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Thu, 22 Oct 2020
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Police swarm on London wedding for having 100+ guests, venue faces £10,000 fine

lockdown police

Police officers and security officials surrounded guests. They were asked to leave because the party breached coronavirus rules
London police have shared footage showing officers breaking up a wedding reception which fell foul of Covid-19 restrictions by hosting more than 100 guests, as the English capital heads for Tier-Two restrictions this weekend.

Police were called to the Tudor Rose in Southall, west London, shortly after 6:30pm on Tuesday, amid reports of a large gathering. Bodycam footage shows police officers milling among the dressed-up guests, who seem to be ignoring social-distancing guidelines and other coronavirus restrictions.

The venue now faces a fine of up to £10,000 (almost $13,000) at the recommendation of the Met Police Service, as Chief Superintendent Peter Gardner described the event as "dangerous and foolish."

Comment: With the number of people defying the tyrannical lockdown orders rising, clearly a great many people are beginning to realise that the coronavirus isn't as deadly as the government wants them to think it is: Firearms officers descend on gym for staying open despite lockdown orders in Merseyside, UK


Protests erupt in Barcelona as bars and restaurants shut for 15 days under new coronavirus restrictions

Barcelona protests
© Reuters/Albert Gea
Workers from the hospitality sector confront police officers during a protest Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. 16 October, 2020.
As new coronavirus restrictions came into force across Spain's Catalonia, bar and restaurant workers took to the streets to protest the 15-day closure of the hospitality sector, warning their industry is in danger of "extinction."

Approximately 1,000 hospitality workers gathered in and around the Plaza de Sant Jaume, in Barcelona's historic center, on Friday to reject the regional government's decision to close bars and restaurants for a fortnight amid a surge in new infections.

Most of the protests have been peaceful, with demonstrators banging pots and pans together as they highlighted the impact of the new Covid-19 restrictions on businesses and jobs.

Demonstrators chanted "do not close us," "government resign," and "we are not to blame" as they expressed their anger over the regional administration's decision. The demonstrations also blocked traffic and major roads as groups marched around the city.


White farmer's brutal murder sends protesters & counter-protesters to rally outside courthouse in South Africa

young white farmer was killed in South Africa
© Reuters / Siphiwe Sibeko
Tensions ran high as two groups of protesters squared off after a young white farmer was killed in South Africa. The case has reignited the decades-old conflict surrounding land ownership in the country.

Local farmers and their supporters rallied outside a courthouse in the town of Senekal, demanding justice for farm manager Brendin Horner, 21, who was brutally murdered earlier this month. Some wore T-shirts saying "Stop farm murders, enough is enough," to highlight what they see as a string of violence against white farmers in the country.

Comment: And on that last point:

"I'm here because of white people... taking advantage of us," EFF supporter Khaya Langile, who came from the Johannesburg township of Soweto.

Tensions have been heightened by a government plan to expropriate white-owned land without compensation as part of an effort to redress economic inequalities that remain stark a quarter of a century after the end of apartheid.

Roughly 70% of privately-owned farmland in South Africa is owned by whites, who make up less than 9% of the country's population of 58 million. (Editing by Olivia Kumwenda-Mtambo and Gareth Jones)

Cell Phone

Twitter changes its hacked materials policy in wake of New York Post controversy

© Eric Thayer / The New York Times / KJN
Twitter has announced an update to its hacked materials policy — saying it will no longer remove hacked content unless it's directly shared by hackers or those "acting in concert with them".

Instead of blocking such content/links from being shared on its service it says it will label tweets to "provide context".

Wider Twitter rules against posting private information, synthetic and manipulated media and non-consensual nudity all still apply — so it could still, for example, remove links to hacked material if the content being linked to violates other policies. But just tweeting a link to hacked materials isn't an automatic takedown anymore.



Court overturns order to shut Berlin bars and restaurants from 11pm

closed bar in Berlin-Friedrichshain
People walk past a closed bar in Berlin-Friedrichshain on Wednesday evening.
A Berlin court on Friday suspended an order for bars and restaurants to close from 11 pm to 6 am, finding that "it was not apparent" such a measure could help fight coronavirus.

Ruling on a case brought by 11 restaurant owners, the administrative court noted that new infections in Germany currently stem from private gatherings of family and friends, at community facilities, meat-processing plants, religious gatherings or in connection with travel.

Closing food and drink establishments was therefore a "disproportionate encroachment on the freedom" of the industry, the court ruled.

City authorities had ordered the sector to close early from last weekend, as infection numbers surge in the German capital.

