Today in breaking bulletins
"Excuse me, excuse me, pardon me, sorry, pardon me, making my way to the new Earth because this one is trash," resolves Sweet's Chanel Parks, after learning that this planet just outside our solar system is "potentially habitable" (that NPR post alone got 13,000+ shares so far). "Even if mankind could not surpass the speed of light, this trip would only take 9 years round trip. Sign me up," declares Ken Sweet with the Associated Press. "Just gotta say: I really hope that life is discovered on another planet while I am still alive," admits Kurt Soller at Bon Appetit. "Someone send Matthew Mcconaughey to check this out," urges USA Today's Hemal Jhaveri. On the other hand, Proxima b's conditions "could be Earthlike, but they could also be hellish like Venus," which gives pause, but that doesn't stop Matt McKinney from suggesting, "We're calling this Earth 2, right?" Still, in mocking response to the most New York Times-ian headline ever ("One Star Over, a Planet That Might Be Another Earth"), National Geographic's Michael Greshko would like to call your attention to "One Twitter Account Over, a Tweet That Might Be a Subtle NY Times Dig" -- namely this one, by Washington Post's Joel Achenbach: "Huge exoplanet discovery, but it ain't another Earth, sorry!"
Meanwhile, in politics:
- Some of us in the media may have been too quick to buy yesterday's AP takedown of Hillary Clinton's meetings with Clinton Foundation donors, because Vox is calling it "a mess." Per Matthew Yglesias: "If you read that and thought to yourself that it seems wrong for the secretary of state to be spending so much time in meetings with Clinton Foundation donors rather than talking to US government officials and representatives of foreign countries, then you are in luck. To generate the 154 figure, the AP excluded from the denominator all employees of any government, whether US or foreign. Then when designing social media collateral, it just left out that part, because the truth is less striking and shareable."
- A CNN poll reveals Clinton and Donald Trump are tight in North Carolina, but Trump is on top in Arizona.
- "In OF COURSE news: Trump used $55,000 in campaign donations to buy copies of his own book," tweets Marlow Stern. Yeah, see, you can't do that with campaign cash, unless you give up your right to the royalties.
- Trump just added a former Heritage Foundation president to his transition team.
In other news worthy of your attention:
- An earthquake, about 10 kilometers deep, has shaken central Italy. Follow CNN's live updates here.
- An attack underway at American University of Afghanistan.
- French police made a woman remove her burkini on a beach in Nice, while the Australian inventor of the swimwear, Aheda Zanetti, writes in The Guardian, "I created it to give women freedom, not to take it away."
Tying it all together, here's Sunny Hundal: "Really don't think we need to take over another planet so we can argue about burkinis, again."