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IE manufacturing avoids total meltdown, CSUSB report indicates
IE Business Daily
Oct. 5, 2020

Inland manufacturing bounced back in September, temporarily pushing aside two consecutive months of dreadful performance.

The two-county region’s purchasing managers index last month was 53.4, well above the 47 recorded among Riverside and San Bernardino County manufacturers in August, according to the Institute of Applied Research and Policy Analysis at Cal State San Bernardino.

But the local manufacturing sector, like the economy, is still being hammered by COVID-19, and that’s not likely to go away soon, said Barbara Sirotnik, director of the institute and a co-author of its monthly report.

Mostly because of erratic spending brought on by the pandemic, Inland manufacturing has been on a pattern of two months of contraction followed by two months of expansion, according to Sirotnik.

“You can say that things improved in September because they weren’t as bad as they were, but it’s still only a slight improvement,” Sirotnik said. “People believe the economy is coming back, but they think it’s coming back way too slowly.”

Read the complete article at “IE manufacturing avoids total meltdown.”

CSUSB professor comments on High Desert Survey results that examines residents' worries and recommends solutions
Daily Press (Victorville)
Oct. 4, 2020

The total results of the High Desert Survey — a poll aimed at gauging local residents’ opinions on the best and worst things about living and working in the area — were released during a livestream on social media on Oct. 4, along with an economist’s report with recommendations on how to ameliorate issues, such as the lack of better-paying jobs.

More than 13,000 provided responses, with another 2,534 giving their names and email addresses so they could be contacted and become involved, said Barbara Sirotnik, a California State University, San Bernardino statistics professor.

Sirotnik found that most concerns dealt with crime, homelessness, or trash and dumping. In a question on public and private services, only 16% of respondents said local roads and streets were excellent or good.

“Clearly, there is a problem here,” Sirotnik said.

Read the complete article at “High Desert Survey results analyze residents' worries, report recommends solutions.”

CSUSB professor discusses conspiracy theories surrounding president becoming ill with COVID-19
Oct. 4, 2020

Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study for Hate and Extremism at Cal State San Bernardino, was interviewed for a segment on Weekends with Alex Witt about conspiracy theories swirling around the news the President Donald Trump had contracted COVID-19. One of the conspiracy theories by QAnon was the diagnosis was staged and that Trump’s tweet that ended with “We’re all in this TOGETHER” was code for upcoming arrest and prosecution of 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and others in the so-called “deep state.”

“We’ve been talking about this for years,” Levin said. “There’s been a coalescence of not only a fringe assortment of fragmentary movements and entities on the far right, but this anchoring in the mainstream by this visceral conspiracism, which goes across ideologies, but mostly what we’re seeing on the hard right, it goes from the fringes all the way into the mainstream.”

He added, “The bottom line is what this does – this is part of an overall fragmentation where institutions aren’t trusted, and both domestic and foreign manipulators are involved in this effort, including the Russians.”

Watch the segment at “Alex Witt – 10/4/20.”

Trump’s ‘tap dance’ around condemnation and ‘murky language’ seen as victory by white supremacists, CSUSB professor says
The Orange County Register/Southern California News Group
Oct. 3, 2020

An article about Life After Hate, a national nonprofit that works to help individuals leave violent extremist groups on the far right, receiving a $750,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security included comments from Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study for Hate and Extremism at Cal State San Bernardino.

While many on the right, including President Donald Trump, have repeatedly raised the issue of antifa and the damage it has done, especially since the Black Lives Matter protests began after the killing of George Floyd, experts still hold that white supremacists and extremists on the far right pose the dominant threat. That view has found support among DHS and FBI officials.

So far, one death in Washington has been attributed to an antifa supporter. But in 2019 alone, there were 29 deaths linked to white supremacists, though 22 of the killings were committed by a single gunman in El Paso, Texas, said Levin. The center has raised the threat level of violence after Trump’s comments during the debate because, Levin said, a line can be drawn between comments the president has made in the past both as president and candidate and incidents of hate, violence and extremism.

“The president’s tap dance around sincere condemnation as well as his murky language has been viewed as a victory by white supremacists and white nationalists,” Levin said.

Life After Hate, which consists of former far-right extremists who are now fighting to counter hateful ideologies, was previously expected to receive a $400,000 grant through the Obama administration’s Countering Violent Extremism program, but those funds were rescinded three years ago by the Department of Homeland Security.

Read the complete article at “Organization of former extremists gets $750,000 from DHS to counter threats from the far right.”

‘Proud Boys and Antifa: The State of Extremism in America Today’ featured CSUSB professor Brian Levin
AJC/Global Voice
Oct. 2, 2020

Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study for Hate and Extremism at Cal State San Bernardino, was the featured speaker when the American Jewish Committee (AJC), a leading global Jewish advocacy organization, held a webinar on the “Proud Boys and Antifa: The State of Extremism in America Today,” as part of its “Advocacy Anywhere” series.

Levin discussed a range of topics related to extremism and extremists groups.

Watch the program at “Proud Boys and Antifa: The State of Extremism in America Today - AJC Advocacy Anywhere.”

CSUSB professor comments on president’s statements about white supremacy
VOA News
Oct. 2, 2020

President Donald Trump on Thursday denounced all extremist groups, including the right-wing, pro-Trump Proud Boys, following growing criticism over his apparent refusal to condemn white supremacy during Sept. 29 presidential debate.    

Brian Levin, executive director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino, said Trump’s latest condemnation is unlikely to undo the damage done by his earlier comments.  

“For his supporters in the white supremacy and extreme far right world, it is his vitriol that is taken as a call to action, and these late pronouncements are taken as forced, scripted and insincere,” Levin said.  

Trump’s “stand back and stand by” comment directed at the extremist group the Proud Boys was interpreted as support by the group.

Read the complete article at “Amid growing criticism, Trump condemns white supremacy.”

These news clips and others may be viewed at “In the Headlines.”