CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: April 21st

Glenn gives the latest coronavirus numbers, updating YOU on everything needed to know as Americans and officials monitor China's new COVID-19 virus:

Daily Stats as of 5:30 AM CT (from John's Hopkins)

  • Total Confirmed Cases Worldwide: 2,498,474 (up from 2,418,980 Yesterday)
  • Total Confirmed Deaths Worldwide: 171,332 (up from 2,197,161 Yesterday)
  • Total Confirmed Recovered Worldwide: 657,808 (up from 633,376 Yesterday)
  • The US has 792,938 Confirmed Cases and 42,518 Deaths, up from 746,265 cases and 40,766 deaths yesterday
  • The US currently has 13,951 people in Serious or Critical Condition, up from 13,336 yesterday
  • The US has now tested 4,027,367 people but still lags behind 36 other countries in terms of testing per capita. US has done less testing per capita than Estonia, Slovenia, Ireland, Aruba and Venezuela...
Iowa Deploys National Guard to Meatpacking Plants https://finance.yahoo.com/news/iowa-sends-national-guard-troops-225054924.html
  • The National Guard has been deployed to two meat processing plants in Iowa.
  • After the Smithfield Meats plant was closed in North Dakota last week, workers from Smithfield were apparently hired by JBS National Beef Packing Inc.
  • Tyson Foods also had an outbreak and is closing one of its Iowa-based meat processing plants.
  • The National Guard is expected to help with testing and medical care of workers in an attempt to try to get the food processing plants back online more quickly.
  • Iowa meatpackers produce about 1/3 of the nation's Pork and 15% of all Beef.
  • With the processing plants offline, many Hog farmers may be forced to euthanize hogs. https://nypost.com/2020/04/21/pork-producers-could-kill-hogs-to-offset-losses-from-coronavirus/
  • Even if the FDA buys hogs from farmers, without production plants to slaughter and process the meat, animals would have to be euthanized.
Russia for the Win - West Texas Oil Crashes 300% to Negative $41 per Barrel https://www.cnbc.com/2020/04/20/oil-markets-us-crude-futures-in-focus-as-coronavirus-dents-demand.html, https://oilprice.com/Energy/Oil-Prices/Whats-Next-For-Oil-As-Prices-Go-Negative.html
  • In February, Russia broke with OPEC+ and increased oil production by over 20%, just as demand for oil/gas dropped of a cliff due to COVID-19.
  • Saudi Arabia followed suit and also increased production in an effort to prevent Russia from capturing market share.
  • The Price War resulted in a massive oversupply of oil, even as demand for oil and fuel dropped by over 35% globally.
  • President Trump had negotiated a production decrease of 9 Million Barrels per day between Russia and OPEC+, but that production cut doesn't go into effect until May.
  • In the interim, there is no place to store the excess oil already in the system, so the May futures contracts, for 1000 barrels of oil each, dropped to negative $41/barrel yesterday in intraday trading. Those contracts 'expire' today, meaning the holder of the contract is forced to either take delivery or pay someone else to take/store the oil.
  • The May futures contract had been trading at $64/barrel as recently as late January.
  • June WTI futures are still trading near $20/barrel, down from $68 in January.
Trump to Temporarily Suspend Immigration Into the US https://www.scmp.com/news/world/united-states-canada/article/3080803/trump-says-hell-suspend-immigration-us
  • US President Donald Trump said he will temporarily suspend all immigration to the United States because of the coronavirus outbreak
  • Trump referred to the "Invisible Enemy" in a late-night tweet on Monday, a phrase he has used to describe the virus that has killed more than 42,000 people out of more than 787,370 confirmed infections in the US
  • He said the move would protect Americans' jobs after almost 22 million people in the US were put out of work.
  • "In light of the attack from the Invisible Enemy, as well as the need to protect the jobs of our GREAT American Citizens, I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the United States!" Trump tweeted, without providing details.
  • Details are said to be forthcoming, but no word yet on whether H2-A Agricultural Worker visas would be exempt from the immigration ban. About 55% of ag and food production workers in the US come from Mexico on H2-A visas.
  • Industry analysts have warned of potential production disruptions if the more than 2 Million H2-A visas aren't exempted.
New Study From China Indicates Multiple SARS-CoV-2 Strains, Some Deadlier Than Others https://www.scmp.com/news/china/science/article/3080771/coronavirus-mutations-affect-deadliness-strains-chinese-study
