Biden to deliver prime-time speech; FDA clears updated COVID boosters; life expectancy plunges again | Hot off the Wire podcast

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President Joe Biden will deliver a prime-time address “on the continued battle for the soul of the nation” Thursday outside Independence Hall in Philadelphia. The White House is billing it as a major address just over two months before the midterm elections.

Biden will discuss how the nation’s standing in the world and its democracy are at stake. The White House says, “He will talk about the progress we have made as a nation to protect our democracy, but how our rights and freedoms are still under attack. And he will make clear who is fighting for those rights, fighting for those freedoms, and fighting for our democracy.”

An FBI investigation into the presence of top-secret information at Mar-a-Lago is zeroing in on the question of whether former President Donald Trump’s team obstructed the probe. Trump said those documents were declassified.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen is warning that a failure to place a price cap on Russian oil would hurt the global economy. She says without a price cap, “we face the threat of a global energy price spike if the majority of Russian energy production gets shut in.” 

A Palestinian detainee held without charge or trial by Israel says he is ending his nearly six-month hunger strike after reaching an agreement to be released in October. 

A 19-year-old man has been charged with first-degree murder in a series of apparently random shootings over roughly two hours last weekend in Detroit that left three people dead and a fourth wounded.

A rapid deployment team of FBI cyber experts is heading to Montenegro to investigate a massive and coordinated attack on the tiny Balkan nation’s government and its services. Last weekend, Montenegro’s Agency for National Security said the country was “under a hybrid war” blaming the attack squarely on Russia, though without providing evidence.

Authorities say a woman killed while looking out the window of her South Carolina home was intentionally shot by a neighbor shooting at targets in his yard. Prosecutors upgraded the charge against 30-year-old Nicholas Lucas to murder on Monday.

U.S. regulators have authorized updated COVID-19 boosters, the first to directly target today’s most common omicron strain. The move on Wednesday by the Food and Drug Administration tweaks the recipe of shots made by Pfizer and rival Moderna. The hope is that the modified boosters will blunt yet another winter surge.

U.S. life expectancy dropped for the second consecutive year in 2021, falling by nearly a year from 2020. That’s according to a new government report. In the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, the estimated American lifespan has shortened by nearly three years.

Scientists are trying to help people reach a goal humans have been chasing throughout history: staying active and vital in old age. They are part of the skyrocketing scientific field of cellular senescence, which is built upon the idea that cells eventually stop dividing.

Ford is recalling more than 277,000 pickup trucks and cars in the U.S. because the rear view camera lens can get cloudy and reduce visibility for the driver. The recall covers certain F-250, 350 and 450 trucks as well as the Lincoln Continental, all from the 2017 through 2020 model years.

A Los Angeles attorney detained for five months in Venezuela is pleading for help from the Biden administration. Eyvin Hernandez says in a jailhouse message that he feels forgotten by the U.S. government as he faces criminal charges at the hands of one of America’s top adversaries.

It was a warm Saturday evening and journalists had gathered at a Paris restaurant to enjoy the last weekend of summer. At sometime past midnight, phones around the table began to ring all at once. News desks were contacting reporters and photographers to alert them that Princess Diana’s car had crashed in the Pont de l’Alma tunnel in Paris. That’s how the news unfolded in the early hours of Aug. 31, 1997.

Mounting evidence from around the country shows that students who spent more time learning remotely during the 2020-2021 school year, many of them Black and Latino, lost about half of an academic year of learning. That’s twice as much as their peers who studied in person that year.

Atlantic City, New Jersey, is fighting a rising sea as flooding becomes a regular problem.