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Friday Clutter: Trump Indictments, January 6 Select Committee, Federal Execution Pause, U.S. Supreme Court, Twitter, Boston Red Sox, NCAA Endorsements, Rob Zombie, and more

Thursday Clutter: Trump Organization Indictments, Bill Cosby, Britney Spears, Boston Red Sox, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Led Zeppelin, and more

Hi everyone,

Welcome back!  How are you?  It's a chilly 70 degrees here this morning, which is terrific.  Last night was the best sleep I've had so far this week.  I only briefly woke up about four times, and that was fine.  BDH and Little Buddha say the highs will be about 80 degrees, and there's a decent amount of rain in the forecast for today and tomorrow.  Some people may not want to start their long weekend like that, but we say, it's good for the garden, so it's good for us.  The guys also say we should have a staff meeting later today.  Hmm, I wonder what that's about.  Anyway, let's get to work.  There's a fresh pot of coffee on the counter, so grab yourself a nice medium DD, because it's time to clear out some Thursday Clutter.

The Trump Organization and CFO Allen Weisselberg are expected to be indicted this afternoon on tax fraud charges, according to reports.  These are the first charges coming from Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance's investigation into Donald Trump's company, but the big question is, will others follow?  Trump himself is not expected to be charged with anything today, but are prosecutors prepared to move forward if Weisselberg doesn't turn on his boss?  We know the grand jury has heard from folks like former insider Michael Cohen, so here's hoping this is only the first chapter of this story.

Donald Trump Allen Weisselberg July 1 2021Allen Weisselberg and Donald Trump.  (pic via nbcnews.com)

Two-time former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld died yesterday at age 88.  Rumsfeld had a long career in politics but deserves to mostly be remembered for being one of the founding fathers of the disastrous Iraq war.  A war that was launched on a lie about that country's alleged involvement in 9/11, and which Rumsfeld completely underestimated how long it would last.

It's repulsive that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court threw out Bill Cosby's sexual assault conviction yesterday, claiming an alleged promise by the former district attorney's office not to prosecute Cosby in 2005, in exchange for his testimony in a civil suit, was used against him.  Why wasn't this brought up at Cosby's 2018 trial?  There's nothing in writing that says such a promise was made, and now a non-repentant sex offender is back on the streets.  Let's be clear, nothing about yesterday means Cosby is innocent.  He was released on a procedural issue, not because he didn't hurt his victims.  Our thoughts go out to the women who were brave enough to tell their stories about being assaulted by Cosby.  Things like this are one of the many reasons why survivors so often don't go to the authorities, and now advocates are concerned this decision will have a further chilling effect on reporting..

Cosby's former co-star Phylicia Rashad tweeted her excitement about his release yesterday.  That's incredibly disturbing, considering that Rashad is the incoming dean of Howard University's recently restored College of Fine Arts.  She tried to profess sympathy for sexual assault victims later in the day, but she already sent a clear message that should worry her students.  Howard University officials already tried to distance themselves from Rashad's comments, but they need to reexamine her ability to stay in her position.

The judge in the Britney Spears case rejected an attempt to remove Jamie Spears from the singer's conservatorship, despite the singer's recent statements about her feelings regarding having her father in control of her life.  Spears made it explicitly clear that she wants her father out, and that she feels trapped and abused by her current situation.  Yet the court is free to ignore this adult woman's wishes without a second thought and continue to imprison her in this structure, while a sex offender like Bill Cosby is a free man on a technicality. 

A federal judge blocked a new Florida law which would fine social media companies who remove content or ban (conservative) politicians.  The law was clearly unconstitutional in the first place, but it's good to see it's been halted.

It should be alarming to everyone that a Microsoft executive testified yesterday that the federal government secretly asks for records for thousands of the company's users every year.

Oregon officials say 63 people have died since Friday because of the intense heat wave which has gripped the Pacific Northwest like much of the rest of the country this week.  The difference is that part of the country isn't prepared for this kind of weather, so the impact is even more severe.  The climate crisis is already here, friends, and it will continue getting worse if we don't take action.  That's why an infrastructure bill that doesn't address this problem is worthless. 

The Boston Red Sox beat the Kansas City Royals 6-2 last night for their sixth straight win. Boston starter Martín Pérez gave up a solo home run in the second inning, and one might have been a little nervous at that moment, considering his recent struggles.  However, Pérez did a nice job after that, giving up just two runs in 5 1/3 innings, and the bullpen continued to fire on all cylinders for the rest of the game.  That gave the Red Sox offense a chance to do their thing, and Xander Bogaerts, J.D. Martinez, and Hunter Renfroe came through, driving in Boston's six runs.  The Red Sox now have a three game lead on the Tampa Bay Rays in the AL East.  They'll go for the sweep against the Royals this afternoon, weather permitting, with Nate Eovaldi taking the mound against Kansas City.

Baseball is officially at the midpoint of the season, and the Sox are on pace for 100 wins this year, with a record of 50-31.  Can they make it to 100?  We wouldn't bet against them.  This team has a remarkable resiliency, and the countdown to Chris Sale's return is about to start any day now.  If the team can get the lefty back by the end of July, and he's even 75% of his former self, that's equivalent to making a major trade.  As much as we want a championship every year, the real ask is just for meaningful baseball in the fall, and things are looking good on that front.

Details of the sexual assault allegations against Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer have been released, and they are disturbing.  The Dodgers should cut Bauer today, and MLB should be taking steps to suspend/ban him from baseball as soon as possible.

Hold on, it's July 1.  Happy Bobby Bonilla Day, folks!  Yes, it's time for one of baseball's great annual traditions, where the New York Mets pay Bobby Bonilla $1.2 million today, as they have since 2011 and will until 2035, instead of just paying him the $5.9 million they owed him in 2000.  See, Mets ownership thought they were being so clever because they were making money with this guy named Bernie Madoff and figured it would go on forever.  Oops.  It's one of the most entertaining stories we've ever heard about stupid owners.  Cheers, Bobby!

We didn't get a chance to watch the newest Loki episode yesterday, but we'll try to get to it soon.

Hey Arnold Schwarzenegger fans  - The Ringer website has an extensive oral history about the making of Terminator 2 that you might enjoy.

Former Doctor Who star Catherine Tate will appear in a Netflix mock documentary about life in a British women's prison next year.   Tate, who used to have her own sketch show, is a very funny woman (who was completely misused on The Office), so we'll check out Hard Cell next year.

Okay kids, that's going to do it for now.   Here's Led Zeppelin to close things out with the classic, "Fool in the Rain" for today's "Song of the Day."

Thanks for dropping by, everyone.  It was a treat to see you, as always.  We hope the second half of the year gets off to a great start for all of you, so enjoy your day, stay dry, 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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