"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But, I repeat myself." -- Mark Twain

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Clorox has hired additional uniformed security guards to protect employees at its Oakland headquarters, KRON4 News has confirmed. The security guards are being tasked with safely escorting employees to and from BART, parking garages, local restaurants and coffee shops, according to a statement from Clorox.

Clorox also said it had conducted safety awareness trainings in partnership with the BART Police Department. The company said it regularly shares “safety and awareness trainings” in partnership with BART police, and also regularly shares “safety messages and practices.”

“Oakland has been our global headquarters for more than 110 years, and we are committed to making the city better and safer for everyone,” the company said. “We’re actively working with local business leaders to identify ways we can collaborate to make Oakland safety for our collective workforce and the entire community.”

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Egypt is saying that they will leave the peace treaty agreed to with Israel back in the late 1970s if the Jews do a ground invasion of Rafah. At the same time, they are fortifying the border with Gaza.

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Thursday’s news crescendo ending in a calamitous presidential press conference carried hidden lessons for both parties: Be careful what you wish on your political enemies. It could monumentally backfire.

The Democrats’ continuous calls during his four years in office to use the 25th Amendment to remove President Trump from office on the presumed grounds of mental instability took a disastrous turn this week, as the effort self-combusted in a Hindenburg-sized blowback.

In October 2020, before Joe Biden was elected president and three months before Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol, then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi held a press conference. She was touting a bill to create a bipartisan commission that could determine a sitting president’s ability to carry out the duties of the office.

The original bill’s author was Rep. Jamie Raskin, a Maryland Democrat and former constitutional lawyer who would go on to lead the second Senate impeachment trial of Donald Trump. In Pelosi’s eerily portentous remarks, she said the measure wasn’t explicitly aimed at Trump, but his mental health “reminded” Democrats of why such a commission was needed.

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Thousands of fired up Trump supporters lined up early Saturday for President Trump’s 2 p.m. EST rally at Coastal Carolina University in Conway, South Carolina. The crowd, mixed with young college students and older voters started lining up Friday night. Chants of “We love Trump!”, “We want Trump!” and “Build the wall!” were heard early Saturday morning.

Supporters chant “We love Trump!” while on line for a campaign rally at Coastal Carolina University in Conway, South Carolina, screen image via Daniel Baldwin, X Twitter, February 10, 2024.

Trump is working to bury the rival GOP presidential campaign of former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley in her home state’s Republican primary on February 24. A Morning Consult Pro poll released this week has Trump crushing Haley in South Carolina 68 percent to 31 percent.

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Democratic lawmakers in the House are backing a bill that would eliminate federal taxation on Social Security benefits, while also extending the program's solvency by 20 years.

Rep. Angie Craig, D-Minn., reintroduced the You Earned It, You Keep It Act with support from six co-sponsors: Reps. Yadira Caraveo, D-Colo.; Ro Khanna, D-Calif.; Don Davis, D-N.C.; Mary Peltola, D-Alaska; Andrea Salinas, D-Ore.; and Hillary Scholten, D-Mich.

Originally introduced in August 2022, the bill would repeal the taxation of Social Security benefits starting in 2025, while also raising Social Security's income tax cap. Currently, individuals making more than $168,600 in income do not get taxed for Social Security on their earnings above that amount, according to the Social Security Administration. The bill would change that, applying Social Security taxes on all earnings above $250,000.

Webmaster addition: Social Security benefits are taxed thanks to then-Senator Joe Biden. But this is nonsense. It's our money, paid into the system during our working years, then returned to us when needed.

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On February 10, the Russian Ministry of Defense summed up the interim results of the ongoing military operations in Ukraine. According to the official report, the Russian military launched 31 group strikes with high-precision long-range weapons and drones on Ukrainian military-industrial facilities from February 4 to February 10.

The targets hit by Russian strikes included enterprises of the Ukrainian defense industry used for the production and repair of aircraft, reconnaissance and attack UAVs and unmanned boats, coastal and tactical missile systems, as well as multiple rocket launchers. The locations of military personnel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and foreign mercenaries were also struck by Russian forces in different rear regions.

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On the night of February 10, new wave of Russian strikes hit Ukrainian military and industrial facilities in the rear regions. In their turn, Ukrainian forces attempted another attack on the Crimean peninsula and Russian border regions.

