Burglaries, Thefts Up More Than 75% In Major Cities Amid Coronavirus Lockdown

Burglaries, Thefts Up More Than 75% In Major Cities Amid Coronavirus Lockdown

Burglaries and thefts have been spiking in major cities across America, as police have been told to curtail enforcement activities during the coronavirus lockdown, and prisons across the country let low-level offenders out early to prevent outbreaks in overcrowded facilities.

In Seattle, burglary cases in the city’s west precinct were up 87% over the preceding 28 days, according to the Seattle PD’s internal crime database, which includes downtown Seattle. The spike coincided with a county policy prohibiting most misdemeanor jail bookings.

"This is a number we’re going to work very hard to reverse in the coming weeks," SPD spokesman Sgt. Sean Witcomb told the "Jason Rantz Show" on KTTH.

In New York City, burglaries of commercial establishments are up 75% between March 12, when a state of emergency was declared by Mayor Bill de Blasio, and March 31. 254 burglaries of businesses were recorded vs. 145 for the same period last year, according to the Wall Street Journal.

"We knew with the closing of many stores that we could see an increase and, unfortunately, we are," said NYPD Chief of Crime Control Strategies Michael LiPetri.

Last week, masked thieves made off with $1.3 million in jewelry from a Bronx jewelry store by entering an adjacent business, drilling a hole in the wall, and entering through a closet.

Also contributing to the spike in crime is New York’s new no-bail law which went into effect on January 1st. The new law prohibits pretrial detention for most misdemeanors as well as certain nonviolent felonies. 

On the bright side, while commercial burglaries have increased during the pandemic – rapes, murders and assaults have fallen approximately 20% in New York vs. the same period in 2019 – dropping from 4,670 to 3,740 a year earlier.

In Houston, burglaries have risen nearly 20%, while aggravated assaults of spiked by 19.3%. Domestic violence incidents have risen six percent, according to KTRK. The increases come as Harris County readies a list of nonviolent inmates for release amid the pandemic.

In the hours after Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo confirmed the intention to release certain inmates from a "ticking time bomb" situation, Acevedo, whose police department is the largest user of the jail, revealed he had not discussed the plan with county leadership.

"While I can’t speak to a plan I have not seen or been consulted on, my position on release is well documented on my Twitter feed and in previous media interviews," the chief tweeted. "Let’s hope people who burglarize vehicles, residences and buildings aren’t released in large numbers." –KTRK

San Francisco, meanwhile has seen a slight increase in motor vehicle theft and robbery, though assaults, burglaries and larceny has dropped over between January 1st and April 5th vs. the same period in 2019 according to the city’s crime dashboard. That said, domestic violence incidents are on the rise, and restaurants have been targeted by vandals and break-in attempts despite covering their windows and doors with plywood, according to SF Eater.

We wonder what these cities will look like in another four months?

Tyler Durden

Tue, 04/07/2020 – 17:20

via ZeroHedge News

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Hulk Hogan: ‘God Has Taken Away Everything We Worship’

Celebrity wrestler Hulk Hogan relayed some of his spiritual insight pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic, asserting that perhaps God might be making people rethink their values.

In a Facebook post on Monday, Hogan featured a photo of himself praying up against a wall in unison with a caption of biblical proportions. Recalling the plagues of Egypt, which were designed to humiliate the pagan deities, Hogan said that our modern “gods,” from sports to celebrity to money, have been taken from us by this pandemic.

“In three short months, just like He did with the plagues of Egypt, God has taken away everything we worship,” Hogan began. “God said, ‘you want to worship athletes, I will shut down the stadiums. You want to worship musicians, I will shut down Civic Centers. You want to worship actors, I will shut down theaters. You want to worship money, I will shut down the economy and collapse the stock market. You don’t want to go to church and worship Me, I will make it where you can’t go to church.”

Hogan then quoted scripture: “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

Concluding his post, Hogan said that people should take this time of isolation to discover what truly matters.

