Thursday Clutter: Democratic Debate, Victoria's Secret, NFL Changes, Colin Jost, Kurt Cobain, Phil Collins, and more
Welcome back! How are you? There's not really much here to report at the moment. I stayed focused on yesterday's to-do list (with the help of BDH and Little Buddha) and finished every errand, which felt good. We've got a quieter day on tap here today, but that's fine, because it means the guys will have some time for reading, and that always makes them happy. Let's check out the headlines. There's a fresh pot of coffee on the table, so grab yourself a nice medium DD, because it's time to clear out some Thursday Clutter.
The focus of last night's Democratic presidential debate was to finally push back on Mike Bloomberg's unchallenged ad blitz since he joined the race. The billionaire was challenged on issues like his support of "stop and frisk" policing and multiple lawsuits from former female employees, and Bloomberg couldn't defend any of it. There's no reason to believe his argument that he's the most electable candidate. If anything, he might be the exact opposite. If voters want someone who opposes minorities, women, and the poor, they can keep the current White House occupant.
Meanwhile, Senator Elizabeth Warren went on the offensive against everyone, but particularly Bloomberg, dismantling the billionaire with a precision that would be the envy of any boxer. That should help voters remember she's still in the race, after several weeks of being erased from media coverage. Bloomberg's presence in the race might end up benefiting Warren the most, because he's the perfect target for someone fighting against the corrupting influence of the top 1% in our political system and economy. Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Senator Amy Klobuchar both need the other one to drop out soon, because there's only room for one moderate/conservative candidate who can't attract a diverse base of supporters. Joe Biden still wants people to think he's the obvious choice. That might still carry weight for anyone who hasn't actually seen him in action so far this cycle.
This fight is just getting started. (pic via journalgazette.com)
At the end of the night Senator Bernie Sanders came in the front-runner, and he left the same way. As long as Bloomberg, Biden, Buttigieg, and Klobuchar are all still fighting over the same group of voters, none of them will likely be able to stop Sanders. The question is whether Warren can continue to push her way back into the spotlight and remind everyone that there's another progressive in the race who has a better track record of actually changing policies. Last night was an important first step. Senator Warren needs to build on that at the upcoming Nevada caucus and then again on Super Tuesday.
Victoria's Secret is reportedly close to being sold to a private equity firm in a deal that would value the lingerie company at $1.1 billion. The last few years have been challenging for the brand, including slumping sales and damaging headlines about current their parent company CEO Leslie Wexner's friendship with Jeffrey Epstein.
It looks like there are some changes coming to the NFL next year. The new collective bargaining agreement is expected to increase the number of teams who make it to the playoffs to seven, add a 17th regular season game, and cut back to three preseason games. The team owners are trying to squeeze every last penny they can out of this league, and none of this feels exciting. They're increasing the chance of some 7-9 teams going to the playoffs, which devalues the importance of winning. The drama of the playoffs will be diluted because it will go on too long, and we don't care one way or another about the preseason. How do you feel about these moves?
Emmitt Smith thinks Dak Prescott should take a hometown discount from the Dallas Cowboys for his new contract. Every NFL player has the right, if not obligation, to go after every last dollar they can since their careers can end in the blink of an eye. Also, the Cowboys aren't exactly on the verge of bankruptcy. Prescott should ignore Smith and fight for what he thinks he's worth.
There is speculation that Colin Jost could be leaving SNL after the 2020 election. The rumors are based on an as-of-yet unpublished Jost memoir which indicates he would like to try other projects, so we'll see if it happens. We didn't realize he's been with SNL for 15 years. Our sense is that Jost seems to be polarizing in some places, so how would you feel if he left the show? Disappointed, or would you be excited for the change?
We want to wish a happy birthday to Kurt Cobain. The late Nirvana frontman would have turned 53 years old today.
There's a big change coming in the Boston radio landscape. Longtime rock station WAAF has been sold and is switching to religious music this coming Saturday. It's harder and harder to find rock on terrestrial radio, but then fewer and fewer people seem to be listening to the radio anyway with all of the available streaming services, satellite radio, and the like. There's also the issue that the genre itself seems to be slowly fading into the past, but it's too early in the day for us to deal with that.
Okay kids, that's going to do it for now. Here's Phil Collins to close things out with, "Something Happened on the Way to Heaven," for today's, "Song of the Day."
Thanks for stopping by, everyone. It's always great to see you. Enjoy the rest of your day, be good, 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.