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‘Victory lap’ raises stakes in key Raiders-Chiefs AFC West clash

Rivalry games don’t come much more fun than Sunday night’s AFC West showdown between the 8-1 Chiefs and 6-3 Raiders in Las Vegas. The result of the game will do one of two things: It will either considerably tighten up a division race that was not expected to be close at all this season. Or...
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LeBron James gets massive $85 million extension from Lakers
LeBron James will be a Laker until at least 2023. Los Angeles and James agreed to a two-year, $85 million maximum contract extension, ESPN reported Wednesday. James helped bring the Lakers their first NBA title since 2009-10 last season with a win over the Heat in the Orlando bubble, receiving Finals MVP honors in the...
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What Happened When Other Countries Prosecuted Former Leaders?
It happens all the time, just not in the U.S.
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Jenna Lyons spent a year on her couch after leaving J. Crew
Jenna Lyons was seriously down in the dumps when she exited J. Crew. The famed fashion maven — who had toiled with the clothing giant for over two decades before she said goodbye in 2017 — said her legacy didn’t seem to count for much after she was no longer part of the company. “I...
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What we know about David Perdue’s stock trades
The Georgia GOP senator is not in legal jeopardy anymore, but the politics aren't helpful to him.
Hacker sentenced to three years for Nintendo Switch leak, child porn
It’s game over for a notorious Nintendo hacker. A 21-year-old man who leaked details about the Nintendo Switch prior to its 2017 launch and was later caught with child porn when authorities investigated has been sentenced to three years in prison. Ryan Hernandez, who went “RyanRocks” and gained access to the information by tricking a...
Biden intends to keep Wray as FBI director
President-elect Joe Biden intends to keep FBI Director Christopher Wray in his post leading the bureau during his administration, Fox News has confirmed.
Biden Thinks Rural Americans 'Feel Forgotten,' Plans to 'Fight Like Hell' to Rebuild U.S. Industry, Education
The president-elect discussed his intentions to strengthen U.S. industrial policies and better serve the needs of rural populations during an interview published in "The New York Times" on Wednesday.
Chargers’ Tyrod Taylor won't file grievance against team, doctor after punctured lung mishap: report
Los Angeles Chargers’ quarterback Tyrod Taylor will not file a grievance against the team after suffering a punctured lung when being treated by a team doctor, which has left him unable to play since Week 2, reports say.
Arizona woman walking funny was hiding 445 fentanyl pills in pants: deputies
An Arizona woman was found hiding 445 fentanyl pills in her pants after deputies noticed she was walking in an odd way during her arrest over the weekend, authorities said Wednesday.
The Star of Lifetime’s New Christmas Movie on Filming a Kiss Scene Through Plexiglass
Tony winner Ali Stroker explains what it’s like to smooch through a transparent barrier.
3 Hong Kong pro-democracy icons were sentenced to prison in huge blow to protest movement
Pro-democracy activists Joshua Wong, right, and Ivan Lam board a Hong Kong Correctional Service van ahead of a sentencing hearing at Lai Chi Kok Reception Centre on December 2, 2020, in Hong Kong. | Anthony Kwan/Getty Images Joshua Wong, Agnes Chow, and Ivan Lam pleaded guilty to participating in an unsanctioned protest in 2019. Three prominent Hong Kong pro-democracy advocates were sentenced to prison Wednesday for their roles in a protest during the massive demonstrations against an extradition bill during the summer of 2019. It’s yet another troubling sign of the erosion of Hong Kong’s freedoms. Joshua Wong, Agnes Chow, and Ivan Lam — all 20-something-year-old members of a now-disbanded pro-democracy group known as Demosisto — all pleaded guilty to the charges related to participating in, and inciting others to join, an unauthorized but largely peaceful protest outside Hong Kong police headquarters in Wanchai on June 2019. All potentially faced sentences of up to three years, but Wong will serve 13.5 months in prison, Chow faces a term of 10 months, and Lam was sentenced to seven months. Wong and Chow were first arrested on these charges in August 2019, and Lam in September 2019 — but many Hong Kong observers see this as part of the larger crackdown on Hong Kong’s democratic freedoms that has intensified after the Chinese government implemented a sweeping national security law in July. That law gives authorities broad powers to target dissenters or anyone who challenges Beijing, making things like protesting or taking any anti-government stance a potentially seditious or terroristic activity. Wong faces additional charges, including for participating in another unsanctioned protest in October 2019 and for violating the Hong Kong government’s mask ban, which had barred people from wearing face