The Week Magazine

The Week Magazine

July 30, 2021

The Week makes sense of the news by curating the best of the U.S. and international media into a succinct, lively digest.

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48 Números

en este número

4 min.
historic fire

Oregon More than 2,000 firefighters battled the Bootleg Fire this week as it burned 1,100 acres per hour, fueled by extreme drought conditions after a punishing heat wave. As more than 80 wildfires raged across 13 states, the Bootleg Fire in Oregon’s southwest tore through 600 square miles, creating hurricane-like winds that ripped trees out of the ground and sent billowing smoke all the way to the East Coast. Weather patterns typically shape fires, but the Bootleg blaze is doing the opposite, releasing enough heat to create thunderstorms. No deaths have been reported from the fire, which has destroyed more than 75 homes and other structures. With 32 percent of the blaze contained, firefighters said, it will take a “season-ending weather event,” such as sustained rain or snow, to fully extinguish…

5 min.
bipartisan infrastructure bill runs into trouble

What happened Republicans delivered a setback to hopes for a bipartisan infrastructure bill this week, voting down New York Sen. Chuck Schumer’s push to open debate on a bill that would provide $579 billion to upgrade roads, bridges, rail lines, and broadband. A motion to advance the “skinny” bill, which is limited to new funding for physical infrastructure, fell 11 votes short of the 60 needed to pass. Republicans said they needed more time to negotiate and actually write details of the legislation. Forcing a vote this week “does not achieve any goal except to alienate people,” said Maine Sen. Susan Collins, a member of the bipartisan group of 10 senators who began negotiations on the physical infrastructure bill last month. Some Republicans opposed measures in the bill to offset the costs,…

3 min.
trump: how close did we come to disaster?

“Donald Trump’s final days in office were even worse than we thought,” said Chris Cillizza in CNN.com. A raft of new books on the chaotic Trump presidency collectively paint “a terrifying picture of a president consumed by personal hatred” and volcanic rage over his election defeat, who was willing to use any means necessary to hold on to power. In Frankly, We Did Win This Election by Wall Street Journal reporter Michael Bender, we learn that an infuriated Trump told aides that whoever leaked the fact that he retreated to the White House bunker during Black Lives Matter protests should be hunted down and charged with treason. “They should be executed!” Trump yelled. Even inside the administration, top aides were deeply worried by Trump’s authoritarian impulses, said Ben Jacobs in…

1 min.
good week/bad week

Good week for: Sharks, after Australia’s conservationists and marine biologists called for renaming “shark attacks” on humans “negative encounters” to help “dispel inherent assumptions that sharks are ravenous, mindless man-eating monsters.” Olympians, who will indeed be able to have sex with one another on the flimsy cardboard beds of Tokyo’s Olympic Village. There had been rumors that the beds were designed to prevent intimacy, but the Olympic committee said the beds can support 441 pounds. Switching teams, after Donald Trump’s former golfing buddy Tom Brady presented President Biden with a number 46 Tampa Bay Buccaneers jersey at a White House ceremony and joked that though he led the team to a Super Bowl victory, “I think about 40 percent of the people still don’t think I won.” Bad week for: Jerks on a plane, after…

1 min.
sudeikis’ confusing split

The past year has been an emotional roller coaster for Jason Sudeikis, said Zach Baron in GQ. In the middle of the pandemic, Ted Lasso—the TV show he co-created and stars in, about a philosophical football-turned-soccer coach—became a surprise hit. At the same time, Sudeikis’ nine-year relationship with actress Olivia Wilde was collapsing. The couple split last November, and Wilde, the mother of Sudeikis’ two children, was soon photographed holding hands with British pop star Harry Styles. Sudeikis, 45, still doesn’t know what led to the breakup. “I’ll have a better understanding in a year,” he says, “and an even greater one in five.” The actor and comedian is used to his career and private life being out of balance. After he joined the cast of Saturday Night Live in…

2 min.
cuba: biden’s policy put to the test

The Cuban people are staging the largest anti-government protests since the revolution in 1959, said William LeoGrande in TheNation.com, but President Joe Biden’s response has been “predictable”—and disappointing. Angered by a flailing government’s failure to address growing “economic desperation” and the rampaging Covid pandemic, young Cubans with no loyalty to “the Revolution” have poured into the streets of 60 cities and villages to demand change. But Biden has merely “expressed solidarity” with protesters; he has not fulfilled campaign promises to reverse the Trump-era “sanctions that hurt families,” including bans on travel and remittances to the island, which have left Cuba broke. Biden no doubt fears “political repercussions in Florida,” where Cuban-Americans largely support a decades-old trade embargo—and “where Democrats took a beating in 2020.” The best way to help Cuba’s protesters…