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No…Biden; “Picking a VP Like Choosing a Calendar Model”…Oh Wow

Liberal Logic Update

It’s truly surreal, he’s losing his mental facilities on a national stage and the demonic Dems have no problem leaving him there to be a sacrificial political lamb.  These people have no souls.

In “private encounters,” Joe Biden likened a vice presidential nominee selection process to browsing monthly morsels in a pinup calendar.

In private encounters before this campaign, Mr. Biden has likened running-mate evaluation to deciding among calendar models, with three broad categories (and outdated honorifics): Contenders can be a “Mr. August” (a shot of momentum in the summer), a “Mr. October” (a reliable and effective campaigner for the fall) or a “Mr. January” (a governing partner, politics notwithstanding).

It is not lost on Mr. Biden that whomever he chooses might well be elected the nation’s first female president after his turn, or at least become a new front-runner for the distinction. He has called himself a “bridge” to the next generation of Democratic leaders, a transitional figure whose chief goal is the removal of President Trump. That Mr. Biden is a 77-year-old man likely to accept the nomination during a pandemic has attached even weightier stakes to his decision.

Biden used the “Mr.” title before he had declared he would nominate a woman as his running mate.

The story comes as Biden continues to defend himself against allegations that he sexually assaulted then-staffer Tara Reade in 1993.

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Team Trump

President Trump’s administration is readying a public health regulation to more permanently stem the flow of illegal immigration at the United States-Mexico border.

Flanked by members of the Coronavirus Task Force, U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a news briefing on the latest development of the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S. in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House March 19, 2020 in Washington, DC. With Americans testing positive by …

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials have credited the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Title 42 with helping to plummet southern border crossings by 84 percent in April and giving Border Patrol agents the authority to return border crossers to their native countries within a matter of hours.

The expansion will come in the form of a public health regulation that continues giving federal immigration officials broad power to swiftly detain, process, and return border crossers. The original order was implemented for 30 days and has already been extended for an additional 30 days.

DHS officials said this is the first time in U.S. history that the CDC’s Title 42 has been applied to border crossers. In the past, the order has only applied to foreign imports.

Last month, less than 16,000 border crossers were apprehended by Border Patrol agents — a 47 percent decrease from the more than 30,000 apprehended in March.

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Market Minders

Overnight on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 369.04 points higher, or 1.5%, at 24,575.90. The S&P 500 advanced 1.7% to 2,971.61, its highest closing level since March 6. The Nasdaq Composite outperformed, rallying 2.1% to finish its trading day at 9,375.78. Wednesday’s advance stateside put the major averages up more than 3% for the week.

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The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 99.344 after touching levels around 99 earlier.

Stocks in Asia Pacific stood little changed in Thursday afternoon trade as investors continue to monitor the reopening of economies amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Mainland Chinese stocks hovered around the flatline by the afternoon, with the Shanghai composite fractionally higher while the Shenzhen component dipped slightly. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was also little changed.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 fell into negative territory as it slipped fractionally in afternoon trade. The Topix index declined 0.16%. South Korea’s Kospi advanced 0.46%.

Shares in Australia dipped, with the S&P/ASX 200 0.17% lower.

Overall, the MSCI Asia ex-Japan index was largely flat.

Japan’s trade data for April released by the country’s Ministry of Finance on Thursday showed exports in April plunging 21.9% as compared to a year earlier. That was less than the 22.7% drop predicted by economists in a Reuters poll.

Tapas Strickland, director of economics and markets at National Australia Bank, wrote in a note prior to the release that economic data “continues to take a back seat as markets look to higher frequency data to gauge how quickly activity is returning.”

“All eyes on the global PMIs to see whether economic activity troughed in April and if the easing of lockdown restrictions is seeing a bounce back in activity as indicated by the high frequency data such as Apple/Google mobility indicators,” Strickland said.

Investors also likely continued to watch for developments on the coronavirus pandemic, as the World Health Organization said the number of newly reported cases globally hit a daily record this week, amid authorities around the world attempting to ease lockdown measures put in place to curb the virus’ spread.

Markets had gotten a boost earlier in the week after Moderna announced a positive development for a potential coronavirus vaccine. On Wednesday, in response to a STAT News report that vaccine experts were skeptical of Moderna’s new vaccine data, the firm’s chairman told CNBC that it would never put out data on its potential vaccine for the coronavirus that was different from “reality.”

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Interesting Stuff

Elon Musk’s SpaceX is set to launch Dragon Demo-2 next Wednesday, a mission that will send NASA astronauts into space from U.S. soil for the first time in nearly a decade.

SpaceX chief Elon Musk speaks during a press conference after the launch of SpaceX Crew Dragon Demo mission at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on March 2, 2019. - NASA and SpaceX celebrated the successful launch March 2 of a new astronaut capsule on a week-long round trip to the International Space Station -- a key step towards resuming manned space flights from US soil after an eight-year break. (Photo by Jim WATSON / AFP) (Photo by

American astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley will launch from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on SpaceX’s Falcon 9 and fly to the International Space Station (ISS) aboard a Crew Dragon capsule. The last such launch came in July 2011 and became the final mission of NASA’s space shuttle program.

Crew Dragon Demo-2 will also be the first two-person orbital spaceflight launched from the U.S. since STS-4 in 1982.

The first stage booster on the launch will also attempt to land autonomously in the Atlantic Ocean on a SpaceX floating barge called “Of Course I Still Love You.”

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said Dragon Demo-2 is a priority for the agency.

“We need access to the International Space Station from the United States of America. Commercial Crew is the program that’s going to make that happen. It’s essential for our country to have that capability,” Bridenstine told CNBC.

SpaceX has a $2.6 billion contract with NASA’s Commercial Crew Program to conduct six such flights, and also flies robotic resupply missions with the cargo version of Dragon,  first sent to the ISS in 2012.

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