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‘China is closing the gap!’ Beijing seeks to control Pacific with new aircraft carrier

Satellite imagery of the PLA’s new asset – the Type 003 carrier – suggests China is making “considerable progress” on the naval vessel, with its flight deck and superstructure showing signs of completion. The vessel being developed in the Jiangyan shipyard near Shanghai is set to level up Beijing’s naval capabilities and will be the largest and most technologically advanced vessel to be constructed outside the US for decades.

Pentagon officials believe the new US Gerald R. Ford class supercarriers would dominate any conflict with China but said the ship marks a leap forward in Beijing’s military power.

Rear Adm. Mark Montgomery, a retired commander of the Japan-based USS George Washington carrier strike group, told The Washington Times China was moving closer to matching US capabilities.

He said: “China is closing the gap technologically with the United States, with the exception of nuclear propulsion.”

Not much is known about the new carrier, but reports suggest the Chinese vessel is around 318 metres in length – only a few metres short of similar US ships.

Eric Sayers, former adviser to the commander of U.S. Pacific Command, said China is building two navies simultaneously: one for the “near seas” and the other for open ocean operations.

He told Foreign Policy: “The trend is that China is attempting to build a blue water navy, and that’s what this third carrier and plan beyond that represents.

“That’s more for projecting power into the Indo-Pacific and beyond.”

Mr Sayers added: “It’s certainly enough to keep the U.S. Pacific Fleet Commander awake at night.

READ MORE: Beijing’s post-Covid economic bounce grinds to halt

Wu Qian, a spokesperson for China’s ministry, threatened that any incursion into Chinese airspace would trigger “serious consequences”.

Speaking about what the development of the new carrier means for China’s military actions in the South China Sea, Jerry Hendrix, a retired Navy captain and former U.S. Defense Department official, believes China will become more aggressive.

“I think they’re going to become more confrontational,” he said.

“With their carriers, they may think that they’re going to be able to establish sea control for long enough that they can pull off an amphibious assault.

“They’re moving beyond having aircraft carriers as just prestige platforms, and they’re moving to something much more complex.

“They’re moving to a power projection platform that can throw ordinance a longer distance.”

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This post originally posted here Daily Express :: World Feed

Rising From Pandemic, New York Seeks a New Mayor to Face Looming Crises

The New York City mayor’s race began in the throes of a pandemic, in a shuttered city convulsed by a public health catastrophe, economic devastation and widespread protests over police brutality.

Now, with voters heading to the primary polls on Tuesday, New York finds itself in a very different place. As the city roars back to life, its residents are at once buoyed by optimism around reopenings, but also anxious about public safety, affordable housing, jobs — and the very character of the nation’s largest city.

The primary election marks the end of an extraordinary chapter in New York’s history and the start of another, an inflection point that will play a defining role in shaping the post-pandemic future of the city. The leading mayoral candidates have promoted starkly divergent visions for confronting a series of overlapping crises, making this primary, which will almost certainly determine the next mayor, the most significant city election in a generation.

Public polling and interviews with elected officials, voters and party strategists suggest that on the cusp of Tuesday’s election, Eric Adams, the Brooklyn borough president, is the front-runner, fueled by his focus on public safety issues and his ability to connect in working- and middle-class communities of color.

Yet even on the last weekend of the race, the contest to succeed Mayor Bill de Blasio appears fluid and unpredictable, and credible polling remains sparse.

Two other leading candidates, Andrew Yang and Kathryn Garcia, campaigned together on Saturday in Queens and Manhattan, a show of unity that also injected ugly clashes over race into the final hours of the election, as Mr. Adams accused his rivals of coming together “in the last three days” and “saying, ‘We can’t trust a person of color to be the mayor of the City of New York.’”

Mr. Yang, at a later event, noted that he had been “Asian my entire life.” (Mr. Adams later clarified that he meant that Mr. Yang and Ms. Garcia were trying to prevent a Black or Latino candidate from becoming mayor.)

