Wyoming strip club reopens with ‘masks on, clothes off’ party


They’re no longer clothed for business.

A Wyoming jiggle joint reopened over the weekend with a “masks on, clothes off” party, as it debuts new coronavirus safety guidelines, according to a report.

The strip club was able to open alongside the state’s sit-down restaurants and bars, which is how the business is classified, the newspaper reported.

As part of the reopening, all of the strippers sported face coverings to dance and there was ample hand sanitizer available, the report said.

But cash was exchanged, which could allow for germs to spread, and dancers were touching patrons, the outlet reported.

“I’m a little nervous because the virus is still out there, but I’m glad to be able to go to work, because a lot of people can’t yet,” dancer Doris Craig told the outlet.

Chavez, who has owned the bar with her husband for 15 years, said that she was concerned about her employees during the shutdown.

“That was the hardest part about being shut: worrying about the girls,” Chavez said. “It was heartbreaking because you know every girl’s story.”


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U.S. mulls paying companies, tax breaks to pull supply chains from China

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. lawmakers and officials are crafting proposals to push American companies to move operations or key suppliers out of China that include tax breaks, new rules, and carefully structured subsidies.

Interviews with a dozen current and former government officials, industry executives and members of Congress show widespread discussions underway – including the idea of a “reshoring fund” originally stocked with $25 billion – to encourage U.S. companies to drastically revamp their relationship with China.

President Donald Trump has long pledged to bring manufacturing back from overseas, but the recent spread of the coronavirus and related concerns about U.S. medical and food supply chains dependency on China are “turbocharging” new enthusiasm for the idea in the White House.

On Thursday, Trump signed an executive order that gave a U.S. overseas investment agency new powers to help manufacturers in the United States. The goal, Trump said, is to “produce everything America needs for ourselves and then export to the world, and that includes medicines.”

But the Trump administration itself remains divided over how best to proceed, and the issue is unlikely to be addressed in the next fiscal stimulus to offset the coronavirus downturn. Congress has begun work on another fiscal stimulus package but it remains unclear when it might pass.

The push takes on special resonance in an election year. While anti-China, pro-American job proposals could play well with voters, giving taxpayer money or tax breaks to companies that moved supply chains to China at a time when small business is flailing may not.

BIPARTISAN APPEAL

Both Republicans and Democrats are crafting bills to decrease U.S. reliance on China-made products, which accounted for some 18% of overall imports in 2019.

“The whole subject of supply chains and integrity of supply chains… does have a greater place in members’ minds,” Representative Mac Thornberry, the top Republican on the House of Representatives Armed Services Committee, told reporters May 7.

“Coronavirus has been a painful wakeup call that we are too reliant on nations like China for critical medical supplies,” said U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham in a press release on Friday. He is expected to issue a new bill this week.

Republican Senator Josh Hawley is pushing for local content rules for medical supply chains, and “generous investment subsidies” to encourage increased domestic production of a range of goods and components. Republican Senator Marco Rubio introduced a bill May 10 that would bar sale of some sensitive goods to China, and raise taxes on U.S. companies’ income from China.

A bipartisan bill introduced by Democratic Representative Anna Eschoo and Republican Representative Susan Brooks would commission a panel to recommend ways to cut drug supply reliance on China.

Republican Representative Mark Green’s “SOS Act” proposes funding takeovers of vulnerable U.S. companies that are critical to our national security.

Lawmakers also hope to include reshoring provisions in the National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, a $740 billion bill setting policy for the Pentagon that Congress passes every year.

PAY TO STAY

A controversial idea being floated in Washington would allocate as much as $25 billion to companies that make essential goods to move production home, ensuring that even products far down the supply chain were sourced domestically, according to two administration officials.

No lawmaker has publicly embraced it, but several congressional aides acknowledged it is part of the broader discussion in Congress. One of the administration officials said states could administer the funds through their separate economic development organizations.

That would be a boon for states that are struggling to pay their own bills after widespread lockdowns, plummeting tax revenues, and a huge surge in COVID-related costs, one state official said.

But given longstanding concerns about the government setting “industrial policy”, the notion of subsidizing industry directly is polarizing, even among Trump’s top advisers.

Outright subsidies are a non-starter, said one of the two administrative sources. “Internally some are questioning why we should be providing funds to companies that have left in recent years.”

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow has talked publicly about using tax incentives instead to prod U.S. companies to move some manufacturing home.

White House trade adviser Peter Navarro wants the federal government to buy more U.S.-made medical goods and drugs, but Trump has not signed an executive order Navarro is promoting.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and others favor building trusted networks of drug and medical suppliers, said two officials familiar with the discussions.

Giving federal dollars directly to companies to shift supply chains away from China would likely run afoul of World Trade Organization rules, and could discourage foreign companies from doing business in the United States, critics of the idea say.

The State Department, meanwhile, is working with other agencies and foreign governments to diversify American supply chains from China. “This includes returning manufacturing to the United States and expanding our base of international manufacturing partners,” said a spokesperson.

Shoplifters wore watermelons on heads while robbing Virginia store: cops


When it came to disguises, they kept an open rind.

