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Covid lockdowns leave one third of US small businesses (& almost HALF minority-owned businesses) unable to pay rent

going out of business
© Reuters / Carlo Allegri
A third of American small business owners were unable to pay rent this month, a recent survey has found. Women and minority-owned businesses were hit particularly hard, and more sectors than ever are coming up short.

Fully one third of American small business owners were unable to pay rent for January, according to the survey published on Wednesday by Alignable showing the devastating economic impact of Covid-19 pandemic shutdowns has yet to be fully realized.

The financial strife wasn't evenly distributed - almost half of minority small business owners were unable to pay, and 35 percent of women small business owners couldn't make ends meet.

Worst hit among the 10 sectors tracked by the survey were restaurants and bars - a whopping 57 percent of which failed to make rent for January. Yoga studios, retail stores, massage and beauty salons, and gyms were among the other markets most severely hit. The economic fallout has broadened significantly since November, when only beauty salons, restaurants and bars had a rent delinquency rate of over 40 percent.

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Attention

Judge says Amazon won't have to restore Parler web service

amazon
Amazon won't be forced to immediately restore web service to Parler after a federal judge ruled Thursday against a plea to reinstate the fast-growing social media app, which is favored by followers of former President Donald Trump.

U.S. District Judge Barbara Rothstein in Seattle said she wasn't dismissing Parler's "substantive underlying claims" against Amazon, but said it had fallen short in demonstrating the need for an injunction forcing it back online.

Amazon kicked Parler off its web-hosting service on Jan. 11. In court filings, it said the suspension was a "last resort" to block Parler from harboring violent plans to disrupt the presidential transition.

The Seattle tech giant said Parler had shown an "unwillingness and inability" to remove a slew of dangerous posts that called for the rape, torture and assassination of politicians, tech executives and many others.

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Magnify

UK says Big Tech is "manipulating lives" launches investigation into its algorithms

uk internet
Yet another probe into Big Tech's suspected foul practices that might be harming users and consumers has been initiated - this time in the UK, by the country's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

The investigation is rather narrowly focused on the way algorithms employed by Google, Facebook and Amazon work, and the way they may influence - or, as the announcement put it, "potentially manipulate" - the way people shop, work, live, and even think, in terms of current events.

The controversy is old news to those who've been paying attention to it - for example, it's been a good while since anybody's seen organically ranked, instead of algorithmically sorted and personally-targeted search results in Google. But it's now coming to the fore in a series of regulatory initiatives in different countries, likely spooked by the sheer amount of unaccountable power these giants obviously wield even in their country of origin.

The UK investigation will look into different ways these companies potentially manipulate the lives of UK residents: Google and Facebook, for instance, are suspected of rigging their feeds in a way that determines what news their users see.

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Cult

Biden inauguration draws dystopian fiction comparisons: Lady Gaga outfit gives off 'Hunger Games' vibe

hunger games lady gaga biden inauguration
© thehungergames.fandom.com / screenshot; Reuters / Kevin Lamarque
(L) A replica Mockingjay pin; (R) Lady Gaga sings the national anthem during the inauguration of Joe Biden in Washington, DC, January 20, 2021.
President Joe Biden's inauguration ceremony has triggered countless comparisons to 'The Hunger Games,' as viewers found eerie parallels to the sci-fi flick, whose dystopian themes are a far cry from the new POTUS' "unity" message.

While pop star Lady Gaga helped to kick off Biden's swearing-in on Wednesday afternoon with a performance of the national anthem, observers appeared more enthralled with her oversized broach. Netizens immediately likened the pin to the iconic 'Mockingjay' of Hunger Games fame - the symbol of the film's fictitious rebellion against the despotic 'Capitol.'

Comment: Many viewers noted the creepy parallel:






Eye 2

Twitter embroiled in new child porn scandal: Lawsuit claims Twitter defends sick content, says it doesn't 'violate policies'

twitter child porn
Twitter has been hit with yet another child porn scandal, with a new lawsuit claiming that they refused to take illegal content down because it didn't "violate policies."

The lawsuit, filed on Wednesday in a federal court in California, related to the case of a 17-year-old from Florida, only identified as John Doe, who when he was between 13 and 14, had sexual images and videos of him widely distributed on Twitter. Sex traffickers posing as a 16-year-old female classmate blackmailed him to share nude content.

After initially exchanging nude content, the victim was then forced to share more, otherwise the material would be shared with his "parents, coach, pastor," and others, the traffickers threatened. Doe first complied under duress, the lawsuit notes, but then managed to block the traffickers. However, at some point in 2019, the child porn was then shared to Twitter from two accounts that were known to share this material.

Comment:


Eye 1

MSM celebrates Washington, DC's military occupation

washington inauguration military

Military rolls out in Washington for Biden's inauguration
Downtown Washington, DC is currently under what essentially amounts to military occupation. Streets are locked down, guarded by Army vehicles and blocked off by huge, garish checkpoints. Vehicular traffic is limited to motorists who can show papers demonstrating that, as one Guardsman told me, they are conducting "legitimate business." (Apparently this includes Uber drivers and food delivery workers.) According to official estimates, 25,000 military personnel are now deployed to the area — on top of countless federal, state, and local law enforcement agents. Troops roam around carrying rifles with no ammo loaded. If you can manage to navigate on foot to the perimeter of the National Mall, you encounter an enormous fencing apparatus, complete with barbed wire.

