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‘Here Comes the Sun’ flashmob cheers Spanish unemployment office

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A flashmob of musicians organised by radio show serenades long queue of people at Madrid office amid harsh winter of austerity

A flashmob of musicians has cheered up the long queue in a busy Spanish unemployment office by playing the Beatles’ Here Comes the Sun.

During the stunt organised by Carne Cruda 2.0, a programme on the leading Cadena SER network, a small orchestra emerged instrument by instrument from the waiting room in a Madrid unemployment office. All work in the office came to a standstill and many people sang along in English.

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Spain is enduring an unprecedented economic crisis caused by a property crash and public debt crisis. Unemployment, already at 26%, is expected to grow. Spain lost around 800,000 jobs last year and more than half of under-25s are unemployed. The Spanish government has resorted to severe budget cuts to reduce its deficit but austerity measures have also depressed the economy.

Oxfam says that previous crises in Latin America and Asia point to serious long-term damage if government austerity measures remain in place. “Poverty and social exclusion may increase drastically,” it says. “By 2022, some 18 million Spaniards, or 38% of the population, could be in poverty.”

© Guardian News and Media 2013


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Fresno city councilman accuses colleague of ‘bullying and abusive behavior’ over rule mandating COVID-19 masks

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During a press conference on Thursday, a Fresno City Council member railed at one his colleagues for a proposal -- since passed -- that would require members to wear masks during meetings.

According to Councilmember Garry Bredefeld he finds the masks -- used to stem the spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus -- "uncomfortable" and he feels he is being bullied by fellow Councilmember Miguel Arias.

Addressing the resolution to mandate wearing masks, Bredefeld told reporters that Arias, "Put on the agenda was it just the latest example of a pattern for him that includes bullying, abusive, belligerent and bullying behavior."

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Defense secretary throws Trump under the bus: ‘I do not support invoking the Insurrection Act’

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Secretary of Defense Mark Esper on Wednesday seemed to be at odds with President Donald Trump when it comes to invoking the Insurrection Act to quell protests over the killing of George Floyd.

Esper explained at a press conference that members of the National Guard had been deployed to keep order "in support of local law enforcement."

"The option to use active duty forces should only be used as a matter of last resort and only in the most urgent and dire of situations," he explained. "We are not in one of those situations now."

"I do not support invoking the Insurrection Act," Esper insisted, referencing Trump's threat to use the law against protesters.

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Trump claims he was rushed to White House bunker only for ‘inspection’ — not fear of protesters

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President Donald Trump on Wednesday insisted that fear of protesters did not prompt him to be ushered into a White House bunker. Instead, the president said that he visited the facility for an "inspection."

During a Fox News radio interview with host Brian Kilmeade, Trump again threatened to use military forces against protesters.

“If they don’t get their act straightened out I will solve it. I’ll solve it fast,” he said.

The president also pushed back against the narrative that he was "hiding in a White House bunker" as protesters demonstrated outside.

"They said it would be a good time to go down and take a look because maybe sometime you’re going to need it," the president said, adding that the visit was more of an "inspection."

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