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  • 05/27/16--06:12: 165 Days and a Wake Up
  • 165 Days and a Wake Up
    A man that definitely has eyes and teeth prepares to mate with Freedom. Image: Getty

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    Oregon Militia Leader Furious He Can't Have Guns or Facebook in Jail
    Image: Getty

    Ryan Bundy, son of Cliven Bundy and former armed militia cosplayer, is not having a very nice time in jail. According to a status report filed earlier this week, not only is he not allowed to hang out with his (also imprisoned) brother Ammon—the guards won’t even let him have his guns.

    http://gawker.com/oregon-wildlif...

    In the documents, Bundy claims that his inability to speak to his brother violates his freedom of assembly, while both allege that “despite being presumed innocent, [the Bundy brothers] are treated as harshly and the same as convicted felons with whom they are commingled and housed.”

    The injustices don’t stop there, folks. From Ryan Bundy’s report (emphasis added):

    My rights are being violated. My right to life is being violated. All of my First Amendment rights are being violated. My right to freedom of religion is being violated. I cannot participate in religious activities and temple covenants, and wear religious garments. I could wear them at Henderson, but MCDC is depriving me of the right to wear them. My right to freedom of speech is being hampered by monitoring and recording. My right to freedom of assembly is being violated; I am not allowed to see my brother and move about.

    Yesterday, I attempted to discuss these issues with the U.S. Marshals, and they said that these were simply the jail rules. I asked them specifically about if there was any reason for the ‘keep separate’ orders. In Henderson, my brothers and father were housed together. Up here, they make efforts to keep us separate. This violates my right to freedom of assembly. My Second Amendment rights are being violated. I never waived that right.

    As if keeping firearms out of the hands of prisoners wasn’t bad enough. Apparently, Ryan and Ammon Bundy are also being denied access to Facebook, which they assert they need “given that this is a media case.” But according to the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, “MCSO has no wi-fi within the jail facility and no ability to provide a hard internet connection.”

    And here I thought this was America.

    You can read the Bundys’ report in full here.

    [h/t TPM]


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    Georgia AD Apologizes For Sexy Ludacris Concert Rider

    On April 13, Ludacris performed for 13 minutes at Georgia’s spring game, and was paid $65,000 for it. His contract also included a pretty great rider, which you can read it full at the bottom of this post. It included condoms, juice boxes, and a couple of bottle of Ludacris’s own brand of cognac, and Georgia athletics would like you to know they’re very, very sorry.

    AD Greg McGarity apologized to the UGA athletics board of directors in a meeting yesterday.

    “I do want to take this opportunity to apologize to our board for mistakes we made with certain aspects of the details of an entertainment agreement,” McGarity said. “Few things in my professional life have bothered me more than this situation. There are no reruns in life so we need to turn the page, learn from our mistakes and do everything we can to make sure errors of this nature do not reoccur.”

    That’s kind of vague. What’s in that rider?

    Georgia AD Apologizes For Sexy Ludacris Concert Rider

    Hey, fun.

    “Obviously in retrospect they should have done a more thorough job of reviewing all of the riders,” said UGA president Jere Morehead, “and removing those that were objectionable.”

    It it were me I’d be apologizing not for the rider and instead for paying Ludacris $65,000 for 13 minutes when they could’ve just given every player like 600 bucks instead, but hey, I’m not running the program.

    Here’s Ludacris’s full contract:


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    The Scandal at Baylor Makes it Clear Penn State Did Nothing to Change College Football
    Ex-Baylor head coach Art Briles: Getty

    In 2011, the most awful scandal in the history of college athletics was exposed when it was revealed that Jerry Sandusky, a longtime coach at Penn State, had groomed and sexually abused teenage boys in the locker room of the school’s hallowed football stadium over a period decades, and that further the abuse had been covered up by university officials who deemed the sanctity of their football program to be paramount to any form of tangible justice for the victims.

    The scandal continues to produce routine horrors, such as the fact that head coach Joe Paterno—the man who won the most games in the history of college football—may have known about Sandusky’s abuses as early as 1976. After punishing the university, its football program, and Paterno itself, the NCAA rolled back several of its sanctions in January 2015, a year ahead of schedule. It was a tacit argument that Penn State—and by proxy, the NCAA at large—had cleansed itself of its sins.

    But revelations regarding the football team at Baylor make it abundantly clear that institutionally, nothing has changed within college football. A few weeks ago ESPN’s Outside the Lines published a report stating that Baylor as a football program and university has conspired with local police in Waco, Tex. to shield its players from investigations and punishment stemming from allegations of sexual and physical assaults against women. OTL reported on three new incidents, which when combined with previously known stories painted a picture of a university—led by president and onetime Clinton antagonist Ken Starr, and head coach Art Briles—that systematically protected star athletes at the expense of women who said they were victims of violence.

    http://deadspin.com/baylor-assault...

    The Scandal at Baylor Makes it Clear Penn State Did Nothing to Change College Football

    To a certain extent, the public was aware of some of the incidents, since two of the players involved have been found guilty in court and sent to prison. In 2014, Tevin Elliot was sentenced to 20 years in prison for raping a Baylor student in the mud outside a party in 2012. Four other women also say they were raped by Elliot, and two of them testified at his trial. In an interview with ESPN, the victim of the 2012 incident, who was identified only as Tanya, said that the university offered no support in the wake of her rape:

    “They didn’t just not respond; they responded by turning me away and telling me that it was not possible for me to receive help from them,” said Tanya, whose identity is being kept private by Outside the Lines because she was the victim of a sexual assault.

    One of Elliot’s victims, Jasmin Hernandez, announced in March that she would be suing the school for, in the words of her attorney, being “deliberately indifferent to complaints by student victims of rape.”

    In August 2015, Sam Ukwuachu was sentenced to six months in prison and ten years probation for raping a Baylor soccer player in 2013. A story in Texas Monthly describes the viciousness of Ukwuachu’s attack:

    After she resisted his initial advances, Doe testified, he began to grab her. “He was using all of his strength to pull up my dress and do stuff to me,” she said. “He had me on my stomach on the bed, and he was on top of me.” Doe testified that he pulled her dress up, pulled her underwear to the side, and forced her legs open with his toes, her head pressed between his bed and his desk, then forced himself inside of her. Doe was a virgin at the time.

    That Texas Monthly story also details the ways in which Baylor and its football program put its students in harm’s way and continued to do so even after the incident. The 2013 assault was not Ukwuachu’s first act of violence. His college football career began at Boise State University, but ended after a year when he was kicked off the team for physically intimidating his girlfriend and her roommate. According to paperwork obtained by Texas Montly, Baylor coaches were aware of the nature of Ukwuachu’s behavior at Boise State but decided to accept him onto the team anyway.

    Ukwuachu committed the rape he was eventually sentenced for shortly after arriving on campus in 2013, and was indicted on two counts of sexual assault on June 25, 2014. Ukwuachu did not play for Baylor in 2014, but the team never publicly specified why—which is to say that the school did not make its students or the public aware that one of its football players had been indicted for rape. The Texas Monthly story notes that in June of 2015 Baylor defensive coordinator (and current interim head coach) Phil Bennett told an audience at a luncheon that he was anticipating Ukwuachu being on the field for the coming season:

    We know that when asked about Ukwuachu a few weeks ahead of his scheduled trial date, rather than acknowledge the charges or decline to comment, Baylor defensive coordinator Phil Bennett told Baylor fans that the team was expecting to have him on the field.

