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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

San Francisco Police Probe Journalist as a ‘Possible Co-Conspirator' in Police Report Leak
Handout/ReutersA freelance journalist in San Francisco whose home and office was raided by police earlier this month after he said he refused to give up a confidential source is now under investigation as a "possible co-conspirator" in an alleged criminal conspiracy to steal a confidential police report, San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott announced Tuesday.

The police department has been under fire ever since the May 10 raid on the home and office of Bryan Carmody, who was accused of leaking a confidential police report on the death of public defender Jeff Adachi. The raid sparked outrage over what many saw as police infringing on press freedom and shield laws meant to protect journalists from being forced to reveal their sources.

But at a press conference late Tuesday, Scott said investigators believe Carmody did more than just receive confidential information from inside the department.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Trevor Noah Laughs in Ben Carson's Face Over ‘Oreo' Gaffe
Comedy Central"If you've ever worried you're not good at your job," Trevor Noah said on Tuesday night's Daily Show, "you can rest assured that there's someone even worse at his."

Of course, the host was talking about Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, who fully embarrassed himself in a congressional hearing earlier in the day when Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA) asked him if he knew what an "REO" stands for.

"Oreo?" Carson asked.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Gloria Allred Opens Up About Nearly ‘Bleeding to Death' From Her Illegal Abortion
Kyle Grillot/ReutersAttorney Gloria Allred took the stage at a pro-choice rally in Manhattan on Tuesday and told a harrowing story about nearly "bleeding to death" after she was forced to get an illegal abortion following a rape in the 1960s.

Describing herself as "living evidence of what happens if abortion is criminalized," Allred said recent anti-abortion legislation in Alabama, Georgia, and Missouri will effectively condemn women and girls to death by leaving them no options other than illegal abortion.

While Alabama's near-total abortion ban stipulates up to 99 year prison sentences for doctors performing abortions, Allred said, "the truth is, the victims are the women and the girls who have to get a back-alley abortion and who are going to be left to die."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Tarantino's Bold and Bloody ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood' Wows Cannes
Sony PicturesCANNES, France—Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, Quentin Tarantino's first post-Harvey Weinstein film, which premiered in competition on Tuesday at Cannes, is bathed in ironic nostalgia for an idealized version of the Entertainment Capital as it entered a period of transition in the late 1960s. Set in 1969, the year of New Hollywood landmarks such as Easy Rider, as well as the Manson murders, the film takes a rather jaundiced look at the countercultural trends that were enveloping Los Angeles at the end of a tumultuous decade.

Never one to embrace peace and love, Tarantino clearly prefers his protagonists, Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio), a B-list actor specializing in Western roles, and Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt), his stunt double who is purported to have gotten away with killing his wife, to a bunch of dirty hippies. Rick and Cliff's macho sensibilities are stuck in the ‘50s, whereas the hippie subculture is only reflected in the film through the distorting lens of the homicidal Manson clan. Hedonistic he-men, Rick and Cliff (based loosely on Burt Reynolds and stuntman Hal Needham) clearly identify with the Western heroes and villains that provide them with their livelihood as they toil away on a series of corny TV oaters.

The ingenious conceit of Once Upon a Time involves intermingling the Dalton-Booth saga with two other echt-‘60s L.A. narrative strands: the appearance on the scene of director Roman Polanski and his b

The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Trump's Gamble: Sue Congress and Run Out the Clock
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Photos GettyThe federal courts are about to be called upon to adjudicate the most serious conflict between the executive and legislative branches of the federal government since the Watergate era, as President Trump seeks to nullify Congress' constitutionally grounded right to investigate potential presidential misconduct.

The first court decision in this looming battle between the president and Congress was issued on Monday, when Judge Amit Mehta rejected a Trump effort to quash the House Oversight Committee's subpoena for Trump financial records held by an accounting firm. It was not a close call. Courts have long recognized the broad "legislative" authority of Congress, an authority that readily extends to inquiries and investigations into potential presidential and executive branch misconduct, such as occurred in Watergate, Iran-Contra, Whitewater, and Benghazi. Trump has asserted that the House has "political" motives and wants to "embarrass" the president; but as Judge Mehta explained, that is legally irrelevant even if it is true. This is because longstanding precedents simply prevent the courts from second guessing the motives or facially proper legislative purposes of Congress.

In short, this was an easy decision for Judge Mehta, and yet that, curiously, is why the case could well present a serious test for the higher courts, including the Supreme Court.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

NXIVM Leader Held Woman Inside Bedroom for 2 Years, Ex-Lieutenant Testifies
Seth Wenig/APA former lieutenant of the leader of NXIVM forced a young woman to stay in her bedroom for almost two years as punishment for expressing interest in another man and gaining weight, a federal court heard Tuesday.

Lauren Salzman testified that Keith Raniere "assigned" her to help a young Mexican member "learn from her mistakes" in solitary confinement or else she would be deported from the United States.

"Of all the things that I did in this case and all the crimes that I admitted to, this was the worst thing I did," Saltzman said, holding back tears. "What can I say? I kept her in a room for two years and I didn't go visit her. And when I did, I wasn't even kind."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Starbucks Accused of Exposing Customers to Poisonous Pesticide
Justin Sullivan/GettyTrouble is once again brewing for Starbucks, the global coffee empire that Seattle billionaire Howard Schultz—who recently flirted with running for president before backing off—spent three decades building into a highly-caffeinated behemoth.

On Tuesday, the iconic company—which claims more than $22 billion in annual revenue and more than 27,500 outlets in nearly 80 countries—was slapped with two lawsuits alleging that thousands of customers who patronize Starbucks' 100-odd Manhattan stores have been exposed to a potentially lethal pesticide.

The lawsuits represent yet another public relations challenge for a company that has aggressively promoted, under Schultz's leadership, a socially conscious, environmentally-friendly corporate image. In April 2018, Starbucks suffered a PR  catastrophe when the white manager of a Philadelphia store called the cops on two African-American men who were simply waiting there quietly for a business meeting, resulting in their arrest and temporary jailing. 

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

U.S. Intel to Congress: No Evidence al Qaeda Is Helping Iran
Kena Betancur/AFP/GettyThe American intelligence community has no evidence that al Qaeda has cooperated with the Iranian government in its recent aggressive moves in the Persian Gulf region, a senior U.S. government official told members of Congress on Tuesday.

That finding, which was relayed to The Daily Beast by three sources familiar with the matter, could undercut a potential legal case for going to war with Iran if tensions between Washington and Tehran keep escalating.

The assessment was delivered in a classified briefing with dozens of House members on Capitol Hill. According to the three sources, one of the officials who briefed the members said the U.S. government does not have evidence of operational coordination between the Iranian government and the terrorist group responsible for 9/11 with respect to the current threat stream.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

U.S. Intel to Congress: No Evidence al-Qaeda Is Helping Iran
KENA BETANCURThe American intelligence community has no evidence that al-Qaeda has cooperated with the Iranian government in its recent aggressive moves in the Persian Gulf region, a senior U.S. government official told members of Congress on Tuesday.

