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Biden says he would 'shut down the virus, not the country' during the final presidential debate

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 8:36pm  |  Clusterstock
Democratic Presidential candidate and former US Vice President Joe Biden speaks during the final presidential debate at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, on October 22, 2020.
  • Democratic nominee Joe BIden pushed back during Thursday night's debate against President Donald Trump's repeated claim that he would tank the economy with shutdowns if elected.
  • "I'm going to shut down the virus, not the country," Biden said.
  • "It's his ineptitude that caused the country to have to shut down in large part," he added.
  • The line was part of a concerted strategy from the Biden campaign to chip away at Trump's last stronghold in polling, with more voters approving of the president's handling of the economy for months. The former VP is closing the gap and even pulling ahead in a recent Morning Consult survey.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden debuted a new line during Thursday night's debate.

"I'm going to shut down the virus, not the country," Biden said.

The former vice president was pushing back on President Donald Trump's repeated claim that he would tank the economy with shutdowns if elected.

—Bloomberg QuickTake (@QuickTake) October 23, 2020

"It's his ineptitude that caused the country to have to shut down in large part," Biden said.

Research has shown that individual decisions accounted for much of the downturn in economic activity back in the spring, with many states taking minimal shutdown measures in comparison to other countries in the absence of a robust federal response.

Biden's pandemic plan focuse on increasing testing and contact tracing in addition to sending more federal funds to schools for safer reopenings.

In the past, Biden has said that if the nation's top medical experts urged him to do a more complete lockdown, he would listen to them and do so.

However, Biden has also noted that the federal government is limited in its power over the states because of the 10th Amendment — an issue Trump struggled with in an inverse way when he was pushing states to lift their lockdown measures.

Biden's line is also part of a concerted strategy to whittle away at Trump's lone remaining advantage in polling, with a plurality of Americans trusting the president more on the economy.

The strategy has made an impact in the polls, with Biden closing the gap and even pulling ahead in a recent Morning Consult survey.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Fact-checking the final Trump-Biden debate

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 7:57pm  |  Clusterstock
  • President Donald Trump and his Democratic challenger Joe Biden took the debate stage for the final time Thursday night ahead of the 2020 general election.
  • The debate was moderated by NBC News' Kristen Welker and focused on six main topics: COVID-19, race, climate change, national security, leadership, and American families.
  • The debate came as Biden holds a hefty lead over Trump in a number of national and state polls, and as the Trump campaign levels new allegations of corruption against Biden based on unverified and unsubstantiated information that Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, has circulated in conservative media.
  • Scroll down to follow Business Insider's fact-check of the debate.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

President Donald Trump and the Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden took the stage for the final time Thursday night in what was a contentious and fiery debate ahead of the November general election.

NBC's Kristen Welker moderated the debate, and the evening focused on six key topics: COVID-19, race, climate change, national security, leadership, and American families. The debate began at 9 p.m. ET, and Welker allotted 15 minutes of discussion for each topic.

Thursday's event came just weeks after the first Trump-Biden debate, in which the president drew widespread backlash for repeatedly interrupting Biden. In the wake of that debate, the Commission on Presidential Debates decided to allow a third party to mute the candidates' microphones to give each contender two minutes of uninterrupted speaking time at the start of each topic. The commission said it was implementing the rule change to "ensure a more orderly discussion of the issues."

With fewer than two weeks left to go until Election Day on November 3, Thursday was Trump and Biden's last chance to appeal to a broad group of potential voters. Biden currently holds a hefty lead over Trump; according to FiveThirtyEight's latest forecast, the president currently has a 12% chance of winning a second term, while Biden has a 88% chance. The data website's national poll tracker also shows that Biden has nearly a 10-point lead over Trump.

Scroll down to follow Business Insider's fact-check of Thursday's debate.

COVID-19

Trump: "We closed up the greatest economy in the world in order to fight this horrible disease that came from China. The mortality rate is down 85%, the excess mortality rate is way down and much lower than almost any other country. There are some spikes and surges in other places, they will soon be gone. We have a vaccine ... it's going to be announced within weeks. Now they say I'm immune, whether it's four months or a lifetime, nobody's been able to say that, but I'm immune. I've been congratulated by the heads of many countries on what we've been able to do. We're rounding the turn, we're rounding the corner. It's going away."

Fact check: Trump's statement that the US's mortality rate is "way down and much lower than almost any other country" is inaccurate. According to data from Johns Hopkins University, more than 223,000 Americans have died from COVID-19, and the number of US deaths as a proportion of the population is higher than many other countries.

Trump has also repeatedly said a new COVID-19 vaccine will be released within weeks, but CDC Director Robert Redfield recently told Congress: "If you're asking me when is it going to be generally available to the American public so we can begin to take advantage of vaccine to get back to our regular life, I think we're probably looking at late second quarter, third quarter 2021."

The president's claim that he is "immune" from COVID-19 is also misleading. As Business Insider previously reported, scientists say there is no reliable indicator of immunity from the novel coronavirus.

On Trump's contention that the US is "rounding the corner," Forbes reported that as of last week, Trump made the same statement on 28 out of the last 46 days. The majority of US states are continuing to see sharp increases in new cases and hospitalizations.

Trump: The president repeatedly attacked Biden over the handling of the swine flu, known as H1N1.

Fact-check: Biden wasn't president when the H1N1 pandemic struck the US in 2009, and he wasn't spearheading the federal response to it; President Barack Obama was. H1N1 also killed far fewer Americans — 14,000 — than COVID-19 has.

National security

Biden: "His own national security adviser told him that what is happening with his buddy, Rudy Giuliani, he's being used as a Russian pawn, he's being fed information that is Russian — that is not true. And then what happens? Nothing happens. And then you find out that everything that's going on here about Russia is wanting to make sure that I do not get elected the next president of the United States because they know I know them and they know me."

Fact check: Biden was referring to a recent Washington Post report that said US officials warned the White House last year that Russian operatives were using Trump's longtime personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, to funnel disinformation to Trump.

One source told The Post that the message to Trump was, "Do what you want to do, but your friend Rudy has been worked by Russian assets in Ukraine."

According to the report, Trump responded by shrugging and saying, "That's Rudy."

Trump: "Joe got $3.5 million from Russia and it came through Putin because he was very friendly with the former mayor of Moscow. Your family got $3.5 million. I never got any money from Russia. I don't get money from Russia."

Fact check: Trump's claim Biden received $3.5 million from Moscow refers to uncorroborated allegations from a Republican Senate report last month that said an investment firm linked to Hunter Biden took in $3.5 million from Yelena Baturina, the widow of the late Mayor Yury Luzhkov of Moscow.

Biden's lawyer, George Mesires, told Politico in a statement that the Senate report held no merit because Hunter Biden did not have any "interest in" and was not the "cofounder" of the investment firm, Rosemont Seneca Thornton, "so the claim that he was paid $3.5 million is false."

Trump's claim that he does not "get money from Russia" has been contradicted by his son, Donald Trump Jr., who said in 2008 that a lot of the Trump family's assets come from Russia.

"In terms of high-end product influx into the US, Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets," Trump Jr. said at a real-estate conference that year. "Say, in Dubai, and certainly with our project in SoHo, and anywhere in New York. We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia."

Trump: "I was put through a phony witch hunt for three years. They spied on my campaign. [The special counsel Robert] Mueller and 18 angry Democrats and FBI agents all over the place spent $48 million, they went through everything I had, including my tax returns. And they found absolutely nothing: no collusion and nothing wrong."

Fact check: The Justice Department inspector general concluded after an internal investigation last year that there is no evidence the FBI "spied" on Trump's campaign, as he has repeatedly alleged. Mueller also did not obtain Trump's tax returns, and he did not conclude that there was "no collusion and nothing wrong" related to the Trump campaign.

Mueller's team determined that it did not have sufficient evidence to charge anyone on the campaign with conspiracy connected to Russia's interference in the 2016 election. But prosecutors prefaced that statement with a significant caveat, that "the investigation established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome, and that the Campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts."

The special counsel also declined to make a "traditional prosecutorial judgment" on whether Trump obstructed justice, citing a 1973 Justice Department memo that said a sitting president cannot be indicted. However, his team emphasized that "if we had confidence after a thorough investigation of the facts that the President clearly did not commit obstruction of justice, we would so state." The team continued: "Based on the facts and the applicable legal standards, however, we are unable to reach that judgment."

Biden: "With regard to Ukraine, we had this whole question about whether or not because he was on the board" of Burisma Holdings, "that somehow I had done something wrong. Yet every single, solitary person when he was going through his impeachment ... said I did my job impeccably. I carried out US policy. Not one single, solitary thing was out of line. Number two, the guy who got in trouble was this guy trying to bribe the Ukrainian government into saying something negative about me. My son has not made money in terms of this thing about ... China. The only guy who made money from China is this guy. He's the only one."

Fact check: Biden was alluding to Trump and his allies' claim that when Biden was vice president, he inappropriately leveraged his position to force the ouster of the Ukrainian prosecutor general in order to shut down a criminal investigation into Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian natural gas company whose board Hunter Biden was serving on at the time.

As Business Insider has previously reported, there are a number of holes in this claim. For one, the Burisma investigation was largely dormant at the time that the prosecutor general, Viktor Shokin, was fired. Also, government officials and Ukrainian anticorruption advocates said Shokin had hampered the investigation into Burisma long before Joe Biden even stepped into the picture, The Wall Street Journal reported. In other words, Biden was doing the opposite of what Trump and Giuliani have implied: He was trying to oust a prosecutor who was slow-walking the investigation into Burisma, rather than actively targeting the company.

Most important, Biden represented the US's official position on the matter, one that was shared by many other Western governments and anticorruption activists in Ukraine, The Associated Press reported.

Trump: "His son didn't have a job for a long time. As soon as [Biden] became vice president, Burisma ... I hear they paid him $183,000 a month. And they gave him a $3 million upfront payment."

Fact check: Hunter Biden was paid $83,000, not $183,000, per month while working at Burisma. And although multiple current and former career officials have said that the former vice president did not engage in wrongdoing connected to his son's work, they also say the ethics of Hunter Biden working for Burisma given his father's policy work in Ukraine may have blurred ethical lines.

Biden: "I have not taken a penny from any foreign source ever in my life. We learned that this president paid 50 times the tax in China [that he paid to the US government], has a secret bank account with China, does business in China, and in fact is talking about me taking money? I have not taken a single penny from any country whatsoever."

Fact check: Biden was referring to a recent New York Times report which found that Trump had a previously undisclosed account at a Chinese bank. It also said Trump ran an office in China and was partnered with a government-controlled company in the country. It added that Trump paid $188,561 in taxes to the Chinese government from 2013 to 2015. Meanwhile, he paid just $750 in taxes to the US in 2016 and 2017.

Biden: Trump "has legitimized North Korea. He talks about his good buddy who's a thug. A thug. And he talks about how we're better off. And they have much more capable missiles able to reach US territory much more easily than they ever did before."

Fact check: Trump has repeatedly met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Kim has sent the US president multiple "love letters," according to the veteran journalist Bob Woodward's latest book, "Rage."

Trump, meanwhile, has boasted about his relationship with Kim on multiple occasions, once stating that he and the North Korean letter "fell in love" over Kim's "beautiful letters."

Trump and Kim have had two formal summits as well as an impromptu meeting at the demilitarized zone that separates North and South Korea. The meetings were meant to foster the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, but that hasn't yet occurred. On the contrary, Pyongyang has continued escalating its aggression in the region and recently created an ICBM that could target the US.

American families

Trump: "We have 180 million people out there that have great private healthcare. Joe Biden is going to terminate all of those policies. They have 180 million plans, 180 million people — families. Under what he wants to do, which will basically be socialized medicine ... they want to terminate 180 million plans."

Fact check: It's not true that Biden's healthcare plan would kick 180 million people off their insurance. Biden has proposed a "public option," which would allow people to voluntarily join a government-run healthcare program similar to Medicare. But if they want to keep their current insurance, under Biden's plan, they would be able to.

Trump: "They did it. We changed the policy. They built the cages."

Fact check: Trump made these remarks in response to questions about his administration's "zero tolerance policy," which separated thousands of migrant families at the US-Mexico border. As The New York Times reported, the Obama administration rarely separated families at the border and only did so if the relationship between a child and the adult accompanying them was not immediately clear.

By contrast, the Trump administration's "zero tolerance policy" was explicitly articulated, and The Times reported that then Attorney General Jeff Sessions specifically told prosecutors who expressed opposition to the policy, "We have to take away the children."

Trump's claim that the Obama administration built cages for migrant children is true.