    Though Waco police eventually funneled their investigation up to the district attorney, which triggered charges, Texas Monthly reported that the school’s investigation into Ukwuachu appeared to be directed solely toward clearing him of any wrongdoing:

    Meanwhile, the details about the investigation conducted by Baylor that came out during the trial reveal one that was shockingly brief: It involved reading text messages, looking at a polygraph test Ukwuachu had independently commissioned—which is rarely admissible in court—and contacting Ukwuachu, Doe, and one witness on behalf of each of them.

    Texas Monthly described the synchronized obfuscation on the part of the football team, university, and police department:

    When a student at Baylor leveled accusations of sexual assault against the player, the school’s investigation—in which the burden of proof is significantly lower than in a court of law—ended without action, despite the fact that the McLennan County District Attorney’s Office found cause to take the matter all the way to a trial on second degree felony charges. We know that officials in Baylor’s football program describe rape accusations against players on the team as “some issues” or “violating a team rule,” the same language they might use to describe a player who broke curfew—even after the player has been accused, indicted, arrested, and, in the case of Tevin Elliott, convicted. We know that the Waco Police Department took months to bring the case to a prosecutor, but that when they did present the case to the DA’s office, the DA took the felony charges all the way to court.

    In those two instances, the Baylor football players involved were at least brought to some sort of justice. But more accusations of abuse at the hands of Baylor football players have trickled out in recent months. The latest of these were hidden from the public, and only came to light due to tips received by journalists.

    On April 13 of this year, defensive lineman Shawn Oakman was arrested and charged with sexual assault stemming from an incident that happened 10 days prior. Via the Waco Herald-Tribune:

    The affidavit, drafted by Waco police Detective Sam Key, said the woman met Oakman at a Baylor-area bar on Speight Avenue and Oakman asked her if she wanted to go to his residence. They walked to Oakman’s duplex and Oakman “forced” her into a bedroom, according to the affidavit.

    Oakman “forcibly removed” the woman’s clothes, “forced” her onto the bed and sexually assaulted her, the affidavit alleges.

    The woman left, but told police she left her panties at the duplex and lost an earring in the bedroom.

    That alleged assault took place after Oakman had graduated and left Baylor. But a few weeks after, news broke that Oakman had been accused of domestic violence in 2013. Again via the Waco Herald-Tribune:

    According to the incident report posted on Twitter by Alex Dunlap of RosterWatch.com, and confirmed by Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton to media to be authentic, Oakman grabbed the alleged victim under her armpits and shoved her into brick walls and cabinets at her South Waco apartment.

    The victim, who was called a “slut and a whore” by Oakman, was left with a swollen lip and bruises on her arms. A police spokesperson told the Waco Herald-Tribune that nobody at his department notified the football coaching staff or the university of the incident, and further stated there was no rhyme or reason as to why they would—or more often wouldn’t—make anyone at Baylor aware of an investigation into alleged misconduct by a football player:

    Swanton said there is no indication that a Waco police officer notified any Baylor employee about the incident report. Swanton also said if an officer had contacted Baylor, it would not necessarily be included in the report. He said there is no requirement for Waco police to notify any Baylor employee when a student or student-athlete is named in any police report.

    “Some of the officers have different working relationships with some of the Baylor folks and will pass things along from time to time,” Swanton said. “Sometimes we share information on cases that involve their students, and sometimes we don’t. There’s no reason why we do or don’t, and again, there’s no formal policy and requirement or law that says we have to.”

    Like Ukwuachu, Oakman ended up at Baylor after being kicked out of his first school for committing violence against women. While at Penn State in 2012, Oakman assaulted a female cashier who attempted to prevent him from stealing food from a convince store. Nonetheless he was accepted onto the Baylor football team, where his career flourished. He amassed the most sacks in school history and likely would have been selected in this year’s NFL Draft had it not been for the alleged rape that got him arrested in April.

    Then, a few weeks ago, the Outside the Lines report brought to light three more players who had sexual assault or domestic violence allegations against them buried by some combination of the football program, the university, and the police department.

    In 2012, safety Ahmad Dixon was accused of assault by a woman who later refused to cooperate with police, and because the investigation remains open basically no details are known about the incident. But in 2011, a 911 caller reported seeing Dixon pulling the same woman by her hair and shoving her into a car. Dixon was never disciplined and was picked in the seventh round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Dallas Cowboys.

    Also in 2012, cornerback Tyler Stephenson picked up and threw his girlfriend against the exterior wall of an apartment building. ESPN reported that an arrest warrant was prepared by police, but the case was closed when they were supposedly unable to contact the victim. Stephenson played sparingly in his final two seasons at Baylor before being accepted as a transfer at Houston Baptist.

    With Dixon and Stephenson, it’s unclear if police notified the football program or school, or if either entity found out about the incidents in another manner. That’s not the case with running back Devin Chafin. Chafin was twice accused in 2014 of assaulting his girlfriend by slamming her arm into a car door and also picking her up slamming her to the ground. The woman said she notified the Baylor football team chaplain of the assaults, who funneled the allegations up to Briles, the head coach, and Starr, the president. But she says she didn’t press charges because she figured nothing would happen anyway:

    “I’d seen other girls go through it, and nothing ever happened to the football players,” she said. “It’s mind-boggling to see it continue to happen. I can’t understand why. I think as long as they’re catching footballs and scoring touchdowns, the school won’t do anything.”

    And it does not appear that Chafin was disciplined by anyone at the school. He played in 9 games in 2014 and 10 games last year. This past March, Chafin was suspended after getting popped on a weed charge in Oklahoma.

    The pattern here is clear. Waco police protected Baylor football players by failing to report investigations to the football program or school. In the most extreme instances (in the cases of Elliot and Ukwuachu), where police eventually did help push charges up through the DA, the school—headed by Kenneth Starr, an attorney famous for staging a witch hunt based on adultery—was completely derelict in its duty to prioritize the victims of those crimes. Further, the school and the football program, led by Briles, allowed alleged rapists and alleged perpetrators of assault to mingle among unsuspecting female students, where many of them continued to commit crimes.

    Yesterday, Pepper Hamilton—an outside firm hired in recent months by Baylor to investigate how the school handled the above incidents—issued a report that was unsparing in its findings and language:

    Pepper’s findings of fact, as set forth in greater detail in this statement, reflect a fundamental failure by Baylor to implement Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX) and the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (VAWA). Pepper found that Baylor’s efforts to implement Title IX were slow, ad hoc, and hindered by a lack of institutional support and engagement by senior leadership. Based on a high-level audit of all reports of sexual harassment or violence for three academic years from 2012-2013 through 2014-2015, Pepper found that the University’s student conduct processes were wholly inadequate to consistently provide a prompt and equitable response under Title IX, that Baylor failed to consistently support complainants through the provision of interim measures, and that in some cases, the University failed to take action to identify and eliminate a potential hostile environment, prevent its recurrence, or address its effects for individual complainants or the broader campus community. Pepper also found examples of actions by University administrators that directly discouraged complainants from reporting or participating in student conduct processes, or that contributed to or accommodated a hostile environment. In one instance, those actions constituted retaliation against a complainant for reporting sexual assault. In addition to broader University failings, Pepper found specific failings within both the football program and Athletics Department leadership, including a failure to identify and respond to a pattern of sexual violence by a football player, to take action in response to reports of a sexual assault by multiple football players, and to take action in response to a report of dating violence. Pepper’s findings also reflect significant concerns about the tone and culture within Baylor’s football program as it relates to accountability for all forms of athlete misconduct.

    Along with the release of the report, the school removed Starr as president. Save your tears, though, because he’ll stick around as chancellor, and also will remain a professor at Baylor’s law school, where he will, I guess, teach students about the mechanics of justice.

    More surprisingly, and more importantly, the school announced its intention to fire head coach Art Briles. At Baylor, like at most large universities with football teams, Briles was a more revered figure than anyone at the school, and even in the entire town of Waco. (This is traditional in a place with a strong football program; at Penn State, fans are still trying to reinstate a bronze statue of Joe Paterno that once stood in front of the football stadium.) Briles had been enormously successful at Baylor. This story in the Waco Herald-Tribune attributes the existence of the team’s new $266 million stadium directly to high-profile games the team won during his tenure as coach.

    Colleges—including Baylor, clearly—go so far out of their ways to protect their football programs that there was some expectation that Baylor might drag its feet on disciplining Briles, or might even guillotine as many people as they could (including Starr) if it meant being able to keep Briles at the wheel of his wildly successful football team. His firing explains columns like this one, by longtime ESPN college football writer Ivan Maisel, which heralds Baylor’s decision to axe Briles as a “new era in college football:”

    Mark this day down. Turn the corner of this page in the college football family bible. Someone in the gridiron-industrial complex stood up and said some standards are more important than winning.

    Baylor will fire head coach Art Briles, who in the past five years has won 50 games and two Big 12 Conference championships. The university also forced president Kenneth Starr to relinquish the job and reprimanded athletic director Ian McCaw. But Starr will be university chancellor, and McCaw will still be AD. Briles received the harshest punishment.

    Maisel goes on to compare the dismissal of Briles to “Facebook turning on Mark Zuckerberg” because “both of these CEOs created something where nothing existed.”

    But in reality, a new era in college football is not, of course, one in which the most powerful institutions in an entire city band together to shield sexually violent star athletes, several of whom the school knew had committed crimes against women in the past. It is not one in which victims have to go to the press to tell their stories of being neglected by their university. It is not one in which incredibly rich and powerful individuals atop that university are only forced to reckon with their actions years later because anonymous sources got so fed up that they leaked police reports to the press.

    All of that is definitively already within the current era of college football (and the entirety of college athletics), which has privileged players since its inception. Whatever “new era” people like Maisel are imagining exists only in the future, in some utopian fantasy where we can be 100 percent certain that no coaches and chancellors and police chiefs have decided that a certain player is too important to be ensnared in the legal system.

    College football has been through this before, and recently. A school with one of the most famous teams in the history of the sport looked the other way on serial child rape. If Baylor actively obscuring numerous instances of rape and domestic abuse seems somehow different, it’s only because violence against women has long been normalized within society. Which means it’s true that, in some sense, Baylor’s players are not outliers—men everywhere get away with similar crimes. But on a micro level, it’s impossible not to feel like the organizations that run an entire city in Texas privileged these specific men, first and foremost, because they played football.

    There was a basic lesson to be learned from Penn State—to do right, first and foremost, by victims of sexual violence—but the saga at Baylor makes it clear that even that little bit of morality has not quite taken root at colleges across America. Here, I guess, is yet another chance, but you can’t blame anyone for being pessimistic.


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    Is Hollywood's Sugarcoating of Violence a Good or Bad Thing for Moviegoers?
    Photo: 20th Century Fox

    A throat is slit, heads are lopped off, buildings crumble, bodies dissolve, Wolverine’s metal claws plunge into multiple living bodies, and little more than a spritz of blood is shed during the two-and-a-half-hour running time of Bryan Singer’s X-Men: Apocalypse. The latest entry in 20th Century Fox’s 16-year-old franchise is its worst, as it manages to be both overstuffed with characters yet empty in its depiction of them. It’s a low-to-no-stakes narrative in an ever-unfolding franchise, and Apocalypse seems mostly to exist because, well, it’s time for a new X-Men movie.

    X-Men: Apocalypse seems particularly useless when compared to recent, more intellectually engaged spandex fests. Both Captain America: Civil War and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice openly grappled with the sort of accountability their franchises have long skirted (albeit the former did so with way more coherence than the latter). In the name of heroism, their protagonists have inflicted destruction upon their environments. They always get the bad guys, but the cost of this in terms of number of unseen deaths has gone mostly uncounted until this year.

    Still, Captain America: Civil War is full of PG-13 violence, the kind that finds a man repeatedly bludgeoned in the face without producing much blood, and one in which a superhero’s arm is ripped off without any visible gore or guts (granted, it’s a robotic arm).

    What these and a growing number of PG-13-rated movies suggest is that acts of violence are permissible in a way that their consequences—from drawn blood to human suffering to loss—are not. PG-13 movies target a broader age group than R-rated movies do. They also make more money. The Classification and Rating Administration (CARA) division of the Motion Picture Association of America is responsible for giving films their ratings and states in its Classification Rules and Ratings document: “There may be depictions of violence in a PG-13 movie, but generally not both realistic and extreme or persistent violence.”

    This can play out absurdly—the PG-13 version of Live Free or Die Hard features a bloodless shooting that magically produces a red geyser in the film’s unrated version. Liam Neeson’s character in the PG-13-rated Taken 2 gets away with an estimated 23 deaths—more than Jason Voorhees enacts in almost every Friday the 13th flick. Death here is not the issue—its severity is. Sugarcoating means sales.

    And the bodies keep piling up. A 2013 study published in the journal Pediatrics, “Gun Violence Trends in Movies found more violence in PG-13 movies than in R-rated movies.

    “It’s clear that PG-13 movies sanitize the violence, so they take out the blood, and that allows them to show a lot more killing than you see typically even in R-rated movies,” explained one of that study’s authors, Dan Romer, by phone. Romer is research director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center and director of its Adolescent Communication Institute at UPENN.

    “R-rated movies that have violence will have more blood, and show more suffering, but there’s actually less violence in those movies, ironically,” he continued. “So PG-13 allows Hollywood to have lots and lots of what some people think of as gratuitous violence, and get away with it because they’re not showing the pain and the suffering and what actually happens if you get hit with a bullet.”

    In other words, MPAA classifications don’t theoretically protect kids from violence itself, but from its more disturbing consequences. The drive to satisfy the MPAA to achieve a PG-13 classification essentially incentivizes making brutal acts consumable. We seem to agree as a culture, then, that the harder something is to watch, the worse it is for you.

    Romer said he plans to look into the effects of PG-13's bloodless violence versus the more graphic kind that you’d find in an R-rated movie, though no data comparing the two exists, to his knowledge. “It could turn out that the ratings are the inverse of harmfulness—that PG-13 is worse than R,” he said. “But we really don’t know. The research hasn’t been done to answer that question.”

    Just what is at stake here? What does “harmfulness” mean in the conversation about cinematic violence, which has the feel of being beamed in from the ‘90s? Romer says the primary fear is that “seeing films with lots of gun violence will develop a more favorable attitude [in viewers] toward the use of guns and increase their likelihood of being seen as an effective way of dealing with conflict.” He points to Bandura’s famous bobo doll experiment to show how kids model the behavior of adults they see in media, and mentions the ready availability of guns in America to suggest the practical implications of this “more favorable attitude” toward gun violence. “Gun Violence Trends in Movies” also points to several studies that measured elevated aggression levels after watching violent media, including “Short-term and Long-term Effects of Violent Media on Aggression in Children and Adults,” which was co-authored by a co-author of “...Trends in Movies,” Ohio State professor Brad Bushman.

    “In general what researchers find with violent media is that it does tend to have a temporary increase in aggression, but it’s very questionable how long that lasts,” said Patrick Markey, a professor at Villanova. “I like to think of it like any kind of art. If you go see a really sad movie, you’ll get sad afterward and feel bummed, but it doesn’t change you. You’re not depressed suddenly. Violence probably does the same thing. Right after we see a violent movie, we might be more hyped up about it, but it doesn’t change who we are.”

    In 2014, Markey co-authored a paper in Human Communication Research called “Violent Movies and Severe Acts of Violence: Sensationalism Versus Science” that challenged some of the claims in “Gun Violence Trends in Movies” and found that “although watching a violent film does not seem to be related to shifts in homicide or aggravated assault rates, such exposure may affect other types of less severe aggressive behaviors such as bullying, spreading gossip, minor fights at school, pushing and shoving, or hurling insults.” Violence in PG-13 movies may be on the rise since 1985 (a point in Romer’s paper that Markey doesn’t contest) but as the Washington Post pointed out in December, gun violence in the U.S. has been on the wane since 1993. The “sensationalism” in the title of Markey’s paper refers to the way Romer’s findings were pegged on extreme acts of violence like the Aurora shooting, as opposed to overall trends. (The Attenberg Public Policy Center than issued a response to the response.)

    If PG- and PG-13-levels of violence is being consumed by more people in more cinematic acts, and yet violent crime is on the wane, could it be that consumable violence is somehow pro-social? Instead of being a disingenuous way of commodifying the idea of death, could PG-13 movies somehow be giving our society the violence it seems to crave without the negative consequences? Have we found our perfect portion? In my estimation, the most brutal decade in cinema was the ‘70s, when crime rates were much higher (and Vietnam still had a tremendous grip on our national psyche). Think about how the extreme violence of many of the movie offerings along 42nd Street during its grindhouse heyday reflected the violence one could encounter just outside the theater (and sometimes within). Think about how this study of violent video games found that in video games that had an option to turn off the blood and gore, “that the presence of blood within the game increased verbally aggressive intentions when it was accompanied by an increase in aggressive cognition.” The study also cites “television research where the presence of blood lessens the likelihood of imitation.”

    But though an R-rated movie may spill more blood, it can’t possibly capture the extent to which violence disrupts and affects lives. You don’t get to smell the stink of death. We’re talking about degrees of packaging violence. The director Ben Wheatley explained this vividly in a recent conversation we had:

    I think the example for me is Hannibal, the TV show, where it’s so horrible, unbelievably horrible. I was watching it, thinking, “Why is this so fucking horrible, this thing?” I think it’s because if in real life I saw a dead body over there and they’d just had a heart attack and died, I’d be traumatized by it and think about it for weeks. If I see it on a TV show and that’s happened...I don’t care. They must have hit that thing and gone, “Right, well now we do a procedural investigation, but no one cares about murder anymore so it has to be this much murder.” If anything had happened on that show in real life, everyone would be talking about it forever. For every episode forever and ever. There would be a whole industry of publishing books about it, going over it, “Well, how could this happen?” I was thinking that’s a crazy gap, between reality and how a show is perceived.

    Perhaps the question at the heart of this piece is one of artistry, not sociology. And anyway, if you go looking for art in a blockbuster, you’re likely to leave the theater disappointed.

    Regardless, I reached out to the MPAA for more clarity on its process and its philosophy regarding consumable violence. The response I received via MPAA Corporate Communications VP Chris Ortman is on background and vague as it is, so I am summarizing it instead of quoting directly.

    According to the MPAA, the ratings system is not meant to police art or protect children but to provide parents with information. Movies are evaluated on a case-by-case basis and there is no predetermined quota of the amount of violence that would dictate what received a PG-13 rating versus and R rating. The MPAA says it is in a continuing dialogue with parents. Furthermore, a recent Nielsen survey found that 80 percent of parents find the ratings system accurate.

    Which is to say that a PG-13 movie is a PG-13 movie because it seems like a PG-13 movie, and most people more or less agree that it is. Whatever the implications, fallout, suggested philosophy, or whatever is of far less concern than maintaining the status quo as we understand it.


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    Yesterday, conspiracy theorist radio host Alex Jones groveled before his former king, former Presidential candidate Ron Paul, and begged him to to love Jones’ new king, failed mail-order meat salesman Donald Trump.

    Jones began by pleading, “It would just be so wonderful to see... a guy with a perfect constitutional record like yourself... Is there any way to at least highlight the things you think that are good [about Donald Trump]? Because I would at least love to see the whole Ron Paul libertarian revolution somehow, you know, at least talking to the Trump populist movement.”

    The camera then pans to Ron Paul as Jones weeps silently at the thought.

    And then the man who believes that maybe the government knew about 9/11, that the U.N. should be dissolved, that the Fed was hiding the truth about Flight MH17, and that sexual predators deserve privacy on the internet, said this:

    Well, I think he’s too much all over the place. What he says one day is something. The next day sometimes he flip flops in one day... what he has said over the years. So I have no idea what he believes in.

    Next, the man who believes that we should essentially be paying for everything with bars of gold said:

    But his economic policies are all over the place, when you talk about a 35% tax on imports.

    All of which is to say, Donald Trump is even too absurd for ardent New World Order opponent Ron Paul

    [h/t Mofo Politics]


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    Noms de Dunes! "Hide the Home Buyers" Is the Hamptons' Favorite Word Game
    Illustration: Angelica Alzona/Gawker

    It’s the classic multi-millionaire’s dilemma: You’ve found the perfect South-of-the-Highway Hamptons home—but what do you name the shell company you’re buying it through?

    Sure, you could name it after the street address of the home, as is the case for the vast majority of shell companies that own property in the Hamptons; that’s fine, as far as your standard tax vehicle goes. The $35 million Southampton house on Meadow Lane used in the Showtime show Billions, for example, is technically owned by a Meadow Lane LLC, though investor Michael Loeb resides there with his family.

    But there are also thousands of Hamptons residents who have opted to select more meaningful names for their fake companies: From Quogue to Montauk, billions of dollars in homes appear to be owned by inside jokes.

    There’s the Butler’s Residence LLC, which owns an East Hampton home assessed at a mere $609,375. On the other end of the island, My Wife Really Likes It, LLC is the proud (and presumably happily married) owner of a $24 million, 20,000 square foot Wainscott home with a pool, clay tennis court, and five acres of green lawn. There’s a home owned by Vandelay Import Export—a Seinfeld fan, presumably—another owned by the Settlement Court LLC, giving an indication of where the down payment came from.

    My personal favorite: Meadowcore, LLC, the owner of a $27,369,900 home in the village of Southampton, and also my private nickname for any style of dress that includes Tods loafers.

    Some Hamptons owners take the fancy route. Jimmy Fallon’s Sagaponack home is registered to the Windemere Trust, an LLC that shares its offices with Kevin Spacey’s foundation—who, perhaps by coincidence or perhaps by introduction from a shared attorney, is a frequent Late Show guest. Steven Spielberg’s Georgica Pond home was registered to County Wexford, LLC before he sold it for somewhere in the ballpark of $20 million in 2014.

    Others like to acknowledge right off the bat that yes, they are using their multimillion-dollar homes for pleasure. Down the road from Fallon’s house, another Sagaponack home, currently assessed at $16,088,200, is owned by “Camp Hedges, LLC”—a company registered to the Park Avenue apartment of former Blackstone CEO Gary Sumers. One home in nearby East Hampton is registered to a company named after a Phish song: Weekapaug Groove LLC. Another is in apparent reference to a Bob Segar classic: Turn the Page, LLC.

    And then, believe it or not, there are those who don’t even bother with an LLC: David Koch, Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, and Jerry Seinfeld among them. Brave.

    The Generically Posh

    Beautiful Joy, LLC

    Starkissed, LLC

    Oceanbaby, LLC

    Real Estate, LLC

    Professors Group, LLC

    Kids, LLC

    Last House, LLC

    BO Family Holdings, LLC

    Quelle Vie, LLC

    Beautiful Horse, LLC

    Waterview, LLC

    Rainwater, LLC

    Wellwater, LLC

    Baywater, LLC

    Seawater, LLC

    Societe Du Vin, LLC

    Cashmina, LLC

    Moonbeam House, LLC

    Sunbeam House, LLC

    Friends Properties, LLC

    No Name Road, LLC

    Anonymous (But Rich)

    Hampton Beach House, LLC

    Center Of The Hamptons, LLC

    Celebrity Holdings, LLC

    Hamptons Residence, LLC

    Hampton Cowboys, LLC

    This Little Farm, LLC

    Sagaponack Potato Farm, LLC

    Big Woot, LLC

    Beach House Associates, LLC

    Southampton Follies, LLC

    Center of the Hamptons, LLC

    Inside Jokes

    Big Johnny, LLC

    Headin’ East Bub, LLC

    Love Shack, LLC

    Seven Dreams, LLC

    Bungi Wungi, LLC

    I.C. Sundae, LLC

    Intellops New York, LLC

    Fool Moon, LLC

    Camp Jerome, LLC

    Dream On, LLC

    Euge Properties, LLC

    Mooning Over Broadway, LLC

    Hunting We Will Go, LLC

    Twice the Price, LLC

    Stay The Course, LLC

    We’ll Miss Dougie, LLC

    How About Here, LLC

    Wainscott Wombles, LLC

    South of the Border, LLC

    Yabba Dabba, LLC

    Two Yags, LLC

    El Squid Roe, LLC

    Queen Myway, LLC

    WhatAreYouDoing, LLC

    Cryptomeria, LLC

    Beach Baby 798, LLC

    Far and Free, LLC

    Feversham, LLC

    Suggestion Box, LLC

    No Hotel Investors, LLC

    Jonez’N For The Beach, LLC

    Lance a Lot, LLC

    23 Bittersweet Lane, LLC

    Rai(NY) Inc.

    Out Here, LLC

    Pop Culture

    Furby Holdings, LLC

    Eraserhead, LLC

    24 Penny Lane LLC

    Out of Egypt, LLC

    Turn the Page, LLC

    Xanadu II, LLC

    Graceland I, LLC

    Sherlocks Manor House, LLC

    Jezebel 21, LLC

    Graceland I, LLC

    Fifty Shades of Construction, LLC

    Strawberry Fields West, LLC

    Animal Lovers

    The Moo Group, LLC

    7 Fish, LLC

    Big Moose Ventures, LLC

    Moo Moo, LLC

    Woof Woof Ventures, LLC

    Dog Beach, Inc

    Clam Clan Corp.

    Puppy Mongo, LLC

    Clam Hole Inc.

    James Moo Cow, LLC

    Galloping Cow, LLC

    The Lonesome Goose, LLC

    Inscrutable

    Lucky Red, LLC

    Big Climbing Tree, LLC

    Red Lad, LLC

    Item No, LLC

    Cinnamon, LLC

    Prop. One, LLC

    New Tick Tock, LLC

    Tick Tock II, LLC

    Tick Tock III, LLC

    Scrumpyhw, LLC

    L NIGGLES PROPERTIES, LLC

    Superfoot, LLC

    Goals and Benefits, Inc.

    Mjmjm Westhamptobeach LLC

    Fiddledeedee Corp.

    Nanabaloo, LLC

    Feversham, LLC

    R A T, LLC

    Nice

    69 Main Street, LLC

    69 Middle Lane, LLC

    69 MH, LLC

    If 6 Were 9 Realty, LLC

    69 Wickatuck Drive, LLC

    69 Wild Goose Lane, LLC

    69 Job’s Lane, LLC

    Southcom 69, LLC

    69 Foster Avenue, LLC

    69 Rogers, LLC


    0 0

    Amber Heard Files Restraining Order Against Johnny Depp Citing Assault
    Photo: TMZ

    The actress Amber Heard has filed for divorce and a restraining order against Johnny Depp, claiming he smashed an iPhone in her face during an argument last weekend, TMZ reports.

    According to court records obtained by CNN, Heard filed for divorce last Sunday citing irreconcilable differences. This morning, TMZ reports, she showed up for a court hearing with a facial bruise allegedly made by Depp, who is currently on the road promoting a movie and did not attend the hearing.

    The pair reportedly did not have a prenuptial agreement and Heard is seeking spousal support.

    A spokesperson for Depp says: “Given the brevity of this marriage and the most recent and tragic loss of his mother, Johnny will not respond to any of the salacious false stories, gossip, misinformation and lies about his personal life.”

    TMZ, which maintains an impressive web of law enforcement sources, reports that Los Angeles police officers responded to a call about a disturbance at the couple’s residence last Saturday night.

    Amber claims during the alleged attack, Johnny shattered various objects in the apartment. She says she was on the phone with a friend during the fight, and when Johnny grabbed her phone she screamed to her friend, “Call the cops!” The friend called 911 and cops came to the residence.

    Amber says when cops arrived Johnny had already fled, so they took a report.

    We’re told cops told Amber they would find Johnny and arrest him if she gave a statement about the alleged violence, but she refused. Officers told her if she changed her mind she could call them.

    The report to which TMZ refers appears to be an LAPD business card with handwritten notes, dated 5/21/16 at 9:16 p.m.: “RADIO CALL OF DISPUTE. REFUSED REPORT. ADV’D CAN CALL @ LATER TIME IF CHANGES MIND.”

    The site reports Heard also claims to have video of another assault.

    The couple was last publicly seen together in a dog apology bizarre video.

    http://gawker.com/johnny-depp-ta...


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    Cleveland Is Making Room for 200 “Fresh Arrests” at the Republican National Convention
    Image: Getty

    We already knew that Cleveland was prepping for a riot gear-paved hell should the situation at the upcoming Republican National Convention turn dire. Now, thanks to Cleveland.com, we’ve learned that cops are also keeping 200 beds open at the Cuyahoga County Jail just in case.

    http://gawker.com/the-republican...

    As we’ve discussed before, the city of Cleveland does have plenty of reason to protest. They already did so in December after the Cleveland police officer who shot and killed 12-year-old Tamir Rice failed to be indicted. Now that Donald Trump is the official presumptive nominee, though, there at least won’t be any brokered convention-inspired violence. Then again, Trump’s supporters haven’t exactly needed the inspiration in the past.

    http://gawker.com/trump-supporte...

    Still, the city of Cleveland isn’t taking any chances. From the county’s submission:

    This agreement will allow Cuyahoga County to house “fresh arrests” that are made by Cleveland Division of Police related to the RNC event. The County will guarantee the City the availability of up to 200 beds for use by the City. In order to accommodate this arrangement, the County will transfer 200 of its own inmates from downtown to Bedford Heights jail and lease for the week.

    Cleveland.com reports that the county board is likely to approve the following purchases in anticipation the RNC:

    • 100 body cameras on a five-year contract
    • Urban search and rescue response breaching equipment
    • Mass casualty incident trailer supplies
    • hand held radiation detection unit
    • Chemical/gas detection host controller
    • Ground resistance tester

    Have fun at the convention, everyone.


    0 0

    Donald Trump Officially Says No to Fake Debate He Was Never Really Considering
    Image: AP

    After Trump gave a half-joking sort of non-answer to Bernie Sanders’ request to debate during Jimmy Kimmel Live earlier this week, Trump has finally clarified his answer that “if [Bernie] paid a nice sum for a charity, I would love to [debate]!” The clarification being that Trump, in fact, meant “no.”

    Of course, Donald Trump never actually had any intention of debating Bernie Sanders, despite his apparent newfound love of “women’s health issues” and the charities that support them.

    Still, this all must be very upsetting for Bernie Sanders, who had even tweeted about how much he was looking forward to the event.

    If I had to compare this situation to one scene in a late-90s Drew Barrymore movie, it would be this scene from 1999's Never Been Kissed:

    Don’t give up on love yet, Bernie. You’ll get your kiss.


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    For Her First Story as a TV Correspondent Elizabeth Smart Covered BYU's Rape Response

    Fox TV show Crime Watch Daily welcomed new correspondent Elizabeth Smart to the team this week. For her first episode with the show she explored the response of her alma mater BYU to students who were sexually assaulted during their time on campus.

    Brigham Young University currently has an “Honor Code” for student conduct, and that code was allegedly frequently used to aggressively persecute anyone who came forward about their assaults. Deseret News reports that during her 18-minute segment, Smart spoke directly of her feelings about BYU’s failure to support those students:

    “It really makes me feel terrible to think that these women are not coming forward and getting the help that they not only need but deserve because they’re too worried about the rules that are in place, worried that they’ll get expelled,” she said.

    Smart also spoke of her experience with captors Brian David Mitchell and Wanda Barzee, touching on the emotional manipulation perpetrated by rapists alongside physical violence:

    “I don’t think most people realize, rapes are premedidated[SIC] and thought out,” Smart said during the show. “These people who are committing them are not stupid. They know how to target women, they know how to target people.”

    The BYU Honor Code has been the subject of much criticism, with even the Provo Police Department stating that BYU should provide limited amnesty to those reporting a sexual assault around the time of the incident, so they would not fear retaliatory punishment for code violations. In an online petition, more than 110,000 people have signed for this provision to be added to BYU’s honor code.

    http://jezebel.com/theyre-embolde...

    Image via Getty.


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    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More

    An outdoor projection screen, Adidas hiking shoes, and a FoodSaver starter kit lead off Friday’s best deals.

    Bookmark Kinja Deals and follow us on Twitter to never miss a deal. Commerce Content is independent of Editorial and Advertising, and if you buy something through our posts, we may get a small share of the sale. Click here to learn more.


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Anker PowerCore 10000, $19

    Update: Sold out

    Anker’s PowerCore 10000 is part of your favorite line of USB battery packs, and you can pick one up on Amazon today for just $19, an all-time low. That comes complete with an 18 month warranty and a nice travel pouch, but the real reason to get this thing is the size. If you’ve owned other ~10,000mAh battery packs, you’ll be shocked how small and light this thing is.

    http://co-op.kinja.com/your-favorite-...

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01B14ANLY?...


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Adidas Outdoor Footwear Gold Box

    Today only, Amazon’s offering a variety of Adidas outdoor shoes at great low prices. Most of the choices here are hiking shoes, but there’s also a pair of breathable lightweight sneakers, if that’s more your speed. Just note that like all Gold Box deals, these prices are only available today, or until sold out.


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Camp Chef 144" Projection Screen, $195

    There are movie nights, and then there are movie nights. With this 144" outdoor projection screen, you’ll be hosting the latter. Today’s $195 price tag is more than $50 less than usual, but it’s only available today, or until sold out.


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More

    At 1/2 horsepower, this isn’t the most powerful Waste King garbage disposal on the market, but today’s price is about $15 less than usual, and it comes with a five-year in-home service warranty.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0014X7B54/...


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Sunbeam Heating Pad Gold Box

    A good heating pad is something everyone should own, and three different models are on sale in today’s Amazon Gold Box.


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Refurb Roku 3 (2013), $55

    Update: Sold out.


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Fitbit Charge HR, $95, use code C15MEMDAYPARTY

    Update: Additional $15 Off with code C15MEMDAYPARTY

    Need a little push to get off the couch? The Fitbit Charge HR is your favorite wearable fitness tracker, and you can get one for just $100 $110 today, which is a match for the best deal we’ve seen.

    http://co-op.kinja.com/your-favorite-...


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    FoodSaver FM2000, $60

    We’ve all had to throw away leftovers or cuts of meat and cheese that spent a little too much time in the fridge or freezer, but vacuum sealing your foods can keep them safe from freezer burn pretty much indefinitely, and dramatically extend their shelf life everywhere else.

    It sounds like an expensive proposition, but today, Amazon’s selling this well-reviewed FoodSaver Starter Kit for just $60, complete with everything you need to get started. Of course you can use this to store meats in the freezer for a long time, but it can also keep cheese from molding, lettuce from wilting, or cookies from going stale, just for starters. Think about how much food you throw away, and you’ll get a sense of just how quickly this purchase could pay for itself.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LUGK5XA


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Extra $5 off 5-Packs of Dress Socks, promo code 7A8YL5JG

    These Modern Motif socks prove that men’s dress socks don’t need to be drab and colorless, and today on Amazon, you can save $5 on a box of five pairs. Note that there are three Amazon product pages eligible for the discount, but each one has multiple sock collections contained within, so be sure to shop around to find your favorite set, and use code 7A8YL5JG at checkout to save an extra $5.


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    SanDisk Ultra II 480GB SSD, $108

    SanDisk’s ultra-popular 480GB Ultra II SSD sells for $130 on Amazon, but Newegg’s eBay storefront will sell you one for $108. Even if you don’t have a computer to pop this into, it could be the basis of a relatively inexpensive external SSD.

    http://gear.kinja.com/build-your-own...


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    HomeBeck Amplified HDTV Antenna, $14 with code J78ON6OB

    If you’ve tried an unamplified HDTV antenna like the Mohu Leaf, but can’t quite pull in every channel you want, this HomeBeck leaf-style model includes a USB-powered amp that should add a few miles of range. All you have to do is plug it into your TV’s USB port (or any other USB charger).

    http://lifehacker.com/how-to-choose-...

    http://www.amazon.com/HomeBeck%C2%AE...


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    RAVPower 6' Lightning Cable, $7 with code 36N3PR5T

    The Lightning cable that Apple includes with its products is never long enough, but this 6' replacement will only set you back $7 today with promo code 36N3PR5T.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0166KRUYG?...


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Indochino Premium Suits, $375, use promo code KINJA

    You voted Indochino your favorite custom clothing company by a wide margin, and today you can dress yourself in one of their premium suits for an exclusive new low price. $375 puts you in a premium suit that typically runs $700-$800, just don’t forget promo code KINJA.

    Read lots more about this deal here:

    http://deals.kinja.com/heres-the-best...


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    refurb Dyson V6, $145, use code C15MEMDAYPARTY

    Update: Additional $15 Off with code C15MEMDAYPARTY

    Get the power, versatility, and customer service of Dyson for just $160 today with this refurb Dyson V6 deal, plus no tax for most and free shipping.

    http://gear.kinja.com/the-dyson-abso...

    Dyson Vacuums were 3 of your 5 top vacuum picks, and got Jolie Kerr’s recommendation in that same contest.


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Bestek 6-Outlet Surge Protector With 2 USB Ports, $11 with code EJ8XPBSK | Bestek 8-Outlet Surge Protector, $8 with code QQBFRPQP

    You can never have too many power outlets, and two popular Bestek surge protectors are on sale today, including one with a pair of USB ports for your mobile devices. Stock up!

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00T46WS1A?...

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00T649BSS?...


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    BLACK + DECKER Mini 3-Cup Rice Cooker, $14

    Rice cookers have their place, but if you’re just cooking for one or two people, and don’t have a ton of storage space, this $14 3-cup (cooked) model from BLACK+DECKER might be all that your kitchen needs.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B016Y8JS4K/...


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    Refurb ASUS ZenWatch, $80

    Want to try out a smart watch without spending a ton of money? The original ASUS ZenWatch was one of the best first generation Android Wear watches, and you can get a refurb today for just $80. If you like it, maybe you’ll upgrade to a newer model in a few months. If you don’t, you aren’t out much money.


    Today's Best Deals: Projection Screen, Hiking Shoes, FoodSaver, and More
    5 Pounds of Haribo Gummi Bears, $11

    We posted this deal a little over a month ago, but if you’ve eaten all of those sweet, sweet Haribo Gold Bears, you can pick up another five pound bag today for just $11. And don’t worry, these aren’t the sugar free ones.

    http://www.amazon.com/Haribo-Gummi-C...

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    At a rally in Fresno, California today, newfound irrigation expert Donald Trump finally revealed the solution to the drought that’s been crippling California for the past five years: Turn the water back on, idiots.

    The historic proposal appropriately took place amid a sea of “Farmers for Trump” signs, where Trump revealed that the reason California’s water problem is “so insane, so ridiculous” is because “they’re taking the water and shoving it out to sea.”

    Fortunately for California, when Donald Trump becomes president, he plans to “start opening up the water so that you can have your farmers survive so that your job market will get better”—a position that is genuinely hard to argue with, though not for the usual reasons.

    Water Scientist Donald Trump on Fixing California's Drought: "Start Opening Up the Water"
    Image: AP

    On the one hand, according to Buzzfeed, Trump might have been referring to the water that gets allocated to rivers and wetlands for environmental uses. On the other, Donald Trump might actually be asking California to stop throwing its water in the ocean. In which case—Californians, please, listen to Mr. Trump, and do NOT shove your water out to sea. The ocean already has plenty of water. It needs no extra.

    Now, how is Trump going to make good on his promise of “opening up the water?” According to Trump, “We’re going to get it done, and we’re going to get it done quick. Don’t even think about it.”

    Mr. Trump, I couldn’t if I tried.

    [h/t Buzzfeed]


    0 0

    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks

    Homemade cold brew, multiple Eneloop Power Packs to choose from, and hammocks and beach chairs are just the start of today’s best deals.

    Bookmark Kinja Deals and follow us on Twitter to never miss a deal. Commerce Content is independent of Editorial and Advertising, and if you buy something through our posts, we may get a small share of the sale. Click here to learn more.


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks

    The Pro Bundle is discounted to $50. Deal on the standard pack is done.

    http://www.amazon.com/Panasonic-K-KJ...


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    Takeya Cold Brew Maker, $19

    Iced coffee is a brilliant way to sell people ice for the price of coffee (which is mostly water to begin with). Cold brew on the other hand is a different process that results in less acidity, among other benefits, and you can do it yourself at home with this $19 Takeya.

    http://www.amazon.com/Takeya-Coffee-...


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    4-Pack of 60W Equivalent Philips A19 LED Bulbs, $5

    These Philips A19 bulbs aren’t just the most popular light bulbs we’ve ever listed, they’re one of the most popular non-Amazon deals we’ve ever posted. Today you can grab a 4-pack for under $5, until they sell out anyway, which definitely beats out the previous discounts we’ve seen.

    http://bestsellers.kinja.com/bestsellers-ph...

    http://gizmodo.com/you-have-no-re...

    http://deals.kinja.com/todays-best-de...


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    Tommy Bahama 2016 Backpack Cooler Chair, $45

    Update: Now $52


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    Neolite Camping Hammock, $36

    It’s officially hammock season, and you can join in the fun for just $36, courtesy of today’s Amazon Gold Box.

    On offer today is a lightweight Neolite camping hammock. Unlike mesh hammocks, this is made of nylon, meaning you can fold it up and stuff it inside a backpack for easy transportation. It supports 400 pounds, comes in an array of different colors, and unlike most camping hammocks, includes a set of tree straps in the box.

    Until this deal, Amazon’s consistently sold this thing for $45, and today’s $36 price is only available today, or until sold out. Happy camping!

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00XOO8LU0/...


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    Sabrent USB 3.0 Universal Docking Station, $60, use code SLIKRICA

    This versatile USB 3.0 dock is also a tablet or laptop stand, and adds HDMI, USB charging ports, ethernet, and more for just $60 today.

    http://www.amazon.com/Sabrent-Univer...


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    Anker PowerCore 10000, $19

    Anker’s PowerCore 10000 is part of your favorite line of USB battery packs, and you can pick one up on Amazon today for just $19, an all-time low. That comes complete with an 18 month warranty and a nice travel pouch, but the real reason to get this thing is the size. If you’ve owned other ~10,000mAh battery packs, you’ll be shocked how small and light this thing is.

    http://co-op.kinja.com/your-favorite-...

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01B14ANLY


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    Fitbit Charge HR, $95, use code C15MEMDAYPARTY

    Update: Additional $15 Off with code C15MEMDAYPARTY

    Need a little push to get off the couch? The Fitbit Charge HR is your favorite wearable fitness tracker, and you can get one for just $100 $110 today, which is a match for the best deal we’ve seen.


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    FoodSaver FM2000, $60

    We’ve all had to throw away leftovers or cuts of meat and cheese that spent a little too much time in the fridge or freezer, but vacuum sealing your foods can keep them safe from freezer burn pretty much indefinitely, and dramatically extend their shelf life everywhere else.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LUGK5XA

    It sounds like an expensive proposition, but today, Amazon’s selling this well-reviewed FoodSaver Starter Kit for just $60, complete with everything you need to get started. Of course you can use this to store meats in the freezer for a long time, but it can also keep cheese from molding, lettuce from wilting, or cookies from going stale, just for starters. Think about how much food you throw away, and you’ll get a sense of just how quickly this purchase could pay for itself.


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    Indochino Premium Suits, $375, use promo code KINJA

    You voted Indochino your favorite custom clothing company by a wide margin, and today you can dress yourself in one of their premium suits for an exclusive new low price. $375 puts you in a premium suit that typically runs $700-$800, just don’t forget promo code KINJA.

    Read lots more about this deal here:

    http://deals.kinja.com/heres-the-best...


