🌞 North vs. South – September 16 2021




Happy Thursday.

Your meme lesson for the day is known as “beaning.” Young people buy up cans of baked beans and spread them all over property, cars, homes. It is a sticky and stupid practical joke and parents are being encouraged to be on the lookout for their children buying up copious amounts of canned beans. 

credit: manchester evening news

In Case You Missed It. 

🍑 Governments worldwide are seeing the highest spike in food prices in 50 years. 

😳 The Justice Department has filed a suit against a New York health insurance company for allegedly cheating the government out of millions of dollars for fraudulent Medicare billing. 

🇰🇵 Kim Jong Un’s sister Kim Yo Jong has threatened the “complete destruction” of North Korea’s relationship with South Korea after both countries conducted ballistic missile testing. 

Coronavirus Update: 😷 Total confirmed cases as of 1:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday: 41,400,046 — Total deaths: 664,572

  • One of Florida's biggest vaccine activists just lost 6 of her family members to Covid in 3 weeks. They were all unvaccinated. 
  • Babies could be given the Pfizer vaccine as early as this Winter. 
  • EU pledges 200 million vaccine doses to Africa, low-income nations.
  • A study out of Israel showed that antibody levels in patients were 10 times higher after a third booster shot than they were after the second. 
  • Researchers say some people are showing signs of super-human immunity to Covid-19. 















*Stock data as of market close, cryptocurrency data as of 5:00am ET. 

  • Markets: Stocks went green again on some good economic data while crypto bounced across multiple large cap coins. 


Program Rate Change APR Change
30 year 2.69%  0.02% 2.74%  0.02%
15 year 1.99%  0.02% 2.06%  0.03%


The Lead: The Financial Cliff

Mitch McConnell has vowed to vote against a debt ceiling increase. credit: getty

The United States is teetering on the brink of the debt ceiling, meaning that Congress has to act fast to avoid a default. 

What does this mean? It means that the U.S. will hit the maximum level of debt allowed in the coming weeks and could default on payments to creditors unless Congress increases the amount of debt allowed. Democrats will vote for this quite handily but Republicans really don’t want to. Republicans also do not want to default on the country’s debt and crash the economy so they may be forced into a corner. 

Democrats are betting that at least 10 Republicans will vote with them to increase the amount of debt allowed but Republicans’ problem with this is that there is no end in sight. The Congressional Budget Office is clear that the country continues to take on more debt than it can handle and the President’s plan to pay it back does not add up. How many more times can the debt limit be raised? What is the end game? And why does this keep coming up? 

The Rich Get Richer

credit: getty

The Economic Policy Institute estimates that CEO compensation is up 1,322% since 2020. Alright for some! 

Meanwhile, the average worker’s wage is up 18%. This means that CEOs in the top 350 firms in the U.S. made $24.2 million in 2020. 

“It used to be that in the 1950s, 60s, and 70s, CEOs made 3.3 times what a top 0.1% earner made. Now, it’s more than six times,” Lawrence Mishel, a distinguished fellow at the EPI, told CNBC. “CEOs now are making 351 times that of a typical worker, but back in 1978, it was only 31 times. In 1989, it was 61 times.”

That is some kind of income gap! 

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A World Without Passwords

credit: microsoft

Microsoft is letting users go password-free starting today. This sounds a bit scary but no more than using password123 as your password! 

Microsoft users will now be able to use Microsoft Authenticators to sign in from other devices or an email or text authentication. Microsoft has been working on this for years so this rollout is kind of a big deal. This is the way of the future. It is far more secure than guessable passwords!

Fixing The Broken Recall System

credit: getty

California Democrats are ready to fix the broken recall system that saw $276 million flushed down the toilet. A day after Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) defeated a Republican-backed effort to remove him, Democrats are looking to make a permanent change. 

Newsom received an overwhelming 63.9% of the vote to stave off the challenge. State Democratic Assemblymember Marc Berman, who's helping lead the drive to overhaul the process, said in a statement that "a small minority of voters" shouldn't be able "to initiate a costly recall that wastes $276 million."

Many argue that the threshold of signatures needed is far too low to begin a recall process. For context:

  • The GOP-led campaign reached the current threshold of signatures to hold a recall, after garnering over 1,495,709 verified voters signatures — about 12% of all ballots cast in the last gubernatorial election.

The big picture: Berman said he and Sen. Steve Glazer, chair of the Senate Committee on Elections and Constitutional Amendments, had begun efforts to "reform our undemocratic recall process.

News By The Numbers

101. That's the age of the world's oldest lobsterman lobsterwoman Lobster Fisher. Virginia Oliver started trapping lobsters in Rockland, Maine when she was just 8 years old, 10 years before the start of World War 2. She's still going strong and hauls daily lobsters alongside her 78-year-old son Max. 

$181 million. That was the settlement amount against the chicken industry for a case that accused them of price-fixing. If you bought chicken between 2009 and 2020, you may be eligible for a payout but don’t expect a lot of cash. Your share will probably be worth a few dollars if that. 

90%. That's the percentage of Fox News staff members who are now vaccinated. The White House praised the conservative news network for the high dosing amounts and encouraged their on-air staff to talk about the positive benefits of getting the vaccine.

Stimulus Kept Millions From Poverty

giphy.gif credit: reuters

Census figures are in and it turns out that stimulus helped keep millions from slipping further into poverty. 

Digging deeper

The U.S. poverty rate rose in 2020 after five years of annual declines, but the broader Supplemental Poverty Measure, which factors in some expenses and accounts for a wider range of income—including hundreds of billions of dollars in pandemic aid—dropped to a record low 9.1%, marking the first time that yardstick has fallen below the official poverty rate.

Household income declined significantly for the first time in nearly a decade, but 2020’s relatively low poverty rate highlights the role of government safety nets, including the more than $400 billion dollars distributed through the first two rounds of stimulus checks.

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