Daily Hits. Links from other news sources. Reprints from others.

The Debt Ceiling Clock Ticks On Plus: Biden taps Gen. Charles “C.Q.” Brown as the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

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Article from The Morning Dispatch.

The Debt Ceiling Clock Ticks On Plus: Biden taps Gen. Charles “C.Q.” Brown as the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Happy Friday! Neuralink—the company founded by Elon Musk to implant chips in humans’ brains—announced yesterday it had received FDA approval to begin clinically studying the technology in humans for the first time. Good thing Ron DeSantis didn’t try to launch his campaign on that platform!

  • The Supreme Court on Thursday ruled unanimously in favor of 94-year-old Geraldine Tyler, whose home was seized and sold for a profit by a Minnesota county in 2016 to settle a small tax debt. “The taxpayer must render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s, but no more,” Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the unanimous opinion, which dealt a blow to the controversial practice often referred to as “home equity theft.”
  • Also on Thursday, the court ruled 5-4 to restrict the power of the Environmental Protection Agency to enforce federal clean water protections, particularly in the nation’s wetlands and other waterways.
  • A 75-year-old Michigan man who in September shot an 84-year-old woman canvassing at his home for Right to Life, a pro-life organization, was handed down a sentence of 100 hours of community service and 12 months probation on Tuesday after pleading no contest to the assault. The woman, Joan Jacobson, survived the attack but received hospital treatment for a shoulder wound.
  • Oath Keepers founder and leader Stewart Rhodes—convicted in November on a number of charges, including seditious conspiracy, for his role instigating the January 6 riots and seeking to disrupt the transfer of power—was sentenced on Thursday to 18 years in prison, the longest such term of any January 6 defendant thus far. The head of the Oath Keepers’ Florida chapter, Kelly Meggs, was sentenced to 12 years in prison.
  • Investigators looking into Donald Trump’s handling of classified material since leaving the White House have reportedly learned that the former president and his aides carried out a “dress rehearsal” for moving sensitive documents around Mar-a-Lago, and that boxes of paper were moved by two Trump employees one day before FBI agents and Justice Department officials traveled to the Florida estate to retrieve the material. The actions, if verified, could justify an obstruction charge—and Trump’s lawyers have reportedly warned him to brace for an indictment this year.
  • The Food and Drug Administration on Thursday formally approved Pfizer’s Paxlovid oral antiviral treatment for adults who contract COVID-19 and are at high risk for severe infections. The drug has been authorized for emergency use since late 2021, but now has full approval.
  • After weeks of speculation, Republican Pennsylvania state lawmaker Doug Mastriano—who was at the Capitol on January 6, 2021 and lost to Democrat Josh Shapiro by 15 percentage points in 2022’s gubernatorial race—announced Thursday he will not run for Senate next year. The news likely clears a path for hedge fund executive and Army veteran Dave McCormick, who ran for Senate in 2022 but lost to Dr. Mehmet Oz in the Republican primary.
  • In Arizona, Karrin Taylor Robson—a businesswoman who lost to Kari Lake in the state’s Republican gubernatorial primary last year—announced Thursday she will not mount a Senate bid in 2024. A spokesman for Lake told Dispatch Politics earlier this month he is “99 percent sure” she will enter the race for independent incumbent Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s seat in the coming months.
  • The Department of Labor reported Thursday that initial jobless claims—a proxy for layoffs—increased by 4,000 week-over-week to a seasonally-adjusted 229,000 claims last week.
Daily Hits. Links from other news sources. Reprints from others.

The Morning Brew

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You can find the article  here.


Tour de headlines

Disney World's castle on an overcast dayRoberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images

 Disney scraps a nearly $1 billion project. Can you guess where? Yep, it’s in Florida, where the company has caught flak from Gov. Ron DeSantis. Citing “changing business conditions” (but not DeSantis explicitly), Disney parks chair Josh D’Amaro announced that Disney was canceling plans for a new corporate campus in Orlando that would have moved more than 2,000 jobs to the area. Disney also said it was shutting down its luxury hotel at Walt Disney World, the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser. These projects were the brainchildren of former CEO Bob Chapek.

