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7/15/2022: Trump’s Running
PLUS: Inflation Explanation, Kevin Spacey Pleads Not Guilty, Kris Jenner’s MasterClass
Today is Friday, July 15, 2022.
It is the 196th day of the year.
169 days remain.
#TwitterDown was trending Thursday morning after the platform was hit by a worldwide outage.
#TheOpen landed in Twitter’s Top 10 Trends Thursday as the final major of the 2022 golf season continues at St. Andrews in Scotland.
The Lord of the Rings was trending yesterday after a new teaser trailer for “The Rings of Power” dropped. Head to Showbiz to check it out.
France celebrated Bastille Day on Thursday. The celebration is in honor of the beginning of the French Revolution in 1789.
Some Twitter users celebrated National Nude Day yesterday. Use your imagination to figure out how.
Let’s talk about inflation.
The Consumer Price Index, or CPI, plays an important part in calculating inflation rates. It’s supposed to be a reflection of the price of a “basket” of theoretical goods that everyday Americans buy on a regular basis to maintain a certain standard of living.
But because the government and its book-cooking goons are sneaky, they’ve found ways to screw even that up. Starting in 1980, the government tried to account for a multitude of variables that affect the prices of everyday products, and it has since gotten too complicated for their own good.
Here’s an example: Since 2018, the “Pro” model of each year’s iPhone has cost $999. But each year brings improvements in the phone’s computing power. Using the complicated CPI formula, the government would say the iPhone actually costs less than it did in 2018 because it’s a more technologically robust device, even though the buyer is still paying $999.
This approach makes it difficult to compare changes in out-of-pocket living expenses for everyday people, which should be the point of understanding changes in inflation.
Ultimately, the government is going to tweak numbers to tell the story they want to tell.
As reported yesterday, the official numbers are ugly, with annual inflation nearing 10% in June. President JOE BIDEN said it’s actually not that bad, because a major driving factor in that increase was fuel prices, which have been falling in recent weeks after reaching historic highs in a shockingly short amount of time.
But if you go back to the simple CPI measurement that actually calculates changes in out-of-pocket expenses for everyday Americans, inflation is around 17%, nearly double what the official, cooked government numbers suggest.
That means if you didn’t get a 17% raise since last year, you have that much less buying power year over year.
Here’s another way to look at it: Imagine going back a year ago, and suddenly taking a near-20% pay cut: going from $25 an hour to $20 an hour overnight, or your household income suddenly going from $75,000 a year to $60,000 a year. But you’re still expected to pay your rent or mortgage, buy groceries, pay for kids’ activities, put gas in the car, maybe even have some fun once in a while.
If you didn’t get at least a 17% raise, that’s what’s happened over the course of the last year.
WORTH ASKING: How did we get here? Who has been in power and which policies have been trumpeted, heralded, and praised by the media for the last year, and who have the media tried to discredit for pushing back?
German farmers have reportedly joined their Dutch counterparts to blockade trucks from entering a grocery distribution center in Ter Apel, a small town in northeastern Netherlands on the border with Germany.
The Dutch have been in revolt against crippling environmental sanctions for the last few weeks. No indication yet whether the Dutch government will budge on their emissions standards that threaten to put their agricultural industry out of business.
Firefighters in Yosemite have been unable to contain the spread of the Washburn fire.
More than 1,000 firefighters have been assembled to put out the wildfire, which has expanded despite their efforts, from being 22% contained on Tuesday to 17% Wednesday. That represents a growth of more than 200 acres since earlier in the week.
Park officials believe the fire was human-caused, but have no leads or suspects.
A portrait by Vincent Van Gogh called “Head of a Peasant Woman” is set to go on display at the National Galleries of Scotland this summer. In preparing the piece for display, art curators discovered through x-ray technology a self-portrait of Van Gogh on the back of the canvas.
Van Gogh was known for reusing canvases. In this case, his painting of himself is covered under cardboard and glue on the reverse side of the actual final painting. Researchers say they think they can carefully remove the layers, but it’ll be a slow, painstaking process.
A Louisville woman who won a local lottery immediately used her winnings to pay forward her good fortune.
Crystal Dunn pocketed more than $109,000 after taxes, and immediately bought $2,000 worth of gift cards at the grocery store, which she then started handing out to strangers who were shopping there.
She says she’s looking forward to paying off bills and buying herself a car, too.
BY THE NUMBERS
📈 The Dow lost 142 points (0.46%) to close at 30,630 points on Thursday. The S&P 500 lost 11.4 points (0.3%) to close at 3,790 and the Nasdaq picked up 3.6 points (0.032%) to close at 11,251.
Year to date, the S&P is down 20.2%, the second-worst start to the index in its history, behind only 1932.