Biden: "What did the president say? He said [of coronavirus], 'Don't worry, it's going to go away. Be gone by Easter. Don't worry. Maybe inject bleach.' He said he was kidding when he said that, but a lot of people thought it was serious." Trump replied that he was, in fact, "kidding."

Fact check: Here's what the president said during the April task-force briefing, according to a transcript and video recording of his remarks:

"So, supposing we hit the body with a tremendous, whether it's ultraviolet or just very powerful light, and I think you said, that hasn't been checked but you're going to test it. And then I said, supposing it brought the light inside the body, which you can either do either through the skin or some other way, and I think you said you're going to test that too, sounds interesting. And I then I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in one minute, and is there a way you can do something like that by injection inside, or almost a cleaning. Because you see it gets in the lungs, and it does a tremendous number on the lungs. So it'd be interesting to check that. So you're going to have to use medical doctors, but it sounds interesting to me, so we'll see. But the whole concept of the light, the way it goes in one minute, that's pretty powerful."

Race

Trump: The president said that Biden called Black Americans "superpredators" in connection to the 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act.

Fact check: This is untrue. Hillary Clinton made the remark in 1996, not Biden.

Trump: The president went after Biden over his support of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act in 1994, which Trump said "put tens of thousands of Black men, mostly, in jail."

Fact check: This claim is largely true. Biden has drawn significant scrutiny because of his support for the measure, which devastated the Black community and exacerbated mass incarceration. The former vice president apologized at the debate and in previous instances for his support of the bill and his hardline stance on criminal justice reform.

Trump: "You know, Joe, I ran because of you. I ran because of Barack Obama. Because you did a poor job. If I thought you did a good job, I would have never run."

Fact check: As several current and former Trump associates have pointed out, he did run because of Obama but it didn't have to do with Obama's record. Instead, they said, it was because Obama made fun of Trump at the 2011 White House Correspondents Dinner.

"I think that is the night he resolves to run for president," the longtime GOP operative Roger Stone told PBS' Frontline. "I think that he is kind of motivated by it: 'Maybe I'll just run. Maybe I'll show them all.'"

"I thought, 'Oh, Barack Obama is starting something that I don't know if he'll be able to finish,'" Omarosa Manigault Newman, the former White House aide and Trump confidant, told PBS.

Trump: "Nobody has done more for the Black community than Donald Trump. If you look, with the exception of Abraham Lincoln, possible exception, nobody has done what I've done."

Fact check: "This may well be the president's most audacious claim ever," Michael Fauntroy, a professor of political science at Howard University, told The New York Times in June. "Not only has he not done more than anybody else, he's done close to the least."

The majority of historians and experts believe Lincoln and former President Lyndon B. Johnson have had the most legislative achievements in advancing civil rights, according to The Times. Johnson, in particular, advocated for the passage of the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act, and the Fair Housing Act.

Other presidents like Ulysses S. Grant, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Harry Truman, Jimmy Carter, and Bill Clinton also took action to protect and enforce the constitutional rights of Black Americans, as well as diversify the federal government and the judiciary, the report said.

Climate change

Trump: "We have the best carbon emission numbers that we've had in 35 years."

Fact check: The Times reported that this is a misleading claim because although the US pollutes less now than it did when Trump came into office, that's largely because of lower natural gas prices and Obama administration policies.

Also, as Business Insider reported, "the Environmental Performance Index, a metric from environmental scientists at Yale and Columbia that ranks 180 countries around the world, puts the US in 10th place when it comes to overall air quality (Australia is first)."

Moreover, contrary to Trump's claims, "air in the country is actually getting dirtier and more dangerous to breathe under his administration," the report said.

Trump: The president repeated a common allegation that Republicans make about Biden, alleging that he supports the Green New Deal and wants to ban fracking.

Fact check: The former vice president has explicitly said that he would not ban fracking and that he does not support the Green New Deal, though his climate plan features some similarities to the plan. In fact, Biden's lack of support for the Green New Deal was one of the main reasons progressive lawmakers including New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez were hesitant to throw their support behind the former vice president.

Leadership

Trump: Biden "wants to raise everybody's taxes, and he wants to put new regulations on everything. He will kill it. If he gets in, you will have a depression the likes of which you've never seen, your 401ks will go to hell, and it'll be a very, very sad day for this country."

Fact check: Biden's tax plan would raise taxes only on Americans making more than $400,000 a year.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Walmart is suing the federal government in a preemptive strike against claims the retailer fueled the opioid crisis by filling suspicious prescriptions

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 6:13pm  |  Clusterstock
A Walmart Health center.
  • Walmart is suing the DOJ and DEA, asking a federal court to clarify what legal authority its pharmacists have to refuse to fill opioid prescriptions.
  • Walmart's legal action comes as it expects the federal government to file its own lawsuit alleging the retail giant helped fuel the opioid crisis by refusing to fill suspicious prescriptions, the company said in a statement Thursday.
  • Walmart claimed the government's "unprecedented" threatened lawsuit would put its pharmacists "between a rock and a hard place" of facing legal action whether or not they refuse to fill the prescriptions.
  • Walmart is currently facing lawsuits from several states and counties over its role as an opioid distributor and pharmacy.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Walmart has filed a lawsuit against the US Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Agency in an attempt to head off what it said was the government's own planned civil legal action related to the retail giant's alleged role in the opioid crisis, the company said in a statement Thursday.

In a lawsuit filed Thursday in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Walmart claimed the federal government is trying to shift blame for its own regulatory failings onto the company, and asked the court to clarify whether its pharmacists have the authority to refuse to fill prescriptions under the Controlled Substances Act.

"In the shadow of their own profound failures, DOJ and DEA now seek to retroactively impose on pharmacists and pharmacies unworkable requirements that are not found in any law and go beyond what pharmacists are trained and licensed to perform," Walmart said in the lawsuit.

The dispute concerns Walmart's role as both a pharmacy and prescription drug distributor. In the wake of the opioid crisis, pharmacies have faced scrutiny and legal action for what critics say was a failure to detect and refusal to fill suspicious, high-volume opioid prescriptions.

In its lawsuit, Walmart said that it has already faced legal action from state and health regulators who accused the company of "going too far by refusing to fill opioid prescriptions." But it also said the federal government's "unprecedented" proposed lawsuit would, conversely, punish Walmart's pharmacists "for not going far enough by continuing to fill opioid prescriptions of certain licensed doctors—many of whom are still authorized by DEA to prescribe opioids to this day."

"Because these new, unsupported expectations directly conflict with the requirements of state regulators who oversee the practice of pharmacy and medicine, pharmacists are left between the proverbial 'rock and a hard place,'" the complaint said.

Walmart is among several major corporations that have faced legal action for allegedly playing a role in fueling the opioid crisis, including distributors like McKesson, Cardinal Health, and AmerisourceBergen, drugmakers such as Purdue Pharma and Johnson & Johnson, and more recently, pharmacies such as CVS Health and Rite Aid.

Walmart is facing lawsuits from several states and counties across the country including West Virginia and Ohio

Read the original article on Business Insider

A Colorado trailer park owner says he'll raise his tenants' rent if Biden wins the election, or freeze it if Trump wins

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 5:43pm  |  Clusterstock
  • A Colorado landlord who manages a trailer park sent a letter to tenants saying rents would likely double if Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden wins the election, KUSA-TV reported. 
  • Tenants are calling it a form of voter suppression.
  • A complaint was filed with Colorado's secretary of state's office.  
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

A landlord who manages a trailer park in Colorado is accused of sending a letter to tenants saying that if Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden wins the election, rents would likely double, KUSA-TV reported. 

The news station, citing a copy of the letter, reported that it also said if Trump won, rents would stay the same for at least two years. 

"Voting is your choice and we are not telling you how to vote. We are just informing our tenants what WE will do according to the election results," the letter read. "If Trump wins, we all win. If Biden wins, we all lose."

The letter claims taxes and other living expenses would increase if Biden was elected and that the trailer park would respond with the rent increases.

Business Insider reached out to Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser's office to learn whether the notice is legal. KUSA-TV reported the Colorado secretary of state's office did receive a complaint about the issue and passed it along to Weiser's office. 

Some tenants living at Pagel's Trailer Park in Fort Morgan told KUSA-TV they believe the letter amounts to voter suppression. 

"I mean, we can't control how this whole election goes," Cindy Marquez, a tenant of the trailer park, told KUSA. "We can't control what everyone else does, you know? We can't control the results."

Marquez said her family lives paycheck-to-paycheck and would not be able to afford higher rent. She also said it isn't fair to be "threatened" with the election results which are outside of the tenants' control. 

Juana Hernandez, whose parents have lived at the trailer park for about a decade told The New York Times: "It's just really infuriating because most of the people who live in the trailer park are Hispanic. A lot of them, they don't even have the right to vote. I do think that it is intimidation." 

At least 47 million early votes have already been cast in this year's presidential election as of Thursday, according to Public Citizen.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Quibi's content failed to hook viewers and convince them to pay. Insiders said Jeffrey Katzenberg had close control of many programming decisions.

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 5:18pm  |  Clusterstock
Jeffrey Katzenberg.
  • Quibi, the mobile-video startup that raised $1.75 billion from backers like Alibaba Group, JPMorgan Chase, and Disney, is folding six months after debuting its subscription service.
  • The Jeffrey Katzenberg-founded startup said in a statement that its demise was likely caused by a combination of an idea that wasn't strong enough and poor timing.
  • But Quibi's failure ultimately comes back to a slate of content that did not break through with its target audience of 25- to 35-year-olds. 
  • That falls on Katzenberg, who insiders previously told Business Insider was hyper-involved in programming decisions, from greenlighting shows to ground-level decisions like casting and wardrobe.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

During a pandemic in which streaming viewership boomed, mobile-video service Quibi lasted only six months.

The Jeffrey Katzenberg-founded startup, which raised $1.75 billion in funding, said in a statement announcing its winding-down on Wednesday that its failure was likely caused by a combination of an idea that wasn't strong enough and poor timing.

Quibi took a risk in betting that millennials would pay for a streaming service with episodes under 10 minutes that could only be watched only on their smartphones. The risk was even greater when the pandemic forced people to remain at home, removing what Quibi perceived as its primary use case, the in-between moments of people's days when they waited in line at Kroger or on the subway.

But Quibi's failure ultimately comes back to a slate of content that did not break through with its target audience of 25- to 35-year-olds. 

Shows like "Chrissy's Court" with Chrissy Teigen attracted enough eyeballs for Quibi to order second seasons. And the police drama "#FreeRayshawn" earned Quibi Emmys acclaim. Yet neither show, nor Quibi titles starring Liam Hemsworth, Anna Kendrick, Kevin Hart, and others, swayed enough people to pull out their credit cards to subscribe.

"We're proud of the content that we made," Katzenberg told CNBC's "Squawk Alley" on Thursday. "Emmy award-winning content in a very short period of time. We're proud of the product and the engineering team and what they built. But in the end we did not get the acceptance of consumers and customers in a way in which we had to in order for this to be a successful business."

While Meg Whitman was Quibi's CEO, Katzenberg, its founder and chairman, was the driving force behind many of Quibi's programming decisions, insiders previously told Business Insider.

And at the end of the day, content is make or break for streaming services in 2020. Netflix, the streaming-video frontrunner, underscored that reality earlier this year when it promoted its content chief as co-CEO alongside its Silicon Valley-rooted founder.

Katzenberg is a seasoned Hollywood exec, who put Disney's animation studio back on the map in the 1980s and 1990s, and cofounded and led DreamWorks to classics like "Shrek" and "Kung Fu Panda."

He worked closely with Quibi's content team that commissioned programming for its mobile platform.

Read the full story: 15 Quibi insiders detail Jeffrey Katzenberg's tight control of the startup's content and intense leadership as he tries to avoid disaster after raising $1.8 billion

Multiple people close to the company said Katzenberg personally greenlit many of the shows on Quibi. He was also intimately involved with ground-level decisions, including casting, wardrobe, and set decoration, several production partners said. 

Katzenberg's reputation loomed large within the startup, as well. Two people close to the company said the content team, many of whom were in their 30s and 40s, often deferred to Katzenberg's judgment, even when they disagreed.

Read the full story: Quibi insiders describe the intense feedback the mobile-video startup gives show creators: 'There are notes and then there are Quibi notes'

Under Katzenberg's leadership, Quibi's content team struggled to use online influencers, who had massive followings among the platform's target audience, to their full advantage.

Quibi released shows by digital creators like Liza Koshy, Tony Greenhand, and Kirby Jenner, and featured influencers like TikTok star Addison Rae. But in trying to distinguish itself from the content on platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok, Quibi often put these influencers in familiar TV formats — like Liza Koshy's series "Floored," a dance competition series that also puts the contestants through obstacles in the style of the network series like "Wipeout," or Rachel Hollis' talk show.

