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Wed, 26 Feb 2020
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Cops smell weed on 16yo boy and beat the hell out of him - taxpayers to be held liable

teen being punched
As the Free Thought Project has reported numerous times, the only thing dangerous about marijuana is what happens when the police catch you with it. Marijuana will not kill you, but the police officers who find you with it just might. The violent arrest of a 16-year-old Delaware boy proves this notion. Now, the taxpayers of New Castle will be held liable because the officer who did the punching, was not.

One year after this boy was savagely beaten by New Castle County police — who were never held accountable — attorney for the family, Chris Johnson, has announced they intend to sue if the department refuses to settle.

As TFTP reported at the time, the boy, identified by his family as Roger Darnell Brown was outside talking with his friend last February because he'd just gotten a brand new dirt bike and wanted to show it off. The boys weren't breaking into cars or vandalizing the neighborhood or stealing things. They were just being boys hanging out.

However, as they stood in the front yard, two cops claimed to smell marijuana and this peaceful hangout quickly turned violent.

Roger was straddling the bike when police arrived and told him to get off it, Mary Fleming, Roger's mother told Delaware Online.

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Stock Down

England has WORST regional inequality in developed world, new report says

Gresham Middlesbrough
© Reuters / Phil Noble
A woman pushes a pram along a semi-derelict terraced street in the Gresham area of Middlesbrough, north-east England
The over-centralization of power has resulted in England becoming "the most regionally divided economy in the developed world," according to new research.

A report released by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) North think tank on Friday says that, while inner London is one of the most productive regions in the European Union, other parts of England have productivity levels "similar to Poland, Hungary and Romania."

"[England is the] most regionally divided economy in the developed world in terms of productivity, income, job opportunities, and health outcomes."

Researchers at the progressive think tank have urged British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to embark on a major devolution program. They report that the "economy isn't working for any part of England" - not even the nation's capital - adding that "this situation is unique in the developed world."

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Stock Down

If slowing growth, unsound financial systems and the coronavirus don't trigger a market meltdown, central banks will

Stock Exchange
© Getty Images / AFP
People walk past the New York Stock Exchange on February 12. US stocks have rallied to an all-time high this month despite worries over sluggish economies in China and Europe and the coronavirus outbreak.
In July 2007, the Post published my article with the headline "Get ready for stock market collapse". Three months later, share prices slid into the abyss of the global financial crisis. I haven't predicted a market collapse since. I am predicting one now.

Back in 2007, signs of a market collapse were evident in overpriced shares, investor complacency, and fast-sprouting hedge funds and brokerage accounts. China was then an emerging economic power with ample debt capacity to cushion the world's fall.

But both China and US got their responses to the global financial crisis wrong. Rather than stimulating consumption that still lags, China stimulated investment despite its industrial overcapacity. The US stimulated consumption (remember "cash for clunkers"?) rather than investing in new technologies, worker retraining and still creaking infrastructure.

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Star of David

Palestinian boy, 8, loses eye after being shot by Israeli police in Jerusalem

Malek Issa

Malek Issa, 8, was shot in the face by Israeli police with with a rubber bullet
The story of a Palestinian boy who lost an eye after being shot in the face by Israeli police has angered Palestinians across the occupied territories who see the incident as another tragic example of Israel's wrongful targeting of Palestinians with excessive force.

Eight-year-old Malek Issa was on his way home from buying a sandwich on Saturday afternoon in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya when he was shot in the face with a rubber-coated steel bullet fired by an Israeli police officer.

Issa's family told local media that the boy had left a restaurant and was headed home when he was shot by police, allegedly at point blank range.

While Israeli police claimed that their officers were engaging in "riot control" measures in Issawiya, video footage of the moments before the shooting, published by Haaretz, shows what appears to be normal activity in the street.


Russia has already self-quarantined 2,500 people to prevent spread of coronavirus infection - Moscow mayor

Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin
© Sputnik / Ilya Pitalev
Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin
Despite its 4,000km border with China, Russia currently has no live reported domestic cases of the pathogen which has sent its neighbor into lock-down. Authorities clearly want to try and keep it that way.

Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin announced on Friday that over 2,500 people have already been ordered into quarantine due to the risk of the Covid-19 coronavirus. He also explained on his blog that all arrivals from China will have to undergo a physical and take a test for the infection. They then must isolate themselves. He added that if tests at the airport detect a temperature or other symptoms, the person would be immediately sent to a hospital.

"In practice, this means that anyone who arrives from China should not leave their home or hotel for two weeks," the mayor said. "Compliance [with the quarantine order] is continuously monitored, including through the automated face recognition system and other technical measures." Many CCTV cameras throughout the Russian capital are equipped with facial recognition technology designed to enable authorities to find wanted criminals.


Good luck with that: After failing with worm burgers, Norwegian grocery chain to launch cricket burgers

cricket burger
After failing to convince consumers to buy worm burgers, a Norwegian grocery chain is trying to market burgers made from ground up crickets.