That finding, which was relayed to The Daily Beast by three sources familiar with the matter, could undercut a potential legal case for going to war with Iran if tensions between Washington and Tehran keep escalating.

The assessment was delivered in a classified briefing with dozens of House members on Capitol Hill. According to the three sources, one of the officials who briefed the members said the U.S. government does not have evidence of operational coordination between the Iranian government and the terrorist group responsible for 9/11 with respect to the current threat stream.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Scouted: These 6 T-Shirt Dresses Will Give You Peace of Mind That You'll Be Comfortable With While Still Looking Good
When it comes to easy dressing, nothing beats a T-shirt dress. They can be dressed up or dressed down. You can be comfortable in them all day because they're lightweight and usually not too clingy. All in all, T-shirt dresses are a staple that everyone should own. If you're in the market for a new one, we've rounded up some of the best we could find on Amazon so you can get it, check out, and be on your way.

levaca Women's High Low Swing Midi Dress, $21-$24 on Amazon: This high-low T-shirt dress gets the addition of a front seam that adds some flow to the dress bottom half of the dress. It comes in 16 different solid colors and has a 4.3-star rating from over 1,500 reviews.

MOLERANI Women's Casual Plain Simple T-Shirt Loose Dress, $13-$21 on Amazon: With a 4.3-star rating from 2,200 reviewers, this simple dress gives you 20 color options, both solid and patterned. This is one you'll want to get in multiple colors to keep around when you just cannot decide what to wear.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

House Democrats Subpoena Hope Hicks
PoolThe House Judiciary Committee said on Tuesday it had issued subpoenas for Hope Hicks and Annie Donaldson for testimony and documents related to the committee's ongoing investigation into obstruction of justice and public corruption by President Trump, his associates, and other members of the administration.

The committee had previously sent document requests to Hicks, a former communications director for Trump and Donaldson, former chief of staff of White House counsel Don McGahn, in March as part of its sweeping investigation. As of late March, Hicks had planned to turn over documents as part of that investigation.

The subpoenas set a deadline for both former Trumpworld figures to submit documents to the committee by June 4. The date for Hicks testimony has been set for June 19. Donaldson's is set for June 24.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

QAnon Teams Up With Alleged Cult Leader
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettyThis story originally appeared in Right Richter, a newsletter by Will Sommer. Subscribe now to see what's happening in right-wing media from the safety of your inbox.

The pro-Trump QAnon conspiracy theory has garnered a surprising number of fans over the past two years, considering that it's based on the idea that Trump is engaged in ceaseless war against powerful cannibal-pedophiles in Hollywood and the Democratic Party.

Now QAnon has a new group of allies: a woman who claims she's a conduit for a 35,000-year-old warrior god, and her thousands of followers.  Since February, at least three top QAnon promoters have made plans to visit a sprawling Washington-state property owned by J.Z. Knight, a New Age guru whose former acolytes have accused her of running a cult.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Rex Tillerson Secretly Meets With House Foreign Affairs Committee to Talk Trump
Jonathan Ernst/ReutersFormer Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was spotted entering a congressional office building on Tuesday morning for what a committee aide told The Daily Beast was a meeting with the leaders of the House Foreign Affairs committee and relevant staff about his time working in the Trump administration.

Tillerson's appearance took place as virtually every other Trumpworld luminary has been stonewalling congressional oversight efforts. At the same time that the former Secretary of State was speaking before lawmakers, former White House counsel Don McGahn was ignoring a subpoena to testify in front of the House Judiciary Committee.

Tillerson's arrival at the Capitol was handled with extreme secrecy. No media advisories or press releases were sent out announcing his appearance. And he took a little noticed route into the building in order to avoid being seen by members of the media.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Ben Carson, Housing Secretary, Does Not Know Basic Housing Term
During testimony before the House Financial Services Committee on Tuesday, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson appeared to be stumped by basic real0estate and housing market terms, at one point seemingly believing that a congresswoman was referring to cookies.

Already struggling to answer Rep. Katie Porter's (D-CA) questions surrounding Federal Housing Authority mortgages—the former California mortgage-settlement official had to walk him through the basic concepts of his own department's policies—the retired neurosurgeon was then asked about issues surrounding the high rate of foreclosures on FHA-insured homes.

After Carson laconically said he hadn't had any discussions on the issue of FHA's servicing of mortgages but he'd "look it up," Porter pressed him on the "disparity in REO rates" for FHA mortgages.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Scouted: Everlane Just Added More ‘Choose What You Pay' Options — And There's Much More Than Winter Clearance
Everlane is hot right now, considering the ever-increasing popularity of its apparel, from jumpsuits to performance chinos and sneakers.After this morning's fresh drop of items into its Choose What You Pay aisle, Everlane's got more than 400 women's options on sale and more than 250 for men. If you don't know, Everlane's choice model lets you choose between three different, marked down prices for anything you buy. And on sale right now are lots of things you want with you this spring and summer so don't wait too long before taking a look.

The black woven women's V Slingback is up to 43% off its original price at a lowest

The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

NXIVM Leader Was Arrested Just Before Group Sex With Slaves, Ex-Member Testifies
REUTERSA former member of the alleged sex cult NXIVM was preparing to have group sex with founder Keith Raniere and his "sex slaves" when authorities burst into a  Mexican compound to arrest him.

Lauren Salzman said Tuesday in Brooklyn federal court that she barricaded herself in a master suite in a Puerto Vallarta home with Raniere in March 2018 when Mexican federal agents entered, determined to protect him.

"My main concern was to protect Keith. It was almost automatic," Salzman said, who had been in a decade-long relationship with Raniere. "I chose love over everything, just like we were taught by Keith."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Rahm Emanuel Joins ABC News as Contributor
Matthew StockmanABC News has a new employee: Rahm Emanuel.

The former Chicago mayor is joining the broadcast network as a contributor, multiple sources told The Daily Beast.

The outspoken mayor and former chief of staff for President Barack Obama took meetings last year with several networks, including MSNBC and CNN, pursuing a potential punditry gig, and had been increasing his national media appearances on cable-news networks.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Meghan McCain Demands to Be Taken Seriously by ‘The View' Co-Hosts
During Tuesday's broadcast of The View, co-host Meghan McCain seemed a bit irritated and annoyed with her colleagues for not taking her viewpoints on politics seriously enough, insisting at one point that she comes to the show every day to give a "different perspective" even though it is an "unpopular one."

With the show hitting the air just moments after a House Judiciary Committee hearing adjourned following former White House counsel Don McGahn defying a congressional subpoena, the hosts jumped right into a debate over impeachment and whether the president attempted to obstruct justice.

