Sanders wins Nevada, USA, corporate media panic


This 23 February 2020 video from the USA says about itself:

Bernie Sanders Wins Nevada Democratic Caucuses, Cementing Front-Runner Status | Victory Speech

This 23 February 2020 video from the USA says about itself:

Bernie Wins Nevada!

Breaking: We won Nevada! We are building an unprecedented grassroots movement, and together, there is nothing we cannot accomplish. Let’s take the next step and win it all.

This 22 February 2020 video from the USA is called BREAKING: Bernie Wins Nevada Caucus, MSNBC is MELTING DOWN!

MSNBC slammed for ‘full-blown freakout’ after Bernie Sanders cements status as Democratic frontrunner: here.

Democratic Party Dinosaurs Have Seen the Meteor, and It’s Coming From Vermont. An MSNBC host outrageously responded to Sanders’s victory in Nevada by comparing it to the Nazi victory in France, by William Rivers Pitt, Truthout, February 23, 2020.

This 23 February 2020 video from Canada says about itself:

Chris Matthews and the Mainstream Media FREAK OUT as Bernie Sanders CRUSHES the Nevada Caucus

Bernie Sanders has just won the Nevada Caucuses by a MASSIVE amount, and the mainstream media are freaking out over it. Bernie not only won Nevada by a large total, but won among moderate and conservative voters. Mainstream media figures on MSNBC like Chris Matthews and James Carville had a tantrum live on TV, but they weren’t the only ones: all across cable news, there is a sense of devastation that Bernie won Nevada, and some are suggesting they would rather have Trump win than Bernie.

From Our Revolution in the USA today:

Despite the best efforts of the ruling class, our movement won in Nevada and is on the path to victory.

While it’s OK to celebrate, it’s even more important that we don’t take our eye off the ball. With South Carolina and Super Tuesday just around the corner, we are on the verge of taking a gigantic leap forward.

Our Revolution has invested in holding over 26 Campaign Kickoffs with thousands of our members of local Our Revolution groups in CA, TX, FL, OH, MI, CO, WA, MI, and other must-win states.

Now it’s up to us to turn all that organizing power into victories powerful enough to save our democracy and global environment from corporate destruction.

Rush a donation here to help us keep up the momentum, fight back against increasingly desperate corporate attacks, and continue to defeat the unlimited resources of the corporate establishment!

Onward to victory,

Our Revolution

This 23 February 2020 video from the USA says about itself:

Bernie Sanders with Crushing Victory in Nevada!

Big Sanders victory in Nevada, CNN admits


Democratic party candidates public opinion poll

Though counting votes in the United States Democratic party primary election in Nevada is not finished yet, according to CNN, it looks like a resounding victory for candidate Senator Bernie Sanders. A victory, a lot bigger than the figures of the public opinion poll at the top of this blog post. CNN says: 46.6% for Sanders; 19.2% for Joe Biden, the next candidate.

And that after all the anti-Sanders smearing by the CIA, by Donald Trump, by Hillary Clinton, by Michael Bloomberg and others, backed up by so much billionaire donors’ money for propaganda … Anti-Sanders smearing to which CNN corporation contributed.

Today, CNN has to admit:

Bernie Sanders wins Nevada caucuses, CNN projects

By Maeve Reston

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders will win the Nevada caucuses, according to a CNN projection, showing the power of his organization and amplifying his argument that he can broaden his appeal across the Democratic electorate based on the results from the most diverse state in Democrats’ nominating contest thus far.

Though former Vice President Joe Biden appeared to have the lead in polls as late as January, Sanders made an enormous organizing push beginning in the middle of last year, putting some 250 paid staffers on the ground in the Silver State. His campaign also harnessed their grassroots fundraising machine to build roots within the state’s large Latino community, advertising in Spanish not only on television, radio and social media, but through ads on music streaming services like Pandora and Spotify.

Taking the stage in San Antonio, Sanders introduced his wife Jane as the next first lady of the United States. He touted the “multigenerational, multi-racial coalition” that his campaign built in Nevada, giving his campaign a fresh burst of momentum after his win in New Hampshire and his strong showing in Iowa.

“In Nevada, and in New Hampshire and in Iowa — what we showed is that our volunteers are prepared to knock on hundreds and hundreds of thousands of doors,” Sanders said. “That no campaign has a grassroots movement like we do, which is another reason why we’re going to win this election.”

“(President Donald) Trump and his friends think they are going to win this election,” Sanders continued. “They think they’re going to win this election by dividing our people up, based on the color of their skin, or where they were born, or their religion or their sexual orientation. We are going to win because we are doing exactly the opposite. We’re bringing our people together.”

Early entrance polls in Nevada showed Sanders winning Latino voters by 54%, some 40 percentage points ahead of the next candidate, former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg. Sanders also won among white voters. …

The fervent support among younger voters for Sanders was evident in the Nevada results. Among the state’s voters under the age of 30 — who only made up 17% of the electorate — some 66% of them favored the Vermont senator. Biden led among caucusgoers over 65, with around a quarter supporting the former vice president. Around 1 in 5 went for Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar and 1 in 8 for Buttigieg, Sanders and [billionaire] businessman Tom Steyer each. Around 1 in 10 caucused for Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

Sanders also won 44% of non-white voters, according to entrance polls, a blow to Biden — who had claimed that minority voters are the base that would power him to the Democratic nomination. …

Among Nevada voters, the overriding concern was supporting a candidate who could beat Trump.

CNN admits: ‘Among those who said electability was most important, Sanders — yes, Sanders — was the leading candidate.’

On the issues, health care was the top concern and 63% of voters said they supported a government-run health care plan like the one Sanders has proposed.

Sanders’ win was also particularly notable given the ideological split within the Nevada electorate: 30% described themselves as very liberal, 35% said they were somewhat liberal and 31% said they were moderate in entrance polls.