One YouTube manager whose client pitched Quibi said that the company dismissed some ideas as "YouTuber ideas."

"If it can be on YouTube, it can't be on Quibi," Katzenberg was known to say, other sources close to the company said.

Read the full story: Quibi says influencers are a key part of its strategy but insiders say it repeatedly dismissed 'YouTuber ideas' in favor of familiar TV formats

In some ways, Katzenberg's heavy influence on Quibi is no different from Silicon Valley founders like Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, or Elon Musk.

Employees, content creators, advertisers, investors, and other partners bought into Quibi because they bought into Katzenberg's vision. 

Read the full story: A Quibi investor says the startup should have tried to 'fight more' but that he'll be happy if he can get 50% of his investment back

But that also means Katzenberg is responsible for Quibi's legacy. 

Currently, the executive is still banking on Quibi's content slate to help it save some face. Quibi is trying to sell the rights to the content it licensed as well as its technology, to help return more money to its investors.

If you have a tip about Quibi, contact the author at arodriguez@businessinsider.com, or ashrodriguez@protonmail.com.

Read the original article on Business Insider

How to watch UFC 254: Lightweight champion Khabib returns to defend his title for the first time in 2020

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 5:05pm  |  Clusterstock

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The UFC Lightweight Champion will be crowned when Khabib Nurmagomedov and Justin Gaethje meet in the main event of UFC 254 this weekend in Abu Dhabi.

Nurmagomedov enters UFC 254 with a perfect record through 28 fights — his dominant victory over Connor McGregor at UFC 229 helped make him one of UFC's most recognizable fighters. Travel restrictions and the coronavirus pandemic have prevented him from competing in 2020 but he hopes to reclaim his title as the undisputed lightweight champion with a win.

Gaethje has won four straight fights since losing to Dustin Poirier in April 2018, claiming the interim lightweight championship with a knockout victory over Tony Ferguson in the final round of their May 2020 fight.

On the undercard, former champion Robert Whittaker will take on Jared Cannonier in a match that will likely decide the next challenger to face reigning middleweight champion Israel Adesanya. Whittaker has won 10 of his last 11 fights, with the sole loss coming to Adesanya in October 2019.

UFC 254 will broadcast live from Yas Island, a private resort in Abu Dhabi that UFC has dubbed Fight Island. The event campus spans six miles and allows UFC to book international fighters that could otherwise face travel restrictions. Fans will still not be in attendance for UFC 254 due to the pandemic.

Here's the match schedule for UFC 254: Khabib vs. Gaethje Early Prelims — 11 a.m. ET, 8 a.m. PT only on UFC Fight Pass
  • Joel Alvarez vs. Alexander Yakovlev [Lightweight]
  • Liana Jojua vs. Miranda Maverick [Women's Flyweight]
Prelims — 12 p.m. ET, 9 a.m. PT on ESPN+ and ESPN
  • Sam Alvey vs. Da-un Jung [Light Heavyweight]
  • Alex Olveira vs. Shavkat Rakhmonov [Welterweight]
  • Nathaniel Wood vs. Casey Kenney [Catchweight]
  • Stefan Struve vs. Tai Tuivasa [Heavyweight]
Main Card — 2 p.m. ET, 11 p.m. PT only on ESPN+ for $64.99
  • Magomed Ankalaev vs. Ion Cutelaba [Light Heavyweight]
  • Lauren Murphy vs. Liliya Shakirova [Women's Flyweight]
  • Jacob Malkoun vs. Phillip Hawes [Middleweight]
  • Alexander Volkov vs. Walt Harris [Heavyweight]
  • Robert Whittaker vs. Jared Cannonier [Middleweight]
  • Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Justin Gaethje [Lightweight Title Bout]
How to watch UFC 254

UFC 254 is separated into three portions: the early prelims, the prelims, and the main card. The early prelims are only available to UFC Fight Pass subscribers, while the prelims will air on ESPN+ and the ESPN2 cable channel. The main card, meanwhile, is an ESPN+ exclusive pay-per-view event.

This means that you have to subscribe to the ESPN+ streaming service before you're able to purchase the PPV fight. An ESPN+ membership costs $5.99 per month or $49.99 per year. The UFC 254 PPV event costs $64.99 for ESPN+ subscribers.

You can access the ESPN+ app on all major mobile and connected TV devices, including Amazon Fire, Apple, Android, Chromecast, PS4, Xbox One, Roku, Samsung Smart TVs, and more.

Ways to save on the UFC 254 pay-per-view price

If you plan on signing up for ESPN+ to watch UFC 254, you can take advantage of a special discounted package.

New subscribers can purchase a year-long ESPN+ membership with access to UFC 254 included for a total of $84.98. That's over 25% off the standard price. Following your first year of service, ESPN+ will then renew for the regular annual price of $49.99.

Bundle the next UFC PPV with an ESPN+ Annual Plan to save over 25% UFC Fight Island will deliver 4 events from a private 'bubble' in the United Arab Emirates — here's the full schedule and how to watchESPN+: All your questions answered about ESPN's streaming serviceHow to get the Disney Plus bundle with ESPN+ and the different versions of HuluGermany's premier soccer league, the Bundesliga, will begin its new season on September 18 — here's how to watch live on ESPN+

 

Read the original article on Business Insider

Quibi's star-studded shows cost the startup up to $100,000 per minute to make

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 5:04pm  |  Clusterstock
Jeffrey Katzenberg.
  • Quibi's content production cost the startup up to $100,000 per minute.
  • While production costs range platform to platform, Quibi's $100,000 per-minute budgets were largely in line with high-end streaming and cable TV productions.
  • It intended to spend $1.1 billion on content in its first year, but the six-month-old streaming platform on Wednesday announced that it would shut down.
  • Quibi did receive multiple short-form Emmy nominations and wins, and the stars of one of the shows with a reported $100,000 per-minute budget, "#FreeRayshawn," each won awards.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Quibi's content spend was as much as $100,000 per minute while it was still in business, a stark reminder that high production spending does not guarantee a startup will be successful.

"People on Quibi have $100,000 a minute to make content," Jeffrey Katzenberg, Quibi's founder, told Vulture some three months prior to his company going out of business. "That doesn't exist on other platforms."

The company had announced it intended to spend $1.1 billion on content in its first year.

While production costs range platform to platform, Quibi's $100,000 per-minute budgets were largely in line with high-end streaming and cable TV productions.

Quibi, which launched as a mobile-only platform with short content designed to be consumed in 10 minutes or less, struck high-profile deals and landed big names like Liam Hemsworth, Chrissy Teigen, and Anna Kendrick.

One of those $100,000-per-minute shows, according to Vanity Fair, was "#FreeRayshawn" starring Laurence Fishburne and Jasmine Cephas Jones, who both won an Emmy in the short-form drama category.

But even with deep investor pockets, massive content budgets, and 10 short-form Emmy nominations and multiple wins, the interest from consumers failed to follow. The six-month-old streaming platform announced on Wednesday that it would shut down. Quibi was unable to attract enough viewers despite raising $1.75 billion from investors such as PepsiCo, Walmart and Anheuser-Busch InBev.

"We had a new product," Katzenberg said Thursday in an interview with CNBC. "We asked people to pay for it before they actually understood what it was. I think we thought there would be easier adoption by people to it."

Previously, The Wall Street Journal reported that Quibi was examining its options and was open to a potential sale. But less than two weeks after The Information reported that Facebook, Apple, and WarnerMedia had passed, the plug was pulled.

Katzenberg, along with CEO Meg Whitman, wrote in an open letter published Wednesday that Quibi was unsuccessful, "likely for one of two reasons: because the idea itself wasn't strong enough to justify a standalone streaming service or because of our timing."

"The circumstances of launching during a pandemic is something we could have never imagined but other businesses have faced these unprecedented challenges and have found their way through it," the executives wrote. "We were not able to do so."

Katzenberg reportedly told employees during a call on Wednesday to listen to the song "Get Back Up Again" from the soundtrack of the 2016 animated movie "Trolls" to help them cope with the news of the layoffs.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Quibi's investors want their money back

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 5:04pm  |  Clusterstock

Hi! Welcome to the Insider Advertising daily for October 23. I'm Lauren Johnson, a senior advertising reporter at Business Insider. Subscribe here to get this newsletter in your inbox every weekday. Send me feedback or tips at ljohnson@businessinsider.com.

Today's news: Quibi's investors want their money back, Facebook's Carolyn Everson talks about the recent advertiser boycott, and GroupM global CEO Christian Juhl makes the case for a new ad model.

Still from "Chrissy's Court" on Quibi. A Quibi investor says the startup should have tried to 'fight more' but that he'll be happy if he can get 50% of his investment backRead the full story here.

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 11: Vice President, Global Marketing Solutions, Facebook Carolyn Everson speaks onstage at the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit - Day 3 on October 11, 2017 in Washington, DC.

'I don't care who takes credit': Facebook's head of ad sales describes lessons the company learned from the summer ad boycottRead the full story here. The global CEO of GroupM: Brands need to put more media dollars toward making a positive social and environmental impact and less on funding hate speechRead the full story here.More stories we're reading:

Thanks for reading and see you on Monday! You can reach me in the meantime at ljohnson@businessinsider.com and subscribe to this daily email here.

— Lauren

Read the original article on Business Insider

Diabolical ironclad beetles can get squished under 39,000 times their weight and survive. Scientists figured out how.

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:50pm  |  Clusterstock
A diabolical ironclad beetle, or Phloeodes diabolicus.
  • The diabolical ironclad beetle can withstand forces up to 39,000 times its body weight.
  • They can do that, researchers discovered, thanks to hardened casings on each wing that interlock and support the beetle's exoskeleton.
  • By mimicking the interlocking nature of these protective layers, scientists could build better planes and armored vehicles. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Imagine a 200-pound man being crushed by the weight of nearly two space shuttles and coming out unscathed. That's about how indestructible the diabolical ironclad beetle is.

The 1-inch-long insect's exoskeleton is capable of withstanding forces up to 39,000 times its body weight. Entomologists who try to mount these beetles for display usually wind up with their steel pins bent or snapped in half.

In a study published Wednesday in the journal Nature, scientists revealed the secrets of this beetle's stab-proof and smash-proof body. An analysis of the beetles' elytra — the hardened casings on top of each forewing — shows that the shields interlock like a 3D jigsaw puzzle and can deform under enormous weight without losing their shape.

Those elytra also fit together with the rest of the beetle's exoskeleton like a suit of armor, making it impervious to  crushing forces.

These insights could have applications for improvements to the design of aircraft and armored vehicles.

This beetle can get run over by a Toyota Camry and survive

Whereas most beetles live for weeks or months, diabolical ironclad beetles typically live for two years, mostly in oak trees on the Pacific coast of North America. They can't fly away from danger, which may explain why they developed an exoskeleton that protects them from birds' stabbing beaks and crushing blows.

The researchers behind the study tested how much force the beetle, known as Phloeodes diabolicus, could take without getting squished. The answer: 149 newtons, which means the insect can get stomped on or run over by a car and survive.

A Toyota Camry.

"We heard from folklore that you could run them over with a car or step on them, and they don't die. And, of course, we had to try that. So we took a old Toyota Camry and put the diabolical on the ground and ran it over, and it survived," David Kisalius, the lead author of the study, told NPR

An exoskeleton that locks together like a jigsaw puzzle

Kisalius's group also investigated the beetle's exoskeleton closely using electron microscopes and CT scans. The secret to the beetle's resilience, they found, are a variety of joints that lock pieces of its exoskeleton together.

Imagine the insect's exoskeleton as two halves of a pistachio shell protecting the soft bits inside. The hardened elytra ensconcing its wings are the top half of the shell, and they connect to the underbelly of the beetle's exoskeleton to make one overall suit of armor. 

But the various parts of the armor are are joined together in different ways. The researchers found three different types of connections, called lateral supports, between the top and bottom halves of the beetle's exoskeleton.  

Each support serves a different purpose in protecting the beetle. 

"The strong and stiff interdigitated supports are used to protect the beetle's vital organs from being crushed," Po-Yun Chen, a materials scientist from National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan who wrote an accompanying Nature article about the findings, told Business Insider. "Whereas the compliant latching and free-standing supports allow deformation of the exoskeleton, so that the beetle can squeeze into crevices in rocks or tree bark."

That variation in joint type "is absent in other beetles, which have only interdigitated supports throughout their bodies," according to Chen.

However, cockroaches also have the ability to change their shape to fit into and move within tight spaces, he said. 

Cockroaches between two rocks. Insights from this beetle could help us build better vehicles

The researchers discovered that the beetle's elytra, too, are made of pieces that interlock. On top of its wings, they found a rigid joint called a suture that fuses the elytra together like two 3D puzzle pieces nestled together, as shown below.

