Alaska Election, Inflation, and Thailand’s Marijuana Giveaway 1440 Weekend Edition

Good morning. It's Saturday, June 11, and in this weekend edition, we're covering an unprecedented race in Alaska's special primary election for the US House, a new 40-year record for annual inflation, and much more. Have feedback? We'd love to hear it. Let us know at [email protected]

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Alaska's Unprecedented Election 

More than four dozen candidates—including former Gov. Sarah Palin (R) and a North Pole councilman named Santa Claus—are vying for a single US House seat in Alaska's special primary election. It's the first all-mail election in the state's history, with ballot submissions due today. 


The top four of the 48 total candidates will advance to the state's special general election in August, as contenders compete to serve the remainder of Republican Rep. Don Young's (At-large) term through January. Young died in March after serving 49 years in Congress.


In a new ranked-choice voting system adopted in 2020 (see 101), Alaskan voters can pick and rank four of their preferences from a single mail-in ballot that lists all the candidates, regardless of party affiliation. In contrast, most states follow a partisan primary, where each party has the chance to choose a nominee for the general election.


Analysts see Palin, businessman Nick Begich, and fisherman-physician Al Gross as top contenders. See all candidates here



Inflation reaches record 40-year-high.

US inflation rose 8.6% year-over-year in May, up from 8.3% in April and beating a 40-year high of 8.5% in March. The figure is the fastest 12-month increase since December 1981. Rising costs of shelter, gas, and food contributed to the increase. See data here.


The US to drop COVID-19 testing for international flyers.

Starting Sunday, global travelers will no longer require a predeparture negative COVID-19 test to enter the US. The end of the requirement will apply to all travelers, regardless of vaccination status. The CDC will reevaluate its decision in 90 days.


The US reaches migration deal with Western Hemisphere leaders.

Called "The Los Angeles Declaration," the pact lays out a roadmap for countries to host a large number of migrants and refugees, including legal pathways for entry and humane border management. See an overview of pledges here.


More than 450 marches against gun violence are expected today.

Thousands of people are expected to attend March for Our Lives protests against gun violence in at least 45 states. The marches follow a string of mass shootings across the US in recent weeks.  


Thailand kicks off marijuana giveaway after legalizing it.

The country began distributing the first 100 seedlings to registered growers Friday as part of a campaign to give away 1 million free cannabis plants. Thailand is the first nation in Asia to decriminalize marijuana for medical and commercial purposes, though recreational marijuana is still illegal.  


Historians identify wreck of royal warship that sank in 1682.

The shipwreck of The Gloucester was first discovered off the coast of Great Yarmouth, England, in 2007, but kept under wraps until recently due to the time taken to confirm its identity and to protect the at-risk site. 

In partnership with OLIPOP



What does Patrick Mahomes do off the football field? Or Gwyneth Paltrow and Mindy Kaling off the screen? Or the Jonas Brothers, Logic, and Camila Cabello off the stage? They drink a lot of OLIPOP. So much so, they’re just a few of the star-studded cast of investors in the startup changing the way we drink soda.


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Today, OLIPOP is announcing the limited-edition launch of their new diabolical Banana Cream soda, in partnership with "Minions: The Rise of Gru." Melding sweet vanilla and creamy banana, it's best described as a delicious banana cream pie in a can—but it’s only available for the month of June. Try this new flavor while it lasts, or any of OLIPOP's other fan favorites for 20% off + free shipping with code 1440MEDIA.

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Ukrainian teen refugee with Down syndrome meets wrestler John Cena. (More)


Meet the world's oldest person to sail solo nonstop across the Pacific. (More


A pediatric nurse brings joy to hospital children with singing and music. (More


Class of kindergartners releases rescued baby turtles into the wild. (More)


Animal shelters use creativity to name pets and help them find homes. (More)


A 50-year-old mom gives birth after becoming a surrogate for her daughter. (More)

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Today, we're sharing a story from reader Stan M. in Bothell, Washington.


"I was at a grocery store buying a sports drink so I could ask for cash back to tip our dog's groomer. After paying for the drink, I was told that cash back only worked for debit cards (I used a credit card) ... I thought about buying another item, when the kind lady behind overheard my conversation with the checker. She asked how much I needed for the tip ($20), and offered me a $20 bill! I profusely thanked her, and she said, 'just pass the favor along, next time.'"


Read another story of kindness here.

What act(s) of kindness did you experience this week? Tell us.




A 100-acre Iowa farm sells for twice the average rate per acre in the area, totaling more than $2.6M.  

> A Chicago suburb grocery store breaks record with 70,000 lb. banana display.



> Scientists cover a robotic finger in human skin.

> America's best cities for first-time homebuyers in 2022

> The 50 highest-rated three-hour-or-longer movies



Kids recount handling hairy situations on their own, without help from grown-ups.


> How to change your life one step at a time.

What is the rarest color in nature?
A fruit fly that lays eggs in your strawberries.


Long Read 

> The fugitive next door: He seemed like a typical Florida retiree who loved fishing with friends and adored his wife, but his life was built on a secret

> The stargazers: Understanding the Maya's sophisticated astronomy.


Best of the Week: Why your favorite color is probably blue.

Historybook: Jeannette Rankin, first woman elected to US Congress, born (1880); Football coach Vince Lombardi born (1913); Reality competition series "American Idol" debuts (2002); RIP actress and civil rights activist Ruby Dee (2014).


"We have to get it into our heads once and for all that we cannot settle disputes by eliminating human beings."

- Jeannette Rankin

Why 1440? The printing press was invented in the year 1440, spreading knowledge to the masses and changing the course of history. Guess what else? There are 1,440 minutes in a day and every one is precious. That’s why we scour hundreds of sources every day to provide a concise, comprehensive, and objective view of what's happening in the world. Reader feedback is a gift—shoot us a note at [email protected].

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