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World News

Exclusive: China hacked eight major computer services firms in years-long attack

LONDON (Reuters) – Hackers working for China’s Ministry of State Security broke into networks of eight of the world’s biggest technology service providers in an effort to steal commercial secrets from their clients, according to sources familiar with the attacks.

Reuters today reported extensive new details about the global hacking campaign, known as Cloud Hopper and attributed to China by the United States and its Western allies.

A U.S. indictment in December outlined an elaborate operation to steal Western intellectual property in order to advance China’s economic interests but stopped short of naming victim companies. A Reuters report at the time identified two: Hewlett Packard Enterprise and IBM.

Now, Reuters has found that at least six other technology service providers were compromised: Fujitsu, Tata Consultancy Services, NTT Data, Dimension Data, Computer Sciences Corporation and DXC Technology, HPE’s spun-off services arm.

Reuters has also identified more than a dozen victims who were clients of the service providers. That list includes Swedish telecoms giant Ericsson, U.S. Navy shipbuilder Huntington Ingalls Industries and travel reservation system Sabre.

North Korea reveals explosive HIV outbreak—after claiming to be disease-free

Ars Technica – North Korea is experiencing an explosive outbreak of HIV amid limited access to diagnostic testing and treatments, according to an exclusive report by Science.

Independent researchers and government health officials tell the outlet that the isolated East Asian country confirmed its first HIV case in 1999 and has quietly watched infections balloon to over 8,300 cases in the last few years. The researchers and North Korean officials have submitted a report on the matter to the new medical preprint server medRxiv, which is scheduled to go live on Tuesday, June 25.

The case estimate stands in stark contrast to a celebration in Pyongyang last year on December 1—annual World AIDS Day—in which government officials declared that North Korea is an “AIDS-free zone” and that there is “not a single AIDS patient” in the country.

The truth of the matter came to light after an unusual collaboration formed. In 2013, North Korean health officials reached out to a US NGO called DoDaum for help tracking the infections. DoDaum already worked on health, education, and development programs in North Korea, and it built up a good rapport with officials. Together, the team worked on assessing the extent of disease spread, particularly in rural areas, as well as the factors driving it.

Blood donors and people who inject drugs appear to be the hardest hit by the outbreak. Efforts to halt the spread of infections have been difficult because there are only three labs in the country that use modern tests to screen for HIV infection. Additionally, international sanctions have made it difficult to import drug treatments, which are not produced domestically. DoDaum says it has helped 3,000 patients gain access to treatment.

North Korean officials at first wanted to stay mum about the outbreak, but they changed their minds amid the discouraging circumstances. Kim Mun Song, a physician and external affairs director at the North Korean Ministry of Public Health in Pyongyang, explained to Science.

Israel Cuts Off Fuel Supply to Gaza in Response to Incendiary Balloons

Sputnik – Israel suspended its supply of fuel to the Gaza Strip on 25 June as a countermeasure to several explosive-laden balloons launched from the Palestinian territory, a spokesman for the Israel Defence Forces said.

U.S. News, Politics & Government

GOOGLE EXECS PANIC! Go Into Hiding – Delete Social Media Accounts After James O’Keefe’s Latest Exposé

Gateway Pundit – James O’Keefe and Project Veritas released alarming new undercover video, leaked documents, and testimony from a Google insider revealing the tech giant’s plans to meddle in US politics and “prevent a Trump situation in 2020.”

One aspect of the report features undercover footage of longtime Google employee and Head of Responsible Innovation, Jen Gennai, saying Google has been working diligently to “prevent” the results of the 2016 election from repeating in 2020, meaning they are actively engaging in election meddling and working to elect someone from the Democratic Party.

The exposé was so damaging that Google-YouTube deleted Project Veritas’ video exposing the tech giant’s electioneering.

And the Google executives have deleted their social media pages.

Jen Gennai, the Google executive caught on video bragging that “Congress can pressure us but we’re not changing,” panicked, deleted her Twitter account and made her Instagram ‘private.’

Gaurav Gite, the Google engineer revealing the tech giant’s actions to manipulate its algorithms based on its own definition of “fairness,” has deleted his Facebook page.

Robert Mueller to testify publicly before Congress next month

USA Today – Former special counsel Robert Mueller will testify publicly before two key House committees after being subpoenaed, top Democratic lawmakers announced Tuesday.