 ChatGPT gets its own app. OpenAI released an app of its chatbot for the iPhone in the US and said a version for green texters is on the way. The ChatGPT app functions similarly to the existing browser design (free, no ads), but OpenAI hopes that by making ChatGPT easily accessible on your phone, you’ll use it more—and Google Search less. In other AI news, Meta, for the first time, revealed the extensive infrastructure it’s been building to support its artificial intelligence ambitions, including a “family” of chips.

 More Americans are high at work. Positive marijuana tests among US workers reached a 25-year high last year, according to Quest Diagnostics. The drug-testing lab screened more than 6 million employees for pot following on-the-job accidents, and 4.3% came back positive, a bump from 3.9% in 2021. Quest attributes the jump in positive tests to the wave of marijuana legalization efforts across the country but warned that getting high on the job, which can slow reaction time and impact memory, can “have a major impact on safety at work.”


The largest bitcoin conference is a lot smaller this year

"Crypto capital" Miami is doing great, even without cryptoFrancis Scialabba

JFK’s nephew, the author of Moneyball, and a robotic bull all walk into an event space—and it’s not that crowded.

The third annual bitcoin industry conference is underway in Miami, with less than half as many attendees as last year’s 35,000-person turnout. The three-day event—with speeches from presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and writer Michael Lewis—is likely drawing smaller crowds because of “crypto winter”: the recent crypto failures (shoutout FTX) dampening enthusiasm for digital coins.

Rewind to the pandemic…and Miami was going all-in on crypto. It built a Transformer-looking version of Wall Street’s Charging Bull, its bitcoin-salaried mayor labeled his jurisdiction the “crypto capital of the world,” and the city even rolled out a (now defunct) digital currency, MiamiCoin.

Fast forward to 2023…and the crypto fever might have passed. Still, Will Smith’s favorite city is showing it doesn’t need bitcoin to thrive.

  • Though spiking mortgage rates took a bite out of home prices across the country this year, Miami-Dade County’s median home price grew by about 5%.
  • Compared to other American downtowns, Miami offices have a relatively low vacancy rate, largely thanks to Florida’s low corporate tax.
  • It has Jimmy Butler.

Party in the city where the heat is on: Miami’s crypto craze may be winding down, but business leaders predict tech startups and traditional financial companies will keep flocking to the 305.—ML




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Dip your fries into a buffapeñolte ranch

Ketchup pouring into aFrancis Scialabba

Ketchup hasn’t seen innovation like this since the first brave soul hit the 57. Kraft Heinz’s newest invention, the Heinz Remix, is a dispenser that lets you get lost in the customization of your sauce.

How it works: First, you choose one of four base sauces—ketchup, ranch, 57 sauce, or BBQ. Then, you can select flavor “enhancers” such as jalapeño, smoky chipotle, buffalo, and mango, and decide the level of intensity. Similar to the Coca-Cola Freestyle machines you see in movie theaters, the Heinz Remix will dispense whatever deranged concoction you can come up with.

Will everything faintly taste like buffalo? We’ll have to see. The food giant will demo a prototype machine at this weekend’s National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago and intends to start putting the machines in restaurants as soon as this year.

The business case: Kraft Heinz isn’t just launching the Remix so teens can make the ultimate graveyard sauce to drink on dares. It’s hoping the machine will help identify what new sauce combos consumers actually want—and add more fuel to its growing food service division. The company has recently made big investments outside your fridge. It closed a deal to put Lunchables in school cafeterias and released a line of professional mayo for chefs.—MM



Key performance indicators

An image from Legend of Zelda: Tears of the KingdomNintendo

Stat: We weren’t sure it was possible, but there is an entertainment product making more money than Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour. The video game Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom sold 10 million copies globally in its first three days, generating more sales (an estimated $700 million) than any movie’s box-office debut this year and more than Swift’s romp around the country, per Axios. Tears of the Kingdom could ultimately unseat Hogwarts Legacy as the best-selling video game of 2023.

Quote: “Next year will probably be my last year.”

Tennis legend Rafael Nadal said a hip injury is forcing him to pull out of the French Open for the first time in nearly 20 years and that he’ll likely retire from the sport in 2024. Nadal is synonymous with the clay at Roland Garros—he’s won an astonishing 112 of the 115 matches he’s played at the French Open. Over his career, Nadal has hoisted 22 major trophies, tied for the most ever in men’s tennis with Novak Djokovic.

