Juul and Beijing

Grind for September 29th
“We spend the first twelve months of our children’s lives teaching them to walk and talk and the next twelve telling them to sit down and shut up.”
– Phyllis Diller


The Headline

Juul CEO steps down amid health concerns

The Grind

Juul CEO Kevin Burns stepped down this week amid concerns about the effects of vaping on teen health.

So far, more than 500 people have been treated for so-called “vape lung,” a respiratory illness that appears to be related to vaping and THC. At least 8 people have died.

The state of California, the FTC, and the FDA are investigating Juul’s marketing practices to determine whether its advertising was designed to attract teenagers. Three states have issued bans on flavored e-cigarettes and Walmart has removed all vape products from its shelves.

The Details

In mid-September, the Trump Administration announced its plans to implement a nationwide ban on flavored e-cigarettes.

Juul decided not to appeal and has agreed to withdraw all of its advertising in the United States.

Juul’s outgoing CEO will be replaced by KC Crosthwaite, a former executive for tobacco company Altria (Altria owns 35% of Juul).

Crosthwaite says he is committed to Juul’s initial purpose – to provide a safer alternative for adult smokers. “Unfortunately, today that future is at risk due to unacceptable levels of youth usage and eroding public confidence in our industry.”

Breaking Records

The Headline

China opens world’s largest airport

The Grind

Beijing unveiled its newest airport Wednesday, a few days before the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

The Daxing International airport is located less than 30 miles from Beijing’s Tiananmen Square and is expected to become the main air travel hub of the region.

The massive, star-shaped airport is expected to host 45 million passengers by 2021 and 100 million passengers by 2040. Four of its seven runways are complete, with total construction costs expected to eclipse $17 billion.

The Details

Daxing features exciting new technologies including facial recognition check-in, smart luggage systems, and robots that park your car. Its terminal building is second only to that of Dubai International, which has a capacity of more than 60 million.

“[The airport] is an indication of how confident China intends to be as far as the expansion of its air network, both domestically as well as internationally,” says Al Jazeera’s Rob Matheson.

American companies are excited to participate in what Boeing estimates will be a $3 trillion market.

“Currently, Chinese airlines comprise 15% of global traffic and worldwide fleet,” reports Boeing. “As China continues its robust growth rate, China is projected to become the world’s largest aviation market in the near future.”

Unfortunately, we can expect trade tensions to affect US participation in China’s air market. The Chinese government has also encouraged its airlines to buy planes made in China.

Did you know… The mathematical proof that 1+1=2 takes 162 pages to explain in the three volume work – Principia Mathematica.