Mueller will testify in open session before the House Judiciary and Intelligence Committees on July 17.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., said in a statement Tuesday evening that Mueller has agreed to testify before both of their committees after they issued a subpoena to the former special counsel.

Flashback...Mueller won’t testify next week, House chairman says

AP (May 10, 2019) – The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee says special counsel Robert Mueller won’t appear before his panel next week, despite the committee’s hope that Mueller would testify May 15.

New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler said Friday that negotiations continue with Mueller and the Justice Department about the testimony. He wouldn’t characterize those talks.

Nadler said he expects Mueller to appear, and if he won’t agree the committee will attempt to compel him.  “If necessary we’ll subpoena him and he’ll come,” Nadler said.

Border official resigns amid uproar over migrant children

AP – The acting head of U.S. Customs and Border Protection resigned Tuesday amid an uproar over the discovery of migrant children being held in pitiful conditions at one of the agency’s stations in Texas.

Acting Commissioner John Sanders’ departure deepened the sense of crisis and added to the rapid turnover inside the agencies responsible for enforcing President Donald Trump’s hardline immigration priorities as the U.S. deals with record numbers of migrant families coming across the border.

In a message to employees, Sanders said he would step down on July 5. He did not give a reason for leaving.

U.S. House approves $4.5 billion bill to aid migrants

NBC – Democrats have whisked a $4.5 billion bill through the House aimed at improving conditions for thousands of families and other migrants whose sheer numbers have overwhelmed federal immigration authorities.

The mostly party-line 230-195 vote sets up a showdown with the Senate, whose Republican leaders plan approval of a bipartisan bill this week.

Many Democrats prefer the House version. It contains stronger protections for how migrant children are treated and provides more services for migrants, including legal representation.

Neither measure would finance President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall.

White House threatens veto on House border bill

Fox News – The White House threatened late Monday to veto a $4.5 billion House bill that would provide emergency funding at the border over concerns that legislation in its current form lacks certain funding and includes provisions thrown in by Democratic lawmakers “that would make our country less safe.”

In a statement issued by the White House Monday night, the administration warned that the bill would be vetoed this week if passed.

“After ignoring the Administration’s request for desperately needed funding to address the humanitarian crisis at the border for over a month, and despite the efforts of the House minority, the House majority has put forward a partisan bill that underfunds necessary accounts and seeks to take advantage of the current crisis by inserting policy provisions that would make our country less safe,” the statement reads.

Some of the provisions added by Democrats include measures that withhold funding from detention centers at the border. The push to pass the bill comes as reports of child deaths after being detained at the border continue to grow.

The White House accused lawmakers in a letter earlier Monday of trying to undermine its efforts at the border.

Illegal immigrants learn a trick to sneak in: Dress like drug smugglers
Washington Examiner – Single adults racing across one part of the U.S.-Mexico border are dressing as drug smugglers to make it less likely they’ll be caught.

Approximately 90% of unauthorized immigrant adults arrested by federal agents based in Tucson, Ariz., are dressed in head-to-toe camouflage and wear carpet booties that are also covered in a camouflage pattern.

Historically, individuals who were arrested near the border and dressed in camouflage and carpet booties were drug smugglers. Agents refer to these types of drug smugglers as “mules” because they carried 40- to 50-pound backpacks of marijuana and ArmaLite Rifles through the desert.

The single adults may have criminal histories, have been deported, or be trying to evade detection for other reasons. The smugglers running them are investing in the outfits to help this demographic sneak across.

Since the start of the fiscal year in October, more than 31,000 single adults have been apprehended in the Tuscon area after illegally crossing.

“Of that 31,000, I would estimate more than 90% to be in camo,” Pete Bidegain III, a regional spokesman for the Border Patrol, wrote in an email to the Washington Examiner.

Supreme Court’s Conservative Justices Weigh Scrapping Another Precedent

Bloomberg – The U.S. Supreme Court’s conservative majority may be ready to overturn a longstanding precedent for the third time in recent weeks — perhaps foreshadowing the vulnerability of its rulings on abortion rights.

The justices will rule as early as Wednesday on a business-backed bid to overturn decades-old decisions that give federal agencies broad power to say what their regulations mean.

The case is one of eight rulings due before the justices’ term ends this week. The court also plans to rule on gerrymandered voting maps and the Trump administration’s bid to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census.