  • A new study by one of China's top scientists has found the ability of the new coronavirus to mutate has been vastly underestimated and different strains may account for different impacts of the disease in various parts of the world.
  • Professor Li Lanjuan and her colleagues from Zhejiang University found within a small pool of patients many mutations not previously reported. These mutations included changes so rare that scientists had never considered they might occur.
  • They also confirmed for the first time with laboratory evidence that certain mutations could create strains deadlier than others.
  • "Sars-CoV-2 has acquired mutations capable of substantially changing its pathogenicity," Li and her collaborators wrote in a non-peer reviewed paper released on preprint service medRxiv.org on Sunday.
  • The study provided the first hard evidence that mutation could affect how severely the virus caused disease or damage in its host.
  • The most aggressive strains of Sars-COV-2 could generate 270 times as much viral load as the least potent type, the study indicated.
  • New York may have a deadlier strain imported from Europe, compared to less deadly viruses elsewhere in the United States.
  • The various strains may help explain why some outbreak regions are so much worse than others, and may also make vaccine production much more complex, the research study concluded.
A Story of Two Pandemics - Sisters Killed 100 Years Apart https://www.miamiherald.com/news/coronavirus/article242145151.html
  • A 96-year-old Texas woman died from coronavirus last week, more than a century after her older sister died from the Spanish Flu, according to an obituary and media reports.
  • Selma Esther Ryan has lived at an Austin assisted living center for the past three years after previously living in San Antonio.
  • Her daughter, Vicki Spencer, said she got a call April 3 that her mother was sick along with four other residents at the center.
  • "Over the next five days I watched through the window as she got sicker and sicker," Spencer said. "It was so hard to not be with her. Her 96th birthday was April 11. Our family gathered outside her window, but it was obvious that something terrible had happened to her."
  • Her death April 14 came 102 years after her older sister, 5-year-old Esther, died from the Spanish Flu, Selma's obituary states. Esther is one of at least 50 million people who died during the 1918 pandemic.
Many Georgia Businesses Allowed to Reopen This Week https://nypost.com/2020/04/20/many-georgia-businesses-may-reopen-by-friday-tennessee-eyes-next-week/
  • Businesses including Salons, Gyms, Spas, Movie Theaters, Restaurants - including limited dine-in services, and tattoo parlors are among those businesses that will be allowed to reopen.
  • Customers and business owners will still be expected to follow social distancing and hygiene guidelines, including maintaining 6 feet of separation.
  • Businesses will also be required to provide hand sanitizer or hand-washing stations for customers, as well as to frequency disinfect surfaces that may be touched by customers.
  • It is unclear how hygiene and disinfection guidelines will be observed and enforced, if at all.
  • Tennessee also expected to relax business closures by next week.
Swiss Study Finds Damage to Multiple Organs from COVID-19 https://www.todayonline.com/world/coronavirus-attacks-lining-blood-vessels-all-over-body-swiss-study-finds
  • COVID-19 attacks the body at all locations that have high ACE-2 cell protein types.
  • ACE-2 cells are found in the lungs and respiratory tract but also found in the Kidneys, Liver, Heart, Gut, Testicles and Brain.
  • COVID-19 appears to prevent blood flow to vital organs by damaging the mico-blood-vessels that feed oxygenated blood to these organs.
  • The study, from the Journal Lancet, looked at cell samples from 119 COVID-19 victims who had succumbed to the virus, as part of an expanded autopsy study.
  • This virus does not only attack the lungs, it attacks the vessels everywhere," said Dr Frank Ruschitzka, an author of the paper from University Hospital Zurich.
  • He said the researchers had found that the deadly virus caused more than pneumonia.
  • "It enters the endothelium [layer of cells], which is the defense line for blood vessels. So it causes severe problems in microcirculation," said Dr Ruschitzka, referring to circulation in the smallest of blood vessels.
  • It then reduces the blood flow to different parts of the body and eventually stops blood circulation, according to Dr Ruschitzka, chairman of the heart center and cardiology department at the university hospital in Switzerland.
  • "From what we do see clinically, patients have problems in all organs — in the heart, kidney, intestine, everywhere," he said.