The primary election will ultimately offer a clear sense of Democratic attitudes around confronting crime, a major national issue that has become the most urgent matter in the mayoral primary.

The outcome will also show whether New Yorkers wanted a political outsider eager to shake up City Hall bureaucracy, like Mr. Yang, or a seasoned government veteran like Ms. Garcia to navigate staggering challenges from issues of education to evictions to economic revival.

And it will reveal whether Democrats are in the mood to “reimagine” a far more equitable city through transformational progressive policies, as Maya D. Wiley is promising, or if they are more focused on everyday municipal problems.

In recent polls and last-minute fund-raising, Ms. Garcia, the city’s former sanitation commissioner, and Ms. Wiley, a former counsel to Mr. de Blasio, seem to be gaining late traction, while Mr. Yang, a former presidential candidate, remains a serious contender even amid signs that his momentum may have stalled.

But other factors may muddy the outcome.

For the first time in New York City, the mayoral nominee will be determined by ranked-choice voting, which allows New Yorkers to rank up to five candidates in order of preference. Some New Yorkers remain undecided about how to rank their choices, and whether to rank at all.

And with many New Yorkers accustomed to a primary that usually takes place in September, it is not at all clear what the composition of a post-pandemic June electorate will look like.

For such a high-stakes election, the contest has felt at once endless and rushed. For months, it was a low-key affair, defined by dutiful Zoom forums and a distracted city.

But if there has been one constant in the last month, it has been the centrality of crime and policing to the contest.

“Public safety has clearly emerged as a significant issue,” said Representative Hakeem Jeffries, New York’s highest-ranking House member, when asked to name the defining issue of the mayor’s race. “How to balance that aspiration with fair, respectful policing, I think has been critical throughout the balance of this campaign.”

Six months ago, few would have predicted that public safety would be the top issue of the race, only a year after the“defund the police” movement took hold in the city. Crime rates are far lower than in earlier eras, and residents are confronting a long list of challenges as the city emerges from the pandemic.

But amid a rise this spring in shootings, jarring episodes of violence on the subways, bias attacks against Asian Americans and Jews — and heavy coverage of crime on local television — virtually every public poll shows public safety has become the biggest concern among Democratic voters.

Mr. Adams, Ms. Garcia, Mr. Yang and Raymond J. McGuire, a former Citi executive, vigorously disagree with the “defund the police” movement. But no one has been more vocal about public safety issues than Mr. Adams, a former police captain who has declared safety the “prerequisite” to prosperity.

Mr. Adams, who had a complex career at the Police Department and battled police misconduct as a leader of 100 Blacks in Law Enforcement Who Care, an advocacy group, says that he was once a victim of police brutality himself, and argues that he is well equipped to manage both police reform and spikes in violence.

In recent weeks, however, Mr. Adams has come under growing scrutiny over questions of transparency and ethics tied to taxes and disclosures around real estate holdings. That dynamic may fuel doubts about his candidacy in the final days, as his opponents have sharply questioned his judgment and integrity.

If he wins, it will be in part because of his significant institutional support, as a veteran politician with union backing and relationships with key constituencies — but also because his message connects at a visceral level in some neighborhoods across the city.

“Mr. Adams! You got my vote!” Blanca Soto, who turns 60 on Monday, cried out as she walked by an Adams event in Harlem on Thursday.

“I am rooting for him because he’s not going to take away from the police officers,” said Ms. Soto, a health aide, who called safety her top issue. “I do want to see more police, especially in the subways. We had them there before. I don’t know what happened, but everything was good when that was going on.”

Mr. Stringer, the city comptroller; Shaun Donovan, a former federal housing secretary; Ms. Morales, a former nonprofit executive; and Ms. Wiley have taken a starkly different view on several policing matters. They support varying degrees of cuts to the Police Department’s budget, arguing for investments in communities instead. The department’s operating budget has been about $ 6 billion. Ms. Wiley, Mr. Stringer and Ms. Morales have also been skeptical of adding more police officers to patrol the subway.