Another precedent-toppling ruling would extend a pattern that already has liberal justices sounding alarms. They’ve hinted that the five conservative justices may be eyeing the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling, which legalized abortion nationwide.

“Today’s decision can only cause one to wonder which cases the court will overrule next,” dissenting Justice Stephen Breyer wrote last month when the court overruled a 1979 precedent to say that states are immune from private suits in another state’s courts.

“Well, that didn’t take long,” Justice Elena Kagan wrote 39 days later when the court overturned part of a 1985 ruling and said people could go directly to federal court to claim that a government regulation unconstitutionally took private property without compensation. “Now one may wonder yet again.”

Both of those were 5-4 decisions, with Chief Justice John Roberts and the other Republican appointees — Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh — in the majority.

Ducking Abortion

So far, the court has largely sidestepped the explosive topic of abortion. In May, the court turned away Indiana’s bid to bar abortions based on a fetus’s race or gender or a risk of genetic disorder — an appeal that could have raised new doubts about Roe. The justices did uphold a separate Indiana law requiring clinics to bury or cremate fetal remains.

The court could provide new signals about its intentions on abortion this week. The justices are due to say whether they’ll consider Alabama’s effort to ban the most common method used for women in their second trimester of pregnancy.

Democrats Get Go-Ahead to Probe President’s Finances in Suit

Bloomberg – Donald Trump lost a bid to halt a lawsuit brought by 201 Congressional Democrats who want a Washington federal court to require that the president seek approval from lawmakers before he accepts any financial benefits from foreign governments.

In a pair of orders issued Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan denied Trump’s request to pause the lawsuit so he could immediately appeal Sullivan’s earlier refusals to dismiss the case. The decision means the 2017 lawsuit led by U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut can proceed.

House panel votes to subpoena Kellyanne Conway over Hatch Act testimony

The Hill – The House Oversight and Reform Committee on Wednesday voted to subpoena White House counselor Kellyanne Conway after she did not appear voluntarily at a hearing focused on her repeated alleged violations of the Hatch Act.

The committee voted 25-16 to compel Conway’s testimony following roughly 30 minutes of arguments over the validity of the Office of Special Counsel’s (OSC) findings that she repeatedly violated the law, which prohibits federal officials from weighing in on elections in their government capacity.

Rep. Justin Amash (Mich.) was the lone Republican to side with Democrats to authorize the subpoena.

Oregon climate bill dead, top Senate Democrats say

Oregonlive – Oregon Senate President Peter Courtney said Tuesday that the climate change bill that prompted Republicans’ walkout lacks the votes necessary to pass because not enough Democrats support it.

“House Bill 2020 does not have the votes on the Senate floor,” Courtney, D-Salem, said after Democrats assembled for their morning roll call. “That will not change.”

He then ticked off a lengthy list of pending policy and budget bills, including protections for foster kids and schoolchildren, that he said have bipartisan support and wants to see passed when and if Republicans end their standoff.

Senate Republicans fled the state last week to block a vote on the carbon capping plan. Courtney appeared to be laying groundwork for Republicans to return, but it was not clear Tuesday that Republicans would agree to return to vote on other bills. Oregon lawmakers face a June 30 deadline to wrap up work under the state Constitution.

Democrats’ support for the climate bill had not been assured. Two Democrats voted against it in the House and Senate leaders scheduled a vote on it last Thursday knowing it might fail, said Senate Majority Leader Ginny Burdick, D-Portland.

“As the person who counts the votes, my personal sense is that the votes were not there,” Burdick told reporters Tuesday afternoon. “I was personally one of the ones who wanted this bill on the floor, because I wanted to raise my hand and say ‘yes.’ And we did not get that opportunity because they walked out.”

NSA Improperly Collected U.S. Phone Records a Second Time

Tech Crunch – Newly released documents reveal the National Security Agency improperly collected Americans’ call records for a second time, just months after the agency was forced to purge hundreds of millions of collected calls and text records it unlawfully obtained.

The document, obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union, shows the NSA had collected a “larger than expected” number of call detail records from one of the U.S. phone providers, though the redacted document did not reveal which provider nor how many records were improperly collected.

The document said the erroneously collected call detail records were “not authorized” by the orders issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, which authorizes and oversees the U.S. government’s surveillance activities.

Greg Julian, a spokesperson for the NSA, confirmed the report in an email to TechCrunch, saying the agency “identified additional data integrity and compliance concerns caused by the unique complexities of using company-generated business records for intelligence purposes.”

