Sound bites: Paris protests continued for the third weekend in a row • Alberta ordered a mandatory cut to oil production • Canada, the U.S., and Mexico finally signed CUSMA • Kareem Hunt was dropped by the Kansas City Chiefs • former U.S. President George H. W. Bush passed away.
More than 400 people were arrested in Paris, France on Saturday after the worst riots in decades erupted in the French capital. At least 133 people were injured, including dozens of police officers. What started as peaceful protests by a group of demonstrators known as the Gillettes Jaunes (Yellow Jackets) turned into violent clashes when protesters set cars and shops on fire. This is the third weekend in a row that protesters have rallied against France’s increased taxes.
Give me some context.
Last week, 8,000 people wearing fluorescent yellow vests stormed the Champs-Elysees for the second time to protest against increased fuel taxes. The protests have since morphed into anti-government and anti-President Emmanuel Macron demonstrations. Many of Paris’ most expensive streets have been littered with graffiti, calling on the French President to resign. On Friday, hundreds of protesters, inspired by France’s Gillettes Jaunes, took to the streets of Belgium.
Alberta, the oil capital of Canada, has ordered a mandatory 8.7% oil production cut to deal with low prices. FYI, Alberta sells oil at a much lower price than the rest of North America, which apparently costs the country about $80-million a day. Alberta Premier Rachel Notley blames the price gap on a bottleneck issue, saying there’s “more product than there is transport capacity.” Starting in January and ending Dec 31, 2019, oil producers will be forced to significantly decrease production. The goal is to get prices back to a normal level and avoid massive job losses. But not everyone’s on board. Some oil producers, like Suncor and Imperial Oil, think government intervention “carries trade risks and sends a negative message to investors.”
RELATIONSHIP STATUS: OFFICIAL
It's official. Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. signed a pact that makes them trade partners again. Introducing the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), formerly known as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). After what seemed like a never-ending battle, the pact between the three countries was reached after 15 months of negotiations. Reminder: President Trump threatened to pull the U.S. out of NAFTA because he believed they had the short end of the deal. There was a point when Canada’s inclusion in the deal looked uncertain, too, because the U.S. and Canada could not get over three main issues: dairy farmers, the auto industry, and the inclusion of an exemption rule.
Both sides had to compromise. Canadians will now be able to export 2.6 million cars (from 1.8 million) to the U.S. without getting taxed. They’ll also be able to buy up to $150 of foreign merch online before having to pay duties. And, a conflict-resolution clause that allows the three countries to challenge each other's trade deals is staying put. But Canada had to open up 3.6% of its dairy market to U.S. producers and wasn’t successful in increasing the number of professionals eligible for temporary work visas. And, Trump's massive taxes on Canadian-made steel and aluminum are holding strong. If you’re wondering why the U.S. got to come first in the new deal name, FYI, it doesn’t. The legal name of the deal in Canada is Canada-United States-Mexico-Agreement (CUSMA).
CAUGHT IN THE ACT
Another domestic abuse case in the NFL caught headlines over the weekend. Kareem Hunt, a former running back for the Kansas City Chiefs, Rookie of the Year, and Pro Bowl (all-star) player – i.e., he’s really really good – was caught on tape shoving, rushing, and kicking a woman.
Oh no. Not again.
This incident happened in February in a Cleveland hotel hallway. Hunt and a 19-year-old woman were arguing outside Hunt’s hotel room. Apparently, that night was the first time the two had met. Hunt’s friends tried to break up the argument, but a shove (by Hunt), a punch (by the woman), and another push (by Hunt) resulted in the woman on the ground, where Hunt kicked her.
Why is this coming up now?
Because TMZ released a video of the whole thing on Friday. The NFL claims it tried to investigate the incident back in Feb, but said that Hunt lied about what happened, and the hotel wouldn’t release any video surveillance. Hunt got to start the 2018 NFL season with zero consequences. Fast forward to this weekend: now with video evidence and a lot of people watching, the Chiefs dropped the 23-year-old all-star, the NFL put Hunt on a Commissioner Exempt list (he can’t practice, play, or attend games), and ESPN got an ‘apology’ on video.
On Friday, former U.S. President George H.W. Bush passed away after battling a number of health issues, including Parkinson’s disease. He was 94. Bush became the 41st president of the United States in 1988. He led America through a period of widespread global change and is credited for a number of political triumphs during his time in office – negotiating a final resolution to the Cold War, developing an international alliance to remove Iraqi forces in Kuwait, and creating an early dialogue between Israel and Palestine. Born in 1924 in Massachusetts, George H.W. Bush was a WWII hero. At age 18, he served as the youngest naval pilot, flew 58 combat missions, and won the Distinguished Flying Cross. He will be laid to rest this week next to his wife Barbara Bush, who passed away in April. They were married for 73 years. Bush is survived by his children, George, Jeb, Neil, Marvin, Dorothy, 17 grandchildren, and loving service pup.
WATCH LISTEN READ
• The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina will be back sooner than expected. Get your cauldrons ready by April 5th.
• Ariana Grande’s Thank u, next music video kept us busy this weekend. The video has already been viewed over 89 million times and broke the record for the most watched YouTube video in a 24-hour period.
• Kris Jenner did the most Kris Jenner thing during the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, living up to her momager title.
• Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas tied the knot this weekend. Here they are playing the newlywed game.
• Travis Scott and Gunna released their music video for Yosemite.
Gift ideas for those who need time to themselves.
A Hoame for the holidays. Hoame
is a modern meditation studio that offers a relaxing space with premium meditation classes, a Himalayan salt cave, and an infrared sauna. For the stressed-out friend who’s trying to find a place for relaxation, Hoame is the perfect gift.
My bff needs this.
Dew Sweat House
It’s cool to get a little Dew-y. Dew Sweat House
is a unique way to chill out. Wrapped in an infrared blanket, you spend 55-minutes sweating out your stress while watching Netflix. When you’re done, you’re rewarded with a lavender-scented wet towel and delicious orange slices.
Ready to Netflix and sweat.
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