 

A cross section showing where two halves of the diabolical ironclad beetle's wing cases meet and interlock like puzzle pieces.

The interlocking pieces of that suture, called blades, have multiple layers. As the scientists increased the forces on the beetle, those blades broke layer-by-layer, which prevented the suture from snapping all together.

Learning how to mimic those multilayered blades could help engineers design better ways of joining materials. By using the beetles' blades as an inspiration, for example, scientists could create tougher joining materials that won't fracture apart unpredictably, Chen said. Or perhaps they could use the design to keep joints from degrading way that the adhesives, bolts, and pins used in aircraft do.

"When you bring two metals together, it's usually the joints that fails," Aura Gimm, a program officer with the US Air Force office of scientific research, told NPR.

The new research, in fact, is part of an $8 million project funded by Gimm's office that looks to create new impact-resistant technologies that mimic the natural armor of animals.

Containers and vehicles await transportation on commercial ships to Europe at the Port of Beaumont, Texas, February 18, 2020.

Chen said the different types of supports the study authors observed on the beetle could be incorporated into armored vehicles, too.

Some of that biomimetic design is already happening.

In 2016, US defense contractor BAE Systems announced a new type of bendable suspension system inspired by the diabolical ironclad beetle, which could allow military vehicles to weather landmine explosions unscathed.

Read the original article on Business Insider

We've tested numerous men's athleisure brands and Rhone consistently ranks among the top — here's a breakdown of our favorite styles from the brand

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:41pm  |  Clusterstock

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  • Rhone makes some of the best workout gear we've tested, yet also offer several athleisure products that function just as well outside of the gym.
  • Since we've mentioned the brand in several buying guides and individually reviewed many of its items, we asked some members of the Insider Reviews team to revisit their favorite Rhone products and to explore a few new styles. 
  • Unsurprisingly, our opinion on Rhone's quality remains unchanged. If you're looking for workout gear made from high-quality materials that perform both in and out of the gym, Rhone is a great option.

Rhone is one of my favorite workout brands due in large part to the fact its gear looks, feels, and performs exceptionally well. The rest of the Insider Reviews team is no stranger to its apparel either, as the brand has consistently shown up throughout several Insider Reviews round-ups. This includes nabbing the top spot in our best workout shirts for men, along with being included in the best high-performance gear in the gym.

We also love how certain styles, like the Rhone joggers or Commuter Dress Shirt, function just as well out of the gym. Rhone truly fits the bill of being an athleisure brand and we're absolutely here for it.  

The brand traces its roots to New Haven, Connecticut where it was founded in 2014 and named after the Rhone River, a trade route in Europe famous for striking a perfect balance of beauty and functionality. The fabric in each product is infused with high-performance technology, specifically designed to increase moisture-wicking, air permeability, heat retention, and odor control. Many of its pieces are also designed to be quick-drying and lightweight.

After reviewing several of its staples in the past, we decided to take another look at Rhone's gear to see if it still holds up to our original takes — and tried out a few of the brand's latest products, as well.

Check out our thoughts of Rhone's gear below.  Element Tee

Beyond the odor-eliminating technology sewn into the soft Pima cotton fabric, the best part of the Element Tee is its versatility. I've worn the shirt in the gym, as an undershirt, and even as a casual shirt throughout the day. In the gym, the shirt is flexible and lightweight enough to avoid bogging you down or feeling soaked in sweat.

The odor-eliminating and soft material make it perfect as an undershirt, and as someone who has dealt with sweat stains throughout the workday, the Element Tee is definitely a go-to for under my dress shirts. Rhone offers the shirt in five different colors, and it comes as either a crew- or v-neck style, meaning you can pick whichever best fits your personal style.

—Danny Bakst, Manager, story production

Everyday Essentials

Rhone's latest release is its Everyday Essentials lineup, a collection that features basics such as undershirts, boxers, and socks. Like almost everything else the brand offers, the line is designed with an eye toward comfort and performance, and though I only tested out the v-neck undershirt and the boxer briefs, I can say that it achieves both of those quite well. 

For the boxer briefs, they come in a 7-inch inseam that provides more coverage than a typical trunk (the line also has trunks, as well), and the pair come without a tag which helps avoid any unnecessary discomfort. There's also a dedicated "comfort pouch" as Rhone calls it, that isn't unlike the BallPark Pouch found in a pair of Saxx boxers. It's a welcome feature that makes the boxers that much more comfortable compared to a standard boxer brief. 

Rhone's undershirt was clearly designed to have a more snug fit than a traditional underlayer, and it's also shorter with tapered sleeves. I tested out the size medium and though I'd likely do better in a large, the medium was still comfortable enough that it didn't feel too constricting. The shirt is also void of any seams under the arm or along the side which add to its comfort when layered with a button-down or any other type of top layer. 

Much of Rhone's apparel comes at a premium price, and though the Everyday Essentials line is similar, it doesn't have a shockingly steep price tag. The boxer briefs (and trunks) run for $32 while the v-neck undershirt (as well as its crewneck counterpart) sell for $38. These are prices you'd likely find on other premium, high-quality basics, so while they aren't exactly a budget option, they are worth the investment. 

–Rick Stella, fitness & health editor

Reign Short Sleeve Tee

Rhone's Reign tee accomplishes the feat of being both comfortable and functional, no matter the workout or activity. Runners will like its soft, moisture-wicking nylon fabric while gym-goers can appreciate its raglan-style sleeves which allow for a full range of movement. As is typical in other Rhone gear, the Reign also features its unique GoldFusion technology which actively repels odor and boosts its quick-drying ability. 

The shirt does tend to run slightly smaller than similar performance tees, so it's worth double-checking the size chart before buying. I often wear size Medium in other brands but wear a large in the Reign, and the larger size is much more comfortable. 

Rhone offers the Reign in seven different color options, as well as a long sleeve version perfect for colder weather workouts. 

–Rick Stella, fitness & health editor

Swift Short Sleeve Tee

Rhone's Swift Short Sleeve is designed for running but I've found it to be great for any type of physical activity where breathability is a top priority. The featherweight design keeps you cool and dry in most instances where you'd typically be sweaty and uncomfortable in a wet shirt. 

The Swift T-Shirt also includes Goldfusion Anti-Odor guard, which makes it possible to wear it a few times in a row between washes. This is a feature I always try to look for in my gym clothes because washing clothes after every workout is unrealistic. However, when I did wash the Swift T-Shirt, it held its shape and didn't shrink.

Aside from its stellar quality and fit, I really appreciate the motivational quotes Rhone incorporates into the shirts. For instance, the Swift Short Sleeve says "To the one that endures, final victory comes." It's a nice touch for people working hard to be their best selves.

—Amir Ismael, reporter

Commuter Jogger

When I first tried Rhone's Commuter Jogger, I wasn't sure the correct setting to wear them. From afar, they look like a standard pair of fancy dress pants — but they come in a stretchy, athleisure-esque material similar to a pair of pants from Lululemon. Because I work in an office without a dress code, I always felt like they looked too dressy for work, yet they'd still not be fancy enough for a real black-tie affair. Like the typical jogger style, the pants are snug on the legs, so I definitely don't want to wear them while I'm actually working out. However, there is a zipper on the calf that makes it easy to take on or off.

I recently started trying out some different workout classes instead of exercising in my building's gym and the joggers have been the perfect pants to wear over my gym shorts before and after a class. Typically, I avoid wearing sweats outside of my house but with the Commuter Jogger, I stay loose on my walk to a class and feel comfortably dressed to complete my day's errands afterward.

They're great for social settings, too, since they're comfortable without sacrificing style. I often wear them when I want to dress up without being too formal, like going out with friends to a nicer restaurant or bar where a sport coat isn't needed.

—Danny Bakst, Manager, story production

Performance Ankle Sock

The first thing that stands out about these socks is the silicone pad sewn into the heel. This helps keep the sock in place, which reduces friction and helps mitigate the risk of blisters. As someone who prefers shoes with heavy ankle-support, I wish they offered a longer version of the padded sock but these are a great option when I wear shorter shoes.

Like their workout tees, Rhone manufactured the socks out of fabric designed to eliminate odor, meaning you won't have to worry about any post-workout funk emanating from your feet. While they only have the one length option, there are four different colors to choose from. 

—Danny Bakst, Manager, story production

Rhone Boxer Brief

We've tried a lot of fancy underwear brands here at Insider Picks. While it's hard to stomach $30 for a single pair of briefs, Rhone's option delivers compared to many of the brands we've tested. One reason is the fly on Rhone's boxers is a seamless fold that's simple and easy to execute, without any unwanted friction.

Additionally, the fabric is specially designed to be lightweight and uses the same ultra-soft Pima cotton as the brand's Element Tee. These are great for working out but are generally an ultra-comfortable underwear option for any time.

—Danny Bakst, Manager, story production

Versatility Shorts

I reviewed the versatility shorts when Rhone first released them and was impressed with how they felt in the gym. I tried the 7-inch, lined version and after several rounds in the washing machine, they still felt as if I'd just pulled them off the rack. The compression short lined in the interior is an especially nice touch that helps limit unwanted motion while jogging or doing most floor exercises.

You can customize the shorts according to your own preferences, too. Rhone lets you choose between four different colorways, as well as whether you want them to be lined or unlined, and a 7-inch or 9-inch pant leg. 

—Danny Bakst, Manager, story production 

Commuter Dress Shirt

I've tried plenty of performance dress shirts and Rhone's is easily one of my favorites. The shirt strikes the perfect balance of stretchiness, softness, and comfort, without looking too schlubby to wear to work or for a night out with friends. It fits nicely on my arms and shoulders, and the lightweight Italian fabric feels great on my skin. Beyond how it looks, the technology weaved into the shirt really sets it apart. It's lightweight and stretchy, yet is also moisture-wicking and wrinkle-resistant. Plus, it's machine washable making it an easy shirt to keep wearing over and over. 

—Danny Bakst, Manager, story production

After regularly wearing Rhone's activewear for my workouts, I was happy to see the brand venturing into business casual pieces like dress shirts. I've tried almost every performance dress shirt on the market and the Rhone Commuter Dress Shirt quickly became one of my favorites for its unparalleled comfort. The overall feel is similar to some of Rhone's performance T-shirts, too. Comparing a $118 dress shirt made with Italian fabric to a T-shirt might seem like a bad thing but in this case, consider it a compliment in regards to comfort. 

—Amir Ismael, reporter 

Read the original article on Business Insider

Target just launched a slew of new safety procedures for the holidays, including new technology that lets customers check for lines outside of stores and reserve spots if needed

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:37pm  |  Clusterstock
  • Target will now monitor lines outside stores in the case that a store is at capacity, and customers can reserve a spot in line. 
  • The retailer will also expand curbside and in-store pickup in order to accommodate holiday shoppers. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

On Thursday, Target unveiled some new procedures ahead of the holiday shopping season. 

The company released its newest guidelines for shoppers, including technology that will allow customers to see if there is a line outside the store, and reserve a spot if needed. 

The feature allows customers to enter their location, and trackers will be able to report if there is a line or not. A list is given to the customer, so they can choose whichever location works best. Customers will also get a notification when it is their turn to enter the store, if the store is at capacity.

"As we've navigated the pandemic, that focus has evolved to ensure we're also creating the safest place for our guests to shop," Target CEO Brian Cornell said in a statement. "As we approach the holidays, guests can feel confident in choosing Target — a safe experience, incredible value, and a differentiated assortment that will help them celebrate the joy of the season."

Other safety measures the retailer is taking to help slow the spread include: up to 12 more curbside spots at locations; expanded options for same day delivery; and increased flexibility with pick-up options within the app, even allowing customers to pick up their order after they've entered the store. 

For those visiting Target for grocery shopping, 80% of its US stores will have the option of picking up fresh and frozen foods via curbside pickup, as reported by CNBC. 

According to CNBC, Cornell said that some of these safety measures have been in the works since July.  

These new procedures come on the heels of new coronavirus cases across the country. Along with cases rising, health experts have been warning of a "twindemic" this winter, as flu cases may rise as well during the winter months. 

The entire list of Target's new procedures can be found here.

