(Review) Doctor Who: The Giggle
Tuesday Clutter: Jack Smith v. Trump, U.S. Supreme Court, Texas Abortion Ban, Boston Red Sox, Shohei Ohtani, New England Patriots, Doctor Who, GH, Sarah McLachlan, and more

Monday Clutter: Trump, Rudy Giuliani, Texas Supreme Court, Elon Musk, Boston Red Sox, Shohei Ohtani, Kansas City Chiefs, Doctor Who, Van Halen, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, and more

Hi everyone,

Welcome back, and a happy Monday to you all.  How was your weekend?  We loved the final Doctor Who anniversary special that aired on Saturday.  Just loved it.  It was both a series finale and launch in one episode, and we can't wait to see the Ncuti Gatwa era start on Christmas Day.  Took care of a few errands yesterday morning and then called it a day when the rain appeared.

Speaking of which, that rain is still continuing at the moment.  However, BDH and Little Buddha say it will end later this morning, which is great.  Unfortunately, the wind chill will keep temperatures in the low 30's.  That's not fun.  Oh well, let's check out the headlines.  The guys made coffee, so grab yourself a nice medium DD, because it's time to clear out some Clutter.

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Donald Trump won't take the stand in his own defense in his $250 million NY civil fraud trial.  Trump, who already testified during the prosecution's case, was scheduled to do so again today.  However, he bailed, probably because he knows he's already cooked, and he's always a breath away from possibly committing perjury.   Trump has already been found liable for fraud in this case.  That's why he's spent this entire time lashing out against Judge Arthur Engoron and the judge's law clerk, in an attempt to distract from his guilt. There are a few remaining questions to be resolved, but the biggest remaining issue is the size of the penalty against him.  (Spoiler:  It should be $250 million.)

Donald Trump December 11 2023Trump wants to avoid being under oath whenever possible.  (pic via latimes.com)

As Donald Trump breaks the 50% mark in Iowa polls, it reconfirms that it doesn't matter that Nikki Haley is consolidating the anti-Trump voters.  They make up a small minority of the GOP.  Most Republicans are perfectly fine with a serial criminal in the White House. 

The trial to determine how much Rudy Giuliani must pay two former Georgia election workers for defaming them is scheduled to begin today.  Hopefully the jury will assess a significant amount.  Giuliani is already drowning in financial problems, so who knows how he'll come up with another dollar.  Regardless, the MAGA mob won't stop trying to destroy U.S. democracy unless they learn they'll pay a major price for their actions.

It's outrageous that the Texas Supreme Court is temporarily blocking a woman's ability to get an abortion, despite the knowledge that the fetus is unlikely to survive to birth, and that her own health is at risk if she continues to carry the pregnancy.  The court has no role here.  This is blatant interference in Katie Cox's fundamental ability to control her own body, and it shows yet again how much conservatives hate women.  They couldn't care less if Cox eventually dies. The only thing that makes these guys more excited than harming women is passing tax cuts for the wealthy.

Elon Musk reinstated conspiracy theorist Alex Jones' Twitter account over the weekend.  This is the same Jones who repeatedly referred to the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting as a hoax.  That should help Twitter's current problems with advertisers.  Musk really is determined to transform the platform into as much of a cesspool as possible.

This is a busy week for investors, as they await the release of November's Consumer Price Index data on Tuesday, and any announcements following the Fed's last meeting of the year on Wednesday.  Barring any major surprises, the Clutter investment team suspects it will be business as usual re: interest rates for the time being.  Our staff would be surprised to hear any talk of another rate hike coming, and they'd be shocked if there was an indication of a cut arriving in the near future.  Chairman Jay Powell and company have repeatedly made it clear they'd rather fight inflation for too long than end too soon. 

