U.S. News, Politics & Government
Sputnik – US Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is a puppet figure, who, if elected in November, will ignite a “revolution” in the United States, US President Donald Trump said on Monday, in a Fox News interview.
“Biden won’t calm things down,” Trump said. “They will take over. They will have won. If Biden gets in, they will have won. He’s a weak person. He’s controlled like a puppet. So it’s not going to be calm … They will have taken over your cities. It’s a revolution. You understand that. It’s a revolution and the people of this country will not stand for that.”
According to Trump, funding for the “revolution” is coming from “very stupid rich people that have no idea that if their thing ever succeeded, which it won’t, they would be thrown to the wolves like never before.”
On Monday, Biden accused Trump of further dividing the protest-ridden nation rather than unifying it and his words and messages were sowing chaos rather than law and order.
Biden’s remarks came after Trump and numerous Republicans repeatedly criticized him and the Democrats for not denouncing the three-month-long campaign of violence by the Antifa and Black Lives Matter movements in Democrat-run states and cities. Republicans have said Democrats in those jurisdictions are trying to score political points in an election year by allowing the violent protests and riots and by refusing federal assistance that Trump has offered to quell the unrest.
Protests against police brutality and racism started in numerous cities in the United States after the death of African American George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis on 25 May.
Last month, a new wave of protests started in Wisconsin and elsewhere in the United States after police shot 29-year-old Jacob Blake, an African American man, in the back seven times . The incident, which occurred on 23 August, left Blake paralyzed. Protests turned into riots complete with violence against police and civilians as well as acts of arson and destruction.
Attorney for Kenosha gunman Kyle Rittenhouse says client was hunted ‘as prey’ before deadly shooting
Fox – An attorney for Illinois teen Kyle Rittenhouse — who is facing first-degree murder charges in connection with a shooting that killed two people and wounded a third person in Kenosha, Wis. last week — told “Tucker Carlson Tonight” Monday his client acted in self-defense.
“He was in imminent danger of serious bodily harm or death,” John Pierce told host Tucker Carlson. “This is 100% self-defense Tucker — Kyle is a good kid.”
According to Pierce, Rittenhouse traveled to Kenosha from his home in Antioch, Ill. to help a friend who owns a business in Kenosha and feared for his property after two nights of rioting that followed the police shooting of Jacob Blake.
Rittenhouse brought a First-Aid kit to render assistance if needed. At one point, Pierce said, Rittenhouse found himself isolated from the business when riot police shifted positions while Rittenhouse tried to extinguish fires set by the rioters.
Breitbart – Multiple Chicago street gangs have struck a pact to shoot Chicago Police Department (CPD) members if officers draw their weapons on suspects in public, according to a newly obtained federal intelligence warning.
The “situational information report” from FBI officials in Chicago dated August 26, 2020, states “members of these gang factions have been actively searching for, and filming, police officers in performance of their official duties. The purpose of which is to catch on film an officer drawing his/her weapon on any subject and the subsequent ‘shoot on-site’ of said officer, in order to garner national media attention.”
Alerts based on police intelligence, no matter how unspecific, are frequently distributed to law enforcement agencies according to investigators, especially when they involve threats to officers.
The FBI alert, headlined “Pact Made by People Nation Gang Factions to ‘Shoot On-Site’ Any Police Officer with a Weapon Drawn” lists street gangs that have become well-known in Chicago the past five decades, from the Latin Kings and Vice Lords to the El Rukns and Black P Stones.
Speaking to WLS, CPD Superintendent David Brown acknowledged that officers face a “sense of lawlessness,” though he would not weigh in on the latest FBI Chicago alert. “I think it’s bigger than a suggestion,” stated Brown. “I think 51 officers being shot at or shot in one year, I think that quadruples any previous year in Chicago’s history. So I think it’s more than a suggestion that people are seeking to do harm to cops.”
The report follows yet another bloody weekend in Chicago, where 55 people were shot, ten fatally, over the weekend, according to the Chicago-Sun Times. Two Chicago police officers, along with a 15-year-old boy, were injured in the shootings.
Breitbart – Rioters marched on the home of Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler overnight Monday into Tuesday, looting nearby stores and setting furniture on fire in the street. At one point, they reportedly set fires inside the condominium building itself.
More than 200 people on Monday night marched to the Pearl District condominium tower where Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler lives to demand his resignation.
The demonstration quickly turned destructive as some in the crowd lit a fire in the street, then placed a picnic table from a nearby business on top of the fire to feed the blaze. People shattered windows and broke into a ground-floor dental office took items including a chair, also added to the fire, and office supplies.
Shortly after 11 p.m., a bundle of newspapers was set ablaze and thrown into a ground-floor storefront in the residential building.
The Portland Police Bureau released photographs of the riot, including graffiti reading, “This is the voice of the unheard,” a reference to a quote by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. that left-wing activists have taken out of context to justify violence.
ZeroHedge – A new tax on millionaires, a 22.5% gas tax hike (bringing the total increase to 250% in 4 years), and now a tax on high frequency trades: it is becoming obvious to most – except perhaps the state’s democratic leadership – that New Jersey is now actively trying to drive out its tax-paying population and top businesses with a series of draconian measures to balance its deeply underwater budget, instead of slashing spending. The state-imposed limitations on commerce, mobility and socialization due to the covid pandemic have also not helped. And in case it is still unclear, the trend of New Jersey’s ultra wealthy residents fleeing for more hospitable tax domiciles which started with David Tepper years ago, is now spreading to members of the middle class.
According to the latest data from United Van Lines and compiled by Bloomberg, people have been flooding into Vermont, Idaho, Oregon and South Carolina, eager to flee such financially-challenged, high-tax, protest-swept, Democrat-controlled states as Connecticut, Illinois and New York. But no other state has seen a greater exodus than New Jersey, where out of every 10 moves, 7 have been households leaving the state, or nearly three times as many moved out than moved in.
Infowars – Business owners are furious after a photograph emerged of Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, who banned indoor dining, eating inside a restaurant in Maryland.
When Kenney prohibited indoor dining, he told residents, “We need to follow what we are being asked to do by the health department. I beg you to follow the rules.”
However, with restaurants in Philly struggling to stay afloat with outdoor dining thanks to Kenney’s shut down order, the Mayor visited a friend’s restaurant on Sunday and remained very much indoors.
ZeroHedge – WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Monday said during the organization’s latest Tuesday virtual news conference from its Geneva headquarters that “no country can just pretend the pandemic is over” as governments around the world ease social distancing restrictions and start to send children back to the classroom.
It’s just the latest example of Dr. Tedros implicitly criticizing President Trump and his handling of the US outbreak, after Trump recently insisted that the virus is “under control” despite flare-ups in Sun Belt states.
“The more control countries have over the virus, the more they can open up. Opening up without having control is a recipe for disaster. It’s not one size fits all, it’s not all or nothing,” Tedros said.
Dr. Tedros described “four essential things that all countries, communities, and individuals must focus on to take control” of the virus before they start to unwind their emergency measures.
- First, prevent amplifying events. COVID-19 spreads very efficiently among clusters of people.
- Second, reduce deaths by protecting vulnerable groups, including older people, those with underlying conditions, and essential workers.
- Third, individuals must play their part by taking the measures we know work to protect themselves and others – stay at least one meter away from others, clean your hands regularly, practice respiratory etiquette, and wear a mask.
- And fourth, governments must take tailored actions to find, isolate, test, and care for cases, and trace and quarantine contacts. Widespread stay-at-home orders can be avoided if countries take temporary and geographically-targeted interventions.
Individuals can minimize their chances of infection by avoiding the “three Cs”, Dr. Tedros said: closed spaces, crowded places, and close-contact environments.
Tedros also said countries should protect the most vulnerable people, including the elderly, those with underlying conditions, and essential workers to help save lives.
Activist Post – Two federal magistrate judges in three separate opinions have ruled that a geofence warrant violates the Fourth Amendment’s probable cause and particularity requirements. Two of these rulings, from the federal district court in Chicago, were recently unsealed and provide a detailed constitutional analysis that closely aligns with arguments EFF and others have been making against geofence warrants for the last couple years.
Geofence warrants, also known as reverse location searches, are a relatively new investigative technique used by law enforcement to try to identify a suspect. Unlike ordinary warrants for electronic records that identify the suspect in advance of the search, geofence warrants essentially work backwards by scooping up the location data from every device that happened to be in a geographic area during a specific period of time in the past. The warrants therefore allow the government to examine the data from individuals wholly unconnected to any criminal activity and use their own discretion to try to pinpoint devices that might be connected to the crime. Earlier this summer, EFF filed an amicus brief in People v. Dawes, a case in San Francisco Superior Court, arguing that a geofence warrant used there violates deep-rooted Fourth Amendment law.
LMT Online – One of President Donald Trump’s top medical advisers is urging the White House to embrace a controversial “herd immunity” strategy to combat the pandemic, which would entail allowing the coronavirus to spread through most of the population to quickly build resistance to the virus, while taking steps to protect those in nursing homes and other vulnerable populations, according to five people familiar with the discussions.
The administration has already begun to implement some policies along these lines, according to current and former officials as well as experts, particularly with regard to testing.
The approach’s chief proponent is Scott Atlas, a neuroradiologist from Stanford’s conservative Hoover Institution, who joined the White House earlier this month as a pandemic adviser. He has advocated that the United States adopt the model Sweden has used to respond to the virus outbreak, according to these officials, which relies on lifting restrictions so the healthy can build up immunity to the disease rather than limiting social and business interactions to prevent the virus from spreading.
Economy & Business
RT – The prices of precious metals rose on Tuesday, with gold nearing $2,000 per ounce, as the US dollar extended its losses, slumping to a more than two-year low.
December gold futures on Comex were up around one percent, nearing the benchmark level of $2,000. Spot gold also added over one percent, trading at $1,987 per ounce. Meanwhile, silver has outperformed bullion’s gains, jumping around 1.8 percent to $29.11 per ounce.
The commodities’ rally came as the greenback fell to its lowest in over two years, after the US Federal Reserve announced a major policy shift on inflation. The US dollar index, which tracks the dollar against a basket of currencies, dipped nearly 0.4 percent to 91.75 in midday trading. August marked a fourth straight month of declines for the US currency and the longest losing streak since the summer of 2017.
Science & Technology
Deutsche Welle -Facebook has threatened to ban users in Australia from sharing news stories on its platform after the government proposed legislation that would require digital giants to pay local media houses for content.
After the Australian government said digital giants should compensate media houses for using their stories, Facebook has issued an unprecedented threat that it may ban the country’s users from sharing news stories on its platforms.
“Assuming this draft code becomes law, we will reluctantly stop allowing publishers and people in Australia from sharing local and international news on Facebook and Instagram,” said Facebook’s managing director for Australia and New Zealand, Will Easton, in a blog post.
He also added that the proposed law required the company to choose between “either removing news entirely or accepting a system that lets publishers charge us for as much content as they want at a price with no clear limits.”
“No business can operate that way,” he said.
Australia is planning to enforce some of the strictest limitations on the powers of digital giants like Facebook and Google, which would require the companies to pay for the content they use from local news outlets. The aim is to bring in more transparency into how the platforms use their algorithms to rank content.
Inverse – IN TIMES OF SERIOUS STRESS, people might turn to exercise to blow off steam and shake off nervous energy. However, despite anecdotal evidence, the link between working out and relieving stress isn’t well understood by scientists. Researchers haven’t yet pinned down exactly how exercise modulates stress in the brain and body, despite knowing that exercise benefits mental health.
In a recent study conducted in mice, researchers became one step closer to that understanding, discovering that exercise actually strengthens the brain’s resilience to stress. Exercise helps animals cope with stress by enabling an uptick in a crucial neural protein called galanin, the study suggests. This process influences stress levels, food consumption, cognition, and mood.
Leveraging this finding, researchers were able to genetically tweak even sedentary mice’s levels of galanin, shifts that lowered their anxious response to stress.
The study’s authors explain that this study helps pin down the biological mechanisms driving exercise’s positive effects on stress. While further human experiments are needed to confirm these findings, the researchers have practical advice for people looking to get these benefits: perform regular, aerobic exercise.
“Not exercising at all and then suddenly going for a hard 10 mile run just before a stressful event isn’t as helpful as regularly jogging 3 miles several days a week over several months,” researchers David Weinshenker and Rachel Tillage, tell Inverse by email.
That’s because, based on these results, a history of increased exercise doesn’t affect the immediate physiological response (like a release of cortisol) during a stressful event, Weinshenker and Tillage explain. Instead, exercise increases behavioral resilience after stress exposure.
“This could suggest that increased exercise doesn’t impact our immediate feelings of stress, but does allow us to cope with stress in a healthier way,” the co-authors say.
These findings were released Monday in the Journal of Neuroscience.
Pigs with Computer Chip in Brain Courtesy of Elon Musk. FDA on Board for Humans – Like a “Fitbit in the Skull”
Activist Post – This sounds like something you’d see published in The Onion. Unfortunately, it’s not.
According to Musk, this has been tested on at least 19 different animals. PETA cannot be amused.
From The Hill:
Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk on Friday showcased pigs with computer chips in their brains during his unveiling of Neuralink, an upcoming technology aiming to bring symbiosis between artificial intelligence and the human brain.
The live showcase involved displaying real-time neural signals from one of the pigs, whom Musk named Gertrude, CNBC reported.