coverings at mass gatherings, months before the coronavirus pandemic would make mask-wearing mandatory. He was also charged along with dozens of other activists for participating in an illegal gathering, a vigil on June 4 to commemorate the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre. Chow was also arrested in August under the national security law, allegedly for “colluding with foreign forces.” She could potentially face life in prison if charged and found guilty. This is likely the last time we see them in a while. @joshuawongcf jailed for 13.5 months, Ivan Lam 7 months, @chowtingagnes 10 months. @AFP #HongKong #HongKongProtests— daniel suen (@danielchsuen) December 2, 2020 Though the activists’ legal woes stem from Hong Kong’s recent upheaval, they were also key figures in Hong Kong’s 2014 Umbrella Movement, which challenged proposed changes to Hong Kong’s election rules. The movement didn’t succeed in its goal of giving Hongkongers universal suffrage, but it became the precursor to the mass anti-government demonstrations last summer and fall. Those began as a protest against a controversial extradition bill and transformed into a larger pro-democracy movement that engulfed Hong Kong for months before arrests and pandemic restrictions, and, finally, the national security law helped to smother the resistance on the streets. But the 2019 Hong Kong protests were largely leaderless. People organized on social media and online, closely guarding their anonymity for fear of reprisal. The fluidity of the protests made it hard for Hong Kong authorities to curtail or weaken them, so they went after the next-best thing: well-known pro-democracy figures who had publicly sided with the cause, even if they themselves weren’t on the front lines of organizing the protests. Wong himself acknowledged this last year, saying last August that it was “completely ridiculous” that the police were targeting “specific prominent figures of social movement in the past and framing them as the leaders of the anti-extradition bill protests.” Worth recalling that the Hong Kong Police HQ siege last year which Wong, Chow, and Lam have just been jailed for was 1. unauthorised, but peaceful - the most I saw that day was egg throwing at the building 2. the movement was essentially leaderless - not formally led by the trio— Helier Cheung (@HelierCheung) December 2, 2020 Hong Kong’s freedoms are deteriorating in real time The sentencing of these pro-democracy figures is just the latest degradation of Hong Kong’s freedoms and its autonomy. Hong Kong is supposed to be governed according to the “one country, two systems” rule. The “one country” part means it is officially part of China, while the “two systems” part gives it a degree of autonomy, including rights like freedom of the press that are absent in mainland China. China is supposed to abide by this arrangement until 2047, but it has for years been eroding those freedoms and trying to bring Hong Kong more tightly under its control. The national security law has accelerated this process, chipping away at the facade of “one country, two systems.” That has directly threatened Hong Kong’s civil society, independent press, and, most obviously, the territory’s sustained pro-democracy movement. Wong faces additional charges, and so could Chow, under the new national security law. This is Wong’s fourth time in jail, and he was already disqualified from running in Hong Kong’s local elections last year. He reported to custody before sentencing and was placed in solitary confinement after a scan allegedly showed a “foreign object” in his stomach. Wong said he had trouble sleeping because the lights were left on for 24 hours. “It is now the Chinese Communist Party’s plan, I think, to start an indefinite detention for them by giving them new charges again and again,” Eddie Chu, a former pro-democracy lawmaker who was arrested in November on charges related to a scuffle with pro-Beijing lawmakers last year, told the Washington Post. Nathan Law, a Hong Kong pro-democracy figure who fled to the United Kingdom, said the same in a New York Times op-ed he co-wrote with Alex Chow, another activist. They said despite the relatively short sentences, those sentenced “might not get out for quite a bit longer than that: The Chinese government, acting through the Hong Kong authorities, has already pressed more charges. And its point, after all, is to stamp out dissent in Hong Kong.” And, as Law and Chow pointed out, the “much more severe national security law” looms. The expansive law has rapidly chilled speech in Hong Kong. Journalists and Hongkongers purged their social media histories this summer, in case past statements could make them targets of the new law. Pro-democracy books were pulled from shelves of libraries in July, including some written by Wong. In August, Hong Kong authorities told publishers to remove “sensitive content” from textbooks. Activists and opposition figures were arrested throughout the summer and fall, some for allegedly advocating for Hong Kong’s independence, a “secessionist” activity illegal under the national security law. In August, 12 activists tried to flee