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Paypal Announces Users Will Soon Be Able To Buy, Sell And Accept Crypto

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Paypal has announced that it is entering the cryptocurrency market and will soon allow its users to purchase and sell Bitcoin, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Ethereum. The payments giant, with 346 million active accounts around the world, pledged to make cryptocurrency “a funding source for purchases at its 26 million merchants worldwide,” CoinDesk reported.

Bitcoin is rocketing in value on confirmation of Paypal plans to let users buy, sell, and enabling merchants to accept cryptocurrency, with the price sitting at $12,813.58 +7.3% at the time of this report.

Market Watch reports, Paypal plans to allow customers to buy cryptocurrency through their accounts and use cryptocurrency for merchant payments. The feature will roll-out in the next couple of weeks in the U.S. and will follow internationally next year.

Initially, PayPal users which total up to an estimated 350 million people will be able to buy Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and Litecoin starting out. PayPal also said it will bring this function to its Venmo platform.

Early next year, PayPal users will be able to use cryptocurrency to pay for goods or services from merchants who accept PayPal. “Consumers will be able to instantly convert their selected cryptocurrency balance to fiat currency, with the certainty of value and no incremental fees,” the company said in a release. PayPal argued that this move will “significantly increase cryptocurrency’s utility.”

PayPal also revealed in its release that it has obtained the coveted Bitlicense by the New York State Department of Financial Services. The Bitlicense helps “encourage, promote, and assist interested institutions to have a well-regulated way to access the New York virtual currency marketplace,” NYDFS superintendent Linda Lacewell said in PayPal’s release.

PayPal Chief Executive Dan Schulman said in the release that PayPal is “eager to work with central banks and regulators around the world to offer our support, and to meaningfully contribute to shaping the role that digital currencies will play in the future of global finance and commerce.”

For months it has been rumored that Paypal was about to jump into the cryptocurrency space.

The New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS), also said it had granted the first “conditional BitLicense” to PayPal for a partnership with Paxos Trust Company, enabling customers to buy and sell cryptocurrencies.

“DFS said it was making good on a promise last year from Superintendent of Financial Services Linda A. Lacewell to take a fresh look at its regulatory framework for virtual currencies, with a view to fostering innovation in New York State.

“DFS’s approval today follows our June 2020 announcement for a new framework for a conditional Bitlicense to encourage, promote and assist interested institutions to have a well-regulated way to access the New York virtual currency marketplace in a way that is both timely and protective of New York consumers, through partnerships with New York authorized virtual currency firms,” said Lacewell in a statement.

“DFS will continue to encourage and support financial service providers to operate, grow, remain and expand in New York and work with innovators to enable them to  germinate and test their ideas, for a dynamic and forward-looking financial services sector, especially as we work to build New York back better in the midst of this pandemic,” she said.

For months it has been rumored that Paypal was about to jump into the cryptocurrency space.

It was further revealed that Paypal responded to the European Commission in a letter earlier this year. Last year the European Commission opened a consultation about regulating digital assets and cryptocurrencies or what it refers to as crypto-assets. In June, responses were published, including a letter from Paypal stating that it has developed capabilities in the sector since withdrawing from Libra. This follows an earlier CoinDesk report stating PayPal and subsidiary Venmo will offer cryptocurrencies.

The company was additionally one of the initial members to commit to Facebook’s Libra, but it subsequently withdrew along with several other major players.

In the letter to the EU, it outlined this as background: “In 2019, PayPal initially signed a non-binding letter of intent to participate in the Libra Association with the intention of learning more about the proposed use of blockchain technologies to provide financial services to unbanked populations across the globe.”

And it continued: “Since the project’s inception, PayPal has taken unilateral and tangible steps to further develop its capabilities in this area, and therefore – without questioning the value of the project – took the decision not to participate in the Libra Association and to continue to focus on advancing our existing mission and business priorities to democratize access to financial services.”

it’s important to mention that PayPal has been active in the crypto space since as early as 2014. At the time, the company partnered with three bitcoin payment processors, including Coinbase, which allowed merchants in its network to accept Bitcoin as payment.

PayPal has a longstanding relationship with Coinbase, going back as early as 2014. Then two years later in 2016, Coinbase integrated, Paypal and credit cards. In 2018, Coinbase made instant fiat withdrawals to PayPal available for U.S. customers. Last year, European Coinbase users could withdraw to their PayPal accounts, followed by users in Canada, then support was added for the U.S.

