safety

Whitney Tipton | Contributor

A Verizon worker who used his bucket truck to rescue a cat stranded atop a utility pole Saturday has been suspended, according to ABC News.

Maurice German was working in the Port Richmond, Pennsylvania, neighborhood when a resident asked if he could help a cat named “Princess Momma,” who had been perched on top of the utility pole for approximately 12 hours, according to ABC’s local affiliate WPVI. German used the boom lift equipment to grab the cat. Residents in the area recorded the rescue on video, and can be heard cheering when the cat is removed.

Verizon suspended German for 15 days without pay. A spokesman told ABC’s affiliate WPVI that German’s good deed violated safety protocol, the company had no choice but to suspend him.

“We take no joy when our employees face consequences related to their job duties. We are, however, fully committed and responsible for keeping our employees and customers safe. All of our field technicians go through extensive training that is focused on workplace safety,” said Rich Young, a spokesman for Verizon.

“Unfortunately,” Young added, “while this employee’s goal was admirable, he potentially put his life and those around him in jeopardy.”

Resident Amanda Boyce told The Tribunist that she had contacted animal rescue, the fire department, and the telephone company looking for help and received no assistance. After learning of German’s suspension, Boyce set up a GoFundMe page. As of press time, $3,395 had been raised for the wireless worker. (RELATED: Two Cats Live Alone In $1,500 Silicon Valley Apartment)

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Source: The Daily Caller

Whitney Tipton | Contributor

A Verizon worker who used his bucket truck to rescue a cat stranded atop a utility pole Saturday has been suspended, according to ABC News.

Maurice German was working in the Port Richmond, Pennsylvania, neighborhood when a resident asked if he could help a cat named “Princess Momma,” who had been perched on top of the utility pole for approximately 12 hours, according to ABC’s local affiliate WPVI. German used the boom lift equipment to grab the cat. Residents in the area recorded the rescue on video, and can be heard cheering when the cat is removed.

Verizon suspended German for 15 days without pay. A spokesman told ABC’s affiliate WPVI that German’s good deed violated safety protocol, the company had no choice but to suspend him.

“We take no joy when our employees face consequences related to their job duties. We are, however, fully committed and responsible for keeping our employees and customers safe. All of our field technicians go through extensive training that is focused on workplace safety,” said Rich Young, a spokesman for Verizon.

“Unfortunately,” Young added, “while this employee’s goal was admirable, he potentially put his life and those around him in jeopardy.”

Resident Amanda Boyce told The Tribunist that she had contacted animal rescue, the fire department, and the telephone company looking for help and received no assistance. After learning of German’s suspension, Boyce set up a GoFundMe page. As of press time, $3,395 had been raised for the wireless worker. (RELATED: Two Cats Live Alone In $1,500 Silicon Valley Apartment)

Follow Whitney on Twitter

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact [email protected].

Source: The Daily Caller

Whitney Tipton | Contributor

A Verizon worker who used his bucket truck to rescue a cat stranded atop a utility pole Saturday has been suspended, according to ABC News.

Maurice German was working in the Port Richmond, Pennsylvania, neighborhood when a resident asked if he could help a cat named “Princess Momma,” who had been perched on top of the utility pole for approximately 12 hours, according to ABC’s local affiliate WPVI. German used the boom lift equipment to grab the cat. Residents in the area recorded the rescue on video, and can be heard cheering when the cat is removed.

Verizon suspended German for 15 days without pay. A spokesman told ABC’s affiliate WPVI that German’s good deed violated safety protocol, the company had no choice but to suspend him.

“We take no joy when our employees face consequences related to their job duties. We are, however, fully committed and responsible for keeping our employees and customers safe. All of our field technicians go through extensive training that is focused on workplace safety,” said Rich Young, a spokesman for Verizon.

“Unfortunately,” Young added, “while this employee’s goal was admirable, he potentially put his life and those around him in jeopardy.”

Resident Amanda Boyce told The Tribunist that she had contacted animal rescue, the fire department, and the telephone company looking for help and received no assistance. After learning of German’s suspension, Boyce set up a GoFundMe page. As of press time, $3,395 had been raised for the wireless worker. (RELATED: Two Cats Live Alone In $1,500 Silicon Valley Apartment)

Follow Whitney on Twitter

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact [email protected].

Source: The Daily Caller

3D printed Android logo is seen in front of a displayed cyber code
A 3D printed Android logo is seen in front of a displayed cyber code in this illustration taken March 22, 2016. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration

March 25, 2019

By Paul Day and Paresh Dave

MADRID/SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – An independent study lead by an academic group in Spain has shown that what personal information can be collected by pre-installed programs on new Android mobile devices is expansive and faces little oversight.

The investigation by the public Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, IMDEA Networks Institute and Stony Brook University looked at apps pre-installed on Android devices from 2,748 users, spanning 1,742 unique devices from 214 vendors across 130 countries.

The study did not look at whether the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation laws would bring greater oversight to pre-installed apps on Android devices.

Though Alphabet Inc’s Google owns Android, its open source nature enables device makers to customize the operating system and package other apps with the operating system before delivering them to users.

The study found the setup posed a potential threat to users’ privacy and security because the pre-installed apps request access to data that similar apps distributed through Google’s Play app store cannot reach.

Pre-installed apps often cannot be uninstalled, and Google may not be performing as rigorous security checks of them as it does for app store versions, the researchers found.

“There is a lack of regulation and transparency and no one seems to be monitoring what these stakeholders and apps do,” said co-author of the study Juan Tapiador.  

Google said it provides tools to equipment manufacturers which helps them make sure their software does not violate Google’s privacy and security standards.

“We also provide our partners with clear policies regarding the safety of pre-installed apps, and regularly give them information about potentially dangerous pre-loads we’ve identified,” a Google spokesperson said.

Pre-installed apps recently have drawn increased scrutiny. A U.S. Department of Justice criminal probe into Facebook, which worked with hardware makers to ensure its app would be on users’ devices, is examining those partnerships, the New York Times reported last week.

The authors of the study noted their paper did not focus on any software developers in particular but was a rather a study in the lack of regulation and transparency that surrounded pre-installed apps found on new devices.

Facebook, which has said it is cooperating with multiple government investigations into its handling of users’ private data, said partnering with mobile operators and device manufacturers on pre-installations immediately give users the best experience on its social network.

(Editing by David Evans)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Sisters from Saudi Arabia, who go by aliases Reem and Rawan, are pictured at an office in Hong Kong
FILE PHOTO: Sisters from Saudi Arabia, who go by aliases Reem and Rawan, are pictured at an office in Hong Kong, China February 23, 2019. REUTERS/Aleksander Solum/File Photo

March 25, 2019

By Anne Marie Roantree and James Pomfret

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Two Saudi Arabian sisters are hoping for a “bright, beautiful future” after being granted asylum, fleeing what they describe as an abusive family and a repressive society.

The sisters fled from their family last September while on holiday in Sri Lanka and have been stranded in Hong Kong since an aborted attempt to get to Australia, where they hoped to secure asylum.

For reasons of safety, the sisters, aged 18 and 20, who say they were beaten by their father and brothers, asked that their names and faces not be revealed, nor the country to which they have now gone.

“Oh my God, I was so happy,” the curly haired younger sister told Reuters recently, describing how she felt when told asylum had been secured.

“I screamed ‘It’s real, it’s happening’ … It was just relief and unforgettable.”

The sisters spoke to Reuters in a room on the 22nd floor of a Hong Kong hotel shortly before they left the city. Hong Kong-based rights lawyer, Michael Vidler, who has been helping them, attended.

They said they have lived in fear for six months, shuttling between 15 safe houses, staying with a nun, families and at a shelter for abused women.

They feared being intercepted by Saudi officials or relatives and forced home, where they believe they could be punished for renouncing Islam, which is punishable by death under the Saudi system of Islamic law..

The Saudi Consulate in Hong Kong has not responded to requests for comment.

The sisters said they were treated harshly, at times beaten, by their brothers and father.

“They were like my jailer, like my prison officer. I was like a prisoner,” the younger sister previously told Reuters.

‘NO REGRET’

They were also critical of Saudi Arabia’s male guardianship system, under which women must have permission from a male relative to work, travel, marry, and even get some medical treatment.

“Women are just like slaves,” said the older sister, adding that her dream was to become a writer one day.

“I want to settle down and to feel safe, and (to know) that I have rights and I matter in that country. Just to live normal, and discover myself … because now I own my life.”

This is not the first case in Asia this year of young Saudi women fleeing what they said was repression.

In January, an 18-year-old Saudi woman was granted asylum in Canada after fleeing her family and barricading herself in a Bangkok hotel to resist being sent home.

Her case drew global attention to Saudi Arabia’s strict social rules, which rights groups say can trap women and girls as prisoners of abusive families.

The Saudi mission in Bangkok declined to comment on that case saying it was a family affair.

The kingdom has given women more rights in recent years. Women have been allowed to enter sports stadiums, vote in local elections, and take a greater role in the workforce as Saudi Arabia tries to diversify its oil-dependent economy.

A ban on driving was lifted last year but many women have taken to social media to push for more freedom. Campaigners say the main sticking point remains the guardianship policy.

‘FIND YOUR LIGHT’

Riyadh has also faced scrutiny from Western allies over the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in October and over the humanitarian consequences of its war in Yemen.

The sisters watched the news of Khashoggi’s death unfold while in hiding in Hong Kong.

“I said to my sister, ‘I’m glad we left. This is the country we left’, there is no regret at all,” said the older sister, who counts George Orwell’s “1984” as one of her favorite books and likened its dystopian society to her homeland.

“It’s a science fiction book but it’s real in Saudi,” she said.

The pair hatched their escape plan over several years, secretly hoarding about $5,000, partly by scrimping on items they were given money to buy, and had timed it to coincide with the younger sister’s 18th birthday.

They said they had been wracked with uncertainty as a deadline for them to leave Chinese-ruled Hong Kong passed last month. Amnesty International had urged Hong Kong authorities not to return the sisters to Saudi Arabia.

The younger sister, who counts Radiohead and Queen among her favorite bands, said she hoped to inspire young people to stand against social injustice.

“Don’t just stick to the wall and cry. Because if you would cry it would be worse … Fight in your own way and you will find your own light.”

Dressed in a red T-shirt, jeans and sneakers, she said she had no regrets.

“There’s a bright, beautiful future awaiting me.”

(Reporting by James Pomfret and Anne Marie Roantree; Editing by Robert Birsel)

Source: OANN

Relatives look for a missing worker at the pesticide plant owned by Tianjiayi Chemical following an explosion, in Xiangshui county
Relatives look for a missing worker at the pesticide plant owned by Tianjiayi Chemical following an explosion, in Xiangshui county, Yancheng, Jiangsu province, China March 23, 2019. REUTERS/Aly Song

March 25, 2019

BEIJING (Reuters) – The death told from a massive explosion last week at a pesticide plant in eastern China rose to 78 on Monday, with 13 people listed as being critically injured, as the government again pledged stricter safely controls, state media reported.

Public anger over safety standards has grown in China over industrial accidents, ranging from mining disasters to factory fires, that have marred three decades of swift economic growth.

State television said 566 people were still being treated in hospital after Thursday’s blast at the Chenjiagang Industrial Park in Yancheng city, Jiangsu province on China’s east coast.

Air quality remained within a safe range, the report added.

The official Xinhua news agency said China would strengthen the control and management of dangerous chemicals, and conduct risk assessments for all chemical industry parks.

“Authorities at all levels should inspect enterprises that are involved in nitration manufacturing and storage to make sure they comply with regulations on dangerous chemicals,” Xinhua said, citing a statement from the Ministry of Emergency Management.

Despite repeated government pledges to tighten safety, disasters have hit chemical plants in particular, with 23 people killed in November in a series of blasts during the delivery of a flammable gas at a chemical maker.

In 2015, 165 people were killed in explosions at a chemical warehouse in the northern city of Tianjin, one of the world’s busiest ports, which is not far from the capital, Beijing.

(Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Himani Sarkar)

Source: OANN

American gun owners have once again been reminded that the ultimate goal of U.S. gun control advocates is firearms bans and confiscation. Since the heinous terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, American anti-gun politicians, activists, and media outlets have offered their full-throated support for the New Zealand government’s efforts to ban and confiscate firearms from law-abiding gun owners.

On March 21, the New Zealand government issued an order in council that immediately reclassified certain commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms as “military style semi-automatics,” or MSSAs. The order re-defined MSSAs in statute to include the following,

(a) a semi-automatic firearm that is capable of being used in combination with a detachable magazine (other than one designed to hold 0.22-inch or less rimfire cartridges) that is capable of holding more than 5 cartridges:

(b) a semi-automatic firearm that is a shotgun and that is capable of being used in combination with a detachable magazine that is capable of holding more than 5 cartridges.

An accompanying order in council offered regulations requiring licensed dealers to alter their records to reflect the new classifications.

MSSAs are heavily restricted in New Zealand and require a firearms licensee to acquire a difficult to obtain category “E” endorsement in order to own them.

However, this is a temporary measure. In a statement to the public, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern made clear that the orders in council were a “transitional measure until the wider ban takes effect,” and further legislation is still being drafted.

Ardern noted that there will be “a ban on all military style semi-automatics (MSSA) and assault rifles in New Zealand.” Going further, she noted that, “related parts used to convert these guns into MSSAs are also being banned, along with all high-capacity magazines.”

As with Australia’s gun bans, New Zealand’s gun control measures will feature confiscation of currently-owned firearms. Ardern noted that her “cabinet has directed officials to develop a buyback scheme.”

Speaking after Ardern, Police Minister Stuart Nash encouraged gun owners to surrender their firearms. Nash went on to say that, “police are gearing up to enable these weapons to be taken out of circulation, they’ll be supported by the New Zealand Defence Force to enable safe storage, transport, and destruction of assault rifles and MSSAs.” The New Zealand Defence Force is the New Zealand military.

Ardern also explained, “The actions announced today are the first step of the Government’s response. We will continue to develop stronger and more effective licensing rules, storage requirements and penalties for not complying with gun regulations.”

New Zealand’s new gun control measures are military-backed confiscation of commonly-owned semi-automatic firearms from law-abiding gun owners.

It is important for all freedom-loving Americans to pay close attention to the figures in this country cheering these radical confiscation policies.

Failed 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton tweeted her support for Ardern’s confiscations measures, stating, “Under @jacindaardern’s leadership, New Zealand has banned assault rifles and military-style semi-automatic weapons just six days after the Christchurch mosque attacks. Public servants didn’t stop at offering thoughts and prayers. They chose to act.” In 2015 Clinton expressed her support for Australia-style gun confiscation.

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) stated via Twitter, “This is what real action to stop gun violence looks like. We must follow New Zealand’s lead, take on the NRA and ban the sale and distribution of assault weapons in the United States.”

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) tweeted out a video of Ardern’s confiscation announcement, adding, “See. It’s not that hard.”

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) tweeted, “Christchurch happened, and within days New Zealand acted to get weapons of war out of the consumer market. This is what leadership looks like.”

Offering their support, Moms Demand Action, a subsidiary of the Michael Bloomberg gun control conglomerate Everytown for Gun Safety, tweeted out a Nicholas Kristoff New York Times column cheering Ardern’s actions titled, “New Zealand Shows the U.S. What Leadership Looks Like.”

Everytown frontwoman and former corporate media flack Shannon Watts shared her support for Ardern’s confiscation efforts with multiple tweets.

The New York Times issued an editorial in support of New Zealand’s measures. The piece was in line with the paper’s 2015 editorial that advocated gun confiscation.

Gun confiscation, not “common-sense reform,” is the ultimate goal of gun control advocates. This goal existed long before the Christchurch attack. The recent stateside reaction to the New Zealand government’s actions has only served to further reveal this long-held but oft-concealed position. It is up to all gun rights supporters to ensure that everyone is made aware of U.S. anti-gun advocates’ actual objective and to work against all gun control measures that bring the U.S. closer to that target.

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Source: The Daily Caller

FILE PHOTO: Candle flames burn during a commemoration ceremony for the victims at the scene of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET 302 plane crash, near the town Bishoftu
FILE PHOTO: Candle flames burn during a commemoration ceremony for the victims at the scene of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET 302 plane crash, near the town Bishoftu, near Addis Ababa, Ethiopia March 14, 2019. REUTERS/Tiksa Negeri/File Photo

March 24, 2019

By Jason Neely

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – The chief executive of Ethiopian Airlines has rejected media reports that optional equipment for Boeing 737 MAX planes was critical for safety aboard a flight that crashed this month.

The crash of flight 302 and a similar one involving Indonesia’s Lion Air in October, both flying the new 737 MAX 8, have cost 346 lives and sparked the biggest crisis in decades for Boeing.

Grieving families, nervous travelers and airlines around the world are looking for answers while Boeing prepares updates aimed at getting the 737 MAX, with sales worth $500 billion at stake, back in the air.

In a sign of the impact on Boeing’s business, Indonesia’s Garuda is pushing to dump a $6 billion order for the grounded planes.

Teams from the three U.S. airlines that own 737 MAX jets were also heading to Boeing’s factory in Renton, Washington over the weekend to review a software upgrade.

One focus for investigators is software Boeing installed on the MAX series designed to push a plane’s nose down if it senses too sharp an ascent and an indicator that shows that angle of flight.

OPTIONAL ITEMS

Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde Gebremariam said it was important not to confuse safety-critical equipment with optional items.

“A Toyota is imported with all the necessary equipment to drive, like the engine and the wheels, but with air conditioning and the radio optional,” Tewolde said.

“When Boeing supplies aircraft there are items which are mandatory for safety and then there are optional items,” he added, noting the angle of attack indicator was optional.

Some media reports have questioned whether having this installed may have helped the cockpit crew regain control of flight 302, which crashed near Addis Ababa on March 10 killing all 157 aboard.

Tewolde rejected this, adding: “The angle of attack indicator was on the optional list along with the inflight entertainment system.”

He echoed the words of Norwegian Air which said it had not selected the cockpit light warning of discrepancies between angle of attack sensors for its fleet of 18 MAX 8 aircraft.

“We have chosen not to fit this particular optional extra …it is not a safety critical feature nor is it a requirement by any aviation authority,” Norwegian told Reuters.

Ethiopian Airlines is Africa’s biggest airline with a modern fleet of Boeing, Airbus and Bombardier aircraft and a flying history that dates back to the 1940s.

They have been flying Boeing planes since 1962 and have four MAX 8 jets, with another 25 worth some $3 billion on order.

GARUDA

Garuda has written to Boeing asking to cancel its order for 49 737 MAX 8 planes, CFO Fuad Rizal said on Friday. CEO Ari Askhara told Reuters customers had lost trust in the plane.

The airline might switch to other Boeing models, Rizal told Reuters, adding it was in negotiations with Boeing while a move to Airbus planes was not under consideration. Garuda rival Lion Air is weighing what to do with an even bigger order following its crash, which killed all 189 passengers and crew aboard.

It has 190 Boeing jets worth $22 billion at list prices waiting to be delivered.

Boeing has said it is been working closely with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration on a software upgrade and training set to be deployed across the 737 MAX fleet in the coming weeks.

The FAA which certifies planes expects to approve these design changes no later than April, it has said.

American Airlines pilots this weekend were preparing to test the planned software upgrade, saying they want their own safety guarantees on the fix.

Southwest and United Airlines said they would also review documentation and training associated with Boeing’s updates.

(Reporting by Jason Neely; additional reporting by Jamie Freed in Singapore, Cindy Silviana and Bernadette Christina Munthe in Jakarta, David Shepardson in Washington and Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; editing by Keith Weir)

Source: OANN

Guns and Gear | Contributor

By Sam Hoober, Alien Gear Holsters

Yes, you need to be practicing one-handed shooting. Start reading into police shootings or watch some bodycam footage, look into some civilian-involved defensive shootings and you’ll find that assuming the perfect modified Isosceles, Weaver or Chapman stance doesn’t happen nearly as often as you’d think.

There’s something to be said for training how you’ll shoot and you’ll shoot how you train of course.

Watch enough videos, read enough reports, and what becomes clear is that you may or may not have the opportunity to assume a two-handed shooting stance. Often enough, people are fending an attacker off with one hand. Additionally, it may happen so fast that you may only have enough time to get the gun out with one hand. This is also why it’s good to practice drawing from concealment with only one hand; you may not have a hand free to clear a cover garment.

If anyone wants to get into the caliber war and the “this is why 9mm is better than .45” in the comments, I suppose this is a good time to do it.

With that said, how to get started?

Well, start small and move up, like with anything else.

First, you need the highest, tightest grip possible. A firm grip on the gun leads to good shooting, one-handed and otherwise; grip it as tight as you can. You can grip too hard, though; what you do is take your carry gun and start to squeeze. Pay attention to the sights.

When the sights start to move or shake, that’s too hard. Let off a little until the gun isn’t moving anymore. If you need to, try to strengthen your hands. Use a hand exerciser and/or do more compound lifts. Barbell rows and deadlifts build grip strength (legs and back too!) and are just good for you anyway.

There are a few different techniques for shooting one-handed. Most common is to just straight-arm it. Extend the shooting hand until your elbow is locking out. Align sights, fire and get back on target.

Some people modify it by canting the gun inward. Doing so ostensibly directs the recoil force more into the trunk of the body rather than torquing the wrist, though some find it makes no difference. Just make sure that you can still get a good sight picture.

Another technique is to essentially use half of a Weaver or Chapman stance, just without the support hand. You want your shooting hand to extend as far and straight out as possible while keeping the elbow tucked into the body. You may have to lean into the gun until you find a good sight picture. Again, the theory is to direct recoil into the body as much as possible, combating muzzle rise and so on.

Massad Ayoob has been teaching a one-handed technique for years that he refers to as the
“Shotokan Punch,” similar to the punching technique taught in Shotokan karate. The gun hand goes straight out, fully extended with the elbow locked. You put your strong side foot out, slightly ahead of your weak-side foot, like stepping into the punch. While getting into this stance, tuck your support hand up into your sternum, like you’re cradling a football.

Come to think of it, he should have called it the Heisman because it’s basically like an RB giving a stiff-arm, but one digresses.

This gets you leaning into the gun and presents a bit of counter-balance, which can help mitigate recoil as well.

