10.19.2018

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All your news in a single email. We scour 100+ sources so you don't have to. Culture, science, sports, politics, business, and more - all packaged in a 5-minute read below.
Need To Know.
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Devastating Taliban Attack.
Taliban assassins infiltrated the governor's compound yesterday in Afghanistan's Kandahar province, killing three top Afghan officials. The attackers, reportedly part of the officials' own security detail, killed Kandahar Gov. Zalmay Wesa, intelligence chief Abdul Mohmin, and the region's powerful police chief, Gen. Abdul Raziq. The loss of Raziq is a significant setback for the Afghan government, as he was influential and respected (and feared) across much of southern Afghanistan, where the Taliban is concentrated. Officials said Gen. Austin Miller, the top US leader in the country, was the main target - Gen. Miller was in the building at the time, but was unharmed. Three Americans were wounded in the attack. 
Justice Department Opens Church Probe.
The Justice Department opened a probe into sexual abuse of minors by Catholic church clergy across the state of Pennsylvania yesterday. The Department issued subpoenas to recover secret files and get testimony from high-ranking church leaders in the state. The move follows a bombshell August report released by the state's attorney general detailing sexual abuse by over 300 clergy working in Catholic dioceses across Pennsylvania. The report alleges a systematic effort to shield the predator priests by local and state church officials that spanned almost 70 years and affected more than 1,000 child victims (see full report). The probe is believed to be the first of its type carried out at the federal level. 

About 20% of the US population - just over 50 million people - identify as Catholic.   
Boston Heads to World Series.
The Boston Red Sox are headed to the World Series after beating the Houston Astros 4-1 in Game 5 of the American League Championship last night. Boston pitcher David Price struck out nine batters during six scoreless innings, shutting down one of the league's best offenses (see stats). For Price, a former Cy Young Award winner, it was his first postseason win in eleven games dating back to 2011. Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. was named series MVP, hitting.250 with two home runs and nine runs batted in. It will be the Red Sox's first World Series since 2013, when they beat the St. Louis Cardinals. Boston will face the winner of the National League Championship Series - the Los Angeles Dodgers lead the Milwaukee Brewers in that series 3-2, with Game 6 scheduled for tonight in Milwaukee (8pm ET, Fox Sports). 
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In The Know.
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Sports, Entertainment & Culture.
> Steve Penny, former USA Gymnastics president, is arrested on an evidence tampering charge in Larry Nassar case (More)
> Former NBA Star and Oscar-winning filmmaker Kobe Bryant is removed from Animation Is Film Festival jury over 2003 rape allegations (More)
> Gotham Awards nominations announced honoring 2018's best independent films; First Reformed starring Ethan Hawke led with 3 nominations (More) | See full list of nominees (More)
Science & Technology.
> Food and Drug Administration cracks down on stem cell clinics touting cures for autism, blindness, and more (More)
> Study finds that dendrites, extensions that branch off of the brain's neurons, have different properties in humans than other species; may explain the human brain's unique computing power (More)
> Chemist identifies set of reactions to make RNA, which encodes basic genetic info, out of six simple molecules; provides insight into possible origins of complex life (More)
Business & Markets.
> US stock markets fall 1% on risk of strained Saudi Arabia/US relations and rising interest rates; Tech stock indices down 2% (More)
> American Express beats Wall Street profit expectations as customer spending increases 10% in Q3 (More) | PayPal beats Wall Street profit expectations as company processes 24% more transactions over last year; shares up 7% in after-hours trading (More)
> Invesco to purchase active fund manager Oppenheimer Funds from Mass Mutual for $5.7B (More) | What is active fund management? (More)
Politics & World Affairs.
> Inspector General finds that Department of the Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke used taxpayer funds for wife's travel amounting to over $25,000 (More)
> US consolidates embassy and consulate in Jerusalem; consulate functions as US point of contact for Palestinians (More)
> 93 women join lawsuit against the University of Southern California over sexual misconduct by university gynecologist (More)
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Weekend Reads.
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The People Who Moved to Chernobyl.
BBC | Zhanna Bezpiatchuk. In 1986, the city of Chernobyl experienced one of the worst nuclear disasters in history, with hundreds of thousands of people being evacuated. But more than 30 years later, a few brave souls are starting to move back. (Read)
How Manhattan Became a Rich Ghost Town.
The Atlantic | Derek Thompson. At least 20% of Manhattan's available street retail is vacant or soon will be. Welcome to the capitalist paradox of a rich ghost town. (Read)
 
Why Bill Gates is Worried.
Vox | Ezra Klien. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has an endowment of $50 billion, more than any other foundation in the world. Bill Gates intends to use it to save humanity. (Read)
 
The Many-Worlds Interpretation Has Many Problems.
Quanta Magazine | Philip Ball. It sounds like science fiction, but many physicists believe in the many-worlds theory - that an infinite number of universes with all possible pasts and futures coexist. The math works, but here's why they might be wrong. (Read)
Etcetera.
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Tired of depressing news? Here are 23 charts and maps that show how the world is getting better.
Winners of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year have been announced, and their photos are amazing.
The Oregon Zoo is celebrating Halloween by posting spooky x-rays of its critters.
30 of the most stunning landscapes to visit in the US
Las Vegas rescue dog turns out to be a natural ice skater (w/ video). 
The 100 best new toys that kids and parents can both play with
The time a truck spilled a bunch of heavy steel balls on a steep street (w/ video). 
5-month-old baby set to become the youngest person to visit all 50 states
Clickbait: Phoenix Police roll out first-ever police ice cream truck.
Historybook: British General Cornwallis surrenders at Yorktown, effectively ending Revolutionary War (1781); John Jay becomes first Chief Justice of the US (1789); RIP abolitionist and suffragist Lucy Stone (1893); HBD actor, director Jon Favreau (1966); Black Monday stock market crash, Dow drops 22% in one day (1987).
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