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ABCThe Monday night edition of Jimmy Kimmel Live! saw the late-night host take aim at Republicans’ bizarre conspiracy-mongering over the Omicron variant, a new COVID variant that, according to the World Health Organization, “has several mutations that may have an impact on how it behaves, for example, on how easily it spreads or the severity of illness it causes,” though epidemiological studies are “still underway” to determine how dangerous of a threat it will pose. Out of caution, the U.S. has implemented travel restrictions against eight countries where Omicron has spread most rapidly: Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe.“But of course, the right-wingnuts have a theory on this,” cracked Kimmel. “Their theory is that this variant is some kind of ploy concocted by the Democrats to help them win elections. In fact, former White House doctor and current congressman from Texas, Ronny Jackson, tweeted on Saturday: ‘Here comes the MEV – the Midterm Election Variant! They NEED a reason to push unsolicited nationwide mail-in ballots. Democrats will do anything to CHEAT during an election – but we’re not going to let them!”(In March, a watchdog organization published a years-long report that found that Jackson, who’d previously served as Trump’s presidential physician, had “made ‘sexual and denigrating’ comments about a female subordinate, violated the policy for drinking alcohol while on a presidential trip and took prescription-strength sleeping medication that prompted concerns from his colleagues about his ability to provide proper care,” reported CNN.)Read more at The Daily Beast.
Fox NewsLara Logan, once a deeply respected and award-winning investigative reporter, told Fox News viewers on Monday night that “people all across the world” are telling her that America’s top infectious disease expert is just like Josef Mengele, the notorious Nazi doctor known as the “Angel of Death.”With the new super-mutated Omicron variant sparking concern around the globe over a possible new round of lockdowns and restrictions, conservatives and right-wing media have started pushing conspiracy theories about the new virus strain. A number of Fox News hosts and GOP politicians have suggested that Democrats are making up COVID-19 variants in an effort to “cheat” and steal the upcoming election.At the same time, while Dr. Anthony Fauci has sounded the alarm over the “troublesome” Omicron’s potential resistance to immune protection, the chief White House medical adviser said he doesn’t anticipate any additional travel restrictions as he doesn’t sense a “high degree of severity” with the virus.Read more at The Daily Beast.
Photo: Scouted/The Daily Beast/Retailers.Yes, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are officially over, but that definitely doesn't mean it's too late to score some stellar Cyber deals during the rest of the week. ICYMI, Black Friday has become more of a bona fide season than it is a single day. Many retailers and brands launched pre-black Friday sales early this year, giving customers extra time to score solid deals ahead of the post-Thanksgiving madness, and the same trend has followed suit for post-Black Friday deals. Whether you were still too lethargic from your turkey-day coma to scroll through the endless deals or simply are looking for extra savings to be found ahead of the holidays, these post-Black-Friday and Cyber Monday sales are basically just as good as last week's, so no FOMO is in order. If you're looking to take advantage of the extended Black Friday sales all week long, be sure to bookmark this page because we'll be updating it daily with new deals as they come in. Scouted selects products independently and prices reflect what was available at the time of publish. Prices are accurate at the time of publication, but are subject to change. Sign up for our newsletter for more recommendations and deals. If you buy something from our posts, we may earn a small commission.Read more at The Daily Beast.
Courtesy Anthony HuynhFor the last month, medical workers across Michigan have slogged toward another holiday season defined by surging COVID-19 cases, an almost surreal descent reminiscent of the pre-vaccine era in which the state emerged as an early pandemic hot spot.Cases have spiked dramatically and hospitals across the state have been pushed to the brink. Looming mass gatherings, lax mask-mandate practices, and stagnating vaccination rates already had doctors and nurses fearing further chaos.Then came the threat of the super-mutated Omicron variant, which—early though it may be—experts fear could be even more contagious and possibly even vaccine-resistant than the Delta strain that sent the state’s hospital system into a tailspin this fall.Read more at The Daily Beast.
Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImagePrince Charles is the member of the royal family who raised questions about the likely color of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s babies’ skin, the author of a new book about the royals which addresses controversy has exclusively told The Daily Beast.Christopher Andersen, who has been covering the royal family for 50 years, first at Time magazine and then as a senior editor running People magazine’s royals coverage in the ’70s and '80s also exclusively told The Daily Beast that relations between the royals are now so poor that William “isn’t returning Harry’s calls” and Charles and Harry “haven’t spoken since Prince Philip's funeral.”Andersen told The Daily Beast, “My sources are rock-solid and they helped me unravel the mystery of which royal Harry and Meghan were talking about when they said a member of the family had brought up the issue of how light or dark their children might turn out to be and that there were concerns about what that would mean for the monarchy.Read more at The Daily Beast.
JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty ImagesThe new Omicron variant of the novel-coronavirus is, at first glance, pretty frightening.With more mutations compared to other variants—“lineages” is the scientific term—Omicron has the potential to be more transmissible. And as with all new lineages, there’s a chance it might partially evade the COVID vaccines, potentially thwarting to some degree our best defense against the virus and setting us back as the pandemic enters its third year.Startling headlines and cable-news chyrons interrupted the weekend. “Omicron” trended on social media. Some pundits predicted doom. The U.S. stock market dropped more than two points in a single day—its worst dip since February. (Stocks have since recovered.)Read more at The Daily Beast.
Dia DipasupilDocuments released by the New York Attorney General’s office on Monday reveal that CNN host Chris Cuomo offered to use his media “sources” to dig up information about women who had accused his brother, then-New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, of sexual harassment.The network, which has stood by its controversial primetime star as calls for his firing over journalistic malpractice have mounted, said on Monday they are currently reviewing the situation.“The thousands of pages of additional transcripts and exhibits that were released today by the NY Attorney General deserve a thorough review and consideration,” CNN said in a statement on Monday afternoon. Read more at The Daily Beast.
Photo: Scouted/The Daily Beast/Allbirds.In the market for a new pair of kicks? Made from superfine merino sheep’s wool, Allbirds are among the comfiest you’ll find, and the brand is launching a new style just in time for the holidays. Plus, Allbirds' launched their unexpected Cyber Monday sale today, which means you can score some of their best-selling shoe and apparel styles at up to 50 percent off today only. If you're planning to wait until tonight to add your favorite Allbirds pieces to your cart, we'd suggest rethinking because the stock is already selling out fast. As we all know, Allbirds doesn't offer many sales either, so whether you're looking for the perfect gift for someone on your holiday list or need a new pair of kicks for yourself, run—don't walk to this stellar Cyber Monday sale. Let Scouted guide you to the best Cyber Monday deals. Shop Here >Read more at The Daily Beast.
Photo Illustration by Kelly Caminero/The Daily Beast/GettyNEW YORK, NY—They were young girls who dreamed of becoming professional musicians, or models, or actresses—but they often came from poor families and their parents needed money. They were the perfect targets for a pair of high-society “predators” who dazzled them with fabulous wealth and promised them the world—and who then allegedly groomed, molested, and raped them.Such was the story presented by federal prosecutors on the first day of Ghislaine Maxwell’s trial in connection to multimillionaire Jeffrey Epstein’s sex-trafficking ring. The 59-year-old British heiress is accused of procuring underage girls for Epstein to molest in what prosecutors called a “pyramid scheme of abuse.” Four victims will testify that Maxwell participated in Epstein’s sex ring—including one who says the couple involved her in “group sexualized massages” when she was only 14 years old. Maxwell has denied the charges.Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast here
Douglas Blackiston and Sam KriegmanYou might have missed the debut of the Xenobots last year when the world was falling apart, but they made quite a splash in the science and tech community. These Pac-Man-shaped synthetic organisms designed by supercomputers can organize into larger groups and be programmed to fulfill specific functions. They’re certainly not robots in the traditional sense, but they’re also too artificial to qualify as typical living organisms. They’re part cell, part machine, and completely one-of-a-kind.As if all of that wasn’t already wild enough, the inventors of the Xenobots have just added one more trick up their creations’ sleeves—the ability to self-replicate. The implications of the new breakthrough, published Monday in the journal PNAS, are enormous. Scientists were already jazzed about the idea of one day using Xenobots for clinical applications and for cleaning up the environment. But the ability to replicate means this technology, if controlled, could be allowed to fulfill those tasks with more autonomy and on a larger scale.“We found Xenobots that walk. We found Xenobots that swim. And now, in this study, we've found Xenobots that kinematically replicate,” Joshua Bongard, a computer scientist and co-author of the new study, said in a press release. “What else is out there?”Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast here
Pascal Pochard-Casabianca/AFP via Getty ImagesAn 11-year-old girl in Texas is dead after her dad accidentally shot her during a Thanksgiving weekend hunting excursion, authorities said.Daisy Grace Lynn George was joining her father, Travis George, in their truck after a day of hunting in Hallsville, Texas, and was inadvertently shot as her dad—who had “been hunting most of his life”—tried to drop the hammer on his high-powered rifle, which he thought was unloaded, Harrison County Sheriff Brandon Fletcher said Monday. According to Fletcher, the father and daughter had spent two cartridges while out hunting and the girl’s dad reported ejecting two additional cartridges when they arrived back at the truck. Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast here
