10 things you need to know this morning in Australia

How secure are your facial features? Picture: Marvel

Good morning.

1. Donald Trump is a powerful man. The internet is currently sharing this video of Rand Paul’s “emotional rollercoaster” as the US President enters the room:

Paul is the senator causing Trump the most problems with his Affordable Care Act. There’s no “rollercoaster” there. It’s one direction – owned by another man’s sheer force of personality. You can see it again in White House chief of staff John Kelly quickly correcting himself after saying he’s “running the United States of America”. Trump even left his own son stranded on the tarmac after he was five minutes late for the private plane.

2. He’s definitely got North Korea in a panic. New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof previously visited the Hermit Kingdom in 1989 and 2005, but on his recent visit, he said he’d never seen so much anti-American propaganda there. “There was a menace in the air,” he said “There were these billboards showing the destruction of the US.” But Trump may be dangerously overconfident in US missile defences against North Korea.

3. To markets, where US traders held fire, waiting on tonight’s US inflation data, retail sales and consumer confidence. Here in Australia, the RBA releases its semi-annual Financial Stability Review, and there‚Äôs September trade data out of China. Plenty to watch. On currencies, the US dollar edged higher, and the Aussie held above US78 cents with it, but fell against the Kiwi. Huh. Bitcoin went bonkers again. The new big move from the world’s biggest cryptocurrency is news there might be another fork in the road ahead – Bitcoin Gold.

4. Pretty much every shooting tragedy draws conspiracy theories about false flags and gun control agendas. But there is little doubt about the fact that Stephen Paddock shot a security guard through the door of his Mandalay Bay Hotel at 9.59pm, then opened fire on the crowd below a full six minutes later. And it took 12 minutes after that for police to arrive at his door – 18 minutes in total. In Las Vegas, 18 minutes is a long time.

5. Ben Simmons is finally an NBA player, and finished his first game with an impressive nine points, six assists and eight rebounds. But barely anyone noticed because Philly’s $US147 million problem child Joel Embiid finally got healthy and pulled off moves like this:

And here’s a great story about how Golden State coach Steve Kerr first described the NBA’s most lethal offence – on a charcuterie board to an airport bartender. Rise up, “Almond Steph Curry”.

6. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg opened up to Axios editor Mike Allen about the company’s role as a media organisation and fake Russian ads. On the first topic, she stood by Facebook’s stance that it was not a media company. Here are all the ways she was wrong about that. And here’s why her Russia talk was an insult to your intelligence.

7. Malcolm Turnbull recently announced your face will be stored in a central database so it can be used by law enforcement authorities. So given that the biometric cat is out of the bag, the startups are lining up for access to that database. Here’s verification service E4 on why that makes sense. Along with another worryingly diminishing voice warning once again of how stolen passwords can be changed, but stolen facial features and fingerprints cannot.

8. In Better Tech news, SpaceX landed its 178th straight successful launch, and every rocket it can reuse is a huge boost to it profit margins. That’s why Elon Musk might be CEO of another $50 billion company – if it ever goes public. And Nissan modified a GT-R so that it could be steered with a PS4 controller like a giant remote-controlled car, which is the future we all really want:

9. You must be kidding:

Some yeast extract brands never learn.

10. Harvey Weinstein is about to check in to a $US37,000 a month rehab centre for sex addicts, where he’ll be put on a “gentle path” treatment program. A far more gentle path than the young aspiring Hollywood starlets he intimidated and abused were put on, including a 17-year-old Kate Beckinsale. UK police are now on the case of a possible London incident. And Rose McGowan earned herself a Twitter ban for speaking out a bit too loudly.

BONUS ITEM: Times when it is okay to use the word “surreal”:

Have a great weekend.

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