South China Morning Post USA

Amazon boss Jeff Bezos is reportedly building a 127-metre luxury yacht

Jeff Bezos may soon be sailing the high seas in his very own mega-yacht.The Amazon CEO has commissioned a 127-metre custom yacht from the Dutch shipbuilder Oceanco, according to an excerpt from Brad Stone’s forthcoming book, Amazon Unbound, which was published in Bloomberg Businessweek on Wednesday.The three-mast ship is expected to be “one of the finest sailing yachts in existence,” but other details about the yacht are unknown, even among those in the exclusive luxury boat world, Stone…

Canada approves Pfizer coronavirus vaccine for children aged 12 to 15

Canada’s health regulator has authorised Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine for ages 12 and older.Dr Supriya Sharma, chief medical adviser at Health Canada, on Wednesday confirmed the decision for the ages to 12 to 15 and said it will help children return to a normal life.The vaccine was previously authorised for anyone 16 or older.The US Food and Drug Administration is also expected to authorise Pfizer’s vaccine for young by next week, setting up shots for many before the beginning of the next school…

USTR Katherine Tai says she expects to meet Chinese counterpart Liu He ‘in the near term’

US tariffs on Chinese goods will remain in place for now, but the top US trade official said on Wednesday that she expects to meet with her Chinese counterpart, Vice-Premier Liu He, “in the near term” for talks that will help determine whether the punitive levies will remain in place.“A lot of this is going to hinge on the conversations that we have with China, and our assessment of the effectiveness of the US China trade and economic agreement,” said US Trade Representative Katherine Tai,…

Facebook oversight board upholds Donald Trump ban

Facebook’s oversight board on Wednesday upheld the company’s suspension of former US president Donald Trump but gave the company six months to determine a “proportionate response” going forward, a verdict that may chart how social media will treat rule-breaking world leaders in the future.The company inappropriately imposed an indeterminate suspension without clear standards, the board said, requiring a company review.The board said Facebook should determine a response that is consistent with…

Why the Bidens seem to tower over the Carters in bizarre viral photo

The internet was set ablaze after former president Jimmy Carter and first lady Rosalynn Carter’s non-profit, the Carter Center, shared a curious-looking photo of President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden posing with the former first couple last week in Georgia.Like something out of a house of oddities, both Bidens appear to tower considerably over the Carters, who look like miniature figures seated in their chairs.The photo seems to suggest that the Bidens are twice as large as the…

Bill and Melinda Gates divorce: who gets the 66,000 sq ft, US$130 million mansion?

With the Bill and Melinda Gates divorce bombshell still echoing, so begins the process of divvying up the fourth-largest fortune in the world.Forbes puts the Microsoft Corp co-founder's net worth at just north of US$130 billion, a massive sum that includes the world's largest private family charitable foundation, a lucrative personal investment firm and a collection of real estate that rivals any in the country.In addition to 98,0000 hectares (242,000 acres) of farmland, the couple own a glut…

Two Asian-American women stabbed in San Francisco attack

Police in San Francisco have arrested a man who they say is suspected of stabbing two Asian-American women without warning in the city’s Mid-Market area.Officers were sent to 4th and Stockton streets shortly before 5pm on Tuesday and found the wounded women, who were taken to a hospital. There was no immediate word on their conditions.Witnesses told KPIX-TV that one woman appeared to be elderly and the other appeared to be in her 30s. They told the station that a man clutching a knife was…

US efforts to rally allies may not sway China, says Joe Biden’s top Asia official

The United States should prepare for the possibility that its strategy to rally allies to confront China may not succeed in pressuring Beijing to alter its behaviour, the White House’s top Asia official said on Tuesday.One abiding belief held by China analysts was that the Chinese government would alter course if it faced opposition from a front of other countries, said Kurt Campbell, who serves as the Indo-Pacific coordinator on the Biden administration’s National Security Council.“I believe…

Donald Trump launches tweet-style blog ahead of Facebook ban ruling

Former US president Donald Trump wants to communicate with his supporters via his own website after being banned from major social media platforms.Trump launched a blog page on his site on Tuesday, which is visually similar to Twitter but contains only posts from Trump.Supporters could technically also use it to repost Trump's statements to Twitter or Facebook, as there is the option to share any short post as a quote via the social media platforms and link back with just a few clicks.A Twitter…

US Customs seizes shipment from Malaysia’s Top Glove over forced labour

The US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) on Wednesday said it had seized a shipment of 3.97 million nitrile disposable gloves from Malaysia’s Top Glove Corp Bhd estimated to be worth US$518,000, on indications they were made by forced labour.CBP on March 29 issued a forced labour finding based on evidence of multiple forced labour indicators in the world’s largest medical glove maker’s production process.It had initially banned products from two of Top Glove’s subsidiaries last July, but…