to Taiwan in a speedboat, including some who’d reportedly been charged under the national security law, but they were intercepted by Chinese authorities. In July, a dozen pro-democracy candidates were barred from participating in the Legislative Council elections. Those elections were slated for this September — until pro-Beijing Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam postponed them a full year, citing the coronavirus. (Which, despite a recent spike, has largely been under control in Hong Kong for months.) In November, the Chinese passed another law that disqualified legislators for “unpatriotic” behavior; a handful of pro-democracy legislators were quickly expelled. The rest of the pro-democracy legislators resigned en masse from the pro-Beijing body. And if those Legislative Council elections are held next year, Hongkongers on mainland China will likely be allowed to vote, assuring domination by pro-China forces. The press, too, has taken a hit. Jimmy Lai, the founder and owner of Next Digital, which publishes Apple Daily, a Hong Kong publication that has backed the pro-democracy protests, was arrested in August under the national security law on allegations of colluding with foreign powers. And just as the pro-democracy activists were sentenced on Wednesday, Lai was arrested on additional fraud charges, along with two other executives from Next Digital. And this week, 40 staff members with Hong Kong’s network, i-Cable News, were abruptly fired. Many belonged to its award-winning investigative unit; other journalists quit in solidarity. One former employee told Radio Free Asia the firings were “a bullet to the head” of newsgathering operations at i-Cable News. All of this has put Hong Kong in a particularly perilous place. Resistance is still happening, but public protests or dissent come with tremendous risks. “It’s not the end of the fight, read Wong’s Twitter account Wednesday, posted via his lawyers. “Ahead of us is another challenging battleground. We’re now joining the battle in prison along with many brave protestors, less visible yet essential in the fight for democracy and freedom for HK.” Law and Chow, in their op-ed, called on the incoming Biden administration to retain its criticism of China, but also “foster a new China policy that prioritizes human rights over other interests.” The Trump administration has revoked Hong Kong’s special trade status and placed sanctions on officials tied to the anti-democratic crackdown in Hong Kong — including Lam, the chief executive, who recently complained she has to hoard cash as she no longer can access banks. But it has so far failed to deter Beijing, which has only escalated its campaign to crush Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement.
This winter, the Vox Book Club is reading about lesbian necromancers in space
Tor Announcing our dual picks for December and January. As we head out of a very odd 2020 and into what we all hope will be a better 2021, the Vox Book Club believes that we all deserve a treat. It is in that spirit that I am delighted to announce that our dual picks for December and January are Tamsyn Muir’s Gideon the Ninth and its sequel Harrow the Ninth, the first two volumes of the Locked Tomb trilogy. (The release date for the third volume, Alecto the Ninth, has yet to be announced.) Together, these two books form an epic tale of secret identities, star-crossed lovers, lesbian necromancers in space, and so much more. The Locked Tomb trilogy is one of those bookseries that I’m evangelical about. As soon as I read Gideon the Ninth last year, I informed every single person I knew that they had to read it, too, and then I watched with satisfaction as everyone who had the good sense to follow my instructions read it, fell in love, and then started telling everyone they knew to read it, too. It’s the kind of book you can love like that: so strongly that you want to force everyone else to love it in just the same way. The Locked Tomb trilogy tells the tale of Gideon Nav, a brash and impulsive swordswoman who likes duels and dirty magazines, and Harrowhark Nonagesimus, a vicious bitch of a goth princess whose only pleasure in life comes from necromantic bone magic. Gideon and Harrow are forced to work together on a quest. They hate each other. Obviously, they will fall in love. It’s delightful. The trappings here are all flamboyant and absorbing and fun, but it’s the prose that really makes this pair work for me. It’s so lush and velvety that you feel you can wrap yourself up in it, and Muir is constantly conjuring up lurid gothic fantasias only to puncture them with a bone-dry joke. The result is pure pleasure. Subscribe to the Vox Book Club newsletter to make sure you don’t miss anything, and let’s get started. Here’s the full Vox Book Club schedule for December 2020 and January 2021 Friday, December 18: Discussion post on Gideon the Ninth Friday, January 15: Discussion post on Harrow the Ninth TBA: Our live Zoom Event for both books will come at the end of January, with details to be announced. Subscribe to the newsletter, and we’ll send you an RSVP link with all the info as soon as it’s available!
