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    By Lawrence Hurley WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Conservative Justice Amy Coney Barrett on Thursday authored her first ruling since joining the U.S. Supreme Court in October as the court handed a defeat to an environmental group seeking access to government documents. In the 7-2 ruling, the justices sided with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, thwarting an effort by the Sierra Club to obtain documents concerning a regulation finalized in 2014 relating to power plants. Barrett and the court's other five conservative justices were joined by liberal Justice Elena Kagan in the majority, with liberals Justices Stephen Breyer and Sonia Sotomayor in dissent. The Senate approved Barrett for a lifetime job on the top U.S. judicial body on Oct. 26 after an accelerated confirmation process that unfolded in the weeks before the Nov. 3 presidential election. She is one of three justices appointed by Republican former President Donald Trump and she...
    Reuters March 4, 2021 0 Comments Conservative Justice Amy Coney Barrett on Thursday authored her first ruling since joining the U.S. Supreme Court in October as the court handed a defeat to an environmental group seeking access to government documents. In the 7-2 ruling, the justices sided with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, thwarting an effort by the Sierra Club to obtain documents concerning a regulation finalized in 2014 relating to power plants. Barrett and the court’s other five conservative justices were joined by liberal Justice Elena Kagan in the majority, with liberals Justices Stephen Breyer and Sonia Sotomayor in dissent. The Senate approved Barrett for a lifetime job on the top U.S. judicial body on Oct. 26 after an accelerated confirmation process that unfolded in the weeks before the Nov. 3 presidential election. She is one of three justices appointed by Republican former President Donald Trump and...
    Jack Cowhick, The Western Journal March 3, 2021 0 Comments Harsh realities have been unleashed by a new book. “Lucky: How Joe Biden Barely Won the Presidency,” published Tuesday, says the 78-year-old Biden won the White House because the coronavirus allowed his team to hide him from the public eye, according to Fox News. The Biden camp’s strategy was described as “you put your dumb uncle in the basement,” according to the book. The authors of “Lucky” — NBC News political analyst Jonathan Allen and The Hill senior correspondent Amie Parnes — wrote that “the stars aligned” for the twice-failed presidential hopeful in November. According to the book, in May, following a Biden interview on CNN, then-President Donald Trump asked Kellyanne Conway for her thoughts. “I think if we lose to him, we are pathetic,” the top aide responded. The authors quoted a Trump adviser as saying Biden’s team...
    Princess Eugenie is the 'only member' of the Royal Family who Meghan Markle is still close to, a royal insider has claimed. The Duchess of Sussex, 39, and the Queen's granddaughter, 30, reportedly maintain a close relationship despite Meghan and Prince Harry's decision to step back as senior royals - and have bonded over their recent pregnancy joy, according to a source.  Meghan Markle, who welcomed Archie Harrison, in May 2019, announced she was pregnant with her second child around the same time Princess Eugenie welcomed her first son August in February 2021 with husband Jack Brooksbank.   Speaking to Us Weekly, a source said: 'Eugenie is really the only member of the royal family that Meghan is still close to.' Princess Eugenie is the 'only member' of the Royal Family who Meghan Markle is still close to, a royal insider has claimed. Pictured, the Duchess of Sussex with Oprah Winfrey in...
    Joe Biden’s aides were furious that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo made a self-serving video for the 2020 Democratic National Convention and asked his camp to redo it — but they refused, a new book says. "Every four years, Democrats asked themselves the same question about the New York governor and former Housing and Urban Development secretary: ‘How is Andrew Cuomo going to f- -- us this time?’’ write the authors of "Lucky: How Joe Biden Barely Won the Presidency.’’ At the convention four years earlier, Cuomo had jarred on "for double his allotted time,’’ while his team refused to participate in fact-checking sessions beforehand, the book says. Then last year, when Cuomo "was supposed to use his credibility to explain why Biden had the best plan for dealing with the pandemic,’’ he instead "recorded something of a tribute to himself,’’ write authors Jonathan Allen of NBC News and Amie Parnes of The Hill. DE...
    President Biden won the White House because the coronavirus let him stay hidden in his basement, protecting his campaign from its biggest liability — the candidate himself, a new book says. The Biden camp ran partly on the strategy of “you put your dumb uncle in the basement,’’ referring to the Democratic candidate, according to “Lucky: How Joe Biden Barely Won the Presidency.’’ Even former President Obama initially refused to support his 78-year-old ex-vice president and friend, worried he could become a “tragicomic caricature of an aging politician having his last hurrah’’ if not protected from himself, the book says. The work’s authors — Jonathan Allen of NBC News and Amie Parnes of The Hill — write that time and again, “the stars aligned’’ for Biden, a previous two-time loser presidential hopeful who succeeded on his third try despite himself. And no one was more caught off guard than the Trump...
    President Biden won the White House because the coronavirus let him stay hidden in his basement, protecting his campaign from its biggest liability — the candidate himself, a new book says. The Biden camp ran partly on the strategy of "you put your dumb uncle in the basement,’’ referring to the Democratic candidate, according to "Lucky: How Joe Biden Barely Won the Presidency.’’ Even former President Obama initially refused to support his 78-year-old ex-vice president and friend, worried he could become a "tragicomic caricature of an aging politician having his last hurrah’’ if not protected from himself, the book says. President Joe Biden speaks about efforts to combat COVID-19, in the State Dining Room of the White House, Tuesday, March 2, 2021, in Washington.  (AP) The work’s authors — Jonathan Allen of NBC News and Amie Parnes of The Hill — write that time and again, "the stars aligned’’ for Biden, a previous two-time loser...
    Joe Biden’s aides were furious that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo made a self-serving video for the 2020 Democratic National Convention and asked his camp to redo it — but they refused, a new book says. “Every four years, Democrats asked themselves the same question about the New York governor and former Housing and Urban Development secretary: ‘How is Andrew Cuomo going to f- -k us this time?’’ write the authors of “Lucky: How Joe Biden Barely Won the Presidency.’’ At the convention four years earlier, Cuomo had jarred on “for double his allotted time,’’ while his team refused to participate in fact-checking sessions beforehand, the book says. Then last year, when Cuomo “was supposed to use his credibility to explain why Biden had the best plan for dealing with the pandemic,’’ he instead “recorded something of a tribute to himself,’’ write authors Jonathan Allen of NBC News and Amie Parnes...
    More On: andrew cuomo Letters to the Editor — March 3, 2021 How Cuomo plans to buck calls to resign: Goodwin The GOP is still Trump’s and other commentary LI Rep. Zeldin exploring run for governor amid Cuomo scandals Joe Biden’s aides were furious that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo made a self-serving video for the 2020 Democratic National Convention and asked his camp to redo it — but they refused, a new book says. “Every four years, Democrats asked themselves the same question about the New York governor and former Housing and Urban Development secretary: ‘How is Andrew Cuomo going to f- -k us this time?’’ write the authors of “Lucky: How Joe Biden Barely Won the Presidency.’’ At the convention four years earlier, Cuomo had jarred on “for double his allotted time,’’ while his team refused to participate in fact-checking sessions beforehand, the book says. Then last year,...
    The White House on Tuesday declined to defend Dr. Seuss after President Joe Biden left the children's author out of a proclamation celebrating Read Across America Day. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the day is 'a chance to celebrate diverse authors whose work and lived experience reflect the diversity of our country.' Her comments come after Biden omitted Dr. Seuss from Read Across America Day, which is held annually on the children's author's birthday on March 2.  But now six of his children's books will no longer be published because of racist and insensitive imagery, Dr. Seuss Enterprises, the company that preserves and protects the author's legacy, announced Tuesday.  Biden broke presidential tradition when he left out any mention of Dr. Seuss during his proclamation. Both former presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump have recognized Dr. Seuss' contributions several times in their proclamations each year.  Psaki said the Education Department wrote...
