Voices, The Peoples News No. 2024-02-18

Voices, The Peoples News

February 18, 2024
Published by Jedi Selman Since March 2000 to Inform and Educate

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This daily Voices, The Peoples News is posted through the blog function of www.MPEN-Ohio.net

# Indigenous
South Dakota Reservation Braces Itself After Closure of Only OB-GYN Program: Health care deserts are one of the many reasons Indigenous people face higher rates of infant and maternal mortality. As Coteau Des Prairies discontinues its obstetrics services, Kantos emphasized that a majority of medical needs can be covered by family medicine. “Even though obstetrics will be closed, we will still do general OB-GYN services. We’ll still continue with the full gambit of family medicine and wellness checks.

# Border / Immigration / Migrants
ICE considers mass releases to close budget gap: According to a concerning new report today from the Washington Post, ICE “has drafted plans to release thousands of immigrants and slash its capacity to hold detainees after the failure of a Senate border bill that would have erased a $700 million budget shortfall.”

Immigration system isn’t broken, just ignored, former immigration judge says: “Despite consistent claims to the contrary, America’s immigration system is not broken. Far from it, in fact,” Matthew O’Brien said at a hearing held by the U.S. Oversight Committee’s Subcommittee on National Security, the Border, and Foreign Affairs on Thursday. The current U.S. immigration system isn’t broken, laws established by Congress are being ignored, a former immigration judge told members of Congress.

Texas to build 80-acre base in Eagle Pass for National Guard troops for Operation Lone Star, the $10 billion state effort to deter people from immigrating into Texas illegally. The base will hold up to 2,300 soldiers who have been deployed to the border.

The Department of Homeland Security has admitted in emails that it fails to track illegal immigrants after they are released into the interior of the US: DHS lacks the ability to accurately track migrants’ post-release addresses and rejects recommendations to develop a policy for validation. Concerns about the security risks associated with increasing encounters at the Southern border are heightened as DHS may not know where released immigrants are located.

Biden’s border blackmail: Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials threatened to release thousands more migrants into the U.S. by slashing capacity to detain them. This unveiled threat by President Joe Biden is despicable, but is also laughably empty, for the cuts he is threatening are to the exact levels his administration sought in his last budget.

Abbott’s Controversial Immigration Policies Take Effect in Texas: Gov. Greg Abbott signs bill making illegal immigration a state crime.The new law would authorize police to arrest people they suspect crossed the Rio Grande between ports of entry. Abbott also signed a bill earmarking more than $1 billion for more border barriers.

Research uncovers reason for mass migration: ‘There’s more to the story’: The effects of a warming planet are altering how people decide where to live, with millions of people avoiding flood-risk areas, according to a new study.

# Covid / Pandemics / Biologicals
Vaccinated Hit by New Bombshell: A new study, conducted by respected medical researchers and published in The Lancet, a renowned medical journal, indicated that the COVID shots themselves actually killed people, and the study now has been killed. It “was quickly censored within 24 hours after its publication because it showed clear evidence that the COVID-19 shots were responsible for many deaths.”

# Economy / Finance / Trade / Banks
A $1 Trillion Conundrum: The U.S. Government’s Mounting Debt Bill: The U.S. government is expected to pay an additional $1.1 trillion in interest over the coming decade, according to the Congressional Budget Office’s latest estimates. Interest costs are on pace to surpass defense this year as one of the largest government expenses in the budget.

# Education / Schools
Judges question $300k fine on teachers challenging antiracism training, suggest training is legal Docking teachers “supplemental pay” for “unprofessional” behavior at antiracism training may be “adverse action,” 8th Circuit suggests. “This training seems to be unprecedented” in terms of court cases with similar factual circumstances, meaning the teachers couldn’t have known a judge would rule it wasn’t compelled speech,” Judge Steve Colloton said.

School district allows LGBTQ lesson opt-outs after legal threat by Muslim parents: White lesbian board member scolded black Muslim women for not showing “solidarity.” Federal appeals court could rule on similar suburban D.C. case “any day.”

# Energy / Pipelines / Mining
Climate conservatives seek ‘all of the above,’ but some GOP’ers see it as hostile to fossil fuels: “Through innovation, we can continue to reduce our emissions without sacrificing reliability or affordability,” Rep. Buddy Carter, R-Ga., vice chair of the Conservative Climate Caucus, said.

# Food / Farming / GMOs / Chemicals / Technology
Why is this largely unknown pesticide showing up in our bodies? First-of-its kind study finds chlormequat in 80% of people tested. While the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) does not currently allow chlormequat use on any food crops, in 2018 the Trump administration approved its use on imported oats and, two years later, increased the allowable level on food from 10 parts per million (ppm) to 30 ppm.

