Discover more from Morning Martini
11/22/2022: “Inexperienced, Unsophisticated & Compromised”
PLUS: Lunar Flyby; Jay Leno Gets Discharged; and Farewell Sir Elton
Today is Tuesday, November 22, 2022.
It is the 326th day of the year.
39 days remain.
There will be no newsletter on Thursday or Friday this week during the Thanksgiving holiday.
#USAvWAL landed in Twitter’s Top 10 Trends on Monday as the US and Wales faced off in the World Cup. More in Sports.
Thanksgiving was trending yesterday as Twitter users tweeted about their holiday plans, the food they are most looking forward to indulging in and the naps they are looking forward to taking.
Ivermectin was trending after the FDA backpedaled on claims made during the pandemic that the drug is only “intended for animals.” In a court case against them, the FDA says their anti-Ivermectin platform was only “a recommendation.” Tell that to the doctors who were attacked and fired for prescribing it to treat covid. More on other ways covid could have been treated in Hit List.
While FTX and its Democrat megadonor founder have made headlines for their historic, scandal-ridden implosion only in recent days, Bloomberg reports that federal prosecutors had been keeping their eye on the firm for months leading up to its bankruptcy.
In particular, federal prosecutors for the Southern District of New York were looking into whether the crypto exchange was skirting compliance rules under the Bank Secrecy Act, which in particular applies to crypto operations.
MEANWHILE: In a recent bankruptcy filing, new FTX CEO JOHN J. RAY III has unloaded on the company’s dweeby founder’s profound mismanagement of the company.
Ray – the same guy who was brought in to manage Enron’s bankruptcy – writes about SAM BANKMAN-FRIED, “Never in my career have I seen such a complete failure of corporate controls and such a complete absence of trustworthy financial information as occurred here. From compromised systems integrity and faulty regulatory oversight abroad, to the concentration of control in the hands of a very small group of inexperienced, unsophisticated and potentially compromised individuals, this situation is unprecedented.”
The filing comes amid news that FTX made loans worth more than $1 billion to the company’s founder and associates – the same money that was shoveled in wheelbarrows to specifically leftist causes over the last year.
While dork journalists wet their pants over ELON MUSK’s decimation of Twitter’s workforce, it turns out last week’s ultimatum that only the most committed, and intense stay on payroll didn’t cull enough employees.
Bloomberg reports that Musk cleaned out even more members of the Twitter sales team. Musk also axed top sales executives who refused to let more people go. So far, nearly 4,000 staffers are believed to have been let go.
WORTH ASKING: If a social media company that once had 7,000 employees is still running after halving its workforce, how many of the nearly 3 million federal government employees could get pink slips without impacting its services?
The Artemis I mission has reached the Moon – the first time in 50 years a spacecraft capable of carrying humans has made the trek.
At its closest, the Orion capsule approached within 81 miles of the lunar surface on the far side of the moon. On Friday, the rocket will fire for a prolonged duration to put the spacecraft in a lopsided orbit around the Moon, which at its longest will put it 270,000 miles from Earth next Monday.
In the current timeline, splashdown is scheduled for December 11 after spending a week in orbit.
BY THE WAY: NASA reports that the force from the initial launch at Kennedy Space Center blew the blast doors off the elevator of the launchpad.
A new study that includes over 600,000 Americans shows that taking Vitamin D reduces the likelihood of covid infection by up to 49%.
IT GETS BETTER: Those who specifically took Vitamin D3 saw a 33% decrease in deaths within 30 days after infection with the virus.
BY THE WAY: The results were published in the science journal “Nature” – the gold standard in the scientific research community.
WORTH ASKING: What might have been different if, instead of sheltering people inside for two years, the government encouraged people to exercise, get sunshine, and take vitamins, instead of holding their livelihoods ransom by requiring they take experimental, DNA-altering shots?
It’s colder than ever at the South Pole, where temperatures reached record lows between November 16 and 18, ranging between -49.36 degrees Fahrenheit to -48.46 degrees Fahrenheit.
MEANWHILE: Antarctica has added 1.35 million square miles of surface ice since a low point at the end of the summer season in 2012.