If you haven’t worked on shooting one-handed before, start slow. Starting out with controlled pairs is a good idea, as you want to build accuracy and recoil control before you start in with the 5 by 5 or the Bill drill. Do some work with the weak hand too, as it also gets neglected.

Click here to get your 1911 Pistol Shopping Guide.

Click here to get The Complete Concealed Carry Training Guide

Sam Hoober is Contributing Editor for AlienGearHolsters.com, a subsidiary of Hayden, ID, based Tedder Industries, where he writes about gun accessories, gun safety, open and concealed carry tips. Click here to visit aliengearholsters.com.

Source: The Daily Caller

Tim Pearce | Energy Reporter

GOP Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz is preparing to introduce a “Green Real Deal” resolution to contrast with Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal, according to Politico.

Ocasio-Cortez unveiled her resolution on Feb. 7 and immediately faced criticism for its scope and potential cost, which reached toward tens of trillions of dollars. (RELATED: Ocasio-Cortez Bungled Green new Deal’s Release. Her Staff Took Its Webpage Offline)

A draft of Gaetz’s resolution, obtained by Politico, recognizes risks to the U.S. from climate change, citing Department of Defense reports that identify certain military assets and bases as at risk to rising sea levels and increasing severe weather events, such as hurricanes.

“Climate change creates new risks and exacerbates existing vulnerabilities in communities across the United States, presenting growing challenges to human health and safety, quality of life, and the rate of economic growth,” the draft says.

Energy lobbyists have seemingly received copies of Gaetz’s resolution are beginning to line up behind it in support.

“Congressman Gaetz deserves to be applauded for taking the lead in crafting a bold resolution that identifies actionable climate solutions that will benefit America’s economy, environment, and national security,” Heather Reams, executive director of Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions, said in a statement.

Gaetz’s resolution pushes market-driven innovation and competition from companies developing green energy technology. It does not set any emission reduction goals.

The draft pledges “to reduce and modernize regulations so that clean energy technologies can be deployed, and compete.”

In contrast to the Green New Deal, the draft Green Real Deal resolution takes a positive view on nuclear energy. Ocasio-Cortez’s resolution did not mention the energy sector, causing some controversy among pro-nuclear energy experts.

Gaetz’s legislation takes a wide-ranging approach to cutting emissions through investing in fossil fuel carbon capture technology, new and updated nuclear and hydropower placements, making the power grid more efficient and granting energy companies improved access to public lands.

The resolution pledges to “empower individuals, states, and the marketplace” to develop and disseminate new technology that will cut the United States’ carbon emissions.

Follow Tim Pearce on Twitter

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact [email protected].

Source: The Daily Caller

FILE PHOTO: A wing of the Boeing 737 MAX is pictured during a media tour of the Boeing 737 MAX at the Boeing plant in Renton, Washington
FILE PHOTO: A wing of the Boeing 737 MAX is pictured during a media tour of the Boeing 737 MAX at the Boeing plant in Renton, Washington December 7, 2015. REUTERS/Matt Mills McKnight/File Photo

March 23, 2019

By Tracy Rucinski

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Teams from the three U.S. airlines that own 737 MAX jets were heading to Boeing Co’s factory in Renton, Washington, to review a software upgrade on Saturday, even as Southwest Airlines Co began parking its 34 MAXs near the California desert.

The factory visits indicate Boeing may be nearing completion of a planned software patch for its newest 737 following a fatal Lion Air crash in Indonesia last October, but the timing for a resumption of passenger flights on the jets remains uncertain.

Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration, which must approve the software fix and new training, are under U.S. and global scrutiny since the MAX suffered a second deadly crash involving Ethiopian Airlines in Addis Ababa on March 10, which led to a worldwide grounding of the fleet.

The Allied Pilots Association (APA), which represents American Airlines pilots, said it has been in talks with Boeing, the FAA and airlines to get the airplanes flying again as soon as possible, albeit with an acceptable level of safety.

“Right now we’re in wait and see mode to see what Boeing comes up with,” Captain Jason Goldberg, a spokesman for APA, said on Saturday. “We’re hopeful, but at the same time the process can’t be rushed.”

APA is among a delegation of airline safety experts and pilots set to test Boeing’s software upgrade, meant to change how much authority is given to a new anti-stall system developed for the 737 MAX, in Renton.

The system, known as the Maneuver Characteristics Augmentation System, or MCAS, is suspected of playing a role in both disasters, which together killed 346 people.

Both crashes are still under investigation.

Southwest, the largest operator of the MAX in the world, and United Airlines said they would also review documentation and training associated with Boeing’s updates on Saturday. United has 14 MAXs while American has 24.

Meanwhile, Southwest said it was starting to move on Saturday its entire MAX fleet to a facility in Victorville, California, at the southwestern edge of the Mojave Desert, while the global grounding remains in effect.

“The planes being in one place will be more efficient for performing the repetitive maintenance necessary for stationary aircraft, as well as any future software enhancements that need to take place,” spokeswoman Brandy King said.

(Reporting by Tracy Rucinski; Editing by Tom Brown)

Source: OANN

Mason Thibault | Contributor

Are you interested in upgrading your home security? Staying hyper-connected for your security needs is the new norm, and LaView, a California based company is looking to set a new standard for premium home security.

LaView’s new ONE Link system features fantastic tech and specs for getting the job done, including HD 1080P wire-free battery cameras with easy magnetic mounting for flexible 360° angling and seamless portability. It is also very easy to use as the system comes with a Smart Station that plugs directly into the user’s router and employs a single-button synching process to connect all the wireless security cameras.

Why take a chance on home security? With LaViews ONE link, your entire security camera system can stay connected for up to six months without need for recharging!

Why take a chance on home security? With LaViews ONE link, your entire security camera system can stay connected for up to six months without need for recharging!

Why pay hundreds of dollars per camera that require constant maintenance or replacement? LaView’s OneLink system is cost effective and includes an entire WiFI ecosystem for home security 

Over the past year, LaView has developed the ONE Series – its collection of smart home- friendly, WiFi camera solutions. This series of DIY units is designed to address the one-off surveillance needs of their clients, while integrating into a single app. The ONE Link fits perfectly into this range of wireless home security cameras, promoting versatility and ease with its Smart Station.

The Smart Station is the brains of the operation for the ONE Link. Single-button synching with each wireless outdoor camera creates a secure ecosystem of WiFi coverage that doesn’t require users to reenter network credentials when connecting and disconnecting the cameras. Plus, linking via the Smart Station increases the wireless security cameras’ already long-lasting 3- month standby life to an unprecedented 6-month battery life per single charge.

The flexibility goes even further with multiple storage options. Each camera in the ONE Link system is equipped with an onboard micro SD slot that supports up to 128GB of data. That makes for easy, free recording and instant physical access to the HD footage. If local storage doesn’t suit the user, they can take advantage of LaView’s affordable cloud service for expanded data capacity and encrypted security. Or, users can choose both options to guarantee the safety and accessibility of their footage.

Thermal detection gives you unprecedented vision and mindfulness for your security needs

Thermal detection gives you unprecedented vision and mindfulness for your security needs

The ONE Link is all about giving users the freedom to change their minds. Magnetic mounting plates screw into any surface for simple installation, custom 360° angling and easy mobility. Users can place the wireless security cameras indoors, outdoors or take them on-the-go for coverage during a family vacation. Mobile versatility is a big focus for LaView as they continue to develop their ONE Series solutions. These wireless home security cameras let users have their security, their way, with the Smart Station as the link between them and the future of smart home surveillance.

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FILE PHOTO: An employee speaks over his phone as he sits at the front desk inside the office of Ola cab service in Gurugram
FILE PHOTO: An employee speaks over his phone as he sits at the front desk inside the office of Ola cab service in Gurugram, previously known as Gurgaon, on the outskirts of New Delhi, India, April 20, 2016. REUTERS/Anindito Mukherjee/File Photo

March 23, 2019

By Chandini Monnappa and Chris Thomas

BENGALURU (Reuters) – The southern Indian state of Karnataka kept the door open on Saturday to talks with local ride-hailing service Ola to avoid a ban that could help rival Uber build market share.

Karnataka earlier this week issued a notice to suspend Ola’s license for six months for violating government rules by running motorcycle taxis which are not allowed for safety reasons.

State capital and technology hub Bengaluru is among Ola’s top three markets in India.

V. P. Ikkeri, state commissioner for transport and road safety, told reporters the department had seized and issued fines for about 258 bikes during a probe after complaints.

Ola’s permit, obtained in 2017 and valid to 2021, allows it to run three and four-wheeler taxis in Karnataka. The company, backed by SoftBank Group Corp and Tencent Holdings Ltd, has until Monday to respond to the suspension notice.

“It’s a temporary suspension and if they give us a satisfactory response, then we won’t need to implement the ban,” Ikkeri said, adding that Ola would face financial penalties.

Ola did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

It could lose out badly to Uber if pushed out of the market for an extended period.

“If Uber comes up with a strategy to lock in some of the drivers or customers with more incentives, it will be difficult for Ola to make a comeback,” said Neil Shah, partner and research director at Counterpoint Research.

“Assuming the top three (Indian) markets contribute to roughly 35-40 percent of Ola’s revenues, if the ban is upheld, we could be looking at a 5-10 percent revenue hit to the company.”

On Friday, the company said it was evaluating all options to find an “amicable solution” and was working closely with the authorities.

Ikkeri also said the department had sent a notice about penalties to the last known address of Rapido, another motorcycle taxi operator in Bengaluru. Rapido could not be reached for comment despite multiple attempts by Reuters.

(Reporting by Chandini Monnappa and Chris Thomas in Bengaluru; Editing by Martin Howell and Andrew Cawthorne)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Rohingya refugees gather at a market inside a refugee camp in Cox's Bazar
FILE PHOTO: Rohingya refugees gather at a market inside a refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, March 7, 2019. REUTERS/Mohammad Ponir Hossain/File Photo

March 23, 2019

By Poppy McPherson

YANGON (Reuters) – The United Nations is making plans to help Bangladesh relocate thousands of Rohingya refugees to a remote island off its coast, documents seen by Reuters show, a move opposed by many refugees and that some human rights experts fear could spark a new crisis.

Bangladesh says transporting refugees to Bhasan Char – a Bay of Bengal island hours by boat from the mainland – will ease chronic overcrowding in its camps at Cox’s Bazar, which are home to more than 1 million Rohingya, members of a Muslim minority who have fled neighboring Myanmar.

Humanitarian and human rights groups have criticized the relocation proposal, saying the island is flood-prone, vulnerable to frequent cyclones and could be completely submerged during a high tide.

A document drawn up by the World Food Programme (WFP), the U.N.’s food aid arm, shows the agency has supplied the Bangladesh government with detailed plans – including a timeline and budget – of how it could provide for thousands of Rohingya transported to the island within weeks. It stresses that any relocation should be voluntary and done “in accordance with humanitarian principles and code of conduct”.

The document, labeled as a “Concept of Operations” and dated March 12, outlines how the organization and its partners “may facilitate the identification, staging, forward movement, reception, and sustainment of refugees” on Bhasan Char, estimating an initial appeal for donor funding of between $8.6 and $19 million.

More detailed operational planning would be needed it says, noting the Concept of Operations had been “developed quickly and without the benefit of any recent on-site assessment”.

Gemma Snowdon, communications officer for WFP in Cox’s Bazar, said the organization was part of “ongoing discussions” with the government over the future of the refugee response.

“The viability of safely relocating people to Bhasan Char needs to be thoroughly assessed and WFP is investigating the potential operational needs, financial costs, and challenges in several areas that we traditionally support in emergencies: food security, emergency telecommunications and logistics,” she said.

REFUGEE INFLUX

The numbers of refugees in the Cox’s Bazar camps have grown dramatically since August 2017, when a Myanmar military-led crackdown that U.N. investigators have said was conducted with “genocidal intent” prompted some 730,000 Rohingya to flee. Myanmar has denied almost all allegations of atrocities made by refugees during what is says was a legitimate counterterrorism operation by its security forces.

Bangladesh says it is struggling to cope with the influx and wants to start relocating thousands of refugees to the island, which it says has been secured with flood defense embankments and cyclone shelters.

A senior U.N. official told reporters in the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka on Thursday the organization welcomed the fact the government had “taken steps to identify alternative settlements”.

“As you also know if you have been to Kutapalong and the various camps in Cox’s Bazar area, it is clear that there is huge congestion,” said Volker Turk, Assistant High Commissioner for the U.N. refugee agency.

Mozammel Haque, the head of Bangladesh’s cabinet committee on law and order and a senior government minister, told Reuters in an interview the government planned to start moving refugees next month.

“We are in talks with U.N. agencies and they have agreed,” he said. “Now we are working on other things like how to move them and other strategies. We are the host country. We will decide where to keep them. And we are doing everything to ensure their safety and security.”

Abul Kalam, the Relief and Repatriation Commission chief based in Cox’s Bazar, told Reuters preparations were “still going on” and the site was not ready.

FLOOD-PRONE ISLAND

Bhasan Char, a flat and featureless island that emerged from the sea 20 years ago, has never been inhabited.

Humanitarians have not visited since a four-hour trip in September 2018, according to WFP. An internal report produced after that visit, also seen by Reuters, found a 1,500-acre area of the 13,000-acre island had been encircled by a nine-foot (3 meter) embankment, short of the 21-foot barrier recommended by WFP.

Housing with corrugated iron roofs and concrete floors and walls for about 70,000 people had been built, but there were only enough cyclone shelters for 17,000.

A U.N. human rights investigator who visited in January said earlier this month she feared a “new crisis” if Rohingya were taken to the island.

“There are a number of things that remain unknown to me even following my visit, chief among them being whether the island is truly habitable,” said Yanghee Lee, the U.N. special rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar.

In Cox’s Bazar, local officials are compiling lists of the first refugees to be moved, District Administrator Mohammad Kamal Hossain told Reuters.

On Thursday, a poem by a Rohingya refugee titled ‘Do Not Send Me to the Island’ was posted to social media. “I’m a human being, I deserve all human rights,” it read.

“You know, we are refugees, surviving in refugee camp for two years,” the author, 22-year-old Mohammed Rezuwan, told Reuters in a message. “Still we are tolerating so much tragedies.”

(Reporting by Poppy McPherson; Additional reporting by Ruma Paul and Serajul Quadir in Dhaka; Editing by Alex Richardson)

Source: OANN

Villagers stand outside their damaged houses following an explosion at a pesticide plant owned by Tianjiayi Chemical, in Xiangshui county
Villagers stand outside their damaged houses following an explosion at a pesticide plant owned by Tianjiayi Chemical, in Xiangshui county, Yancheng, Jiangsu province, China March 22, 2019. REUTERS/Aly Song

March 23, 2019

By David Stanway

YANCHENG, China (Reuters) – Rescuers pulled a survivor from rubble early on Saturday in the wake of a massive explosion at a pesticide plant in eastern China that flattened buildings, blew out windows more than a mile away and killed at least 64 people.

Officials said more than two dozen people were still missing and hundreds had been injured in Thursday’s blast at the Chenjiagang Industrial Park in the city of Yancheng, in Jiangsu province on China’s east coast.

The cause of the explosion was under investigation, but an editorial in the China Daily newspaper speculated it was likely to be identified as “a serious accident caused by human negligence”.

The company, Tianjiayi Chemical Co – which produces more than 30 organic chemical compounds, some highly flammable – had been cited and fined for work safety violations in the past, the China Daily had reported.

At the Xiangshui People’s Hospital on Saturday morning, the ward corridors were filled with temporary beds for the wounded.

“I was just going to collect my wages when it blew up,” said a worker who identified himself as Zuo. His head was covered in bloody gauze.

“I don’t even have a home to go to now,” he said.

The hospital was relying on dozens of unpaid volunteers.

“No one is thinking about how people will pay their medical bills at the moment – the priority is rescuing them and worrying about fees later,” said one volunteer surnamed Jiang, who was sent to help out at the hospital by his employers on Friday.

Public anger over safety standards has grown in China over industrial accidents, ranging from mining disasters to factory fires, that have marred three decades of swift economic growth.

In 2015, 165 people were killed in explosions at a chemical warehouse in the northern city of Tianjin, one of the world’s busiest ports, which is not far from the capital, Beijing.

Those blasts were big enough to be seen by satellites and register on earthquake sensors.

Despite repeated government pledges to tighten safety, disasters have hit chemical plants in particular, with 23 people killed in November in a series of blasts during the delivery of a flammable gas at a chemical maker.

After the blast in Yancheng, police, some wearing face masks, sealed off roads to what was left of the devastated, smoldering plant.

The explosion smashed windows in the village of Wangshang 2 km (1.2 miles) away. Stunned villagers likened it to an earthquake.

A provincial official told Reuters on Saturday the accident has shown that the market for dangerous chemicals has grown too quickly and production to meet demand has expanded too crudely.

President Xi Jinping, who is in Italy on a state visit, ordered all-out efforts to care for the injured and to “earnestly maintain social stability”, state television said.

Authorities must step up action to prevent such incidents and determine the cause of the blast as quickly as possible, Xi said.

“There has recently been a series of major accidents, and all places and relevant departments must fully learn the lessons from these,” the report cited Xi as saying.

Cheng Jie, an official with the environment bureau, told reporters the priority was to ensure contaminated water doesn’t leak into the public water supply system.

The Jiangsu environmental protection bureau said late on Friday that a team of 126 inspectors found various degrees of contamination in local water samples, with nitrobenzene concentrations exceeding standards at one location.

Some volatile organic chemical measurements far exceeded surface water standards, 15 times over in one case, the Jiangsu bureau said.

(Reporting by David Stanway; Writing by John Ruwitch; Editing by Tom Hogue)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: NFL: Atlanta Falcons at Carolina Panthers
FILE PHOTO: Dec 23, 2018; Charlotte, NC, USA; Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) on the sidelines in the third quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports – 11893582

March 23, 2019

The Atlanta Falcons and wide receiver Julio Jones are closing in on an extension that would pay him $20 million per season on a four- or five-year deal, Bleacher Report reported Friday.

According to the report, Jones is expected to get around $50 million-$60 million in new guarantees, though the deal is not done yet.

The league’s highest-paid wideout, recent Cleveland Browns addition Odell Beckham Jr., averages $18 million annually with an additional $1 million per season available via incentives. He got $41 million fully guaranteed at signing and $65 million in injury guarantees.

Jones, 30, has two years and $21 million remaining on his contract. He stayed away from the Falcons throughout the 2018 offseason while seeking further contract guarantees. The team responded by turning $4.4 million of his future salary into a signing bonus while reportedly promising to redo the deal after the 2018 season, a rare concession for a player with multiple years remaining on his deal.

–The attorney of New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is firing back against law-enforcement officials in South Florida.

William Burck, who represents Kraft, issued a statement to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Kraft is facing misdemeanor charges of soliciting prostitution at a massage parlor in Jupiter, Fla., but he has pleaded not guilty.

“There was no human trafficking and law enforcement knows it,” Burck told Schefter, who posted the quote on his Twitter account. “The video and the traffic stop were illegal and law enforcement just doesn’t want to admit it. The state attorney needs to step up and do the right thing and investigate how the evidence in this case was obtained.”

–The Houston Texans signed offensive tackle Matt Kalil to a one-year contract, multiple media outlets reported.

Kalil, 29, was released by the Carolina Panthers last week in a salary-cutting move after he missed all of 2018 with a knee injury. He also missed 14 games to injury in 2016, but in his other five NFL seasons, Kalil started all 80 possible games at left tackle.

Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson was sacked 62 times last season, easily most in the NFL and equaling the fifth-highest total in NFL history. The Texans re-signed right tackle Seantrel Henderson — who missed all but one game in 2018 — earlier this offseason.

–The Pittsburgh Steelers will release safety Morgan Burnett by April 1, his agent, Kevin Conner, told ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Burnett asked the team in January to release him before free agency.

Burnett indicated he wants to join a team that will use him in a pure safety role, after playing what he believes was out of position at dime linebacker in Pittsburgh, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported in January.

–The Oakland Raiders signed free agent quarterback Mike Glennon and safety Curtis Riley.

The Raiders released AJ McCarron last week, creating a need for a backup quarterback behind Derek Carr. Glennon, 29, was released by the Arizona Cardinals earlier this month after joining the team on a two-year, $8 million deal last spring.

Riley, 26, started all 16 games for the New York Giants in 2018, nabbing four interceptions and totaling 75 tackles.

–The Los Angeles Rams matched an offer by the Detroit Lions to keep running back Malcolm Brown in the fold. The two-year deal gives Brown a $100,000 signing bonus and is worth $3.3 million total, with $1 million guaranteed.

Brown, 25, has rushed for 514 yards in four seasons in a backup role to Todd Gurley, including 43 carries for 212 yards and five catches for 52 yards and a touchdown in 2018.

–Former Broncos first-round pick Shane Ray visited the Indianapolis Colts, according to multiple reports.

Ray, who had eight sacks in 2016 but has battled injuries the last two years, would move from linebacker to defensive end if he joins the Colts. Indianapolis reportedly added pass rusher Justin Houston on Thursday.

–The Buffalo Bills signed former Seahawks safety Maurice Alexander and former Cincinnati Bengals offensive tackle Jake Fisher, who is making the transition to be a blocking tight end.

Buffalo also reportedly visited with former Titans guard Quinton Spain and former Seahawks defensive back Neiko Thorpe.

–The Lions agreed to a one-year, $3.5 million deal with free agent cornerback Rashaan Melvin, multiple media outlets reported. Detroit also officially re-signed offensive lineman Andrew Donnal.

–Wide receiver Cody Latimer officially re-signed with the New York Giants.

–The Cleveland Browns signed free agent offensive lineman Bryan Witzmann.

–The Kansas City Chiefs re-signed fullback Anthony Sherman, per multiple reports.

–The Bengals signed former Giants defensive end Kerry Wynn, ESPN reported.

–The Texans re-signed special teamer Joe Webb III, who also serves as a backup wide receiver and quarterback.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

A headline in Reason Magazine said it all: “Have Gun, Can’t Travel.”

That’s the plight of New York City “premises licensees” under one of the most bizarre and oppressive gun control laws in the nation.

Now the U.S. Supreme Court has that law in its sights.

