The Boys & Girls Clubs of Southern Maine is expanding after buying two properties in Portland.
- The Telegraph
Game of Thrones stars Kit Harington and Rose Leslie have won a battle to build a new moat wall at their home, despite Historic England saying it could lead to the loss of ancient remains and artefacts. The celebrity couple feared a garden would slide into the moat at their farmhouse in Suffolk after part of the existing 6ft wall collapsed. They said the collapse was putting structural pressure on a small footbridge across the moat and other parts of the wall were suffering “significant lean”. The actors, both 34, asked for permission to carry out urgent repairs, including building a new wall with a concrete core “to ensure the long-term stability and safeguard against future problems”. However, conservation body Historic England raised concerns that the work could lead to the loss of ancient remains and artefacts. The heritage organisation cited a 2019 study that said the 15th-century house and its grounds had “a high potential for medieval and post-medieval archaeology”.
- Business Insider
Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the US needs to "fully understand what happened in order to have the best shot possible to prevent it from happening again."
The "Rocky" star moved to Palm Beach at the end of last year and has reportedly been spotted by locals visiting the luxurious Florida resort.
- Business Insider
Ever Given ship forbidden to leave the Suez Canal until its owners pay up to $1 billion in compensation for the chaos it caused
The Japanese-owned container ship might have been freed from the banks of the Suez Canal but is now embroiled in a row over compensation.
- Business Insider
Trump spent several minutes insulting 'dumb son of a b---h' Mitch McConnell during a rambling speech to GOP donors at Mar-a-Lago, say reports
Former President Donald Trump took aim at Senate Minority Leader for his lack of support during his February impeachment trial, Politico reported.
- Business Insider
Vice President Mike Pence pleaded with the acting defense secretary to 'clear the Capitol' as pro-Trump rioters overran the building, report says
The Associated Press obtained an internal Pentagon document that detailed the call, which came after rioters had overrun the building.
- The Week
Prince Philip, the late husband of the United Kingdom's Queen Elizabeth II, will be laid to rest next Saturday, Buckingham Palace has announced. The ceremony, which will take place at St. George's Chapel in Windsor, will reportedly contain many traditional customs associated with the death of a royal family member; however, attendance will be scaled down because of COVID-19 restrictions. The Duke of Edinburgh, who died Friday morning at 99, will not lie in state anywhere accessible to the public so as not to draw oversized crowds, but the funeral will be televised, and eight days of national mourning will precede the event. A Land Rover will carry the duke's coffin from Windsor Castle to St. George's, a nod to his preference for driving himself without a chauffeur, CNN notes. Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex and Prince Philip's grandson, will travel from the United States to the U.K. for the funeral. His wife Meghan Markle, who is pregnant, will remain at their home on the advice of her doctor. Read more at CNN and BBC. More stories from theweek.com7 brutally funny cartoons about Mitch McConnell's corporate hypocrisyYou should start a keyhole gardenHow red states silence urban voters
The chief of an indigenous group in the South Pacific island of Vanuatu that venerated Prince Philip offered condolences to Britain's royal family on Sunday and recalled meeting the late prince during a visit to England. "The connection between the people on the Island of Tanna and the English people is very strong," said Chief Yapa of Ikunala village, Tanna. "We are sending condolence messages to the royal family and the people of England."
- Business Insider
The party of big business has taken to policing corporate America's speech now, and that's not going to change anytime soon.
- Business Insider
Luxury ships from the Royal Caribbean and Carnival Cruise lines sail to the rescue and evacuate islanders in the path of a volcano eruption
Saint Vincent's National Emergency Management Organisation has since tweeted that La Soufrière volcano has erupted.
Prince Philip died at age 99 on Friday. Born Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, he and Queen Elizabeth II were cousins through Queen Victoria.
- Associated Press
Iran on Sunday described a blackout at its underground Natanz atomic facility an act of “nuclear terrorism,” raising regional tensions. Ali Akbar Salehi, the head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, stopped short of directly blaming anyone for the incident. Many Israeli media outlets offered the same assessment that a cyberattack darkened Natanz and damaged a facility that is home to sensitive centrifuges.
