Neuralink ของ อีลอน มัสก์ ฝังชิปในสมองลิงให้เล่นเกมด้วยจิตสำเร็จ #SootinClaimon.Com

#SootinClaimon.Com : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์โพสต์ทูเดย์

https://www.posttoday.com/world/650139

วันที่ 10 เม.ย. 2564 เวลา 15:30 น.Neuralink ของ อีลอน มัสก์ ฝังชิปในสมองลิงให้เล่นเกมด้วยจิตสำเร็จNeuralink เผยคลิปวิดีโอลิงที่ผ่านการฝังชิปไว้ที่สมองควบคุมการเล่นเกมผ่านความคิด

บริษัท Neuralink ซึ่งร่วมก่อตั้งโดย อีลอน มัสก์ มหาเศรษฐีเจ้าของบริษัทรถยนต์ไฟฟ้า Tesla เผยแพร่คลิปวิดีโอโชว์ความคืบหน้าของเทคโนโลยีการใช้คลื่นสมองสั่งการคอมพิวเตอร์ แสดงให้เห็นลิงตัวหนึ่งกำลังเล่นเกมโดยใช้สมองสั่งการให้ลูกบอลในเกมเคลื่อนไหว

ก่อนหน้านี้ Neuralink ฝังชิปลงไปที่สมองคอร์เท็กซ์ส่วนที่ใช้สั่งการการเคลื่อนไหวของมือและแขนทั้งฝั่งซ้ายและฝั่งขวาของเข้าลิงเพศผู้ที่ชื่อว่า เพเจอร์ แล้วฝึกให้มันเล่นเกม Mind Pong โดยใช้จอยสติ๊กก่อน เพื่อบันทึกและถอดรหัสคลื่นสมอง จากนั้นถอดปลั๊กจอยสติ๊กออก แล้วให้เพเจอร์ควบคุมไม้ตีลูกบอลในเกมด้วยการคิดว่าจะขยับมือขึ้นหรือลง

ด้าน อีลอน มัสก์ ทวีตว่า ผลิตภัณฑ์ตัวแรกของ Neuralink จะช่วยให้ผู้เป็นอัมพาตใช้สมองสั่งการสมาร์ทโฟนได้เร็วกว่าที่คนปกติใช้มือ และผลิตภัณฑ์รุ่นหลังจากนี้ส่งสัญญาณจาก Neuralink ที่ฝังอยู่ในสมองไปยังตัวรับสัญญาณและมอเตอร์ที่อยู่ในร่างกายคนที่เป็นอัมพาตให้กลับมาเดินได้อีกครั้ง

First @Neuralink product will enable someone with paralysis to use a smartphone with their mind faster than someone using thumbs— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 9, 2021

Photo by Brendan Smialowski / AFP

Alibaba เจอศึกหนักโดนปรับกว่า 8 หมื่นล้านฐานผูกขาด #SootinClaimon.Com

#SootinClaimon.Com : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์โพสต์ทูเดย์

https://www.posttoday.com/world/650137

วันที่ 10 เม.ย. 2564 เวลา 14:00 น.Alibaba เจอศึกหนักโดนปรับกว่า 8 หมื่นล้านฐานผูกขาดบริษัทยักษ์ใหญ่ด้านเทคโนโลยีอย่าง Alibaba โดนปรับสูงสุดเป็นประวัติการณ์ฐานละเมิดกฎระเบียบในการต่อต้านการผูกขาดตลาด

รอยเตอร์สรายงานว่าสำนักงานบริหารจัดการกฎระเบียบตลาดแห่งรัฐของจีน (SAMR) สั่งปรับบริษัท Alibaba (อาลีบาบา) เป็นเงิน 2,750 ล้านเหรียญสหรัฐ หรือประมาณ 86,515 ล้านบาท ฐานละเมิดกฎระเบียบในการต่อต้านการผูกขาดตลาด ซึ่งเงินจำนวนดังกล่าวคิดเป็น 4% ของรายได้ทั้งหมดของบริษัทในปี 2019

พร้อมกันนี้ยังได้สั่งให้ Alibaba ดำเนินการแก้ไขเพื่อให้ธุรกิจเป็นไปตามกฎระเบียบตลอดจนปกป้องสิทธิของผู้บริโภค

แม้จะเป็นค่าปรับที่สูงที่สุดเป็นประวัติการณ์แต่นักวิเคราะห์มองว่าคงไม่ใช่เรื่องใหญ่นัก เพราะเงินจำนวนนั้นยังไม่ถึง 1% ของมูลค่าตลาดของ Alibaba เสียด้วยซ้ำ และหากการจ่ยค่าปรับครั้งนี้จะทำให้บริษัทหลุดพ้นจากสภาวะกดดันเช่นนี้ได้มันก็คุ้มค่า นักวิเคราะห์ยังไม่คิดว่าอำนาจของ Alibaba จะลดลงอย่างมีนัยสำคัญ

ขณะที่อีกส่วนหนึ่งมองว่าสิ่งที่จะเกิดขึ้นหลังจากนี้คือจะเกิดความเสียหายต่อยักษ์ใหญ่ด้านเทคโนโลยีรายอื่นๆ ในประเทศจีน และเป็นการส่งสัญญาณว่ากฎระเบียบในการต่อต้านการผูกขาดตลาดจะเริ่มเข้มงวดขึ้น