Other Democrats fall short

Buttigieg pointed to Sanders’ embrace of Medicare for All as a major liability for Democrats heading into November …

In Nevada, Buttigieg was under intense pressure to show he could appeal to minority voters as polls have consistently shown him with scant, if any, support from African Americans and Latinos.

The Nevada results do not appear to have moved the needle much on that front. …

Biden, pointing to the diversity of Nevada as evidence that it would be a better fit for his campaign than Iowa and New Hampshire, had hoped for a comeback in the Silver State after his fourth and fifth-place finishes in the first two states. But he still fell short — even after heavy campaigning in the past week — underscoring the uncertainty among Democratic voters over the former vice president’s stamina against Trump. …

Warren also made a vigorous push this week in Nevada, seeking a last-minute surge after she led the charge against former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg in Wednesday night’s Las Vegas debate. (Bloomberg is not competing in the state).

Warren did not have the kind of finish her campaign hoped for after her strong debate performance …

Fourth with 10.3%, according to CNN

Steyer made an enormous investment in Nevada, ultimately plowing $15.5 million into television ads — far outpacing Sanders, who was a distant second in spending with about $2 million. Despite the exorbitant amount of money that Steyer spent in Nevada, it does not appear to have bought him much in the state.

Klobuchar had hoped the momentum she’d built over the first two contests would continue in Nevada.

Billionaire candidate Steyer: sixth with 3.6%; Klobuchar: fifth with 4.5% according to CNN.

Appearing in her home state of Minnesota, which does not vote until Super Tuesday, Klobuchar was the first candidate to take the stage Saturday afternoon.

She said that she had once again exceeded expectations, a claim that did not trend with the actual results that have been reported so far.

Maybe Senator Klobuchar had expected only 1% or 0% …

One of the most striking facets of the Nevada entrance polls was that Sanders won convincingly within an electorate where nearly two-thirds said beating Trump was more important than choosing a candidate who shared their views.

It showed that Sanders is increasingly persuading Democrats that he can defeat Trump by galvanizing working-class voters who feel left behind in the Trump economy and bringing new voters into the process. …

At the same time, he continues to burnish his appeal as an outsider willing to take on the Washington establishment, including those in his own party.

Sanders has fired up his supporters by promising to take on a lengthy list of powerful interests, from the pharmaceutical industry to the military-industrial complex to the “crooks on Wall Street“.

He has also cast his campaign as one that will drive revolutionary change in the area of economic justice, emphasizing policies like raising the minimum wage to at least $15 an hour, forgiving student loan debt, providing free college, reforming what he calls a “broken and racist” criminal justice system, and making universal health care a human right.

In minority communities, Sanders’ campaign also made a very deliberate effort to connect with voters by sharing his family’s immigrant story. Sanders often talks on the trail about how his father came to the United States at the age of 17 [as a refugee from Adolf Hitler’s Holocaust] without any money and minimal English skills, but was able to make a living through determination and hard work.

He has portrayed the Trump administration’s actions on immigration as cruel, immoral and heartless, casting the President as a racist and a xenophobe, while promising to reverse Trump’s policies as soon as he takes office.

This 23 February 2020 video from the USA, by the anti-Sanders Washington Post daily, owned by Amazon boss Jeff Bezos, says about itself:

‘We got momentum now’: Sanders supporters celebrate Nevada win

Senator Bernie Sanders’ supporters celebrate his win in the Nevada caucuses Feb. 22 in Las Vegas.

Las Vegas, USA attack on homeless people


This June 2018 video from the USA says about itself:

Las Vegas homeless areas only 5 minutes away from downtown. Tent city, camp. See the other side of fabulous Las Vegas where tourists do not go.

A commenter on this video says:

I was there. In that position. I lost my job because of medical issues. My wife and I lived off of her paycheck while I went through surgeries. I was in need of two more surgeries when my wife was tragically killed while crossing a street in a marked crosswalk in March of 2017.

I depleted our savings paying rent and utilities. I had my second to last surgery in August 2017. Then got evicted the next month. Just one week out of intensive care. Money gone.

I held a sign at the Wal-Mart on Boulder highway and Nellis. In Las Vegas. My little dog Cookie and I. I was lucky. I had something most of the others did not. I served 14 years in the Army. I had benefits. Three times a week, I pushed my paperwork through. I hounded the VA. I bought a tent, a sleeping bag, a butane camp stove and a mess kit.
I held a sign every day. Seven days a week from September 2017 until April 2018. I went on food stamps. 192 dollars a month. I don’t drink or do drugs or gamble.

The beautiful people in that area helped me. And encouraged me not to give up.

By Jacob Crosse in the USA:

Las Vegas anti-homeless ordinance enforcement begins

17 February 2020

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) has begun enforcing anti-homeless ordinance measures passed by the Las Vegas city council this past November and January. “Bill 2019–36” was passed by a 5–2 margin over the objections of the hundreds of workers, students and activists who packed the November 6, 2019, council meeting. The ordinance further criminalizes poverty, making it illegal to sleep or camp on sidewalks or in public spaces, “if there is space available at the Courtyard Homeless Resource Center.”

Homeless man detained by police [Credit: U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Timothy Young]

The law is a further assault on the most vulnerable in society, with punitive measures ranging from monetary fines, up to $1,000, and/or the possibility of a six-month jail sentence.

A similar ordinance passed by the city council of Boise, Idaho, was struck down by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in December of last year. The court ruled that it is “cruel and unusual punishment”, to issue fines to people for sleeping outdoors while not providing adequate space for those that need it.

Advocates of the law, including the LVMPD, have stressed that the ordinance is a critical “new tool” for the police to use against the homeless. Unable to organize society to meet human need, the dictates of capital demand that property values be maintained by removing the “eyesore” of the homeless who have nowhere else to sleep but on sidewalks, in doorways or on park benches.