- Business Insider
David Hogg is giving up pillow entrepreneurship and returning to gun-control activism. His company Good Pillow aimed to rival the MyPillow brand.
David Hogg, an activist and entrepreneur, announced on Twitter that he is permanently stepping away from Good Pillow.
- The Telegraph
The island tribe in the South Pacific nation of Vanuatu that has for decades worshiped the Duke of Edinburgh as a deity will hold a day of mourning and feasting on Monday. Hundreds of people are expected to converge on the rainforest village of Yaohnanen on the island of Tanna to pay their respects to Prince Philip after he died on Friday at the age of 99. The village is the focus of a visionary movement in which Philip is viewed as a god, a pale-skinned mountain spirit who left Tanna decades ago to seek a rich and powerful woman to marry. The belief was reinforced during the colonial era when islanders saw the respect that was accorded to Prince Philip, whose portrait hung in government offices and who visited what was then an Anglo-French colony, the New Hebrides, in 1974. The prince was supposed to have returned to the island bringing wealth and wisdom but those hopes, which persisted for decades, have now been dashed. Islanders, who live in thatched huts and hunt wild pigs and flying foxes in the forest, have been left grief-stricken by the death of the prince, said Jean-Pascal Wahé of the Vanuatu Cultural Centre, a national museum of anthropology.
Ecuadoreans will vote in a presidential runoff on Sunday to decide whether to maintain the pro-market policies of the last four years or return to the socialism of the preceding decade as the Andean country seeks to revive its stagnant economy. Left-wing economist Andres Arauz won the first round of the election in February, garnering almost 33% of the vote, on promises of generous cash handouts and a resumption of the socialist policies of his mentor, former President Rafael Correa. Arauz's rival, banker and third-time presidential candidate Guillermo Lasso, is promising to create jobs through foreign investment and financial support for the agricultural sector.
- The New York Times
In the years since she says extraterrestrial beings took her from her suburban yard outside Rochester, New York, Virginia Stringfellow has kept her story mostly within a close-knit community of people who say they have also encountered UFOs. But over the past year, that pool has grown: Each of her monthly locals-only UFO meetups average about five new people who believe they have seen a mysterious object in the sky — not including about 50 out-of-towners who have tried to join. “I have to turn away people,” said Stringfellow, 75. Sign up for The Morning newsletter from the New York Times Sightings of unidentified objects in 2020 nearly doubled in New York from the previous year, to about 300, according to data compiled by the National UFO Reporting Center, or NUFORC. They also rose by about 1,000 nationwide, to more than 7,200 sightings. But according to ufologists (pronounced “yoof-ologists”), as those who study the phenomena call themselves, the trend is not necessarily the result of an alien invasion. Rather, it was probably caused in part by another invader: the coronavirus. Pushed to stay home by lockdown restrictions, many found themselves with more time to look up. In New York, droves of urbanites fleeing the virus took up residence in places such as the Catskills and the Adirondacks, where skies are largely free from light pollution. About a quarter of the reports nationally came in March and April of last year, when lockdowns were at their most strict. Glimmers wobbling across the sky have gone viral on TikTok, racking up millions of views. Longtime UFO enthusiasts say the pandemic clearly has more people scanning the night skies. But there is another reason that the public might be newly receptive to the idea that the flicker on the horizon is worth reporting: The Pentagon revealed over the summer that it would soon convene a new task force to investigate so-called “unidentified aerial phenomena” observed from military aircraft. Last year, it declassified three videos of such sightings. In addition, the $2.3 trillion appropriations package signed late last year by then-President Donald Trump includes a provision that the secretary of defense and director of national intelligence collaborate on a UFO report and release it to the public. “It’s encouraging to many of us in the field of ufology that the government is willing to confirm that they are aware of these circumstances, that they are conceding that people are reporting these events,” said NUFORC director Peter Davenport. Previously, he said, the government appeared to have believed “that people like me are just crazy — and we’re not.” Davenport and his peers