Read: The last gamble of Tokyo Joe. (Chicago magazine)


The quiz and the furious

New Friday quiz image

The feeling of getting a 5/5 on the Brew’s Weekly News Quiz has been compared to throwing the first piece of trash into an empty bag.

It’s that satisfying. Ace the quiz.


What else is brewing

  • Twitter and Google scored a win at the Supreme Court, which ruled that the companies were not liable for terrorism-related content on their platforms.
  • Five TikTok users in Montana filed a lawsuit challenging the state’s complete ban of the app, which was signed into law on Wednesday. That was quick.
  • Sam Zell, the billionaire real estate mogul, died at 81.
  • US home prices logged their biggest annual decline in 11 years.
  • The first kiss may have occurred 1,000 years earlier than believed, a new review paper says. Researchers have concluded the first smoochers lived in Mesopotamia about 4,500 years ago.


Friday to-do list

 Vision myths busted: Experts described the habits that help (and hurt) your vision.

 My hull will go on: Take a 3D tour of the Titanic’s shipwreck, which just got its first full-sized digital scan. Plus, here’s the Titanic compared to a modern cruise ship.

 Designers—you’ll love this: A YouTuber redesigns Oslo’s transit diagram.

 Trailers galore: Here’s the first trailer for Killers of the Flower Moon (the new Scorcese flick starring Leo and De Niro). Plus, the newest Mortal Kombat.

 Ctrl alt delight: Looking for a community of IT professionals like yourself? Stay up to date on the latest trends with IT Brew. Subscribe today.


 Good vibrations: Meet the wearable that trains your body to embrace sleep and banish stress. Apollo Neuro’s touch-therapy technology uses soothing vibrations to improve sleep, relaxation, and focus. Keep calm with $40 off.*

Daily Hits. Gun Control Just my own thoughts Links from other news sources.

California’s gun control works for who? 9 mass shootings up to April 16th.

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California’s gun control works for who? 9 mass shootings up to April 16th. And it’s not just this year. From 1982 to 2023 California leads the nation in mass shootings. More than Texas and Floridan combined. How can that possibly be? One California loon claims that every single mass shooting was with a gun bought outside of California. SMH.

Now I’m sure that the Progressives who follow this website will say the answer is simple. Pass more gun control. How crazy is that? Obvious that states like California that have these laws, either don’t enforce them, or they just don’t work.

What’s the answer? First thing is to look at who and where the shootings are happening? In minority neighborhoods? If so you set up check points and increase police presence.

Nuff said. That’s a start.

Daily Hits. Links from other news sources. Reprints from others.

What’s making news today.

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Complete articles of the WSJ can be found here.

Daily Hits. Links from other news sources. Reprints from others.

What’s making the news.

Hits: 4

What’s making the news.

Good morning. This day could go down in history. Former President Donald Trump said that he expects to be arrested over an investigation into a hush-money payment today. And yesterday afternoon, the NYPD began installing steel barricades around Manhattan’s Criminal Court.

It’s still not a sure thing, but if Trump is indicted and arrested, he’d be the first former president to face criminal charges. His lawyers have said that if it happens, he’ll follow standard arrest procedures, including getting fingerprinted and having a mugshot taken. Should be an interesting day.

Sam Klebanov, Jamie Wilde, Neal Freyman, Abby Rubenstein

  • Markets: Regulators in Switzerland seem to have given US markets a boost by calming investors’ fears of a banking crisis (at least for now). Stocks closed higher yesterday, and regional US banks started gaining again, with PacWest jumping up the most. But not all regional banks—First Republic’s shares plummeted once more, and Jamie Dimon is reportedly trying to engineer another fix for the struggling lender.
  • Amazon will lay off another 9,000 staffers. The e-commerce giant recently finished letting go of 18,000 employees, but it’s already announcing another round of job cuts to reduce spending. The layoffs will take place over the next few weeks and will include workers in its cloud computing, Twitch, advertising, and human resources divisions. The reductions come after Amazon’s ranks swelled to help the company meet surging demand when nobody could go to stores during the pandemic.

