Wednesday Clutter: Coronavirus, Mike Pence, Mitch McConnell, JetBlue, Starbucks, Baseball Notes, Aaron Rodgers, Beastie Boys, and more
Friday Clutter: Coronavirus, Trump, Mike Pence, Joe Biden, Warren Buffett, Boston Red Sox, Parks and Recreation, Crowded House, and more

Thursday Clutter: Trump, Mike Pence, Google v. Zoom, Elon Musk, NBA, Gronk, Parks and Recreation, Guns N' Roses, the Eagles, and more

Hi everyone,

(Sorry for the delay.  We were minutes away from hitting the "publish" button this morning, when our site's host crashed.  BDH and Little Buddha stayed on top of things, and now we're ready to go, so let's get to it!)

Welcome back!  We've made it through the first third of 2020, so give yourself a round of applause.  Here's hoping the next four months lighten up a bit.  I finished spreading the compost yesterday, so gardening season is officially off and running.  Still a little sore and stiff, but it's not as bad as yesterday, and things should be fine by tomorrow.  I had a bunch of quarantine dreams last night that ended with me waking up at 4:00 this morning, so I hope you don't mind, but I asked BDH and Little Buddha to make the coffee stronger than usual.  They just put a fresh pot on the table, so grab yourself a nice medium DD, and let's clear out some Thursday Clutter.

Donald Trump reportedly had a meltdown about his deteriorating poll numbers last Friday.  The Great Pumpkin is physically incapable of admitting that he shouldn't have suggested the possibility of people injecting themselves with Lysol, or that his call for people to be willing to die for the economy hasn't been well-received, so Trump apparently went after his campaign manager.  That sounds about right.  Trump supposedly threatened to sue Brad Parscale.  Not sure what the basis would have been for that, unless he wants to claim Parscale is failing to save Trump from his own idiocy.  This show is overdue for cancellation.

Donald Trump April 30 2020Allergic to taking responsibility for his own behavior.  (pic via ktar.com)

Mike Pence continues to be blasted for refusing to wear a mask during his visit to the Mayo Clinic this week.  The man doesn't believe in science, and he will do whatever it takes to be seen as the successor to the MAGA throne.  He has no business being anywhere near the federal government's response to this public health crisis.

There have now been more than  60,000 coronavirus-related deaths in this country, and Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell says this is the worst economy ever.  Are we tired of the winning yet?

Donald Trump issued an executive order forcing U.S. meat plants to stay open, calling them "essential businesses."  However, what happens if the employees don't show up to work?  Our understanding is that these facilities are less than hygienic during the best of times, but workers across the country have complained about unsafe conditions during the pandemic, and a number of them have died, so what's the next step?  Our staff doesn't eat much red meat anyway, and at this point, a break from chicken would probably also be just as well.

Congratulations to Los Angeles on becoming the first major U.S. city to offer free coronavirus testing to all of its residents.  Ramped-up testing is the key component to reducing the threat of this pandemic.  Hopefully other cities will follow L.A.'s lead as soon as possible.

Google is launching a direct attack on Zoom by making their own teleconferencing system available for free to anyone with a Gmail account.  Between this development and Facebook's recent announcement about expanding their Messenger video conferencing system, it will be interesting to see if Zoom can survive the challenges.

Speaking of Facebook, the company reported that its first quarter revenue growth slowed, but have no fear:  Mark Zuckerberg and company pulled in $4.9 billion over the first three months of 2020, so there's no need for them to apply for a small business loan from the Trump administration.

Tesla founder Elon Musk went on a Twitter rant about stay-at-home orders last night.   He then continued his diatribe during Tesla's earnings conference call.  Musk has been wrong every time he's spoken about the pandemic, and there's no reason anyone should be listening to him talk about this topic.  The billionaire is a car manufacturer who also owns a rocket company, but he hasn't got a clue when it comes to public health.  We've said before that he's too erratic for the Clutter investment team's liking, and this latest tirade just reinforces the wariness.

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is already warning that holding the 2021 Summer Olympics is no sure thing unless the coronavirus is under control.

The NBA is now reportedly considering using Disney World to finish the current season.  We sound like a broken record, but the key issue is being able to do it safely, and that includes widespread testing.  Otherwise, scrap the rest of this year and focusing on making sure the 2020-2021 season encounters minimal disruption.  It's not that we want to sound like Debbie Downer, but when you've got Japan talking about postponing the 2021 Olympics, it's hard to imagine how sports resume this year.

Rob Gronkowski says he was joking when he claimed he had the Tampa Bay Buccaneers playbook before he was even traded to the team.  It would be a violation of NFL rules, if that was actually the case.  Our hunch is that he was serious and had the book delivered as soon as Tom Brady signed with the team.  However, we don't really care, so good luck to both men.

Amazon and the NFL just extended their contract to allow the company to stream Thursday Night Football games for the next three years.  The deal is reportedly worth $200 million, which is a relief, because we were worried Amazon might be struggling to survive these days.  We're always looking for ways to make better use of our Prime account, so maybe BDH and Little Buddha would enjoy this option.  Of course, why wouldn't we just watch the games on television?   Maybe we should check out the new Amazon comedy Upload instead.  That looks like it could be fun.

Harrison Ford almost caused an accident when the plane he was piloting crossed a runway where another plane was landing.  This is not Ford's first safety incident, and he's almost 78 years old, so maybe it's time to call it a day on the piloting.

We're excited for tonight's special Parks and Recreation episode.  Watching Leslie Knope check in on her friends during this crisis sounds perfect.  Here's a quick preview:

Can't wait!

Guns N' Roses is apparently working on a new album.  It would be their first release since Axl Rose put out Chinese Democracy in 2008, and the first record to include Slash and Duff McKagan since The Spaghetti Incident? dropped in 1993.  No word on a release date, but it's nice to have something to look forward to down the road.  Gotta say, we're pleasantly surprised.  We expected this reunion to last for about three shows before it imploded, but apparently there was enough money involved to soothe egos.

Okay kids, that's going to do it for now.  As a belated tribute to a friend who celebrated her birthday earlier this week, here are the Eagles to close things out with a tune that reminds us of her every time we hear it.  We give you, "Seven Bridges Road," for today's, "Song of the Day."

That's an underrated track.

Thanks for stopping by, everyone.  It's always a treat to see you.  BDH and Little Buddha say you're totally invited to come back later to watch tonight's Parks and Recreation episode with them.  We even have snacks!  Otherwise, stay safe, 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.

 

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