NSA said the issues were “addressed and reported” to the agency’s overseers, but did not comment further on the violations as they involve operational matters.

The ACLU called on lawmakers to investigate the improper collection and to shut down the program altogether.

Med Students Are Doing Vaginal Exams on Unconscious, Non-Consenting Patients

The practice is still legal in 42 states despite decades-long ethical concerns.

Vice – When Ari Silver-Isenstadt was attending the University of Pennsylvania Medical School in the 90s, another student warned him about something that might happen during his OB/GYN rotation: A supervising surgeon might ask him and other students to perform a pelvic exam on a woman under anesthesia without her knowledge or explicit consent. The move would be just for practice and not for her medical benefit. To perform the exam, students insert two gloved fingers into the patient’s vagina and place one hand on her pelvis in order to feel the uterus and ovaries. Multiple medical students might do this, and patients would have no idea any of it happened.

The practice of using non-consenting, unconscious patients as pelvic-exam training tools for medical students has continued to an unknown degree across the country since Silver-Isenstadt, now a pediatrician in Baltimore, first learned about it. It happens not only during gynecological surgeries, but also in the midst of unrelated procedures like stomach surgery. As a student, Silver-Isenstadt was ready to avoid doing such an exam at all costs, and his refusal became part of a movement to end the practice—an effort that would ultimately lead to statewide bans, first in California in 2003, then in Illinois, Virginia, Oregon, Hawaii, Iowa, Utah, and Maryland.

While some individual medical schools like Harvard ban it, the practice remains legal in 42 states. For some current medical students—like Savanah Harshbarger, who enrolled at the Duke University School of Medicine in 2016—these pelvic exams are still routine. “I estimate that I did about 10 of these exams last year,” she said.

There is no federal legislation regarding unauthorized exams. Despite people being concerned about the ethics of the practice for decades, this issue hasn’t garnered sustained national attention. But in the #MeToo era, that may be beginning to change.

Drug OD Deaths May Be Heading Downward

The Crime Report – For the first time in decades, drug-overdose deaths in the U.S. may be declining, reports the Wall Street Journal. Authorities are still counting last year’s fatalities, but provisional data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are pointing lower. Those data predict there were nearly 69,100 drug deaths in the 12-month period ending last November, down from almost 72,300 in the previous year. If the trend holds through December, annual drug deaths will fall for the first time since 1990, when overdoses killed about 8,400 people. “I think we’re probably looking at a decline,” said the CDC’s Robert Anderson. “We shouldn’t say oh, we’ve won and we’ve defeated the drug-overdose epidemic.”

Veteran News

Graves of 30 U.S. Marines, sailors found on Pacific World War II battlefield

CBS – Honolulu – A nonprofit organization that searches for the remains of U.S. servicemen lost in past conflicts has found what officials believe are the graves of more than 30 Marines and sailors killed in one of the bloodiest battles of World War II. A team working on the remote Pacific atoll of Tarawa found the graves in March, said Mark Noah, president of History Flight.

The remains are believed to belong to Marines and sailors from the 6th Marine Regiment killed during the last night of the Battle of Tarawa. In November 1943, 18,000 U.S. Marines stormed the Tarawa. It was so heavily fortified that a Japanese commander boasted it would take a million men a 100 years to take the island. It took the Marines three days.

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency expects to pick up the remains and fly them to Hawaii next month, said Dr. John Byrd, director of agency’s laboratories. Military forensic anthropologists will then work to identify them using dental records, DNA and other clues.

Economy & Business

‘Gold Rush’: US-Iran Confrontation Sends Gold Prices to 6-Year High

Sputnik – Fears of a military conflict between the Islamic Republic and the US flared up when Iran downed a US surveillance drone reportedly flying over one of its coastal provinces in the Strait of Hormuz. After the incident, Donald Trump said that the US was “cocked and loaded” for retaliatory strikes but he stopped the attack.

U.S. Treasury Secretary says U.S., China were close to trade deal

Reuters – U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Wednesday that the United States and China were close to a trade deal, CNBC reported.

“We were about 90% of the way there (with a deal) and I think there’s a path to complete this,” Mnuchin said in an interview to the news channel.

