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$250 MILLION FOOD SCHEME
Forty-seven people in Minnesota have been charged in a scheme to defraud the government of at least a quarter-billion dollars that was earmarked to make sure children from low-income households had food to eat. The defendants are accused of setting up companies that were reimbursed for offering meals to tens of thousands of kids, but very little was ever served. Instead, the cash allegedly went to pay for luxury cars, real estate and jewelry.
[Ed. note: This morning's email incorrectly said "quarter-million dollars."]
2. POLITICAL ISSUES
TRUMP DOCS: The special master tasked with going through documents seized at Mar-a-Lago says he's planning to process the papers quickly. At a hearing Tuesday, he also seemed skeptical of former President Donald Trump's legal team’s refusal to say whether it believes the docs were declassified. “I guess my view of it is, you can’t have your cake and eat it,” he said.
MIGRANT PLANES: People online are using the flight tracking website FlightAware to keep an eye out for additional chartered flights that may be bringing migrants from Texas and Florida to other states. They were checking flights Tuesday that were scheduled to start in San Antonio, hop over to Crestview, Fla., and then head toward Teterboro, N.J. (right outside of NYC) and Delaware (President Joe Biden's home state). Biden responded to these reports by trolling Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, saying, "He should come visit. We have a beautiful shoreline."
3. FED DECISION TODAY
CREDIT CARD DEBT: Today the Federal Reserve will announce its next interest rate change. It's expected to rise 0.75%, a hefty increase, especially when you look at how this year's hikes are already affecting the public. One example: A new report that says the number of people who carry monthly credit card debt has jumped 10% since last year.
GLOSSARY: Interested in what Fed Chair Jerome Powell has to say, but don't really know what he's talking about half the time? We've put together a basic glossary so you can understand today's announcement and impress your friends.
4. CHICAGO BUILDING EXPLOSION
At least eight people were injured in a building explosion in Chicago. Crews had to secure the building before rescuers could search the scene to make sure nobody was trapped inside. So far, investigators don't know what caused the blast and the property management company says it's cooperating with emergency services.
5. WE ARE ALL FREAKING OUT
AT THE U.N.: Secretary-General Antonio Guterres opened the U.N. General Assembly with some wildly concerning warnings. He said the world is "gridlocked in colossal global dysfunction" and "in peril and paralyzed." There is a "forest of red flags" around emerging technology, he said, and he cited the "suicidal war against nature." What's the fix? “Let’s work as one, as a coalition of the world, as united nations."
Why don't you tell us how you really feel?
ANXIETY: An influential medical group is recommending all U.S. adults under 65 get screened for anxiety. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force is making the suggestion based on a review it started pre-pandemic and doesn't include older adults because it says there is not enough research for review. The task force's recommendations are often used to determine insurance coverage.
We're confident we can self-diagnose this one.
RUSSIA MOBILIZES RESERVISTS: Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered a partial mobilization of reservists to ensure territorial integrity in his invasion of Ukraine. Meanwhile, four regions of Ukraine that are partially or fully under Russian control will begin voting this week on whether they should officially become part of Russia. It includes the Zaporizhzhya region that houses the embattled nuclear power station.
IRAN MORALITY POLICE DEATH: There are protests in Iran over the death of a woman who was being held by the country's morality police. Mahsa Amini, 22, collapsed in the police station after she was detained. Police deny mistreating her and say she died of a heart attack. The U.N. says these patrols that look for women committing offenses like wearing hijabs incorrectly have expanded recently and videos show officers striking and abusing women they find to be in noncompliance.
7. CLIMATE WEEK
EV100 TURNS 5: The Climate Group's EV100 program turned 5 in September and the second day of NYC Climate Week featured a panel with members, old and new, charting their progress and looking ahead to an all-electric future. And one moderator, COP President Alok Sharma, teased a new coalition coming for COP27.
EMERGENCY FUND: Director Adam McKay isn't just making movies to address the climate crisis, he's putting some big bucks into the cause as well. He donated $4 million to the Climate Emergency Fund, an organization that acts as a bridge between climate activists and the funding they need to draw more attention to the cause.
8. BITCOIN SOUTH OF $20,000
It feels like just yesterday that cryptoheads were proclaiming the success of digital currency as Bitcoin soared above $60,000 per coin. "To the moon!" they said. But alas, what goes up must come down, and down it is indeed. Bitcoin is now trading below $20,000. But in other news, Colorado is now allowing taxpayers to submit their payments in crypto, so there's no sign enthusiasts are going to take their losses and run.
Somebody check on Mayor Adams!
9. IN ENTERTAINMENT
SQUID GAME IRL: Immersive Gamebox and Netflix teamed up to bring “Squid Game” to life. The virtual experience, which takes place in a “smart,” motion-sensing room, lets teams of up to six people compete in the high-stakes game — without the life-or-death risk, whew! Cheddar News tried it out and survived to tell the tale.
MORE HOLLYWOOD: Here are a few of the entertainment headlines we've been keeping an eye on: The Latin Grammy Awards have released its nominees, and Puerto Rico's Bad Bunny leads the pack with 10 nods. The Golden Globes are making a comeback after going dark for the past two years, and Sir Elton John is set to tear down the White House this weekend.
10. NYQUIL CHICKEN
Put this on the list of things we thought we'd never have to say: The FDA has warned Americans that they should not, under any circumstance, cook their chicken in NyQuil or other over-the-counter cold medications. For those of you not on TikTok, this is the latest ridiculous challenge going around. Not only does this recipe sound like something we would never put on the dinner table, the FDA points out that boiling medication can make it more concentrated and change its properties.
How do you say "disgusting" in Rhode Island Red?
Inside the Largest Recycling System in America
New York has a whole lot of trash, but did you know half of it is recyclable? While NYC might not be the best at it, its system is state of the art — from facilities processing New Yorker's bottles and cans to a brand-new composting movement to a community that relies on the system to survive.