British Conservatives bomb Iraq, coronavirus or not

This 13 March 2020 video says about itself:

Iraqi military condemns U.S. airstrikes in the country

The United States launched Thursday an attack on a pro-Iranian militia group in Iraq, which it blamed for the death of two American troops and one British soldier in a rocket attack a day earlier. Iraq’s military condemned the overnight airstrikes, describing them as an aggression against Iraq’s formal armed forces. The Iraqi military said no paramilitary fighters had been killed in the strikes, noting that three soldiers, two policemen and one civilian were killed and 12 others injured.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Sunday, April 26, 2020

MoD admits to dropping bombs on Iraq two weeks ago despite supporting global ceasefire during Covid-19 pandemic

The Peace Pledge Union accuses the government of attempting to hide from scrutiny

BRITAIN staged airstrikes in Iraq during PM Boris Johnson’s hospital stay this month just a week after the government offered support for a global ceasefire during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) admitted on Saturday that the Royal Air Force (RAF) had carried out the attacks, which are the first known aerial strikes by British troops for seven months.

The bombing, which the MoD said took place on April 10, was reportedly part of a counter-terrorism operation in northern Iraq.

Iraq sets timetable for withdrawal of US troops, 28th April 2020: here.

How robins and blackbirds sing

This 27 April 2020 video from Britain says about itself:

Are you struggling to tell apart the birds in your garden based on their song? Ahead of #InternationalDawnChorusDay, BTO’s Training Manager, Nick Moran, will be teaching you which bird is which.

In this video, Nick tells you how to separate Robin and Blackbird song. Two of our most common garden birds, you’ll almost certainly hear these songs on a daily basis.

COVID-19 update, USA

This 27 April 2020 video from the USA is called If Coronavirus Goes Away, Trump Will Bring It Right Back.

THESE HEALTH CARE WORKERS SPOKE OUT. THEY GOT FIRED. Doctors and nurses say drawing attention to urgent needs and hospital conditions is the only way to force change and save lives. But it could cost them their jobs. Jhonna Porter felt a duty to alert her co-workers to a potentially dangerous change on the fifth floor of Los Angeles’ West Hills Hospital. Within hours of posting on Facebook, the hospital administration called Porter in for a meeting. Porter was suspended without pay while West Hills investigated. [HuffPost]

FDA HAS ‘ALL BUT GIVEN UP’ OVERSIGHT ON ANTIBODY TESTS The Food and Drug Administration has “all but given up” its oversight responsibility on coronavirus antibody tests, one the country’s top infectious disease experts said. “We have the wild, wild West for testing right now,” the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, told NBC. “The FDA has all but given up its oversight responsibility for the tests we have on the market,” he added. “Many of them are nothing short of a disaster.” [HuffPost]

He sewed masks in his prison cell. 30 miles away, his mother was dying of COVID-19.

LGBTQ people suffer more economic hardship due to coronavirus, survey finds.

The whiteness of anti-lockdown protests.

Crabs, cockroaches, other unusual flower pollinators

This 26 April 2020 video says about itself:

Crabs, Cockroaches, and 3 Other Pollinators That Aren’t Bees

Bees aren’t the only pollinators out there. Some of the other, more surprising pollinators aren’t just unconventional, they give us unique examples of how the relationship between pollinators and plants evolved in the first place.

Hosted by: Olivia Gordon.

Coronavirus update, USA

This 15 April 2020 video from the USA says about itself:

Amazon Workers Strike, Power & The Battle For Safety Against the Virus With Worker Chris Smalls

Amazon workers are fighting for health and safety protection against the coronavirus Covid-19. Amazon worker Chris Smalls from New York talks about his work and why he became an organizer of a strike. He also discusses the failure of OSHA, the CDC and Health Department to protect workers and how he was retaliated against by Amazon and Jeff Bezos including a slander campaign calling him “not smart or articulate”.

He was terminated on March 30, 2020 after his effort to force Amazon to protect the workers from infection from Covid-19.