Merrill Lynch Caught Criminally Manipulating Precious Metals Market “Thousands Of Times” Over 6 Years

ZeroHedge – Remember when it was pure tinfoil-hat conspiracy theory to accuse one or more banks of aggressively, compulsively and systematically manipulating the precious metals – i.e., gold and silver – market? We do, after all we made the claim over and over, while demonstrating clearly just how said manipulation was taking place, often in real time.

Well, it’s always good to be proven correct, even if it is years after the fact.

On Tuesday after the close, the CFTC announced that Merrill Lynch Commodities (MLCI), a global commodities trading business, agreed to pay $25 million to resolve the government’s investigation into a multi-year scheme by MLCI precious metals traders to mislead the market for precious metals futures contracts traded on the COMEX (Commodity Exchange Inc.). The announcement was made by Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and Assistant Director in Charge William F. Sweeney Jr. of the FBI’s New York Field Office. In other words, if the Merrill Lynch Commodities group was an individual, he would have gotten ye olde perp walk.

As MLCI itself admitted, beginning in 2008 and continuing through 2014, precious metals traders employed by MLCI schemed to deceive other market participants by injecting materially false and misleading information into the precious metals futures market.

They did so in the now traditional market manipulation way – by placing fraudulent orders for precious metals futures contracts that, at the time the traders placed the orders, they intended to cancel before execution.  In doing so, the traders intended to “spoof” or manipulate the market by creating the false impression of increased supply or demand and, in turn, to fraudulently induce other market participants to buy and to sell futures contracts at quantities, prices and times that they otherwise likely would not have done so. Over the relevant period, the traders placed thousands of fraudulent orders.

Of course, since we are talking about a bank, and since banks are in charge of not only the DOJ, and virtually every other branch of government, not to mention the Fed, nobody will go to jail and MLCI entered into a non-prosecution agreement and agreed to pay a combined – and measly – $25 million in criminal fines, restitution and forfeiture of trading profits.

Under the terms of the NPA, MLCI and its parent company, Bank of America, have agreed to cooperate with the government’s ongoing investigation of individuals and to report to the Department evidence or allegations of violations of the wire fraud statute, securities and commodities fraud statute, and anti-spoofing provision of the Commodity Exchange Act in BAC’s Global Markets’ Commodities Business, whose function is to conduct wholesale, principal trading and sales of commodities.  Laughably, MLCI and BAC also agreed to enhance their existing compliance program and internal controls, where necessary and appropriate, to ensure they are designed to detect and deter, among other things, manipulative conduct in BAC’s Global Markets Commodities Business.

Translation: it will be much more difficult to catch them manipulating the market next time.

Deutsche Bank Faces Federal Reserve Scrutiny Amid Allegations of Money Laundering

Sputnik – Germany’s top multinational lender is facing a flurry of investigations in the US, related to its business practices, regulatory compliance, and overall sustainability – while a major US bank is already recruiting its embattled German counterpart’s personnel.

Kristian Rouz – America’s central bank has requested an explanation from Deutsche Bank regarding its proposed “bad bank” scheme and its possible impact on the US market.

The inquiry comes as Deutsche Bank faces a separate US federal probe into allegations of the bank’s loose compliance with global money laundering standards, possibly leading to questionable money flows through the Frankfurt-based lender over the past decade.

Chinese buyers are pulling out of New York real estate in droves

Quartz – China’s capital controls are making their mark on New York’s luxury real estate market.

In an effort to shore up its currency, the world’s second biggest economy has been cracking down on money leaving the country, and there are significant concerns (paywall) about its real estate developers’ levels of US dollar debt.

Having briefly been the main movers and shakers in New York real estate, Chinese developers have fallen behind the Canadians, the Germans and the Dutch. As trade war tensions increase and having money in the United States becomes less desirable, many of those developers have decided to service their debts by offloading massive New York properties, according to the Financial Times (paywall).

Chinese investment in New York real estate has all but vanished.

Wal-Mart to close 269 stores as it retools fleet

CNBC – Wal-Mart said it will close 269 stores across the globe, including 154 in the U.S. The world’s largest retailer also will open as many as 405 stores globally in the coming fiscal year, as it shifts its focus toward Supercenters and Neighborhood Markets in profitable locations.

In all, 16,000 employees will be impacted by the store closings, about 10,000 of whom are in the U.S.

Energy & Environment

EPA changes transparency rules

CNN – The Environmental Protection Agency is making changes to its transparency rules that include explicitly granting the administrator the authority to decide which public records the agency will release or withhold.

