Signed last-minute bill.
Here's something everyone can agree on: the need to pay our service men and women abroad when the government goes dark. On Monday night, President Obama signed a last-minute bill ensuring the armed forces and civilian employees of the Defense Department and Pentagon will continue to get paid when the shutdown is set to go into effect at midnight. It was approved by the House and approved by the Senate earlier without dispute—a near-miracle in the current political climate.
Say they were fired for being Muslim.
Shams Uddin and Shamiha Mitwally, two former Sears cashiers, are suing the company for discrimination, claiming they were fired from their jobs at a Connecticut Sears store because they are Muslim. Mitwally is also alleging that she was assaulted by an assistant manager who yelled threateningly in her face, but did not hit her. Both Uddin and Mitwally were fired last month for giving customers discount coupons, even though they claim some of their coworkers did the same thing. "I suspect there was a relatively new person working there in a position of power who is prejudiced against Muslims," said their lawyer, Anthony Macri, noting that his clients had been "generally mistreated while on the job, especially during the last couple months."
As soda loses its popularity in the developed world, Apple bumps Coca-Cola out of its top spot.
By Katy BarnatoApple was named the world's most valuable brand on Monday, taking the fizz out of Coca-Cola's 13-year run at the top of a closely followed annual survey.The soft drink giant slipped to third place, behind Apple and Google, in this year's Interbrand survey of the most valuable brands, based on a number of factors including the company's financial performance."Every so often, a company changes our lives, not just with its products, but also with its ethos.
First time since 1979 revolution.
Wow, that must have been one powerful phone call. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has asked for a study into resuming direct flights between his country and the U.S., which have not occurred since the 1979 revolution. The groundbreaking move comes just days after a phone call between Rouhani and U.S. President Obama, the first direct contact between nations. Rouhani’s ultimate goal is to ease Western sanctions over Iran’s nuclear program, but it appears he is willing to expand contact between nations.
It’s a down day, but as the government shutdown looms, Wall Street isn’t freaking out yet. Daniel Gross on why the markets may be waiting for Boehner and the fractious Republicans to blink.
It began Sunday afternoon East Coast time. As prospects of a government shutdown grew more likely, stock markets in Asia began to fall. As daylight moved from east to west, so too did the red arrows on stock markets. This is the way the global financial system processes dysfunction in America.Japan fell out of bed, postings “its biggest drop in six weeks,” according to Reuters, based in part on “growing concerns over a possible U.S. government shutdown.
Seventy-four missing in China.
Vietnam ordered the evacuation on Monday of 58,000 people from central coastal areas as the nation braced for a powerful typhoon that already sank three fishing boats in the South China Sea. Seventy-four Chinese fisherman were declared missing, China’s state-run news agency Xinhua reported, and 14 had been rescued. Typhoon Wutip is the 10th storm to hit Vietnam this year, and storms and floods have already killed 22 people. Wutip, with winds of up to 149 kilometers per hour, is expected to hit Vietnam on Monday and head toward Thailand on Tuesday.
Asia shares already open low on threats.
This is just what the economy needs to fully recover. The shutdown could cost the Washington area up to $200 million a day—and that’s not even counting the losses when all the tourist sites are closed, local economists said Sunday. More than 700,000 jobs in the Beltway are likely to be affected, coming just months after 26,500 jobs were affected by the sequester in August. “This is serious,” said economist Stephen Fuller. “For the Washington area, this is a tsunami.” In addition to the government contracts directly affected and national tourist sites shut down, federal agencies such as Social Security will not be able to process any new applications and basic agencies for the city, like trash collection, will be halted. Asian markets already took a hit Monday on fears of the shutdown.
Was shipped to Sheremetyevo in 2007.
Could it be the lost fortune of Saddam Hussein? Or Muammar Gaddafi? Officials in Russia are searching for the owner of about 16.75 billion that are just stacked on pallets at the Sheremetyevo Airport. A handful of people have tried to claim the cash, which was flown to Moscow in August of 2007 without a recipient listed on the shipping documents, but so far no one has been able to convince authorities that they are the rightful owners. Other possible explanations include the idea that the money belongs to the Russian mafia or corrupt politicians. Russian law enforcement agents haven't seized the stash because they don't have any grounds to at this point.
Film made $35 million.
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 won the box office this weekend, taking in $35 million. The 3-D animated sequel did slightly better than the original, which opened with a $30.3 million haul in 2009 but went on to gross $243 million worldwide. The movie beat out last weekend’s top-grossing film, Prisoners, which made $11.3 million. Rush, starring Chris Hemsworth and Olivia Wilde, came in third with $10.3 million. Baggage Claim and Don Jon rounded out the top five, making $9.3 million and $9 million, respectively.
Over budget problems.
Just months after completing a $2 million renovation, the U.S.'s oldest continually operating public aquarium—open for 128 years—is most likely going to close on Monday. The National Aquarium is only 10,000-square-feet and has been operating out of the basement of the Herbert C. Hoover Building in Washington, D.C., but, it's going to run out of money unless a donor steps in to keep the aquarium going. If no one comes through, all of the wildlife, about 1,500 creatures in total, will have to be removed by March of 2014.
With an Ohio Walmart hosting a holiday food drive for its own workers, The Daily Beast's Michael Tomasky criticizes the notoriously stingy company for not paying them more.
What, no government shutdown next year? Patty Murray and Paul Ryan are hailing their bipartisan budget deal as a breakthrough in such a partisan Congress—but it still has to pass.