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Atop the Material World: Madonna leads Forbes’ highest-paid musician list

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Business magazine Forbes named Madonna the highest-paid musician in the world on Tuesday, estimating her earnings at $125 million in the year to June.

Revenues from her MDNA concert tour plus sales of Madonna-related products and merchandise put the Material Girl, 55, well ahead of Lady Gaga at $80 million.

The Mother Monster’s income would have been higher had a hip injury not forced her to abandon a global concert tour, Forbes said.

Veteran rocker Bon Jovi placed third at $79 million, followed by country star Toby Keith ($25 million) and British band Coldplay ($64 million).

Forbes based its list, posted on forbes.com, on pretax income from ticket sales, royalties, merchandising, endorsements and other ventures.

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It doesn’t take into account fees for agents, managers and lawyers.

Only living artists can make the list — otherwise, Forbes said, Michael Jackson would have been number one with a posthumous income of $160 million.

[Image via Agence France-Presse]

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US sanctions Chinese oil trader for violating Iran restrictions: Pompeo

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The United States is placing a leading Chinese oil importer on its sanctions blacklist for trading in Iranian crude, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Monday.

"As part of that maximum pressure campaign, I am announcing that the United States is imposing sanctions on the Chinese entity Zhuhai Zhenrong and its chief executive Youmin Li," Pompeo said in a speech.

"They violated US law by accepting crude oil," he said.

The announcement was the latest step by Washington to ratchet up economic pressure on Tehran over its alleged military activities in the Middle East and its nuclear program by taking aim at business partners.

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French inventor to hover across English Channel on ‘flyboard’

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A French inventor aims to soar across the English Channel this week on a jet-powered "flyboard", despite authorities warning the stunt is a danger to shipping.

Former jet-skiing champion Franky Zapata has pledged to go ahead on Thursday on his device, which can reach speeds up to 190 kilometres an hour (118 mph).

It will come 10 days days after the entrepreneur wowed crowds when he flew above the Champs-Elysees boulevard in Paris in front of President Emmanuel Macron for the annual July 14 military parade.

But authorities are divided over the daredevil venture, which will mark 110 years to the day since Frenchmen Louis Bleriot made the first aeroplane flight across the Channel.

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Meghan McCain snaps at Sunny Hostin for daring to disagree with her about Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

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Meghan McCain slammed President Donald Trump for hurling racist abuse at four Democratic congresswomen to heighten divisions in his rival party, and then framed the debate in the exact same way he has.

The conservative co-host on "The View" condemned the president's statements urging the four first-year lawmakers to return to their home countries as racist, and then complained that one of their chiefs of staff had accused moderate Democrats of turning a blind eye to racism.

"I think the politics of this is fascinating," McCain began. "We spent our entire week last week talking about how racist and xenophobic the original comments and the chants were, and I stand by that statement."

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