Monday Clutter: Trump, Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren, Coronavirus, Rayshard Brooks, SpongeBob SquarePants, MLB, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, and more
Wednesday Clutter: Trump, John Bolton, New Facebook Tool, MLB, NBA, Tom Brady, 30 Rock, Christopher Meloni, Keanu Reeves Date, Evanescence, and more

Tuesday Clutter: Historic Supreme Court Decision, Coronavirus, Ted Cruz, Phantom Gourmet, MLB Fiasco, NFL, Lady Gaga, and more

Hi everyone,

Welcome back!  How are you?  I'm just waiting for BDH and Little Buddha to give me today's weather forecast.  Ah, here they are.  Hi guys.  Sunny with highs in the upper 70's?  We can work with that.  I definitely need to water the garden today.  We could use about a week of a solid rain around here.  I also have to go grocery shopping, and our staff has already given me a list of all of the snacks they would like.  They also made a fresh pot of coffee, so grab yourself a nice medium DD, and let's clear out some Tuesday Clutter.

In a historic win for equality, the United States Supreme Court ruled 6-3 yesterday that the 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits employment discrimination against members of the LGBTQ+ community.  Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Neil Gorsuch joined the liberal members of the court for the majority.  The fact that Gorsuch wrote the decision is likely to cause a meltdown in conservative circles, much like the tantrum Justice Samuel Alito threw in his dissent, claiming that "sex" discrimination doesn't include gender identity or sexual orientation. Alito claims he's a champion of reading the "plain language" of statutes when determining constitutionality, but that's only the case when it allows him to get to the ideological decision he wanted to reach in the first place.  Gorsuch supports the same approach to interpreting the law.  It's a strategy to protect entrenched power structures, but it still accidentally reaches the right conclusion once in a blue moon.

Supreme Court June 16 2020A landmark ruling.  (pic via bdnews24.com)

Justice Brett Kavanaugh made largely the same argument as Alito in his dissent, saying it was up to Congress to expand the definition of "sex" in the law.  Kavanaugh then tried to pretend he was good with the outcome anyway.  We have decades of smarminess to look forward to with this guy.  Remember that when anyone tries to tell you there's no difference between Republican and Democratic presidential candidates.  The decision will improve lives across the country, and it should have far-reaching legal ramifications in the future.  It's also a major defeat for Donald Trump, whose administration has been trying to eliminate all legal protections for transgender people.  However, Trump had a muted response yesterday, because he still needs to the court to save him on multiple fronts, so he won't risk angering the justices now.

Kavanaugh's support of discrimination yesterday is one more reason why Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) should be defeated this November.  Her support of Kavanaugh was critical to him being confirmed, and she should face the consequences of her actions.

The FDA revoked the emergency authorization for hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine to be used as coronavirus treatments yesterday, as the evidence continues to grow that they don't work and in fact can have serious side effects.  Score a win for science over politics for once.  Our first thought was that this decision is likely to cost someone at the FDA their job for going against Donald Trump.  However, at this point, it seems more likely that Trump will claim he never said the treatment would work, just that it was something people were looking into.  He's clearly given up on trying to fix the pandemic at this point and would rather people stop getting tested.

The good news is that a second wave of the coronavirus hasn't hit the United States yet.  The bad news is that's because the first wave never left.  As much as Donald Trump finds it inconvenient, we're still dealing with an active public health threat.  On a related note, please wear your masks, friends.

We're sorry to hear that U.S. Rep. Ilham Omar's father died from coronavirus-related complications.  Our condolences go out to her and the rest of her family.

Actor Ron Perlman has been in a Twitter feud with Senator Ted Cruz over a variety of topics for the last few days.  If this was a boxing match, it would have been a knockout win for Perlman in the first 30 seconds.  He's been dominating Cruz at every turn.  Cruz's attempts at trash-talking have the impact of a fly, whereas every response from Perlman would send Cruz through a wall.  We can't remember the last time we saw someone so consistently destroyed in a social media fight.  One would argue that if Cruz had any pride, he'd just quietly walk away from this, but given his subservience to Donald Trump after Trump attacked his wife and father, we know Cruz isn't dealing with an abundance of self-respect.

Local Boston TV food show Phantom Gourmet is on "hiatus" after people complained that CEO/co-host Dave Andelman made a number of racist posts on social media about the Black Lives Matter protests.  We've often had Phantom Gourmet on in the background while watering the plants, but we'll be changing the channel moving forward.  What is striking to us about this story is how many conservative online commenters default to "what about the right to free speech" when they complain about this decision.  Let's review - Andelman has the right to make his comments, the public has the right to criticize his comments, and the TV station has the right to decide whether or not his comments are bad for their business.  Everybody's rights are doing just fine here. 

The Federal Reserve announced it is expanding its program to buy corporate credit yesterday.  The program now has an upper limit of $750 billion which seems like a lot to us.  Stocks rallied on the news, but shouldn't it be setting off a warning sign to anyone that corporate America needs this much assistance from the federal government to stay afloat?

This is going to get ugly:  MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred now says he's not confident there will be baseball unless the players agree not to file a grievance against the owners for allegedly violating a March agreement that established the framework for playing this year.  That's all you need to know to confirm that the owners' claims of massive losses if the players don't agree to further pay cuts are utter nonsense.  They were negotiating in bad faith from the beginning, and now they'd rather blow up the season than pay these guys what they already agreed to a few months ago. 

Union boss Tony Clark described the players as "disgusted" by Manfred's comments.  As we've said many times before, the pandemic was likely to shut down this season anyway.  That would have been a drag, but people would have understood.  Now, the stench of greed hangs over the sport in a way it hasn't in close to 20 years.  This is going to cost the sport moving forward, and it was a completely self-inflicted wound.  Also, Manfred has done an abominable job of handling this situation, and it's clear that baseball would be better served with someone else in the commissioner's office.  Preferably, someone who actually likes baseball.

Speaking of awful commissioners, Roger Goodell now thinks it would be a great idea for a NFL team to sign Colin Kaepernick.  He's right, of course, but Goodell's statement yesterday made no mention of the league blackballing Kaepernick in 2016.  No reason to bring up the ugly past, right?  He couldn't even bring himself to say the quarterback's name.

Several members of the Dallas Cowboys and Houston Texans have reportedly tested positive for the coronavirus, including Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliot.  You know this is only the beginning.  NFL training camps are supposed to start in a little over a month, but the odds that they're able to start on-time and that the season will go off without a hitch seem like a long-shot at best.  We just hope it doesn't turn into a repeat of the MLB fiasco.

Apparently the San Francisco 49ers like head coach Kyle Shanahan.  The team reportedly gave Shanahan a three-year contract extension which will keep him in charge through the 2025 season.

Hey Supernatural fans - it may be a while before we see how the show concludes, but you can watch the first 13 episodes of the final season on Netflix now, in case you need to catch up on anything.

Okay kids, that's going to do it for now.  In recognition of Pride Month and yesterday's Supreme Court decision, here's Lady Gaga to close things out with, "Born This Way" for today's, "Song of the Day."

Thanks for stopping by, everyone.  It was great to see you, as always.  Be good, stay safe, 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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