“Maybe we don’t need a vaccine, maybe we need to take this time of isolation from the distractions of the world and have a personal revival where we focus on the ONLY thing in the world that really matters. Jesus,” his post concluded. 

Hogan’s post received 42k likes, 27k shares, and over 5k comments, most of which were in agreement with the wrestler’s message.

“I do believe this to be true! Thank you for having the courage to say this statement.We have lost what really is important in life. Prayers for you and your family & everyone to stay safe,” said one user.

“Maybe we’ve concentrated on material things, money and lifestyles for too long. So, once this virus ends, let’s concentrate on things that really matter, our families and friends and be thankful for what we have and not what we want?” said another user.

Though not as prophetic as Hogan’s post, MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell recently called upon Americans to turn to God and read their bibles during this time.

“God gave us grace on Nov. 8, 2016 to change the course we were on. God had been taken out of our schools and lives, a nation had turned its back on God,” Lindell said during an address in the White House rose garden.

“I encourage you to use this time at home to get back in the word, read our Bibles, and spend time with our families,” he continued. “Our president gave us so much hope where, just a few short months ago, we had the best economy, the lowest unemployment, and wages going up. It was amazing. With our great president, vice president, and this administration, the other great people in this country, and praying daily, we will get through this and get back to a place that is stronger and safer than ever.”

via The Daily Wire

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The Telegraph: China Floods Facebook with COVID-19 Propaganda Ads

Move over, Russia. News outlets run by the Chinese government are waging the new information war on Facebook. “Chinese state media is flooding Facebook and Instagram with undisclosed political adverts whitewashing its role in the coronavirus pandemic and pinning blame on Donald Trump,” The Telegraph reported in its April 5 coverage. This misinformation blitz is reportedly being carried out by “Xinhua, China Central Television and the Global Times,” which have released stories in English, Chinese and Arabic.

via NewsBusters – Exposing Liberal Media Bias

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Michael ‘Big Short’ Burry Blasts “Unjustifiable” Lockdowns As “Most Devastating Economic Force In History”

Michael ‘Big Short’ Burry Blasts "Unjustifiable" Lockdowns As "Most Devastating Economic Force In History"

Infamous for his painful but ultimately profitable "big short" bet against mortgage-backed securities during the 2008 financial crisis, Michael Burry, the doctor-turned-hedge-fund-manager has been on a multi-day Twitter rant claiming that the lockdowns intended to contain the COVID-19 pandemic are worse than the disease itself.

Echoing the thoughts of many, Burry opined in a series of tweets over the past two weeks that the government-enforced lockdowns and business shutdowns across America may trigger one of the country’s deepest-ever economic contractions, and further still, are not necessary to contain the epidemic (on March 22nd).

COVID-19 policy cannot be settled by CYA politicians career ID docs. Too much hammer/nail and too little common sense. 

POTUS must reflect the interests of the working class and small business here – the economy cannot crash 30% to save the 0.2%.

Set America Free!

If COVID-19 testing were universal, the fatality rate would be less than 0.2%.

This is no justication for sweeping government policies, lacking any and all nuance, that destroy the lives, jobs, and businesses of the other 99.8%.

Furthermore, Burry – who earned his M.D. at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine – has also dared to say that some controversial treatments for COVID-19, such as the malaria drug hydroxycloroquine, should be made more widely available (on March 24).

Prudent plan:

1) Standardize on chloroquine and azithromycin -cheap and available

2) Sick and elderly voluntarily shelter in place. 

3) Americans lead their normal lives with extra hand washing and special care if around elderly.

Saving the economy means life, not murder.

Additionally, in an email to Bloomberg News, Burry wrote that "universal stay-at-home is the most devastating economic force in modern history… And it is man-made. It very suddenly reverses the gains of underprivileged groups, kills and creates drug addicts, beats and terrorizes women and children in violent now-jobless households, and more. It bleeds deep anguish and suicide."