    Novelist Sir Kazuo Ishiguro has warned that a 'climate of fear' is forcing young writers to self-censor. Sir Kazuo, 66, said they were avoiding writing from viewpoints outside their own immediate experiences for fear of being cancelled by an 'anonymous lynch mob' online. The Nobel Prize winner whose novels Never Let Me Go and The Remains of the Day were adapted for the big screen, said he was concerned for less established writers.  Novelist Sir Kazuo Ishiguro has warned that a 'climate of fear' is forcing young writers to self-censor They would feel that 'their careers are more fragile, their reputations are more fragile and they don't want to take risks'. 'I think that is a dangerous state of affairs,' he told the BBC. 'I very much fear for the younger generation of writers. Novelists should feel free to write from whichever viewpoint they wish or represent all kinds...
    Social media rallies thousands to sign up for bone marrow in effort to help a mother and son team beat cancer Britain has a moral and legal obligation to Shamima Begum © Little Brown Books for Young Readers, Zonderkidz, DC Comics. As we say goodbye to Black History Month, it’s time to look forward to the future — something that’s easy to do when reading kids books by talented Black authors. For too long, literature for children, like literature for everyone, was limited to white writers and their singular world view. But this generation of kids has the benefit of reading books coming from many different perspectives. This list of some of our favorite books by Black authors is a mere sampling of that shift. This is a big deal. When Black kids read books by Black authors, they see themselves represented and have their self-worth reaffirmed. When non-Black...
    Almost fifty years ago, on a Sunday morning in late November 1974, a team of archaeologists in Ethiopia unearthed a three-million-year-old skeleton of an ancient early human. The remains would turn out to be one of the most important fossils ever discovered. That night Donald Johanson, the paleoanthropologist who discovered the fossilized remains, played a cassette tape of the Beatles and as the group listened to the sound of “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” reverberate through the campsite a colleague suggested that he name the female hominin Lucy. She represented a new species—Australopithecus afarensis—and a visit to almost any major natural history museum in the world will give you the opportunity to see an artist’s rendition of how she appeared in her own time. Visit more than one natural history museum or flip through a handful of scientific textbooks, however, and you’ll quickly notice how much disagreement there is...
    Over the course of the next decade humans will integrate more with technology to 'upgrade' our lives including brain chips and exoskeletons, a new report claims. Produced by dentsu, a Japanese advertising and PR firm, the report looks at ways the world could change over the next 10 years and the impact on global brands. 'As brands assess the impact of a seismic year and look to chart a new path to recovery, these trends provide them with a roadmap for the next decade,' the firm wrote in the executive summary to the report. One key area of change will be the continued rise of the 'synthetic society' as people increasingly incorporate the latest technology into their lives.  The study suggests people could even use brain chips to aid memory and exoskeletons to make us faster and stronger.  One key area of change will be the continued rise of...
    The MIT list of this year’s most important technologies says that 2021 will bring improvements in vaccination, online recommendation algorithms, batteries, and data protection. This is the 20th time the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has released a list of the “Top 10 Breakthrgouh Technologies of the Year.” MIT highlights technology that is already changing lives while others are still a few years off, authors explained. The most important technology for 2021 is the development of Messenger RNA vaccines. mRNA vaccines have been around for about 20 years but got a boost to prominence in 2020 when researchers magnate toward it to produce COVID-19 inoculations. “The new covid vaccines are based on a technology never before used in therapeutics, and it could transform medicine, leading to vaccines against various infectious diseases, including malaria,” list authors said. Other technologies on the list include Tik Tok recommendation algorithms, lithium-metal...
    LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Los Angeles County officials are taking additional action to help with suicide prevention. The Board of Supervisors plans to meet on Tuesday to discuss ways to help improve how the county responds to mental health crises. Supervisor Janice Hahn authored a motion calling for the co-sponsorship of Assembly Bill 988, the Miles Hall Lifeline Act, which would establish 9-8-8 as a nationwide suicide prevention hotline number. She also proposed a second motion that would help suicide prevention counselors work with teams from L.A. County to dispatch in-person psychiatric help. Both motions are set to be discussed during Tuesday’s board meeting. Earlier this month, the Los Angeles Police Department launched a new pilot program that dispatches a sworn officer and a Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health clinician to certain mental health calls as part of a series of efforts to remove law enforcement from nonviolent...
    More that 4,300 SpaceX employees volunteered to be part of a COVID-19 antibody study co-authored by CEO Elon Musk in 2020. The study, which was recently published in the journal Nature Communications, shows evidence that infected people who exhibited milder symptoms developed less of an immunity to COVID-19 than those who got sicker from the disease. The group behind the study found some evidence that suggests there’s a particular threshold of antibodies that could provide immunity, though they wrote that “the precise levels […] associated with protection from re-infection remain unclear.” Vaccines also produce a much stronger immune response than cases with little to no symptoms, the authors note. They hope that this research, and other studies like it, could help policymakers figure out how to distribute limited vaccine supplies effectively. SpaceX employees were asked by email in April 2020 to be a part of the study — right...
    Lee Harvey Oswald was instructed to assassinate President John Kennedy by the Soviets —perhaps by then-leader Nikita Khrushchev himself, according to a new book by former intelligence chiefs of the CIA and KGB. "Operation Dragon: Inside The Kremlins Secret War on America," written by Ambassador R. James Woolsey and Lt. Gen. Ion Mihai Pacepa, said Khrushchev and the Soviets later changed their minds about killing Kennedy, but KGB associate Oswald proceeded with the plan due to his love for the USSR, per the New York Post. "There is no doubt that Lee Harvey Oswald was trained by the KGB to commit the assassination of President John F. Kennedy," the authors wrote. "Even after the KGB ordered Oswald to stand down, Oswald stubbornly went ahead with what he considered his personal mission as bestowed upon him by his hero, Khrushchev." Woolsey ran the CIA from 1993-1995. Pacepa, who died of COVID-19 earlier this month, was...
    LEIMERT PARK, Calif. -- The Black-owned bookstore, Eso Won Bookstore has a history spanning over 30 years and focuses primarily on providing Black information and Black literature."I think Black bookstores play a particular role in that we have the information that is most critical to teaching history the way it should be taught," co-owner James Fugate said."It's very important that we have stores like this that really promote books that will make people think about these issues," Fugate said. "And know about these issues and history."The bookstore has had visits from many prominent Black authors like President Barack Obama, Toni Morrison and Muhammad Ali. Owners at Eso Won, which means 'water over rocks' in an Ethiopian language, believe in the power of knowledge."As water flows over rocks, so does knowledge flow through books," Fugate said.And Fugate said knowledge is especially important when it comes to celebrating and preserving Black history,...
    Merrick Garland expects return to death penalty moratorium This Week on The Dan Abrams Podcast: Law&Crime’s Elura Nanos Talks Georgia GOP’s Attempt to Help Trump Legal Defense Unique Tip If Your Car Has Automatic Headlights Ad Microsoft The Best Flashlight We've Ever Tested Ad Microsoft Expert: “This credit card is so good I signed up personally” Ad Microsoft Full screen 1/26 SLIDES © via amazon.com (4) Put these books on your must-read list Books provide an entry point into the minds of others. Like an invitation to a well-thought-out event,...
    Lee Harvey Oswald was a KGB associate who was personally instructed by Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev to assassinate President Kennedy. Sometime shortly thereafter, the Soviets changed their minds, and Oswald was told to drop the plan. But Oswald, harboring a blinding love for all things USSR, refused. A new book by two former intelligence chiefs — one from the west, one from the east — tosses this tale on the voluminous pile of JFK assassination theories. “Operation Dragon: Inside The Kremlin’s Secret War on America,” (Encounter Books), was written by Ambassador R. James Woolsey, who ran the CIA from 1993-1995 (and who, ironically, resigned abruptly during the scandal over Aldrich Ames, a CIA officer turned Russian double agent), and Lt. Gen. Ion Mihai Pacepa, a former acting chief of Communist Romania’s espionage service and the “highest-ranking intelligence official from an enemy country ever granted political asylum in the United States”...
    More On: jfk assassination Bob Dylan releases 17-minute song about John F. Kennedy assassination Detective handcuffed to Lee Harvey Oswald when he was fatally shot dies at 99 This ‘homesick’ Cuban expat who may have helped Lee Harvey Oswald kill JFK Secret Service agent who couldn’t save JFK says guilt haunted him Lee Harvey Oswald was a KGB associate who was personally instructed by Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev to assassinate President Kennedy. Sometime shortly thereafter, the Soviets changed their minds, and Oswald was told to drop the plan. But Oswald, harboring a blinding love for all things USSR, refused. A new book by two former intelligence chiefs — one from the west, one from the east — tosses this tale on the voluminous pile of JFK assassination theories. “Operation Dragon: Inside The Kremlin’s Secret War on America,” (Encounter Books), was written by Ambassador R. James Woolsey, who ran the...
