News Burst 5 November 2021 – Get The News!

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Editor’s Note: Roseramblesdotorg is now on Telegram at https://t.me/Roserambles1. Thanks!

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  • Tundra is ablaze in Magadan region in out-of-season wildfire, complicated by wind and zero snow. The grass is burning on 360 hectares close to villages of Pribrezhniy and Arman in the Magadan region, with the fire spreading fast because of strong wind. The wildfire started in a temperature of minus 20C, and is proving hard to extinguish because firemen cannot get water from frozen lakes and rivers. Normally the ground would be under thick snow by this time of year; this November several areas of eastern Russia, like its coldest territory Yakutia, say they are short of snow.
  • Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis was in West Palm Beach on Wednesday to speak about his proposed measures to tighten election security, including a ban on ballot harvesting and mandatory clean-up of voter rolls. At one point, he brought up the “Brandon administration,” causing the audience to chant “Let’s go Brandon!” The chant has riled up Democrats, while a CNN analyst went as far as to draw parallels between the phrase and a call to support terrorists, demanding a Southwest Airlines pilot who allegedly used it be fired. An NBC reporter drew widespread mockery after he alerted the Secret Service to the chant when a gunmaker used it to advertise rifle parts.
  • Vietnam has undergone an economic transformation and has become one of the fastest-growing countries in the world. The favorable economic climate has also fostered the emergence of the digital economy and an expanding startup ecosystem. According to the World Bank, Vietnam now has over 745 listed companies on the stock exchange which accounted for 68.6% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2020. After 35 years, the Vietnam economy has been thriving and attracting many foreign investors. It has been one of the five fastest-growing countries in the world over the past 30 years, beating its neighbors. From 2009 to 2019, Vietnam’s GDP grew by an average of 7% per annum. In 2020, Vietnam was one of a few countries globally that recorded a GDP growth of 2.9%. Vietnam’s GDP per capita grew to US$2,800 from a mere US$422 in 1986.
  • The ex-president of the Democratic Black Caucus in one of Florida’s largest counties has pleaded guilty to fraud, admitting she bilked the government for $300,000 in Covid-19 relief funds using a bogus front company. Damara Holness, 28, of Fort Lauderdale, Florida entered a guilty plea to one count of fraud on Wednesday, according to the Department of Justice. Holness, who is also the daughter of Broward County Commissioner Dale Holness, acknowledged that she applied for a federally guaranteed Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan worth $300,000 in June 2020 under the pretext the funds would support her company. While she claimed her firm, Holness Consulting, employed 18 people and spent some $120,000 each month on payroll, “in fact, Holness Consulting had zero employees and no payroll expenses,” the DOJ said, adding that she used fraudulent tax forms on the application.
  • The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has said it still has “full confidence” in the data used to approve the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid vaccine, after an explosive report alleged poor practices in the jab’s Phase 3 trial. “Although the agency cannot comment further at this time in this ongoing matter, FDA has full confidence in the data that were used to support the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 Vaccine authorization and the Comirnaty approval,” FDA spokesperson Alison Hunt told Sputnik on Wednesday. The FDA comment came on foot of an explosive report concerning the Pfizer approval process and Phase 3 trial data, published on Tuesday by leading medical journal the BMJ. The outlet was reportedly contacted by a whistleblower, Brook Jackson, who briefly served as a regional director at Ventavia Research Group, contracted to assist in the Pfizer trials. Jackson provided The BMJ with dozens of internal documents and emails to back up her claims, casting a shadow on the integrity of the vaccine’s testing process, according to the publication’s report.
  • As some Europeans continue to resist mandatory vaccine measures, a group of parliamentarians have upbraided the Commission for allowing pharmaceutical companies to ‘run roughshod over democracy.’ In an effort to ‘protect the health of their constituents,’ they bought millions of batches of Covid vaccines from various pharmaceutical companies without letting lawmakers sneak a peek at the contracts. This has raised more than one eyebrow in the European Union, and perhaps none more conspicuously than that of Romanian MEP Cristian Terhes. At the weekend, Terhes appeared at a press conference in Brussels with several other EU lawmakers at this side, all visibly shaken by the news that they would be required to produce, starting on November 3, a digital ‘green pass’ to gain entry into Parliament. Like many EU citizens, these lawmakers have declined to get the vaccine not because they are ‘anti-vaxxers’ but because they have been denied critical information regarding the product and procedures. Now they will be refused entry into Parliament, the place where the will of their people is (supposedly) represented.