    Xi Jinping is visiting “dear friend” Vladimir Putin. China’s leader began a three-day visit to Russia yesterday, meeting with Putin even as the West tries to keep Russia isolated because of its invasion of Ukraine. China has called the trip a “journey of friendship, cooperation, and peace,” while the US has derided it as “diplomatic cover” for alleged Russian war crimes. The US is concerned China may try to sell weapons to Russia or push a peace deal that leaves Russian troops in Ukraine.

    CDC issues warning on fungus. In a possible inspiration for future seasons of The Last of Us, the CDC said yesterday that a fungal threat to human health is growing at “an alarming rate” in health facilities across the US. Candida auris, a drug-resistant and sometimes deadly fungus that grows as a yeast, has now been detected in more than half of all states after first being found in the US in 2016. The fungus can cause infections and is especially dangerous for older people and people with weakened immune systems.

    How funny is this? Junk Science.

    If humanity wants to avoid a Mad Max-like future, the world needs to act now to rein in climate change, a new UN-backed report stressed. “The climate time-bomb is ticking,” said United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres. “Humanity is on thin ice—and that ice is melting fast,” he added for dramatic effect.

    Hundreds of scientists from around the world worked together to create the report. One finding the panel has “very high confidence” in? “There is a rapidly closing window of opportunity to secure a livable and sustainable future for all.” Cue Lloyd Christmas saying, “So you’re telling me there’s a chance?”

    It’ll take some elbow grease—err, biofuel—to claw back climate change

    Greenhouse gases need to be reduced by 50% by 2030 to keep climate change within 1.5 degrees Celsius of pre-industrial levels—and so far, the world’s on track to miss this target. By the early 2050s, we’d need to reach net zero CO2 emissions to stick to the goal.

    Some key tools in the world’s “survival guide,” per the report, which…are all somewhat “duh”:

    • Increase solar and wind power
    • Make cities more bikeable and walkable
    • Cut back on agricultural pollution and limit food waste

    Looking ahead…Guterres is putting the onus on high-income nations (ahem, US) to use their resources to limit their CO2 emissions by 2040—ten years before the rest of the world.—JW

    What else is brewing
    • France’s government narrowly survived no-confidence votes, paving the way for President Emmanuel Macron’s unpopular plan to raise the retirement age to take effect.
    • The new CEO of Starbucks, Laxman Narasimhan, took over from founder Howard Schultz two weeks earlier than planned.
    • Eggs have gotten so expensive that Dollar Tree can no longer make a profit selling them.
    • Rupert Murdoch, the 92-year-old executive chairman of News Corp, is engaged to be married for the fifth time.
Daily Hits. Links from other news sources. Reprints from others.

Your daily news from Morning Brew.

Hits: 11

Your daily news from Morning Brew.


Meta downsizes…again

Mark Zuckerberg lookin sadIllustration: Morning Brew, Photo: Getty

We’re beginning to learn what Meta’s “year of efficiency” means in practice: fewer employees.

Yesterday, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Meta plans to lay off 10,000 employees, just four months after it laid off 11,000 staff members. That round of layoffs, impacting 13% of Meta’s workforce, represented the biggest job cuts in the company’s history.

Not only is Meta laying off 10k employees, but it’s also closing 5,000 open roles. This is not a company that wants to onboard many people right now.

Why is that?

Meta is looking to reduce costs as part of what Mark Zuckerberg calls the “year of efficiency.” Last year was “a humbling wake-up call,” Zuck said, citing economic uncertainty and increased competition (aka TikTok) for denting the company’s ad revenue.

But Meta made plenty of unforced errors, too. And by dubbing 2023 “the year of efficiency,” it’s acknowledging that previously, things were not very efficient.

That starts with hiring. Meta has been criticized for growing its headcount so rapidly that many employees had nothing to do.

  • In a viral TikTok video, one former Meta employee said, “we were just sitting there” and “you had to fight to find work.”
  • report in Wired argues that Meta’s headcount got bloated due to “ghosts in the machine”—employees who were brought on to launch new products and stayed on the payroll even when those products failed.

Putting the recent layoffs in context: Even after shedding 21,000 jobs, Meta will still have a higher headcount than it did before the pandemic. In the boom times of 2020 and 2021, it hired more than 27,000 employees.

Zoom out: While the US labor market remains strong, layoffs have spiked in 2023. Companies announced 180,713 job cuts in January and February—the most to start any year since 2009, according to Challenger, Gray & Christmas. About one-third of the layoffs took place at tech companies.—NF



Tour de headlines

An MQ-9 Reaper takes off August 8, 2007 at Creech Air Force Base in Indian Springs, NevadaEthan Miller/Getty Images

 A Russian fighter jet crashed into a US drone. In the first known physical contact between US and Russian aircraft since the invasion of Ukraine, a Russian fighter jet collided with a US surveillance drone in international airspace above the Black Sea, damaging a propeller and forcing the US to bring the drone down. At least that’s what the US claims happened: Russia denied that the plane came into contact with the drone. According to one US official, drones have been intercepted in the area before, but this incident was particularly “unsafe and unprofessional.”

 ​​ChatGPT is old news. OpenAI released its much-hyped GPT-4 AI language model yesterday, representing an advancement over the tech that powers ChatGPT. GPT-4 is wowing reviewers with its ability to understand not only text but also images (even complex memes). Plus, it crushes its predecessor GPT-3.5 on academic assessments: On a simulated bar exam, GPT-4 scored around the top 10% of test takers, while GPT-3.5 scored around the bottom 10%.

 EPA moves to get “forever chemicals” out of drinking water. The EPA proposed regulations yesterday to limit the amount of six types of industrial chemicals allowed in drinking water. PFAS, as they are known, cause health problems including cancer. Though many companies have begun phasing out the chemicals, a 2020 study found that 200 million Americans are exposed to PFAS in tap water.


What happened to Signature Bank

Signature logo with downward arrowJakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

We’ve written at George R. R. Martin-length about the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank, the second-largest banking collapse in US history. But did you know that the third-biggest bank failure happened just two days after SVB imploded? The deets are juicy.

On Sunday, regulators seized the assets of NY-based Signature Bank and gave senior management the boot, but they assured its depositors that they could access all of their money. Signature was deemed a threat to the US financial system after panicked customers reportedly withdrew 20% of its total deposits.

But leaders inside the bank say authorities overreacted, led by none other than Barney Frank, the former US representative on Signature’s board. If that name sounds familiar, it’s because Frank crafted key banking regulations in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis (the Dodd-Frank Act).

Frank argues that Singature was singled out because of its ties to crypto—it was one of the go-to banks for crypto companies. Frank told Bloomberg that he believes Signature wasn’t on the verge of collapse, and regulators only shut it down “to send a message to get people away from crypto.”

Authorities have pushed back on the pushback. The New York State Department of Financial Services, which initiated the closure, claims that Signature executives were elusive in sharing data with regulators during the bank panic, causing a “crisis of confidence.”—SK



Boneless wings are going to court

Chicken nugget in a sea of boneless wingsIllustration: Morning Brew, Photos: Getty

Everyone with a complex about getting wing sauce all over their face has a new hero. Aimen Halim of Chicago filed a class-action lawsuit against Buffalo Wild Wings that accuses the restaurant chain of falsely advertising its boneless wings when they are allegedly just chicken nuggets.

The lawsuit, filed last Friday, states that Halim believed BWW’s boneless chicken wings were actually deboned wings. If he had known the breast-meat truth, Halim claims he would have ordered something else, and therefore he’s suffered “financial injury.”

This debate has been a hot one. A man went viral in 2020 for giving an impassioned speech to the Lincoln, NE, city council about why the term “boneless wings” should be stripped from every menu in the city.

But we’ve been having the conversation even before that. In the early 2000s, boneless wings gained popularity when the price of chicken breast—which is what boneless wings are usually made of—cratered, while wings remained expensive. And wing purists have always pushed back against the bone-free option. The prices of both items have fluctuated in the past few years, but the debate over what, if anything, constitutes a boneless wing has raged on.—MM



Key performance indicators

Argentina fans at the last World CupHannah Peters—FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images

Stat: Calling it now—summer 2026 will see the lowest worker productivity on record. The World Cup is expanding to 104 games, a considerable increase from the 64 matches played last year in Qatar. That’s the result of more teams in the field (48 vs. 32 previously) and a bigger group stage. The next tournament will be hosted in North America over a span of nearly six weeks.

Quote: “The standard deli sandwich with processed meat and cheese, you’re literally eating a heart bomb.”

