• Celebrity

    Helen Mirren, Who Won an Oscar for Playing Queen Elizabeth II, Says Meghan Markle Was a ‘Fantastic Addition to the Royal Family’

    Helen Mirren, who won an Oscar for her performance as Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II in “The Queen,” says Meghan Markle was "a fantastic addition to the royal family," and she “applauds” Markle and Prince Harry’s decision to step back from royal duties, she tells Variety. Mirren, who is the subject of an homage at the […]

  • Sports

    Ferrari Blacklisted These Celebrities From Purchasing Their Supercars

    You don't own a Ferrari, Ferrari owns you.Even if you have deep pockets, one still may not get past Ferrari's acceptance to purchase one of their new supercars. Owning one of these cars is more of a lifestyle than anything else, and they call the shots on who they

  • Celebrity
    Scary Mommy

    ‘Vanderpump Rules’ Newbie Has Never Eaten Pasta Because It’s Why ‘Everyone Gains Weight’

    When new SURver Charli Burnett made her first appearance on Vanderpump Rules, she revealed she has never eaten pasta because it’s “the reason everyone gains weight.” And in this week’s episode, we watched fellow SURver (and Youtuber and alleged racist-tweets tweeter) Brett Caprioni ask Charli out on a date. And while tonight’s episode also heavily []

  • Business

    Coronavirus Is Breaking Out All Over. Can We Say the P-Word?

    (Bloomberg) -- Empty classrooms, shuttered restaurants and hospitals bursting with patients. That was the scene in Mexico City in 2009 when a new strain of flu swept across much of the country and spread around the world.Just 11 years after the swine flu outbreak, which infected more than 60 million people in the U.S. alone and took as many as half a million lives worldwide, the new coronavirus is threatening to spark another global epidemic.Health officials are trying to contain the virus that causes Covid-19, a pneumonia-like illness that can be severe in a minority of patients and spread from others who look healthy. Death rates estimated at around 2% are higher than the 0.1% for seasonal flu, another lung infection, but far lower than those from severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, the related virus that killed about 9.6% of some 8,000 people infected. Now, researchers and disease trackers are teetering on the brink of calling it a pandemic, a crisis that will likely affect the entire world.“We’re on the knife-edge,” said William Schaffner, a Vanderbilt University infectious disease specialist who’s been through the Asian flu, Hong Kong and swine flu pandemics.Two months after emerging in China’s Hubei province, the coronavirus has hit at least four continents, with rising case counts and huge responses in Iran, South Korea, Italy and Japan. More than 80,000 cases have been reported, including some 2,800 deaths. The U.S. reported a suspected case of community transmission, one that couldn’t be linked to a foreign outbreak.Yet most of the cases and clusters are traceable, according to the World Health Organization, meaning that for the most part community spread outside China is rare. Questions over the nature of the virus underscore WHO’s reluctance to call the outbreak a pandemic just yet, especially while there are early signs of slowed or stopped transmission in some countries.A pandemic doesn’t have a formal numerical definition, said Schaffner, who has advised the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on infections. It’s an epidemic that becomes global, spreading in multiple countries. In most cases, measures to contain the epidemic in one region or country have failed, and the goal switches to mitigation -- trying to ease the pain.‘Getting Worse’The distinction may not be necessary, according to Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.“The situation is getting worse; all you have to do is look at the numbers,” he said. “If the trend continues the way we’re seeing now, we’re going to have a problem. Whatever you call it, it’s not good.”But the eight-letter word resonates with state and local health departments, hospitals, clinics and nursing homes, Schaffner said. Many of them have pandemic plans, developed and refined after earlier outbreaks, that will need to be dusted off, reviewed and implemented.The reasons for calling this outbreak a pandemic now are many, according to Tom Frieden, a former CDC director and New York City health commissioner. Researchers can’t trace all the links between outbreaks in different nations; the spread in hospitals and families shows the virus is quite transmissible; some countries that haven’t reported cases probably have them; and simple calculations suggest the tallies of travelers with the disease are probably just a fraction of the real number.“A pandemic is inevitable and we should call it what it is,” Frieden said. “What’s not inevitable is that it will be severe.”Measures as simple as frequent hand-washing can help prevent the spread of the virus, public health experts say. Travel restrictions like those implemented in China have slowed its global spread, but probably won’t stop it, Fauci said.‘Precarious Position’People in the U.S. should prepare for disruptions to daily life, warned Nancy Messonnier, director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. In the event of a pandemic, schools may consider dividing classes into smaller groups or even shutting down, she said. Businesses will have to consider more telecommuting, and communities and cities may have to cancel mass gatherings.The WHO has already declared the outbreak an international public health emergency. The situation may be more difficult to define as a pandemic, according to Michael Ryan, executive director of WHO’s emergencies program. Most pandemics are caused by flu, and the transmission of coronavirus needs to be studied further, he said. While new cases are falling in China, the possibility of a global outbreak is real, he said.“It is time to do everything you would do in preparing for a pandemic,” he said in a press conference. “We’re still trying to avoid that eventuality and countries are having success in doing that. Let’s focus on what we can do.”The coronavirus outbreak looks nothing like the 1918 flu that killed an estimated 50 million people worldwide. The pandemics of Asian flu of 1956-1958 and Hong Kong flu in 1968 are each estimated to have killed from 1 million to 4 million people.Fortunately, unlike most flu strains, the new virus seems to leave children relatively unscathed, Schaffner said. That suggests fewer scenes like one he witnessed in the swine flu outbreak, when a five-year-old child died at Vanderbilt after being sent home from two other emergency rooms, he recalled.Treatments for flu have improved since then, and doctors are already testing antivirals and vaccines against the coronavirus. Yet other signs of a pandemic may still come, such as shortages of hospital beds and patients waiting in hallways waiting for attention, he said.“We’re at the edge of the cliff,” Schaffner said. “We’re in a more precarious position now than we were one week ago, and I see this week as determining what’s going to happen.”(Updates with fatality rates in third paragraph)To contact the reporter on this story: John Lauerman in London at jlauerman@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Eric Pfanner at epfanner1@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • U.S.

