Despite the surge in the new COVID-19 Omicron variant that is especially prominent in Florida, the number of new unemployment claims during the week that ended on December 25th was the lowest since before the pandemic during the same time period in 2019.
According to a news release by the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) on Thursday, the number of initial unemployment claims in Florida for that week was only 3,982 – down 1,178 from 5,160 the week before.
The wife of a former La Mesa, California police officer told The Star News Network that since a jury December 10 acquitted her husband Matthew Dages, the couple fights now to regain his spot on the force so that he can return to his law enforcement vocation.
“The foreman handed it to the court clerk, and she read the verdict, and I think all of us were just waiting for the end pronunciation of the not guilty words – and as soon as we heard that everyone kind of erupted in a huge sigh of relief and just tears,” said Christina Dages, whose husband was charged with the felony filing a false police report regarding his May 27, 2020, interactions and arrest of Amaurie Johnson, at the Grossmont Transit Center here.
Dages said when the couple celebrated their second wedding anniversary, December 28, it was poignant because, for 19 months of their marriage, they have been dealing with the severe possibility of her husband going to prison.
A bombshell report just published in Newsweek details an in-depth, secret operation conducted by the Justice Department before and during January 6. Contrary to the lamentations of FBI Director Christopher Wray that he wished his agency had had better resources to prevent the Capitol breach, hundreds of elite forces under Wray’s authority were on stand-by days just before the protest, and even on the ground as it happened.
The “shadowy commandos” stationed at Quantico, home of the FBI Academy, on January 2, 2021 included the FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team and SWAT teams.
“On the morning of January 6, most of these forces staged closer to downtown Washington, particularly after intelligence was received indicating a possible threat to FBI headquarters building or the FBI’s Washington Field Office,” Newsweek investigative reporter William M. Arkin wrote. “FBI tactical teams arrived on Capitol Hill early in the day to assist in the collection of evidence at sites—including the Republican and Democrat party national headquarters—where explosive devices were found. FBI SWAT teams and snipers were deployed to secure nearby congressional office buildings. Other FBI agents provided selective security around the U.S. Capitol and protection to congressional members and staff.”
Amazon and Google are lobbying small businesses who use their services to oppose antitrust bills aimed at breaking up major tech companies, enlisting them to pressure lawmakers, Politico reported.
The companies are conducting a public relations campaign in an effort to drum up opposition to antitrust legislation proposed in the Senate, including a bill sponsored by Republican Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley and Democratic Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar that goes after companies like Amazon and Google for prioritizing their own services in online shopping platforms, according to Politico.
The tech giants are using email campaigns, Zoom calls and online petitions, to spread the message that the bills would harm small businesses that rely on their platforms, Politico reported. Several technology trade groups, including the Connected Commerce Council, are also working to encourage small businesses to oppose the legislation.
A record number of American workers quit their jobs in November 2021 as the gap between available jobs and potential workers continues to increase, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported.
Over 4.5 million workers quit their jobs in November 2021, a jump from October’s 4.1 million, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced Tuesday.
Quits in accommodation and food services saw the greatest increase, 159,000, while other low-wage sectors like health care, social assistance, transportation, warehousing and utilities also saw spikes as workers looked for jobs with higher pay.
According to a Tuesday report, a defendant from the Jan. 6 protest at the Capitol who is being held in a Virginia jail is being denied medical care, and the special diet he needs due to an autoimmune disease.
According to his attorney Joseph McBride, Jan. 6 participant Christopher Quaglin, charged with assaulting police officers, has lost 20 pounds at Northern Neck Regional Jail.
The Biden Administration announced Monday it will spend $1 billion in American Rescue Plan Act funds to increase independent meat and poultry processing capacity.
The administration will invest $375 million on independent processing plant projects that fill a need for diversified processing capacity, spend up to $275 million in working with lenders to increase availability of loans, particularly to underserved communities, for independent processors, and spend $100 million to back private lenders investing in independently owned food processing and distribution infrastructure to move product through supply chain.
It will spend and additional $100 million to support training, safe workplaces and jobs in meat and poultry processing facilities, $100 million in reducing overtime and holiday inspection costs for small and very small processing plants, and $50 million to provide independent business owners and producers with technical assistance and research and development.
For decades, the Federal Bureau of Investigation enjoyed strong support from Republican political leaders and voters. But the agency’s reputation has crashed among its most dependable constituency amid scandal, corruption, and flagrant politicking on behalf of the Democratic Party.
A Rasmussen poll released today shows that 57 percent of Republicans hold an unfavorable view of the FBI; 47 percent of all likely voters surveyed at the end of December view the FBI unfavorably.