A pair of shoplifters wore hollowed-out watermelons on their heads while stealing from a convenience store in Virginia, police said.

Surveillance cameras caught the seedy characters roaming around a Sheetz store around 9:30 p.m. on May 6, wearing the melons with cut-out eye-holes as masks, the Louisa Police Department said on Saturday.

Cops in Louisa, a town about 100 miles from Washington D.C., on Sunday said an arrest had been made in connection with the melon-drama, but didn’t immediately provide additional details.

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It is unknown what the suspects stole, or how much money they made off with.


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Top Epidemiologist Warns of a Second Covid-19 Outbreak in China


Beijing, May 17 (Prensa Latina) China faces great risks today of suffering a second wave of Covid-19, as the population lacks immunity and it takes time to obtain a safe vaccine against the disease, said Zhong Nanshan, the government’s main epidemiological adviser .

The expert argued his forecast with the recent emergence of infectious foci and indigenous cases in Heilongjiang, Jilin and Hubei provinces, in the latter specifically in Wuhan, where the disease broke out and was focused.

In this sense, he urged the authorities not to be complacent although the country shows a better health outlook compared to other states in the world, where the Covid-19 pandemic left more people dead and infected.

Apart from Zhong, the National Health Commission emphasized the importance of optimizing the ability to carry out tests, investigate in depth and monitor asymptomatic patients, because in the first half of May the majority of local cases arose from such patients.

Officials from that entity assured that China can manage 1.5 million nucleic acid tests daily and will expand them with the startup of new laboratories and the training of microbiology personnel.

Official figures confirm that Covid-19 left at least 4 thousand 645 deaths in the Asian state, 515 asymptomatic cases and 84 thousand 484 confirmed, of which 1,700 are mostly compatriots returned from abroad.


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Cuba celebrates Farmer’s Day with guarantees for the rural population


Havana, May 17 (Prensa Latina) Cubans today commemorate Farmer’s Day and the 61st anniversary of the Agrarian Reform Law, signed with the aim of changing the reality of the countryside in the island a few months after the revolutionary victory.

The date recalls three interrelated historical events: the assassination of the peasant leader Aniceto Pérez in 1946, the signing of the Agrarian Reform Law in 1959 and the foundation of the National Association of Small Farmers (ANAP), two years later.

Inspired by the example of Aniceto Pérez, the date was chosen by the historical leader of the Revolution, Fidel Castro, to sign a statute that protected the peasants and guaranteed their rights 13 years after the murder of the farmer and fighter against evictions and exploitation of the sector.

Two years later, ANAP was founded to organize cooperative members, peasants and their families, voluntarily associated and whose interests correspond to the harmonious development of the construction of socialism.

Before the revolutionary triumph, in Cuba illiterates represented 23.6 percent of the total population, while in agricultural areas that proportion was 42 percent.

Schooling rates covered just over 52 percent of children, while in the fields it reached just 35 for lack of educational centers.

The figures on medical care reflected that 91 percent of the inhabitants of rural areas were malnourished, the vast majority suffered from parasitism, while another portion suffered from tuberculosis, malaria or typhoid fever.

In contrast, according to UNESCO, Cuba currently shows much higher rates in these aspects for its rural population. In the Latin American and Caribbean region, it was the only nation to achieve all the Education for All 2000-2015 (EFA) goals established in 2000, including equal opportunities for access to learning and the acquisition of life skills.

Likewise, rural and urban areas have the presence of a family doctor as part of the primary health system, with an index of one doctor for every thousand inhabitants.

According to the National Statistics and Information Office, the rural population in Cuba in 2015 reached two million 554 thousand people.


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Cuba defends respect for sexual orientation and gender identity


Havana, May 17 (Prensa Latina) Cuba celebrates today the International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia with the fundamental premise of respect for sexual orientation and gender identity, in order to build a society without exclusions.

The largest of the Antilles made great progress in recognizing the enjoyment of all rights without exception by its citizens and the new Constitution reflects this, recently commented the director of the National Center for Sexual Education (Cenesex), Mariela Castro.

However, many remains to be resolved. The debates related to the proposal for a new Family Code are promoted, among other actions.

Today in society, discriminatory attitudes persist that restrict a transsexual person in their workplace or a homosexual couples who want to expand their family or who, by their own decision, are interested in contributing to the development of the country without their bisexuality becoming an obstacle , notes the newspaper Juventud Rebelde.

That respect for people should prevail regardless of their sexual orientation and gender identity, that sexual rights or others are not reviled, said the director of Cenesex.

‘We educate for love and respectful coexistence, not for the perpetuation of relationships of domination or violence’, said Castro.

Homophobia refers to hatred, fear, prejudice or discrimination against homosexual people, biphobia is phobia towards people with sexual orientation towards both sexes and transphobia towards transgender individuals (transvestites and transsexuals).

Beginning in 1974, the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality and bisexuality from its Classification Manual for Mental Illness.

Years later, in 1990, the World Health Organization set May 17 as the date to celebrate the aforementioned event globally.

Currently there is still discrimination in many parts of the world towards people with different heterosexual orientation, and these are manifested in various ways such as: the limitation of their free development, job discrimination, verbal offenses and extreme physical violence.


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