This prompted outspoken liberal co-host Joy Behar to take aim at the Republican Party as a whole for circling the wagons around Trump, insisting that if Richard Nixon were president today he "would have gotten away with everything just like this corrupt president is getting away with." She went on to say that Republicans taking Trump's side should all "be thrown into jail" to raucous applause from the audience.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

House Dems Rake in Cash From Gun Lobbyist
Bill Clark/GettyThe Democratic Party's House campaign arm raised money from one of Washington's premiere defense industry lobbyists just months after he signed two new clients: a leading firearm manufacturer and the government of the United Arab Emirates.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee received $26,250 in "bundled" contributions last month from Michael Herson, the chief executive and co-owner of American Defense International, according to a Federal Election Commission filing on Monday.

Through ADI, Herson lobbies on behalf of leading defense contractors including Raytheon, General Dynamics, and BAE Systems. In January, he also signed Sig Sauer, a German firearms manufacturer for which Herson will attempt to secure military contracts from the U.S. and other nations, according to disclosure forms.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Scouted: 6 Men's Jeans Built to Last and Engineered to Let Your Legs Breathe and Move
Jeans are essential — some of us think there's no such thing as too many of them. And in that spirit, we put together some of the best men's jeans out there. If it's time to say goodbye to the pair you're clinging on to or you want to upgrade to jeans designed more specifically for warmer climes or enhanced comfort and breathability of the athleisure class, we've got your back. Get one or get them all but be sure to find a pair that's best for your jean-specific needs. And stay cool.

Performance Denim Slim, $129 at DU/ER: I already love DU/ER for its new weatherproof denim and this performance denim, constructed with the brand's flexible and breathable fabric will be a great choice for the months ahead. I'm not at all surprised more than 130 reviewers left DU/ER's denim a 4.6-star average rating.

Slim Fit Jean, $68 at Everlane: This Japanese-sourced denim is designed with a slight two-way stretch to allow for flexibility without too much give. The premium 11-ounce fabric feels substantial but stays comfortable. More than 1,300 reviewers gave the slim fit a 4.7-star average.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Johnny Depp Accuses Ex-Wife Amber Heard Of ‘Painting On' Her Bruises
Reuters / Danny MoloshokJohnny Depp has made the extraordinary claim that Amber Heard painted bruises on herself to make him look bad as he set out to defend himself from his ex wife's claims that he was physically abusive towards her.

The star has repeatedly denied the abuse allegations. However, newly-filed court documents give fresh detail on how he intends to defend himself. Depp not only denied the allegations, but claimed Heard carried out "innumerable acts of domestic violence" against him and fabricated evidence to support her claims that he attacked her.

Heard's lawyer responded by dismissing Depp's "increasingly desperate" efforts to revive his career by attacking those who used to be closest to him.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Scouted: The New CBD Balm Sticks From Daughter of the Land Are the Best Way to Use Topical CBD
CBD has always been a mystery, but after finding ways to add it to my routine like drinking it or adding it to my baths, I've decided not to think too hard on it. That's why I've really been enjoying the new CBD balm sticks from Daughter of the Land.

These sticks are foolproof and are subtle in scent but not in power. After a particularly long day at work (and not having a great sense of ergonomic efficiency at my desk), I used the Soothing stick to help ease tension. It has a slight minty fragrance but ultimately sinks into my skin quicker than even my moisturizer does.

I've been using the Calming stick as lip balm, which let me take a second to appreciate that it's a stick and not a tin so I'm not dunking my dirty fingers and slathering it onto my mouth.  Because it's made for more sensitive skin and doesn't have any essential oils (just a hint of chamomile) like the Soothing formula does, it doesn't really taste like anything or leave a lingering scent, but it gives my lips a little hint of moisture.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

‘Crashing' Star Pete Holmes on the First Joke That Made Him ‘Come Alive'
The Daily BeastSubscribe to The Last Laugh on Apple Podcasts

"I'm glad that you get it," Pete Holmes tells me when I compliment the title of his new spiritual memoir Comedy Sex God. "A lot of people are like, are you calling yourself a comedy sex god?' And I just want to start owning it. Like, yep, that's what I'm saying."

No, Pete Holmes is not calling himself a comedy sex god. As he explains on this week's episode of The Last Laugh podcast—and as those who listen to his popular podcast You Made It Weird already know—those are the three topics that interest him most. "Comedy just being art or creativity," he tells me, "sex being relationships or love and God being just a catch-all for what's going on here?"

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Travel to Hapsburg Medieval Jousting Tournaments
Courtesy Taschen PressWe have a pretty expansive definition here at Beast Travel of what constitutes a travel story. We cover shenanigans at museums, mafia-run beach towns, archaeological breakthroughs, and crumbling private residences. We also believe travel isn't just about going to a different place, but often a different time.

That's why this week selection for Just Booked, our twice-a-month series on gorgeous travel-related coffee table books, is Taschen's colorful reproduction of Emperor Maximilian I's famed manuscripts of his jousts, Freydal: Medieval Games: The Book of Tournaments of Emperor Maximilian I with accompanying text by Stefan Krouse director of the Kunsthistorisches Museum's Imperial Armory in Vienna. The work origin

The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

The Highball Is Taking Over America
Courtesy Noah FecksOne of the most popular drinks in craft cocktail bars at the moment is the simplest: the Highball.

Generally, it's a refreshing mix of whiskey and club soda, which is delicious on a hot afternoon. While many bartenders and drinkers discovered their love of the bubbly concoction in Tokyo bars where Highballs are a downright sensation, their history is much longer and they can actually be made from a variety of ingredients.

On this episode of the award-winning podcast Life Behind Bars, co-hosts David Wondrich and Noah Rothbaum discuss the roots of the Highball and try to figure out which drinks can be included in the category. (Is a Rum & Coke a Highball? How about a Paloma or a Jack & Coke?)

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

More Than 500 Attacks on Muslims in America This Year
Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post via GettyIslamophobia watchdogs have identified more than 500 potentially anti-Muslim incidents in the U.S. since the start of the year. And that's probably a low estimate.

In the two months since a white supremacist allegedly murdered 51 worshippers in a New Zealand mosque, American Muslims have faced a series of high-profile threats. An arson at a California mosque was later linked to a white supremacist accused of opening fire in a murderous rampage at a synagogue. A New Haven, Connecticut, mosque suffered significant damages from an arson attack last Sunday. And on Thursday, a Queens, New York, man was indicted on hate crime charges for allegedly trashing a mosque during an anti-Muslim tirade.

It's part of a troubling trend of hate that started surging in 2015, said Abbas Barzegar, national research and advocacy director at the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Feds Broke Up Alleged Scheme to Send Surplus Pentagon Gear to Iran
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Photos GettyThe Justice Department says a New Hampshire man sold nearly $1 million worth of surplus Defense Department hand-me-down machinery to Iran—and they've got secret tracking data to prove it.