It’s worth noting that PayPal was the first company to pull out of the coalition of companies involved in a Facebook-led cryptocurrency initiative, Libra Association.

Many are reporting that Paypal is now being forced into the space with its rival Square including digital assets which the latter was one of its early adopters. Square Inc., a payments company founded and run by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, was awarded last year with a coveted license to deal in cryptocurrencies in New York.

However, while it may seem that this is a forced move its important to note for viewers that this action has been one that has been in the works for a long time. While its true that Paypal’s CFO last year said it was too early for Bitcoin and cryptocurrency integration, the former COO stated differently years before in 2017.

In 2018, Paypal was found to have filed a mysterious patent for fast cryptocurrency transactions similar to the lightning network.

Paypal seems determined on exposure into cryptocurrency with a new system for speedy transactions that was patented in 2016 which mirrors much of the ideas behind the second layer solution the Lightning Network.

In other words, the system allows a user, in theory, to pay a third party through a second party so making it possible for Alex to pay Chris through Bill by allocating, through encryption and hashes, part of the private key to the secondary wallet.

This allows for instant payments according to PayPal, addressing latency problems due to Bitcoin requiring around 10 minutes for one confirmation. Extremely similar to what the Lightning Network claims.

However, that’s not the full story the patent actually dates back to 2016, yes you read that right. The patent was filed in August 30th, 2016, right before the major bull run. Although, its unknown if Paypal received the patent or not, it shows the companies early interest into cryptocurrency.

If that’s not enough last year Paypal joined in a $4.2 million funding round for cryptocurrency compliance and risk management platform TRM Labs.

The startup aims to help financial institutions embrace the opportunities associated with cryptocurrencies by mitigating the risks.

Cointelegraph also reports that Paypal is hiring blockchain and cryptocurrency engineers. The news outlet reported there are currently two public-facing job listings for crypto pros to go to work for PayPal.

The first listing of note is for a job titled “Technical Lead – Crypto Engineer.” The listing describes that this person will be responsible for “new initiatives for PayPal global with a focus on agility, time-to-market and innovation. The role includes designing, developing and maintaining key crypto products/features targeted towards availability, performance and scalability of PayPal services.”

The second listing worth mentioning is for a blockchain research engineer to work within the company’s research group, “a newly formed group within the Strategic Technology Enablement team chartered with establishing expertise and opinions on emerging blockchain technologies and their potential uses within PayPal.”

The clues were all there, but now its been officially confirmed by Paypal themselves. This comes as Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell recently announced the Fed was willing to work with private companies on a potential digital U.S. dollar, Yahoo News reported.

Alex Baldridge is an activist and freelance journalist from the midwestern United States who was inspired to become a writer after watching the development of the Wikileaks story and the persecution of Julian Assange. Alex is especially interested in topics like surveillance, the rise of automation, foreign policy, prison reform, and the legal system.

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Nancy Pelosi Reelected As House Speaker In Narrow Vote

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Nancy Pelosi won another term as Speaker of the House of Representatives on Sunday, after a narrow vote.

80-year-old Pelosi will hold the position for a second consecutive two-year term and fourth overall, having previously been elected in 2007, 2009 and 2019.

Pelosi has served as a US representative from California since 1987. A member of the Democratic Party, she is the only woman in U.S. history to serve as Speaker and, until the inauguration of Kamala Harris as Vice President, is the highest-ranking female elected official in United States history.

As House speaker, Pelosi is second in the presidential line of succession, after the vice president.

During her first speakership, she was instrumental in the passage of many of the Obama administration’s landmark bills, including the Affordable Care Act, the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal Act, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and the 2010 Tax Relief Act.

Pelosi lost the speakership in 2011 after the Republican Party won a majority in the House of Representatives in the 2010 elections.

She retained her role as leader of the House Democratic Caucus and returned to the role of House minority leader. In the 2018 midterm elections, the Democrats regained control of the House.

When the 116th Congress convened on January 3, 2019, Pelosi was again elected speaker, becoming the first former speaker to return to the post since Sam Rayburn in 1955.

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Under Pelosi’s leadership, the House of Representatives impeached President Donald Trump on December 18, 2019.

Despite supporting the $2000 checks for struggling Americans, Pelosi, along with everyone in congress have provoked anger from citizens who see them as being out of touch with the average people.

The nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics (CRP) estimated in 2009 that Pelosi’s average net worth was $58 million which ranks her 13th among 25 wealthiest members of Congress.