Ms. Wiley argues that the best way to stop violence is often to invest in the social safety net, including in mental health professionals, violence interrupters and in schools.

Ms. Wiley, who has been endorsed by some of the most prominent left-wing leaders in the country, including Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, is seeking to build a coalition that includes white progressives as well as voters of color across the ideological spectrum.

Rival campaigns have long believed that she has the potential to build perhaps the broadest coalition of voters in the race, but polls suggest that she has not yet done so in a meaningful way.

Mr. Jeffries, who has endorsed Ms. Wiley and campaigned with her, said that she offers change from the status quo, “a fresh face” who is both prepared “and is offering a compelling vision for investing in those communities that have traditionally been left behind.”

Mr. Jeffries has said that he is ranking Mr. Adams second, and that if Mr. Adams were to win, it would be on the strength of Black and Latino communities “who have increasingly felt excluded from the promises of New York City, as it has become increasingly expensive.”

A number of campaigns and political strategists see Latino voters as the crucial, late-breaking swing vote, and the leading candidates all see opportunities with slices of that diverse constituency, with candidates including Mr. Adams and Ms. Wiley airing new Spanish-language ads in recent days — an Adams spot criticizes Ms. Garcia in Spanish — and Mr. Yang spending Thursday in the Bronx, home to the city’s largest Latino population.

Mr. Yang, who would be the city’s first Asian American mayor, is betting that he can reshape the electorate by engaging more young, Asian American and Latino voters as he casts himself as a “change” candidate.

Mr. Yang was a front-runner in the race for months, boosted by his strong name identification and air of celebrity, as well as a hopeful message about New York’s potential and an energetic in-person campaign schedule.

But as New York reopened and crime became a bigger issue in voters’ minds — and as Mr. Yang faced growing scrutiny over gaffes and gaps in his municipal knowledge — he has lost ground.

His tone in the homestretch is a striking departure from the exuberant pitch that defined his early message, as he sharpens his criticism of Mr. Adams and tries to cut into his advantage on public safety issues. Mr. Yang, who has no city government experience, has also sought to use that outsider standing to deliver searing indictments of the political class.

Ms. Garcia has moderate instincts — she was one of the few leading mayoral candidates to favor President Biden as her first choice in the presidential primary — but she is primarily running as a pragmatic technocrat steeped in municipal knowledge.

She has been endorsed by the editorial boards of The New York Times and The New York Daily News, among others, and has generated palpable traction in politically engaged, highly educated corners of the city, like the Upper West Side, even as Mr. Stringer and Mr. Donovan have also vied for the government experience mantle.

“I don’t think New York does that well, as progressive as I am, with a series of progressives who think that we should spend more time dealing with those kinds of issues rather than actual stuff that needs to be done,” said William Pinzler, 74, as he prepared to vote for Ms. Garcia at Lincoln Center. “Kathryn Garcia picked up the garbage.”

But Ms. Garcia, who has struggled to deliver a standout moment during several televised debates, is in many ways still introducing herself, and it is not yet clear whether she can attract the same kind of support citywide.

Asked what lessons national Democrats may take from the results of Tuesday’s contest, Representative Grace Meng, who has endorsed Mr. Yang as her first choice and Ms. Garcia as her second, and appeared with them on Saturday, pointed to questions of both personal characteristics and policy visions.

“How much people prioritize a leader with experience or vision to get us out of the pandemic, but also to address issues like public safety and education — I think that it’ll kind of be a filter through which we see the next round of elections nationally,” she said. “Wherever they may be.”

Author: Katie Glueck
This post originally appeared on NYT > Top Stories

EMA Seeks More Data on Myocarditis After COVID-19 Shots

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) safety committee is continuing its review of myocarditis and pericarditis following vaccination with COVID-19 vaccines.

“Currently, further analysis is needed to conclude whether there is a causal relationship with the vaccines, and the PRAC requesting additional data from the companies marketing them,” the EMA said in a statement issued Friday.

The Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee (PRAC) started its review in April after reports of myocarditis following vaccination with the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine Comirnaty in Israel.

Most of these cases were mild and resolved within a few days. They mainly affected men younger than 30 years of age, with symptoms mostly starting within several days of vaccination with the second dose, the EMA said.

Cases of myocarditis and/or pericarditis following vaccination with all COVID-19 vaccines have also been reported in the European Economic Area (EEA) that includes the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway.

In the EudraVigilance database at the end of last month, there were 122 reported cases of myocarditis associated with Comirnaty, 16 with the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, 38 with Vaxzevria (AstraZeneca) and none for the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.

Cases of pericarditis reported in the database as of May 31 were: 126 (Pfizer BioNTech), 18 (Moderna), 47 (AstraZeneca) and 1 (Janssen).

The exposure in the EEA for each vaccine was around 160 million doses for Comirnaty, 19 million doses for Moderna, 40 million for Vaxzevria, and 2 million for Janssen, the EMA said.

For the Comirnaty and Moderna vaccines, PRAC is reviewing cases of myocarditis and pericarditis in the context of a “safety signal” under an accelerated timetable, with a final decision expected in July.

For the AstraZeneca and Janssen vaccines, PRAC is reviewing the cases in the context of the vaccines’ pandemic summary safety reports.

The EMA encourages all healthcare professionals to report any cases of myocarditis or pericarditis and other adverse events in people receiving COVID-19 vaccines.

Patients with related symptoms such as shortness of breath, irregular heartbeat, or chest pain following vaccination should be encouraged to consult their healthcare provider, they advise.

This week, Tom Shimabukuro, MD, MPH, deputy director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Immunization Safety Office, said swelling of the heart appears to be a very rare side effect that primarily strikes young people after vaccination for COVID-19.

The side effect seems to be more common in teen boys and young men than in older adults and women and may occur in 16 cases for every 1 million people who got a second dose, Shimabukuro said in presenting information on cases of myocarditis and pericarditis to an expert panel that advises the US Food and Drug Administration on vaccines.

For more news, follow Medscape on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn

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This post originally appeared on Medscape Medical News Headlines

NFL wants to hold games in Germany, seeks partner city

Weekly television viewership in Germany has grown by more than 20% annually since 2017, the league said.

LONDON, UK — The NFL wants to expand its international series by holding regular-season games in Germany, launching a process Wednesday to identify a partner city.

Germany boasts a strong NFL fan base and is one of the world’s largest economies, making the country an attractive partner.

The NFL has staged 28 regular-season games in London since 2007 and will play two more in October at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. German fans often travel to London to attend games, the league said.

“We are very excited about the development of our German fan base, and the time is right to identify a partner who can execute a game at NFL standards as part of our international growth strategy,” Brett Gosper, the NFL’s head of UK and Europe, said in a statement.

The NFL has hired London-based The Sports Consultancy to assist, including working with interested cities to develop their proposals.

“This process is designed to explore potential local partnerships, stadium suitability and game logistics,” Gosper said. “We need engaged and motivated host partners that span the public sector, venue, sport, community and major event spheres and can help us deliver a high-impact event and a long-term partnership. Identifying a preferred host city is a key step in bringing regular-season NFL games to our millions of German fans.”

Weekly television viewership in Germany has grown by more than 20% annually since 2017, the league said.

German viewership of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 31-9 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs in the Super Bowl on Feb. 8 set a record.

“Germany is a leading market outside North America for NFL Shop sales, fantasy football participation and sales of the Madden NFL video game,” the league said in its statement.

The NFL staged five preseason games in Germany between 1990 and 1994, and had a professional team presence in Germany between 1991 and 2007 with the Berlin Thunder, Cologne Centurions, Frankfurt Galaxy, Hamburg Sea Devils and Rhein Fire playing at various times in the former World League/NFL Europe/NFL Europa.

NFL regular-season games have also been played in Mexico and Canada.

