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Trump says he has 'a mouth that tells the truth' while making false statements at Georgia rally

3 hours 27 min ago
President Donald Trump discusses the potential impact of Hurricane Michael during a meeting with Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and FEMA Administrator Brock Long in the Oval Office of the White House on October 10, 2018 in Washington, DC.
  • Former President Donald Trump slammed the US withdrawal from Afghanistan in a rally in Georgia on Saturday.
  • Trump said Democrats think he has a "big mouth" and don't want him to talk about Afghanistan.
  • Trump claimed he only speaks the "truth" but delivered a speech filled with inaccuracies and lies.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Former President Donald Trump said Democrats are "after" him because they think he has a "big mouth" during a rally in Georgia on Saturday.

"They want to go after me because I have, they think, a big mouth. I don't have a big mouth, you know what I have, I have a mouth that tells the truth," Trump told the crowd.

The former president was discussing the US withdrawal from Afghanistan in a speech filled with inaccuracies and false statements.

Trump recounted a bizarre exchange of what he said happened when Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar learned of the US withdrawal.

"He gets a call or a message. It said the military has left. He said 'you're nuts' in their language," Trump said of Baradar.

Trump blamed President Joe Biden for sending people to Afghanistan to help with the withdrawal "who weren't even familiar with all of it" including 13 service members who were killed in an ISIS-K terror attack.

However, it was Trump who started the process to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, at one point even bragging about it.

Trump falsely claimed those evacuated were not eligible to be evacuated. He also claimed the administration "abandoned hundreds of American citizens in enemy-occupied territory."

The US began evacuating Americans and Afghan allies soon after the Taliban took over Kabul on August 15. Biden considered extending the August 31 deadline to withdraw all troops from the country but the Taliban threatened "consequences" if the US did not leave by the deadline.

More than 120,000 people had been evacuated from the country by the time the last US plane left Kabul. Evacuees were vetted before boarding flights out of the country, in secondary stops, as well as before coming into the US, for those who are being processed to be resettled here.

Trump also criticized Republicans at the rally and reiterated the false claim that the 2020 presidential election was rigged. He was joined by three Republicans who he's endorsed: Herschel Walker, who recently launched a Senate campaign, Rep. Jody Hice, who he's endorsed to replace Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, and Sen. Burt Jones, who worked to overturn the election results in Georgia, the Associated Press reported.

The former president used the rally to slam officials like Raffensperger, a Republican who maintained the election in the state was fair and accurate.

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A nonprofit run by a Trump administration official is training 'critical race theory activists' to overtake local school boards

3 hours 27 min ago
Former Office of Management and Budget director Russ Vought, who is now the president of Citizens for Renewing America, waits to speak during the daily press briefing at the White House, Monday, March 11, 2019, in Washington.
  • Conservative social welfare group Citizens for Renewing America believes critical race theory will "socially replace" white people.
  • Critical race theory was coined by lawyer and legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw.
  • Toolkits from Citizens for Renewing America give tips on building grassroots coalitions to stop critical race theory.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Conservative social welfare group Citizens for Renewing America is training "critical race theory activists" how to organize within their communities and win back local school boards.

Founded by Trump administration official Russ Vought, Citizens for Renewing America has said on its website and in its materials that critical race theory is a radical theology that will "socially replace" and lead to discrimination against white people.

"In other words, because people of color were discriminated against in the past, white people, including children in schools, need to be discriminated against now in order to make up for it and let African Americans catch up," a toolkit from the organization said.

"Combatting Critical Race Theory In Your Community" gives tips on building grassroots coalitions, recalling school board officials, and launching political campaigns. The toolkit urges local groups to create social media profiles, pen op-eds, distribute training materials, and even find legal advisors in case of lawsuits.

School board members drew more recall petitions than any other group in the first half of 2021, according to Ballotpedia, with a total of 126 school board members facing recall campaigns. In Texas, Spectrum News reported that opponents of critical race theory are traveling to school board meetings throughout the state to speak during public comment, almost exclusively repeating the same conservative talking points.

-Russ Vought (@RussVought45) September 4, 2020

Coined by lawyer and legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw, critical race theory is a practice, not a diversity and inclusion training, that recognizes race as a social construct embedded in our country's institutions, consequently relegating people of color to second-class citizenship, according to the American Bar Association.

Vought directed federal agencies during his tenure in the Office of Management and Budget to cancel all contracts and divert spending related to training on critical race theory or white privilege, which he called "divisive, anti-American propaganda" in a September 2020 memo.

His stance has not wavered since becoming president of Citizens for Renewing America in 2021.

Business Insider reached out to Citizens for Renewing America for comment.

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At least 3 are dead and 'well over' 50 injured after an Amtrak train derailed in Montana

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 9:27pm
In this photo provided by Kimberly Fossen people work at the scene of an Amtrak train derailment on Saturday, Sept. 25, 2021, in north-central Montana.
  • An Amtrak train derailed in Montana on Saturday, resulting in multiple deaths and injuries.
  • A spokesperson told Insider the train was carrying 146 passengers and 16 crew members.
  • The train had reportedly been running between Seattle and Chicago.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

At least three people were killed and 50 injured after an Amtrak train derailed in Montana, CNN and The New York Times reported Saturday evening.

An Amtrak spokesperson told Insider seven cars on the Empire Builder train derailed near Joplin around 4 p.m. MT. There were 146 passengers and 16 crew members aboard the train at the time, the spokesperson said.

"Amtrak is working with the local authorities to transport injured passengers, and safely evacuate all other passengers. Additional details will be provided as available," the spokesperson said, adding that anyone with loved ones aboard the train should call 800-523-9101.

Photos posted on social media showed Amtrak cars laying on their side, off the tracks, as first responders, passengers, and crew members crowded nearby. It wasn't immediately clear whether anyone was injured.

-Melissa Luck ☘ (@MelissaKXLY4) September 25, 2021-Jake V (He/Him) (@JSweatervest) September 25, 2021-Steve Lookner (@lookner) September 26, 2021

The Seattle news station KXLY reported that the train had been running between Seattle and Chicago.