Craig BarrittVogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour remembered the fashion designer Virgil Abloh, who passed away on Sunday after a private fight with cancer aged 41, by sharing one of her favorite memories of the Off-White designer and Louis Vuitton men’s artistic director.“There will be many tributes to Virgil Abloh’s design genius, but I would like to share a more personal memory of a wonderful colleague, humanitarian and friend,” Wintour wrote in a statement sent to The Daily Beast. “Some years ago I heard about the French soccer team Melting Passes, whose players were all immigrants. The team had just won the FSGT championship in 2017, but despite this huge accolade, they didn’t have the resources for team jerseys. “When I happened to mention this to Virgil, he immediately offered to help, calling up Nike, and after what seemed like about a minute later, thirty jerseys were on their way to those young players. Later, he invited them all to his Off-White show in Paris, to celebrate their achievements as much as his own. The thing about Virgil wasn’t just his remarkable ability to speak to the moment, or his relentless drive to create, create, create. He was someone who was always ready to help others on the road to success; to play his part in lifting them up, whenever and wherever he could. It was a gift which only makes his untimely passing even harder to bear.”Read more at The Daily Beast.
MANDEL NGANFollowing news that the Omicron variant of the coronavirus had been detected in nearly 20 countries across the world, President Joe Biden told Americans on Monday that the new mutation is “cause for concern—not cause for panic.”While many of the variant’s specifics—from its contagiousness to its virulence to its ability to dodge the body’s immune response—remain unknown, Biden pledged to “fight this variant with scientific and knowledgeable actions and speed.”“Sooner or later, we are going to see cases of the Omicron variant here,” Biden said in the Roosevelt Room of the White House on Monday.Read more at The Daily Beast.
CNNCNN political commentator S.E. Cupp didn’t mince words on Monday morning as she blasted several Fox News hosts as “evil” for suggesting that Democrats invented the latest super-mutated COVID-19 variant as part of a politically motivated conspiracy.Amid global concerns that the Omicron variant will spark a new round of lockdowns and restrictions, a number of Republicans and pundits have claimed that the Democratic Party is using fears over the virus—which was first detected in South Africa—to “cheat” in the upcoming midterms.During a weekend broadcast of morning show Fox & Friends, for instance, all three hosts implied that the White House was overplaying the danger of COVID variants to sway the next election. Fox News contributor Sean Duffy, meanwhile, said Democrats would use Omicron as a way to change election rules, all while asserting that the party “stole” last year’s election due to COVID.Read more at The Daily Beast.
Alex Wong/GettyIt’s that time of year again: the annual White House Christmas decorations reveal. What should have been a blip on the White House social calendar became an all-out culture war during the Trump administration when the then-first lady trussed up her home’s hallways with infamous blood-red trees in 2018 and then got caught in a secret recording last year asking, “Who gives a fuck about Christmas stuff and decorations?” Jill Biden has opted for a much less Scrooge-ian route, using her first year in office to celebrate “Gifts From the Heart,” the official theme of holiday 2021.According to the AP, Biden was inspired by the people she’s met while campaigning for her husband. “The things we hold sacred unite us and transcend distance, time, and even the constraints of a pandemic: faith, family, and friendship; a love of the arts, learning, and nature; gratitude, service, and community; unity and peace,” Biden wrote in a commemorative guidebook. “These are the gifts that tie together the heart strings of our lives. These are the gifts from the heart.”Read more at The Daily Beast.
CHALINEE THIRASUPAAs of one minute after midnight Monday, the United States has banned all foreigner travelers coming from southern Africa, but until now has done next to nothing to find cases that might already be coming into the country, according to Reuters. Even though President Joe Biden announced Monday’s new restrictions on Friday, health officials did not mandate any new screening or tracing measures tied to the super-mutated Omicron variant for travelers scrambling to get in before today’s deadline. The U.S. does require all airline passengers coming from outside the country to provide proof of vaccination or proof of a negative COVID test, but so did the Netherlands—whose health officials then found 61 positive cases, of which 13 turned out to be Omicron, upon testing all 600 passengers aboard two flights from South Africa on Friday. The U.S. does not require any incoming passengers to be tested on arrival.That might not bode well for the spread of Omicron, which may or may not be as bad as panic-mongers predict. The World Health Organization on Monday issued a warning to prepare for the worst, but at the same time lambasted countries for closing off southern Africa. Read more at The Daily Beast.
