As vaccinations in Montana rise, questions about safety and efficacy emerge
When big ships go out of service, they're got to a graveyard in India - but work there has ground to a halt as oxygen is diverted to fight COVID
Oxygen is vital to operate the hissing gas torches that slice large chunks of metal ships at the Alang-Sosiya scrapyard, but it's now being diverted for COVID patients.
- Business Insider
Marjorie Taylor Greene is holding another gun giveaway - despite there having been at least 156 mass shootings in the US since the start of the year
Greene is giving away a Honey Badger AR Pistol, which she claims is the "same type of gun the hate-America gun-grabbers in DC would love to ban."
TOKYO (Reuters) -Fujifilm Holdings Corp said on Wednesday it started a new phase III trial in Japan of its Avigan drug for COVID-19, reviving hopes for a home-grown treatment for the virus. Domestic approval for the antiviral drug to treat the coronavirus was dealt a setback in December after a health ministry panel said that trial data was inconclusive. Fujifilm has over the years pivoted from its traditional camera and office solutions businesses to health care.
- The Daily Beast
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast / Photos GettyAs Rep. Matt Gaetz combats allegations that he was involved in a sex ring, the Florida Republican’s latest campaign finance report reflects a public relations scramble that began even before he acknowledged being the focus of a federal investigation.The filing, which covers the three months between January and March, shows that Gaetz has incurred unprecedented fundraising expenses during a typically quiet period. In that time, Gaetz dropped six figures on a direct mail blitz, shelling out more for fundraising services than he did in all of 2020.Gaetz also paid $5,000 in “strategic consulting” fees to notorious political operative Roger Stone, and he gave money to a number of GOP Florida state lawmakers that he’s never supported before. The report also indicates that Gaetz—who cites his lack of friends in Washington as a point of pride—may be increasingly isolated; he’s received no contributions from his GOP colleagues.How Scandal-Plagued Matt Gaetz Became ‘Excommunicado’ at Fox NewsMore than anything, the filing reflects a concerted effort to bolster support ahead of the creeping shadow of the investigation. Gaetz has spent roughly $170,000 on direct mail outreach this year, $116,543 of it on one day—March 31. The previous day, The New York Times broke the news that the Justice Department was looking into whether the third-term congressman had sex with a 17-year-old and paid for her travel, a possible violation of federal sex-trafficking laws.Gaetz has also invested heavily in fundraising, paying Nevada-based Red Rock Strategies nearly $160,000 for fundraising consulting. That’s roughly $10,000 more than the campaign spent on fundraising services in 2019 and 2020 combined, according to The Daily Beast’s analysis of filings in the FEC database.Last week, Politico also reported that Gaetz recently spent six-figures on TV ads punching back against the accusations. The 30-second spots, slated to run in his panhandle home district and on select national cable networks, ask supporters to “fight back” against “a multi-week fake news cycle,” targeting CNN specifically. The ad buys came after the quarterly filing deadline and aren’t included in the latest report, but should appear in the next filing, which is due in July.However, one expense in particular will raise eyebrows: A $5,000 “strategic political consulting” fee to Drake Ventures, the company belonging to longtime GOP smear artist and Gaetz associate Roger Stone. On Friday, the DOJ sued Stone and his wife, Nydia, alleging that the couple owes millions in unpaid taxes and have used Drake Ventures to shelter more than $1 million.The campaign paid Stone’s company on March 24, just days before Gaetz’s father held an in-person meeting with a former DOJ prosecutor, according to a person familiar with the meeting. In a bizarre March 31 interview with Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, Matt Gaetz claimed that his father recorded that conversation at the direction of the FBI, alleging without evidence that the former prosecutor was at the center of a convoluted scheme to extort the congressman. The Gaetz campaign had never paid Drake Ventures until then.The report also suggests that Gaetz has few friends in Washington. While Gaetz swore off donations from corporate PACs, he kept the door open to donations from candidate committees. But he has so far reported no financial support in 2021 from friends in Congress such as Jim Jordan and Stephen Scalise, both of whom donated to his 2020 campaign. And while he made same-day $4,000 donations to Sens. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Rand Paul (R-KY) in mid-February, Gaetz did not give money to any House colleagues.Gaetz did, however, send out $1,000 donations to five GOP Florida state senators on Jan. 26. Gaetz hadn’t donated to any of their campaigns previously.One of the contributions reflects Gaetz’s ties to Joel Greenberg, his longtime friend whose federal indictment on a range of offenses—including sex trafficking—led to the probe targeting Gaetz. The contribution went to Jason Brodeur, a longtime Gaetz ally who was also close with Greenberg through local GOP circles. Brodeur’s campaign drew scrutiny for dirty tricks, including an alleged sham candidate scheme. Brodeur has denied involvement and went on to win that race, now representing Greenberg’s Seminole County at the state level.Gaetz has also continued to rack up legal fees, a pattern established last summer around the time the DOJ investigation was reportedly launched. The Daily Beast reported earlier this month that weeks after Greenberg was first indicted—in June 2020—Gaetz paid the law firm Venable LLP $38,000, nearly four times the combined amount of legal fees incurred in the previous five years. The new filing reveals a $21,000 payment to Venable in February, bringing total legal expenses up to $85,000 since Greenberg was charged.Caleb Burns, a partner at Wiley Rein who specializes in campaign finance law, told The Daily Beast that spikes in legal fees are often accompanied by a parallel spike in fundraising.“The law permits candidates and officeholders to use campaign contributions for legal expenses that arise from their candidate and officeholder duties and responsibilities,” Burns explained. “But if an officeholder gets into a car accident on the way to the grocery store—which has nothing to do with running for or holding office—the law bars the use of campaign funds to cover any resulting legal expenses. Therefore, it is not uncommon for candidates and officeholders facing scrutiny for their political activities to raise additional funds into their campaigns to help offset associated legal expenses.”While the thrust of the Gaetz investigation is said to focus on the sex trafficking allegations, CNN reported earlier this month that federal investigators are also examining campaign finance irregularities as part of their broader inquiry. Gaetz can legally tap his campaign coffers for those expenses.The congressman has already raised money from the scandal. On April 7, Talking Points Memo published a fundraising email in which Gaetz slammed “The far-left New York Times” for reporting “salacious allegations against me in an attempt to end my career fighting for the forgotten men and women of this country.” The email added that it was “a shame that the Left tries to drag my dating life into their political attacks,” and included a donation link asking supporters to “fight back against the fake news.”Gaetz donor Richard Bell, who gave to the congressman late last month, told The Daily Beast that while he has liked Gaetz’s policies since he arrived in D.C., Gaetz “should pay the price” if the allegations are true.“I know there is a big expense in defending and felt I wanted to help out,” Bell said.Another recent donor, Florida resident Jerry Klinger, told The Daily Beast that he gave to Gaetz because he agreed with the congressman’s “small-government philosophy.” However, Klinger said that “the shadows that have come out since may have given me pause to reconsider.”Klinger expressed skepticism about the merits of the DOJ investigation, and said he has “no objection” if Gaetz uses his donation for legal expenses. But he pointed out that the congressman comes from a wealthy and influential family.“If daddy wants to pay for junior, that’s a different story,” he said.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
- The Telegraph
Johnny Mercer sacked by text message after row over NI veterans At least 13 bureaucrats had second jobs during time at Whitehall Liz Truss to hold showdown talks with Australia over trade negotiations Coronavirus latest news: India reaches record 2,000 Covid deaths in 24 hours amid warning hundreds of variants could be circulating Subscribe to The Telegraph for a month-long free trial Boris Johnson is under renewed pressure over a fresh lobbying row, after it emerged he told Sir James Dyson he would "fix it" so that staff would not have to pay extra tax while working in the UK during the pandemic. Sir James, whose firm is now based in Singapore, sent a series of text messages in March 2020 to the Treasury and the Prime Minister, with Mr Johnson replying: "I will fix it." According to the BBC, the PM later messaged Sir James saying: "Rishi [Sunak] says it is fixed!! We need you here." Labour has seized on these revelations, saying: "Boris Johnson is now front and centre of the biggest lobbying scandal in a generation, and Tory sleaze has reached the heart of Downing Street." Shadow business minister Lucy Powell told the Today programme it was "jaw-dropping". "It stinks, really, that a billionaire businessman can text the Prime Minister and get an immediate response and apparently an immediate change in policy," she said. But Oliver Dowden, the Culture Secretary, defended the move, telling BBC Breakfast: "This was not normal times, this wasn't business as usual of a government in peace time - we were essentially at war with this virus and people rightly expected us to move rapidly." He stressed the result was not "for personal gain" but to ensure the country had more ventilators, saving "many, many lives". MPs also had the opportunity to vote on the "temporary" change, he dded. Follow the latest updates below.