Question: does anyone with a media job find this situation to be worthy of some further inquiry? Or in other words, worthy of questioning the premise of why such an extravagantly intensive military presence is allegedly necessary? Is it proportionate to the scale of the purported threat? Has the nature of the threat itself — whatever that might be, exactly — been adequately probed to determine whether it is grounded in reality? Already a bunch of purported threats initially trumpeted across the media with the usual five-alarm-five hysteria have dissipated in short order, so there is perhaps some reason for doubt in that regard.

Comment:


Handcuffs

Simone Gold, who advocated hydroxychloroquine as a remedy for coronavirus, arrested in connection to US Capitol 'riot'

Simone Gold
© Washington Post/John Strand
Doctor Simone Gold
The left-wing media is having a heyday with the news that America's Frontline Doctors head Dr. Simone Gold was arrested for having appeared at the United States Capitol on Jan. 6.

Dr. Gold was present with her megaphone to deliver a speech about the dangers and ineffectiveness of Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines, urging listeners to instead take advantage of safe, effective and inexpensive remedies like hydroxychloroquine (HCQ).

Believing the Capitol to have been open to the public, she says, Dr. Gold, who runs a clinic in Los Angeles, entered the building and stayed neatly within the velvet ropes of the rotunda as she warned those around her not to fall for the Chinese virus vaccine hoax.

Because she was merely seen at the so-called "insurrection," Dr. Gold is being treated like a "domestic terrorist." Two others who were with her, 52-year-old Gina Bisignano and 37-year-old John Strand, are also facing charges simply because of their presence at Donald Trump's Stop the Steal rally.

Black Magic

Day One: Biden obliterates women's sports, reinstates rule allowing transgender students to use 'preferred' bathrooms

transgender unfair advantage wrestling
© AP Photo/Dallas Morning News/Jae S. Lee
In this Friday, Feb. 16, 2018 photo, Euless Trinity’s Mack Beggs, top, wrestles Lewisville’s Elyse Nelson in the second round of the 110-pound girls division during the 6A Region II wrestling meet at Allen High School in Allen, Texas.
Joe Biden obliterated women's sports on the first day of his presidency.

Biden also reinstated the rule allowing transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms according to their "gender identity."

In other words, a biological male can now waltz into a bathroom and locker room to watch your teenage daughter change into gym clothes.

Any learning institution that receives federal funding must admit biological males to women's teams, women's scholarships etc.

Comment: So Biden has overruled the will of individual states. Not a dictator though.


Pocket Knife

'F**k every single Trump voter': Biden may be in, but Hollywood's and media's crusade to destroy conservatives has just begun

Moore/Trump/Cohen
© Reuters/Mark Blinch/Jonathan Ernst/Monica Almeida
Michael Moore • Former President Donald Trump • Sacha Baron Cohen
Joe Biden's calls for "unity" mean nothing to his most public supporters, the liberal celebs who celebrate their victory by spewing vitriol at Donald Trump and his supporters, and who have no intention of stopping anytime soon.

Trump Derangement Syndrome is going nowhere. If you find yourself hoping Joe Biden's presidency means we can, for better or worse, turn the page on the four years Trump occupied the White House, then you are an optimist whose blinkers are screwed on so tight that oxygen is being cut off from your brain.

Watching the reactions to Biden's inauguration and Trump's final hours as president, one would assume the election results were flipped and we were headed into another four years of Trump. CNN's coverage of Trump's final speech as president included anchors blasting him as "small" and obsessing over crowd sizes, the sort of lame-brained analysis that's been signature to the network's brand for years now.

Looking to Trump's loudest critics and Biden's biggest supporters in Hollywood also paints a picture that, culturally speaking, the next four years will look exactly like the last four: Trump and anyone deemed supportive of him are the boogeymen of the world.

Comment: Biden's call for unity? Look at the tweets. A national storm is brewing and rapidly, rabidly gathering momentum.


Clock

After running down the clock, Maricopa County will now give election materials to state senate for audit

Maricopa County Election Department
© Olivier Touron/AFP via Getty Images
A poll worker sorts ballots inside the Maricopa County Election Department in Phoenix, Arizona, on Nov. 5, 2020.
Maricopa County officials agreed Wednesday, on the day of President Joe Biden's inauguration, to turn over election data and ballots to Arizona Senate Republicans for an audit.

The agreement ended weeks of back-and-forth between the county and the state's legislative body, many of whom question how Biden won the once reliably Republican Arizona.

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors had fought the senate's subpoenas because they believed the request to be out of bounds and could expose private voter information. GOP President Karen Fann had pressed ahead with her quest for an audit to ensure the county ran the election correctly and, in part, to help craft new legislation to address Republican concerns. Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich also filed a brief in support of the senate's authority to issue subpoenas.

"Not only has the Board agreed to turn over all the relevant information we sought in our subpoenas so that we may perform an audit, but they also acknowledge that the Legislature is a sovereign power of the state and that the county is a political subdivision, and as such, the Legislature has the constitutional and statutory authority to issue subpoenas," Fann said in a statement.

Comment: They could have come to this conclusion a month ago.
** On December 15th Arizona officials issued a forensic audit to be completed in Maricopa County.

** On December 18th the Maricopa Board of Supervisors refused to comply with subpoenas to turn over the Dominion voting machines for an audit.

** On December 30th the Arizona Attorney General joined in the battle for the forensic audit of the Maricopa County elections equipment.

** On January 20th, Inauguration Day, the Maricopa County officials finally agree to the audit.
They were just stalling so that Biden could be inaugurated.

Coincidentally, the TCF center in Detroit managed to find the video surveillance footage requested by Gateway Pundit, and are slated to hand it over soon. What took them so long?