Musk said the process for installing a Neuralink in a human brain would be an hourlong operation that is no more invasive than LASIK eye surgery, inserting a coin-sized device into the skull that would leave a tiny scar after the electrodes are inserted in the brain.
He likened the technology to being essentially a “Fitbit in your skull.”
Musk also said Friday that the technology had received “Breakthrough Device” designation from the Food and Drug Administration, according to Forbes.
The Verge – Federal Bureau of Investigation documents warned that owners of Amazon’s Ring and similar video doorbells can use the systems — which collect video footage sometimes used to investigate crimes — in order to watch police instead.
The Intercept spotted the files in the BlueLeaks data trove aggregated from law enforcement agencies. One 2019 analysis describes numerous ways police and the FBI could use Ring surveillance footage, but it also cites “new challenges” involving sensor- and camera-equipped smart home devices. Specifically, they can offer an early warning when officers are approaching a house to search it; give away officer locations in a standoff; or let the owner capture pictures of law enforcement, “presenting a risk to their present and future safety.”
These are partly hypothetical concerns. The standoff issue, for instance, was noted in a report about motion-activated panoramic cameras. But the FBI points to a 2017 incident where agents approached the home of someone with a video doorbell, seeking to search the premises. The resident wasn’t home but saw them approach by watching a remote video feed, then preemptively contacted his neighbor and landlord about the FBI’s approach. He may also have “been able to covertly monitor law enforcement activity” with the camera.
RT – After decades of teasing and disappointment since ‘Star Wars: A New Hope’ took to the big screen in 1977, it appears the world may soon finally have proper holograms, following a breakthrough by Japanese researchers.
Using ‘metasurface’ materials which manipulate light at the nanoscale, a team of scientists at the Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology (TUAT) have created a bonafide 3D hologram, visible from multiple viewing angles in respectable quality.
Static holograms, like hoverboards, have long been the somewhat disappointing real-world counterparts of much-hyped movie effects from big-screen hits like ‘Star Wars’ and ‘Back to the Future’.
Dr. Leonard Coldwell – Chocolate in all its forms is something that I, along with many others like to indulge in on an almost daily basis. But chocolate as it’s enjoyed today is quite different from when it first arrived in Europe from South America around the 16th century.
To the indigenous Aztec people, cocoa was consumed as a drink and held great cultural and medicinal significance. It was almost viewed as a panacea that could cure various ailments, including fever, diarrhoea, fatigue, angina and tooth decay.
The Aztec belief that cocoa was a divine elixir was probably due to the notion that it was a gift from Quetzalcoatl, the Aztec god of wind and wisdom. Perhaps this is why Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus named the plant Theobroma cacao, from the ancient Greek words “theos” meaning god and “broma” meaning food – “food of the gods”.
It’s more likely though that the reason for any potential benefits is due to the high concentration of polyphenols found in natural cocoa – known as cocoa flavanols. Polyphenols are antioxidant compounds in fruit and vegetables that protect the body from free radicals, which in excess have been linked to various diseases. So while cocoa may not be the cure-all it was once believed to be, research shows it’s more than just a guilty pleasure.
A rich past
The person thought to be responsible for beginning the integration of cocoa into Europe was Hernan Cortes, a Spanish conquistador (soldier and explorer) following his return from the “New World”.
In 1518, Cortes and his men arrived in what is now Mexico and headed towards the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan. During their time in Mexico, the Spaniards tasted a bitter drink known as “chikolatl”. The drink contained roasted cocoa beans that were crushed, then boiled in water with spices and chilli.
The first exposure to the drink was not a favourable experience for the Spaniards – deeming it too bitter and almost unpalatable. But having seen Montezuma II, king of the Aztecs, consume the drink around 50 times a day, Cortes was interested in the potential of cocoa and sought to bring it back to Spain following his conquest.
Once in Europe cocoa beans were crushed and mixed with honey and sugar, becoming a popular drink among the elite. Eventually, in the 19th century, the first chocolate bar was made by Joseph Fry and Sons, creating what we know as chocolate today.
From bean to bar
While cocoa beans in their natural form contain a high amount of antioxidant compounds, the processes involved in turning beans into a bar reduces the cocoa flavanol content, lowering the antioxidant properties of the cocoa.
Indeed, research shows that natural cocoa powder contains almost ten times more flavanols than cocoa that has been through this process.
As for chocolate bars, dark chocolate almost always contains a higher concentration of flavanols than milk chocolate. For example, a 25g serving of high percentage (more than 75%) dark chocolate can contain more than 80mg cocoa flavanols compared with around 10mg or lower per 25g for a milk chocolate bar.
