Former President Donald Trump announced his plan to sue CNN Wednesday for “repeated defamatory statements.”
“I have notified CNN of my intent to file a lawsuit over their repeated defamatory statements against me,” Trump said in a statement. “I will also be commencing actions against other media outlets who have defamed me and defrauded the public regarding the overwhelming evidence of fraud throughout the 2020 Election. I will never stop fighting for the truth and for the future of our Country!”
This is a developing story…
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Target: Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
Goal: Ban the use of body-gripping traps within areas protected under the National Wildlife Refuge System.
Many types of body-gripping traps are still widely available for commercial use throughout the U.S. These traps, which include conibear traps, snares, and steel-jaw leghold traps, work by crushing animals bones and holding them hostage until a trapper, hunter, or furbearer comes to retrieve them. Although body-gripping traps—such as conibear traps which are designed to snap an animal’s spinal cord—are meant to kill animals instantaneously and painlessly, they are often unreliable and typically animals die a slow, agonizing death. An animal could be stuck in one of these traps for days before being retrieved, subject to extreme hunger, dehydration, and psychological trauma, and vulnerable to predators. Some animals will even resort to chewing their own limbs off to try and escape the crushing, all-consuming pain.
These types of traps are responsible for the deaths of millions of animals each year. As they are nonselective and cannot be continuously monitored, they often catch and kill non-intended targets. This includes endangered animals, such as Bald Eagles and Mexican wolves, as well as companion animals that happen to take a misfortunate step.
Though these traps are banned in many states, they still remain largely under regulation. In 2021, a bill was introduced to the House of Representatives that, if passed, would end the use of these cruel, indiscriminate traps once and for all within areas protected under the National Wildlife Refuge System.
Animals do not deserve to suffer prolonged, torturous deaths. Sign this petition to end this archaic method of trapping.
Dear Representative Pelosi,
Body-gripping traps are a particularly cruel method of trapping wildlife and kill millions of innocent animals each year. These devices work by slamming shut onto helpless animals, often crushing bones or vital organs in the process. An animal can be ensnared for days without any food or water, left vulnerable to predation and infection as they die a slow and agonizing death. Some desperate animals will even chew off their trapped limbs to try and escape the devices’ powerful grip. Since these traps are indiscriminate, they don’t just catch targeted wildlife, but also endangered species and companion animals. Even so, body-gripping traps like conibear traps, snares, and steel-jaw leghold traps are still widely commercially available in the U.S. today.
Luckily, changes are underway. In 2021, a bill was introduced to the House by Congressman Jerrold Nadler to ban inhumane conibear and steel-jaw leghols traps from areas protected under the National Wildlife Refuge System. If passed, millions of innocent animals will be granted the ability to roam freely and graciously, without the possibility of having their spinal cords snapped.
We are asking you, Mrs. Pelosi, to please ban the antiquated 300-year old practice of catching animals with inhumane, bone crushing traps and to support Bill H.R. 4716.
In the state of Utah, as in much of the world during the COVID-19 pandemic, domestic violence rates are up. One non profit cited an increase of between 25-50% in domestic violence cases in the state during the pandemic. But right now, when a victim seeks a legal order of protection against an abuser, they could be putting their pets’ lives at risk. That’s why a new bill, HB 175, has been put forward that would allow those legal protections to extend to pets, the same way they extend to children.
Sign now if you want to keep at-risk pets safe from domestic abusers in Utah!
One such woman, Jessica, said it took her 2 years to leave an abusive situation with her dog, Roxie. When she finally did, her abuser tried to get Roxie back! But Jessica knew Roxie wouldn’t be safe with him. This is not an uncommon situation. That’s why the Humane Society of Utah and Ruff Haven have worked so hard on the bill that would allow orders of protection to include pets.
Research has shown that domestic abuse and animal abuse are linked. Studies show that people who abuse animal companions are more likely to act violently to their human partners. And we know that victims of domestic abuse often delay or avoid leaving a situation because their abuser may take their rage out on a pet. We need to make it easier for people and their pets to escape dangerous situations, together!
Suffering through domestic abuse is one of the worst experiences a person can have, coupled with putting your beloved animals at risk, the experience just gets more intense. Someone who abuses an intimate partner or family member would have no reason to stop at the family pet. Let’s make sure these vulnerable pets are safe!
Sign the petition to urge Utah legislators to pass this new bill and allow people who get legal orders of protection to extend those to their pets as well!
In the most aggressive back-to-back interest rate increases since the early 1980s economic crisis, the Federal Reserve on Wednesday announced another three-quarters of a percentage point hike and signaled that it wasn’t done in its effort to beat back inflation despite rising risks of triggering a recession.
The Fed’s hefty increase in its benchmark rate, which forms the basis for borrowing costs on credit cards, home loans and other products, is aimed at further cooling the economy to help curb pricing pressures.