ทั้งนี้ แจ็ค หม่า และ Alibaba ถูกเพ็งเล็งโดยรัฐบาลจีนนับตั้งแต่ที่เขาออกมาวิพากษ์วิจารณ์ระบบกำกับกฎระเบียบทางการเงินของจีนเมื่อเดือนตุลาคมปีที่แล้ว จนส่งผลให้ Ant Group (แอนท์ กรุ๊ป) ซึ่งเป็นบริษัทในเครือถูกระงับการเปิดขายหุ้น IPO มูลค่าราว 37,000 ล้านเหรียญสหรัฐ และยิ่งตึงเครียดขึ้นเมื่อรัฐบาลจีนเริ่มตรวจสอบการผูกขาดของ Alibaba และ Ant Group เมื่อช่วงปลายปีที่ผ่านมา

นอกจากนี้เมื่อเดือนมีนาคมรัฐบาลจีนกดดันให้ Alibaba ขายหุ้นสื่อในมือรวมถึงเซาท์ไชน่ามอร์นิ่งโพสต์ เนื่องจากกังวลถึงอิทธิพลของบริษัทยักษ์ใหญ่ที่มีต่อความคิดเห็นของสาธารณชน

Photo by Philippe LOPEZ / AFP

คาด ‘เจ้าชายแฮร์รี’ เตรียมกลับอังกฤษร่วมพิธีศพ ‘เจ้าชายฟิลิป’ #SootinClaimon.Com

#SootinClaimon.Com : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์โพสต์ทูเดย์

https://www.posttoday.com/world/650128

วันที่ 10 เม.ย. 2564 เวลา 12:30 น.คาด 'เจ้าชายแฮร์รี' เตรียมกลับอังกฤษร่วมพิธีศพ 'เจ้าชายฟิลิป'แหล่งข่าวเผยเจ้าชายแฮร์รีเตรียมกลับอังกฤษพร้อมยืนเคียงข้างครอบครัวหลังพูดคุยเจ้าชายชาลส์

สื่อท้องถิ่นอังกฤษรายงานว่าเจ้าชายแฮร์รีซึ่งขณะนี้กำลังอาศัยอยู่ในแคลิฟอร์เนีย สหรัฐอเมริกา วางแผนกลับอังกฤษเพื่อร่วมพิธีศพของเจ้าชายฟิลิปแม้อาจต้องทำการกักตัวอย่างน้อย 5 วันตามมาตรการควบคุมและป้องกันโรค

แหล่งข่าวใกล้ชิดกล่าวว่า “เจ้าชายแฮร์รีจะพยายามอย่างเต็มที่เพื่อกลับไปหาครอบครัวที่สหราชอาณาจักร เขาไม่ต้องการอะไรไปมากกว่าการได้อยู่เคียงข้างครอบครัวของตนโดยเฉพาะคุณย่า (สมเด็จพระราชินีนาถเอลิซาเบธที่ 2) ในช่วงเวลาเลวร้ายเช่นนี้”

นี่จะเป็นครั้งแรกที่เจ้าชายแฮร์รีจะได้กลับไปพบครอบครัวของเขานับตั้งแต่ที่เขาและเมแกนให้สัมภาษณ์ในรายการของโอปราห์ วินฟรีย์ ในสหรัฐเมื่อเดือนก่อน

นอกจากนี้แหล่งข่าวเผยว่าเจ้าชายแฮร์รีได้พูดคุยกับสมาชิกราชวงศ์อังกฤษหลายคนหลังการสิ้นพระชนม์ของเจ้าชายฟิลิปรวมถึงเจ้าชายชาลส์

อย่างไรก็ตามยังไม่ชัดเจนว่าเมแกน มาร์เคิลซึ่งกำลังตั้งครรภ์ลูกคนที่ 2 จะกลับมาด้วยหรือไม่ ซึ่งแหล่งข่าวกล่าวว่าเธอจะต้องได้รับคำแนะนำจากแพทย์เสียก่อนว่าเธอจะสามารถเดินทางได้หรือไม่

ทั้งนี้ ทั้งคู่ได้เขียนสาส์นถวายอาลัยแด่เจ้าชายฟิลิปบนเว็บไซต์มูลนิธิ Archewell ของตนว่า “ขอบพระทัยสำหรับความอุทิศพระองค์ และพระองค์จะทรงสถิตอยู่ในใจของพวกเรา”

Photo by Ben STANSALL / AFP

วังอังกฤษจะจัดพิธีศพเจ้าชายฟิลิปเรียบง่ายที่สุด #SootinClaimon.Com

#SootinClaimon.Com : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์โพสต์ทูเดย์

https://www.posttoday.com/world/650127

วันที่ 10 เม.ย. 2564 เวลา 11:30 น.วังอังกฤษจะจัดพิธีศพเจ้าชายฟิลิปเรียบง่ายที่สุดสำนักพระราชวังของอังกฤษจะจัดพิธีศพเจ้าชาบฟิลิปอย่างเรียบง่ายที่สุดตามพระประสงค์

สำนักพระราชวังบักกิงแฮมออกแถลงการณ์ว่า เนื่องจากสถานการณ์การแพร่ระบาดของโรคโควิด-19 และเพื่อให้สอดคล้องกับคำแนะนำของรัฐบาลสหราชอาณาจักร ซึ่งต้องการให้ทุกภาคส่วนเว้นระยะทางสังคม เพื่อลดความเสี่ยงของการติดต่อโรค สมเด็จพระราชินีนาถเอลิซาเบธที่ 2 ทรงอยู่ระหว่างเตรียมการพิธีทุกขั้นตอนที่เกี่ยวข้อง และจะมีการปรึกษาหารือกับภาครัฐอย่างใกล้ชิด โดยกำหนดจำนวนผู้เข้าร่วมพิธีศพไม่เกิน 30 คน