“Sin City” is bereft of social services and affordable housing, yet the police were able to grow their budget by $30,892,504 or 5.6 percent over the 2018/19 fiscal year thanks to an increase in the regressive sales taxes passed by a compliant city council. The total budget for the department now exceeds $631 million for 2020. The new funds will allow the city to hire 82 more police officers in order to maintain a ratio of two police officers for every 1,000 residents.

The new anti-homeless ordinance first took effect without the penalty provisions on November 10, however less than two weeks before the enforcement mechanisms were to take effect on February 1, the city council passed an additional “street-cleaning ordinance” which further expands the reach of the police, allowing them to fine or imprison anyone sitting or sleeping on sidewalks or streets “during designated cleaning times”. The month-old street-cleaning ordinance does not have the same stipulation as Bill 2019–36 regarding availability at the Courtyard shelter, meaning that even if there is no space available a person can be cited or jailed.

The city-funded Courtyard Homeless Resource Center, the only 24-hour, 7-day-a-week shelter in the city, has current capacity of 450 and is a chain-linked ghetto within the sardonically named “Corridor of Hope”. Next to the courtyard is the CARE Complex, a non-profit center that provides secure lockers and various services to those that stay in the Courtyard such as helping them to acquire an identification card.

CARE Complex President Michael Swecker recently spoke to NBC 3 regarding the current state of the Courtyard. “It’s a scary place and it’s not any place you would bring a child,” Swecker noted. He advised that “single women should not stay there overnight.” He concluded the interview with the hope that with additional funding the Courtyard would “become a more humane place.” The city of Las Vegas is currently in the midst of a $20 million “upgrade” to the facilities with the stated goal of increasing the capacity to 800 by 2021. As of right now, in total, the city only offers 1,300 shelter beds for those without a home to sleep on.

Those who stay in the facility are provided with a roughly six-inch thick rubber mattress on which to lay. The sleeping area is a concrete slab where the blue mats are arranged in compact columns and rows with roughly one foot separating them, similar to an ICE detention facility or concentration camp. While there is a roof overhead the Courtyard is not an enclosed space.

No bedding is provided and those with pets must keep them locked in separate pens. “Residents” are provided one black plastic tote in which to store all of their possessions and are provided one bottle of water a day to drink. Twelve portable toilets are located within the Courtyard for the roughly 300 to 500 people that filter in and out of the facility daily.

Mayor Carolyn Goodman has faced increasing criticism from residents over the Dickensian legislation implemented under her direction and at urging of the local business community which is dominated by large casino operators. In her state of the city address Goodman defended the law, stating, “I will not allow the city of Las Vegas to become a skid-row harbor of rampant crime and potential pandemic disease.” In interviews following her address Goodman expressed her desire that the new ordinances will become “a model that can be replicated elsewhere in Nevada and hopefully elsewhere in the country.”

There have been several protests and demonstrations against the law since its passage and up until the beginning of its enforcement. On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, roughly 50 people staged a march from City Hall to the Fremont Street tourist district in a demonstration dubbed “Occupy Fremont”.

Protesters carried signs reading “Homes Not Handcuffs, No to the Camping Ban.” Once they arrived at the tourist district they were quickly surrounded by horse-mounted police. A few protesters pitched small camping tents while the rest formed a circle around the tents. After ordering the group to disperse, the police moved swiftly on the few dozen left and within twenty minutes twelve protesters were arrested with one reported injury.

After the demonstration, the former Democrat and now independent Mayor Goodman took to the airwaves to denounce the protesters as outside agitators and “paid protesters”, who were “reading a script from a cell phone.” This was quickly rebutted by homeless advocate Katie Krikorian of the nonprofit group “Food not Bombs”, who was one of the twelve arrested. Rebutting the mayor’s baseless slander in a telephone interview, Krikorian stated, “I was arrested protesting against homelessness on the Occupy Fremont Street event. I am a resident. I’m a homeowner, and if you’d like to see me, I will be out there tonight.”

The mayor has tried to frame the new laws as her “getting something done” while demonstrating “compassion”, arguing that laws are there to “help those who want to help themselves” while providing an avenue “to get services to those that need it.” The truth is that neither of the new ordinances provide new funding for sanitation, housing or transportation to the nearly 14,000 chronically homeless in southwest Nevada or the over 6,500 without permanent housing within the city limits.

While the law has been in effect for two weeks, the police and City Hall have maintained that no one has been fined or arrested yet under the new guidelines, and according to various press reports, they have been given directives not to enforce the punitive measures for another week.

However, a cellphone video shot on February 11 by Krikorian casts serious doubts on the police and City Hall claims that they haven’t already begun to levy fines and detain “violators”. In the early morning video, a woman can be seen bent over the hood of a Las Vegas police sport utility vehicle with her hands cuffed behind her back. As Krikorian approached the vehicle, filming the entire time and inquiring as to the reason for the woman’s detention, the police quickly released her.

The briefly-detained woman produced to Krikorian a pink citation slip which stated it was for violating the street-cleaning ordinance, with an accompanying $1,000 fine.

According to Krikorian, there were no street-cleaning vehicles present and no signage posted indicating when street-cleaning crews were supposed to be present, as mandated by the new law. Police disputed this account, without saying what the person was cited for nor how much the citation was. The police went on to explain that the reason the woman was handcuffed was because she “refused to sign the citation.”

In anticipation of the Nevada caucuses on February 22, this past Saturday the Clark County Democratic Party hosted a “Kick off to the Caucus” gala which featured speeches from the candidates at the Tropicana Casino and Resort in Las Vegas. The event boasted a VIP reception, along with dinner and speeches from the candidates including billionaire Tom Steyer, former Vice President Joe Biden, Senators Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar, and former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg. Tickets for the event started at $125 and reached up to $2,500.

Las Vegas, COVID-19, and the Homeless Crisis. By Emilia Miller, April 9, 2020.