    ATLANTA (AP) — A new study finds that teachers may be more important drivers of COVID-19 transmission in schools than students. The paper released Monday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention studies nine COVID-19 transmission clusters in elementary schools in the Atlanta suburb of Marietta in December and January, That included one cluster where 16 teachers, students and relatives of students at home were infected. In only one of the nine clusters was a student clearly the first documented case, while a teacher was the first documented case in four clusters. In another four, the first case was unclear. Of the nine clusters, eight involved probable teacher-to-student transmission. Two clusters saw teachers infect each other during in-person meetings or lunches, with a teacher then infecting other students. “Educators were central to in-school transmission networks,” the authors wrote. The findings line up with studies from the United...
    The authors of a new book are arguing for race-blind dating apps — and the removal of filters for race and ethnicity. Finding love, they say, isn’t so black-and-white.  In a new book, “The Dating Divide: Race and Desire in the Era of Online Romance,” sociologists Jennifer Lundquist, Celeste Vaughan Curington and Ken Hou-Lin show how online dating sites exacerbate racial divisions. They found that race-related “preference” filters on digital dating platforms help foster racist attitudes — especially toward black women.  “Filtering out people based on race is a normal practice on dating apps,” Lundquist told The Post.  “The idea of having racial preferences is unacceptable and illegal in any other arena,” she added. “But it’s literally built into the structure of these dating apps.” A 2014 study about dating preferences along racial lines on OKCupid came to a similar conclusion: Black women had a hard time matching on dating apps,...
    More On: online dating ‘Sugar daddy’ dating site founder arrested twice amid prostitution, rape probes For NYC singles, rapid tests are the new roses A third of online daters in Britain said ‘I love you’ before meeting Bumble will ban users for being ‘fat-phobic’ or ‘transphobic’ The authors of a new book are arguing for race-blind dating apps — and the removal of filters for race and ethnicity. Finding love, they say, isn’t so black and white.  In a new book, “The Dating Divide: Race and Desire in the Era of Online Romance,” sociologists Jennifer Lundquist, Celeste Vaughan Curington and Ken Hou-Lin show how online dating sites exacerbate racial divisions. They found that race-related “preference” filters on digital dating platforms help foster racist attitudes — especially toward black women.  “Filtering out people based on race is a normal practice on dating apps,” Lundquist told The Post.  “The idea of having...
    A growing number of 'woke' academics are refusing to teach Shakespeare in U.S. schools, arguing that the Bard promotes racism, white supremacy and intolerance, and instead are pushing for the teaching of 'modern' alternatives. Writing in the January issue of School Library Journal, Amanda MacGregor, a Minnesota-based librarian, bookseller and freelance journalist, asked why teachers were continuing to include Shakespeare in their classrooms. 'Shakespeare's works are full of problematic, outdated ideas, with plenty of misogyny, racism, homophobia, classism, anti-Semitism and misogynoir,' she wrote, with the last word referring to a hatred of black women. School Library Journal asked in January if it was still worth teaching Shakespeare Shakespeare's works were described as being 'full of problematic, outdated ideas, with plenty of misogyny, racism, homophobia, classism, anti-Semitism and misogynoir' RELATED ARTICLES Previous 1 Next Young adult author is 'canceled' and DROPPED by her agent......
    Welcome to Off the Beat, a weekly Q&A with a local business person doing something a little different. Have an idea or pitch that reflects some unusual business activity? Email mneibauer@bizjournals.com. Ceece Kelley is the founder and principal author of D.C.’s Soaring Kite Books, an independent publishing company that specializes in books featuring characters of color. She recently debuted a Kickstarter campaign for its new children’s book series. What was the inspiration for the “Georgie Dupree” series? I was inspired to write Georgie because when I was growing up, there weren’t a lot of books with main characters that looked like me or that had Black main characters at all. So, I was inspired by “Ramona,” “Junie B. Jones” and books like that that I used to love, but I wanted it to feature a spunky Black character that children could relate to and also see characters of different ethnicities...
    Originally Published by: Outdoor weddings rise in popularity COVID-19 testing wont be mandated before domestic flights for now UK opens quarantine hotels, pushes on with vaccine drive Zinc and Vitamin C fell short in a clinical trial after researchers found they made no significant difference in easing the duration of coronavirus symptoms. Findings from the Cleveland Clinic were published in JAMA Network on Friday, drawing on results from April 27 to Oct. 14, when 214 coronavirus patients in Ohio and Florida outpatient care sites were given either 50 milligrams of high-dose zinc to be taken at night, 8,000 milligrams of Vitamin C to be taken several times throughout the day with meals, a combination of the two or standard care over a 10-day period. These patients, averaging about 45 years old, were at home and answered virtual surveys about their symptoms, any adverse effects, hospitalizations and...
    Zoom and other video conference services may not be as much of an environmentally-friendly alternative to in-person meetings as many people assumed, according to a new study. But there’s a simple trick to make video conferencing even greener - turn off your camera. Despite a record drop in global carbon emissions in 2020, a pandemic-driven shift to remote work and more at-home entertainment still presents a “significant environmental impact” due to how internet data is stored and transferred around the world, according to a study by Purdue University, Yale University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, released on Thursday, Jan. 14. One hour of videoconferencing emits about 150-1,000 grams of carbon dioxide into the environment, according to the study. The video also requires about 2-12 liters of water. For comparison, 1 gallon of gasoline burned from a car emits about 8,887 grams. However, by turning the camera off during a...
    Anna Moneymaker/CNP/Zuma Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.In a scathing new report, a team of medical experts at the Lancet determined that hundreds of thousands of people in the United States died unnecessarily as a result of former President Trump’s policies—even before the pandemic. The report considers Trump’s environmental protection rollbacks, attacks on the Affordable Care Act, and cuts to public health funding. The results are grim. By comparing premature death rates in the United States to those of other G7 nations, the paper’s authors determined that Trump’s presidency led to 461,000 unnecessary deaths in 2018. The paper also concludes that Trump’s politicization of the pandemic and failure to implement commonsense strategies to slow the spread of the virus accounted for 40 percent of preventable COVID deaths. To make matters worse,...
    BOSTON (CBS) – A Harvard report gave Massachusetts failing grades on its COVID-19 vaccine report card. The authors, Graham Allison and Hugo Yen at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard’s Kennedy School, compared how Massachusetts stacks up against the rest of the country. RELATED: Watch Live @ 11: Gov. Baker Updates On COVID Vaccines In Massachusetts They determined the state is “currently earning an F” in three of the four key performance measures. For deaths per capita, Massachusetts ranks 48th and gets an F. For vaccinations per capita, Massachusetts ranks 42nd for another F and for vaccinations as a percent of doses available, the state is 44th, getting a third F. In the fourth and final category, “months to finish vaccinating eligible,” Massachusetts ranks 33rd, which earns a D. RELATED: 2 Seriously Hurt As Fire Guts Lowell Multi-Family Home In comparison, West Virginia received three A’s...
    The media world is salivating over the “Reddit rally.” As Hollywood moves to write the screenplay, Big Apple book publishers are scrambling to sign authors to cover the bizarre trading phenomenon, sources said. At least three proposals are circulating for book deals on how cheap stocks like Gamestop added billions to their market valuations overnight in a trading frenzy fueled by small investors hoping to make money while giving the middle finger to Wall Street. While it’s unclear whether any publisher has yet inked a deal, several journalists are being courted, source said, including Nathaniel Popper, the New York Times reporter who wrote “Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money,” published by Harper Collins; the Wall Street Journal team of Julia Ambra-Verlaine and Gunjan Banerji, who scored the first exclusive with Keith Gills, the Reddit trader known as...