ทางสำนักพระราชวังยังขอความร่วมมือชาวอังกฤษงดวางดอกไม้และจุดเทียนไขที่บริเวณรั้วของพระราชวังบักกิงแฮมและพระตำหนักอื่นๆ ทั่วประเทศ เพื่อให้เป็นไปตามแนวทางปฏิบัติด้านสาธารณสุข โดยเปิดให้ประชาชนร่วมลงชื่อแสดงความเสียใจผ่านเว็บไซต์ของสำนักพระราชวัง

ด้านสำนักมุรธาธรแห่งสหราชอาณาจักรเผยว่า พิธีฝังพระศพของเจ้าชายฟิลิปจะไม่ได้จัดแบบรัฐพิธีแม้ว่าพระองค์จะมีสิทธิ์ในฐานะพระสวามีของสมเด็จพระราชินีนาถอลิซาเบธก็ตาม แต่จะจัดอย่างเรียบง่ายที่สุดตามพระประสงค์ของเจ้าชายฟิลิปที่ไม่โปรดความหรูหรา โดยพระศพจะตั้งอยู่ที่พระราชวังวินด์เซอร์ก่อนจะเคลื่อนย้ายไปทำพิธีที่โบสถ์เซนต์จอร์จ

ทั้งนี้ หลังการสิ้นพระชนม์ของเจ้าชายฟิลิปสถานที่ต่างๆ ในอังกฤษ รวมถึงในประเทศในเครือจักรภพ คือ ออสเตรเลีย แคนาดา และนิวซีแลนด์ ได้ลดธงครึ่งเสา ส่วนวิหารเวสต์มินสเตอร์ได้ลั่นระฆัง 99 ครั้งตามพระชนมายุของเจ้าชายฟิลิป และเบื้องต้นมีรายงานว่า กองทหารเกียรติยศเตรียมยิงสลุต 41 นัด ตามสถานที่สำคัญหลายแห่งทั่วราชอาณาจักร พร้อมกันในช่วงเที่ยงของวันเสาร์ตามเวลาท้องถิ่น

หลังเสร็จสิ้นพิธี พระศพของเจ้าชายฟิลิปจะถูกนำไปฝังยังสุสานหลวงที่สวนฟรอกมอร์ พระราชวังวินด์เซอร์ ซึ่งเป็นที่ฝังพระศพของสมเด็จพระราชนีนาถวิกตอเรีย เจ้าชายอัลเบิร์ต พระสวามี และพระเจ้าเอ็ดเวิร์ดที่ 8 พระมาตุลา (ลุง) ของสมเด็จพระราชินีนาถอลิซาเบธที่ 2 

Photo by Tolga Akmen / AFP

จีนเริ่มกักน้ำเตรียมผลิตไฟฟ้าจากเขื่อนใหญ่อันดับสอง #SootinClaimon.Com

#SootinClaimon.Com : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์โพสต์ทูเดย์

https://www.posttoday.com/world/650085

วันที่ 10 เม.ย. 2564 เวลา 10:00 น.จีนเริ่มกักน้ำเตรียมผลิตไฟฟ้าจากเขื่อนใหญ่อันดับสองจีนเริ่มกักน้ำเข้าเขื่อนเตรียมเดินหน้าผลิตกระแสไฟฟ้าจากเขื่อนที่ใหญ่เป็นอันดับสองของประเทศ ก.ค.นี้

สำนักข่าวเซาท์ไชนามอร์นิ่งโพสต์รายงานว่า สถานีไฟฟ้าพลังน้ำไป๋เฮ่อทันของจีนเริ่มกักเก็บน้ำเข้าเขื่อนไป๋เฮ่อทันตั้งแต่วันที่ 6 เม.ย. เพื่อเตรียมผลิตกระแสไฟฟ้าในเดือน ก.ค.นี้ และคาดว่าจะผลิตเต็มกำลังในเดือน ก.ค.ปีหน้า

เขื่อนไป๋เฮ่อทันตั้งอยู่บนแม่น้ำจินซาตอนต้นของแม่น้ำแยงซี คร่อมอยู่ระหว่างพื้นที่ทางตะวันตกเฉียงใต้ของมณฑลยูนนานกับมณฑลเสฉวน อ่างเก็บน้ำของเขื่อนจุน้ำได้ 20,627 ล้านคิวบิกเมตร

เขื่อนนี้มีกำลังการผลิตกระแสไฟฟ้า 16 ล้านกิโลวัตต์ ทำให้ขึ้นแท่นเป็นสถานีผลิตกระแสไฟฟ้าพลังน้ำที่ใหญ่เป็นอันดับ 2 ของจีนในแง่ของกำลังการผลิต โดยเป็นรองเพียงเขื่อนสามผาทางตอนกลางของมณฑลหูเป่ย

หน่วยผลิตไฟฟ้าชุดแรกของไป๋เฮ่อทานจะเริ่มดำเนินงานในเดือน ก.ค.นี้ และคาดว่าทุกหน่วยผลิตไฟฟ้าจะดำเนินงานครบภายในเดือน ก.ค.ปีหน้า

Gianluigi Colalucci, who gave fresh color to Michelangelo’s frescoes, dies at 91 #SootinClaimon.Com

#SootinClaimon.Com : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation.

https://www.nationthailand.com/news/30404745

Gianluigi Colalucci, who gave fresh color to Michelangelo’s frescoes, dies at 91

InternationalApr 10. 2021Gianluigi ColalucciGianluigi Colalucci

By The Washington Post · Emily Langer

“Until you have seen the Sistine Chapel,” the German poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe wrote in “Italian Journey,” an account of his travels across Italy in the 1780s, “you can have no adequate conception of what man is capable of accomplishing.”