Canadian, Las Vegas workers fight for their rights


This video from Nevada in the USA says about itself:

Vegas workers may strike for first time in years

23 May 2018

Members of the Culinary Workers Union voted to authorize a citywide strike unless they reach a contract deal with their employers by June 1.

By Jerry White in the USA:

Canadian rail workers, Las Vegas casino workers set to strike as class conflict widens across North America

29 May 2018

More than 3,000 railway workers could strike Canadian Pacific at 10 p.m. tonight, while 50,000 food service and hospitality workers could walk out of the major casinos in Las Vegas, Nevada at 12:01 a.m. Friday. The potential walkouts, which follow a massive contract rejection by the CP rail workers and a near unanimous strike vote by the casino workers, are part of a series of working-class struggles spreading across North America and internationally. …

In Las Vegas, thousands of members of the Culinary Workers Union voted during mass meetings last week by a 99–1 percent margin to authorize the first city-wide casino strike since the 67-day walkout in 1984. A strike by kitchen workers, servers, bellmen, porters and guest room attendants would hit 34 major casinos, including those owned by the largest casino operators, MGM and Caesars. …

The struggle of US teachers is also continuing. Hundreds of elementary school teachers in the San Diego suburb of National City, California, voted by 88 percent last week to strike. The contract covering 300 teachers at 10 elementary schools expires on June 30, with school officials offering a one-time, two percent bonus and demanding the lengthening of the school day by five percent. The National City Elementary Teachers Association, which is resuming mediated talks today, has signaled that it will not call a strike before the end of the school year, but that it might once schools resume in September if the district unilaterally imposes its demands.

Thousands of Las Vegas casino workers mull strike action over fears robots could take jobs: here.

Golden eagle saved from well


This video from the USA says about itself:

4 February 2018

Starving Eagle Rescued from Well | This [golden] eagle was starving to death, but rescuers found him just in time and helped him get better — and the moment he finally goes back home is amazing. To help Goldielocks’ rescuers save more animals, you can support the Friends of Nevada Wilderness.

Las Vegas billionaire Steve Wynn accused of sexual abuse


This video from the USA says about itself:

Report: Dozens of women claim Billionaire Steve Wynn demonstrated a pattern of sexual misconduct

26 January 2018

The casino mogul and Republican National Committee Finance chairman is accused of pressuring employees to perform sex acts.

From the New York Times in the USA:

Stephen Wynn, Casino Mogul, Accused of Decades of Sexual Misconduct

By MATTHEW GOLDSTEIN, TIFFANY HSU and KENNETH P. VOGEL

JAN. 26, 2018

Stephen Wynn’s perch at the top of the casino industry was badly shaken on Friday following the disclosure of allegations that he engaged in a long pattern of sexual misconduct with employees of his casinos.

A detailed investigative report in The Wall Street Journal portrayed Mr. Wynn, a billionaire casino magnate and prominent political donor, as a man who frequently demanded naked massages from female employees, sometimes pressuring them for sex and to masturbate him. The newspaper said that the activity had gone on for decades and that some female employees had complained to supervisors about Mr. Wynn’s behavior.

Some of the women told The Journal that they had tried to avoid having to give Mr. Wynn massages by hiding in bathrooms, or entering fake appointments in record logs to make it look as if some of their colleagues were busy. The newspaper relied on court records and interviews with dozens of people who worked at his casinos.

Mr. Wynn, chairman and chief executive of Wynn Resorts, denied the allegations in a statement, saying, “The idea that I ever assaulted any woman is preposterous.” …

The fallout from the story mounted during the day. Investors fled shares of Wynn Resorts, Mr. Wynn’s casino company, driving the stock price down 10 percent.

Gambling officials in Massachusetts, where Mr. Wynn’s company plans to open a $2.4 billion casino resort near Boston next year, said they had opened a review into the “troubling allegations” of Mr. Wynn’s behavior “to determine the appropriate next steps.”

The allegations could also have political impact as well. Mr. Wynn was named chairman of the Republican National Committee’s finance committee shortly after the election of President Trump in November 2016. Mr. Trump has described Mr. Wynn as a friend.

Mr. Wynn and his companies have donated more than $5.2 million over the years to a mix of Republican and Democratic candidates and committees.

A spokesman for the R.N.C. did not respond to questions about whether Mr. Wynn would remain as the party’s finance chairman.

Michael Weaver, a spokesman for Mr. Wynn’s company, declined to comment when asked whether Mr. Wynn intended to step down from his R.N.C. post, and also declined to specify the last time Mr. Wynn had spoken to Mr. Trump. “In the past, Mr. Wynn has not disclosed publicly when he speaks to the president”, Mr. Weaver wrote in an email.

The allegations against Mr. Wynn are similar to the long history of sexual assault and misconduct documented by The New York Times in October against the movie mogul Harvey Weinstein. The report on Mr. Weinstein set off a wave of news reports about allegations of sexual misconduct and harassment against powerful men in Hollywood, the news media, politics, the arts, restaurants and other industries.

The onslaught of news reports about sexually aggressive men has been fueled, in part, by women coming forward to share their stories of sexual harassment under the banner of #MeToo.

Mr. Wynn, who turns 76 on Saturday, is one of the most powerful figures in the casino industry. Like Mr. Trump, he is known for splashing his name on his casinos and resorts, and his signature is the company’s logo.

His ornate casinos, which included the Bellagio, the Mirage, Treasure Island and Wynn, helped change the image of the Las Vegas Strip into one encapsulating glamour, fancy restaurants and exotic attractions like the lion-taming duo of Siegfried & Roy at the Mirage. The Bellagio, a huge hotel and casino on the strip, features an array of dancing water fountains that routinely fascinate tourists. Mr. Wynn eventually sold the Bellagio, along with the Mirage and Treasure Island.

