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RINGSIDE POLITICS – February 1, 2021

Written by on February 1, 2021

Welcome to another edition of Ringside Politics with Jeff Crouere

Today’s Hot Topics:

1) GameStop shares fell as much as 34% and were briefly halted on Monday as the Reddit-fueled frenetic trading extended into February.

Shares of the bricks-and-mortar video game retailer last traded down 25% in morning trading on Monday. GameStop jumped as much as 18% to $384.89 in premarket trading.

The stock surged 1,625% in January as point-and-click investors piled into the name while hedge funds rushed to cover their losses from shorting the stock.

The astronomical rally has inflicted a mark-to-market loss of almost $20 billion to hedge funds with short positions against the stock, according to data from S3 Partners. However, many short sellers are holding onto their bearish positions.

Robinhood and other trading apps continue to limit buying of GameStop stocks and options contracts, along with those of other heavily shorted names, following a week of hugely volatile trading due to a retail trading frenzy led by 5 million-strong Reddit thread “WallStreetBets.” Currently, Robinhood only allows clients to buy one share of GameStop, unless they already own shares, in which case the client can’t buy any shares.

2) You may have noticed that “Jewish Space Laser” has been trending on Twitter. After all, it’s not every day that you see a racial (or other demographic) term and “space laser” used together. Indeed, how often do you hear things like a Black space ship, a Latino light saber, or a Chinese virus?

Actually, let’s re-ask that question. How often do you hear things like a Black space ship or a Latino light saber?

The trending of “Jewish Space Laser” apparently was ignited by social media post from first-term Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Georgia). Her Facebook post was actually from 2018 but re-emerged recently, sort of like a piece of something floating back to the water surface in a toilet bowl.

In her post, Taylor Greene suggested that the 2018 California wildfires may not have been due to climate change leaving vegetation drier and more combustible. No, instead she advanced the theory that, drum roll please, some kind of “space laser” had lit things on fire. Yes, you heard that correctly: a space laser. As they said in the movie Wayne’s World, exsqueeze me, baking powder?

3) Plans for the 230-member governing body of Louisiana’s Republican Party to hold an in-person meeting Saturday at a church have drawn concerns about whether the space offers enough protections from a coronavirus outbreak.

The meeting of the Republican State Central Committee, to be held at a Baptist church in Baton Rouge, includes elections for party leadership.

GOP officials say seats will be blocked off to provide social distancing and masks will be required. But it does not appear the party will provide any mask enforcement effort even through Louisiana’s Democratic governor, John Bel Edwards, has enacted a statewide face covering mandate.

4) Gina Raimondo, President Biden’s nominee for secretary of commerce, promised that the Biden administration will ensure that union workers who lost jobs due to the blocking of the Keystone XL pipeline will get new jobs.

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, raised the issue Tuesday during Raimondo’s confirmation hearing.

“Last week, President Biden signed an executive order canceling the Keystone pipeline, destroying 11,000 jobs including 8,000 union jobs. If you were confirmed as secretary of commerce, what would you say to those 11,00 construction workers whose jobs have been destroyed by the stroke of a pen?” Cruz asked.

“I would say, we’re going to get you to work,” Raimondo replied. “I would say that climate change is a threat to all of us, and that we will make sure that you have jobs, that you have the skills you need to have a job, and by the way as we meet the needs of climate change, there will be many jobs created, good-paying jobs, union jobs. And should I be the commerce secretary I will fight every single day for every American to have a decent paying job and a chance to compete.”

Today’s Guests:

1)  Adam Korzeniewski, Former Senior Adviser, Department of Commerce – calls in the first hour to explain the stock market frenzy and help us understand why the heck everyone is talking about GameStop.

2)  Brock Pierce; Presidential Candidate, Entrepreneur, Humanitarian – calls in to talk about a variety of topics including the GameStop squeeze and the indomitable power of the people.

3) Chad Rogers, Publisher of TheDeadPelican.com; Ringside All-Star – joins the show to take callers and share his unique, pessimistic outlook on the future.

4) David Campbell, Owner of Quik Notary – calls in to discuss his business and all the great services offered.