“One hears and reads of so many great and worthy people, but here,” Goethe continued, marveling at the frescoes adorning the ceiling of the chapel at the heart of the Vatican, “above one’s head and before one’s eyes, is living evidence of what one man has done.”

That man was Michelangelo Buonarroti, the Italian artist who in 1508, at age 33, began painting the Sistine ceiling on the commission of Pope Julius II. Along with the depiction of the Last Judgment, which Michelangelo added to the chapel’s altar wall nearly three decades later, the ceiling is a masterpiece of Renaissance art.

But for generations – until the restoration effort undertaken in 1980 by Gianluigi Colalucci, chief conservator of the Vatican Museums – visitors who entered the Sistine Chapel saw not only the living evidence of what Michelangelo had achieved, but also living evidence of the ravages that time had wreaked on his art.

A dusky hue had come to hang over the chapel, darkening Michelangelo’s representations of God giving life to Adam and Christ dispatching the saved and the condemned to their fates. The darkness, scholars determined, was the result of the accretion of dust and dirt, fungi, varnishes and wine used in primitive restorations, and soot from candles lit during papal conclaves and other religious observances.

Even Goethe had noted the mix of smoke and incense released into the chapel and that “with sacred insolence, not only wraps the sun of art in clouds, but also makes it grow dimmer every year and in the end will totally eclipse it.”

To paint the Sistine ceiling, Michelangelo labored atop a towering scaffolding, his neck craned skyward and paint dripping onto his face. In an enterprise that captivated the international art world, Colalucci assumed the same position for the delicate task of cleansing the chapel of the layers of filth that had accumulated during the intervening centuries.

It took Michelangelo four years to paint the Sistine ceiling and 10 for Colalucci and his small team of restorers to clean it, not including the four years they then spent on “The Last Judgment.”

The restoration, although deeply controversial at the time, is regarded today as one of the most consequential undertakings in art history – an artistic resurrection that liberated Michelangelo’s work from a shroud of grime and allowed millions of visitors to experience the full palette of his colors as they had not been seen since the 16th century.

“The cleaning basically gave us a new Michelangelo,” Carmen C. Bambach, a curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art who witnessed the restoration process, said in an interview, describing Colalucci’s work as “a gift that is of lasting, monumental contribution.”

Colalucci died March 29 at a clinic in Rome, according to his wife, Daniela Bartoletti Colalucci, who said that he had heart ailments. He was 91.

One of the most experienced art conservators in Italy, Colalucci was hired by the Vatican in 1960. He became chief restorer in 1979, the year before the work on the Sistine Chapel began, and retired from the Vatican Museums in 1995, the year after it was concluded.

A New York Times reporter once noted that by the end of his efforts in the chapel, Colalucci’s brown hair had turned white.

Some artists and art historians feared that any hand laid to Michelangelo’s frescoes could subject the Sistine Chapel to ruinous harm. In 1987, a group of artists including Robert Motherwell, George Segal, Robert Rauschenberg, Christo and Andy Warhol petitioned Pope John Paul II to order a “precautionary” pause in the restoration.

James Beck of Columbia University, the most prominent art historian to oppose the restoration, denounced it as an “artistic Chernobyl,” while another preservationist accused Colalucci of “cleaning Michelangelo like a rug.” But by the end of the process, any fears had been allayed.

Colalucci, who displayed a seemingly constant equanimity under international scrutiny, once commented that “you don’t do this kind of work if you’re the nervous sort.” Acknowledging his critics’ reservations, he observed that dirt had befouled the frescoes for so long, even experts struggled to imagine the chapel, or Michelangelo’s capabilities as a colorist, in a different light.

Generations of art scholars “preferred a brooding Michelangelo, the painter of mysterious figures hidden in the shadows, and concealed from us in their secrets,” Colalucci told the Wall Street Journal. Because of the restoration, he added, “there’s a younger generation of art historians just waiting to interpret him differently.”

Through the painstaking application of a mild solvent, inch by inch across the chapel’s vault, Colalucci and his colleagues revealed the blazing greens and oranges and pinks and blues that lived beneath the accumulated grime.

“The Last Judgment” was even dirtier than the Sistine ceiling. At one point in its history, Colalucci said, the wall had been coated in a glue concocted from horses’ hoofs. The heavens had come to resemble a “polluted lake,” in the description of a Reuters wire-service reporter. With Colalucci’s restoration, the azure shades Michelangelo had rendered from lapis lazuli reappeared.

Throughout the work, Colalucci and his collaborators allowed art historians from around the world to ascend the scaffolding and observe their technique. The effort was filmed by Japan’s Nippon Television, which financed the project with a grant of more than $4 million in exchange for exclusive photographic rights.

The final result, which included the removal of some of the loincloths and other coverings added over the centuries to conceal the nudity in Michelangelo’s original work, was met with “universal admiration,” said William Wallace, an art historian at Washington University in St. Louis who, like Bambach, observed the restoration process.

“The newly revealed ceiling looks overwhelmingly beautiful,” critic Michael Kimmelman wrote in the Times in 1990, when it was unveiled, adding, “If it is too much to say that there was a history of Renaissance art before the project and another history that must now be written, it is true that Michelangelo will no longer be perceived as he has been since the third quarter of the 16th century.”

Colalucci reflected in a commentary published in National Geographic that “there comes a day for each of us when nothing will ever be the same again.” For him, that day was when John Paul II celebrated a Mass in the newly restored Sistine Chapel.

