Sticks and Loans: Hacks are so common these days that even massive ones can fail to get our attention. Consider this one on the world’s biggest bank. From Bloomberg (Gift Article): “On Thursday, trades handled by the world’s largest bank in the globe’s biggest market traversed Manhattan on a USB stick. Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd.’s US unit had been hit by a cyberattack, rendering it unable to clear swathes of US Treasury trades after entities responsible for settling the transactions swiftly disconnected from the stricken systems. That forced ICBC to send the required settlement details to those parties by a messenger carrying a thumb drive as the state-owned lender raced to limit the damage.”

+ West Can’t Coast: “Putin still believes that time is on his side. If he can’t win on the battlefield, he will win using political intrigue and economic pressure. He will wait for the democratic world to splinter, and he will encourage that splintering. He will wait for the Ukrainians to grow tired, and he will try to make that happen too. He will wait for Donald Trump to win the 2024 U.S. presidential election, and he will do anything he can to help that happen too. Right now, Putin’s bets are on the Republicans who repeat Russian propaganda.” Anne Applebaum making the case that it’s sad one even needs to make at this point. The West Must Defeat Russia.

+ Where Do I Plug This In? Electric vehicles are hitting a road block: Car dealers. (Weird. They’ve always been so great to work with in the past…)

+ Cult Not Following: “Conservative activists pushing for parents to have more of a say in what their children are taught in school suffered a series of high-profile losses in Tuesday’s election, dealing a major blow to a movement that has advocated for book bans and restrictions on classroom discussion about issues of gender and race.” In school board elections across America, voters offer stunning rebuke of culture war politics.

+ Swift Shift: “As thousands of Taylor Swift fans eagerly lined up Thursday for the superstar’s first-ever concert in Argentina, they saw themselves surrounded by posters urging them to not vote in favor of right-wing populist Javier Milei in next week’s presidential election.” Taylor Swift’s Argentina concert takes political turn as presidential election nears. (I wonder if she could save America in 2024?)

+ Don’t Call Us, We’ll Call You: “Time, technology and changing tastes have derailed a once profitable, unique business that at its peak sold thousands of vintage telephones to buyers from around the world and produced revenues of nearly $1 million a year.” Wisconsin couple has tens of thousands of old phones — and nobody to buy them.