In January, the high court agreed to review a decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upholding the regulation against a challenge under the Second Amendment and other constitutional provisions. The case is New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. City of New York.

Should the court resolve the case on Second Amendment grounds, it will be the first time since McDonald v. City of Chicago in 2010 that the Supreme Court applied that provision to a gun control law.

Even many gun control advocates probably don’t expect New York City’s regulation to fare any better before the high court than the handguns bans from Washington, D.C. and Chicago did in 2008 and 2010, respectively. Like those laws, the handgun travel ban is an outlier.

Most of the suspense and speculation instead revolve around whether the court will resolve the case narrowly or establish more generally applicable principles that could broadly be applied to other gun control laws.

But the story of New York City’s defiance of the Second Amendment and the Supreme Court’s renewed interest in reviewing overreaching gun control demonstrate how the steadfast activism of the NRA and our five million members continues to play a vital role in securing our nation’s constitutional legacy.

New York City’s handgun laws are a case study of the strange and often contradictory thinking of the nation’s most fervent gun control advocates.

The system is designed to make obtaining the license necessary to acquire and own handguns as difficult and expensive as possible for the ordinary applicant.

It dates back to the enactment of New York’s Sullivan Act in 1911 when its proponents – including the New York Times – openly promoted it as a way to keep firearms out of the hands of Italian immigrants.

Commenting on what was supposedly the first conviction under the law – of Italian immigrant Marino Rossi, who claimed to be an honest working man carrying a revolver for self-defense – the Times wrote on Sept. 29, 1911:

Judge FOSTER did well in sentencing to one year in Sing Sing MARINO ROSSI, who carried a revolver because, as he said, it was the custom of himself and his hot-headed countrymen to have weapons concealed upon their persons. The Judge’s warning to the Italian community was timely and exemplary.

Consistent with this discriminatory outlook, the law allows licensing officials a wide degree of discretion in determining who possesses the requisite “good moral character” and, in some cases, “proper cause” for a license.

It also provides for different types of licenses, including “premises licenses,” which allow the holder to “have and possess [a handgun] in his dwelling” and “carry licenses,” which bestow some latitude to possess or carry the handgun beyond one’s own residence.

New York City supposedly provides for both types of licenses.

But in reality, the only applicants who can get a New York City carry license are the rich and famous or the especially well-connected. The licensing system has repeatedly spawned corruption scandals and prosecutions over the years.

The best an ordinary New York City resident can realistically hope for is a premises license, yet even that requires a substantial investment of time, money, and self-disclosure.

As of January, the mandatory application fee for a three-year premises license was $340, not counting a separate $88.25 fingerprinting fee.

Applicants must register online with the city and complete a lengthy application form, which includes the uploading of numerous documents. Besides providing information about prior arrests, convictions, summonses, and orders of protection, applicants must disclose employment and residential timelines and any history of “mental/physical conditions and any medications taken in connection therewith.”

Paper applications have been prohibited since January 1, 2018. Low income residents who lack ready access to computer equipment, including digital scanners and high-speed Internet access, are out of luck.

After the online application is completed, the New York Police Department (NYPD) License Division will schedule a date for the applicant to appear in person during business hours to pay the required fees, get fingerprinted, and provide hard copies of the same documents that were already submitted digitally.

Once the application is reviewed by the Licensing Division, the applicant may be required to appear on subsequent occasions to submit additional documentation.

In any case, when the application itself is considered complete, all applicants must appear for an in-person interview with a licensing official.

Applicants can expect a decision from the Licensing Division, according to its website, “[w]ithin approximately six months of receipt of your handgun application, and all required documents/forms.”

Unfortunately, none of these requirements is specifically at issue in the case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court. Even more unfortunately, most of them have been upheld by lower state and federal courts in New York. They do, however, form the backdrop for the Supreme Court’s deliberations.

For now, the issue before the Supreme Court is the circumstances in which premises licensees can travel with their own firearms.

New York City currently allows them to do so only for specified purposes and only to one of seven approved shooting ranges in the city, which in some cases require advanced written permission from the NYPD. In all cases, the firearms must be unloaded and in a locked container, with any ammunition stored separately.

The plaintiffs in the case, however, wish to travel with their lawfully licensed handguns to ranges outside the city for use in training or competition. One plaintiff wants to be able to take his lawfully licensed handgun back and forth between his New York City residence and his second home in upstate New York.

These are all prohibited by New York City’s rules.

It takes an especially zealous gun control advocate to even think up such ludicrous regulations, much less to argue them all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. Indeed, it appears that New York City’s transport ban may be the first and only one of its kind in U.S. history. That does not bode well for the city’s position that it is nevertheless a commonsense measured aimed at promoting public safety.

Even taking the city’s arguments at face value, it appears the real reason for the law is simply to exercise a maniacal level of scrutiny and control over Gotham’s lawful handgun owners.

In its brief urging the Supreme Court not to hear the case, the city noted that it used to have a “target license” that allowed for holders to transport their locked, unloaded guns to NYPD-approved ranges outside New York City. What it discovered, however, was that it was difficult as a practical matter to determine whether licensees who ventured outside the city with their own handguns were actually doing so for NYPD-approved reasons.

Notably, the city did not go so far as to claim there were any violent crimes or other harmful behavior committed by traveling target licensees. City officials instead apparently expect the court to believe that any movement of a licensed handgun that has not been specifically preapproved and documented by the NYPD is inherently dangerous, even if done for innocent reasons.

Thus, premises licensees can only practice at or compete at NYPD-approved shooting ranges within the city itself (and at big city prices). These facilities, in turn, “are required to maintain a roster listing the names and addresses of all persons who have used the range and the date and hour that they used it and to make those records available for inspection by NYPD during their hours of operation.” This underscores that owning a gun in New York City is a bureaucratically administered privilege, not a fundamental right.

For nearly 10 years, lower courts have upheld almost every sort of gun control law imaginable, while the Supreme Court has not taken up another Second Amendment case.

Thanks to the work of NRA members like you, President Donald Trump has appointed two justices to the high court who take the Constitution’s original meaning seriously.

Time will tell, but that will hopefully mean the Supreme Court is finally poised to accord our right to keep and bear arms the respect it deserves.

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Source: The Daily Caller

FILE PHOTO: An aerial photo shows Boeing 737 MAX airplanes parked at the Boeing Factory in Renton
FILE PHOTO: An aerial photo shows Boeing 737 MAX airplanes parked at the Boeing Factory in Renton, Washington, U.S. March 21, 2019. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson/File Photo

March 22, 2019

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The chairman of U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Peter DeFazio on Friday urged current or former Boeing Co and Federal Aviation Administration employees to come forward with any information about the government’s aircraft certification program.

Federal prosecutors, the Transportation Department’s inspector general and lawmakers are investigating the FAA’s certification of the 737 MAX 8 aircraft that has been involved in two fatal crashes since October.

“It is imperative we continue to ensure we have the highest level of safety for the traveling public,” DeFazio said in a statement, urging people to utilize the committee’s whistleblower web page.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; editing by Grant McCool)

Source: OANN

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro speaks during his visit to a vehicle production plant in Las Tejerias
Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro speaks during his visit to a vehicle production plant in Las Tejerias, Venezuela March 21, 2019. Miraflores Palace/Handout via REUTERS

March 22, 2019

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Trump administration on Friday warned the government of Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela over the detention of Americans, including six executives from Houston-based oil company Citgo Petroleum who have been jailed since 2017.

“We will hold Maduro and his prison officials to account for their safety and well-being,” the U.S. State Department said in a statement, adding that the Citgo employees include five individuals with dual U.S. citizenship and one U.S. legal permanent resident.

(Reporting by Tim Ahmann and Susan Heavey; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

Source: OANN

Evie Fordham | Politics and Health Care Reporter

Certain medications to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may increase the risk of psychosis in young adults, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine Thursday found.

The study found that teens and young people taking amphetamines like Adderall and Vyvanse were at a higher risk of developing psychosis than those taking methylphenidates like Ritalin or Concerta, reported the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Psychosis is a severe mental disorder that causes a person to break with reality, causing paranoia and even hallucinations.

Patients taking amphetamines were still at a low risk of developing psychosis, but the finding is “concerning,” the paper’s lead author Dr. Lauren V. Moran said according to AJC. (RELATED: Researchers Who Think Voice Assistants Like Siri Perpetuate Gender ‘Stereotypes’ Have A Genderless Solution)

“The findings are concerning because the use of amphetamines in adolescents and young adults has more than tripled in recent years. More and more patients are being treated with these medications,” Moran said. “There is not a lot of research comparing the safety profiles of amphetamines and methylphenidate, despite increasing use of these medications.”

A bottle of Ritalin sits on the counter of the Post Haste Pharmacy And Surgical Store on June 16, 2003 in Hollywood, Florida. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

A bottle of Ritalin sits on the counter of the Post Haste Pharmacy And Surgical Store on June 16, 2003 in Hollywood, Florida. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The study examined insurance claims of more than 220,000 ADHD patients between 13 and 25 years old who began taking amphetamines or methylphenidates between Jan. 1, 2004 and Sept. 30, 2015, reported AJC. While only 1 in 1,046 patients who started treatment with methylphenidate developed psychosis, one out of every 486 patients who started treatment with amphetamine developed it.

The National Institutes of Health funded the study.

Moran pointed out that “people who have been on a drug like Adderall for a long time, who are taking the drug as prescribed and are tolerating it well, are not likely to experience this problem (psychosis),” according to AJC. She also would take family history into account when prescribing Adderall and avoid prescribing it for patients who may be at a higher risk of bipolar disorder because of their genetics, reported CBS News.

Medication is not the only way to treat ADHD, which patients can combat with behavioral therapy as well.

The American Psychiatric Association estimates that roughly 5 percent of children have ADHD, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. In fact, more than 10 percent of American children had ADHD diagnoses in 2015 and 2016, which is nearly double the amount of diagnoses between 1997 and 1998.

Some researchers say it is not all bad news that the percentage of diagnoses has grown. That is because premature babies are more likely to develop ADHD and an increase in ADHD diagnoses could go hand-in-hand with an increase in premature baby survival.

Follow Evie on Twitter @eviefordham.

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Source: The Daily Caller

The logo of EDF is seen on the French state-controlled utility EDF's headquarters in Paris
FILE PHOTO: The logo of EDF (Electricite de France) is seen on the French state-controlled utility EDF’s headquarters in Paris, France, February 15, 2019. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

March 22, 2019

By Bate Felix

CORDEMAIS, France (Reuters) – French utility EDF aims to convert its 1,200-megawatt (MW) Cordemais coal-fired power plant by spring 2022 into one that burns pellet fuel made from discarded wood, giving the unit a new lease of life.

If successful, the process – known as Ecocombust – could be exported and adapted to other coal plants, saving jobs, while Cordemais would boost France’s security of supply in winter.

But EDF must convince the government by autumn that the project is financially and environmentally viable. French grid operator RTE is also expected to determine by April whether the plant is surplus to requirements.

In its long-term energy plan, France has laid out moves to phase out electricity generation from coal by 2022, with the goal of decarbonizing energy production by 2050.

The decision sounded the death knell for the five remaining coal-fired generators in France, with an installed capacity of around 3,000 MW. Three of the generators – Cordemais 4 and 5, and Havre 4 – are operated by state-controlled EDF.

Cordemais in western France was overhauled two years ago to meet new emissions and safety standards at a cost of several million euros, and could keep operating until 2035, EDF says.

France’s two other coal generators, Emile Huchet 6 and Provence 5, with a combined installed capacity of 1,200 MW, are operated by German utility Uniper.

EDF executives said the Ecocombust project, already in an advanced test phase, would burn pellets made from discarded “class B” wood and garden waste, for large-scale power generation. The project is the first of its kind, they say.

Although pellets from wood chips and sawdust are widely used for heating, Eric Bret, EDF’s head of thermal power generation, said the process was different because the company would not cut down any trees.

“The pellets are made from … everyday objects such as beams, doors, window frames and furniture, which until now are mostly recycled or buried in landfill,” he said.

SOURCED LOCALLY

Lionel Olivier, director of the Cordemais and Havre power plants, said the pellets would be 70 percent “class B” wood and 30 percent residue from grass, tree branches and garden waste, all sourced within a radius of 150 km (93 miles).

He said EDF was setting up a supply chain that included municipal waste authorities and companies, but would need state aid.

EDF declined to say what the conversion would cost and how much it had invested in the process.

At capacity, it aims to replace around 1.3 million to 2 million tonnes of coal imported annually from Poland, Australia and the United States, with about 700,000 tonnes of biomass.

Tests carried out in August with 80 percent pellet fuel and 20 percent coal to generate electricity for over four hours were successful, Olivier said.

The pellets have 20 percent less energy or caloric value than coal, which could reduce each generator’s output capacity to 530 MW from 600 MW currently, he added.

Cordemais’ production would focus on periods of peak power demand in winter. After the conversion, output would be reduced to 800 hours annually from 4,000 hours, he said.

“Runtime would be five times less than the current production using coal but it will focus on a period when power prices are higher and more profitable,” Olivier said.

He added that the plant would also use five times less coal and emit five times less carbon dioxide.

(Reporting by Bate Felix; Editing by Dale Hudson)

Source: OANN

The logo of EDF is seen on the French state-controlled utility EDF's headquarters in Paris
FILE PHOTO: The logo of EDF (Electricite de France) is seen on the French state-controlled utility EDF’s headquarters in Paris, France, February 15, 2019. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

March 22, 2019

By Bate Felix

CORDEMAIS, France (Reuters) – French utility EDF aims to convert its 1,200-megawatt (MW) Cordemais coal-fired power plant by spring 2022 into one that burns pellet fuel made from discarded wood, giving the unit a new lease of life.

If successful, the process – known as Ecocombust – could be exported and adapted to other coal plants, saving jobs, while Cordemais would boost France’s security of supply in winter.

But EDF must convince the government by autumn that the project is financially and environmentally viable. French grid operator RTE is also expected to determine by April whether the plant is surplus to requirements.

In its long-term energy plan, France has laid out moves to phase out electricity generation from coal by 2022, with the goal of decarbonizing energy production by 2050.

The decision sounded the death knell for the five remaining coal-fired generators in France, with an installed capacity of around 3,000 MW. Three of the generators – Cordemais 4 and 5, and Havre 4 – are operated by state-controlled EDF.

Cordemais in western France was overhauled two years ago to meet new emissions and safety standards at a cost of several million euros, and could keep operating until 2035, EDF says.

France’s two other coal generators, Emile Huchet 6 and Provence 5, with a combined installed capacity of 1,200 MW, are operated by German utility Uniper.

EDF executives said the Ecocombust project, already in an advanced test phase, would burn pellets made from discarded “class B” wood and garden waste, for large-scale power generation. The project is the first of its kind, they say.

Although pellets from wood chips and sawdust are widely used for heating, Eric Bret, EDF’s head of thermal power generation, said the process was different because the company would not cut down any trees.

“The pellets are made from … everyday objects such as beams, doors, window frames and furniture, which until now are mostly recycled or buried in landfill,” he said.

SOURCED LOCALLY

Lionel Olivier, director of the Cordemais and Havre power plants, said the pellets would be 70 percent “class B” wood and 30 percent residue from grass, tree branches and garden waste, all sourced within a radius of 150 km (93 miles).

He said EDF was setting up a supply chain that included municipal waste authorities and companies, but would need state aid.

EDF declined to say what the conversion would cost and how much it had invested in the process.

At capacity, it aims to replace around 1.3 million to 2 million tonnes of coal imported annually from Poland, Australia and the United States, with about 700,000 tonnes of biomass.

Tests carried out in August with 80 percent pellet fuel and 20 percent coal to generate electricity for over four hours were successful, Olivier said.

The pellets have 20 percent less energy or caloric value than coal, which could reduce each generator’s output capacity to 530 MW from 600 MW currently, he added.

Cordemais’ production would focus on periods of peak power demand in winter. After the conversion, output would be reduced to 800 hours annually from 4,000 hours, he said.

“Runtime would be five times less than the current production using coal but it will focus on a period when power prices are higher and more profitable,” Olivier said.

He added that the plant would also use five times less coal and emit five times less carbon dioxide.

(Reporting by Bate Felix; Editing by Dale Hudson)

Source: OANN

Man looks out through a window with an advertisement of SpiceJet Airline, on a commercial building in the western Indian city of Ahmedabad
A man looks out through a window with an advertisement of SpiceJet Airline, on a commercial building in the western Indian city of Ahmedabad February 14, 2014. REUTERS/Amit Dave

March 22, 2019

(Reuters) – India’s SpiceJet Ltd said on Friday it was in talks will lessors globally to induct aircraft, in an effort to fill a gap after the grounding of its MAX fleet.

The airline was forced to ground its 12 Boeing Co 737 MAX 8 planes by India’s aviation watchdog due to safety concerns after an Ethiopian Airlines plane crash that killed 157 people earlier this month.

The low-cost carrier could also benefit from cash-strapped Jet Airways being forced to ground planes, and is in talks with lessors to lease some of those aircraft, a person with direct knowledge of the matter had told Reuters earlier this week.

(Reporting by Tanvi Mehta in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

Source: OANN

Survivors of Cyclone Idai, arrive to an evacuation centre in Beira
Survivors of Cyclone Idai, listen to a volunteer from Mozambique Red Cross, after arriving to an evacuation centre in Beira, Mozambique, March 21, 2019. Denis Onyodi/Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre/Handout via REUTERS

March 22, 2019

BEIRA, Mozambique (Reuters) – The situation in the port city of Beira in Mozambique was “boiling” as residents suffered shortages of food, water and other essentials one week after a devastating cyclone, the head of a South African rescue operation said on Friday.

Cyclone Idai battered Beira, a low-lying city of 500,000 residents, with strong winds and torrential rains last week, before moving inland to neighboring Zimbabwe and Malawi.

In Mozambique, 242 were killed in the storm and resulting floods, according to the official death toll, although this is expected to rise. In Malawi, around 56 were killed while Zimbabwe has recorded 142 deaths.

Around 15,000 people were still missing in Mozambique, Land and Environment Minister Celso Correia said late on Thursday. The government is expected to give a briefing on Friday morning to update the number of people missing and dead.

Briefing his team late on Thursday night, Connor Hartnady, rescue operations task force leader for Rescue South Africa, said Beira residents were becoming fed up with shortages.

“There have been three security incidents today, all food related,” he told his team, without giving further details.

Cartnady also said a group of 60 people had been discovered trapped by flood water in an area north of Beira during a reconnaissance flight. Rescue teams and the government were deciding how best to help them, he said, either by airlifting them to safety or dropping supplies.

The storm’s torrential rains caused the Buzi and Pungwe rivers, whose mouths are in the Beira area, to burst their banks.

Roads into Beira were cut off by the storm, and most of the city remains without power. The Red Cross has estimated 90 percent of the city was damaged or destroyed in the storm.

Zimbabwe’s Ministry of Information said at least 30 students, two headmasters and a teacher from three schools were missing in the eastern region of the country.

In the capital Harare there were shortages of diesel, leading to long queues following reports earlier this week that a control room for the pipeline in Beira that transports fuel to Zimbabwe had been damaged.

(Reporting by Emma Rumney; Additional reporting by MacDonald Dzirutwe in Harare; Editing by Tiisetso Motsoeneng and Raissa Kasolowsky)

Source: OANN

An aerial photo shows Boeing 737 MAX airplanes parked on the tarmac at the Boeing Factory in Renton
An aerial photo shows Boeing 737 MAX airplanes parked on the tarmac at the Boeing Factory in Renton, Washington, U.S. March 21, 2019. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson

March 22, 2019

By Cindy Silviana and Tracy Rucinski

JAKARTA/CHICAGO (Reuters) – Boeing Co will mandate on MAX jets a previously optional cockpit warning light, which might have warned of problems that possibly played a role in the recent crashes of Ethiopian and Indonesian planes, two officials briefed on the matter said.

The safety feature is expected to be offered as part of a software update to the MAX fleet that was grounded in the wake of the Ethiopian Airlines crash, said the officials who asked not to be identified.

The crash set off one of the widest inquiries in aviation history and cast a shadow over the Boeing MAX model intended to be a standard for decades.

Boeing did not immediately comment on the plan to make the safety feature standard, but separately said it was moving quickly to make software changes and expects the upgrade to be approved by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the coming weeks.

But Indonesia’s national carrier Garuda said on Friday that customers had lost trust in the planes and it has sent a letter to Boeing asking to cancel an order for 49 MAX 8s – the first airline to publicly confirm plans to cancel an order for the troubled aircraft.

The current order was valued at $6 billion at list prices and Garuda, which currently has one MAX in its fleet, said it could switch to other Boeing models.

While a direct link between the crashes has not been proven, initial investigations show similarities and attention has focused on an automated flight-control system, MCAS (Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System), that came into service two years ago with the MAX.

The software is designed to prevent a loss of lift that can cause an aerodynamic stall, sending the plane downwards in an uncontrolled way. In the Lion Air crash, it may have been erroneously activated by a faulty sensor, investigators believe.

Chicago-based Boeing will also retrofit older planes with the cockpit warning light, the officials told Reuters. The world’s largest plane maker previously offered the alert, but it was not required by aviation regulators.

Boeing has said it plans to make software changes to the aircraft, but it is unclear how long it will take Boeing to refit existing MAX planes with new software or hardware.

Experts said it could take weeks or months to be done, and for regulators to review and approve the changes. Regulators in Europe and Canada have said they will conduct their own reviews of any new systems.

The FAA has said installation of the new software and related training was a priority.

SOFTWARE FIX

Randy Tinseth, Boeing’s vice president of commercial marketing, said the software changes include changes in the control laws of the airplane, an update of the displays, the flight manual, as well as the training.

Boeing has tested the improvements in a simulator and in the air, he said on Thursday. He defended Boeing’s design and production processes, adding that it was too early to speculate on what the investigations will show.

The company has said there was a documented procedure to handle the automated system at the heart of the problem.

The pilots’ union of Southwest Airlines, the largest operator of the MAX, said it is working with the company, Boeing, other pilot unions and the FAA to test and validate the new software.

“We still would like to have more detail on the development, control parameters and testing done on the algorithm that will trigger an MCAS event,” the union said in a statement.