    Today's Best Deals: Cold Brew, Eneloops, Beach Chairs, Hammocks
    5 Pounds of Haribo Gummi Bears, $11

    We posted this deal a little over a month ago, but if you’ve eaten all of those sweet, sweet Haribo Gold Bears, you can pick up another five pound bag today for just $11. And don’t worry, these aren’t the sugar free ones.

    http://www.amazon.com/Haribo-Gummi-C...

    http://bestsellers.kinja.com/bestsellers-ha...

    Tech

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    Commerce Content is independent of Editorial and Advertising, and if you buy something through our posts, we may get a small share of the sale. Click here to learn more, and don’t forget to sign up for our email newsletter. We want your feedback.


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    MLB On Colossal Beer Pyramid: "Wow"
    Screencap via

    What separates man from beast? Humans are weak-skinned bipeds, but our great advantage in this life is our bigass brains. We build. To engineer is human. That’s how we survived in the jungles and took over this planet. Read one way, the story of human history is a long, inexorable march towards the construction of baseball stadiums.

    Which brings us to last night in Cleveland, where it was $2 beer night. A beer is a beer, but a beer can, well that’s building material. To the fans who built this 112-can tall beeramid, we salute you.

    Cleveland stadium staff, of course, took it down, probably because it was a more impressive edifice than the stadium which housed it. Humans are vain creatures.

    The official MLB account had this to say on the /r/baseball post regarding the beeramid.

    MLB On Colossal Beer Pyramid: "Wow"

    MLB, we can agree on this much: wow indeed.

    h/t to the anonymous tipster who sent in this video.


    0 0
  • 05/28/16--10:28: Nice.
  • Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump: “[...] 69 ... nice.”

    This has been Nice.


    0 0

    Police in Riot Gear Make Dozens of Arrests At San Diego Trump Rally
    Photo: AP

    As the Republican National Convention and likely coronation of Donald Trump as Republican presidential nominee approaches, the numbers of protestors showing up at Trump events have swelled. So have arrests.

    Yesterday, more than 1,000 protestors demonstrated outside a Trump rally in San Diego.

    By their own estimates, police arrested 35 protestors, some of which they claim entered areas off-limits to them. Ironically, many of these protestors were there specifically to oppose Trump’s racist and cruel immigration policies (San Diego shares a border with Mexico).

    The Associated Press reported that at around 4 p.m. local time, protestors and Trump supporters became physically aggressive—throwing trash cans at one another, for instance—at which point police in riot gear intervened.

    CBS News posted footage on Twitter of police hitting protestors with batons:

    The numbers of protestors showing up to and being arrested at Trump events has been steadily ratcheting up this week. On Wednesday, about 100 peaceful protestors showed up to a Southern California rally. The Anaheim Police Department arrested seven of them on the on a range of charges including unlawful assembly and selling T-shirts without a permit.

    The day before, police reacted to a protest of a Trump event in Albuquerque by deploying smoke bombs and pepper spray. Albuquerque police swiftly attempted to justify their actions with claims, via Twitter, that protestors had been throwing rocks at them. Trump also got on Twitter after the protest to describe the protestors as “thugs who were flying the Mexican flag.”

    After last night’s rally, Trump tweeted the following at the San Diego Police Department.

    For a while now, Trump rallies have been well attended on both sides of the barricades.


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    Cleveland Cops Will Be Well Armed at the RNC, but Many Won't Be Wearing Body Cams
    Photo: AP

    In preparation for the Republican National Convention in July, Cleveland police have been stocking up on apocalyptic tools like hand-held radiation detection units and mass casualty incident trailer supplies. But there’s one piece of equipment they don’t intend to be using much of: body cameras.

    According to Cleveland.com, police officials told officers that many of them won’t be furnished with body cameras for the convention, citing inability to attach these cameras to the officers’ riot gear. Police sporting softer uniforms will be able to wear the cameras, but, these days, those don’t tend to be the ones who get into physical altercations with protestors.

    Officials said that police will use alternative methods to record interactions between them and protestors, but didn’t go into details.

    Cleveland.com reported yesterday that 200 beds are being kept open in Ohio’s Cuyahoga County jail in anticipation of the convention. The same article reported that the Cleveland Sheriff’s Department is seeking a five-year contract with Taser International for 100 body cameras worth $724,600. Perhaps the police department will also need updated armored outfits to match.


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    University of North Carolina System Says It Won't Enforce Its State's Discriminatory Bathroom Bill
    Photo: AP

    The University of North Carolina system has finally taken a firm stance against its state’s so-called “bathroom bill.” UNC system president Margaret Spellings said in a federal court yesterday that she has no plans to enforce the state law requiring transgender people to use bathrooms that match the sex on their birth certificate. The law applies to public schools and many public buildings.

    In March, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed the Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act into law; state university administrations are required to comply. But they are also must satisfy a federal injunction that forbids public schools from enforcing the discriminatory law under threat of legal action and the withdrawal of federal funding.

    In recent statements, Spellings hasn’t taken a firm position on the matter, except to highlight that it is a fraught position to be in. Two weeks ago she wrote in a letter, “We hope that the Department of Justice appreciates that the University is in a difficult position.”

    But apparently appreciation has its limits, and yesterday Spellings changed her tune. As part of a motion asking a federal court to stop civil legal proceedings against UNC, Spellings wrote that, whatever the outcome, “I have no intent to exercise my authority to promulgate any guidelines or regulations that require transgender students to use the restrooms consistent with their biological sex.”

    UNC’s lawyers noted that the state law lacks any enforcement mechanism whatsoever.


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    Chicago Will Release Recordings From 100 Ongoing Police Violence Investigations
    Photo: AP

    Local governments and police departments are known to be worse than shady about making records of police violence public, but releasing an overwhelming amount of information all at once can also be an obfuscating tactic.

    According to a memo obtained by the Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago’s Independent Police Review Authority plans to release recordings that document about 100 incidents of police violence, including shootings and use of stun guns. The disclosure is “tentatively scheduled” for June 2 and all of the records are connected to ongoing IPRA investigations.

    In February, Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel embraced the recommendation of his Task Force on Police Accountability to release recordings of shootings and injuries sustained in police custody within 60 days of the incident, but this mass revelation suggests there’s been a buildup of footage. The task force was ostensibly created to soothe public outrage after footage was released in November of officer Jason Van Dyke fatally shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald sixteen times. The video was released more than a year after the incident, and inspired calls for the mayor’s resignation.

    On Friday, the mayor’s office released this statement on the impending unveiling of police records:

    “Consistent with the Task Force on Police Accountability’s recommendations, Mayor Emanuel announced in February that Chicago is leading the nation in adopting a written policy regarding the release of videos and other evidence in police-involved shootings. Over the past few months, multiple city agencies have been working together to prepare for this release, which includes thousands of police reports, audio recordings, and videos – materials that require careful organization and proper care. Promoting transparency is driving this initiative, and now all members of the public will now have an opportunity to review these materials through a user-friendly interface.”

    But the authors of the Sun-Times article, Sam Charles and Fran Spielman, suggest the delay serves the mayor’s agenda better than it does the public:

    By releasing so many videos all at once, the mayor’s office makes it difficult, if not impossible, for the news media to view them all, let alone focus on the most egregious videos.

    Emanuel can also claim to be “open and transparent” while managing to take the political hit in one fell swoop. It’s kind of like removing a Band-Aid. Sure, you feel the pain. But you get rid of it all at once.


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