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Fri, 03 Apr 2020
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Federal Prison system goes into lockdown mode to prevent virus outbreak

Action plan phase V
The Bureau of Federal Prisons (BOP) issued an order this week, directing all prisons to lockdown facilities and keep inmates in cells for two weeks. The order will affect 122 federal prison facilities across the country.

Bureau of Federal Prisons (BOP) issued an order
Bureau Director Michael Carvajal activated "Phase 5 of its COVID-19 Action Plan" on April 1. Here are the following "Phase 5" actions that BOP will conduct to "further mitigate the exposure and spread of COVID-19:"

Comment: See: Doctors warn of COVID-19 wave racking US prisons

Take 2

New Yorkers baffled over 'unsettling' Empire State Building siren display

The Empire State Building
© Rita J. King @RitaJKing
The Empire State Building lights up in siren red in tribute to emergency workers.
New Yorkers were left spooked Monday night by a glaring Empire State Building light display intended to honor emergency workers fighting coronavirus.

The iconic Midtown skyscraper announced the debut of a display that began at 9 p.m. Monday, and will continue through the course of the ongoing pandemic.

"Starting tonight through the COVID-19 battle, our signature white lights will be replaced by the heartbeat of America with a white and red siren in the mast for heroic emergency workers on the front line of the fight," read a tweet from the building's official Twitter account.


Never mind the pandemic, when are you dropping out? Bernie Sanders gets a raw deal on 'The View'

Democrat presidential contender Bernie Sanders got quite a hostile reception on ABC's 'The View', with the hosts more interested in pressuring him to drop out than in his proposal to deal with Covid-19 by nationalizing healthcare.

Sanders should have realized the fix he was in when ABC aired the promo announcing his upcoming live appearance, literally accusing him of "politicizing this pandemic to push his agenda of Medicare for All" and implying his staying in the race could "guarantee" President Donald Trump another term.

Eye 1

First quarantine, now digital leper bells: How much freedom are Britons willing to surrender in a fit of Covid-19 panic?

face mask leper bell
© Global Look Press / Heritage-Images; Global Look Press / Keystone / Steve Taylor
(L) Leper woman with a bell, 14th century; (R) A man wearing a face mask views his mobile phone in central London
The NHS is set to launch an opt-in contact tracking app to help stop the spread of the coronavirus at the end of the quarantine, in a first sign that the unprecedented controls could be here to stay.

The NHS is planning to launch a coronavirus contact tracking app to help slow the spread of the disease through the population. It is reportedly planned for launch just before or just after the end of the lockdown, and is being modelled on TraceTogether, a Bluetooth based-app used in Singapore to curb the country's Covid-19 spread. The idea behind this very 21st century way of keeping tabs on the health of the nation is for patients to upload their diagnostic data to the app. It will then communicate via Bluetooth with other nearby phones. If someone in the vicinity has tested positive for the disease then, after a short delay, those within an as yet to be revealed radius will be notified that they have been near someone with Covid-19.


A proposed Amendment to the US Constitution

White House
— —
The U.S. President will be elected by means of a standardized physical and personally signed mail-in ballot, which, starting in the first month of the election-year, is mailed out to all registered voters, who are broken down into 100 different and all-inclusive randomly assigned daily batches of 1% of the electorate (5% of the electorate per week), and which asks each such person "Whom do you wish were America's President right now? (Name a living American.)" Each of the top two chosen named persons that is Constitutionally qualified and willing to serve as President — both of them naturally being publicly well-known — will then, within 30 days of having been publicly announced as having been selected by the voters for the second-round voting and willing to serve, post online that individual's proposed Presidential policies; and each of these two contenders will, then, after yet another 30 days, together face a town hall, with 100 randomly selected Americans, at which event ten of them who would like to ask questions will randomly be selected, each one of these ten questioners to ask only one question (secretly held by that randomly selected individual), which they want to be answered by both of the contenders, and allowing each such questioner up to 5 successive follow-up questions on that one question, to ask that question of each one of the two contenders, but allowing no other question, and no time-limits.

Comment: A necessary addition to any nation's democratic framework would be the incorporation of the study of Political Ponerology: Political Ponerology: A Science on The Nature of Evil adjusted for Political Purposes

Also check out SOTT radio's: The Truth Perspective: Introducing Political Ponerology, plus some odds and ends

More from Eric Zeusse:

Arrow Up

Prediction: Jobless claims huge, but millions more due to the 'earthquake shaking the whole country'

boarded disney
© David Paul Morris/Bloomberg/Getty Images
The boarded and the bored.
Economists expect 4 million to 5 million or more workers filed for unemployment claims last week, but there are still millions of claims expected, and layoffs could easily double those in the financial crisis, economists said.

