Tillerson in Europe, North Korea on edge, lucrative CryptoKitties

Good morning, Quartz readers!

What to watch for today

Theresa May attends key Brexit talks in Brussels. The prime minister’s lunch with European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker and Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, is aimed at hashing out an agreement on the Irish border and the rights of EU citizens in the UK—part of the first phase of the UK’s withdrawal.

US-South Korea war games put North Korea on edge. The exercises, which include the largest-ever joint aerial drills, start today and will further stoke tensions with Pyongyang. North Korea’s state-run newspaper said that the Trump administration was “begging for nuclear war by staging an extremely dangerous nuclear gamble on the Korean peninsula.”

Rex Tillerson starts a week of meetings in the EU. The secretary of state arrives in Brussels today—somewhat under a cloud since last week’s rumors that Donald Trump was planning to fire him. Today, he meets NATO secretary general Jens Stoltenberg ahead of the NATO foreign ministers meeting on Dec 5.

Over the weekend

The US Senate passed the Republican tax bill, 51 to 49. The nearly 500-page bill was rushed through in the early hours of Saturday morning, with last-minute amendments hastily scribbled onto the text in handwriting. The House and Senate now go to a committee to hash out the differences between their two versions of the bill before the president can sign it into law.

Facebook opened its new London office. It’ll be Facebook’s biggest engineering hub outside the US, and will create 800 new jobs. It’s a vote of confidence in post-Brexit Britain, and will boost Facebook’s total UK staff to more than 2,300 by the end of 2018.

The New York Metropolitan opera suspended James Levine. It said the famous conductor—who was the Met’s music director for 40 years before retiring last year—would not appear this season. The announcement follows accusations from three men that Levine sexually abused them when they were teenagers.

CVS agreed to buy Aetna for $69 billion. The deal between the pharmacy chain and the major US insurer could create a new model for the health care industry. CVS could offer primary-care services and medical follow-ups directly from its drugstores and walk-in clinics. CVS’s nervousness over Amazon possibly disrupting the industry is a key factor behind the deal.

Disney resumed talks with 21st Century Fox. Disney is reportedly interested in scooping up some of Fox’s assets, including its movie studio, some of its US cable channels, and its holdings in Indian broadcaster Star and British TV platform Sky. Comcast is another potential buyer, as are Sony and Verizon.

Trump attacked the FBI. He called the agency a biased institution (paywall) whose reputation for fairness was “in tatters.” On Friday, the president’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the agency about his conversations with the Russian ambassador.

Quartz obsession interlude

Olivia Goldhill on the flawed science of implicit bias. “The implicit bias narrative also lets us off the hook. We can’t feel guilty or be held to account for racism that isn’t conscious. The forgiving notion of unconscious prejudice has become the go-to explanation for all manner of discrimination… if implicit bias is a weak scapegoat, we must confront the troubling reality that society is still, disturbingly, all too consciously racist and sexist.” Read more here.

Matters of debate

You should talk to your kids about Harvey Weinstein. Answer their questions about sexual harassment now, and they won’t have to do the same for their children in 30 years.

Russia’s 2018 World Cup poster is a sign it sees the tournament as politics. It references the mid-century space race and 1920s constructivist art to send subtle messages about Russian power.

Bitcoin is a frankly terrible currency. But it could still transform the world economy.

Surprising discoveries

Prehistoric women packed a serious punch. The average woman 7,000 years ago was stronger than the ladies on Cambridge University’s elite rowing team are today.

Trump eats fast food in epic quantities. One chow-down during his campaign involved “two Big Macs, two Fillet-O-Fish, and a chocolate malted,” former aides say.

Nicolas Maduro announced a new virtual currency. The Venezuelan president was ridiculed after saying the (still non-existent) “petro” cyrptocurrency would help the beleaguered economy tackle its huge debt.

A “smart condom” provides data on your most intimate moments. Men can get stats on their thrusting, endurance, and calories burned—and share the data.

Users of a top cryptocurrency are obsessed with cartoon cats. “CryptoKitties” have sold for thousands of dollars on the ethereum network.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, smart condoms, and “petro” coins  to hi@qz.com. You can follow us on Twitter for updates throughout the day or download our apps for iPhone and Android.