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Beto O'Rourke blames the Biden administration's 'failures' for worsening the Haitian migrant crisis at the border

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 9:21pm
  • Some 15,000 migrants, mostly Haitians, gathered in Del Rio, Texas, last week seeking asylum.
  • Beto O'Rourke penned an op-ed blaming the Biden administration for worsening the crisis.
  • He said the administration should've seen the problem coming and that it was too slow to respond.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

In an op-ed published Friday, Beto O'Rourke said what happened at the border with Haitian migrants was "years in the making," but that the Biden administration's failures made it worse.

An estimated 15,000 Haitian migrants gathered beneath a bridge in Del Rio, Texas, last week after arriving at the Texas-Mexico border in search of asylum. The large number of migrants led to poor conditions in the camp and disturbing confrontations with border patrol.

The situation drew criticism from both Republicans and Democrats. Homeland Security said on Friday that the encampment had been cleared after the agency arranged deportation flights back to Haiti.

"What has happened in Del Rio is wrong. It didn't have to happen," O'Rourke, who formerly represented El Paso, Texas, in the US House of Representatives, began in the op-ed published by El Paso Matters.

He noted that most of the migrants had come from various countries in South America, having been displaced by the 2010 earthquake that devastated Haiti. Now, for a variety of reasons, those displaced Haitians sought asylum in the US.

O'Rourke argued that the US should have seen it coming: "We have diplomatic missions in each of these countries and an unrivaled global intelligence network."

He also criticized the White House for a slow response once the migrants arrived, "leaving the people of Del Rio and the Border Patrol to their own devices."

He blasted the administration's use of Title 42, a Trump-era policy, "to immediately, and without due process, repatriate Haitians back to the country they left a decade ago, one whose streets are now ruled by gangs and criminals."

President Joe Biden has responded to some of the criticism aimed his way, saying he took "responsibility" for the actions of the border patrol agents who confronted migrants horseback and that those agents "will pay."

-ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) September 24, 2021

O'Rourke also criticised the actions of Republican politicians: "We need some leadership at this moment. Not the photo ops favored by our governor and GOP congressmen, hungry to pose tough in front of suffering people."

He ended by saying the US must "dispense with cynical Trump-era policies and follow current U.S. law to ensure due process for asylum seekers" and "to hold accountable those who would treat immigrants as less than human."

He called for an overhaul of US immigration policy, saying it should be driven by people from border communities.

O'Rourke, who has previously run for US Senate and the presidency as a Democrat, is said to be considering a 2022 run for governor of Texas.

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Sidney Powell countersues Dominion Voting Systems after failing to get its lawsuit against her tossed in court

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 6:50pm
Attorney Sidney Powell speaks to the press about various lawsuits related to the 2020 election, inside the Republican National Committee headquarters in Washington, DC, on November 19, 2020.
  • Former Trump attorney Sidney Powell countersued Dominion Voting Systems, per a Bloomberg report.
  • Powell, who accused Dominion of manipulating the election, faces a $1.3 billion defamation suit.
  • The attorney has been unable to get Dominion's suit tossed and is seeking $10 million in damages.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Sidney Powell, the attorney who filed multiple lawsuits in an effort to overturn former President Donald Trump's 2020 election loss, on Friday filed a countersuit against the voting-technology company she accused of manipulating the results, according to new court documents.

Powell emerged a key figure in the spread of election conspiracy theories last year, falsely claiming that Dominion Voting Systems tilted the US election to boost now-President Joe Biden.

She also alleged - without evidence - that Dominion secretly aided a rival election-technology company, Smartmatic, and had links to the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

Dominion filed a defamation lawsuit against Powell earlier this year in pursuit of $1.3 billion in damages. Powell has been unable to get the lawsuit tossed in court and subsequently filed her counterclaim against company on Friday.

In her filing against Dominion, Powell called the company's demand for $1.3 billion "ludicrous," and said the company's legal action was "diverting attention from the failings of its election equipment, trying to change the 'narrative' that was exposing Dominion's serious flaws and wrongdoing, and avoiding post-election inquiry into voting irregularities in the 2020 election."

She is seeking $10 million in damages.

In May, Powell's lawyers argued that their client was being unfairly targeted among individuals who falsely claimed that Dominion conspired to alter the election results against Trump. Their filing, which was intended to support a motion to dismiss the case, argued that Dominion lacked the standing to sue Powell.

In August, a federal judge denied motions by Powell, former Trump personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, and MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell in seeking to toss defamation lawsuits brought against them by Dominion.

Despite her claims, Powell has so far been unable to validate any of the election theories or irregularities that she claims were prevalent in the 2020 election, and state election officials have roundly dismissed her accusations.

Powell, whom Trump brought on to his legal team during the turbulent post-election period in November 2020, was eventually purged from the campaign team. But just weeks later, The New York Times reported that Trump had invited Powell to the White House to discuss the possibility of her becoming a special counsel investigating voter fraud.

Read the original article on Business Insider

McConnell has warmed up to former NFL star Herschel Walker's Senate bid in Georgia

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 4:26pm
The former NFL player Herschel Walker.
  • Former NFL player Herschel Walker has emerged as a GOP frontrunner in the Georgia US Senate race.
  • McConnell told Politico he "had a good conversation" with Walker about his Senate bid.
  • "I think there's every indication he's going to be a good candidate," McConnell said of Walker.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

While some Republicans have questioned whether former NFL player Herschel Walker can defeat Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in the Georgia Senate race next year, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky appears to have warmed up to the Heisman Trophy winner's candidacy.

This past summer, Politico wrote that the longtime Republican leader saw the former football standout's "complicated" personal history as "a vulnerability" in regaining control of the Senate; the publication referenced an Associated Press report that detailed threats that Walker allegedly made to his ex-wife and questions surrounding his business dealings.

Walker, who has had a decadeslong friendship with former President Donald Trump, was strongly encouraged by the former president to jump into the race - which he did last month.

And McConnell, who earlier this year suggested he would oppose unelectable Trump-backed candidates, recently praised Walker.

"There are some things written that indicate he's had some challenges in his life. On the other hand, the good news is, he's made several impressive performances on national television. His whole team is the same team around [former Sen.] Johnny Isakson," McConnell told Politico this week. "He's called me; we had a good conversation. I think there's every indication he's going to be a good candidate."

Isakson, a longtime Peach State lawmaker, held the Senate seat that Warnock now occupies from 2005 to 2019 before stepping down for health reasons.