Prosecutors charged Aiden Davidson, an Iranian citizen and a naturalized American, with money laundering, violating U.S. sanctions on Iran, and immigration offenses in the fall of 2018.

Justice Department officials have not spoken publicly about the charges and The Daily Beast is the first news outlet to report on the charges and search warrants obtained in the case.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

One Gay Couple's Battle to Keep Their Twin Sons American
Courtesy Laura Stark Photography via Immigration EqualityWhen Andrew and Elad Dvash-Banks won their lawsuit against the State Department in February, they thought that the yearlong legal battle over their Canadian-born son's American citizenship was finally over.

"This is over, this is behind us," Andrew Dvash-Banks, a U.S. citizen who was born in California, recalled thinking when U.S. District Judge John F. Walter ruled that the State Department's imposition of a biological requirement for their son's birthright citizenship was based on a "strained interpretation" of existing immigration law.

But the department's decision earlier this month to appeal the federal judge's ruling has drawn national attention to a little-known policy that effectively de-recognizes the marriages of same-sex couples who have children abroad—and has once again thrown Andrew, Elad, and their twin sons into legal limbo.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Don't Just Pay Off Student Debt. Make It Extinct.
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Photos GettyOver the weekend billionaire Robert F. Smith pledged to pay off the student loan debt of Morehouse College's 2019 graduating class. This is an incredibly generous gesture that rightfully deserves praise. But it does highlight the problematic normalization of crushing amounts of student loan debt, and our growing dependence on the billionaire class.

Morehouse President David A. Thomas described Smith's move as "a liberation gift" and said, "When you have to service debt, the choices about what you can do in the world are constrained." Thomas believes that Smith's gift will help these students support their families, start businesses, and follow their dreams and passions.

But in 2020, there will be another graduating class from Morehouse with probably the same amount of debt. Do we expect Smith to pay their debt too? Will the new norm be that Morehouse employees need to annually find a billionaire or a pool of billionaires to cover this debt? Should the financial "liberation" of the future classes also depend on the benevolence of a philanthropic billionaire?

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Veteran Turned Cop Turned Gang Hitman Convicted for Conspiracy
via HBOAfter he served his country in the Middle East, Vancito Gumbs returned home to Stone Mountain, Georgia, to become a cop. But according to federal prosecutors, Gumbs would soon lead a double life as a "hitman" for the Gangster Disciples.

Gumbs, a 27-year-old father, was convicted last week of one count of RICO conspiracy involving murder, a charge that could land him decades behind bars. His sentencing is scheduled for this August—one month after he's expected to appear in state court on unrelated charges of breaking a suspect's jaw.

Four other alleged members of the Gangster Disciples (GD), a highly structured national street gang formed in Chicago in the 1970s, were found guilty of a variety of crimes including racketeering, carjacking and attempted robbery.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

The Surgical Mask Is Coming for the Met Museum, the Red Carpet, and Your Face
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettyGood news to anyone about to perform an appendectomy: the surgical mask has become a capital-F fashion accessory.

Take it from Miley Cyrus, who sported a Louis Vuitton mask when she had the flu last month: The drab white iteration is out, and bedazzled antiviral protection is so in.

You could also chose to cough into this $63 Face Mask by South Korean fashion label Blindness. The rather thong-like number is currently on sale in the Met's gift shop as part of the New York museum's Camp: Notes on Fashion exhibition.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Latest Sign of Beto O'Rourke's Fizzle: Opposition Research Requests Have ‘Died Off'
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettyIn the days leading up to Beto O'Rourke's presidential campaign, a top Republican opposition research firm was brimming with requests from political reporters angling for dirt.

American Rising, a political action committee that shared details of its internal inquiries with The Daily Beast, said the asks came from a dozen or more reporters and ranged from broad questions to more tailored points of interest.

But 10 weeks after O'Rourke's official launch, those requests are virtually nonexistent.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Latest Sign of Beto O'Rourke's Flameout: Opposition Research Requests Have ‘Died Off'
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettyIn the days leading up to Beto O'Rourke's presidential campaign, a top Republican opposition research firm was brimming with requests from political reporters angling for dirt.

American Rising, a political action committee that shared details of its internal inquiries with The Daily Beast, said the asks came from a dozen or more reporters and ranged from broad questions to more tailored points of interest.

But 10 weeks after O'Rourke's official launch, those requests are virtually nonexistent.

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The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

Game of Thrones' Last Conversation Jokes About Brothels. Sigh.
Courtesy of HBO"I once brought a jackass and a honeycomb into a brothel."

Those were some of the last words spoken on Game of Thrones, the series hailed as one of the best dramas ever on TV, and perhaps the last major television cultural phenomenon we'll have, at least in the traditional sense.

(Caution: Major spoilers ahead.)

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 21, 2019

A Disturbing Portrait of an Islamic Terrorist Invades Cannes
Courtesy CannesCANNES, France—In July 2018, a young Muslim woman was the victim of a vicious hate crime in a small Belgian town near Brussels. According to press reports, assailants tore off the woman's headscarf and outer garments, engraved a cross on her body, and called her a "dirty Arab" as they departed. This assault was only one of many incidents of burgeoning anti-Muslim violence throughout Belgium, as well as Europe in general, during 2018.

Instead of focusing on crimes of this nature, Young Ahmed, the new film by the Belgian brothers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, which premiered in competition at Cannes on Monday, concentrates on the travails of a troubled Muslim teen in a similarly small town who, after becoming a disciple of a fundamentalist imam, attempts to murder his liberal Muslim teacher.

There is of course nothing inherently wrongheaded or Islamophobic about making a film about rigid fundamentalism. The problem with Young Ahmed, however, is that the Dardennes, known for compassionate depictions of alienated working-class characters (and the winners of Cannes's coveted Palme d‘Or on two occasions) stack the deck by making their anti-hero thoroughly dislikable—and, in their own words, "inscrutable." Conversely, the movie's adults, especially the police and social service administrators, appear to have only the best intentions as they strive to reform a zealot, who turns out to be considerably more fanatical than the imam who inspires his campaign against "apostates."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Colbert ‘Apologizes' to ‘Spineless' Republicans: ‘I Was Wrong About One of You'
"It's finally happened," Stephen Colbert said during his monologue Monday night. "The thing we've all been waiting for, a Republican finally read the Mueller report."

The Late Show host was referring to Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI), who became the first Republican member of Congress to call for President Trump's impeachment over the weekend.

"So with that, I would like to offer the Republican Party this apology," Colbert said, turning to the camera. "Now, I know I give the GOP a hard time and often imply that you're a spineless group of self-interested toadies who would rather see the country destroyed than stand up to an out of control narcissistic toddler."

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Trump Gets Rally Crowd to Boo Fox News: ‘Something Strange Is Going On'
Fox NewsIt appears that President Trump is not going to let go of Mayor Pete Buttigieg's Fox News town hall anytime soon.