Read the original article on Business Insider

'Don't react to it': Cindy McCain, wife of the late Republican senator, explains the 'tipping' point that led her to endorse Democrat Joe Biden

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:34pm  |  Clusterstock
Vice President Joe Biden administers a ceremonial Senate oath during a mock swearing-in ceremony to Sen. John McCain of Arizona, accompanied by his wife Cindy, in the Old Senate Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., January 5, 2011.
  • Cindy McCain, philanthropist and wife of the late Republican Sen. John McCain, explained the moment President Donald Trump crossed the line and spurred the decision to endorse his opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden.
  • McCain recounted the numerous times Trump had disparaged her late husband, a longtime senator known for working with Democratic colleagues to pass legislation.
  • "When the president decided to call my children, and my husband, and my father, and all the other hundreds of people in my family who have served honorably 'losers' and 'suckers,' that was the tipping line for me," McCain said.
  • The McCain family has a long line of military service that stretches back decades.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Cindy McCain, philanthropist and wife of the late Republican Sen. John McCain, explained the moment President Donald Trump crossed the line and spurred her decision to endorse his opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden.

Speaking at a "Republican Veterans for Biden-Harris" panel with other members of her party, McCain described what was a "very important issue" facing Americans ahead of the 2020 US presidential election.

"I'm a Republican ... and I have no intention of changing my party," McCain said to the panel. "That's not why I'm here. But I do believe that we need to do what's right for this country."

McCain recounted the numerous times Trump had disparaged her late husband, a longtime senator known for working with his Democratic colleagues to pass legislation. Throughout his candidacy, presidency, and even after the senator's death, Trump often derided John's public service, which included being captured and tortured for over five years during the Vietnam War.

In 2015, Trump rejected the notion of describing John as a war hero "because he was captured," adding that "I like people who weren't captured."

"I was listening to this," McCain said during the panel. "I'd listen through the months and listened to him denigrate my husband, and then denigrate my husband again while [John] was on his death bed."

"And John kept telling me, he said, 'Don't. It's just politics. Don't react to it,' McCain added. "And I didn't."

McCain went on to explain the moment where Trump crossed the line, referencing the numerous reports in which the president allegedly referred to death US service members as "suckers" and "losers." According to the initial report published in The Atlantic, Trump made critical remarks about service members and Republicans who served in the military.

During a trip to Paris in 2018, Trump reportedly resisted the idea of visiting a military cemetery to commemorate the 100th anniversary of World War I, saying that the revered site was "filled with losers" and "suckers" who died.

"But when the president decided to call my children, and my husband, and my father, and all the other hundreds of people in my family who have served honorably 'losers' and 'suckers,' that was the tipping line for me," McCain said.

The memorial service for Sen. John McCain, in Washington, D.C., September 1, 2018.

John McCain died in 2018 after from an aggressive form of brain cancer. After his death, Trump was reportedly angry when the senator received half-staff flag honors. He told his staff of McCain, "We're not going to support that loser's funeral," sources with knowledge of the conversations told The Atlantic.

The McCain family has a long line of military service that stretches back for decades. More recently, Jack and Jimmy, McCain's two sons, have served in the US Navy, US Marine Corps, and Army National Guard.

McCain endorsed Biden and his running mate, Sen. Kamala Harris of California, and is featured in advertisements for the Biden campaign.

"If Joe Biden is elected he would be a president for all Americans, not just Americans that agree with him," she said.

A number of other prominent Republicans have said they will not vote for Trump, including former President George W. Bush and Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Who the hell are the non-voters at a time like this? An Insider investigation.

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:31pm  |  Clusterstock
  • Almost 100 million eligible Americans did not vote in the 2016 presidential election.
  • Business Insider conducted a series of polls to find out why.
  • Our polls revealed a variety of factors — including education level and employment status — impact how people feel about voting.
  • Survey respondents cited problems with the system, problems with the candidate, issues with ballot access or registration, COVID-19 concerns, disinterest in voting and politics, and religion as reasons why they are not voting in 2020.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The 2020 presidential election is one of the most divisive in modern US history. Despite the coronavirus pandemic continuing its surge across the country and Republican efforts to restrict and undermine voting, turnout is expected to reach historic highs this fall. Early voting and new registrations have already reached record levels. 

But there are millions of Americans — nearly 100 million in 2016 — who won't be casting their ballots this fall. With the election dominating headlines and consuming the attention of a nation, we wanted to know: who?  

It turns out non-voters are hardly a monolith. Business Insider conducted a series of polls and identified a number of characteristics that define this subset of citizens. For some, the threat of exposure to coronavirus poses too big a risk.  Others said they faced obstacles in registering to vote or getting to the polls, while another subset indicated religious objections to voting. And many conveyed a general disillusionment or disinterest in the American political system. Our polling also found that Asian-Americans are more likely than Black and Latino citizens to sit out the election.

Keep reading for more on what these non-voters are all about.

Click here to read: Who the hell are non-voters? We polled them and found the 6 kinds of people who don't vote.

Click here to read: People without a college degree are much more likely than others to say they don't intend to vote this year

 

 Click here to read: Unemployed Americans are more likely to not vote, a new Insider poll finds

 Click here to read: America's 1.3 million Jehovah's Witnesses will be sitting out this election

 

Click here to read: More than 20% of Asian Americans say they do not plan on voting in the 2020 election Read the original article on Business Insider

The best light bulbs

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:31pm  |  Clusterstock
  • Every home needs good lighting that's energy-efficient and attractive. We've researched and tested a number of light bulbs to find the best.
  • The Cree 60W Equivalent Soft White A19 Dimmable LED Light Bulbs are our top pick because they will last you two decades, dim on demand, and save lots of energy. 

Good lighting is essential in any home, and it all starts with the humble light bulb. 

Up until fairly recently, incandescent bulbs were still king, but now, there are tons of options, including LEDs, compact fluorescents (CFLs), and smart bulbs. Modern light bulbs can change colors, turn on and off with voice commands or the movement of your arm, dim to suit your desires, and do so much more than Edison could have dreamed.

There are several types of light bulbs to consider and one may suit the look and feel you're going for better than another. If you'd like to learn more about the types of light bulbs and their characteristics, you'll find an explainer after the last pick in our guide.

After much research and some testing at home, these are our top picks for the best light bulbs. We've included mostly LED bulbs because they represent the best value for your money, but we also highlight the best smart light bulbs and the best vintage filament light bulb you can buy.

Here are the best light bulbs:

Prices and links are current as of 10/22/20.

The best overall The Cree 60W Equivalent LED Light Bulb produces soft white light that dims on demand and works as well indoors as out.

LED light bulbs are great for conserving energy, and the Cree Soft White Dimmable LED Light Bulbs are the best of the bunch. These bulbs produce a soft white light with a warm tone, thanks to their 2,700K output. The brightness level is similar to a 60 Watt incandescent bulb and you can dim them if you find these bulbs too bright.

The Cree bulbs pack 815 Lumens and only use 9.5 Watts of energy, which amounts to 84% less energy use in your home than you'd get with an old incandescent light bulb. The bulbs are Energy Star certified and Cree claims these bulbs will last you more than 22 years or 25,000 hours. 

Cree offers a 10-year warranty in case you run into problems with your new LED light bulbs. You can use the bulbs indoors or outdoors without fear, which is a nice perk. You can pop them in most light fixtures, whether it's a table lamp, a floor lamp, or an overhead light fixture. Anywhere an A19 bulb can fit, these Cree ones will go. 

Overall, these are the best light bulbs for most people because they work anywhere, produce warm light for LED bulbs, and conserve lots of energy.

Pros: Dimmable, Energy Star certified, 10-year warranty, soft white light tone, 60 Watt equivalent, lasts more than 22 years, can be used indoors or outdoors

Cons: A bit expensive

The best smart light bulbs The Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance A19 Smart Bulb Starter Kit lets you program your lights, dim them, change their colors, and even turn them on or off with your voice.

We're smart light bulb evangelists here. Ever since we started using the Philips Hue Starter Kit in our New York City apartment, we can't imagine life without them. They are quite simply the very best smart light bulbs money can buy.

The starter kit comes with a hub, three color-changing light bulbs, and a Smart Button that acts as a light switch, allowing you to select from five preset lighting looks. The hub connects to your Wi-Fi during the set-up process and syncs your bulbs up with the Philips Hue app. You can name your light bulbs, put them in rooms, and adjust them in the app. The lights can dim, change color, and turn on and off at a set time that you choose in the app.

Perhaps the best feature, though, is voice control. If you have an Amazon Echo or a Google Home smart speaker, or if you happen to own an iPhone with the HomeKit app, you can use your voice to turn your lights on and off at will. You can also dim them and change their color with your voice.

I named my Hue bulbs after presidents (nerdy, I know), so anytime I want a specific bulb off, I can say, "Hey Google, turn off the Jefferson (or Washington or Clinton)," and hey presto! The light turns off. It's absolutely magical, and it makes for one hell of a party trick.

The real benefits are in the energy savings you can get by dimming your bulbs and programming them to go on and off when the time it right. I've used lots of different smart bulbs, and none have worked as seamlessly or as effortlessly as the Philips Hue

We've also chosen them as the best overall pick in out guide to the best smart light bulbs, so if you're interested in outfitting your home, and you want to know more, check out our full buying guide.

Pros: Easy to set up, excellent app, dimmable, can change colors, programmable, very stable, work with other smart home devices like Google Home and Amazon Echo

Cons: Expensive 

Read our full review of the Philips Hue Starter Kit on Insider ReviewsRead our guide to the best smart light bulbs. The best LED light bulb The Philips 60W Equivalent Soft White A19 Dimmable LED Light Bulb dims to a soft glow, saves tons of energy, and produces warm light in every room.

If the Cree bulbs aren't for you, the Philips Dimmable LED Light Bulb is the next best thing. These 60 Watt equivalent bulbs have a brightness of 800 Lumens and you can dim them further if you want to. The light temperature is also adjustable between 2,200K and 2,700K, so you can determine how warm you want the lighting to look.

The Philips bulbs will last you 22.8 years if you turn them on for three hours a day and they use only 9.5-Watts of energy to consume 80% less energy compared to older incandescent bulbs. Since they're A19 bulbs, they fit in most light fixtures, including table lamps, floor lamps, and overhead light fixtures.

You can get the Philips LED light bulbs in a six-pack, and they're reasonably affordable.

Pros: Soft white light, dimmable, adjustable color temperature, environmentally friendly, long lasting, versatile

Cons: Not for outdoors

The best vintage-style light bulb The GreenSun LED Lighting 40W Vintage Edison Bulbs provide a gentle glow, and a decorative vintage-style gold filament adds an industrial flair to your space.

Old school bare bulbs show off golden filaments and cast a soft warm light. They're great for creating ambiance and are especially welcome if you have a lamp or other light fixture that features a bare bulb. If you want to bring some old-fashioned light bulbs into your home, look no further than the GreenSun LED Lighting 40W Vintage Edison Bulbs.

These vintage filament bulbs use an E27 or E26 base, 40 Watts of power, and a 2,200K color temperature. The bulbs are inspired by vintage Edison bulbs and maintain the same globe shape, clear glass design, and spiralized filament structure. You can dim them as you please to give your home a throwback look.

Since the filaments are so pretty, these bulbs look best bare or in clear fixtures where the design stands out. They're specialty bulbs, so you won't need to buy too many. 

They come with a 120-day warranty and are designed to last about 2,000 hours. Don't be fooled by the brand name. These are incandescent bulbs, so they don't have the staying power of LED bulbs, but that's the sacrifice you'll make to get the vintage look.

Pros: Clear glass with gold filament, fit in most lighting fixtures

Cons: Not as long-lasting as LED bulbs

The best CFL light bulb If you're looking for a long-lasting bulb and don't like the blue-ish glow of LEDs, the GE CFL bulb is a great option.

While CFL bulbs aren't always the most popular option, we tend to think that they're a bit overlooked. And to that end, one of the best options on the market right now comes from GE. 

What I have come to particularly appreciate about these bulbs is that they don't flicker when you first turn them on. This tends to be a problem with a number of other CFLs, which needless to say, can be a bit annoying. But this GE bulb is a solid pick, and instantly floods your room with an inviting light that lasts a long time. Impressively, if you're looking at an average usage of about three hours per day for these bulbs, they should last seven years — that's a whole lot of savings.

If you're turned off by the cool blue glow that some LED lights can give off, these GE bulbs are a good alternative. They give off a clean light that doesn't have a yellow hue, yet is still capable of warming up a room. Plus, this light bulb is Energy Star rated for extra environmental and economic benefits.