The chapel “became transfigured by the sacredness of the Mass, a sacredness that emanated not only from the pope, but from the very frescoes that the day before I’d considered simply works of art,” Colalucci wrote. “. . . I felt like I had been struck by a bolt of lightning, and suddenly understood two important things: the transcendent spirituality of Michelangelo’s paintings and the true meaning of working inside the Vatican.”

Gianluigi Colalucci was born in Rome on Dec. 24, 1929. His father was a lawyer, and his mother was a homemaker. Accompanied by an aunt, Colalucci visited the Sistine Chapel for the first time at age 14, his wife said, and was immediately struck by its splendor.

After high school, Colalucci attended the Institute for Restoration in Rome, graduating in 1953. He spent the early years of his career working in private and public art collections in Sicily. He restored celebrated frescoes of Raphael, among many other works at the Vatican, and also participated in the restoration of Giotto’s 14th-century frescoes in the Scrovegni Chapel of Padua, Italy.

A complete list of survivors was not immediately available.

In a book, “Michelangelo and I,” Colalucci reflected on the emotions that washed over him as he stared up at the Sistine Chapel, “face to face with those eternal giants.” The most daunting figure of all was the image of Christ in “The Last Judgment,” whose eye Michelangelo had painted in several determined strokes.

“The whole Judgment revolves around this gaze of Christ, the Judge,” Colalucci said in an interview last year with the Vatican Museums. “If these two brushstrokes get ruined while you are cleaning, you are lost. The painting is lost. We are all lost. I thought about this and reflected on it a lot before confronting it.”

“Then I faced it,” he continued. “It did not betray me. The result is what you see today.”

Medical examiner says police restraint, neck compression ‘more than Mr. Floyd could take’ #SootinClaimon.Com

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Medical examiner says police restraint, neck compression ‘more than Mr. Floyd could take’

InternationalApr 10. 2021Hennepin County Medical Examiner Andrew BakerHennepin County Medical Examiner Andrew Baker

By The Washington Post · Holly Bailey, Mark Berman, Lenny Bernstein

MINNEAPOLIS – The medical examiner who performed George Floyd’s autopsy testified Friday that the pressure police applied to the Black man’s neck and back while he was pinned to the ground proved more than his already stressed heart could withstand.

Hennepin County Medical Examiner Andrew Baker testified that Floyd’s coronary arteries were narrowed, indicating “very severe underlying heart disease.” Floyd also had “hypertensive heart disease, meaning his heart weighed more than it should,” Baker said.

“Now, in the context of an altercation with other people, that involves things like physical restraint, that involves things like being held to the ground,” Baker testified. “Those events are going to cause stress hormones to pour out into your body, specifically things like adrenaline. And what that adrenaline is going to do is it’s going to ask your heart to beat faster. It’s going to ask your body for more oxygen so that you can get through that altercation.

“And in my opinion, the law enforcement subdual restraint and the neck compression was just more than Mr. Floyd could take by virtue of those heart conditions,” said Baker, who ruled Floyd’s death a homicide.

Former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was charged with murder after video showed him, at the time serving on the Minneapolis force, with his knee on Floyd’s neck for nine minutes and 29 seconds. Chauvin’s defense has argued that Floyd died because of his compromised health and drug use, not Chauvin’s knee on his neck, making his cause of death a central question in the case.

Testifying Friday, Baker rebutted a core part of that argument. His autopsy report last year noted that heart disease as well as fentanyl and methamphetamine use were all noted in Floyd at his autopsy. Baker testified Friday that these were “not direct causes” but “contributing causes” to Floyd’s death.

“I would still classify it as a homicide today,” Baker said.

Baker’s remarks capped an arduous second week of testimony in the case, which began with several Minneapolis police officers taking the stand to rebuke their former colleague and ended with medical experts who have conducted thousands of autopsies placing the blame for Floyd’s death on the police.

The week was bookended by two of the most widely anticipated individual testimonies, those of Baker and the police chief who fired Chauvin.

Using those men’s accounts, prosecutors sought to push against what may be Chauvin’s two primary defenses in the case: that he was following his training and that Floyd’s death could be blamed on causes other than the actions of the former officer.

Chauvin’s defense is expected to begin fully making its case next week, calling its own witnesses and seeking to sway jurors before they are sequestered to begin deliberations. Chauvin is charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Baker’s testimony also offered a reminder that Chauvin’s legal jeopardy may not end when the jury here renders a verdict. Baker said he has twice testified before a federal grand jury investigating Floyd’s death.

A person close to the case said a federal civil rights investigation into Floyd’s death is looking at Chauvin as well as the other officers at the scene on May 25, 2020. Those officers – Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao – also were fired and are to stand trial this summer on charges of aiding and abetting murder.

Baker testified that he conducted Floyd’s autopsy the day after his death. He said that to avoid influencing his finding, he had specifically chosen not to watch the viral video of Floyd struggling under Chauvin’s knee until after he had completed the autopsy.

Baker declared Floyd’s death a homicide in June, deeming the cause of death to be “cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint, and neck compression.” Baker explained that “complicating” means it occurred in the presence of.

Baker’s report also noted heart disease, fentanyl use, methamphetamine use and Floyd’s recent coronavirus infection as significant conditions.

Chauvin’s defense has argued that the death of Floyd should be blamed on drug his use and his health problems. In a filing last year, they wrote that Floyd “most likely died from an opioid overdose.”

Medical experts disputed that idea, particularly the suggestion that Floyd died of a fentanyl overdose, describing his actions in the widely seen video as incompatible with the opioid’s effects.

Also Friday, Lindsey Thomas, a consulting forensic pathologist testified that in her view, “the activities of the law enforcement officers resulted in Mr. Floyd’s death.”

