Tag Archives: simply

'It simply isn't justified' EasyJet furious at 'huge blow' on Portugal as airports enraged

Johan Lundgren, CEO of EasyJet, commented: This shock decision to add Portugal to the amber list is a huge blow to those who are currently in Portugal and those who have booked to be reunited with loved ones or take a well-deserved break this summer with Portugal rates similar to those in the UK it simply isn’t justified.”

The Cheif Executive of Gatwick has also made a statement on the news, and said: “It is bitterly dissapointing news.”

Government Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said it was a “difficult decision to make.”

He said: “One is the positivity rate which has nearly doubled since the last review in Portugal and the other is there’s a sort of Nepal mutation of the [Delta] Indian variant which has been detected and we just don’t know the potential for that to be a vaccine defeating mutation and simply don’t want to take the risk as we come up to the 21 June and the review of the fourth stage of the unlock.”

Thomas Cook CEO Alan French said: “This news will disappoint thousands of our customers who’d booked a holiday to Portugal following the Government advice.

“We’d welcome more transparency from the government on the data it is using to make these decisions so we can help our customers better plan ahead.

“Right now, our focus is on helping those customers out in Portugal and due to travel in the coming days. We will be in touch with all of our customers in departure date order.”

What happens if you have holidays booked to Portugal?

Those currently in Portugal will now have to self-isolate on return.

They will need to self-isolate at from for 10 days.

Those who cannot self-isolate on return would be best advised to rearrange.

Grant Shapps defended the move. He said: “I want to be straight with people, it’s actually a difficult decision to make, but in the end, we’ve seen two things really which have caused concern.

“One is that the positivity rate has nearly doubled since the last review in Portugal, and the other is that there’s a Nepal mutation of the so-called Indian variants which has been detected.

“We just don’t know the potential for that to be a vaccine defeating mutation and simply don’t want to take the risk, as we come up to June 21.

“What I want to do with today is difficult, but I hope decisive action, is make sure that we protect the future by not restarting problems which may or may not be there at home, we’ll be able to get international travel down the line open more quickly.

“It’s a safety-first approach given where we are in the fourth stage of the unlock.”

More countries have been added to the red list.

Among the nations moving from the amber list to the red list in package holiday hotspot Egypt, as well as Caribbean destinations Trinidad and Tobago.

Afghanistan, Bahrain, Costa Rica, Sudan and Sri Lanka will also turn red following the latest update.

The Government has warned Britons they should not travel to red list countries.

This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Travel Feed

Did Joe Biden pack the Supreme Court commission to simply fail?

With the establishment of his commission to study the possible packing of the Supreme Court, President Biden has adjoined his name to one of the most inglorious efforts of Franklin Roosevelt. Court packing has long been anathema in the United States, and polls have consistently shown the vast majority of Americans oppose the idea. Biden himself once denounced it as a “boneheaded” idea, but that was back in 1983, when there remained a real space in politics for at least the pretense of principle.

Now Biden and others seem to think the Supreme Court must be canceled for its failure to yield to the demands of our age of rage. Many of us were surprised when he pandered to court packing calls in the 2020 primaries. Some of us have called for expanding the court over a lengthy transitional period, but commentators and some Democrats called for an immediate infusion of new justices to give liberals the controlling majority. Unhappy with conservative rulings, Democrats demanded that the Supreme Court be replaced by a much larger and more reliably liberal body.

Washington already looks like many of our campuses, where opposition of such liberal measures results in isolation and condemnation. Take Justice Stephen Breyer. One would think he would be immune from the mob as one of the most consistently liberal justices in our history. However, this week Breyer warned against any move to expand the Supreme Court. He was swiftly denounced by figures like cable news host Mehdi Hasan who called him “naive” and called for his retirement. Demand Justice, a liberal group calling for court packing, had a billboard truck in Washington the next day telling Breyer to retire. Demand Justice once employed White House press secretary Jen Psaki as a communications consultant, and Psaki was on the advisory board of one of its voting projects.


The commission is an ominous sign that Biden may be offering up the last institution immune from our impulsive politics. Its composition also seems to confirm the worst expectations. Indeed, it is a lesson in how to pack a body. The group is technically bipartisan but is far from balanced. Only a handful of the 36 members are considered center right academics, which is actually a strong showing on many of the represented schools, which have few if any conservative or libertarian faculty. Liberals make up the vast majority on the commission, and some have been outspoken critics of Republicans and the conservative Supreme Court majority.