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This post originally appeared on CBS8 – Sports

Petition seeks to restore Texas' $300-a-week jobless benefit

GALVESTON, Texas (KTRK) — Boosted benefits will end for unemployed Texans in about a month, but not everyone is convinced it is enough to end the labor shortage.On Monday, Gov. Greg Abbott announced he is ending federal unemployment benefits, which includes an extra weekly $ 300. Several people, including John McKinney, who lost his job last month, attended a job fair that took place at Galveston ISD Tuesday.

“A little hard to hear, but it happens,” McKinney said. “It didn’t come as a huge shock because I knew the financial issues were happening.”McKinney applied for unemployment benefits. He said he thought it would include an extra $ 300 a week, but Abbott announced the state will opt out on June 26.

“I get what he did,” McKinney said. “Honestly, I think it was a good decision to help businesses and get people back in the workforce.”

Though, not everyone agrees.

Susan Winner works part-time, but she said the extra weekly $ 300 makes a big difference.

“I think people are still skeptical about going back into the workplace,” Winner said. “People that either can’t get vaccinated or don’t want to get vaccinated. They don’t want to be sick.”

We didn’t see many unemployed people looking for work at the job fair. There were employers hiring on the spot and some were even offering sign-on bonuses, but it wasn’t enough to attract people on unemployment.It’s not a surprise to Dietrich Vollrath, an economics professor at the University of Houston.

“I’m skeptical that it’s going to have a large effect because I think some of the forces that are keeping people from saying yes to these jobs are less about the money and more about some of the systemic things still going on,” Vollrath said.

Vollrath also said the virus and childcare will prevent people from returning to work.

The governor’s announcement on Monday also included an update on the unemployment fraud situation.

SEE RELATED: Why unemployment-benefits fraud victims are getting tax bills

A month ago, ABC13 found there were 611,300 unemployment claims flagged as suspicious. The governor said as of mid-May, the number is above 800,000. Last month, the state lost $ 691 million from the fraudulent claims. Texas Workforce Commission said this could impact all Texans because the tax rate business owners pay might go up to make up the difference.”That is really the concern, that the burden will be on the businesses in Texas, and that’s going to hurt hiring,” said James Bernsen, a spokesperson for Texas Workforce Commission.

On Tuesday, TWC released a video explaining Abbott’s decision does not mean all unemployment benefits will end in June. Regular state benefits will remain.

However, self-employed workers will lose all benefits and the extra $ 300 weekly boost will end.

There is an online petition with more than 1,500 signatures, urging the governor to change his mind.

Follow Nick Natario on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Copyright © 2021 KTRK-TV. All Rights Reserved.

Author: Nick Natario

This post originally appeared on ABC13 RSS Feed

Almost 2 decades after being convicted of pregnant wife's murder, Scott Peterson seeks new trial

MODESTO, Calif. — Almost two decades after the disappearance and murder of his wife Laci Peterson and their unborn child, Connor, Scott Peterson says he is still seeking justice and that his first trial was unfair.Peterson was convicted in 2004 of first-degree murder in relation to his wife and of second-degree murder of their unborn son. He was sentenced to death by lethal injection in 2005.

Laci Peterson, who was 27 years old and eight months pregnant, disappeared on Christmas Eve in 2002. The remains of her and Connor were found in the San Francisco Bay in 2003, four months after she went missing.The bodies were identified several days after they were found. On that same day, Scott Peterson was arrested and charged. He pleaded not guilty.

“There’s absolutely no physical evidence at all that Scott committed this crime. You can’t just pick Scott as the default because you don’t know what else it could have been,” said his sister-in-law, Janey Peterson. “To dump his wife’s body in broad daylight. It just defies logic.”

Watch the full story on “20/20,” streaming now on Hulu

Investigators said Scott Peterson bought a brand new boat 15 days before his wife disappeared, and that he had researched ocean currents and could not identify the kinds of fish he was trying to catch on the day that he says Laci Peterson was home alone.