Gov. Brian Kemp appointed Republican Kelly Loeffler to the Senate seat, who held it until losing to Warnock in the January runoff election, which also saw Democrat Jon Ossoff unseat GOP Sen. David Perdue. Warnock was elected to fill the remainder of Isakson's term, which will expire in January 2023.

Trump on Saturday will appear with Walker at a political rally in Georgia, and in the evenly divided Senate, a GOP net gain of one seat in the upper chamber would give the party majority control, which is McConnell's ultimate goal.

But internal issues have also come into play between the two Republican leaders.

Earlier this week, the Wall Street Journal reported that Trump was actively speaking with Republican senators and allies in an effort to remove McConnell as GOP leader, but with unwavering support in his caucus, the effort is highly unlikely to succeed.

The two men have yet to patch up their falling out over McConnell's sharp criticism of the former president's conduct on the day of the Capitol insurrection. However, as McConnell looks to 2022 and Trump continues to flirt with a 2024 bid, the men will invariably need to work with each other at some point in the future.

The Kentucky senator, who led the caucus when the party lost what were seen as winnable races in Nevada, Delaware, Missouri, and Indiana in the 2010 and 2012 cycles, has not noticed the type of pushback among party members that occurred with some controversial candidates in years past.

"I don't see Sharron Angle, Christine O'Donnell, Todd Akin, or Richard Mourdock out there," McConnell told Politico, referring to the GOP Senate nominees who were defeated in those high-profile races. "I don't think there's much chance we're going to end up with a nominee who can't win in November."

Despite the questions surrounding Walker's candidacy, his entry into the race has given the GOP its highest-profile candidate to date in what will be one of the country's marquee Senate races.

The other Republicans in the race include state Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black and two military veterans: Latham Saddler and Kelvin King.

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Walmart does away with layaway, which didn't carry any fees, and announces new buy now, pay later program that will charge customers interest

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 3:32pm
Walmart cashier Regina Tommy waits on customers.
  • Walmart decided to get rid of layaway before the 2021 holiday season.
  • The company announced it's using Affirm, a buy now, pay later service the retailer partnered with in 2019.
  • Walmart started to phase its layaway out last year, only allowing it for select jewelry purchases.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Walmart has decided to scrap its layaway program completely before the 2021 holiday season, replacing it with a buy now, pay later financing option.

The retailer is now using the company Affirm, which partnered with Walmart in 2019, to replace layaway. Instead of having stores hold items from late August through mid-December while customers make payments until paid in full, shoppers can now take the item home immediately and pay it off with Affirm.

Unlike layaway, purchases made with Affirm can rack up interest over time. Although Affirm does not charge any hidden or late fees for using its services, customers can have an APR rate on purchases of 10-30% depending on their credit and 0% for select promotional items on

Not all Walmart customers may be eligible to use Affirm depending on their prequalification status. The service can be used on purchases ranging from $144 to $2,000 and excludes items like alcohol, groceries and food, personal care products, and pet supplies.

Last year, Walmart, the world's largest retailer, started to phase out layaway, only offering it on select jewelry items.

"We've learned a lot in the past year as our customers' needs and shopping habits have changed," a Walmart spokesperson told Insider. " We are confident that our payment options provide the right solutions for our customers."

Affirm's services operate alternatively to a credit card. Customers will purchase the item immediately, and pay for the items over a three to 24 month period. Customers can select their own payment plan and Affirm will match them with a lender who will provide them with a loan for the financed item.

Walmart shoppers can return any purchases made with Affirm for a refund, but the amount they paid in interest will not be refunded. Partial payments or late payments may impact a consumer's credit score or ability to receive new loans with the company, according to Affirm.

Some Walmart customers expressed concern on social media, worried about how families would be able to purchase gifts for the holiday season if they don't qualify for Affirm.

-THEE STEP MUVA (@Stepmuvalex) September 25, 2021

"Walmart took away layaway and replaced it with Affirm, which checks credit… right before Christmas," one Twitter user wrote. "So many low income families are not gonna be able to give their children gifts."

Some customers seemed to not mind the change, making jokes that without layaway they have no place to hide their children's gifts during the holidays.

Walmart has recently undergone several company-wide changes, including raising its minimum wage, getting rid of its employee bonus program for hourly workers, and opening Ghost Kitchens inside select stores.

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Netflix's TUDUM convention gives fans a sneak peek at teasers for new seasons of Stranger Things, Ozark

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 3:22pm
  • The event was live-streamed across Netflix's Youtube channels globally, as well as Twitter and Twitch.
  • The convention, directed towards a global audience, was broadcast in over 29 languages.
  • The event also featured panels with the casts and creators from over 70 series and 28 films on Netflix's slate.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Netflix is giving fans a taste of the shows coming to the streaming platform.

Netflix held its 'TUDUM: A Netflix Global Fan Event' on Saturday morning, allowing viewers a three-hour peek at exclusive content, reviewing over 100 shows, movies, documentaries, and specials.

The global fan convention featured dozens of recognizable actors from Netflix properties, including hit series like Stranger Things, Money Heist, and Bridgerton. Co-hosted by Lilly Singh, Finn Wolfhard, Caleb McLaughlin, and Nicolo Coughlin, the event also announced premiere dates and series renewal announcements, hosted cast and creator panels, and unveiled exclusive behind-the-scenes content.

The fan event features a slew of international projects alongside the big-name productions. Netflix took greater interest in local-language television and film programming, according to producers in the industry, with some productions becoming sensations both in the US and abroad.

Netflix has made major strides in a rapidly expanding streaming space, growing to 209 million paid subscribers globally as of June, and logging 41% of streaming audiences. It has fueled a competitive streaming war over the past few years with platforms like HBO Max, Disney +, and Amazon Prime Video.

TUDUM, named after the opening sound on the Netflix platform, was first held in-person in Sao Paolo, Brazil, in January 2020. A second online event was held later that year, but this event marks the first-ever global edition of the streaming convention. Many fan conventions went remote this past year due to the coronavirus pandemic, from streaming and entertainment to gaming to streetwear.

