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Cramm for 11/18/19
 
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THE HIGHLIGHTS

Everyone’s watching the Hong Kong protests. 

 

THE BACKGROUND. 

Not too long ago, China said ‘hey, here’s an idea’ and intro’d an extradition bill that’d make it easier to hand over people accused of crimes in Hong Kong to mainland China. (Back it up: over the past couple centuries, Hong Kong’s been handed from empire to empire. Since 1997, China’s had control of Hong Kong - but the city got more freedoms, including its own gov.) Surprise surprise...people weren’t happy. And saw the bill as an opportunity for China to punish journalists and activists. 

 

THE HAPPENINGS. 

Update: in the months since, the extradition bill’s been trashed, but the protests have stuck around and become a larger cry for more democracy. And lately, the protests - and resulting violence - have been escalating. Over the last week, protests continued past the weekend for the first time, with thousands setting up base at universities. You read that right. 

 

THE HAPPENINGS PT 2. 

As of now, protesters are still holed up at multiple campuses - despite police orders to leave. One group of protesters that did leave was beaten and arrested by police. And police are now firing tear gas and rubber bullets on any demonstrators attempting to ditch these universities - while warning they’ll use live ammunition if things get worse. 

 

SO…?

The Hong Kong protests have reached a new turning point. TBD, TBD, TBD. 


THE ACTION

WORLD: Iran’s cracking down. Reminder: recently, the gov announced they’d be upping gas prices by a lot. Cue protests - protests that’ve lasted multiple days and led to more than a thousand arrests, hundreds of injuries, and at least 12 deaths. As of now, the gov’s standing by the price hike. Plus blocking nearly all internet access in an attempt to get control. Unclear if there’s an end in sight. Meanwhile, say hello to Aramco. That’s Saudi Arabia’s state-owned oil biz that’s estimated to be the most valuable biz in the world. Right now, the biz is reportedly prepping to go public - with a target valuation of $1.7 trillion (yes, with a tr). For context, Apple just hit a trillion dollar valuation this year. Stay tuned. 

 

USA: Pete Buttigieg is putting up the streamers. You know Buttigieg (pronounced “boot-edge-edge”) as being the mayor of South Bend, Indiana who’s running for prez in 2020. He’s also the new frontrunner in Iowa, according to a new poll. Hint: Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren are all tied for second. This comes just days ahead of the next Dem debate. Speaking of which, Louisiana’s governor - Dem John Bel Edwards - just won re-election in what’s being labelled a “major blow to Trump.” See: Louisiana’s a red state - and Trump campaigned for Edwards’ opponent. And in other news, four people were just killed during a shooting at a family gathering in Fresno, California. Police are currently searching for the shooter(s). 

 

POLITICS: Prez Trump has his mind on vaping. Quick refresher: ever since the FDA announced that teen e-cigarette use has become an epidemic, the gov’s been scrambling to crack down. Includes semi-bans on flavored e-cigarettes - which many see as a product built to appeal to teens - and a potential federal ban on all flavored e-cigarettes, minus menthol. The other day, Prez Trump made his decision. Spoiler: he’s not going forward with the ban - even though he had said he would in  the past. Because, jobs. And in other news, new witnesses in the impeachment inquiry seem to back up Gordon Sondland’s claim that he was directed by Prez Trump in  his dealings with Ukraine. 


WHAT TO KNOW

Bei Bei:” the giant panda who’s leaving Washington, DC for China on a private jet. Oh, to be a panda. 


SAY WHAT?

“TikTok’s Chief Is on a Mission to Prove It’s Not a Menace” - an actual headline. What could be more menacing?

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