The change in the Freedom of Information Act rule comes without the normal process of public input. It was not announced but instead was placed in the Federal Register for formal publication.

The rule change appears to allow, for example, the administrator to personally review his own documents, such as emails and calendars, and decide what to release and what to withhold, though he still must comply with the applicable laws governing the release of public documents. At federal agencies, that process is typically in the hands of career employees and attorneys.

The EPA says it has fielded an unprecedented level of requests under the Trump administration, and some of its disclosures under FOIA have resulted in embarrassing revelations about agency leadership and actions.

Science & Technology

The golden asteroid that could make everyone on Earth a billionaire

RT – Whether it was the Big Bang, Midas or God himself, we don’t really need to unlock the mystery of the origins of gold when we’ve already identified an asteroid worth $700 quintillion in precious heavy metals.

If anything launches this metals mining space race, it will be this asteroid–Psyche 16, taking up residence between Mars and Jupiter and carrying around enough heavy metals to net every single person on the planet close to a trillion dollars.

The massive quantities of gold, iron and nickel contained in this asteroid are mind-blowing. The discovery has been made. Now, it’s a question of proving it up.

NASA plans to do just that, beginning in 2022.

Of course, says veteran miner Scott Moore, CEO of EuroSun Mining  “The ‘Titans of Gold’ now control hundreds of the best-producing properties around the world, but the 4-5 million ounces of gold they bring to the market every year pales in comparison to the conquests available in space.”

In the decades to come, if you want to be a gold titan, you’ll have to get your feet off the ground. The real titans will be far from Earth.


America Once Had The Finest Free-Market Healthcare In The World — Then The Government Invaded & Ruined It

Ron Paul Liberty Report- ​Jacob Hornberger writes:

Americans once had the finest healthcare system in the world — a free-market healthcare system. It was so reasonably priced that hardly anyone had medical insurance, with the possible exception of catastrophic insurance. It was a system in which people in all income categories were being treated. Doctors, who at that time loved their profession, would voluntarily provide free healthcare services to poor people simple out of sense of moral obligation.

The enactment of Medicare and Medicaid succeeded in destroying that healthcare system. That’s when healthcare costs began soaring, launching an ever-increasing set of healthcare crises, followed by healthcare reform after healthcare reform. Meanwhile, doctors began hating what they do in life and began checking out with early retirement.

Of course, no reform has ever worked to resolve the healthcare crises. There is a simple reason for that: Socialism cannot be made to work, even when it’s not referred to as socialism and even when it’s run by American bureaucrats.

That’s what so many Americans still don’t get: No matter what healthcare reform is adopted, it’s not going to fix the crises. Anyone who devotes himself to coming up with the magic reform that will finally fix America’s healthcare system is wasting his time, money, and energy. He’d be better off just leaving the system alone because as we have learned, reform oftentimes makes things worse, which leads to calls for even more governmental involvement in healthcare.

There is only one way to get America back on the track toward the finest healthcare system in history: the repeal (not the reform) of Medicare and Medicaid and the total separation of healthcare and the state. There is no other way. Socialism cannot be made to work, not with Medicaid expansion, not with Medicare for all, and not with a full socialist government takeover of healthcare.

Surprising Survey Shows 45% Of Americans Doubt Safety Of Vaccines

Study Finds – The latest measles outbreak that’s gripped communities across the country in recent months pushed the topic of vaccinations (and those who choose to forgo them) right back onto centerstage for many Americans. Now a new survey delving into feelings over immunizations finds the country may be more split on the issue than believed, with 45% of adults admitting to harboring some doubt about the safety of vaccines.

That said, the vast majority — more than eight in 10 surveyed — still view vaccines as effective and continue to support them, despite their concerns.

The survey, funded by the American Osteopathic Association, questioned 2,000 adults and asked doubters the source of their suspicions of the science-supported, long-established safety and importance of vaccinations. Of the nearly half who listed at least one source of doubt over vaccine safety, researchers found the most common sources came from online articles (16%), distrust of the pharmaceutical industry (16%), and information from medical experts (12%).

According to lead researcher Rachel Shmuts, a perinatal psychiatrist, widespread negative attitudes towards vaccines has become a phenomenon caused by human psychology and amplified by social media.

“From an evolutionary perspective, humans are primed to pay attention to threats or negative information,” Dr. Shmuts explains in a media release. “So it makes sense that people hold onto fears that vaccines are harmful, especially when they believe their children are in danger.”