Here are some previews of the biggest projects Netflix unveiled in its fan convention:

Stranger Things Season 4 TeaserMoney Heist (La Casa de Papel) Vol. 2 - Final Episodes Sneak PeekOzark Season 4 First LookBridgerton Season 2 First LookTiger King Season 2 - Date Announcement

Emily in Paris Season 2 - Date AnnouncementThe Witcher Season 2 First Look Trailer

Red Notice - Exclusive Clip

Neil Gaiman's The Sandman - First LookArmy of Thieves (Army of the Dead Prequel) - Teaser

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Trump suggests that only 'a bad call from a doctor' would stop him from running for president in 2024

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 1:45pm
Former President Donald Trump.
  • Former President Trump said that only a "bad call from a doctor" would keep him from mounting a 2024 bid.
  • The former president has teased a potential campaign since leaving office in January.
  • He has continued to travel the country and hold rallies in support of MAGA-aligned candidates.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Former President Donald Trump on Friday said that only a "bad call from a doctor" would keep him from pursuing the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, a campaign that he has hinted at since leaving office in January.

Trump, who defeated former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2016 but lost to now-President Joe Biden last fall, has continued to assuage his political base with the possibility of a bold campaign - boosting political allies ahead of the 2022 midterm elections while continuing to lean into debunked conspiracy theories regarding voter fraud.

During an interview on "The Water Cooler" show on Real America's Voice, the former president was asked by commentator David Brody about what would keep him from a future - and third - White House bid.

"Well, I guess a bad call from a doctor or something, right?" Trump said. "You get that call. Come on down and see because we've got a bad report. ... Things happen, through God, they happen."

He added: "I feel so good and I hate what's happening to our country. Our country has never been in a position like this. We were so good ten months ago and we're so bad now."

-David Brody (@DBrodyReports) September 24, 2021

The former president proceeded to complain about the state of the US-Mexico border, which this week became an even bigger political flashpoint after videos showed Border Patrol agents whipping at Haitian migrants as they attempted to cross the Rio Grande in Del Rio, Texas.

President Joe Biden on Friday said that the agents who whipped at and charged the migrants would "pay" for their actions.

"I promise you those people will pay," he said. "There will be consequences. It's dangerous. It's wrong. It sends the wrong message around the world; it sends the wrong message at home. It's simply not who we are."

Trump, continuing in his criticism of the Biden administration, called the border situation "third-world all the way, but worse."

The former president, who ran on border security in 2016, will almost certainly employ it as a major issue issue if he pursues a 2024 bid.

Despite being out of office, Trump has continued to hold a multitude of political rallies across the county, which have largely been forums for him to promote candidates that embrace his "Make America Great Again" political philosophy and to vent about continued election grievances.

While speaking with a group of New York City Police Department officers earlier this month, the former president said of his eventual decision: "I think you're going to be happy."

However, he has not yet offered a timeline on when a decision will come.

During the interview with Brody, Trump also criticized Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious-disease expert, who also advised his administration on the coronavirus and is currently the chief medical advisor under Biden.

"He was there for like 40 years or something. He was a part of the furniture. But if you think about it, I really did pretty much the opposite of whatever he said," Trump said.

He added: "I actually got along with him, you know? I actually found him - he was a character. He'd say, 'Just call me Tony. Just call me Tony, sir.' And, you know, he's a better promoter than he is a doctor."

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Cannabis industry jobs are on the rise, fueled by the Great Resignation

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 12:54pm
A budtender weighs out marijuana for a customers at ShowGrow, a medical marijuana dispensary in downtown Los Angeles.
  • Retail workers are finding refuge as they move into marijuana-related jobs, The Washington Post first reported.
  • The legal cannabis sector is currently one of the fastest-growing industries in the US.
  • Millions of people across the US are quitting their jobs in the Great Resignation, fueled by COVID-19 pandemic stresses.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

As more Americans choose to leave their current jobs amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the question remains: where are they going? One answer is the booming legal marijuana industry.

The cannabis industry has become a place of refuge for frustrated and under-appreciated retail workers who left their jobs, the Washington Post reported. Despite unemployment and a temporary economic recession in 2020 fueled by the pandemic, resulting in one of the worst years for US economic growth in 80 years, employment in the industry grew by 32%. The industry added over 77,000 jobs across the sector, according to a 2021 Leafly Jobs report. There are now 321,000 American working in the legal cannabis industry, more than those who are EMTs and paramedics, aircraft pilots, or electrical engineers, the report said.

"I am so much happier," a cannabis dispensary employee Jason Zvokel told The Washington Post. "For the first time in years, I'm not miserable when I come home from work."

Zvokel left his job as a Walgreens pharmacist, which he held for over twenty years, according to the Post, taking on a job at a dispensary where his pay is 5% lower, but hours and work expectations are more manageable. Between administering dozens of coronavirus vaccines daily, the pressures of meeting high sales and prescription goals, and the lack of overtime pay or raises, Zvokel felt inclined to quit.

"People were quitting left and right and I was being asked to do a lot more than I physically could," Zvokel added.

Similar stresses are echoed throughout different industries, like retail, food service, and healthcare - fueling the Great Resignation, where US workers are quitting their jobs in droves for better pay, work-life balance, and feeling valued at work. Almost 70% of workers in the US considered changing their careers for more job flexibility, even at the expense of lower pay. Some underqualified workers are outright "ghosting" their employers without notice, leading to a sharp decline in worker retention, especially in the restaurant industry.

Mario Porter, the co-owner of a Michigan-based dispensary, Hempire Collective, told The Washington Post he was able to expand his dispensary staff in 2021. He received hundreds of applications, many of which came from retail workers who left their jobs during the pandemic.

Like jobs in the retail sector, most entry-level jobs in the cannabis industry are minimum wage, but there are more opportunities to move up quickly, the Post reported. Lucrative managerial and executive jobs in the industry can rake in 6-figure salaries.

But as the industry's workforce grows, cannabis worker's rights groups have pushed to establish firm guardrails to avoid worker's issues prevalent in industries like retail.

"Without proper structures and safeguards in place at the outset, cannabis could end up looking like many other U.S. industries," according to a report from the Economic Policy Institute. These industries are dominated by "strictly profit-maximizing firms" that treat find ways to keep wages low and undermine worker power, the report continued.

Though medical marijuana is now legal in 37 states, and 18 states and Washington DC have legalized recreational marijuana for all adults, the substance is still prohibited on the federal level.