    More On: gamestop Brett Ratner’s RatPac buys WallStreetBets founder’s life story Rep. Waters wants Redditor behind GameStop frenzy to testify at hearing Watch Robinhood’s awkward Super Bowl 2021 ad amid stocks backlash Woman named Hedges-Stocks had wild ride on social media amid GameStop frenzy The media world is salivating over the “Reddit rally.” As Hollywood moves to write the screenplay, Big Apple book publishers are scrambling to sign authors to cover the bizarre trading phenomenon, sources said. At least three proposals are circulating for book deals on how cheap stocks like Gamestop added billions to their market valuations overnight in a trading frenzy fueled by small investors hoping to make money while giving the middle finger to Wall Street. While it’s unclear whether any publisher has yet inked a deal, several journalists are being courted, source said, including Nathaniel Popper, the New York Times reporter who wrote...
    WASHINGTON HEIGHTS -- Growing up in the south, Janifer P. Wilson didn't see anyone that looked like her in any books."I grew up as a child dreaming and trying to figure out, 'so am I invisible? Who am I? Where do I fit in all of this?'," Wilson said. "It's always been in my soul to house, present, and preserve the history of the African diaspora."In January of 2000, Sister's Uptown Bookstore & Cultural Center was born. How she learned to do it wasn't easy."I would go around to local bookstores, and just sit at the feet of the owners to find out how they did it and I just asked them, how do you start a bookstore where the premise is, most of the books are written by African American authors?" Wilson said. "So, I got started on the shoulders of folk who already were in the book business."Working...
    Essential workers in kitchens and in agricultural settings are most at risk of death from the coronavirus, according to a study that adds a new urgency to the race to vaccinate those on the front lines of the pandemic. The study, conducted by researchers at the University of California-San Francisco, examined the occupations of those who have died in California since the beginning of 2016. In the past year, researchers found an especially high rate of excess mortality — the measure of how many people died over what might have been an ordinary period — among those who work in proximity to others. Line cooks experienced the most substantial number of excess death in 2020, the study found, followed by agriculture workers, bakers and construction laborers. Those who work in delivery occupations — shipping clerks, truck operators and delivery drivers — also experienced higher rates of death last year. The...
    WASHINGTON HEIGHTS (WABC) -- Growing up in the south, Janifer P. Wilson didn't see anyone that looked like her in any books."I grew up as a child dreaming and trying to figure out, 'so am I invisible? Who am I? Where do I fit in all of this?'," Wilson said. "It's always been in my soul to house, present and preserve the history of the African diaspora."In January of 2000, Sister's Uptown Bookstore & Cultural Center was born. How she learned to do it wasn't easy."I would go around to local bookstores, and just sit at the feet of the owners to find out how they did it and I just asked them, how do you start a bookstore where the premise is, most of the books are written by African American authors?" Wilson said. "So, I got started on the shoulders of folk who already were in the book...
    Researchers in Brazil have reported cases of patients infected with two coronavirus variant strains at once, amid efforts to track the spread of emerging variants across the country. The findings were posted ahead of peer review this week in the preprint server medRxiv. The infections were found in two patients in their 30s, who both recovered without requiring hospitalization. One developed a cough and the other experienced a headache, cough and sore throat. "We were the first to identify two independent events of co-infection caused by the occurrence of B.1.1.28 (E484K) with either B.1.1.248 or B.1.91 lineages," study authors wrote. GETTING THE COVID-19 VACCINE? DON'T TAKE OVER-THE-COUNTER PAIN RELIEVERS BEFOREHAND, EXPERTS SAY The Brazil P.1 variant is a branch of the B.1.1.28 lineage, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), with the first U.S. case of the P.1 variant identified in Minnesota earlier this week.  The team of researchers warned that co-infections can...
    Young French-speaking Muslims in Europe’s capital Brussels are at least three times as likely to be antisemitic, homophobic and sexist compared to their atheist counterparts, according to a Belgian study. The study was highlighted by signatories to a letter published by newspaper L’Echo condemning a recent move to allow the wearing of the Islamic veil in Belgian schools by several secular and feminist activists this week. Published earlier this month, the 70-page study, which was authored by Professor at the Free University of Brussels (ULB) and the Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris Joël Kotek and Joël Tournemenne, examined religious attitudes in 38 schools in the Brussels region, compared to atheists. “Islam is even, according to all of our respondents, the religion with the most positive image; Judaism… the most negative,” the authors said in a summary of their findings. The authors add that Muslim women often appeared to be even more conservative than...
    The coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic that hit the world in 2020 has proved devastating. The Covid-19 human death toll hit the two million mark in January 2021. The deaths of other animals related to the pandemic are even higher. Denmark reportedly killed 15 million mink alone, which were farmed for fur, after the species proved susceptible to the virus. The pandemic has come with its fair share of lessons. It has, for example, offered us a stark reminder of a regularly ignored but elemental fact: humans, other animals, and the natural world as a whole are completely interconnected. This pierces through a mindset that has dominated certain cultures, namely western ones, for centuries. We often see ourselves as separate from nature rather than a part of it. But we are not, as the emergence of Covid-19 has made crystal clear. Coronavirus is believed to have transferred to humans from another...
    Loading the player... Over a dozen people tested positive for the potentially deadly coronavirus after attending a birthday party thrown for a cat. The super-spreader event was held in Santo Domingo, Chile, where 15 people contracted the virus. The cat’s owner is believed to be patient zero, reported the Daily Mail. “When I heard it was a cat’s birthday party, I thought it was a joke — that they were probably trying to hide something,” said Francisco Álvarez, the regional health secretary for Valparaíso, according to the report. Read More: Gov. Gavin Newsom lifts California’s coronavirus stay-at-home orders “We have corroborated it with at least six of the 15 [infected] people who told us the same thing,” he added. 15 people infected with Covid and several seriously ill after going to cats birthday party https://t.co/0mgh3CHDcs pic.twitter.com/aQ3HTt9oEs — Daily Mirror (@DailyMirror) January 22, 2021 Álvarez noted his dismay over people continuing...
    After months of litigation with rights holders Wizards of the Coast, Dragonlance creators Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman confirmed their new trilogy of Dungeons & Dragons novels is back on. About two weeks after Weis and Hickman dropped their lawsuit against Wizards, the authors’ representatives announced that the first book in a new Dragonlance series will get a publication date later in 2021 — although it’s not guaranteed that the book itself will release this year. Last October, Weis and Hickman filed a lawsuit against Wizards. The pair claimed breach of contract, and asked for a jury trial and $10 million in damages. Court documents state that Wizards had approached them to secure an agreement for a new Dragonlance trilogy in 2018. The project had reportedly led to one completed manuscript with two more in production. Wizards allegedly told the authors it would not be approving any more drafts, which...
    CHICAGO (WLS) -- Young poets from the Chicago area are hopeful that Amanda Gorman's podium performance will help other writers get their words and voices heard.The power of 22-year-old Gorman's words were not a surprise to those in Chicago's spoken word scene.WATCH: Amanda Gorman recites 'The Hill We Climb'EMBED More News Videos Inaugural poet Amanda Gorman summoned images dire and triumphant as she called out to the world "even as we grieved, we grew." "It was just really awesome to be able to see poetry, to just see how important it is - that it's literally integral to every space, including the presidential office," said Kara Jackson. Like Gorman, she is a previous US Youth Poet Laureate."In watching Amanda, I was just hoping that this opens a larger conversation of the necessity of young people's voices and the necessity of investing in our voices," Jackson said.Jackson and Penelope Alegria are...
    Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s most senior royal aide fact-checked the book Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan and the Making of a Modern Royal Family to “make sure” authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand “got nothing wrong,” a senior editor at the Mail on Sunday claimed Wednesday in testimony released by the High Court in London. Harry and Meghan have consistently denied they co-operated with Scobie and Durand either directly or indirectly, leaving many observers to wonder why the couple did not complain about the book’s multiple apparent invasions of their privacy. However, in a witness statement released today, Mail on Sunday editor Ted Verity claimed that Sara Latham, a former adviser to the Clintons who headed up Harry and Meghan’s PR operations and now works for the queen, “assisted the authors of ‘Finding Freedom’ by performing a role that was essentially fact-checking.” Meghan is seeking a so-called “summary...
