Libya's military factions welcome a show of unity from the country's political rivals.
Australia's Fortescue Metals Group has apologised to an Aboriginal group for clearing land on a heritage site while flouting a government condition for representatives of the community to be present when the damage took place. It is the week's second such incident, despite pressure on Australian iron ore miners to show they have improved practices to manage important sites after Rio Tinto destroyed two sacred rock shelters for a mine expansion last May. Fortescue had state government permission to clear the land in the Weelamurra Creek area registered as sacred to the Wintawari Guruma people, on condition that community elders were present to perform salvage and cultural rites, four documents reviewed by Reuters showed.
- Associated Press
The boyfriend of a Wyoming woman whose 2-year-old son was found dead in an apartment complex dumpster has been arrested, police said Tuesday. Wyatt Lamb, 27, was taken into custody after the disappearance of Athian Rivera triggered a search Friday. Lamb was listed as the boyfriend of Rivera's mother, Kassy Orona, 25, on Orona's Facebook page on Monday but the reference had been deleted Tuesday.
- Associated Press
A Navy veteran who was going through an episode of paranoia died after a Northern California police officer knelt on his neck for several minutes, his family said Tuesday. The family of Angelo Quinto called police on Dec. 23 because the 30-year-old was suffering a mental health crisis and needed help.
- LA Times
'Saturday Night Live's' most recent musical guest, 'EL ÚLTIMO TOUR DEL MUNDO' star Bad Bunny, went full snake plant in SNL's 'Loco' music video with Ego Nwodim.
Scotland's vaccination drive appears to be markedly reducing the risk of hospitalisation for COVID-19, suggesting that both the Pfizer-BioNtech and Oxford-AstraZeneca shots are highly effective in preventing severe infections, preliminary study findings showed on Monday. Results of the study, which covered the entire Scottish population of 5.4 million people, showed that by the fourth week after the initial dose, the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines were found to reduce the risk of hospitalisation by up to 85% and 94% respectively. "These results are very encouraging and have given us great reasons to be optimistic for the future," said Aziz Sheikh, a professor at the University of Edinburgh’s Usher Institute who co-led the study.
- Architectural Digest
A British artist just launched a new project in the Mediterranean Sea: A series of sculptures using the faces of six selected local residents
- Business Insider
"Look, when a crisis hits my state, I'm there. I'm not going to go on some vacation," GOP Rep. Michael McCaul said on CNN's "State of the Union."
U.S. President Joe Biden and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sought on Tuesday to turn the page on the Trump era, stressing the countries' deep ties and pledging to work together to counteract Chinese influence and address climate change. "The United States has no closer friend, no closer friend than Canada," Biden told Trudeau via an electronic video link with the Canadian leader and top aides. "That's why you were my first call as president (and) my first bilateral meeting," he said.
- The Telegraph
Faster path to freedom if jabs exceed expectations New wave of £7,500 grants for self-employed UK strategy of delayed second doses too risky, says Ursula von der Leyen Analysis: Why No 10 now faces a nervous waiting game Subscribe to The Telegraph for a month-long free trial A new Government campaign has launched urging Britons to stay home for the time being while vaccines are rolled out and full lockdown restrictions remain. The campaign, which will air for the first time on ITV this evening, will feature prominently across television, radio and social media. Viewers are told that "every sacrifice, every day at home, every covered face - everything we're doing is helping stop the spread of Covid-19. Let's keep going." Matt Hancock, the Health Secretary, said: “I know it’s been a long year but we can’t let up now. Everything we’re doing is bringing us one step closer to beating this virus. “The vaccine roll out is going extremely well and is saving lives - but it is not the only way we will reduce infection rates and be able to get back to normality." Professor Chris Whitty said: "Vaccines give clear hope for the future, but for now we must all continue to play our part in protecting the NHS and saving lives." Follow the latest updates below.
- Associated Press
President Joe Biden's nominee to run the CIA told lawmakers Wednesday that he would keep politics out of the job and deliver “unvarnished” intelligence to politicians and policymakers even if they don't want to hear it. William Burns told members of the Senate Intelligence Committee at his confirmation hearing that “politics must stop where intelligence work begins.” The comments from Burns appeared aimed at drawing a contrast with the prior administration, when President Donald Trump faced repeated accusations of politicizing intelligence while also publicly disputing the assessments of his own intelligence agencies, most notably about Russian election interference.