In June, Democratic senators proposed sweeping reforms to legalize cannabis. The legal cannabis industry is expected to shoot to $100 billion over the next eight years according to analysts at Cowen investment bank, given it becomes legal in the coming years.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Sen. Joe Manchin seeks to slow down $3.5 trillion infrastructure bill as Democrats move forward with the legislation in critical phase

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 12:19pm
Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia.
  • Sen. Manchin told Politico that "there is no timeline" for the $3.5 trillion infrastructure bill.
  • The senator's position is at odds with Democratic leaders, who want to see both infrastructure bills signed into law this year.
  • Manchin has expressed reservations about the cost of the reconciliation bill, which would be passed on a party-line vote.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia on Thursday insisted that "there is no timeline" for the $3.5 trillion infrastructure bill, a stance that threatens the momentum that President Joe Biden and party leaders have sought to build as they push for votes on the legislation next week.

Biden and Democratic leaders, angling for passage of the gargantuan reconciliation package that would provide critical investments in healthcare, childcare, and climate initiatives, have pleaded with moderate holdouts to identify a figure that could possibly attract their support for the bill.

While many of Manchin's colleagues are hoping that the influential senator will point out what he'd like to see cut from the bill, he is in no rush to take such action, as he feels that funding for spending programs is sufficient to last through the end of the year.

"What's the need? There is no timeline. I want to understand it," Manchin expressed in an interview with Politico. "I don't think anything runs out. Right now, we've got good nutrition for children, a lot of things are covered right now clear [into] next year."

The senator's statement makes it extraordinarily difficult to foresee a reconciliation deal being put together ahead of a House vote on the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package, which could come as soon as Sept. 27, a self-imposed deadline that was set last month after the successful passage of the bipartisan bill that easily passed in the Senate.

In the evenly-divided Senate, Democrats need every member to be on board for the reconciliation package to pass, and Manchin - along with fellow moderate Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona - wield incredible influence over the bill, which is slated to include tax increases on the wealthy and tuition-free community college, among many other items.

Manchin does not have the same sense of urgency as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who must contend with unrest about the larger reconciliation package from moderates who want to pass the $1.2 trillion bipartisan bill regardless of the larger bill's fate and progressives who feel that the larger bill should be passed in tandem with the bipartisan bill.

However, the senator has signaled a willingness to compromise on the reconciliation bill, versus outright opposition to the sweeping legislation.

Democratic Sen. Jon Tester of Montana, a fellow moderate, said as much to Politico.

"I don't think Joe is unworkable, I think, look he's fiscally conservative, OK? So, $3.5 trillion is a lot of money, it shakes into his soul," he said to the publication. "We can get to a point where we're all happy. Maybe not tickled, but happy."

Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, the chairman of the Budget Committee, who has insisted that the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package should remain at that level, said earlier this week on CBS's "Face the Nation" that he expects the party "to come together again and do what has to be done."

Manchin, in admitting that his "strategic pause" of the $3.5 trillion framework is largely at odds with the rest of the Democratic caucus, said that he wanted to further "understand" the pacing of the bill.

"I've always said pause. I thought because this is such a big thing. Right now I can tell they're not moving for a pause and looking for a pause," the senator said. "I don't know what the time frame is, but I want to understand it right now before I do anything."

Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia speaks during a news conference with a group of bipartisan lawmakers to unveil a proposal for a COVID-19 relief bill. 'Everybody knows me pretty well'

As is the case with many substantive pieces of legislation, Manchin has been heavily courted by his colleagues in the Senate caucus, along with Biden, who has met him twice in recent days.

However, according to Politico, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin of Illinois isn't "actively whipping" Manchin, while Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York continues to speak highly of the West Virginian.

"Everybody knows me pretty well. My mind is my mind, not theirs," Manchin told the publication. "I wouldn't think I could do anything to change their minds. I think Bernie [Sanders] is sincere, he has a very social mindset and he is who he is to the core. I hope he'll respect me. I'm not anywhere near that."

GOP Sen. John Cornyn of Texas was skeptical that Manchin will broker a deal to allow the reconciliation bill to pass in the coming weeks.

"I'd be surprised if he cut a deal that allowed him to do it this fall," he said. "He's been consistent."

Senate Republicans, led by Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, are vehemently opposed to the Democratic reconciliation package - and are also refusing to support a short-term government funding bill, which Democrats have paired with an increase in the federal debt ceiling.

While Sinema has also balked at the cost of the reconciliation bill, she has signaled support for climate provisions that Manchin has opposed.

A Democratic senator who spoke anonymously to Politico said that Manchin and Sinema are taking different approaches in tackling the bill.

"Kyrsten recognizes there's a timeline, there's got to be a process," the senator told the publication, while Manchin is "coming at it from a values perspective first and saying 'I am happy to support this or this or this but not in this way or not at this time.'"

Despite Manchin's continued skepticism of the reconciliation bill, Democrats are confident that he will join them in passing the legislation, as he did with the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package that passed along party lines in March.

"None of us like artificial deadlines and he doesn't make a decision before he needs to," Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia told Politico. "When we need him, he's there. And I would be surprised if that were any different this time."

Read the original article on Business Insider

A witness said the Taliban hung a body from a crane in a city square in western Afghanistan: report

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 11:43am
People look up at a dead body hanged by the Taliban from a crane in the main square of Herat city in western Afghanistan, on Saturday, September 29, 2021.
  • The Taliban on Saturday hung a dead body from a crane in the town square in the western Afghanistan city of Herat, the Associated Press reported.
  • Four bodies were displayed in the main square while three others were displayed elsewhere in the city, a witness told the AP.
  • The Taliban said the four people displayed in the town square were killed by police because they participated in a kidnapping.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

The Taliban on Saturday hung a dead body from a crane in the city square in the western Afghanistan city of Herat, a witness to the event told the Associated Press.

According to the report, Wazir Ahmad Seddiqi, who owns a pharmacy in the square, said the Taliban brought four bodies to the main square while three others were displayed elsewhere in the city.

Seddiqi told the AP that the Taliban said the four people displayed in the town square had participated in a kidnapping and were killed by police, according to the report.

According to the AP, a Taliban-appointed police chief said the four men were killed in crossfire when a father and son were abducted by the kidnappers. A civilian and Taliban fighter were wounded while the four kidnappers were killed in the exchange of gunfire, the police chief Ziaulhaq Jalali said, according to the AP.