# Gov / Politics / Global
Over a Million Palestinians Are About to be Forced Into Egypt at Gunpoint: The IDF’s recent airstrikes on civilian areas in Rafah mark the beginning of the final phase of Israel’s massive ethnic cleansing project. In order to establish a Jewish homeland, Jews would have to maintain a sizable majority, which means Palestinians would have to be evicted. That is the niggling issue that has bedeviled Israeli leaders from 1948-on; how to ‘disappear’ the native population.

What would make Egypt open its border to Palestinians? Local authorities in North Sinai have been preparing for this for months, readying emergency accommodation and medical aid.

Why Egypt Won’t Open the Border to Its Palestinian Neighbors: Cairo has understandable concerns about unsustainable refugee flows, Sinai terrorist threats, and longer-term Palestinian political aspirations, all of which need to be taken into account when pushing for humanitarian corridors into Gaza.

# Gov / Politics
Tea Party poll shows 86% of people believe only US citizens should vote in elections: The poll also showed that 87% of voters believe that proof of U.S. citizenship should be required to vote in U.S. elections. “It’s simple. Americans want to protect American democracy and American elections from the foreign interference of allowing non-citizens to vote. American voters want to protect their vote from being canceled out by the vote of non-citizens,” McLaughlin & Associates CEO John McLaughlin said in a statement.

Shutdown Deadline Looms as Congress Skips Town: Congress may be out next week for its Presidents’ Day recess, but the clock is still ticking toward a March 1 deadline to keep portions of the government from shutting down and a second deadline covering the rest of federal agencies a week later.

House Moderates pitch $66 billion security package: Seeking to break the logjam over a supplemental spending bill that would provide aid to U.S. allies, a bipartisan group of moderates in the House released a proposal Friday to send billions in military aid to Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan while tightening immigration policy.

Trump Wants to Fire Thousands of Government Workers. Liberals Are Preparing to Fight Back if He Wins: Former President Donald Trump has plans to radically reshape the federal government if he returns to the White House, from promising to deport millions of immigrants in the U.S. illegally to abolishing government agencies and firing tens of thousands of workers and replacing them with loyalists.

Congressional watchdog again unable to determine if U.S. financial statements are reliable: The U.S. Government Accountability Office, which is Congress’s research arm, said it was hampered by “serious financial management problems at the Department of Defense,” problems in accounting for transactions between federal agencies, weaknesses in the process for preparing the statements and inadequate support for the cost of loan programs from the Small Business Administration and Department of Education.

Biden blames Putin for Navalny’s death, pushes Congress to pass funding for Ukraine: President Joe Biden on Friday blamed Russian President Vladimir Putin for the death of Alexei Navalny, an imprisoned political foe, and used the moment to push Congress to approve additional funding for Ukraine to aid the country in its war against Russia.

Alexei Navalny’s spokesperson says he was murdered, authorities claim ‘sudden death syndrome’: “An employee of the colony said the body of Navalny is now in Salekhard,” Navalny’s spokesperson said. Russia’s Federal Penitentiary Service claimed that Navalny fell down and died after feeling “unwell” during a walk. “His death occurred on February 16 according to the official message to Alexey’s mother,” who was forbidden to see her son’s body.

Biden rendered nearly speechless at White House reacting to Trump’s NATO comments: “America stands by our sacred commitment to our NATO allies, as they have stood by their commitments to us repeatedly,” Biden stated forcefully. “The United States will defend every inch of NATO territory. Now’s the time for even greater unity among our NATO allies to stand up to the threat that Putin’s Russia poses.”

Fifty-one members of Congress have announced they will not seek re-election in 2024, more than at this point in previous cycles: A surge of lawmakers calling it quits the past three weeks is on the verge of putting Congress on pace to have more members retire before the next election than in any similar cycle over the past decade. And the implications are huge.

Calls for secession surge in Alaska, more than a third want to separate from the US: 36 percent of Alaska residents support the state breaking away from the United States and becoming a fully independent nation. The result made Alaskans the most likely to support their state seceding from the Union, with the result substantially above the national average of 23 percent. The survey of 35,307 U.S. adults was conducted by YouGov between February 2 and 5. Those questioned were asked whether they would “support your state seceding from the U.S.?”

Trump’s Allies Are Preparing a 4,000-Strong MAGA Team to “Gain Control Over the Levers of Power”: According to a report, Donald Trump’s allies are actively preparing a team of MAGA “shock troops.” They are apparently ready to quickly transform the government if Trump is reelected to a government that supports his vision. This is driven by Trump’s frustration with former officials who restrained his more radical policies, aiming to install committed loyalists in crucial positions.

Republicans return to Antebellum era theories to justify Trump’s civil war push: The crisis alongside the Texas border is just the latest instance of Republicans looking back to the Antebellum era. The attempt by Trump and his allies to overturn the 2020 election was the clearest example yet that a growing number of Republicans no longer grant any legitimacy to their political opponents or to America’s electoral system.