  • The share of women in the Norwegian police force is rising to the point of “domination”, as national broadcaster NRK put it. At the Oslo Police Academy, wholly 7 out of 10 students are women. According to Police Academy researcher and associate professor Nina Jon, measures must be considered to prevent the proportion of women in police education from increasing further. “It is just as problematic if there are too few men, as it is if there are too few women”, Nina Jon, a researcher in masculinity, police culture, and gender equality in the police, told national broadcaster NRK.
  • The Swedish government has decided to ban a number of several disposable plastic products for environmental reasons. In line with the EU’s disposable plastic directive, this is a total ban on plastic products considered harmful to nature, and that can be replaced with other, “greener” alternatives. Moreover, in the future, all companies that offer consumers takeaway food must be able to offer a reusable alternative. However, this particular change will not take effect until 2024, and some smaller eateries will be exempted from the requirement. In 2020, the share of recycled plastic in Sweden was 24 percent. “It also means that we get a more circular economy where we recycle plastic and make sure that we actually don’t just buy and throw away but that things can return as new products”, Bolund said.
  • An independent Pentagon review has concluded that the U.S. drone strike that killed innocent Kabul civilians and children in the final days of the Afghanistan war was not caused by misconduct or negligence, and it doesn’t recommend any disciplinary action. The review, done by Air Force Lt. Gen. Sami Said concluded that the mistaken strike happened despite prudent measures to prevent civilian deaths. Said is the inspector general of the Air Force and is considered independent as he had no direct connection to Afghanistan operations. His review said the drone strike must be considered in the context of the moment, as U.S. forces under stress were being flooded by information about threats to troops and civilians at the Kabul airport.
  • Indonesia received about 684,400 doses of Astrazeneca Covid-19 vaccine from New Zealand. The shipment came through the global sharing mechanism Covax facility, while also bringing the total vaccines that have arrived in Indonesia — be it in finished or bulk forms — to around 292 million doses. “This marks New Zealand’s first time to have vaccine dose-sharing partnership with Indonesia,” Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi said, as quoted from a press statement on Monday. “On behalf of the Indonesian government and people, I would like to thank New Zealand for the collaboration and cooperation given amid the pandemic,” Retno said.
  • The Indonesian Drug and Food Supervisory Agency, or BPOM, has issued emergency use authorization of the Covid-19 vaccine produced by China’s Sinovac Biotech for children as young as six years old. BPOM head Penny Lukito said on Monday the approval was granted following successful clinical trials Phase 1 and 2 which focused on safety and immunogenicity – the ability of the vaccine to trigger an immune response among children. “The immunogenicity demonstrated during the trials was in high percentage — 96 percent. As for the efficacy rate, we referred to results from previous clinical trials,” Penny said in a news conference. The Sinovac vaccine was the first to get Indonesian approval for use among children, previously limited to those aged 12 and above.
  • Chinese tech giant Huawei has launched a five-year US$50 million budget to develop 500,000 information and communication technology (ICT) talents in the Asia Pacific region. Experts from the region convened on Wednesday at the 2021 Digital Talent Summit webinar, cohosted by the ASEAN Foundation and Huawei, to explore ways to step up developing digital talents as a huge shortage of skilled personnel continues. International consultant Korn Ferry estimated a shortage of 47 million tech talents by 2030 in the Asia Pacific region. PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) found in a survey that more than 50 percent of Asia Pacific CEOs say it is difficult to hire digital talent with the right skills.
