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Political Misfits bring you news, politics and culture from the belly of Washington DC without the red and blue treatment. Informed by progressive politics, class analysis and anti-war activism, we break down the day's pressing economic, social and political stories from perspectives often ignored.

Portland Bans Facial Recognition; Trump Admits He Downplayed COVID

Portland Bans Facial Recognition; Trump Admits He Downplayed COVID
Portland enacts the ban on facial recognition in the country. Will others file suit?

Caleb Maupin, journalist and political analyst, joins us to discuss the Portland City Council unanimously approving bans on city and private use of facial recognition technology on Wednesday. These are the strictest such restrictions in the country. The ban on the use of facial recognition technology by city departments goes into effect immediately, and Oregon Live reminds us that police across the state of Oregon are already banned from using facial recognition technology in their body cameras. The ban on the private use of the technology goes into effect January 1.

Kei Pritsker, journalist with BreakThrough News, discusses President Donald Trump admitting he knew weeks before the first confirmed US coronavirus death that the virus was dangerous, airborne, highly contagious and "more deadly than even your strenuous flus," and that he repeatedly played it down publicly, according to legendary journalist Bob Woodward in his new book "Rage." But now, Woodward is defending his decision to sit on bombshell tapes of President Trump for months. Trump also told Woodward he doesn't feel any responsibility to better understand the pain Black Americans feel. That interview, released Wednesday, took place just weeks after George Floyd died in police custody in Minneapolis. Woodward suggested to Trump they have a duty, as privileged white men, to try to better understand the pain and anger African Americans feel. Trump replied, "No...You really drank the Kool-Aid, didn't you? No. I don't feel that at all."

Max Blumenthal, award-winning journalist and editor of The Grayzone, this week published a report on the backlash to the film Planet of the Humans. It came out in April, it was directed by Jeff Gibbs with Michael Moore as executive producer, and if you watched it you might have come away quite frightened at how the same old corporate interests are lurking behind some high-profile “green energy” and “revolutionary green technology” projects, frightened at how destructive some of these “green energy” projects actually are, frightened at how much oil and gas is still powering them. And then you might have been confused as a team of climate activists fronted a suppression campaign to discredit and hide the documentary greenwashing, the corruption of movements by the forces of capital, and the cynical deployment of cadres of “professional activists” to stand in the way of real critique and real change. And drawing all those threads together is a single movie, and the backlash to it.

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