Discovery+ to Launch With Originals From Chip and Joanna Gaines, Bobby Flay and Giada De Laurentiis and More
Discovery+ will launch Jan. 4, 2021 with over 55,000 episodes in its content library.
Discovery to launch subscription streaming service in January
 Discovery is launching a new streaming service, called discovery+, and has a US distribution deal with Verizon Communications that will make the service available to 50 million customers on day one, following Disney’s lead. Discovery+ will be available on Jan. 4 in the United States where it will include 55,000 episodes from channels in the Discovery portfolio, which includes HGTV,...
Tyreek Hill's first impression of Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes: 'I thought he was trash'
If you told Tyreek Hill, when the Kansas City Chiefs first drafted Patrick Mahomes in 2017, that he would bring home a Super Bowl championship just three years later, he would have strongly disagreed with you.
Florida teen charged with murder in death of librarian who defended son during attack: police
Florida law enforcement officials have upgraded the charges against one of the teenagers accused of running over a beloved local librarian, who later died, as she tried to defend her son from an attack.
Can Trump pardon himself? What's a preemptive pardon? Experts explain the sweeping power
Legal experts answer some of the most common questions about what Donald Trump can and cannot do with the broad pardon powers of the president.
NBA schedule: Kevin Durant will face Warriors in first game back
Kevin Durant’s first game with his new Nets team will come on Opening Night against his old Warriors team. It will come 561 days since the last time he took the court in an NBA game. Now on Dec. 22, Durant officially returns to the court against his former team in Brooklyn, unsure exactly when...
Taylor Swift and Ryan Reynolds give us the 'match made in hell' 2020 deserves
Ryan Reynolds uses Taylor Swift's "Love Story" in a very 2020 ad for dating site — because this year has really gone to hell. Even Satan agrees.
Review: Frances McDormand is at her finest in 'Nomadland,' a sublime ode to American wanderlust
The award-winning road movie from the writer-director Chloé Zhao is a gorgeous, lyrical weave of documentary and fiction.
LA comedian dies of COVID-19 days after documenting battle
A 38-year-old Los Angeles comedian died of COVID-19 — two days after posting a video admitting that he initially “doubted” the seriousness of the virus. Joe Luna, who performed as Joe El Cholo, posted on Nov. 21 what was supposed to be the first in a series of Instagram videos documenting his coronavirus battle. “Let...
Jim Parsons Auditioned For ‘The Office’ Pilot Before ‘Big Bang Theory’
Bears, beets, Bazinga.
Oreo is launching Lady Gaga themed cookies. Here's when you can get them
Oreo partnering with Lady Gaga on a specially themed package of Oreos based on the pop star's latest album, Chromatica.
How to make the best cookies for the holidays
Tips to make your cookies look as good as the pros
Khabib Nurmagomedov: 'I have no interest in fighting' Conor McGregor or Dustin Poirier
Khabib continues to not budge on remaining retired despite Dana White continually suggesting otherwise.        Related StoriesRose Namajunas opens up on overcoming anxiety from Conor McGregor's infamous bus attackOwen Roddy: 'Stone-cold killer' Conor McGregor will be too much for Dustin Poirier againUFC free fight: Jack Hermansson submits Gerald Meerschaert in Round 1
2020 Holiday Cookies: All the ingredients you need to get baking
Organized by grocery aisle, this list contains all you need to make great holiday cookies.
After NC Senate 'epic fail,' Democrats trade blame for Cal Cunningham loss
A Democratic North Carolina state lawmaker blasted the DSCC and "career" politicians for favoring candidate Cal Cunningham.
Ex-Bill Clinton aide Doug Band dishes on family ties to Epstein, Ghislaine Maxwell
Former President Bill Clinton’s one-time top advisor dished on the family’s ties to pedophile billionaire Jeffrey Epstein and alleged madam Ghislaine Maxwell in a series of new interviews on his time with the political dynasty. Doug Band — who rose from Bubba’s body man during his second term in office to the most trusted adviser...
‘Pocahontas’ actress Irene Bedard arrested twice in three days
The actress who voiced Pocahontas in the Disney movie was nabbed twice in three days.
