NEED TO KNOW

robert massimi
6 min readMay 26, 2021

No Bull With Raging Robert.

Teen Vaccinations

Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine is 100% effective in children aged 12 to 17, according to results released by the company yesterday. In a trial with more than 3,700 participants, zero infections were observed after the two-dose regimen, and the treatment was found to be 93% effective after the first shot. The company plans to seek authorization for use in the age group in the coming weeks; a vaccine from Pfizer and partner BioNTech is already approved for the more than 25 million 12- to 17-year-olds in the US.

Officials said no significant safety concerns were observed. However, researchers are investigating whether the Pfizer vaccine — of which almost 5 million doses have been administered to teens — is linked to a small number of myocarditis cases. The condition, inflammation of the heart muscle, typically resolves itself without issue. It’s unclear whether the number of cases, none of which were fatal, is higher than what would be naturally expected in the general population.

Almost 62% of US adults, and more than 58% of Americans over age 12, have received at least one vaccine dose. Roughly half of US adults are now fully vaccinated.

DC Sues Amazon

The attorney general in the nation’s capital announced a lawsuit against Amazon, accusing the tech giant of anticompetitive price-fixing practices.

At issue is an updated version of the company’s “most favored nation” clauses — provisions in contracts that prohibit sellers from offering the same item for a lower price on a competing platform. Violations would result in sellers losing access to Amazon’s online marketplace, which facilitates about 40% of e-commerce in the US. The company reportedly dropped the explicit clause in 2019; however, Washington, DC, officials allege it was replaced by a nearly identical clause allowing Amazon to level sanctions on third-party sellers.

The suit is the latest legal battlefront for Amazon, which has been accused of similar practices around e-books and of misusing data collected by third-party sellers to boost its own-label products.

Dylann Roof Appeals

Lawyers representing mass shooter Dylann Roof asked an appeals court yesterday to overturn his conviction and death sentence, arguing Roof should have been found incompetent to stand trial.

An avowed white supremacist, a then-21-year-old Roof entered the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2015 opening fire during bible study. Nine people were killed in the attack. Roof was subsequently found guilty on 33 federal charges and sentenced to death — the first time the death penalty had been meted out for a hate crime in the US. Federal executions had been on a hiatus since 2003 until being revived last year, with 13 inmates being put to death since July 2020.

Roof himself was not a signatory on the original appeal brief; earlier court documents revealed he was staunchly against using mental illness as a defense for fear it would damage his reputation.

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THE FUTURE OF FOOD?

Demand for healthy food is steadily rising, but it’s still difficult (read: impossible?) to find affordable, delicious, and healthy food when you’re on the go.

And Blendid knows this all too well. Through partnerships with Jamba and Walmart, Blendid’s fully autonomous robotic kiosks serve fresh and tasty food, at a fraction of the cost of human-operated locations. Today, they’re looking for investors to help them provide affordable and healthy food everywhere … but let’s talk numbers:
> Annualized gross sales per kiosk $200K-$400K
> Operator net margin 20%-40%, significantly higher than traditional operations
> Ten patents granted or in process
> 24/7 accessibility, to meet consumers where and when they want delicious, healthy food

If you see the value in the expansion of healthy food, and believe in the innovation brought on by advanced robotics, Blendid is at the intersection of these two booming industries. They’re already serving customers in several locations: You can check out Blendid’s investment opportunity today.

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IN THE KNOW

Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

Brought to you by The Ascent

> Alex Trebek and Larry King earn posthumous nominations for Daytime Emmy Awards (June 25, 8pm ET, CBS); see full list of nominations (More)

> NFL announces 30 of 32 franchises given approval to have full stadium capacity next season; all teams permitted to host fans at training camp (More)

> Samuel E. Wright, actor who voiced Sebastian in “The Little Mermaid” and originated the role of Mufasa in “The Lion King” on Broadway, dies at 74 (More) | Bachelorette star Ryan Sutter reveals Lyme disease diagnosis after yearlong health battle (More)

From our partners: Mortgage rates are still sliding, and you could be saving big by refinancing. See if you can decrease your monthly payments and enjoy a streamlined process, amounting to many thousands of dollars in possible savings. Check it out now.

Science & Technology

> Meta-analysis suggests immune system T cells can target more than 1,400 sites on the SARS-CoV-2 virus, suggesting it would be difficult for variants to acquire enough mutations to evade the cells (More) | What are T cells? (More)

> Molecules used in stem cell research shown to rebuild muscle tissue, reverse age-related muscle loss in mice (More)

> Scientists discover hypersensitized connections between the auditory and motor regions of the brain in those suffering from misophonia; the condition causes intense reactions to certain sounds (More)

Business & Markets

> Following the Colonial Pipeline hack, Department of Homeland Security will require pipeline operators to report cyberattacks and designate a cybersecurity point person (More)

> “Meme stocks” trade higher Tuesday — GameStop up 16%, AMC Theatres up 19% — as discussions of another potential short squeeze surface on social media (More)

> Lumber shortages continue construction delays; lumber sees all-time high pricing up more than 300% in the last year (More)

Politics & World Affairs

> President Joe Biden to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin June 16 in Geneva, Switzerland; the first face-to-face meeting between the pair (More)

> Senate GOP raises its infrastructure counterproposal to nearly $1T, up from around $560B; White House proposal currently sits at $1.7T, down from $2.3T (More)

> Rallies held around the US to mark the one-year anniversary of the killing of George Floyd (More) | Riot declared in Portland, Oregon (More) | Kristen Clarke confirmed as first Black female to lead Justice Department’s civil rights division (More)

BLENDID, SPLENDID

In partnership with Blendid

Blendid’s fully autonomous robotic kiosk is quite the Renaissance robot. It knows what you’re most likely to enjoy (based on AI), recognizes ingredients, constantly calibrates inventory, makes delicious healthy food, and never takes a break or asks for help. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg (lettuce).

They’ve already launched high-profile partnerships with both Jamba and Walmart, and — thanks to strong margins and high demand — are planning on expanding nationwide with their current crowdfunding round. Learn all about this investment opportunity today.

Please support our sponsors!

ETCETERA

Photos of last night’s super flower blood moon.

Stimulate the economy at America’s best bars for 2021.

This year’s tick forecast is not looking good.

Disney unveils a $100 sandwich.

A viral birthday party leads to 149 arrests.

Inside the life of a lion’s mane jellyfish.

When you really don’t want to be in the group photo, but your friend makes you.

Avian freeloader nails a no-cost trip​.

Clickbait: How not to catch a home run. (via YouTube)

Historybook: Dow Jones Industrial Average begins with 12 stocks (1896); Actor John Wayne born (1907); Legendary jazz musician Miles Davis born (1926); First American woman in space, Sally Ride, born (1951); HBD musician Lenny Kravitz (1964).

Drama Critic, Dramatists Guild, Metropolitan Playhouse, “The Poor of New York”, Nimbus Magazine, My Life Publications, You Tube, Prezi, Ice Hockey, “The Gathering”.

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robert massimi

Drama critic for Nimbus Magazine, Metropolitan Magazine and New York Lifestyles Magazine. Producer, editor and writer.