Prosecutors claim that Scott Peterson traveled to San Francisco Bay with his wife’s body from their home in Modesto, California, and that he dumped it from his fishing boat.

Investigators say they discovered that, at the time of Laci Peterson’s disappearance, Scott Peterson was having an affair with massage therapist Amber Frey.

“I met Scott Peterson Nov. 20, 2002. Scott told me he was not married. We did have a romantic relationship,” said Frey.

She had known him for just over a month when Laci Peterson disappeared.

“Unfortunately, Scott had an infidelity problem and he traveled in conjunction with his work, and that created an opportunity for him. … His own words are that he was ‘weak,”’ said Janey Peterson.

She said that she believes the intense focus on his affair compromised the initial investigation into what happened to Laci Peterson.

“He has to die knowing that everyone stopped looking for Laci because he was having an affair,” said Janey Peterson. “We make no excuse for Scott’s behavior in that sense… But unfortunately, a lot of that is being used to convict him of murder.”

Indeed, the prosecution argued that the affair was Scott Peterson’s motive to kill his wife so that he could be with Frey.

“It was so hard. The media was labeling me as the mistress,” said Frey in a 2017 interview with “20/20.”

The public was enthralled by media coverage when Peterson’s trial began in 2004.”This case is driven by headline narratives,” said Janey Peterson. “To have a case that’s been this highly publicized, to have people have such a small understanding of what happened on this day is profoundly frustrating.”

Scott Peterson’s defense attorney, Pat Harris, alleged that investigators misinterpreted circumstantial evidence.

“The prosecution couldn’t tell you when [the murder] happened. They couldn’t tell you where it happened. They couldn’t tell you how it happened,” said Harris. “The only thing they could do was just say Scott Peterson’s a bad person.”

Harris alleges that the investigation dismissed a burglary that had occurred across the street from the Petersons’ home on the same day Laci Peterson disappeared, Dec. 24, 2002.

Scott Peterson said that his wife was home at the time and multiple witnesses claim to have seen Laci Peterson walking the dog in the neighborhood.

“A neighbor, Diane Jackson, said she saw three men in a van in front of the home on Dec. 24 that morning,” said Janey Peterson.

Investigators later caught the men who broke into the house and interviewed them. The police determined that the men did not abduct Laci Peterson.

“We caught the guys that went in there and broke into that house and interviewed them. They talked about the abduction, [saying], ‘We don’t want [that], our hands are clean on that,'” said Modesto Police Department detective Al Brocchini.

Brocchini also said that the investigators found another local pregnant woman had walked her golden retriever on the same day Laci Peterson disappeared.

“We actually found the pregnant lady with a golden retriever that walked her dog on that day and the conclusion was that it was not Laci,” said Brocchini.

In 2003, Modesto police received a tip from Lieutenant Xavier Aponte at Norco Prison in California.

Aponte claimed that he had overheard an inmate’s phone conversation in which Laci Peterson was mentioned.

“We sent our investigator down to interview Lieutenant Aponte who confirmed and signed a declaration saying it was true,” said Harris. “We ask him specifically if he had been interviewed by the Modesto police, and he said, ‘Yes, they interviewed me back before the trial started.'”At first, Aponte said the inmate told them Laci Peterson had seen one of the burglars and that the burglar had threatened her. Aponte later backtracked on the details of the call.

“We were gonna call him in as a witness, and he changed his story and he started saying, ‘Well, I don’t really know what I heard,’ He started backing off everything,” said Harris.

On Aug. 24, 2020, almost two decades after his conviction, the California Supreme Court upheld Peterson’s guilty verdict, but overturned his death penalty sentence. The court determined that the 2004 trial court “erroneously dismissed” prospective jurors who opposed the death penalty improperly because the juror questionnaire did not ask if their views would prevent them from following the law. Prosecutors plan to pursue the death penalty again.

In October 2020, the California Supreme Court announced that it was sending the case back to the San Mateo County Superior Court to determine if Peterson should receive a new trial based on possible jury misconduct.