Taliban co-founder Mullah Nooruddin Turabi previously told the Associated Press that it planned to once again carry out executions and amputations of hands as punishment, according to the report, an indication the group plans to resume the harsh tactics it employed when it previously ruled in Afghanistan despite its earlier claims it planned to rule more moderately.

"Everyone criticized us for the punishments in the stadium, but we have never said anything about their laws and their punishments," Turabi told the AP earlier this week. "No one will tell us what our laws should be. We will follow Islam and we will make our laws on the Quran."

The Taliban took control of Afghanistan in August, seizing city after city with little push back from the Afghanistan military. It took the country's capital city on August 15 as the country's president fled Afghanistan and the US military underwent a rapid withdrawal from the country after a two-decade occupation.

The Taliban had been booted from control in Afghanistan in 2001 when the US entered the country.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Two-thirds of low wage workers still don't have sick days amid ongoing pandemic

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 11:36am
  • Two-thirds of low-wage workers do not have sick days, despite the ongoing pandemic, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Overall, paid sick days have a positive benefit to employers as it reduces employee turnover.
  • There has been a recent push by Democratic politicians and workers in the US to secure paid leave for low-wage workers.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Two-thirds of low-wage workers do not have sick days, even during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Over three-quarters, or about 77%, of private-sector workers in the US have the ability to earn paid sick time at work, but the benefit is mostly available to higher-wage workers, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data. Only 33% of the lowest-paid workers are able to earn paid sick days in the US, the data found.

Low-wage workers, such as people working in education, restaurants, and manufacturing, are typically working in positions where they have more direct contact with the public, putting them at a higher risk for developing a contagious disease like COVID-19, falling ill, and subsequently being forced to miss work, the Economic Policy Institute points out.

Access to paid sick days has positive benefits to employers as it reduces employee turnover with no impact on employment, according to EPI.

Depending on where workers live can also impact their access to paid sick days, the EPI reported. 95% of private-sector workers living in the Pacific Region (California, Oregon, and Washington) have access to paid sick leave while only 67% in East South Central states (Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Tennessee) have the same access. Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Tennessee all have preemption laws prohibiting cities and counties from requiring local employers to offer paid sick leave or other forms of paid family or medical leave, according to the EPI.

There is no federal law requiring employers to provide paid sick leave.

Recently, Tyson Foods, the world's second-largest processor and marketer of chicken, beef, and pork, granted workers fully vaccinated against the coronavirus 20 hours of paid sick leave a year to incentivize employees to get the vaccine, Insider Reported.

However, Amazon, which currently employs every 1 out of 153 workers in the US, does not offer its warehouse workers paid sick leave. Amazon has come under scrutiny from its employees and labor activists for offering unsafe working conditions for its warehouse workers and delivery drivers.

The company has repeatedly said the safety of drivers and communities is its top priority and it invests millions of dollars in safety protocols for workers.

-Dan Price (@DanPriceSeattle) June 23, 2021

House Democrats are currently drafting a bill that includes 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave for American workers. The proposed $3.5 trillion infrastructure plan, called the Build Back Better Act, would guarantee workers time off to raise newborn children or deal with a medical emergency, Insider reported.

"This is our historic opportunity to support working families and ensure our economy is stronger, more inclusive, and more resilient for generations to come," Chairman Richard E. Neal, a Massachusetts representative, previously told Insider.

Read the original article on Business Insider

A Proud Boys member and FBI informant was texting his handler during the January 6 Capitol riot, report says

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 11:34am
Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as they push barricades to storm the US Capitol in Washington D.C on January 6, 2021.
  • A member of the far-right Proud Boys and FBI informant was texting his handler during the January 6 riot at the US Capitol, The New York Times reported.
  • The FBI was investigating at least two other January 6 rioters with potential ties to the Proud Boys, according to the report.
  • The records appear to show the FBI had advanced knowledge that Proud Boys members were headed toward the Capitol.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

A member of the Proud Boys who was working as an FBI informant was present at the January 6 riot at the US Capitol and sent his FBI handler live updates by text message, indicating the law enforcement agency had real-time knowledge that a pro-Trump mob was headed toward the building.

According to a report published Saturday by The New York Times, the informant was updating his handler as the pro-Trump mob marched toward the US Capitol 6 while lawmakers were meeting inside to discuss and certify Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 presidential election.

The informant, who was associated with the Midwestern chapter of the organization, told the FBI that members of the Proud Boys were following the mob but maintained the group didn't have plans to attack the US Capitol.

The informant described meeting up with other members of the Proud Boys at the Washington Monument on the morning of January 6 before they moved to the Capitol, records show, according to the Times. The informant described seeing barriers knocked over and Trump supporters entering the building.

The handler didn't appear to understand that the Capitol had been breached, according to the records obtained by the Times. The records were provided to the outlet on the grounds it would not quote directly from them, according to the report.

The informant began working with federal investigators in July 2020, records said, according to the Times.

The records do not indicate whether the informant could've intentionally misled federal investigators, according to the report. The informant's statements pose difficulties for federal prosecutors who aim to make the case that rioters at the capitol associated with the Proud Boys in advance planned to storm the building.

Prosecutors have filed conspiracy charges against 15 members of the Proud Boys relating to the January 6 riot, The Times noted. In total, at least 654 people have faced charges related to their participation in the January 6 riot, according to an Insider database.

The FBI was investigating at least two other people involved in the January 6 riot who may have been connected to the Proud Boys, according to the report.

A person familiar with the situation told The New York Times the FBI had another informant present on January 6 who was affiliated with another chapter of the Proud Boys.

"While the F.B.I.'s standard practice is not to discuss its sources and methods, it is important to understand that sources provide valuable information regarding criminal activity and national security matters," the FBI told The New York Times in a statement.

Read the original article on Business Insider

A virtual reality 'empathy machine' to stop domestic abusers from reoffending to begin trials, report says

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 11:27am
A stock image shows a man using a virtual reality headset.
  • France will trial "empathy machines," which use virtual reality technology, from October, per rfi.
  • 30 male volunteers - all convicted of domestic violence - will take part in the experiment.
  • The experiment is part of an effort to stop domestic abusers from re-offending, rfi reported.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

France is trialing a virtual reality "empathy machine" as part of an effort to deter men convicted of domestic violence from reoffending, according to Radio France Internationale (rfi).

The machine, unveiled by French Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti on Friday, uses "total immersion" technology to try and help offenders see situations from their victims' perspective, rfi reported.

