9.22.2017

*|MC:SUBJECT|*
09.22.2017
NEED TO KNOW.
Flint.
A new study found that Flint, MI, saw a 58% increase in fetal deaths and a drop in pregnancies and fertility rates due to a lead-contaminated public water supply (report here). During Flint's water crisis - which began in 2014 when state officials switched the city's water source in a bid to save money - lead levels in the public supply were nearly double the recommended limit. Young children are particularly susceptible to lead poisoning, where it can cause irreversible damages in brain development. The report came out on the same day that a preliminary hearing was held for manslaughter charges against Nick Lyon - the head health official in the state, who continues to serve despite currently being tried on two felony counts related to the crisis. 

More Sanctions.
President Trump authorized wider sanctions on North Korea, signing an executive order placing tighter economic sanctions on Leader Kim Jong Un's regime. The new sanctions - which were announced during a meeting with South Korean and Japanese leaders, two countries under the greatest threat from North Korea - allow the Treasury Department to freeze the assets and cut off access to the US financial system to any company doing business with the country. The move is seen as a desire by Trump to use economic and diplomatic tools before military force - for now. In an encouraging sign, Chinese banks will reportedly stop doing business with North Korean clients as well. In response, Pyongyang threatened to carry out a nuclear test in the Pacific Ocean. You can read the full executive order here

Facebook.
Said it would turn over thousands of Russia-linked advertisements to House and Senate Intelligence Committees as they investigate the country's potential interference in the 2016 presidential election. The decision follows the company's revelation on September 6th that a Kremlin-backed agency had purchased nearly 3,000 ads via fake accounts. Many ads did not reference the election itself, but focused on divisive hot button issues. Twitter, facing similar scrutiny over fake accounts, has been less public on the issue but will join Facebook to meet with congressional investigators. More broadly, social media companies are being forced to confront how they handle fake news and propaganda on their platforms. You can check out the best - or worst, depending on your perspective - Russian memes used by the fake accounts here
 
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IN THE KNOW.

Sports, Entertainment & Culture.

L'Oreal heiress & world's richest woman, Liliane Bettencourt, dies at 94 (More)
Families allege that Tom Cruise partially to blame for death of two pilots during filming of American Made (More)
NFL football player Aaron Hernandez had stage 3 CTE (brain trauma) at time of suicide (More) | CTE 101 (More)
 

Science & Technology.

Jellyfish with no brains still seem to need sleep (More)
Alphabet's (Google Parent) Waymo unit seeking $2.6B from Uber over theft of single self-driving trade secret (More)
DNA analysis from ancient skeletons reveals huge migrations (More)
 

Business & Markets.

S&P downgrades China's sovereign debt rating, citing too much debt growth (More)
Wireless charging startup, Pi, wins TechCrunch Disrupt Startup Battlefield In San Francisco (More)
Hewlett Packard Enterprise (Storage & Services biz) to cut 5k jobs or 10% of workforce as competition mounts (More)
 

Politics & World Affairs.

CVS to limit amount, strength of opioid prescriptions (More)
Securities and Exchange Commission cybersecurity breach latest sign that government data is vulnerable (More)
Africa to get high-quality HIV pill, will cost $75 per person per year (More)
WEEKEND READS.

Two Paths Cross in the Ruins of Raqqa. 

Der Spiegel | Christoph Reuter. The story of recently liberated Syrian city of Raqqa, as seen through the eyes of three people heading in opposite directions. One, a German woman who went to Raqqa when ISIS took control to pursue an Islamic life, and two others, Syrians who fled Raqqa for the safety of Germany. Both are now trying to return to their homelands. (Read
 

Facebook’s War on Free Will. 

The Guardian | Franklin Foer. It's a global behemoth, but it's also sorta just a billion photo albums combined with a tangle of algorithmic rules for what shows up on your screen - But those rules only show you what Facebook wants you to see. (Read)
 

The Making and Unmaking of Iggy Azalea. 

Jezebel | Clover Hope. After years of bucking advice to stop rapping and pursue pop music, Azalea - white and from Australia - bucked the odds when she rocketed to stardom in 2014. Since then she has continued to face questions about her authenticity and whether an artist who knows nothing about black culture can thrive in hip hop. (Read)
 

How to Turn a Job You Hate Into One You Like. 

The Cut | Kristen Wong. Are the crappy parts of your job all in your head? Probably not - but this download on 'job-crafting' gives a great look at ways to change your job without changing jobs. (Read)
 

Jeff Bridges Will Be “The Dude,” Now and Forever. 

GQ | Caity Weaver. They say the lines between an actor or actress and their character sometimes blur. In the case of Jeff Bridges and Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski, the line may have disappeared altogether. (Read)
ETCETERA.
Flex: See Fortune's 50 Most Powerful Women for 2017.

Speaking Of: First female Marine infantry officer set to graduate next week.

Live sports audiences are getting older

Don't Blame Millennials: New survey shows college students split on tenets of free speech.

Oh Hai: Pro-ISIS supporters forget to turn off geolocation on Instragram. 

Most Americans get science news from general outlets - but admit they don't get the facts right. 

Artist duo Ella & Petr paint a 47-meter tall mural on the side of a dam.

Boosters: How much is your college football team worth

See the greenest US cities in 2017.

Science Clickbait w/ Bonus Fact: Sexual competition among ducks wreaks havoc on penis size - and apparently duck penises fall off every mating season and regrow anew. Who knew. Happy Friday! 

Historybook: Nathan Hale executed by British (1776); Shaka Zulu assassinated (1828); Lincoln issues Emancipation Proclamation (1862); HBD Peace Corps (1961); Failed assassination attempt on Gerald Ford (1975); Iraq invades Iran (1980); ‘Friends’ debuts (1994); RIP Yogi Berra (2015)
"WHEN YOU COME TO A FORK IN THE ROAD, TAKE IT."
-Yogi Berra
 
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