Thomas, an unpaid expert witness for the prosecution, said that on the basis of the video she reviewed, Floyd’s death was “not a sudden death,” nor was it “the type of death that has been reported in fentanyl overdose” cases.

Fentanyl-related deaths, she said, tend to be “peaceful” and not involve struggles like those seen in the viral video of Floyd’s encounter with police.

“There’s no evidence to suggest he would have died that night except for the interactions with law enforcement,” Thomas said.

During Thomas’s testimony, color photographs from Floyd’s autopsy were distributed to the jurors and others in the courtroom for review, presumably to avoid having the graphic images projected on a large screen visible to people watching the live stream of the proceedings. The photos included close-ups of Floyd’s face, shoulders and hands, showing scrapes and abrasions.

The photos were distributed again when Baker was on the stand. Chauvin placed the images on his lap, looking at them under the table and showing no visible reaction.

Friday’s testimony unfolded with a new visitor to the courtroom. For the first time since the trial began last month, someone sat in a seat reserved for a member of Chauvin’s family.

The courtroom’s occupancy is limited because of the coronavirus, with one seat reserved for Floyd’s family and one for Chauvin’s. An unidentified woman occupied the Chauvin seat Friday.

At various points during the day, the seat reserved for Floyd’s family was filled by his brothers Rodney and Philonise. A Hennepin County deputy sat in a chair between the seats reserved for the two families.

Baker’s appearance was seen as key to countering the defense’s attempts to break what legal experts call the “chain of causation” connecting Chauvin’s use of force and Floyd’s death.

During his testimony, Baker reiterated what court filings say he has expressed before: that if Floyd were found dead at home, with no other factors and that amount of fentanyl in his system, the death could have been deemed an overdose.

But Baker also noted in his testimony that Floyd was not found in those circumstances.

“Mr. Floyd’s use of fentanyl did not cause the subdural or neck restraint. His heart disease did not cause the subdural or the neck restraint,” Baker said.

Baker also listed several other factors he said did not cause Floyd’s death, including the coronavirus, for which Floyd had tested positive several weeks before dying, and a tumor discovered in his stomach during the autopsy.

Eric Nelson, Chauvin’s attorney, asked whether the placement of his client’s knee would have “anatomically cut off” Floyd’s airway. Baker responded, “In my opinion, it would not.”

At one point, Baker discussed a video call he had with law enforcement officials from the Justice Department, recounting that he told them: “It was the stress of that interaction [with police] that tipped him over the edge.”

Legal experts said the defense’s invocation of Floyd’s drug use fits a pattern seen in other prosecutions of police, in which officers’ attorneys will point to drug use or other perceived issues in the backgrounds of the person who died.

The prosecution sought preemptively to rebut the defense’s argument by calling Floyd’s girlfriend, Courteney Ross, to the stand last week to testify about their struggles with opioid addiction and to make clear his tolerance for the drugs.

White House border czar to step down this month #SootinClaimon.Com

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White House border czar to step down this month

InternationalApr 10. 2021Roberta JacobsonRoberta Jacobson

By The Washington Post · Anne Gearan, Nick Miroff, Karen DeYoung

WASHINGTON – The top White House official leading efforts to address the migrant crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border will leave her post at the end of April, the White House announced Friday, stepping down as the administration continues struggling to cope with an influx of unaccompanied minors.

Roberta Jacobson, a former ambassador to Mexico and career State Department official, had been tasked with coordinating the Biden administration’s efforts, a broad and daunting task that led some to call her President Joe Biden’s “border czar.”

Vice President Kamala Harris was recently assigned to oversee the part of Jacobson’s portfolio involving diplomatic outreach to the Central American nations that are home to most of the migrants.

It’s not clear whether that was a factor in Jacobson’s departure, but both U.S. and Latin American officials said that Jacobson had always planned to stay only briefly.

Jacobson, in an interview, expressed dismay over media reports that she had acted in response to Biden’s giving Harris the lead role on the overall border and regional issue.

“I always was only going to stay 100 days,” she said, and had filled a need during the early days when there were relatively few confirmed officials.

“They knew they were going to have to talk to the Mexican government early,” as first-day executive orders on immigration were implemented, and there “were not other people appointed at other agencies,” including the secretary of state, Jacobson said.

Now, she added, “I think it is in quite good shape in terms of policy outlines.”

Jacobson also was a senior member of the Biden transition team focusing on the State Department, and she was working border issues starting right after the election.

National security adviser Jake Sullivan said in a statement that Jacobson’s tenure was long planned to cover only the administration’s first 100 days. He thanked her for “an invaluable contribution to the Biden-Harris Administration and to the United States.”

Sullivan credited Jacobson with “having shaped our relationship with Mexico as an equal partner, having launched our renewed efforts with the Northern Triangle nations of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, and having underscored this Administration’s commitment to re-energizing the U.S. immigration system.”

Still, her departure is striking, coming as the Biden administration is struggling to address a surge of would-be migrants to the border, drawn in part by President Biden’s more lenient immigration policy, and amid heavy Republican criticism of the administration’s approach. The administration has wrestled in particular with how to handle a large number of unaccompanied children who are showing up at the border.

The number of unaccompanied minors crossing into the United States began rising last fall, as former president Donald Trump’s tenure was coming to a close. They soared after Biden took office and his administration announced that it would not use a Trump-era public health order to return the unaccompanied teens and children to their home countries.

Last month, border authorities took 18,890 minors into custody, up from 5,858 in January.

