What to expect at the 2020 Golden Globes

The 77th annual Golden Globe Awards officially kick off awards season in Hollywood on Sunday, January 5, at 8 pm Eastern / 5 pm Pacific. The ceremony will air live on NBC, with British comic Ricky Gervais returning as host for a record-breaking fifth time.

The Golden Globes are traditionally held on the first Sunday of the year and mark the beginning of a lengthy awards season in the entertainment industry, but the season is shorter than usual in 2020, with the Globes airing just over one month before the Oscars. Administered by the somewhat mysterious Hollywood Foreign Press Association

There’s little evidence to support Pence’s tweets tying Qassem Soleimani to 9/11

As the Trump administration faces questions about the rationale behind its killing of Iranian military leader Qassem Soleimani in a Friday drone strike, Vice President Mike Pence is being scrutinized for his claim Soleimani helped carry out the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Pence, in a wide-ranging Twitter thread detailing Soleimani’s alleged crimes against America, claimed Soleimani “assisted in the clandestine travel of 10 of 12 terrorists who carried out the September 11 terrorist attacks.”

Ahead of the Iowa caucuses, 2020 Democratic candidates announce strong fourth quarter fundraising 

Several Democratic candidates for president are celebrating after the final fundraising numbers for the fourth quarter of 2019 were made public.

Sen. Bernie Sanders raised a whopping $34.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2019, closing out a historic year of fundraising in which he was consistently near the top of the 2020 pack. South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg raised the second most in the field, bringing in $24.7 million in donations from more than 326,000 people, his campaign said.

Both candidates have been consistently strong fundraisers throughout the primary thus far, and are considered frontrunners both nationally and in …

Mourners in Iraq chant threats to America after Soleimani’s death

Thousands of mourners flooded the streets of Baghdad Saturday, and called for revenge against the United States after Iranian military leader Qassem Soleimani was killed in a drone strike early Friday morning.

Chants of “Death to America, death to Israel” and “We will take our revenge!” emanated from the crowd, according to The Associated Press. Other mourners chanted “America is the Great Satan” as they made their way through Baghdad’s streets.

Soleimani, who led the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps Quds Force (IRGC-QF), was killed alongside several Iranian-backed Iraqi militia leaders in a convoy at Baghdad’s international airport Friday.

The …

How to tell a Ricky Gervais joke: Offend, defend, repeat

In 2018, then-four-time host Ricky Gervais said that hosting the Golden Globes again would be “the end of his career.”

Gervais was thinking of the blowback he would likely receive from the gig in an increasingly polarized culture as a provocative comic who’s known for offending people. But on January 5, he will indeed return to host the awards for a record fifth time.

NBC, which hosts the annual awards show, is leaning into the idea that Gervais’s hosting gig will be outlandish and unpredictable. There’s some justice to that: As Baffler’s Brendan James put it in a rundown of

Bill Gates’s big takeaway from 2019: raise his taxes

The year 2019 saw Bill Gates reclaim his title as the world’s richest person from Jeff Bezos — and come under harsher scrutiny than ever amid a new, powerful backlash against the billionaire class and the economic system that produces extraordinary wealth like his.

In an end-of-year retrospective, Gates — who ended the year with a net worth of $110 billion — sounds like he’s taken the critiques of the billionaire class to heart. His conclusion? We should absolutely have higher taxes on the rich. It’s not a new position for him (he has stated his support for higher …

A second airstrike against Iranian targets in Iraq: what we know

One day after the US killed a top Iranian general — a major escalation between the two countries — another strike was reportedly conducted in Iraq, this time targeting members of Iranian-backed paramilitaries in the country.

Early Saturday morning local time, a two-car convoy containing members of the Popular Mobilization Forces, the overarching group for those Iranian-backed militias, was struck, killing at least five people, according to multiple international media outlets.

Though the target hasn’t been made public, a PMF spokesperson confirmed the attack to the AP.

The US has yet to say whether it conducted the attack. But …

Vox Sentences: A killing in Iraq

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Iran vows revenge

  • Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei promised there will be “harsh retaliation” for the death of the “international face of resistance,” Qassem Soleimani, the top military leader killed in an American airstrike in Baghdad early Friday morning. [AP News / Qassim Abdul-Zahra and Zeina Karam]
  • Soleimani’s killing is unprecedented in recent Middle Eastern history; he was simultaneously a