a half-billion dollars in public money annually.”

As Natural News reported in December 2015, the series of undercover videos showed Planned Parenthood official Deborah Nuctola talking about how the organization uses partial-birth abortions to supply intact body parts to human biological firms.

In another, Mary Gatter, the abortion mill’s medical director’s council president, haggled over payments for intact fetal specimens.

In still another, Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains’ Vice President and Medical Director, Savita Ginde negotiated on pricing for harvested body parts as she discussed how to avoid legal consequences and possible criminal charges.

In a fourth video, Melissa Farrell, Director of Research for Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast, admitted that Planned Parenthood had been selling body parts illegally for a number of years.

A subsequent investigation by congressional Republicans turned up “more than enough evidence to indict Planned Parenthood for its illicit body part trafficking, which has garnered obscene profits for the abortion provider,” Natural News reported separately.

And for a time, it seemed like that might happen. Then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions hinted that charges could be filed if the congressional probe turned up evidence that would warrant one. (Related: Planned Parenthood loses big in court, now ‘one step closer’ to getting defunded.)

“It depends on the substance of those congressional findings, but they certainly can provide a basis for starting an investigation,” Sessions told Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) in November 2017. “Verifying the findings of the Congress could provide a basis for charges.”

Sessions would later resign under pressure from President Trump, and no charges were ever filed against Planned Parenthood though federal law generally prohibits the sale of fetal tissue if it “affects interstate commerce.”

Economy & Business

Wall Street Hits Record High on Trade Deal Hopes, Strong Earnings

Newsmax – Wall Street’s main indexes hit fresh record highs on Friday, led by gains in technology stocks as upbeat comments related to U.S.-China trade talks and solid earnings from semiconductor industry bellwether Applied Materials brightened sentiment.

Dean Foods files for bankruptcy as consumers increasingly reject processed cow’s milk

NaturalNews – The largest commercial milk processor in the United States has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, citing heavy debt and substantial unfunded debt obligations as among the reasons why.

The current owners of Dallas-based Dean Foods say that they eventually want to sell the company, but first need to get things back on track. One step involved securing commitments for $850 million in debtor-in-possession financing, a funding mechanism that’s available for companies in financial dire straits.

Dean Foods customers likely won’t see any changes in terms of product availability, however “advanced discussions” with the Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) about Dean Foods selling “substantially” all of its assets will be quietly taking place in the background.

Should Dean Foods come to a mutual agreement with the DFA about a sale, this transaction will still be open to other potential buyers, which means the process could take a while to reach completion.

Wells Fargo says that while Dean Foods is currently overwhelmed with pension commitments and debt, there’s value in the “company-owned refrigerated distribution assets and margin optionality from full-fat dairy products.”

Following the completion of a strategic review back in September, Dean Foods had determined that selling the company was not the best option. However, because demand for conventional dairy products is plummeting, Dean Foods has no choice but to make some drastic changes if it hopes to remain afloat.

“Dean Foods’ business has struggled as more consumers turn to nondairy milk or buy private-label products,” writes Amelia Lucas for CNBC. “Americans’ per capita consumption of fluid milk has fallen 26% in the last two decades, according to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.”

California: Man Arrested For Eating At Subway Station, Also California: Homeless Shooting Heroin, Pooping on City Streets

Infowars – While California grapples with homeless shooting heroin and pooping on city streets, a man was arrested for eating a sandwich while waiting on a Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) train.

Video of the Nov. 4 arrest went viral over the weekend, and it shows a BART officer stopping and handcuffing a man because he was eating a sandwich while waiting for a train at the Pleasant Hill station which is northeast of San Francisco.

“BART said the man was stopped for eating in the system, which is against state law, and that [he] was handcuffed when he refused to provide his name for the citation,” reported Mercury News.

The irony here cannot be overstated: in a state overwhelmed with heroin addicts living – and pooping – on the streets, the police were quick to uphold the law against a man who was merely eating on a train platform.