    Zoom and other video conference calls may not be as much of an environmentally-friendly alternative to in-person meetings as many people assumed, according to a new study. But there’s a simple trick to make video conferencing even greener - turn off your camera. Despite a record drop in global carbon emissions in 2020, a pandemic-driven shift to remote work and more at-home entertainment still presents a “significant environmental impact” due to how internet data is stored and transferred around the world, according to a study by Purdue University, Yale University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, released Jan. 14. One hour of videoconferencing emits about 150-1,000 grams of carbon dioxide into the environment, according to the study. The video also requires about 2-12 liters of water. For comparison, 1 gallon of gasoline burned from a car emits about 8,887 grams. However, by turning the camera off during a video call,...
    Politico is defending its decision to allow the Daily Wire’s Ben Shapiro to write Thursday’s Politico Playbook after staff spoke out against Shapiro. “Opposition to impeachment comes from a deep and abiding conservative belief that members of the opposing political tribe want their destruction, not simply to punish Trump for his behavior,” Shapiro wrote. “Republicans believe that Democrats and the overwhelmingly liberal media see impeachment as an attempt to cudgel them collectively by lumping them in with the Capitol rioters thanks to their support for Trump.” His participation in Thursday’s Playbook sparked a backlash internally among Politico staff who said that Shapiro should not have been allowed to guest-write the newsletter. The Daily Beast reported that one staffer said in a Politico company-wide Slack channel that Shapiro has a “long history of bigoted and incendiary commentary.” There are now upwards of 225 people on the @politico Zoom call convened to...
    One of the co-authors of the second impeachment article against President Trump was spotted removing their mask to sneeze in the House of Representatives. Viewers of the impeachment proceedings were shocked when pulled down his mask to sneeze into his hand. Representative David Cicilline was spotted sneezing on camera while Representative Yvette Clark was speaking at the podium just in front of him. Although Cicilline put his mark back on his face, he was not seen sanitising or washing his hands afterwards. Representative David Cicilline was caught pulling down his face mask in order to sneeze Cicilline was spotted sneezing on camera while Representative Yvette Clark was speaking at the podium just in front of him RELATED ARTICLES Previous 1 Next 'I said "Look, she's got vascular dementia"': 'Outraged'... Travellers from ALL of South America may be banned from... Share...
    Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have had a 'painful' year since Megxit after the couple's nanny moved back to the UK and the pandemic left them feeling 'alone,' the authors of Finding Freedom have claimed.   Carolyn Durand and Omid Scobie, who co-wrote the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's bombshell biography, alleged that moving to LA brought difficult changes for the couple who stepped back as senior royals in March last year.  ‘To be at the point they are at now, having set up an empire and a charity in just over nine months, shows just how hard they have worked to make this transition a success,’ said Omid Scobie, writing in Grazia. 'But it’s taken a lot of work to get here. The journey has been painful.’   The authors went on to say the move has also been challenging for Meghan, 39, who has juggled motherhood with moving house four times. ...
    Dragonlance co-creators Tracy Hickman and Margaret Weis have voluntarily dismissed their $10 million lawsuit against Dungeons & Dragons publisher Wizards of the Coast. In 2020 the pair alleged breach of contract related to a new series of novels set in their famous role-playing universe. How exactly the disagreement has been resolved is unknown. News Brig has reached out to all parties for more information. The Dragonlance Chronicles originated at TSR in the 1980s with Dragons of Autumn Twilight, spawning additional books and RPG supplements set in the high-fantasy world of Krynn. The novels star iconic characters such as Tanis Half-Elven, Raistlin, Flint Fireforge, and Goldmoon — all of which have been largely absent from the reinvigorated 5th edition of D&D. Court documents had claimed that Hickman and Weis were approached in 2017 by Wizards to write a new series of novels. Negotiations included a new licensing agreement between...
    Their tales of awfully big adventures delighted readers around the world. But authors JM Barrie and Robert Louis Stevenson found their greatest admirers... in each other. In letters believed to have been lost for more than 70 years, the Scottish pair’s affectionate relationship is revealed. Barrie, who wrote Peter Pan, even declared his love for Stevenson – author of Treasure Island – in one letter, writing: ‘To be blunt I have discovered (have suspected it for some time) that I love you, and if you had been a woman...’ He left the sentence unfinished.  However, the Scots, who bonded over their love of writing and their heritage, never actually met in person. JM Barrie, whose work included 1904's Peter Pan,  fantasised about meeting Robert Louis Stevenson Scottish novelist Robert Louis Stevenson and JM Barrie never met, despite their affection for each other The letters, from 1892-94, have now...
    Sinovac’s Covid Shot Proves 78% Effective in Brazil Trial Four Decades Later, These AMC Commercials Still Make Us Smile Incredible Blanket Puts Humans In A Deep Sleep, Melting Stress & Anxiety Away Ad Microsoft Full screen 1/6 SLIDES © Provided by Best Life If This Part of Your Body Hurts, You Could Have COVID While some symptoms of COVID have been widely reported, like headaches, respiratory distress, and fatigue, they're far from the only signs you've contracted the virus. According to new research, pain in one specific part of your body could be a major tell that you have the illness, experts say, so read on to discover what symptoms to be on the lookout for. And if you've already had COVID, If You Have These 4 Symptoms, You Could Have Longer Immunity to...
    After an emotionally exhausting year brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, a contentious election, and racial justice uprisings, people everywhere are desperate for an escape. To cope with all the feelings of uncertainty that 2020 has brought, many have been turning to one place guaranteed to bring a happy ending and sense of optimism: romance novels. Sarah Wendell, an author, podcaster, and co-creator of the romance community blog Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, has seen a 75% surge in traffic on her website since the pandemic began in March. Her site was so overwhelmed, in fact, that she had to upgrade to a new server. “I think the major attraction to romance is that it centers womens’ stories and the stories of people who are finding emotional fulfillment through courtship narratives,” Wendell said. “Romances are stories about happiness. If you pick up a romance novel, you're going to read a courtship story...
    If you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at writing a mystery novel, 2021 just might be your year. With people spending much more time at home due to the winter cold and the ongoing (seemingly endless) COVID-19 pandemic, authors Cathi Stoler, Lori Robbins and D.M. Barr have gotten together to give aspiring writers some help with the hardest thing of all: the first page. The three are all members of the New York chapter of Sisters in Crime, a group for female mystery authors. They will be offering free hour-long Zoom seminars to anyone who could use some encouragement with penning that thriller or police procedural.  “The most important thing is to sit down and put something down on paper. Just do it. You have to try. You can’t think ‘I’d love to do that’ and then just think about it forever,” says Cathi Stoler, author of the Murder...
    Politico has announced that starting January 1, a string of high-profile journalists will head up the Playbook newsletter. The Hollywood Reporter was the first to report the story, which Politico confirmed via tweet. NBC’s Chuck Todd, CNN’s Don Lemon, PBS’s Yamiche Alcindor, Recode co-founder and New York Times opinion writer Kara Swisher, and Washington Free Beacon editor-in-chief Eliana Johnson, in addition to other Politico reporters, will guest author Playbook until the new team takes over later in January. ???? We are thrilled to announce that a high powered roster of journalists including @chucktodd, @donlemon, @Yamiche, @karaswisher, & @elianayjohnson, in addition to POLITICO reporters, will guest author @playbookplus until a new team starts later in January ???? https://t.co/gtnxuaqIjP — POLITICO Press (@POLITICOPress) December 30, 2020 Jake Sherman and Anna Palmer, who have led Playbook since 2016, announced in October that they will be leaving Politico at the end of...
    A GIRL of nine has become one of the world’s youngest published authors after writing a novel during lockdown. Ellah Ramsey was inspired to pursue her dream after meeting writer Frank English when he gave a talk at her school. 5Ellah Ramsey, nine, has become one of the world’s youngest published authorsCredit: SWNS:South West News Service 5Ellah, of Grangetown, North Yorks, wrote a novel during lockdownCredit: SWNS:South West News Service She then started work on The Magic Whistle and the Tiny Bag of Wishes during lockdown and sent the first few chapters to Frank, 75. The pair spent the next three months emailing back and forth with chapters and edits until the first draft was ready — and the book is now on sale in Waterstones and on Amazon. Ellah said: “I feel really proud of the book. I will keep it forever and I think I will write forever...