An article from the WSJ ruined sandwiches for us, and now we’re ruining them for you, too. Sorry. This quote about the health risks of sandwiches comes from a cardiologist and nutrition professor at Tufts University, who, along with other health experts, is warning about the high levels of sodium, sugar, and saturated fat in Americans’ favorite lunch option. A typical turkey sandwich in the 1980s had ~320 calories; in the 2000s, it had 820, per the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.

Read: Influencer parents and the kids who had their childhood made into content. (Teen Vogue)


What else is brewing

  • Silicon Valley Bank’s new CEO said that rebuilding has begun and asked customers to return: “We are open for business.” Meanwhile, the DOJ and the SEC have begun investigating the bank’s collapse.
  • Ohio sued Norfolk Southern to ensure the railroad pays for damage caused when its train containing hazardous chemicals derailed in East Palestine in early February.
  • Boeing notched a big order for 78 787 Dreamliners from two Saudi airlines.
  • Argentina’s inflation topped 100% on an annual basis last month.
  • Google Health rolled out a bunch of new initiatives—many of them leveraging AI—aimed at improving access to care.
Daily Hits. Links from other news sources. Reprints from others.

Headline News. Stories that are making a difference.

Hits: 26

Trying something different. Running with headline news from Newsmax, FOX, and Breitbart.



New Disney Board Members Vow Big Change
House Republicans Launch Their 1/6 Panel Probe
Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga., informed The Hill on Wednesday that he would be leading an investigation into the now-dissolved House Jan. 6 Select Committee. Loudermilk, who chairs the House Administration Committee’s Subcommittee on Oversight, said that his panel is …… [Full Story]
Biden Says He Will Meet With Speaker McCarthy 'Anytime' on Budget
President Joe Biden shakes hands with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy of California last month before Biden’s State of the Union address, his first before the new Republican-controlled House. (Getty Images)

Legendary movie and TV star dead at the age of 89 after 'long-term heart issues'

Daily Hits. Links from other news sources. Reprints from others. Uncategorized

News you can use. The week ahead.

Hits: 19

News you can use. More from Morning Brew.

The week ahead

Students walking on campus in the fall.Jon Lovette/Getty Images

Student loan forgiveness on the docket: On Tuesday, the Supreme Court will begin hearing oral arguments over President Biden’s student loan forgiveness program, which is being challenged by six GOP-led states. A ruling, due later this year, could have far-reaching consequences for a president’s power to make rules unilaterally.

Retailers in the spotlight: This week’s slate of earnings is all about retail. Target, Dollar Tree, Macy’s, Kroger, and others will give us an update on American consumer health in this period of ripping inflation.

New month alert: March arrives on Wednesday and with it St. Patrick’s Day, March Madness, Ted Lasso Season 3, and an extra hour of daylight in the evenings.

Everything else…

  • Congress gets back to work today following a break.
  • Tesla is holding its Investor Day on Wednesday.
  • Read Across America Day is also on Wednesday. That’s Dr. Seuss’s birthday (not a coincidence).


Key performance indicators

Screenshot from New GirlNew Girl/20th Television

Stat: For millennials, “adulting” has meant racking up debt at a historic pace. Americans in their 30s have accumulated 27% more debt from late 2019 to late 2022, per the New York Fed. That’s a bigger increase than any other age cohort and the highest rate of debt accumulation for Americans in their thirties since the 2008 financial crisis, the WSJ notes.

Quote: “Either an economic illiterate or a silver-tongued demagogue…”

In his annual letter to shareholders, Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett blasted critics of stock buybacks as Econ 101 dropouts. Some lawmakers, such as Sen. Elizabeth Warren, have vilified the practice as a misuse of corporate funds that only benefits the elite. Buffett responded that buybacks benefit all shareholders by lifting the intrinsic value of the stock they own. Berkshire spent $7.9 billion on stock buybacks last year.

Read: Forget what you’ve heard—this is how large language models like ChatGPT actually work. (Stephen Wolfram)


What else is brewing

  • Tens of thousands of protesters in Mexico City denounced President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s electoral reforms, saying they would erode democracy in Mexico.
  • Jake Paul lost his first match as a pro boxer, in a split decision to Tommy Fury.
  • Nokia is refreshing its logo for the first time in almost six decades.
  • Fans of the Turkish soccer team Beşiktaş threw toys on the field as a donation to children affected by the earthquakes.
  • Warner Bros. Discovery sued Paramount Global for allegedly breaching a $500 million South Park licensing deal the two signed in 2019.
Daily Hits. Links from other news sources.

