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Home Daily Digests Oil, Immigrants, Tech, and Trafficking: News Roundup

Oil, Immigrants, Tech, and Trafficking: News Roundup

Ukraine’s war effort is increasingly supported by oil from Russia. In the U.S., debates surge over a bill facilitating home loans for undocumented immigrants, a proposed TikTok ban, contentious educational programs, legislation against vaccine manufacturers’ liability protections, a major human trafficking sting, and deployment of National Guard troops to tackle subway crime.

user profile picture Ivor Mar 08, 2024
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In a twist of irony, Ukraine’s war effort is increasingly fueled by oil imports from Russia, processed through Hungary and Turkey. The Ukrainian customs authority reports a significant increase in diesel imports from these countries, with MOL Group, a Hungarian company, doubling its sales to Ukraine in the past six months. Despite Russian attacks on Ukraine’s energy supply, the country remains well supplied, thanks to new supply routes and a decrease in petroleum consumption due to scaled-back operations in the war economy.

Meanwhile, in the United States, a proposed bill in California, Assembly Bill 1840, is stirring controversy. The bill would allow undocumented immigrants to access zero-interest loans for home down payments through the California Dream for All Fund. Critics argue that the bill incentivizes illegal immigration and should prioritize assisting legal residents first. This comes amid a housing crisis in California and a significant increase in military-aged Chinese men crossing the U.S.-Mexico border, raising national security concerns.

In the realm of technology and security, the House Energy and Commerce Committee has advanced a bipartisan bill to ban TikTok in the US unless its parent company ByteDance divests the app. The bill aims to address national security concerns over Chinese government access to American user data. However, it faces opposition from groups concerned about free speech implications.

In education news, the Long Beach Unified School District in California is funding Californians for Justice (CFJ), a progressive activist group, to pay high school students to participate in racial and social justice training programs. The district has paid CFJ nearly $2 million since 2019, with plans for more training sessions in the future. However, some teachers have criticized the program as a “horrible propaganda strategy.”

In health-related legislation, Rep. Chip Roy has introduced a bill to remove liability protections for COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers, allowing Americans harmed by the shots to sue. The bill would retroactively eliminate protections under the PREP Act, except in cases of willful misconduct. Critics warn that changing liability laws could hinder future vaccine development.

In Florida, a human trafficking sting operation called “Operation March Sadness 2024” led to the arrest of nearly 230 people and the rescue of 13 potential victims. The operation uncovered a sex trafficking ring involving illegal immigrant females from Venezuela who were forced to pay off debts by engaging in sex work. The operation highlighted the issue of human trafficking at the border and the exploitation of illegal immigrants.

Finally, New York Governor Kathy Hochul is mobilizing 1,000 National Guard troops and State Police officers across New York City’s subway system in response to a surge in violent crime. The move has raised questions about the nature of the threat, with some speculating that it could be related to terrorism concerns.

Sources

Terror Threat? NYC Mobilizing 1,000 National Guard Troops In Subways

“These brazen heinous attacks on our subway system will not be tolerated,” the governor said, adding the Guardsmen are part of a new five-point plan to crack down on the city’s crime wave.

Source | Submitted by pnwdefector

Massive Human Trafficking Sting in Florida Leads to 228 Arrests and 13 Rescues

“This is not the last operation,” he advised. “We‘ll have more, and we’ll give you the opportunity to be arrested if you’re stupid enough to show up. That’s a guarantee.”

Source | Submitted by bcoop

Legislation Introduced to Strip COVID-19 Vaccine Manufacturers of Liability Protections

“No federal law … may make the manufacturer of a COVID-19 vaccine immune from suit or liability, or limit the liability of such a manufacturer, with respect to claims for loss caused by, arising out of, relating to, or resulting from the administration to or the use by an individual of a COVID–19 vaccine,” the bill states.

Source | Submitted by aaronmckeon

California School District Pays Students to Become Social Justice Warriors

“I am shocked and horrified at such a fact,” another teacher told the outlet.

Source | Submitted by aaronmckeon

House Panel Unanimously Advances Bipartisan Bill To Ban TikTok

“The government is attempting to strip 170 million Americans of their Constitutional right to free expression. This will damage millions of businesses, deny artists an audience, and destroy the livelihoods of countless creators across the country,” said a spokesman for the company, The Hill reports.

Source | Submitted by aaronmckeon

California Bill Would Allow Illegal Immigrants to Access Homebuyer Assistance Program

Assembly Bill 1840 would change existing law to allow illegal immigrants to be eligible for the California Dream for All Fund, which provides interest-free loans for a down payment on a home for first-time buyers.

Source | Submitted by nickythec

Kyiv’s War Effort Relies Heavily on Fuel Imports, Mainly from Russia

Kyiv is almost completely dependent on fuel imports to maintain its war effort

Source | Submitted by newsbuoy

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