The commission rapporteur, who is tasked with publishing the final report after 180 days of study about the Supreme Court, is University of Michigan professor Kate Andrias, one of 500 academics who called for the rejection of Brett Kavanaugh. One commission chair, Yale University professor and former Justice Department official Cristina Rodriguez, had also signed the public letter against Kavanaugh. The other commission chair is New York University professor and past White House counsel Bob Bauer.

The commission includes such individuals as Harvard University professor Laurence Tribe, who called Donald Trump a “terrorist” and has a history of personal and vulgar attacks on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and others, myself included, who maintain views that he opposes. Tribe once ridiculed former Attorney General William Barr for his Catholic faith. The only ire Tribe has drawn from the left, however, was when he referred to the possible selection of an African American like then Senator Kamala Harris to be vice president as mere “cosmetics” for the party.

Tribe has not been subtle about his sudden interest in court packing. After the election he declared, “The time is overdue for a seriously considered plan of action from those of us who believe McConnell and Republicans, abetted by and abetting the Trump movement, have prioritized expansion of their own power over the safeguarding of our American democracy and the protection of the most vulnerable who are among us.”

Another Harvard University professor put it in more direct terms. Michael Klarman declared the refusal of Senate Republicans to confirm Merrick Garland as a justice in 2016 was itself court packing. He said, “Democrats are not initiating this spiral. They are simply responding in kind.” He added that Democrats should not worry about Republicans responding with their own court packing when they return to power. Instead, Klarman insisted, Democrats could change the system with a manufactured liberal majority to ensure that Republicans “will never win another election.”


The only hope is that this commission is so lopsided that it is clearly not intended to be a credible basis for a court packing proposal. While the group has many respected and thoughtful academics, its composition is unlikely to sway many conservatives or even some moderates. Rather, it could be an effort to defuse the left while sentencing the court packing scheme to death by commission, a favorite lethal practice in Washington. Commissions to study events or new ideas often become a vast political wasteland where bad scandals or notions are sent to perish.

If this is the case, the timing is right. The announcement came almost to the day of the anniversary of the 1937 decision where the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of a minimum wage bill, breaking the voting bloc against the New Deal. Indeed, Contemporary observers paraphrased Benjamin Franklin to describe the decision as a “switch in time” that saved nine because the shift with the Supreme Court majority was what defused the demands for packing the bench beyond its nine members.

This commission could now be a “switch in time” moment for Biden. The hope is that he does not have the courage to simply repeat his past view that court packing remains a “boneheaded” idea but that he can assemble an overwhelmingly liberal commission to effectively kill the scheme. After all, 180 days is not much time to reinvent the Supreme Court, but it is just enough time to give the pretense of an effort to do so. Unfortunately, that is the closest we get to principled government today. But in this instance, the short lifespan just may be a “hitch in time” that saves nine.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can find his updates online @JonathanTurley.[1]


  1. ^ @JonathanTurley (twitter.com)

atan@thehill.com (Jonathan Turley, opinion contributor)

Google offers Gmail users a boost that Zoom simply can't match

This isn’t the first time that Google has extended its video calling with an hour-long limit first due to take effect in September. This was then pushed to March 2021 and now you have until June to use it. We guess we’ll have to wait and see if Google then adds even more time to this offer.

If you weren’t already aware, Google Meet offers an easy way to chat with up to 30 friends at once without needing any extra software or plugins.

This service has been improving over the past year with Google releasing numerous features aimed at making its video calls better for users.

One big upgrade included noise cancellation which strips out any background sounds – like tapping on a keyboard, the soft hum of a desk-fan, or the rustle of a crisps packet during a mid-meeting snack.

Is Facebook’s ‘unregulated’ monopoly simply killing all competitors? Boom Bust digs in

Mollye Barrows of America’s Lawyer gives her insight into the fight over tech regulation as Facebook vows to combat proposed measures from the US government.

There’s some need for updating regulatory language and regulatory laws, she tells Boom Bust. The two recent lawsuits “basically make similar claims that Facebook bought Instagram and WhatsApp in order to squash what they thought was competition that could pose a threat to the company.”

She points out that the US attorney general accused Facebook of using their market dominance to stifle competition, while the Federal Trade Commission wanted the firm to unload Instagram and WhatsApp and become separate companies again.“So, in response to those claims Facebook’s basically alleging that those two apps weren’t exactly real competitors, they were ‘potential’ competitors rather than an actual threat,” Barrows says, adding: “So, they are basically trying to say ‘Hey, we sort of fall through the cracks, we’re kind of unregulated’ which you’ve heard from other big tech companies before.”

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