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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Hannity: ‘I Was Happy' That Whistleblower Complaint Is About Ukraine
Fox NewsAt the same time that President Donald Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani was on CNN denying (then admitting) that he urged the Ukrainian government to investigate Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, Trump's shadow chief of staff was insisting on Fox News that he was "happy" that a whistleblower complaint against Trump involves Ukraine.

Leading off his primetime program by downplaying the bombshell news about the intelligence community's whistleblower complaint, Fox News host Sean Hannity complained that the "media mob" has been "breathlessly" reporting on the story over the past 24 hours.

After referencing past president's promises to world leaders—including President Barack Obama telling then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev that he'd have more "flexibility" after the 2012 election—Hannity circled back to the reports surrounding the whistleblower.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Stephen Colbert Blows the Whistle on Trump After ‘Promise' to Foreign Leader
"Remember a couple of years ago when Trump first got into office?" Stephen Colbert asked during his Late Show monologue Thursday night. "We were all so nervous that Donald Trump was some sort of sleeper agent who was going to sell America out to a foreign power behind our backs." 

"Well, it's Throwback Thursday!" he added before laying out the details of the whistleblower complaint that has just started to come to light this week regarding the president making an unknown "promise" to a foreign leader. 

"Thank god Trump never keeps his promises," the host joked. "In fact, Eric is still waiting by the front door to go to Disney World." 

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Giuliani Admits He Asked Ukraine About Biden Seconds After Denying He Did in Insane CNN Interview
Shortly after numerous outlets reported on Thursday night that the intelligence community's whistleblower complaint about President Donald Trump involves Ukraine, Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani showed up on CNN for a largely incomprehensible interview that featured the former New York City mayor repeatedly contradicting himself while he tossed out personal insults at anchor Chris Cuomo.

Giuliani, who has long been lobbying Ukraine to investigate Democratic presidential frontrunner Joe Biden ahead of the 2020 elections, immediately began arguing with Cuomo over the merits of a Ukrainian investigation into Biden and his son Hunter. (Back in May, Ukraine's prosecutor general said there was no evidence that Biden or his son broke the law.)

After the CNN host noted that Giuliani was obviously doing this for political purposes to serve his client—Democratic lawmakers are currently probing Giuliani's efforts to get Ukraine to investigate Biden—Giuliani flip-flopped on his position within 30 seconds.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Trump Whistleblower Saga Threatens to Blow Up 2020 Campaign
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily BeastAn explosive whistleblower complaint that is threatening to paralyze much of Washington, D.C.,  now may upend the 2020 presidential campaign. 

Two outlets on Thursday night reported that the complaint in question involves President Trump and matters related to Ukraine. Those outlets, The Washington Post and The New York Times, did not go much further than those details. But earlier reports said that what prompted the whistleblower to come forward was a pledge made by Trump to a foreign leader. 

The complaint was explosive enough to prompt the intelligence community's inspector general to bring it to the attention of the director of national intelligence, who has not made it available to Congress in part because of objections from the Department of Justice. 

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

There's Never Been a Whistleblower Case Like This Before
Mark Wilson/GettyWhen Congress first put together a whistleblower process for employees of the intelligence community, lawmakers probably didn't expect that it would be used to report potential misconduct by the president, but here we are. There's a complaint by someone in the intelligence community that President Trump made some inappropriate promise to a foreign leader over a series of communications. So just how bizarre is this scenario and how is the whistleblower process supposed to work?

Welcome to Rabbit Hole. 

Untrodden territory: The whistleblowing process to report intelligence community employee concerns to Congress is used anywhere from four to 20 times a year, according to official reports. From what little we can tell from official reports, the intelligence community has never faced an issue remotely like the one raised by a complaint against Trump. The complaint, first filed on Aug. 12, reportedly involves Trump's conversations with an unnamed foreign leader about Ukraine, according to The Washington Post. 

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Pundit Kurt Bardella Arrested After Altercation With Cop at Climate Forum
Justin T. Gellerson/The New York Times via ReduxWell-known political strategist and pundit Kurt Bardella was arrested on Monday after getting into an altercation with a Georgetown University police officer who tried to bar him from entering a forum featuring 2020 presidential candidates.

The Metropolitan Police Department confirmed to The Daily Beast that the Republican operative-turned-Democratic pundit was arrested early Thursday morning after getting into a brief physical dispute with a campus police officer in a stairwell at Georgetown University.

Bardella, a political strategist and contributor for USA Today and NBC News, was attempting to enter Georgetown's presidential forum on climate change hosted by MSNBC and Our Daily Planet, an environmental news outlet founded by Bardella's wife Miroslava Korenha. According to a police report, a university police officer attempted to stop Bardella from entering a stairwell, and requested to see his credentials. When Bardella said he had used the stairwell previously and tried to walk past the officer, the officer blocked the entrance, prompting Bardella to "slap" the officers arm, the report said.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Facebook Won't Sell Off Instagram and WhatsApp, Senator Says Zuckerberg Told Him
Antoine Gyori/Corbis/GettyIn a rare jaunt to the nation's capital, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg entered Washington's buzzing hornet's nest as it swarms his massive company with regulatory threats—some all buzz, some that could sting. 

So far, one fairly specific threat materialized from Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), an emerging Big Tech critic who's amplifying some of the right's favorite attacks against Silicon Valley's business elite. In a private meeting with Zuckerberg, Hawley called for Facebook to sell Instagram and WhatsApp, two of the company's roomiest lifeboats for weathering its current corporate storms.

Hawley, one of a handful of lawmakers who have been whipping up cries of anti-conservative censorship, tweeted on Thursday that he "had a frank conversation" with Zuckerberg. He appears to have explicitly asked Facebook's top executive to sell the two companies, in addition to demanding that the company conduct a third-party audit on conservative censorship to his liking. "He said no to both," Hawley added.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Elizabeth Warren's Rivals Start to Turn on Her
Heidi Gutman/GettySen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) has mostly been coasting to her position atop the 2020 Democratic primary field, often dodging the scrums other candidates have engaged in on the trail and the debate stage. 

But as she's risen, her opponents have begun to notice. And this week, several of them have started to test out attack lines against her.

On Thursday, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg accused Warren of dodging questions about potential tax increases that could come with instituting a Medicare for All healthcare system, which Warren supports. 

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Scouted: Check Out the Latest Footwear Additions to Zappos's Huge Inventory
We at Scouted love shoes and grab virtually every chance we get to share with you the latest and greatest from brands like Allbirds, Mizuno, and Cole Haan. And in that vein, we came across The Drop Launch Calendar from Zappos and knew we'd have to let you know about some of the most important recent footwear releases available at the Amazon-owned online apparel store (yes, it makes ordering, shipping, and returning just as easy as Amazon Prime does).

ASICS GEL-Kayano 26, $160: Designed for the road, the Kayanos pack heavy shock-absorbing features with lots of support and a breathable fabric lining.

Nike Legend React 2, $100: With a neutral level of support and a lightweight build, the cushioning in these shoes gives you back some bounce with each step.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Whistleblower Complaint Being Suppressed by Trump or Someone ‘Close' to Him, Schiff Says
REUTERSFollowing a closed-door briefing with the intelligence community's inspector general on Thursday, members of Congress told reporters that they learned no substantive details about a whistleblower's complaint that reportedly involves President Donald Trump making a "promise" to an unknown foreign leader—but were told that the complaint's subject "relates to one of the most significant and important of the DNI's responsibilities to the American people."

Only minutes after that briefing's conclusion, The New York Times reported that Michael Atkinson, the intelligence community's inspector general, told members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence that the complaint related to "multiple acts," far beyond the scope of a single alleged conversation with a foreign leader.

But specifics of the complaint—and even public confirmation that it concerns actions by the president—are still being withheld from Congress, committee members said.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Scouted: The Best New Launches from Burrow, Thakoon, GREATS and More
New Kids on the Block helps you navigate all the new and exciting launches from our favorite brands, all in one place.

Burrow Corner and U Sectionals: If you thought you couldn't get a sectional sofa delivered to your door in easy-to-wield, flat-pack boxes, think again. Burrow's new line of gorgeous, highly-functional Corner and U Sectionals bring the elevated look of a high-end couch into anyone's space. No longer will you have to take time out of your day to get a couch delivered, because these will arrive in neatly stacked boxes for you to unpack at your leisure.

GREATS Royale Suede: Take your favorite pair of everyday sneakers and make them fall-ready with these new suede shades from GREATS. The Royale Suede is the perfect shoe for cooler weather, with its low profile and deep, rich colorways to go with everything from jeans and sweaters to a maxi dress or trousers. These will be your more versatile shoe of the fall.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Feds Paint Depraved Portrait of Dem Donor Ed Buck
Kevork Djansezian/GettyLOS ANGELES—Months after Los Angeles prosecutors declined to charge political donor and activist Ed Buck with the fatal overdose of a man in his home during sex, the feds stepped in and did it.

The U.S. attorney's office accused Buck, 65, of injecting Gemmel Moore, 26, with a deadly shot of methamphetamine at Buck's West Hollywood apartment in July 2017.

Two other men have overdosed at the house, according to authorities: Timothy Dean, 55, who died there in January, and an unidentified man who who survived his encounter with Buck earlier this month and called police.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Democratic Donor Ed Buck Hit With Federal Charge for Man's Overdose Death
Kevork Djansezian/GettyPolitical donor and activist Ed Buck was charged by federal prosecutors on Thursday for the death of the first of three men to overdose at his West Hollywood home—where authorities said he lured vulnerable victims to indulge a "malicious" sexual fetish.

The new charge, distribution of methamphetamine resulting in death, is connected to the 2017 death of Gemmel Moore, 26. It comes a day after Buck was arrested by local police in connection with the overdose of an unidentified man a week ago.

Buck, a retired entrepreneur who has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to Democratic politicians and liberal causes, made a brief court appearance in the local case on Thursday morning and was then transferred to federal custody to face the far more serious charge.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Democratic Donor Ed Buck to Face Federal Charge for Man's Overdose Death
Kevork Djansezian/GettyPolitical donor and activist Ed Buck will be charged by federal prosecutors on Thursday for the death of the first of three men to overdose at his West Hollywood home, a law enforcement official told The Daily Beast on Thursday.

