United's CEO just lost out on the Chairmanship of United's board

When United CEO Oscar Munoz lied about Dr David Dao, slandering the passenger that was beaten unconscious as a direct result of his employees enacting the policies he put in place, he was acting in the knowledge that he would shortly be elevated to the Chairmanship of United's board of directors. Read the rest

Portland hotel magnate withdraws overt Trump donation, funnels $1M through front companies instead

Gordon Sondland owns Provenance Hotels, with four PDX properties -- the Lucia, deLuxe, Sentinel and Westin. After he was outed as being the host for a Trump event last summer, he pulled out, saying that he'd broken with Trump over his racist anti-Muslim rhetoric. Read the rest

The world recoils as Turkey's president steals dictatorial powers (but Trump congratulates him)

Though Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan presides over a nominal democracy, he has surrounded himself with all the trappings of dictatorship: spending more than a billion tax-dollars on a "palace" for himself, hiring the mafia to smuggle his money-laundering kid out of Italy ahead of the police, conspiring to launder millions himself, brutalizing protesters, jailing critics and comedians, arresting and purging public institutions of his opposition, and more. Read the rest

"Golden Geese": the American 1%ers who arrange a second citizenship to escape taxation

David Lesperance is a Canadian-born lawyer who specializes in helping the super-rich secretly buy foreign citizenship so they can escape taxation at home. Read the rest

Weaponized shelter: a website that lets tenants bid against each other for apartments, in 1000 cities

Rentberry -- run by a Travis Kalanick-style markets-fix-everything doctrinaire named Alex Lubinksy -- collects renters' personal information and their bids on apartments, then presents them to landlords, who get to choose among high bidders to rent to. Read the rest

20 years ago, Ted Cruz published a law paper proving companies could always beat customers with terms of service

You might think that when companies impose crappy, abusive terms of service on their customers that the market could sort it out, by creating competition to see who could offer the best terms and thus win the business of people fed up with bad actors. Read the rest

Trump HQ's latest push-poll takes trumpism to unexpected new lows

The latest poll emailed by Trump HQ to its mailing lists asks supporters to click based on whether they "stand with President Trump" or "believe Democrats and Fake News": click the former and you're taken to a donation solicitation, click the latter and you are taken to a page where you're informed that "Democrats, the media, and the entire opposition have tried to take down President Trump by attacking him, spreading fake news and fake polls, and spreading fake news." Read the rest

Wisconsin's Senator Ron Johnson blames Net Neutrality for porn and bad health care

As the Republican Congress and Donald Trump's FCC move to dismantle the most basic protections for American internet users, no target is juicier than Net Neutrality, the simple idea that your ISP should send you the bits you ask for, rather than accepting bribes from big companies to slow down your net connection when you try to connect to their competitors. Read the rest

Senate Republicans introduce resolution ensuring ISPs don't need your permission to sell your private data and SSN

Donald Trump's new FCC boss, Ajit Pai, has nuked an Obama-era rule that banned ISPs from selling off your browsing data, location, financial and health information, children's information, Social Security Number and contents of your messages, without your permission. The now-defunct rule also required ISPs to notify you when they got hacked and your sensitive personal information got out into the wild. Read the rest

Medical procedures priced in Iphones, for the benefit of noted dumbass Jason Chaffetz

Yesterday, Rep Jason Chaffetz [R-UT; DC office: (202) 225-7751; Utah office: (801) 851-2500; email; Twitter] defended his plan to take away the health insurance of 22,000,000 Americans by saying "rather than getting that new iPhone that they just love and want to go spend hundreds of dollars on that, maybe they should invest in their own health care." Read the rest

Porno-copyright troll behind "Prenda Law" pleads guilty to everything

For years, John Steele has been half of a criminal enterprise masquerading as a copyright law firms, "Prenda Law," whose owners, clients and employees were a mix of lies, impersonations, and crumbs of reality. In a guilty plea, John Steele admitted that the whole thing was a con, that they stole $6,000,000 from innocent internet users by threatening them with draconian copyright lawsuits, and then laundered the money. Read the rest

Chris Christie's Port Authority boss blackmailed United into scheduling a flight to bring him to his weekend place

Former NJ Port Authority Chairman David Samson -- a "staunch ally" of Chris Christie -- got United to schedule an extra, largely empty Friday night flight from Newark airport to Columbia, SC, where he had his weekend place (the flight returned early Monday in time for him to go back to the office). A court has now accepted his guilty plea for accepting bribes and sentenced him to one year of house arrest and four years of probation. Read the rest

Wisconsin Republican Senator Ron Johnson threatens legal retaliation against constituent who won't give up trying to talk to him

Senator Ron Johnson [R-WI/Twitter/email/DC office (202) 224-5323] is one of the many Republican lawmakers who've chosen not to meet with their own constituents during the Congressional recess; Earl Good, a Vietnam veteran and Milwaukee constituent who called Johnson's office hundreds of times because the Senator won't meet with the people he represents has now been sent a cease-and-desist letter threatening legal retaliation if he doesn't stop contacting his elected official. Read the rest

Arizona House of Reps kills bill that would let cops take your home if you planned a protest that turned violent

SB 1142 is a bill introduced last week in the Arizona Senate that would allow the cops to charge participants in demonstrations with racketeering -- and confiscate their assets, including their homes -- if they attended a protest that turned violent, even if they did nothing violent and were not involved in planning any violence. Read the rest

Chris Christie vetoes unanimous bill that would make NJ cops disclose what they seize through asset forfeiture

Civil asset forfeiture is the bizarre American practice of seizing peoples' property without charging its owner: instead the property is charged with being the ill-gotten gains of a crime, and if the owner doesn't pay their property's legal bills, the police get to keep or sell the property. Read the rest

South Dakota lawmaker blocks workplace protection for pregnant workers: "It's not prison. You can quit."

South Dakota state Rep. Wayne H Steinhauer [R-9] (Phone: 605-526-4269/ 605-773-3851/ 605-359-6298); Email: Wayne.Steinhauer@sdlegislature.gov, never-used Twitter account) was part of a group of eight male, GOP reps who killed a bill that would have guaranteed workplace accommodations to pregnant South Dakotans. During the hearing, Rep Steinhauer told women "It’s not prison. You can quit." Read the rest

Skynet: Trump campaigned like a crappy AI, and now he's governing like one, too

Cathy "Weapons of Math Destruction" O'Neil nailed Trump's tactics when she compared him to a busted machine-learning algorithm, throwing a ton of random ideas out, listening for his base to cheer the ones that excited their worst instincts, and then doubling down on them. Read the rest

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