Asian-Americans are the least likely to hold elected office in US

This story is published in a content partnership with POLITICO. It was originally reported by Rishika Dugyala on politico.com on May 4, 2021.Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders are dramatically under-represented in elected office and particularly in the criminal justice sector – even as they’re the fastest growing demographic group.A Tuesday report from the Reflective Democracy Campaign, obtained exclusively by POLITICO, revealed that AAPI members made up just 0.9 per cent of elected leaders…

Pentagon watchdog opens new probe into US military’s handling of UFOs

This story is published in a content partnership with POLITICO. It was originally reported by Bryan Bender on politico.com on May 4, 2021.The Pentagon's inspector general is looking into the actions the military has taken to address the spate of UFO sightings in recent years involving high performance aircraft that have violated military airspace.The probe comes as Congress awaits a public report, due next month, from a host of national security agencies on the issue, and as advocates complain…

Derek Chauvin seeks new trial after conviction for murder of George Floyd

The defence lawyer for the former Minneapolis police officer convicted of killing George Floyd has requested a new trial, saying the court abused its discretion on several points and that the verdict should be impeached because of jury misconduct, according to a court document filed Tuesday.Derek Chauvin, who is white, was convicted last month of second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter in the May 25 death of Floyd.Evidence at trial showed Chauvin…

Wine aged on International Space Station expected to sell for US$1 million

If a bottle of Petrus 2000 that Christie’s is selling tastes out of this world it might be because it aged for 14 months aboard the International Space Station.Christie’s hopes the bottle, now up for grabs in a private sale, will fetch US$1 million, which would make it the most expensive wine ever sold.The bottle is one of a batch of 12 that European start-up Space Cargo Unlimited sent into orbit as part of research into how food and drink matures in space.The wine spent almost 440 days in…

Joe Biden’s new coronavirus goal: 70 per cent of US adults to get one vaccine dose by Independence Day

President Joe Biden on Tuesday announced a goal to have 70 per cent of US adults vaccinated with at least one Covid-19 shot by the July 4 Independence Day holiday, and urged young people in their 20s and 30s in particular to get inoculated.The president, who has made fighting the coronavirus a key priority of his administration, had previously announced July 4 as a target date for when Americans can gather in small groups to signal a return to greater normalcy in the middle of the pandemic…

Asian-Americans hope US$250 million plan to fight racism will support women, celebrate diversity

Growing up in Los Angeles, Korean-American Eunice Kim, 34, learned to assimilate by downplaying parts of her heritage that her family celebrated proudly at home. It was only in recent years that the second-generation US citizen started to share Korean food and traditions with her non-Asian friends. This is despite her being born and raised in California, a state where Asians account for 14.2 per cent of the population, double the 7 per cent they make up nationwide. Kim said she felt a need to…

The wealth and philanthropy of Bill and Melinda Gates

Bill and Melinda Gates have filed for divorce after 27 years of marriage. Here are details about their wealth and philanthropic activities. Bill Gates Bill Gates is the world’s fourth-richest person with a net worth of US$130.5 billion, according to Forbes. Gates dropped out of Harvard University to co-found technology giant Microsoft with school friend Paul Allen in 1975. Gates owned 49 per cent of Microsoft at its initial public offering in 1986, which made him an instant multimillionaire…

US to authorise Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine for children 12 to 15

The United States was expected to authorise the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for children age 12 and up by early next week, US media reported.Pfizer has applied for emergency use authorisation for its Covid-19 vaccine for children and teenagers between ages 12 and 15, according to CNN, citing a government official.“The FDA will have to amend the emergency use authorisation for the vaccine, but the process should be straightforward,” CNN reported on Monday.The US Food and Drug Administration…

Bill and Melinda Gates divorce: a look back at how they met

From muddy streets in South Africa’s townships to cocktail parties at Davos – Bill and Melinda Gates came as a pair.Together, they built a charitable empire through Bill’s technology company Microsoft and the massive non-profit they co-founded and co-chair, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.And when it came time to announce Monday the end of their 27-year marriage, they did that as a pair too in a joint statement posted to their respective Twitter accounts at exactly the same moment.Gates, 65…

The Force may not be with us, but what about the tech in ‘Star Wars’?

There are few film lines that are more iconic than “may the Force with you”. Say it a few times fast (or make a young child say it a few times) and it can sound like “may the Fourth be with you”.Apparently enough people said it this way that now May the Fourth, May 4, is the designated day for celebrating all things “Star Wars”.The year 2021 especially is a big year, as it’s the 44th anniversary of the US premiere of the first “Star Wars” film by George Lucas.Just in time for this Force-tastic…

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