After lashing out on Twitter that the right-leaning network is covering Democrats too much by airing the Democratic presidential candidate's town hall (while also taking swipes at Fox News anchor Chris Wallace), the president took time out during his Monday night campaign rally in Pennsylvania to air more grievances.

Claiming that he watched "Alfred E. Neuman" on Sunday night, referencing his nickname for the South Bend mayor, Trump then asked the audience: "What's going on with Fox, by the way?"

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Secret Service Officers Are Being Sent to the Border
Jose Luiz Gonzalez/ReutersThe U.S. Secret Service is now participating in a not-so-secret undertaking: dealing with the influx of migrants at America's southern border. According to a communication from the Department of Homeland Security's headquarters reviewed by The Daily Beast, the small law enforcement agency has sent personnel to the border already and is looking to send more in the coming weeks.

The move came in response to a directive then-DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen sent out earlier this spring asking each component of the department to find volunteers and dispatch them to the border. Even though it's most closely associated with the White House, the Secret Service—along with a host of other entities and agencies—is a component of DHS. And as a result, it's shipping people south.

A DHS spokesperson did not dispute this reporting.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Fox News Host Pete Hegseth Privately Lobbied Trump to Pardon Accused War Criminals
Tom Williams/APIf the president pardons U.S. servicemen accused and convicted of war crimes, you can thank one of Donald Trump's favorite cable-news hosts.  

Over the weekend, news broke that Trump is preparing to pardon several U.S. servicemen involved in high-profile cases of gunning down civilians or killing detainees, with the White House having already ordered that the necessary paperwork be drawn up ahead of the coming Memorial Day. The news came roughly two months after Trump publicly intervened in what the president called "restrictive" confinement conditions of one of the alleged war criminals.

At the heart of both these moves has been a months-long lobbying campaign by Pete Hegseth, a Fox & Friends co-host and a buddy and informal adviser of the president's.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Jeff Daniels Tears Apart ‘Worthless' Republicans Enabling Trump: ‘Democracy Is at Stake'
MSNBCJim Carrey has channeled his rage over President Trump and the Republican Party into outrageous political cartoons. His Dumb and Dumber co-star prefers words.

Jeff Daniels went on MSNBC on Monday afternoon presumably to promote his Tony Award-nominated performance as Atticus Finch in Aaron Sorkin's Broadway adaptation of To Kill a Mockingbird. But while he was there he delivered a critique of the right that left host and "recovering Republican" Nicolle Wallace nearly speechless.

In a soliloquy on the state of the Republican Party in 2019 that evoked Will McAvoy, his righteous news anchor character from Sorkin's The Newsroom, Daniels pulled no punches. He explained that in both Harper Lee's book and the play, Atticus Finch believes that the people "on the other side" don't all have "bad intentions," but that that notion is "being challenged now."

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

‘Out' Magazine Chief Phillip Picardi Threatens to Quit in Battle Over Unpaid Writers
Photo Illustration by The Daily BeastOut magazine editor in chief Phillip Picardi has threatened to resign in a long-simmering struggle over the magazine's unpaid freelance writers.

Multiple sources told The Daily Beast on Monday that Picardi has recently told the company's owner, Pride Media, he will leave the 27-year-old magazine if the dozens of freelance contributors were not compensated.

A person with direct knowledge of the situation told The Daily Beast that matters came to a head late last week when some employees had serious concerns that the publication wouldn't make payroll. "Phillip told Adam [Levin Pride Media CEO] that he couldn't continue to work for him when he was exploiting queer people for their labor," said a person with direct knowledge of the matter.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Scouted: The Sleek, Black Stainless Steel Version of the 6QT Instant Pot LUX60 Is on Sale for $50
Right now, you can add the sleek, black stainless steel edition of the 6QT Instant Pot LUX60 to your kitchen while it's on sale for $50. That's a savings of 50% on a gadget that could easily replace half of the other things you use in your kitchen on a regular basis.

What's so great about this Instant Pot? I mean, just look at it. It's like the original Instant Pot's cool teen brother. It's like the original Instant Pot got a makeover montage in an early-Aughts romcom. You get everything the Instant Pot has to offer, from the pressure cooker to the rice cooker to the steamer. It's still the six-in-one gadget you love, just with a black stainless steel outside, and it's on sale. If the original super shiny Instant Pot clashed with your aesthetic, this is the version for you. Want one that makes a bit more of a statement? You can get

The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Border Agent Charged With Hitting Migrant With Truck Called Them ‘Subhuman,' Feds Say
Spencer PlattOn Nov. 20, 2017, Border Patrol agent Matthew Bowen rage-texted his colleague about their professional inability to stop migrants: "Mindless murdering savages. PLEASE let us take the gloves off trump!"

"Disgusting subhuman shit unworthy of being kindling for a fire," the 39-year-old Arizona agent said in another text to a colleague who at the time was facing criminal charges for allegedly shooting an unarmed Mexican teenager through a fence.

Two weeks later, Bowen allegedly hit a Guatemalan man accused of illegally entering country with a government truck and then lied about it in a report, according to a court document filed last month in U.S. District Court in Arizona. The filing was first revealed Sunday by the Arizona Daily Star.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Scouted: Set on Gadget Domination, Amazon Adds Alexa-Capabilities to the Classic Wall Clock — and It's on Sale
Have you ever wished your clock could just do more? Well, you can get a wall clock that has the power of Alexa behind it while it's on sale for $25 (17% off).

One of my biggest gripes of having my Echo be the main source of kitchen timing is that I can't physically look up to see how much time is left; I have to ask. It's trivial but annoying. The Echo Wall Clock acts like a regular clock telling time but has the added bonus of a built-in, digital LED panel that counts down the time after you ask Alexa to set a timer. It's like being on the world's most boring cooking show, but it gives you the freedom to concentrate on your dish. All you have to do is look up. It's easy to set up and works with any iteration of the Echo family. It also syncs time to your Echo device and will automatically adjust for DST (no winding here). It's the perfect way to bring the classic, analog timepiece into 2019, and it's even better when it's on sale.

Scouted is internet shopping with a pulse. Follow us on Twitter and sign up for our newsletter for even more recommendations and exclusive content. Please note that if you buy something featured in one of our posts, The Daily Beast may collect a share of sales.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

DOJ: Congress Can't Make Don McGahn Testify
Alex Wong/GettyDon McGahn does not have testify before Congress, according to a memo released Monday from the Department of Justice.

The memo, released by the department's Office of Legal Counsel and addressed to White House Counsel Pat Cipollone, asserted that Capitol Hill does not have the power to make the former White House Counsel talk to them about his work for President Donald Trump.

"The immunity of the President's immediate advisers from compelled congressional testimony on matters related to their official responsibilities has long been recognized and arises from the fundamental workings of the separation of powers," reads the memo, signed by OLC chief Steven Engel, a Trump appointee. "Those principles apply to the former White House Counsel.  Accordingly, Mr. McGahn is not legally required to appear and testify about matters related to his official duties as Counsel to the President."

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Star Mueller Witness Don McGahn Says He Won't Testify Before Congress
Alex Wong/GettyDon McGahn does not have testify before Congress, according to a memo released Monday from the Department of Justice. And according to his lawyer, he won't be.

"[T]he President has unambiguously directed my client not to comply with the Committee's subpoena for testimony," McGahn's lawyer, William Burck, wrote in a letter to House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) telling him McGahn would not comply with the chairman's order that he testify on Tuesday. "In the event an accommodation is agreed between the Committee and the White House, Mr. McGahn will of course comply with that accommodation."

McGahn's appearance before lawmakers had already seemed improbable, given that the White House had directed him to refuse to turn over documents related to the Mueller probe. But his formal refusal to testify adds even more fuel to an already bitter political and legal fight between the parties over the boundaries of executive privilege and presidential power.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Allison Mack Kept Sex Slave Photos for Blackmail, Ex-NXIVM Member Testifies
REUTERSThe founder of the alleged cult NXIVM forced member Allison Mack to store naked photos of women branded with his initials to blackmail them into becoming sex slaves, a former member testified in court Monday.

Lauren Salzman said in Brooklyn federal court Mack, the Smallville actress, was forced to collect the photographs in a Dropbox folder at the request of her master, NXIVM founder Keith Raniere. Salzman began testifying on Friday and continued this week.

"The photo had to be fully frontal naked," Salzman said. "Our brands had to show, and we had to look uniform and happy."

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Scouted: Today Only, Save Upwards of 50% on Cuisinart Grills, Smokers, and Grilling Accessories
Even if it's coming slow, it's coming: Grill season is inching its way to full-blown presence and it's time to gear up on the essentials. And today, Cuisinart has unleashed a long list of discounts on its easy-to-use and highly rated grills, smokers, and various accessories. Through the day, you stand to save up to 55% on a multitude of grilling essentials. Consider any one of the top-rated gas grills the brand has on offer, styles ranging from the modern and colorful to the rugged and monotone.

The Petit Gourmet Portable Tabletop Gas Grill — boasting a 4.1-star average rating on more than 3,000 reviews — is versatile enough to fit easily in a cabinet and yet cook up a dinner that covers the family. Get it for $68 (55% off). Or get serious about your smoked foods with the gorgeous and enviable Vertical 18-Inch Charcoal Smoker, on sale today for $97 (or 51% off) — vents at the top and bottom provide dual ventilation to more than 500 square inches of your cooking space. Clean up your griddle act with the Extra Large Griddle Scraper for $18 (30% off). The highly-rated, 36-piece Backyard Tool Set is yours for $31, or 37% off right now. You're getting the foundational spatula, tongs, and fork with steel constructions and ergonomic handle for comfortable use, as well as a slew of additions from heat resistant gloves to stainless steel skewers (no more realizing you forgot to buy a bag of them while shopping). And e

The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Mayor Pete Schools Prof. Liz on How to Take on the Enemy and Win
Elijah Nouvelage/ReutersMayor Pete Buttigieg's performance in the Fox News town hall on Sunday shows why he came out of nowhere to become a real force in the 2020 elections—while Elizabeth Warren stumbled out of the gate.  

In case you missed it, Warren declined an invitation to speak at a Fox News town hall and chose, instead, to try to score points by attacking the network. Conversely, Buttigieg said yes and delivered a solid performance at his own Fox News town hall, buttressing his image as a thoughtful and likeable candidate, while simultaneously taking Fox News to task.

"A lot of people in my party were critical of me doing this, and I get where that's coming from, especially when you see what goes on with some of the opinion hosts on this network," Buttigieg told Fox News' Chris Wallace.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Ukraine's New President Volodomyr Zelenskiy Vows Reform. Or Is It Revenge?
Maxym Marusenko/GettyVolodymyr Zelenskiy, Ukraine's comedian turned politician, was sworn in as president on Monday in front of a parliament that was mostly hostile to his agenda. So Zelenskiy simply announced he would dissolve the parliament, calling snap elections. "Glory to Ukraine!" he said.

In his inaugural speech, President Zelenskiy said that his main responsibility is to end the war against pro-Russian forces in eastern Ukraine. After five years of fighting and thousands of lives lost, that certainly is his biggest challenge. But the solutions he offers are neither dramatic nor even very clear.

When it comes to fighting corruption, however, an issue on which the vast majority of Ukrainians agree, Zelenskiy announced some bold strokes.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

‘Fox & Friends' Bashes Pete Buttigieg's Fox News Town Hall: He Showed ‘No Courage' by Attacking Us
The morning after Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg took aim at stars Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham during a Fox News town hall event, Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade blasted the South Bend mayor as cowardly, suggesting Democrats shouldn't come on Fox if they're going to attack the network's primetime hosts.

During Sunday night's forum with anchor Chris Wallace, Mayor Pete acknowledged the controversy over his participation, considering fellow Democratic contenders Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris have refused network invitations and the DNC has barred Fox from hosting any 2020 primary debates. Buttigieg conceded that his fellow candidates do have a point, ripping into Carlson and Ingraham for their inflammatory rhetoric.

"I get where that's coming from especially when you see what goes on with some opinion hosts on this network," Buttigieg declared. "I mean when you've got Tucker Carlson saying that immigrants make America dirty. When you've got Laura Ingraham comparing detention centers with children in cages to summer camps

The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Nigel Farage Becomes Latest Right-Wing British Politician to Be ‘Milkshaked'
REUTERSYou might think it's a good time to be Nigel Farage. His lifelong obsession with Britain leaving the European Union is within striking distance, and his newly established Brexit Party has defied the odds by surging to first place in polls ahead of the U.K.'s European Parliament elections later this week.

However, you'd be wrong, as he's absolutely furious and covered in milk.

You see, a new kind of street protest is striking fear and fury into the hearts of emboldened right-wing politicians in Britain. On Monday, Farage became the latest victim to be "milkshaked." The simple yet humiliating act of being drenched in sweet, thick, luminous liquid has taken the European election campaign by storm and there appears to be no way to stop it.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Did GEDmatch's New DNA Rules Just Freeze Out Cold-Case Murder Investigators?
REUTERS/Michaela RehleIt's the genealogy service that shocked the criminal-justice world—and anybody with skeletons in the closet—with its role in cracking the case on the long-sought Golden State Killer suspect.

Now the gene-keepers are making it much harder for cops to use its clients private data to crack cold cases.

