RationalWiki:What is going on in the world?/October 2019

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October 2019[edit]

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24United KingdomNew ZealandSamoaUnited StatesThe worldwide measles epidemic rages on - research shows the measles virus attacks the body's immune system, 3 people have died in Samoa and there are nearly 2000 reported cases in New Zealand. The infection has spread from New Zealand to USA
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34United StatesCalifornia. Putting politics aside, Reagan's Presidential library has been saved from California wildfires by the heroic actions of a herd of goats
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28United StatesOhio. Murray Energy, the largest privately owned coal mining company in America and whose CEO, Bob Murray, is a major Trump supporter and notably tried to sue John Oliver in his coal investigation, has filed for bankruptcy due to mounting debts and falling interest in coal. The multi-millionaire owner will lose a couple of his jobs but stay as chairman, and complains that he's "lost everything"
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26United KingdomDue to internal squabbles and funding problems with UKIP, its leader Richard Braine has quit as leader after only three months on the job. This means that the party is seeking a replacement for the seventh time for a permanent holder for the post over the past three years.
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17ChileDue to the recent riots in Santiago, Chilean president Sebastian Piñera has cancelled the upcoming APEC trade summit and the COP25 climate summit which was planned to be hosted in the country’s capital later this year.
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8BelgiumIt has emerged that local authorities in the Belgian city of Kortrijk have been using mobile phone tracking technologies from the telecoms giant Proximus to find out how many visitors visited the city.
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17Australia Just days after the British government abandoned plans for strict age verification for viewing online porn, the Australian government has put out a white paper for an online age verification system that mixes webcam based facial recognition and a personal ID database.
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18United StatesIsraelPalestineNBC News has investigated reports that Microsoft was invested into an Israeli company AnyVision, which provides AI-linked tracking CCTV software for the Israeli government to monitor Palestinians in the occupied West Bank. Further investigations reported that such technology is being tested on the American-Mexican border.
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12United KingdomEuropean UnionThe EU has agreed to give the British another extension of three months to Brexit. Now the date is 31st January 2020.
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20United StatesUtah. Controversy as it is revealed that the University of Utah offered women a "premarital exam" and questionable sex advice including using a vaginal dilator before sex and taking antibiotics to avoid catching a UTI on your honeymoon; Mormons are blamed. (Also: defense; Jezebel article).
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19United StatesSyriaISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has apparently been killed by a US military raid in Syria, Trump to make “major statement” soon. UPDATE: Trump claims Bakr al-Baghdadi is dead. He is said to have detonated a suicide vest after being cornered by US forces. Given his history of "deaths", it remains to be seen whether this one sticks.
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23United StatesTrumponomics: the US federal deficit usually shrinks in times of economic growth, but the Trump government has defied this trend by raising the deficit by 26% in a single year to $984 billion, the highest it's been in 7 years.
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18United KingdomSwedenA scientist at the National History Museum in London pays tribute to Greta Thunberg by naming a species of beetle after her.
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43SpainFrancisco Franco's remains have been moved out of his vast mausoleum, which became a shrine for the far right, so that they can be buried in a regular grave. And he's still dead.
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23RussiaUnited StatesFlorida. ICE detains a Russian Putin critic as an alleged visa overstay.
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37ChileCapitalist paradise Chile has sent in the military to deal with widespread protests against economic inequality. Billionaire president Sebastián Piñera has focused on lowering taxes for the rich while Chilean people suffer from high debt, high oil prices, and corrupt officials. About 10,500 soldiers are in Santiago, stirring bad memories of the Pinochet government.
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29United StatesTurkeySyriaIraqRather than being brought home, the US troops withdrawn from kurdish areas in Syria are instead being sent to Iraq. The US Defense Secretary also said that some soldiers will stay in Syria to defend oil wells.
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25United StatesAlthough reversing his decision to hold the G7 at his own resort, Trump defended his prior decision and complained that he was being unfairly scrutinized because of the US Constitution's "phony emoluments clause".
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30IsraelNetanyahu fails to form a government. Now it’s Benny Gantz’s turn to try.
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25United KingdomThe law which would allow equal marriage and abortion in Northern Ireland due non-return of Stormont has passed. This means that the first same-sex marriages would happen Northern Ireland on Valentine’s Day 2020, and abortion on March 31st, 2020.
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12BoliviaThe Bolivian electoral commission had an unexpected and unexplained delay in updating election returns as it has become clear that Evo Morales will probably not win a fourth term in the first round of the election.