BY THE NUMBERS
📈 The Dow lost 45 points (0.13%) to close at 33,700. The S&P lost 15 points (0.39%) to close at 3,949 and the Nasdaq lost 121 points (1.09%) to close at 11,024.
🛢 West Texas Intermediate closed at $79; Brent Crude at $87.
⛽ The national average price of a gallon of gas was $3.66 on Monday.
₿ Bitcoin lost more than $600 and was trading around $15,600 Monday evening.
🛩 There were 2,460 flights delayed within, into, or out of the United States on Monday and 65 such cancellations.
Top 5 Songs on iTunes:
Jung Kook & BTS, “Dreamers”
Sam Smith & Kim Petras, “Unholy”
Meghan Trainor, “Made You Look”
Taylor Swift, “Anti-Hero”
Rihanna, “Lift Me Up”
Top 5 Songs on Spotify:
Sam Smith & Kim Petras, “Unholy”
Taylor Swift, “Anti-Hero”
Beyonce, “Cuff It”
Drake & 21 Savage, “Rich Flex”
Rema & Selena Gomez, “Calm Down”
Actress NICKI AYCOX has died.
The “Supernatural” star passed away on November 16, according to her sister-in-law. While no cause of death was shared, she had been battling leukemia for over a year.
She was 47.
KENDALL JENNER, 27, and DEVIN BOOKER, 26, have called it quits.
Sources told TMZ that the pair split last month due to their hectic schedules.
The model and basketball player started dating in 2020.
Last week, Congressional Republicans published a detailed report outlining the abundance of evidence that President JOE BIDEN, his son son HUNTER BIDEN, and his brother JAMES BIDEN have been involved in an international pay-for-play scheme for years, and that Biden’s White House has squashed attempts to get information for the Treasury Department to prove it.
When asked about these claims, White House Media Commissar KARINE JEAN-PIERRE fumbled what should have been a very simple “No!” answer.
MEANWHILE: Even CBS News appears to have validated that the widely-reported laptop belonging to HUNTER BIDEN that implicates him in international money laundering, drug trafficking, and human trafficking schemes is legitimate.
WORTH ASKING: What more does it take for President JOE BIDEN to have to answer honestly about this screaming-loud scandal? How much longer can he run from claims he’s never, ever discussed his son’s corrupt business dealings?
DESPITE IT ALL: A USA Today poll shows 71% of Democrats now say Biden could win re-election in 2024, up from only 60% in August.
No winner for Friday night’s Mega Millions drawing. Tonight’s drawing will be for a $259 million jackpot or a $131.4 million cash payout.
JAY LENO is out of the hospital.
He was discharged from Grossman Burn Center on Monday, nine days after suffering burns to his face, chest and hands while working on one of his vintage vehicles.
Before leaving, the center shared a photo of Leno alongside several members of his care team.
While introducing MICHAEL J. FOX at the 13th Annual Governors Awards, WOODY HARRELSON shared a story about the time the two visited Thailand.
During a jungle hike, Harrelson said Fox gave someone “like thousands of [Thai] baht, which probably amounted to about $16” to watch a fight between a cobra and a mongoose.
After the fight -- which the mongoose won -- the snake was tied up by its tail and its blood was drained into glasses that were also filled with Thai whiskey. Harrelson explained that drinking the cobra blood is called “becoming brother to the snake.”
The two men drank the drink and “Mike promptly vomited,” Harrelson said, before adding “never could hold his cobra blood.”
A celebration honoring the late LESLIE JORDAN was held in his hometown of Chattanooga, Tennessee on Sunday.
Hundreds of fans showed up to the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium to enjoy music, singing, and comedy, according to a local ABC station.
Tickets for the memorial were $20, with all proceeds going to one of the actor’s favorite causes, CEMPA Community Care, which provides affordable and compassionate care through person-centered best practices.
Jordan died in a car accident in October. He was 67.
SINBAD’s family issued an update on the comedian’s condition Monday -- two years after he suffered a stroke.
In the lengthy release, his family says the 66-year-old is still “fighting for every inch” and his once “dead” limbs are coming “back to life.” They also noted that the survival rate for the type of stroke he suffered is around 30%, so they are celebrating him beating the odds.
