Can they stem the violence? The St. Louis suburb — and the rest of the county — went into lockdown mode yesterday after a young man, 18, was injured in a shootout with police during Sunday’s demonstration marking the anniversary of Michael Brown’s death. Such “acts of violence will not be tolerated,” County Executive Steve Stenger said. Several, meanwhile, were arrested for civil disobedience at a courthouse, and officers detained more protesters who gathered along West Florissant Avenue. The injured teen, meanwhile, remains hospitalized and faces charges in connection with Sunday’s shooting.
The Presidential Daily Brief
It’s purring, while others snarl. Reactor No. 1 at the Sendai power plant was stirred back to life early today, ending a two-year nuclear hiatus sparked by public fears following the 2011 Fukushima disaster. Operator Kyushu Electric Power says the plant will begin generating power on August 14. Nearly 60 percent of Japan is opposed to the resurrection of nuclear power, but Prime Minister Shinzo Abe believes it can help boost the economy and is looking forward to a second Sendai reactor springing to life in October.
Their financial philosophy: Less is more. Beijing’s central bank, responding to a sharp decline in exports and falling producer prices, devalued the tightly controlled yuan today, setting its official guidance rate down by nearly 2 percent. It said its “one-off depreciation” aimed to make the exchange rate more market-oriented, but it was the biggest sudden devaluation in two decades. The news took global markets by surprise, leaving many to ponder China’s timing — and its ability to consume oil, sending U.S. oil prices to a six year low.
Could these be the cause of the crash? Dutch investigators say they’ve found what may be pieces of a Russian missile in the wreckage of flight MH17, which went down over Ukraine last July carrying 298 people, two-thirds of whom were Dutch nationals. Since then, suspicion has mounted that the plane was shot down by pro-Russian rebels supplied by Vladimir Putin’s government — though Russia has maintained that Ukraine’s military was probably to blame. The Joint Investigation Team is calling for more scrutiny of the crash artifacts to make a positive identification.
They’ve learned the ABCs of big business. The Internet giant is rebranding itself by becoming the largest wholly owned subsidiary of new parent firm Alphabet. YouTube, Android and apps will remain under Google, while newer entities and research divisions fall under the new holding company. The change promotes Larry Page to chief executive of Alphabet and VP Sundar Pichai to CEO of Google. Stocks soared more than 6 percent on news of the restructuring, which aims to boost flexibility for spinning off and divesting itself of companies as needed.
Greece agrees to ‘technical deal’ for bailout. (WSJ) sub
Iraqi parliament adopts anti-corruption reforms. (DW)
Rick Perry stops paying campaign staff. (Washington Post)
American rowers felled by bacteria at Rio Olympics trial run. (The Guardian)
U.S. Coast Guard brings in $1 billion in confiscated drugs. (Al Jazeera)
Australia sets new target for emissions. (BBC)
This could cramp the Donald’s style. After he commented that moderator Megyn Kelly had ”blood coming out of her wherever” during the first GOP debate, feminist writer Amber Gordon tweeted #periodsarenotaninsult and unleashed a flow of gleeful snark from people across the internet. While some just wanted to update the presidential candidate on their cycles, others advocated for causes that provide menstrual products for poor women — and others are now using Trump’s name as the new euphemism for what’s delicately referred to as Shark Week.
Now he wants to reboot your DNA. The Microsoft founder has joined a team of 13 other investors — including the likes of Google Ventures and T. Rowe Price — to pour $120 million into a company that’s researching ways to modify genetic mutations behind some 5,000 diseases. Editas Medicine will use the funds to develop a gene-editing method for use in opthalmology and oncology but says it will be a lengthy and expensive process. The research, if successful, offers hope for better health and big financial returns.
It’s looking to sweeten the deal. The beverage giant hopes that by replacing the much-maligned sugar substitute with sucralose it can differentiate itself from other diet sodas — and possibly reverse declining sales that aspartame-laced drinks have suffered in recent years. Many are predicting at least an initial sales bump in response to the rebranding, with the reconfigured drinks hitting stores this week. But company execs hope the new taste, which they say isn’t too different, will put Pepsi back on top of the soda world.
Need your umbrella? Apps like Weathernews, a Japanese outfit, are forging a reputation for super-accurate predictions based on both crowd observations and data sensed or collected via smartphones. Phone apps collect information for meteorologists from our social posts — it’s raining in Paris! — incorporating metrics like air pressure and temperature. Weathernews has doled out thousands of weather sensors to a fraction of its six million users … all to help you avoid getting caught in the rain.
They’re going for the kill. Though Leonardo DiCaprio has been attached to the long-awaited film adaptation of the book Devil in the White City since 2010, Martin Scorsese has just jumped aboard for the duo’s sixth collaboration. The book tells the story of H.H. Holmes — DiCaprio’s character — who killed as many as 200 people. While Paramount’s owned and released the rights to the adaptation twice before, and recently won them again at auction, many hope this powerhouse team will help ensure the third time’s a charm.
He wants a real commitment. Agent Rich Paul says Tristan Thompson will leave Cleveland unless he gets a multi-year contract. The Cavaliers forward has been asking for a near-maximum of $94 million over five years. But the team has come back with an unverified, smaller offer for the 24-year-old, who had a significant role in the playoffs after star Kevin Love’s injury. No decision is expected until next month, but a one-year qualifying offer of $6.8 million would make Thompson an unrestricted free agent next summer.