2021-01-04: News Headlines

WSWS (2021-01-04). Illinois high school student dies of COVID-19. wsws.org A senior at Lincoln Way East High School in Frankfort, Illinois, Sarah Simental was just a few months from graduating in the spring.

WSWS (2021-01-04). Hospitals overwhelmed and bodies loaded into semi-trailers as California reaches breaking point with COVID-19. wsws.org The flood of coronavirus cases has exposed the underfunded and unprepared health care system in the richest state in the US.

Brian Dolinar (2021-01-04). COVID-19: Coming to a Jail Near You. progressive.org Illinois jails have become hotspots for the coronavirus, and county officials haven't done much to stop the spread.

WSWS (2021-01-04). Over 2,900 US health care workers have died from COVID-19. wsws.org A new report by the Guardian and Kaiser Health News published last week estimates that over 2,900 health care workers have died in the United States due to COVID-19.

Brian Berletic (2021-01-04). COVID-19: The Emergence of the Pandemic Industrial Complex. globalresearch.ca : | If official numbers are to be believed, the United States is one of the worst hit countries in terms of COVID-19 infections and deaths. According to the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), at the time of writing, …

WSWS (2021-01-04). A tale of two pandemics: Ontario's finance minister holidays in the sun while workers get infected and die. wsws.org During the 18 days Rod Phillips was living it up with his family at an ultra-exclusive Caribbean resort, 2,237 Canadians died from COVID-19.

Wyatt Skinner (2021-01-04). Texas prisons: Scene of negligence toward COVID-19. liberationnews.org In Texas prisons, the class nature of COVID-19 spread is being exposed as infection rates surge.

WSWS (2021-01-04). UK teaching unions call for no work in "unsafe schools" as opposition among educators mounts. wsws.org Schools have been a major vector for the spread of COVID-19, worsened by a new and more contagious variant of the disease.

WSWS (2021-01-04). Strikes spread across Spain as anger mounts at COVID-19 herd immunity policy. wsws.org Workers' struggles erupted in Spain in December, anticipating an intensification of the class struggle across Europe as a winter of death opens in the new year.

Fight Back (2021-01-04). Arizona educators planning sick-out in several school districts. fightbacknews.org Tucson, AZ – As COVID-19 rates and deaths continue to rise in Arizona, as many as 750 educators in the districts of Chandler, Dysart, Peoria and Deer Valley are planning a sick-out to resist the order to return to in-person instruction. | The event is called "Blackout for the Benchmarks" using the hashtag #RIPMetrics in order to highlight the neglect of state and county COVID-19 health benchmarks and safety metrics demonstrated by these school districts. State Superintendent of Schools Kathy Hoffman recommended at least two weeks of virtual learning as students return from winter break. Reactionary Governor Doug…

Online News Editor (2021-01-04). Singapore's GDP posts worst-ever contraction of 5.8 percent. laprensalatina.com Bangkok, Jan 4 (efe-epa).- Singapore's gross domestic product (GDP) shrank by 5.8 percent during 2020, its worst contraction since independence from Malaysia in 1965, weighed down by the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. This is the fourth straight quarter of decline of the GDP of the city-state, whose economy is in recession. The last …

Online News Editor (2021-01-04). Japan considers declaring state of emergency in Tokyo area. laprensalatina.com Tokyo, Jan 4 (efe-epa).- Japan Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said Monday that the government was considering declaring another state of emergency in Tokyo and the surrounding areas due to the continued rise of Covid-19 cases that have piled up the pressure on the country's healthcare system. The emergency declaration, if announced, would affect the capital …

Online News Editor (2021-01-04). Europe considers extending restrictions amid rising covid-19 infection rates. laprensalatina.com Madrid Desk Jan 4 (efe-epa).- The second wave of the coronavirus pandemic continues to peak in several European countries, such as Spain, the United Kingdom and Italy, although experts warn that the true impact of social gatherings during the holiday period is yet to be truly felt. BELGIUM Belgian authorities will convene on Friday to …

Santa Cruz News (2021-01-04). Police Chief Mills says New Homeless Camping Ordinance will go to City Council this Month. indybay.org In the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, which has the local homeless population scrambling for places to camp and shelter in place, Santa Cruz Police Chief Andrew Mills is soliciting support from the public for a new camping ordinance that he says will go before the City Council for approval in January. "It will need our support," Mills said. "We Have not had an ordinance to enforce due to a SCOTUS decision and council suspending our ordinance," he added. (Photo: Correspondence between Police Chief Mills and a member of the public concerning the homeless.)…