- The Telegraph
A black teenage girl was shot dead by police in Ohio on Tuesday minutes after a guilty verdict was returned in the case of the officer who killed George Floyd. Officers were responding to a call on Legion Lane in the city of Columbus when police shot the girl, who was named locally as 16-year-old Makiah Bryant. Police later released body camera footage showing an officer shooting the victim, who was holding a knife and was poised to attack another girl. Police Chief Michael Woods, who called a late-night press conference, said they took the unprecedented step of releasing the footage within hours of the incident as the force wanted to provide some answers for what exactly happened, with America on edge after the trial of former police officer Derek Chauvin. A video taken by a witnesses circulated on social media which appeared to show a victim wearing jeans and trainers lying motionless on the ground as a police officer stood nearby. Witnesses say the girl was shot in the chest. Crowds gathered near the scene shortly after the shooting, which occurred around 4.45pm, and began shouting “no racist police” and "enough is enough" at officers gathered.
- Business Insider
The STRATCOM commander says he needs a modern nuclear force because he cannot deter "leftovers of the Cold War" forever.
- Business Insider
Minimize discomfort by moving your arm or taking hot showers. Use cold washcloths or ice instead of Advil.
ANKARA (Reuters) -Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday that any move by U.S. President Joe Biden to recognise the 1915 mass killings of Armenians by the Ottoman Empire as a genocide will further harm already strained ties between the NATO allies. Turkey accepts that many Armenians living in the Ottoman Empire were killed in clashes with Ottoman forces during World War One, but contests the figures and denies that the killings were systematically orchestrated and constitute a genocide. For decades, measures recognizing the Armenian genocide, stalled in the U.S. Congress and U.S. presidents have refrained from calling it that, stymied by concerns about relations with Turkey and intense lobbying by Ankara.
- Associated Press
A first round of direct talks between regional rivals Saudi Arabia and Iran signaled a possible de-escalation following years of animosity that often spilled into neighboring countries and at least one still-raging war. The talks, hosted by Iraq earlier this month, were confirmed Tuesday to The Associated Press by an Iraqi and a Western official in Baghdad. Saudi Arabia is recalibrating its regional position after losing an unflinching supporter in President Joe Biden's predecessor, Donald Trump.
- Business Insider
From toilet paper to diapers, here's a list of household staples that are about to get more expensive
From Huggies diapers to Tampax, Dunkin coffee, and Cheerios, many top goods will get more expensive in the coming months.
The Ingenuity drone completes the first powered, controlled flight by an aircraft on another world.
- The Daily Beast
Sputnik/Alexei Druzhinin/ReutersA day after the European Union’s top diplomat warned that over 100,000 Russian troops have now gathered on Ukraine’s border and in annexed Crimea, new satellite images show the mighty stockpile of military equipment that the Kremlin has deployed to back them up.On Monday, the EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell said a massive Russian army has gathered on the Ukraine border, adding: “It’s the highest military deployment of Russian army in Ukrainian borders ever... When you deploy a lot of troops, a spark can jump here or there.”Top Kremlin Mouthpiece Warns of ‘Inevitable’ War With U.S. Over Another Ukraine Land GrabOn Tuesday, the satellite images published by the Wall Street Journal showed the extent of the Russian force that’s causing so much concern. The photos, taken between March 27 and April 16 by commercial satellite company Maxar Technologies, show that Russia is gathering fighter jets, attack helicopters, and even building a new military hospital.Experts say the range and number of fighter jets gathered are a cause for sharp concern. Philip Breedlove, a retired U.S. Air Force general who was the top NATO military commander when Russian forces annexed Crimea in 2014, told the Journal: “They have appropriately deployed the various elements of airpower that would be needed to establish air superiority over the battlefield and directly support the ground troops.”Dan Jablonsky, the chief executive of Maxar Technologies, said the company decided to make its images public so that the world knows more about what Russia is planning on the Ukraine border. “I think it removes some of the uncertainty and doubt about what is really happening in a fairly critical region of the world,” said Jablonsky.Putin Reignites Ukraine Conflict as Rift With Biden Blows UpU.S. officials are also showing increasing concern about what could happen in the region. The U.S. estimate of the number of Russian troops in Crimea or near Ukraine stands at 80,000, according to the Journal—double the number of troops deployed to the region just one month ago. However, the officials said they would expect to see bigger ammunition stockpiles and more military hospitals if a large-scale invasion was imminent.Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba told the Journal: “In a few weeks from now they will be close to sufficient combat readiness to pursue a military escalation. By our estimations, their combined military force will reach over 120,000 troops by then... We don’t know whether Putin will decide to attack, but he will certainly be ready to do so.”Last week, during a call between President Joe Biden and Putin, the White House said the U.S. president “emphasised the United States’ unwavering commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
Derek Chauvin's defense focuses on reasonable doubt in a closing argument that compares the murder case to baking cookies
Attorney Eric Nelson told jurors they must consider all the facts and circumstances Chauvin had to assess when he used force on George Floyd.
