Today's Takes: Tuesday, June 22

Today's Takes: Tuesday, June 22

Vol. I, No. 31 • Sports Gone Woke • China's Farce • Bitcoin's Dive • Infrastructure • Much More!

We didn't think it was possible for "sports" to sink lower than the NFL and NBA did after they merged with the Woke-acracy enlisting their players as parrots to chirp out the latest state-sanctioned views on everything from race to trade relations with China, but here we are.

Take these four headlines from yesterday:

  1. New Zealand weightlifter Laurel Hubbard is first openly transgender athlete selected to compete at the Olympics (Washington Post)
  2. Raiders player Carl Nassib comes out as gay, first active player in NFL history (SB Nation)
  3. Buffalo Bills' Cole Beasley says he'd rather retire than get Covid-19 vaccine (CNN)
  4. Transgender BMX rider for Team USA reportedly vowed to ‘burn’ US flag on medal podium (NY Post)

The first two celebrate athletes merely because of what they choose to call themselves and who they choose to have sex with. The third, and most sympathetic character in the lot, makes a point of trying to humiliate a player for his decision to forgo the vaccine. And the fourth, well, you can figure that one out.

The "shut up and dribble" rejoinder issued to LeBron James after he offered his lame opinions on then President Donald Trump has become symbolic of people's growing distaste for professional sports. It was inevitable that James, the most prominent athlete in the nation, would get into a position where he'd have to pick a side, and it came as a surprise to no one that he chose the side of his employer. Whatever the case may be, fans tend to agree: politics and sports do not play well together. NFL and NBA ratings are sinking. LeBron "can't-get-past-the-first-page" James and the all-out politicization of sports probably have something to do with it.

Headlines

🇨🇳 Chinese State Media nominated the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) for its Outstanding Science and Technology Achievement Prize going so far as to claim that the WIV deserved the Nobel Prize. From the outside, it looks like China is taking the scorched Earth strategy as consensus builds around the lab leak theory. The Biden administration, for their part, has taken a decidedly soft stance against China amidst the probe into the virus' origins.

🏗 Speaking of Infrastructure, Biden plans to meet with lawmakers this week to discuss the bipartisan infrastructure deal hovering around $1 trillion. A coalition of at least 21 bipartisan lawmakers have come together to form a plan that will focus exclusively on roads, bridges, transit, trains, water, broadband, and power. It strips out many of the social aspects of Biden's original proposal. Much of the debate centers on how to fund the bill. Republicans push for a bill that can be implemented without tax increases while Democrats have pushed for increasing the corporate tax, the income tax, or the gas tax. Potentially all three. Maybe they'll tax your dog too. Hard to say.

🌔 Bitcoin's price took a dive over the weekend after the Chinese government pursued a more aggressive ban on Bitcoin mining in the region. There has been a flurry of misinformation concerning the effect of the ban. Barron's posted in their newsletter that "less mining, of course, means fewer coins" which is either an ignorant misunderstanding or a willful misrepresentation. In theory, Bitcoin mining is similar to mining for gold. But, when the mining power of the network decreases (like we saw over the weekend), the network adjusts how hard miners have to work to produce new coins to maintain a consistent network throughput. Far from meaning miners will produce fewer coins, a reduction in the number of miners means a temporary reduction in the security of the network until more miners come online to pickup the slack. The absence of Chinese miners is not necessarily a good thing, but the network will continue unimpeded. It likely offers an opportunity for new players to enter the space as capital costs are fairly steep to run a mining operation. If you're curious how Bitcoin actually works, here's a good intro (Watch)

Nashville Politics

  • Tennessee tax revenue eclipses $1.5B in May (Main Street)
    • 38% more than the budgeted estimate
    • 34.5% more than in May 2019 and 59% more than in May 2020
    • State collected $1.5 billion more in sales and use taxes than were budgeted

Nashville News

  • Drivers impressed with revival of Nashville Superspeedway (Post)

Nashville Development

  • North Gulch hotel project advances with permit (Post)
  • Sheraton Grand Nashville Downtown hotel sold to New York firm (Biz Journal)
  • Metro issues more than $5 billion in value of construction permits for FY 2021 (WSMV)
  • Nashville SC closes on Century Farms land for $9 million (Biz Jounral)
  • River North creator Don Allen talks about his epic Oracle deal and the 20 years it took to get there (Biz Journal)

The Clintons Ride Again

📚 Bill Clinton's got a new book out with James Patterson entitled, The President's Daughter. The backcover of the book claims, "Every detail is accurate—because one of the authors is President Bill Clinton", but, surprisingly, there are no sexual liasons. The news sparked reminders of a book released last year entitled Rodham which asks what would've come of Hillary Clinton had she said no to marriage with Bill. It's good to see the Clintons staying busy in these wild and crazy times.

Who's higher: gas prices or Hunter Biden?

🎥 A gas station in Ashland City, TN pays homage to America's lost son and crack addict, Hunter Biden (Watch)

Stat of the Day

💸 60% of millennials earning over $100,000 say they're living paycheck to paycheck (Read)

Have a great Tuesday