Mr. Wynn made more than $28 million in total compensation from Wynn Resorts for 2016.

“The thing about Steve Wynn is this: He is the biggest name in the history of Nevada business”, said Jon Ralston, the editor of The Nevada Independent, who has reported on the state’s gaming industry for decades. …

The allegations against Mr. Wynn are notable because he is one of the most prominent executives of a large public company to be hit with multiple claims of sexual misconduct. The claims could tarnish his company’s brand because his name is so closely identified with it. And given that casinos are a state-regulated industry, the allegations could have an impact on the company’s management of the casino resorts it operates and other projects under construction.

His planned casino near Boston came under scrutiny on Friday when the Massachusetts Gaming Commission said, “The suitability and integrity of our gaming licensees is of the utmost importance, and ensuring that suitability is an active and ongoing process.”

Democrats sought to capitalize on the revelations.

They pointed out that Mr. Wynn and the R.N.C.’s chairwoman, Ronna McDaniel, hosted a fund-raiser at Mr. Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Fla., just last week to celebrate the one-year anniversary of his inauguration. Democrats noted that in the wake of The Times’s exposé on Mr. Weinstein’s decades-long pattern of sexual misconduct, Republicans had blasted Democrats for accepting donations from the Hollywood producer. …

Mr. Wynn’s selection as the R.N.C.’s finance chairman under Mr. Trump last year struck some in G.O.P. finance circles as odd. Mr. Wynn had initially supported Mr. Trump’s rival, Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, for the party’s nomination.

A registered Democrat for decades, Mr. Wynn had long dabbled in politics, but had focused mostly on Nevada. He was seen a business-minded centrist who cultivated politicians from both parties who could help his business interests.

Mr. Wynn pivoted sharply to the right in response to President Barack Obama’s pushes to pass an economic stimulus bill and overhaul the nation’s health care system. …

The Journal story said the 2005 settlement involved a payment of $7.5 million to a manicurist who worked at one of his Las Vegas resorts. The newspaper said Mr. Wynn pressured the woman to take off her clothes and to have sex with him, even though she did not want to. …

As for Wynn Resorts, the company is continuing to build and grow in Las Vegas.

It reached an agreement last month to buy 38 acres of land on the Las Vegas Strip directly across from Wynn Las Vegas for $336 million.

Casino mogul Steve Wynn’s former company was fined a record $20 million by Nevada gambling regulators for failing to investigate claims of sexual misconduct made against him before he resigned a year ago.

Massacre in Las Vegas, USA, why?


This United States TV video says about itself:

2 October 2017

NBC NewsTom Costello has new details on what is known about Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock, including that he owned two planes, had a pilot’s license and a hunting license from Alaska.

By Patrick Martin in the USA:

The social pathology of the Las Vegas Massacre

3 October 2017

In yet another eruption of savage impersonal violence, at least 59 people were killed and 527 people wounded as an outdoor music festival on the Las Vegas Strip, attended by more than 20,000, was suddenly converted into a war zone.

The alleged gunman, Stephen Paddock, used multiple semi-automatic weapons that had been converted to fully automatic use, through an attachment known as a bump-stock device—available for a mere $40 per weapon—as he opened fire on the helpless crowd from his vantage point on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel and casino. He took his own life after the rampage.

Paddock could lay down a field of fire on a military scale, nearly 100 rounds per minute. He was found in possession of about 20 weapons, many of them high-powered semi-automatics, along with additional ammunition. The first minutes of gunfire triggered a smoke alarm that allowed police to locate Paddock far more quickly than through a search of the huge 3,300-room hotel, a fact that suggests that the toll of death and injury could have been much higher.

The gunman’s motives are unknown, and his identity sheds little light on what drove him on this murderous course. Paddock was 64 years old, shared a comfortable home with his female companion, and was, according to some reports, financially well-off. One of his brothers described Paddock as a real estate multi-millionaire. He had a pilot’s license and owned two small planes. He had no known associations with any political or religious group.

There is a family history of mental illness—Paddock’s father, Richard Hoskins Paddock, was a bank robber and diagnosed as a psychopath. He was on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List for nearly a decade. But Stephen Paddock had no contact with his father after he was seven years old, and there are no reports that he exhibited mental illness or received any treatment for it.

As in virtually all such shootings, the gunman knew none of the wounded and killed. They did not exist for him as individuals. Paddock saw the concert-goers packed below him in a parking lot not as fellow human beings, but as objects to be destroyed. The victims were the random targets of the uncontrolled and impersonal hatred of a gunman indifferent to their fate and the lifelong suffering that awaits their surviving family and friends.

Clearly, this was not the act of a normal person. Some form of mental illness, even if not previously diagnosed, must be involved in Paddock’s crime. But there is certainly a socially induced element in this terrible event. The frequency of these occurrences cannot be explained in purely individual and personal terms. The Las Vegas massacre is a peculiarly American crime, arising out of the social pathology of a deeply troubled society.

What is the social context of this latest episode of domestic mass killing? The United States has been at war more or less continuously for the past 27 years. The US government has treated tens of millions of people in the Middle East, Afghanistan, and Africa as targets for extermination through bombs, bullets, and drone-fired missiles. These wars have penetrated deeply into American culture, celebrated endlessly in film, television, music and even sport.

Social relations within the United States, characterized by the growth of economic inequality on a scale that exceeds any previous era in American history, fuel a culture of indifference, and even outright contempt for human life.

One telling detail: on the day that the media was filled with reports about the worst mass shooting in American history, the stock market continued its relentless march upwards, with new records for the Dow-Jones Industrial Average and other indexes. Wall Street is celebrating in anticipation of the Trump administration pushing through the biggest tax cut for corporate America and the super-rich in history.

The damage inflicted on American society by constant war and deepening social inequality has found expression in an endless series of events like the mass shooting in Las Vegas. With only 5 percent of the world’s population, the US accounts for 30 percent of the mass shootings. And the scale of such horrors is increasing: the four worst mass shootings, in terms of casualty toll, and six of the seven worst, have taken place since 2007.