    U.S. Supreme Court dismisses 'D.C. Sniper' Malvo case after change in law

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday formally dismissed a case in which Lee Boyd Malvo, who was 17 when he took part in the deadly 2002 "D.C. Sniper" shooting spree in the Washington area, was challenging his life without parole sentence. The move comes after a new law was passed in Virginia, where Malvo is incarcerated in a supermax state prison. The measure, signed into law on Monday, lets people sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for offenses committed before age 18 - as Malvo was - to seek release after 20 years.

  • Politics
    The Week

    Watch Elizabeth Warren tell a Sanders supporter that Bernie helped write the delegate rules he now opposes

    At a CNN town hall in South Carolina on Wednesday night, a Bernie Sanders supporter asked Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) about a moment in the Nevada Democratic debate where all the candidates but Sanders said if nobody has a majority of votes by the convention, the process should play out as written, potentially handing the nomination to somebody with fewer delegates. "Can you explain why the will of the voters should not matter if no candidate reaches a majority of delegates?" he asked. Warren began her answer with a question: "So, you do know that was Bernie's position in 2016?""That was Bernie's position in 2016, that it should not go to the person who had a plurality," Warren continued. "And remember, his last play was to superdelegates. So the way I see this is, you write the rules before you know where everybody stands. And then you stick with those rules." Sanders "had a big hand in writing these rules — I didn't write them, but Bernie did," she added. "Those are the rules that he wanted to write and others wanted to write. Everybody got in the race thinking that was the set of rules. I don't see how come you get to change it just because he now thinks there's an advantage to him for doing that." Elizabeth Warren is right. pic.twitter.com/EegW7Dz77V — Sawyer Hackett (@SawyerHackett) February 27, 2020The system could work to Sanders' advantage, too. In the Nevada caucuses, for example, Sanders got 34 percent of the votes in the first round and ended up at 40 percent in the final preference, 47 percent of the final vote, and 22 delegates; Warren got 13 percent in the first round, ended up with 11.5 percent of the final voter preference, 10 percent of the final vote, and zero delegates. If you can support ranked choice voting, you can support nominating convention rules that allow candidates who don't start with the most delegates to win after the first ballot. — Bill Scher (@billscher) February 27, 2020Goose, gander, ect.More stories from theweek.com Harvard scientist predicts coronavirus will infect up to 70 percent of humanity Naming Mike Pence coronavirus czar with 'zero experience in the medical area' is 'a total joke,' says 2014 Trump Israel is the first country to warn its citizens not to travel abroad over coronavirus fears