Wet Lettuce Wins
Monday, October 24th, 2022
Your Five Daily Current Events Questions
1. Well, that didn't take long. After just 46 days in office, who is no longer prime minister of the UK?
2. What satellite internet service, run by Elon Musk’s company, has played a pivotal role this year in Ukraine? Now, the White House is in talks with Musk about using the service in Iran.
3. The controversial rapper Ye (formerly known as Kanye West) has announced a buyout of what conservative social media platform?
4. The far right continues to rise in Europe. Giorgia Meloni was recently confirmed as Italy's first female prime minister, having been swept to power on the backs of a neo-fascist party. In what Scandinavian country was Ulf Kristersson recently chosen as prime minister, receiving backing from a far-right party?
5. What Chinese American actress has become the first Asian American person depicted on US currency?
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1. What's going on over there, Britain? Y'all okay? It seems you got us beat this year on political chaos.
Shortly after taking office and having her economic budget repudiated, LIZ TRUSS resigned as prime minister of the UK. We'll forever remember Truss for being in pictures of Queen Elizabeth II's funeral and … that’s about it. One British tabloid newspaper bought a head of lettuce and live streamed its decay on YouTube with the question "Which wet lettuce will last longer?" It turns out lettuce wins.
2. Elon Musk owns STARLINK, a satellite internet service operated by SpaceX. Earlier this year, Starlink played a pivotal role in providing Internet access to Ukraine after the Russian invasion. The White House is now in talks with Musk to use Starlink to support Iranian protesters, who have faced aggressive Internet clampdowns from the regime. According to CNN:
If a plan is enacted, it would be the second major theater this year — along with Ukraine — where the US government has turned to Starlink to help provide crucial telecommunication services, even as questions swirl around Musk’s reliability in his dealings with the US government.
“He’s a loose cannon we can never predict,” said a senior US defense official familiar with the government’s discussions with Musk and SpaceX about Ukraine.
Concerns over Musk’s unpredictable tendencies intensified after CNN first reported last week that Musk’s company, SpaceX, had been quietly asking the Pentagon to pay tens of millions of dollars per month to fund Starlink in Ukraine and take the burden off SpaceX. In response to that reporting, Musk then abruptly announced on Twitter that he had withdrawn the funding request.
3. Ye is, as ever, in the spotlight for bad behavior. The rapper was kicked off both Instagram and Twitter for posting anti-Semitic and hateful content. Soon after, he announced he would buy PARLER, the social media platform for far-right conservatives. Parler was banned from Apple and Google stores after the role it played in the January 6th riots. Unsurprisingly, Ye's takeover of Parler has already been embroiled in mishap.
4. Ulf Kristersson is the new prime minister of SWEDEN. Kristersson's predecessor, Magdalena Andersson, lasted just a year in the job. While Kristersson comes from a moderate party, his coalition has received backing from the Sweden Democrats, a far-right party founded by Nazi sympathizers that received a fifth of votes in the recent election. According to the BBC,
Swedish media outlets described this year's election campaign as one of the ugliest in history. A sharp rise in gun violence and gang crime led to opinion polls suggesting that crime was at the top of the agenda for many Swedes.
Founded in 1988, the SD struggled for two decades to win enough votes to elect any MPs at all. But since entering parliament in 2010, the party has increased its share of the vote in three successive elections and is now the second-largest party.
5. ANNA MAY WONG appears on an edition of quarters issued by the US Mint. The actress is known as the first Chinese American film star in Hollywood. Wong made her name in such films as Daughter of the Dragon, Shanghai Express, and The Good Earth. She is part of the American Women Quarters program, which also features the likes of Maya Angelou, Sally Ride, Wilma Mankiller, and Nina Otero-Warren.
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Coming up this week …
On Tuesday, an update on Thailand’s biggest drug. On Wednesday, the California prop causing interstate commerce woes. On Thursday, a collaboration post with Memeforum! And on Friday, the latest social media app that’s taking high schools by storm. To make sure you’re able to access the full content …
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So is it 44, 45, or 46 days for Truss? I've seen all three. I don't mean this in a "cite your sources" way but I'm not sure why the disparity exists. Time zones? Can it be fixed with a MacGuffin?