Friday, September 20, 2019

The makers of OxyContin may have tried to hide $1 billion...

As lawsuits mount against the company responsible for making OxyContin — a drug blamed for helping to spark the nation’s opioid crisis — New York Attorney General Letitia James said on Friday that the family behind the company may have attempted to hide at least $1 billion in assets. The allegation could lead to the reexamination of a proposed settlement between drug maker Purdue Pharma and plaintiffs who brought more that 2,000 lawsuits against it. And some legal experts believe it could ultimately lead to members of the Sackler family, which owns Purdue, facing criminal charges. James’s office is pursuing...

A US military operation killed Osama bin Laden’s son, Hamza, the...

A senior member of al-Qaeda and son of 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden, Hamza bin Laden, was killed in a US counterterrorism operation, the White House announced on Saturday. Bin Laden’s death was first reported on July 31. The news was met with skepticism from some corners, given terrorist leaders have been reported dead before only to resurface months later. Anonymous intelligence officials cited in the reports also would not, or could not, indicate whether the US had been involved in his death, which they said had occurred within in the last two years. Saturday’s announcement also did not say when...

Vox Sentences: Humberto trails Dorian

Vox Sentences is your daily digest for what’s happening in the world. Sign up for the Vox Sentences newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox Monday through Friday, or view the Vox Sentences archive for past editions. Read what Vox staffers took away from the third Democratic debate Thursday night; another hurricane threatens the Bahamas. Biden and Warren face off onstage for the first time AFP/Getty Images Former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Elizabeth Warren finally faced each other in a Democratic debate, walking away with the most speaking time Thursday night —...

The ferocious, chilling Parasite is an essential thrill ride about social...

The upstairs-downstairs construct — in which the literal levels of a house demarcate the differences between the wealthy and those who serve them — has long worked as shorthand for class division and struggle. (See: every British period drama, ever.) The “upstairs” people are comfortable, happy, and prefer to be oblivious to what’s going on “downstairs” with the hired help, who do their work and live their lives invisibly alongside. In Parasite, Korean horror master Bong Joon-Ho (The Host, Snowpiercer) draws on that visual metaphor for a twisty, pummeling thriller that’s among his best work. It’s thematically familiar territory for...

Here are the best and most substantive answers of the third...

Beto O’Rourke may not be one of the top-polling candidates in the 2020 presidential primary, but at the third Democratic debate on Thursday, he did have one of the best and most moving answers on what has become one of the central issues of his White House bid: gun control. The former Texas Congress member and US Senate candidate has turned his focus to gun violence in recent weeks in the wake of a mass shooting at a Walmart in his hometown of El Paso, Texas, in August. At Thursday’s debate, multiple candidates commended his focus on the issue —...

Hong Kong’s protesters created their own “national anthem”

In an online video, protesters in riot gear sing and play instruments. They have violins tucked under chins covered with masks, drumsticks swinging in black-gloved hands. And together, in Cantonese, they belt out the soundtrack to the Hong Kong resistance: a new, if unofficial, national anthem. “Glory to Hong Kong” (Or “Glory be to thee, Hong Kong”) has become the rallying cry of pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong, one that’s being sung in unison by crowds in malls and even at a soccer game this week. It’s the latest act of opposition by demonstrators, who for months have been resisting...

Vox Sentences: The gig economy is in trouble

Vox Sentences is your daily digest for what’s happening in the world. Sign up for the Vox Sentences newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox Monday through Friday, or view the Vox Sentences archive for past editions. California Senate passes a landmark bill protecting gig economy workers like drivers and couriers; a rocket explodes in Kabul on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. A win for California contractors Justin Sullivan/Getty Images A landmark bill to regulate Uber, Lyft, and other gig economy powerhouses was approved in the California Senate on Tuesday, possibly transforming the...

The UK government’s own assessment of what a no-deal Brexit looks...

Waits of up to 2.5 days at border crossings, delays in the arrival of medicines, decrease in the supply of fresh food, disruptions to financial services, potential fuel shortages — these are just some of the “reasonable worst-case” scenarios if the United Kingdom leaves the European Union without a Brexit deal on October 31. And that’s not according to Brexit opponents. That’s according to the UK government’s own planning documents. The government’s conclusions are laid out in a report dubbed “Operation Yellowhammer,” which was officially made public on Wednesday. Details of Operation Yellowhammer leaked earlier this summer. But on Monday, members...

Republicans hold on to a North Carolina congressional seat plagued by...

Dan Bishop, a North Carolina Republican known for writing the state’s controversial “bathroom bill,” narrowly beat out Democrat Dan McCready to win a House seat in the state’s Ninth Congressional District, according to Decision Desk HQ. His victory comes in the wake of a massive scandal that plagued the district’s election last fall, and suggests that Republicans still have a lot to worry about in 2020. North Carolina’s Ninth is, after all, a staunchly conservative district that’s been electing Republicans since the 1960s, and one President Donald Trump won by 12 points in 2016. Bishop’s win should have been relatively...

Trump’s asylum ban may also be a loyalty test for the...

As soon as this week, the Supreme Court could weigh in on a fraught battle over whether many victims of persecution may seek asylum in the United States — or whether the Trump administration can effectively tell them go back to Mexico. Last week, the last round of briefs were filed on a stay request involving the Trump administration’s rule, announced in July, that would remake American asylum policy at the Southern border. In the words of a federal court, the new rule would “deny asylum to almost anyone entering the United States at the southern border if he or...