Additionally, as Bloomberg’s Reed Stevenson reports, Burry responded to questions via email to offer more thoughts on the pandemic and the response to the outbreak…

How the Pandemic Happened

This is a new form of coronavirus that emanated from a country, China, that unfortunately covered it up. That was the original sin. It transmits very easily, and within the first month it was likely all over the world. Very poor testing infrastructure created an information vacuum as cases ramped, ventilator shortages were projected. Politicians panicked and media filled the space with their own ignorance and greed. It was a toxic mix that led to the shutdown of the U.S., and hence much of the world economy.”

“In hindsight, each country should have immediately ramped up rapid field testing of at-risk groups. But as I understand it, the CDC was tasked with some of this, and botched it, and other departments were no better. The bureaucracy failed in a good number of countries. Turf wars and incompetence has ruled the day. So the political cover for that failure on the part of the technocrats and politicians is a very harsh stay-at-home policy.”

The U.S. Policy Response

“If there was ever a time for the government to stimulate with fiscal and monetary policy, it is now. Unfortunately, the U.S. has been adding $3 for every $1 of new GDP over a very long time, and interest rates were already near zero. Still, nothing is more important now that loans to small and mid-sized businesses, and the U.S. Treasury, backed by the Fed, is providing that liquidity, which is vital.”

Potential Treatments

It’s pretty clear that hydrochloroquine is doing something good for many Covid-19 patients. The standard in medicine is a placebo-controlled double-blind study. But there is no time for that. The technocrats at the top are getting this wrong. Do the studies, make the vaccines, but allow doctors to have what they feel is working now. Don’t take tools or drugs out of the treating doctors’ hands. Trump should use the Defense Production Act more liberally in this area.

“A more nuanced approach would be for at risk groups — the obese, old and already-sick — to shelter in place, to execute widespread mandatory testing, and to ID and track as necessary while allowing society to function. Again, Trump should get the massive contract manufacturers like Flextronics to make testing machines.”

Getting Back to Normal

“I would lift stay-at-home orders except for known risk groups. We already know certain conditions that are predictive of severe disease. Especially since young healthy lungs tend to be resistant, I would let the virus circulate in the population that is not likely to get severe disease from it. This is the only path that comes close to balancing the needs of all groups. Vaccines are not coming anytime soon, so natural immunity is the only way out for now. Every day, every week in the current situation is ruining innumerable lives in a criminally unjust manner.”

“When it comes to vaccines, coronaviruses are not known for imparting enduring immunity, and this will be one big challenge. It seems the genetic code is relatively conserved, and this will help the development of the vaccine. But we’re still looking at the end of the year. In the meantime, the world is an innovative place, and I expect many effective treatments — both new and repurposed — shortly. The question then will be regulation, expense and availability.”

“Medically, the new normal will be the old normal. As long as innovation continues, medicine will conquer everything in our way.”

Japan’s Response

“I believe Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is trying his best to manage through the situation without shuttering the economy. He sees what it has done to the U.S., and would rather not force a shut in, but instead asks for common sense. Japan has certain features — such as a largely lawful and well-educated society — that make this more possible. As do Taiwan, Singapore, Korea.”

Business Recovery

Economically speaking, we have to realize the policy-driven demand shock will be resolved by 2021. But Japan and the U.S. are putting more than 20% of the GDP into new fiscal stimulus, and easy money will be the rule. Those things will all bring stock and debt markets back.”

Countries will also look to bring supply chains home, and many employees will need retraining with higher cost. When we start working and playing again, inflation may be in store. The other big point is that consumers have learned new behaviors, which will drive business churn.”

Finally, on the investment side, Burry told Bloomberg News last month that he placed a “significant bearish market bet that is working out for now,” without providing details except to say it was a trade of a “good size” against indexes. He said the pandemic could unwind the passive investment boom, which he has compared to purchases of collateralized debt obligations that fueled the pre-2008 mortgage bubble.

