Jan. 19, 2018: What to Know 

  • Bingo Barnes
  • Federal employees across the nation are keeping a close eye on D.C. today as a stopgap bill to temporarily fund the government that passed the U.S. House and will now be debated in the U.S. Senate. The New York Times reports that a showdown is looming because Senate Democrats are intent on securing protections for young immigrants to be a part of the funding package. If the Senate can't come to an agreement, the government faces a shutdown by the end of the day. Critics wonder how that's possible when Republicans control both houses of Congress as well as the White House.
  • Federal scientists confirmed Thursday that the past four years have been the warmest on record across the globe. NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration placed 2017 as the third-warmest since records have been kept. NASA said the planet's average surface temperature has risen about 2 degrees during the past century, a change driven largely by increased carbon dioxide and other emissions into the atmosphere.
  • A 17-year-old Boise male has been charged as an adult in connection with a sexual assault on a female teenager. BPD said the incident occurred on Jan. 13 on the 3000 block of W. Pasadena Drive. When offices arrived on the scene, the suspect allegedly struck one of the officers. The juvenile, whose name has not been released, is being held at the Ada County Jail on a $500,000 bond. The suspect is charged with felony counts of sexual penetration-forcible by use of a foreign object, battery with intent to commit a serious felony, battery on a law enforcement officer and two additional counts of battery.
  • The Wall Street Journal reports what a lot of television viewers already know: that people are cancelling their streaming services once they finish binge-watching their favorite shows. In fact, some cancellation rates for streaming services are over 50 percent, according to the WSJ.

  • click to enlarge KARLIS DAMBRANS CC2.0
    Meanwhile, Recode is reporting that Amazon is expected to announce today that is Prime membership monthly fees will soon increase from $10.99 to $12.99 in the U.S., an jump of about 18 percent. The increase comes less than two years after Amazon unveiled a Prime membership of $99. Amazon officials say for those customers who choose to pay their annual fee in a lump sum, the price will remain at $99. For those that pay monthly, the annual cost will bump up to about $156.
  • The burger wars have escalated. Food & Wine magazine says Burger King's new "Double Quarter Pound King Sandwich" looks a lot like the Quarter Pounder at McDonald's—and BK isn't exactly hiding the fact. "We’d like to offer our deepest condolences to all the flat-top fried double quarter pound burgers out there. We’re flame-grilling the competition," the chain reportedly said in a statement. What makes the Burger King sandwich different? BK's version has 900 calories and 54 grams of fat while McDonald's has 770 calories and 45 grams of fat. Burger King is also forgoing lettuce, tomato and mayonnaise in favor of only cheese, onions, pickles and ketchup atop its beef patties.

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