March was the busiest month along the U.S.-Mexico border in nearly two decades, and U.S. authorities took 172,331 migrants into custody, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection statistics released Thursday that provide a stark measure of the challenges facing the Biden administration.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki was asked earlier Friday whether the rising numbers might cause the administration to again evict and turn back children under Trump’s public health order.

“The reason for accepting these children is that we feel it is not the humane step to send these kids back on their treacherous journey,” Psaki said. “Our focus is on addressing the needs, opening up shelters, ensuring there is access to health and educational resources, expediting processing at the border. And those are the steps we feel that are most effective from a policy standpoint.”

Jacobson spoke to reporters at the White House last month and acknowledged the significant challenge of addressing the flow of families and unaccompanied children.

“President Biden has made clear from day one that he wants to change our immigration system,” she said then. “Doing so means truly building back better, because we can’t just undo four years of the previous administration’s actions overnight.”

She and other Biden officials have sharply blamed the Trump administration for its hostility to migrants, saying they damaged the system in ways that take time to fix.

“Those actions didn’t just neglect our immigration system; they intentionally made it worse,” Jacobson said. “When you add a pandemic to that, it’s clear it will take significant time to overcome.”

She said then “the border is not open” and spoke at length in Spanish to urge would-be migrants not to make a dangerous trip with little likelihood of successful entry.

But Republican and some Democratic critics say Biden’s own policies have created the problem, and GOP lawmakers have held events at the border to make their point.

Jacobson came out of retirement to join the Biden administration as a “border coordinator” who could leverage her experience and extensive contacts in Mexico.

As border crossings jumped in the weeks after Biden’s inauguration, Jacobson took the lead in negotiations with Mexico and in the U.S. efforts to get the government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador to tighten immigration enforcement.

Last month Mexican authorities deployed more national guard troops and other security forces along the country’s southern border with Guatemala, the result of a negotiation in which the Biden administration agreed to send millions of surplus coronavirus vaccines made by AstraZeneca. Jacobson played a lead role in the talks, which officials in both countries insisted did not amount to a quid pro quo.

The number of migrants taken into custody by U.S. border agents is the highest level in nearly 20 years, including record numbers of teenagers and children arriving without parents. The Biden administration has responded by adding thousands of emergency shelter beds for the minors, while pledging to redouble efforts to address the “root causes” driving Central Americans to head north.

Jacobson issued one of the strongest statements by any Biden official last month, when asked about the administration’s message to asylum seekers.

“The message isn’t, ‘Don’t come now.’ It’s, ‘Don’t come in this way, ever,’ ” she told Reuters in an interview. “The way to come to the United States is through legal pathways.”

Biden has pledged to try to stem the flow of migrants at the source by helping create stability and economic opportunity in Central America and Mexico. That longer-term effort is now Harris’s remit, and she distinguishes her role from that of Jacobson and other officials dealing with the more immediate humanitarian and logistical crises facing migrants who have made their way to the border.

Earl Anthony Wayne, who served as U.S. ambassador to Mexico until 2017, called Jacobson “one of the United States’ most experienced experts on Mexico.”

“She has a range of contacts there and a deep understanding of Mexican politics,” said Wayne. “Those are valuable assets to have at this time, so it will be important for the administration to find someone who can bring the expertise and skills that she has demonstrated over her years of service.”

The Biden administration appears to be spending at least $60 million per week to care for the more than 16,000 migrant teenagers and children in shelters operated by the Department of Health and Human Services, The Washington Post reported Thursday.

Those costs are expected to rise significantly over the coming months, according to an analysis of government data obtained by The Post.

With a record number of unaccompanied minors arriving at the border in the past several weeks, HHS quickly filled the 7,700 available beds in its network of permanent shelters, and the administration has raced to set up some 16,000 temporary beds at military bases and other facilities.

Migrant boy found wandering alone in Texas had been deported and kidnapped #SootinClaimon.Com

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Migrant boy found wandering alone in Texas had been deported and kidnapped

InternationalApr 10. 2021

By The Washington Post · Kevin Sieff, Ismael López Ocampo

The 10-year-old had been lost for hours – crying and shaking as he wandered a vast scrubland- when he saw the Border Patrol officer.

“Can you help me?” the boy asked between sniffles.

The agent recorded the interaction, which was widely shared on the Internet, seen by many as a glimpse into the desperation of unaccompanied children arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border.

But the story behind the video of Wilton Obregon, according to relatives, shows how the Biden administration is putting migrant families in even more peril after they cross the border, in some cases deporting them into the hands of criminal groups.

Wilton and his mother Meylin, 30, crossed the border into Texas last month to seek asylum after fleeing their native Nicaragua. But they were immediately sent back to Mexico under Title 42, a pandemic-era policy that expels migrants who cross the border without allowing to apply for protection.

Hours after being expelled to northern Mexico, they were kidnapped, according to Misael Obregon, Meylin’s brother, who lives in Miami.

Misael received a call from the kidnappers. They wanted $10,000 to release Meylin and Wilton.

“They threaten to hurt them both, or worse,” Misael Obregon said. “These people are capable of anything.”

Misael could only come up with $5,000. He sent the cash through a money transfer company. The kidnappers agreed to release Wilton, but not his mother.

The smugglers then abandoned Wilton after leading him across the border, leaving him to wander through the arid farmland of South Texas looking for assistance, until he found the Border Patrol agent who recorded his encounter with the boy.

“I came looking because I didn’t know where to go, and they can also rob or kidnap me or something,” he told the agent.

Meylin remains in the custody of kidnappers. She called Misael Obregon on Friday morning, crying after seeing the video of her bleary-eyed son.

“Now I’m worried that she’s going to die,” said Obregon, “that she’s not going to make it through this.”