_____ (2021-01-04). The Political Lessons Of The Pandemic. popularresistance.org 1. As the New Year begins, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to sweep across the globe. This is a world crisis of vast historical significance. The pandemic is a "trigger event" that manifests in a highly concentrated form the contradictions of the world capitalist system and is unleashing long-suppressed forces of social transformation. | 2. The pandemic cannot be described as merely a medical crisis. In the course of the past year, the thoroughly reactionary character of world capitalism has been exposed. The interaction of the drive for profit regardless of social cost, the lust of the oligarchs for obscene leve…

The Canary (2021-01-04). Nationwide May elections to give voters first chance for say on coronavirus and Brexit. thecanary.co As well as voting on regional matters, millions of voters will this year get their first chance to have a say on how politicians have handled coronavirus (Covid-19) and Brexit.Devolved and local: A bumper set of elections are to be held across Great Britain on 6 May, including a number of contests postponed from 2020 because of the pandemic.Voters in Scotland and Wales will be choosing new parliaments. In London there will be elections for the mayor and assembly, which were originally due to take place last year. And across the rest of England voters will be choosing a mixture of councillors, local mayors,…

WSWS (2021-01-04). COVID-19: Global vaccination stymied by nationalism and profit gouging. wsws.org The race to procure vaccines against a fast-spreading virus that travels unimpeded by border controls has set in motion a ferocious national competition that threatens to prolong and intensify the pandemic.

teleSUR (2021-01-04). Venezuela Denounces Obstacles To Access COVID-19 Vaccines. telesurenglish.net Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro on Sunday denounced the blocking of resources by international banks and western nations against the country to prevent the acquisition of COVID-19 vaccines, noting the moves are in line with the U.S. unilateral sanctions. | RELATED: | The Venezuelan assets to buy COVID-19 vaccines "have been stolen and frozen by the U.K, Portugal, Spain, and the U.S.," Maduro pointed out, recalling that his administration has ma…

teleSUR (2021-01-04). Mexico: 32,824 Health Workers Have Been Vaccinated So Far. telesurenglish.net Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) Sunday announced that 53,625 doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been received in the country, 32,824 of which have been applied to health personnel. | RELATED: | He added that 50,000 more doses will arrive on Tuesday to continue the vaccination in the healthcare sector , which has at least 750,000 workers. | The elderly population will be vaccinated with the…

teleSUR (2021-01-04). Egypt Licenses Sinopharm COVID-19 Vaccine for Emergency Use. telesurenglish.net Egypt's Health Minister Hala Zayed said that the COVID-19 vaccine developed by Chinese drugmaker Sinopharm has been officially licensed for emergency use in Egypt. | RELATED: | "The Egyptian Drug Authority (EDA) will send us the official license early in the morning, which it has already issued today," he announced. | Egypt received the first batch of Sinopharm vaccines on Dec. 10. The minister said that the batch…

Mehr News Agency (2021-01-04). COVID-19 claims 55,650 lives across Iran. en.mehrnews.com TEHRAN, Jan. 04 (MNA) — The coronavirus has infected 6,073 people and claimed 110 lives in Iran in the past 24 hours, according to the Iranian Health Ministry.

Sovereignty (2021-01-04). Pfizer VP Calls For Vaccine Withdrawal, Flu Shots Down, Nobel Prize Winner Warns. indybay.org Why have flu shots dropped 98%? | Why does a retired Pfizer VP petition EU health agency to withdraw vaccine? Why are not just pregnant women but all women who want ever to conceive warned against vaccine? Nobel Prize winner and creator of PCR test says it should not be used in covid 19 tests. Why?>

Alan Macleod (2021-01-04). Media Praise of Israel's COVID Vaccination Drive a Form of "Medical Apartheid" mintpressnews.com Completely missing from media accounts of the Israeli vaccine drive was mention of the millions of Palestinians living under Israeli occupation, none of whom have received the vaccine.

Yasmina Allouche (2021-01-04). Egypt: Man who filmed chaos in Covid-hit hospital questioned by police. middleeasteye.net Egypt: Man who filmed chaos in Covid-hit hospital questioned by police | Footage from the al-Husseiniya hospital shows patients struggling to breathe and medical staff collapsed on the floor, as oxygen allegedly runs out | Mon, 01/04/2021 – 11: 53 | "> | The image of this nurse collapsed on the floor has raised concern over the situation in Egypt, which is stru…

Michael Hàºter (2021-01-04). Generation Betrayed. The Corona Regime in Schools. The Future of Our Children. globalresearch.ca "Protecting children from all dangers is my damned father's duty," sang Reinhard Mey. Our offspring currently need protection from the rigid corona regime in schools. | Serious damage is done to our sons and daughters through masking and social distance rules, …

WSWS (2021-01-04). Three-quarters of infected Memphis workers remained on the job after testing positive for coronavirus. wsws.org While the study by county health officials does not attempt to explain why so many people continued to work, the fact is that major corporations have continued to operate at close to full capacity during the height of the pandemic, resorting to lies and threats to keep workers on the job under unsafe conditions.