In its statement announcing the rate change, the Fed noted the slowing economy. “Recent indicators of spending and production have softened,” it said, adding that the Fed expects to make “ongoing increases” in its key interest rate as it strives to return inflation to its 2% target.
The central bank’s efforts have profound implications not just for the U.S. and global economies. As the Fed tries to steer between a rock and a hard place, it has raised the political stakes, especially for Democrats, because voters in the upcoming congressional elections are not going to like either a continued rise in prices or a downturn that would cost jobs and other unwelcome consequences.
If there are bright spots for President Biden and his party, it’s that gas prices have come off their highs in June and there’s positive news in an economic indicator that most Americans don’t usually pay much attention to: the value of the dollar against foreign currencies.
One offshoot of the Fed’s rate-hike campaign has been a surge in the dollar in recent months, which is making products from Europe, Asia and other parts of the world cheaper for American buyers.
Since the U.S. purchases trillions of dollars in imported products each year — including a wide array of things such as clothing, electronics, flowers and fresh vegetables — the stronger dollar is starting to make it a little easier for shoppers to deal with inflation for some goods.
“That’s one of the very few forces working against food price inflation,” said Ricky Volpe, an agribusiness professor at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, noting persistent food-supply challenges involving labor, weather, transportation and energy.
The housing crisis in Southern California is getting worse. Today, Southern California has the fewest homes available per capita of any metro area in the country.
In June the cost to U.S. consumers for food produced at home was 12.2% more than a year earlier. That helped push up overall inflation to 9.1%, a four-decade high. Cereals and breads, eggs and milk, as well as poultry products have been rising even faster in recent months. By comparison, prices for imported foods including vegetables and fish have been trending down lately.
Carl Tannenbaum, chief economist at Northern Trust, said cheaper imports should provide a relatively small but notable help in lowering the rate of U.S. inflation as more companies pass on those savings to consumers.
The downside for American multinational corporations is that their exports and sales overseas will take a hit.
And the rapid and sharp gain in the dollar, Tannenbaum said, is inflicting real pain on some developing countries as they face bigger dollar payments for debt and commodities. The recent political turmoil in Sri Lanka reflected a severe economic crisis that included a shortage of dollars and a national currency that has now plunged more than 80% against the greenback.
Still, for American voters, a decline in import prices, along with companies like Walmart now starting to mark down merchandise due to excess inventory and slowing demand, could provide some relief from the decades-high inflation.
Jack Ablin, chief investment officer at Cresset Capital, said he thinks inflation may have peaked in June and July. Gas prices nationally averaged $4.30 a gallon Wednesday, down from $4.90 a month earlier.
“There’s growing evidence that consumers’ willingness and ability to spend is getting tired,” he said in a note to clients. “Moreover, households appear to have spent through their pandemic-supported cash hoard, as evidenced by a recent run-up in credit card debt and AT&T’s acknowledgement that an increasing number of their customers’ bills are past due.”
On Thursday, the government is expected to release data showing the U.S. economy declined in the second quarter, after earlier reports of shrinking activity in the first three months of the year. Republicans are likely to jump all over the news, as consecutive quarters of falling real gross domestic product, or economic output, is commonly seen as evidence of a recession.
An official determination of a recession is based on an array of data, and most economists say that while two negative quarters of GDP might constitute a “technical recession,” the U.S. doesn’t appear to be in an outright downturn at the present moment. Employment thus far has held up well and the picture of consumer spending, which accounts for two-thirds of economic activity, is still mixed.
GDP in the current third quarter, for now, looks lackluster. And what happens over the rest of the summer and beyond will depend at least in part on what the Fed does and how people react to its efforts to get inflation under control.
The Fed’s rate move Wednesday is the fourth increase this year and lifts its benchmark rate to nearly 2.5%, a level that’s considered neutral — that is, neither stimulative nor restrictive to the economy.
The question now is, how much more will the central bank do? In their June forecast, Fed officials projected their main rate to end the year at nearly 3.5%. And Fed Chair Jerome H. Powell could provide more guidance at a news conference Wednesday afternoon.
But there are a number of factors that will influence inflation and growth, which remain highly uncertain and are largely beyond the Fed’s control, including the war in Ukraine, the global economic situation and pandemic lockdowns in China.
Supply chain problems at ports and in other parts of the logistics system have eased somewhat in recent weeks, but there’s still a shortage of parts and goods, particularly for new autos.
And it will take time before the backlog of orders is cleared and companies adjust to shifting supply chains, said Shawn DuBravac, an economist and president of Avrio Institute, a consulting firm. But, he said, with demand slowing and inventories of things like apparel relatively high, many more businesses don’t have the pricing power they had at the start of the year.
In recent days, some of the biggest companies, including Microsoft, General Motors, Alphabet and Walmart, have reported lower profits. And companies in finance, housing and some other sectors have cut their outlook and are shedding jobs.
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