Today’s Headlines: In the face of the Great Resignation, employers roll out the perks

Hello, it’s Thursday, Nov. 18, and there’s an astronomical event tonight that may appeal to fellow space fans: a partial lunar eclipse that converts the so-called “beaver moon” of November into a “blood moon” because of a possible reddish hue. Holcomb Observatory trumpets it as the longest such eclipse of the century.

NASA is a little less breathless, noting that partials aren’t as spectacular as full lunar eclipses, when the moon is entirely shadowed by Earth. But they happen more often, meaning “more opportunities to witness little changes in our solar system that sometimes occur right before our eyes.” Plus this one’s fairly convenient for West Coast night owls. It starts shortly after 11 p.m., with a maximum at 1 a.m.

Here are today’s headlines.

TOP STORIES

Employers are bending over backward to keep you from quitting

Although U.S. employers added 531,000 jobs last month, companies are still struggling to fill positions. Some 4.4 million people quit their jobs in September. Companies are stretching their pocketbooks and imaginations to hire and keep people — such as a work-from-anywhere program, 14 weeks of paid caregiving leave, and all-expenses-paid trips.

More broadly, flexible work schedules or telecommuting are becoming routine. Meanwhile, the steep health challenges of a global pandemic highlighted the importance of family care benefits and more paid time off.

House censures GOP’s Gosar over a cartoon in which he stabs AOC, wields swords against Biden

The tense relationship between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy hit another low as they sparred over Democrats’ censure of Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.), who shared an animated video of himself killing Democratic colleague Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Pelosi questioned McCarthy’s leadership, while McCarthy all but assured Pelosi that House Republicans would retaliate by stripping Democrats of committee assignments when they regained control of the chamber, a reality that could come as soon as January 2023 after next November’s midterm election.

More politics

  • Column: Paul Gosar’s anime video of killing AOC is not a joke. It displays the new GOP’s violent extremist turn.
  • Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and President Biden are radically far apart on climate change action, but the president may have to push that aside during the North American Leaders’ Summit. He needs López Obrador to help reduce migration to the U.S.
  • Biden hits the road to sell the historic infrastructure law and try to avoid a replay of 2010.
  • California lawmakers should take early action next year on how to implement the state’s constitutional spending limit, an analysts’ report recommended, pointing out that the long-standing law will dictate how to divvy up almost all of a towering $31-billion tax surplus.

Sign up for our California Politics newsletter to get the best of The Times’ state politics reporting and the latest action in Sacramento.

In South L.A., a legacy of limbs lost

The coronavirus piggybacked on a catastrophe of poorly treated chronic illnesses rampant in South L.A.: heart disease, high blood pressure, lung cancer, kidney disease, asthma, arthritis, depression. And diabetes.

But although that deadly winter COVID-19 wave receded, the high tide of underlying conditions remained, with Black and Latino residents facing nearly unrivaled numbers of diabetic amputations.

More top coronavirus headlines

  • Here are eight COVID precautions you can leave behind this holiday season.
  • The Biden administration is making billions of dollars available to drugmakers to boost vaccine capacity.
  • An estimated 100,000 Americans died of drug overdoses in one year, a never-before-seen milestone that health officials say is tied to the COVID-19 pandemic and a more dangerous drug supply.

Stay up to date on pandemic developments, coronavirus case counts and vaccine news with Coronavirus Today.

A string of LAPD shootings exposes L.A.’s broken mental health system

Police shootings in recent months highlight a troubling trend of LAPD officers opening fire on mentally ill suspects — but also a broader systemic failure of the mental health system.

Mentally ill people are cycled through what police, mental health officials and advocates agree is a dizzying revolving door of temporary psychiatric units and jail wards, never getting the long-term care they need.

An agreement on the 2028 L.A. Olympics outlines key issues, but the final price tag’s unclear

Los Angeles officials have reached a tentative agreement with private organizers of the 2028 Summer Olympics that, although short on details, serves as a road map for the biggest issues facing the city as it inches toward hosting a sporting event that could cost $7 billion or more.

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CALIFORNIA

The LAUSD tells students: Get a shot — and a prize! With a deadline for student COVID-19 vaccinations days away — and about 72% in compliance — the Los Angeles Board of Education authorized an estimated $5 million for prizes and treats as incentives, including gift cards to Amazon and Target, tickets to “Hamilton” and food trucks on campus.

A UC lecturer strike was averted after the union and university reached a tentative agreement on a contract that would strengthen job security and boost pay by an average 30% over five years. The union hailed it as its “best contract” ever.

Dozens of L.A. city employees have lost pay after refusing to sign a notice of a vaccine mandate, and the numbers could grow in coming weeks, Mayor Eric Garcetti said.

