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✨ Good morning! Today is Tuesday, October 15, 2019, and this brings travelling in style to a whole new level.
BULLETIN: TYPHOON TERROR
• The Background
A violent typhoon — which made landfall on Saturday evening — is continuing to haunt Tokyo, Japan, inciting landslides, flooding, and leaving a path of destruction. At least 50 people have been killed in the deadly storm, known as Typhoon Hagibis, with at least 200 more injured and at least 14 people still missing. More than 110,000 personnel have been dispatched in a search and rescue operation, hoping to recover those still lost beneath the rubble. CNN
• What Else You Need to Know
Ahead of the storm, 230,000 residents were evacuated from their homes, with emergency orders issued for all surrounding cities. So far, more than 84,000 homes in Tokyo are still without power. To make matters worse, heavy rain is battering the area, which will undoubtedly contribute to the already catastrophic flooding. Officials say that landslide risks are still very high, as the soil is unstable and many of the devastated areas are mountainous.
• What’s Next?
Typhoon Hagibis is the most powerful storm to hit the region since 1958, when a deadly typhoon killed hundreds of people.
• Catalonia Clashes
Things are getting chaotic in Spain, after the Catalan independence crisis blew up yesterday. Police and protesters warred at Barcelona airport after the Spanish Supreme Court ruled to jail nine Catalan separatist leaders over their participation in an illegal independence referendum in 2017. Swarms of pro-independence demonstrators tried to break through a line of police, while officers retaliated by hitting protesters with batons and gas, sending over a dozen to the hospital. The chaos led to more than 60 cancelled flights. The Guardian
• U.S.: Cold Turkey
Amid prolonged criticism from both Democrats and Republicans over his choice to withdraw U.S. forces from Syria (more on that below), President Donald Trump announced plans to sanction Turkey. He said he would sign an executive order authorizing sanctions against certain officials in the Turkish government, and anyone else contributing to the country’s plan to destabilize actions in northeast Syria. The president also announced plans to hike tariffs on steel up to 50% and halt trade negotiations with Turkey on a $100 billion trade deal. NBC News
🇨🇦 CANADA VOTES 2019
From now until Oct. 21, we’ll be bringing you all the updates from the campaign trail (including who’s making promises and who’s breaking ’em).
• Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer is making big promises: he claims if elected, he’ll end the economic deficit in five years by delaying billions of dollars in federal infrastructure spending, taxing tech companies, and forcing tobacco companies to pay for anti-smoking campaigns.
• With exactly six days until the big day, polls are leaning toward a minority government for either the Liberals or Conservatives — which means a coalition government might be essential. Initially, Jagmeet Singh said he would “absolutely” work with other parties, but is now walking back on those comments, claiming he will not support a Conservative government.
• More than two million Canadians have cast their ballots already — that’s a 25% increase from the number of people who voted in advance in the 2015 federal election. (Get out and vote, people!)
• World: On the Brink
So about that withdrawal…Russia, Iran, and the Islamic State have all called POTUS’s decision a win. (Who needs friends when you have frenemies like these.) The American troops meant to check negative international influence and prevent the Islamic State from regaining their footing are gone, and President Bashar al-Assad of Syria, named a war criminal by the U.S., has struck up a deal with the POTUS’s former Turkish allies (what was a relatively stable site just over a week ago is now an intense battleground). All 28 EU member states have ceased arms sales to Turkey (currently a fellow NATO member) over the invasion, and 160,000 people have been displaced in less than a week. New York Times
📣 QUOTE OF THE DAY
“In some areas, we have more lines and poles down than standing.”
– Manitoba Hydro chief executive officer Jay Grewal, after a major snowstorm wreaked havoc on the province. Premier Brian Pallister quickly declared a state of emergency, allowing the government to pull resources from Ontario Saskatchewan and Minnesota. CTV News
• Uber Takeover
Uber is making strides to deliver a more manageable life to users with its newest venture: a majority share in Cornershop, a grocery delivery service. If the project gets the go-ahead, Uber could be bringing the grocery aisle straight to your front door as early as 2020. Uber has previously struggled to turn profits with its ride-share and food delivery businesses — even though Uber Eats is the company’s most successful venture to date — so it’s hoping this new venture with Cornershop could be a new, more profitable direction. Mashable
• Gymnastics: Biles Style
Twenty-two-year-old Simone Biles made history this weekend, becoming the most decorated gymnast (male or female) of all time. On Sunday, she took home the gold at the 2019 World Gymnastics Championships in Stuttgart, Germany. The gold she earned on the beam marked her 24th world championship medal, beating the previous record of 23 held by Vitaly Scherbo, which had stood since the 1990s. Biles later won a 25th medal, taking home gold in the floor finals. National Post
• Tied at the Top
Last night, Canadian literary icon Margaret Atwood won this year’s Booker Prize for her novel The Testaments (the sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale) — but she wasn’t the only winner. The award was also given to British author Bernardine Evaristo for her book, Girl, Woman, Other, after the judging panel refused to name just one recipient. After what was essentially a five-hour sit-in in protest of the Booker Prize Foundation rulebook, prize organizers were forced to relent to the five-person judging panel and split the award between Atwood, the oldest person to win the Booker, and Evaristo, the first black woman to win. They will also be splitting the £50,000 purse. CBC News
• Pumped Up Kicks
How much is too much to pay for a pair of sneakers? Apparently,
heaven’s the sky’s the limit. Yep, this weekend, Nike, the beloved maker of athleticwear, managed to sell out of its US $1,425 “Jesus Shoes.” A collaboration between the world-famous brand and a Brooklyn-based company called MSCHF, the white Air Max 97 sneakers feature teal accents and have holy water injected into the soles so that wearers can “walk on water.” (God only knows what they were thinking.) The Hill
• Healthy Habits
Today is Global Handwashing Day, a movement aimed at raising awareness about the importance of washing your hands to prevent the spread of disease. (Hello, flu season.)
⚡️ STRAIGHT TO THE POINT
• The Hard Rock Hotel in New Orleans partially collapsed, killing two construction workers and injuring 30 others. An investigation into the building collapse is now underway.
• The 2019 Nobel Economics Prize was awarded to three U.S.-based economists for their work in fighting poverty. The female recipient in the trio is only the second woman to win the prize in its 50-year history.
• Reddit and Snapchat are working together to allow users to share content from Reddit on Snapchat through a new integration.
• To get us all excited, Disney announced a massive list of movies and TV shows coming to its upcoming streaming service, Disney+, which is set to launch on Nov. 12.
• Fact Check
Well this is embarrassing.