The American Airlines’ pilots union told Reuters it expects to test the software fix on simulators this weekend in Renton, Washington, where Boeing builds the MAX and has two simulators.

MAX simulator training is currently not required, partly because not many simulators exist.

Southwest and American expect to receive MAX simulators later this year.

Ethiopian Airlines said on Thursday the simulators are not designed to replicate the MCAS problems. The airline is among the few that do have a simulator but the captain of the doomed flight had no chance to practise on it before the crash, a pilot colleague said.

MOUNTING PRESSURE

The two crashes killed almost 350 people.

Since the Ethiopian crash, Boeing shares have fallen 12 percent and $28 billion has been wiped off its market value.

Pressure has mounted on the company from U.S. legislators, who are also expected to question the FAA. The company also faces a criminal investigation by the U.S. Justice Department.

Several lawsuits already filed on behalf of victims of the Lion Air crash referring to the Ethiopian accident. Boeing declined to comment on the lawsuits.

Consumer advocate and former U.S. presidential candidate Ralph Nader lost a grand-niece in the Ethiopian crash and urged whistleblowers to help challenge the aviation industry and get to the bottom of what happened.

“They lulled us into complacency,” he said in an interview in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal.

(For a graphic on ‘Boeing 737 MAX deliveries in question’ click https://tmsnrt.rs/2Hv2btC)

(For a graphic on ‘Grounded 737 MAX fleet’ click https://tmsnrt.rs/2O6jQbI)

(For a graphic on ‘Ethiopian Airlines crash and black boxes’ click https://tmsnrt.rs/2ChBW5M)

(Additional reporting by David Shepardson in Washington, Jamie Freed in Singapore, Bernadette Christina Munthe in Jakarta, Maggie Fick and Jason Neely in Addis Ababa, Tim Hepher in Paris, and Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; Writing by Sayantani Ghosh, Georgina Prodhan and Ben Klayman)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: An aerial photo shows Boeing 737 MAX airplanes parked at the Boeing Factory in Renton
FILE PHOTO: An aerial photo shows Boeing 737 MAX airplanes parked at the Boeing Factory in Renton, Washington, U.S. March 21, 2019. REUTERS/Lindsey Wasson

March 22, 2019

By Tracy Rucinski

CHICAGO (Reuters) – American Airlines Group Inc pilots expect to test Boeing Co’s 737 MAX software fix on the U.S. manufacturer’s simulators this weekend, officials from the pilots’ union told Reuters on Thursday, a key step in restoring pilots’ confidence in the aircraft after two fatal crashes.

Boeing has been working on a software upgrade for an anti-stall system and pilot displays on its fastest-selling jetliner in the wake of the deadly Lion Air crash in Indonesia in October.

Similarities between the flight path in the Lion Air incident and a fatal Ethiopian Airlines crash on March 10 have raised fresh questions about the system, and pilots want assurances that the update is solid. The two crashes killed everyone aboard both planes, a total of 346 people.

American is the second largest U.S. operator of the MAX, behind Southwest Airlines. United Airlines is the third U.S. carrier to operate the MAX.

“This airplane can be a safe airplane, and there have been great strides on getting a fix in the works, but I’ll have a better feel after we can test it out,” said Mike Michaelis, safety committee chairman of the Allied Pilots Association, or APA, which represent American Airline pilots.

Michaelis said one APA pilot and one pilot from American’s management team would test the software fix in Renton, Washington, where Boeing builds the MAX and has two simulators.

Boeing declined to comment.

The MAX jets were grounded worldwide in the wake of the Ethiopian crash. For the aircraft to fly in the United States again, the Federal Aviation Administration must approve the planned software fix and new training, which pilots must complete.

Boeing also plans to offer as standard a safety feature that might have warned earlier of problems that possibly played a role in the two crashes.

As for training, Boeing has proposed new computer-based training on the software update, followed by a mandatory test.

Jon Weaks, head of Southwest Airline’s pilots’ union, told members on Wednesday that the FAA-mandated training should be enhanced.

MAX simulator training is not required, partly because not many simulators exist.

Southwest and American, which operate 34 and 24 MAX jets, respectively, have said they expect to receive MAX simulators later this year.

Canada’s CAE Inc, the main simulator producer, said it has delivered nine of the simulators, which are now in high demand by airlines but take about a year to build. CAE expects to deliver 20 more in 2019.

“For now we want to get our safety experts in these unicorn simulators to show us what the software fix does,” said Dennis Tajer, a spokesman for the American Airlines pilot union and a 737 pilot. “When it comes to safely issues, it has to be a full-course meal, nothing a la carte.”

(Reporting by Tracy Rucinski; additional reporting by Allison Lampert in Montreal and Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; editing by Leslie Adler)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick prepares to take the field before an NFL game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara
FILE PHOTO: San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick prepares to take the field before an NFL game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California, U.S. October 23, 2016. Picture taken October 23, 2016. REUTERS/Loren Elliott

March 22, 2019

The Indianapolis Colts have signed former Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Justin Houston to a two-year, $24 million contract, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Thursday.

Houston registered 78 1/2 sacks in 102 games with the Chiefs from 2011-18, including a league-high 22 sacks in 2014.

The Chiefs released the 30-year-old pass rusher earlier this month when they could not find a trading partner. The four-time Pro Bowl selection had been due $15.25 million in base salary in 2019.

Colts general manager Chris Ballard knows Houston from his time in Kansas City, where he served as director of player personnel (2013-14) and director of football operations (2015-16).

–Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid will share less than $10 million in the settlement of their collusion case against the NFL, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The settlement was announced last month, but financial terms were withheld due to a confidentiality agreement.

Kaepernick, the former quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers, opted out of his contract in March 2017 to pursue free agency. But when he found no takers, he filed a grievance against the league seven months later. Reid, the former 49ers safety who was the first player to join Kaepernick in 2016 by kneeling in protest during the national anthem, filed his own collusion case against the NFL in May 2018, and the grievances were later combined into a joint case.

–The Ravens have reached a two-year agreement to keep quarterback Robert Griffin III in Baltimore, pending the results of a physical. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The 29-year-old former Rookie of the Year will continue his role as a backup and mentor to Lamar Jackson. Griffin played in three games for the Ravens in 2018 and completed 2 of 6 passes for 21 yards.

–The Los Angeles Rams and Dallas Cowboys will play a preseason game this summer in Hawaii.

The defending NFC West and NFC East champions will meet Aug. 17 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu. It will be the second preseason game for both teams and the first NFL exhibition game played in Hawaii since 1976, when the San Francisco 49ers played the then-San Diego Chargers.

–Restricted free agent cornerback Darqueze Dennard re-signed with the Cincinnati Bengals, reportedly rejecting offers from the Chiefs and other teams, per NFL Network.

A first-round pick in 2014 out of Michigan State, the 27-year-old Dennard has played in 68 games (19 starts) and registered 227 tackles, three interceptions and three sacks.

–Free agent tight end Jared Cook is close to a contract agreement with the New Orleans Saints, NFL Network reported.

Cook turns 32 next month but has been productive in stints with the Oakland Raiders, Green Bay Packers, then-St. Louis Rams and Tennessee Titans. He had 68 receptions for 896 yards and six touchdowns with the Raiders in 2018.

–Defensive end Vinny Curry is returning to the Philadelphia Eagles, agreeing to a deal after playing one season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Curry, 30, was released by the Bucs in March in a move that cleared $8 million in 2019 cap space. He won a Super Bowl with the Eagles two years ago and adds depth to a defensive line that has lost Michael Bennett and Haloti Ngata.

–New Orleans Saints wide receiver Cameron Meredith agreed to a pay cut that saves the team $2.3 million in cap space for the upcoming season. His cap hit is now $4.15 million, down from $6.45 million.

A knee injury limited Meredith, 26, to just six games in the 2018 season. He caught nine passes for 114 yards and a touchdown last season. He has 86 catches and five touchdowns in his three-year career.

–The Arizona Cardinals reached a two-year deal with defensive lineman Darius Philon, the NFL Network reported. The deal is worth $10 million — $12 million with incentives — with $5 million guaranteed, according to the report.

Philon, 25, played in all 16 games with the Chargers last season, starting 13. He recorded four sacks, 33 tackles and a forced fumble.

–Field Level Media

Source: OANN

Vehicle of paramilitary police is seen near smoke following an explosion at a chemical industrial park in Xiangshui
A vehicle of paramilitary police is seen near smoke following an explosion at a chemical industrial park in Xiangshui county, Yancheng, Jiangsu province, China March 21, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer

March 22, 2019

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – The death toll from an explosion at a pesticide plant in eastern China’s Jiangsu province on Thursday evening has risen to 12, state media said on Friday.

China Central Television reported that the fire at the Chenjiagang Industrial Park in the city of Yancheng had been put under control at 3.00am local time on Friday morning.

It said a total of 88 people were rescued from the scene, including the 12 fatalities.

According to a report in the official China Daily on Friday, the fire at a plant owned by the Tianjiayi Chemical Company spread to neighboring factories. Children at a kindergarten located in the vicinity of the factory were also hospitalized.

The exact cause of the blast is still under investigation, but the company – which produces more than 30 organic chemical compounds, some of which are highly flammable – has been cited and fined for work safety violations in the past, the China Daily said.

(Reporting by David Stanway; Editing by Michael Perry)

Source: OANN

United Nations workers mourn their colleagues during a commemoration ceremony for the victims at the scene of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET 302 plane crash, near the town Bishoftu
United Nations workers mourn their colleagues during a commemoration ceremony for the victims at the scene of the Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET 302 plane crash, near the town Bishoftu, near Addis Ababa, Ethiopia March 15, 2019. REUTERS/Tiksa NegerI

March 21, 2019

By Maggie Fick and Tim Hepher

ADDIS ABABA/PARIS (Reuters) – At the headquarters of the Ethiopian Civil Aviation Authority, a paper sign balanced above room 107 and a threadbare square of carpet welcome a stream of foreign visitors to the Accident Investigation Bureau.

The office – with three investigators and an annual budget of less than 2.5 million Birr ($89,000) – is leading a multi-party, multi-nation probe into what caused an Ethiopian Airlines flight to crash on March 10, killing all 157 people on board.

Brusque foreign investigators in cargo pants and Ethiopians in suits or reflective vests wave away questions from reporters on how their inquiries are progressing.

This modest agency is under intense international scrutiny because the results of its investigation could have far-reaching consequences for the global aviation industry.

If the investigators highlight flaws in the 737 MAX 8 that echo a recent crash of the same model in Indonesia, their report could deal a major blow to Boeing, the world’s biggest planemaker and a massive U.S. exporter.

But if investigators find Ethiopian Airlines fell short in maintenance, training or piloting, that could damage one of Africa’s most successful companies, a symbol of Ethiopia’s emergence as a regional power.

Disagreements have broken out in Addis Ababa between Ethiopian authorities and foreign investigators over issues including the handling of evidence and crash site management, according to several sources close to the investigation.

Kevin Humphreys, a former Irish regulator who founded the country’s air investigation agency, told Reuters the high stakes involved tend to make probes like this one particularly tough.

“There are tensions because it is unrealistic to assume that international protocols are always going to work. There is a potentially important economic impact from such investigations.”

An 18-strong team of American investigators has been sent to aid the Ethiopians with the inquiry, including representatives from the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), Boeing, and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which certified 737 MAX planes as safe.

U.S. and some other foreign investigators are unhappy because Ethiopia is so far sharing only limited information, the sources said.

“There is no opportunity for the international community to benefit and learn from this,” said one of them, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter.

Some foreign officials are also unhappy about the prominent role Ethiopian Airlines played in the probe, suggesting a possible conflict of interests, they said.

But one Addis Ababa-based source said the carrier’s role in the investigation does not necessarily indicate it is trying to exert undue influence. The airline is more likely involved because it is the most well-funded and staffed state enterprise able to help the over-stretched inquiry team, he added.

“When you have a vacuum, someone has to fill it,” he said.

Ethiopian Airlines’ spokesman Asrat Begachew said the carrier was supporting the investigation. “We are not taking the lead,” he added, declining to comment further.

Under global aviation rules, interested parties like airlines and manufacturers are discouraged from speaking publicly about the investigation.

Yet in the first days after the Flight 302 crash, Ethiopian Airlines made all of the public statements, including announcing the black box recorders would be sent overseas for data extraction.

It was not until six days after the tragedy that the Ministry of Transport began briefing the media and public.

Hours after the crash, Ethiopian Airlines tweeted a picture of its CEO Tewolde Gebremariam holding a piece of debris in the crater of the crash site, surprising aviation experts who said the site should have been preserved for investigators.

Musie Yehyies, spokesman for Ethiopia’s Ministry of Transport, said the government had been quick to share information about the crash. He denied there was any mistrust between the Ethiopians and other parties.

“Our friendship with the United States is obvious,” he told Reuters. “Plenty of governments have been offering assistance, and some of them have helped practically.”

The ministry did not respond to requests for comment on the airline’s role in the investigation or any potential conflict of interest.

Ethiopia’s Accident Investigation Bureau and civil aviation authority, which fall under the transport ministry, declined to comment on the investigation or any grievances of parties involved.

Boeing, the FAA and the NTSB also declined to comment.

BLACK BOXES

The cockpit voice and flight data recorders were recovered the day after the crash, but it took Ethiopian investigators three days to decide where to send them for the information to be extracted and decoded. Like many fast-growing players, the Ethiopians do not have the technology to perform the task.

In a sign of the distrust between the parties, the Ethiopians turned down an American offer to perform the analysis in the United States, according to two sources.

U.S. authorities declined to comment.

Ethiopian Airlines CEO Tewolde personally approached German authorities to request to send the black boxes to Germany to have the data extracted there, a separate source with knowledge of matter told Reuters. Airlines are not usually involved in such decisions, according to current and former investigators.

The airline could not comment on the investigation, a spokesman said in response to questions about the incident.

However German officials said they too did not have the most recent software needed to extract the data, so the devices were eventually sent to France.

Partial data from the flight data recorder was shared informally late on Monday with U.S. and French investigators in Paris, but nothing from the cockpit voice recorder, three sources familiar with the matter said.

It is common for the host investigator to closely guard voice recordings to protect privacy but unusual for relatively little data to be available a week after being downloaded.

“As an investigator, it is hard to understand the logic behind withholding safety-of-flight information,” Greg Feith, a former senior air safety investigator with the NTSB, said on Facebook on Thursday.

Ethiopia said on Thursday it had begun analyzing cockpit data and was working with U.S. and European experts.

Following Ethiopian Airlines’ last major crash, outside Beirut in 2010, an investigation led by the Lebanese and to which France contributed blamed crew mismanagement of the aircraft and poor communication in the cockpit.

The airline – led by the same CEO as today – said the report was “biased, lacking evidence, incomplete,” pointing to evidence of an explosion on board.

HIGH STAKES

Most crash investigations end up pinpointing a combination of factors.

For decades, reconstructions by independent investigators have been credited with reducing air accidents to record low levels. The system of co-operation works by sticking to technical details and avoiding blame or other agendas.

Safety experts worry that too many turf battles can cloud the progress of an investigation.

“The sole purpose of an accident investigation is to reduce the chances of something ever happening again,” said Paul Hayes, safety director at the Flight Ascend Consultancy.

The Flight 302 crash triggered the global grounding of Boeing’s 737 MAX jets, wiping billions off the company’s market value. Also on the line are more than $500 billion worth of 737 MAX orders.

Ethiopian Airlines is regulated by the country’s civil aviation authority, but its resources are far more extensive. The carrier’s operating revenue in the 2017/18 financial year was $3.7 billion. This dwarfs the regulator’s budget, which is 360 million Birr ($12.5 million) for this fiscal year.

CRASH SITE

Responsibility for leading the probe fell to Ethiopia because the crash occurred on its soil. Nairobi-bound Flight 302 went down into farmland minutes after take-off from Addis Ababa.

The crash killed people from 35 countries, all of which are also entitled to examine the crash site and join in the investigation. America, China, Kenya, Britain, Canada, Israel, France and other nations have sent investigators.

Some nations were unhappy that Ethiopia was using heavy earth-moving equipment at the site, potentially damaging evidence or human remains, although others said that was the only way to move heavy items such as engines.

Some foreign officials also complained of being unable to access the site in the days after the crash.

After Israel’s team were not given permission to visit the site, the Israeli prime minister eventually called the Ethiopian prime minister on Wednesday, a statement on the Israeli prime minister’s website said. 

A permission letter – from Ethiopian Airlines – was issued late on Thursday for the Israeli ambassador and emergency response unit ZAKA, a source familiar with the incident added.

The European Union’s aviation safety agency, EASA, waited more than a week to be allowed to join the crash investigation.

“The Ethiopian investigation body is very keen to keep a very, very closed circle around the investigation,” EASA Executive Director Patrick Ky told the European parliament on Monday.

(Additional reporting by Jason Neely in Addis Ababa, Katharine Houreld in Nairobi, Georgina Prodhan in Paris and David Shepardson in Washington; Writing by Katharine Houreld; Editing by Alexandra Zavis and Pravin Char)

Source: OANN

By Joe Kurtenbach, American Rifleman

For me, Mossberg firearms are epitomized by the dozen or so M500 pump-action shotguns filling a rack in the armory of Comanche Troop, 4/7 CAV, at Camp Hovey, Republic of Korea. I can’t be sure of the guns’ whereabouts today, but they were already well-tenured residents during my rotation to the U.S. Army installation during 2008 and 2009. Used and abused would be an apt description of their service experience. The shotguns had been handled by countless soldiers, shot during familiarization training and qualification fire, and issued often for field exercises during which they would rattle around in the back of a HUMVEE or get strapped to the newest troopers’ packs to be dragged up, down and around Korea’s mountainous terrain. They were tools and were treated as such. And, like the best tools, they were tough, gritty and reliable. No one could say the pump-action assemblies of those guns ever cycled smoothly, but they always cycled.

Mossberg’s newest product, the MC1sc—for Mossberg Carry 1 Subcompact—retains the reliability and utility for which the company is known, but provides an evolved experience compared to classic offerings. Though the trade winds have been, for years now, blowing strongly toward handguns suitable for personal defense and concealed carry, Mossberg has relied upon its sporting- and service-oriented rifles and shotguns, and has won a following of loyal customers through innovative offerings such as the 590 Shockwave pump-action, the AR-magazine-fed MVP series of rifles, and the user-customizable FLEX system of stocks and grips. With longarms currently in use by the military and law enforcement, and a century’s worth of field experience with American sportsman and armed citizens, the rifles and shotguns from North Haven, Conn., and Eagle Pass, Texas, have garnered a strong reputation for quality, reliability and affordability.

Such a company, then, could easily have stumbled when attempting to introduce its first handgun in nearly 100 years. For those who don’t know, Mossberg’s very first commercial firearm was actually a pistol; the 1919 Mossberg Brownie was a four-barreled .22 rimfire intended for use by trappers, though it also found some acceptance as a vest-pocket defensive arm. However, despite the long hiatus from the handgun market, the MC1sc stands as a testament to Mossberg’s heritage of performance and value, and boldly leaps into relevance as one of the most refined concealed handgun offerings in what is now a well-established category. I can only speak for myself, but the MC1sc surprised and impressed me with its aesthetic appeal, excellent ergonomics, unquestionable utility and unwavering reliability. In short, it’s a pistol that Mossberg can be proud of, and it may launch the company into its next hundred years of firearm design and manufacture.

Though most of the MC1sc’s disassembled components are familiar, note the slide’s push-button back plate (arrow) and the orange-shrouded striker assembly. Mossberg’s disassembly method does not require pulling the trigger.

Within the concealed carry market at large, the MC1sc will find itself quite at home, and among good company. It’s no mistake that the new Mossberg bears more than a passing resemblance to category stalwarts such as the Smith & Wesson Shield, Glock 43 and Springfield Armory XD-S. Those pistols have been wildly successful commercial offerings, and the small-frame, single-stack, semi-automatic in 9 mm Luger continues to be a proven winner. Given the success of competitive firearms, it does beg the question as to why Mossberg would choose to take on some of the most popular pistols of the day with its first handgun offering in a century. The answer, according to Mossberg, was based on extensive market research. The company found that despite the plethora of excellent offerings, there is still unmet demand for subcompact pistols in this configuration.

Turning our attention directly to the new Mossberg, it’s useful to examine the pistol independently, and then I’ll clue you in on some very interesting, and largely unadvertised, crossover capabilities. The MC1sc is a striker-fired, recoil-operated center-fire pistol chambered for 9 mm Luger. It uses a 3.4″ barrel of 416 stainless steel that is button-rifled with a six-groove, 1:16″ twist, and features a diamond-like carbon (DLC) finish for increased resistance to wear and fouling. A subcompact both in name and size, the pistol weighs 19 ozs. unloaded, is 6.25″ long and stands 4.3″ tall with the six-round, flush-fitting magazine installed, or 4.75″ with the seven-round extended magazine. Those magazines, by the way, are both “single-stack” in design, but I add the quotation marks because some staggering is readily apparent through their transparent polymer bodies—that’s right, transparent, but more on that later. The MC1sc is also very trim; the slide measures just a hair more than 0.9″ wide, and the widest point on our sample gun was at the slide stop lever where it measured 1.07″ across. 

As one would expect from a new entry in this category, Mossberg opted to use an injection-molded polymer frame. Besides offering advantages in terms of weight savings, durability and reduced manufacturing costs, polymer pistol frames also afford designers a lot of latitude regarding shape, texturing and ergonomics. On the MC1sc, Mossberg took full advantage. The rounded heel paired with the shallow finger grooves yields a comfortable, hand-filling grip despite the slim frame. Two texturing patterns also improve purchase, the front- and backstrap feature vertically aligned ovate windows with stepped, pyramid-like flats—it’s an interesting design. The left and right sides of the frame have areas with a coarser, finely detailed crosshatch pattern. The combination of shape and texturing are very effective for anchoring the gun in the hand.

For all its similarities to the current crop of sub- compact semi-automatics, Mossberg’s MC1sc stands out thanks to features such as: its ergonomic and well-textured grip frame; a fine, 5-lb., flat-faced trigger; its dehorned slide with forward cocking serrations; and dovetailed, steel, three-dot sights (inset).

