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AOC Says She May Quit Politics Over Deep Hostility from Centrist Democrats

AOC revealed that she has considered exiting politics due to the hostility of her own party.

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While New York Rep. Aexandria Ocasio-Cortez won an easy and overwhelming victory on Election Day, the popular left-wing Democrat has revealed that she has considered exiting politics due to the hostility of her own party toward progressive causes.

“I don’t even know if I want to be in politics,” Ocasio-Cortez told the The New York Times. “You know, for real, in the first six months of my term, I didn’t even know if I was going to run for re-election this year.”

The 31-year-old New York congresswoman, famously known as AOC, is clearly a rising star in U.S. politics and is widely seen as the potential successor to Bernie Sanders’ progressive wing of the party.

In an interview with the New York Times, however, the Bronx native said that the centrists in the Democratic Party have revealed a deep hostility to the causes cherished by progressives, including Medicare For All and the Movement for Black Lives.

“Externally, there’s been a ton of support,” she added. “But internally, it’s been extremely hostile to anything that even smells progressive.”

While many Democrats are still celebrating Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential elections, Democrats are also reckoning with the reasons behind their lackluster performance in down-ballot races, with Republicans potentially maintaining control of the Senate and Democrats losing House seats.

The poor performance in an election contest that drew record levels of voters, especially in battleground states, has led to widespread finger-pointing – with many blaming their shrunken House majority on Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s leadership, as well as an inability to remain on-message and organize a strong ground game to rally support.

Establishment Democrats have also decried the presence of progressives and democratic socialists in the ranks of the party, blaming young insurgents like Ocasio-Cortez for taking the party too far to the left and potentially alienating that small faction of undecided conservatives who might have voted blue.

For Ocasio-Cortez, her treatment from Democratic careerists and centrists has led her to believe she and her progressive colleagues are seen as the “enemy.”

“I need my colleagues to understand that we are not the enemy. And that their base is not the enemy. That the Movement for Black Lives is not the enemy, that Medicare for all is not the enemy,” Ocasio-Cortez said.

Ocasio-Cortez rejects the idea that progressives were at fault for the Democratic losses, instead blaming the complacent centrists in the party who made themselves “sitting ducks.”

“Before we even had any data yet in a lot of these races, there was already finger-pointing that this was progressives’ fault and that this was the fault of the Movement for Black Lives,” Ocasio-Cortez said.

Instead, incumbents and candidates who lost their seats or fared poorly should blame their own inability to run a campaign “on all cylinders” for their losses, she added, commenting: “I just don’t see how anyone could be making ideological claims when they didn’t run a full-fledged campaign.”

Additionally, the Democrats continue to believe that establishment centrists remain content with messaging that fails to stir up emergent voting blocs and those who feel apathetic about the U.S. electoral process.

“It’s really hard for us to turn out nonvoters when they feel like nothing changes for them. When they feel like people don’t see them, or even acknowledge their turnout,” she said.

The New York congresswoman explained that the Democrats’ avoidance of progressive issues simply won’t galvanize the support it needs to win future races.

“This isn’t even just about winning an argument,” she added. “It’s that if they keep going after the wrong thing, I mean, they’re just setting up their own obsolescence.”

The hostility that she’s faced from her opponents both inside and outside the party has also given her pause about continuing her political career.

“It’s the incoming. It’s the stress. It’s the violence. It’s the lack of support from your own party. It’s your own party thinking you’re the enemy. When your own colleagues talk anonymously in the press and then turn around and say you’re bad because you actually append your name to your opinion,” she said.

“I’m serious when I tell people the odds of me running for higher office and the odds of me just going off trying to start a homestead somewhere — they’re probably the same,” she added.

Ocasio-Cortez’s own ability to beat much more well-funded opponents has been impeccable since her rise to political stardom in 2016. However, centrist Democrats in battleground states have disregarded her talents even when she offered them.

“I’ve been begging the party to let me help them for two years,” she said. “That’s also the damn thing of it. I’ve been trying to help. Before the election, I offered to help every single swing district Democrat with their operation. And every single one of them, but five, refused my help.”

Indeed, progressives chalked up major wins in races across the country. All four members of the group of congressional freshmen known as the “The Squad” – consisting of Representatives Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib, and Ayanna Pressley – handily won reelections last week while unabashedly championing progressive causes.

And with Biden’s presidential win, left-wing Democrats aren’t planning to shrink back and toe the party line dictated by the DNC – instead, they plan to use their significant clout and influence to push Congress, as well as their party, to champion more progressive causes.

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Corruption

Man Who Spent Decades in Prison Gets $6 Million After Cop Found to Have Faked Evidence

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A North Carolina man who spent decades in prison was awarded $6 million in damages by a federal jury after it was found that he was wrongfully convicted thanks to evidence fabricated by a detective.

Darryl Howard languished in prison for over 20 years on double murder and arson charges in 1995 for killing a woman and her teen daughter in 1991. Last Wednesday, a jury in Winston-Salem found that former Durham police detective Darryl Dowdy simply faked the evidence that resulted in his conviction.

In 2016, Howard’s 80-year sentence was stricken down by a Durham County judge who cited the misconduct of police and prosecutors. The $6 million award was the result of a 2017 federal civil rights lawsuit filed by Howard, reports the News & Observer.

Dowdy, 65, denied the accusations in the lawsuit. The former detective was a 36-year veteran of the Durham Police Department before he retired in 2007.