Tyler Durden

Tue, 04/07/2020 – 10:45

via ZeroHedge News

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Chicago Mayor Forced To Defend Getting A Haircut In Violation Of Her Own Stay-At-Home Order

Chicago’s mayor Lori Lightfoot is on the defensive Tuesday after a Chicago hair stylist revealed on social media that she’d given the mayor a haircut in violation of Lightfoot’s own stay-at-home orders.

Illinois was one of the first states to institute a full shelter-in-place program to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, and has been warning its residents to stay home at all costs unless they need necessary items like food or prescrition medication. The state had some of the first cases of coronavirus in the nation and, so far, around 11,000 Illinois residents are infected with the disease and 275 have died.

Lightfoot is, herself, the face of the Chicago stay-at-home order, appearing regularly on television to remind Chicagoans of the need to remain self-quarantined and her frequent lectures have earned her space on memes, where she stares down would-be fun-havers with her steely glare.

It has mostly been a positive time for Lightfoot — until Monday, that is, when her hair stylist posted a post-haircut photo with the mayor on social media. The stylist apparently visited Lightfoot at home and wore a mask and gloves to give Lightfoot a trim — something ordinary Chicagoans can’t get, given that barber shops and salons are shuttered until further notice.

Lightfoot was forced to defend her actions, according to the Chicago Tribune.

“Asked about photos on social media showing her with a stylist, Lightfoot acknowledged getting a haircut, then said the public cares more about other issues,” the Trib reported.

“I think what really people want to talk about is, we’re talking about people dying here. We’re talking about significant health disparities. I think that’s what people care most about,” she added.

Lightfoot contended that she was abiding by her own rules because the stylist came prepared: “The woman who cut my hair had a mask and gloves on so we are, I am practicing what I’m preaching,” she said during a press conference.

Asked what separated her from average Chicagoans who are forgoing beauty treatments in order to abide by regulations they’ve been told are saving lives, Lightfoot claimed that her status affords her some special privileges.

“I am the public face of this city. I’m on national media and I’m out in the public eye,” she said. “I take my personal hygiene very seriously. As I said, I felt like I needed to have a haircut. I’m not able to do that myself, so I got a haircut. You want to talk more about that?”

That last part didn’t sit well with some Chicagoans, who accused the mayor of abiding by one set of rules while mandating a second set of rules for less important residents. Indeed, just weeks ago, Lightfoot called the stay-at-home order a matter of life and death.

“Congregating on our lakefront, to be blunt, is going to create a risk that is unacceptable and could lead to death,” she said in a speech announcing that Chicago’s recreational areas, parks, and public beaches would be closed to traffic. “That is why we are taking these actions and going back and saying again: dear god, stay home, save lives.”

via The Daily Wire

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Rand Paul Recovers from Coronavirus, Volunteering at Hospital

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) announced Tuesday that he has recovered from the Chinese coronavirus and has begun volunteering at a Kentucky hospital.

“I appreciate all the best wishes I have received. I have been retested and I am negative,” Paul tweeted. “I have started volunteering at a local hospital to assist those in my community who are in need of medical help, including Coronavirus patients. Together we will overcome this!”

Paul contracted the coronavirus in March, making him the first senator to be infected.

Paul, an eye surgeon, is volunteering at TriStar Greenview Regional Hospital in Bowling Green while the Senate is on a break amid the coronavirus outbreak. Paul worked in emergency rooms early in his career as a physician, his office said.

The hospital’s CEO, Mike Sherrod, said Tuesday that the senator is “lifting the spirits of patients and our colleagues” by volunteering.

“We appreciate Senator Paul and his support in recognizing our healthcare workers and providers at TriStar Greenview for their unwavering response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said in a statement.


The AP contributed to this report. 

via Breitbart News

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Fact Check: Trump Does Not Own Stake in a Hydroxychloroquine Drugmaker

Claim: “Donald Trump Has Stake In Hydroxychloroquine Drugmaker: Report”

That’s the headline across a HuffPost story that goes on to claim that “President Donald Trump reportedly owns a stake in a company that produces hydroxychloroquine, the anti-malaria drug he has repeatedly touted as a coronavirus treatment even though his experts say there’s no strong evidence it works.”