  • Vaishnavi, a Class 8 student in Telangana, wrote to Chief Justice of India NV Ramana demanding restoration of bus services to her village Rangareddy district. Vaishnavi in her letter said that she and her siblings, Preethi and Praneeth, were facing issues commuting to school because of the sudden halt of services in the aftermath the pandemic, legal news website LiveLaw said in a report. Vaishnavi also highlighted that it was not possible for her to afford an auto-rickshaw to go to school. The Chief Justice of India upon receiving the letter took prompt action and alerted the Telangana State Road Transport Corporation (TSRTC) regarding the issue. The CJI told them that the services need to resume so as to honour the child’s right to education. VC Sajjanar, the managing director of the TSRTC, informed via Twitter that the bus service was restored. “Spoke to P Vaishnavi also with her mother, greeted Diwali wishes and appreciated the baby (the student) for writing about the issue to CJI Ramana sir,” he said in a tweet.
  • The administration of the Union territory of Jammu & Kashmir on Thursday announced a reduction in Value Added Tax (VAT) on petrol and diesel by ₹7 (0,094 US $). “PM Modi has given a great Deepawali gift by announcing a reduction in excise duty on Petrol&Diesel,” the Office of Lieutenant Governor of Jammu & Kashmir tweeted from its official account.
  • Mexico cheers U.S. decision to open borders in Nov. to fully vaccinated people. Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said it will coincide with a push to reactivate economic activities as they’ve pushed to bring area vaccination rates in line with the USA. U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas earlier said U.S. borders with Canada and Mexico would reopen in November for fully vaccinated travelers after being closed to non-essential crossings since March 2020 due to the pandemic.
  • American financier and sex offender Jeffrey Epstein asserted that he had accompanied Princess Diana to several events, as per a new book by US journalist Michael Wolff “Too Famous” as cited by the Daily Mail. The book sheds light on a previously unpublished interview with Epstein, in which he claimed to have gone out with Princess Diana when asked by Wolff. “I escorted her on occasion”, he responded. He, however, omitted the details, never revealing the time or the place of their alleged outings. Diana never claimed being friends with the financier, and there are no photos of the two together.
  • In 2015, years before the world was hit by the coronavirus pandemic, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates said during a Ted talk that the world was not ready for the next possible global pandemic. Bill Gates has called for a massive global effort in order to prepare the world for future pandemics, suggesting, among other things, to carry out so-called “germ games” and pour more money into vaccine research. In a sit-down with former UK Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, Gates grimly admitted that his predictions about the world’s readiness for pandemics from several years ago turned out to be “a better forecast of what would happen than anyone would have wished for”. “You know, we didn’t have vaccines that block transmission. We got vaccines that help you with your health, but they only slightly reduced transmission”, he said. “We need a new way of doing the vaccines”. According to Gates, the world needs a global Task Force to carry out everything that he suggested. Should this happen, the billionaire hopes he will have a chance to write a book in several years that would be titled “We ARE ready for the next pandemic”.
  • In 2014, rapper Cardi B posted a video on her social media that went viral due to the saying “a hoe never gets cold”, and it turns out she was right. Scientists from the University of South Florida and Colorado College decided to test this hypothesis by conducting a study. The scientists focused on self-objectification rather than on how sex workers are able to withstand cold temperatures. “Objectification theory posits that when women take an outsider’s perspective of their body – so when women are highly focused on how they appear externally – it reduces the amount of cognitive resources they have available to appraise their internal states”, said Roxanne Felig, a postgraduate student in social psychology at the University of South Florida. The scientists spent five nights surveying women who attended Florida bars when the temperature was around 40-50 degrees Fahrenheit (4-10 degrees Celsius). Besides asking how cold the women felt, the researchers also took pictures of them to see how much of their skin was exposed. After analysing the data, the scientists realised that there was no relationship between skin exposure and how cold the participants of the survey felt. According to Roxanne Felig, one of the researchers in the study, the results showed that women who are high in self-objectification didn’t feel cold.

News Burst 5 November 2021

By cindyloucbp

Cynthia is the typical Pisces! Her left brain activities include scientific activities in the hospital laboratory as a director. Her right-brain activites show as a painter, photographer and musician. She is known as the scientist who sings!

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