Everything’s winding down, isn’t it? People hate winter and I love it, a potential byproduct of growing up in heat and humidity. I worshipped snow in Massachusetts, in Geneva, and now in D.C., and it came this week, right in the middle of everything — sudden good news for my family, surprises at work, last-minute travel, ongoing ups and downs relating to the election (American elections never end, they only lull at times.) I’m ready for the cold, even though I wish autumn hadn’t passed over in a span of hours, as it’s prone to in D.C. I’ll be in New Orleans next week (still working, just…in New Orleans), and then speeding towards the end of the year, with a trip to El Paso and Albuquerque in there, for no reason at all other than that I’ve decided to go to El Paso and Albuquerque. This year started so abruptly and now it’s going, going, gone, just like the snow on D.C. streets that arrived in a flurry and now it’s all melted, just like that.
What Beto won. A blue wave in Kansas? My Brilliant Friend! Finding the best burger place in America and then killing it: culture journalism and accountability at its finest. What it’s like to be rejected by your religious family. Amazon is coming to New York City and the D.C. area to completely and totally fuck everything. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is changing how politics is conveyed to young people, women, and people of color — which is huge. I, a journalist, endorse no politicians, but there is something painfully endearing about this Beto O’Roruke Medium post about…a jog.
Me: A green ripple in Texas has major implications, both locally and nationally. California’s farmworkers are still at work despite deadly wildfires. A landmark industry vs. industry lawsuit sees West Coast crab fishers pursuing climate change accountability from 30 fossil fuel companies. Mass-school closures across California come as the death toll from wildfires rises dramatically. Republicans and Democrats alike waffle on climate action — will Green New Deal lawmakers change that?
Elsewhere: California’s deadly, all-consuming blaze. The incarcerated firefighters saving California at great personal cost. Your children’s Yellowstone, radically altered. Virginia regulators are growing uneasy about the Atlantic Coast Pipeline’s potential impact on a Black community. Will Amazon protect Queens from climate change? My wonderful editor concluded her heartbreaking coverage of post-Florence North Carolina this week with this piece on the thousands of people newly displaced by the storm’s impacts. A Russian village swallowed by sand.
Around the Globe
Africa. The very ill president of Gabon is in Saudi Arabia for treatment. A precarious coalition in Congo appears to be falling apart. The country is also in the midst of another Ebola outbreak and 8 U.N. peacekeepers have been killed. In Anglophone Cameroon, violence continues. The E.U. may move away from ties with Tanzania amid widespread crackdowns on human rights. At least 20 people were killed as car bombs erupted in Mogadishu earlier this week.
Americas. Canada would like teenagers to not smoke weed, thanks. An Argentine submarine that vanished with 44 people on board appears to be found. International students aren’t coming to the U.S. Marriage equality, coming to Costa Rica! The caravan is still coming, full of people desperately seeking a better life. Brazil-Cuba relations disintegrated further this week. Florida, forever the site of election disasters historic and contemporary. The U.S. eyes targeting Julian Assange.
Asia. It’s that time of year again: fighting has broken out in Gaza and Israel’s right-wing defense minister resigned. New evidence has emerged indicating what we knew: that the highest rungs of Saudi government knew about the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Peace in Japanese-Russo relations? Bangladesh’s efforts to return minority Rohingya refugees to Burma didn’t go well.
Europe. From France, a denouncement of nationalism. The latest Brexit news is that a deal was reached….and then Theresa May’s cabinet had a meltdown. The European Commission is set to discipline Italy over its budget. Massive protests over consent and rape culture ripped through Ireland this week.
Spoken & Written
“I’ve been asking myself what the other side of this looks like. How do I do this better? Is there a way to celebrate a place without the possibility of destroying it? Or is this just what we are now -- a horde with a checklist and a camera phone, intent on self-producing the destruction of anything left that feels real, one Instagram story at a time?” — Kevin Alexander
A lot of lists — the end of the year is coming! | Get out if you can — I’ll be working remotely in New Orleans next week and I can’t wait to be back in the South.