Bold start. Smooth finish. The newsletter that interesting people love.
Happy Monday! I’m excited about watching the latest season of The Crown. But it’s not just royal descendants who have colorful lives. Today you’ll meet a gigolo-loving German heiress and a race car-driving Brazilian scion who’re the business world’s king- and queen-in-waiting. You’ll also name and shame water abusers. Check out a free gift that’ll help your loved ones make sense of 2020 and start planning your Thanksgiving weekend watch-list. And read to the end for the answer to Thursday’s quiz.
It was a brief, four-year break from America’s traditional global role, and it’s now over: That’s the message from President-elect Joe Biden. He plans to appoint former senior diplomat Antony Blinken, a foreign policy centrist, as his secretary of state. Meanwhile, New Jersey’s ex-Gov. Chris Christie, a longtime ally of President Donald Trump, called on the outgoing leader to concede the election. (Sources: WSJ, CNN)
2. December Date
It’s the pinprick the world’s been waiting for. The U.S., U.K. and Germany are all poised to start administering COVID-19 vaccines by next month, and Spain by January, though it’s unclear how many people will receive shots in the first phase. (Source: Guardian)
3. Burning Rage
Protesters in Guatemala set the country’s Congress building on fire Sunday demanding a rollback of budget cuts, while demonstrators in Brazil continued rallying against the killing of a Black man by supermarket security guards. And in Ethiopia, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has warned rebels in the Tigray region they must surrender in 72 hours or face a military assault. (Sources: Al Jazeera, France 24, BBC)
4. The Name is Bond …
... Bad bonds. China’s financial regulators are planning to shake and stir bond defaulters after recent instances of giant state-owned enterprises evading their dues. It’s not all bad news though — at least for China: Saudi Arabian oil giant Aramco plans to issue yuan-denominated bonds in a nod to the Asian giant’s growing financial heft. (Sources: South China Morning Post, Nikkei)
OZY and Chevrolet are teaming up for an innovative discussion, taking on the toughest questions in our society today. Hosted by Carlos Watson, OZY’s co-founder and winner of multiple Emmy Awards, who will be joined by key leaders from across the country, we’re having pointed conversations to identify problems and equip you with solutions. Put aside the shouting matches and talking heads, and be an ally: Join us Tuesday, Dec. 8, on YouTube for a conversation you won’t want to miss.
The shy 52-year-oldloves riding horses. Now he must ride out a spate of controversies to take South Korea's biggest firm to new heights after his father, former Samsung Chairman Lee Kun-hee, passed away in October. It won’t be easy.Jae-yong was sentenced to five years in prison in 2017, convicted of bribing South Korea’s then-President Park Geun-hye — who was impeached and jailed — but Jae-yong's sentence was suspended. And his father Kun-hee was twice pardoned after being convicted of corruption too. Yet storm clouds are gathering afresh; In September, prosecutors indicted Jae-yong again. Has the family's legal luck run out?
The daughter of Africa's richest man, Aliko Dangote, Halima is rapidly emerging as the continent's most influential businesswoman. Last November, she was appointed group executive director for commercial operations at her father's conglomerate, Dangote Industries Limited. But she’s also not scared of showing her fun side, nearly breaking into song while delivering a speech in New York last year.
4. Pedro Paulo Diniz
He knows how to race, but does he know how to win? The lean 50-year-old Brazilian with salt-and-pepper hair is aformer Formula One driver who never had success racing cars but is in line to inherit father Abilio dos Santos Diniz's $2.2 billion retail empire. Now he's trying to convince Brazil's farmers to go organic.
Here’s a teaser. This Indian industrialist inherited a liquor business and expanded it to airlines, F1 and more. Now he’s absconding from the law. Who is he?
At a time coastal cities are trying to retreat to higher ground to escape floods, the Colombian Caribbean port city of Barranquilla is expanding near the Magdalena River and aggressively planting trees to protect that development. The argument? Humankind can only recede so much from the shores. Will this prove to be a revolutionary approach or a disaster? Read more on OZY.
2. Levee Was Dry
Or at least, it’ll keep New York City dry. America’s largest urban hub is building five miles of levees across Staten Island, and is raising embankments along the eastern Manhattan coastline, at a total cost of more than $2 billion, by 2024 — but will that be too late? Read more on OZY.
3. Water Shaming
Don’t wait until the planet goes down the toilet. Battling repeated water shortage crises, Cape Town is publishing maps pinpointing addresses that consume excess water — sparking a name-and-shame campaign that’s proving effective. The city nearly halved its water consumption between 2015 and 2018. Read more on OZY.
It’s that time of the year — but this is no ordinary year. You can make it better with innovative gifts that actually put a smile on faces.
Collegestudents often pay a part of their loans by working part-time. With the economy shuttered for months and jobs hard to find in 2020, why don’t you pay a month’s loan for a loved one and help reduce their debt? It turns out 70 percent of students would prefer that to a regular gift of equal value.
2. 2020’s Best Show
The most thoughtful gifts can be free. To help your loved ones make sense of this madcap year — and laugh while they’re at it — point them to The Carlos Watson Show. We kick off season two later today with Valerie Jarrett, who led former President Barack Obama's transition and shares insights on what Biden’s might look like. Check out past episodes with comedians, sports stars, politicos, business icons, actors and more. It’s the definition of binge-worthy.
The titular character, Amiko falls head over heels in love with cool boy Aomi who later shatters her dreams and starts living with another girl whom Amiko believes is the "embodiment of mass culture." Amiko’s cynical and self-deprecating monologues make this Japanese movie a one-of-a-kind stand-up on life.
What’s the shortest distance race in which Ethiopia has won an Olympic medal? That’s what we asked on Thursday. The answer: the 3,000-meter steeplechase, in which Sofia Assefa won the women’s silver in 2012 and Eshetu Tura won the men’s bronze in 1980.