Mauritania: Former president jailed, faces graft charges

Source: Al Jazeera [Qatar state media]

“Mauritania’s former President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz has been jailed after a judge in charge of a corruption probe ordered his incarceration. The ex-leader says he is being persecuted in a bid to keep him out of politics but has vowed he would not go into exile. A prosecutor speaking on condition of anonymity and the spokesman of the former president’s party, Djibril Ould Bilal, confirmed his detention on Tuesday without citing the reason. Aziz has twice gone before a magistrate investigating the case since the charges, including money laundering, were brought in March. The move comes days after the former leader refused to continue reporting to police after being put under house arrest.” (06/23/21)

Canceling Critical Race Theory

Source: Heartland Institute
by Larry Sand

“In Florida, the state board of education has voted to approve a rule that prohibits schools from teaching CRT and the 1619 Project. Iowa governor Kim Reynolds recently signed a law that will ban schools from making students ‘feel discomfort, guilt, anguish or any other form of psychological distress’ because of their race or sex, among other provisions. In D.C., a bill has been introduced that would ban the promotion of ‘race or sex stereotyping or scapegoating.’ … And now, ironically, the wokesters — the same crowd that brought us ‘cancel culture’ — is [sic] screaming ‘Censorship!'” (06/22/21)

MO: Jim Bakker & his church settle lawsuit over COVID-19 claims

Source: San Francisco Chronicle

“Jim Bakker and his southwestern Missouri church will pay restitution of $156,000 to settle a lawsuit that accuses the TV pastor of falsely claiming that a health supplement could cure the coronavirus. Missouri court records show that a settlement agreement was filed Tuesday. It calls for refunds to people who paid money or gave contributions to obtain a product known as Silver Solution in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. The settlement also prohibits Bakker and Morningside Church Productions Inc. from advertising or selling Silver Solution ‘to diagnose, prevent, mitigate, treat or cure any disease or illness.’ Bakker, in the agreement, does not admit wrongdoing.” (06/23/21)

How social justice and due process are inextricably linked

Source: Foundation for Individual Rights in Education
by Rohan Krishnan

“When due process protections are minimized, marginalized groups with little political power are disproportionately harmed, as white and wealthy students are more likely to have the power and connections to protect themselves against sexual assault allegations. For example, an analysis of sexual assault allegations at Colgate University found that [b]lack male students at the university were accused of 50% of the sexual assault violations even though the [b]lack population at Colgate accounts for only 4.2% of the student body. The disproportionate nature of sexual assault allegations based on race demonstrates the need for stronger due process and the continuation of the current Title IX regulations.” (06/22/21)

A Charter School Named For the Author of “Pedagogy of the Oppressed” Is Union Busting

Source: In These Times
by Hamilton Nolan

“In 1968, Paulo Freire, a famous Brazilian philosopher, authored the book Pedagogy of the Oppressed, a Marxist argument for using education to empower the downtrodden. In 2013, a charter school named in his honor was founded: the Paulo Freire Social Justice Charter School (PFSJCS), located in Chicopee, Massachusetts. Now, in a display of the universe’s sense of humor, teachers at PFSJCS say that the school’s leadership is engaging in union busting. In March 2020, the school’s professional staff of about 26 people (mostly teachers, along with a few other employees such as guidance counselors) unionized with UAW Local 2322 in Massachusetts. Zack Novak, one of the teachers who helped lead the union drive, said that several years of experience working in unionized public schools had led him to expect certain standards of treatment that he didn’t see at PFSJCS.” (06/22/21)

SpaceX’s Starlink satellite internet could achieve global coverage by September

Source: Yahoo! News

“The Starlink satellite internet service may have the capability to provide users in far-flung regions around the world with high-speed connections before the year ends. SpaceX has deployed 1,800 or so satellites for the Starlink constellation so far. While that number’s just a fraction of the 12,000 satellites regulators already approved for the constellation, it’s enough to enable worldwide coverage. … That doesn’t mean the company can automatically offer everyone around the world access to broadband-speed internet services, though. As Shotwell explained during the event, SpaceX will first have to secure regulatory approval to provide telecommunications services in every country where it wants to offer Starlink’s internet. At the moment, Starlink is available as a beta service in only a handful of countries, including the US, the UK and Canada.” (06/23/21)

Zoning by “Outsiders”

Source: Common Sense
by Paul Jacob

“Government land-use regulation by ‘zoning’ is an awesome expression of rights-abridging power, usually becoming nothing more than what most regulations are: special-interest protection schemes, helping the in-crowd at the expense of ‘outsiders’ (you and me, actually). Most savvy people understand this in specific instances, but not generally, so when they see zoning they don’t like, they might leap to the notion that bad local regulations should be replaced by good state or federal regulators. Trouble is, we have less ability to ensure that regulators in distant political centers aren’t captured by special interests or malign ideologues.” (06/22/21)