On the radio program Thursday, Glenn Beck sat down with chief researcher Jason Buttrill to go over two bombshell developments that have recently come to light regarding former Vice President Joe Biden's role in the 2016 dismissal of Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin.

"Wow! Two huge stories dropped within about 24 hours of each other," Jason began. He went on to explain that a court ruling in Ukraine has just prompted an "actual criminal investigation against Joe Biden in Ukraine."

This stunning development coincided with the release of leaked phone conversations, which took place in late 2015 and early 2016, allegedly among then-Vice President Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry, and Ukraine's former President Petro Poroshenko.

One of the audiotapes seems to confirm allegations of a quid pro quo between Biden and Poroshenko, with the later admitting that he asked Shokin to resign despite having no evidence of him "doing anything wrong" in exchange for a $1 billion loan guarantee.

"Poroshenko said, 'despite the fact that we didn't have any corruption charges on [Shokin], and we don't have any information about him doing something wrong, I asked him to resign,'" Jason explained. "But none of the Western media is pointing this out."

Watch the video below for more details:


Listen to the released audiotapes in full here.

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A recently declassified email, written by former National Security Adviser Susan Rice and sent herself on the day of President Donald Trump's inauguration, reveals the players involved in the origins of the Trump-Russia probe and "unmasking" of then-incoming National Security Adviser, Gen. Michael Flynn.

Rice's email details a meeting in the Oval Office on Jan 5, 2017, which included herself, former FBI Director James Comey, former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, former Vice President Joe Biden, and former President Barack Obama. Acting Director of National Intelligence, Richard Grenell, fully declassified the email recently amid President Trump's repeated references to "Obamagate" and claims that Obama "used his last weeks in office to target incoming officials and sabotage the new administration."

On Glenn Beck's Wednesday night special, Glenn broke down the details of Rice's email and discussed what they reveal about the Obama administration officials involved in the Russia investigation's origins.

Watch the video clip below:

Fellow BlazeTV host, Mark Levin, joined Glenn Beck on his exclusive Friday episode of "GlennTV" to discuss why the declassified list of Obama administration officials who were aware of the details of Gen. Michael Flynn's wiretapped phone calls are so significant.

Glenn argued that Obama built a covert bureaucracy to "transform America" for a long time to come, and Gen. Flynn was targeted because he happened to know "where the bodies were buried", making him a threat to Obama's "secret legacy."

Levin agreed, noting the "shocking extent of the police state tactics" by the Obama administration. He recalled several scandalous happenings during Obama's "scandal free presidency," which nobody seems to remember.

Watch the video below for more:


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To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

Colleges and universities should be home to a lively and open debate about questions both current and timeless, independent from a political bias or rules that stifle speech. Unfortunately for students, speaking out about personal beliefs or challenging political dogma can be a dangerous undertaking. I experienced this firsthand as an undergraduate, and I'm fighting that trend now as an adjunct professor.

In 2013, Glenn Beck was one of the most listened to radio personalities in the world. For a college senior with hopes of working on policy and media, a job working for Glenn was a ticket to big things. I needed a foot in the door and hoped to tap into the alumni network at the small liberal arts school where I was an undergrad. When I met with a career services specialist in early March 2013 about possible alumni connections to Glenn Beck, she disdainfully told me: "Why would you want to work for someone like him?" That was the beginning and end of our conversation.

I was floored by her response, and sent an email to the school complaining that her behavior was inappropriate. Her personal opinions, political or otherwise, I argued, shouldn't play a role in the decision to help students.

That isn't the kind of response a student should hear when seeking guidance and help in kick starting their career. Regardless of the position, a career specialist or professors' opinion or belief shouldn't be a factor in whether the student deserves access to the alumni network and schools' resources.

Now, seven years later, I work full time for a law firm and part time as an adjunct teaching business to undergraduate students. The culture at colleges and universities seems to have gotten even worse, unfortunately, since I was an undergrad.

College is a time to explore, dream big and challenge assumptions.

I never want to see a student told they shouldn't pursue their goals, regardless of their personal or political beliefs. College is a time to explore, dream big and challenge assumptions. I never got access to the alumni network or schools' resources from the career services office.

Lucky for students in 2020, there are several legal organizations that help students protect their rights when an issue goes beyond what can be handled by an undergraduate facing tremendous pressure from a powerful academic institution. Organizations like Speech First and the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), for instance, are resources I wish I knew about at the time.

When I experienced mistreatment from my college, I spoke up and challenged the behavior by emailing the administration and explaining what happened. I received a letter from the career services specialist apologizing for the "unprofessional comment."

What she described in that apology as a "momentary lapse of good judgement" was anything but momentary. It was indicative of the larger battle for ideas that has been happening on college campuses across the country. In the past seven years, the pressure, mistreatment and oppression of free expression have only increased. Even right now, some are raising concerns that campus administrations are using the COVID-19 pandemic to limit free speech even further. Social distancing guidelines and crowd size may both be used to limit or refuse controversial speakers.

Students often feel pressure to conform to a college or university's wishes. If they don't, they could be expelled, fail a class or experience other retribution. The college holds all the cards. On most campuses, the burden of proof for guilt in student conduct hearings is "more likely than not," making it very difficult for students to stand up for their rights without legal help.

As an adjunct professor, every student who comes to me for help in finding purpose gets my full support and my active help — even if the students' goals run counter to mine. But I have learned something crucial in my time in this role: It's not the job of an educator to dictate a student's purpose in life. I'm meant to help them achieve their dreams, no matter what.

Conner Drigotas is the Director of Communications and Development at a national law firm and is a Young Voices contributor.