🌞 Shrinkage – March 10 2022

 

ScoreMaster

 

Happy Thursday.

Researchers say that giant spiders the size of your hand will drop out of the sky along the entire East Coast this spring. You’ve been warned. 

a joro spider in Georgia credit: university of georgia

In Case You Missed It. 

🩺 Idaho passed a bill banning gender reassignment surgeries and hormone therapies for minors. 

🎸 Ed Sheeran is defending his “Shape of You” hit song in a copyright trial in London. 

πŸ₯Ά Russian troops stranded in convoys face temperatures as low as -20C. 

πŸ₯ Ukraine says a maternity hospital was hit by Russian fire, injuring many but thankfully no one was killed. 

Covid Update 😷:

  • new study links Covid diagnosis to economic hardship. 
  • Covid victims and their families are calling for a Covid Memorial Day as the U.S. reaches 1 million Covid deaths. 

MARKETS

Bitcoin

$39,202.16

Ethereum

$2,595.36

Cardano

$0.8054

Dow

33,286.25

S&P

4,277.88

Nasdaq

13,255.55

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

  • Markets: Stocks surged and oil dropped back down to Earth. The UAE said it would support boosting oil production and push the rest of OPEC to do the same.

The Lead: U.S. Government Remains Open

credit: getty

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a $1.5 trillion spending package that would prevent a government shutdown as well as a budget to send more money to Ukraine to the tune of $13.6 billion.

The bill now heads to the Senate and it doesn’t have much time. The current debt limit will be reached on Friday, after which the U.S. will not be allowed to borrow any more money to pay its bills. To address this time crunch, the House also gave the Senate a 4-day package that would fund the government until March 15. 

The bill includes money for what Bloomberg calls “lawmakers pet projects.” It’s a hodgepodge, but it’s something. Like or not, the U.S. does not show any signs of slowing its support for Ukraine and that won’t come cheap. 

However, the U.S. said on Wednesday that it does not support sending fighter jets to Ukraine by way of Poland. This is unexpected. The Pentagon fears that Russia would consider this a direct involvement and redirected some retribution. 

We take this opportunity to remind you that there are other violent conflicts in the world. The United Nations says that hundreds of people have been killed in air attacks in Ethiopia in recent months. 

Biden's Crypto Crackdown

credit: giphy

President Biden issued an executive order on Wednesday aimed at regulating cryptocurrencies. 

It is not very specific, but it still has crypto enthusiasts concerned. The order defines six “key priorities:” “protecting U.S. interests, protecting global financial stability, preventing illicit uses, promoting ‘responsible innovation,’ financial inclusion and U.S. leadership,” according to Coindesk

Crypto, by definition, protects no government interests or national leadership. It cannot be what it is and do that. So…we wait for clarification on exactly what the government means. 

Keep in mind that the U.S. has the strictest tax laws in the world. It is only one of 2 countries to tax citizens, whether they live or have lived in the country or not. The other country is Eritrea and that tax is a flat 2%. The United States does not let a single dollar slide if it can help it. Make no mistake: crypto regulation is not about “stability.” It is about control. 

Bitcoin prices surged by 9% on this news as many see it as a legitimizing step for their beloved currency. However, this morning Bitcoin is down 7% so maybe not everyone is on board with the US getting its hands on crypto. 

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File This Covid Story Under: WTF

credit: istock

The United States used $1 billion of taxpayer money to advertise the Covid vaccine on mainstream media. Read that again. 

A Freedom of Information Act request from the Department of Health and Human Services found that the government bought advertising from ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox News, CNN, MSNBC and all of the major U.S. newspapers. Some ads even had celebrity endorsements. 

Is this good or bad? The argument could be made that the government thought that it needed to do this to prevent the spread of Covid. A counter-argument could also be made that the government gave $1 million of free advertising to Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson because all three companies profited from the vaccine. 

Also, how independent did the newsrooms of those media outlets behave based on the advertising dollars that kept their lights on? Did they pull vaccine-critical stories because of the government ad revenue? These are fair questions that deserve an answer. 

Redlining Led to Massive Pollution

credit: guardian

shocking new study shows that neighborhood redlining has a negative impact on the environments that people live in. Simply put: people drawn into poorer neighborhoods live with more environmental toxins. 

Redlining is when the government draws lines around what they consider undesirable neighborhoods and discourages investment in those areas. A study out of UC Berkeley found that people who live in those neighborhoods breathe 56% more free pollutant nitrogen dioxide than people in more desirable neighborhoods. 

And who lives in those neighborhoods? Predominantly people of color. 

The study’s author says: “The people who made the decision [to redline certain neighborhoods] aren’t even alive any more but the decisions made a long time ago still matter quite a lot for the disparities experienced today.” 

News By The Numbers

30. That is how many fewer sheets of toilet paper you get when you buy a Procter & Gamble Super Mega roll as a result of “shrinkflation.” You pay the same price but the product gets smaller. 

5%. That is how much Alaska Airlines is cutting flights due to the increase in fuel prices. Other airlines are doing the same. 

5 times. That is how much your odds of an audit increase if you make $25,000 or less. So wait, the government says it wants to go after the Jeff Bezoses of the world but audits poor people five times more than any other income bracket? 

52. That is how many reptiles a man had in his clothing as he tried to get through the Mexican border. 

Tripled. That is how much cheating has increased since Wordle became popular, according to a new study. So people want to play but they cheat to do it!? We’re on to you! 

What's Trending?

giphy.gif credit: ap

Jerry Jones is trending. He is the owner of the Dallas Cowboys. A 25-year-old woman is suing him, saying that he is her biological father and claims that Jones and her mother agreed to never admit this in public. 

Jennifer Griffin is trending for her recent report on Fox News regarding Biolabs in Ukraine. She confirms that the Pentagon has collaborated on Biolabs in Ukraine in an effort to “clean up those Soviet-era labs” and that the U.S. government is concerned that Russia will use these labs for biological warfare. We will have a full update on this story on today's live show at 9AM Eastern

Obi-Wan Kenobi is trending because a new trailer for the series about the Jedi Master is out! 

Amazon stock is trending because the company approved a 20-to-1 stock split! 

Amanda Bynes is trending because she has been in conservatorship for nine years, much like Britney Spears was until recently. She has filed court documents to end it and now she joined Instagram to thank her fans for their support. 

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