The new charge, distribution of methamphetamine resulting in death, is connected to the 2017 death of Gemmel Moore, 26. It comes a day after Buck was arrested by local police in connection with the overdose of an unidentified man a week ago.

Buck, a retired entrepreneur who has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to Democratic politicians and liberal causes, is accused of preying on vulnerable men to indulge what authorities called a "malicious" sexual fetish.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Fox Business' Charlie Gasparino Bashes WSJ Colleagues: They ‘Couldn't Wear My Jockstrap'
Fox Business Network senior correspondent Charlie Gasparino would very much like you to know that his colleagues at the Wall Street Journal cannot "wear his jockstrap."

Appearing on Fox Business Network's Cavuto: Coast to Coast on Thursday, the pugnacious reporter found it necessary to publicly call out the Wall Street Journal over their report that AT&T is exploring options to sell DirecTV, noting that Fox Business was first on the beat.

"I want to say this you know, because we broke the story. I want to say that the Wall Street Journal—the editor there who went to my wedding, Matt Murray—the reporters, who are probably good reporters, but they couldn't wear my jockstrap as a reporter or hold it, I think hold it is the term," he boasted.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Tekashi Sings for the Feds: Spills on His Gangster Pals, Kidnapping, Revenge Plot
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily Beast/GettyThe rapper Tekashi69 told jurors Thursday that he was so "humiliated" after a fellow gang member kidnapped and robbed him, he put a $50,000 price on his head.

The hip-hop artist testified that he could have gone to police and told them that Anthony "Harv" Ellison abducted him and stole a bag full of jewelry. But, he explained in a moment rich with irony, "I didn't want to snitch."

Instead, Tekashi said, he opted for revenge.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Tekashi69 Says He Was ‘Humiliated' by Kidnapping and Ordered a Hit on His Assailant
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily Beast/GettyThe rapper Tekashi69 told jurors Thursday that he was so "humiliated" after a fellow gang member kidnapped and robbed him, he put a $50,000 price on his head.

The hip-hop artist testified that he could have gone to police and told them that Anthony "Harv" Ellison abducted him and stole a bag full of jewelry. But, he explained in a moment rich with irony, "I didn't want to snitch."

Instead, Tekashi said, he opted for revenge.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Marianne Williamson Defends ‘Power of the Mind' Tweet at Climate Forum
During MSNBC's Climate Forum 2020 on Thursday, moderator Ali Velshi pressed Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson to explain why she tweeted—and then deleted—a message urging the "creative use of the power of the mind" to cause Hurricane Dorian to veer away from land. 

"You had a very unusual tweet about Hurricane Dorian," Velshi said during their onstage discussion, quoting part of her tweet, which read in full, "The Bahamas, Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas… may all be in our prayers now. Millions of us seeing Dorian turn away from land is not a wacky idea; it is a creative use of the power of the mind. Two minutes of prayer, visualization, meditation for those in the way of the storm." 

"You seemed to imply that good energy can offset bad hurricanes," Velshi said as Williamson attempted to laugh off the line of questioning. 

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Fox News Hosts Scold Right-Wing Pundit for Mocking Greta Thunberg: 'No Kid Bashing!'
Conservative pundit Buck Sexton seemingly thought on Thursday afternoon that he was in a safe space to mock 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg by appearing on Fox News. He apparently thought wrong.

While sitting in as the lone male guest-host of Outnumbered—a woman-led daytime talk show—Sexton joined forces with co-hosts Dagen McDowell and Melissa Francis in ridiculing NBC News for launching a "climate confessions" section.

"Climate change is a religious belief for people who think they're too smart for religion," Sexton declared. "They're asking for forgiveness. Do you think there is a world where it makes a difference?"

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Scouted: The Cleaver Is a Versatile, Durable Knife That Every Home Chef Should Wield
What do professional chefs and serial killers have in common? An affinity for cleavers. Jokes aside, I'm here to give you a rundown of why a cleaver is one of the most versatile and important knives to have in your kitchen, even if it looks like a horror movie prop.

A heavy cleaver can be used for countless things but excels at breaking through tougher matter like tendons and bones. One of the best things you can do is learn how to properly de-bone a chicken (buying whole chickens is so much cheaper!) and having a cleaver can help. With one fell swoop, you can separate wings from legs and legs from thighs. If you're like me and do not enjoy fondling raw chicken while trying to prepare it, a cleaver is your best friend. It gets the job done and done quickly. It's also great to use for crushing garlic, one of life's worst kitchen chores. The broad side is the perfect mashing template for garlic. Just bust the clove out of the skin, sprinkle a little salt on it to release moisture, and get to smushin'. 

Outside of meat, the shape of a cleaver is also really good for chopping tougher or awkwardly-shaped veggies. There's not a squash out there that a cleaver can't cut through. I particularly like it to take down a head of lettuce; because of its large size, it's easy to get the knife straight through the head in one shot. A smaller vegetable cleaver gives you full control over your dices and is also the perfect thing to scoop up your work. Dicing onions or carrots for soup is made easier by just using the side of the knife to scoop everything in. You can even get a cleaver that comes with its own self-shar

The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

GOP Grifter Pleads Guilty to Fraud
The Washington PostA Republican fundraiser pleaded guilty Tuesday to using fraudulent promises of support for conservative candidates for office and military veterans to bilk donors out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The details of Kelley Rogers' scheme were at once brazen and familiar, in which he and a cadre of unnamed consultants used a huge email marketing campaign to solicit mostly small-dollar contributions with promises that it would be spent on political and charitable causes. The money was actually used to continue building their own in-house list of donors that they could hit up in the future—and rent out to clients willing to pay them for access.

Rogers' guilty plea represents one of the highest-profile convictions to date involving a scam PAC, or a political group created to funnel donor money to its own executives and consultants. But while the Justice Department has stepped up its prosecution of such groups of late, Rogers, unlike other recent targets, was not just an obscure grifter who found a way to make a quick buck; Rogers' business for years epitomized the legal and ethical pitfalls of a sector of a political fundraising industry that has proliferated over the past decade. And at least in Rogers' case, it existed for little purpose but to perpetuate and enhance its own financial prospects.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

‘Worse Than Harvey': Catastrophic Imelda Flooding Turns Deadly in East Texas
Thomas B. Shea/Getty ImagesTropical Depression Imelda dumped catastrophic amounts of rain on parts of eastern Texas and western Louisiana overnight—and forecasts show the deluge of water isn't over yet.

The unrelenting flooding has stranded hundreds of people, requiring water rescues, evacuations, and desperate calls from police for people not to attempt to drive their way to dry ground.

The National Weather Service says driving a vehicle into floodwaters is the "single worst decision you can make in a flash flood," due to the unknown depth and deceptive strength of the current.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

‘Worse Than Harvey': East Texas Overwhelmed by Catastrophic Imelda Flooding
Lucas Jackson/ReutersTropical Depression Imelda dumped catastrophic amounts of rain on parts of eastern Texas and western Louisiana overnight—and forecasts show the deluge of water isn't over yet.

The unrelenting flooding has stranded hundreds of people, requiring water rescues, evacuations, and desperate calls from police for people not to attempt to drive their way to dry ground.

The National Weather Service says driving a vehicle into floodwaters is the "single worst decision you can make in a flash flood," due to the unknown depth and deceptive strength of the current.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Verdict Leads to Angry Fallout
Christopher FurlongTOKYO—Three executives of Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) who ignored repeated warnings of a potential tidal wave that could result in a nuclear disaster, which did in fact take place, were found not guilty of criminal negligence resulting in death and injury by a Tokyo Court on Thursday. Many feel justice was poorly served. However, a former prosecutor says that the verdict was to be expected. 

The Tokyo District Court ruled former executives of TEPCO were not guilty of criminal negligence, in the only criminal prosecution to come out of the 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima Prefecture, Japan.

The cataclysm at the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant in March of 2011 resulted in over 100,000 people losing their homes, wide-spread radioactive pollution, injuries, and the deaths of patients who had to be evacuated. The disaster, on the scale of Chernobyl, raised alarms around the world about nuclear energy and atomic safety. 

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Wheaton College Students Sue Chicago for Banning Them From Evangelizing at The Bean
Kamil Krzaczynski/ReutersFour students at Wheaton College filed a federal free-speech lawsuit against the City of Chicago this week, claiming that it violated the Constitution when it prohibited a group of evangelists from speaking and passing out fliers near "The Bean" statue at the popular Millennium Park.

The three sophomores and one junior who filed suit—Matt Swart, Jeremy Chong, Gabriel Emerson, and Caeden Hood—are all members of the Chicago Evangelism Team at the 2,500-student, Christian liberal arts school. The team is sponsored by the college's Office of Christian Outreach.

"An essential part of Christianity is sharing the gospel," Chong told The Chicago Tribune, which first reported the lawsuit, on Thursday. 

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Scouted: Take Your Homemade Adult Beverages to the Next Level With Stylish and Easy Cocktail Shakers
This might come as a shock but you can make some great adult beverages at home without breaking a sweat, without breaking the bank, and with full control of things like alcohol volume and sweetness levels. And you can grab any of a plethora of high-quality, stylish, and top-rated cocktail shakers and ancillary tools to help you along. We consulted in-house Whiskey expert and general beverages consultant, Half Full Editor Noah Rothbaum, about the best tools to consider.

"The quality of bar tools available is unprecedented," he told me. "It's amazingly high for both professionals and amateurs." And lots of the best options are on Amazon, which makes it easy to get something delivered in time for your next party and which makes it easy to return the tools if they haven't totally elevated your drinks that night. Let's take a look at some of the top options to consider, which I vetted with Rothbaum's guidance.