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14United StatesEuropean Union US will move ahead with EU tariffs. UPDATE: Despite Trump's vow to boost the industry, US manufacturing is in a recession now. UPDATE: Manufacturing report causes the Dow to dive into red as state of US economy worries investors.
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21United KingdomVatican CityBritish IT boffins have discovered that a recently released Vatican-approved $109 eRosary to be a personal security nightmare. This is due to the woeful coding in the accompanying app, which allows the release of all kinds of user's information.
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25United KingdomThe planned vote on Boris Johnson's new Brexit deal has been delayed as the House of Commons votes to delay Brexit until 31 January
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15United StatesFlorida. The 2020 G-7 to be held at the Trump Doral and no details are available about the proposed costs. UPDATE: It now won't be held there after all.
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18ChileChile President Piñera declares emergency as capital rocked by riots, caused by a Metro fare hike in Santiago, Chile, where the cost of living is high and the minimum wage is low. Chile is one of South America's wealthiest countries and has one of the highest rates of inequality.
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37United KingdomChick-fil-A will close its sole British outlet in the town of Reading as a result of pressure from the local pride activists on the shopping centre’s owner.
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25TurkeySyria Turkey caught using white phosphorous on Kurdish civilians, a war crime.
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15United States A bill in the US Senate may require all new cars to have a new passive ignition interlock devices.
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22United StatesKansas. In Coffeyville, Kansas, debt collectors decide who goes to jail and who remains free. Debt prisonsWikipedia basically, which were ruled unconstitutional all the way back in the 1830's.
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9United KingdomBoris Johnson has announced a 'great new deal' with the EU, despite the DUP saying they cannot support it.
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16United StatesMaryland. Congressman Elijah Cummings, a key figure in the Donald Trump impeachment case, has died at the age of 68.
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20United KingdomPlans to introduce a strict age verification system for viewing online porn and to block all porn sites that don't comply with it are dropped.
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40NetherlandsSix people aged 16 to 25 rescued in the Netherlands after being kept underground for years by some kind of doomsday cult leader, apparently "waiting for the end of time".
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12United KingdomElectromagnetic hypersensitivity campaigners claim victory after Brighton & Hove Council rejected three applications for 5G cell towers in the city. However, the council stated this was due to beautification reasons rather than EMF.
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16United StatesEric Trump's ball-gargler & senior Trump campaign adviser, Lara Trump, defends Trump's actions in Syria by saying most Americans don't know who the Kurds are.
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22the WorldThe new IPCC impact report of climate change on oceans and ice is out. The short version: mostly really bad.
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16Poland Recent radio listenership figures have shown falling interest the religious Catholic station "Radio Maryja", to its lowest audience score in history.
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18SpainSpain's Supreme Court has sentenced nine Catalan separatist leaders to between 9 and 13 years in prison over their role in the 2017 independence referendum as protesters take to the streets .
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20United KingdomDespite only having one case of voter fraud in the last general election, the British government is proposing legislation for voter ID laws in the next Queen’s speech.
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20United KingdomFlag of Wales.svg Due to growing demands for Welsh independence, the Welsh government in a report has said that Westminster must be open to any requests for an independence referendum.
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15United StatesDeclassified documents in relation to the Trump-Zelenskiy call revealed that Trump often passes the receiver to Ivanka for her to speak too.
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19United States Shepard SmithWikipedia, one of Fox News’ most respected journalists, abruptly leaves network.
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45the WorldRussiaLegendary cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, the first human to conduct a spacewalk, has died from chronic illness in a Moscow hospital. Rest in peace, comrade.
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20United StatesUkraineUkraine's President Zelensky says there was nothing corrupt about "the phone call" because he didn't know the military aid had been suspended. It's a good line in staying in #45's good books and getting that aid, although it's irrelevant to whether #45 was conducting a corrupt practice.
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20United StatesCalifornia. 800,000 Californians have been left without electricity due to power company PG&E preemptively shutting off the grid to prevent wildfires.
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38United StatesTwo Giuliani associates were arrested for campaign finance violations Wednesday night. They were helping Giuliani try to dig up dirt on the Bidens in Ukraine before being arrested as part of the separate matter.
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20GermanyGunman murdered 2 people in Germany outside a synagogue, reportedly live-streaming the attack and spouting anti-Semitic BS. Update: The attacker manufactured the gun with a 3D Printer and shared instructions online.