Howard and his legal team have expressed satisfaction that the jury recognized the grave injustice he faced, but are disappointed that the $6 million is a mere fraction of the $48 million in damages they requested.

Attorney Nick Brustin, who represented Howard, said that Dowdy’s defense attacked Howard for his past gunshot wounds and history of selling and using drugs.

“I think to some extent the racist defense that they have been implementing since the beginning of the ligation has in some ways succeeded,” Brustin said. “I think the verdict doesn’t value the suffering that Darryl went through.”

Howard himself noted that the heavy damage dealt by his long incarceration have completely altered his life.

“I am happy about the verdict, but I am kind of upset about the damages,” Howard told the News & Reporter.

“Just imagine, 23 years I stayed in prison,” he added.

Brustin also highlighted the systemic nature of the injustice his client suffered as a result of Dowdy’s police work.

“The kinds of misconduct are pattern misconduct,” he noted, adding that Durham police need to review other cases handled by the crooked cop.

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Happy Holidays? Billionaire CEO Fires 900 Workers in Zoom Call

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The boss of an online mortgage lending company has come under fire as callous and heartless after he unceremoniously fired about 900 staff members in the run-up to the holidays – all on one single Zoom call.

Vishal Garg, the chief executive of New York-based mortgage firm Better.com, didn’t mince words in the call, telling employees:

“This isn’t news that you’re going to want to hear … If you’re on this call, you are part of the unlucky group that is being laid off. Your employment here is terminated effective immediately.”

Adding that he did “not want to do this,” he explained that “this is the second time in my career I’m doing this … The last time I did it, I cried.” 

While the 43-year-old CEO claimed that the mass sacking was a painful ordeal, he also noted that the “market has changed” and the company required streamlining to deal with the cool-off in the recent housing boom.

However, Garg neglected to mention that the company recently received $750 million from investors just last week.

According to Fortune, the chief executive also was the anonymous author of a blistering blog post to professional network Build that put his own employees on blast.

“You guys know that at least 250 of the people terminated were working an average of 2 hours a day while clocking 8 hours+ a day in the payroll system?” Garg wrote, adding that “they were stealing from you and stealing from our customers who pay the bills that pay our bills. Get educated.”

Garg also has come under fire for his poor management approach and history of abusing workers after an email he sent to employees was published by Forbes last year.

“You are TOO DAMN SLOW,” the CEO wrote. “You are a bunch of DUMB DOLPHINS… SO STOP IT. STOP IT. STOP IT RIGHT NOW. YOU ARE EMBARRASSING ME.”

Regardless of his personal frustrations with employees, social media users were stunned by news of the mass firing, calling the move “cold,” “a horrible move,” and “harsh” – especially with Christmas around the corner.

Employment law and business experts have also lambasted Garg’s actions, noting that such mass firings run counter to the law in most countries, and are not only abusive but destructive toward morale, despite being perfectly legal in the United States.

“Existing employees will look to how the company treats people as a signal to how it will treat them in the future,” Gemma Dale of the Liverpool John Moores University in the UK told the BBC.

“There are ways to do these things which, even in difficult conditions, are empathetic and decent,” she added. “There is a right way to do these things both morally and legally.”

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Environment

China Was Just Caught Literally Changing The Weather For Communist Party Celebration: Study

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In recent years, China has made a number of head-turning and downright dazzling technological advances. Now, according to a new study, the East Asian giant has successfully managed to literally change the weather.

According to a recent report from the South China Morning Post, scientists at Tsinghua University say that during the 100-year anniversary of the Communist Party of China, authorities succeeded in modifying the weather in Beijing to clear the sky and improve air quality for the masses gathered to celebrate the party’s centenary in Tiananmen Square.

The large-scale operation involved lacing the clouds above the capital with chemicals to usher in rainfall over suburban parts of Beijing before the July 1 centennial event. According to the Tsinghua researchers, eyewitnesses report rockets being launched from mountains outside the city in the run-up to the event.

The Beijing researchers claim that the artificial rain managed to reduce the level of PM2.5 air pollutants by over two-thirds, bringing air quality to “good” conditions from “moderate” levels per World Health Organization Standards.

The use of chemicals to modify weather conditions is a practice that dates back to at least the 18th century, when European states used gunfire to shoot at storms in hopes to prevent hail from harming crops.

By the turn of the 20th century, dozens of hail cannons were deployed for commercial purposes despite the unproven nature of such primitive geo-engineering methods.

Fast forward to the 2020s, and the People’s Republic of China has reportedly invested vast resources into weather modification programs that will be tested in a region spanning 5.5 million square miles by the year 2025. The impact of such geo-engineering efforts could lead to regional tensions with China’s increasingly nervous neighbors.

Meanwhile, as the potential for a new cold war with the people’s republic continues to grow, professional China skeptics have stoked fears that the ruling Communist Party could use its newfound ability to manipulate the weather for military purposes. However, it’s worth noting that the United States military has been hoping to weaponize the rain since at least 1967.

However, with arid conditions and extreme drought threatening the food security of populations across the globe, the ability to literally make rain fall may not be as frightening as some make it out to be.

Additionally, some researchers have claimed that geoengineering could play a role in mitigating the impact of rampant climate change. However, it remains far too early to know the long-term impact of lacing skies with chemicals on a widespread, regular basis.

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