Amazon reportedly tried to shut down a virtual event for workers to speak out about the company’s coronavirus response by deleting employees’ calendar in Google: here.

More than two-thirds of US Amazon facilities may have had coronavirus cases. By Erik Schreiber, 27 April 2020. As Amazon’s stock price reaches a record high, the company’s belated provision of inadequate protective measures is putting workers’ lives at risk.

This video from the USA says about itself:

UAW 167 Bargaining Chair Travis Watkins Fired For Defending Members Against Coronavirus Pandemic

UAW 167 Bargaining Chair Travis Watkins was interviewed by WorkWeek’s Steve Zeltzer about his struggle to defend himself and fellow auto parts plant workers who were being walked out of the GMAC plant in Wyoming, Michigan because they had been contaminated by Covid-19.

He talks about why he took up this fight and how he was illegally framed up with the use of comments on a private Facebook page.

He also talks about the labor-management partnership that has led some union officials to refuse to defend workers from being contaminated at the plant. He also reached out to UAW president Rory Gamble and other officials only to receive silence.

This interview took place on 4/12/20.

Reinstate UAW member Travis Watkins at once – Protect workers from COVID-19. Petition here.

“Would any worker want to put his or her child back in the plant?” General Motors contract worker victimized over COVID warning speaks about his case. By Sheila Brehm, 27 April 2020. Travis Watkins, a contract worker and local United Auto Workers bargaining chairman was fired March 18 after he made a Facebook post alerting workers to possible infections at his plant in western Michigan.

Nurses hold a demonstration outside Jacobi Medical Center, New York (Image Credit AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Confirmed coronavirus cases in the US surpass one million. By Bryan Dyne, 27 April 2020. Whatever the claims of the various governors, there is no medical or scientific basis for lifting social distancing and isolation measures.

This video from the USA says about itself:

NNU-CNA SF CPMC Nurses Demand PPE Equipment & More Staffing While CPMC Gets Millions From Government

San Francisco Sutter CPMC Van Ness campus nurses on April 24, 2020 protested the demands that management are forcing them to re-use masks and is also laying off nurses. and other staff workers who do critical work at the hospital.

They also were angry that while the hospital has gotten millions it is not going to the frontline workers who need more N95 respirators and other protective gear required to safely treat COVID-19 patients and also protect themselves, other patients, workers and their families.

Former Sutter CEO & President Patrick Fry was paid $13,161,450 in salary. $279,177 in additional “other” pay in 2016.

“Veritable volcanoes for the spread of the virus”. ACLU study predicts an additional 100,000 COVID-19 deaths in US prisons. By Alex Findijs, 27 April 2020. America’s 2.3 million inmates and 420,000 guards and staff are at high risk of infection, threatening tens of thousands of lives.

Columbia University graduate workers strike against university’s COVID-19 response. By Josh Varlin, 27 April 2020

The deadly return to work begins. 27 April 2020. From Georgia to Minnesota, US states are beginning to ease social distancing measures and reopen businesses this week, despite the growing death toll from COVID-19: here.

US billionaires increase wealth by $280 billion since March, as millions unable to get unemployment benefits. By Gabriel Black, 27 April 2020. The wealth of the ultra-rich has surged since the March stock market slump, as the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic further concentrates the wealth of society.

As mass layoffs intensify, tens of millions in US stand to lose health insurance. By Alex Johnson, 27 April 2020. An Economic Policy Institute blog reveals that some 9.2 million Americans lost their health insurance coverage over the previous four weeks due to the coronavirus pandemic.

US nursing homes: A goldmine for real estate and private equity firms. By Isaac Finn, 27 April 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has jeopardized large sections of the nursing home industry, which have become controlled by corporate operators at the expense of residents’ quality of care.

After Coronavirus, Nearly Half Of The Day Care Centers In The U.S. Could Be Gone.

Detroit bus drivers and riders exposed to COVID-19. By Stephen Fuller, 27 April 2020. One-quarter of the residents of the Motor City cannot afford a car and many are forced to ride public buses, which have become a conduit for the spread of deadly disease.