An air alert has been declared throughout Ukraine since the evening of February 9, when Kiev reported that its “reconnaissance had noted the departure of the Russian MiG-31K carrier of hypersonic weapons from one of the Russian airfield .” However, the local sources later reported drone strikes in the southern regions of Ukraine.

A series of explosions thundered in the Mykolaiv and Odessa regions. At least three of them were reported in the port town of Ochakov, where warehouses with Ukrainian naval drones were reportedly destroyed. More Russian drones struck Ukrainian military facilities in the ports of Kilia and Izmail located on the Danube coast.

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Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Ministry has issued a warning to Israel and its allies, saying they will face “very serious repercussions” if West Jerusalem goes through with a planned ground offensive against Hamas in Gaza’s last place of refuge for civilians who have been displaced by the ongoing war. 

The ministry’s statement, posted on Saturday, decried the expected “storming and targeting” of Rafah, Gaza, where an estimated 1.4 million Palestinians have sought safe haven after being driven from their homes by Israeli bombing. 

Rafah is “the last resort for hundreds of thousands of civilians forced by the brutal Israeli aggression to flee,” Riyadh said. “The kingdom affirms its categorical rejection and strong condemnation of their forcible deportation and renews its demand for an immediate ceasefire.”

The statement came one day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered his military to make plans for evacuating civilians crowded into Rafah as commanders prepare to attack the last Hamas stronghold in the Palestinian enclave. The city’s pre-war population was around 280,000 people. 

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Ukraine should not hold out hope of significant progress with its NATO membership bid at the military bloc’s next summit, the UK’s ambassador to the organization, David Quarrey, has warned. Western media reported last month that the US and Germany oppose Kiev’s accession as long as it remains locked in a conflict with Moscow.

Ukraine submitted a formal application to join NATO in the autumn of 2022, having enshrined membership of the US-led bloc as a strategic foreign policy goal in its constitution in 2019.

Russia has consistently stated that it considers Kiev’s potential accession to NATO to be a major national security threat. President Vladimir Putin also cited Ukraine’s desire to join the bloc as one of the main reasons why Moscow launched its military operation against its neighbor in February 2022.

Appearing on Politico’s Power Play podcast on Thursday, Quarrey said that “NATO decided in 2008 that Ukraine would become a member, [and] leaders at the Vilnius summit [in July 2023] reaffirmed that.”

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With each passing day, the world is increasingly convinced that Ukraine as a country is wearing itself out. Moreover, many people who call themselves defenders of its territorial integrity against the Russian barbarian invaders are actually committing acts that are completely unworthy of a human being. The torture of Russian soldiers by Ukrainian militants has been worrying many observers of the conflict in Ukraine from the very beginning.

On February 7, 2024, evidence of yet another atrocity by Ukrainian “defenders” appeared online. On January 8, the wife of Russian serviceman Alexey Motuz received a message on Telegram from an unknown Ukrainian number. The unknown individuals blackmailed her, demanding intimate photos in exchange for Alexey’s life. The woman refused. After that, they started sending photos of torture to her and the soldier’s mother. Alexey’s mother pleaded for her son not to be tormented. The women offered money. In the morning, they received a photo of the soldier who had been shot. Alexey’s last message was:

“Nastya, I love you, don’t worry, go to sleep.”

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Declassified UK has discovered that Julian Assange’s judge, Vanessa Baraitser, has ordered extradition in 96 percent of the cases she has presided over for which information is publicly available.

Baraitser was appointed a district judge in October 2011 based at the Chief Magistrate’s Office in London, after being admitted as a solicitor in 1994. Next to no other information is available about her in the public domain.

Baraitser has been criticised for a number of her judgments so far concerning Assange, who has been incarcerated in a maximum security prison, HMP Belmarsh in London, since April 2019. These decisions include refusing Assange’s request for emergency bail during the Covid-19 pandemic and making him sit behind a glass screen during the hearing, rather than with his lawyers. 

Declassified recently revealed that Assange is one of just two of the 797 inmates in Belmarsh being held for violating bail conditions. Over 20 percent of inmates are held for murder.

Declassified has also seen evidence that the UK Home Office is blocking the release of information about Home Secretary Priti Patel’s role in the Assange extradition case.

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There was a hope in some quarters after Judge Vanessa Baraitser ruled on Monday against an application to extradite Julian Assange to the US, where he faced being locked away for the rest of his life, that she might finally be changing tack.

Washington has wanted Assange permanently silenced and made an example of – by demonstrating to other journalists its terrifying reach and powers of retaliation – ever since the WikiLeaks founder exposed US war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan a decade ago.