Supermarket Meny scrapped the idea of worm burgers after insufficient demand but seem convinced that they can stir up enthusiasm for people to chomp down on insects.

"It is difficult to see whether Norwegian consumers are more open to insects in a burger than bread, but the link to testing alternative protein sources, such as insects, is probably more closely linked to a burger," communications manager of Meny, Nina Horn Hynne, told E24.

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Fake email 'from outside the country' made Ukrainians throw stones at Wuhan evacuees, BuzzFeed report implies

ukrainian police coronavirus
© REUTERS / Valentyn Ogirenko
Ukrainian police clear the way as demonstrators block a road to prevent the arrival of evacuees from coronavirus-hit China.
Violent protests in Ukraine over the evacuation of its citizens from infection-stricken China was triggered by a foreign psyop, a report at BuzzFeed wants reader to believe. Well, what isn't Russia's fault?

On Thursday, local residents in a small Ukrainian town tried to stop buses carrying people evacuated from Wuhan, China. Panicked beyond all reason, they erected roadblocks, burned tires, and ultimately pelted the vehicles carrying evacuees with stones - a reaction that left many people in the country and elsewhere disgusted.

Comment: Even Ukrainian President Zelensky said in this case Ukraine had reverted to the Middle Ages:
"You know, we always say that Ukraine is Europe," the president told the nation, referring to a slogan popular among pro-Western elements, which became particularly widespread following the 2014 Maidan coup. "To tell the truth, yesterday, we sometimes seemed to be the Europe of the Middle Ages," he added, chastising those who staged violent protests in central Ukraine.

Sure, a woman shouting "we will torch [the hospital] with the sick people inside" is not a pleasant sight to see. But if you read BuzzFeed, you might assume the culprit in this mess was Russia. "A Viral Email About Coronavirus Had People Smashing Buses And Blocking Hospitals," reads the headline of the story.

Comment: The number one rule of Ukrainian statecraft (though they're by no means the only ones): whenever possible, blame a foreign country for your own problems, preferably Russia.

Eye 1

New York City taxi commission accused of $810 million fraud

NYC taxi cabs
© James D. Morgan/Getty Images
Taxi's lined up at an intersection on Feb. 27th 2017, in New York City.Taxi's lined up at an intersection on Feb. 27th 2017, in New York City.
New York Attorney General Letitia James announced plans to sue New York City for allegedly fraudulent practices by its Taxi and Limousine Commission, accusing the agency of running a scheme on taxi drivers that created a "trapdoor of despair."

A taxicab medallion, often seen bolted to a vehicle's hood, is a numbered plate required to operate a yellow cab. James is alleging that the TLC played a role in inflating the price of thousands of medallions over a 14-year period, 2004 to 2017, sometimes by more than 200%.

"Government should be a source of justice, not a vehicle for fraudulent practices," James said in a statement, announcing a notice of claim for $810 million. She's alleging the city profited by that same amount selling medallions and by collecting a 5% tax on third-party transfers.

"These taxi medallions were marketed as a pathway to the American Dream, but instead became a trapdoor of despair for medallion owners harmed by the TLC's unlawful practices," she added.

Star of David

No racism here: Israeli taxi app 'Gett' sued for service option used to avoid Arab drivers

Israel gett taxi service
© Valerii Soloviov/Alamy
A Gett sign on a car in Tel Aviv, Israel.
Human rights lawyers in Jerusalem have sued Gett, an Israeli taxi-hailing app, for providing a service they allege was designed to give customers the option to practically guarantee they would not get an Arab driver.

Gett, a global firm that also works with black cabs in the UK, offers users in the holy city the choice to request a taxi that is not driven on the Sabbath, the weekly Jewish day of rest, and some Jewish holidays.

In addition to its "express" and "premium" offers, the unique service is labelled as "Mehadrin", referring to the most stringent levels of Jewish regulations. Unlike observant Jews, Palestinian Arab drivers in Jerusalem are generally Muslim or Christian and often work during the Sabbath.

Gett says drivers of any religion can register to provide this service if they confirm that their vehicle meets the requirements.

However, according to a class-action lawsuit filed this week, Gett Mehadrin is accused of being a cover for a discriminatory service.



'America's defeat': NYT shredded online for op-ed by Taliban leader wanted by the FBI

New york times
© REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
Twitter users are scratching their heads and openly questioning the New York Times' standards after the outlet published an opinion piece by the Taliban's deputy leader - a man on the FBI's most-wanted list with a $5mn bounty.

Considering the current position of the US in the Middle East, the Times running a piece penned by Sirajuddin Haqqani, entitled 'What We, the Taliban, Want,' did not sit well with many.

Social media users were quick to denounce the piece as "propaganda," with several tweeting that publishing something written by the Taliban is "not a good look" for the NYT. One Twitter commenter wrote: "Nothing screams American defeat more than today's oped."

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