Barstool Fund Helps Paris, Tennessee Bakery Who Employs Those with Special Needs

Sweet Jordan’s, a Paris, Tennessee bakery that employs special needs workers, was one of the latest recipients of the Barstool Fund. The donation saved their business from the pandemic-related financial strain threatening to close its doors.

Sweet Jordan’s was inspired by Jordan St. John, the two owners’ son who was born with Downs Syndrome. Their family wanted to open up a business to employ others with special needs like Jordan.

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Commentary: The Social Media Purge Exposes Net Neutrality’s True Goal

For nearly two decades, Silicon Valley made net neutrality its highest policy priority. Under the banner of a “free and open” internet, Google, Facebook, and Twitter sought regulations to ensure the uninterrupted flow of information by treating every bit equally. Or so they said.

Beginning last Friday night, these firms and others executed an unprecedented digital purge of the social media and video accounts of their political rivals. After several years of accelerating suspensions and suppressions, this time YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter permanently banned a number of high-profile conservatives and deplatformed thousands of others, at least temporarily. Many of these accounts had nothing to do with last Wednesday’s heinous events at the Capitol. Yet their histories are erased.

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The 1776 Commission Releases Report on American Founding with Proposals to Unify Nation

The 1776 Commission published its report on the history and principles of the American founding on Monday. The 45-page account explored the key individuals, events, and documents informing this country’s founding. It addressed the contextual history and meaning of the Declaration of Independence and Constitution, ideologies that both historically and presently challenge American principles, and a series of proposals to restore national unity.

The appendices included the entirety of the Declaration of Independence, as well as further insight on the topics of religious faith, identity politics, and a strong civics education. In an interview with The Tennessee Star, Vice Chair Dr. Carol Swain explained that the report focuses on the virtues and ideals of this country that unite and benefit American citizens.

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FAKE NEWS: CNN Botches Story About Virginia Man Arrested at Police Checkpoint in Washington D.C.

Virginia man who was arrested at a police checkpoint in Washington D.C. over the weekend, has been released from custody following a brief court appearance.

Although initial news reports hyped the story, investigators said they do not consider Wesley Beeler, a security contractor who was working in the area, to be a threat to public safety.

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Biden Vows to Undo President Trump’s Pro-Life Policies

President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris have promised to undo a number of President Donald Trump’s pro-life policies.

Biden has indicated that he will reverse the Mexico City Policy, which bars foreign organizations receiving U.S. funding from providing abortions, abortion information or abortion referrals. He has also promised to restore federal funding to Planned Parenthood, to repeal the Hyde Amendment and to renew legal action against the Little Sisters of the Poor.

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Hungary Weighs Big Tech Sanctions over ‘Systemic Abuses’ of Free Speech

Hungarian Justice Minister Judit Varga said Monday that Hungary is considering sanctions against big tech firms over alleged “systemic abuses” of free speech, Reuters reported.

Varga plans to meet with the Hungarian Competition Authority this week to discuss possible penalties for what he says are unfair commercial practices utilized by social media firms including Facebook and Twitter, according to Reuters. In addition, the minister plans to convene a meeting with the state-sponsored Digital Freedom Committee.

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West Virginia School Bus Drivers File Lawsuit Against School Superintendent over Suspensions Related to Capitol Protest

Two veteran school bus drivers from a West Virginia school district have filed a civil lawsuit for suspensions related to their attendance at the January 6 Washington, DC protest.

Tina Renner and Pamela McDonald were suspended by Jefferson County Schools Superintendent Bondy Shay Gibson after receiving word the drivers had “posted threatening and inflammatory posts on their Facebook pages, had been present at the Electoral protest march on Wednesday that erupted in violence, and had violated […] leave policy.”

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Commentary: They Have Opened the Gates of Hell and It’s a One-Way Passage

Recently, we received a copy of a private commentary sent around by a tech founder in Silicon Valley, who wrote the following, which we quote here with permission provided the author’s anonymity is preserved:

The entire American tech stack – which enables Americans to buy, sell, pay, and communicate – has been weaponized in furtherance of a radical anti-freedom agenda.
This is the single most chilling week in my lifetime, and America’s since the Civil War.

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Gov Bill Lee Proposes Education Bill Package to Address Learning Loss, Literacy Proficiency

Gov. Bill Lee has unveiled legislation to address learning loss among Tennessee students caused by pandemic-related school closures and extended time away from the classroom.

A series of Lee-backed bills include proposals to provide summer school and after school tutoring, require school districts to use phonics-based literacy curriculum and suspend test-related accountability measures for teachers and schools this year. Lee said he’ll also propose pay raises for teachers, but those details have not been released.

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Biden Reportedly Taps Warren Ally Rohit Chopra to Lead Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

President-elect Joe Biden will reportedly nominate Rohit Chopra, an ally of Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Chopra is a member of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), and if confirmed by the Senate would take over an agency that he helped create alongside Warren approximately a decade ago. Chopra’s selection was first reported by Politico, which cited four individuals with knowledge of the decision.

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Center of the American Experiment President John Hinderaker Exposes the New Leftist Standards for Minnesota’s Public Schools

Monday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed John Hinderaker, President of the Center of the American Experiment to the show to discuss his mission of bringing awareness to the educational curriculum standards in Minnesota’s public schools.

