11.18.2023

 

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Good morning. It's Saturday, Nov. 18, and in this weekend edition, we're covering Argentina's presidential runoff, the ousting of OpenAI's chief executive, and much more. First time reading? Sign up here.

 

You share. We listen. As always, send us feedback at [email protected].

One Big Headline
 

Argentina Elections 

Argentinian voters head to the polls tomorrow as Economy Minister Sergio Massa and outsider candidate Javier Milei face off in the country's presidential runoff. The election is seen as one of the most pivotal in modern history for the third most populous country in South America, home to 46 million people and burdened by an economic crisis. Argentina faces year-over-year inflation of 142.7%, with 40% of the country's population living in poverty. 

 

The two candidates represent opposite sides of the political spectrum. Massa, 51, is a member of the ruling Peronist coalition (see overview) and received the highest share of votes (36.7%) in last month's elections compared to Milei (30%). Massa supports a social safety net and seeks to cut taxes, among other plans.

 

Milei, 53, is a self-described anarcho-capitalist known for wielding a chain saw at campaign rallies—a symbol of his plans to cut government spending. Milei's proposals include abolishing the country's central bank and ditching the Argentine peso for the US dollar.

 

See a comparison of the two candidates here.

Quick Hits
 

Sam Altman steps down as CEO of OpenAI after board loses confidence.

OpenAI's Chief Technology Officer Mira Murati will become the interim CEO as the company behind ChatGPT conducts a formal search for the next chief executive. Cofounder Greg Brockman, who had been chairperson of the board, is also leaving his board seat but will continue to serve as OpenAI's president. Altman helped found OpenAI in 2015, with help from Elon Musk

 

Biden signs federal spending bill averting government shutdown.

President Joe Biden signed the short-term stopgap measure to fund two tranches of federal government programs through Jan. 19 and Feb. 2. His signing comes after the Senate passed the bill by a vote of 87 to 11 and the House passed it by a vote of 336 to 95 this week. 

 

United Auto Workers members ratify contract with Ford, Stellantis.

Of the more than 26,000 UAW members at Stellantis (formerly Fiat Chrysler) facilities who participated in voting for a new labor contract, 68.4% approved the deal. The Ford deal was approved by 68.2% of the nearly 35,000 UAW members who voted. The contract ratifications officially conclude historic negotiations with the Detroit Big Three automakers. 

 

Former US first lady Rosalynn Carter enters hospice care at home.

The 96-year-old joins her husband, now 99-year-old former President Jimmy Carter, in hospice care at their home in Plains, Georgia. Jimmy has been in hospice care since February after a series of hospital stays. Rosalynn has been dealing with dementia, according to an announcement in May. 

 

House Ethics chairperson files resolution to expel Santos from Congress.

The resolution comes a day after the House Ethics Committee released a report accusing Rep. George Santos (R, NY-3) of various federal crimes, including campaign fraud and misuse of campaign funds. Santos has said he won't run for reelection. The earliest a House vote to expel Santos can be held would be the week after Thanksgiving; House lawmakers return Nov. 28. See our previous write-up here.

 

Los Angeles freeway closed after fire to reopen next week.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) said Interstate 10, which was shut down this week after last weekend's arson fire, is due to reopen Tuesday, several weeks ahead of the initially estimated schedule. The blaze burned nearly 100 support columns of the highway after pallets and other items under it were set on fire. See our previous write-up here.

 

'Zombie' disease found in deer in Yellowstone for first time.

Chronic wasting disease, found in a deer inside Yellowstone National Park, causes a deer to become emaciated and lose its mobility before killing them. Chronic wasting disease is a prion disease that is untreatable and impacts the brain. See an overview of prion diseases here.

 

Kool & The Gang drummer George "Funky" Brown dies at 74.

Brown, a founding member and songwriter of the pop-R&B group, died after a battle with lung cancer. Kool & The Gang, which formed in New Jersey in 1964, is known for its 1973 hits such as "Jungle Boogie" and "Hollywood Swinging." The band has won two Grammy Awards, including in 1978 for their work on the "Saturday Night Fever" soundtrack.   

In partnership with Pendulum

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Humankind
 

Meet Miles Scott, a 15-year-old boy who went viral 10 years ago as "Batkid" and is now cancer-free. (More)

 

Young UK man honored with statue after surprising strangers with acts of kindness for three years, including donating clothes and toys and paying for coffees. (More)

 

Minnesota high schoolers band together to create club to tutor their peers and bridge an achievement gap at their school. (More

 

Two college students opt to live in senior community instead of school dorms as part of immersion program, learn life lessons along the way. (More)

 

"Thanksgiving Grandma" partners with Airbnb to welcome a couple of strangers to her home for a holiday dinner. (More

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Humankind(ness)
 

Today, we're sharing a story from reader Rich L. in Port Charlotte, Florida.

 

"A few weeks ago my wife and I attended the Punta Gorda Airshow. It's a large event with 25,000 or more attendees. I am 83 years old and I unfortunately forgot our lawn chairs at home. After walking around for over an hour my legs were giving out. My wife went to find us some water and I proceeded to sit on the ground. Not an easy task at this age. Five minutes later, a young man came over to me and gave me a double lawn chair to use. He said he was much younger than I and he would sit on the ground. A few minutes later, Linda came back with water and we both sat and enjoyed the show. Toward the end of the show the young man returned to tell me that we should keep the chair and enjoy it. This was truly an act of kindness!"

 

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

Etcetera
 

Bookkeeping

> Rare 24-cent misprint stamp, dubbed the "Inverted Jenny," sells for record-breaking $2M at auction.

> The US death rate from cancer among people up to the age of 19 has dropped 24% from 2001 to 2021, according to new CDC research

 

Browse 

> Wild looks from the 2023 beard and mustache championships.

> The 50 best places to travel in 2024, via Travel + Leisure

> Visualizing the spread of massive Joro spiders across the US.

Why are objects in space round?

> Up your footwear game with a McDonald's-Crocs collab

 

Listen 

> The science behind gossip, and why we love it


Watch 

> How every organ in your body ages from head to toe.

> Everything in Central Park got there by choice—not by nature.

> What the longest-running study on happiness reveals.

> A weevil power-drills through an acorn

 

Long Read 

> Nature's invisibility cloak: the sea creatures with the power to go unnoticed

> How clocks and watches have shaped society

 

Best of the Week: National Geographic unveils the year's best pictures

 

Historybook: Abolitionist and women’s rights activist Sojourner Truth born (1797); Poet and novelist Margaret Atwood born (1939); 918 people die in a mass murder-suicide in Jonestown, Guyana (1978); Massachusetts court ruling makes the state the first to recognize same-sex marriage (2003).

"It is the mind that makes the body."

- Sojourner Truth

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