Categories: Bitcoin Business

Thursday US briefing: Britain in Brexit deadlock as May clings on

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Good morning, I’m Tim Walker with today’s essential stories.

Top story: Corbyn refuses Brexit talks until ‘no deal’ ruled out

The British prime minister Theresa May has survived a vote of no confidence in her Conservative-led government despite the crushing parliamentary defeat of her Brexit deal, leaving the UK in limbo as the planned date of its departure from the EU looms. May has invited the leaders of Britain’s other major parties to help her reach a Brexit consensus, but Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the Labour opposition, has said he will not take part in such talks until May rules out the possibility of a “no-deal” Brexit.

How the US shutdown affects a small rural town

Prison employee Hannah Gariepy is one of the federal workers affected by the shutdown in Jesup, Georgia. Photograph: Khushbu Shah for the Guardian

Among the 800,000 federal employees affected by the partial government shutdown are the 300 people who work at a federal prison in Jesup, a small town in southern Georgia. But while they struggle on without pay, Guardian reporter Khushbu Shah finds that others in Jesup are barely aware of the shutdown: a pattern that most likely applies in communities across the US.

  • State of the Union. The House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, has asked Donald Trump to delay his State of the Union address, scheduled for 29 January, or deliver it in writing, saying the agencies responsible for security at the event have been “hamstrung” by the ongoing shutdown.

US plans new space sensors for missile defence

The new system is designed to counter missiles from ‘rogue states’ such as Iran and North Korea. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images

Trump is set to unveil plans for a new generation of space-based sensors designed to identify and shoot down missiles directed at the US from “rogue states” such as Iran and North Korea. The plan is part of a major expansion of US missile defence stemming from an administration review – the first since 2010 – which the president will present in a speech at the Pentagon on Thursday. It is thought Trump may tie the plans to his recent proposals for the creation of a new “space force” branch of the military.

The plant-focused diet that could save the world

Americans would have to eat six times as many beans and pulses as part of the ‘planetary health diet’. Photograph: Molly Katzen/Eat Forum

An international commission has devised a “planetary health diet” that could improve the health of billions of people, while also averting a global environmental catastrophe, its creators have said. The new diet demands people in North America eat 84% less red meat and six times more beans and lentils. Scientists have said its health benefits would prevent at least 11m deaths per year, while diminishing our reliance on the industrial agriculture that is devastating the natural environment.

Crib sheet


Manchester City lift the Premier League trophy in 2018. The club’s owners have lobbied to overturn the way the league does business. Photograph: Michael Regan/Getty Images

How a deluge of money nearly broke English soccer

The English Premier League, the world’s most lucrative soccer league, has seen global expansion, staggering profits and the arrival of several ultra-wealthy new club owners. Jonathan Clegg and Joshua Robinson explain how all that money almost tore it apart.

Why sick migrant children get the bare minimum of care

The recent deaths of two migrant children in US custody made headlines, but as Alexandra Villareal reports from a detention facility in Pennsylvania, parents are used to seeing their sick children go untreated while supposedly under the government’s protection.

Teenagers talk sex in acclaimed new Netflix comedy

Netflix’s new series Sex Education centres on the 16-year-old son of a sex therapist, who counsels his classmates about their sexual issues. It’s a raunchy yet sensitive depiction of how today’s teenagers deal with intimacy and consent, writes Arielle Bernstein.

The battle behind Mark Zuckerberg’s Hawaii estate

Many longtime landowners on the Hawaiian island of Kauai have lost property to wealthy newcomers. So when Mark Zuckerberg got caught up in a land dispute, many locals called him “the new face of neocolonialism”. Julia Carrie Wong reports from Kauai.


Ethan Lou, a bitcoin creator who covered the energy industry as a journalist, says there are distinct parallels between cryptocurrency and big oil – and that bitcoin will one day be haunted by its environmental footprint.

Bitcoin mining uses as much power as a small country, according to some estimates. Miners compete for limited coins, resulting in an arms race, and that power usage increases constantly and rapidly.


in 2014, the UFC president, Dana White, took a strong stance against domestic violence, insisting: “You don’t bounce back from putting your hands on a woman.” But MMA fighters remain almost four times as likely to face domestic violence charges than NFL players, and the sport doesn’t want to talk about it, as Karim Zidan reports.

The professional bull rider Mason Lowe, who was ranked 18th in the world by the sport’s governing organisation, PBR, has died from his injuries after he was thrown from a bull and trampled at a competition in Denver.

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The British prime minister Theresa May has survived a […]


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