    A research paper concluding that working with female mentors might hurt young women’s careers in the sciences has been retracted after fierce criticism from “group email threads” and on social media. The academic journal that published the paper apologized for “any unintended harm derived from the publication of this paper.” A study published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Communications was retracted following backlash from people who were uncomfortable with the paper’s findings, according to a report by Inside Higher Ed. The research paper studied a variety of dynamics within three million mentor-mentee research pairings, including the “possibility that opposite-gender mentorship may actually increase the impact of women who pursue a scientific career,” reported Inside Higher Ed. The authors — which studied the disciplines of biology, chemistry, computer science, economics, engineering, geology, materials science, medicine, physics, and psychology — wrote that their study “suggests that female protégés who remain in academia reap more benefits...
    In a Washington Post editorial published Wednesday, authors Deborah E. Lipstadt and Norman Eisen argue for the radical comparison of challenging recent election results with denying that a Nazi Holocaust, the “best-documented genocide in the world,” ever occurred.  The essay, titled “Denying the Holocaust threatens democracy. So does denying the election results,” makes several comparisons while suggesting how to combat such “denial.” Claiming to have “learned the hard way” to take Holocaust denial seriously, the authors state they have “watched with alarm the birth of another powerful disinformation mythology,” referring to the “false conviction pushed by Trump and his enablers” that the recent election was “stolen.” “Call it democracy denial,” the editorial suggests. Noting that such a comparison is highly extreme, the authors assure readers that it was not made “lightly.” “As students of history, we do not make this comparison lightly,” they wrote. The pair also sought to associate...
    PHILADELPHIA (AP) — An independent review of Philadelphia’s police response to days of widespread protests after the May killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police found failures in planning that led to short staffing, emotional responses from officers and sometimes excessive uses of force. The 110-page report released Wednesday by the research group CNA and the law firm Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads LLP was commissioned by Mayor Jim Kenney as an independent review of police operations during the protests. The city faced criticism for its police response including several interactions between officers and protesters that were recorded by witnesses and posted on social media. A video of Philadelphia SWAT officers firing tear gas and other less-lethal munitions at protesters who had made their way onto Interstate 676 and were trapped by advancing SWAT officers became part of the national conversation over police responses to protesters. In all,...
    Google this year moved to tighten control over its scientists’ papers by launching a “sensitive topics” review, and in at least three cases requested authors refrain from casting its technology in a negative light, according to internal communications and interviews with researchers involved in the work. Google’s new review procedure asks that researchers consult with legal, policy and public relations teams before pursuing topics such as face and sentiment analysis and categorizations of race, gender or political affiliation, according to internal webpages explaining the policy. “Advances in technology and the growing complexity of our external environment are increasingly leading to situations where seemingly inoffensive projects raise ethical, reputational, regulatory or legal issues,” one of the pages for research staff stated. Reuters could not determine the date of the post, though three current employees said the policy began in June. Google declined to comment for this story. The “sensitive topics”...
    More On: google Google, Facebook reportedly agree to help each other in antitrust fights Google to provide free, weekly at-home COVID-19 tests for workers in US Google wins EU antitrust approval for $2B Fitbit deal Latest Google antitrust lawsuit accuses it of ‘unlawful’ union with Facebook Google this year moved to tighten control over its scientists’ papers by launching a “sensitive topics” review, and in at least three cases requested authors refrain from casting its technology in a negative light, according to internal communications and interviews with researchers involved in the work. Google’s new review procedure asks that researchers consult with legal, policy and public relations teams before pursuing topics such as face and sentiment analysis and categorizations of race, gender or political affiliation, according to internal webpages explaining the policy. “Advances in technology and the growing complexity of our external environment are increasingly leading to situations where seemingly...
    By Paresh Dave and Jeffrey Dastin OAKLAND, Calif. (Reuters) - Alphabet Inc's Google this year moved to tighten control over its scientists' papers by launching a "sensitive topics" review, and in at least three cases requested authors refrain from casting its technology in a negative light, according to internal communications and interviews with researchers involved in the work. Google's new review procedure asks that researchers consult with legal, policy and public relations teams before pursuing topics such as face and sentiment analysis and categorizations of race, gender or political affiliation, according to internal webpages explaining the policy. "Advances in technology and the growing complexity of our external environment are increasingly leading to situations where seemingly inoffensive projects raise ethical, reputational, regulatory or legal issues," one of the pages for research staff stated. Reuters could not determine the date of the post, though three current employees said the policy began in...
    The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) embraced “woke” culture in a recent article asserting sex designations on birth certificates “offer no clinical utility” and can even “be harmful for intersex and transgender people.” The authors of the article, titled “Failed Assignments – Rethinking Sex Designations on Birth Certificates,” state, “We believe that it is now time to update the practice of designating sex on birth certificates, given the particularly harmful effects of such designations on intersex and transgender people.” Sex designations on birth certificates offer no clinical utility, and they can be harmful for intersex and transgender people. Moving such designations below the line of demarcation would not compromise the birth certificate’s public health function but could avoid harm. — NEJM (@NEJM) December 17, 2020 Vadim M. Shteyler, M.D., Jessica A. Clarke, J.D., and Eli Y. Adashi, M.D., wrote the piece in which they argue: Recognizing that the birth certificate has...
    This November, the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, a professional organization for genre authors, dropped a bombshell announcement that shook the science fiction community: For several years, author Alan Dean Foster had been trying, without success, to get paid for several major tie-in novels adapting movies from the Star Wars and Alien franchises. While Disney has kept the books in print with other publishers, with Titan handling Alien and Del Rey on Star Wars, Foster says he hasn’t received royalty payments for new editions. So, he had turned to SFWA for help, and the #DisneyMustPay hashtag was born. According to SFWA, the incident sets troubling precedence for others in similar positions. If a publisher can get out of paying an author by having the license travel to another company, it could undermine the livelihoods of many writers who made their livings writing novelizations and tie-in novels for some...
    “You know you got it when you’re going insane.” Some of the lyrics from Ted Nugent’s 1977 song “Cat Scratch Fever” are not medically inaccurate, a new study suggests. In research published this month in the journal Pathogens, authors offer further evidence for the theory that Bartonella bacteria, which can be spread by insect bites and animal scratches — most famously, those of cats — is linked with psychiatric symptoms. In research published this month in the journal Pathogens, authors offer further evidence for the theory that Bartonella bacteria, which can be spread by insect bites and animal scratches — most famously, those of cats — is linked with psychiatric symptoms. (iStock) Scientists studied 33 participants, 29 of whom were found to be infected with Bartonella, with 24 reporting the development of stretch-mark-like skin lesions (considered a common sign of the disease) manifesting alongside mental symptoms. DOGS ABLE TO...
    A new study has defined the tendency for some individuals to see themselves as victims, including in seemingly harmless exchanges, often leading to a desire for revenge against those who wronged them and a sense of entitlement, numerous sources reported. The new construct, called the “Tendency for Interpersonal Victimhood” (TIV), was defined by researchers Rahav Gabay and Boaz Hameiri as an “enduring feeling that the self is a victim across different kinds of interpersonal relationships,” according to PsyPost. Psychologists have identified “how a person’s interpretation of social transgressions can inform feelings of victimhood and lead to revenge behaviors.” Congratulations on our diagnosis, 100% of Twitter users. https://t.co/yCEhc9kENt — Marty Beckerman (@martybeckerman) December 10, 2020 The authors point to small, interpersonal transgressions, like being interrupted while speaking, that many may view as inoffensive, but that someone with the TIV personality type would ruminate over and use to paint themselves as...
    Fans of The Expanse got some mixed messages last month just before Thanksgiving. That’s when Amazon announced that it had ordered a sixth season of the popular science fiction show. Unfortunately, that sixth season would also be its last. The move meant that content from several of the novels that the show is based were basically guaranteed to be left out entirely. Speaking with News Brig on Tuesday, writers Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck declined to call it a cancellation. Instead, they prefer to think of it as a pause. “We have what we think is a very natural pause point for the story after season 6,” Franck told News Brig during a press event for the new season. “It’ll feel like a satisfying end to the story we’ve been building over the first five seasons. I think one of the things that is sort of an outmoded idea is...