Photo Illustration by Thomas Levinson/The Daily Beast/GettyLast week, Human Rights Watch addressed a public letter to the International Olympic Committee, a kleptocracy that owns and operates the Summer and Winter Olympic Games, calling on the IOC to stop promoting “Chinese state propaganda” regarding tennis star Peng Shuai’s sexual-assault allegations against former People’s Republic of China Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli, and subsequent disappearance.“The IOC has vaulted itself from silence about Beijing’s abysmal human rights record to active collaboration with Chinese authorities in undermining freedom of speech and disregarding alleged sexual assault,” read the letter, quoting Yaqiu Wang, a policy researcher at Human Rights Watch. “The IOC appears to prize its relationship with a major human rights violator over the rights and safety of Olympic athletes.”There’s something bitterly funny about HRW shaming the IOC for promoting authoritarianism, because even a cursory reading of the history of the IOC is crystal clear on the matter: the IOC loves enabling authoritarianism. Can’t get enough of it. Telling the IOC to stop collaborating with violent, autocratic forces is like telling your dog to stop eating cat poop from the litter box. Sure, they might look at you with sad ol’ eyes for a second, but they’re just jonesing for another bite of that precious, delicious dung.Read more at The Daily Beast.
JASON REDMONDOn April 20 this year, a group of the largest stakeholders in Boeing took part in a virtual version of the company’s annual general meeting. A few hours before the meeting opened online, they learned something that took them by surprise: The retirement age for the top job, CEO of the aerospace colossus, was suddenly being raised from 65 to 70.This meant that the current CEO, Dave Calhoun, who was 64, could enjoy at least another five years in the job. A move like that would normally indicate that the stakeholders were so pleased with the way a company was being run that they thought the best way of keeping it that way was to leave the boss in place rather than replace him.But this was Boeing, and the company had never been in worse shape. Calhoun had been in charge since January 2020. In that time, its previously stellar reputation for engineering excellence had been publicly shredded after two crashes of its newest jet, the 737MAX, had killed 346 people, because of serious failures in Boeing’s safety regimen. At the same time, other airplane programs, both commercial and military, were plagued with problems, and its effort to catch up with Elon Musk’s SpaceX program supplying astronaut-carrying capsules to NASA suffered repeated and ignominious failures.Read more at The Daily Beast.
Photo: Scouted/The Daily Beast/Retailers.Cyber Weekend is officially upon us and many of these killers deals will be live through Monday—and some for the entire week. Because there are so many sales to sift through, we did the work for you and spent the day finding all the best ones worth shopping this weekend and beyond. We'll be spending the weekend sorting through all the best Cyber Monday deals 2021 that are worth your time, so keep checking back here for more and more still-on-going Cyber weekend and Cyber Monday deals, as we'll be updating this piece. All-new Echo (4th Gen), $59.99 (was $99, 30% off)All-new Echo Dot (4th Gen) with clock, $34.99 (was $59.99, 40% off)Read more at The Daily Beast.
Photo: Scouted/The Daily Beast/Revlon.I’ve always envied those who, armed with only a blow dryer and round brush, could give themselves a sleek blowout that lasted for days. Imagine styling your hair once—once!—and looking put together for the rest of the week. The logistics of wrapping hair around a brush with one hand while angling a stream of scalding air with the other always turned my very curly hair into a frizzy mop of fluff. If I didn’t go to a salon, I couldn’t get a blowout. End of story. Enter the (likely literally) magic Revlon One-Step Hair Dryer and Volumizer. This hair dryer has given me the most low-maintenance hair of my life, and it's $22 right now for Cyber Monday on Amazon. It’s a round brush smashed together with a hairdryer–the air blows out from between the bristles of its oval-shaped barrel. While a little bulky, it demands neither the dexterity nor the mathematical calculations of a traditional blowout. A blowout with this device takes about 20 minutes on my curly hair and lasts me four days—more, if shame didn’t compel me to wash my hair. This One-Step Hair Dryer Brush turns my hair sleek and brushable without a flatiron or touch-ups, something only a professional stylist (and honestly, sometimes it took two) could accomplish before.While some equate “blowout” with a fancy event, the luxury of having styled hair upon wakeup is the real draw of straight strands. So, if you’re looking for a solid One-Step hair dryer and brush, this one is not to be missed. Grab your own while it's on discount—trust me, you won't regret it. Read more at The Daily Beast.