Culture Feature

Late Capitalism Diaries: The Worst COVID Scams

There is no cure for the coronavirus, but these people still think you should give them money.

If there's one thing that can save us from a global pandemic, it's capitalism.

Maybe you think that a sense of shared humanity uniting us in collective action — with those least at risk looking out for the most vulnerable — would be a better approach than embracing greed and short-term profit. But you're wrong.

Capitalism teaches us that money is the only thing that's real and the only solution to every problem. So when people are desperate and afraid because a deadly and wildly contagious virus is killing hundreds of thousands and ravaging the global economy, what they really need is someone to give their last few dollars to.

Thankfully, the ancient, venerated tradition of the snake oil salesman is alive and well, and the following good Samaritans were more than happy to strip confused and struggling people of every last dime in exchange for "cures" that primarily treated the problem of having too many dimes.

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Culture Feature

This Haunts Me: Did Scientists at CERN End the World in 2012?

Can the strangeness of recent history be blamed on scientists meddling with forces beyond their understanding?

Do you remember 2012?

People were convinced that the world was going to end — that the Mayan calendar had predicted it more than 2,000 years earlier. And protesters and time travelers continued to decry the cataclysmic dangers of CERN's Large Hadron Collider, where scientists were taking apart the building blocks of the universe to understand how they worked...

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Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart appear on "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart"

Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for Comedy Central

Once written off as a baseless conspiracy, the lab leak theory — the idea that COVID-19 was spread thanks to a lab accident — has been gaining traction in recent months.

Recently, on the first in-person episode of Stephen Colbert's A Late Show in over a year, none other than Jon Stewart expressed his support for the idea. Or rather, he expressed his opinion that he believes there is "a chance" the pandemic was unleashed in a lab.

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CULTURE

Great Beers to Drink on National Beer Day (Instead of Corona)

It has nothing to do with the coronavirus pandemic, but to the residents of Mexicali it's just as important.

April 7 is National Beer Day in America.

As such, it's as good a time as any to make a pledge that you won't drink Corona beer ever again...

Last February — back when the pandemic was just kicking off — Twitter had a field day with a survey revealing that 38% of American beer drinkers wouldn't buy Corona "under any circumstances." They had the right idea.

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Culture Feature

BTS Speak Out Against Anti-Asian Hate, Share Their Experiences

The K-Pop stars are using their platform to contribute to a broader conversation on the discrimination that breeds hate crimes.

K-Pop sensation BTS have added their voices to the concern around a recent spike in anti-Asian hate crimes in the US and elsewhere.

On Tuesday the band — who, along with their management company, donated $1 million to Black Lives Matter last summer — took to Twitter with the hashtags #StopAsianHate and #StopAAPIHate, sharing a message of unity and anti-discrimination, expressing "grief and anger" over violence and lives lost, and recounting some of their own experiences of anti-Asian racism.

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Culture Feature

Are Disney World And Universal Orlando Doing Enough To Keep Visitors Safe?

Is it possible to keep a theme park clean and safe during a pandemic?

Back in October, California governor Gavin Newsom announced a plan for reopening theme parks in the state.

After months of lobbying for reopening from both Disney and Universal as the state sought to limit the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the plan was not received well, with representatives from both companies balking at measures they saw as overly restrictive. Then — after huge spikes in COVID numbers — Disneyland was converted into a vaccine distribution site in January...

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