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✨ Good morning! Today is Thursday, August 29, 2019, and there’s nothing better than the internet doing its thing.
BULLETIN: WEATHERING THE STORM
• The Background
As expected, tropical storm Dorian has officially strengthened into a Category 1 hurricane and is now making its way through the Caribbean. The storm has already begun battering the British and U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico with heavy rains and hurricane-force winds. Puerto Rico has declared a state of emergency, but the island could actually dodge a direct hit if the path of the hurricane continues as is. That said, Dorian has thrown a few curve balls over the last 24 hours, the most significant of which was the shift to the east. The storm is ultimately expected to intensify to a Category 3 hurricane before making landfall in Florida, which has already declared a state of emergency, over the coming long weekend. CNN
• What Else You Need to Know
So far, the storm has impacted the U.S. Virgin Islands the most intensely, where flash flood warnings are in effect. Florida residents have already started gathering supplies in advance of the storm, after the Florida governorencouraged people to collect seven days’ worth of food, water and medicine.
• What’s Next?
Sadly, the hurricane has already claimed its first life, an 80-year-old man who fell from the roof of his house in Puerto Rico. The National Hurricane Centerhas released a summary of watches and warnings currently in effect.
• Nightclub Nightmare
At least 26 people were killed and 11 more injured In an arson attack at a Mexican bar, carried out by an armed gang. The perpetrators stormed the nightclub, known as “White Horse” or “Caballo Blanco” in Coatzacoalcos, sealing off the emergency exits before lighting up the entrance hall and escaping before the flames flooded the venue. The attack marks the worst single act of violence since Andrés Manuel López Obrador took office in December. Despite making many promises, Obrador has failed to curb the violence across the country. The Guardian
• World: Wish Granted
Boris Johnson has officially received his much-needed approval from the Queen herself, after requesting to suspend parliament just weeks before the Brexit deadline and only a few days after MPs are set to return from summer recess next week. The reason behind Johnson’s move is simple: his government is planning to deliver a Queen’s Speech on Oct. 14, which will outline the agenda for the parliamentary session. Suspending parliament will work in Johnson’s favour, as it will shorten the length of time MPs have to block a no-deal Brexit before the Oct. 31 deadline. BBC News
• World: Quick Turnaround
Italy’s turbulent political landscape is finally at peace (for now). Warring parties struck a late-night deal to form a new government that pushes out Matteo Salvini, the hard-right leader who’s been at the centre of Italian politics for more than a year. The leaders of the anti-establishment Five Star Movement and the centre-left Democratic Party agreed that the outgoing prime minister, Giuseppe Conte, should stay on as PM. Conte is expected to be formally asked to return to government sometime this morning. New York Times
📣 QUOTE OF THE DAY
“Now, let’s go beat Donald Trump and win back the Senate.”
– New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, announces that she’s ending her 2020 presidential bid. The decision comes as two separate polls found that more than half of the presidential candidates won’t qualify for the next debate on Sept. 12. (Less is definitely more.) Time
• Lord & Trouble
Amid rising concerns about the fate of traditional retailers, iconic clothing store Lord & Taylor has been sold for $75 million to Le Tote, Inc., a fashion rental subscription service. Lord & Taylor, which was actually America’s first department store, is owned by Hudson’s Bay Company, which will get an equity position as part of the deal. The Bay will also continue to own the property and leases for the remaining 38 stores, but in 2021, Le Tote and Lord & Taylor will assess whether or not to keep the retail locations open long-term. CNN
• Just For Kids
YouTube just announced it’s making a separate platform strictly for youngsters, after the service was criticized for having inappropriate content on the main site. The new website is set to go live by the end of the week, and will be an online version of the YouTube kids’ mobile app, featuring different categories for different age groups. The platform will make it easier for parents to select appropriate content for their kids, and will hopefully combat the growing issue of children watching and sharing violent and/or explicit videos. The FCC is currently investigating whether YouTube breached the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Bloomberg
• Country Club
The Country Music Association has officially announced its nominees for this year’s CMA Awards. Maren Morris claimed the top spot with six nominations, including single of the year, album of the year, song of the year, female vocalist of the year, musical event of the year and music video of the year. (Is that all?) Other notable nominees include Brothers Osborne, Dierks Bentley, Luke Combs, Dan + Shay, Kacey Musgraves, Blake Shelton and Carrie Underwood. Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus’s “Old Town Road (Remix)” was nominated for musical event of the year, but Billboard sparked controversy by removing the original song from the country charts upon its release. CNN
📖👀🎧 THE WEEKEND PLAYLIST
With the importance of climate change, it’s the perfect time to pick up a copy of Inconspicuous Consumption: The Environmental Impact You Don’t Know You Have by Tatiana Schlossberg, a former climate reporter for the New York Times.
The newest, must-see indie comedy is finally hitting theatres. Before You Know It stars Alec Baldwin, and centres on a dysfunctional family in New York City. (Sounds right up our alley.)
Lana Del Rey’s long-awaited album, Norman F*cking Rockwell! is out tomorrow — and we couldn’t be more excited.
• Karma’s a B*tch
In arguably one of the best punishments of all time, a Cascade County District Judge ordered two men who falsely claimed they’d served in the military to wear a placard that says “I am a liar” for eight hours on both Memorial Day and Veterans’ Day. In addition (and equally as embarrassing), both defendants received a long list of conditions in order to be eligible for parole, including a personally handwritten letter of apology identifying themselves as liars to the American Legion, AMVETS, the Disabled American Veterans, the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Vietnam Veterans of America. Lesson learned: you need to earn your stripes. USA Today
• The Binging Begins
On this day 22 years ago, Netflix launched as an internet DVD rental service. In the company’s short history, it has completely revolutionized the entertainment landscape (and our productivity, for that matter).
⚡️ STRAIGHT TO THE POINT
• And another Republican bites the dust. Georgia Sen. Johnny Isakson is resigning at the end of the year.
• Lock your doors: the fired army reservist who was linked to a neo-Nazi group has been reported missing.
• Dragon’s Den‘s Kevin O’Leary was on board one of the boats involved in a fatal crash in Muskoka this past weekend. Two people were killed.
• In other sad news, the “fastest woman on four wheels,” Jessi Combs, died yesterday as she attempted to beat a land speed record.
• Sneak a Snack
It truly doesn’t get more Canadian than this.