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February 18, 2020

2020 Warning: Nevada Chaos Ahead

This Day in History | 1885

Mark Twain publishes the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.

Good morning Middle Americans, 

One has to wonder if Democratic campaigns are intentionally setting low expectations for the upcoming Nevada Caucuses. After all, how important will Nevada ultimately be in deciding who becomes president? Another Bernie Sanders win would mean his momentum would be nearly impossible to stop.  It would also mean the effort from establishment Democrats to stop Sanders would ramp up.  For Republicans, this whole 2020 primary process has been very cathartic. 

The Boy Scouts of America has filed for bankruptcy. The national organization is drowning under a sea of sexual abuse lawsuits. 

Nascar’s Ryan Newman is expected to recover after a wild crash at the Daytona 500 yesterday. We don’t normally cover sports here, but the crash is worth noting because it shows how important safety improvements have been in the sport.  It was 19 years ago tomorrow that Dale Earnhardt died at Daytona in a wreck that looks less dramatic now, compared to Newman’s despite the results being much different. 

Finally today, we are starting to get a better picture of how the coronavirus will impact companies like Apple.  The tech giant’s bean counters are now starting to brace for revenue shortfalls.  

Read all about it. 

– Fraser Dixon 

Campaigns Warn of Chaos Ahead of Nevada Caucuses

(The Washington Post) – With the Nevada caucuses days away, campaign officials and Democratic activists are increasingly alarmed that they might prove a debacle as damaging as the vote in Iowa, further setting the party back in its urgent effort to coalesce around a nominee to take on President Donald Trump.

Campaigns said they still have not gotten the party to offer even a basic explanation of how key parts of the process will work. Volunteers are reporting problems with the technology that’s been deployed at the last minute to make the vote count smoother. And experts are raising serious questions about an app the party has been feverishly assembling to replace the one scrapped after the meltdown in Iowa.

“It feels like the [state party is] making it up as they go along,” said one Democratic presidential aide, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the process. “That’s not how we need to be running an election.”

Learn more here

Boy Scouts of America Files for Bankruptcy

(NBC News) – The Boy Scouts of America has filed for bankruptcy protection.

Facing mounting legal costs from defending itself against lawsuits alleging sexual abuse of boys, the venerable nonprofit sought Chapter 11 protection in a court filing early Tuesday.

A spokesman for the Boy Scouts of America said in a statement that the filing had “two key objectives: equitably compensate victims who were harmed during their time in Scouting and continue carrying out its mission for years to come. The BSA intends to use the Chapter 11 process to create a Victims Compensation Trust that would provide equitable compensation to victims.”

The Boy Scouts said that only the national organization had filed for Chapter 11 and that local councils that provide programming and other services are financially independent.

“The BSA cares deeply about all victims of abuse and sincerely apologizes to anyone who was harmed during their time in Scouting. We are outraged that there have been times when individuals took advantage of our programs to harm innocent children,” Roger Mosby, BSA’s president and chief executive officer, said in a statement Tuesday.

Read more here

NASCAR Driver Ryan Newman Taken to Hospital After Daytona 500 Ends in Massive Crash

(WFTV) – NASCAR driver Ryan Newman continues to recover at Halifax Hospital after an intense crash during the final lap of the Daytona 500 left him with serious injuries.

Safety crews rushed to retrieve Newman, 42, from his No. 6 Ford after another vehicle hit his bumper, causing Newman to spin out and strike a wall before his car went airborne and was struck by another vehicle. Newman’s vehicle then slid upside-down on its drivers side for a considerable distance.

Watch the crash here

Coronavirus Takes a Bite Out of Apple’s Revenue Projections 

(CNBC)Apple said Monday that it does not expect to meet its quarterly revenue forecast because of lower iPhone supply globally and lower Chinese demand as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.

The company initially said that it expected to report net sales between $63 billion to $67 billion in its fiscal second quarter. Apple did not provide a new forecast for its fiscal second-quarter revenue on Monday.

The company said it provided a wider range than usual in late January, citing the uncertainty around the coronavirus outbreak.

“As you can see from the range, anticipates some level of issue there. Otherwise, we would not have a $4 billion range,” CEO Tim Cook said at the time.

Apple makes most iPhones and other products in China. The Coronavirus has caused it to temporarily halt production and close retail stores in China. Some Apple retail stores reopened in China with reduced schedules last week.

Read more here


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