While on the topic of the frame, it is worth examining the pistol’s controls. My evaluation model featured a left-side-only slide stop lever, a magazine release button that is reversible for right- or left-handed use, and, of course, the trigger, which is of a flat-faced design—a feature increasingly popular as an aftermarket upgrade for competitive pistols—and is equipped with the central blade-style safety lever. There is no manual safety on the test gun, but Mossberg is building versions of the MC1sc equipped with crossbolt safeties which, like the magazine release, are user-reversible for righties and lefties; instructions for reconfiguring the controls can be found in the owner’s manual. Coming back to the trigger, the pistol operates with a striker-fired action so the trigger pull is very consistent shot to shot. Mossberg advertises that the MC1sc exhibits 0.5″ of trigger travel, and that calculation was spot-on for my evaluation sample—0.25″ of take-up followed by a defined break and another 0.25″ of overtravel. Reset comes after just 0.25″ of forward travel—right at the trigger’s breaking point—and is easily distinguished by clear audible and tactile cues. In terms of trigger pull weight, Mossberg advertises 6 lbs. of pressure as the requirement, but the average of 10 pulls with the test gun using a Lyman digital trigger gauge was exactly 5 lbs., and none of the measured pulls were more than +/- 3 ozs. from 5 lbs. It is a very good trigger.

Moving to the top half of the gun, the MC1sc’s slide is also machined from 416 stainless steel and receives the same black DLC finish as the barrel. Angled serrations are present both in the usual rearward location, as well as at the front of the slide. They are actually back-cut, giving each groove an extra bit of bite and providing very positive engagement with the shooter’s fingers. The entire slide has also been dehorned, giving the gun a smooth and polished appearance. Although forward cocking serrations and a thorough dehorning job have long been the specialty of custom gunsmiths, and are oft-sought aftermarket modifications, both features are standard-issue on the Mossberg. Topping the slide are low-profile steel sights. My test pistol’s sights were in the familiar three-white-dot configuration, but Mossberg also offers the gun with TruGlo Tritium Pro night sights. The sights are secured via dovetail cuts in the same pattern as many SIG pistols, so compatible aftermarket options are plentiful and readily available.

Compatibility is one of the standout features of the MC1sc, and it’s not limited to the sights. Too often, in my opinion, we see companies launch new firearm designs that utilize proprietary—and often unproven—magazines, which are a pretty important component when it comes to ammunition storage, feeding and overall gun functionality. Likewise, handguns always bear the added concern of holster fit. Outside of the two or three most popular pistol manufacturers, aftermarket support for a new platform may lag behind the introduction, and may be quite limited in scope and variety. Given that the MC1sc is Mossberg’s first pistol in a century, and considering its use of proprietary magazines, one would be right to worry about aftermarket support.

To disassemble the MC1sc, remove the magazine and ensure that the chamber is clear. Lock the slide to the rear. Next, depress the integral push-button on the rear slide plate (l.) and remove the plate by pulling it downward. With the plate removed, the orange shroud of the striker assembly will be visible (ctr.). Remove the striker assembly by pulling it rearward, out of the slide. Once the striker is removed (r.), release the slide and ease it forward off of the frame in order to access the barrel, recoil spring and internal components.

Fear not.

Even though Mossberg isn’t likely to advertise it, the MC1sc has some serious cross-compatibility with a very popular pistol that should set your mind at ease. Ever heard of Glock’s G43? The MC1sc functions flawlessly with factory Glock G43 magazines. Also, the Mossberg will fit most G43 holsters. Don’t think you can fit a round trigger guard into a square space? Think again; the internal dimensions of the MC1sc’s trigger guard are similar to the G43 and therefore engages the retention features of Kydex holsters—I tested half a dozen from various makers, and they all worked. The external dimensions are similar as well, so leather rigs should be no problem. Mossberg has shown some serious savvy by designing the MC1sc to be compatible with the sights, magazines and holsters of other, more established handgun models. In so doing, the company completely sidestepped the requirement of developing an accessory aftermarket, which can be a major barrier for newly introduced firearms. Oh, and did I mention that a version of the MC1sc will also be available pre-equipped with a Viridian trigger guard-mounted red laser? The laser sights will be available separately as well, so those who prefer an additional aiming device, Mossberg’s got you covered on that front.

If you’ve followed along, a picture should be taking shape wherein Mossberg, despite being out of the handgun game for most of the past 100 years, has introduced a very refined personal-defense pistol that is heavily influenced by and, in many ways, similar to its more seasoned competitors. One area where the MC1sc breaks away from the crowd is in its safe disassembly procedure. Rather than incorporating takedown levers or tabs, or requiring the trigger to be pulled during disassembly, Mossberg engineered an entirely different method to improve safety during maintenance. With a cleared gun—magazine removed and chamber checked—users need only lock the slide to the rear, remove the rear slide plate by pressing the integral button and pulling it down and out, and then extract the striker assembly from the rear of the slide (the component is especially hard to miss thanks to its blaze orange polymer shroud).

Mossberg’s method completely removes the mechanical components required to impact a cartridge’s primer, rendering the now-partially disassembled gun inert. How’s that for safe? With the striker assembly removed, simply release the slide assembly and ride it forward off the frame in order to access the barrel, recoil spring assembly and the frame’s internals. The recoil spring, by the way, is a dual-captured assembly—again, a proven design for guns of this size and type.

To introduce the new pistol and put it through its paces, Mossberg chose the tried-and-true approach of inviting a group of gun writers to Paulden, Ariz., to take part in three days of shooting at Gunsite Academy. This venue has seen its share of new product introductions, and has humbled more than a few guns due to the combination of heat, dust and high-volume shooting. The Mossberg representatives may have even questioned their decision to hold the event when, on the morning of Day 1, many of us questioned aloud why the company would ever jump into the compact polymer pistol arena, already convinced its clear magazines wouldn’t survive the week. It was, indeed, a particularly outspoken congregation, most of us having carried a gun for a living, and the remainder being civilian shooters who nonetheless take their pistolcraft seriously.

Our “constructive criticism” wasn’t reserved for Mossberg, either. One evening the group went to a local restaurant for dinner and refreshment. After ordering a bourbon, neat, one attendee—who shall remain nameless—agreed to sample the bartender’s “counter-offer” of a small-batch, craft-style, independently distilled Irish whiskey. The barman regaled us for three or four minutes about the merits of his no-doubt-hipster-infused spirits. Upon taking a sip of the proffered liquor, and with the barkeep leering over his shoulder, the attendee simply said it “Tastes a bit of wet dog,” and politely repeated his order of bourbon, neat. All in all, it was a group that didn’t mince words or hold back opinion. Little did we know that by the end of Day 3 we’d all walk away impressed.

Mossberg’s transparent polymer magazines stood up to the rigors of Gunsite, and they have been reliable throughout testing.

During the event, more than a dozen pistols were shot to the tune of 500 to 1,000 rounds, each—using a mix of American Eagle 115-gr. FMJs and Hornady Critical Duty 135-gr. FlexLocks—and experienced exactly zero stoppages or malfunctions. That’s something I’ve never seen at a Gunsite industry event. We shot steel and paper on the square range at distances of 3 yds. to 50 yds. for accuracy and from the holster for time. We shot our way through outdoor simulators such as Gunsite’s “Donga” course, and fought through shoot houses with frangible ammunition. Frequent NRA Publications contributor Richard Mann even wanted to see if the MC1sc would cycle 9 mm Luger snake-shot loads, a feat very few semi-automatics are capable of—the gun ran perfectly.

And those clear polymer magazines? We abused those things, even tossing them around the range, stepping on them and covering them in sand. They worked just fine. The general category of transparent plastic pistol magazines has earned a dubious reputation due to inconsistent quality from various makers, but Mossberg’s magazines are manufactured to the company’s exacting specifications and have been the model of reliability throughout my testing. One cautionary note, it is easy to squeeze an extra round into some of the magazines, and doing so may affect the pistol’s functionality. Mossberg is aware of this issue and is currently exploring remedies for future production. Until then, please don’t overload your magazines.

Upon returning from the Gunsite event, my testing continued at the NRA Headquarters range with the American Rifleman protocol testing. The protocol includes using three types of ammunition, each of which is chronographed to determine velocity and energy, and accuracy testing is conducted by firing five consecutive, five-shot groups at 7 yds. due to the pistol’s sub-3.5″ barrel and intended role as a concealed defensive arm. I chose to test the gun with Aguila’s 115-gr. FMJ ammunition, which I have found to be an excellent and affordable range load, Hornady’s American Gunner 124-gr. XTP +P load, which is a great all-around cartridge—the MC1sc is rated for use with +P ammunition, but the manual advises against using +P+ loads—and SIG’s 365 115-gr. V-Crown JHP personal-defense ammunition which has been formulated to perform well in short-barreled pistols. The full results of my testing are tabulated nearby, and several sub-1″ groups with the Aguila and Hornady loads confirmed what I’d already learned at Gunsite by ringing 12″ steel at 50 yds.—the MC1sc is a very accurate little gun.

When the smoke clears and the brass has all been swept, I’m interested to see how the market responds to the MC1sc. Afterall, this is a pistol that a company like Mossberg had no business making. This is no rough-around-the-edges pump-action; reliable, yes, but this one is also thoughtfully refined. Common-sense upgrades such as forward slide serrations and magazine cross-compatibility have eluded companies in this market for years, companies that do nothing but build handguns. And if that weren’t enough, true to tradition, Mossberg is going to offer the pistol at an exceedingly reasonable price so that regular guys and gals, the company’s faithful fans, can afford the newest addition. The MSRP on the base model gun is listed at $425, but I’ve seen it advertised by some sellers at less than $350. The folks at Mossberg may have had no business making this gun, but they did, and 100 years on, they’ve managed to put the rest of the market on notice.

Thanks to American Rifleman for this post. Click here to visit AmericanRifleman.org.

Source: The Daily Caller

By Joe Kurtenbach, American Rifleman

For me, Mossberg firearms are epitomized by the dozen or so M500 pump-action shotguns filling a rack in the armory of Comanche Troop, 4/7 CAV, at Camp Hovey, Republic of Korea. I can’t be sure of the guns’ whereabouts today, but they were already well-tenured residents during my rotation to the U.S. Army installation during 2008 and 2009. Used and abused would be an apt description of their service experience. The shotguns had been handled by countless soldiers, shot during familiarization training and qualification fire, and issued often for field exercises during which they would rattle around in the back of a HUMVEE or get strapped to the newest troopers’ packs to be dragged up, down and around Korea’s mountainous terrain. They were tools and were treated as such. And, like the best tools, they were tough, gritty and reliable. No one could say the pump-action assemblies of those guns ever cycled smoothly, but they always cycled.

Mossberg’s newest product, the MC1sc—for Mossberg Carry 1 Subcompact—retains the reliability and utility for which the company is known, but provides an evolved experience compared to classic offerings. Though the trade winds have been, for years now, blowing strongly toward handguns suitable for personal defense and concealed carry, Mossberg has relied upon its sporting- and service-oriented rifles and shotguns, and has won a following of loyal customers through innovative offerings such as the 590 Shockwave pump-action, the AR-magazine-fed MVP series of rifles, and the user-customizable FLEX system of stocks and grips. With longarms currently in use by the military and law enforcement, and a century’s worth of field experience with American sportsman and armed citizens, the rifles and shotguns from North Haven, Conn., and Eagle Pass, Texas, have garnered a strong reputation for quality, reliability and affordability.

Such a company, then, could easily have stumbled when attempting to introduce its first handgun in nearly 100 years. For those who don’t know, Mossberg’s very first commercial firearm was actually a pistol; the 1919 Mossberg Brownie was a four-barreled .22 rimfire intended for use by trappers, though it also found some acceptance as a vest-pocket defensive arm. However, despite the long hiatus from the handgun market, the MC1sc stands as a testament to Mossberg’s heritage of performance and value, and boldly leaps into relevance as one of the most refined concealed handgun offerings in what is now a well-established category. I can only speak for myself, but the MC1sc surprised and impressed me with its aesthetic appeal, excellent ergonomics, unquestionable utility and unwavering reliability. In short, it’s a pistol that Mossberg can be proud of, and it may launch the company into its next hundred years of firearm design and manufacture.

Though most of the MC1sc’s disassembled components are familiar, note the slide’s push-button back plate (arrow) and the orange-shrouded striker assembly. Mossberg’s disassembly method does not require pulling the trigger.

Within the concealed carry market at large, the MC1sc will find itself quite at home, and among good company. It’s no mistake that the new Mossberg bears more than a passing resemblance to category stalwarts such as the Smith & Wesson Shield, Glock 43 and Springfield Armory XD-S. Those pistols have been wildly successful commercial offerings, and the small-frame, single-stack, semi-automatic in 9 mm Luger continues to be a proven winner. Given the success of competitive firearms, it does beg the question as to why Mossberg would choose to take on some of the most popular pistols of the day with its first handgun offering in a century. The answer, according to Mossberg, was based on extensive market research. The company found that despite the plethora of excellent offerings, there is still unmet demand for subcompact pistols in this configuration.

Turning our attention directly to the new Mossberg, it’s useful to examine the pistol independently, and then I’ll clue you in on some very interesting, and largely unadvertised, crossover capabilities. The MC1sc is a striker-fired, recoil-operated center-fire pistol chambered for 9 mm Luger. It uses a 3.4″ barrel of 416 stainless steel that is button-rifled with a six-groove, 1:16″ twist, and features a diamond-like carbon (DLC) finish for increased resistance to wear and fouling. A subcompact both in name and size, the pistol weighs 19 ozs. unloaded, is 6.25″ long and stands 4.3″ tall with the six-round, flush-fitting magazine installed, or 4.75″ with the seven-round extended magazine. Those magazines, by the way, are both “single-stack” in design, but I add the quotation marks because some staggering is readily apparent through their transparent polymer bodies—that’s right, transparent, but more on that later. The MC1sc is also very trim; the slide measures just a hair more than 0.9″ wide, and the widest point on our sample gun was at the slide stop lever where it measured 1.07″ across. 

As one would expect from a new entry in this category, Mossberg opted to use an injection-molded polymer frame. Besides offering advantages in terms of weight savings, durability and reduced manufacturing costs, polymer pistol frames also afford designers a lot of latitude regarding shape, texturing and ergonomics. On the MC1sc, Mossberg took full advantage. The rounded heel paired with the shallow finger grooves yields a comfortable, hand-filling grip despite the slim frame. Two texturing patterns also improve purchase, the front- and backstrap feature vertically aligned ovate windows with stepped, pyramid-like flats—it’s an interesting design. The left and right sides of the frame have areas with a coarser, finely detailed crosshatch pattern. The combination of shape and texturing are very effective for anchoring the gun in the hand.

For all its similarities to the current crop of sub- compact semi-automatics, Mossberg’s MC1sc stands out thanks to features such as: its ergonomic and well-textured grip frame; a fine, 5-lb., flat-faced trigger; its dehorned slide with forward cocking serrations; and dovetailed, steel, three-dot sights (inset).

While on the topic of the frame, it is worth examining the pistol’s controls. My evaluation model featured a left-side-only slide stop lever, a magazine release button that is reversible for right- or left-handed use, and, of course, the trigger, which is of a flat-faced design—a feature increasingly popular as an aftermarket upgrade for competitive pistols—and is equipped with the central blade-style safety lever. There is no manual safety on the test gun, but Mossberg is building versions of the MC1sc equipped with crossbolt safeties which, like the magazine release, are user-reversible for righties and lefties; instructions for reconfiguring the controls can be found in the owner’s manual. Coming back to the trigger, the pistol operates with a striker-fired action so the trigger pull is very consistent shot to shot. Mossberg advertises that the MC1sc exhibits 0.5″ of trigger travel, and that calculation was spot-on for my evaluation sample—0.25″ of take-up followed by a defined break and another 0.25″ of overtravel. Reset comes after just 0.25″ of forward travel—right at the trigger’s breaking point—and is easily distinguished by clear audible and tactile cues. In terms of trigger pull weight, Mossberg advertises 6 lbs. of pressure as the requirement, but the average of 10 pulls with the test gun using a Lyman digital trigger gauge was exactly 5 lbs., and none of the measured pulls were more than +/- 3 ozs. from 5 lbs. It is a very good trigger.

Moving to the top half of the gun, the MC1sc’s slide is also machined from 416 stainless steel and receives the same black DLC finish as the barrel. Angled serrations are present both in the usual rearward location, as well as at the front of the slide. They are actually back-cut, giving each groove an extra bit of bite and providing very positive engagement with the shooter’s fingers. The entire slide has also been dehorned, giving the gun a smooth and polished appearance. Although forward cocking serrations and a thorough dehorning job have long been the specialty of custom gunsmiths, and are oft-sought aftermarket modifications, both features are standard-issue on the Mossberg. Topping the slide are low-profile steel sights. My test pistol’s sights were in the familiar three-white-dot configuration, but Mossberg also offers the gun with TruGlo Tritium Pro night sights. The sights are secured via dovetail cuts in the same pattern as many SIG pistols, so compatible aftermarket options are plentiful and readily available.

Compatibility is one of the standout features of the MC1sc, and it’s not limited to the sights. Too often, in my opinion, we see companies launch new firearm designs that utilize proprietary—and often unproven—magazines, which are a pretty important component when it comes to ammunition storage, feeding and overall gun functionality. Likewise, handguns always bear the added concern of holster fit. Outside of the two or three most popular pistol manufacturers, aftermarket support for a new platform may lag behind the introduction, and may be quite limited in scope and variety. Given that the MC1sc is Mossberg’s first pistol in a century, and considering its use of proprietary magazines, one would be right to worry about aftermarket support.

To disassemble the MC1sc, remove the magazine and ensure that the chamber is clear. Lock the slide to the rear. Next, depress the integral push-button on the rear slide plate (l.) and remove the plate by pulling it downward. With the plate removed, the orange shroud of the striker assembly will be visible (ctr.). Remove the striker assembly by pulling it rearward, out of the slide. Once the striker is removed (r.), release the slide and ease it forward off of the frame in order to access the barrel, recoil spring and internal components.

Fear not.

Even though Mossberg isn’t likely to advertise it, the MC1sc has some serious cross-compatibility with a very popular pistol that should set your mind at ease. Ever heard of Glock’s G43? The MC1sc functions flawlessly with factory Glock G43 magazines. Also, the Mossberg will fit most G43 holsters. Don’t think you can fit a round trigger guard into a square space? Think again; the internal dimensions of the MC1sc’s trigger guard are similar to the G43 and therefore engages the retention features of Kydex holsters—I tested half a dozen from various makers, and they all worked. The external dimensions are similar as well, so leather rigs should be no problem. Mossberg has shown some serious savvy by designing the MC1sc to be compatible with the sights, magazines and holsters of other, more established handgun models. In so doing, the company completely sidestepped the requirement of developing an accessory aftermarket, which can be a major barrier for newly introduced firearms. Oh, and did I mention that a version of the MC1sc will also be available pre-equipped with a Viridian trigger guard-mounted red laser? The laser sights will be available separately as well, so those who prefer an additional aiming device, Mossberg’s got you covered on that front.

If you’ve followed along, a picture should be taking shape wherein Mossberg, despite being out of the handgun game for most of the past 100 years, has introduced a very refined personal-defense pistol that is heavily influenced by and, in many ways, similar to its more seasoned competitors. One area where the MC1sc breaks away from the crowd is in its safe disassembly procedure. Rather than incorporating takedown levers or tabs, or requiring the trigger to be pulled during disassembly, Mossberg engineered an entirely different method to improve safety during maintenance. With a cleared gun—magazine removed and chamber checked—users need only lock the slide to the rear, remove the rear slide plate by pressing the integral button and pulling it down and out, and then extract the striker assembly from the rear of the slide (the component is especially hard to miss thanks to its blaze orange polymer shroud).

Mossberg’s method completely removes the mechanical components required to impact a cartridge’s primer, rendering the now-partially disassembled gun inert. How’s that for safe? With the striker assembly removed, simply release the slide assembly and ride it forward off the frame in order to access the barrel, recoil spring assembly and the frame’s internals. The recoil spring, by the way, is a dual-captured assembly—again, a proven design for guns of this size and type.

To introduce the new pistol and put it through its paces, Mossberg chose the tried-and-true approach of inviting a group of gun writers to Paulden, Ariz., to take part in three days of shooting at Gunsite Academy. This venue has seen its share of new product introductions, and has humbled more than a few guns due to the combination of heat, dust and high-volume shooting. The Mossberg representatives may have even questioned their decision to hold the event when, on the morning of Day 1, many of us questioned aloud why the company would ever jump into the compact polymer pistol arena, already convinced its clear magazines wouldn’t survive the week. It was, indeed, a particularly outspoken congregation, most of us having carried a gun for a living, and the remainder being civilian shooters who nonetheless take their pistolcraft seriously.

Our “constructive criticism” wasn’t reserved for Mossberg, either. One evening the group went to a local restaurant for dinner and refreshment. After ordering a bourbon, neat, one attendee—who shall remain nameless—agreed to sample the bartender’s “counter-offer” of a small-batch, craft-style, independently distilled Irish whiskey. The barman regaled us for three or four minutes about the merits of his no-doubt-hipster-infused spirits. Upon taking a sip of the proffered liquor, and with the barkeep leering over his shoulder, the attendee simply said it “Tastes a bit of wet dog,” and politely repeated his order of bourbon, neat. All in all, it was a group that didn’t mince words or hold back opinion. Little did we know that by the end of Day 3 we’d all walk away impressed.

Mossberg’s transparent polymer magazines stood up to the rigors of Gunsite, and they have been reliable throughout testing.

During the event, more than a dozen pistols were shot to the tune of 500 to 1,000 rounds, each—using a mix of American Eagle 115-gr. FMJs and Hornady Critical Duty 135-gr. FlexLocks—and experienced exactly zero stoppages or malfunctions. That’s something I’ve never seen at a Gunsite industry event. We shot steel and paper on the square range at distances of 3 yds. to 50 yds. for accuracy and from the holster for time. We shot our way through outdoor simulators such as Gunsite’s “Donga” course, and fought through shoot houses with frangible ammunition. Frequent NRA Publications contributor Richard Mann even wanted to see if the MC1sc would cycle 9 mm Luger snake-shot loads, a feat very few semi-automatics are capable of—the gun ran perfectly.