- The Week
Golfer Tiger Woods is in serious condition following a solo car accident Tuesday morning near Rancho Palos Verdes, California, Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said on Tuesday afternoon. Woods was driving a Genesis GV80 SUV, which rolled over several times before coming to a stop. After being extracted from the vehicle, Woods was taken to Harbor-UCLA Medical Center with multiple leg injuries, and is undergoing surgery. Contradicting earlier reports, Los Angeles County Fire Department Chief Daryl Osby said the Jaws of Life tool was not used to remove Woods from the car. Villanueva said when deputies arrived at the scene, there was "no evidence of impairment," and weather was not a factor in the crash. Deputy Carlos Gonzales was the first officer to reach the vehicle, and he told reporters Woods was conscious and able to communicate but could not stand on his own. Gonzales said Woods was wearing a seatbelt, which "greatly increased the likelihood that it saved his life." More stories from theweek.comThe MyPillow guy might be Trump's ultimate chumpBiden nominates postal board slate that could oust Louis DeJoy after DeJoy vows to stay putIt's been 1 year since Trump infamously tweeted the 'coronavirus is very much under control' in the U.S.
The wife of Mexican drug cartel boss Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman was arrested and charged in the United States on Monday with helping her husband continue to run his drug trafficking cartel while he was behind bars. Emma Coronel Aispuro, 31, a regular attendee at her husband's high-profile U.S. trial two years ago where he was convicted of trafficking tons of drugs into the United States, was arrested at Dulles International Airport in northern Virginia. Her arrest is the highest profile U.S. capture of a Mexican on drug charges since former Mexican Defense Minister Salvador Cienfuegos was detained in October, and experts said it indicated a deterioration in bilateral security relations.
Britain's Prince Philip is getting a lot better, his youngest son said on Tuesday after Buckingham Palace said the 99-year-old husband of Britain's Queen Elizabeth would remain in hospital for several more days to receive treatment for an infection. Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, walked into London's private King Edward VII Hospital last Tuesday evening after he was advised by his doctor to be admitted after he felt unwell, and has spent seven nights there. "He is comfortable and responding to treatment but is not expected to leave hospital for several days," Buckingham Palace said, adding he was receiving medical attention for an unspecified infection.
- Yahoo News Video
One month into the job, President Biden is on the cusp of securing a bigger economic rescue package than during the 2009 financial crisis. He has wiped out his predecessor Donald Trump's policies from climate change to travel bans, while the U.S. daily COVID-19 vaccine distribution rate grew 55 percent.
- The New York Times
SAN ANTONIO — As millions of Texans shivered in dark, cold homes over the past week while a winter storm devastated the state’s power grid and froze natural gas production, those who could still summon lights with the flick of a switch felt lucky. Now, many of them are paying a severe price for it. “My savings is gone,” said Scott Willoughby, a 63-year-old Army veteran who lives on Social Security payments in a Dallas suburb. He said he had nearly emptied his savings account so that he would be able to pay the $16,752 electric bill charged to his credit card — 70 times what he usually pays for all of his utilities combined. “There’s nothing I can do about it, but it’s broken me.” Sign up for The Morning newsletter from the New York Times Willoughby is among scores of Texans who have reported skyrocketing electric bills as the price of keeping lights on and refrigerators humming shot upward. For customers whose electricity prices are not fixed and are instead tied to the fluctuating wholesale price, the spikes have been astronomical. The outcry elicited angry calls for action from lawmakers from both parties and prompted Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican, to hold an emergency meeting with legislators Saturday to discuss the enormous bills. “We have a responsibility to protect Texans from spikes in their energy bills that are a result of the severe winter weather and power outages,” Abbott, who has been reeling after the state’s infrastructure failure, said in a statement after the meeting. He added that Democrats and Republicans would work together to make sure people “do not get stuck with skyrocketing energy bills.” The electric bills are coming due at the end of a week in which Texans have faced a combination of crises caused by the frigid weather, beginning on Monday, when power grid failures and surging demand led to millions being left without electricity. Natural gas producers were not prepared for the freeze either, and many people’s homes were cut off from heat. Now, millions of people are discovering that they have no safe water because of burst pipes, frozen wells or water treatment plants that have been knocked offline. Power has returned in recent days for all but about 60,000 Texans as the storm moved east, where it has also caused power outages in Mississippi, Louisiana, West Virginia and Ohio. The steep electric bills in Texas are in part a result of the state’s uniquely unregulated energy market, which allows customers to pick their electricity providers among about 220 retailers in an entirely market-driven system. Under some of the plans, when demand increases, prices rise. The goal, architects of the system say, is to balance the market by encouraging consumers to reduce their usage and power suppliers to create more electricity. But when last week’s crisis hit and power systems faltered, the state’s Public Utilities Commission ordered that the price cap be raised to its maximum limit of $9 per kilowatt-hour, easily pushing many customers’ daily electric costs above $100. And in some