Good morning, Quartz readers!
What to watch for today
The US Supreme Court rules on Donald Trump’s travel ban… Justices are expected to weigh in on the US president’s attempt to restore his travel ban on visitors from six Muslim-majority countries. Several lower courts rejected the measure, citing Trump’s own tweets as evidence that it is biased against Muslims.
…And Trump meets Narendra Modi. The Indian prime minister will begin a two-day US trip that includes a dinner at the White House, where diplomatic expectations are low. Despite a recent Trump tweet calling Modi a “true friend,” one Indian paper predicted it would be more “awkward first date” than “bromance.”
Trade talks between the EU and Mexico continue. The two sides will meet in Mexico to finalize updates to a trade agreement first signed in 2000. Spurred by Trump’s frequent attacks against NAFTA, EU trade commissioner Cecilia Malmström said: ”We want to send a clear signal to the world about the importance of strengthening—not weakening—the rules that govern international trade.”
Mongolia votes for a new president. Candidates are playing to patriotism and anti-Chinese sentiment as the country of 3 million struggles to recover from a collapse in commodity prices. The economy grew just 1% last year, compared to 17.5% in 2011, and Mongolia recently received a $5.5 billion bailout from the International Monetary Fund.
Over the weekend
Takata finally filed for bankruptcy. The troubled Japanese airbag maker filed for bankruptcy protection in Japan and the US, and said most of its assets will be acquired by Detroit-based Key Safety Systems for about $1.6 billion. Takata is still trying to recall tens of millions of defective airbags, used by 19 different automakers.
A Pakistani oil tanker inferno killed at least 150 people. After the truck veered off the road in the eastern city of Bahawalpur, people rushed to collect leaking fuel in pots, only to perish in a massive explosion. Reports say a stray cigarette or static electricity from a mobile phone may have triggered the blast.
More than 90 people remain missing after a landslide in China. At least 10 bodies have been recovered after a landslide buried about 40 homes in Maoxian county in Sichuan province. Rescuers say they don’t expect to find any more people alive.
Qatar rejected demands from four Arab states. A Saudi-led group that includes Egypt, the UAE, and Bahrain wanted Qatar to close the Al Jazeera news channel, cut diplomatic ties with Iran, and close a Turkish military base. US secretary of state Rex Tillerson said the demands were “difficult to meet,” and that “a lowering of rhetoric would also help ease the tension.”
London apartment buildings were evacuated due to fire risks. Thousands of residents at a council estate in Camden were asked to leave in the dead of night (paywall). The towers, along with dozens of other buildings across the UK, used materials similar to those linked to the deadly Grenfell Tower fire that killed at least 79 people.
Quartz obsession interlude
Activist Joshua Wong on Hong Kong’s thirst for democracy 20 years after returning to Chinese rule. “[Y]oung people, free from financial burdens and family demands, have the least to lose should they be arrested or convicted and therefore should take a more prominent role.”
Matters of debate
Future jobs for humans will rely on emotional labor… Robots will have trouble replacing workers who are currently underpaid and underappreciated.
…And being smart will be redefined. In the age of AI, critical and creative thinking will be more important than ever.
Anxiety can actually be beneficial. It’s one of the most agonizing things to experience, but you cannot be a creative, imaginative human being without anxiety.
Canada is critically low on marijuana. The government thinks a supply shortfall will be the biggest hurdle for its legalization plans.
North Korea hearts WordPress. The country’s new foreign-ministry website was built with the open-source blogging platform, based on a custom theme called “DPRK.”
Mexicans are threatening to sue Heineken for its tequila-flavored beer. “Desperados,” which has only trace amounts of the spirit, runs contrary to tequila’s upmarket aspirations.
Millennials are keeping public libraries alive. More than half said they recently used one, compared to people of older generations.
Amazon wants to build a giant beehive for drones. It’s seeking a patent for “multi-level fulfillment centers for unmanned aerial vehicles” that could serve urban areas.
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