And those clear polymer magazines? We abused those things, even tossing them around the range, stepping on them and covering them in sand. They worked just fine. The general category of transparent plastic pistol magazines has earned a dubious reputation due to inconsistent quality from various makers, but Mossberg’s magazines are manufactured to the company’s exacting specifications and have been the model of reliability throughout my testing. One cautionary note, it is easy to squeeze an extra round into some of the magazines, and doing so may affect the pistol’s functionality. Mossberg is aware of this issue and is currently exploring remedies for future production. Until then, please don’t overload your magazines.

Upon returning from the Gunsite event, my testing continued at the NRA Headquarters range with the American Rifleman protocol testing. The protocol includes using three types of ammunition, each of which is chronographed to determine velocity and energy, and accuracy testing is conducted by firing five consecutive, five-shot groups at 7 yds. due to the pistol’s sub-3.5″ barrel and intended role as a concealed defensive arm. I chose to test the gun with Aguila’s 115-gr. FMJ ammunition, which I have found to be an excellent and affordable range load, Hornady’s American Gunner 124-gr. XTP +P load, which is a great all-around cartridge—the MC1sc is rated for use with +P ammunition, but the manual advises against using +P+ loads—and SIG’s 365 115-gr. V-Crown JHP personal-defense ammunition which has been formulated to perform well in short-barreled pistols. The full results of my testing are tabulated nearby, and several sub-1″ groups with the Aguila and Hornady loads confirmed what I’d already learned at Gunsite by ringing 12″ steel at 50 yds.—the MC1sc is a very accurate little gun.

When the smoke clears and the brass has all been swept, I’m interested to see how the market responds to the MC1sc. Afterall, this is a pistol that a company like Mossberg had no business making. This is no rough-around-the-edges pump-action; reliable, yes, but this one is also thoughtfully refined. Common-sense upgrades such as forward slide serrations and magazine cross-compatibility have eluded companies in this market for years, companies that do nothing but build handguns. And if that weren’t enough, true to tradition, Mossberg is going to offer the pistol at an exceedingly reasonable price so that regular guys and gals, the company’s faithful fans, can afford the newest addition. The MSRP on the base model gun is listed at $425, but I’ve seen it advertised by some sellers at less than $350. The folks at Mossberg may have had no business making this gun, but they did, and 100 years on, they’ve managed to put the rest of the market on notice.

Thanks to American Rifleman for this post. Click here to visit AmericanRifleman.org.

Source: The Daily Caller

By Joe Kurtenbach, American Rifleman

For me, Mossberg firearms are epitomized by the dozen or so M500 pump-action shotguns filling a rack in the armory of Comanche Troop, 4/7 CAV, at Camp Hovey, Republic of Korea. I can’t be sure of the guns’ whereabouts today, but they were already well-tenured residents during my rotation to the U.S. Army installation during 2008 and 2009. Used and abused would be an apt description of their service experience. The shotguns had been handled by countless soldiers, shot during familiarization training and qualification fire, and issued often for field exercises during which they would rattle around in the back of a HUMVEE or get strapped to the newest troopers’ packs to be dragged up, down and around Korea’s mountainous terrain. They were tools and were treated as such. And, like the best tools, they were tough, gritty and reliable. No one could say the pump-action assemblies of those guns ever cycled smoothly, but they always cycled.

Mossberg’s newest product, the MC1sc—for Mossberg Carry 1 Subcompact—retains the reliability and utility for which the company is known, but provides an evolved experience compared to classic offerings. Though the trade winds have been, for years now, blowing strongly toward handguns suitable for personal defense and concealed carry, Mossberg has relied upon its sporting- and service-oriented rifles and shotguns, and has won a following of loyal customers through innovative offerings such as the 590 Shockwave pump-action, the AR-magazine-fed MVP series of rifles, and the user-customizable FLEX system of stocks and grips. With longarms currently in use by the military and law enforcement, and a century’s worth of field experience with American sportsman and armed citizens, the rifles and shotguns from North Haven, Conn., and Eagle Pass, Texas, have garnered a strong reputation for quality, reliability and affordability.

Such a company, then, could easily have stumbled when attempting to introduce its first handgun in nearly 100 years. For those who don’t know, Mossberg’s very first commercial firearm was actually a pistol; the 1919 Mossberg Brownie was a four-barreled .22 rimfire intended for use by trappers, though it also found some acceptance as a vest-pocket defensive arm. However, despite the long hiatus from the handgun market, the MC1sc stands as a testament to Mossberg’s heritage of performance and value, and boldly leaps into relevance as one of the most refined concealed handgun offerings in what is now a well-established category. I can only speak for myself, but the MC1sc surprised and impressed me with its aesthetic appeal, excellent ergonomics, unquestionable utility and unwavering reliability. In short, it’s a pistol that Mossberg can be proud of, and it may launch the company into its next hundred years of firearm design and manufacture.

Though most of the MC1sc’s disassembled components are familiar, note the slide’s push-button back plate (arrow) and the orange-shrouded striker assembly. Mossberg’s disassembly method does not require pulling the trigger.

Within the concealed carry market at large, the MC1sc will find itself quite at home, and among good company. It’s no mistake that the new Mossberg bears more than a passing resemblance to category stalwarts such as the Smith & Wesson Shield, Glock 43 and Springfield Armory XD-S. Those pistols have been wildly successful commercial offerings, and the small-frame, single-stack, semi-automatic in 9 mm Luger continues to be a proven winner. Given the success of competitive firearms, it does beg the question as to why Mossberg would choose to take on some of the most popular pistols of the day with its first handgun offering in a century. The answer, according to Mossberg, was based on extensive market research. The company found that despite the plethora of excellent offerings, there is still unmet demand for subcompact pistols in this configuration.

Turning our attention directly to the new Mossberg, it’s useful to examine the pistol independently, and then I’ll clue you in on some very interesting, and largely unadvertised, crossover capabilities. The MC1sc is a striker-fired, recoil-operated center-fire pistol chambered for 9 mm Luger. It uses a 3.4″ barrel of 416 stainless steel that is button-rifled with a six-groove, 1:16″ twist, and features a diamond-like carbon (DLC) finish for increased resistance to wear and fouling. A subcompact both in name and size, the pistol weighs 19 ozs. unloaded, is 6.25″ long and stands 4.3″ tall with the six-round, flush-fitting magazine installed, or 4.75″ with the seven-round extended magazine. Those magazines, by the way, are both “single-stack” in design, but I add the quotation marks because some staggering is readily apparent through their transparent polymer bodies—that’s right, transparent, but more on that later. The MC1sc is also very trim; the slide measures just a hair more than 0.9″ wide, and the widest point on our sample gun was at the slide stop lever where it measured 1.07″ across. 

As one would expect from a new entry in this category, Mossberg opted to use an injection-molded polymer frame. Besides offering advantages in terms of weight savings, durability and reduced manufacturing costs, polymer pistol frames also afford designers a lot of latitude regarding shape, texturing and ergonomics. On the MC1sc, Mossberg took full advantage. The rounded heel paired with the shallow finger grooves yields a comfortable, hand-filling grip despite the slim frame. Two texturing patterns also improve purchase, the front- and backstrap feature vertically aligned ovate windows with stepped, pyramid-like flats—it’s an interesting design. The left and right sides of the frame have areas with a coarser, finely detailed crosshatch pattern. The combination of shape and texturing are very effective for anchoring the gun in the hand.

For all its similarities to the current crop of sub- compact semi-automatics, Mossberg’s MC1sc stands out thanks to features such as: its ergonomic and well-textured grip frame; a fine, 5-lb., flat-faced trigger; its dehorned slide with forward cocking serrations; and dovetailed, steel, three-dot sights (inset).

While on the topic of the frame, it is worth examining the pistol’s controls. My evaluation model featured a left-side-only slide stop lever, a magazine release button that is reversible for right- or left-handed use, and, of course, the trigger, which is of a flat-faced design—a feature increasingly popular as an aftermarket upgrade for competitive pistols—and is equipped with the central blade-style safety lever. There is no manual safety on the test gun, but Mossberg is building versions of the MC1sc equipped with crossbolt safeties which, like the magazine release, are user-reversible for righties and lefties; instructions for reconfiguring the controls can be found in the owner’s manual. Coming back to the trigger, the pistol operates with a striker-fired action so the trigger pull is very consistent shot to shot. Mossberg advertises that the MC1sc exhibits 0.5″ of trigger travel, and that calculation was spot-on for my evaluation sample—0.25″ of take-up followed by a defined break and another 0.25″ of overtravel. Reset comes after just 0.25″ of forward travel—right at the trigger’s breaking point—and is easily distinguished by clear audible and tactile cues. In terms of trigger pull weight, Mossberg advertises 6 lbs. of pressure as the requirement, but the average of 10 pulls with the test gun using a Lyman digital trigger gauge was exactly 5 lbs., and none of the measured pulls were more than +/- 3 ozs. from 5 lbs. It is a very good trigger.

Moving to the top half of the gun, the MC1sc’s slide is also machined from 416 stainless steel and receives the same black DLC finish as the barrel. Angled serrations are present both in the usual rearward location, as well as at the front of the slide. They are actually back-cut, giving each groove an extra bit of bite and providing very positive engagement with the shooter’s fingers. The entire slide has also been dehorned, giving the gun a smooth and polished appearance. Although forward cocking serrations and a thorough dehorning job have long been the specialty of custom gunsmiths, and are oft-sought aftermarket modifications, both features are standard-issue on the Mossberg. Topping the slide are low-profile steel sights. My test pistol’s sights were in the familiar three-white-dot configuration, but Mossberg also offers the gun with TruGlo Tritium Pro night sights. The sights are secured via dovetail cuts in the same pattern as many SIG pistols, so compatible aftermarket options are plentiful and readily available.

Compatibility is one of the standout features of the MC1sc, and it’s not limited to the sights. Too often, in my opinion, we see companies launch new firearm designs that utilize proprietary—and often unproven—magazines, which are a pretty important component when it comes to ammunition storage, feeding and overall gun functionality. Likewise, handguns always bear the added concern of holster fit. Outside of the two or three most popular pistol manufacturers, aftermarket support for a new platform may lag behind the introduction, and may be quite limited in scope and variety. Given that the MC1sc is Mossberg’s first pistol in a century, and considering its use of proprietary magazines, one would be right to worry about aftermarket support.

To disassemble the MC1sc, remove the magazine and ensure that the chamber is clear. Lock the slide to the rear. Next, depress the integral push-button on the rear slide plate (l.) and remove the plate by pulling it downward. With the plate removed, the orange shroud of the striker assembly will be visible (ctr.). Remove the striker assembly by pulling it rearward, out of the slide. Once the striker is removed (r.), release the slide and ease it forward off of the frame in order to access the barrel, recoil spring and internal components.

Fear not.

Even though Mossberg isn’t likely to advertise it, the MC1sc has some serious cross-compatibility with a very popular pistol that should set your mind at ease. Ever heard of Glock’s G43? The MC1sc functions flawlessly with factory Glock G43 magazines. Also, the Mossberg will fit most G43 holsters. Don’t think you can fit a round trigger guard into a square space? Think again; the internal dimensions of the MC1sc’s trigger guard are similar to the G43 and therefore engages the retention features of Kydex holsters—I tested half a dozen from various makers, and they all worked. The external dimensions are similar as well, so leather rigs should be no problem. Mossberg has shown some serious savvy by designing the MC1sc to be compatible with the sights, magazines and holsters of other, more established handgun models. In so doing, the company completely sidestepped the requirement of developing an accessory aftermarket, which can be a major barrier for newly introduced firearms. Oh, and did I mention that a version of the MC1sc will also be available pre-equipped with a Viridian trigger guard-mounted red laser? The laser sights will be available separately as well, so those who prefer an additional aiming device, Mossberg’s got you covered on that front.

If you’ve followed along, a picture should be taking shape wherein Mossberg, despite being out of the handgun game for most of the past 100 years, has introduced a very refined personal-defense pistol that is heavily influenced by and, in many ways, similar to its more seasoned competitors. One area where the MC1sc breaks away from the crowd is in its safe disassembly procedure. Rather than incorporating takedown levers or tabs, or requiring the trigger to be pulled during disassembly, Mossberg engineered an entirely different method to improve safety during maintenance. With a cleared gun—magazine removed and chamber checked—users need only lock the slide to the rear, remove the rear slide plate by pressing the integral button and pulling it down and out, and then extract the striker assembly from the rear of the slide (the component is especially hard to miss thanks to its blaze orange polymer shroud).

Mossberg’s method completely removes the mechanical components required to impact a cartridge’s primer, rendering the now-partially disassembled gun inert. How’s that for safe? With the striker assembly removed, simply release the slide assembly and ride it forward off the frame in order to access the barrel, recoil spring assembly and the frame’s internals. The recoil spring, by the way, is a dual-captured assembly—again, a proven design for guns of this size and type.

To introduce the new pistol and put it through its paces, Mossberg chose the tried-and-true approach of inviting a group of gun writers to Paulden, Ariz., to take part in three days of shooting at Gunsite Academy. This venue has seen its share of new product introductions, and has humbled more than a few guns due to the combination of heat, dust and high-volume shooting. The Mossberg representatives may have even questioned their decision to hold the event when, on the morning of Day 1, many of us questioned aloud why the company would ever jump into the compact polymer pistol arena, already convinced its clear magazines wouldn’t survive the week. It was, indeed, a particularly outspoken congregation, most of us having carried a gun for a living, and the remainder being civilian shooters who nonetheless take their pistolcraft seriously.

Our “constructive criticism” wasn’t reserved for Mossberg, either. One evening the group went to a local restaurant for dinner and refreshment. After ordering a bourbon, neat, one attendee—who shall remain nameless—agreed to sample the bartender’s “counter-offer” of a small-batch, craft-style, independently distilled Irish whiskey. The barman regaled us for three or four minutes about the merits of his no-doubt-hipster-infused spirits. Upon taking a sip of the proffered liquor, and with the barkeep leering over his shoulder, the attendee simply said it “Tastes a bit of wet dog,” and politely repeated his order of bourbon, neat. All in all, it was a group that didn’t mince words or hold back opinion. Little did we know that by the end of Day 3 we’d all walk away impressed.

Mossberg’s transparent polymer magazines stood up to the rigors of Gunsite, and they have been reliable throughout testing.

During the event, more than a dozen pistols were shot to the tune of 500 to 1,000 rounds, each—using a mix of American Eagle 115-gr. FMJs and Hornady Critical Duty 135-gr. FlexLocks—and experienced exactly zero stoppages or malfunctions. That’s something I’ve never seen at a Gunsite industry event. We shot steel and paper on the square range at distances of 3 yds. to 50 yds. for accuracy and from the holster for time. We shot our way through outdoor simulators such as Gunsite’s “Donga” course, and fought through shoot houses with frangible ammunition. Frequent NRA Publications contributor Richard Mann even wanted to see if the MC1sc would cycle 9 mm Luger snake-shot loads, a feat very few semi-automatics are capable of—the gun ran perfectly.

And those clear polymer magazines? We abused those things, even tossing them around the range, stepping on them and covering them in sand. They worked just fine. The general category of transparent plastic pistol magazines has earned a dubious reputation due to inconsistent quality from various makers, but Mossberg’s magazines are manufactured to the company’s exacting specifications and have been the model of reliability throughout my testing. One cautionary note, it is easy to squeeze an extra round into some of the magazines, and doing so may affect the pistol’s functionality. Mossberg is aware of this issue and is currently exploring remedies for future production. Until then, please don’t overload your magazines.

Upon returning from the Gunsite event, my testing continued at the NRA Headquarters range with the American Rifleman protocol testing. The protocol includes using three types of ammunition, each of which is chronographed to determine velocity and energy, and accuracy testing is conducted by firing five consecutive, five-shot groups at 7 yds. due to the pistol’s sub-3.5″ barrel and intended role as a concealed defensive arm. I chose to test the gun with Aguila’s 115-gr. FMJ ammunition, which I have found to be an excellent and affordable range load, Hornady’s American Gunner 124-gr. XTP +P load, which is a great all-around cartridge—the MC1sc is rated for use with +P ammunition, but the manual advises against using +P+ loads—and SIG’s 365 115-gr. V-Crown JHP personal-defense ammunition which has been formulated to perform well in short-barreled pistols. The full results of my testing are tabulated nearby, and several sub-1″ groups with the Aguila and Hornady loads confirmed what I’d already learned at Gunsite by ringing 12″ steel at 50 yds.—the MC1sc is a very accurate little gun.

When the smoke clears and the brass has all been swept, I’m interested to see how the market responds to the MC1sc. Afterall, this is a pistol that a company like Mossberg had no business making. This is no rough-around-the-edges pump-action; reliable, yes, but this one is also thoughtfully refined. Common-sense upgrades such as forward slide serrations and magazine cross-compatibility have eluded companies in this market for years, companies that do nothing but build handguns. And if that weren’t enough, true to tradition, Mossberg is going to offer the pistol at an exceedingly reasonable price so that regular guys and gals, the company’s faithful fans, can afford the newest addition. The MSRP on the base model gun is listed at $425, but I’ve seen it advertised by some sellers at less than $350. The folks at Mossberg may have had no business making this gun, but they did, and 100 years on, they’ve managed to put the rest of the market on notice.

Thanks to American Rifleman for this post. Click here to visit AmericanRifleman.org.

Source: The Daily Caller

Palestinian demonstrators protest at the Israel-Gaza border fence, in the southern Gaza Strip
FILE PHOTO: Palestinian demonstrators protest at the Israel-Gaza border fence, in the southern Gaza Strip March 1, 2019. REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa

March 21, 2019

By Jeffrey Heller

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel said on Thursday a U.N. report critical of its use of lethal force during Palestinian protests on the Gaza border was biased and should have included a demand that the enclave’s dominant Hamas group take action to stop anti-Israeli violence.

A U.N. Commission of Inquiry on the demonstrations, which began nearly a year ago, said this week that Israel should investigate the shootings of more than 6,000 people, far beyond the criminal inquiries it has announced into 11 killings.

Issuing an official response to the commission’s report, Israel said it had “serious concerns about the factual and legal analysis conducted by the commission, its methodologies and the clear evidence of political bias against Israel”.

Gaza health authorities say some 200 people have been killed and thousands injured by Israeli fire since Palestinians launched the protests. One Israeli soldier was shot dead by a Palestinian sniper along the frontier.

Protesters have been demanding the lifting of an Israeli blockade of the territory and a right to return to land from which their ancestors fled or were expelled. Israel has said it has no choice but to use deadly force to defend the frontier.

Addressing the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva on Monday, the inquiry commission’s chairman, Santiago Canton, called on Israel, which boycotted the day-long debate, to review immediately its military’s rules of engagement.

Israel’s response, published on its Foreign Ministry’s website, said the commission’s “bias is most evident in (its) absolute failure … to make recommendations concerning Hamas”.

The militant group, Israel said, sends women, children and others to sabotage the Israeli security fence along the frontier and to act as shields for armed attacks. Balloons and kites have been flown across the border into Israel to start fires.

“If the commission seriously wished to provide an objective report that would contribute towards human rights and the safety of individuals, (it) would have seen fit to demand Hamas take action in the context of these events,” Israel said.

Asked about the Israeli allegations, Sami Abu Zuhri, a Hamas official in Gaza, said “most of those killed were hit hundreds of meters from the fence – evidence that Israeli soldiers had deliberately targeted them”.

A summary accompanying the 252-page report said protest organizers “encouraged or defended demonstrators’ indiscriminate use of incendiary kites and balloons”, and Gaza’s de facto authorities did not stop such acts.

The Human Rights Council, a 47-member forum, is due to vote on Friday on four resolutions related to the occupied Palestinian territories.

European states are divided on the resolutions, including a text related to the Gaza inquiry, with some expected to vote against and others abstaining, diplomats said.

The United States, Israel’s closest ally, quit the Geneva forum last year over what it says is bias against Israel.

Gaza is home to 2 million Palestinians, mainly stateless descendants of people who fled or were driven from Israel on its founding in 1948. Israel captured Gaza in a 1967 war but pulled out troops and settlements in 2005. Hamas took control in 2007.

Since then, Israel has fought three wars against the Islamist group and, along with Egypt, imposed a blockade of the territory that the World Bank says has collapsed its economy.

(Additional reporting by Nidal al-Mughrabi in Gaza and Stephanie Nebehay in Geneva)

Source: OANN

Palestinian demonstrators protest at the Israel-Gaza border fence, in the southern Gaza Strip
FILE PHOTO: Palestinian demonstrators protest at the Israel-Gaza border fence, in the southern Gaza Strip March 1, 2019. REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa

March 21, 2019

By Jeffrey Heller

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel said on Thursday a U.N. report critical of its use of lethal force during Palestinian protests on the Gaza border was biased and should have included a demand that the enclave’s dominant Hamas group take action to stop anti-Israeli violence.

A U.N. Commission of Inquiry on the demonstrations, which began nearly a year ago, said this week that Israel should investigate the shootings of more than 6,000 people, far beyond the criminal inquiries it has announced into 11 killings.

Issuing an official response to the commission’s report, Israel said it had “serious concerns about the factual and legal analysis conducted by the commission, its methodologies and the clear evidence of political bias against Israel”.

Gaza health authorities say some 200 people have been killed and thousands injured by Israeli fire since Palestinians launched the protests. One Israeli soldier was shot dead by a Palestinian sniper along the frontier.

Protesters have been demanding the lifting of an Israeli blockade of the territory and a right to return to land from which their ancestors fled or were expelled. Israel has said it has no choice but to use deadly force to defend the frontier.

Addressing the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva on Monday, the inquiry commission’s chairman, Santiago Canton, called on Israel, which boycotted the day-long debate, to review immediately its military’s rules of engagement.

Israel’s response, published on its Foreign Ministry’s website, said the commission’s “bias is most evident in (its) absolute failure … to make recommendations concerning Hamas”.

The militant group, Israel said, sends women, children and others to sabotage the Israeli security fence along the frontier and to act as shields for armed attacks. Balloons and kites have been flown across the border into Israel to start fires.

“If the commission seriously wished to provide an objective report that would contribute towards human rights and the safety of individuals, (it) would have seen fit to demand Hamas take action in the context of these events,” Israel said.