OXO SteeL Cocktail Shaker, $30 on Amazon: Go simple and durable with a brand you know and trust and the most basic of your at-home cocktail-cocktail shaking needs. The jigger cap gives you measurement markings and the shaker's got a built-in strainer. A brushed stainless steel design means you'll look good making drinks taste better.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

President Trump Sues Manhattan DA Cy Vance Over Tax Returns
REUTERSPresident Donald Trump sued the Manhattan district attorney's office on Thursday in an effort to squash a subpoena for eight years worth of the president's personal and business tax returns. 

The documents are being sought by state prosecutors as part of a criminal investigation into falsified business records by the Trump organization, a person familiar with the matter told The Daily Beast.

The suit was filed in Manhattan Federal court Thursday. A copy of the complaint was not immediately available. 

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Has Kamala Harris Already Blown Her Chances in Iowa?
Stephen MaturenWhen Kamala Harris touches down in Iowa on Thursday it will be for the first time in over a month. 

"Oh my God, is that true?" one Democratic official in the state audibly gasped when presented with that detail. "I didn't even notice that."

For now, the fact that she wasn't missed may be the California senator's biggest benefit. Well-placed activists and party officials in the state have been so busy juggling other candidates' trips, some say, that Harris' absence has, at best, escaped much scrutiny.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Has Kamala Harris Already Lost Iowa?
Stephen MaturenWhen Kamala Harris touches down in Iowa on Thursday it will be for the first time in over a month. 

"Oh my God is that true?" one Democratic official in the state audibly gasped when presented with that detail. "I didn't even notice that."

For now, the fact that she wasn't missed may be the California senator's biggest benefit. Well-placed activists and party officials in the state have been so busy juggling other candidates' trips, some say, that Harris' lack of presence has, at best, escaped much scrutiny.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Scouted: Victorinox Makes the Iconic Swiss Army Knife Multitool. It Also Makes Other Stuff You Should Know About.
There are few brands I return to repeatedly for new products, whose new launches excite me, and whose quality has yet to falter or disappoint. Victorinox is on that short list—and close to the top.

You might know the brand best for its classic Swiss Army Knife—which is fantastic and has somehow never fallen out of vogue. And yet, Victorinox boasts an array of high-quality and popular products, from slim multitools and tech-forward luggage to elegant watches and highly-rated kitchen cutlery (not to mention its exploration of the fragrances space). And the list is only growing, with recent launches like: 

"I often share the following saying with the team at Victorinox, because I find it very true," Victorinox CEO Carl Elsener Jr. (whose great-grandfather founded the knifemaking factory that would become Victorinox) told me during a recent visit stateside, "The future is not what will happen, but what we make out of it." Seems at least partially true, considering the company's constant search for redefining

The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Third Photo of Justin Trudeau in Blackface Threatens to Destroy His Progressive Reputation
REUTERS/Chris WattieThe progressive reputation of Justin Trudeau is in ruins Thursday morning after a third instance of the Canadian prime minister wearing racist, dark face-paint emerged.

The first photo that surfaced, showing Trudeau in 2001 wearing brownface as part of an Aladdin costume, would have been enough to turn some voters off him forever. But, within hours, a second photo was published of him wearing blackface to sing the Jamaican folk song "Day-O," followed by a third video of him sticking his tongue out wearing dark makeup.

What was initially assumed to be a deeply stupid and offensive costume at one theme party now looks like it was just one instance of a deeply troubling habit.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

MSNBC to Host 2020 Democratic Primary Gun-Policy Forum on Anniversary of Vegas Shootings
REUTERSMSNBC will host a forum with the 2020 presidential candidates focusing exclusively on gun violence.

The network announced Thursday morning that MSNBC anchor Craig Melvin will moderate the gun policy-centric event in Las Vegas on Oct. 2, the two-year anniversary of the mass shooting at a country-music festival in the city that left more than 60 people dead.

The forum will feature all ten Democratic candidates who qualified for the third presidential debate: former Vice President Joe Biden, Sens. Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Amy Klobuchar, former Rep. Beto O'Rourke, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, former HUD Sec. Julian Castro, and businessman Andrew Yang.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Demanding Builder Told the Queen Not to Serve His Tea in a Fancy Cup—She Brought it Just the Way He Liked it
Chris RatcliffeIn the complicated love-hate relationship between the British builder and his skittish employer, the British homeowner, there is one talisman and touchstone of how well or how badly things are going: tea.

If a builder refuses a cup of tea it's often taken as a coded message that he doesn't really trust or like his employer, and can be an early warning sign that things other than the milk might end up going sour. But, by the same token, if he starts making himself eight cups a day and kicking back with his crew in the sunshine, that can also be a sign that your new kitchen extension definitely won't be ready by Christmas.

When placing their tea order, many builders rejoice in being more fussy than Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally as they reel off the exact amount of milk and sugar they require, and specify whether the spoon and teabag should be left in or out of the mug.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Cooking on the Cadillac of Vintage Stoves
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily BeastTwo brothers who make a living messing around in the kitchen inevitably find themselves competing for real estate at a four-burner gas range. Believe us, we're not stove snobs, we don't require special "features" or impressive BTUs, and the 265 recipes in our first cookbook (that garnered two James Beard Awards and two IACP awards) were developed on a four-burner Magic Chef that our landlord installed. 

But still, the idea of working on a stove with some elbow room was a fantasy of ours.

So, when we learned about the rare "Town & Country" model produced in the late 1940s by Roper, in Rockford, Illinois, we took note. A full five-feet wide, the stove has four burners over here and another four over yonder, with a sheet-pan-sized aluminum griddle in between. Three oven doors march across the front—one concealing a large broiler—and, in fact, there are three broilers total on this rig. It has the pragmatism of a bicycle built for two, the chrome-plating of a 1950s Cadillac, and the ridiculous bravado of Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose. We had to find one.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

The Man Who Made Trump a Monster: Inside ‘Where's My Roy Cohn?'
Sony Pictures ClassicsIn a new documentary, Roy Cohn is called evil, ugly, corrupt, indecent, a hypocrite, a puppeteer, a liar, and a demagogue. And that is by his family and friends. Roger Stone, of all people, refers to him as "one of the most controversial people in the country." 

So what does it say, then, that at one of the most vexing, stressful, and nearly impeachable moments in his presidency, it is reported that Donald Trump called out to his aides, "Where's my Roy Cohn?" 

At a moment of crisis, Trump cried out for his former friend, personal lawyer, and fixer. Some might characterize it as the president attempting to summon a demon. 

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Death by Donors: The Untold Story of ThinkProgress' Demise
Photo Illustration by The Daily BeastThe public explanation for why ThinkProgress, the recently shuttered news arm of the Center for American Progress, was forced to close up shop has mostly centered around the site's dwindling advertising revenues and the instability that caused.

But documents obtained by The Daily Beast point to another culprit, one that raises larger questions about the sustainability of progressive outlets in the news ecosystem. A lack of support from direct and indirect donors played a far more critical role in ThinkProgress' demise than has previously been reported. 

Started in 2005, ThinkProgress has never been a profitable enterprise. But its finances hit a particular rough patch during the last few years. A document put together in May by Navin Nayak, the president of the Center for American Progress Action Fund, showed that in 2017, the site ran a roughly $625,000 deficit. Its ad revenues topped $1.19 million that year, which helped the gap from being even larger. But it also received a $1,000,000 donation from an anonymous "major donor."  

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

In Purgatory: Democrats Hit a Wall in Trump Oversight Efforts
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily BeastEight months since taking power in the House, Democrats have arrived at the most painful phase yet of their oversight of President Trump and his administration: purgatory.

In the face of total stonewalling from the White House, they've been forced to go to court to compel documents and testimony from witnesses that could shed light on Trump's offenses outlined in Robert Mueller's report and beyond. When those witnesses do appear, they claim "executive privilege" to avoid answering questions, forcing Democrats to go to court anyway in hopes of getting a judge to toss out that defense.

Or, in the case of Corey Lewandowski—the former Trump campaign manager who appeared before the Judiciary Committee on Tuesday for one of their biggest hearings yet—the witness invokes executive privilege while openly trolling the committee for the ostensible purposes of launching a Senate campaign. 

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

This Activist Invited ICE to a Community Meeting. Days Later They Arrested Him.
Smith Collection/Gado/GettyWhen Houston immigration activist Roland Gramajo Reyes invited U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to a public meeting for people worried about being arrested due to their immigration status, he didn't think he'd end up behind bars.

He was wrong. 

Gramajo's longtime advocacy on behalf of Houston's immigrant and Latino communities, family, attorney, and allies said, make them seriously doubt that the timing of his apprehension was an accident.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Rosario Dawson on Challenging the Anti-Immigrant Narrative: ‘We're Suffering a Crisis of Our Very Humanity'
Ilya S. Savenok/GettyIf you could rewrite the story on immigration in this country, what would you say?

The story that the current administration repeats ad nauseam is about a "violent invasion" of immigrant hordes—the exact same words used by the gunman who targeted our Latino community and shot down 22 innocent people in El Paso last month. This last week's denial of refugees from the Bahamas fleeing the destruction of Hurricane Dorian because they could be "very bad gang members" saw thousands of climate refugees abandoned to squalid conditions.

The stories we tell—on cable TV, in movies and music, at our own dinner tables—have real-life consequences for people that we all know and love.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Rosario Dawson on Challenging Trump's Immigration Narrative: ‘We're Suffering a Crisis of Our Very Humanity'
Ilya S. Savenok/GettyIf you could rewrite the story on immigration in this country, what would you say?

The story that the current administration repeats ad nauseam is about a "violent invasion" of immigrant hordes—the exact same words used by the gunman who targeted our Latino community and shot down 22 innocent people in El Paso last month. This last week's denial of refugees from the Bahamas fleeing the destruction of Hurricane Dorian because they could be "very bad gang members" saw thousands of climate refugees abandoned to squalid conditions.

The stories we tell—on cable TV, in movies and music, at our own dinner tables—have real-life consequences for people that we all know and love.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Scouted: With a Detachable Suitcase Strap, the Away Longitude and Latitude Totes Will Go Anywhere With You
We're not going to beat around the bush here: Away makes great luggage and has now launched the perfect companions. The brand new Latitude and Longitude totes are Away's newest iteration of a travel bag that you won't just take with you to the airport. 