Harris said that Peterson still may have a chance to overturn his conviction due to a juror not disclosing involvement in other legal proceedings.

In a 2000 legal proceeding, the juror, identified in court papers as Richelle Nice, alleged that her boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend “committed acts of violence against her” and prompted “fears for her unborn child,” ABC News reported previously.

During the jury selection process, Nice told attorneys she had never been the victim of a crime or involved in a lawsuit. In a 2017 interview with “20/20,” she said that her situation never came to mind when she had filled out the application.

“Miss Nice is now the basis for the court sending it back to the trial court to determine whether that’s sufficient or not to overturn the verdict,” said Harris.

In April 2021, the trial judge granted Scott Peterson’s team’s request for a 60-day extension to conduct discovery. Harris said that if Peterson were granted a new trial, the defense would be ready.

“What I want the public to know in this coming trial is: just listen to the evidence. Don’t go on emotion on this,” said Harris. “It’s rare in life you get a second chance. It’s taken 18 years for Scott, sitting in a jail cell.”

Laci Peterson’s mother, Sharon Rocha, said another trial would be painful for the family and would likely only result in the same outcome.

“To have to go through a trial again, of course, would be excruciating. But if that’s what it takes, I’ll be there,” she said. “And I’m sure they’ll find him guilty again.”

Copyright © 2021 ABC News Internet Ventures.

Author: ABCNews

This post originally appeared on ABC13 RSS Feed

Amazon seeks renewable power for Japan data centres – Nikkei

Amazon seeks renewable power for Japan data centres - Nikkei© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The logo of Amazon is seen at the company logistics centre in Boves, France, August 8, 2018. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol

TOKYO (Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ:) is in talks with Japanese power utilities and trading houses to build a renewable power plant in Japan to procure clean energy for its local data centres, the reported late on Thursday.

The U.S. online retail and tech giant is seeking ways to procure electricity over the long term from exclusive renewable energy power stations, the Nikkei said.

A Japanese trading house is considering supplying electricity to Amazon from an off-shore wind farm to be built in Japan if it wins in the government auction that began last year, the Nikkei said.

The Japanese government brought in a law in 2019 to enhance development of offshore wind farms, allowing operators to use designated sea zones for 30 years. The auction under the new law started last year.

Amazon is also in talks with power companies to build a new solar power plant, the Nikkei said.

The tech behemoth, which has seven data centres in Japan, aims to make all the power consumed globally by its data centres renewable by 2025, according to the Nikkei.

Amazon was not immediately available for comment.

The U.S. company has pledged to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2040 and to power all its operations with renewable energy by 2030.

The company issued its first sustainability bond on Monday, raising $ 1 billion to invest in renewable energy, clean transport, greener buildings and affordable housing.

X: Therefore doesn`t .

Author: Reuters
This post originally appeared on Stock Market News

APD seeks man reported missing 44 years after disappearing, niece says it’s time for closure

Author: Billy Gates
This post originally appeared on KXAN Austin

APD seeks man reported missing 44 years after disappearing

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin police are asking the public for help in looking for a man who disappeared in 1976, but was not officially reported until this February.

In a press release, police said they’re looking for Brian Thomas Vargo, who was a student at the University of Texas at Austin and 21 years old at the time of his disappearance on March 9, 1976. However, it took 45 years for someone to report that he was missing.

Vargo stopped going to UT and drove to Colorado, but his car broke down in Colorado. He went to Houston to get the vehicle’s title, and then his mother dropped him off at the bus station in Houston. His family was then told he never went back to his apartment in Austin, and Vargo’s wallet was found inside when his family went to that apartment.

Amanda Vargo Wattecamps, Vargo’s niece, held a news conference Thursday morning at Austin police headquarters to bring attention to the case. She said someone discouraged her grandmother from filing a missing persons report back in 1976, but the family wanted to do so now after all these decades.

“I can’t imagine what my grandmother has gone through, and it’s time she got closure,” Wattecamps said.

