The News 10/30-11/4: Cold email war

Stories of the Week

You've got mail (again). FBI Director James Comey decided to break all precedent and potentially the law in order to bring us the millionth chapter of the Hillary Clinton email saga, for which none of us are thankful. President Obama has taken Comey to task, as have a slew of other voices including (not shockingly) those belonging to the Clinton campaign. Whether or not the FBI's review will be done by Election Day is unclear. Either way, the teenager whose sexts with Anthony Weiner sparked this whole fiasco is really unhappy at being dragged into a political situation.

Russia? Americans are obsessed with discussing Russia this week -- did Trump have a server directly communicating with Russia? Is Russia interfering with the American election? How will Russia react to Hillary Clinton, if she is elected? Questions, questions. Bottom line: the US has interfered with many elections around the globe, Trump has cosy business ties to Russia, but no, Russia is probably not secretly orchestrating a huge push to get Trump elected. 

Brexit delayed. A UK court has ruled that Brexit must go before parliament prior to triggering the country's exit from the EU. Will this actually do much to stop the situation? Maybe not, but it will almost certainly lead to mud-slinging. For one, the pro-leave left (seemingly with silent support from Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn) hasn't had much of a spotlight until now -- but that could quickly change. 

Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour party (Flickr - Garry Knight)

Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour party (Flickr - Garry Knight)


Blues Buzz

Chimamanda on Hillary. How the world sees the US election. Zadie Smith is inspired by dancers. HRC  wrote an op-ed for The Root. Day of the Dead gentrification. Hexing the patriarchy. This Jewish woman is not a lampshade. The gay Vietnamese man running for the US Congress who would be the first representative born in a refugee camp. Muslim Americans are organizingVoting third party is the whitest thing you can do, Americans. Indigenous Canadians have undergone horrifying trauma. The gone girl on the train with the dragon tattoo. Fragmented Ferrante. More Ferrante. Excerpted Ferrante. Cinematic justice with Ava DuVernay. Men are complaining about the same contraception side effects that women have always dealt with -- but remember, the stakes are very, very different. Queer porn, safe sex. Further instructions for American writers in Bulgaria. Bye, Hitchcock. White gay men for Trump. On that note, why don't advertisers sell things to lesbians? Indigenous land claims could save the world. Michelle Tea graces us with her presence.


Regional Updates

South Asia:

  • Known rabble-rouser Imran Khan, of Pakistan's PTI party, decided to give protesting another go and caused quite a furor in Islamabad last week into this week. It was shut down.
  • Pakistan has accused India of running a "spy ring" in Islamabad, part of the ongoing escalation of accusations between the two countries.
  • Two US troops and at least 30 Afghans were killed in clashes with the Taliban this week.

Southeast & East Asia:

  • In South Korea, some very real drama is going down. A synopsis: no one is a fan of President Park Geun-hye, who is corrupt and also may be part of a cult. 
  • Malaysia and China are getting cosy
  • More than 30 coal miners were trapped underground after an explosion in near Chongqing, China. 

Europe & Eurasia:

  • Italy was hit by a massive earthquake.
  • Turkey's crackdown on independent media continues.
  • Jews want to immigrate from Britain to Germany because Brexit.
  • A well-known neo-Nazi killed a police officer in Hungary recently.
  • The Pirate party of Iceland made strong gains in the country's election, prompting its Prime Minister Sigurdur Ingi Johannsson to resign. Still, the status quo ultimately prevailed, apologies to pirate enthusiasts.

Middle East & North Africa:

Sub-Saharan Africa:



Quote of the Week:

"The State of Texas: Queso does not belong to you, Arkansas." - TX Monthly email title game going strong, followed by:
'Apparently Arkansas thinks it owns queso. This, of course, is objectively incorrect. Queso is Texas, Texas is queso. But someone forgot to tell Arkansas that. Writes the Wall Street Journal: "When it comes to food, Arkansas has long lived in the shadow of neighbors such as Texas, Louisiana and Tennessee, known respectively for their fajitas, gumbo and Memphis barbecue. Many Arkansans think cheese dip has finally given them something to call their own." Wait a minute, "cheese dip?" Nope. No way. The proper spelling is Q-U-E-S-O. Apparently Arkansas holds a "World Cheese Dip Championship," and, probably because they don't understand what the stuff is supposed to taste like, they once invited a Texan chef to be a judge. “I declined to go to Arkansas and participate in an event that misnamed chile con queso,” Robb Walsh told the Journal. Spoken like a true Texan. Meanwhile, the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism is apparently promoting something called the "Cheese Dip Trail," with nineteen stops throughout the state at places that serve cheese dip. We're pretty sure "Cheese Dip Trail" is actually the medical term for something that happens to your body after you're forced to eat vast amounts of sub-par queso, but whatever. ' " (Source of conflict)

Another quote for the road:

"'I'll have no man telling me to shave my fuckin’ legs. Shave yours." -- Adele, our queen

Blue Out: Hillary Clinton experiencing the Cubs winning is the joy we all deserve at least once in this life.