Alas, you can't use these GE bulbs with a dimmer, and you should generally plan on keeping a CFL light on for at least 15 minutes in order to preserve its longevity. And when the bulb finally burns out, be prepared to recycle them properly by getting in touch with the waste management department in your city. — Lulu Chang

Pros: Long-lasting bulbs, warm, inviting light, energy-efficient

Cons: Despite their longevity, the price tag can still be intimidating

What to look for in a light bulb The Bedtime Bulb is one of Amazon's top product picks Types of light bulbs
  • LED (Light-Emitting Diode): LED bulbs are the most energy-efficient ones you can buy and they can last between 20,000 to 50,000 hours. We highly recommend you choose these kinds of bulbs over all others. LED bulbs are more versatile, too, because they can change colors, dim to suit your preferences, and you can alter the color temperature so as to avoid the excessive blue light these kinds of bulbs tend to emit.
  • CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lightbulb): CFL bulbs were once the most energy efficient bulbs you could own, but now they're in second place behind LEDs. They're still a great option if LEDs prove to be too expensive for you. After all, CFLs last between seven to ten times longer than old-school incandescent bulbs, and they use about 75 percent less energy, which is nothing to sneeze at. CFLs come in multiple color temperatures, but few are dimmable.
  • Halogen incandescent light bulb: Halogen incandescent light bulbs use about 25 to 30 percent less energy than old-school incandescent bulbs. These bulbs work with dimmers and appear more blue or cool than other bulbs. 
  • Smart light bulbs: Smart light bulbs have special features that most other bulbs don't offer, including the power of remote control, programmable scheduling, color changing, voice control, and compatibility with other smart home products. The best ones are LED bulbs and connect via Wi-Fi instead of Bluetooth. Some may require a hub, and they are pricey.
Features to consider
  • Lumens and brightness:  The brightness of light bulbs is measured in lumens. If you want to match the brightness of a 60-watt incandescent bulb, you should find a bulb that's 800 lumens.
  • Color temperature: Whether you like warm or cool light is entirely a matter of preference. Warm yellow light is around 2,700 Kelvin, white light is about 3,000K, bright white light is 3,500K to 4,100K, and bluish white light is 5,000K to 6,500K, according to Consumer Reports
  • Dimmable bulbs: If you hate super bright lights, you'll probably want to find light bulbs that let you adjust how bright they are. Most LED bulbs are dimmable, but many CFLs are not.
  • Motion-activated bulbs: Motion-activated bulbs are good for outdoor lights, entry-ways, and so on, but you probably don't want one in your livingroom.
Check out our other great lighting guides Read the original article on Business Insider

10 affordable online classes to boost your public speaking, presentation, and storytelling skills

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:28pm  |  Clusterstock

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If giving presentations or chiming in during brainstorm sessions makes you nervous, you might not mind your current remote work setup. But a pandemic may actually be the best time to brush up on your public speaking skills.

For one, many online classes remove the scariest factor — a live audience. When you can pre-record your assignments or simply watch an expert share their tips, the barrier to entry gets lower. And even in courses held over Zoom, presenting via camera takes away the very real panic of standing at a podium. 

Beyond that, the ability to captivate a crowd is invaluable even when you're working remotely. Whether you're trying to make your virtual team all-hands more engaging or need to nail those final rounds of job interviews, having more confidence as a presenter can make all the difference in your career.

The courses below range from public speaking and communication tips to storytelling and rhetoric, since your presentation is only as good as your actual speech. Some classes are also free to audit, meaning you have access to them but won't receive a grade or certification. If you want to take a paid course or earn a certificate of completion, prices can range from $15-$49 a month, depending on the learning platform.

10 affordable online courses that will make you a better public speaker: Introduction to Public Speaking Available on Coursera, included in free 7-day trial, $49 per month after trial

Offered by the University of Washington, this is the first of four courses in Coursera's Dynamic Public Speaking Specialization. As an intro class, it covers rehearsal techniques and speechwriting tips to reduce presentation jitters. Learners practice by recording themselves and receiving feedback so they can gradually become more self-assured orators. More advanced courses in this specialization focus on specific types of public speaking, such as informative presentations and motivational speeches.

Rhetoric: The Art of Persuasive Writing and Public Speaking Available on edX, free to audit

This Harvard course gets to the root of what makes an argument compelling by looking at some of the most well-known political speeches in American history. Students can annotate examples of rhetorical devices and hear professors unpack what makes each speech memorable, all while crafting a persuasive essay of their own. There's also a section devoted to public speaking advice, helping students put everything together into an unforgettable presentation. The class is free, but costs $99 if you want a certificate of completion. 

Robin Roberts Teaches Effective and Authentic Communication Available on MasterClass, $15 a month for the course or $180 for annual membership

Robin Roberts, Emmy-winning co-anchor of "Good Morning America," shares her tips on how to connect with an audience in a more meaningful way. She touches upon vulnerability and how to "make your mess your message" before diving into public speaking strategies that can help you stand out in a job interview, ask for what you're worth at work, and even feel comfier on TV, should the occasion arise. 

Communicating with Confidence Available on LinkedIn Learning, included in free one-month trial, then $19.99 or $29.99 per month depending on your subscription plan

The most popular public speaking course on LinkedIn Learning, "Communicating with Confidence" emphasizes the importance of your physical presence as a speaker. The class walks you through breathing techniques and other tips for slowing down your speech, managing your facial expressions, and maintaining self-assured body language, so that you genuinely feel less jittery when it's your turn to present. Once you're done with the course, you'll be able to add a certificate of completion to your LinkedIn profile for employers to see.

The Complete Public Speaking Course Available on Udemy, $139.99 for the course

Available in both English and Chinese, this course provides a well-rounded education in public speaking. It addresses common issues like "data dumping" that can make stories hard to follow, and teaches you the key attributes of a successful speech. Part of the class will require practicing over video, which you can conveniently access via laptop, phone, or tablet. You'll also receive a certificate of completion at the end.

Presentation Essentials: How to Share Ideas That Inspire Action Available on Skillshare, included in free one-month basic subscription trial, then $19.99 per month or $99 per year

TED Talk thought leader, motivational speaker, and author Simon Sinek shares his best public speaking secrets in this quick, one-off class. In 30 minutes, he shows you how to pinpoint what you're most passionate about, use your nerves to your advantage by converting them into an energetic stage presence, and cut down any bulkiness in your speech to get to the heart of what you really want to say. It's perfect if you have a big presentation or interview in the next few days (with little time to prep), or just want to dip your toe into public speaking without making a huge commitment. 

How to Break the Habit of Self-Doubt and Build Real Confidence Available on CreativeLive for $29

Mel Robbins is a CNN host, one of the most popular TEDx speakers of all time, and the most-booked female speaker in the world, so she definitely knows a thing or two about carrying yourself with confidence. In about five hours of videos, she tackles one of the biggest obstacles to public speaking: imposter syndrome. With tactics to help you de-escalate anxiety and hop over similar mental blocks, her class doesn't just help you talk to a crowd — it shows you how to move through the world with a greater conviction of your own self-worth. 

"TED Talks: The Official TED Guide to Public Speaking" by Chris Anderson Available on Audible, included in free one-month trial, $14.95 per month after Audible Premium trial ends

Written by Chris Anderson, the head of TED, this audiobook shares insights from all the top TED speakers, from educationalist Sir Ken Robinson to Monica Lewinsky. It's less about subscribing to one set of guidelines and more about exploring tips from the public speakers who do it best. As a bonus, the book is also sprinkled with TED tidbits and history, if you happen to be a hardcore TEDx fan in general.

"Public Speaking for Success" by Dale Carnegie Available on Audible, included in free one-month trial, $14.95 per month after Audible Premium trial ends

Dale Carnegie, the famed author of "How to Win Friends and Influence People," is considered one of the most iconic public speaking teachers to this day. This particular guide was originally written in 1926, and has inspired many generations of public speakers with advice that still feels relevant today. The audiobook covers all the essentials of addressing a crowd, from diction exercises and voice techniques to building an authentic sense of self-esteem as a speaker.

Communication Strategies for a Virtual Age Available on Coursera, included in free 7-day trial, $49 per month after trial

This University of Toronto course feels especially useful right now, given that it focuses specifically on remote public speaking skills. More than ever, it's important to be as engaging as possible over video, and this four-week course covers everything from making virtual meetings less boring to giving attention-grabbing presentations over Zoom. This is particularly helpful if you're already a manager or work in a professional environment where you find yourself leading virtual meetings fairly often.

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25 gifts for toddlers that will keep them entertained longer than the boxes they come in

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:26pm  |  Clusterstock

When you buy through our links, we may earn money from our affiliate partners. Learn more.

  • Toddlers have strong opinions, so finding gifts they'll love more than the boxes they come in can be a challenge.
  • As a mom of a 2-year-old, I've already gone through that process and have rounded up 25 toddler toys and gifts they're sure to love. 
  • You can check out all of our 2020 holiday gift guides here to shop for everyone on your list.

Toddlers can be picky little humans. You know this if you've ever seen how long they're entertained by a cardboard box or bubbles, only to leave a $50 toy sit by the wayside day after day. 

I would know — my 2-year-old has a big personality. But I've become a pro at buying gifts that she plays with longer than the packages they come in. That's why I've rounded up 24 gifts that will be a hit with any toddler. Many of the picks on this list have also been tried, tested, and well-loved by my own child.  

The top 5 gifts for toddlers:
  1. The World of Eric Carle puzzles, $12.67
  2. A Baby Yoda doll, $19.89
  3. A mini kitchen mixer, $19.99
  4. A Disney Lego Duplo set, $38.99
  5. A push car with all the bells and whistles, $79.99

This list includes a Sponsored Product that has been suggested by Crocs. It also meets our editorial criteria in terms of quality and value.

Check out 25 of the best toddler toys and gifts in 2020: The ultimate racetrack Go! Go! Smart Wheels Ultimate Corkscrew Tower, available at Walmart, $19.88 

This quickly became our family's favorite Go! Go! Smart Wheels track after the company sent us a review sample a few months ago. It can be configured into one tall spiral or two smaller spirals for racing. You'll get one race car, and the track includes a switch track, hazards, and a trap door. Five different locations along the track prompt the car to play various sounds, songs, and phrases. If you already have other Go! Go! Smart Wheels tracks, you can connect them to the tower.

Recommended ages: 1 to 5 years

Pixar Cars Crocs Kids' Crocs Fun Lab Disney and Pixar Cars Clog, available at Crocs, $34.99

Kids can float like a Cadillac and sting like a Beemer in these Lighting McQueen Crocs. Thanks to Crocs' comfort and breathability, your toddler will be happy to put their shoes on and go play. We know you'll appreciate how well they stand up against wear and tear.

*Sponsored by Crocs

A customized tricycle Radio Flyer Custom Build-A-Trike, available at Radio Flyer, from $55

There's nothing quite like a classic red tricycle under the tree on Christmas morning. Radio Flyer sent this tricycle for me to test, and I'm impressed by its quality. Depending on how you customize it, this tricycle can grow with your child from 9 months to 5 years old. Available customization options include a classic bell, a canopy, and a footrest. What I appreciate most about it is the push handle — I use it to help my daughter learn to steer and make sure she is safe while learning to ride. 

Recommended ages: 9 months to 5 years

A color-changing bath book "Color Me: Who's in the Water?" available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble, from $6.19

Toddlers will think this book is magic when it changes color in their bathwater. The illustrations are the central focus with just a few words on each page. This creates an ideal environment for reluctant readers to pick up a book. Use it for some water painting fun out of the bath, too. 

Recommended ages: 1 to 3 years

A cash register with play food and money LeapFrog Count Along Cash Register, available at Target and Amazon, $19.99 

My daughter and I have played many hours of "grocery store" with this set. It comes with a working cash register, eight pieces of play food, 10 coins, and a credit card. Prompts encourage kids to count coins, and buttons on the display correspond with the play food.  

Recommended ages: 2 to 4 years

A dump truck made of recycled plastic Green Toys Dump Truck, available at Amazon, $22.94

Whether you have a sandbox, a dirt pile in the backyard, or a bunch of toys that need to be moved around the house, toddlers will enjoy loading this truck and dumping things out. The brightly colored toy is made of 100% recycled plastic. An added bonus: After this truck spends a long day hauling materials for your child, you can throw it in the dishwasher. 

Recommended ages: 12 months and up

A cuddly version of everyone's favorite Star Wars character Star Wars The Mandalorian The Child aka Baby Yoda Plush, available at Kohl's and Target, from $19.89

Toddlers can cuddle up with quite possibly the cutest Star Wars character ever. Toys based on characters like this one give kids just enough inspiration for imaginative play scenarios without doing all the work for them. Even if you haven't seen "The Mandalorian," it's hard to resist this endearing little creature.

Recommended ages: 3 years and up

A doll to love and care for Perfectly Cute My Sweet Baby Doll, available at Target, $10.99Baby Alive Luv 'n Snuggle Baby, available at Walmart, $9.27

Baby dolls help kids develop empathy, and they foster imaginative play. I even use the Baby Alive doll to help my 2-year-old practice hygiene and daily tasks like getting dressed and going potty. These dolls are soft and huggabe.