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28SyriaTurkeyUnited StatesEuropean UnionDonald Trump dismisses concerns that Turkey's attacks on the Kurds could free DAESH prisoners, saying they'll just "be escaping to Europe".
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21EcuadorEcuador protests against austerity measures leading to spikes in fuel prices, forcing President Lenín Moreno to relocate government from the capital of Quito to Guayaquil.
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23TurkeySyriaUnited States Turkish warplanes have bombed parts of north-eastern Syria. This comes just days after President Donald Trump controversially withdrew US troops from northern Syria.
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25United NationsThe United Nations is in a liquidity crisis and is currently so short of cash that it can't pay its workers next month according to the Secretary-General António Guterres.
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38United StatesChinaSouth Park creators issue mock apology after ban
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25RomaniaRomania is set to create its first-ever national Holocaust museum. Romania took a long time to come to terms with its role in the genocide, only acknowledging its involvement for the first time in 2003.
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13United States United Kingdom President Trump has ordered a military withdrawal from al-Hasakah ahead of a planned Turkish assault on the disputed Kurdish state of Rojava. Claims by the President the UK was thrilled with the decision have been disputed by British diplomats and 10 Downing Street.
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10United States Possible stopped clock moment as the Trump Organization halts an "Act For America" fundraiser at Mar-a-Lago.
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12Papua New GuineaBougainville set to hold long-awaited independence referendum late this November
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23United Kingdom Flag of Sark.svg Thought of a quaint rural idle where nothing can happen, the Channel Island of SarkWikipedia has been been revealed by the outgoing police officer as a home of drug smuggling, drunkenness and traffic problems (despite cars being banned!), assisted with a local version of omertà. In other news, the local assembly has approved same-sex marriage on the island, making now Northern Ireland the only place the British Isles where same-sex marriage is not allowed.
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17United StatesIllinois. Rod Blagojevich, remember him? Trump has hinted that he may commutate the corrupt former governor of Illinois. AP says he may do it, as a vendetta against the Justice Department and Robert Mueller.
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36United States In need of people with "dark skin" for facial recognition data, Google in a totally not unethical way targeted homeless people and students to "play with the phone for five bucks," often without telling those involved that their pictures were being taken to be analyzed and stored inside Google's facial profile database.
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24Canada In the middle of an election campaign trying to scrounge up votes from the centre and centre right, human rights crusader Justin Trudeau doesn't think Native Canadians deserve their rightful compensation for human rights violations.
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15European UnionGraphene turns 15
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15ChinaThe motivations and strategies of Chinese anti-TCM activists. Tactics include hiding their identities and working in cells to not be punished asking for medicine that actually works. (sci hub link)
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15United Kingdom Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg has been accused of pandering to antisemitism in linking the 2016 Remain campaign's finances "allegedly" to George Soros.
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25United StatesContinuing the tradition of Trump officials dropping like flies, Rick Perry is planning to resign next month.
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27United KingdomFlag of Scotland.svg Scotland becomes the first country in the UK to make smacking children completely illegal.
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31PakistanGenetically modified cotton makes farmers far less sick with medical costs per season for families dropping almost 50%.
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13FranceMartiniqueThree police officers and a civilian member of staff have been stabbed to death by a fellow colleague in the main police station in Paris. The attacker, 45-year-old Martinique-born civilian intelligence worker with no previous mental health issues, was later shot dead by an armed officer.
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15United Kingdom Diane Abbott becomes the first black person to represent an entire political party at prime minister's questions.
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10United StatesOregon. Amid poor ticket sales and criticisms of his far-right beliefs, Morrissey ejects a protestor from a concert in Portland after she holds up a sign critical of For Britain.
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8PeruPeru’s president and Congress mutually suspend each other (Non-paywalled link)
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14United KingdomThe Advertising Standards Agency admonishes Burger King for a Twitter post in the summer deemed to encourage the throwing of milkshakes at the likes of Nigel Farage and Tommy Robinson.
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18United StatesMissouri. Why 13 African American children have been shot dead in St Louis over the course of six months
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23United StatesAustralia Trump tried pressuring the Australian government into investigating the origins of the Mueller probe.
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13TurkeyPakistanMalaysia Turkey, Pakistan, and Malaysia are jointly going to start a channel modeled on the BBC to "promote Islamic issues" and combat Islamophobia: but given those countries' human rights records/blasphemy laws, is its aim a Sunni version of Russia Today?