Bold start. Smooth finish. The newsletter that interesting people love.
Good morning! Or, if you’re a politics junkie and have been up all night waiting for the results of Senate runoff races: Go to bed! Everyone else, keep reading for a daring vaccine caper, a daring helicopter caper, a daring … tangerine … caper? The last one is a stretch. I just love capers, OK?
Democrat Raphael Warnock has won a Georgia Senate runoff that makes him the first Black Democrat to represent a former Confederate state in the upper house of Congress. Jon Ossoff, also a Democrat, is leading in Georgia’s other Senate runoff. A win for him would turn the Senate blue. And if LeBron James has his way, Republican Kelly Loeffler — who lost to Warnock — might also lose the Atlanta Dream, the WNBA team she owns. James has put in an ownership bid for the team. Did President Donald Trump’s challenge to the credibility of elections cost the GOP? Vote on Twitter. (Sources: WaPo, CBS)
2. Knock Knock; WHO’s There
China has denied entry to a team of World Health Organization investigators hoping to explore the origins and early days of the COVID-19 pandemic in Wuhan. Meanwhile, dozens of pro-democracy figures were arrested in Hong Kong under the recent controversial national security law. (Sources: BBC, CNN)
3. No Consequences
A Kenosha, Wisconsin, prosecutor announced yesterday that he won’t even file charges against the officer who shot and partially paralyzed Jacob Blake while Blake’s three children watched. “I feel in many ways completely inadequate for this moment,” Michael Gravely, Kenosha's district attorney said, calling for peace and arguing that the officers had a strong case for self-defense. (Sources: NYT, NBC)
4. Crude Move
TheSaudi Arabia-led oil cartel OPEC and a Russia-driven group of crude producers agreed Tuesday to keep output flat — only for Riyadh to announce a decision later in the day to cut its oil production by a million barrels per day. Oil prices rose sharply despite the economic uncertainty caused by COVID-19. (Source: WSJ)
Better Inocu-late Than Never
It’s important to be able to pivot in a crisis, whether that’s oil production … or something far more important like vaccines.
A freezer failure in California Monday saw public health officials scramble to distribute 830 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine to nursing homes, jails and emergency clinics within two hours, after which those shots would have been useless. They eventually vaccinated more people than in the previous two-and-a-half weeks.
In times like these, no one wants to spend hours picking an outfit for a 30-minute Zoom meeting or deciding if grocery stores require “real pants.” Our friends at Outerknown found a solution that solves all these problems: the Station Jumpsuit. This best-selling jumpsuit has long sleeves to keep you warm through fall and winter, and with just one zip you’ll have a complete, fashionable outfit. An effortless, go-to look so comfortable that you’ll never want to take it off … could it get any better? With the code OKOZY, you can get Outerknown’s Station Jumpsuit with an extra 20 percent off!
When he was a child, he watched Ethiopian forces drive out would-be colonizers — and lost his best friend to the violence. It set him on a path as a global peacemaker, who has worked in Africa, Ireland and the Middle East. Along the way, the bespectacled Isaac learned 17 languages. But the retired Harvard professor’s experience has never been more relevant than today, as his country — where he mediated a peace deal in 2010 — grapples with a new civil war.
2. Carlota Perez
A British Venezuelan powerhouse, this economist thinks consumerism and environmentalism don’t need to be decoupled — but that a less materialistic future is possible if people learn to aspire to a new understanding of what it means to have a “good life,” rather than feeling guilty. Oh, and she doesn’t mind taking on autocrats, calling Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro a “petty dictator” on Twitter.
3. Michelle vanDellen
The social psychologist behind PsyCorona, the world’s biggest behavior study regarding the pandemic, has collected data on 60,000 people as she attempts to draw conclusions about how humanity is handling the crisis. But don’t expect quick bites and fast takeaways from the University of Georgia professor. She knows her work’s relevance — and she won’t compromise on research rigor. Read more on OZY.
Today on ‘The Carlos Watson Show’
Singer-songwriter Sevyn Streeter shares how she expresses herself through her music and opens up about the R&B queens who made her who she is today. Plus: see what happens when she improvises songs about 2020, tequila and a serenade for Carlos. Watch later today.
Missing the good old days? We do too. Luckily, our friends at Cariuma have captured the nostalgic, effortlessly cool style we all crave with their brand-new CATIBA Pro. Beyond its attractive vintage style, the CATIBA Pro is built for an active lifestyle and has maximum durability without sacrificing comfort.
When far-right radical and convicted Holocaust denier Jean-Marie Le Pen came in second in the country’s first-round presidential race, it was a shock to the nation. But the runoff was a different story: Left and right mobilized against Le Pen — the father of modern-day contender Marine Le Pen — to hand Jacque Chirac victory with more than 82 percent of the vote.
2. Zimbabwe, 2008
According to Morgan Tsvangirai, he beat ruling dictator Robert Mugabe outright in the first round of the 2008 elections. But Mugabe disagreed, saying that while Tsvangirai had come out ahead, he only got 48 percent of the vote. During the runoff campaign, Tsvangirai dropped out of the race, citing widespread violence that had killed scores of people. His name stayed on the ballot, but Mugabe walked away with upwards of 85 percent of the final vote.
3. Louisiana, 1989
Former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke has been banned from Twitter and thrown out of Italy. But in the late 80s, Louisianans elected him to their statehouse by a margin of 227 votes in a runoff with moderate Republican John Treen, who had the backing of the Republican establishment … but not of the 99.6 percent white district Duke won over.
Enough politics: Let’s talk about love. These true stories are mostly shocking with a little “aww.”
Lisa Carver fell in love with her handsome fiancé’s gold-flecked brown eyes. Not quite so easy to love: The fact that he was also engaged to four other women — at the same time — and was managing to satisfy them all thanks to a case of sex addiction. Read more on OZY.
Born intersex in India, Sweety Sahu joined a community of people recognized as a third gender, known as kinnar, and started working as a bar dancer. But when they fell in love with a client, they couldn’t bring themselves to reveal their true self. One night, the man asked if Sahu would come over to his place. Sahu knew it was over. Read more on OZY.
3. Get the Chopper
When Lucy Dudko and John Killick met in 1995, they had no idea that less than five years later she’d be busting him out of an Australian prison in a hijacked helicopter, leading to weeks on the run and eventual prison time. Read more on OZY.
People think January is the month of dieting. Those people are wrong! (Desserts forever!)
1. Ring Out the Old
Across Latin America today, Christians will celebrate epiphany, or King’s Day, with a rosca de reyes. This orange-flavored bread, usually curled into a circle, is decorated with dried fruit to add to the winter festiveness.
2. Nuts About This
Simple and sugary, Sudanese peanut macaroons (aka ful sudani) take less than half an hour to make, using just peanuts, vanilla, salt, powdered sugar and egg whites. Pair them with cinnamon tea — and save the egg yolks you don’t use for chocolate mousse later.
3. Orange You Glad
New Year’s is past, but we’re still celebrating — and trying to figure out what to do with all this in-season citrus. How about this Russian New Year’s dessert, a tangerine pie that packages your daily vitamin C inside a fancy crust?
What dessert are you craving most as you read this?