Juul Settles, 'Fat Leonard' Escapes, and Stable Diffusion Everything you need to know for today in five minutes.

Good morning. It's Wednesday, Sept. 7, and we're covering a multistate settlement with electronic cigarette maker Juul, the escape of a Malaysian businessman charged in the worst US Navy bribery scandal, and much more. Have feedback? Let us know at [email protected].


First time reading? Sign up here.



Juul Settles Vaping Probe 

Electronic cigarette maker Juul has agreed to pay $438.5M to settle a two-year investigation by 33 states and Puerto Rico into its marketing and sales practices directed at underage consumers. The deal concludes one of Juul's biggest legal battles; the company faces nine other state challenges and a consolidated class action from individuals, school districts, and local governments. 


Juul will make payments over six to 10 years and the total amount may increase depending on how long the company takes to payoff the settlement. Juul is also banned from a host of marketing practices, which it already halted after coming under fire in 2019, including depicting people under 35 in its campaigns, paying social media influencers, and advertising on billboards.


The settlement follows earlier deals with individual states and comes amid an ongoing fight against the Food and Drug Administration, which seeks to ban Juul products from the US. Juul, launched in 2015, once controlled more than 75% of the US e-cigarette market.

Earthquake in Sichuan

At least 74people were killed and hundreds injured after a 6.8 magnitude earthquake struck southwestern China Monday, triggering landslides and disrupting power. The epicenter hit 125 miles southwest of Chengdu, the capital of the Sichuan province, in the mountainous county of Luding.


Despite the earthquake, authorities continue to enforce strict COVID-19 lockdown measures in the city of nearly 21 million people. Citizens shared videos reportedly showing officials preventing them from exiting their residences during the tremors. China reported almost 1,500 new cases yesterday, with Sichuan accounting for 138. Nearly 65 million people in China are currently under some level of lockdown.


Earthquakes are common in the region as it sits on the Tibetan Plateau—where the continental plates of India and Eurasia meet—including a 7.9 magnitude quake that killed nearly 90,000 people in 2008.


See video of the quake here.

'Fat Leonard' Escapes

Leonard Francis, the Malaysian businessman who pleaded guilty in 2015 to bribing the US Navy, escaped house arrest outside San Diego Sunday after cutting off his GPS monitoring bracelet. After seven years of cooperating with federal prosecutors, he was due for sentencing in three weeks. 


As head of a Singapore-based supplier of port services, Francis allegedly swindled the US Navy's 7th Fleet out of at least $35M, paying $500K to dozens of Navy officials—often via dinners, travel, and sex workers—in exchange for classified information to boost his business contracts by gouging Navy clients. He was arrested after a 2013 sting operation in San Diego. Hundreds of servicemembers were implicated, and at least 30 individuals from the Navy and Francis' company have either pleaded or been found guilty. 


In 2021, Francis recorded his side of the story after journalist Tom Wright smuggled a microphone to him in home detention. Listen to the nine-part podcast here.

In partnership with Electric



Does managing IT mean sitting back and relaxing with a cold drink in your hand? It could if you read on ... but right now, managing IT support is a real headache for you, especially when it distracts you from running a company.

We’ve got good news. If you’re an IT decision-maker at a US company with 10-500 employees, Electric can help. With over 900 customers, more than 130 IT specialists, and 55,000 end-users, Electric knows large-scale IT support inside and out. Offering lightning-fast chat support, streamlined employee onboarding/offboarding, and proactive security standardization across devices, Electric can cut your IT costs in half. If that sounds too good to be true, we should mention that according to Forrester's Total Economic Impact report, Electric yields an ROI of 105%.

Oh, and back to the deal—if you book a qualified meeting with an Electric specialist, you’ll receive your very own YETI Hopper Flip 8 Soft Cooler! Try the company that’s keeping IT support cool and take your qualified meeting before Sept. 30.

Please support our sponsors!



Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

In partnership with The Ascent

> Justin Bieber cancels remaining tour dates amid health problems; Bieber was recently diagnosed with Ramsay Hunt syndrome, leaving his face partially paralyzed (More) | "NCIS" star Pauley Perrette, 53, reveals she suffered massive stroke last year (More)


> Alabama, Georgia top college football's AP Top 25 poll after Week 1 victories (More) | Majority of minor league baseball players support unionizing, paving the way to join Major League Baseball Players Association (More)


> Las Vegas Aces top Seattle Storm 3-1 to advance to WNBA Finals; Chicago Sky and Connecticut Sun face off in decisive Game 5 tomorrow (8 pm ET, ESPN2) in the other semifinal matchup (More) | See latest bracket (More)

From our partners:  0% APR is 100% an insane deal. This card offers 0% APR for 21 months on balance transfers, giving you nearly two years to save big. Enjoy that, and no annual fee.

Science & Technology

> Los Angeles Unified, the second largest school district in the US, reveals it suffered a ransomware attack over the weekend; schools remained open as officials worked to resolve technical disruption (More)


> Scientists discover mechanism allowing tardigrades—commonly known as water bears—to survive dehydration under extreme conditions; organisms produce a gel that coats cells, protecting their structure in the absence of water (More) | Meet the world's toughest creature (More)


> Antarctic seafloor mapping reveals the Florida-sized Thwaites glacier retreated at rates up to 1.3 miles per year at some point during the past two centuries; results suggest the large glacier changes quickly in response to local climate (More)

Business & Markets

> US stock markets end lower (S&P 500 -0.4%, Dow -0.6%, Nasdaq -0.7%) to kick off the week (More) | Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy virtually rings New York Stock Exchange bell, encourages investment in Ukraine (More)


> CVS to acquire in-home healthcare provider Signify Health for $8B (More)


> The European Union blocks Illumina’s proposed $7B acquisition of cancer detection business GRAIL (More)

Politics & World Affairs

> Typhoon Hinnamnor hits South Korea, killing at least six people, flooding streets with 3 feet of rain, and causing power outages (More) | California urges residents to reduce electricity use as state faces record-breaking power demand and chance of blackouts amid heat wave (More)


Federal judge bars New Mexico county commissioner and Cowboys for Trump founder Couy Griffin from public office for joining Jan. 6 storming of the US Capitol (More)


> Memphis, Tennessee, police identify body of abducted jogger Eliza Fletcher, an heir to a multibillion-dollar hardware company; police charge Cleotha Abston with first-degree murder (More) | Uvalde, Texas, students return to school since deadly mass shooting in May; Robb Elementary remains shuttered (More



In partnership with Electric

Are you ready to level up your IT game and score yourself a free brand-new YETI cooler? If you’re a US-based company with 10-500 employees, chances are you give tech support—and we bet you’d wish you didn’t have to. Take a load off and try Electric, the company companies use when their tech support needs tech support.

With over 130 IT specialists, Electric provides streamlined employee onboarding/offboarding, lightning-quick chat support, and proactive security standardization across devices to over 900 companies across the United States. Electric can give customers a 105% ROI and halve their IT costs—and throw in a free YETI cooler to top it off. Book a qualified meeting today to let your IT take care of itself.

Please support our sponsors!



Stable Diffusion, a powerful AI-based image generator, opens to the public.


Visualizing various animal sleep patterns.


NASA is producing oxygen on Mars.


Expedition captures the Titanic in unprecedented detail.


The crafty camouflages of the insect world


America's most underrated places to visit.


A view of the traffic leaving Burning Man. (via Reddit)


Illinois' ComEd power company appreciates its goats.


Clickbait: Officials seize $12M in cocaine baby wipes.


Historybook: Uncle Sam first used as nickname for the US (1813); Rock and roll pioneer Buddy Holly born (1936); "I Will Survive" singer Gloria Gaynor born (1943); Pro Football Hall of Fame opens in Canton, Ohio (1963); Rapper Tupac Shakur is shot, dies six days later (1996).


"Self-esteem comes from what you think of you, not what other people think of you."

- Gloria Gaynor

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].

Interested in advertising to smart readers like you? Apply here!

Join a community of over 3.6 million intellectually curious individuals.

100% free. Unsubscribe anytime.

Don't miss out on the daily email read by over 3.7 million intellectually curious readers.