Recommended ages: 18 months and up

A pull sled for wintertime fun Flexible Flyer Toddler High Back Sleigh, available at BuyBuyBaby, $19.99

Another classic toy to gift this holiday season: a sled. The Flexible Flyer sleigh is simple and lightweight — just what a toddler needs. With a seatback for stability and a seatbelt, it's ideal for younger toddlers. My daughter used it when she was about 18 months old last winter, and although the sled is on the smaller side, it will still be our go-to this winter when she's 2. 

Recommended ages: 18 months to 4 years

Read my full review of the sled here.  Toddler-size crayons and coloring books My First Toddler Coloring Book, available at Amazon, $4.29Crayola Jumbo Crayons, available at Walmart, $2.97Crayola Multicultural Large Crayons, available at Office Depot, $2.89

This is a simple yet exciting gift for young toddlers who are just learning how to color and develop their fine motor skills. The large pictures, numbers, letters, and shapes have thick lines, and the pages are durable. These are all characteristics that make coloring easier for toddlers. Thicker jumbo and large crayons are designed for toddlers to have success coloring. This book was one of the first coloring books I bought my toddler over a year ago, and it's still going strong. 

Recommended ages: 1 to 3 years (coloring book); 3 years and up (crayons)

A push car with all the bells and whistles Step2 Whisper Ride II Ride-On Push Car, available at Amazon, $79.99

My neighbors can't help but smile when they see my toddler roll by in this push car. Step2 sent a review sample that we've been testing since the beginning of the summer. It's still in great shape and handles hills and bumpy roads well. Some standout features include a storage trunk, a working horn, cup holders (for you and your toddler!), and a seat belt. 

Recommended ages: 18 months to 4 years

A doctor's play set B. Toys Toy Doctor Kit, available at Amazon, $21.95

Doctor visits can be scary, but role-playing with a play doctor kit makes them more approachable and even fun. This 10-piece kit comes with a stethoscope, otoscope, blood pressure cuff, syringe, scissors, thermometer, mirror, a pair of tweezers, a beeper, and a carry case to keep it all organized. The pager beeps and lights up, and the stethoscope makes a heartbeat sound. 

Recommended ages: 18 months and up

An interactive thinking chair Blues Clues and You! Play and Learn Thinking Chair, available at Walmart, $49.44

If you have a Blues Clues fan, this real-life thinking chair will be a big hit. It comes with a mailbox, letters, and an interactive handy dandy notebook. The chair can detect when kids sit down or get up, and there is even a storage space under the seat. We've been testing it for a few months, and my daughter hasn't let it leave our living room since. 

Recommended ages: 2 to 5 years

A Lego set with beloved Disney characters Lego Duplo Disney Mickey's Vacation House, available at Kohl's and Amazon, from $39.29

Fans of "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse" won't be able to get enough of Mickey's Vacation House. My daughter regularly occupies herself for extended periods of time with this set, which says a lot about this toy. It includes Mickey's vacation house, an airplane, a sled, and Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, and Pluto figures.

Recommended ages: 2 years and up

Their first Play-Doh set Play-Doh Shape and Learn Colors and Shapes, available at Walmart, $9.99

This Play-Doh set combines fun sensory play with an introduction to colors and shapes. It was the first set I bought my toddler. In this box, you'll get eight Play-Doh colors, two activity mats, eight double-sided shape cutters, and a roller. 

Recommended ages: 2 years and up

A World of Eric Carle puzzle My First Puzzle Pairs Brown Bear, "Brown Bear What Do You See?" available at Amazon and Walmart, $12.67

Two-piece puzzles are a step up from peg puzzles, another toddler favorite. This set of 10 puzzles is inspired by the popular book "Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See?" As a former English teacher, I can't resist a toy that encourages reading. Even if you don't have the book at home, these puzzles will still be engaging and challenging while simultaneously exposing toddlers to color matching.  

Recommended ages: 2 years and up

A starter dollhouse Melissa & Doug Fold and Go Wooden Dollhouse, available at Amazon, $32.79

Dollhouses can keep toddlers entertained for hours as they imagine new scenarios and practice everyday skills. This one seems plain at first glance, but after testing many dollhouses for our buying guide, it's the one my toddler played with most often. The set comes with 11 pieces of wooden furniture and two dolls, which is a big plus as many dollhouses don't come with dolls. 

Recommended ages: 3 to 6 years

Holiday and winter-themed books "The Polar Express," available at Amazon, $7.86"'Twas the Night Before Christmas," available at Amazon, $13.70"The Sweet Smell of Christmas," available at Amazon, $8.89"Chanukah Bugs," available at Barnes & Noble, $12.99"Seven Spools of Thread: A Kwanzaa Story," available at Amazon, $6.99"Diwali," available at Amazon, $7.59

There's nothing quite like cuddling up with a blanket and a good book on a cold winter day. From pop-ups to scented pages to engaging stories, these books encourage toddlers to actually sit through the whole story. Books are an excellent way to teach children about other cultures and traditions, so consider buying one about the holiday you celebrate and another about unfamiliar traditions. 

Recommended ages: varies by book 

A fire truck that blasts 'water' Ryan's World Fire Engine, available at Kohl's and Walmart, from $5.18

This small but mighty toy includes a fire engine with a moveable ladder, a Ryan figure, and two water projectiles. The removable Ryan figure can sit in the bucket of the ladder to blast the water. With its small size, this toy would make an exciting stocking stuffer, too.

Recommended ages: 3 to 6 years

A flashlight for exploring and playing in the dark Melissa & Doug Giddy Buggy Flashlight, available at Amazon, $11.69

Toddlers can turn this simple flashlight on and off easily, and it has a convenient handle. My daughter uses hers to make shadow puppets, read books in the dark, go on "letter hunts" through the house, and more. A flashlight is one of those toys that seem incredibly simple to adults but is novel and exciting for toddlers. 

Recommended ages: 3 to 7 years

A stylish play mixer for the budding chef KidKraft Modern Metallics Baking Set, available at Target, $19.99

This stylish mixer can be an addition to an existing play kitchen, but it's also ideal if you have limited space. The set comes with a mixer, a bowl, eggs, flour, sugar, milk, a baking sheet, cookies, and a working rolling pin. Toddlers can't help but imitate daily life, and this set let my daughter "make" cookies without making a mess. 

Recommended ages: 3 years and up

Everything they need to complete rescue missions PAW Patrol Dino Rescue Rev Up Vehicle with Mystery Dinosaur Figure, available at Kohl's and Amazon, from $14.97

For less than $15, this toy comes with a figurine, a vehicle, and a surprise dinosaur egg. Choose from six different Paw Patrol characters: Chase, Marshall, Rocky, Rubble, Skye, and Zuma. Each vehicle has a rev-up motor and a working tool.

Recommended ages: 3 years and up

A cleaning set so they can 'help' around the house Melissa & Doug Let's Play House! Dust, Sweep & Mop Set, available at Kohl's and Amazon, from $21.24

My daughter loves to "help" me clean around the house and this set is the perfect size for her. It comes with a pint-sized broom, mop, duster, brush, dustpan, and even a storage rack. My toddler has consistently used it for more than a year, and it's still in excellent shape. 

Recommended ages: 3 years and up

Reusable mess-free coloring pads Melissa & Doug Water Wow! 3-Pack, available at Amazon and Walmart, from $13.49

If you have a toddler living in your house and you haven't yet discovered the magic that is Water Wow, you're missing out. Each pad comes with four reusable boards that change color when they make contact with the water pen. They make absolutely no mess and are some of our favorite travel toys for toddlers. We keep one in the car and always bring them along to places like the doctor's office and restaurants. 

Recommended ages: 3 years and up

Their first toolbox Little Dutch Toolbox, available at Scandiborn, $27.95

Toddlers can "help" put together all their new holiday toys with this 20-piece tool kit. The set includes a hammer, wrench, screwdriver, four bolts, four screws, two nails, two blocks with holes, two long junction strips, and two short junction strips. Each piece is made of wood and painted with water-based paint.  

Recommended ages: 3 years and up

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The balance of power is shifting in Asia, and China is gaining on the US

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:19pm  |  Clusterstock
President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing, November 9, 2017.
  • The gap in Chinese and US national power has narrowed, driven by external factors and domestic political decisions, according to the latest Asia Power Index by Australia's Lowy Institute.
  • Neither is likely to dominate the region going forward, meaning the choices and interests of middle powers will be more consequential.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

The gap between Chinese and US influence in Asia has narrowed, a reflection of an ongoing rebalance in the region and of political decisions in both countries.

The US still tops this year's Asia Power Index, compiled by the Lowy Institute, an Australian think tank. First released in 2018, the index now draws on three years of data based on military, economic, diplomatic, and resource indicators.

But US's standing has waned by almost all of those measures. Its 10-point lead over China in 2018 has been halved.

The spread of COVID-19 has caused tumult recently, but deterioration of the regional order, China's rise, and President Donald Trump's often alienating approach are trends visible in 2018 and that have "accelerated through the course of the three iterations," lead researcher Hervé Lemahieu told Insider in an interview.

While Asia rise as a center of global power will continue, the pandemic will affect its course, undercutting the economic transformation driving that shift, Lemahieu said.

The pandemic has "highlighted the fact that whilst countries in the region are growing economically ... they still remain quite weak when it comes to some of these more basic development challenges, and that will impact their ability to project power externally," Lemahieu added.

Political rather than structural Trump greets a performer at the Forbidden City in Beijing, November 8, 2017.

Neither China's rise nor a US decline are inevitable, Lemahieu said, attributing waning US influence to "political choice more than structural decline."

"Where we've seen the US lose the most power in the region has been in terms of ... its ability to exercise regional leadership," Lemahieu added.

The index includes a "power gap" based on an assessment of a country's use of its resources and influence. The US's -2.4 score makes it an underperformer.

Trump's unilateral approach to trade and hardline on defense burden-sharing has frustrated partners and allies. Some welcome a more assertive stance on China, but Trump's "us or them" approach doesn't work for many in the region.

"I do think the political choices made in the last four years have been detrimental to US standing in Asia, and it wouldn't be this bad without those choices," Lemahieu said, noting that because they're political rather than structural, these changes could be reversed.

But those decisions don't mean Beijing has been making friends. 

China's neighbors, not all of them US allies, view Beijing with "wariness" and "consider China to be a more immediate threat," Lemahieu said. That raises the chance China could use force to secure concessions but also raises the costs of doing so.

Beijing is also focused on asserting power internally, limiting its projection outward. "It has to deal with a whole range of consequences of having an authoritarian, one-party state, and it's also a rapidly aging society," Lemahieu added.

China will likely draw even with the US in terms of power, but limits on its resources and influence are a handicap.

"I think this idea that somehow a unipolar US-led order becomes a unipolar China-led order is going to be very hard to accomplish for Beijing," Lemahieu said.

'The US falls short' Trump with fellow national leaders at the 31st Association of South East Asian Nations Summit in Manila, November 13, 2017.

Even as Trump's policies have frustrated others, US officials have emphasized the value of good relationships in countering China.

"America's network of allies and partners provides us an asymmetric advantage our adversaries cannot match," Defense Secretary Mark Esper said in speech this week focused on those ties.

Those statements haven't been reassuring in the face of other US policies, or lack thereof. "I think we're concerned that the US doesn't have an endgame," Lemahieu said. "There's a so-called China strategy, but what is the objective?"

The US has embraced the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, a multilateral grouping with India, Japan, and Australia. While that's a good development, those countries still have very different approaches to China, Lemahieu said.

Leaders in China and the US have broached "decoupling," but that simply isn't feasible for most of the region.

"It's just an existential reality that we have to deal on some level with China economically, and I don't think the US fully understands that," Lemahieu added.

Similarly, the US focus on military strength and presence isn't seen as a comprehensive alternative to a Chinese-led order. Countries in the region are working on multilateral projects, mainly trade-focused, but US engagement is wanting.

"As important as it is to balance China militarily, you also have to come up with a means of trying to balance China economically," Lemahieu said. "That's where the US falls short as an alternative."

For China and the world Chinese President Xi Jinping.

In the US, the direction of national leadership remains in doubt. Four more years of Trump would prompt a "profound reevaluation" in Australia in particular, which has tolerated the instability he's created, Lemahieu said.

Trump's ouster would still leave uncertainty about the trends that propelled him to office, which predate his political arrival. "Another great unknown, I would say, is what happens to Trumpism after Trump," Lemahieu added.

In China, Communist Party leader Xi Jinping is installed for life, but the potential for an alternative to emerge, albeit small, remains.

"I think there are alternative visions for China's rise within the Communist Party, and that would have a huge impact both on the nature of US-China competition but also maybe in the way that China is perceived in the region," Lemahieu said.

China doesn't necessarily need new leadership to change direction.

