Congress is still trying to come to an agreement on the next stimulus package, but they also have an impeachment hitting the Senate floor today.
House Democrats expect to vote on the stimulus package in the next two weeks. They are arguing with Republicans about the $1,400 direct checks and the $15 minimum wage. Democrats want it. Republicans don’t.
There is also talk of lowering the eligibility for those $1,400 checks from $75,000 per year in income to $50,000 per year. This would leave out a lot of people who are struggling and could use that money.
Democrats have also found some money for the transportation industry to the tune of $50 billion for airlines, railways, and aviation manufacturers. This is in addition to the money already marked for this industry in the Covid relief bill.
While all of this legislation is going on, the Senate opens the floor for impeachment trials of former President Trump today. His lawyers filed their opening case on Monday, and his defense revolves around arguing that it is illegal to impeach a former President. They also say that the former President did not actually call for violence when he urged his supporters to “fight” to overturn the election. They call the impeachment trials “political theater.”
Former President Trump will also have to defend himself in Georgia, where the Secretary of State says it has launched an investigation into whether the former President violated election laws when he urged state officials to overturn the election results.
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Lego has launched a lineup of bricks for adults called Lego Botanical Collection. These are “home decor” items that you can assemble yourself in order to relax and then leave on display to decorate your home.
This is much like adult coloring books. It can be meditative – or tedious, depending on your perspective. Think of it like a bonsai that you can’t possibly kill. In fact, the Lego line does include a Bonsai kit with 878 pieces. You do not become one with the plant and shape it in conversation with its inner creative force. You assemble according to instructions.
The pieces are made with plant-blasted plastic and sustainably-sourced sugarcane.
The island is designed to collect waste, sort it, and find ways to recycle it. It also has living quarters for the seafaring environmental pirates aboard.
The 8th Continent is just a concept but it won the Jacques Rougerie foundation’s 2020 Grand Prix Award for Architecture and Innovation. It sure is needed. As much as 8 million tons of plastic floats into our oceans per year with dire consequences. See the sea lion story below.
$74,500. That is how much it costs to buy Scout, a robot/pet that can carry around a variety of objects to help you around the house. It can now find it’s own charger when it needs it too. Good robot!
60%. That is how much gun sales rose in January, the largest single-month rise in sales since the FBI began tracking this in 1998. Last year, gun sales were up 40% to over $39.5 million guns sold in the U.S.
3,000 miles. That is how far a 70-year-old British man rowed across the Atlantic Ocean by himself to raise over $1 million for Alzheimer’s research. The trip took him 6 weeks and he completed it last Saturday.
$7,000. That is how much the state of New York will offer for funeral expenses for people who have died of Covid. Helpful but that may not be enough. See above story.
Sea lions have the highest mortality rate from cancer than any other mammal group, including humans. In fact, sea lions in California are dying from cancer at an alarming rate. A new study estimates that between 18 and 23 percent of adult lions will suffer from cancer.
How does a sea lion get cancer? Scientists say that toxins have been increasingly dumped into their environment and they are suffering the consequences. Scientists say that this ecosystem is not isolated from humans and that humans will follow suit if environmental changes are not made and fast.
“The decades of research looking into this deadly disease clearly shows the ocean environment we all share is in trouble and that we need to find solutions to protect our collective health,” says the study from The Marine Mammal Center.
Did you know that traditional funeral burials account for over 4 million gallons of embalming fluid, 20 million board feet of hardwood, 81,000 tons of metal, and 1.6 million tons of concrete poured into the ground each year in America alone? Cremation is a slightly greener alternative but it still takes about 20 gallons of gasoline per cremation and it vaporizes heavy metals into the air from dental fillings and surgical implants.
In short, the cemetery business is not at all eco-friendly. It is also not wallet-friendly. The average cost of a burial is $9,500.
But there is a movement to change that! The Green Burial Council offers certification to funeral homes that shun practices such as embalming and lining graves with concrete so that they don’t collapse. In fact, concrete liners are used so that cemeteries can be mowed uniformly without graves swelling into mounds but in green cemeteries, natural grasses grow so that no mowing is necessary.
There are currently 82 green cemeteries in the world, but it is a growing movement. The founders of this movement hope that cemeteries become multi-use places for not only natural burials but also guided nature hikes, community round tables on death, and DIY coffin-making classes.
Today’s Live Show
On today’s live show we’re looking at the first draft of new stimulus legislation and whether President Biden buckles on $15 per hour minimum wage. Join us at 9 AM Eastern over your cup of coffee or tea. Click here to watch and subscribe.
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