Friday, August 30th, 2019
Hurricane Dorian Update, U.S. Space Command & Labor Day
All the news you need in less than 10 min:
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All the news stories mentioned in today's episode are listed with links below, so you can spend as much -- or as little -- time as you want perusing the latest happenings...
Hurricane Dorian: Hurricane Dorian could make a direct hit on Florida as a Category 4 storm over the weekend. There’s a chance Dorian’s path could change, but forecasters think it’ll make landfall by early Monday. Both Florida and Georgia have declared a state of emergency, and President Trump canceled his trip to Poland.
Read more: Weather Channel, AccuWeather, NBC News, CBS News, NYT
Methane Restrictions: The Trump administration wants to roll back regulations on methane. The proposed rule from the EPA would mean oil and gas companies no longer have to use technology to find and fix methane leaks. The Trump administration says eliminating the rule would save the oil and gas industry millions of dollars each year, but environmentalists say it would be a major setback in the effort to fight climate change. The more relaxed rule will go up for public comment before likely being finalized next year.
Read more: NYT, USA Today, Reuters
Comey's Violations: Ex-FBI Director James Comey broke FBI policies when he leaked info, according to a new report from the Justice Department’s inspector general. That said, the office also found none of the info was classified at the time. Comey wrote down details of private conversations he said he had with President Trump that concerned him, and he leaked one of the memos to a friend, who gave it to a reporter. The Justice Department isn’t prosecuting.
Read more: AP, WSJ
U.S. Space Command: The U.S. Space Command is coming back. The division of the Air Force was originally created in 1985 for missile defense and surveillance efforts during the Cold War. It then merged with another command to focus on the invasion of Afghanistan after 9/11. Now, it'll be its own entity once again. The Space Command will defend America’s military satellites and plan for how future wars might play out in space. To clarify: this isn’t the same as the so-called “Space Force” that Trump has proposed (Congress would have to approve that), but it could be a step in that direction.
Read more: Politico, NPR, Washington Post
Juul & Vaping Concerns: The Federal Trade Commission is launching an investigation to determine whether e-cigarette company Juul marketed its products to kids, especially through social media influencers. It’s been a big government concern because of the popularity of Juul among teenagers.
Read more: The Verge, WSJ
Now, the company says it'll try a new checkout system to keep its products away from kids. Starting in 2021, stores will have to scan customers’ IDs if they want to sell Juul products.
Read more: Business Insider, Engadget, Gizmodo
Also, there are new warnings from health officials about all kinds of vaping. The city of Milwaukee issued a warning for everyone to stop vaping immediately after cases of chemical pneumonia that could be linked to vaping. The first vape-related death was also reported in Illinois last week, and the FDA is reportedly investigating seizures that have been linked to the devices as well.
Read more: The Washington Post, CNN, Bloomberg
E-Scooter Danger: Some cities in Florida are scrambling to get all the bikes and e-scooters off their streets before Hurricane Dorian arrives. Miami, Tampa and others are telling e-scooter companies to remove their products by noon today. Since the dockless scooters aren’t attached to anything, officials are worried the hurricane winds will pick them up and send them flying into people or things. Company spokespeople say they’re on it.
Read more: Bloomberg, The Verge
Apple Event: Apple just sent out media invites to its annual event, which will be held on September 10th. Industry insiders expect Apple will announce three new iPhones, including the iPhone Pro and iPhone Pro Max. The phones will have an upgraded camera that can capture ultra-wide angles and an option to wirelessly charge AirPods. We can also expect to learn more about the upcoming Apple TV+ subscription service.
Read more: Engadget, USA Today
Alex Trebek Back: Long-time Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek is back to film season 36 of the game show after finishing chemotherapy. Trebek was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer earlier this year. There’s a low survival rate, but he says he’s determined to fight it. This season of Jeopardy! premieres September 9th.
Read more: Deadline, Today, Variety
Labor Day Weekend Deals: Labor Day is on Monday. Most schools and government offices will be closed for the federal holiday, which is meant to be a time to relax and pay tribute to the contributions and achievements of American workers. It’s also a time for lots of sales and discounts (see some of them here). Labor Day is known as the unofficial end of the summer season.
Read more: History, NBC News