Another factor in this phenomenon is that, since vaccines have effectively banished many once-common and deadly diseases, people fear possible side effects from the vaccines more than the diseases themselves.

“For some, it really might be that vaccines are viewed as the more salient threat,” says Shmuts.

Despite these concerns, 82% of respondents were still generally in favor of vaccines, while 8% showed serious doubts, and 9% said they were unsure.

San Francisco becomes first major U.S. city to ban e-cigarettes

NBC – San Francisco became the first major U.S. city to ban e-cigarettes after city supervisors unanimously passed the measure in a final vote Tuesday. The ban will go into effect 30 days after the mayor signs the ordinance.

San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors approvedan ordinance to prohibit the sale of electronic cigarettes in the city until marketing for the devices are approved by the Food and Drug Administration. The board voted unanimously last week to approve the bill but a city ordinance in San Francisco requires two readings before it can be put into effect.

The measure specifically singled out the use of electronic cigarettes for presenting “significant public health consequence” to minors.

A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study from February stated that about 4.9 million middle and high school students were vaping in 2018, up from 3.6 million the year before. CDC Director Robert R. Redfield said when the study released that the country must help keep kids safe from a preventable health risk.

“The skyrocketing growth of young people’s e-cigarette use over the past year threatens to erase progress made in reducing youth tobacco use,” Redfield said. “It’s putting a new generation at risk for nicotine addiction.”

7 Reasons to eat more ginger

NaturalNews – inger (Zingiber officinale) is a popular ingredient that’s used for savory dishes or desserts like gingerbread cookies. It’s also widely used in medicine for its abundance of health benefits. Here are seven more reasons to add ginger to your daily diet.

Ginger root: One-stop shop for your nutrition needs

A cup of freshly chopped ginger root contains about 80 calories, less than 18 g of carbohydrates, and at least 2 g of fiber and protein. This superfood also offers vitamins and minerals like vitamin C, folate, iron, magnesium, niacin, phosphorus, potassium, riboflavin, and zinc.

Below are more incredible benefits that ginger can offer.

It eases menstrual cramps

It relieves bloating, constipation, gas

It prevents infections

It protects against colon cancer

It minimizes inflammation

It relieves nausea

It promotes weight loss


Clint Eastwood to Film New Movie in Georgia Despite Hollywood Boycott Over ‘Heartbeat Bill’

CNS News – Despite the boycott of filming in Georgia launched by Hollywood liberals angry over the state’s new pro-life “Heartbeat” law, legendary actor/director Clint Eastwood will be making his latest movie, “The Battle of Richard Jewell,” in Atlanta this summer, reported NBC Charlotte and other media.

“Clint Eastwood will perform new film in Georgia despite abortion bill boycott,” tweeted NBC Charlotte on June 25. The movie is about Richard Jewell, a police officer and security guard who discovered a bomb at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Ga., and saved countless lives. Jewell was initially hailed as a hero and then was viewed as a suspect.

Rock star: After ‘Free Solo,’ climber unsure of next journey

AP – Rock climber Alex Honnold meticulously chalked his hands before pulling himself up to the thin ledge inside the climate-controlled climbing gym. He dangled by his finger tips for a bit and then fell back to the bouncy mat.

Nice and safe. No heart-pounding fear of a 3,000-foot drop, either.

In the aftermath of the Academy Award winning documentary ”Free Solo ,” Honnold is trying to get a grip on his sudden fame (he’s recognized everywhere), his image (he’s not really that aloof) and most of all what exactly he does next to top that spine-tingling feat .

His realization: Maybe his 2017 ropeless climb of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park that’s chronicled in the film just might be the summit of his career. Maybe his cliff-hanger sequel doesn’t exist.

If so, he’s at peace. These days, he’s content taking a less treacherous path inside climbing gyms.

“Everybody already thinks I’ve done the best thing I’ll ever do,” Honnold said in a recent interview as young climbers gawked, pointed and stared at him before a competition at Earth Treks Englewood in Colorado. “So I don’t feel any obligation to top that. Even if I did top it, there would never be a better film about it. It will never be documented in a better way. It’s just not possible to make a better film than that. So it’s like, ‘Cool — a-once-in-a-lifetime kind of thing.’ It’s like, ‘Let’s move on.’”

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