The Boston Red Sox acquired outfielder Tyler O'Neill on Friday from the St. Louis Cardinals for two minor league players.  Tyler is a two-time Gold Glove winner, and he's also a right-handed batter, so those are both wins for the Sox.  On the other hand, he's been battling injuries for two years, so how much can the team depend on him?  This feels like a moderate upgrade for the Red Sox.  However, new baseball boss Craig Breslow still has plenty of work ahead of him, particularly when it comes to upgrading the starting pitching.

Shohei Ohtani agreed to a 10-year/$700 million deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers over the weekend.  The now-former Los Angeles Angels star doesn't even have to buy a new place to live.  Ohtani will start off as a DH, while he recovers from his latest Tommy John surgery.  After that, the Dodgers are counting on him to resume his greatness as a two-way player in 2025. 

According to reports, the majority of Ohtani's salary is deferred, which will help the Dodgers with the luxury tax.  It also eats into the actual value of the contract, since inflation will creep in over time.  However, $700 million is still $700 million.  Baseball owners aren't hurting, so good for Ohtani for getting his money.  There are reportedly no player opt-out clauses in the deal, so we'll be interested to see how the next 10 years play out for both Ohtani and the Dodgers.

The New England Patriots had yesterday off after their Thursday win, so we watched the Buffalo Bills beat the Kansas City Chiefs 20-17 in an exciting game that was decided by a brutal, but proper, penalty.  It looked like the Chiefs were about to score a last-minute touchdown to likely win the game, when Travis Kelce lateraled a pass to wide receiver Kadarius Toney, who ran into the end zone.  However, the play was called back, because Toney had lined up offside before the snap. Talk about a back-breaker.

There's no argument, Toney messed up.  Unfortunately,  Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid embarrassed themselves with their whining afterwards that the referees didn't warn them ahead of time.  Toney is a professional football player.  He should know where to stand, and he was looking right at the ball before the snap.  He should have known better, and Mahomes and Reid should have kept their mouths shut afterwards instead of acting like spoiled children.  It was an all-around disappointing end to a terrific game.

We're sorry to hear that former NFL tight end Frank Wycheck died on Saturday after a fall at his home.  He was just 52 years old.  The linked article said it was Wycheck's request that his family work with, "experts for ongoing brain injury (TBI) and CTE research," which makes it sound like may have struggled after retirement.  Our condolences go out to his family and friends.

Barbie finally makes its streaming debut on Max this Friday. 

John Oliver shared some thoughts about Jim Cramer and Thomas the Tank Engine yesterday.  It's safe to say Oliver's not a fan of the Mad Money host.  The Clutter investment team learned a lot from Cramer's book, "Confessions of a Street Addict," but they wouldn't take stock tips from him.

We've got the trailer for Ncuti Gatwa's first full Doctor Who adventure on Christmas.  It's immediately clear that a new day is here:

If you're wondering about the status of the proposed Who's the Boss? revival, so is everyone connected to the project.

Wolfgang Van Halen and Michael Anthony reconnected for the first time in 20 years last week, in a gathering of former Van Halen bass players.  Anthony attended Mammoth WVH's show in Las Vegas and had nothing but praise for it on social media.  The fact that these two get along makes it even sillier that some people are still mad about Wolfgang's stint in Van Halen.  Eddie wanted to play with his son, and if that move didn't happen, the group would have ended even earlier.

Joe Satriani explained how working with Mick Jagger is helping him prepare for this upcoming Van Halen "Best of All Worlds" tour in 2024 with Sammy Hagar, Michael Anthony, and Jason Bonham.

Ghost's Tobias Forge said he's already got a few songs ready for the next record.  No word on a release date, but we look forward to hearing what he comes up with next.

Okay kids, that's going to do it for now.  Seeing how Christmas is two weeks away, it's time for us to start breaking out a few holiday tunes.  Here's Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers to kick things off with a live version of, "Christmas All Over Again" for today's, "Song of the Day."

Thanks for stopping by, folks.  It was great to see you, as always.  Enjoy the rest of your day, be careful driving if the roads are slippery, 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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