The Nicaraguan government on Friday identified Wilton as being the boy in the video, but it did not mention the kidnapping. It said Nicaraguan police had interviewed the boy’s father, who confirmed that Meylin had told him in their last conversation that she and Wilton were preparing to cross the border together because they were “in danger.”

In a speech, the vice president of Nicaragua, Rosario Murillo, said she had called on Interpol to locate the boy and his mother.

“Our national police, our Ministry of the Interior, have made, and continue to make inquiries to the United States authorities, Mexican authorities to obtain information that lead us to locate Meylin and the child,” she said.

Wilton is currently in U.S. government custody according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

The video of the boy was raised at a White House news conference this week. “I don’t have any response from the president directly. What I can convey is, for any of us who have seen that video, it is heartbreaking,” said press secretary Jen Psaki.

Relatives say the boy and his mother were in part fleeing domestic violence in Nicaragua.

Thirty-three percent of families who crossed the border last month were expelled to Mexico, according to CBP statistics.

Biden had long complained about the humanitarian consequences of the Trump administration’s so-called Remain in Mexico policy, which forced asylum seekers to wait for the their court hearings in Mexico. Many of them were kidnapped and abused during their months waiting.

Under Title 42, though, which began under Trump and continues under Biden, asylum seekers are once again in the same desperate situation. It’s unclear how many of them have been kidnapped.

“The Biden administration is winding down one of the Trump administration’s most notorious policies but at the same time it is expelling other asylum seekers back to the very same dangers, attacks and kidnappings through its continued use of the Trump administration’s Title 42 policy to evade U.S. refugee law,” Eleanor Acer, senior director of refugee protection at Human Rights First, said in a statement.

YouTube pulls video of DeSantis panel discussion urging no masks for children #SootinClaimon.Com

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YouTube pulls video of DeSantis panel discussion urging no masks for children

InternationalApr 10. 2021Florida Gov. Ron DeSantisFlorida Gov. Ron DeSantis

By The Washington Post · Meryl Kornfield

YouTube has pulled a video featuring Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, over allegations it contains misinformation about the coronavirus and mask-wearing.

The video is of a March 18 roundtable discussion in Tallahassee the governor hosted with panelists – radiologist and former White House adviser Scott Atlas, Harvard University biostatistician Martin Kulldorff, Oxford University epidemiologist Sunetra Gupta, and Stanford Medical School economist Jay Bhattacharya – who have publicly spoken against lockdowns and other measures enacted to reduce the spread of the virus. The video shared by news station WSTB Tampa Bay was taken down Wednesday because it violated a policy related to “COVID-19 medical misinformation,” according to platform spokeswoman Elena Hernandez.

“We removed this video because it included content that contradicts the consensus of local and global health authorities regarding the efficacy of masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” Hernandez wrote in a statement shared with The Washington Post.

At one point during the hour-and-45-minute discussion, DeSantis asks panelists about enforcing mask-wearing for children, which the scientists dispute is effective to prevent the spread of the virus, despite recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization that children wear masks. The CDC advises mask-wearing for children 2 and up, and the WHO recommends masks for children 12 and above.

“Children should not wear face masks,” Kulldorff said in response to DeSantis’s question. “They don’t need it for their own protection, and they don’t need it for protecting other people either.”

“I think it’s developmentally inappropriate and it just doesn’t help on the disease spread,” Bhattacharya added about mask-wearing for children. “I think it’s absolutely not the right thing to do.”

In a statement shared with The Washington Post on Friday, DeSantis’s spokesman Cody McCloud called the video’s removal “another blatant example of Big Tech attempting to silence those who disagree with their woke corporate agenda,” arguing that the panelists’ academic affiliations qualify them to speak about the crisis.

“Good public health policy should include a variety of scientific and technical expertise, and YouTube’s decision to remove this video suppresses productive dialogue of these complex issues,” McCloud wrote.

After social media platforms were blamed for allowing misinformation to fester amid the 2016 election, the tech giants have cracked down on falsehoods about the coronavirus pandemic, fueling calls for stricter regulations of these companies from conservatives, including DeSantis, who view the scrutiny as overreaching. A video of Atlas was removed by the platform before while he was an adviser to former president Donald Trump, prompting him to compare his plight to those who live in “Third World countries.”

Reactions from Florida politicians largely split along party lines. The state’s top elected Democrat, Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Nikki Fried, tweeted “we should find a governor who doesn’t get banned from @YouTube for endangering children with conspiracies.” Sen. Marco Rubio warned of “unelected gatekeepers of the public square.”

The removal of the video was first reported by the American Institute for Economic Research, the libertarian think tank behind the Great Barrington Declaration, a controversial letter co-signed by three of the panelists that endorses herd immunity. Although the online document claimed that thousands of doctors and scientists had signed it, Britain’s Sky News documented some transparently fake signatories, including “Dr. Person Fakename.”

Despite YouTube’s decision to yank the video, the discussion can still be viewed on Florida Channel, a state-funded live-streaming service.

One of the panelists, Bhattacharya, told The Post that he thought YouTube’s decision was “censorship” and “contrary to American democratic norms of free expression.”

In an email, Bhattacharya wrote that he viewed the discussion as a “policy forum” and raised objections to mask-wearing based on evidence that masks could hinder a child’s ability to learn and interact with others.

The other panelists did not immediately respond to a request for comment Friday evening, but Kulldorff tweeted a link to a Wall Street Journal editorial, which decried the removal, saying it “should not matter” if the information panelists were presenting was false because the discussion “offers a window into the thinking of the Governor and people who influence him.”