In November 2020 it was reported that Sinbad had a blood clot that traveled from his heart to his brain. He then suffered another clot, followed by brain swelling and a bleed.
A dozen kids may not be it for NICK CANNON.
The “Masked Singer” host recently told Billboard that he is unsure if there will be more little Cannons in his future.
He referred to the 11 he has (plus one due any day) the “creative forces” in everything that he does.
WHOOPI GOLDBERG returned to “The View” on Monday after a week off with Covid.
“You can get boosted within an inch of your life and then the next thing you know you got Covid again,” she told the audience.
Goldberg, who had a bout with Covid at the beginning of the year, said this time around it was “rough.”
Viewers enjoying ELTON JOHN’s final concert on Disney+ Sunday night were shocked when former president DONALD TRUMP’s name appeared in the closed captioning.
His name popped up during the songs “Levon” and “Candle in the Wind” for about 30 seconds each time before it appeared to be deleted.
No word from Disney on the incident.
IN OTHER NEWS: The concert was Elton’s last in the US for his Farewell Tour. He now heads to Europe.
CHERYL BURKE is leaving “Dancing With the Stars.”
In her exit announcement, the pro dancer thanked all the fans and her “second family on the show,” while explaining that “it is time to begin the next phase of her career.”
She did not reveal anything about what she plans to do next.
BRANDY will reprise her role as Cinderella in a new “Descendants” movie for Disney+.
Twenty-five years after first playing the iconic Disney princess in “Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella,” the singer will put on her glass slippers in “The Pocketwatch.” The film also stars RITA ORA as the Queen of Hearts from “Alice in Wonderland.”
According to the streamer, “The Pocketwatch” follows the daughter of the Queen of Hearts and Cinderella and Prince Charming’s daughter, who “cross paths at a momentous celebration in Auradon and unexpected chaos breaks out.” The two must “travel back in time, via a magical pocket watch created by the Mad Hatter’s son, to stop an event that would lead to grave consequences.”
MILEY CYRUS and her godmother, DOLLY PARTON, will co-host “Miley’s New Year’s Eve Party” on NBC.
The event, produced by “SNL” creator LORNE MICHAELS, will feature a “star-studded lineup of performances and special guests,” according to the network. Those names will be announced at a later date.
Parton replaces PETE DAVIDSON, who co-hosted last year.
Reality stars TODD and JULIE CHRISLEY were sentenced Monday in their bank fraud and tax evasion case.
Todd got 12 years in prison while Julie got seven years in prison. Both will also serve 16 months probation.
The couple were found guilty in June of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, conspiracy to defraud the United States and tax fraud. Julie was also convicted of wire fraud.
They claim they are innocent, blaming their former employee Mark Braddock for impersonating Todd and committing the fraud in retaliation for being fired in 2012.
Todd and Julie are set to report to prison in January.
WORTH NOTING: It is unknown if they will be allowed to stagger their sentences as they have a 16-year-old son and have custody of their 10-year-old granddaughter.
THE DAILY KARDASHOPUS
JULIA FOX claims she only dated KANYE WEST as a favor to his ex-wife KIM KARDASHIAN.
Speaking about the relationship in a recent TikTok video, Fox said that she thought “Maybe I can get him off of Kim’s case [...] like maybe I can distract him, like, just get him to like me.”
The explanation comes after one of her followers called her out for dating the “famously violent misogynist and anti-Semite.”
WE’LL NEVER BE ROYALS
PRINCE HARRY and MEGHAN MARKLE appeared in the pre-celebration special that aired before ELTON JOHN’s final US concert on Disney+.
“Hi Elton, we just wanted to say congratulations,” the two told the camera.
“And we are just so proud of you. We’re so grateful that we were able to see you on your farewell tour also,” Meg added.
Harry then thanked Elton for being “a companion” to his family, including his late mom PRINCESS DIANA and his children.
Always one to have the final word, Meg blew a kiss to the camera before the two signed off.
The United States and Wales tied 1-1 in their 2022 World Cup opener on Monday in Qatar.
The US led for most of the match after TIM WEAH scored in the first half, but Welsh player GARETH BALE converted a late penalty kick to earn his Welsh team a point.