Behind the clinical test of hydroxychloroquine in Detroit. By Kevin Reed, 27 April 2020. Democratic politicians in Detroit and Michigan are collaborating with the Trump administration and the pharmaceutical industry in the rush to find a pandemic “wonder drug”.

This 25 April 2020 video from the USA says about itself:

‘This is America’ — This TikTok user nailed the blatant double standard in how conservative and Indigenous protesters are treated.

In US news and current events today, TikTok user Cante Zephier (@DakotaWinyan) has gone viral after highlighting the difference in how anti-lockdown protesters and Indigenous protesters at Standing Rock were treated. She points out how Trump supporter protesters were left alone while Native American protesters were hit with rubber bullets and pepper spray.

While the Standing Rock protesters protected the environment and health. While Trump’s ‘Flu Klux Klan‘ endangers health and lives.

A rich Brazilian neighbourhood, coronavirus and Bolsonaro

Dutch NOS correspondent Marc Bessems on his balcony in São Paulo, Brazil

Translated from Dutch NOS radio, 27 April 2020:

The “little flu” that threatens to topple the Brazilian president

The angry neighbor on the other side tries to out-shout the noise protest against his president. “Communists!” he screams, while neighbors knock on pots and pans around him. Lonely he stands there, on his balcony, undisturbed despite overwhelming opposition.

“Down with Bolsonaro“, my downstairs neighbor lady shouts in his direction. “Useless!” It is unclear whether she means Brazilian President Bolsonaro or the neighbor. “Fuck off to Cuba or Venezuela, bitch,” he replies.

In my wealthy neighborhood in western São Paulo, about 75 percent of residents voted for the far-right Jair Bolsonaro in 2018. Judging by the noise, many of them now seem to regret that.

Little flu

It is the beginning of April, the corona crisis has only just seized Brazil. Since March 23, the schools and most shops have been closed by order of the governor. President Bolsonaro disagrees: He compared the virus to a “little flu” and wants everyone to return to work. That is why people protest every night.

My four-year-old daughter cannot sleep. My wife has been sick in bed for some days. Because she has all the symptoms of coronavirus, my daughter and I also stay indoors preventively. As frustrating as it is, I will have to report adbout this stage of the crisis from home, as far as possible with a bored toddler in the house.

My neighborhood turns out to be a good place for a journalist: it is the epicenter of the corona epidemic in Brazil. The wealthy Brazilians were infected first. Many of our Brazilian friends and neighbors are really scared. …

Virus spreads to poor parts

[Later], the peak in this part of the city is likely to be reached. The worst seems to be over for the ‘class A’, the richest upper tier in the country. …

Meanwhile, the coronavirus spreads to the poor parts of the city and the country. In the distant Amazon, care is collapsing completely. And in the poor neighborhoods of São Paulo, more and more people are getting sick. The crisis is spreading, and that does not bode well.

Political crisis

All eyes are on Bolsonaro, and the political crisis in the capital, Brasilia. The president first fires his critical health minister and replaces him with a yes man. That evening, a large part of the neighbors hit the pots and pans again. The neighbor across the street uses heavy artillery, and plays the Brazilian national anthem on his sound system. “Long live Bolsonaro“, he screams long after the noise protest is over.

The political crisis escalates on the day that my wife, daughter and I are symptom-free for two weeks and are finally able to go outside again. The popular Minister of Justice, Sérgio Moro, has stepped down and accuses the President of political interference in police investigations [into Bolsonaro family corruption]. A political bomb that could even lead to impeachment proceedings against the President. The departure of the ‘super minister’ is also disastrous for the popularity of Bolsonaro.

Eg, the talk of the day is again the political crisis, not the more than 58,000 registered corona infections and more than 4,000 deaths. As soon as the president starts his umpteenth television speech, the neighbors start ramming on pots and padns again. But one thing stands out: this time the neighbor, the persistent Bolsonaro fan, is silent.