The all-male volunteers are reportedly immersed in a "seemingly innocuous interior" by wearing a virtual reality headset designed by French start-up Reverto, according to the French media outlet La Voix du Nord.

They are then shown 12 minutes of 360-degree video, chronicling a series of scenarios that detail an abusive family dynamic from the victims' perspective, the media outlet reported.

"It's a kind of empathy machine," said Guillaume Clere, co-founder of Reverto, during an interview with rfi. "It makes men understand fear," he added.

According to a 2021 study in the Technology, Mind, and Behavior Journal, virtual reality machines like Reverto's have the ability to arouse compassionate feelings. The jury is still out on whether they can increase cognitive empathy, or the ability for users to put themselves in the shoes of somebody else, the study said.

The machine will be trialed with 30 volunteers and the experiment will begin in October, according to the French justice ministry.

It will take place for a year in prisons and the trial is prioritizing convicts who are "most likely to re-offend," a justice ministry official told rfi.

In recent years, France has tried to staunch its high rates of gender-based violence. In 2019, 146 women were killed by an intimate partner, making it one of the more dangerous countries for women in Europe.

Last summer, France's parliament implemented a bill to protect victims of domestic violence by allowing doctors to break patient confidentiality if they believe life is in immediate danger.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Marvel is suing former comic-book artists to keep full control over characters including Iron Man, Thor, and Spider-Man

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 11:08am
Iron Man is one of the characters at the centre of the lawsuit.
  • Marvel is suing ex-comic book artists or their estates to keep full control over several characters.
  • It follows complaints from the artists' heirs, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
  • Their creations were made "for hire" and Marvel claims that this means it fully owns the rights.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Disney's Marvel division is suing former comic-book artists to keep full control of classic characters.

It filed suit against Larry Lieber, and the estates of Stan Lee, Steve Ditko, Don Heck, Don Rico, and Gene Colan.

The lawsuit, which was viewed by The Hollywood Reporter, claims that Marvel holds full ownership over characters including Iron Man, Spider-Man, and Thor.

The development came after the artists' relatives sent termination notices to try and reclaim part of the rights to several characters.

The artists all co-created the characters in question between the 1950s and 1970s. Their creations, however, were made when they were working on a "for hire," basis.

This arrangement means the artists cannot reclaim rights to them under the Copyright Act, Marvel argued in the filing.

In reference to Lieber, who is Lee's brother, Marvel said in the lawsuit: "Marvel assigned Lieber stories to write, had the right to exercise creative control over Lieber's contributions, and paid Lieber a per-page rate for his contributions."

Marc Toberoff, who represents the artists, the lawsuits were based on "an anachronistic and highly criticized interpretation of 'work-made-for-hire' under the 1909 Copyright Act that needs to be rectified," Reuters reported.

But Marvel attorney, Dan Petrocelli told Reuters in a statement: "Since these were works made for hire and thus owned by Marvel, we filed these lawsuits to confirm that the termination notices are invalid and of no legal effect."

This is not the only recent legal battle that Marvel and Disney have been involved in. "Black Widow" actor Scarlett Johansson is suing Disney over the movie's dual-release. The lawsuit argues that Disney violated her contract by debuting the film online and in theaters.

According to court documents shared with Insider, Johansson's representatives contacted Marvel to ensure that the movie would solely be released in theatres.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Amateur divers find an 'incredible' treasure trove of gold coins from the Roman Empire while cleaning up trash on the seabed

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 11:05am
Amateur freedivers found a large collection of gold Roman coins off the coast of Spain.
  • Amateur freedivers in Spain have discovered one of the largest collections of gold Roman coins found in Europe.
  • The collection of 53 coins date back to the 4th and 5th centuries and are nearly perfectly preserved.
  • Researchers suggested the coins could have been hidden from barbarian looters.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Freedivers off the coast of Spain have uncovered a treasure trove of 53 perfectly preserved gold coins from the Roman Empire, one of the largest collections ever found in Europe.

Brothers-in-law Luis Lens and César Gimeno were freediving in the Mediterranean Sea while on vacation in Xàbia, Spain. Cleaning up trash, according to The Times, as they explored the underwater scenery they came across a shiny object that resembled a "10-cent-coin," newspaper El Pais said.

After retrieving the object, they noticed an inscription with an ancient Greek or Roman face and assumed it was from jewelry.

Using the corkscrew of a Swiss Army knife, they discovered another seven coins embedded in a rock crevice.

After reporting their discovery to local authorities, a team of scuba divers and archaeologists uncovered a total of 53 gold coins, three nails, and some remains of what appeared to be a chest.

Scientists from the University Institute for Research in Archeology and Historical Heritage analyzed the coins. They found they were from the end of the 4th century and the beginning of the 5th century.

"It's incredible. It's every child's dream to find a treasure," Luis Lens told El Pais.

Amateur freedivers found a large collection of gold Roman coins off the coast of Spain.

"It is one of the largest sets of Roman gold coins found in Spain and Europe," said Jaime Molina, head of the team of underwater archaeologists from the University of Alicante, in a press release.

What makes the discovery even more unusual is how perfectly preserved the coins were.

Researchers were able to identify the emperors on the coins: Valentinian I (3 coins), Valentinian II (7 coins), Todosio I (15 coins), Arcadi (17 coins), Honorius (10 coins), and an unidentified coin.

Molina said that the discovery could provide a multitude of new information to understand the final phase of the fall of the Western Roman Empire.

Historians said that the coins could have been intentionally hidden to avoid looting barbarians, such as the Alans.

They said the coins shed light on the historical moment of insecurity with the arrival of barbarian people, such as the Suevi, Vandals, and Alans, leading to the fall of the Roman Empire.

The coins will be restored and exhibited in the Soler Blasco Archaeological and Ethnographic Museum of Xàbia, the University of Alicante said.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Carnival posts $2.8 billion loss in third quarter after the Delta variant hit summer cruise sales

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 10:01am
The average Carnival ship was only 59% full in August, the company said.
  • Carnival Corp recorded a $2.8 billion loss in the third quarter of this year, AP reported.
  • The company said sales were knocked this summer due to the impact of the Delta variant of COVID-19.
  • Shares rose on Friday, however, after the company expects soaring demand for next year.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Carnival Corp, the world's biggest cruise line, recorded a $2.8 billion loss in the third quarter of this year as concerns over the Delta variant of COVID-19 impacted sales.