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State Rep. Justin Lafferty Talks Upcoming Special and Legislative Sessions and Tennessee’s Good Path Forward

Monday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Tennessee (R) State Representative Justin Lafferty to the newsmakers line to discuss upcoming legislation facing Tennessee’s education and healthcare priorities.

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Strategy at the Center for Security Policy in Washington, D.C. Michael Waller Gives Eyewitness Account of Capitol Breach

Monday morning on the Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed the Senior Analyst for Strategy at the Center for Security Policy Michael Waller to the newsmakers line to give an eyewitness account of what he saw during the breach of the Capitol last week.

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Georgia Voting System Chief Gabriel Sterling Blames Rep. Taylor Greene for Runoff Election Losses

A member of the Georgia Secretary of State’s office attempted to shift the blame to President Donald J. Trump and his supporters, including a newly-elected congresswoman, for the GOP’s failure in the U.S. runoffs in the Peach State.

“The drop off in GOP turnout from Nov to Jan was driven by Trump and most prominently in areas represented by Doug Collins and Marjorie Taylor Greene. These folks cost the GOP two senate seats and control of the Senate. Giving Biden and Dems a free hand,” Gabriel Sterling, the Secretary of States’s Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial officer said on Twitter. 

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Northam Administration Moves to Tax PPP Loan Recipients

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam’s administration has recommended to the General Assembly that the state not conform its tax code to specific provisions included in the recently-signed federal emergency relief bill that gives businesses who received Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans a significant tax benefit.

Under the provisions of the Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA), signed into law by President Donald Trump in late December, businesses in the Commonwealth that got forgivable PPP loans would not be taxed on that income and could deduct their business expenses covered by the federal payment.

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Georgia Legislators Officially Request Commission on Slavery Reparations

Six Georgia state representatives put forward a resolution last week asking that members of the U.S. Congress create a formal commission to study whether the government should provide reparations for slavery. “The racial bigotry fed by slavery did not end with slavery or with segregation. And many of the issues that still trouble America have roots in the bitter experience of other times. But however long the journey, our destiny is set: liberty and justice for all,” according to the language of the resolution.

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Georgia Congressman Says Unfair Trade Practices Hurt the State’s Blueberry Industry

Georgia is one of several states that harvest blueberries, but  U.S. Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA-08) said this week that other nations’ unfair trade practices have harmed all of America’s blueberry growers. Scott and other members of Congress want members of the International Trade Commission to help.

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Bill Introduced to Allow Reopening of Minnesota Businesses Despite Executive Orders

A bill has been introduced in the Minnesota Legislature that would allow businesses to remain open despite further COVID-19 restrictions.

The bill, which was introduced by Sens. Andrew Mathews, R-Princeton, and Eric Pratt, R-Prior Lake, provides that businesses may remain in operation under executive orders as long as they create a COVID-19 safety preparedness plan.

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Twitter Suspended Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene’s Account for 12 Hours

Twitter suspended Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene from her personal account temporarily on Sunday. The suspension occurred shortly after Greene posted allegations that Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer Gabriel Sterling were to blame for potential voter fraud.

Greene had issued a response to Sterling’s tweet which claimed that Greene, Doug Collins, and President Donald Trump were to blame for a significant drop-off in Republican turnout. Just over 270,000 less Republicans voted in the runoff elections, as compared to nearly 166,000 less Democrats.

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Year-End Campaign Fundraising Haul for Virginia’s Statewide Candidates Shows McAuliffe Far Ahead, Followed by Foy

With Virginia’s statewide elections for governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general drawing ever closer, candidates’ campaign finance reports literally show who has been busy fundraising, but can also offer an early glimpse of their viability in the races. 

On Saturday, year-end fundraising reports, covering the second half of last year from July 1st to December 31st, for each statewide candidate were released to the public. The Virginia Public Access Project (VPAP) compiled the numbers and listed the cash on hand for each candidate.

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Hyped for Weeks, Media Outnumbered Protestors at Michigan’s Capital

After media reports hyped “armed protests” in Lansing, some businesses boarded up windows, and Mayor Andy Schor issued news releases telling residents to stay away from downtown.

Police say now that only 25 protesters showed up at the event’s peak.

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Three Weeks After Christmas, Ohio COVID Hospitalizations Trend Down

January 15 marked three weeks since Christmas – two from New Year’s celebrations. Statewide hospitalizations have trended downward since Christmas and deaths more so, according to the Ohio COVID dashboard.

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Second Amendment Advocates Pour Into Virginia’s Capitol for Lobby Day 2021

Buses, a decommissioned ambulance, and lots of cars and trucks traveled through Richmond for hours on Monday afternoon as part of the Virginia Citizens Defense League’s (VCDL) Lobby Day 2021 demonstration. Most vehicles sported VCDL flags and decals; a few also waved Trump flags and other paraphernalia.

“When the first bus came, it just seemed like car after car after car, decked out, horns honking, people waving,” VCDL President Phil Van Cleave said. Car caravans came from all corners of the Commonwealth.

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Former Sen. Corker Bashes Trump, Wants to Guide GOP Forward

A former Republican Senator from Tennessee who had a tumultuous relationship with President Donald J. Trump has resurfaced to bash the forty-fifth President in his final days in office, along with, by extension, those who support him.

“Look, there’s no one that feels more strongly about the fact that Republicans ought to celebrate some of the policy gains that have occurred, but never ever, ever allow someone like President Trump to serve again, certainly to become the Republican nominee or be president of the United States,” former Sen. Bob Corker (T-TN) told Knox News last week. 

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