Asked about the Israeli allegations, Sami Abu Zuhri, a Hamas official in Gaza, said “most of those killed were hit hundreds of meters from the fence – evidence that Israeli soldiers had deliberately targeted them”.

A summary accompanying the 252-page report said protest organizers “encouraged or defended demonstrators’ indiscriminate use of incendiary kites and balloons”, and Gaza’s de facto authorities did not stop such acts.

The Human Rights Council, a 47-member forum, is due to vote on Friday on four resolutions related to the occupied Palestinian territories.

European states are divided on the resolutions, including a text related to the Gaza inquiry, with some expected to vote against and others abstaining, diplomats said.

The United States, Israel’s closest ally, quit the Geneva forum last year over what it says is bias against Israel.

Gaza is home to 2 million Palestinians, mainly stateless descendants of people who fled or were driven from Israel on its founding in 1948. Israel captured Gaza in a 1967 war but pulled out troops and settlements in 2005. Hamas took control in 2007.

Since then, Israel has fought three wars against the Islamist group and, along with Egypt, imposed a blockade of the territory that the World Bank says has collapsed its economy.

(Additional reporting by Nidal al-Mughrabi in Gaza and Stephanie Nebehay in Geneva)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: The Boeing logo is pictured at the LABACE fair in Sao Paulo
FILE PHOTO: The Boeing logo is pictured at the Latin American Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition fair (LABACE) at Congonhas Airport in Sao Paulo, Brazil August 14, 2018. Picture taken August 14, 2018. REUTERS/Paulo Whitaker

March 21, 2019

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Boeing Co will mandate a previously optional cockpit warning light as part of a forthcoming software update to the 737 MAX fleet that was grounded in the wake of two fatal crashes, two officials briefed on the matter said Thursday.

Boeing previously offered the AOA DISAGREE alert, which warns pilots when the “angle of attack” (AOA) readings do not match, but it was not required by regulators. Boeing will now retrofit older planes with the light that did not initially receive it, the officials said. Boeing did not immediately comment Thursday.

There has been a long-running industry debate about how much information should be displayed in the cockpit, notably about the angle at which the wing is slicing through the air.

Federal prosecutors, the Transportation Department’s inspector general and U.S. lawmakers are investigating the Federal Aviation Administration’s certification of the 737 MAX.

The FAA declined to comment on the software upgrade Thursday but said last week it planned to mandate “design changes” coming from Boeing in its software upgrade by April for the 737 MAX.

Indonesia’s Lion Air did not install the warning light. Lion Air Fight 610 crashed in October minutes after takeoff, killing all 189 onboard. The company told Reuters in November it did not install it because it was not required.

The angle is a key flight parameter that must remain narrow enough to preserve lift and avoid an aerodynamic stall. A faulty AOA reading led the doomed Lion Air jet’s computer to believe it was stalled, prompting the plane’s anti-stall system, called the Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS), to repeatedly push down the plane’s nose.

The planemaker has come under fire in the wake of the Lion Air crash for not outlining the automated system, MCAS, in the flight manual for the 737 MAX.

(Reporting by David Shepardson in Washington and Sweta Singh in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Eric Johnson in Seattle; Editing by Nick Zieminski)

Source: OANN

Graeme Gallagher | Contributor

Six people have been killed and 30 are seriously injured after a chemical plant explosion in eastern China on Thursday.

Occurring at around 2:50 p.m. local time, the blast at the Jiangsu Tianjiayi Chemical factory, which produces fertilizer and pesticides, created a fireball and billowing clouds over the industrial park area in Yancheng, Jiangsu, province, according to BBC.

Damaging further buildings in the radius, the explosion is believed to have caused a 2.2-magnitude earthquake that was recorded by China’s earthquake administration at the same time as the factory erupted.

Videos and images of the deadly explosion have surfaced social media. (RELATED: Multiple Fatalities After Explosion Devastates Kindergarten In China)

Shockwaves from the explosion shattered nearby windows of residential buildings and destroyed cars, injuring many through flying debris. Children are among those injured as online maps show 10 schools are within the 5K radius of the explosion.

“Workers were trapped after buildings were knocked down by the shock wave, which also shattered windows of nearby homes,” reported state-run news agency Xinhua. “Witnesses said many workers were seen running out of the factory covered in blood after the blast.”

A total of 176 fire trucks and 928 firefights have been sent to the site for rescue operations and to combat the ongoing flames from the blast. (RELATED: China Backs Venezuela’s Claim That Blackout Is Result Of U.S. Sabotage, Offers Help)

Paramilitary police officers and a medical staff transfer an injuried man as smoke rises from an explosion site behind them in Yancheng in China's eastern Jiangsu province on March 21, 2019. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

Paramilitary police officers and a medical staff transfer an injuried man as smoke rises from an explosion site behind them in Yancheng in China’s eastern Jiangsu province on March 21, 2019. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

The chemical company, Tianjiayi Chemical, was founded in 2007 and was listed by the State Administration of Work Safety to have had 13 safety problems, including a lack of safety training among management, at the plant. In addition, the company has received past punishments for “failures regarding solid waste management, environmental impact assessments and air pollution,” according to the South China Morning Post.

Industrial accidents have become prevalent in the East Asian country, as poor safety regulations have led to past factory explosions.

Two massive explosions, linked to haphazard management of explosive materials and poor regulations, in the port of Tianjin killed more than 160 people in 2015. Similarly, another explosive, due to problems in their safety management systems, in the Hebei province, near Beijing, killed 23 people last year.

Source: The Daily Caller

Rescue workers are seen near smoke following an explosion at a chemical industrial park in Xiangshui
Rescue workers are seen near smoke following an explosion at a chemical industrial park in Xiangshui county, Yancheng, Jiangsu province, China March 21, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer

March 21, 2019

BEIJING (Reuters) – An explosion at an industrial park in eastern China killed six people on Thursday and seriously injured 30, authorities and state media said.

Rescue efforts were going on, authorities in the city of Yancheng, in Jiangsu province, said in a statement. State media said authorities were investigating the cause of the blast.

Video footage and images on state media showed a fire and shattered windows in nearby buildings.

Among the injured were children at a kindergarten near the industrial park, state media said.

Public anger over safety standards has grown in China over industrial accidents ranging from mining disasters to factory fires that have marred three decades of swift economic growth.

(Reporting by Se Young Lee and Min Zhang; Editing by Robert Birsel)

Source: OANN

Rescue workers are seen near smoke following an explosion at a chemical industrial park in Xiangshui
Rescue workers are seen near smoke following an explosion at a chemical industrial park in Xiangshui county, Yancheng, Jiangsu province, China March 21, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer

March 21, 2019

BEIJING (Reuters) – An explosion at an industrial park in eastern China killed six people on Thursday and seriously injured 30, authorities and state media said.

Rescue efforts were going on, authorities in the city of Yancheng, in Jiangsu province, said in a statement. State media said authorities were investigating the cause of the blast.

Video footage and images on state media showed a fire and shattered windows in nearby buildings.

Among the injured were children at a kindergarten near the industrial park, state media said.

Public anger over safety standards has grown in China over industrial accidents ranging from mining disasters to factory fires that have marred three decades of swift economic growth.

(Reporting by Se Young Lee and Min Zhang; Editing by Robert Birsel)

Source: OANN

A sign marks a Biogen facility in Cambridge
FILE PHOTO: A sign marks a Biogen facility in Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S. January 26, 2017. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

March 21, 2019

(Reuters) – Biogen and partner Eisai Co Ltd are ending two late-stage trials testing an Alzheimer’s drug, they said Thursday, marking the latest setback for an industry keen to develop treatments for the memory-robbing disease.

Shares in Biogen slid 25 percent to $81.60 in premarket trading.

The decision to discontinue the trials testing drug aducanumab was made after an independent data monitoring committee reported the drug was unlikely to be successful, the companies said. The recommendation was not based on safety concerns, they added.

After dozens of experimental Alzheimer’s drugs have failed in the recent past, there is a desperate need for a treatment that works.

The disease is the most common form of dementia that affects nearly 50 million people worldwide and is expected to rise to more than 131 million by 2050, according to Alzheimer’s Disease International.

Biogen said it would continue to develop other treatments for Alzheimer’s.

“This disappointing news confirms the complexity of treating Alzheimer’s disease and the need to further advance knowledge in neuroscience,” Biogen Chief Executive Officer Michel Vounatsos said.

“We will continue advancing our pipeline of potential therapies in Alzheimer’s disease.”

The companies, however, for now will also discontinue a mid-stage study and a long-term extension study of aducanumab.

(Reporting by Tamara Mathias in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: An American Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 8 flight approaches for landing at Reagan National Airport in Washington
FILE PHOTO: An American Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 8 flight from Los Angeles approaches for landing at Reagan National Airport shortly after an announcement was made by the FAA that the planes were being grounded by the United States in Washington, U.S. March 13, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts/File Photo

March 21, 2019

By Tracy Rucinski and Jamie Freed

CHICAGO/SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Pressure mounted on Boeing Co in Washington as U.S. lawmakers called for executives to testify about two crashed 737 MAX jets, even as the world’s biggest planemaker worked to return the grounded fleet to the skies.

A Senate panel plans to schedule a hearing with Boeing at an unspecified date, officials said, the first time a U.S. congressional committee has called the company’s executives to appear for questioning over the crashes.

The same panel, the Senate Commerce subcommittee on aviation and space, will also question FAA officials on March 27, likely about why the regulator agreed to certify the MAX planes in March 2017 without requiring extensive additional training.

The Ethiopian Airlines crash on March 10 that killed all 157 on board has set off one of the widest investigations in aviation history. Initial reports from investigators say there are clear similarities between the crash and the Lion Air accident that killed all 189 crew and passengers in November.

While no direct link has yet been established, the MCAS flight control software and related pilot training are at the center of the investigation, and U.S. lawmakers are questioning the Federal Aviation Administration’s certification of MAX’s safety.

Boeing has promised a swift update to the MCAS, and the FAA said the installation of new software and related training was a priority.

However, extra computer-based training will be required after the software update, the pilot union of MAX’s biggest customer, Southwest Airlines Co, said on Wednesday, becoming the first major airline union to comment.

Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association said it had previewed the proposed Boeing training, including a required test, which would be mandatory for Southwest pilots before flying the 737 MAX again.

A Boeing spokeswoman said training on the software update would be provided by the manufacturer, but declined to disclose further details.

Regulators in Europe and Canada have said, however, they will seek their own guarantees of the MAX’s safety.

MOUNTING SCRUTINY

The Ethiopian Airlines crash has shaken the global aviation industry and cast a shadow over the Boeing model intended to be a standard for decades to come.

Investigators examining the Lion Air crash are weighing how the MCAS system ordered the plane to dive in response to data from a faulty sensor and whether the pilots had enough training to respond appropriately to the emergency, among other factors.

MCAS is meant to prevent a loss of lift which can cause an aerodynamic stall and send the plane downwards in an uncontrolled way.

The pilots of the doomed Lion Air flight scrambled through a handbook to understand why the jet was lurching downwards in the final minutes before it hit the water, three people with knowledge of the cockpit voice recorder contents said.

Indonesian investigators have said the cockpit voice recorder information was leaked to the media and they plan to hold a news conference at 0830 GMT on Thursday.

Boeing has said there was a documented procedure to handle the problem.

The company was sued on Wednesday in federal court in Chicago by the estate of one of the Lion Air crash victims in which the plaintiffs referred to the Ethiopian crash to support a wrongful death claim against the company.

A Boeing spokesman said the company does not respond to, or comment on, questions concerning legal matters.

The Seattle Times reported the Federal Bureau of Investigation was joining the investigation into the MAX’s certification. An FBI spokeswoman in Seattle would neither confirm nor deny that it was a part of any investigation.

Criminal prosecutors at the U.S. Justice Department, who are also investigating the FAA’s oversight of Boeing, have issued multiple subpoenas to Boeing, CNN reported, citing sources briefed on the matter.

Bloomberg said U.S. officials started investigating the FAA’s approval of the MAX software linked to the Lion Air plane crash last year within weeks after the accident, citing people familiar with the matter.

The Pentagon Inspector General said it would investigate a complaint that Acting U.S. Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan, a former Boeing executive, violated ethical rules by allegedly promoting Boeing while in office.

Facing high-profile scrutiny, Boeing reshuffled executives in its commercial airplanes unit to focus on its response.

FINAL MOMENTS

Before the Lion Air flight crashed, sources told Reuters the Indian-born captain, aged 31, was quiet, while the Indonesian officer, 41, said “Allahu Akbar”, or “God is greatest”.

A different crew on the same plane the previous evening had the same situation but resolved it after running through three checklists, though they did not pass on the information to the doomed Indonesian crew, a preliminary report in November said.

As with the Indonesia flight, the Ethiopian crew radioed about control problems shortly after take-off and sought to turn back. Ethiopia’s civil aviation head Wosenyeleh Hunegnaw said he expected a report on the investigation within 30 days.

For now, more than 350 MAX aircraft are grounded, and deliveries of nearly 5,000, worth more than $500 billion, are on hold. Boeing’s shares have fallen 11 percent since the Ethiopian Airlines crash, wiping $26 billion from its market value.

(For a graphic on ‘Boeing 737 Max deliveries in question’ click https://tmsnrt.rs/2Hv2btC)

(For a graphic on ‘Ethiopian Airlines crash and black boxes’ click https://tmsnrt.rs/2ChBW5M)

(Reporting by Tracy Rucinski in Chicago and Jamie Freed in Singapore; Additional reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru, Maggie Fick and Jason Neely in Addis Ababa, David Shepardson in Washington, Tim Hepher in Paris, Jonathan Stempel in New York, David Ljunggren in Ottawa, Cindy Silviana in Jakarta, Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; Writing by Sayantani Ghosh; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)

Source: OANN

Matt M. Miller | Contributor

Pro-choice students at the University of Michigan were caught on video Friday allegedly vandalizing a pro-life display created by the Students for Life organization.

Though Students for Life had the university’s permission to set up their display, a women with purple hair and a black trench coat—along with several others—proceeded to collect pink crosses that were stuck in the ground. The display was comprised of 1,000 pink crosses, that were arranged at 9 a.m. Friday.

The video shows them putting the crosses in trash bags and claiming that they were “just cleaning up garbage on the school’s campus,” when confronted by Students For Life organizers. (RELATED: New York Passes Bill On Roe v. Wade Anniversary Casting Abortion As A Woman’s Right)

The pink crosses were a part of Students For Life’s #PlannedParenthoodTruth Tour, in which the pro-life organization tours college campuses to spread the word about “Planned Parenthood’s poor track record on helping women,” according to the Students for Life website.

At around 12:50 p.m., Kaylena Wiederhold, Students for Life’s Michigan regional coordinator, approached the people who were vandalizing the arrangement, asking why they were stealing Students for Life’s property. (RELATED: Supreme Court Legalized Abortion 46 Years Ago. Here’s A Look At Abortion Across The US)

“Is there a reason why you’re doing this?” Wiederhold asked the purple-haired girl.

“Because we disagree with it,” she said plainly.

She then continues to contest the fact that the crosses in the display are Students for Life’s property, refusing to stop throwing them away.

She only complies after being instructed by campus police to stop what she is doing and return the crosses to Students for Life. In response, she dumps her trash bag full of crosses on the ground and walked away, refusing to put the crosses back where she found them.

Source: The Daily Caller

Matt M. Miller | Contributor

Pro-choice students at the University of Michigan were caught on video Friday allegedly vandalizing a pro-life display created by the Students for Life organization.

Though Students for Life had the university’s permission to set up their display, a women with purple hair and a black trench coat—along with several others—proceeded to collect pink crosses that were stuck in the ground. The display was comprised of 1,000 pink crosses, that were arranged at 9 a.m. Friday.

The video shows them putting the crosses in trash bags and claiming that they were “just cleaning up garbage on the school’s campus,” when confronted by Students For Life organizers. (RELATED: New York Passes Bill On Roe v. Wade Anniversary Casting Abortion As A Woman’s Right)

The pink crosses were a part of Students For Life’s #PlannedParenthoodTruth Tour, in which the pro-life organization tours college campuses to spread the word about “Planned Parenthood’s poor track record on helping women,” according to the Students for Life website.

At around 12:50 p.m., Kaylena Wiederhold, Students for Life’s Michigan regional coordinator, approached the people who were vandalizing the arrangement, asking why they were stealing Students for Life’s property. (RELATED: Supreme Court Legalized Abortion 46 Years Ago. Here’s A Look At Abortion Across The US)

“Is there a reason why you’re doing this?” Wiederhold asked the purple-haired girl.

“Because we disagree with it,” she said plainly.

She then continues to contest the fact that the crosses in the display are Students for Life’s property, refusing to stop throwing them away.

She only complies after being instructed by campus police to stop what she is doing and return the crosses to Students for Life. In response, she dumps her trash bag full of crosses on the ground and walked away, refusing to put the crosses back where she found them.

Source: The Daily Caller

FILE PHOTO: Werner Baumann, CEO of Bayer AG poses for a picture during the annual results news conference of the German drugmaker in Leverkusen
FILE PHOTO: Werner Baumann, CEO of Bayer AG poses for a picture during the annual results news conference of the German drugmaker in Leverkusen, Germany February 27, 2019. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay/File Photo

March 20, 2019

By Tina Bellon

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Bayer AG had hoped a new trial strategy focusing jurors on scientific evidence could stem a burgeoning tide of U.S. lawsuits over its glyphosate-based weed killer Roundup, but a second jury finding on Tuesday that the product caused cancer has narrowed the company’s options, some legal experts said.

Bayer shares tumbled more than 12 percent on Wednesday after a unanimous jury in San Francisco federal court found Roundup to be a “substantial factor” in causing California resident Edwin Hardeman’s non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

The jury decision was a blow to Bayer after the judge in the Hardeman case, at the company’s request, had split the trial, severely limiting evidence plaintiffs could present in the first phase. Tuesday’s defeat on terms considered advantageous to Bayer sets up the second phase to be even tougher and limits the grounds on which the company could appeal any final verdict, the experts said.

“The fact that Bayer lost this trial despite it being set up in the most favorable way for them is a huge setback,” said Thomas Rohback, a Connecticut-based defense lawyer.

Bayer in a statement on Tuesday said it stood behind the safety of Roundup and was confident the evidence in the second trial phase would show that Monsanto’s conduct was appropriate and the company not liable for Hardeman’s cancer.

The company, which bought Monsanto last year, on Wednesday declined to comment beyond that statement.

Tuesday’s finding did not address liability, which will be determined following the second trial phase that began on Wednesday.

Bayer denies glyphosate or Roundup cause cancer. The German company faces more than 11,200 lawsuits over the popular weed killer. Last August, following the first Roundup trial, a California state court jury issued a $289 million verdict against the company.

Two weeks after that verdict, which was later reduced to $78 million and is being appealed, Bayer Chief Executive Werner Baumann reassured analysts that the company had a new legal strategy based on focusing jurors on the scientific evidence.

“Bayer and the joint litigation team are working to ensure that, going forward, this overwhelming science will get the full consideration it deserves,” Baumann said in an Aug. 23 conference call.

A LOT AT STAKE

There is a lot at stake for Bayer, which acquired Roundup maker Monsanto last year for $63 billion. Though Bayer does not break out sales figures for Roundup, glyphosate is the world’s most widely used weed killer, and Roundup is the leading brand.

Bayer’s new strategy was focused on keeping out plaintiffs’ allegations that the company improperly influenced scientists, regulators and the public about the safety of Roundup. Bayer has denied it acted inappropriately and said in public statements following the August verdict that it thought the jury was inflamed by the claims of corporate misconduct.

Vince Chhabria, the San Francisco federal judge overseeing the Hardeman case, agreed with the company’s argument that such evidence was a “distraction” from the scientific question of whether glyphosate causes cancer. He agreed to split the trial in a January order.

Had Bayer had won the first phase, there would have been no second phase looking at company liability. Now that it has lost, almost all of the previously excluded evidence can be presented to the jury.

Plaintiffs’ lawyers hit Bayer with those allegations in their opening statements for the second phase on Wednesday. Aimee Wagstaff, one of Hardeman’s lawyers, said Monsanto influenced the science around Roundup through its “cozy” relationship with regulators.

Bayer could convince the jury in the second phase that, despite their finding that Roundup played a substantial role in Hardeman’s cancer, the company was not liable. Experts said that was unlikely.

“They could present evidence of how careful they were in developing Roundup, but that’s an uphill battle given that the scientific evidence was their strongest argument,” said Alexandra Lahav, a law professor at the University of Connecticut.

A lawyer for Bayer on Wednesday argued that Bayer could not be held liable because the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as well as other regulators worldwide, approved Roundup without a cancer warning.

If the Hardeman trial had not been split and a final verdict went against Bayer, the company might have been able to appeal any damages award to the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals by claiming the jury had been improperly swayed by inflammatory evidence, said Lori Jarvis, a Virginia-based mass tort defense lawyer. That argument will now be difficult to make.

“It would not be surprising at all for the 9th Circuit to uphold what the jury did in this case, particularly given the great effort Chhabria put into creating a level playing field for Monsanto,” Jarvis said.

Some lawyers said Bayer could still argue on appeal that plaintiffs’ experts and their scientific evidence were insufficient and statistically invalid and should not have been admitted at trial. But they noted the 9th Circuit, which oversees the San Francisco federal court, has generally been permissive in allowing expert testimony.

However, experts said it was probably too soon to write off Bayer’s legal strategy, noting future Roundup cases could result in different outcomes.

“It’s a relatively early phase in this litigation as a whole and we just need to see more trials to understand Bayer’s liability,” said Adam Zimmerman, a law professor at Los Angeles-based Loyola Law School.

(Reporting by Tina Bellon; Editing by Anthony Lin and Bill Berkrot)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Werner Baumann, CEO of Bayer AG poses for a picture during the annual results news conference of the German drugmaker in Leverkusen
FILE PHOTO: Werner Baumann, CEO of Bayer AG poses for a picture during the annual results news conference of the German drugmaker in Leverkusen, Germany February 27, 2019. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay/File Photo

March 20, 2019

By Tina Bellon

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Bayer AG had hoped a new trial strategy focusing jurors on scientific evidence could stem a burgeoning tide of U.S. lawsuits over its glyphosate-based weed killer Roundup, but a second jury finding on Tuesday that the product caused cancer has narrowed the company’s options, some legal experts said.