Abortion Clinics Are Rapidly Closing. Many Won’t Come Back
Dr. Yashica Robinson is an optimist—and that, she says, is fortuitous. As one of the last abortion providers in Alabama, a willingness to see the bright side is practically a job requirement. For much of the past year, Robinson, who is the medical director at the Huntsville-based Alabama Women’s Center for Reproductive Alternatives, and her…
Visa to launch credit card that offers bitcoin as a reward
Visa, Evolve Bank and credit card firm Deserve are partnering with cryptocurrency startup BlockFi to offer a credit card that lets users earn bitcoin on purchases. Card users will receive a 1.5 percent cashback on an accrual basis for every transaction made through the card, which will then be converted to bitcoin and placed into...
Harnden: Priority groups in the UK will get vaccine by Easter
Professor Anthony Harnden, Deputy Chair of the UK Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, gives Becky Anderson a comprehensive update on the vaccine race. He thinks we'll be 'looking towards the end of the tunnel in the UK' by Easter.
Rep-elect Donalds say GOP 'Freedom Force’ will push 'message of liberty' to counter AOC's Squad
As several new Republican members are forming a "Freedom Force" to counter socialism, Rep. Byron Donalds appeared on “America’s Newsroom” to explain how the emerging group will "contrast" the “Squad.”
New rule cracks down on emotional support animals on planes
Airlines don't have to treat emotional support animals as service animals, a new rule says.
Bosnia’s ‘Oxygen Man’ brings cheer, and supplies, to COVID-19 patients
KONJIC, Bosnia – Miralem Sabic Mika, known as the “Oxygen Man” in his native town of Konjic, has become a local hero for helping coronavirus patients breathe easier and comforting them with warm words and laughter. Sabic, a 57-year-old war veteran, drives his old van to the capital Sarajevo around 38 miles (61 km) to...
LeBron James, Lakers agree to two-year, $85 million contract extension
Contract extension keeps LeBron James with Lakers through 2022-23 season, and his son Bronny will graduate in 2023 – and possibly be draft eligible.
CNN has been ‘overwhelmingly biased’ against Trump: Joe Concha
You don't need behind-the-scenes tapes to know that CNN is anti-Trump because of how blatant the network coverage is, Fox News contributor Joe Concha told "America's Newsroom" Wednesday.
Julianna Margulies Joins ‘The Morning Show’ Season 2
Margulies will play Laura Peterson, an anchor at UBA News.
Join Kara Swisher to discuss why Amazon wants to get even closer to you
Ravens-Steelers updates: Game officially on, no new positive tests for Baltimore, per reports
The Ravens did not have a positive COVID-19 test in Wednesday's results, but Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey will be out for the game.
How the U.K. Approved Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine Faster Than the U.S. and Europe
Some experts in Europe and the U.S. see politics at work
Is ‘Ammonite’ Based on a True Story?
"Based" being the key word here.
Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez postponed their wedding twice
Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez will exchange vows "when the time is right."
See the ‘Jersey Shore’ cast then and now
“Jersey Shore” premiered on MTV in 2009 and fans could not get enough of the “gym, tan, laundry” antics at the beach. Jenni “JWoww” Farley, Paul “Pauly D” DelVecchio, Vinny Guadagnino, Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino, Angelina Pivarnick, Ronnie Ortiz-Magro and Deena Nicole Cortese are back with a new season of “Jersey Shore: Family Vacation.” This...
In Glover Park, an old Catholic cemetery gets new life
Once crumbling, dilapidated and full, Holy Rood has risen from — and with — the ashes.
Lakers' LeBron James agrees to two-year contract extension
LeBron James has agreed to a two-year, $85-million contract extension with the Los Angeles Lakers, keeping him with the team through the 2022-23 season.
New rule cracks down on emotional support animals on planes
A new Department of Transportation rule cracks down on emotional support animals on planes, saying airlines are no longer required to treat them as service animals.
Homeless men appeal forced relocation from UWS Lucerne Hotel
Three homeless men who intervened in a lawsuit to stop their forced relocation from a shelter at the Upper West Side’s Lucerne Hotel to one in the Financial District have appealed a recent ruling green-lighting the move. Ramone Buford, Larry Thomas and Travis Trammell were three homeless men, among over 200, who were being housed...