There are two key employment reports Thursday and Friday. One is the government's weekly report of unemployment benefit claims, filed with states in the week ended March 28, due Thursday at 8:30 a.m. The second is March's employment report, expected before the opening bell Friday.

Economists have been ramping up their estimates for the weekly claims report. Their estimates range to as high as 9 million, but many are between 4 million to 5 million. That follows the record 3.3 million claims filed the week earlier.

Friday's monthly employment report for March is expected to show little impact from the coronavirus shutdowns and are instead penciling in job losses of as much as 10 million or more for April. Morgan Stanley expects 700,000 job losses in March, but other economists expect nonfarm payrolls at negative 100,000 and a higher unemployment rate of about 3.8%.

Comment: US jobless claims 10M and counting
New symptom? Investors on Wall Street have whiplash:
US stocks traded wildly on Thursday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 100 points at the opening, before recovering and making strong gains. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite were trading higher.

The surge in unemployment is far greater than expected by economists who have characterized it as "monstrous," "stunningly awful," and "a portrait of disaster." US jobless claims were hovering in the low 200,000s each week preceding the Covid-19 outbreak.

"The news is terrible and I'm not sure why the estimates the past two weeks have been so far off but we all know how rough things are," Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Advisory Group, was cited as saying by CNBC. "The only question it seems is timing. The timing of when that freaking curve bends and when we as a society decide to shift to a life resumption plan, masks included."


#MeToo, but not this time? Hashtag champion actress Alyssa Milano slammed for hypocrisy on Biden assault claims

Alyssa Milano
© Reuters / Carlo Allegri
Alyssa Milano
#Resistance heroine Alyssa Milano is being raked over the coals for backing Democratic presidential frontrunner Joe Biden despite sexual assault allegations, and she's not the only 'feminist' making an exception from #MeToo.

Milano, one of the earliest high-profile boosters of the #MeToo hashtag, has refused to drop her support for Biden, despite former Senate aide Tara Reade going public with allegations that the former vice president sexually assaulted her while she was working on Capitol Hill over two decades ago.

Instead, the liberal actress spent Wednesday retweeting demands for Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders - whom she supported in 2016 - to drop out of the race, which would leave Biden, now an accused sexual predator, to run against President Donald Trump.


Less than a third of America will rush to get Coronavirus vaccine

Doctors and researchers hope to deliver a coronavirus vaccine to the American public sometime in the first half of 2021, but new poll findings indicate the bigger public health challenge may be convincing skeptical Americans to obtain a COVID-19 vaccine.

A majority of U.S. adults (75%) said in a new LX/Morning Consult poll they'd likely get a coronavirus vaccine, if and when it passes clinical trials. But even as the number of confirmed cases and fatalities continue to climb in America, only 30% of respondents indicated they'd be in a rush to get an FDA-approved vaccine.

One in five respondents said they planned to be among the last Americans to get the vaccine (11%) or they wouldn't get it at all (9%).

Bad Guys

Man intentionally derails train near USNS Mercy docked in Los Angeles: Feds lay charges

USS Mercy hospital ship
© Cpl. Alexa Hernandez / U.S. Marine Corps via AP
The USNS Mercy arrives in Los Angeles on Friday, March 27, 2020.
Authorities said the suspect told investigators he wanted to bring attention to the government's activities regarding COVID-19.

Prosecutors charged a locomotive engineer who worked at the Port of Los Angeles with intentionally derailing a train at full speed near the Navy hospital ship Mercy because of suspicions over its activities surrounding COVID-19, according to a federal criminal complaint.

Eduardo Moreno, 44, of San Pedro, California, was charged with one count under a little-known train-wrecking statute that carries a maximum sentence of up to 20 years in the incident Tuesday, according to the 10-page criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles.

Moreno, who was held overnight, was turned over to FBI agents Wednesday morning. He was expected to make an initial appearance in federal court Wednesday afternoon.


Mike Rowe rips universities' rising tuition costs as classes go online: 'What are we paying for?'

Mike  Rowe
© Fox News
Mike Rowe
Mike Rowe took a swipe at the rising cost of college tuition during an interview Tuesday with Fox News, asking "what are we paying for?"

Calling what students are paying to attend college courses "somewhere between egregious and obscene," the host of "Dirty Jobs" said that he predicts "one of the silver linings" from the coronavirus pandemic will be Americans' commitments "truly to learning" and that the crisis could "completely redefine" how people learn moving forward.

"When you look at Harvard, and when you look at William and Mary and Brown and MIT and some of these schools with $40 billion endowments...you start to realize, what are we really paying for?"