Jul 15, 2019

Axios PM

By Mike Allen
Mike Allen

Good afternoon: Today's PM — edited by Axios' Justin Green — is 482 words, a 2 minute read.

Situational awareness: Trump escalated his racist tweets against female Democrats.

  • "If somebody has a problem with our country, if somebody doesn't want to be in our country, they should leave."

D.C.-area readers: Join me tomorrow at 8am for a News Shapers event focused on U.S. foreign policy and news of the day. Guests: Tom Cotton, Brian Hook, Michèle Flournoy and Susan Lund. RSVP here.

1 big thing: The Prime Days of our lives

Photo: Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto via Getty Images

On this 5th edition of Amazon's Prime Day, the everything store has produced a perfect look at the evergreen trends dominating our times.

The big picture: We're closer than ever to instant gratification for consumers, whether you think that's awesome or awful.

  1. 51.3% of U.S. households have an Amazon Prime membership this year, according to eMarketer data emailed to Retail Dive.
  2. Prime Day created an e-commerce gold rush: Market research firm Coresight estimates that the event will bring in $5.8 billion this year, and Amazon competitors will get estimated revenue jumps of 79% today and tomorrow, notes Axios' Erica Pandey.
  3. All that rush delivery is having a climate impact: 1 day deliveries — and the warehouses to enable them — from Amazon and others are an increasing concern for carbon emissions.
  4. Amazon warehouse workers are using it to protest working conditions: "We're humans, not robots," one worker told CNN. "They're treating us like machines."
  5. Amazon spokesperson Rachael Lighty told Axios: "Simply put, people would not want to work for Amazon if our working conditions truly were as our critics portray them to be in this period of record low unemployment and plentiful job opportunities."

The big picture: The great American consumer machine isn't as awe inspiring as in times past — Alibaba's "Singles Day" matched the last Prime Day's sales in less than 10 minutes, Business Insider reported last year.

Go deeper:

Bonus: Pic du jour

Photo: Anthony Devlin/Getty Images

A bumble bee collects pollen from flowers on a tomato plant in Manchester, England.

2. What you missed
  1. Anheuser-Busch InBev canceled the $9 billion-plus Hong Kong IPO of its Asia-Pacific business, due to weak investor demand. Go deeper.
  2. The world's debt rose by $3 trillion in the first quarter of 2019 — an almost unprecedented borrowing binge that brought total global debt to $246.5 trillion. Go deeper.
  3. The Trump administration will force migrants fleeing their home countries to apply for asylum in one of the first countries they pass through. Go deeper.
  4. 🎧 Axios' Dan Primack and David McCabe discuss venture capitalist Peter Thiel's attacks on Google, just days after a White House airing of grievances over perceived social media bias. Listen here.
3. 1 surreal headline

"Proving Hitchcock Right, Birds Attacks Are Turning Violent This Summer," the WSJ reports.

  • "Bird-on-human attacks are growing more common as people encroach on their habitats, says Lori Naumann, information officer at the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources."
  • "Many people who have long lived in harmony with the birds have noticed an uptick in their aerial assaults this season."
  • “'You talk to people about being attacked by birds, and they look at you like you’re crazy,' says [Stephen Vedder], a 60-year-old programmer. 'This is 'The Birds’ all over again, but it’s real!'"
Mike Allen