President Trump Adds New Restrictions to His Travel Ban

The Supreme Court canceled arguments for the dispute over Trump’s travel ban following the announcement that the President was adding eight new countries to the ban and that it has no expiration date. -GEG

Against the backdrop of a revised set of administration rules on visa issuance and restricted nationalities; and considering the previously argued ‘Trump travel ban’ guidelines expired Sunday; the Supreme Court has cancelled their hearing of arguments in opposition to the former travel restrictions and visa guidance.

(Via Associated Press) – 1:40 p.m. – The Supreme Court has canceled arguments set for Oct. 10 in the dispute over President Donald Trump’s travel ban, after Trump rolled out a new policy Sunday.

The unsigned order from the justices Monday asks both sides to weigh in by Oct. 5 about what to do with the case.

The court had been ready to hear argument about the legality of a 90-day ban on travelers from six mostly Muslim countries and a 120-day ban on refugees from around the world.

The ban expired Sunday and was replaced by a new policy that affects eight counties and has no expiration date.  Those countries are Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen.  Chad, North Korea and Venezuela were not covered by the earlier ban. (link)

In addition both Chad and Venezuela are pushing back against Homeland Security guidance that led to their inclusion on the revised travel restrictions:

♦Chad’s government says it learned “with astonishment” of the decision by the U.S. government that its country is on a list whose nationals will be prohibited from entering the United States.

A government statement Monday said the government expresses its incomprehension about the “official reasons for this decision; which contrasts with Chad’s constant efforts and commitments in the fight against terrorism at regional and global levels.”

Chad’s government called for a better appreciation of the situation and for Trump to reconsider the decision which it says “undermines the image of Chad and the good relations between the two countries.” (LINK)

♦Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro (nee-koh-LAHS’ mah-DOO’-roh) says the Trump administration’s decision to include Venezuelan officials on a travel ban is a form of “political and psychological terrorism.”

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‘Conservative’ Milo Yiannopoulos’ Free-Speech Event Fizzles

Milo Yiannopoulos, a provocateur who identifies himself as conservative, organized a four-day free-speech event at Berkeley and advertised that former White House staffer, Steve Bannon, and Ann Coulter also would be speaking. However, they cancelled and other high profile speakers said they never were scheduled to speak.  At the last minute, the Berkley Patriots, who were the sponsors of the event, dropped out, so everything was canceled.  Milo showed up anyway for 20 minutes and posed for photos with fans and signed autographs. School officials called in extra law enforcement just in case and say that the stunt cost $800,000 for security. -GEG

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but is it worth $800,000?

Officials at the University of California, Berkeley, said the brief appearance of right-wing provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos on campus Sunday cost the school $800,000 to ensure his safety.

Yiannopoulos appeared at the steps of the iconic Sproul Hall – the birthplace of the 1960’s Free Speech movement – after his highly anticipated Free Speech Week was abruptly canceled.

The open-air event lasted less than an hour. Yiannopoulos spent the time taking pictures with fans, signing his new book and took part in the national anthem.

Attendees — including Yiannopoulos — had to pass through metal detectors.

Dan Mogulof, a campus spokesman, dubbed the event “the most expensive photo-op in the university’s history,” The San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Police arrested at least 11, including four dressed in an all-black outfits commonly worn by the violent Antifa group, The Mercury News reported. One man who sported a “Make America Great Again” message was also detained.

This is the second time recently that the school had to spend six figures to ensure the safety of a conservative. Ben Shapiro appeared on campus two weeks ago and the school said it spent $600,000 at that event.

Shapiro at that time blamed the city’s radical Antifa agitators who were the reason UC Berkeley had to spend such money on safety. “Free speech isn’t free. It costs over $600,000 thanks to Antifa,” he tweeted.

The Sunday protest was organized in response to the cancellation of the Free Speech Week, where both organizers and the university blamed each other for lack of commitment to ensure its happening.

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Israel Bombed Syria Near Damascus Airport

Israeli warplanes struck arms depots belonging to the Lebanese pro-Iranian Hezbollah movement near the Damascus Airport, according to a monitoring organization. Syrian opposition forces claim that Hezbollah, which is fighting in support of Syrian President Assad, have received weaponry and supplies from Iran. No fatalities were reported. -GEG

The latest in an ever-growing string of Israeli attacks against targets inside Syria, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported an overnight Israeli attack on the Damascus International Airport. Three separate strikes were carried out.

The attacks targeted a warehouse area at the airport, reportedly a weapons depot which was used as storage for equipment belonging to Hezbollah. This hasn’t been confirmed, but would be in keeping with Israel’s previous strikes targeting Syria mostly going after Hezbollah.

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Climatologist, Judith Curry, Says The Idea of Punishing ‘Climate ‘Deniers’ Is Ludicrous

Judith Curry, a climatologist and the former chair of the School for Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at Georgia Tech, dismissed journalists’ demand for climate skeptics to be punished, saying the idea is ludicrous. She says that global warming is not an existential problem, despite the claims of Al Gore and Leonardo DiCaprio.[She is the scientist who said the debate over global warming has entered the campfire phase, a contest to see who can tell the scariest story.] -GEG