Corporate media pundits and government officials are incapable of more than perfunctory expressions of shock and dismay over such atrocities, which recur with appalling frequency in the United States. Even uttering such rote statements seems to be too much to ask of President Trump, whose remarks Monday morning were both banal and palpably insincere. How can anyone take seriously a foul-mouthed misogynist and pathological liar as he begins a sentence with the words, “Scripture teaches us”?

As for his moronic statement that the killings in Las Vegas were “pure evil,” such a characterization explains nothing. It doesn’t even explain Trump himself, who gave a speech two weeks ago at the United Nations where he threatened to use nuclear weapons to incinerate the 27 million inhabitants of North Korea. Yet CNN, ever the sycophant, described his televised remarks on Las Vegas as “pitch perfect.”

Trump is to visit Las Vegas Wednesday, one day after an equally stage-managed and bogus display of compassion set for Puerto Rico. There he will view the devastation inflicted by Hurricane Maria, while pursuing his Twitter feud with local government officials who have dared to criticize the poorly executed federal response to the catastrophe.

During the 16 years since the 9/11 attacks, during which the US government has been supposedly engaged in a “war on terror”, an average of one American per year has been killed by a foreign terrorist. During the same period, at least 10,000 Americans have been killed every year by other Americans. Mass shootings like Virginia Tech, Newtown, Orlando and now Las Vegas have killed six times as many Americans as all the terrorist attacks in that period.

Further investigation into the circumstances of the Las Vegas tragedy is vital. But one conclusion can surely be drawn: what happened late Sunday night outside the Mandalay Bay hotel was a manifestation of a deep sickness in American society.

DEATH TOLL RISES TO 59, OVER 500 INJURED IN LAS VEGAS MASS SHOOTING Here’s what we know about the victims in one of the deadliest U.S. mass shootings in modern history. The suspect, Stephen Paddock, had a “cache of weapons.” Take a look at his preparation and how he was able to fire so many shots. Videos and photos show the horror of the chaotic scene, while this graphic breaks down how the terror unfolded. And while ISIS took credit, there is no evidence linking the terrorist group to the shooting. [HuffPost]

LAS VEGAS MOURNS A DAY THAT WASN’T SUPPOSED TO HAPPEN ​Hundreds gathered for candlelight vigils Monday. Las Vegas officials have created a GoFundMe for shooting victims, and many residents have donated blood. And here’s how you can help the Las Vegas shooting victims. [HuffPost]

Sean Hannity was incensed about gun control conversations in light of the Las Vegas shooting, calling them shameful.

And according to Bill O’Reilly, that’s the “price of freedom.”

Las Vegas shooting: Stephen Paddock was a wealthy gambler who owned homes in four states … At various points of his life, Stephen Paddock worked for defence contractor Lockheed Martin: here.

SUSPECT’S MOTIVE STILL UNCLEAR IN LAS VEGAS MASS SHOOTING Stephen Paddock appeared to have premeditated the massacre by setting up cameras inside and outside of his hotel room to see when authorities would be coming. As an off-duty cop said, “No amount of training prepares you for something like this.” Paddock was known to verbally abuse his girlfriend in public, and her sisters say he sent her out of the country before the shooting. New footage emerged of a “slip and fall” incident that Paddock had sued another Nevada casino for in 2011. And take a deeper look at the lives lost Sunday night. [HuffPost]

AUTHORITIES ARE INVESTIGATING IF THE LAS VEGAS SHOOTER BOOKED HOTELS OVERLOOKING OTHER CONCERTS Stephen Paddock’s motives still remain unknown. [HuffPost]

MOMENTUM GROWS IN CONGRESS FOR ‘BUMP STOCK’ BAN After some Republicans expressed interest in regulating the sale of accessories that can make an AR-15 fire at the rate of an automatic weapon. Evidence suggests the shooter planned an escape. Take a look at what his room looked like when authorities gained access. The shooter’s girlfriend suspected nothing, saying “he never said anything to me.” And this 5-year-old reunited with his family after the Las Vegas massacre with the help of strangers. [HuffPost]

In Trump’s America, white US men are a bigger domestic terror threat than Muslim foreigners: here.

More than 800 people have been shot and killed since the Las Vegas massacre.

VEGAS HOTEL SUES SHOOTING VICTIMS The owner of the Mandalay Bay Hotel in Las Vegas is suing more than 1,000 victims of the Oct. 1 massacre to pre-empt future liability claims. [HuffPost]

Over fifty people murdered in Las Vegas, USA


This video from Nevada in the USA says about itself:

50 dead, over 100 shot at Las Vegas Country Music Festival near Mandalay Bay Resort 10:08 pm

2 October 2017

Update from police: 50 dead so far. Making this the worse mass-shooting in American history.

Worst Mass Shooting in US History Leaves More Than 50 Dead, 400 Injured in Las Vegas: here.

AT LEAST 50 DEAD, OVER 200 INJURED IN SHOOTING AT LAS VEGAS COUNTRY MUSIC FESTIVAL Police identified Stephen Paddock, 64, as the lone gunman who shot at thousands of concertgoers from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort during the end of Jason Aldean‘s set. Authorities killed Paddock in the hotel room. Eyewitnesses said “the shots just kept coming” as people fled the streets while bodies were dropping. [HuffPost]

I wish strength and recovery to all injured people; and strength to all families and friends of the dead and injured people.

This massacre in Nevada state is the bloodiest mass murder as an expression of ‘gun culture’ in the USA so far. Murderer Stephen Paddock owned at least ten guns. He also had a hunting licence and owned two private aircraft.