As ridiculous as this sounds, there is a weird logic behind it: when sheer lawlessness (such as defecating in front of a place of business) is tolerated, the police tend to focus more on petty “crimes” by productive members of society.

And some may even argue that the state law outlawing eating at a BART station is as nonsensical as some elements of California’s Prop. 47, which analysts have blamed for adding to the homeless problem.

According to the Woodland Daily Democrat:

Approved by voters in November 2014, Prop. 47 reclassified a number of crimes as misdemeanors instead of felonies, including shoplifting, forgery, fraud, petty theft and drug offenses….

…Although “well-intentioned,” the law has spurred an uptick in homeless individuals across the state, according to [Yolo County District Attorney Jeff] Reisig. “We can’t ignore it now.”

The longtime county district attorney said the homeless population falls into three categories — the “truly destitute” individuals who lost their jobs, suffered a tragedy and are desperate for help; those suffering from mental illness; and those who are “driven by addiction.”

The last category “has exploded in the last few years,” the district attorney told the newspaper, adding that Prop. 47 has given addicted homeless the incentive to ignore misdemeanor drug charges.

Energy & Environment

Will Bananas Go Extinct?

Mercola – The Cavendish variety of banana is poised to be struck down by an insidious fungus that has infected soil in Australia, Asia, Middle East, Africa and the Americas.

In an effort to maintain this variety, researchers have begun to edit its genome. Producers are aiming at a genetically altered plant able to pass regulators, which happened earlier in the U.S..

It is not surprising that without diversity any type of crop may be vulnerable; however what appears to be progress with genetic engineering may actually be a step backward in terms of health.

The Cavendish is only one of nearly 1,000 varieties of bananas. In a move that may seem counterintuitive, you may wish to consider eating unripened green bananas as they are a great source of prebiotic fiber

Venice hit by another ferocious high tide, flooding city

Reuters – An exceptionally high tide hit Venice again on Friday just three days after the city suffered its worst flooding in more than 50 years, leaving squares, shops and hotels once more inundated.

Mayor Luigi Brugnaro closed access to the submerged St. Mark’s Square and issued an international appeal for funds, warning that the damage caused by this week’s floods could rise to one billion euros.

Local authorities said the high tide peaked at 154 cm (5.05 ft), slightly below expectations and significantly lower than the 187 cm level reached on Tuesday, which was the second highest tide ever recorded in Venice.

But it was still enough to leave 70% of the city under water, fraying the nerves of locals who faced yet another large-scale clean-up operation.

“We have been in this emergency for days and we just can’t put up with it any more,” said Venetian resident Nava Naccara.

Science & Technology

How Google Interferes With Its Search Algorithms and Changes Your Results

Over time, Google has increasingly re-engineered and interfered with search results to a far greater degree than the company and its executives have acknowledged, a Wall Street Journal investigation has found.

Those actions often come in response to pressure from businesses, outside interest groups and governments around the world. They have increased sharply since the 2016 election and the rise of online misinformation, the Journal found.

Google’s evolving approach marks a shift from its founding philosophy of “organizing the world’s information,” to one that is far more active in deciding how that information should appear.

More than 100 interviews and the Journal’s own testing of Google’s search results reveal:

  • Google made algorithmic changes to its search results that favor big businesses over smaller ones, and in at least one case made changes on behalf of a major advertiser, eBay Inc., contrary to its public position that it never takes that type of action. The company also boosts some major websites, such as Amazon.com Inc. and Facebook Inc., according to people familiar with the matter.
  • Google engineers regularly make behind-the-scenes adjustments to other information the company is increasingly layering on top of its basic search results. These features include auto-complete suggestions, boxes called “knowledge panels” and “featured snippets,” and news results, which aren’t subject to the same company policies limiting what engineers can remove or change.
  • Despite publicly denying doing so, Google keeps blacklists to remove certain sites or prevent others from surfacing in certain types of results. These moves are separate from those that block sites as required by U.S. or foreign law, such as those featuring child abuse or with copyright infringement, and from changes designed to demote spam sites, which attempt to game the system to appear higher in results.