Associated Press reported that shares rose 3% on Friday, however, after the cruise line operator said bookings for the second half of next year are running ahead of 2019 levels.

The average ship was only 59% full in August, Carnival told AP. That was an improvement from 39% in June.

The cruise industry has been one of the hardest-hit sectors following the huge disruption caused by the pandemic. Former and current cruise employees recently told Insider how they had to reckon with loneliness, fear, and uncertainty while being stuck in mandatory quarantines.

AP reported that the big three cruise companies in the US did not receive the same kind of federal relief that was allotted to airlines.

But the future for Carnival looks more assured, thanks to pent-up demand for cruises. In July, it said advance bookings for 2022 were already higher than in 2019, Insider's Grace Dean reported.

"We reported a significant loss, so we haven't recovered yet, obviously, but as we look ahead we see brighter days," Carnival CEO Arnold Donald told AP. "If things continue to trend the way they are (with COVID-19 cases), we should see positive cash flow as we get our fleet sailing broadly again."

People are spending a lot of money on board, too. The company told AP that while there were fewer passengers on board this summer, they spent 20% more onboard than before the pandemic.

According to Donald, the fact that people haven't been able to cruise, or travel at all, could be behind the increased spending. "So they are in a mood to spend more because they haven't had a chance to in a while," he said.

Eight of Carnival's nine cruise lines have resumed sailing with reduced schedules, AP reported. The company said it anticipated its full fleet to be operating by spring 2022.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Donald Trump mocks his Republican foes by sending a bizarre meme of Liz Cheney and George W. Bush's faces morphed together

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 10:00am
Left to right: Rep. Liz Cheney, Former President Donald Trump, Former President George W. Bush
  • Donald Trump sent his supporters a photoshopped image of Liz Cheney and George W. Bush's faces.
  • The face-morphed image, originally shared by a meme account, is the former president's latest jab at his political nemeses.
  • In a statement made on Wednesday, Trump blasted Bush for his support of Cheney in next year's GOP primary in Wyoming.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Former President Donald Trump mocked his political nemeses by emailing a meme of Republican congresswoman Liz Cheney and former President George W. Bush's faces morphed together to his supporters, according to the Independent.

-Mike Sington (@MikeSington) September 24, 2021

The image, which appears to have first been shared by Twitter meme account, was used by Trump in a fundraising message, sent on Thursday, for his Save America PAC. "ICYMI: Must-See Photo," it was captioned.

The former president shared the meme a day after releasing a statement that criticized Bush, who he previously accused of leading "a failed and uninspiring presidency," for his "stupidity" in the Middle East.

-Alex Sheppard

The Queen of Stonks: How Nancy Pelosi became the biggest meme in investing

Sat, 09/25/2021 - 9:35am
Nancy Pelosi has become an unlikely investing meme.
  • The investing world has a new meme: Nancy Pelosi, House Speaker and star stock-picker.
  • Pelosi's husband's winning tech trades have shot the couple into the investing limelight.
  • While some meme about insider trading, others actively copy, and follow, the Pelosi approach.
  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Move over GameStop and dogecoin, the investing world has a new meme: Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, and star stock-picker.

Pelosi has become a regular feature on the biggest financial meme pages such as Litquidity and Parik Patel. And investing TikTok accounts are getting tens of thousands of views on clips about Pelosi's moves in the market. But why?

A fateful Alphabet bet

Central to the story of how Pelosi became the biggest meme on Wall Street is US legislation that forces lawmakers to disclose their and their family's trading activity. It means the general public can view Pelosi's - or, more specifically, Pelosi's husband's - often highly successful trades.

Pelosi has reported many stock trades carried out by her husband, Paul, over the last few years. But his trading activities shot into the news in July, when he made a cool $5.3 million by exercising call options that let him buy 4,000 shares of Google parent company Alphabet.

The trade was highly controversial. That's because it came just before the House Judiciary Committee voted on antitrust regulation, which ultimately wasn't seen as a big threat to the tech titans.

Spokespeople for Speaker Pelosi told media outlets at the time that she had no knowledge of the purchases and that she owns no stock herself. Insider contacted Pelosi's office but received no reply.

Although she didn't break any rules, the trades were seen as fishy by many, and two memes based around Pelosi quickly sprung up. One is that the 81-year-old is a high-rolling, risk-taking star trader. Another is that she's making the big bucks off of insider information.

Parik Patel is one account that regularly memes about Pelosi. Paul Pelosi is one good day-trader

For the anonymous Wall Street banker behind the Litquidity meme account, the whole situation is funny.

It's funny to imagine Paul Pelosi as just another WallStreetBets day-trader trying to make some money on his phone, Litquidity told Insider.

And it's funny that the family of the country's most powerful Democrat, whose party is seen as wanting to tax the rich and slash inequality, should be regularly buying and selling millions of dollars of stocks and options.

The whole issue of politicians trading stocks is highly partisan. Democrats frequently point to the cases of Republican Sens Kelly Loeffler and Rand Paul, whose trading activity has also been criticized.

Unsurprisingly then, memes on Pelosi generate a lot of heat online, Litquidity says. One Litquidity Instagram post is a picture comparing George Soros and Nancy Pelosi as traders. A comment underneath says: "Nice. Now do Rand Paul and his wife." Others are highly critical of the speaker.

Read more: The market is headed for its dreaded 'late-cycle stage,' Bank of America warns - but these 6 real-estate stocks offer strong fundamentals and inflation-protected dividends

Copying the Pelosi approach

Yet there's also a community online who are more admiring and look to copy the Pelosi family trades.

In a recent TikTok video, an account called Quicktrades got 70,000 likes in a post focusing on trades by the "queen of investing." Another account posted a TikTok saying "shouts out to Nancy Pelosi for the stock tips." And trading social media app Iris allows users to track Pelosi's disclosures.

Ed Moya, senior market analyst at trading platform Oanda, told Insider the new army of retail traders in the US are always looking for experts to mimic. "The newbie believes politicians have an insight to what will likely be a good stock pick, as government officials know what fiscal policies will impact which sectors," he said.

"Retail traders are somewhat realizing that they have taken AMC and Gamestop as far as they can go and need to look for other trades."

Read the original article on Business Insider

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