The cleverly-named totes actually correlate with the shape. The Longitude Tote is tall and slightly narrow and the Latitude Tote is shorter and wide. They each come in four colors: Black, Pine, Buff, and Ruby, with long top handles to throw over your shoulder and an interior pouch (that's detachable) for organizing your keys, wallet, and more. But the best part is yet to come. Each tote has a set of D-rings on the outside that is used with a detachable strap to secure your bag to your luggage handle. The strap is similar to a luggage sleeve seen on other brand's bags, though this one gives you the option to streamline your bag when you're not using it to shuffle through a terminal. The bags are roomy, gorgeous, and ready to be your co-pilot on trips and travel. |

The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Top Climate Scientist to Bernie: You're Killing People in India
Nic Antaya for The Boston Globe via GettyThursday and Friday nights, MSNBC is co-hosting a climate forum at Georgetown University, which some of the Democratic candidates will attend (though not Joe Biden or Elizabeth Warren). They'll be tripping over one another to prove they're the greenest of the green. Meanwhile, climate experts will be waiting to hear what they say about the most obvious source of clean energy, which is nuclear power.   

Most Democratic candidates recognize that the planet cannot be saved from catastrophic climate change without nuclear energy as part of the mix. But there are three holdouts: Marianne Williamson, who will attend the summit; Tulsi Gabbard, who will not be there; and most prominently, Bernie Sanders.

Sanders says as president he would impose a moratorium on nuclear plants as part of his $16.3 trillion climate change plan. But critics of Sanders say he is ignoring science, so I reached out to Dr. James Hansen, the climate scientist whose testimony before the U.S. Senate in 1988 about greenhouse gases causing global warming put the issue on the map. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Just How Good Is the Impossible Burger for You or the Planet?
Drew Angerer/GettyThis story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 220 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.

This month I stepped inside a Burger King for the first time in three years.

I wanted to try out the new, plant-based "Impossible Whopper," and learn from an expert—a vegan, no less—about its supposed potential to save the planet, your health, and the lives of lots of cows.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

How a White Nationalist Mass Shooting Inspired Janet Jackson's Masterpiece
Michel Linssen/Redferns/GettyJanet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 is a blockbuster and a landmark album—for Janet, for producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, and for its time. It has sold 12 million copies and famously spawned a whopping seven Top 5 hits, but the legacy of Rhythm Nation is deeper and darker than its commercial success. The catalyst for Jackson's magnum opus was a moment in U.S. history that would come to herald a harsh, ugly facet of contemporary American life. 

"I remember when we were working on Rhythm Nation with Janet, and we had this concept for a song… We were watching CNN and there had been a school shooting and all these kids had been getting killed and we just thought, we gotta talk about that on a record," remembered Jimmy Jam.

It was Jan. 17, 1989, when white supremacist Patrick Purdy murdered five children and wounded 32 people—mostly Southeast Asian refugees—at Cleveland Elementary School in Stockton, California. The tragedy would shock the nation, and occurred just a decade after the similarly-named 1979 Grover Cleveland Elementary School shooting in San Diego, California, when 16-year-old Brenda Spencer opened fire on schoolchildren from her apartment window. The Stockton shooting was particularly devastating for the mostly Vietnamese and Cambodian student body and community.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Lewandowski Gave Congress the Finger. Dems Should Break It.
Alex Wong/GettyI remember 20, 25 years ago, being a reporter in New York, hearing all the kinds of things one heard about Donald Trump, watching him go through bankruptcy after bankruptcy, watching him get sued by people he obviously swindled but always wriggle out, and wondering: How does this guy get away with this? It was always a mystery to me.

Now I know. Now that he's the president and I'm watching it all unfold much more closely, I know. It's called lie and make it up. 

First: Just keep lying—never, ever, ever stop lying. Because if you admit something once, you've given up the game. So, Trump says: All 16 or however many of those women are harlots and hustlers who are out for money. He won't say, "Oh, maybe I did kiss this one." That would just put a crack in the facade, and once there's a crack, there's another, and another.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Why These Wall Streeters Are Giving to Elizabeth Warren
Photo Illustration by Lyne Lucien/The Daily Beast/GettyJhoana Ocampo has worked in finance for 14 years. There, she is surrounded by people who fret about what could happen to their industry should Elizabeth Warren win the presidency and implement the tough regulatory policies that are so closely associated with her candidacy. And yet, Ocampo has given $400 to the Massachusetts Democrat and plans to max out to her presidential campaign, saying that Warren's policies resonate with her more than most.

"I'm just a firm believer that we all prosper when the middle class prospers," Ocampo, who didn't want her employer to be named and stressed she doesn't speak on their behalf, told The Daily Beast. "Some people just don't have the time; frankly they might not even care to really understand what she's talking about. It could be perceived as being extreme until you look at what the plans really say. I might work in the financial services industry but I don't have too many friends who have $50 million in the bank."

Ocampo has also gone to fundraisers for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg. But in Warren, she said, she saw something critically different. She's "a very consistent advocate for the middle class," she explained. "It was very important to me as I see that disappearing."

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The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

#FreeBritney Movement Invades Los Angeles: ‘She Can't Be Herself Under This Conservatorship'
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/Getty/Tarpley Hitt/The Daily BeastOn Wednesday afternoon, a few dozen protestors gathered outside the Stanley Mosk Courthouse in downtown Los Angeles, brandishing hot-pink signs with unusual slogans: "The conservator is TOXIC," "HYBRID BUSINESS MODEL?" and "Where there is smoke, there is fire!" The agitators were there as part of the #FreeBritney movement—a campaign first hailed as an internet joke, then as a serious concern, then as a joke again, then as a scandal, and now as some inscrutable combo, both on- and offline, ironic and completely earnest. They were there to protest a hearing where Britney Spears' father, Jamie, was scheduled to appear—a man they believe coerced and manipulated the 37-year-old Grammy-award-winning pop star into a legal conservatorship that's lasted 11 years.

"Britney Spears inspired me to take my first dance class," said Simon Schuh, a freckly dance major at USC. "I watched her video ‘Me Against the Music' at age five, when it came out, and I was blown away. I took my first ballet class after that. Ever since then I've been following her career and kind of honing in on her every move. She not only inspired me to dance but come out as gay and just be myself, and unfortunately, she can't be herself under this conservatorship."

A conservatorship is a court-supervised process whereby the court appoints a third party to be in charge of the health and financial affairs of another person—typically an older person no longer able to care for themselve

The Daily Beast
Sep 19, 2019

Cryptocurrency Consultants Allegedly Extorted $8 Million From Clients
D-Keine/GettyTwo New York scammers running a cryptocurrency consulting company extorted their clients for $8.23 million using fake military personas, secret legal agreements, and midnight threats to "destroy" their clients' business, according to a newly released criminal complaint.

According to a complaint unsealed Wednesday by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York, Steven Nerayoff, a 48-year-old attorney and entrepreneur, ran three companies that together extorted an unnamed Seattle startup known as Company 1 in the complaint. The company's business centered on drumming up interest for clients by "issuing its own cryptocurrency tokens as loyalty rewards" for its products. 

His partner at one company was Michael Hlady, a 47-year-old attorney who allegedly posed in his business dealings as "Michael Peters." According to the complaint, Hlady claimed to have deposed a head of state and killed others in the course of his work for the U.S. military, Irish Republican Army, FBI, CIA, and NSA. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Samantha Bee Lays Into Ted Cruz: ‘Shut the Fuck Up, Bitch!'
Samantha Bee began this week's episode of Full Frontal by returning to a topic she probably hoped she would never have to discuss again: Brett Kavanaugh's penis. Or as cable news has been calling it all week, his "genitalia." 

"First off, this fucking sucks," the host said. "Secondly, you're the news, just say penis. Why are you say saying ‘genitalia?' That sounds like 20 dicks. It sounds like a rat king of dicks." 

After new allegations against the Supreme Court Justice emerged in the new book, The Education of Brett Kavanaugh: An Investigation, this past week, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) went on ABC's This Week to dismiss any and all concerns about his behavior. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Laura Ingraham: Hollywood ‘Pushing the Skinny Jeans, Crop Top, Pajama Boy Version of Masculinity'
Fox NewsFox News host Laura Ingraham complained on Wednesday night that the left and Hollywood have long been pushing a "pajama boy version of masculinity" as they wage a battle against heterosexual males.

Leading off her primetime program by once again asserting that there's a "war against men," the right-wing Fox star said the complaints about "toxic masculinity" have now "infected" nearly every area of American culture. That prompted her to loudly condemn Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren for crediting "hard-working women" for the country's success at a recent campaign rally.

"Her comments, kind of tossing off the involvement of men in our society, it speaks volumes about the direction the Democrats will take if they gain control again," Ingraham declared. "So men who are heterosexual, strong, aggressive competitors, are no longer an acceptable part of society, not really. They are the problem."

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Why Wasn't Democratic Donor Ed Buck Charged Before a Third Man's Overdose in His Apartment?
Kevork Djansezian/GettyWEST HOLLYWOOD, California—In court papers, Los Angeles prosecutors say that political activist and donor Ed Buck's predatory behavior led to the drug-related deaths of two black men in his home before he was arrested Tuesday in connection with the overdose of a third.

What they don't say is why Buck wasn't charged in the first two cases—a question that those who have been seeking justice for the men are angrily asking. 

"It's incomprehensible to me that it took a third black gay man to be attacked and almost die to finally dissolve the unconscionable apathy that has allowed Ed Buck, a racist sexual predator, to roam free," Democratic U.S. Rep. Karen Bass, who represents a district adjacent to Buck's neighborhood, told the Associated Press. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

CNN Analyst Condemns Whistleblower Complaint: Intel Community Should Not ‘Snitch' on Trump to Congress
CNN counterterrorism analyst Phil Mudd expressed outrage Wednesday night over a report that a whistleblower complaint at the center of a standoff between Congress and the intelligence community involves President Donald Trump making a "promise" to a foreign leader. But it wasn't the idea of Trump in cahoots with a foreign leader that angered Mudd—it was the idea of the intelligence community ratting him out for it.