Verdict: False.

The report cited by the HuffPost is from a New York Times story that said: “Trump himself has a small personal financial interest in Sanofi, the French drugmaker that makes Plaquenil, the brand-name version of hydroxychloroquine.”

Trump’s personal financial interest, however, does not include a stake in Sanofi–and the New York Times did not claim it did. Instead, Trump’s financial disclosures show that his three family trusts each had investments in a $10.3 billion Dodge & Cox mutual fund that owns shares in Sanofi, the world’s fifth-largest drugmaker by prescription sales. As of its latest disclosures, those holdings amount to just 3.3 percent of the fund’s holdings.

Trump’s most recent financial disclosure forms lists holdings in the Dodge & Cox International Fund valued between $1,001 and $15,000. That means Trump holds a maximum stake in the mutual funds of $35,000, giving him an indirect interest in Sanofi of $1,155 at the most.

His “financial interest” in Sanofi, which has a market capitalization of nearly $58 billion, could be as low as $99.10.

This was originally reported by independent journalist Mike Cernovich on his website. Cernovich’s figures are lower because it appears he was calculating the interest of a single trust rather than combining the three trusts as we have here.

Plaquenil, the company’s version of the drug, is not material to Sanofi’s stock. It is generically available, not sold in the United States, and has been around since the 1950s.

Trump’s indirect interest in Sanofi pales compared with his indirect interest in practically every company in the world through his much larger holdings in basically every big company in the world through broad market index funds.

Marketwatch reports:

Trump has a small stake in basically every big company you can think of.

In each of the trusts, the biggest fund holding is just the broader SPDR S&P 500 ETF, in which Trump holds between $200,000 and $450,000, according to his financial-disclosure forms.

So one could say Trump has $22,000 or so invested in Microsoft, and nearly as much in Apple

It would be accurate to claim that Trump has an interest in the prosperity of businesses around the globe, especially American companies. But it is inaccurate to claim he has a particular interest in the bottom line of Sanofi. Like most diversified investors, Trump’s stock portfolio benefits when the broad market rises and is not leveraged to the profits of one company.

In any case, it is certainly false to claim he directly owns a stake in the French drugmaker.

via Breitbart News

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Detroit Deploys ‘Plane Flyovers, Video Surveillance’ to Enforce Social Distancing

The city of Detroit is increasing its Big Brother-type controls to ensure residents abide by social distancing orders.

City leaders are growing increasingly annoyed with residents who are ignoring commands, as the city comprises 6.7 percent of Michigan’s population but one-quarter of the state’s coronavirus cases.

“We are going to have to deal far more strictly with enforcing the governor’s executive order on social distancing,” Mayor Mike Duggan said on Friday.

“I expect the police department to be very strong in dealing with groups that are gathered and have no reason to be in public,” he said.

According to the Metro Times, the city has begun removing basketball rims at public parks to discourage congregating.

The Bridge reported:

Duggan acknowledged city officials had “significant debate … about closing parks” but settled on increased patrols, plane flyovers and video surveillance to disperse crowds.

“If we have to close parks, we’ll close parks,” the mayor said, according to the Times.

“We don’t want to do that. A vast majority of the city has been terrific. People are angry when they see these gatherings. We’re going to step up the tickets and take stricter and stricter actions until we get more enforcement.”

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services director Robert Gordon issued an order authorizing police to fine violators up to $1,000 or six months in jail.

Meanwhile, on the west side of the state, officials at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore are “not enforcing the social distancing order on an individual basis,” according to The Bridge.

“Rangers are not out there policing with a tape measure,” park superintendent Scott Tucker said.

“If folks are in the park, we’re assuming they’re there for the right reasons.”

Kyle Olson is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter and like him on Facebook.

via Breitbart News

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