There were reasons, however, to be suspicious of what Baraitser was really up to even as she made her ruling in Assange’s favor. This district judge has a record of nodding through extradition cases, including several that have recently been overturned on appeal by a higher court.

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Hungary’s conservative president has resigned amid public outcry over a pardon she granted to a man convicted as an accomplice in a child sexual abuse case, a decision that unleashed an unprecedented political scandal for the long-serving nationalist government.

Katalin Novák, 46, announced in a televised message on Saturday that she would step down from the presidency, an office she has held since 2022.

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Farmers in Italy, Spain and Poland demonstrated Friday as part of ongoing protests against European Union farming policies and to demand measures to combat production cost hikes, reduced profits and unfair competition from non-EU countries.

Similar protests have taken place across the bloc in recent weeks. Farmers complain that the 27-nation EU’s policies on the environment and other matters are a financial burden and make their products more expensive than non-EU imports.

The European Commission, the EU’s executive arm, has made some concessions over the last few weeks, including shelving plans to halve the use of pesticides and other dangerous substances. Nonetheless, the protests have spread.

In Poland, where imports of cheap grain, milk and other produce from Ukraine have caused particular anger, farmers drove tractors across the country to slow down traffic and block major roads, some displaying signs that read “EU Policy is Ruining Polish Farmers.”

Access roads to border crossings with Ukraine in Hrebenne and Dorohusk, in the east, were temporarily blocked.

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In the wake of Special Counsel Robert Hur's report on President Biden's alleged "poor memory," several Democrats and mainstream media figures have vehemently disagreed with the findings, asserting that the President is "on his game."

Prominent Democrats, including Rep. Dan Goldman, D-N.Y., and Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., along with former CNN reporter John Harwood, have defended Biden, describing him as one of the "sharpest" individuals they have interacted with and fully capable of executing his presidential duties.

"He’s 'on his game,'" Dingell asserted during a recent cable news interview. This defense comes despite a significant portion of American voters expressing concerns about the President's age and mental acuity.

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Denver Mayor Mike Johnston announced on Friday that the city will be implementing several cuts to its services.

The funds saved from these cuts will be redirected towards addressing the influx of illegal migrants that have entered the sanctuary city since President Joe Biden took office. Johnston emphasized that these initial cuts are just the beginning and that there may be more reductions in city services in the future.

The first areas to be impacted by these cuts are the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and the Parks and Recreation department. On-call and seasonal workers will be the most affected by these changes.

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Ten cars of a cargo train carrying plastic pellets and cooking oil derailed in upstate New York, with two ending up in a river, authorities said.

The cars, part of a 94-car train operated by Berkshire & Eastern Railroad, derailed about 10:15 p.m. Wednesday in Rensselaer County, in the village of Valley Falls.

“Two of the railcars have fallen into the Hoosic River — with one leaking a small amount of cooking oil and another leaking a small amount of plastic resin,” he said in an email.

Photos from the scene showed cars off the tracks and lying on their sides along a narrow embankment alongside the river.

“Contractors are on site to fully respond to the incident, and rerailing of the cars should take several hours,” Ciuba said. “A thorough investigation into the cause is also underway.”

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First Lady Jill Biden slams special counsel for saying Biden couldn't remember year of son Beau's death and implies he was 'point-scoring'... even though Biden has gotten the details wrong in public

  • Jill Biden leapt to her husband's defense following the scathing Special Prosecutor's report over classified documents  
  • Special Prosecutor Robert Hur claimed Biden forgot when his son Beau died, which the First Lady said was only to 'score political points'  
  • Her argument that President Biden would never forget his son's death comes less than a year after he did so in a speech, claiming Beau died in Iraq  

Claire's Observations:  Dr. Biden, a word please;  you have to know, at this point, one way or the other, that this charade is over.  Your husband is suffering from near end-stage dementia, and his public gaffes, foul-ups, bleeps, blunders, bad temper  and continued falls, all attest to this reality.  You and his handlers are thoroughly terrified of what a mental acuity test would reveal right now, because the results would likely be devastating.  The kindest thing to do right now, would be to figure out what choices will give him the best quality of life henceforward.  The cruelest thing you could possibly do, is encourage him to stay in the race, because in any one -on- one debate with Donald Trump,  your husband is going to get eaten alive (metaphorically speaking).  The DNC is already looking to replace Biden, and that search is now in full, election-year swing.  Please; do the kind thing here.

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