Comment: In addition to the courts in Germany, ever greater numbers of German people are responding to the ridiculous and egregious lockdowns and speaking out about them:


Ex-Mexico army chief arrested in LA on drug, money-laundering charges

Salvador Cienfuegos  arrested drugs
© AP Photo/Marco Ugarte, File
In this April 16, 2016 file photo, Mexico's Defense Secretary Gen. Salvador Cienfuegos Zepeda salutes soldiers at the Number 1 military camp in Mexico City.
Former Mexican defense secretary Gen. Salvador Cienfuegos, who led the country's army for six years under ex-President Enrique Peña Nieto, has been arrested on drug trafficking and money laundering charges at Los Angeles International Airport, U.S. and Mexican sources said Thursday.

Two people with knowledge of the arrest said Cienfuegos was taken into custody on a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration warrant. One of the people said the warrant was for drug trafficking and money laundering charges. Both spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the case publicly.

The DEA declined to comment Thursday night.


'Not a body double': Navy SEAL rebuts Trump over QAnon theory on Osama bin Laden death

osama bin laden
© AP Photo / Mazhar Ali Khan
Osama bin Laden in 1998 file photo from his hideout in Afghanistan.
The retired US Navy SEAL credited with the assassination of al-Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden is speaking out after US President Donald Trump amplified a baseless conspiracy theory suggesting that former US President Barack Obama's administration actually staged a fake operation, complete with a bin Laden body double.

"Very brave men said goodby to their kids to go kill Osama bin Laden. We were given the order by President Obama. It was not a body double," Robert O'Neill, the former Navy SEAL who allegedly killed bin Laden in a 2011 raid, tweeted on Tuesday. "Thank you Mr. President. Happy birthday @USNavy."

"S**t. I just found out that I killed Osama bin Johnson. Drinks are on me, I guess..." he added in a tweet later that day.

Comment: There have been various stories over the last two decades regarding exactly when OBL died. QAnon aside, who says Trump isn't onto something?

Eye 1

11 hacks, leaks, and hoaxes Twitter and Facebook didn't throttle, in hopes of damaging Trump

Jack Dorsey Twitter

Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter
Twitter's technicality is a fig leaf to enable continued control of public discourse by an unelected private industry that is 9-to-1 in the tank for Democrats and can decide what Americans are allowed to know.

On Wednesday, Twitter and Facebook banned their users from sharing a link to an explosive report from the New York Post containing emails indicating Hunter Biden had lucratively monetized his father's vice presidency through international business dealings. A massive public relations disaster ensued, including fierce reactions from senators and members of Congress with tech oversight.

In response, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey claimed Twitter had banned the link because it included private information obtained through hacking.


Steve Scully earns indefinite suspension from C-SPAN for tweet hack lie

Steve Scully
© AP Photo/Ron Edmonds/File
C-SPAN suspended its political editor Steve Scully indefinitely after he admitted to lying about having his Twitter account hacked.
In a statement, Mr. Scully said he falsely claimed his Twitter account was hacked after he was criticized about a questionable exchange with Anthony Scaramucci, a former aide to President Trump who has turned into a Trump foe.

Mr. Scully said both the tweet and hacking claims were "errors in judgment."

"These actions let down a lot of people, including my colleagues at C-SPAN, where I have worked for the past 30 years, professional colleagues in the media, and the team at the Commission on Presidential Debates," he said. "I ask for their forgiveness as I try to move forward in a moment of reflection and disappointment in myself."

In its own statement, C-SPAN said Mr. Scully came clean about the false claim Wednesday.

Comment: Twitter had some comment:


Greta mocks US Supreme Court nominee, eco-activists claim judge should be disqualified for position on climate

© Reuters / Lucas Jackson
Greta Thunberg is shown in 2019, scolding world leaders for inaction on climate change in a speech at the United Nations in New York.
Child enviro-prodigy Greta Thunberg is ripping US Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett for declining to give her opinions about the cause of climate change, likening the judge's restraint to lacking a view on gravity.

"To be fair, I don't have any views on climate change, either," Thunberg said on Thursday on Twitter, mocking Barrett's answers in her Senate confirmation hearing. "Just like I don't have any views on gravity, the fact that the earth is round, photosynthesis nor evolution. But understanding and knowing their existence really makes life in the 21st century so much easier."

The Swedish teenager's snarky attack came after Barrett dodged questions from Democrats this week regarding her views on climate change. For instance, Barrett told Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) that she didn't think her views on climate would be "relevant to the job I would do as a judge," and that she hadn't studied scientific data enough to offer an "informed opinion."

Comment: See also: