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Monday Clutter: James Comey, Ayanna Pressley, Planet Fitness, Sports Gambling, New England Patriots, Tom Cruise, Conan O'Brien, Les Miserables, and more

Sunday Clutter: George H.W, Bush, SNL, Trump, New England Patriots, Kareem Hunt, XFL, Ghost-Pet Shop Boys, and more

Hi everyone,

Welcome back!  How are you?  It's looking ugly outside right now as the freezing rain falls.  Thankfully it's supposed to warm up in a bit, so the roads shouldn't be too bad later in the day.  We got our tickets for two out of three Red Sox spring training games yesterday!  The Minnesota Twins start selling their tickets on Tuesday, but even just getting these two games at face value makes us feel like we're already ahead for this trip.  Meanwhile, I'm dealing with what feels like the world's slowest-developing cold.   BDH and Little Buddha say they have the perfect cure:  coffee!  They just made a fresh pot, so help yourself to a nice medium DD, and let's clear out some Sunday Clutter.

Former President George H.W. Bush died on Friday at age 94.  There are many chapters to his story, but as the usual reflexive whitewashing of a recently-deceased politician's record continues, we will point out that this country is worse off for Bush having been in the White House.  A relative moderate early in his political career, Bush embraced corruption (the Iran-Contra scandal and subsequent pardons) and racism (the Willie Horton campaign ad), had a terrible record dealing with HIV/AIDS and other LGBTQ issues, and cynically gave us Clarence Thomas.  He wholeheartedly jumped on board the culture war path that Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan started by allying himself with the religious right, and supported policies that pitted 99% of the country against each other, while the top 1% of the country walked away with all of the money.

Bush brought us into the first Gulf War under dishonest pretenses.  Had he not been in office, his son Neil Bush would not have been given a slap on the wrist for his involvement in the S&L scandal of the 1980's, and he bears some responsibility for inflicting George W. Bush on the country.  It's easy to get fired up about how terrible Donald Trump is (with good reason), but Trump is a direct political descendant of George H.W. Bush.  He and the current GOP are merely the crass extension of the road that was facilitated by Bush and company.  For those who think we're somehow being uncouth by mentioning this after his death, it's an evaluation of the record of a public official.  It comes with the territory.  This notion that we shouldn't discuss it now is a claim of privilege that does nothing but benefit those who have a vested interest in making sure history books present a sanitized story.

Let's check out what SNL has to say about the latest Donald Trump - Michael Cohen news:

Donald Trump is bailing on his plan to further raise tariffs on China for the time being.  Is he too distracted by the Cohen developments to get fired up for other battles?  We're certainly not arguing for the hike, but Trump looks deflated in all of the footage coming out of the G20 summit.

Republicans love to pretend they're worried about voter fraud, but it looks like they actually committed it in North Carolina.

Neil deGrasse Tyson is the latest high-profile figure to be accused of sexual misconduct.  One woman claims that he raped her while they were in graduate school, and two other women also said he engaged in inappropriate behavior.

The New England Patriots take on the Minnesota Vikings this afternoon.  The player we're most interested in seeing is running back Rex Burkhead, who is back from his IR stint.  New England could use a little more depth at that position, but the biggest question will be if Burkhead can stay on the field for the rest of the year.  The Patriots have won seven out of their last eight games, but the Vikings defense will be a challenge.  Given that the game is at home, and the Vikings might also have to adjust to the ugly weather (they'll definitely face challenging field conditions), we'll predict a new England win and a stomach ache.

Tom Brady December 2 2018Tom Brady and company look to protect their #2 playoff seed.  (pic via skysports.com)

Running back Kareem Hunt was released by the Kansas City Chiefs following the public outcry after the release of a video showing Hunt assaulting a woman in February.  Mind you, it's not the attack that got him cut, it's that the team didn't like the negative publicity they're getting now.  Officials knew about this incident shortly after it happened, and they were hoping to ignore it.  If TMZ hadn't released the video, Hunt would be playing today. The names change, but the NFL still doesn't care about domestic violence.  At least this time the NFL put Hunt on the commissioner's exempt list before the Washington Redskins or another team had a chance to claim him. 

The XFL reportedly accidentally released of eight cities were the revived league will play in 2020.  Let's set the over/under on how long this version lasts at 3.5 seasons.  What's your bet?

Sorry to hear actor Ken Berry died.  We used to watch him in Mama's Family with Grandma and Grandpa Clutter way back when.  Berry was 85 years old.

Okay kids, that's going to do it for now.  We've always been a fan of the Pet Shop Boys tune, "It's a Sin," and this cover by Ghost is so tremendous, we would be open to making it our official theme song.  For now, it's today's, "Song of the Day."

Thanks for stopping by, everyone.  It was great to see you, as always.  Enjoy the rest of the day, be careful driving out there, and we'll catch up with you again soon.  Until next time, that's today's Clearing out the Clutter, and we are outta here.

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