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Category Archives: Government Documents

Government secrecy is growing during the coronavirus pandemic

The Conversation: “Students at the University of Florida who want to know how they are being protected from the COVID-19 pandemic can’t find out. The university is hiding its emergency response plan under a legal loophole intended to keep terrorists and enemy combatants – not viruses – from exploiting government weaknesses. Since the spread of coronavirus accelerated in recent weeks, local, state and federal officials throughout the United States have locked down information from the public. Examples include:

  • The city of Palestine, Texas, banned a news reporter from a city council meeting on March 23, even though fewer than a maximum of 10 people would be in the room, and did not allow the public to listen in on the meeting through a toll-free phone number, as required by state law.
  • The Council of the District of Columbia decided on March 19 that district employees do not have to respond promptly to public records requests any more.
  • The FBI no longer accepts requests for information online or by email because of the virus. If anyone wants information they must mail their request, which ironically is more apt to pass along the virus…”

Trade Adviser Warned White House in January of Risks of a Pandemic

The New York Times – “A top White House adviser starkly warned Trump administration officials in late January that the coronavirus crisis could cost the United States trillions of dollars and put millions of Americans at risk of illness or death. The warning, written in a memo by Peter Navarro, President Trump’s trade adviser, is… Continue Reading

COVID-19: China Medical Supply Chains and Broader Trade Issues

CRS Report – COVID-19: China Medical Supply Chains and Broader Trade Issues – R46304 April 6, 202o: “The outbreak of CoronavirusDisease2019 (COVID-19), first in China, and then globally, including in the United States, is drawing attention to the ways in which the U.S. economy depends on manufacturing and supply chains based in China.This report aims to… Continue Reading

HHS OIG Report – Hospital Experiences Responding to COVID-19

Hospital Experiences Responding to the COVID-19 Pandemic: Results of a National Pulse Survey March 23-27, 2020 04-03-2020 | OEI-06-20-00300 | Complete Report “…WHAT WE FOUND – Hospitals reported that their most significant challenges centered on testing and caring for patients with COVID-19 and keeping staff safe. Hospitals said that severe shortages of testing supplies and extended… Continue Reading

ACUS Launches Webpage to Help Agency Adjudication Offices Navigate Coronavirus

“The Administrative Conference of the United States (ACUS) is pleased to announce the launch of a new webpage to help federal agency adjudication offices navigate challenges posed by the ongoing national emergency surrounding COVID-19. The new webpage compiles relevant orders, policies, news releases, and other statements related to federal agencies’ responses to the ongoing situation. It includes… Continue Reading

U.S. Government: Update Chrome 80 Now, Multiple Security Concerns Confirmed

Forbes: “…Here’s what you need to know. CISA, a standalone federal agency under the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) oversight, is responsible for protecting “the Nation’s critical infrastructure from physical and cyber threats.” In an April 1 posting, CISA confirmed that Google Chrome Version 80.0.3987.162 “addresses vulnerabilities that an attacker could exploit to take… Continue Reading

Coronavirus Needs: How to Become a Health Literate Society

Here’s a complete guide on Health Literacy: “The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is spreading across the world. For those who catch it, the vast majority will experience mild symptoms, but for a few it can cause severe disease and death. Some groups – like older people and those with pre-existing health conditions – are more vulnerable… Continue Reading

How Much Data Does Clearview Gather On People?

TechDirt – The Answer (Sadly) Will Not Surprise You – “Clearview’s facial recognition app links to a database of 4 billion pictures. And those photos are linked to all the data that got scraped up with them, culled (without permission) from sites like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn… pretty much anywhere people post photos and personal information. There’s… Continue Reading

How to Digitize Your Most Important Documents

The New York Times – If you have some spare time at home and want a productive project, consider creating a digital archive of your personal papers.  “While this week’s World Backup Day is typically celebrated most by hard-drive makers and data-storage services, it’s supposed to make people remember to back up their computers. But… Continue Reading

How Americans perceive the outbreak and view media coverage differ by main news source

Cable TV and COVID-19: “Coverage of COVID-19 has dominated the news and resulted in skyrocketing ratings for the nation’s cable news networks. And according to a survey conducted March 10-16, 2020, as a part of Pew Research Center’s Election News Pathways project, responses to that coverage and the pandemic itself vary notably among Americans who… Continue Reading

Air pollution’s impact on health and the immune system – and the ventilator quagmire

Jamie Hopkins – PublicIntegrity.org: “I wrote a story this week about air pollution’s impact on health and the immune system that included a quick data analysis. Academics who studied the impact of the 1918 flu looked at 180 cities and found that higher-pollution places — as measured by coal use — saw more deaths. I… Continue Reading