As if to prove the bureau has become the jackboots of the national Democratic Party rather than a nonpartisan law enforcement agency, a whopping 63 percent of Democrats have a favorable opinion of the FBI.
Former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo started 2022 much like he ended 2021, with an apparent legal victory.
A lawyer for the disgraced ex-leader of the state said Monday that the Manhattan district attorney’s office ended its investigation into the Cuomo administration’s nursing home policies during the early stages of the COVID-19 crisis without pressing any charges.
“I was told that after a thorough investigation – as we have said all along – there was no evidence to suggest any laws were broken,” Elkan Abramowitz, former outside counsel for the executive chamber, said in a statement posted by Cuomo spokesperson Rich Azzopardi on Twitter.
A majority Americans begin 2022 full of worry and dread. During President Biden’s first year in the White House, societal anxiety surged, including among voters who identify as independents and Democrats. In the newest Axios/Momentive year-end survey, 2021 saw a 50% increase in fear about what 2022 will bring among independents. Democrats weren’t much more sanguine. They began last year with refreshing optimism as their party took control of the White House and Congress, with only 19% of Democratic voters declaring themselves fearful about 2021. By year’s end, that number had surged to 45%.
Reflecting this dour assessment, the RealClearPolitics polling average of Joe Biden’s approve/disapprove ratio also receded sharply for the last year, from a stellar 20-percentage-point surplus in his favor on Inauguration Day, to a minus- 10-point rating.
Given this environment, Republicans naturally grow more confident about the midterm elections. But taking nominal control of Capitol Hill won’t be enough. Will Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy and their lieutenants be content with stopping the woke and socialist-inspired agenda of progressives? Or will they boldly implement a full-throttle populist nationalist “America First” agenda?
Prominent personalities including podcast host Joe Rogan and Republican Sen. Rand Paul have announced plans to leave major social media platforms amid growing backlash over censorship.
Rogan announced late Sunday that he had started an account on alternative social media site Gettr, posting remarks critical of Twitter on the platform.
“Just in case shit over at Twitter gets even dumber, I’m here now as well,” Rogan wrote. “Rejoice!”
The Navy cannot force service members with religious objections to COVID-19 vaccines to take them so long as the exemption process remains “by all accounts … theater,” a federal judge ruled Monday.
“Our nation asks the men and women in our military to serve, suffer, and sacrifice. But we do not ask them to lay aside their citizenry and give up the very rights they have sworn to protect,” U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor wrote in approving a preliminary injunction against the mandate as applied to the 35 service members who sued.
“Every president since the signing of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act has praised the men and women of the military for their bravery and service in protecting the freedoms this country guarantees,” O’Connor said.
Former President Donald Trump, who is building his own social media solution, on Monday night called Twitter and Facebook a “disgrace to our Nation” for their continued censorship of conservative voices and implored Americans to abandon their platforms.
Trump’s statement was released after a tumultuous 24-hour period in which freshman Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia was banned permanently from Twitter and given a 24-hour timeout on Facebook for information she posted on COVID-19.
“Twitter is a disgrace to democracy. They shouldn’t be allowed to do business in this Country,” the former president said. “Marjorie Taylor Greene has a huge constituency of honest, patriotic, hard-working people. They don’t deserve what’s happened to them on places like low-life Twitter and Facebook.
Days after Republican Gov. Mike Parson let emergency COVID-19 orders expire on Dec. 31, Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) reported significant increases in COVID-19 infections.
The DHSS dashboard on Monday showed 35,067 new confirmed cases during the last seven days, an 88.8% increase compared to the previous seven-day total. The seven-day positivity rate was 27.3%, an increase of 11.7 percentage points compared to the previous seven-day total. Many health organizations and agencies consider a positivity rate higher than 5 or 10% to be a predictor of rampant spread of sickness, resulting in increased hospitalizations and deaths.
“Thanks to the effectiveness of the vaccine, widespread efforts to mitigate the virus, and our committed health care professionals, past needs to continue the state of emergency are no longer present,” Parson said in a statement on Dec. 30, 2021. “Over the last 22 months, we have coordinated with local, state, and private partners to mitigate COVID-19 and work towards returning to normalcy. We all now know how to best fight and prevent serious illness from this virus. The State stands ready to provide assistance and response, but there is no longer a need for a state of emergency.”
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) and Florida Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo signaled they would be adopting procedures that would shift Florida’s COVID testing protocol away from the federal government’s standard of testing.
Both officials stressed the importance of “high-value testing” rather than blanketed testing like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends.