Orrin Hatch on Kavanaugh accusations: "...it would be hard for senators not to consider who he is today"

Senator Orrin Hatch has never found an accusation of sexual misconduct by a Republican he couldn't wave away. When asked about Professor Christine Blasey Ford's accusations of sexual assault by SCOTUS nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, Hatch told Bloomberg News' Laura Litvan, "If that were true, I think it would be hard for senators not to consider who he is today. He has denied this and I feel bad that this happened to him."

In addition to that pile of bullshit, Hatch told NBC Capitol Hill reporter Leigh Ann Caldwell that after talking to Kavanaugh, he thinks Ford might be "mixed up."

If this sounds vaguely familiar, you might be recalling Hatch's comments on Anita Hill. In a 2010 interview with CNN, Hatch said,

"I can tell you Clarence Thomas was telling the truth. I believe that Anita Hill was an excellent witness. I think she actually believed and talked herself into believing what she said. There was a sexual harasser at that time, according to the sources I had, and he was her supervisor, he just wasn’t Clarence Thomas. I think she transposed that to where she believed it because she was outed by the feminist women at that time and she couldn’t change her mind after — she couldn’t change her tune. And that’s what happened.

Buckle up, everyone. It's going to be an even uglier week than usual.

Trump Defends Kavanaugh While Signaling Possible Delay in Vote [Laura Litvan and Toluse Olorunnipa/Bloomberg News][Photo: Gage Skidmore/Flickr][CC BY-SA 2.0] Read the rest

Warner Bros. releases first image of Joaquin Phoenix as The Joker

We have our first glimpse of Joaquin Phoenix as The Joker in Warner Bros. upcoming Joker origin story. And we also have The Joker's first name.

From director Todd Phillips' Instagram:

No Country for Old Jokers?

The Daily Mail also published some not-so-official footage from the set, captured last week by paparazzi.

The yet-untitled Joker film is scheduled to open on October 4th, 2019.

Joaquin Phoenix spotted in character as The Joker for the first time as filming starts on the origins story [Daily Mail][PHOTO: PXHere] Read the rest

Nightmare park attendant blocks driver, then falsely tells 911 she's being run over

Chris Hampshire of Georgetown, TX was driving through Cedar Breaks Park near Lake Georgetown when he took a wrong turn. He backed up and turned towards the exit when a park attendant stopped him. And that's when all hell broke loose.

Hampshire describes what happened:

The situation was me leaving a lake with my Jetski. Accidentally steered down the wrong exit while leaving, this parks and rec worker happened to be outside. She saw me correct myself and I was about to leave the main exit point. At that point she started telling me she was calling the cops and I wasn’t allowed to leave. I said no ma’am you’re mistaken, you can’t hold me here. She jumped in front of my car then this is when I pulled out my phone... shortly after the video ended she stepped out of the way to talk to the park rangers and I voiced that I was leaving being that this was unlawful from the beginning and I didn’t do anything illegal.

About a mile down the road I see 15 officers with sirens and lights speed pass me (they legitimately thought someone was being run over) quickly a few officers turned around, pulled me over and talk to me about what happened. Thankfully they were very calm and shortly after showing the video I was let go....

The park attendant was identified as Judine Reed. She no longer works for the park, which is managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Read the rest

Texas board of education tries to erase Hillary Clinton from history

The State Board of Education in Texas has proposed some rather interesting cuts to the their social studies curriculum. Read the rest

Les Moonves' wife Julie Chen borrows the Camille Cosby playbook

An interesting to subplot to the drama at CBS and the firing/resignation of its president Les Moonves after more sexual misconduct allegations... Read the rest

Boston: One person dead, others injured after dozens of gas explosions and fires

At least 1 person is dead and 80 homes and businesses burned across three Boston suburbs - Lawrence, North Andover, and Andover this afternoon after a high-pressure gas main explosion rocked the area shortly after 3:00 PM EST. Read the rest

Trump diverts millions from FEMA for ICE detentions, calls Puerto Rico "unsung success"

As the Carolinas prepare for the arrival of Hurricane Florence, currently a Category 4 storm, Senator Jeff Merkley appeared on the Rachel Maddow Show with a document that shows $10,000,000 was diverted from FEMA's budget to pay for ICE detention centers.

It's believed the transfer of funds took place at the beginning of summer. You know, right before the start of hurricane season. And if that's not enough to make your blood boil, this video of Trump calling his administration's handling of Puerto Rico during and after Hurricane Maria "an incredible, unsung success" should do the trick.

I'm sure Carolinians are relieved the President of the United States considers 3000 dead Americans an incredible, unsung success. No worries, Outer Banks! He'll be there to throw paper towels at you soon.

Trump admin took millions from FEMA for ICE detentions [MSNBC] Read the rest

George Papadopoulos gets 14 days in jail, former Trump campaign adviser must also pay $9,500 fine

Former Trump campaign adviser (and coffee boy) George Papadopoulos was sentenced to 14 days in jail, a year of supervised release, 200 hours of community service, and a $9,500 fine after pleading guilty to lying to federal agents in connection with the Russia investigation. Read the rest

National Museum of Brazil destroyed by inferno

Brazil’s National Museum in Rio de Janeiro, opened in 1818 and home to over 20 million artifacts has been completely destroyed by fire. The three-story museum was closed when the fire quickly consumed the building. Founded by John VI, the King of Brazil and Portugal, the museum celebrated its 200th anniversary earlier this year. The cause of the fire is currently unknown. Brazil's President Michel Temer called it a tragic day for Brazil. "200 years of work and research and knowledge are lost."

Rio's 200-year old National Museum hit by massive fire [Bruno Federowski/Reuters][Photo: Twitter/@arielpalacios] Read the rest

Aretha Franklin honored at Buckingham Palace by British Army during Changing of the Guard

The life of Aretha Franklin is being celebrated today in Detroit, at what is already described as a legendary memorial service. Earlier today, the British Army paid tribute to the late singer during the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace in London. Read the rest

Matt Smith joins 'Star Wars: Episode IX'

Fresh off his role as Prince Philip in The Crown (oh, and a rather obscure British TV show called Doctor Who), Matt Smith has joined the cast of the yet-unnamed ninth installment of the Star Wars saga. He joins Dominic Monaghan, Keri Russell, Naomi Ackie and Richard E. Grant as newcomers to the series. Episode IX is scheduled to open on December 20th, 2019.

Matt Smith Joins 'Star Wars: Episode IX' [Aaron Couch/Hollywood Reporter][Photo: Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons] Read the rest

John McCain's farewell to America

Senator John McCain, who died on Saturday at age 81 from an aggressive form of brain cancer, wrote a farewell letter to America. The letter was read by family spokesman Rick Davis this afternoon.

Full text:

My fellow Americans, whom I have gratefully served for sixty years, and especially my fellow Arizonans,

Thank you for the privilege of serving you and for the rewarding life that service in uniform and in public office has allowed me to lead. I have tried to serve our country honorably. I have made mistakes, but I hope my love for America will be weighed favorably against them.

I have often observed that I am the luckiest person on earth. I feel that way even now as I prepare for the end of my life. I have loved my life, all of it. I have had experiences, adventures and friendships enough for ten satisfying lives, and I am so thankful. Like most people, I have regrets. But I would not trade a day of my life, in good or bad times, for the best day of anyone else’s.

I owe that satisfaction to the love of my family. No man ever had a more loving wife or children he was prouder of than I am of mine. And I owe it to America. To be connected to America’s causes — liberty, equal justice, respect for the dignity of all people — brings happiness more sublime than life’s fleeting pleasures. Our identities and sense of worth are not circumscribed but enlarged by serving good causes bigger than ourselves.

Read the rest

Milo Yiannopolous plays the victim in Facebook tirade

Milo Yiannopolous is having a very bad week and just wants to eat his sushi in peace, you ungrateful bastards.

A little backstory. Last week, Politicon (think Comic-Con but with less cosplay) announced the lineup for its 2018 convention to be held in October in Los Angeles. Milo was included in that lineup, with his appearance touted as an opportunity to “speak at length about the institutional Left’s systematic protection of sex offenders who share its politics, as well as his experiences being wrongly smeared as an advocate for a crime of which he is in fact a victim. The appearance marks his return to the front lines of the American culture wars.” Less than 24 hours later, Yiannopolous was disinvited from Politicon after social media threats of a boycott. One speaker, comedian Cameron Esposito, canceled her appearance after learning of his involvement and others threatened to do likewise.

When Yiannopolous found out he was disinvited, he told Mediaite “I subject myself to this continuous hell because unlike the needy, vacuous, desperate grifters of conservative media, I actually care about my fans and the stuff I talk about. No amount of cancellations from now until the end of time will ever deter me from trying. Next!”


Fast forward to Friday night. Yiannopolous posted a short video of himself with his husband at sushi restaurant on Facebook. The comments were less than laudatory, accusing Yiannopolous of fleecing his aforementioned fans out of money they paid for the VIP membership to his website which promised a daily podcast that apparently hasn’t been updated for weeks, if not months. 
 Read the rest

Senator John McCain is dead

After announcing yesterday that the Arizona Senator and American war hero was discontinuing his treatment for glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer, John Sidney McCain III has died. Senator McCain's office released this statement just moments ago.

McCain served in Congress for 36 years and spent five years in the Hanoi Hilton as a POW in Vietnam. He was 81 years old.

[Photo: Gage Skidmore/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0] Read the rest

Today in "do not give this asshole your money": the Michael Cohen Truth Fund

When Lanny Davis announced the launch of the Michael Cohen Truth Fund campaign through GoFundMe, he should have been laughed off of television. Appearing on the Today Show, Davis said his client "needs help from the American people to tell the truth." At that moment, Lanny became less like a lawyer and more like a televangelist. "We can save this nation from the firey pits of hell with the truth that only our dear brother Michael can deliver! Pick up the phone now and give in the name of the Lord Almighty!" Oh, and the cost of that truth? $500,000.

1 in 3 campaigns on GoFundMe are to cover medical expenses. People desperately looking for money to cover a surgery, pay for chemo costs, get a wheelchair for their kid. Money can be raised via GoFundMe for virtually anything. But there's something especially revolting about using it to help the man who once famously said he take a bullet for the President whose shitty health care policies are what has driven a lot of those desperate people to GoFund Me in the first place.

Less than 24 hours after its launch, the Michael Cohen Truth Fund has raised over $133,000. When I saw that amount, I was horrified. This is money that'll go to a man who purchased a $6.7 million dollar apartment FOUR months ago. A man who spent nearly a decade as Donald Trump's personal Ray Donovan. A man who didn't give a flying rat's ass about telling the truth until he realized he was looking at a lengthy prison sentence. Read the rest

Michigan health chief to stand trial for involuntary manslaughter in connection with Flint water crisis

It's about damn time.

Nick Lyon, Michigan's health director, has been ordered to stand trial on involuntary manslaughter charges after the deaths of two men were linked to an outbreak of Legionnaire's disease in Flint. 90 cases of Legionnaire's were reported in Genesee County, resulting in 12 deaths.

Flint still does not have clean drinking water.

State official ordered to trial on Flint charges[WOOD-TV]

Image by Ildar Sagdejev (Specious) - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link Read the rest

Kevin Spacey's new movie makes less than $500 on opening weekend

Kevin Spacey's once-illustrious movie career came to an end this weekend with the release of Billionaire Boys Club. The movie, filmed in 2015 before numerous accusations of sexual assault and misconduct were brought against Spacey, made less than $500 on its opening weekend.

No, that's not a typo. Less than $500. There are yard sales that made more this weekend. Lemonade stands that did better. The guy who sells long-stemmed roses outside of your local nightclub probably did better than this movie. Released in only ten theaters across the entire country, Billionaire Boys Club had a bit of hype around it when first announced thanks to an ensemble cast of Hollywood up-and-comers including Ansel Elgort, Taron Egerton, Emma Roberts, and Billie Lourd. But that all came crashing down when Spacey was revealed to be a predator.

The Hollywood Reporter breaks down the math:

Put another way, that's a per location average of roughly $53 for the weekend. If going by the average ticket price to date of $9.27, that means fewer than six people showed up in each cinema.

Yikes.

Spacey has one unreleased film, Gore that he both starred in and produced for Netflix. Netflix severed their deal with Spacey after the allegations of sexual assault and misconduct became public.

Box Office: Kevin Spacey's 'Billionaire Boys Club' Earns Abysmal $126 on Opening Day [Hollywood Reporter/Pamela McClintock] [Photo: Flickr/CC BY 2.0] Read the rest

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