Bayer shares tumbled more than 12 percent on Wednesday after a unanimous jury in San Francisco federal court found Roundup to be a “substantial factor” in causing California resident Edwin Hardeman’s non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

The jury decision was a blow to Bayer after the judge in the Hardeman case, at the company’s request, had split the trial, severely limiting evidence plaintiffs could present in the first phase. Tuesday’s defeat on terms considered advantageous to Bayer sets up the second phase to be even tougher and limits the grounds on which the company could appeal any final verdict, the experts said.

“The fact that Bayer lost this trial despite it being set up in the most favorable way for them is a huge setback,” said Thomas Rohback, a Connecticut-based defense lawyer.

Bayer in a statement on Tuesday said it stood behind the safety of Roundup and was confident the evidence in the second trial phase would show that Monsanto’s conduct was appropriate and the company not liable for Hardeman’s cancer.

The company, which bought Monsanto last year, on Wednesday declined to comment beyond that statement.

Tuesday’s finding did not address liability, which will be determined following the second trial phase that began on Wednesday.

Bayer denies glyphosate or Roundup cause cancer. The German company faces more than 11,200 lawsuits over the popular weed killer. Last August, following the first Roundup trial, a California state court jury issued a $289 million verdict against the company.

Two weeks after that verdict, which was later reduced to $78 million and is being appealed, Bayer Chief Executive Werner Baumann reassured analysts that the company had a new legal strategy based on focusing jurors on the scientific evidence.

“Bayer and the joint litigation team are working to ensure that, going forward, this overwhelming science will get the full consideration it deserves,” Baumann said in an Aug. 23 conference call.

A LOT AT STAKE

There is a lot at stake for Bayer, which acquired Roundup maker Monsanto last year for $63 billion. Though Bayer does not break out sales figures for Roundup, glyphosate is the world’s most widely used weed killer, and Roundup is the leading brand.

Bayer’s new strategy was focused on keeping out plaintiffs’ allegations that the company improperly influenced scientists, regulators and the public about the safety of Roundup. Bayer has denied it acted inappropriately and said in public statements following the August verdict that it thought the jury was inflamed by the claims of corporate misconduct.

Vince Chhabria, the San Francisco federal judge overseeing the Hardeman case, agreed with the company’s argument that such evidence was a “distraction” from the scientific question of whether glyphosate causes cancer. He agreed to split the trial in a January order.

Had Bayer had won the first phase, there would have been no second phase looking at company liability. Now that it has lost, almost all of the previously excluded evidence can be presented to the jury.

Plaintiffs’ lawyers hit Bayer with those allegations in their opening statements for the second phase on Wednesday. Aimee Wagstaff, one of Hardeman’s lawyers, said Monsanto influenced the science around Roundup through its “cozy” relationship with regulators.

Bayer could convince the jury in the second phase that, despite their finding that Roundup played a substantial role in Hardeman’s cancer, the company was not liable. Experts said that was unlikely.

“They could present evidence of how careful they were in developing Roundup, but that’s an uphill battle given that the scientific evidence was their strongest argument,” said Alexandra Lahav, a law professor at the University of Connecticut.

A lawyer for Bayer on Wednesday argued that Bayer could not be held liable because the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as well as other regulators worldwide, approved Roundup without a cancer warning.

If the Hardeman trial had not been split and a final verdict went against Bayer, the company might have been able to appeal any damages award to the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals by claiming the jury had been improperly swayed by inflammatory evidence, said Lori Jarvis, a Virginia-based mass tort defense lawyer. That argument will now be difficult to make.

“It would not be surprising at all for the 9th Circuit to uphold what the jury did in this case, particularly given the great effort Chhabria put into creating a level playing field for Monsanto,” Jarvis said.

Some lawyers said Bayer could still argue on appeal that plaintiffs’ experts and their scientific evidence were insufficient and statistically invalid and should not have been admitted at trial. But they noted the 9th Circuit, which oversees the San Francisco federal court, has generally been permissive in allowing expert testimony.

However, experts said it was probably too soon to write off Bayer’s legal strategy, noting future Roundup cases could result in different outcomes.

“It’s a relatively early phase in this litigation as a whole and we just need to see more trials to understand Bayer’s liability,” said Adam Zimmerman, a law professor at Los Angeles-based Loyola Law School.

(Reporting by Tina Bellon; Editing by Anthony Lin and Bill Berkrot)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Werner Baumann, CEO of Bayer AG poses for a picture during the annual results news conference of the German drugmaker in Leverkusen
FILE PHOTO: Werner Baumann, CEO of Bayer AG poses for a picture during the annual results news conference of the German drugmaker in Leverkusen, Germany February 27, 2019. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay/File Photo

March 20, 2019

By Tina Bellon

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Bayer AG had hoped a new trial strategy focusing jurors on scientific evidence could stem a burgeoning tide of U.S. lawsuits over its glyphosate-based weed killer Roundup, but a second jury finding on Tuesday that the product caused cancer has narrowed the company’s options, some legal experts said.

Bayer shares tumbled more than 12 percent on Wednesday after a unanimous jury in San Francisco federal court found Roundup to be a “substantial factor” in causing California resident Edwin Hardeman’s non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

The jury decision was a blow to Bayer after the judge in the Hardeman case, at the company’s request, had split the trial, severely limiting evidence plaintiffs could present in the first phase. Tuesday’s defeat on terms considered advantageous to Bayer sets up the second phase to be even tougher and limits the grounds on which the company could appeal any final verdict, the experts said.

“The fact that Bayer lost this trial despite it being set up in the most favorable way for them is a huge setback,” said Thomas Rohback, a Connecticut-based defense lawyer.

Bayer in a statement on Tuesday said it stood behind the safety of Roundup and was confident the evidence in the second trial phase would show that Monsanto’s conduct was appropriate and the company not liable for Hardeman’s cancer.

The company, which bought Monsanto last year, on Wednesday declined to comment beyond that statement.

Tuesday’s finding did not address liability, which will be determined following the second trial phase that began on Wednesday.

Bayer denies glyphosate or Roundup cause cancer. The German company faces more than 11,200 lawsuits over the popular weed killer. Last August, following the first Roundup trial, a California state court jury issued a $289 million verdict against the company.

Two weeks after that verdict, which was later reduced to $78 million and is being appealed, Bayer Chief Executive Werner Baumann reassured analysts that the company had a new legal strategy based on focusing jurors on the scientific evidence.

“Bayer and the joint litigation team are working to ensure that, going forward, this overwhelming science will get the full consideration it deserves,” Baumann said in an Aug. 23 conference call.

A LOT AT STAKE

There is a lot at stake for Bayer, which acquired Roundup maker Monsanto last year for $63 billion. Though Bayer does not break out sales figures for Roundup, glyphosate is the world’s most widely used weed killer, and Roundup is the leading brand.

Bayer’s new strategy was focused on keeping out plaintiffs’ allegations that the company improperly influenced scientists, regulators and the public about the safety of Roundup. Bayer has denied it acted inappropriately and said in public statements following the August verdict that it thought the jury was inflamed by the claims of corporate misconduct.

Vince Chhabria, the San Francisco federal judge overseeing the Hardeman case, agreed with the company’s argument that such evidence was a “distraction” from the scientific question of whether glyphosate causes cancer. He agreed to split the trial in a January order.

Had Bayer had won the first phase, there would have been no second phase looking at company liability. Now that it has lost, almost all of the previously excluded evidence can be presented to the jury.

Plaintiffs’ lawyers hit Bayer with those allegations in their opening statements for the second phase on Wednesday. Aimee Wagstaff, one of Hardeman’s lawyers, said Monsanto influenced the science around Roundup through its “cozy” relationship with regulators.

Bayer could convince the jury in the second phase that, despite their finding that Roundup played a substantial role in Hardeman’s cancer, the company was not liable. Experts said that was unlikely.

“They could present evidence of how careful they were in developing Roundup, but that’s an uphill battle given that the scientific evidence was their strongest argument,” said Alexandra Lahav, a law professor at the University of Connecticut.

A lawyer for Bayer on Wednesday argued that Bayer could not be held liable because the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as well as other regulators worldwide, approved Roundup without a cancer warning.

If the Hardeman trial had not been split and a final verdict went against Bayer, the company might have been able to appeal any damages award to the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals by claiming the jury had been improperly swayed by inflammatory evidence, said Lori Jarvis, a Virginia-based mass tort defense lawyer. That argument will now be difficult to make.

“It would not be surprising at all for the 9th Circuit to uphold what the jury did in this case, particularly given the great effort Chhabria put into creating a level playing field for Monsanto,” Jarvis said.

Some lawyers said Bayer could still argue on appeal that plaintiffs’ experts and their scientific evidence were insufficient and statistically invalid and should not have been admitted at trial. But they noted the 9th Circuit, which oversees the San Francisco federal court, has generally been permissive in allowing expert testimony.

However, experts said it was probably too soon to write off Bayer’s legal strategy, noting future Roundup cases could result in different outcomes.

“It’s a relatively early phase in this litigation as a whole and we just need to see more trials to understand Bayer’s liability,” said Adam Zimmerman, a law professor at Los Angeles-based Loyola Law School.

(Reporting by Tina Bellon; Editing by Anthony Lin and Bill Berkrot)

Source: OANN

Whitney Tipton | Contributor

The Trump administration announced Tuesday it would no longer detain select migrant families who illegally cross the border in the Texas Rio Grande Valley.

The change is a result of crowded detention facilities, according to The Wall Street Journal, and represents a reversal of the administration’s previous commitment to end “catch-and-release” practices, calling for “catch-and-detain” instead. (RELATED: ICE Officers Giving Up On Trump Over Catch And Release)

WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 11: Honduran asylum seeker Sandra Sanchez adjusts the coat of her daughter Yanela Sanchez, 2 1/2, in the basement apartment they share with fellow immigrants on February 11, 2019 in the greater Washington D.C. area. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON, DC – FEBRUARY 11: Honduran asylum seeker Sandra Sanchez adjusts the coat of her daughter Yanela Sanchez, 2 1/2, in the basement apartment they share with fellow immigrants on February 11, 2019 in the greater Washington D.C. area. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

The administration has struggled to manage the recent surge in illegal crossings and detention facilities have been pushed to occupancy limits. Additionally, immigration officials have come under fire for safety issues, including the December 2018 deaths of two Guatemalan children in custody.

The policy means Border Patrol agents will release hundreds of families instead of transferring them to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement for detention. Not all families will be released, the numbers of which will be determined by actual facility populations.

Those released by the Border Patrol will be given notices to appear, which orders them to report at a later date to immigration authorities for asylum requests or deportation. Families are allowed to live in the U.S. while waiting for the asylum process.

The Rio Grande Valley has produced 42 percent of the 136,000 arrests made for illegal border crossings nationally. Migrants are largely from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. Families with children are currently permitted 20 days in one of three family detention centers, which hold thousands of people.

Follow Whitney on Twitter

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact [email protected].

Source: The Daily Caller

Amber Athey | White House Correspondent

Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke has fascinated the public with his love of standing on restaurant counters, but little attention has been paid to the unsung heroes of O’Rourke’s campaign — the baristas and bartenders forced to wipe down the counters after the former congressman’s departure.

O’Rourke, who has kicked off his campaign by visiting various small businesses in Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan, has generated jokes and memes about his constant need to address crowds from atop an elevated surface. Politicos and verified Twitter users have opined on the cleanliness — or lack thereof — of O’Rourke’s dirty shoes trampling the same surface used to serve customers. (RELATED: On The Road Again — Beto Takes Road Trip To Meet America)

“People from cultures where shoes are considered very dirty and not worthy of being in the house get grossed out when politicians walk all over counters,” journalist Yashar Ali tweeted.

Dan O’Sullivan, who has written for Vice and Rolling Stone, expressed sympathy for the employees who have to “disinfect the counter after Beto hops his stupid horse body up on top of it.”

Employees at the coffee shops and bars visited by O’Rourke on the campaign trail did have to wipe down the counters after the candidate’s countertop speeches, according to four people who spoke to The Daily Caller.

Suann Wells, the owner of Beancounter Coffeehouse & Drinkery in Burlington, Iowa, somewhat proudly told the Caller that “he started that here,” referencing O’Rourke’s infamous counter-hopping.

Suann asserted that “of course” an employee cleaned the counter, adding that “in [O’Rourke’s] defense, it was very crowded.”

An unnamed employee who answered the phone at Central Park Coffee in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, similarly said “of course” when asked if the counters were cleaned off after O’Rourke’s visit on Friday but declined to comment further about the politician’s visit.

MOUNT PLEASANT, IOWA - MARCH 15: Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke stands on a counter top as he talks with voters during his second day of campaigning for the 2020 nomination at Central Park Coffee Company March 15, 2019 in Mount Pleasant, Iowa. After losing a long-shot race for U.S. Senate to Ted Cruz (R-TX), the 46-year-old O'Rourke is making his first campaign swing through Iowa after jumping into a crowded Democratic field this week. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

MOUNT PLEASANT, IOWA – MARCH 15: Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke stands on a counter top as he talks with voters during his second day of campaigning for the 2020 nomination at Central Park Coffee Company March 15, 2019 in Mount Pleasant, Iowa. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

O’Rourke made another stop in Iowa to the Sing-A-Long Bar and Grill, where he ditched the coffee counter for a spot next to the register by the bar. Annette from Sing-A-Long told the Caller that they offered O’Rourke a step stool to ease his climb to the counter, which an employee later cleaned with sanitizer.

“We brought out a step stool to make sure he was safe,” she explained.

MOUNT VERNON, IOWA - MARCH 15: Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke answers questions from voters during his second day of campaigning for the 2020 nomination at The Sing-A-Long Bar and Grill March 15, 2019 in Mount Vernon, Iowa. After losing a long-shot race for U.S. Senate to Ted Cruz (R-TX), the 46-year-old O'Rourke is making his first campaign swing through Iowa after jumping into a crowded Democratic field this week. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

MOUNT VERNON, IOWA – MARCH 15: Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke answers questions from voters during his second day of campaigning for the 2020 nomination at The Sing-A-Long Bar and Grill March 15, 2019 in Mount Vernon, Iowa. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

An unnamed employee at Cargo Coffee in Madison, Wisconsin, explained that normally employees at the shop would use “a sanitizer that is still safe for humans to ingest” on dirty countertops, but they took extra steps to ensure cleanliness after O’Rourke’s Sunday visit.

Photos only show O’Rourke standing on a chair at Cargo Coffee, but the employee said O’Rourke stood on the counter as well.

“Yes, we made sure the counter was clean,” she told the Caller. “This time, we used bleach because his feet were on it.”

Interviews with Suann and Annette revealed that O’Rourke does have at least one healthy habit: asking for permission.

“The crowd was so deep that no one could see him,” Suann said. “His staffer asked if he could [get up on the counter].”

Annette said, “He definitely asked for permission.”

Baristas from other establishments told The Daily Beast that they would prefer O’Rourke stay off their counters if he happens to visit, noting the potential sanitary and safety issues.

“I would understand standing on the counter because the crowd was so big, although organizing it would be better. But he’s kneeled down. It seems like a photo op that wasn’t necessary. His feet are right by the cups,” Josh Wilson, owner of Cohesive Coffee in Greenville, South Carolina, said.

Connor Finnegan, who manages a coffee shop in Brooklyn, New York, said he would not allow O’Rourke to stand on his counter.

“He can be heard and seen perfectly well standing on the ground,” Finnegan said.

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Source: The Daily Caller

Graeme Gallagher | Contributor

Kenyan police and detectives seized a personal safety deposit box containing more than $20 million in counterfeit money Tuesday, according to CNN.

Made up of fake $100 dollar bills, the deposit box was reportedly found at a Barclays Bank branch in Nairobi, the nation’s capital.

“Six people were arrested … by DCI detectives in connection with fake currency amounting slightly over $20 million at Barclays Kenya Queensway Branch,” said Kenya’s Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) in a statement on Twitter. (RELATED: First Lady Melania Trump Visits Children In Nairobi, Kenya)

Among those arrested was the owner of the deposit box, Erick Adede, and two bank officials, Boaz Ochich and Charles Manzi.  A person who would have been defrauded by the suspects was already collaborating with the investigation, added the DCI.

Additionally, the bank, which is a subsidiary of the South African Absa Group, said they were working with police in the investigation and that the contents of the deposit box were only known to the owner. The bank also said the money was not part of its deposit and it went “against the bank’s rules and regulations.” (RELATED: Conservative Under Consideration For World Bank President)

“The customer had concealed fake currency in his personal safe deposit box against the bank’s rules and regulations which include restrictions of items which can be held in the safe deposit box,” said Barclays Bank Kenya in a statement.

The large seizure of funds transpires as lawmakers in the east African country are pushing for a policy that removes current strict banking laws requiring financial institutions to “declare the source, purpose and beneficiaries” when moving transactions more than $10,000.

However, Patrick Njoroge, the governor of the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK), believes that the new law would put Kenya in danger of being “blacklisted” by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). The task force, of which Kenya is a member, is an intergovernmental body that sets standards to promote legal and operational measures against money laundering and corruption. (RELATED: Who’s Paying For This $5 Billion Nuclear Plant In Kenya?)

“Kenya’s banking sector will be blacklisted internationally and the country will most likely be blacklisted by the FATF,” said Njoroge while in front of the finance committee in February.

“The adverse effects of the amendment on the banking sector, would be immediate termination of relationships by foreign correspondent banks and closure of accounts of Kenyan banks,” insisted the CBK governor while in front of the finance committee in February.

Source: The Daily Caller

The wrecakge of a burnt out bus is seen on a road in Milan
The wreckage of a bus that was set ablaze by its driver in protest against the treatment of migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea, is seen on a road in Milan, Italy, March 20, 2019. Vigili del Fuoco/Handout via REUTERS

March 20, 2019

MILAN (Reuters) – A bus full of schoolchildren was hijacked and set on fire by its own driver on Wednesday in an apparent protest against migrant drownings in the Mediterranean, Italian authorities said.

All 51 children managed to escape unhurt before the bus was engulfed in flames on the outskirts of Milan, Italy’s business capital. Police named the driver as Ousseynou Sy, a 47-year-old Italian citizen of Senegalese origin.

“He shouted, ‘Stop the deaths at sea, I’ll carry out a massacre’,” police spokesman Marco Palmieri quoted Sy as telling police after his arrest.

A video posted on Italian news sites showed the driver ramming the bus into cars on a provincial highway before the fire took hold. Children can be seen running away from the vehicle screaming and shouting “escape”.

One of the children told reporters that the driver had threatened to pour petrol over them and set them alight. One of group managed to call the police, who rushed to the scene and broke the bus windows to get everyone to safety.

Palmieri said some children were taken to hospital as a precautionary measure because they had bruises or were in a state of shock, but none suffered serious injuries.

A teacher who was with the middle school children was quoted by Ansa news agency as saying that the driver had said he wanted to get to the runway at Milan’s Linate airport.

An unnamed girl was also quoted as saying that Sy blamed deputy prime ministers Matteo Salvini and Luigi Di Maio for the deaths of African migrants at sea.

The United Nations estimates that some 2,297 migrants drowned or went missing in the Mediterranean in 2018 as they tried to reach Europe.

A Libyan security official said on Tuesday that at least 10 migrants died when their boat sank off the Libyan coast near the western town of Sabratha.

The Italian government has closed its ports to charity rescue ships that pick up migrants off the Libyan coast. Salvini says this has helped reduce deaths because far fewer people are now putting to sea.

Human rights groups say deaths might have increased with hardly any boats now searching for the would-be refugees.

(Reporting by Sara Rossi and Crispian Balmer; Editing by Mark Heinrich)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Trump addresses members of U.S. military during refueling stop in Anchorage, Alaska
FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump introduces U.S. Army Bronze Star recipient Sgt. Sean Rogers after calling him onstage while addressing members of the military during a refueling stop at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage, Alaska, U.S., February 28, 2019. REUTERS/Leah Millis/File Photo

March 20, 2019

By Mike Stone

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Department of Defense is proposing to pay for President Donald Trump’s much-debated border wall by shifting funds away from projects that include $1.2 billion for schools, childcare centers and other facilities for military children, according to a list it has provided to lawmakers.

The Pentagon gave Congress a list on Monday that included $12.8 billion of construction projects for which it said funds could be redirected.

Around 10 percent of the list relates to educational establishments and includes school buildings for the children of service members in places like Germany, Japan, Kentucky and Puerto Rico.

The move comes as a surprise given the Trump administration’s oft-touted support for the sacrifices made by military families and suggests the White House’s desire to build a wall on the border with Mexico outstrips nearly all other issues.

However, of the $1.2 billion in projects related to education, approximately $800 million worth are far in the future, and those funds could readily be used for wall construction and replaced later.

The Pentagon told Congress that just because a project was listed, it “does not mean that the project will, in fact, be used” as a funding source to build sections of the border wall.

Trump earlier in March asked for $8.6 billion in his 2020 budget request to help pay for his promised wall on the U.S-Mexico border to combat illegal immigration and drug trafficking. It drew swift criticism from Democrats.

He declared a national emergency in a bid to fund the wall without congressional approval, a move that allows his administration to use money from the military construction budget, if needed.

In a tense Congressional hearing last week, Democratic senators demanded that they be provided a list of military funds that could be utilized to fund wall construction.

Military officials have vowed that they would not use any funds from military housing. A recent Reuters investigation https://reut.rs/2t1Y2UA found thousands of U.S. military families were subjected to serious health and safety hazards in on-base housing, prompting moves from lawmakers to improve landlord controls.

But elementary and middle schools on bases around the world serving military families are at risk of suffering from the funding diversion, as well as a new engineering building and parking garage at West Point, the Army’s military academy in New York state.

Joint Base Andrews, where the president’s Air Force jet is based, was slated to receive $13 million for a “Child Development Center,” but funding for that project is on the list.

The base currently has three child development centers serving the 12,000 to 14,000 active and reserve military stationed there.

(Reporting by Mike Stone; Editing by Chris Sanders and Rosalba O’Brien)

Source: OANN


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