Happy Monday. Turns out people who are sleeping on the beach don’t like when a 5-month old mini pinscher jumps on their legs. Sorry lady, Grover is a puppy. I’ll blame it on that.
In Case You Missed It. Sources say a major bombshell UFO report is coming soon from reporters at The New York Times. The main point of the story? We have UFO wreckage. The second point of the story? The UFO is not built by any country on Earth. Count me in.
Coronavirus Update: Total confirmed cases as of 3:30 a.m. ET: 3,773,260 — Total deaths: 140,534 — Total recoveries: 1,131,121
Florida reported over 12,000 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, the fifth day in a row the state has announced over 10,000 new infections.
In Today’s Newsletter:
The EU has a late night
Coronavirus in U.S. is out of control
U.S. Stimulus debates start today
The Lead: EU Stimulus Emerges and Late Night Beer Pong
Europeans stay up late but not as late EU leaders did last night.
After 3 AM, European Union leaders appeared to reach a deal on its stimulus package. The plan would have 390 billion Euros, or $450 billion, in funds available to member nations.
The funds will come as a combination of grants and low-interest loans. It does not appear to resemble the American stimulus with money directly to citizens, at least not from the EU. Each country would have some discretion on how to use and distribute its funds.
EU officials met in-person for the first time on Friday to hammer out this deal and seem to have at least most of the plan in place just three days later. Compare that to the American response where the House and Senate reached a stalemate and then went home on vacation and, yeah, that does not feel good.
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Today, Congress finally returns from vacation to a giant plate of catastrophic deadlines.
The biggest question plaguing lawmakers is the extra $600/week in federal unemployment benefits. Those benefits run out on July 31st. Democrats and Republicans are jousting over whether to keep it going.
Democrats argue the extra benefits have been essential for the roughly 25 million people who’ve used them.
Republicans think the extra benefits keep people from going back to work, something they desperately want.
Sources point to a potential compromise in the works. Something along the lines of $200-$400 per week instead of the current $600. Perhaps you can thank two former Fed chairs who proposed extending extra benefits but capping total payments at a fixed percentage of total income.
More on their plate
Lawmakers are focused on a number of other target areas, including…
Liability: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is expected to introduce a bill that includes a five-year liability shield for businesses, healthcare providers, and schools so they don’t suffer an “epidemic of lawsuits.”
Schools: How to open schools safely (or whether to do it at all) will be a major challenge this fall. As an example, Florida is a coronavirus nightmare and state lawmakers want to reopen schools in a few weeks? Hmmm.
State and local governments: They’re on the frontlines of the pandemic, but they’re stuck in an unprecedented financial hole. The Dems will be forceful in trying to secure more funding for state and local officials.
Looking ahead… this is going to be one crazy week so make sure you tune into our live YouTube show for immediate updates.
$2.999 million. You can now buy one of the best-known houses in television history. ‘The Golden Girls’ house can be yours for nearly $3 million dollars. Turns out we were lied to. The 1950’s-era home is in Brentwood, California not Miami, Florida.
99 million. That’s how many people watched Netflix’s original movie ‘Extraction’ making it the most-watched original film for the streaming network. I’m not surprised at all. It’s two hours of Chris Hemsworth killing people to protect a child. Count me in.
4 to 2. Worried about COVID-19, the NFL reduced the number of pre-season games from 4-2 but that might not be enough. Players are now pushing the NFL to cancel the season altogether.
Lawmakers in Florida are calling for Governor Ron DeSantis to shut down the state once and for all while COVID cases rage “totally out of control.”
Democratic Representative Donna Shalala used this term this weekend, and she means business. She says that low-income and minority residents were bearing the brunt of the pandemic because employers are demanding their return to work before it is safe to do so.
DeSantis has established himself a reputation for being unwilling or slow to legislate against the virus. He was one of the last state governors to order shut down measures in the spring, he has refused to mandate masks in his state, and he does not seem to have an appetite to shut down again, even though COVID still rages out of control in his state.
What the Fax?
Your COVID results could be laying in a big jumble of mixed up faxes. Faxes! As in those physical papers that are sent over phone wires to a machine that prints them out for a recipient. Hundreds of test results were faxed to a County Health department in Houston, and so many came in unmonitored that they spilled all over the floor. Officials there have yet to sort them out.
The surprising news, sadly, is not that so many people are dealing with COVID. It is that the health system still uses fax machines, presumably because the technology is compliant with privacy standards. Well, in theory, they do. If the results get spit out and mixed up on a doctor’s office floor, there can be little confidence in that privacy.
If ever there was a story that pointed to our need for a health system upgrade and overhaul, this is it. Until we find out that the carrier pigeons have been intercepted, that is.
While real estate sales in urban centers have suffered, real estate in the suburbs has not! It seems that Americans are looking to leave cities in droves after the pandemic showed them that they might not have to report to that high rise office so much after all!
Realtor.com compared consumer searches for suburban and rural homes from June 2020 to June 2019. Searches for suburban and rural homes had a 30 and 34 percent jump, respectively.
Of course, that does not necessarily mean that people will pull the trigger and move, but it shows a willingness to think about a life where families are not as tied to a bit city for their income as they may have previously thought.
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