Team USA plays England on Friday.
DAY OF THE YEAR
Go For a Ride Day
National Cranberry Relish Day
ON THIS DATE
1718 – Bloodthirsty pirate Edward Teach is killed in battle with the British Navy off the coast of North Carolina.
You'll know Teach better as Blackbeard.
His most notorious ship was the Queen Anne's Revenge, a 26-gun French merchant ship he upgraded to 40 guns. But that was shipwrecked earlier in the year.
In his last battle, legend says he survived 5 musket shots and 20 slashes from swords before eventually falling.
1858 – General William Larimer, a veteran of the Pennsylvania Militia, establishes a little land speculation out West and names it for Kansas Territorial Governor James W Denver.
Today, we know that town as Denver, Colorado.
Larimer laid cottonwood logs across each other to stake his claim, on a bluff that overlooked where the South Platte River and Cherry Creek flowed into each other. By naming it after the territorial governor, Larimer hoped to land a spot in the local government.
1900 – The first official Mercedes car is taken for a drive in Cannstatt, Germany.
It was a custom build for Emil Jellinek, a businessman with a penchant for the new automobile technology. Jellinek thought it could do so well at motor races that he bought 36 of them.
In return for Jellinek's business, the production company agreed to name the cars after his daughter -- Mercedes.
1963 – Dallas, Texas: Lee Harvey Oswald murders John F. Kennedy.
Oswald allegedly set up shop in a sixth-floor window of the Texas School Book Depository. As Kennedy's motorcade drove by the street below, the President was susceptible to such an attack in his open convertible.
Oswald was captured that afternoon, after shooting a police officer who tried to apprehend him.
Two days later, a Dallas restaurant owner shot Oswald dead as he was being transported between the police station and the jail.
1986 – Mike Tyson knocks out Trevor Berbick in just 5 minutes and 35 seconds.
The win makes Tyson the youngest heavyweight title holder in history.
Commentators noted Tyson's hard punches and relentless attack. Berbick was 13 years Tyson's elder, and wanted to stand up to this newcomer and take his punches rather than box him. Obviously, this was a mistake.
1990 – British PM Margaret Thatcher resigns from office after 11 years.
She was the first female elected leader of the country. The Iron Lady was a staunch anti-communist and ally to American President Ronald Reagan.
Her capitalist reforms included privatization of government industries, pulling back government spending, and reducing the role of trade unions.
2016 - The Vegas Golden Knights are revealed as the Las Vegas NHL expansion team’s name.
Team owner Bill Foley and General Manager George McPhee announced the name during a fan event at Toshiba Plaza outside of T-Mobile Arena. They also revealed the logo, a knight’s helmet with a V etched into the middle. The colors are black with a gold outline.
Baby Ariel - actress, “Zombies 2” - 22
Auli’i Cravalho - voice actress, “Moana” - 22
JuJu Smith-Schuster - football player - 26
Hailey Bieber - model - 26
Katherine McNamara - actress, “The Maze Runner” & “Arrow” - 27
Trevor Tordjman - actor, “Zombies” - 27
Dacre Montgomery - actor, “Stranger Things” - 28
Vinny Mauro - drummer, Motionless In White - 29
Jamie Campbell Bower - actor, “Stranger Things” & “Sweeney Todd” - 34
Scarlett Johansson - actress, “The Prestige” & “We Bought a Zoo” - 38
Michael D. Cohen - actor, “Henry Danger” - 47
Mark Ruffalo - actor, “Foxcatcher” & “Shutter Island” - 55
Mads Mikkelsen - actor, “Doctor Strange” - 57
Jamie Lee Curtis - actress, “Halloween” films - 64
Billie Jean King - tennis player - 79
Born On This Date
Michael Kenneth Williams - actor “Boardwalk Empire” & “12 Years a Slave” - 1966 (d. 2021)
Rodney Dangerfield - comedian - 1921 (d. 2004)
Wiley Post - aviator, first to fly solo around the world - 1898 (d. 1935)
Abigail Adams - 2nd First Lady - 1744 (d. 1818)
Thanks for reading Morning Martini! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support our work.