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The great Biggie Smalls once said: “Mo(re) money, mo(re) problems.” That’s also the prognosis of some economists about the $1.9 trillion stimulus package. Read about the new medicine against inflation that investors are now betting on today, meet the voice actors behind your favorite animations, ease into March Madness by reliving past surprises and visit a Martian environment without getting on a spaceship.
Joshua Eferighe, Reporter
News in a Minute
“Really Bad Day”
A Georgia police captain described the killing of eight people, mostly Asians, in Atlanta massage parlors Tuesday, as a case of the suspected gunman “having a really bad day.” The officer had last year posted racist anti-China messages on Facebook. Does the comment reflect an anti-Asian bias in the police force amid rising hate crimes against the community? Vote on Twitter or here. (Sources: NYT, NBC)
Russia has called back its ambassador to Washington after President Joe Biden warned that Moscow would “pay the price” for interfering in the November election. And across the Bering Strait from Russia, senior Biden administration officials will meet their Chinese counterparts in Alaska to try and reset tense ties. (Sources: France 24, OZY)
COVID Second Strike?
New research shows that recovered COVID-19 patients over the age of 65 are at high risk of contracting the virus a second time. Meanwhile, Tanzania’s COVID-19-denying President John Magufuli has died, officially of a heart attack, two weeks after his disappearance from public life, which prompted speculation that he might have contracted the virus. (Sources: Guardian, NPR)
Who’s got it right? The Federal Reserve has indicated it will keep interest rates close to zero until 2024, while Brazil’s central bank has raised interest rates for the first time in six years, fearing inflation. Read on for a deep dive on the inflation threat. (Sources: WSJ, FT)
Armed and dangerous, the robbers attacked a supermarket in Hong Kong. But they weren’t after the cash register. Instead, they stole 600 toilet paper rolls in the early days of the pandemic. But they had sh*tty luck, got caught and are now in jail.
Asking the right questions has the power to dissolve the barriers to creative thinking and channel the pursuit of solutions into new, accelerated pathways. A great question can ignite innovative thinking that is essential in our globalized, digitized and disruptive world. The six-week Inquiry-Driven Leadership online short course from the MIT Sloan School of Management teaches you to adopt a questioning approach to effectively identify and solve organizational problems.
Are you ready to unlock the power of catalytic questioning? Find out more about the program here.
A rare Vietnamese American trans actor in television, the 19-year-old Alexander represents Lev, a key character in the popular 2020 Playstation 4 video game The Last of Us Part II. But it’s as a no-holds barred defender of trans rights that he first gained prominence. In 2016, some University of California, Los Angeles, students held a sign that went viral and read “Transgenderism is a mental disorder!” Alexander, just 15 at the time, responded with a sign that was equally direct: “Shut the f*** up.”
Do Black people distrust the medical system? Do white doctors believe racist myths? Should there be all-Black hospitals? The racial inequities in America’s health care system have been laid bare over the past year, and they are crying out for creative solutions. Hear policymakers, medical professionals and patients on what needs to change today.
Is Inflation Back?
For decades now, major economies have not had to worry about inflation. Now the specter of this economic indicator is worrying some experts.
Amid economic crises, governments through history have printed more bills and devalued the currency to boost spending. But that has previously led to hyperinflation in countries from France to Zimbabwe, Germany to Venezuela. Your money buys you less than you’re used to. One solution? Cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin, for instance, has a 21 million cap on the number of coins that can be minted, so the value of crypto-investments can’t go below a certain level.
March Madness: Past Surprises
Before bingeing on this year’s March Madness, look back at past moments that set our hearts racing.
1. An Airball From Heaven
They were called “Phi Slama Jama.” The Houston Cougars, powered by future NBA greats Hakeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler, should have steamrolled plucky N.C. State Wolfpack in the 1983 NCAA championship. But the “Cardiac Pack” sprung perhaps the upset of the century when Lorenzo Charles dunked home Dereck Whittenburg’s long-range airball as time expired, sending Wolfpack Coach Jim Valvano racing around the court looking for someone to hug.
2. Ice in Her Veins
Prior to the 2018 NCAA tournament, Notre Dame’s women’s basketball team lost a staggering four players to ACL injuries. But they persevered to make the final four. That’s when Arike Ogunbowale’s magic came into play as she hit back toback game winners against UConn and Mississippi State to win it all for Notre Dame.
3. Birth of a Legend
Already a prolific scorer, Stephen Curry became a sensation in March 2008, when the Davidson player took down the sort of big-name teams that didn’t recruit him in high school. Before the tournament, the Wildcats hadn’t won a game in the dance since 1969, but with Curry, they upset Gonzaga, Georgetown and Wisconsin before falling to Kansas. During that stretch, he went bananas, averaging 34.3 points and shooting a lights-out 50.8 percent — a taste of a megastar NBA career to come.
If you missed them the last time around, the sneakers we can’t get enough of are back — and just in time for spring! These all-season low-tops are OZY’s favorite look for dressing up or down. But don’t wait around — these comfy kicks fly off the shelves and won’t be here for long.
Join OZY’s editors today at 6 p.m. PT/9 p.m. ET for a behind-the-scenes look at our editorial planning and in-depth analyses of the news of the day. Write to OZY reporter Joshua Eferighe below so we can get you into the room.
Are you the next Steve Jobs, Billie Eilish or Amanda Gorman? Help us help you with the OZY Genius Awards. Apply today for a prize worth up to $10,000 or nominate a brilliant college student.
Meteors have crashed into our planet since its birth — and some of them have left what are today among the most stunning natural wonders.
1. Monturaqui Crater
You’re excused for thinking you’re on Mars. Located south of the Salar de Atacama salt flat in Chile, it resembles the Bonneville crateron Mars. So if you’re craving a Mars expedition but closer to home, you know where to go.
2. Vredefort Crater
Surrounded by green hills, it’s the planet’s oldest and largest crater and was once 185 miles wide. The meteor that created the crater was twice the size of the rock that wiped out dinosaurs. Today, the crater in South Africa remains a treasure trove of revelations about the early days of our planet.
3. Karakul Crater
High in Tajikistan’s Pamir mountains, Karakul is a crater-created lake that has no external outlet, receives hardly any precipitation, yet remains alive — and salty.