    NEW YORK -- The coronavirus pandemic hasn't hurt the sale of books.In fact, "Publishers Weekly" reported in October that sales of books for the first three quarters of this year were up by more than 6% compared to 2019. A run of summer bestsellers, demand for parents for more children's books and a surge in interest in books about social justice are just some of the reasons for the surge.I am married to an author: novelist Eileen Goudge, and when I learned what her agent told her about how the pandemic has increased book sales, I decided to call her representative Paula Munier and find out more."In times of trouble, nothing is more comforting than a good book," Munier told me via zoom from her suburban home.She is a former publishing executive who is also an author herself, and she has been busy."People have rediscovered their love of reading," Munier...
    By Robert Preidt, HealthDay Reporter (HealthDay) TUESDAY, Dec. 8, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Alcohol poses the greatest threat to brain health at three periods of a person's life, according to new research. During those three periods -- from conception to birth, from ages 15 to 19, and after age 65 -- people undergo "dynamic" brain changes that may be particularly sensitive to the harmful effects of alcohol, researchers say. Worldwide, about 10% of pregnant women drink. Heavy drinking during pregnancy can cause fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, and even low or moderate drinking during pregnancy is associated with poorer brain health and behavior in children, according to the authors of a paper published Dec. 7 in the BMJ journal. More than 20% of teens ages 15-19 in wealthy nations report at least occasional binge drinking. Research shows that binge drinking in the teen years is associated with reduced brain volume, poorer...
            by Jon Miltimore  On February 18, the Oxford Mail published an article headlined “Scientists working on a coronavirus vaccine in Oxford.” The article explained that Sarah Gilbert, a British vaccinologist and professor at the University of Oxford, was leading a team of scientists at Oxford’s Jenner Institute in rapid development of a vaccine. The article was short (less than 200 words), featured a quote from Gilbert, and was reported without any predictions on possible death tolls. For months, Gilbert’s research was not covered in the US. And when US media did cover it months later, the successful track record of the Oxford researchers was downplayed, as was the possibility of getting a vaccine developed quickly. “The earliest available (major outlet) U.S. story is from CNN on April 23rd and begins with a quote from England’s Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty saying that the probability of having a vaccine or...
    The family of Roald Dahl, who penned the children’s classics “Matilda” and “James and the Giant Peach,” has quietly apologized for the late writer’s “prejudiced” anti-Semitic comments. Dahl, who died at age 74 in 1990, had made offensive declarations in several interviews, including a 1983 interview with The New Statesman, reports The Sunday Times of London. “There is a trait in the Jewish character that does provoke animosity, maybe it’s a kind of lack of generosity towards non-Jews. I mean, there’s always a reason why anti-anything crops up anywhere,” Dahl said. “Even a stinker like Hitler didn’t just pick on them for no reason.” In 1990, Dahl told The Independent: “I’m certainly anti-Israeli and I’ve become anti-Semitic in as much as that you get a Jewish person in another country like England strongly supporting Zionism.” Even some of Dahl’s characters are considered anti-Semitic portrayals, including the large-nosed...
    More On: anti-semitism Feds sue NY town for alleged anti-Semitic zoning laws Rashida Tlaib’s all-too-telling anti-Israel tweet Amazon’s Alexa accused of sharing anti-Semitic conspiracies, Holocaust denial Professor put on leave for calling COVID-19 a ‘leftist stunt’ The family of Roald Dahl, who penned the children’s classics “Matilda” and “James and the Giant Peach,” has quietly apologized for the late writer’s “prejudiced” anti-Semitic comments. Dahl, who died at age 74 in 1990, had made offensive declarations in several interviews, including a 1983 interview with The New Statesman, reports The Sunday Times of London. “There is a trait in the Jewish character that does provoke animosity, maybe it’s a kind of lack of generosity towards non-Jews. I mean, there’s always a reason why anti-anything crops up anywhere,” Dahl said. “Even a stinker like Hitler didn’t just pick on them for no reason.” In 1990, Dahl told The Independent: “I’m certainly...
    More On: dogs Firefighters rescue dog from icy North Dakota river Heroic dog praised for key role in 78-year-old owner’s rescue Missing elderly man’s dog leads off-duty NJ cop to its owner Joe Biden says he broke foot tripping after shower when he pulled dog’s tail Elise Maitland’s adopted collie-Labrador mix Michigan was a beloved member of the family for a dozen years, but one day the poor dog suddenly lost control of his bowels. Blood began oozing out of him. Vets couldn’t diagnose Michigan’s health problems until a year later, when the pooch died of kidney failure caused, it turned out, by the melamine contained in the Ol’ Roy dog food he was fed.  Chinese manufacturers added the plastic to the feed to make it appear higher in protein, and it ended up in more than 150 different dog-food brands, which were eventually recalled in 2007, the largest...
    OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- Two East Bay middle school students became published authors during the course of the coronavirus pandemic. They're part of a novel writing class at Westlake Middle School in Oakland.In Arlita Michelle Bailey's book "Secrets," a pair of sixth grade friends confront bullies. They are armed with a power that reveals the secrets of their peers.Halla Alajji's book "Hedija's Feast of Friends" tells the story of a family who escapes war in Yemen. They find a new home and new challenges in Utah.Both authors will read passages during a virtual book talk Thursday night.The novels will go on sale by next summer.App users: For a better experience, click here to view the full map in a new windowIf you have a question or comment about the coronavirus pandemic, submit yours via the form below or here.Get the latest news, information and videos about the novel coronavirus pandemic...
    Rising temperatures and environmental pollutants are already endangering the health and well-being of Americans, with fatal consequences for thousands of older men and women, a team of public health experts warned Wednesday. Their report, published in The Lancet, called on lawmakers to stem the rise of planet-warming gases in the next five years. The section on the United States presents climate change as a public health risk now, rather than a hazard faced by future generations. It points to the immediate dangers of extreme heat, wildfires and air pollution, and makes the case for rapidly shifting to a green economy as a way to improve public health. The coronavirus pandemic, the authors point out, has served as a reminder of the urgent need to strengthen the country’s public health system — something that’s going to be all the more necessary for Americans to deal with the health effects of climate...
            by Christopher Roach  While there is a long-shot hope that Donald Trump will remain president, things are not looking good. We have to consider, while remaining hopeful, what a Biden presidency will look like. On issues of war and peace, we have a preview from his cabinet picks. The Return of the Technocrats The most prominent name to date is Tony Blinken, Biden’s pick for secretary of state. Undoubtedly qualified in the sense that he has experience in prior administrations and high-status educational credentials—a bachelor’s from Harvard and a Columbia law degree—he also has the uniquely Washington qualification of being frequently wrong and completely undaunted by his record of failure. Blinken had a hand in the “humanitarian interventions” of Obama’s second term. He helped craft the disastrous Syria policy, which created a refugee crisis and permitted the rise of ISIS. He also supported military intervention in Libya,...
    East Georgia State College’s Chief of Police, Deryl “Mack” Seckinger, has been working on a scholarly journal that was recently accepted for publication. “Cocked, Locked, and Loaded: An Analysis of the Five Policy Regimes of Concealed Carry on College Campuses” authored by Drs. Kristina LaPlant (University of Wisconsin La Crosse), Deryl Mack Seckinger (East Georgia State College), Keith Lee and James LaPlant (both from Valdosta State University) has been accepted for publication in Politics and Policy. The article will appear in early 2021. The study investigates the research question of “what are the predictors of the five types of policy regimes on campus carry across the 50 states?” The five types of policy regimes range from most restrictive to least restrictive in terms of allowing concealed carry on college campuses. The study explores the role of problem environment, gun culture,...