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Roll Call said Pelosi’s earnings are connected to her husband’s heavy investments in stocks that include Apple, Disney, Comcast, and Facebook. Roll Call reported that the Pelosis have $13.46 million in liabilities including mortgages on seven properties.

According to Roll Call, Pelosi and her husband hold properties “worth at least $14.65 million, including a St. Helena vineyard in Napa Valley worth at least $5 million, and commercial real estate in San Francisco”.

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FAA Responds To Numerous Reports Of A UFO Over Hawaii

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The FAA was notified after multiple people reported seeing an Unidentified Flying Object (UFO) in the sky over Leeward Oahu on Tuesday evening. Witnesses all over the region called into 911 at around 8:30 p.m.

Officials with the Federal Aviation Administration said that there were no aircraft incidents or accidents in this area at the time of the reports, but multiple witnesses reported seeing a large blue object fall out of the sky and into the ocean.

Some of the witnesses managed to get video or photos of the incident.

Witness Misitina Sape told Hawaii News Now she captured a photo of the object at 8:26 p.m. near Haleakala Avenue in Nanakuli.

Another witness named Moriah said she had never been a believer in UFOs until she saw the object fall from the sky.

“I started calling my husband and them because they were all in the garage. I was like hey. Come look up there. See if you see what I see. They all said yea!” Moriah said.

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They jumped in the car to follow the object and see what it was.

“I don’t know what it was,” she said. “This one was going so fast.”

About three miles down the road, they saw the object fall into the water.

She said that it was larger than a telephone pole but didn’t make any sound when it hit the ground.

“We called 911,” Moriah said, “For have like one cop or somebody for come out and come check em out.

She also says that they saw another light in the sky after the blue object fell into the water. She says that police saw the second light as well.

“My husband went look up and he seen the white one coming,” she said. “The white one was smaller. Was coming in the same direction as the blue one.”

FAA spokesperson Ian Gregor said the agency received a report from police Tuesday night about a possible plane down in the area “but had no aircraft disappear off radars. And no reports of overdue or missing aircraft.”

Earlier this year, the Pentagon announced the formation of a new task force that will be studying UFOs or “Unidentified Flying Objects.”

The formation of this new task force was revealed last year when the Pentagon acknowledged that military pilots were encountering aircraft that might not have been made by humans.

The new task force was officially revealed to the public after the Pentagon released declassified videos that appeared to show government aircraft interacting with UFOs in the sky.

One of the videos, taken from US Navy aircraft, seems to show the pilots chasing a UFO off the east coast of the United States.

Navy pilots reported spotting the objects flying around 30,000 feet in the air at hypersonic speeds and showing no visible engines or exhaust plumes typical of any known aircraft currently on Earth.

The new agency has been called, The Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force (UAPTF).

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Mitch McConnell’s House Vandalized Over $2,000 Checks

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had his home vandalized this week, after blocking the vote to increase stimulus payments to $2,000.

Messages like ‘WERES MY MONEY’ and ‘MITCH K1LLS THE POOR.’ were spray-painted on the building.

Police said that they don’t have any suspects.

On Saturday, McConnell released a statement to the Louisville Courier Journal which read: “Vandalism and the politics of fear have no place in our society. My wife and I have never been intimidated by this toxic playbook. We just hope our neighbors in Louisville aren’t too inconvenienced by this radical tantrum.”

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In 2015, Time listed McConnell as one of the 100 most influential people in the world. McConnell is the longest-serving U.S. senator for Kentucky in history, and the longest-serving leader of U.S. Senate Republicans in history.

During the Trump administration, Senate Republicans, under McConnell’s leadership, broke records on the number of judicial nominees confirmed. Among those nominees were Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh who were recently confirmed to the Supreme Court.

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McConnell’s critics have called him by a variety of different nicknames, including “Moscow Mitch”, “Cocaine Mitch”, the “Grim Reaper”, “Darth Vader”, “Rich Mitch”, “Nuclear Mitch”, and “Midnight Mitch.” On some occasions, he has even embraced these nicknames, although he was apparently unhappy with the more recent “Moscow Mitch.”

McConnell has a net worth of $35 million dollars, and many Americans feel that he is out of touch. He isn’t the only US politician that was a target for vandalism this week.

 

According to a report from TMZ this week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had her house vandalized with a pig’s head and fake blood.

Spray painted in black on the white garage door were the messages “$2K,”  an apparent reference to the $2,000 COVID stimulus checks that have been held up in the U.S. Senate, as well as “CANCEL RENT!” and “WE WANT EVERYTHING!”

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