Welcome to America’s Newsletter from Tag The Flag, the best morning newsletter on the internet, bringing you nonpartisan news and every view of the Red, White, and Blue. Here’s what you need to know to start your day.
📌 BULLETIN BOARD
Flag Figures: Since 2016, Facebook has deleted some 2.8 billion “fake” accounts as part of a Whack-A-Mole style effort to stamp out disinformation campaigns designed to mess with elections. The tech giant’s next big test on this score is the European Parliamentary election later this month.
🦅 U.S. NEWS
Barr Assigns U.S. Attorney in Connecticut to Review Origins of Russia Inquiry
Attorney General William Barr has appointed a U.S. attorney to examine the origins of the Russia investigation and determine if intelligence collection efforts targeting the Trump campaign were “lawful and appropriate”. Context: This appointment comes about a month after Barr told Congress he believed “spying did occur” against the Trump campaign, without providing details. The big picture: This is at least the third investigation into the origins of the Russia probe. The FBI’s inspector general Michael Horowitz is currently investigating the government’s use of wiretaps through the FISA process, while U.S. Attorney for Utah John Huber is also looking into claims of FBI misconduct. – Fox News / Axios
Supreme Court says Apple will have to face App Store monopoly lawsuit
America’s Supreme Court ruled that users of Apple’s app store could sue the firm over excessive prices. In a battle that has lasted since 2011, four plaintiffs argued that Apple’s monopoly on which applications can be downloaded onto iPhones—and its hefty 30% commission—were antitrust violations. Apple now faces being sued for many millions; its shares fell on the news. – The Verge
Startups want to lend to millennials
Startups are offering loans to recent college-grad renters who are moving and need help covering rent and other moving costs, The Wall Street Journal reports. While payday lenders will charge annual interest of as much as 700%, the startups — including StayTony, Domuso, Till and Uplift — offer rates of less than 20%. Although the loans are an option for millennials working without a steady income, they may also encourage living beyond one’s means, according to the Journal. Why it matters: 62% of Millennials live paycheck to paycheck – and just 38% feel financially stable. – WSJ / Daily Mail
🌎 WORLD NEWS
China is raising tariffs on $60 billion of US goods starting June 1
China will raise tariffs on $60 billion of U.S. goods in retaliation for the U.S.’s decision to hike duties on Chinese goods, the Chinese Finance Ministry said Monday. Beijing will increase tariffs on more than 5,000 products to as high as 25%. Duties on some other goods will increase to 20%. Those rates will rise from either 10% or 5% previously. Big picture: The duties in large part target U.S. farmers, who largely supported Trump in 2016 but suffered from previous shots in the Trump administration’s trade war with China. From tequila to TV cameras — here is a list of all the goods China is targeting with a 25% tariff. – CNBC
Pakistan to get $6bn IMF lifeline to ease economic crisis
Pakistan has secured a $6bn bailout from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as the country battles to stave off an economic crisis. Why it matters: few countries know the IMF as well as Pakistan. This is the thirteenth time the country has received financing from the IMF in 30 years. Context: The bailout comes despite new Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan previously saying he would not seek another bailout from the IMF, as he targeted alternative funding from the Middle East and China. What’s next: The agreement now heads to the IMF’s bosses in Washington for approval. – BBC / CNN
Cry havoc: the Sahel
Many people have never heard of the Sahel, the vast, arid region running south of the Sahara. But it is now moving into the spotlight for all the wrong reasons. Western intelligence agencies call it the new frontline against jihadism. Today defense ministers from Mali, Niger, Mauritania, Burkina Faso, and Chad will meet diplomats in Brussels to discuss the rapidly declining security situation. A dizzying array of heavily armed jihadist groups are active in the area, and some governments have done little to help. In the past six months, well over 5,000 people have lost their lives. A strategy is greatly needed. – The Economist
Wall Street shudders as U.S.-China trade war intensifies
Wall Street sank on Monday after China defied Washington by announcing retaliatory tariffs, the latest salvo in the two countries’ increasingly belligerent trade war, sending investors fleeing equities for less risky assets. All three major U.S. indexes lost ground in a widespread sell-off, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq posting its biggest one-day percentage loss this year. The S&P 500 and the Dow both had their largest percentage drop since Jan 3. As for Uber, the ride-sharing giant extended its slide, falling 10.8% on its second day as a publicly traded company. CEO Dara Khosrowshahi sent an email to employees yesterday addressing the brutal stock-market debut. Here’s what he said. – Reuters
Rags to Riches: Cavs sign Michigan’s Beilein to 5-year deal
John Beilein has spent a coaching lifetime taking ordinary programs and turning them into consistent winning ones. Here’s the thing, all of this was done in college. Now he’s getting a chance to do the same thing in the NBA. Driving the news: The Cavaliers ended a monthlong search Monday by hiring Beilein, a 66-year-old offensive mastermind who made Michigan a perennial powerhouse and now takes over a rebuilding project in Cleveland. Beilein got a five-year deal with the Cavs, who believe he can make the successful leap from campus. Our take: It’s the American dream. He started at Nazareth College then went to LeMoyne then to Canisius, Richmond, West Virginia and finally to Michigan. Now he’s getting a shot at the turning his legacy into a true rags to riches story. – AP
In its race to get to one-day shipping, Amazon is offering to pay its own employees 3 month’s salary and up to $10,000 in startup costs to quit their jobs and launch startups delivering for…Amazon. According to the AP, more than 200 Amazon delivery businesses have been created since it launched the program last June. Why it matters: It’s becoming increasingly clear that Amazon wants to own the entirety of the e-commerce process. The big picture: Amazon is undoubtedly threatening the big shipping players if it gets into shipping. This could reduce its use of UPS and FedEx, and even take away additional business from them. – Axios
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📅 ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
One year after the United States doubled its territory with the Louisiana Purchase, the Lewis and Clark expedition leaves St. Louis, Missouri, on a mission to explore the Northwest from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean.
🇺🇸 TOP TAGS
Yesterday’s top tag was sent in from overseas
What is the highest-rated airport in the world?