Saturday Clutter: Historic Unemployment, Trump Inner Circle Gets Sick, Barack Obama, Summer Cancelled in Boston, Delta Airlines, Virtual Comic-Con, NBA, NFL Notes, One Chicago Trivia, Rihanna, and more
Welcome back! Come on in, have a seat. How are you? What a dreary day. It's raining now (we won't talk about what it did earlier), and we're supposed to be dealing with strong winds all day, with the temperatures staying in the 40's. Feels more like early April than May. We don't care for it. Don't care for any of it. I guess the positive side is that it will be easy to stay inside today. Since we're all here, how about we check out today's headlines? BDH and Little Buddha just made a fresh pot of coffee, so grab yourself a nice medium DD, and let's clear out some Saturday Clutter.
Hold on, before we do that - We probably won't be back until Monday, so a quick note about tomorrow. First off, we wish you all a happy Mother's Day. Second, the day comes with all sorts of challenges for so many people for a variety of reasons. If you're one of those folks, we send you our best wishes and urge you to be good to yourself.
Now, let's get to work...
April's unemployment numbers were horrific, and the country is now looking at an unemployment rate of 14.7%. That's the worst since the Great Depression, as the coronavrus pandemic continues to overwhelm the economy. The Labor Department says there was a reporting error, and if certain people had been classified correctly, the real number would be nearly 20%. Most of these losses are considered temporary, but that is subject to how well officials handle this situation, so who knows how long it will take for these numbers to recover.
Mike Pence's spokesperson Katie Miller has tested positive for the coronavirus. Between Miller and Donald Trump's personal valet who we discussed yesterday, the virus continues to get deeper into the inner circle at the White House. Turns out Trump can't just wish the virus away, as much as he might wish he could right now. Miller is married to Trump's chief KKK member Stephen Miller, so you'll notice some irony that Miller's most recent push to close our borders, supposedly to keep the virus from coming into the country, didn't really work out as he might have expected.
Hold on, Ivanka Trump's personal assistant also reportedly tested positive for the coronavirus, and FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn is now in isolation after interacting with Katie Miller. There have also reportedly been 11 Secret Service agents who have tested positive, but it's unknown if they work at the White House. Team Trump wants to pretend this nightmare is almost over, but it's clearly coming closer to them as we speak.
Trump is also such a fraud, he somehow argues Katie Miller testing positive for the coronavirus confirms that frequent testing is a bad idea. If she hadn't been tested, she could have been spreading the virus to everyone she came into contact with at the White House. You know the notorious germaphobe is getting three times a day while he tells the public there's no need for them to be tested, and the hardcore MAGA crowd falls for it. The stupidity here is exhausting.
Thousands of Americans are dying every day because of the coronavirus, and the economy now resembles that of the Great Depression. However, nothing will distract Donald Trump from his only interest, which is himself. The man lacks any trace of empathy. He's a damaged human being who needs professional help to address his mental health issues, instead of punishing the rest of us because daddy never loved him.
Doesn't feel bad for anyone but himself. (pic via summarizer.co)
Former President Barack Obama was reportedly critical of recent Trump administration actions, including the response to the coronavirus pandemic and DOJ's abandonment of the case against Michael Flynn. It sounds like Obama is finally ready to start becoming a major public figure again, which is one of the best things that could happen to Joe Biden.
Summer is cancelled in Boston: Mayor Marty Walsh announced there will be no Fourth of July fireworks celebration this year, and any other event that involves a large public gathering will be scrapped until at least Labor Day. The Boston Red Sox don't fall under Walsh's mandate. They're an issue to be decided at the state level, but this seems to imply that the best-case scenario is that we could see two baseball games at Fenway Park in September this year. That's not fun...but it's not surprising. At least we'll probably be able to convince ourselves that next year's tickets are "free" after we get credit for this season.
Delta Airlines is dropping service to 10 airports as part of an 85% reduction in flights, as the airlines continue to be slammed by the coronavirus crisis. What would it take to get you on a plane right now?
It was a little sad to hear that the Sweet Tomatoes restaurant chain is permanently closing because of the coronavirus pandemic. The restaurants are known as the Souplantation in southern California, and we visited those a number of times way back when, while visiting Grandma and Grandpa Clutter during winter vacation. The food wasn't anything special, but the company was fantastic. However, the owners are right when they say it doesn't seem like buffets are going to be an acceptable business model again anytime soon, if at all.
Comic-Con looks like it might be going virtual this year. The mega-event was cancelled in April because of coronavirus concerns, but the organizers sent out a tweet yesterday about “Comic-Con @ Home 2020," so it seems like something is in the works. We'll be keeping an eye on this, particularly to find out if there's a Doctor Who component, and get back to you when we know more details.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver says no decision has been made on resuming the season yet, but if it happens, fans will not be in attendance. Silver seems to feel that the league doesn't have to make a final call for about another month. However, we don't see how this can be done safely without widespread testing, and who in their right mind thinks that's going to be available by mid-June? The only qualifier is that the NBA seems to have better access to testing than just about anyone else, but we give it a 25% chance the games resume. At this point, Silver, the owners, and players, should be figuring out how to maximize the odds of next season taking place.
Quarterback Joe Burrow still hasn't signed his rookie contract with the Cincinnati Bengals, because he's, "waiting to see what happens over the next three months," with the coronavirus pandemic. A lot of NFL fans seem to be in a state of denial about whether football is going to start on time/at all this year. It's the same issue that's facing the NBA, MLB, and every other professional sports league. The odds are against the games starting on schedule, so the Bengals have likely asked Burrow to wait a little bit before forcing them to pay him the $24 million he's due when he signs the contract.
New Indianapolis Colts quarterback Philip Rivers has already secured his post-NFL career: Rivers will become a high school football coach in Alabama after he retires, so it doesn't seem like he'll be interested in an extension after his 1-year deal with the Colts expires.
Brett Favre disputes he was paid $1.1 million by the state of Mississippi for speeches he never made. The former quarterback claims the money was for some PSA's that he did for the state. Seems like it should be pretty easy to determine which one of these is the correct story. Favre is returning the money, which is a little odd if his version is true.
This should be fun: Some "One Chicago" cast members did a virtual trivia contest yesterday to benefit the Greater Chicago Food Depository. We'll post the video now, and then BDH and Little Buddha will see how well they do after we're done here:
It's good to see that Upload has officially been renewed for a second season. As we mentioned about a week ago, the Amazon series, which looks at what happens with you cross the afterlife with capitalism, was an entertaining ride. We enjoyed all of the characters, the humor was sharp, and the twists of the season finale left us wanting more. Now we wait to see what creator Greg Daniels has in store next for everyone.
We're sorry to hear that Roy Horn, of the legendary Siegfried and Roy Las Vegas act, died yesterday from coronavirus-related complications. Horn had a stroke after being mauled by a tiger in 2003, so it makes sense he would have been vulnerable. The performer was 75 years old. Our condolences go out to his family and friends.
Okay kids, that's going to do it for now. Here's Rihanna (with Calvin Harris) to close things out with, "We Found Love," for today's, "Song of the Day."
Thanks for stopping by, everyone. It was great to see you, as always. BDH and Little Buddha invite you all to come back later if you want to play that "One Chicago" trivia game with them, but be warned they can get a little competitive. Otherwise, be good, stay safe, and we'll catch up with you again soon (with hopefully better weather.) Until next time, that's today's Clearing out the Clutter, and we are outta here.
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