Chinese killer robots sold to Middle East will leave ‘every human dead’

Fears that ‘fully autonomous’ military drones sold by China to Middle East countries could have dire results with the machines able to decide on who lives and dies

The Star – China is selling its most advanced “fully autonomous” military drones with fears that it could lead to a bloodbath in the Middle East.

The Asian superpower is reportedly selling AI-enhanced combat drones to the region, with potentially disastrous consequences.

Prof Toby Walsh, of the University of NSW, in Australia, said: “They would be impossible to defend yourself against.

“Once the shooting starts, every human on the battlefield will be dead.”

US Defence Sec Mark Esper has said that China is selling drones programmed to decide themselves who lives or dies.

He told a conference on Artificial Intelligence: “As we speak, the Chinese government is already exporting some of its most advanced military aerial drones to the Middle East as it prepares to export its next generation stealth UAVs when those come online.

“In addition, Chinese weapons manufacturers are selling drones advertised as capable of full autonomy including the ability to conduct lethal, targeted strikes.”

An Australian outlet, news.com.au, reports that a state controlled Chinese defence company is negotiating the sale of its Blowfish A3 armed helicopter drone to Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.

Dr Malcolm Davis, an Australian Strategic Policy Institute analyst says that it is not strange there is no debate over the sales in China.

He reportedly said: “This isn’t a surprise.

Health

Amazon now harming Americans by allowing Chinese manufacturers to sell harmful and mislabeled products to US consumers

NaturalNews – China’s success, which has been decades in the making, may have propelled it to the world’s second-largest economy, but increasingly it’s becoming clear Beijing’s on a roll in large part because American companies have appeased the Communist government.

And generally always in a way that either harms Americans or the U.S. economy.

An extensive investigation by The Wall Street Journal found that Amazon’s catering to China is endangering American consumers in ways that would land U.S. manufactures and companies in very deep legal trouble — the kind that leads to arrests and convictions.

The paper noted:

It looked like Amazon.com Inc.’s years-long quest to build a shopping business in China was a bust in July when it folded a big part of its local business.

In fact, Amazon’s China business is bigger than ever. That is because it has aggressively recruited Chinese manufacturers and merchants to sell to consumers outside the country. And these sellers, in turn, represent a high proportion of problem listings found on the site, according to a Wall Street Journal investigation.

Between May and August, the paper uncovered 10,870 items for sale through Amazon “that have been declared unsafe by federal agencies, are deceptively labeled, lacked federally-required warnings, or are banned by federal regulators.”

After the paper’s initial report was published, Amazon officials said the company went through the listings and removed some of them.

However, of 1,934 sellers whose addresses could be learned, some 54 percent were based in China. Also, the e-tailer behemoth’s Chinese outreach efforts “is one reason why its platform increasingly resembles an unruly online flea market,” WSJ reported.

“It’s a good deal!”

That’s because a new product is uploaded to the Amazon platform from China ever 1/50th of a second, based on slides that were shown to a conference last December in the industrial port city of Ningbo.

In other words, the Chinese are taking full advantage of the Amazon platform — and American consumers — in defiance of U.S. law and product regulations. (Related: CEO: POTUS Trump’s tariffs like ‘gun to the head’ of China, forcing Beijing to negotiate or suffer MASSIVE recession and unrest.)

What’s more, Chinese manufacturers are doing so at a profit, but at the expense of middlemen who sell products on Amazon’s third-party platform. That is leading some U.S. sellers to conclude that soon they will be cut out of the loop entirely.

Tony Sagar, the owner of the Ontario-based Down Under Bedding, told the WSJ he began seeing the ‘China effect’ way back in 2015.

His company had been selling goose-down duvets on Amazon since 2014, which go for about $699 for a queen-size version today.

But then Chinese competitors began showing up on the Amazon platform, and began selling goose-down duvets for one-sixth the price. So Sagar bought one of them, cut it open, and inside discovered inexpensive duck down.