# Legal / DOJ
Judge orders Trump to pay $355 million for lying about his wealth in staggering civil fraud ruling: A New York judge today ordered former president Donald Trump and the Trump Organization to pay nearly $355 million penalties for their actions to defraud lenders and insurance companies. “In order to borrow more and at lower rates, defendants submitted blatantly false financial data to the accountants, resulting in fraudulent financial statements,” Judge Arthur F. Engoron wrote in his ruling

Witness says DA Fani Willis and Nathan Wade started a relationship years earlier than claimed: Fulton County policy suggests both DA Willis, Wade were required to disclose relationship: “Georgia law is pretty specific about what should happen now because of her conflict, whether it tainted the legitimacy of the case, which it has,” former Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline opined.

Bobulinski testified Biden was involved in son’s business, shielded by ‘plausible deniability’: In a prepared opening statement obtained by ABC News, Bobulinski told lawmakers Tuesday that “Biden was more than a participant in and beneficiary of his family’s business; he was an enabler, despite being buffered by a complex scheme to maintain plausible deniability.”

Bobulinski continued in his opening statement before lawmakers conducting a presidential impeachment inquiry: Biden Family Sold Joe’s ‘Brand’ to Foreign Investors: “I want to be crystal clear,” said former family associate Tony Bobulinski, “from my direct personal experience and what I have subsequently come to learn, it is clear to me that Joe Biden was ‘the Brand’ being sold by the Biden family to get rich from foreign governments.”

Biden’s use of fake names in email could cost him: Top officials have used such aliases in the past for emails, the problem is, there was “work” being discussed on some of these emails, including official foreign travel plans and the hiring of associates of Hunter for high-level positions. More importantly, some emails are relevant to the clients of Biden’s son. Biden has previously lied that he knew nothing of these dealings, but these emails could reveal even more about his knowledge and involvement.

ICJ Hearings Will Examine 57 Years of Israel’s Illegal Occupation of Palestine: More than 50 countries are set to participate in next week’s hearings at the International Court of Justice.

Joe the Rainmaker? Payments, deals followed key Biden meetings with son’s foreign associates: House impeachment investigators are seeking to uncover what role, if any, Joe Biden played in his son’s foreign business dealings. After repeated denials of ever having met Hunter’s business partners, evidence of meetings, key payments and witness testimony tell another story.

Joe Biden Met Nearly Every Foreign Associate Funneling His Family Millions: This past December, President Biden lied to the American people when he claimed he “did not” interact with his family’s foreign business associates. But bank records don’t lie.

# Medical / Health
Oklahoma GOP Advances Bills That Would Ban Emergency Contraception: A GOP-sponsored bill in Oklahoma, HB 3216, passed a legislative hurdle on Wednesday when it passed out of committee. HB 3216 would ban emergency contraception in the state and create a state database of people who have had an abortion.

# Military / DOD
Navy SEALs in Cyprus pledge ‘unyielding response’ to any adversaries in eastern Mediterranean: Navy SEALs operating in the eastern Mediterranean said that drills carried out off the coast of Cyprus were a signal to adversaries that attacks in the eastern Mediterranean will be opposed with plenty of force.

Navy SEALs Forge Alliance with Cypriot Navy: In a constant demonstration of partnership in the Eastern Mediterranean, U.S. East Coast-based Naval Special Warfare Operators (SEALs) and Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewmen (SWCC) collaborated with Cypriot Navy Underwater Demolition Team (MYK) partners Jan. 22 – Feb. 14, 2024, refining their operational expertise in the maritime domain throughout waters surrounding Cyprus

# Military / Global
Armed Resistance to the Israeli Occupation Is Spreading in the West Bank: As Israel cracks down on Palestinian resistance, young men from small West Bank villages have been taking up arms.

# Pharmaceuticals / Drugs
Nitazenes are a powerful class of street drugs emerging across the US: Nitazenes are a class of synthetic opioids that contains more than 20 unique compounds, including isotonitazene, which was first identified in 2019 and is known on the streets as ISO. It also includes protonitazene, metonitazene and etonitazene.
The drug was never approved for use in humans.

Fentanyl Is Smuggled for U.S. Citizens By U.S. Citizens, Not Asylum Seekers: U.S. Citizens Were 89% of Convicted Fentanyl Traffickers in 2022. Reducing deaths requires figuring out the cause, not jumping to blame a group that is not responsible. Instead of attacking immigrants, policymakers should focus on effective solutions that help people at risk of a fentanyl overdose.

# Space / NASA
SpaceX Launched Military Satellites Designed to Track Hypersonic Missiles: The prototype satellites hitched a ride on a Falcon 9 rocket. Two prototype satellites for the Missile Defense Agency and four missile-tracking satellites for the US Space Force rode a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket into orbit Wednesday from Florida’s Space Coast.

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