🛢 Brent Crude is just below $100 a barrel while West Texas Intermediate continues its decline below $100 a barrel.
⛽ The national average price of a gallon of gas was $4.60 on Thursday.
₿ Bitcoin added around $410 Thursday after a morning decline, trading at $20,635 Thursday evening.
🛩 There were 3,077 flight delays for routes within, into, or out of the United States, and 181 such cancellations on Wednesday.
New to Amazon Prime:
Don’t Make Me Go (Rotten Tomatoes Score: 50%)
New to Disney+:
Zombies 3 (No Score)
New to HBO Max:
Godzilla (Rotten Tomatoes Score: 76%)
New to Hulu:
Centurion (Rotten Tomatoes Score: 61%)
Filth (Score: 66%)
I’m Still Here (Score: 53%)
Ragnarok (Score: 69%)
Viva (Score: 80%)
New to Netflix:
Persuasion (Rotten Tomatoes Score: 34%)
Uncharted (Score: 40%)
IVANA TRUMP has died.
The ex-wife of former PRESIDENT TRUMP passed away at her home in New York City on Thursday.
A spokesperson for the NYPD told Fox News that officers found her unconscious “in close proximity” to the bottom of a staircase in her apartment. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
Ivana had three children with Trump, DONALD JR., IVANKA, and ERIC.
She was 73.
MARK FLEISCHMAN has died.
The former owner of Manhattan’s Studio 54 died by assisted suicide on Wednedasy at a clinic in Switzerland.
He was 82.
RASHARD ANDERSON has died.
His death was announced Thursday by his alma mater Jackson State University. No further details were shared.
Anderson played cornerback at the school before being drafted by the Carolina Panthers in 2000.
He was 45.
ERROL MUSK, 76, the father of ELON MUSK, revealed this week that he welcomed a secret second love child with his stepdaughter, JANA BEZUIDENHOUT, 35.
“The only thing we are on Earth for is to reproduce,” Errol bragged to The Sun.
The two already share a son, Elliot Rush, 5.
Errol has a total of seven children, a few less than Elon’s brood of 10.
SOPHIE TURNER, 26, and JOE JONAS, 32, have welcomed their second child, a baby girl.
Sources told TMZ that the actress gave birth earlier this month.
The couple are already parents to daughter, Willa, 23 months.
In a New York Magazine profile, former President DONALD TRUMP all but acknowledges he’s running again.
When asked directly about his intentions, the reporter got a coy answer from Trump, who said, “In my own mind, I’ve already made that decision,” and added, “I would say my big decision will be whether I go before or after.” He then clarified to the reporter he meant announcing before or after the November midterms.
MEANWHILE: A separate report in the Washington Post says Trump is preparing to announce his candidacy for 2024 sometime in September, according to two unnamed advisers.
But Congressional Republicans are weary, fearing his entry into the race will make the midterm elections a litmus test on their support for Trump, and all the associated baggage of impeachments and “insurrection.”
ON ONE HAND: Liberals who say drag queens around kids are a great idea but praying at a football game is morally reprehensible, white kids are inherently evil, and the only way to treat gender dysphoria in children is radical surgical procedures.
ON THE OTHER HAND: A guy who says gas should be cheaper, despots like VLADIMIR PUTIN should be afraid of rolling tanks into countries like Ukraine, the government needs to get out of everyone’s way, and this country is inherently great, actually.
WORTH NOTING: Between the two, I’ll take Trump’s chances.
MEANWHILE: Trump is scheduled to head to Washington DC for the first time since leaving the White House. He’s expected to give an address at the America First Policy Institute on July 26.
No winner for Monday night’s Mega Millions drawing. Tonight’s drawing will be for a $480 million jackpot or a $276 million cash payout.
No winner for Wednesday night’s Powerball drawing. Saturday night’s drawing will be for an $82 million jackpot or a $46.6 million cash payout.
These albums drop today:
Beastie Boys, “Check Your Head (4LP Deluxe Edition)”
Interpol, “The Other Side of Make-Believe”
J-Hope, “Jack in the Box”
LMD, “Flying High”
Mikey Polo, “Emo or Die 2”
Noah Cyrus, “The Hardest Part.”
Rowdy Rebel, “Rebel vs. Rowdy”
Steve Lacy, “Gemini Rights”
The 65th annual Grammy Awards are set to take place at Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles on Sunday, February 5, 2023.
The ceremony will air live on CBS and stream on Paramount+.
Nominations will be announced on Thursday, November 15.
JAMIE SPEARS must appear for a deposition as part of the investigation into his role as his daughter, BRTINEY SPEARS’ conservator, a judge ruled this week.
Brit’s attorney publicly called Jamie out for “running and hiding” from the order. Meanwhile, Jamie’s team has requested his daughter be deposed as well.
