Numlock News: June 19, 2018


Jerry! Jerry! Jerry!

"The Jerry Springer Show" has been on the air for 28 seasons but has reportedly gone out of production. The CW will air already-produced episodes and re-air earlier shows, and could eventually decide to make more. It is unclear what's next for the nation's trash ex-boyfriends who must reveal a devastating secret to settle a pressing paternity question.
Brian Haas, Entertainment Tonight

Supreme Court Justices

The Supreme Court agreed 9-0 that Wisconsin Democrats who brought a case against a partisan gerrymandering of their state lacked standing to sue, but rather than order the case dismissed, 7 justices agreed the plaintiffs should get another try in district court. In her concurrence, Justice Elena Kagan laid out an argument that could sway swing-vote Justice Anthony Kennedy by building off an earlier Kennedy concurrence. The crux is that rather than argue a statewide injury to all Democrats, argue that the state treating Democrats unfavorably based on their decision to affiliate with a party is a violation of the First Amendment right to free association.
Noah Feldman, Bloomberg


Marvel Weddings

In mere days, X-Men Kitty Pryde and Colossus will tie the knot on the pages of Marvel Comics. I combed through over 50,000 back issues of Marvel to find every time someone got married to prove just how perilous it truly can be. Two out of every three weddings get attacked or interrupted by some adversary or alien armada or furious father, and nearly 50 percent of the 98 weddings studied didn't even make it to the the reception. At least your drunk uncle wasn't Doctor Doom is all I'm saying.

Supporters of Family Separation

About 60 percent of Americans oppose the Trump administration's practice of taking undocumented children away from their families and putting them in government holding facilities. Well over 90 percent of Democrats and nearly 7 in 10 independents oppose the practice, but58 percent of Republicans support the family separation, according to the new poll of 1,012 adults conducted for CNN by SSRS.
Grace Sparks, CNN 

Oprah Finally Makes Good

Congratulations to Oprah, who is now the kind of rich that makes other rich people think damn, that is a rich person. Winfrey's fortune notched $4 billion on Monday, making her one of the 500 richest people on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Winfrey's wealth is up $427 million this year following a rally from Weight Watchers International stock, which has more than doubled in value this year. This is just the latest in a 33-year complicated plan to exact revenge on Anjelica Huston for that stolen Best Supporting Actress Oscar win over Winfrey in '85. 
Tom Metcalf, Bloomberg 

Free Filers

Theoretically about 70 percent of American taxpayers can use the IRS Free File program to get their tax prep done free. That's saved users about $1.5 billion in fees, with more than 50 million returns filed under the program over 16 years. You may see the real loss here: 50 million returns over 16 years is only 3 percent of the eligible tax returns. This means that about $1 billion is spent annually on tax prep by people who don't need to pay a dime for tax prep. Part of this is that the program is unadvertised, and the tax-prep companies that manage it have zero incentive to talk it up.
Tik Root, ProPublica 

Hypothetical L.A. Lakers Membership

LeBron James, an outstanding basketball player who was surrounded by several participants during the the NBA Finals, is eyeing an exit from Cleveland. One potential landing spot is in Los Angeles, where he'd be potentially joined by Kawhi Leonard of the San Antonio Spurs and Paul George of the Oklahoma City Thunder. This is unique, because creating an NBA super-team from scratch is nigh unheard of. Going back to 1976, this would be the first notable Big Three formed when 0 players were already on the team's roster. I guess L.A. is just that appealing of a town.
Neil Paine, FiveThirtyEight  

Marijuana Money

A New York City comptroller report estimated there are 1.5 million marijuana users in the state and projected a $3.1 billion marketshould the drug be legalized. A new report from the state's Department of Health will recommend a framework for legalization and will soon go to the Governor, who has in the past claimed pot is a gateway drug but is also facing a primary election opponent from the left. The comptroller's report claimed it would increase state tax revenue by $440 million, which could certainly go in the direction of fixing the damn subway.
Tim Dickinson, Rolling Stone