cases, like Willoughby’s, bills rose by more than 50 times the normal cost. Many of the people who have reported extremely high charges, including Willoughby, are customers of Griddy, a small company in Houston that provides electricity at wholesale prices, which can quickly change based on supply and demand. The company passes the wholesale price directly to customers, charging an additional $9.99 monthly fee. Much of the time, the rate is considered affordable. But the model can be risky: Last week, foreseeing a huge jump in wholesale prices, the company encouraged all of its customers — about 29,000 people — to switch to another provider when the storm arrived. But many were unable to do so. Katrina Tanner, a Griddy customer who lives in Nevada, Texas, said she had been charged $6,200 already this month, more than five times what she paid in all of 2020. She began using Griddy at a friend’s suggestion a couple of years ago and was pleased at the time with how simple it was to sign up. As the storm rolled through during the past week, however, she kept opening the company’s app on her phone and seeing her bill “just rising, rising, rising,” Tanner said. Griddy was able to take the money she owed directly from her bank account, and she now has just $200 left. She suspects that she was only able to keep that much because her bank stopped Griddy from taking more. Some lawmakers and consumer advocates said the price spikes had made it clear that customers did not understand the complicated terms of the company’s model. “To the Texas Utilities Commission: What are you thinking, allowing the average type of household to sign up for this kind of program?” Tyson Slocum, director of the energy program at Public Citizen, a consumer advocacy group, said of Griddy. “The risk-reward is so out of whack that it never should have been permitted in the first place.” Phil King, a Republican state lawmaker who represents an area west of Fort Worth, said some of his constituents who were on variable-rate contracts were complaining about bills in the thousands. “When something like this happens, you’re in real trouble” with such contracts, King said. “There have got to be some emergency financial waivers and other actions taken until we can work through this and get to the bottom of it.” Responding to its outraged customers, Griddy, too, appeared to try to shift anger to the Public Utilities Commission in a statement. “We intend to fight this for, and alongside, our customers for equity and accountability — to reveal why such price increases were allowed to happen as millions of Texans went without power,” the statement said. William W. Hogan, considered the architect of the Texas energy market design, said in an interview this past week that the high prices reflected the market performing as it was designed. The rapid losses of power — more than a third of the state’s available electricity production was offline at one point — increased the risk that the entire system would collapse, causing prices to rise, said Hogan, a professor of global energy policy at Harvard’s Kennedy School. “As you get closer and closer to the bare minimum, these prices get higher and higher, which is what you want,” Hogan said. Robert McCullough, an energy consultant in Portland, Oregon, and a critic of Hogan’s, said that allowing the market to drive energy policy with few protections for consumers was “idiotic” and that similar actions had devastated retailers and consumers following the California energy crisis of 2000 and 2001. “The similar situation caused a wave of bankruptcies as retailers and customers discovered that they were on the hook for bills 30 times their normal levels,” McCullough said. “We are going to see this again.” DeAndré Upshaw said his power had been on and off in his Dallas apartment throughout the storm. A lot of his neighbors had it worse, so he felt fortunate to have electricity and heat, inviting some neighbors over to warm up. Then Upshaw, 33, saw that his utility bill from Griddy had risen to more than $6,700. He usually pays about $80 a month this time of year. He had been trying to conserve power as the storm raged on, but it didn’t seem to matter. He also signed up to switch to another utility company, but he is still being charged until the change goes into effect Monday. “It’s a utility — it’s something that you need to live,” Upshaw said. “I don’t feel like I’ve used $6,700 of electricity in the last decade. That’s not a cost that any reasonable person would have to pay for five days of intermittent electric service being used at the bare minimum.” As Texas slowly thaws out, Tanner is allowing herself a small luxury after days of keeping the thermostat at 60 degrees. “I finally decided the other day, if we were going to pay these high prices, we weren’t going to freeze,” she said. “So I cranked it up to 65.” This article originally appeared in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company
- WCVB - Boston
Massachusetts State Rep. Jon Santiago announced Tuesday that he is launching a campaign to run for mayor of Boston.
- Business Insider
Firefighters found Woods conscious and in stable condition, Los Angeles County Fire Department Chief Daryl Osby told reporters.
- The State
“The fact that I, Meghan McCain, co-host of ‘The View,’ I don’t know when or how I will be able to get a vaccine ...”
Tiger Woods was involved in a terrible single-car crash on Tuesday morning. The sports world quickly sent their prayers.
- Reuters Videos
Luca Attanasio, 43, Italian military policeman Vittorio Iacovacci, 30, and a Congolese driver, whose name has not been released, were confirmed dead by the Italian government in a statement.They were killed on Monday when their convoy was attacked at about 10:15 a.m. (0815 GMT) in an attempted kidnap near the town of Kanyamahoro, about 25 km (15 miles) north of the regional capital Goma, a spokesman for the Virunga National Park told Reuters.The driver was working for the U.N. World Food Programme, it said in a statement, adding that a number of other passengers were injured.