are quick to point out that any uptick in sightings does not mean a spike in flying saucers. Unidentified flying objects are just that — airborne phenomena that have not yet been identified. The vast majority of sightings called in to the reporting center are swiftly determined to be things such as birds, bats, satellites, planes and drones, he said. A number of sightings last year were quickly identified as satellites launched by SpaceX, Elon Musk’s space-exploration initiative that conducted test runs over northern Idaho last year. One viral TikTok video of an object hovering in New Jersey last year turned out to be a Goodyear blimp. “A skilled UFO investigator is one of the most skeptical people around,” Davenport said. Only a small fraction of reports scrutinized by NUFORC, which is based in Washington state, are truly not identifiable. That proportion has not changed even as more calls have poured in, according to Davenport. Ufologists are frequently prickly when it comes to the subject of apparent increases in UFO sightings, warning that bumps occur with regularity over the years, and are a favorite subject of news reports. The coverage itself may also drive up sightings, they warn. In New York, as city dwellers have tried to escape the virus by relocating to the countryside, they have driven up rural sightings, said Chris DePerno, assistant director of the New York state branch of the Mutual UFO Network, a nonprofit organization that uses civilian investigators to study reports of UFOs. Absent urban light pollution, he said, the transplants are taking new notice of the night sky and whatever may be in it. “They come up toward the Hudson Valley — it’s beautiful up there, you get clear skies and then all of a sudden you see this thing zipping through the sky, that stopped on a dime, goes straight up, takes off again, stops, comes back. We’re talking incredible speeds,” said DePerno, a retired police detective. “With the COVID thing, more people are looking up.” The seeming uptick in reports has come as a relief to some who say they’ve seen mysterious floating craft but feared they were alone. “Because of the Pentagon being outed, there is more news now, there is more reporting now,” said Stringfellow, who goes by Cookie. “People aren’t so afraid to say, ‘Oh, jeez, I was in the woods now, or I was by the lake, and this thing came down.’” But for a 65-year-old retired New York State Park Police officer from Granville (along the state border with Vermont) who asked not to be named because he worried about going public with his belief in UFOs and extraterrestrial life, full acceptance still feels a ways off. The lingering fear of ridicule may be suppressing the true numbers of UFO sightings, he suggested; there might, in fact, be more out there. He urged city folks to stay calm should they see a UFO, just as he did one evening about 30 years ago, when, he said, he spotted a football-fields-long object floating beside the Taconic State Parkway as he finished a patrol shift. And most important, he said, people should not let fear of being mocked prevent them from reporting what they see. If enough people report UFOs when they see them, he said, the world will believe they are telling the truth. This article originally appeared in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company
- Business Insider
Creator of a scam PAC that targeted Trump supporters has been charged with defrauding the Paycheck Protection Program
Authorities say that James Kyle Bell duped Trump supporters into giving to his PAC and then presented false tax documents to get a PPP loan.
- The Telegraph
The heavily pregnant Duchess of Sussex will not attend the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral on the advice of her doctors, a Buckingham Palace spokesperson confirmed on Saturday, although Prince Harry is hoping to arrive back in the UK as early as Sunday. Prince Harry scrambled to arrange a flight as soon as he was informed of the death of his grandfather, anxious to be alongside his family as they mourn their patriarch, though he must obey Covid travel rules which means he will have to self-isolate on arrival. Meghan, 39, is due to begin maternity leave in around four weeks, with the couple’s second child, a daughter, thought to be due in June. With tensions in the family remaining high after the couple’s explosive interview with Oprah Winfrey, there had already been speculation that the Duchess would decide to remain in California rather than risk overshadowing the sombre occasion. The prospect that the Duke might not have flown back to London for the funeral was never on the cards, sources insisted, stressing that he had remained in close contact with his relatives. “He has spoken to everyone over the last 24 hours,” one said. “They are his family.”
