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5 things to know for November 4: Impeachment, McDonald’s, Airbnb, measles

It’s the first full week of Movember. Also, NoShavember. Confused? Both focus on health — and a lot more hair.

Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

1. Impeachment inquiry

The sound of silence may end up being this week’s soundtrack for the House impeachment probe. All four White House officials scheduled to give depositions today won’t show up, a source tells CNN. Three others — including Energy Secretary Rick Perry — who were due to be deposed this week plan to skip out, too. Still, Democrats seem undeterred by their subpoenas being ignored at the behest of the White House, with some saying it’s time to take the proceedings to the public stage. Meantime, the whistleblower who filed the complaint at the center of the inquiry is willing to answer written questions from Republicans, their lawyer said. The questions, however, cannot seek to identify the whistleblower.

2. McDonald’s

The top exec of one of the world’s most popular burger chains is out. McDonald’s board found that Steve Easterbrook violated company policy and “demonstrated poor judgment involving a recent consensual relationship with an employee,” the company said. Easterbrook in an email to employees expressed regret and called the relationship “a mistake.” Easterbrook had led McDonald’s aggressive modernization plan, including adding digital menu boards and selling fresh beef burgers. But he also ran up against some tension with franchisees. Stepping in as president and CEO is Chris Kempczinski, the recent head of McDonald’s USA.

3. Europe & the far-right

Officials in two European countries took steps to push back against what they consider threats from the far-right. In Norway, a high-profile American white supremacist was arrested hours before he was due to give a speech at a far-right conference. Intelligence authorities considered Greg Johnson “to be a threat, not because of what he could do but because of his hate speech and his previously expressed support for Anders Breivik,” the right-wing terrorist who killed 77 people in 2011. Johnson said he’s never supported Breivik’s crimes and has “always consistently condemned violence and terrorism.” In Germany, city councilors in Dresden declared a “Nazi emergency” after years of “right-wing extremist, racist” activity. The symbolic move has no legal consequences but aims to highlight the far-right threat, said an official in a swath of the country where anti-immigrant sentiment runs high.

4. Airbnb

Airbnb may not be your go-to for that next big bash. The global online lodging marketplace announced it’s banning “party houses” after five people were shot and killed at a Halloween party near San Francisco. CEO Brian Chesky tweeted that his company will expand screening of high-risk reservations, create a “‘party house’ rapid response team” and potentially remove anyone from its site who breaks the rules. Though the deadly party happened at a rental that forbade parties, it was advertised on social media and drew more than 100 people. The party problem is the latest test for Airbnb, which has been accused of skirting local laws and propagating overtourism.

5. Measles

You know in the movies, when someone’s memories get zapped away by some inexplicable fictional force? Turns out measles has a similar — but very real — trick up its sleeve. The virus can erase the immune system’s memory, leaving us vulnerable to diseases we were previously protected against, two separate studies have found. Dubbed “immune amnesia,” researchers say measles can undo the protection vaccines provide, wiping out 11% to 73% of patients’ protective antibodies. We’re talking infections like flu or tuberculosis, so measles outbreaks can cause spikes in other illnesses. Surviving measles patients can regain the lost immunities — but only by being re-exposed to the illnesses. Measles, of course, is easily preventable, with two doses making the vaccine 97% effective.


Know the signs

Country singer Chely Wright revealed she had a stroke a year ago, just after turning 48. She’s speaking out now so we might all better recognize the signs.

A Kenyan rookie beat a Kenyan superstar in the NYC marathon

Joyciline Jepkosgei’s goal was just to finish strong in her first-ever marathon. Her countryman, Geoffrey Kamworor, won the men’s division.

‘Houston, we have a cookie’ 

An oven — and cookie dough — just blasted off to the International Space Station for the very first time. Now, about that glass of milk …

A storm dislodged a boat trapped above Niagara Falls for 101 years

Whoever had 2019 in the office pool can come collect now.

John Legend got ‘wine drunk’ and sang ‘All of Me’ onstage

Really, who among us could cast the first stone?


“I didn’t ask God to let me live, but I asked God to give me a proper attitude toward death. And I found that I was absolutely and completely at ease with death.”

Former President Jimmy Carter, after doctors told him in 2015 that cancer had spread to his brain. Carter, 95, spoke at his Georgia church yesterday, less than two weeks after suffering a minor pelvic fracture.


$1.5 trillion

The record-shattering value analysts say an initial public offering of Saudi Aramco could garner. Saudi Arabia’s huge state oil producer announced its intention to float shares on the Tadawul exchange in Riyadh.


The Nationals head to the White House

They just won the World Series. So, (most of) Washington’s home team heads just up the street later today to be honored by President Trump.



It’s all fun and games …

Until a quarter-million dominoes start falling down. We (and our 8-year-old adviser) dare you to look away. (Click to view.)



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