    By HILLEL ITALIE, AP National Writer NEW YORK (AP) — The annual publishing convention and trade show known as BookExpo, a decades-old tradition where guest speakers have ranged from Bill Clinton to Margaret Atwood, may be coming to an end. ReedPop, which has managed BookExpo for a quarter century, announced Tuesday that effectively immediately it was “retiring” the event, along with the fan-based BookCon and merchandise-based UnBound. Any future for the convention depends on the wishes of the book community. As in other industries, publishers have debated the necessity of holding BookExpo when much of the business once conducted there has moved online. BookExpo used to be rotated around the country, from Los Angeles to Chicago to Washington, D.C., but it was held almost exclusively in recent years in Manhattan’s Jacob Javits Center. New York publishers looked to reduce costs, including cutting back sharply on how much space they purchased...
            by Frank Jordans and Hillel Italie  BERLIN, Germany (AP) — German media giant Bertelsmann said Wednesday that its Penguin Random House division is buying rival Simon & Schuster in a megadeal that would reshape the U.S. publishing industry. Penguin Random House, already the largest American publisher, will buy the New York-based Simon & Schuster, whose authors include Stephen King, Hillary Clinton and John Irving, from TV and film company ViacomCBS for $2.17 billion in cash. “Simon & Schuster strengthens Bertelsmann’s footprint globally, and (particularly) in the U.S., its second-largest market,” the Guetersloh, Germany-based company said in a statement. The purchase of Simon & Schuster would reduce the so-called Big Five of American publishing — which also includes HarperCollins, Hachette Book Group and Macmillan — to four. The companies said the deal is expected to close in 2021, subject to regulatory approval. No U.S. publisher in...
    Courtney Milan, Alyssa Cole, and Bree and Donna of Kit Rocha. In addition to having driven so much change in Georgia’s electorate, Stacey Abrams is a romance author. So it’s appropriate that, with two Senate runoffs coming up in the state, one of the most exciting fundraising efforts is coming from a group of romance authors. Alyssa Cole, Courtney Milan, and Kit Rocha (the pen name for two authors, Bree and Donna) pulled the Romancing the Runoff effort together quickly and blew through one fundraising goal after another, with many other authors, agents, and others contributing books and services to be auctioned off to benefit Fair Fight, the New Georgia Project, and Black Voters Matter. On Tuesday night, they declared victory, having raised $398,866.80. And then they got a new offer for auction—from Stacey Abrams herself. The Georgia runoff is Jan. 5. Click here to request an absentee ballot. Early in-person voting starts Dec. 14. And REGISTER...
    A slate of new emoji was announced in January. Months later, they’ve finally trickled onto most people’s phones… but in one case, it’s really more of a skitter. I’m talking about the cockroach, arguably the most shudder-inducing emoji of 2020 — and the product of a great little short story about the looming end of the world. As my colleague Jay Peters and an excellent 2019 documentary explain, anyone can submit an emoji proposal to the Unicode Consortium. The proposal must convince the consortium that many people will use the emoji in a variety of ways. And for the authors of the cockroach application — Jason Li, Melissa Thermidor, and Amanda Hickman — that includes the aftermath of a nuclear war. It starts with a line from the opening paragraph. After noting “strong global demand” for a roach emoji, the authors casually lay out one specific scenario: preparing our culture...
    Two of the biggest publishing houses in the US will soon be under one roof. ViacomCBS announced Wednesday it will sell Simon & Schuster to Penguin Random House, which is a subsidiary of German media giant Bertelsmann, for $2.175 billion in cash. The deal is expected to close next year and subject to regulatory approval. ViacomCBS, which owns CBS network, CBS All Access, Paramount Pictures, Showtime and MTV, among others, said the sale is part of the company’s efforts to unload non-core assets following the reunion of Viacom and CBS last year. The company sold CNET Media Group earlier this year. Simon & Schuster is the third biggest publishing house in the US. This year, it published several Trump tell-all books including Bob Woodward’s “Rage” and Mary Trump’s “Too Much and Never Enough.” It also publishes bestselling authors such as Stephen King and Doris Kearns Goodwin. Penguin Random House, the...
    A study published in late October by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology linking a decrease in coronavirus hospitalizations to a face-mask mandate has been withdrawn following an increase in cases in the areas studied. “The authors have withdrawn this manuscript because there are increased rates of SARS-CoV-2 cases in the areas that we originally analyzed in this study,” the updated abstract of the study titled "Decrease in Hospitalizations for COVID-19 after Mask Mandates in 1083 U.S. Counties” now reads. “New analyses in the context of the third surge in the United States are therefore needed and will be undertaken directly in conjunction with the creators of the publicly-available databases on cases, hospitalizations, testing rates. Etc.” The update adds: “We will be performing this in conjunction with machine learning experts at UCSF. Therefore, the authors do not wish this work to be cited as reference for the project....
    A South Dakota motorcycle rally attended by nearly half a million people earlier this year resulted in at least 86 cases of COVID-19 among residents of Minnesota, including one death, according to a report released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The report, which looked to find the impact of the rally on a neighboring state, found that of the 86 identified cases among Minnesotans, 35 had not gone to the event but were contacts of people who did.  About one-third of Minnesota counties had a case associated with Sturgis rally, which took place over a 10-day period in August with no social distancing or mask requirements. The findings show the importance of wearing masks and following social distancing rules and other recommendations from public health officials in stopping the spread of COVID-19, the authors of the report wrote.  “These findings highlight the far-reaching effects that gatherings in one...
    Contend Projects co-founders Brooke Stanton and Christiane West published “When You Became You” November 10, a colorfully illustrated children’s book that “takes you on a scientific journey through the stages of a human being’s life.” The book addresses a highly debated and emotional topic in the abortion debate: when life begins. “It does not matter what you look like, where you are from, how old you are, how young you are, if you can talk, if you can walk, if you can dance, or even if you aren’t born yet,” the first page of the book reads. “You are a human being.” Teaching little children when life begins is not only vital to helping them understand the morality of life issues, it’s also fundamental in fighting progressive ideology taught to children in schools, authors Brooke Stanton and Christiane West said in an interview with the Daily Caller News...
    A trader speaks on a phone outside the New York Stock Exchange, November 4, 2020.Andrew Kelly | Reuters Day traders have terrible track records.  Academics who study stock pickers have long observed that the vast majority of professional money managers – about 85% – underperform their benchmarks over a multi-year period. Now those professionals are turning their sights on retail day traders, warning that the same poor results apply to them as well.  "I don't confuse day traders with serious investors," Princeton professor Burton Malkiel, author of "A Random Walk Down Wall Street," wrote in a blog for Wealthfront, where he is chief investment officer.  "Serious investing involves broad diversification, rebalancing, active tax management, avoiding market timing, staying the course, and the use of investment instruments such as ETFs, with rock bottom fees.  Don't be misled with false claims of easy profits from day trading." Backing up Malkiel is a...
    By JILL LAWLESS, Associated Press LONDON (AP) — Booker Prize judges are meeting Thursday to pick a winner of the prestigious literary award, choosing from a six-book list that's both U.S.-dominated and strikingly diverse. Five of the books competing for the 50,000 pound ($66,000) prize are by American or U.S.-based authors, including “The Shadow King,” the story of an orphan in Ethiopia by Maaza Mengiste; Diane Cook’s dystopian tale “The New Wilderness,” Avni Doshi’s India-set mother-daughter saga “Burnt Sugar" and Brandon Taylor’s “Real Life,” which explores racism and homophobia in academic life. The sole British contender is New York-based Scottish writer Douglas Stuart for “Shuggie Bain,” the story of a boy’s turbulent coming of age in 1980s Glasgow. Also on the list is Zimbabwean writer Tsitsi Dangarembga’s “This Mournable Body,” which links the breakdown of its central character and turmoil in post-colonial Zimbabwe. Dangarembga, one of Zimbabwe’s most garlanded authors,...
    LONDON (AP) — Booker Prize judges are meeting Thursday to pick a winner of the prestigious literary award, choosing from a six-book list that’s both U.S.-dominated and strikingly diverse. Five of the books competing for the 50,000 pound ($66,000) prize are by American or U.S.-based authors, including “The Shadow King,” the story of an orphan in Ethiopia by Maaza Mengiste; Diane Cook’s dystopian tale “The New Wilderness,” Avni Doshi’s India-set mother-daughter saga “Burnt Sugar” and Brandon Taylor’s “Real Life,” which explores racism and homophobia in academic life. The sole British contender is New York-based Scottish writer Douglas Stuart for “Shuggie Bain,” the story of a boy’s turbulent coming of age in 1980s Glasgow. Also on the list is Zimbabwean writer Tsitsi Dangarembga’s “This Mournable Body,” which links the breakdown of its central character and turmoil in post-colonial Zimbabwe. Dangarembga, one of Zimbabwe’s most garlanded authors, was arrested in July...