Research has found that dark chocolate and cocoa products containing at least 200mg of cocoa flavanols can help to keep blood vessels elastic, which helps with blood flow. And regularly consuming cocoa flavanols – even doses of 80mg a day – improves blood vessels’ ability to dilate or expand, which helps the body regulate blood pressure and blood flow to organs.
This is thought to be because cocoa flavanols increase the concentration of bioactive nitric oxide. This is a molecule involved in the widening of blood vessels that also has anti-inflammatory properties and reduces the formation of blood clots, all of which can have beneficial effects on blood pressure.
So chocolate can be more than just a sweet treat, but you’ll need to select dark chocolate with a high cocoa content or natural cocoa powder if you want the health benefits.
For The First Time, Terminally Ill Cancer Patients Allowed To Use Magic Mushrooms To Treat Depression
Free Thought Project – The fact that any people have to get permission from their government to ingest a fungus that grows wildly in all corners of the globe is infuriating. Even more infuriating, however, is the fact that terminally ill cancer patients have to get permission from their government to use mushrooms to treat their end-of-life distress. Unfortunately, however, because of fear, ignorance, and complacency, this is the way things are. So, when a government actually grants citizens permission to do with their bodies as they see fit, this is now newsworthy.
Multiple studies, including out of Johns Hopkins, have determined that psilocybin mushrooms are incredibly beneficial to those facing certain death. The studies found that psilocybin produced substantial and sustained decreases in depression and anxiety in patients with life-threatening cancer, and that mystical-type experiences on session days mediated the effect of psilocybin dose on therapeutic outcomes.
After waiting nearly four months, the government of Canada has granted permission to four terminally ill cancer patients to receive psilocybin therapy to treat their anxiety about dying — marking the first time that a legal exemption has been given in Canada for patients to access psychedelic substances for treatment.
In a sick twist of statist irony, Canada legalized the “right to die” with assisted suicide in 2016. So, if these terminally ill cancer patients wanted to simply end their lives with assisted suicide, they could do so. However, if they wanted to ingest a mushroom that makes them enjoy the last days of their lives, they would be thrown in a cage without this permission.
According to TheraPsil, an advocacy group for psilocybin therapy, these four individuals are the first publicly-known individuals to receive a legal exemption from the Canadian Drugs and Substances Act to access psychedelic therapy. They are also the first known patients to legally use psilocybin since the tyrannical state made it illegal in Canada in 1974.
“I would like to personally thank the Hon. Minister Hajdu and the team at the Office of Controlled Substances for the approval of my section 56 exemption. This is the positive result that is possible when good people show genuine compassion. I’m so grateful that I can move forward with the next step of healing” says Thomas Hartle, one of the section 56 applicants battling cancer.
Laurie Brooks, another applicant from British Columbia facing end-of-life distress states: “I want to thank the Health Minister and Health Canada for approving my request for psilocybin use. The acknowledgement of the pain and anxiety that I have been suffering with means a lot to me, and I am feeling quite emotional today as a result. I hope this is just the beginning and that soon all Canadians will be able to access psilocybin, for therapeutic use, to help with the pain they are experiencing, without having to petition the government for months to gain permission. Thanks also to TheraPsil for helping the four of us in this fight. To Thomas Hartel and the other two patients – I think of you often and wish you only good things, especially good health!”
Imagine a government that would tell a person dying of cancer that they cannot have mushrooms that have shown incredible results in giving peace to the terminally ill — because “it’s illegal.” The state does not see the benefits of such medicine. Instead, they only see the words scribbled on paper by ignorant and fearful people who once made them illegal.
For years, the Free Thought Project has been reporting on the beneficial effects of psilocybin mushrooms ranging from treating PTSD to addiction and depression. In the land of the free, however, in all places except for Oakland and Denver, cops will kidnap and cage you for having them. But as this case illustrates, in Canada that facade is collapsing.
Canada has been leading the way in fighting psilocybin prohibition, going so far as to openly defy the law by selling mushrooms out of dispensaries online.
As TFTP reported last year, Dana Larsen knows he is not the first person to sell magic mushrooms online. Psilocybin has long been available on the dark web and the non-psychoactive spores which can be used to cultivate psychedelic mushrooms in your closet are readily available from multiple online shops.
“I’m definitely not the first person to sell mushrooms online,” Larsen, founder of the online Medicinal Mushroom Dispensary says. “But I might be the first to put my name, face, and reputation on the line for it.”
What makes Larsen’s move so brave is the fact that psilocybin mushrooms are illegal to possess or sell in Canada. But he’s doing it anyway, and successfully.