Xi has closed the scope of internal party debate, giving rise to bad policy, including poor handling of tensions with the US, according to Steve Tsang, director of the China Institute at SOAS London University.

A lack of debate and its effect on what policymakers are told are obstacles to the "accurate and timely information" they "need to avoid making major policy mistakes," Tsang told The Financial Times. "This is not a good thing for China or for the world."

Read the original article on Business Insider

Coursera's MasterTrack programs let you take virtual master's classes and get certified in different subjects for an affordable price — here's what it's like to be in one

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:11pm  |  Clusterstock

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As remote lifestyles become more common, many students and workers are flooding online learning platforms and affordable educational programs are taking on new value.

Many such offerings are available through sites like Coursera. Their MasterTrack programs, in particular, offer a portion of an on-campus master's program online for cheaper prices and with a more flexible time commitment than is traditionally found in a physical classroom setting.

Students work at their own pace and receive access to real-world projects, live sessions, and virtual office hours. When they've completed the program, learners receive a certificate they can add to their resume and LinkedIn to demonstrate aptitude (and their commitment to personal growth).

What's nice about MasterTrack is that if you like what you studied and wish to pursue a full Master's degree in the subject, most MasterTrack programs provide instructions on how students may transfer those online credits into an on-campus program in order to save time and money (though how much your online work equates to on-campus varies by program and school). Other MasterTracks offer scholarships for full Master's programs to those who complete the program online.

edX also offers MicroMasters, which are slightly different from Coursera's MasterTrack programs. There are fewer edX options than MasterTrack courses, but they offer up to 50% of Master's programs online and are eligible for financial assistance. A MasterTrack, on the other hand, typically doesn't exceed one-quarter of a Master's program curriculum.

Here's everything you should know if you're considering enrolling in a Coursera MasterTrack, including a personal review of the University of Illinois' Instructional Design program.

What you'll find below:
  • A personal review of MasterClass
  • Some common FAQs
A review of MasterTrack

I started the University of Illinois' Instructional Design MasterTrack program back in late August, and while I won't complete it until December, it has felt like a solid investment so far. 

When I decided I was interested in instructional design as a potential career pivot, I knew I probably needed additional schooling to break into the field, since many jobs ask for at least a Master's degree or equivalent experience. The main factors in my decision boiled down to money and time — since I wasn't sure if I'd love instructional design, I wanted a program I could finish in under a year and one that I felt wasn't a big financial risk. MasterTrack hit all those points for me: The program was about 4-5 months long, fairly flexible, and cost $2,384. Not included in that total was a textbook I needed to rent for the class, plus a $57 surprise fee when I paid my tuition via credit card. 

The program consists of two courses, which I'll be taking back to back. Both involve live-recorded weekly Zoom classes, short video lectures, assigned readings, graded short-answer questions, and a few final projects. Right now, I'm wrapping up a group final project and individual portfolio assignment for my first class, "Instructional and Training Systems Design," while also starting readings and videos for my second class, "Learning Technologies."

One of my group project members described this as a "Master's class at twice the speed" which is pretty accurate. While I'm only taking one class at a time, this MasterTrack program feels more like a bootcamp due to the amount of information I'll need to learn to be proficient in instructional design by the end. There's an emphasis on multiple hands-on projects, so I'm being challenged to create something right away and essentially practice what I would be doing as an instructional designer. The class also includes an e-portfolio assignment, which is a real instructional design portfolio I can show to future employers when I'm done with the course.

At the same time, going through the information this quickly (especially all remotely) can make it hard to fully process everything, or even enjoy the class. Compared to some other online classes I've taken and loved, like edX's Rhetoric course or Coursera's Science of Well-Being, I feel less engaged with this one because it feels like the end goal is to train me to do a job rather than learn something for the pleasure of learning it. The workload can also feel like a lot if you have a full-time job or kids (or both!) and feel like you have to cram in studying and homework on weeknights and weekends.

That being said, given that I picked this as a way to directly advance my career and learn a new skill set, I feel like the experience the course provides — plus the physical certificate at the end — has definitely helped me, even in my current role as an e-learning editor.  —Julia Pugachevsky, e-learning editor

Coursera MasterTrack FAQs:What is a MasterTrack certificate?

MasterTrack Certificates are for those who want to develop skills for career advancement and receive a certificate from a university to back it up. It's also a good option for those who aren't sure about a full program, or need a flexible time commitment or lower financial commitment before enrolling in a full master's program. 

Each MasterTrack is a stackable, for-credit program comprised of several courses completed over a few months. In some cases, they allow students to earn credit toward the full master's degree program from which the MasterTrack Certificate program is based, though this varies by institution.

How much does a Coursera MasterTrack cost?

MasterTrack courses cost between $2,000 and $5,000, depending on the specific program. 

How is a MasterTrack billed?

Students can pay all at once, and receive a 5% discount for doing so. Otherwise, there are payment installation programs available for a handful of programs.

How does receiving credit for an online MasterTrack certificate work and can you apply it towards a full master's program? 

Students receive a certificate upon completion of a MasterTrack to share on their resume and LinkedIn to demonstrate aptitude and a commitment to individual growth.

Additionally, once you have completed your MasterTrack program, you can apply to the institution's full master's program. If admitted, your certificate will sometimes transfer and equate to a certain number of classes or credits in the program. However, the exact details vary by program. 

For instance, you may apply to the MScA degree from the University of Chicago after the online Machine Learning for Analytics MasterTrack Certificate program and, if admitted, your MasterTrack Certificate will equate to the first two classes in the program (approximately 18% of course requirements), allowing you to enjoy a headstart on your degree.

For the Supply Chain Excellence MasterTrack Certificate, your MasterTrack would equate to three credits (one course). For ASU's The Big Data MasterTrack, learners would be awarded nine of the 30 credits required to complete the program.

Other programs don't work this way. For instance, completing the Blockchain Applications MasterTrack Certificate from Duke makes you eligible to earn a scholarship that fast tracks your application process, and covers 10% of tuition for the Duke University's Master of Engineering in FinTech. But, it doesn't technically count as credit. 

How closely does a MasterTrack online module for a master's degree from a university resemble that university's in-person curriculum? 

According to Coursera, MasterTrack Certificates are quite similar to the full program experience for which they are designed to precede. They feature live expert instruction and feedback combined with interactive, team-based learning. 

What MasterTrack programs are offered?

Coursera offers 15 MasterTracks in topics that range from Machine Learning for Analytics from the University of Chicago to Blockchain Applications from Duke University, and Sustainability and Development by the University of Michigan.

Most programs include four to six courses, but that count can vary and range anywhere from two to six.

According to Coursera's MasterTrack team, expect more programs in the future as the site builds out its offerings. 

Browse the list of all MasterTracks here

How long does it take to complete a MasterTrack program?

It varies. The range is about four to eight months, depending on the program. However, the time commitment is flexible and self-paced, especially in comparison to an entire master's program.

Will MasterTrack students always have access to their program materials? 

Students will not have access to the course content forever. They're given access based on the estimated time it takes to complete the program.

Do MasterTrack programs cap enrollment at a certain number?

According to Coursera's MasterTrack team, there are enrollment caps depending on the bandwidth of each university partner, the instructors, and their faculty.

Coursera provides best practices for their partners on factors like an ideal student to faculty ratio.

If a student completes a MasterTrack program and decides to pursue a master's degree from the university that offered it on Coursera, will they have a better chance of being accepted? 

Currently, MasterTrack Certificate holders do not receive preferential treatment during the application process, which is conducted independently by the university, according to Coursera.

But, it's worth noting that a student's success in the online program likely helps build the case that they'd continue to do well in the on-campus program. 

Can you audit MasterTrack courses?

No, unfortunately. MasterTrack courses are available only to learners who have paid for the full program. You may not subscribe to a MasterTrack or pay for individual courses within a MasterTrack.

Is financial aid available for MasterTrack courses?

Financial aid or free audit access is not available for MasterTrack courses.

Note: Similar MicroMasters programs from edX are available for financial aid.

What is the refund policy?

Students have two weeks following the start of the first course session to receive a refund on the payment.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Dow climbs 153 points after Nancy Pelosi suggests stimulus deal is close

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:08pm  |  Clusterstock
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
  • US stocks clawed back early losses on Thursday to finish the day higher, driven by positive comments from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on the potential for a fiscal stimulus deal.
  • Pelosi told reporters that negotiations on another round of fiscal stimulus were "just about there," adding, "The president wants a bill — that's part of the opportunity that we have."
  • New weekly jobless claims totaled 787,000 last week, coming in below the median economist estimate of 870,000 compiled by Bloomberg. It was also a marked decrease from the prior week's revised total.
  • Watch major indexes update live here.

US stocks reversed an early decline and finished higher on Thursday as negotiations on another round of fiscal stimulus showed progress.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters that talks with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin were "just about there," adding, "The president wants a bill — that's part of the opportunity that we have."

But obstacles remain for another round of stimulus before the November election, as Senate Republicans have shown little appetite to pass anything but a skinny stimulus deal focused on extending aid to small businesses.

Here's where US indexes stood at the 4 p.m. ET market close on Thursday:

Read more: MORGAN STANLEY: Buy these 61 stocks that will offer major earnings-driven upside following an imminent 10% market sell-off

New weekly jobless claims totaled 787,000 last week, coming in below the median economist estimate of 870,000 compiled by Bloomberg. The reading was also a marked decrease from the previous week's revised total.

Elsewhere, existing-home sales in the US spiked to their fastest rate since 2006 as the housing-market boom accelerates, in part buoyed by an exodus to suburbs and record-low mortgage rates.

Tesla posted a record profit for the third quarter, beating analysts' estimates. The firm committed to its target of delivering 500,000 cars in 2020 despite interruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Shares moved higher on the solid earnings beat.

Read more: World-beating fund manager Mike Trigg is bringing in huge returns by investing in 3 high-growth areas his peers neglect. He shares the keys to betting on each.

Align Technology, the maker of Invisalign, surged more than 25% after it reported strong third-quarter earnings helped in part by influencers on TikTok.

Gold fell as much as 1.5%, to $1,894.72 per ounce.

Oil traded higher. West Texas Intermediate crude jumped as much as 2.5%, to $41.02 per barrel. Brent crude, oil's international benchmark, rose 2.5%, to $42.79 per barrel, at intraday highs.

Read more: Big investors pay thousands of dollars for Danielle DiMartino Booth's research. The former Fed advisor explains how the central bank has distorted markets — and shares 2 areas where analytical traders can still find returns.

Read the original article on Business Insider

How to download HBO Max movies and shows onto your phone or tablet to watch when you're without internet

Thu, 10/22/2020 - 4:07pm  |  Clusterstock
It's easy to download shows and movies with HBO Max.
  • You can download HBO Max titles onto your smartphone or tablet to watch later or when you're offline.
  • To download a show or movie from HBO Max, tap "Download" on the show or movie's details page.
  • You can find content you've downloaded in the HBO Max app by tapping the "Profile" icon and then going to the "Downloads" tab.
  • Visit Business Insider's Tech Reference library for more stories.

If you subscribe to the latest iteration of HBO's streaming service, HBO Max, you have access to everything in HBO's usual catalog of programming, along with a wealth of shows and movies.

And luckily, if you know you're going to be somewhere without internet service later, you can download these shows and movies to your smartphone or tablet to watch offline. 

One thing to keep in mind: You don't get to keep downloaded content permanently. You have 30 days after you download, or 48 hours after you start watching the show or movie before it's deleted from your device. Also, you can only have a total of up to 30 downloads on an account at a time. 

Here's how to download content from HBO Max, using your iPhone, iPad, or Android device.

Check out the products mentioned in this article:iPhone 11 (From $699.99 at Apple)iPad (From $329.99 at Apple)Samsung Galaxy S10 (From $699.99 at Walmart)How to download shows and movies on HBO Max

Firstly, make sure your device is connected to Wi-Fi — HBO Max won't download over cellular data connections.

1. In the HBO Max app, tap the show you want to download to see its details page with the show description.

2. Tap "Download" and the download will begin.

Tap "Download" on any show or movie's Details page. How to watch shows and movies you've downloaded from HBO Max

1. When you want to watch the downloaded show or movie, tap the "Profile" icon in the bottom-right corner of the screen. 

2. Tap "Downloads." You'll see a list of all your downloaded shows and movies, along with how much time is remaining to watch them before they expire. 

You can find all of your downloaded shows and movies on the "Downloads" tab of your Profile page.

3. If you want to remove a downloaded show from your device before it automatically expires, tap "Edit" in the Downloads section, and then tap the "X" next to any videos you're no longer interested in keeping. 

You don't have to wait for a show to expire — you can delete it when you're done with it. Related coverage from Tech Reference:Read the original article on Business Insider


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