Happy Monday. Public Service Announcement: the need for speed is real. Allow us to introduce a 62-year-old Arizona man who was cited by police last week for dressing up a fake skeleton to use the HOV lane.
“It is never too late to be what you might have been.”
– George Eliot
This Week at a Glance
Monday: Impeachment trial reconvenes
Tuesday: U.S. evacuation flight from Wuhan (coronavirus ground-zero), Apple earnings, Trump meets Israel’s Gantz & Netanyahu
Wednesday: Federal Reserve announces policy decision, Facebook, Boeing, & Microsoft earnings
Thursday: Amazon earnings
Friday: Brexit becomes official
The Race for the White House
One week from today, the first Democratic presidential contest – the Iowa caucus – will be held. The New Hampshire primary takes place eight days afterward, with Nevada and South Carolina also scheduled to vote before Super Tuesday.
The rules for each state are varied. Here’s how the Iowa caucus works:
Caucus goers vote on the candidates. After the vote is tallied, candidates are placed into two categories: viable and non-viable.
Candidates are considered ‘viable’ if they receive at least 15% of the vote.
Those who voted for non-viable candidates can switch their votes, or try to marshal additional support to turn a non-viable candidate into a viable one.
A second and final vote is then taken. Each viable candidate is awarded at least one delegate – more go towards those who receive a higher percentage of the vote. A candidate must secure at least 50% of the overall delegates to become the official Democratic nominee.
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Deadly Earthquake Hits Turkey
A 6.8-magnitude earthquake struck the Turkish town of Sivrice on Friday, killing at least 31 people and wounding more than 1,600 others. Emergency rescue teams have rescued 45 people from collapsed buildings so far, with officials saying at least 20 more may still be trapped in rubble.
As of Sunday morning, the official count of confirmed coronavirus cases in China was at 1,975 – on Monday, Chinese officials raised the country’s death toll to at least 80 people. Three more cases of the virus were reported in the U.S. (two in CA, one in AZ), bringing the national count up to five.
More context: Stay up to date on the latest news with this interactive map from Johns Hopkins University.
Five-time NBA Champion and Los Angeles Laker legend Kobe Bryant, along with eight others, died in a helicopter crash Sunday morning. The passengers reportedly included Bryant’s 13-year-old daughter Gianna, a teammate from Gianna’s basketball team, a parent of the teammate, and Orange Coast College baseball coach John Altobelli.
After being postponed twice last week due to weather, Boeing successfully completed the first flight of its new generation of 777X aircraft on Saturday. The 777X is the largest twin-engine jet ever built, though it is yet to be approved by regulators following Boeing’s recent 737 MAX incidents.
The husband-and-wife owners of DC Solar pleaded guilty to involvement in a ~$1 billion Ponzi scheme on Friday. According to prosecutors, the couple used false financial statements and lease contracts to defraud investors (including $377 million from Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway) and fund their extravagant lifestyle.
According to Reuters, the financial arm of the Swiss government is investigating whether financial institution Credit Suisse engaged in corporate espionage against two former executives. Depending on the results of the investigation, the Swiss government could order an overhaul of the leadership at the country’s second-largest bank.
Wheel of (Good) Fortune
26-year-old Ste Burke of Liverpool is a real-life superhero – his attention to detail ended up righting a wrong and making one man’s day in the process. Ste was on his way home from the gym when he was approached by two men. They tried to sell Ste an expensive bike for just over $100, but he recognized its true worth (over $1,700) – leading him to believe the men had not acquired the bike through conventional means.
Thinking quickly, Ste purchased the bike and proceeded to search out the rightful owner via social media. Surprised and grateful, the owner offered to reimburse Burke for his purchase of the bike, but Burke refused, saying he couldn’t bear to take money from a man whose home had been broken into. Burke’s heroic deed proves that there are some people in the world that can be counted on to do the right thing, even in the face of injustice.
A few shelter dogs made a splash in Bradenton, FL last weekend, as their adorable mutt mugs appeared on Motorworks Brewery’s beer cans. The local establishment’s goal is to find these dogs forever homes, as well as raise funds for Shelter Manatee, an organization working to build a new animal shelter for beloved pets in need.
So far, 150 four-packs of beer have been sold, and two of the four dogs featured have been adopted. Since the brewery is not able to legally ship their product to other states, they have successfully taken their fundraising efforts national by selling the special-edition labels featuring the pooches. A few lovable companions are on the way to cozier conditions, all thanks to some great PR on the part of a generous beer company.
And the winner is… the 62nd annual Grammy Awards were held in Los Angeles last night – check out the winners here. The event took place amid an ongoing dispute between the Recording Academy (which hosts the Grammys) and their ex-CEO.
Speaker for the Dead… a team of researchers has 3D printed the voice box of mummified Egyptian priest Nesyamun, who died around 1069 BC.
Dropping some knowledge… learn more about the most destructive nuclear bomb known to man, developed and tested by the Soviets in 1961 but never deployed.
Cash Bash… the New York City Council passed legislation on Friday banning cashless businesses, citing discrimination against poor people and minors.
What is the only state with no scheduled air service?