“No thanks,” Scotland said. Yesterday’s historic independence referendum drew a record number of voters, the majority of whom — 55 percent — want to remain subjects of the United Kingdom. A radically altered and uncertain future has been set aside as nationalists march away from the polls piping a mournful tune. But “Better Together” campaigners and the pound sterling rallied on the news, and London — much maligned by the “Yes” campaign — rejoiced and plans to transfer more power to the Scottish parliament.
The Presidential Daily Brief
The U.S. Senate voted overwhelmingly to back President Obama’s plan to equip and train moderate Syrian rebels to help them fight Islamic State. Obama praised the support, saying it “shows the world that Americans are united in confronting the threat.” Meanwhile, another IS captive, British journalist John Cantlie, appeared in an IS video criticizing America and Britain. Cantlie, who vanished in 2012, also said the media was trying to “drag the public back to the abyss of another war.”
A feeding frenzy awaits. China’s online retail juggernaut raised $21.8 billion in its initial public offering yesterday, with stocks priced at an impressive $68. This gives the company — started by teacher Jack Ma in his apartment 15 years ago — a market valuation of $167.6 billion, vaulting it past Amazon and eBay. Its shares, which begin trading today on the NYSE, could raise as much as $25 billion, making “BABA” the largest listing ever.
A Florida man shot dead his six grandchildren, aged three months to 11 years, and their mom before taking his own life. Don Spirit, 51, called police in the rural community of Bell to report that he’d “injured someone.” He killed himself after police arrived. Spirit was jailed for three years after accidentally shooting and killing his young son during a 2001 hunting trip. The motive is unclear, but yesterday’s tragedy is certain to reignite rancor over guns.
Australia boosts parliament security in wake of terror alert. (AFP)
Larry Ellison steps down as Oracle CEO. (CNN Money)
Shiite rebels shell Yemeni state TV and residents flee. (Reuters)
56 million credit cards at risk in Home Depot hack. (USA Today)
Sierra Leone launches three-day Ebola lockdown. (BBC)
Gidget has plenty to write home about, but no way to get there. The seven-year-old Jack Russell terrier went missing from her family home near Philadelphia four months ago and was found ambling along a suburban road near Portland, Oregon. A microchip scan identified her Pennsylvania owner. How Gidget made the nearly 3,000-mile incredible journey remains a mystery, as does her method for getting home. Gidget’s owner can’t afford to fetch her, so animal authorities are begging for help.
Two major doughnut chains are no longer glazing over the issue. Dunkin’ Donuts and Krispy Kreme have responded to environmentalists’ sweet-talking campaigns with pledges to reform their use of palm oil, essential in deep-frying the irresistible rings. Much of the world’s supply comes from planet-harming deforestation schemes, but both firms have pledged to check their palm oil sources carefully in the future. Doughnuts may not be terribly healthy, but they’re helping the rainforest out of a sticky situation.
American parents may be embroiled in a cultural war, but they’re willing to take responsibility for it. Folks at either end of the political spectrum have very different priorities when it comes to raising children, a study has found. Conservatives focus on religion and hard work, while curiosity, tolerance and creativity come last. Liberals, meanwhile, emphasize helping others and empathy, while playing down religious obedience. But they’re all willing to own up to the differences: Being responsible is the No. 1 priority for both sides.
She was plagued by flashbacks, suicidal thoughts and nightmares for months after her husband’s assassination, downing vodka as a means of escape, according to a new book. Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis: The Untold Story, by Barbara Leaming, suggests the former first lady was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. The worst of it? Jackie was convinced she could’ve saved her husband’s life: “I could have pulled him down, and then the second shot would not have hit him.”
The electrifying Devin Hester broke an NFL record last night, scoring his 20th touchdown return. The fleet-footed Falcon cradled a Buccaneer punt and raced 62 yards, earning a “BEST EVER” Tweet from Deion “Prime Time” Sanders, the previous record holder, who was watching as part of the CBS/NFL Thursday Night Football crew. In tribute, Hester crossed the goal line with high steps, as Sanders used to. But flair is unsportsmanlike these days, so the refs dinged him with a 15-yard penalty.