New terms of service from GEDmatch, one of the world's largest DNA databases, will now require those who use its services to search for lost relatives to "opt in" if they want to allow law-enforcement officials to have access their data. The move will make it much harder for police to access the data on the site, and the DNA profiles it holds could even be rendered "useless" in solving cases, BuzzFeed News reports.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Survey: Americans Say President Shouldn't Launch Nuclear Strike Without Congressional War Declaration
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Photos GettyThis story originally appeared at Center for Public Integrity. The Center for Public Integrity is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, investigative newsroom in Washington, D.C. More of its national security work can be found here.

By Patrick Malone

With rising tensions between the United States and other nations, the public overwhelmingly wants to curtail the president's power to unilaterally order the first use of nuclear weapons, preferring instead that Congress stand between the commander-in-chief and nuclear launch orders when the country is not officially at war or under attack.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Scouted: Upgrade Your Sleeveless Options With One Of These 5 Highly-Recommended Tank Tops
I feel like tank tops don't get the recognition they deserve. They live in the shadows of nice T-shirts, but they're great in their own right. Tanks are the perfect layering option. They don't get all bunchy in the armpits under blazers. And they really go with any kind of bottom, from jeans to a flowy skirt.

But not all tank tops deserve a coveted place in your clothing rotation. Find a tank that works for you and your aspirations and stick with it, whether it's a cami-style or a muscle tank. We've rounded up five of the best-reviewed and most-loved tank tops to give you a head start in finding the best sleeveless tee that you can find.

Women's Muscle Tank, $32 from Richer Poorer: This easy-breezy tank top is my summer uniform. It's cut in a way that still feels work appropriate, but can easily be tied up or tucked into shorts for a stylish weekend top.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Is Iran Testing Trump With Little Attacks in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and the Persian Gulf?
Anne SpeckhardBAGHDAD—The sound of an explosion echoed through the Green Zone on Sunday night around 9:00 p.m., a reminder that this most secure part of the Iraqi capital is not, in fact, all that safe. The projectile appears to have been aimed at the United States embassy and, after the blast, embassy sirens went off, accompanied by repeated warnings blaring on loudspeakers instructing everyone to take immediate cover.

Within the hour the missile was reported to have been fired from the Amana bridge in Baghdad, missing its likely intended target and landing in an empty field near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, with no casualties reported.

But for a brief and highly fraught moment alarms were going off in Washington, as well, where the much-publicized threat of Iranian "proxy" attacks on U.S. interests and personnel, and the American response positioning bombers and aircraft carriers, have conjured the specter of a new Middle Eastern war. One breaking news service breathlessly reported National Security Adviser John Bolton "just seen arriving at the White House amid rocket attack possibly aimed at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq."

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Going 10 Rounds With Top Bartender Mike Dougherty
Courtesy CentroWhat do you like to drink after a shift? "Beer."

What is the all-time best dive bar jukebox song? ""Copacabana" by Barry Manilow."

After all these years bartending and creating drinks, do you still enjoy going out to bars? "Absolutely."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Robot Apple Pickers Could Change Farming as We Know It
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Photos GettyWhile the Trump administration works to reduce the number of immigrants entering the United States, the U.S. economy is dealing with the worst labor shortage it's seen in decades. This labor shortage is hitting nearly every industry, but among the worst is the agricultural industry.

A recent survey found over half of California's farmers have started using machines in place of humans to meet their needs in the past five years. One of those machines could be a robot.

New Zealand's farms have become a prime testing ground for this, as the country tries to tackle labor shortages in its agricultural industry.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Instead of Fixing the SAT, Which Favors the Wealthy, the College Board Makes Up an ‘Adversity Index'
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/Photos GettyLast week the College Board announced a new "Adversity Index" that quantifies college applicants' statistically assumed hardships into to a single ranked score. The Index was originally reported as an assemblage of 15 factors based on neighborhood, home, and high school environments. New reporting states as many as 31 factors may be involved.

All we know about the Index comes from the College Board, which trotted out consultants and early adopters to defend its psychometric phrenology in the wake of competitive pressures and cheating scandals. But even what we know has prompted a reaction that resembles the "New Coke" debacle of 1985, when the reformulation of "Classic Coke" met with widespread derision as perhaps the worst product launch in history.

The Index is to be used, if at all, by college admissions staff in assessing students' SAT scores, another College Board product which its president, David Coleman, at long last admits is biased in favor of the wealthy. Despite such a damning if obvious declaration, the SAT itself remains unchanged.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

A Shady Facebook Campaign Is Stoking the Iran-U.S. Conflict
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Photo GettyAs U.S. policymakers weigh responses to increasing Iranian aggression in the Persian Gulf, a German national based in a small neighborhood of northwest London is quietly financing an ad campaign designed to stoke a more forceful U.S. policy toward Tehran.

The person behind the campaign, pushed in part under the guise of independent news and analysis, is Soheila Aligholi Mayelzadeh, who's previously identified herself as a lobbyist for the National Council of Resistance of Iran, a leading opposition group in the country. Since March, a company owned by Mayelzadeh has bought dozens of Facebook ads targeted at users in the United States promoting a more aggressive confrontation with Iran.

Those paid ads have run on two Facebook pages. One is the official page of the People's Mujahedin of Iran, a militant Marxist opposition group in the country with deep ties to the NCRI, and commonly known by its Farsi acronym, MEK. The other is the page of an ostensibly independent news organization called Iran Focus.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Inside the Secret Dinners Where Congress Figures Out How to Stop a Nuclear Apocalypse
Photo Illustration by Lyne Lucien/The Daily Beast/Photos GettyOn an evening two years ago, Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-TN) walked out of a closed-door dinner on Capitol Hill without a campaign check or valuable contact, but something else: sobering new knowledge about nuclear weapons.

In a recent interview, the congressman recalled the dinner, where he sat alongside Democratic and Republican lawmakers, listening to top experts explain the finer points of nuclear weapons policy and urge them to pay close attention to an issue that has fallen on Congress' backburner.

Everything was off the record—what the guests said, what they were asked, who they were, where the dinner even was.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Here's How Much Money Fox News Hosts Have Made Off GOP Speaking Gigs
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily Beast/GettyBoosting the Republican Party has paid off—quite literally—for many Fox News hosts.

In a new report shared exclusively with The Daily Beast, liberal media-monitoring group Media Matters found that on-air personalities at the right-leaning news network have made a total of at least $500,000 in speaking fees for appearances at Republican groups and conservative organizations while working at Fox News.

Additionally, the report notes, several of the network's news division employees—including Shannon Bream, Chris Stirewalt, and Neil Cavuto—have headlined events alongside Trump administration officials or spoken at events on Trump properties. Fox News did not respond to a request for comment on this story.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Terrence Malick's Anti-Nazi Film Stuns Cannes
Courtesy CannesCANNES, France—Since his comeback in 2011 with the Palme d'Or winning The Tree of Life, Terrence Malick's 20th-century films have generated a considerable amount of critical divisiveness. His admirers consider him a genius, whose approach combines a mastery of cinematic technique with a rare sensitivity to undogmatic religious fervor. His detractors chide him for falling prey to what they consider irksome stylistic tics and a spirituality that sometimes verges on New-Agey sentimentality.