Probably, Donald Trump and the Trump supporting National Rifle Association will repeat their shopworn mantra: ‘Guns don’t kill people …’

Trump Offers Condolences To Las Vegas Shooting Victims, Doesn’t Mention Guns. Trump spoke in platitudes while reading prepared remarks from the White House: here.

And no, Rupert Murdoch empire, this bloodbath was not by a Muslim. And no, Rupert Murdoch empire, this bloodbath was not by a Black Lives Matter activist. It was not by an open or closet gay man. It was by a heterosexual affluent white male.

Musicians flocked to Twitter to offer their thoughts and condolences on the Las Vegas shooting.

THE MOM OF A MASS SHOOTING VICTIM IN TEXAS DESCRIBES HER LAST DAYS “As soon as Debbie Lane got clearance to drive after cataract surgery, she filled her pickup truck with used patio furniture and carted it to her only child in Plano, Texas. Meredith Hight, 27, was going through a divorce after six years of marriage, and her house needed a makeover.” [HuffPost]

Big Triassic fossil fish discovered in Nevada, USA


Possible look of the newly discovered predatory fish species Birgeria americana with the fossil of the skull shown at bottom right. Artwork: Nadine Bösch

From the University of Zurich in Switzerland:

Large-mouthed fish was top predator after mass extinction

July 26, 2017

Summary: The food chains recovered more rapidly than previously assumed after Earth’s most devastating mass extinction event about 252 million years ago as demonstrated by the fossilized skull of a large predatory fish called Birgeria americana discovered by paleontologists from the University of Zurich in the desert of Nevada.

The most catastrophic mass extinction on Earth took place about 252 million years ago — at the boundary between the Permian and Triassic geological periods. Up to 90 percent of the marine species of that time were annihilated. Worldwide biodiversity then recovered in several phases throughout a period of about five million years. Until now, paleontologists have assumed that the first predators at the top of the food chain did not appear until the Middle Triassic epoch about 247 to 235 million years ago.

Unexpected find of a large predatory fish

Swiss and U.S. American researchers led by the Paleontological Institute and Museum of the University of Zurich have discovered the fossil remains of one of the earliest large-sized predatory fishes of the Triassic period: an approximately 1.8-meter-long primitive bony fish with long jaws and sharp teeth. This fish belongs to a previously unknown species called Birgeria americana. This predator occupied the sea that once covered present-day Nevada and the surrounding states already one million years after the mass extinction.

Triassic “Jaws

In the United States, almost no vertebrate fossils from the Early Triassic epoch (252 to 247 million years ago) have been scientifically described until now. “The surprising find from Elko County in northeastern Nevada is one of the most completely preserved vertebrate remains from this time period ever discovered in the United States,” emphasizes Carlo Romano, lead author of the study. The fossil in question is a 26-centimeter-long partial skull of a fierce predator, as evidenced by three parallel rows of sharp teeth up to 2 centimeters long along the jaw margins, as well as several smaller teeth inside the mouth.

Birgeria hunted similarly to the extant great white shark: the prey fish were pursued and bitten, then swallowed whole. Species of Birgeria existed worldwide. The most recent discovery is the earliest example of a large-sized Birgeria species, about one and a half times longer than geologically older relatives.

Predators appeared earlier than assumed

According to earlier studies, marine food chains were shortened after the mass extinction event and recovered only slowly and stepwise. In addition, researchers assumed that the ancient equatorial regions were too hot for vertebrates to live during the Early Triassic. Finds such as the newly discovered Birgeria species and the fossils of other vertebrates now show that so-called apex predators (animals at the very top of the food chain) already lived early after the mass extinction. The existence of bony fish close to the equator — where Nevada was located during the Early Triassic — indicates that the temperature of the sea was a maximum of 36°C. The eggs of today’s bony fish can no longer develop normally at constant temperatures above 36°C.

“The vertebrates from Nevada show that previous interpretations of past biotic crises and associated global changes were too simplistic,” Carlo Romano says. Despite the severity of the extinctions of that time and intense climatic changes, the food webs were able to redevelop faster than previously assumed.

Three new toad species discovered in Nevada, USA


This video from the USA says about itself:

24 July 2017

Scientists have discovered three new species of toads living in Nevada’s Great Basin in the US, that have been isolated from other populations for 650,000 years and may already be at risk of extinction. Discoveries of new amphibians are extremely rare in the US with only three new frog species discovered since 1985 – and toad species are even more rare, with the last species discovered north of Mexico, the now extinct Wyoming toad, in 1968.

“We’ve found the toads in small, wet habitats surrounded by high-desert completely cut off from other populations,” said Dick Tracy, professor at University of Nevada in the US. “These are absolutely new, true species that have been separated from other populations for 650,000 years,” said Tracy. The three new species, the Dixie Valley toad, Railroad Valley toad and Hot Creek toad are not connected geographically.

They were found in Tracy’s 10-year long survey of the desert-dominated Great Basin. The toads are small in size, yet each have a suite of unique physical features that differ from each other, as well as other toads in the region. Each of the species have slightly different colours, and they are about two inches long when full grown.

“The Dixie Valley toad is a pretty toad, with flecks of gold on an olive background,” said Tracy. The Dixie Valley toad is only found in an isolated spring-fed marsh which make up less than four square miles surrounded by an arid region where aquatic resources are both rare and widely scattered. The habitat occupied by this newly described species is also adjacent to a proposed site for a geothermal power plant that could dry up the marsh and threaten the toad’s survival.

“If this power plant goes in and the habitat is dried up, this recently discovered species could go extinct,” Tracy said. “It’s a good candidate for an Endangered Species Act listing,” he said. The Dixie Valley species has the smallest body size among the region’s complex of related species in the western US, and can be further diagnosed from other toads in the complex by the large glands on its hind legs in addition to its distinctive colouration.