- The Daily Beast
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettyIn Tulsa, Oklahoma, this past weekend, thousands gathered at the Health and Freedom Conference—maskless, of course—to bask in the glow of Trumpworld luminaries and scheduled speakers such as pillow magnate Mike Lindell, MAGA attorney Lin Wood, and the actor who played Jesus Christ in the Mel Gibson movie. The crowd was there to reaffirm their fealty to twice-impeached former President Donald Trump, the QAnon conspiracy theory, coronavirus denialism, their religious faith, and the belief that their high-profile political enemies deserve to be executed.And Fever Dreams co-host Will Sommer was on the ground in Tulsa to take it all in.“[It was] sort of a confluence of COVID denialism, QAnon, evangelical Christianity, all this kind of stuff, gathering outside of Tulsa, 4,500 people,” Sommer told co-host Asawin Suebsaeng on this week’s episode of The Daily Beast’s Fever Dreams podcast. “They were ready to throw down and talk about how much they love both Trump and QAnon, no masks, [of course]… I didn’t see a single mask... I, too, had to go sans mask to fit in.”There were, naturally, “a lot of people who are big deals in Trumpism. I mean, it was Lin Wood, and Michael Flynn, and Sidney Powell. Jim Caviezel, who you may remember from The Passion of the Christ,” Sommer said. “These were people who were fringe in a way, but who still have a lot of sway in the Republican Party… Look, the chairman of the Oklahoma Republican Party was at this thing.”According to Sommer, one of Wood’s addresses to the audience included a moment when he blathered on about “people [who] are torturing children,” and how “the punishment for treason is a firing squad”—at which point the crowd of roughly “5,000 people just explode, like standing ovation, all this stuff. So, I mean, it was really something to see.”Later in this Fever Dreams installment, Suebsaeng and Sommer welcome guest Sara Kenigsberg, a veteran video producer for the 2020 Democratic presidential campaigns of both Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden. On this episode, she opens up about what it was like when the Trump re-election campaign, conservative media, and MAGA icons aggressively went after her last summer… for her past tweets about pigs.That’s right: Last summer, as the United States was engulfed by the COVID-19 pandemic, a tumultuous presidential race, a torpedoed economy, and mass protests, the Trump campaign found time to devote considerable messaging resources to denouncing a mid-level Biden 2020 official over her love of pigs, yoga, and adorable piglets.Kenigsberg, who at that point had recently assumed the position as a producer on Biden’s presidential campaign, had shared a meme spreading the message of: “Please stop calling cops pigs. Pigs are highly intelligent and empathetic animals who would never racially profile you.”It wasn’t long before MAGAland declared her a new public enemy, with the Trump campaign putting out multiple statements about her. Kenigsberg recalls what happened behind the scenes, as she and the Biden staff responded to these salvos, and the torrent of threats and hate mail that followed. “It was just such a ridiculous controversy when so many other important things were happening in the world,” she said. “It was really pathetic on the part of the Trump campaign.”For more on this, as well as on Sommer’s dispatch from what Suebsaeng calls the misadventures in “the COVID and QAnon wilderness,” enjoy the rest of our latest episode.Listen, and subscribe, to Fever Dreams on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
- Associated Press
The Las Vegas Raiders got angry backlash for a tweet the team sent after Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was convicted of murdering George Floyd. The tweet sent by the team's official account on Tuesday said “I CAN BREATHE 4-20-21.” Floyd told officers “I can’t breathe” more than 20 times before he was killed when Chauvin pressed his knee into Floyd's neck last May.
- Yahoo News
It has been a year of historic antiracism protests unlike anything seen in this country for decades, but Derek Chauvin’s conviction on all three counts gave many Americans some hope that the past need not repeat itself.
A deadly second wave has overrun hospitals and even crematoriums in India.
When Ghana received 50,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses from India last month, it hit a frustrating roadblock: it had not trained enough staff to distribute them. The country was still rolling out shots received in late February from the global vaccine-sharing scheme COVAX, and didn't have the capacity to expand that operation, according to the head of Ghana's immunisation programme. Rather than going straight into the arms of health workers, the additional doses were put in cold storage in the capital Accra, Kwame Amponsa-Achiano told Reuters, adding that his team had received two days' notice about the shipment.
A retired police veteran, a Minnesota resident and a black political hopeful share their thoughts.