Football conspiracy theories: Are we in a ‘golden age’ of fan paranoia?
Sports

Football conspiracy theories: Are we in a ‘golden age’ of fan paranoia?

One of the most eye-catching bios on X, or Twitter as we all know it, belonged to a sports writer with one of the UK’s biggest national newspapers. It was plain and simple and boiled down to five words: “Biased against your football club.”Which is true. If you’ve followed football for any length of time, then you know that every arm of the media is out to get the club you support. You should see The Athletic’s morning meetings where we plot against the teams we most want to stitch up (all of them, obviously). Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean we aren’t trying to get Mikel Arteta banned from the touchline. Or perpetuating bias in favour of London. Or scheming for more points deductions at Everton. It’s All the President’s Men meets 24.Truthfully, more attention is paid to the subsid...
New Jersey Deli Scheme Leads to Securities Fraud Guilty Plea
Technology

New Jersey Deli Scheme Leads to Securities Fraud Guilty Plea

A man involved in a brazen plot to manipulate the stock price of a New Jersey deli’s parent company pleaded guilty to securities fraud on Wednesday.James T. Patten, 64, of North Carolina, admitted to orchestrating a series of misleading trades in an apparent bid to enrich himself and two co-defendants in U.S. District Court in Camden, N.J.Mr. Patten faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $5 million for securities fraud. He also pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy to commit securities fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.Mr. Patten’s lawyer, Ira Lee Sorkin, said in an interview on Wednesday that attention on the case “was exaggerated beyond any perception — that this was some $100 million fraud involving a delicatessen...
Did the Grinch Come for the Office Holiday Party?
Business

Did the Grinch Come for the Office Holiday Party?

Of course, some companies, even before the pandemic, were trying to avoid celebrations that were raucous or boozy. Roy Bahat, a venture capital investor with Bloomberg Beta, has held a holiday party for start-ups since 2014, called Startup Festivus, on the first Friday of December from 3 to 6 p.m., so people can get home to their families.“We want to throw holiday parties where the next Monday everyone shows up proud of who they were,” Mr. Bahat said. “We all know the story where someone goes to the holiday party and ends up doing something that causes a big rift.”At Conductor, a New York-based software company, the chief executive, Seth Besmertnik, decided that what his employees would like most this year would be to take one week off at the same time in late December, and then have a par...
Latest Israel-Hamas War and Gaza News: Live Updates
World

Latest Israel-Hamas War and Gaza News: Live Updates

There was a noticeable absence among the participating countries when Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III announced that the United States was organizing a new naval task force to confront the threat from Yemen’s Houthi militia marauding against global shipping in the Red Sea.No regional power agreed that its navy would participate. The only Middle Eastern country taking part is the tiny island state of Bahrain, and there was otherwise conspicuous silence from regional capitals.Many Arab countries depend heavily on the trade that flows through the Red Sea, from the Suez Canal in the north to the Bab-al-Mandeb Strait that Yemen abuts in the south. But with the United States’ repeated and vocal announcements of support for Israel’s war in the Gaza Strip fomenting anger among Arab popula...
Behind the Shortage Keeping Cancer Patients From Chemo
Health

Behind the Shortage Keeping Cancer Patients From Chemo

Stephanie Scanlan learned about the shortages of basic chemotherapy drugs this spring in the most frightening way. Two of the three drugs typically used to treat her rare bone cancer were too scarce. She would have to go forward without them.Ms. Scanlan, 56, the manager of a busy state office in Tallahassee, Fla., had sought the drugs for months as the cancer spread from her wrist to her rib to her spine. By summer it was clear that her left wrist and hand would need to be amputated.“I’m scared to death,” she said as she faced the surgery. “This is America. Why are we having to choose who we save?”The disruption this year in supplies of key chemotherapy drugs has realized the worst fears of patients — and of the broader health system — because some people with aggressive cancers have been ...
Sean Payton’s flare-up at Russell Wilson puts coach-QB relationship back in spotlight
Sports