The Washington Post reported that an official in the U.S. intelligence community was so disturbed by the president's communication with a foreign leader that the official filed a whistleblower complaint with the intelligence community's inspector general. While the IG found the matter of "urgent concern," something that requires Congress to be notified, the acting Director of National Intelligence has refused to share details of the complaint.

Appearing on CNN's Cuomo Prime Time moments after the Post's report dropped, Mudd—a former CIA analyst—immediately condemned the whistleblower's alleged actions.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Aaron Carter Sides With Backstreet Boy Nick Carter's Rape Accusers as Vicious Family Feud Escalates
Jerod HarrisThe ongoing feud between former child star Aaron Carter and boybander brother Nick Carter came to a head on Tuesday when news broke that Nick had filed a restraining order against his younger brother, as TMZ first reported. Now, Aaron has found unlikely support in early-aughts singer Melissa Schuman, who accused Nick of rape in 2017.     

On Tuesday, the younger Carter responded to the news of the restraining order on Twitter, writing, "So my brother just got a restraining order against me. And I was just served lol." In two separate tweets, he added, "Take care. @nickcarter we're done for life" and "I haven't seen him in four years. And I don't intend." 

Nick, on the other hand, chose to release a lengthy Notes-apps-by-way-of-Twitter statement citing his brother's violent and erratic behavior as the reason behind his decision. "After careful consideration, my sister Angel and I regret that we were required to seek a restraining order against our brother Aaron today," the Backstreet Boys singer wrote. "In light of Aaron's increasingly alarming behavior and his recent confession that he harbors thoughts and intentions of killing my pregnant wife and unborn child, we were left with no choice but to take every measure possible to protect ourselves and our family." Carter shared the note with the hashtags "#mentalhealth," "#GunControlNow," and "#GunControl."



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Netanyahu Lost. His Enemies Won. But Who Can Govern Israel?
Jack Guez/AFP/GettyThe strangest episode of Israel's raucous election—the second in six months—flickered by almost unnoticed, one clip among the 30 videos Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu posted to his YouTube channel in the final two days before Tuesday's vote.

Lush with images of sleek Israelis surfing off Tel Aviv beaches and sipping coffee and cocktails in a succession of inviting bars and cafés, it almost looked like a product of the tourism ministry— until the part where you see a woman's toes peek beyond a blanket, reaching out to tease the toes of the man sharing the bed with her, and those manly toes turning away.

"Right-wing voters have to wake up!" the caption blared. "On Tuesday, you have to go out to vote Likud, and bring family and friends!"

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Canadian PM Justin Trudeau Sorry for Picture of Him in Brownface: ‘I'm Disappointed and Pissed Off at Myself'
Jeff Mitchell/GettyCanadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau admitted he "made a mistake" late Wednesday after a photo surfaced of him wearing brownface makeup to an "Arabian Nights"-themed gala at the Vancouver private school where he taught in 2001.

The picture, found in West Point Grey Academy's yearbook and published by TIME, shows Trudeau with his face, neck and hands darkened—along with him wearing a turban and robes. While he was not the only one pictured in costume at the gala, he appeared to be the only one pictured in brownface.

"Obviously I regret that I did it, I'm really sorry I did it," Trudeau told reporters Wednesday evening. "I take responsibility for my decision to do that. I should have known better... I didn't know it was racist at the time."

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Under Fire After 2001 Picture of Him Wearing Brownface Surfaces
Jeff Mitchell/GettyCanadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wore brownface makeup to an "Arabian Nights"-themed gala at the Vancouver private school where he taught in 2001, according to a photo obtained by TIME.

The picture, found in West Point Grey Academy's yearbook, shows Trudeau with his face, neck and hands darkened—along with him wearing a turban and robes. While he was not the only one pictured in costume at the gala, he appeared to be the only one pictured in brownface.

The photo, which surfaced as Trudeau is ramping up his re-election campaign, sparked an outpouring of criticism on Twitter, where many accused the Canadian prime minister of racism.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Scouted: Hill City's Feature-Forward Performance Gear Is Legion. Here's a Guide.
As Scouted ramped up its coverage of men's athleisure-wear and activewear, one name that kept popping up was Hill City. GAP's foray into elevated men's performance clothing has been giving us option after option of high-end, high quality products and we've repeatedly featured them, whether for the best running shorts, athleisure pants that work at work, performance shirts, performance underwear, and overall running gear. Here's an overall take on the brand: When Hill City does something, it does it with purpose. Intrigued? Great. To help you navigate what's become a vast universe of solid clothing options from Hill City, we put together a guide to their essentials to get you started on your own upgrades for any and all seasons.

Everyday Pant in Athletic Fit, $128 at Hill City:

The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Dan Rather: Corey Lewandowski Won Car-Crash CNN Interview, ‘The Press and Best Interests of the Country Lost'
Steven Ferdman/GettyWednesday's CNN appearance by former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, the morning after he acknowledged to the House Judiciary Committee that he feels no obligation to be honest with the news media, re-ignited an ongoing debate among staffers at the cable network over who should and not be accorded airtime if they are simply using it as a forum to mislead.

The controversial booking of Lewandowski also provoked a barrage of criticism from journalists who argued that he's a confirmed liar who can't be trusted by viewers to be a credible source of information.

Lewandowski is himself a former paid CNN commentator whose 2016 hiring, after being dismissed by Trump, embarrassed the network when it was disclosed that he was continuing on the Trump campaign payroll at $20,000 a month while working for CNN.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

The Clues Hidden in the Drones That Attacked Saudi Arabia
Hamad I Mohammed/ReutersSaudi Arabia says the drones and missiles used to attack its energy industry were made in Iran. But just because the Kingdom says it, doesn't make it so. So who's right? There are a few hints in the wreckage shown off in a Wednesday press briefing—similar components and a mirror image drone at an Iranian exposition—that points towards Tehran-made weapons but is it enough to say the attack was pulled off by Iran? Read along as we dive through the bits of missile and drone to see what points to Iran and what doesn't.

Welcome to Rabbit Hole.

The Saudi guess: We got a hint of what the Saudis think made the drones used to attack their oil facility in Abqaiq from a brief slide shown off during the press briefing. Col. Turki al-Maliki showed the wreckage of what he said were the delta-wing drones used to hit liquefied natural gas containers at the Abqaiq facility. In the right hand corner of the slide, left unexplained, is a picture of a similar looking drone on a stand in an exposition somewhere.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Epstein Victim From Criminal Case Sues His Estate After Charges Vacated
Stephanie Keith/GettyAfter millionaire sex offender Jeffrey Epstein killed himself in a Manhattan jail cell last month, and the charges against him were dropped, many of his victims felt that they would never see justice. Now, one of the women he was charged with preying on is suing his estate.

The woman named in the indictment as Victim-1 filed suit in federal court on Wednesday, claiming Epstein's associates recruited her at approximately age 14 and called on her to give the financier sexual "massages" until she was 17. As a result, the accuser says she never finished high school, suffers from panic attacks, and is "unable to form healthy emotional relationships with men."

The lawsuit names as defendants Epstein's longtime lawyers Darren Indyke and Richard D. Kahn, who he appointed as executors of his estate in his will. At least four other accusers have filed lawsuits against the millionaire's estate since he killed himself. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Scouted: Nordstrom Rack Is Discounting Hundreds of Jeans From Your Favorite Brands
Normally, Nordstrom Rack has a quick, three-day sale on a specific brand, but they've gone one step further and discounted an entire clothing category. It's one of those sales that truly gives everyone and anyone options to choose from. Get up to 60% off top brands like Levi's, Madewell, PAIGE, AG, and more. 

A personal favorite of mine, the Levi's Wedgie Straight Crop Released Hem Jeans are down to $40 during the sale. These jeans give you the perfect shape, dark denim, and a released hem detail to give any outfit a little edge. Or go for the KUT from the Kloth Boyfriend Jeans that are made of a great cotton/polyester/rayon/spandex blend to give you the right amount of structure but with some stretch. They're on sale for $30. Guys can grab the Joe's Jeans Athletic Faded Slim Fit Jeans for $60. These have the right amount of fade and whiskering to feel like you've already lived in them, even if you just put them on. This sale has denim for ev

The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Tekashi69 Spills on Stand About Times Square Armed Robbery
Bob Levey/GettyThe rapper Tekashi69 took the stand against his former associates for a second day on Wednesday, testifying about a gang-related armed robbery in Times Square and his inability to hail a getaway cab as police closed in.

The hip-hop artist turned government witness told jurors in Manhattan federal court how after he was snubbed at a record label party in Austin, he and his allies decided to get back at their music-world rivals.

"They tried to embarrass us, so we were going to rob them," Tekashi said.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Tekashi69 Spills on Stand About Times Square Armed Robbery, Kidnapping
Bob Levey/GettyThe rapper Tekashi69 gave a federal jury a glimpse into his life as a gang-banging criminal—and a crime victim.

Taking the stand in the trial of ex-associates for a second day, the hip-hop star turned government witness testified Wednesday that as his fame grew, the Nine Trey Bloods disintegrated into two camps: those with Tekashi and those against him.

He told jurors that things became so toxic, one of the gang members—who walked out of the courtroom in the middle of his testimony—kidnapped him and forced him to turn over jewelry, including a diamond-encrusted necklace of a pony with rainbow hair like his own.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Taylor Swift Condemns ‘Repulsive' White Supremacists—and Slams Kanye West: ‘He Is So Two-Faced'
via Rolling StoneNearly a month after the release of Lover, one of Taylor Swift's most autobiographical albums to date, the pop star opened up to Rolling Stone in an in-depth profile. The interview, published on Wednesday morning, is further proof that Swift may finally be ready to show us the "real Taylor," three years after dramatically declaring the old wide-eyed, red-lip-classic version of herself dead.

In fact, in the piece, she finally breaks down the meaning behind the notorious "The old Taylor can't come to the phone right now" line from Reputation. "I needed to make boundaries, to figure out what was mine and what was the public's," Swift told Rolling Stone's Brian Hiatt, who also interviewed her for the magazine back in 2012. "That old version of me that shares unfailingly and unblinkingly with a world that is probably not fit to be shared with? I think that's gone." As for why she delivered the line as a staticky voicemail greeting during the bridge of a spiteful, Right Said Fred-tinged revenge anthem, "that's how all of this started, a stupid phone call I shouldn't have picked up."

The 29-year-old is, of course, referring to her secretly recorded phone call with Kanye West in which she seems to give him permission to write about her in his 2016 song "Famous," a call that reignited a

The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Taylor Swift Finally Condemns ‘Repulsive' White Supremacists—and Slams Kanye West: ‘He Is So Two-Faced'
via Rolling StoneNearly a month after the release of Lover, one of Taylor Swift's most autobiographical albums to date, the pop star opened up to Rolling Stone in an in-depth profile. The interview, published on Wednesday morning, is further proof that Swift may finally be ready to show us the "real Taylor" three years after dramatically declaring the old wide-eyed, red-lip-classic version of herself dead.

In fact, in the piece, she finally breaks down the meaning behind the notorious "The old Taylor can't come to the phone right now" line from Reputation. "I needed to make boundaries, to figure out what was mine and what was the public's," Swift told Rolling Stone's Brian Hiatt, who also interviewed her for the magazine back in 2012. "That old version of me that shares unfailingly and unblinkingly with a world that is probably not fit to be shared with? I think that's gone." As for why she delivered the line as a staticky voicemail greeting during the bridge of a spiteful, Right Said Fred-tinged revenge anthem, "that's how all of this started, a stupid phone call I shouldn't have picked up."

The 29-year-old is, of course, referring to her secretly recorded phone call with Kanye West in which she seems to give him permission to write about her in his 2016 song "Famous," a call that reignited a

The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Scouted: Give Your Body a Fighting Chance at a Good Night's Sleep With One of These Best-Selling White Noise Machines
Until recently, I never understood the need for a white noise machine. I knew in my head that I slept better in the summer with the AC on, but didn't realize it was the noise that lulled me to sleep and not just the temperature. Now that I sleep with a fan on every night, I find it kind of hard to fall asleep without any noise. If you're in the same boat and have been considering getting a white noise machine, we've rounded up the top five best-selling machines on Amazon. Now you can get the sleep of your dreams.

Marpac Dohm UNO White Noise Machine, $29: With almost 15,000 reviews and a 4.2-star rating, this is by far the best-selling white noise machine on Amazon. The Marpac Dohm is a classic machine (it came out in 1962!) that's non-looping and features a soothing rush of air to help lull you to sleep. Just rotate the cap and collar to fit your preference and get to snoozin'.

LectroFan Evo White Noise Sound Machine, $45: If you want variety and customization in your white noise, this is the option for you. It has 22 unique, non-looping sounds (ten fan sounds, ten white, pink and brown noise variations, and two varieties of ocean sounds), precise volume control, a timer, and a port to plug headphones or a portable speaker into. You can't really argue with 5,900 reviews and a 4.4-star rating.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Meghan McCain Goes Off On ‘Absolute Clown Show' Corey Lewandowski
The day after former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski's House Judiciary Committee combative testimony that culminated in him proudly confessing that he lies to the press, The View's Meghan McCain—your favorite pundit on the planet, dear reader—blasted the combative Trump ally for being an "absolute clown show."

Recapping the House hearing during Wednesday's broadcast of The View, the panel all took various shots at Lewandowski, including slamming him for announcing during his testimony that he's weighing a possible run for Senate in New Hampshire. 

"I have had kids who were murderers and pimps who behaved better than this," liberal co-host Joy Behar yelled at one point, referencing her time teaching juvenile delinquents.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Trump Pushes Baseless Smear That Ilhan Omar ‘Partied' on 9/11
REUTERSPresident Donald Trump on Wednesday used his Twitter account to boost a baseless smear claiming that Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) danced at an event last week on the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, a claim that's based on footage that wasn't actually taken from that day.

Trump's tweet circulated a video from conservative personality Terrence Williams, in which Williams declared that Omar "partied on the anniversary of 9/11." In his video, Williams comments on footage of the Muslim congresswoman dancing and fumes that she's disrespecting the memory of the Sept. 11 attacks.

But the footage of Omar dancing actually came from a Sept. 13 event hosted by the Congressional Black Caucus and wasn't taken on the eleventh, as Williams and Trump wrongly claimed. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Scouted: Amazon Is Giving Prime Members Its Kindle Paperwhite, the Best All-Around E-Reader, for $90
I don't hesitate to share that the newest iteration of the Kindle Paperwhite is the best all-around Kindle e-reader out there. And right now, Amazon is giving Prime members the Paperwhite for its lowest price ever, $90.

The $40 discount gets you a Paperwhite that's loaded with upgrades to carry you through virtually any scenario:

You can grab this upgrade or save even more with the entry-level Kindle e-reader, which you can get right now for $65. Either way, don't forget to take a look at the essentials bundles Amazon has to offer or the Kindle Unlimited subscription for an entire library of books to choose from as you please. Snagging a $90 Paperwhite is a truly solid deal considering the discount on the best-selling device but also an objectively sound investment. | Get it on Amazon

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Trump to California: Go Drown
Leah Millis/ReutersPresident Donald Trump has a message for California: Go drown.

As had been long expected, the Trump administration Wednesday banned California from enacting tougher auto emissions standards, a critical step in fighting global warming (and, as we've already seen, the rising tides, forest fires, and storms that will go along with it).

It makes you wonder: whatever happened to "states' rights"?

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

CNN Brings on Corey Lewandowski, a Known Liar, for Totally Batshit Interview
Less than 24 hours after former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski admitted that he has "no obligation to be honest to the media" while being caught lying red-handed, CNN brought on the pugnacious Trump loyalist for an interview that predictably went sideways.

Appearing on CNN's New Day on Tuesday morning, Lewandowski and anchor Alisyn Camerota spent a frustrating and headache-inducing 16 minutes going round and round over his contentious and combative testimony before the House Judiciary Committee. The lengthy CNN segment, in fact, basically came across like a microcosm of Tuesday's hearing—lots of deflection, insults, contradiction, and condescension.

For instance, Camerota began the interview by asking Lewandowski about his tactic of stonewalling or just straight-up refusing to answer questions from House Democrats during his testimony, prompting the possible Senate hopeful of doing the same exact thing to her.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Prince Harry Reveals Details of His New Show With Oprah
IAN WESTPrince Harry has announced that the show he is working on with Oprah Winfrey will focus on stories of the "human spirit fighting back from the darkest places."

Harry and Oprah are co-producers on the new series, which is due to launch on the Apple streaming service next year.

Harry told the Telegraph's Bryony Gordon that he was inspired by the response to a podcast he recorded with her, in which he discussed how he came close to having a breakdown as a result of not adequately processing the trauma which resulted from his mother's death. "It made me realize what an impact sharing my story could have, and what an impact other stories can have for so many who are suffering silently," he said. "If the viewers can relate to the pain and perhaps the experience, then it could save lives, as we will focus on prevention and positive outcomes."

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Scouted: Stop Compromising on Knives That Aren't Meant to Do What You Want of Them With a Specialized Boning Knife
As you slowly round out your perfect set of knives with a Chef's knife and a paring knife, you might be contemplating whether you want to finally upgrade (or get) your boning knife. And that largely depends on your cutting, of course. As the name implies, the boning knife is designed for bones. Pork bones, fish bones, chicken bones—whatever bone stands in your way is avoided using the flexible and versatile boning knife. It's not going to mow down the bone but rather dance around it. And that's why boning knives are slim and consequently stylish. To help you upgrade yours, we put together some of the best-selling and top-rated options on Amazon (so if you hate it, you can return it).

Victorinox Swiss Army Cutlery Fibrox Pro Curved Boning Knife, $21 on Amazon: If you want to enter the world of deboning without too hefty an investment, the Victorinox Fibrox option is your best bet. A semi-stiff build will let you bend around corners and the curve of the blade will help you get the best angle possible. More than 1,100 reviewers left this boning knife a 4.8-star average rating, a high mark in the cutlery-verse on Amazon.

DALSTRONG Filet Knife, $100 on Amazon: From the brand's Shogun Series comes a deboning knife that's packed with high-quality steel. The "ultra-sharp" Japanese steel is sharpened to an 8-12-degree angle and you're working with 66 layers of high-carbon stainless steel, to boot. More than 100 reviewers le

The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Sandy Hook Promise's Shocking ‘Back to School' Ad Is Hard to Watch
Sandy Hook Promise / YouTubeA chilling new ad spot by Sandy Hook Promise depicts kids showing off their new "back to school" gear while a mass shooting suddenly erupts around them and—be warned—it's a tough watch.

It's the latest public-service announcement from the group that was set up to help protect children from gun violence in the aftermath of the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary on Dec. 14, 2012. The Connecticut massacre claimed the lives of 20 first-graders and six adult staff members.

The video, titled "Back to School Essentials," shows the kids using their new colored pencils, scissors, and socks to help them as they try to survive a school shooting that's going on around them. It's part of Sandy Hook Promise's "Know the Signs" campaign that aims to warn students, teachers, and parents about the signs that someone is planning a shooting.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

‘Silicon Valley' Star Thomas Middleditch: ‘Swinging Saved My Marriage'
Joshua BlanchardOn the hit HBO show Silicon Valley, lead character Richard Hendricks is a diffident software nerd whose classic lines include: "I always knew I was missing something, and then when someone explained the concept of ‘game' I remember very distinctly thinking ‘That's what I don't have.'"

So it may come as a surprise to fans of the show to learn that Thomas Middleditch, the actor who plays the socially-challenged coding genius, is a bed-hopping swinger with a penchant for group sex and sleeping with his fans.

And, what's more, his stunningly beautiful costume-designer wife Mollie Gates is okay with it.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

How Sex-Trafficking Survivors Are Locked Out of Victim Funds
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/Photos GettyDeborah Pembrook doesn't remember exactly when she was first sex-trafficked, but she knows it was early—the images of abuse collide in her brain with images of childhood crayons and stuffed animals. When she finally escaped, she was 17 years old and all alone. Her earnings had gone to her trafficker, so she had no savings, and she was forced to move to another state, so she had no family or safety net. And because of the laws in California—the state where she eventually settled, to disappear among tourists on the crowded beaches of Santa Cruz—she had no way of getting what she really needed: cash.

Throughout the United States, thousands of human-trafficking survivors are struggling to make up for the wages stolen from them while they were enslaved. But unlike victims of other violent crimes—say, a mugging victim who can't work because of their injuries, or a robbery victim who can't work because of a stolen computer—trafficking victims are routinely barred from recouping lost income through state victim compensation funds.

Now, lawmakers in California are trying to change that. A new bill would secure the right of sex- and labor-trafficking victims to recover lost income through the state's victim compensation fund—a decades-old institution that provides reimbursement for crime-related expenses like medical care, mental health services, funeral expenses, relocation, and lost income. In the last year, it paid out more than $57 million dollars to victims of violent crimes.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Scouted: Allbirds Launches the Mizzle Collection, a New Take on Water-Resistant Shoes
In true Allbirds fashion, they've created a brand new, simple, versatile shoe that you can wear every day with ease. The idea of making a washable wool shoe was revolutionary, and now they're going one step further. The Mizzle collection for men and women is the brand's first foray into weather-resistant shoes that don't lean on the use of synthetic materials or chemicals to do their job. 

The new collection features the iconic Wool Runner and brand new shape, the Wool Runner-Up, made from a thick layer of ZQ-certified Merino Wool (ZQ is one of the world's top ethical suppliers of wool). In addition to the wool, each shoe features Puddle Guard, a combination of a thin, water-repellent membrane and a fluorine-free DWR coating to help rain bead up and roll off. The brand has also added a reinforced SweetFoam sole with traction to keep you from slipping and sliding in the rain. The Mizzle Wool Runner will be your go-to

The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

How the U.S. and Iran Got Locked in a Toxic Dance of Death
Kaveh Kazemi/GettyOn Saturday, Houthi rebels launched their most audacious attack to date in their war against Saudi Arabia, badly damaging two oil plants that process most of the country's crude output. The attacks were carried out by drones with a range of almost 1,000 miles, and immediately escalated tensions between the United States and Iran.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused Iran of being behind "an unprecedented attack on the world's energy supply." The Iranians have long supported the Houthis in their ongoing conflict with Saudi Arabia, a close American ally, and American intelligence officials strongly suspect that Iranian technicians trained the Houthis to deploy missile-launching drones.

The Houthi attack on the Saudi refineries is perhaps best seen as the most recent development in what historian David Crist calls the 40-year "twilight war" between Iran and the United States. Most experts see President Donald Trump's May 2018 withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal of 2015 as the beginning of the most recent chapter of the conflict.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

How to Rule at London Fashion Week, à la Billy Porter, Helen Mirren, Naomi Campbell, and More
Santiago Felipe/Getty Celebrities are currently peacocking all over London for the city's annual Fashion Week, led by Billy Porter. You may not be able to commit to his marathon 14 outfit changes in three days, but you can cop some style tips from the singer and his fellow over-dressers. Below are the ten commandments of pretending you, too, are front row at fashion week—and looking as good as Porter and Co. (Mostly Porter—there is never enough Billy Porter.)

Look Like You're From The Future, but Also 1974

The only way Porter's chunky heels and bellbottoms could get any more plucked-from-the-'70s is if the actor accessorized both looks with a newspaper clipping about the Patricia Hearst kidnapping. But before we mount a revival of Company using these outfits, let's also appreciate the futuristic elements. There's a nod to moonstone in his jewelry, and his bedazzled choker sublimely reeks of space age kitsch. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

‘Star Wars' Hater Bill Burr Teases His Role in ‘The Mandalorian'
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily BeastSubscribe to The Last Laugh on Apple Podcasts

Bill Burr has a habit of popping up in some unexpected places on screen. "That ended up becoming a recurring theme in my career," he says on this week's episode of The Last Laugh podcast, "where I somehow get to paratroop into these great things and be a small part of them." 

It happened with Breaking Bad nearly a decade ago when Burr joined that show in season four as Kuby, one of Saul Goodman's fast-talking henchmen. Now, he is set to appear in the highly anticipated Star Wars series The Mandalorian. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Jeremy O. Harris on the Success of ‘Slave Play'—and Why He Doesn't ‘Trust' Broadway on Race
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Photo Gary Gershoff/GettyJeremy O. Harris, the playwright of Slave Play, presently Broadway's hottest ticket, was holding a Helmut Lang suit bag. It was the Saturday of New York Fashion Week, and inside the bag was his outfit for the Lang show, happening later that afternoon.

The handsome, multi award-winning playwright and actor met me in the lobby of his grand Lower East Side apartment building wearing a beautiful navy Thom Browne outfit (long jacket and shorts) and showed me (briefly) inside his new apartment, which is big and airy, and has a study where he will write. Harris, 30, apologized unnecessarily for his gravelly voice: "My voice sounds like I'm in pain. Too much Fashion Week smoking, I'm mortified."

His upstairs neighbor, he said, was Stephen Karam, playwright of The Humans, who asked him by text not to mention the actual name of the building. His phone pinged: "Oh cool, a friend might drop by to say hi." He multi-tasked checking messages, speaking to me, and eating lunch at a nearby Greek restaurant. Life for Harris, you sense, is quite the professional and personal whirl—he also has a new boyfriend—and he's relishing every moment. His Instagram account conveys this whirl in vivid pictures.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Anarchists Unlikely Tool for Fighting Climate Change: Farming
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Photo GettyThis story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 220 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.

In the waning months of 2011, Tim Holland was deeply involved in Occupy Denver, the local arm of the international Occupy movement. The 41-year-old anarchist and hip-hop artist, who goes by the stage name Sole, had been living in the Mile High City since 2009. When Occupiers first set up an encampment at Lincoln Park, Holland organized street protests, public assemblies, fundraisers, reading groups, and more. Protesters interrupted city council meetings and repeatedly attempted to take over government buildings before the movement was quashed when their second encampment in Civic Center Park went up in a haze of flames. Following Occupy Denver's suppression by law enforcement, gentrification in the city seemed to shift into hyperdrive, forcing Holland to rethink living there.

"I wanted to pull myself out of the rat race and reimagine what a new form of my political interventions and practices could be," he said.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Anarchists' Unlikely Tool for Fighting Climate Change: Farming
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Photo GettyThis story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 220 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.

In the waning months of 2011, Tim Holland was deeply involved in Occupy Denver, the local arm of the international Occupy movement. The 41-year-old anarchist and hip-hop artist, who goes by the stage name Sole, had been living in the Mile High City since 2009. When Occupiers first set up an encampment at Lincoln Park, Holland organized street protests, public assemblies, fundraisers, reading groups, and more. Protesters interrupted city council meetings and repeatedly attempted to take over government buildings before the movement was quashed when their second encampment in Civic Center Park went up in a haze of flames. Following Occupy Denver's suppression by law enforcement, gentrification in the city seemed to shift into hyperdrive, forcing Holland to rethink living there.

"I wanted to pull myself out of the rat race and reimagine what a new form of my political interventions and practices could be," he said.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Why We Need the ‘Downton Abbey' Movie, an ‘Oasis' From the ‘Relentless Anger' of Life
Jaap Buitendijk/Focus FeaturesOn screen, there were the happily-ever-afters and neatly tied bows: the wedding and the baby and the job offer and the toast to the future. "With any luck, they'll be happy enough," spoke the Dowager Countess, played by Maggie Smith, in 2015's final episode of Downton Abbey. "Which is the English version of a happy ending." 

As far as these things go, it was satisfying enough. Which is the TV version of a perfect conclusion. 

Off-screen, there was the sobbing and the farewells and the reveling at the wrap party at the Ivy Club. The actors shot off in different directions, landing TV series and movie franchises and starring roles in plays of their own. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Rapper Soulja Boy Owns Up to (Some of) His Wild Scams: ‘I Was Always Tricking People'
Ben Rose/GettyIf the spring of 2018 brought us "Grifter Season," the summer of 2019 heralded the rise of scam rap: a Detroit-based movement whose stars rap openly about credit card theft or identity fraud, while namechecking bitcoin, VPNs, and Tor. But those cultural moments had nothing on the first half of 2007, where grifters large and small were thriving: Bernie Madoff was "investing" money for the likes of Kevin Bacon and Zsa Zsa Gabor; subprime mortgage lenders offered unbelievable loans; and, for a brief moment in May, any LimeWire user looking for a Top 40 track ran the risk of downloading something else: a snap single called "Crank That (Soulja Boy)" by Soulja Boy Tell'em. The prank came from the mind of a 16-year-old named DeAndre Cortez Way. Way was online in Batesville, Mississippi, tinkering with the peer-to-peer file sharing service. He'd eye popular downloads and upload his own songs under the same names. It was a slick bait-and-switch, a kind of rickrolling before it had a name, but instead of Rick Astley you got the stylings of a scrawny kid in Flavor Flav shades.

"I was on LimeWire, and I was like, shit, I'm going to blow up my song," Soulja Boy told me from his artist trailer after a show at HARD Summer, a music festival held at an off-season Nascar track in Fontana, Califor

The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

If Elizabeth Warren Were a Man, She'd Be the Frontrunner
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily BeastEverything Elizabeth Warren is about came together in Manhattan on Monday night when she brought her anti-corruption campaign to the capital of capitalism. Her overarching theory of what's wrong in the country is that  the power of the big guys—lobbyists, Wall Street, corporations, and the government in cahoots with them—keeps the system from working for the little guy. 