A judge will rule later this month on whether that will need to happen.
ALEX RODRIGUEZ says he has “no regrets” when it comes to his relationship with ex-fiance JENNIFER LOPEZ.
“Life is good,” A-Rod told MARTHA STEWART on her “The Martha Stewart Podcast.”
The pair dated from 2017 to 2021.
EMINEM’s daughter HAILIE JADE SCOTT has launched her own podcast, called “Just a Little Shady,” a clear nod to her dad’s hit, “The Real Slim Shady.”
The show will be about Hailie’s life with some pop culture thrown into the mix.
She will co-host along with her friend, BRITTANY EDNIE.
A teaser trailer for “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power” dropped yesterday.
The news series is set to premiere on September 2 on Prime Video.
ALFONSO RIBEIRO will co-host the upcoming season of “Dancing With the Stars,” along with TYRA BANKS.
LEN GOODMAN, CARRIE ANN INABA, BRUNO TONIOLI and DEREK HOUGH are all expected to return as judges for Season 31.
As previously reported, the dancing competition show moves to Disney+ this fall. A premiere date will be announced later.
WORTH NOTING: Ribeiro was the Season 19 Mirrorball Champ.
Paramount+ has given a 10-episode series order to a “Criminal Minds” reboot, starring six of the original cast members; JOE MANTEGNA, KIRSTEN VANGSNESS, ADAM RODRIGUEZ, AJ COOK, AISHA TYLER and PAGET BREWSTER.
Also returning is the original series’ executive producer/showrunner ERICA MESSER.
Production is set to begin in August.
As many may remember, the original show follows a group of criminal profilers who work for the FBI.
MARTIN LAWRENCE believes there will be at least one more “Bad Boys” film, despite the Oscar incident involving his co-star WILL SMITH.
In a recent interview with Ebony, the actor said that reports of Smith’s assault on CHRIS ROCK putting a “halt” to the sequel are “inaccurate.”
“That movie’s been in development and still is,” he explained.
Lawrence and Smith star in the franchise as detectives Marcus Burnett and Mike Lowrey, respectively.
“The Bear” has been renewed for a second season by FX.
The show follows young chef Carmen “Carmy” Berzatto, played by JEREMY ALLEN WHITE, who returns home to work in his family’s Chicago-based sandwich shop after the death of his brother.
The eight-episode first season debuted on June 23. It is available on Hulu.
KEVIN SPACEY pleaded not guilty to five sexual assault charges in a London court on Thursday.
A trial date has been set for June of next year.
As previously reported, the actor was formally charged with four counts of sexual assault and one count of “causing a person to engage in penetrative sexual activity without consent” in June.
He has maintained his innocence.
THE DAILY KARDASHOPUS
KRIS JENNER is spilling her secrets to success on MasterClass, a streaming platform that features hundreds of video lessons taught by 150+ of the world’s best.
In her videos, the momager speaks on her family’s early success with their reality show, “Keeping Up With The Kardashians,” as well as all of her children’s many business ventures.
As for how she manages it all, Kris says her best advice is: “Be able to learn that magical word, which is no, when you just can’t do anymore.”
Kris’ MasterClass is now available to stream for paid subscribers.
WE’LL NEVER BE ROYALS
PRINCE ANDREW’s bombshell interview about his friendship with JEFFREY EPSTEIN is to become a film, titled “Scoop.”
HUGH GRANT is rumored to be in the running to play the disgraced royal, Deadline reports.
WORTH NOTING: No footage from the actual BBC interview will be used in the film.
Speculation into why PRINCE HARRY has yet to release his memoir has led to some interesting reasoning by one royal reporter.
Natalie Oliveri recently appeared on “Australia’s Today Show” where she claimed that The Firm had “intervened” in the release, which ended up causing a “delay.”
Later in the interview, Oliveri suggested that maybe Harry is “making some late additions after attending the Platinum Jubilee.”
Oliveri also said that maybe there is “going to be a really big launch later this year […] a surprise launch. That’s why we haven’t actually been given a date.”
Regardless of the reason, the memoir is likely to cause a further divide between Harry and his family.
The World Athletic Championships -- the most prestigious track and field meet besides the Olympics -- kicks off in the US today, for the first time ever.
Events will be held at the newly redesigned Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon, which is known in the world of track and field as TrackTown, USA.
WORTH NOTING: Hayward Field is also known as the birthplace of Nike.
LIST OF THE WEEK
Rise in Grocery Prices From Last Year:
Chicken - 18.6%
Ground Beef - 9.7%
Sausage - 16.3%
Flour - 19.2%
Butter & Margarine - 26.3%
Eggs - 33.1%
Milk - 16.4%
Food Prices, in general, are up 12.2% since last year.
Eating out is up 7.7% from last year.