Sean Payton’s flare-up at Russell Wilson puts coach-QB relationship back in spotlight

(Editor’s note: This is excerpted from Mike Sando’s Pick Six of Dec. 18, 2023.)Sean Payton blasting quarterback Russell Wilson on the sideline, then suggesting he was merely upset about officiating, invited all sorts of speculation.It’s hard to fault Payton for losing his cool when officials wiped out a Broncos touchdown with an offensive offside call that seemed indefensible. As one former head coach put it, officials have “lost their minds” searching for penalties associated with Philadelphia’s tush-push plays.It’s just difficult to understand why Payton would funnel any of that rage toward his quarterback.GO DEEPERSean Payton downplays sideline flare up with Russell WilsonThe nature of Payton’s relationship with Wilson faded into the background during a five-game winning streak fueled b...
Vera Molnar, Pioneer of Computer Art, Dies at 99
Technology

Vera Molnar, Pioneer of Computer Art, Dies at 99

Vera Molnar, a Hungarian-born artist who has been called the godmother of generative art for her pioneering digital work, which started with the hulking computers of the 1960s and evolved through the current age of NFTs, died on Dec. 7 in Paris. She was 99.Her death was announced on social media by the Pompidou Center in Paris, which is scheduled to present a major exhibition of her work in February. Ms. Molnar had lived in Paris since 1947.While her computer-aided paintings and drawings, which drew inspiration from geometric works by Piet Mondrian and Paul Klee, were eventually exhibited in major museums like the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, her work was not always embraced early in her career.“Vera Molnar is one of the very few artists who ha...
Wall Street’s Bond ‘Vigilantes’ Are Back
Business

Wall Street’s Bond ‘Vigilantes’ Are Back

Typically, the esoteric inner workings of finance and the very public stakes of government spending are viewed as separate spheres.And bond trading is ordinarily a tidy arena driven by mechanical bets about where the economy and interest rates will be months or years from now.But those separations and that sense of order changed this year as a gargantuan, chaotic battle was waged by traders in the nearly $27 trillion Treasury bond market — the place where the U.S. government goes to borrow.In the summer and fall, many investors worried that federal deficits were rising so rapidly that the government would flood the market with Treasury debt that would be met with meager demand. They believed that deficits were a key source of inflation that would erode future returns on any U.S. bonds they...
Brazil’s Congress Weakens Protection of Indigenous Lands, Defying Lula
World

Brazil’s Congress Weakens Protection of Indigenous Lands, Defying Lula

Brazilian officials served up an array of plans and figures at the recent COP28 climate summit in Dubai, presenting itself as a world leader, on track to protect its forests and the people who live there.But on Thursday, Brazil’s Congress approved a law that threatens Indigenous people’s rights to most of the land they inhabit or claim, potentially opening vast territories to deforestation, farming and mining.The new law requires that Indigenous people must provide concrete evidence that they occupied the land they claim on Oct. 5, 1988, when the country’s current Constitution was enacted — a requirement that many of them have little or no hope of meeting.Under the new rule, not only can Indigenous land claims currently going through the legal process be thrown out for lacking such documen...
Morning Person? You Might Have Neanderthal Genes to Thank.
Sports

Morning Person? You Might Have Neanderthal Genes to Thank.

Neanderthals were morning people, a new study suggests. And some humans today who like getting up early might credit genes they inherited from their Neanderthal ancestors.The new study compared DNA in living humans to genetic material retrieved from Neanderthal fossils. It turns out that Neanderthals carried some of the same clock-related genetic variants as do people who report being early risers.Since the 1990s, studies of Neanderthal DNA have exposed our species’ intertwined history. About 700,000 years ago, our lineages split apart, most likely in Africa. While the ancestors of modern humans largely stayed in Africa, the Neanderthal lineage migrated into Eurasia.About 400,000 years ago, the population split in two. The hominins who spread west became Neanderthals. Their cousins to the ...