Overnight Briefing & General Reality Check - Jul 29, 2011
July 29, 2011
30 years ago today in 1981, Britain's PRINCE CHARLES married Lady DIANA SPENCER in an elaborate ceremony televised worldwide from St Paul's Cathedral in London.
That Debt-Ceiling Crisis:
If lawmakers don't raise the debt ceiling, will the U-S go into default? Not exactly.
The top priority will be paying the interest on the existing debt so that the government doesn't default. . That's at least $38 billion this month.
That leaves the government with roughly $140 billion to pay for such critical items as Medicare, Medicaid and salaries to U-S troops. Those bills alone would put the U-S $130 billion short.
Simply put, the Treasury Department will have to face the same tough choices like those of any cash-strapped household: Which bills to pay.
The Treasury continues to take in money, about $172 billion projected in August, but we have $308 billion in bills. And keep in mind, the current deficit of $14 trillion is accumulated debt. That's money we've already spent on programs we've said we wanted --from the war in Iraq to food stamps. (Maiman)
The debt ceiling crisis has everyone on edge, but the White House apparantly has time to goof around with its Twitter page. On Wednesday, DAVID WIGGS from Franklin, Tennessee, complained during the White House's Twitter chat that the session wasn't as (quote), "entertaining as yestedays." He got a Tweet back from the White House that said, "Sorry to hear that. Fiscal policy is important, but can be dry sometimes. Here’s something more fun:," which was followed by a link to click on. David did, and he wound up getting "Rick-Rolled!"
In case you don't know what that is, "Rick-Rolling" is when you send someone a link that they will think is really important, but when they click on it, they get directed to the music videofor RICK ASTLEY's 1987 hit, "Never Gonna Give You Up." OK, kinda silly, but the message in the lyrics does give hope to the American people: “Never gonna give you up, never gonna let you down." (Marino)
No winner in Wednesday night's drawing for the Powerball Lottery. That means Saturday night's drawing is valued at $133 million ($69.8 million cash value). Powerball is played in 44 states, Washington DC and the U-S Virgin Islands. Chances of winning the grand prize (all five numbers plus the powerball) are 1 in 195.2 million.
Trash talk and satellite dish:
RUMER WILLIS may be a real chip off the old block. The daughter of DEMI MOORE and BRUCE WILLIS is looking a little more (ahem) well-endowed these days and rumors are swirling she may have given "the girls" a little boost. Dr. ANTHONY YOUN told the National Enquirer that it looks like she's gone from an A to a C cup, her reps deny she's gone under the knife. (Lee)
Grace notes from Vinny Marino:
AMY WINEHOUSE may have died because she STOPPED drinking. People magazine says she quit drinking cold turkey within the last few weeks, and it's possible that her body was too shocked to deal with it. There's been a lot of talk that Amy was actually drinking heavily just before she died, but her father MITCH told friends and family at Amy's funeral that she ignored doctors' orders to taper off her alcohol consumption, not do it all at once. So, it's possible that the withdrawl symptoms may have killed her. We won't know for sure until the toxicology reports come back, and that's still weeks away. (Marino)
There may be a third, posthumous AMY WINEHOUSE album on its way.
Spokesman CHRIS GOODMAN says there is "plenty" of material, but there has been no discussion of releasing it yet. Another spokesman close to Universal says Winehouse had finished the "framework" of around a dozen new songs. "She had put down the bare bones of tracks and some were further along than others," said the spokesman.
A source close to Winehouse's management says there may even be enough material for more than one album. "Amy was a writer, she was always writing songs," said the source. "She had studios at home and would create demos. It seems that she was singing and playing drums to the last."
Winehouse was in the studio sporadically over the last few years. (Maiman)
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