Online News Editor (2021-01-04). Coronavirus found on auto parts from Daimler factory in China. laprensalatina.com Shanghai, China, Jan 4 (efe-epa).- Authorities have found coronavirus on auto parts shipped from an accessories department of a subsidiary of the German firm Daimler in Beijing, according to a media report published on Monday. The virus had survived on the parts for a long time due to the cold weather. It was detected when …

Online News Editor (2021-01-04). Australian woman activist arrested in Tanzania over social media post. laprensalatina.com Sydney, Australia, Jan 4 (efe-epa).- An Australian activist, who has renounced her Islamic faith and now campaigns for women's rights, has been arrested and charged in Tanzania over a social media post. The activist had criticized the president of the African country for his handling of the coronavirus outbreak. A Foreign Ministry official told EFE …

Online News Editor (2021-01-04). Coronavirus vaccines roll out across EU, although too slowly for some. laprensalatina.com Madrid Desk, Jan 4 (efe-epa).- Coronavirus vaccines were being rolled out across the European Union, although some countries are facing criticism that the distribution and administration of the jabs is taking too long. FRANCE French President, Emmanuel Macron, will lead a special government meeting on Monday to assess delays in the coronavirus vaccination campaign and …

Lisa Becker, Alex Demirivic & Horst Kahrs (2021-01-04). Easing into a New Normality of the Crisis. indybay.org With the intertwining of the Corona and economic crises, massive distribution struggles are already looming. Society, in a collective effort to prevent illness, has downsized its economic activity. This collective decision must not serve to enrich a few. The radical taxation of the great fortunes is an indispensable moment to face the Corona crisis.

_____ (2021-01-04). Father Takes Assange's Fight To New York. popularresistance.org The father of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has turned his focus from the UK to the US where he hopes a change of president could advantage his son. | Assange is being held at London's Belmarsh Prison, pending a court decision on a warrant for his extradition to the US to face charges. | A judgment is due to be handed down at Woolwich Crown Court on Monday, but Assange's father John Shipton won't be there. | Mr Shipton says there's too much uncertainty about his ability to travel amid a series of border closures in the UK due to a mutant strand of coronavirus. | "It's all up in the air like it is for everybody…

The Canary (2021-01-04). 'Batch testing' is reportedly limiting how fast we can roll the coronavirus vaccine out. thecanary.co Boris Johnson has suggested the limiting factor in expanding the UK's coronavirus vaccine rollout is waiting for batches of the jab to be tested.Batch testing: Ministers have said the NHS has the capacity to deliver two million doses a week of the Oxford vaccine once it receives supplies from the manufacturers. The prime minister claims the issue is not supply or staff but waiting for batch approval.He said: We have the capacity, the issue is to do with supply of the vaccine. It's not so much a manufacturing issue although that's part of it. Each batch needs to be properly approved and quality controlled.(P…

Mehr News Agency (2021-01-04). Iran, Russia preparing meeting on coronavirus vaccines: envoy. en.mehrnews.com TEHRAN, Jan. 04 (MNA) — Iran's Ambassador to Moscow Kazem Jalali said that Iran and Russia are preparing a personal meeting on cooperation in producing vaccines against the coronavirus.

Mehr News Agency (2021-01-04). West refusing to unfreeze Caracas funds for vaccine purchase. en.mehrnews.com TEHRAN, Jan. 04 (MNA) — Venezuelan President says the EU nations and the United States have refused Venezuela's request to unfreeze its assets so that the sanctions-hit country could purchase a coronavirus vaccine.

The Canary (2021-01-04). Stay-at-home lockdown — and school closures — announced for Scotland for January. thecanary.co Most of Scotland will be placed in lockdown from 5 January for the whole of January to tackle the rising spread of the new coronavirus strain, Nicola Sturgeon has announced. | Lockdown 3: | The first minister said a legally-enforceable stay-at-home order will apply from 5 January to areas currently under Level 4 — mainland Scotland and Skye — with exemptions in place for carers, essential shopping, unlimited outdoor exercise, and being part of an extended household. | Schools and nurseries will remain closed to most pupils until February, meaning an additional two weeks of home learning for mos…

Dean Baker (2021-01-04). All in for $2K. counterpunch.org A few weeks ago I had exchanges with people on Twitter in which I argued against across the board payments to individuals. I was concerned that these were likely to come out of other provisions (most importantly unemployment insurance) in the pandemic relief package. Since most people have actually not seen their income cut from

WSWS (2021-01-04). Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education lays off educators, closes schools. wsws.org As with hundreds of other colleges and universities around the country, at PASSHE the pandemic has prompted massive shortfalls in revenue, compelling school officials to lay off faculty and staff and reduce educational opportunities for students.