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NATION-WORLD

Two men convicted in Malcolm X’s 1965 assassination are set to be exonerated. Prosecutors now say authorities withheld evidence in the case of the civil rights leader’s killing, according to a news report.

The man who fatally shot Ahmaud Arbery testified that Arbery attacked him. Travis McMichael said the 25-year-old Black man — whom he and his father pursued in their Georgia neighborhood after arming themselves — grabbed his shotgun.

PHOTO OF THE DAY

(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)

HOLLYWOOD AND THE ARTS

A $750-million Astroworld lawsuit names Apple alongside Travis Scott, Drake and Live Nation. A Houston attorney filed the suit Monday on behalf of clients including the family of 21-year-old Axel Acosta, one of the 10 people who died at Scott’s annual hip-hop festival in a crowd crush that also left hundreds injured.

“Tiger King 2’s” biggest hurdle is answering for the misogyny of the first one. Above all, Joe Exotic loved to talk trash about his competitors, and Netflix exploited those lies, writes television critic Lorraine Ali. How do you make a sequel when the star is currently in prison for hatching a murder plot against his rival, Carole Baskin, and the series helped propagate his smear campaign against her?

The script supervisor for “Rust” sues, says the scene didn’t call for a gun to be fired. Mamie Mitchell, who was the first to call 911 after cinematographer Halyna Hutchins was fatally shot on set, is suing Alec Baldwin and the movie’s producers. She says they intentionally ignored safety protocols and that Baldwin “cocked and fired the loaded gun even though the upcoming scene to be filmed did not call for the cocking and firing of a firearm.”

“Power of the Dog” reasserts Jane Campion’s mastery and reveals a new side of Benedict Cumberbatch. Phil Burbank is a 1920s rancher and also a sadist, a master of psychological abuse and, as played by a monstrous, mesmerizing Cumberbatch, one of the scariest characters you may encounter in a movie this year, writes film critic Justin Chang.

BUSINESS

Biden urged the Federal Trade Commission to probe possible illegal conduct in U.S. gasoline markets, pointing to the difference between pump prices and the cost of wholesale fuel and noting potential “anti-consumer behavior by oil and gas companies.”

SPORTS

No. 2 UCLA tightens up defense to handle North Florida. It was just what was needed for second-ranked UCLA during a 98-63 victory that qualified as an improvement over what had preceded it two days earlier.

Giannis Antetokounmpo torched the Lakers with 47 points Wednesday night. The Milwaukee forward was the most powerful player on the Fiserv Forum court as the Bucks beat Los Angeles 109-102.

Angel City FC unveils the franchise’s first jersey. Los Angeles’ newest professional sports franchise has hired a coach, signed a player and moved closer to finalizing a deal for a training complex over the last three months. Now the team has something to wear.

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OPINION

Nextdoor says it wants to “cultivate a kinder world.” Good luck with that, writes columnist Robin Abcarian. There are numerous acts of kindness and offers of assistance on the platform, but as is the case with other social networks, users just can’t stop themselves from being jerks.

If these two OB-GYNs were able to take their pregnant, COVID-vaccine-wary patients on a tour of the ICU, this is the trepidation and anguish they would find. “We know that when a pregnant mother arrives in the hospital with COVID, it may be only a matter of hours before she deteriorates and needs an emergency caesarean section,” they write, an operation carried out by two dozen people in protective gear that makes it difficult to talk, breathe or hear one another.

ONLY IN L.A.

Call it “the Crypt”: The official name change doesn’t happen until Dec. 25, but folks in L.A. started using the moniker almost immediately after the news broke Monday night that Staples Center was changing its name to Crypto.com Arena. A good nickname is crucial, although there are a few cases in which the official name is pretty spectacular itself.

So where does Crypto.com Arena/the Crypt rank among NBA arena names/nicknames? Here’s a completely subjective ranking.

Meanwhile, Angelenos weighed in on the new name. Said one: “Regardless of whatever they want to call it, I will always refer to it as the ‘House That Kobe Built.’”

FROM THE ARCHIVES

Girls sit at typewriters in a classroom, with a nun in the background.

Nov. 7, 1965: Regina Caeli High School students work on their words per minute.

(Los Angeles Times)

Remember typewriters? Fifty-six years ago this month, students at the all-girls Regina Caeli High School in Compton were learning to type under the watchful eye of their instructor, a nun from the Sisters of the Holy Family. The school, after suffering declines in enrollment, consolidated in 1995 with another Catholic high school to form the Queen of Angels Academy, which itself was closed in 2002 due to shrinking enrollment and rising costs.

Today’s newsletter was curated by Amy Hubbard and Laura Blasey. Comments or ideas? Email us at [email protected]

Eleanore Beatty

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