*Info courtesy of MarketWatch
DAY OF THE YEAR
National Give Something Away Day
National I Love Horses Day
National Tapioca Pudding Day
National Pet Fire Safety Day
Gummy Worm Day
Pet Fire Safety Day
ON THIS DATE
1741 – Russian explorer Aleksei Chirikov sights land in the Pacific Ocean.
What he found is present-day southeast Alaska -- it is thought he spotted and sent longboats to land on Baranof Island. It was the first visit by the Civilized World to Alaska.
Chirikov was a seasoned navigator, he had sailed with Vitus Bering, and eventually became his second-in-command before getting his own expeditionary force.
1799 – A French lieutenant in Napoleon's expedition army in Egypt stumbles upon an artifact with strange inscriptions.
What Pierre Francois Bouchard found is now called the Rosetta Stone.
The slab features a decree from Egyptian King Ptolemy V and appears in three languages: hieroglyphics, an ancient Egyptian script, and Ancient Greek. A wider understanding of old Greek texts allowed a more comprehensive understanding of the hieroglyphics.
This bridge enabled a much better understanding of ancient Egyptian culture and life.
1815 – After his defeat at Waterloo, Napoleon Bonaparte retreats from battle. As the French monarchy is restored in Versailles, Napoleon insists on political asylum before surrendering to British Captain Frederick Maitland on the HMS Bellerophon.
Napoleon would remain in exile on the island of Saint Helena.
1869 – Hippolyte Mege-Mouries (EE-po-lay MEZH-more-ee-ay) of Provence, France is granted a patent for his fatty acid compound we now know as margarine.
Emperor Louis Napoleon III had devised a national contest and prize for whoever could invent a butter substitute to be used by the proletariat and military.
Mister Mege-Mouries used the recently-isolated compound margaric acid to produce the butter-substitute. It quickly caught on.
He received an American patent four years later. Despite the rising demand, Mege-Mouries’ business endeavors to market the invention flopped: he died in obscurity.
1959 – Half a million UNION steel workers walk off the job to leverage pay increases, fringe benefits, and health insurance.
Big Steel was willing to budge, but wanted a little give from the unions, particularly the repeal of a clause in their contracts that prohibited managers from changing how many employees could perform a task or introduce new technologies to make manufacturing more efficient at the cost of human capital.
The union representative said this was just union-busting, and the negotiations ended.
President Eisenhower invoked provisions of the Taft-Hartley Act to impel strikers back to work. The Supreme Court ultimately had to order the workers back on the job.
A new contract followed in January, with a meager 7 cent pay raise.
1965 – The Mariner IV spacecraft delivers the first satellite images of Mars back to Earth.
Image transmissions continued until August 3. Each image was beamed back twice to ensure its safety.
About 634 kilobytes of information were received. That's less information than what's found in a typical Facebook photo album.
1975 – Crews in Cape Canaveral, Florida and Kazakh, Russia launch their respective manned rockets.
The Saturn IB in Florida holds a crew of three Americans. The Soyuz launched in Kazakh carries two cosmonauts into space.
The crews rendezvous their ships, highlighting the period of political detente between the United States and Soviet Union.
2016 - “Stranger Things” debuts on Netflix.
The hit series, created by the Duffer Brothers, stars Winona Ryder, David Harbor, Finn Wolfhand and Millie Bobby Brown.
The show quickly rises to the top of the streamer’s most-watched list.
Iain Armitage - actor, “Young Sheldon” & “Big Little Lies” - 14
Trevor Stines - actor, “The Fosters” - 26
Mason Dye - actor, “Finding Carter” - 28
Frankie A. Rodriguez - actor, “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series” - 30
Damian Lillard - basketball player - 32
Alexander Calvert - actor, “The Returned” - 32
Olly Alexander - pop singer - 32
Aimee Carrero - actress, “Hannah Montana” & “The Mentalist” - 34
Taylor Kinney - actor, “Chicago Fire” - 41
Ray Toro - guitarist, My Chemical Romance - 45
Lana Parrilla - actress, “Once Upon A Time” - 45
Jim Jones - rapper - 46
Gabriel Iglesias - comedian - 46
Diane Kruger - actress, “Unknown” & “Inglourious Basterds” - 46
Marty Wright - wrestler - 48
Brian Austin Green - actor, “Beverly Hills, 90210” - 49
Scott Foley - actor, “Felicity” & “Whiskey Cavalier” - 50
Adam Savage - TV show host, “Mythbusters” - 55
Forest Whitaker - actor, “The Last King of Scotland” & “Platoon” - 61
Born On This Date
Don Kojis - basketball player, Milwaukee native - 1939 (d. 2021)
Clement Clarke Moore - author, “‘Twas the Night Before Xmas” - 1779 (d. 1863)