Today, I have for you a quiet money win for LGBTQ+ soldiers, an interesting money strategy being adopted by Olympic hopefuls, lots of hot links and some helpful journaling prompts to start the second half of 2024 off strong.

—Nick Wolny

The financial upsides to Biden's LGBTQ+ soldiers pardon

Credit: @deagreez1, DepositPhotos

Lots of U.S. political hubbub last week, from a controversial Biden Vs. Trump debate to a flurry of Supreme Court decisions. One notable civil rights win received little coverage -- here's why it matters.

President Biden announced a pardon for LGBTQ+ soldiers who had dishonorably discharged from the military for homosexuality. Since homosexuality was deemed sodomy in the U.S. from 1951 to 2013, soldiers who were dishonorably discharged became ineligible for important financial veteran benefits.

At least 32,837 service members since 1980 were forced out of the military for their sexual orientation, according to Department of Defense data. A later military policy, “Don't Ask, Don't Tell,” was created in 1994 and allowed homosexuals to serve -- as long as they didn't talk about it, creating multiple degrees of inertia for queer people that are difficult to measure. DADT was abolished in 2011.

“Those covered by the pardon will be able to apply to receive proof that their conviction has been erased, petition to have their discharges from the military upgraded and move to recover lost pay and benefits," reads Zeke Miller's writeup for the Associated Press.

The financial benefits for veterans include disability compensation, help with education expenses, special rates on home loans, lower insurance costs and a burial expenses allowance. This pardon allows LGBTQ+ people whose benefits were forfeited upon their dishonorable discharge to apply and have said benefits restored, including back pay.

Miller has the writeup in AP.

🔗 Read at AP News

Why this sponsor spotlights unsponsored Olympians

Credit: @deagreez1, DepositPhotos

The Paris Olympics start later this month, and it's the one time I go from giving zero fucks about sports to being glued to the TV and crying at every other medal ceremony for days on end.

Athletes go through incredible challenges to fund their Olympic dreams. The most elite athletes in certain sports have sponsors who can help them bear the financial burden, but many other athletes don't have this support. What we don't see in the months and years leading up to Olympic trials are the extra jobs, insane hours of training, travel to complexes and cost of recovery services needed to keep performing at the highest level.

A new sponsor, Bandit Running, is helping some track and field athletes bring their Olympic dreams to fruition by offering two-week sponsorships and comparatively agreeable sponsor terms. In an interview with CNBC, cofounder Tim West said Bandit is sponsoring 35 U.S. track and field hopefuls to cover the cost of their travel and entry to the Olympic trials.

The trade? The athletes wear all-black uniforms that are so muted they actually stand out in comparison. It's an interesting strategy the company hopes will bring attention to lower-rated but still competitive athletes, who often have the talent and training to compete on the world stage but not the funding. The contracts have built-in release clauses so that if an athlete receives a sponsorship offer after trials, it's an easy upgrade.

Here's a CNBC writeup of the company and why it matters. Which sports are you most excited to watch later this month?

🔗 Read at CNBC

Reading is fundamental

Credit: @deagreez1, DepositPhotos

Money and Work

The S&P 500 is up 15% for the first half of 2024.The Nasdaq is up 19% YTD. The indexes were up 15.9% and 31% at this point last year, respectively. (Barron's)

Google will drop continuous scroll in search results, moving back to a paginated (page-by-page) format. (Search Engine Land)

In Kenya, 5 are dead after anti-tax protestors stormed parliament, burning part of the building down and drawing police fire. (AP News)

Coinbase sued the SEC and FDIC over failed FOIA requests. The firm believes that federal regulators are intentionally trying to cut crypto out of the banking sector, and alleges the agencies are intentionally ignoring FOIA requests, a journalism technique that requires federal entities to provide access to public records upon request. (The Block)

A brokerage is trying to allow betting on economic performance and things like monthly Consumer Price Index reports. Oy! (The Wall Street Journal)

Lie down, sit still, take a break: Your brain needs a rest. A new analysis found breaks as short as 10 minutes are good for combatting fatigue. (Washington Post friend link)

Could an all-inclusive cost the same as rent? He tried it. A Seattle man tested whether living at a resort in Mexico for a month would be cheaper than his rent at home. Nice recruiting eye from Expedia, which found the man on TikTok and sponsored the trip. (Washington Post friend link)


AI and Future Tech

Research from DeepMind found that political deepfakes were the top malicious use of AI. (Financial Times)

Uber and Aurora announced a ‘long-term’ Texas-based driverless truck deal after a successful pilot. Driverless semi trucks will start completing some journeys from Dallas to Houston. (The Verge)

OpenAI's ChatGPT and Microsoft's Copilot repeated a false claim about the presidential debate. Great reporting from NBC's deputy tech editor Ben Goggin on how these chatbots continue to fail. (NBC News)

OpenAI Wants AI to Help Humans Train AI. The company is piloting CriticGPT, a chatbot designed to fact-check ChatGPT. What could go wrong? (WIRED)

Tesla's Cybertruck gets its fourth recall since going on sale last November. (AP News)

Amazon Is Investigating Perplexity Over Claims of Scraping Abuse. Perplexity has come under fire for allegedly ignoring websites that instruct it to not scrape them for information. The ignoring is technically not illegal (pending copyright lawsuits), but it is very shitty. (WIRED)

How Landlords Have Started Using AI Chatbots to Manage Their Properties in NYC. (The New York Times friend link)

Why sextortion schemes targeting teen boys are on the rise. (Fast Company)



The Secret Telegram Channels Providing Refuge for LGBTQ+ People in Russia. (WIRED)

Man who stabbed gay student to death says he was worried about being outed to his dad. Sad story, this happened six years ago. Flagging because the defendant had moved to Texas to train with a neo-Nazi group called Atomwaffen Division, which gives participants militia-level training and instructs them to attack minorities. (LGBTQ Nation)

The New York Times published a story based on edited emails put together by an anti-trans activist. The NYT story is about Biden administration correspondence related to gender-affirming surgeries. (LGBTQ Nation)

Several prominent RuPaul's Drag Race alumni formed Drag PAC, the first political action committee of its kind, with an objective to increase voter turnout for the 2024 U.S. election. (LGBTQ Nation)

Tractor Supply caves to far-right homophobia and bigotry and drops all LGBTQ+ support. The walkback includes erasing all past inclusivity initiatives from a website, a disappointing result of a far-right online pressure campaign. (The Advocate)

Adult film star Austin Wolf has been arrested on charges of distributing child pornography. Content warning: Some dark details in the charges. (Them)

What does it mean to grow old as an LGBTQ+ person? A lovely editorial comic from Jamal Jordan. (Washington Post friend link)

What you need to know about the Stonewall uprising, which began 55 years ago. (The Advocate)

Everything that happened In anti-trans legislation last week (June 24-28). (Them)


Two quarters down, two to go. I love quarterly planning because 90-day goals are big enough to make meaningful changes, but small enough that the finish line is always in sight.

Consider taking an hour or two this week to journal and decide where you want to go for summer. Here are some prompts I like.

  1. What has brought me peace and stability this year?
  2. What would I like to change for the second half of the year, based on how the first half went?
  3. What have been some big work and personal wins so far this year?
  4. What’s something positive I have done for my wellness so far this year?
  5. Are there any relationships in my life that could use a bit more focus?

Cheering you on,


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A free email newsletter on personal finance, business, LGBTQ+ matters and how they all intertwine. Written by Out Magazine finance columnist Nick Wolny.

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