She said her family only found out this year that Vargo withdrew from UT Austin, where he attended the engineering program, prior to his disappearance.

“The circumstances are very iffy on whether he wanted to disappear or whether there was foul play,” Wattecamps said.

Vargo is described by police as:

  • White man
  • 6 feet tall
  • 150 pounds
  • Brown hair
  • Blue eyes

Below are photos of him in 1976, the year we went missing, and a photo of what he could potentially look like now with age progression enhancements.

On the left is a photo of Brian Vargo in 1976. On the right is a photo of what Vargo could potentially look like today using age progression enhancements. (APD photo)
On the left is a photo of Brian Vargo in 1976. On the right is a photo of what Vargo could potentially look like today using age progression enhancements. (APD photo)

Wattecamps told reporters it may not be likely her family will ever find where her uncle is now or what may have happened to him back then, but it’s still worth trying.

“The scenarios are pretty much he left the country or he’s living off the grid and has lived off the grid for 45 years,” she said. “I can’t imagine being my grandmother, but she’s ready for closure at this point.”

If anyone has information or knows anything about Vargo’s disappearance, contact APD’s missing persons unit at 512-974-4123.

Biden Seeks Shift in How the Nation Serves Its People

Author: Peter Baker
This post originally appeared on NYT > U.S. News

For their part, Democrats welcomed Mr. Biden’s go-big approach, which stood in contrast to the more incremental or centrist efforts ultimately advanced since the conservative backlash to the Johnson era by all of his party’s subsequent presidents, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter.

“We want to invest in our work force, so, as we build back better, we have a trained work force, many more people able to participate from every aspect of our society, that what we’re doing in terms of children and seniors and care for them, that many more women can participate in the fullest way,” Ms. Pelosi told Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC.

But as aggressive as Mr. Biden’s programs were, he faced pressure from the left within his own party to go further. Some liberals, for instance, were disappointed that he pulled out a plan to negotiate prescription drug prices amid industry opposition.

“In general, I think we are going to say we agree with everything that is in the president’s plan,” Representative Pramila Jayapal, Democrat of Washington State and the chairwoman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, said on MSNBC. “But we need more, and there’s a couple of areas where we really think they’ve been excluded, and they need to be included.”

Mr. Biden arrives at his 100-day mark on Thursday with solid if not spectacular approval ratings, with about 52 percent of the public favoring his performance — higher than Mr. Trump received at any point in his presidency in the main opinion polls but below nearly all modern presidents at this stage of their tenure.

That underlined the political challenges for Mr. Biden in building a broader consensus behind his agenda at a time when political divisions remain as acute as they have been in years. Sensitive to that, Mr. Biden made a special point to reassure working-class Americans, many of whom supported Mr. Trump, that his plans would benefit them by creating new jobs.

“These are good-paying jobs that can’t be outsourced,” he planned to say in the speech. “Nearly 90 percent of the infrastructure jobs created in the American Jobs Plan don’t require a college degree. Seventy-five percent don’t require an associate’s degree. The Americans Jobs Plan is a blue-collar blueprint to build America.”

Houston's Instagrammable multi-sensory museum seeks bold artists for new mural

HOUSTON, Texas — Locals who’ve visited west Houston’s utterly Instagrammable, experiential museum (immersive world, really) known as Seismique are well aware of the dazzling visuals that await.A hybrid of a Willy Wonka wonderland, the edgy Meow Wolf (the interactive museum in Santa Fe, New Mexico), and a futuristic theme park, Seismique features works by more than 24 established and emerging artists along with advanced technological elements such as projection mapping from 111 projectors, holograms, augmented reality, light mapping, gamification, and more.

Inside, the cavernous, 40,000-square-foot multi-sensory mecca is an almost overwhelming treat. Now, the museum’s owners want to take the visuals outdoors with a new mural/artistic vision. Seismique (2306 South Highway 6) has announced a call for artists to add to the mural, which will be emblazoned on a wall that is 43 feet wide by 28 feet tall.

Video above from separate reporting.

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