WSWS (2021-01-04). The political lessons of the pandemic and the fight for socialism in 2021. wsws.org The pandemic is a "trigger event" that manifests in a highly concentrated form the contradictions of the global capitalist system and is unleashing long-suppressed forces of social transformation.

WSWS (2021-01-04). Macron government refuses calls to cancel school reopenings as pandemic surges. wsws.org The Macron government has refused calls by medical specialists and teacher and parent groups for the cancellation or postponement of in-person classes.

Andrew Latham (2021-01-04). How 3 prior pandemics triggered massive societal shifts. zcomm.org Will the bumbling efforts of the open societies of the West to come to grips with the virus shattering already-wavering faith in liberal democracy, creating a space for other ideologies to evolve and metastasize?>

Pip Hinman (2021-01-04). Christmas: a time for taking. greenleft.org.au The pandemic has thrown up many challenges for employers and employees, backpackers and farmers.

Pip Hinman (2021-01-04). Christmas: a time for taking. greenleft.org.au The pandemic has thrown up many challenges for employers and employees, backpackers and farmers, writes Chris McCoomb.

Eliza Egret (2021-01-04). Education union defies the government as Matt Hancock is accused of gaslighting. thecanary.co The government's incompetence in dealing with the pandemic has reached new levels, as it continues to ignore unions and teachers and insists on keeping schools open. If the government has its way, millions of children are set to mix in schools over the coming days. | But headteachers are beginning to

teleSUR (2021-01-04). Brazil to Import 2 Million Doses of AstraZeneca Vaccine. telesurenglish.net Brazil's National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) Sunday authorized the "exceptional import" of 2 million doses of the vaccine produced by Oxford University and the United Kingdom-based laboratory AstraZeneca. | RELATED: | The doses that will arrive in the country in the next days will not be supplied to the entire population. The immunizer will be used in emergencies, such as patients at high risk of dying due to the disease. | "More doses will…

Jessica Corbett, staff writer (2021-01-04). Chicago Teachers Union Members Take Stand Against Unsafe School Conditions. commondreams.org "We're afraid for our lives. We don't want to lose our jobs. The fear of losing our jobs is real," said one teacher. "But the fear of this virus is greater than that fear." | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files/styles/cd_special_coverage/public/headline/thumbs/gettyimages-12300930171.jpg

Julia Conley (2021-01-04). Paygo Exemptions Will Help Pave Way for Green New Deal and Medicare for All. zcomm.org "Paygo's the biggest scam of the decade, designed to legitimize the fear-mongering over artificial deficits. This is a big win by progressives."

Tara Lohan (2021-01-04). Midnight rush: 6 ways Trump trashed the environment during the holidays. nationofchange.org Trump's team continued its unprecedented onslaught on environmental regulations, with nearly a dozen new rollbacks or threats to public health, wildlife, clean air, public lands and the climate.

teleSUR (2021-01-04). Open Arms Lands Eritrean Migrants in Sicily. telesurenglish.net The Italian authorities on Monday allowed the Spanish humanitarian ship Open Arms to dock in Porto Empedocle in Sicily to disembark the 265 sub-Saharan migrants who were rescued in the Mediterranean Sea a few days ago. | RELATED: | Among those saved are 63 minors, six babies under three years of age, and 14 women, one of whom is in the ninth month of pregnancy. | Doctors from the Office of Maritime Health (USMA…

Alan Macleod (2021-01-04). "No Victory for Press Freedom" — Assange Wins Case but Judge Sets Worrying Precedent. mintpressnews.com Julian Assange will not be extradited to the United States as many feared, but his fate still hangs in the balance as it was the integrity of his mental health, not the right to a free press, that saved him.

Fight Back (2021-01-04). Political prisoner Facundo Molares wins freedom! fightbacknews.org Political prisoner Facundo Molares, an Argentinian photojournalist who was incarcerated by the Bolivian Añez regime, is now safely home in his native Argentina. | Molares was arrested during a violent incident between armed forces backing the coup d'etat and protests for democracy in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia on November 19, 2019, two days after the unelected Añez government took over. Molares was documenting the confrontation for the magazine Centenario, but during this incident he had a health crisis and was rushed to the hospital. | The Añez coup regime arrested Facundo in his hospital bed. It is widely…