- Fort Worth Star-Telegram
The Rangers and Padres have a brief history with ‘unwritten rules’
- The Daily Beast
Ian Tuttle/GettyFor years, any time LeVar Burton would run into Alex Trebek—at the Daytime Emmys or elsewhere—he would pester the Jeopardy! host with one idea: do a celebrity tournament.“I was completely and totally selfish and self serving in my desire,” the Star Trek: The Next Generation actor and Reading Rainbow host admitted in an interview with The Daily Beast. He just really, really wanted to find a way to appear on Jeopardy!Eventually, it worked. The first star-studded tournament premiered in 1992, and in 1995 Burton finally got his turn and won. Now, he’s on a slightly different pursuit—one that, although trivia-related, is far from trivial. Burton and hundreds of thousands of fans are convinced that he should be the next host of Jeopardy! As Burton himself put it, “It’s what they call ‘on brand’—right?”Watching Alex Trebek’s Last ‘Jeopardy!’ as America CrumblesAlex Trebek died in November, at the age of 80, after a public battle with pancreatic cancer. For 37 years, Trebek had earned the admiration and adoration of multiple generations; many of those who grew up watching Trebek behind the podium had come to see him as something of a Walter Cronkite figure. Replacing Jeopardy!’s legendary emcee was never going to be easy, and so far it’s unclear who will take the reins. In the meantime, we’ve seen a series of temporary hosts including Ken Jennings, Katie Couric, and, more controversially, Dr. Oz. Burton’s name has been floating in the ether of possible picks to replace Trebek for months, but so far he has not even appeared as a temporary fill-in.Fans have not given up hope: More than 200,000 people have signed a petition calling on the show’s producers, Sony Pictures Entertainment, to install Burton as the next host. Change.org petition creator Joshua Sanders’ explanation for creating the petition is a clear and concise rundown of Burton’s qualifications: “Between hosting 21 seasons of the educational Reading Rainbow, playing the brainiac engineer Geordi La Forge on Star Trek: the Next Generation, and filling the roll of Kunta Kinte in the ever important mini-series Roots, LeVar Burton has inspired and shaped the minds of several generations of trivia-loving nerds.” More recently, Burton has also continued that tradition with his podcast, LeVar Burton Reads, in which he narrates short stories from authors including Neil Gaiman, Haruki Murakami, and Octavia Butler.Ken Jennings Proved He Should Be the Next ‘Jeopardy!’ HostBurton believes that many of the people who signed his petition are the same Gen X-ers and millennials who grew up with him on Reading Rainbow, and who now listen to the podcast. “I’m trying to keep them, this generation, engaged with their imaginations,” he said. When asked why he believes fans have been so supportive of his Jeopardy! campaign, he reasoned, “I think it’s because when they think about it as I do—it makes sense... Everything that I’ve done in my career points to the idea that I would probably be pretty good at this.”Burton still remembers watching Jeopardy! as a fifth grader growing up in West Sacramento, California—when original host Art Fleming was still behind the lectern. Hosting Jeopardy!, he said, is the only game show position he’s ever wanted. As both he and his fans note, his qualifications do feel uniquely suited to the gig.Beyond a long on-screen résumé that more than demonstrates Burton is capable of talking to people naturally on camera, the actor pointed out that he’s made knowledge, learning, and curiosity a cornerstone of his work. It’s a value he learned from his family, who taught him to prize education.“And I think that there’s a certain amount of personality that needs to be present,” Burton added. “I’ve seen some of the guest hosts who are not as familiar with this particular type of communication... which is to say, dealing with the contestants and the mechanics of the game while including the audience at home. It’s not like everybody can do it.”This is not the first time Burton has looked into the possibility of hosting Jeopardy!, either. A couple years ago, as Trebek was negotiating his contract and it seemed, for a moment, like he might’ve been preparing to retire, Burton says he reached out to Sony to express his interest in the position. They said Trebek wasn’t leaving, but said they’d keep him in mind “when the time comes.”Now, Burton said, “If they were to hire somebody and I did not feel like I gave it my absolute best shot to get in there, I would never forgive myself.”“I am willing to put my skills up against those of anybody else who they are considering,” he added, “because I just believe so fervently that I’m right.”But thanks to the overwhelming support he’s received from fans, Burton said, “I really feel like I’ve won”—whether he gets the job or not. “To watch it happen in real time is a trip,” he said of the petition’s astronomical growth. “Just to see it unfold before your eyes, it’s crazy. It’s wild. It’s miraculous.”Sony had not reached out yet as of Friday—but as Burton put it, “I’ve gotta figure they’re listening... Let’s see what happens.”A representative for Jeopardy! did not immediately respond to The Daily Beast’s request for comment regarding any plans the show might have for Burton.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.