The Railroad Valley toad is in the Tonopah Basin in the central Nevada desert and the Hot Creek Toad is about 56 kilometres away but in Hot Creek Mountain Range, in a drainage isolated from the Railroad Valley toad. All three new species are natives of the Great Basin in Nevada, which was once covered by large marshes and giant inland lakes during the Pleistocene Epoch and is now among the most arid regions in the US with only one per cent of the landscape containing water. The findings were published in the journal Zootaxa.

From the University of Nevada, Reno in the USA:

Rare discovery of three new toad species in Nevada’s Great Basin

July 21, 2017

Summary: Three new species of toads have been discovered living in Nevada’s Great Basin in an expansive survey of the 190,000 square mile ancient lake bottom, report investigators.

Three new species of toads have been discovered living in Nevada’s Great Basin in an expansive survey of the 190,000 square mile ancient lake bottom. Discoveries of new amphibians are extremely rare in the United States with only three new frog species discovered since 1985 — and toad species are even more rare, with the last species discovered north of Mexico, the now extinct Wyoming toad, in 1968.

“We’ve found the toads in small, wet habitats surrounded by high-desert completely cut off from other populations,” Dick Tracy, a biology professor at the University of Nevada, Reno, and lead scientist on the project, said. “These are absolutely new, true species that have been separated from other populations for 650,000 years.”

The three new species, the Dixie Valley toad, Railroad Valley toad and Hot Creek toad are not connected geographically. They were found in Tracy’s 10-year long survey of the desert-dominated Great Basin. His team used 30 “shape” metrics and DNA studies to analyze these toads’ characteristics to determine if each were distinguishable from the closely related Western toad, found throughout the Western United States.

The evidence supports the recognition of three distinct new species. The toads are small in size, yet each have a suite of unique physical features that differ from each other, as well as other toads in the region. Each of the species have slightly different colors, and they are about two inches long when full grown.

“The Dixie Valley toad is a pretty toad, with flecks of gold on an olive background,” Tracy, a long-time professor in the biology department of the College of Science, said. “It’s not like the big, common green toads you might find in other marshes around the west or even in Rancho San Rafael Park in Reno.”

The Dixie Valley toad is in Churchill County about 100 miles east of Reno. The toad is only found in this isolated spring-fed marsh which make up less than four square miles, surrounded by an arid region where aquatic resources are both rare and widely scattered. Dixie Valley is the hottest and most geothermally active system in the Basin and Range Province. The habitat occupied by this newly described species is also adjacent to a proposed site for a geothermal power plant that could dry up the marsh and threaten the toad’s survival.

The power plant development is on hold while the Bureau of Land Management reviews the geothermal project and the possible impacts on the toad species. The Center for Biological Diversity, a national environmental group based in Tucson, Arizona, marshaled more than 1000 letters to the BLM asking them to reconsider permitting the power plant being built at the site of the newly discovered species.

Potential for Endangered Species Act listing

“If this power plant goes in and the habitat is dried up, this recently discovered species could go extinct,” Tracy said. “It’s a good candidate for an Endangered Species Act listing. The ESA was passed under Richard Nixon in 1973, and the second species listed under the new Act was the Houston Toad. This is a tough conflict between commerce and biological resources, and we need to seek compromises so if the project proceeds, it won’t hurt the toads.”

Tracy’s team includes his master’s student Michelle Gordon from the University’s Biology Graduate Program, who is the lead author of the scientific paper describing the new species, and his former doctoral student Eric Simandle from the University’s Ecology and Evolution and Conservation Biology Graduate Program. Simandle is now an associate professor at Paul Smiths College in New York and is a co-author on the study that discovered the toad in the thick underbrush of the spring-fed marsh.

The small isolated toad populations also have the smallest individuals compared to other western toads.

The Dixie Valley species has the smallest body size among the region’s complex of related species in the western United States, and can be further diagnosed from other toads in the complex by the large glands on its hind legs in addition to its distinctive coloration.

The overall population numbers of the Dixie Valley toad are unknown, and the current range is severely restricted, suggesting that this species’ population is likely very small and especially vulnerable to changes in environment.

“The toads are perfectly concealed in the dense vegetation of their habitat,” Gordon said. “You could easily miss seeing them during the day, making accurate counts difficult. But, during one trip at dusk, toads were everywhere, giving the impression that toads were locally abundant. And, without the water in this habitat, this toad species would completely disappear.”

Isolated by Desert

The Railroad Valley toad is in the Tonopah Basin in the central Nevada desert and the Hot Creek Toad is about 35 miles away but in Hot Creek Mountain Range, in a drainage isolated from the Railroad Valley toad. All three new species are natives of the Great Basin in Nevada, which was once covered by large marshes and giant inland lakes during the Pleistocene Epoch and is now among the most arid regions in the United States with only one percent of the landscape containing water.

“Our goal has been to understand the relationships among toad populations in the Great Basin,” Tracy said. “We’ve found that our knowledge of amphibian diversity in the western United States remains incomplete and that novel discoveries continue to occur, even in unlikely settings. This is really, really neat; an exciting thing, to find something not known to exist before.”

Tracy has been honored as a Guggenheim Fellow, as a Fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science, as a Distinguished Scholar at Pepperdine University, and as a Fellow of the Association of Western Universities. He is the recipient of an American Society of Zoologists’ Service Award, a Desert Tortoise Council Conservation Award and a Service Award from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Tracy has authored more than 200 scientific papers, and his work is known internationally.

“Dr. Tracy has long been recognized as one of the world’s leading ecologists,” Jack Hayes, chair of the Department of Biology said. “In recent years as he has turned his attention to conservation issues, he has been translating his basic knowledge into studies that make a difference for Nevada, the U.S., and the biodiversity of the world. The discovery of a new species of vertebrate in North America at this point in time is extremely rare, so the research by Dr. Tracy and his graduate students is a remarkable and exciting accomplishment.”

The discovery of the Dixie Valley toad was announced in the peer-reviewed science journal Zootaxa on July 6.