Today’s Stories.

Hits: 11

 Today’s Top Stories

  • Thanks to The Dispatch for this article.
  • The death toll from Monday’s earthquakes in Turkey and Syria passed 21,700 and is expected to rise throughout the day as rescue workers continue their search through the rubble.
  • State Department officials said Thursday the Chinese surveillance balloon that flew over the U.S. earlier this month carried multiple antennas to collect signals intelligence—like communications and geolocation data—as part of a larger surveillance program targeting more than 40 countries on five continents. The Defense Intelligence Agency was reportedly aware of the balloon the day before it entered U.S. airspace but didn’t flag it as an urgent threat, instead moving to collect intelligence on it. The House of Representatives voted unanimously Thursday to condemn China for the incursion.
  • Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced Thursday Nicaragua has released 222 political prisoners—including one U.S. citizen—who arrived in the United States yesterday morning. Blinken said Nicaragua freed the prisoners unilaterally, without U.S. concessions or inducements, suggesting President Daniel Ortega’s administration—known for its repressive tactics and close ties to Russia—may be interested in improving relations with the United States.
  • Special Counsel Jack Smith has subpoenaed former Vice President Mike Pence as part of an investigation into former President Donald Trump’s attempts to overturn the 2020 presidential election, ABC News reported last night. The subpoena—which compels the former vice president to provide relevant documents and testimony—is the result of months of negotiations between federal prosecutors and Pence’s lawyers. Former National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien also received a subpoena as part of the probe.
  • Meta reinstated Trump’s Instagram and Facebook accounts Thursday, ending his suspension for praising people involved in violence during the January 6 Capitol riot. Trump has not yet posted on either of the two social media platforms, and also has yet to post on Twitter, which restored his access in November.
  • Newly-elected Pennsylvania Sen. John Fetterman was hospitalized Wednesday evening after feeling lightheaded at a retreat with other Senate Democrats. Fetterman—who suffered a stroke while on the campaign trail in May—remains in the hospital, though doctors have ruled out another stroke.
  • Pop music composer and songwriter Burt Bacharach died Wednesday at the age of 94. He had more than 70 Top-40 hits over the course of his career, including “I Say A Little Prayer”—sung by Aretha Franklin—and the Oscar-winning “Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head.”
  • Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes was named NFL MVP on Thursday, his second time winning the award in his six-year career. Minnesota Vikings receiver Justin Jefferson won Offensive Player of the Year, San Francisco 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa won Defensive Player, and Brian Daboll of the New York Giants won Coach of the Year.

Entitlement Reform Debates Resume

Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) during a news conference to discuss the ongoing negotiations over the national debt ceiling. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)
Remember Tuesday? Us neither. For reference: President Joe Biden delivered his second State of the Union address that evening and received a lot of boos and shouts of “liar” when he suggested some Republicans—“I’m not saying it’s a majority”—want to cut Medicare or Social Security in exchange for raising the debt ceiling.
Republicans really hate this line of attack—and the French protests over modest pension reforms we discussed last week might explain why. “The only people talking about cutting Social Security and Medicare right now are the Democrats using it as a scare tactic because they can’t defend their failed economic policies,” Nebraska Rep. Adrian Smith told The Dispatch on Thursday.
Crime Daily Hits. Links from other news sources. Uncategorized

California Progressives rejoice. Rest of the population mourns. Their gun control laws only allowed one mass shooting this week.

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California Progressives rejoice. Rest of the population mourns. Their gun control laws only allowed one mass shooting this week. Yes my friends it looks as if gun control is finally working in California. Only one mass shooting this past week.

A mass shooting took place Thursday in the wealthy Beverly Crest neighborhood of Los Angeles, killing three and wounding four people according to police. The shooting took place at a short term rental on the 2700 block of Ellison Dr. No suspect or motive has been identified as of yet but the public is not believed to be in danger. It has not been determined whether a party was taking place.

It’s working so well that California lawmakers are calling for even tougher laws. Oh they work so well. Don’t you think?


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