The WSJ bought the exact same Chinese-made duvet which advertises “100% Fill With Goose Down” and had the product tested. The results: The same as Sagar’s results a few years ago.

“They’re claiming they’re selling a $500-$700 duvet based false specifications, so people say, ‘$120, it’s a good deal!’” he told the paper. “Amazon is making a direct push for these factories in China.”

This is just the latest example

In response to the WSJ reporting, Amazon essentially downplayed how widespread the problem really is.

“Bad actors make up a tiny fraction of activity in our store and, like honest sellers, can come from every corner of the world. Regardless of where they are based, we work hard to stop bad actors before they can impact the shopping or selling experience in our store,” said a spokesman.

The e-tail behemoth also said it took enforcement action against the seller of the cheaply made duvets and that the Chinese company’s products were no longer being sold on the platform.

But Sagar’s findings are, by far, not the only ones involving faulty Chinese products and dubious claims.

“Among the 10,000 most-reviewed accounts on Amazon’s U.S. site whose locations could be determined in October, about 38% were in China, Marketplace Pulse calculates, compared with 25% three years ago,” the Journal reported.

Amazon officials downplayed that figure as well, claiming that it “is a significant exaggeration of the real percentage of the top ten thousand,” adding that the methodology used by the WSJ was flawed. Marketplace Pulse, however, stood by its analysis.

Amazon has been engaged in an outreach program with Chinese manufacturers since 2013, the paper noted, so it’s not surprising to see the efforts paying off. What is surprising is that Amazon appears to have done very little to identify and remove faulty Chinese products from its platform, despite the potential harm some of them could do to American consumers. Worse, it’s nearly impossible to hold Chinese manufacturers accountable.

It’s just the latest example of an American corporation essentially selling its soul to China in exchange for access to hundreds of millions more adult customers.

Capitalism is great and it’s the best economic model going. But like everything else that’s great about America, it requires scrupulous, principled people to work properly.

Experts claim addiction to shopping is mental illness

The Times – Addiction to shopping fuelled by online retailing should be classed as a mental health condition, psychiatrists claim.

Researchers said that about 5 per cent of adults in developed countries — more than 2.5 million Britons — had some form of buying-shopping disorder (BSD), an extreme form of craving.

The World Health Organisation does not classify it as a mental health condition, unlike gambling and video game addiction, pyromania and kleptomania. A classification leads health services to devise specific approaches to treatment.

CDC: Vaping-Linked Lung Illness Tops 2,100 Cases

Newsmax – The number of Americans stricken with a severe lung illness tied to vaping has now reached 2,172, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Thursday.

That’s a rise from the 2,051 case total from a week ago.

Cases have now been reported in every state except Alaska, the agency noted.

The related death toll has also risen by three over the past week, to 42 fatalities, spread across 24 states and the District of Columbia. Deaths have involved patients ranging from the ages of 17 to 75, with a median age of 52

Sleep Problems Are Growing for Americans

Newsmax – More Americans are having trouble falling and staying asleep, and smartphones and technology are probably to blame, researchers report.

Their analysis of data from nearly 165,000 adults nationwide showed that the number who reported difficulty falling asleep at least once a week was up 1.4% between 2013 and 2017, and those who had trouble staying asleep rose 2.7%.

Those percentages may appear small, but it means that as many as 5 million more adults have sleep problems, according to study leader Zlatan Krizan, a professor of psychology at Iowa State University (ISU), in Ames, Iowa.

“How long we sleep is important, but how well we sleep and how we feel about our sleep is important in its own right,” Krizan said in a university news release. “Sleep health is a multidimensional phenomenon, so examining all the aspects of sleep is crucial for future research.”

The study was published online recently in the journal Sleep Health.

Krizan and his team could not say what’s contributing to the increase in sleep problems, but technology is likely a factor, according to lead author Garrett Hisler. He’s a former ISU graduate student who is now a postdoctoral associate at the University of Pittsburgh.

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