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SpaceX CEO Musk’s security clearance under review over pot use: official

SpaceX founder Elon Musk speaks at a post-launch press conference after the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, carrying the Crew Dragon spacecraft, lifted off on an uncrewed test flight to the International Space Station from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida, U.S., March 2, 2019. REUTERS/Mike Blake(Reuters) - SpaceX Chief Executive Elon Musk’s security clearance is being reviewed by the Pentagon after the billionaire smoked marijuana on a California comedian’s podcast in September, a U.S. official said on Thursday. An incident report was started by the Pentagon some time after the marijuana event, according to the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. The review was…

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Last Chevrolet Cruze in Ohio built amid GM restructuring

(Reuters) - General Motors Co said the last Chevrolet Cruze rolled off the assembly line Wednesday afternoon at its Lordstown, Ohio, assembly plant, the first of five plants in North America to end production this year and ending U.S. production of the Cruze. Employees watch as the last Chevrolet Cruze rolls off the assembly line at the General Motors Co assembly plant in Lordstown, Ohio, U.S., March 6, 2019, in this photo obtained from social media. Marisol Gonzalez-Bowlers via REUTERS Workers posted photos of the final Cruze making its way down the assembly line on social media. It came off the line around 3 p.m., a GM…

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Manafort says his life is ‘professionally and financially in shambles’

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (Reuters) - President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort told a court on Thursday ahead of his sentencing for bank and tax fraud that his life is “professionally and financially in shambles.” “To say I have been humiliated and ashamed would be a gross understatement,” Manafort told U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis, who will hand down a sentence later in the hearing. Reporting by Andy Sullivan; Writing by Eric Beech; Editing by Mohammad ZarghamOur Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Philadelphia Bans ‘Cashless’ Stores Amid Growing Backlash

In a sign of the growing backlash against “cashless” stores around the country, the City of Philadelphia will require retailers to accept legal tender starting this summer.Retail outlets that have stopped accepting cash say it is faster and easier for their employees to process digital payments. But critics say the practice discriminates against people without bank accounts or credit cards, or who simply prefer to pay cash.City Councilman Bill Greenlee, a co-sponsor of the bill, said it would ensure fairness as residents complete everyday transactions.“It just seemed to me unfair that I could walk into a coffee shop right across from City Hall, and I had a…

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Tesla enters into agreement with Chinese lenders for Gigafactory

FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: A Tesla logo is seen at a groundbreaking ceremony of Tesla Shanghai Gigafactory in Shanghai, China January 7, 2019. REUTERS/Aly Song(Reuters) - Tesla Inc said on Thursday it signed an agreement with lenders in China for a 12-month facility of up to 3.5 billion yuan ($521 million) for the electric carmaker’s Gigafactory in Shanghai, and secured new commitments from banks that could be used for investments in the United States and elsewhere. The company broke ground on the factory in January. A Shanghai city government official said on Wednesday the factory is expected to be completed in May. Tesla has said that the…

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Germany does not want to ban Huawei from 5G networks: minister

FILE PHOTO: German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier presents the national industry strategy for 2030 during a news conference in Berlin, Germany, February 5, 2019. REUTERS/Fabrizio BenschBERLIN (Reuters) - Germany does not want to ban Chinese telecoms equipment maker Huawei Technologies from building its 5G networks, Economy Minister Peter Altmaier said on Thursday, adding that Berlin would tighten security criteria for all vendors instead. Asked on a ZDF television talk show if the government plans to bar Huawei from the upcoming 5G auction due to concerns over the global market leader’s ties to the Chinese government, Altmaier said: “No, we will not want to exclude any company.” But…

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Queen Elizabeth II Posts Her First Instagram Photo. No, It Wasn’t a Mirror Selfie.

The world’s longest reigning monarch has already emailed and tweeted, and on Thursday she passed a new milestone by publishing her first post on Instagram.Wearing a bright tangerine coat with a matching hat, Queen Elizabeth II stepped up to a glass lectern, removed a long black glove and gently tapped “share” on an iPad.Just so we’re clear: The queen, 92, used the royal family’s account; she does not have a personal Instagram page. Do not expect her to post mirror selfies from Buckingham Palace.The queen’s first post was a picture of a letter that was sent to her great-great-grandfather by Charles Babbage, a 19th-century mathematician, inventor and…

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Jerry Merryman, Co-Inventor of the Pocket Calculator, Dies at 86

Jerry Merryman, a self-taught electrical engineer who helped design the first pocket calculator, died on Feb. 27 in Dallas. He was 86.His wife, Phyllis (Lee) Merryman, said the cause was heart and kidney failure. He had been hospitalized since late December for complications arising from surgery to install a pacemaker.In 1965, two years after he joined the electronics maker Texas Instruments without a college degree, the company asked Mr. Merryman and two other engineers to build a calculator that could fit into a shirt pocket.He designed the fundamental circuitry in less than three days, and when Texas Instruments unveiled the device two years later, the moment marked…

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Airbnb Acquires HotelTonight to Expand Travel Portfolio

SAN FRANCISCO — Airbnb says it plans to acquire HotelTonight, a service for travelers seeking last-minute hotel bookings, in a deal that will expand the lodging-rental company’s portfolio with traditional and boutique hotel listings.Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition values HotelTonight in the vicinity of its last private valuation, $465 million, said two people who were briefed on the deal and were not authorized to disclose the price. That would make it Airbnb’s biggest acquisition.In a statement, Brian Chesky, Airbnb’s chief executive, emphasized the company’s desire to expand into all aspects of travel. “A big part of building an end-to-end travel platform is serving…

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Under pressure, Canada’s Trudeau denies impropriety, offers no apology

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday denied interfering in Canada’s judicial system as he sought to defuse a controversy threatening his political future and offered no apology, asserting only that lessons had been learned. Trying to ease a month-long crisis, Trudeau called a news conference to address allegations that improper pressure was put on former justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould to help construction firm SNC-Lavalin Group Inc avoid a criminal trial. “There was no breakdown of our systems, of our rule of law, of the integrity of our institutions,” Trudeau, the Liberal Party leader, told reporters. “There was never any inappropriate pressure.” Trudeau, 47, came…

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