To emphasize her point, she re-released her plan, embodied in proposed legislation, to stop corruption where it thrives, among the ruling class exchanging money for influence. For drama, she spoke in the shadow of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, where 146 people, mostly young female immigrants, burned to death in 1911. That's what happens, she said, "when the rich and the powerful take control of government and use it to increase their own profits while they stick it to working people." 

For a show of power, she was introduced by Maurice Mitchell, the president of the influential Working Families Party, whose coveted endorsement she snatched from Bernie Sanders that very day. The group claims progressive wins in dozens of races across the country, and its backing may be a sign to the Bernie bros that it's safe to come over should he drop out.  

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 18, 2019

Stephen Colbert Desperately Tries to Get Elizabeth Warren to Bad-Mouth Joe Biden
CBSBefore she sat down with Stephen Colbert on Tuesday night, the mere mention of Elizabeth Warren's name during The Late Show host's monologue drew loud applause from the live audience.

That enthusiasm only continued when the senator and 2020 presidential candidate joined Colbert at his desk moments later. "Why don't we just quit now and do a selfie line?" she joked.

But Colbert wanted to talk about more than just selfies. And he began by asking about a specific line from her massive rally the night before in New York City's Washington Square Park.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Democratic Donor Ed Buck Charged After Third Man Overdoses at His West Hollywood Home
Kevork Djansezian/GettyActivist and Democratic donor Ed Buck—who has been under fire since two men overdosed in his West Hollywood home—was charged Tuesday with operating a drug house and giving methamphetamine to a third man.

The Los Angeles District Attorney's office said the victim also suffered an overdose after Buck injected him with the meth on Sept. 11, but he survived.

Buck, 65, who has long faced allegations of drugging young black men for sexual pleasure, was charged with battery causing serious injury, administering methamphetamine, and maintaining a drug house. He will be arraigned on Wednesday.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Prosecutors Call Democratic Donor Ed Buck ‘Malevolent' After Third Man Overdoses at His Home
Kevork Djansezian/GettyActivist and Democratic donor Ed Buck was hit with criminal charges in connection with the overdose of a third man at his West Hollywood home, with prosecutors calling him a "malevolent" predator who gets off on giving vulnerable sexual partners dangerous amounts of drugs.

"The defendant's predatory acts and conscious disregard for human life must be stopped," Los Angeles prosecutors wrote in a request to the court for high bail.

"From his home, in a position of power, Buck manipulates his victims into participating in his sexual fetishes. These fetishes include supplying and personally administering dangerously large doses of narcotics to his victims."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Tom Steyer Says He Can't Disclose Hundreds of Millions in Financial Assets
Josh Edelson/AFP/GettyDemocratic presidential candidate Tom Steyer has insisted publicly that he is divested from his once-extensive fossil fuel interests. But he also has hundreds of millions of dollars tied up in assets that he will not or cannot disclose.

The California billionaire filed a new personal financial accounting last week giving a broad view of his extensive assets and sources of income. But he declined to go into detail about significant segments of his investment portfolio, citing confidentiality agreements that bar him from publicly disclosing the underlying assets in which he is invested.

Those assets are worth between $370 million and $742 million, according to a Daily Beast review of the filing, which only discloses the values in ranges. The total could actually be higher than that, as four of the assets, holdings in two hedge funds and two private equity funds, are valued at more than $50 million, without an upper range (The Daily Beast pegged their values at $50 million precisely for the purposes of this analysis). 

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Trump Feuds With Lindsey Graham Over ‘Weak' Iran Policy
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettySen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) told The Daily Beast on Tuesday that the Trump administration's so-called maximum pressure campaign on Iran isn't working. 

"Clearly what we're doing isn't working," Graham said, adding that the goal of the administration's Iran policy should be to deter Tehran from escalating tensions in the region. 

Following his phone call with The Daily Beast, Graham in a series of tweets called on the Trump administration to do more, saying the "measured response" by President Trump is "seen by the Iranian regime as an act of weakness." On the same night as a Tuesday fundraising event in Silicon Valley, Trump tweeted back at Graham: "No Lindsey, it was a sign of strength that some people just don't understand!"

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Michelle Malkin Smears Cokie Roberts on the Day of Her Death: ‘One of the First Guilty Culprits of Fake News'
Charley Gallay/Getty for International Innovators of Justice/American Justice AllianceHours after the world learned that journalist Cokie Roberts had passed away following complications from breast cancer, right-wing provocateur Michelle Malkin took a swipe at the reporter's legacy by calling her "one of the first guilty culprits of fake news."

Taking part in a panel at the Paley Center on Tuesday, Malkin joined an array of liberal and conservative commentators and media figures to discuss whether the media is biased.

At one point in the discussion, Malkin—who has recently been making the media rounds hawking her latest anti-immigrant book—took aim at Roberts.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Corey Lewandowski's House Testimony Was Basically His Senate Campaign Launch
Bloomberg via GettyIn calling in Corey Lewandowski to testify, House Judiciary Committee Democrats hoped they'd get a spectacle that might boost their impeachment efforts. 

It's unclear whether that will happen. What they clearly did get, however, was a spectacle that cemented Lewandowski's brand as an unapologetic fighter for Donald Trump—for better or for worse.

Tuesday's high-profile hearing was essentially a coming-out party for Lewandowski's long-teased, but still unannounced campaign for U.S. Senate in New Hampshire: he talked up his "blue collar" roots and service to President Trump while effusively praising his former boss and gleefully trolling his Democratic questioners. During a bathroom break, he tweeted out a link to a web site supporting his possible Senate run; at another point, while answering a question from a friendly lawmaker fantasized about what he'd do if he were in the "upper chamber."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Scouted: If Your Home Could Use Some Upgrades, Urban Outfitters Is Having a Sale for You
The gods of home decor smile upon you: Urban Outfitters is running a massive sale that cuts up to 40% off nearly 2,000 items, from bedding to furniture, rugs, and much more. There's a lot to choose from so we pulled out some highlights to give you an idea of what's in store, literally.

Everyone could use a throw and with cooler weather approaching, the Brushed Fringe Trim Throw Blanket is a great choice. Grab it any of four different colors and get it for $39 right now. Or upgrade your sleep with the Ayat Tufted Comforter and get more than $100 off. It comes in three different colorways, each sporting a cozy look that'll keep you warm and your room looking great. Or get the powerful statement piece that is this Triangle Bookshelf, down to $229 during the sale. It'll go in any corner of your room and showcase your abs

The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Tekashi69 Testifies Against Gang: We Did ‘a Lot of Crimes'
Bob Levey/GettyIt took gangbanging rapper Tekashi69 just one day after his arrest to decide he was going to cooperate with the feds—and lay out for a jury how the Nine Trey Bloods jump-started his career, which he then used to bankroll the crew.

"I got the street credibility. I would say I got my career," the hip-hop star testified Tuesday in a Manhattan federal courtroom where two of his ex-associates are on trial.

"I knew I had a winning formula for my music videos: repeat the gang image. That's what people liked." 

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Forget the Lime Shirt. There Is Nothing Funny About Sean Spicer Being on ‘Dancing With The Stars'
Eric McCandless/ABCOh look, a straight white man in a lime green monstrosity of a shirt and white pants takes to the dance floor!

My, he does it with a flourish of his arms. What fun!

His legs go this way and that. I never knew he would look like this!

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Corey Lewandowski's House Testimony Quickly Devolves Into a Total Mess
REUTERSIt was expected that Corey Lewandowski's testimony in front of the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday would be a combative affair. But the fact that the wheels fell off the hearing moments after it started reflected just how utterly painful Republicans want to make Democrats' newly minted impeachment inquiry seem.  

Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY) could not get through his questioning of Lewandowski—President Trump's former campaign manager and a key figure in Robert Mueller's report—without the witness slow-walking by asking for a copy of the report itself and then asking for instructions on how to find specific passages. 

Then, Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA), the top Republican on the panel, forced two groan-inducing votes on parliamentary procedure, which devolved into gavel-banging and shouting from Democrats and Republicans over Lewandowski's clock-chewing tactics and Nadler's move to give himself more time for questioning, respectively. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Meghan McCain to NYT Reporters: ‘Hatchet Job' Kavanaugh Story Is Why ‘People Mistrust the Media'
Following the New York Times' significant update and correction to a story that contained a new sexual-misconduct allegation against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, Times reporters Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly appeared Tuesday on The View to discuss the controversy around the handling of the report, which was excerpted from their new book.

Unsurprisingly, they faced the wrath of conservative co-host Meghan McCain, who took the opportunity to portray the story as a "hatchet job" that will only embolden the public's distrust of the media.

Echoing outrage from Republicans and right-wing media, McCain kicked off the interview by putting on her media-critic hat to denounce the rollout of the Times' initial story.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Canadian Mom Who Allegedly Bought Son's Way Into UCLA Arrested in ‘Varsity Blues' Scandal
REUTERS/Lucy NicholsonA Canadian mother who allegedly bought her son's way into the University of California, Los Angeles, was arrested on Monday night in Spain, making her the 52nd defendant charged in the sprawling college-admissions scandal that earned actress Felicity Huffman a prison sentence last week.

Xiaoning Sui, 48, of Surrey, British Columbia, Canada, was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud, according to an indictment that was unsealed on Tuesday in Boston federal court. Sui's alleged crimes were first reported by the Los Angeles Times last month.

Sui is one of dozens of parents accused of paying Rick Singer—a former private college-admissions consultant and the ringleader of the nation's largest-ever college cheating and bribery scheme—to facilitate her son's entry into an elite school.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
Sep 17, 2019

Facebook Reveals Iraq-Based, Pro-Saddam Hussein Disinfo Campaign
Sean GallupFacebook on Tuesday disclosed the latest coordinated disinformation campaign on its platform. 

In a post to its Newsroom blog, the company said that it identified two "unconnected operations"—one originating in Ukraine and another in Iraq.

The platform has previously identified disinformation campaigns centered around Ukraine, but such an effort out of Iraq is new. 

Read more at The Daily Beast.



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