Wherever one comes down in this debate, it's difficult to dispute that the subject matter of his new film A Hidden Life, which premiered in competition in Cannes on Tuesday, is almost tailor-made to fit Malick's cinematic agenda. The based-on-fact saga of the Austrian farmer Franz Jägerstätter (August Diehl), whose refusal to swear allegiance to Hitler and serve in the army during World War II led inexorably to his execution in 1943, possesses all of the elements of an archetypal Malick film. The director has a well-known penchant for protagonists who spurn the material world for higher spiritual callings. In addition, focusing on Jägerstätter's hometown, the idyllic mountain village of St. Radegund in Upper Austria, allows Malick to indulge his fondness for capturing achingly beautiful natural landscapes. Franz's crisis of conscience, moreover, enables Malick to explore how his hero's status as an intransigent

The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

Game of Thrones' Big Series Finale Screw-Up: A Plastic Water Bottle Cameo
HBOWho could forget the infamous coffee cup seen ‘round the world during the Battle of Winterfell celebratory banquet in "The Last of the Starks," the fourth episode of Game of Thrones' eighth (and final) season.

"The latte that appeared in the episode was a mistake. Daenerys had ordered an herbal tea," HBO said in a statement, before removing the coffee cup from the scene during future airings.

Well, it turns out the props department made another drink-related blunder—though this one might be on John Bradley, the actor who plays Samwell Tarly.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

‘Game of Thrones' Finale Gaffe: First a Coffee Cup, Now a Plastic Water Bottle
HBOWho could forget the infamous coffee cup seen ‘round the world during the Battle of Winterfell celebratory banquet in "The Last of the Starks," the fourth episode of Game of Thrones' eighth (and final) season.

"The latte that appeared in the episode was a mistake. Daenerys had ordered an herbal tea," HBO said in a statement, before removing the coffee cup from the scene during future airings.

Well, it turns out the props department made another drink-related blunder—though this one might be on John Bradley, the actor who plays Samwell Tarly.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 20, 2019

‘Game of Thrones' Ends Not With a Bang But a Whimper
Helen Sloan/HBO"Quiet and contained" are not qualities Game of Thrones is known for, and neither are happy endings. Yet what was once the most sprawling, shocking, unpredictable fantasy show on TV went out gently, with an ending both satisfying and a little strained.

"The Iron Throne" wraps up the series' most important loose ends, revealing the future of Westerosi governance and what becomes of the characters we've watched grow, regress, kill and survive until now. True to George R.R. Martin's promise, the sum of their fates is bittersweet. But while everyone ends up mostly where they should at the end of a stirring, at times even beautiful final episode, a lot of it lands without the emotional resonance it deserves because of the series' late-stage bum-rush to get here. 

Take Bran Stark's fate as the newly-crowned ruler of Westeros, now divided into six kingdoms and an independent North. Handing the responsibility to him makes sense on paper—as Varys went out insisting, the best ruler is likely someone who doesn't want power, and in his own words Bran "doesn't really want…anymore." He's a fittingly unconventional victor for a fantasy series that sought to zig wherever Lord of the Rings zagged; Bran is not just the anti-Aragorn, he's anti-personality period.



The Daily Beast
May 19, 2019

John Oliver Drags Meghan McCain: ‘The Most Embarrassing Child of a Prominent Political Figure'
HBOOn Sunday evening, John Oliver dedicated the opening portion of Last Week Tonight to the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest—specifically, to the Icelandic group Hatari. Though the eye-catching BDSM-themed outfit placed 10th overall with their rendition of "Hatrið mun sigra," they managed to attract headlines (and the ire of their Israeli hosts) for showcasing Palestinian flags during their performance.

And if that weren't enough, one of its members is the son of the Icelandic ambassador to the U.K.

"You may be thinking that's the most embarrassing child of a prominent political figure you've ever seen, but let me remind you of the continued existence of Meghan McCain!" exclaimed John Oliver, before trolling her husband Ben Domenech, publisher of the far-right rag The Federalist.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 19, 2019

Robert Pattinson Loses His Damn Mind in ‘The Lighthouse'
Cannes Film FestivalCANNES, France—According to the lingo of the entertainment industry, Robert Eggers's new film The Lighthouse, which premiered at Cannes on Sunday as part of the Directors' Fortnight sidebar, is a "long-awaited" follow-up to The Witch, the director's innovative debut horror film. Although The Lighthouse has already proved a crowd-pleaser with both the Cannes audience and critics, it's a less revelatory film than The Witch, a slow-burning shocker that was exceptional for its devotion to period detail and a climactic scene that dared to imply that 17th-century "witch hunts" might not have been fueled purely by paranoia.

The Lighthouse is both less terrifying and more calculated in its effects, especially Eggers's determination to toy with our expectations of what defines a contemporary horror movie. The chief pleasures to be derived from the film involve its unapologetically manipulative twist on old-fashioned ghost stories (based on an idea by Eggers's brother Max, the movie aspires to evoke the grandeur of Herman Melville but is more reminiscent of a midlevel Twilight Zone episode that borrows a few notions from bawdy sea shanties) and the ingenious pairing of stars Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson.

Dafoe and Pattinson play lighthouse "wickies" (so named because of their original proximity to oil wicks) in an isolated corner

The Daily Beast
May 19, 2019

Nothing Beats These Compact Handheld Egg Weights For Working Out While Traveling
As a short person, I've often been told that good things come in small packages. It may be true, but it's even better, as far as I'm concerned, when those small things also pack a hefty punch.Egg Weights are one example of just this sort of combination, literally: little but mighty, Egg Weights are highly portable, easier on sensitive wrists, and add numerous benefits to boxing, running, or any other workout.

Coming in dense metal weights ranging from 1 to 5 pounds, the ergonomic Egg Weights slip comfortably around your middle finger and into your grip, making it easier to build muscle, tone, and burn extra calories while you punch the air, run, or even keep your arms straight in Warrior 2. They fit into your palms surprisingly naturally (even with my very little hands), and add a noticeable extra intensity to any workout. Used by certain Olympic athletes to train, Egg Weights says their product is scientifically proven to increase the intensity of any movement from 28-62 percent according to their site. It certainly feels that way.

What I also like is that Egg Weights can reduce stress and risk of injury compared to dumbells, taking some of the pressure off certain joints. Unlike dumbells, you aren't using your already-taxed-from-typing wrists to grip the weights — instead, you're engaging your shoulders and arms more fully. If you get sore wrists from lifting weights as I do, these will help.



The Daily Beast
May 19, 2019

Romney: GOP Rep's Call to Impeach Trump a ‘Courageous Statement'
Reacting to Republican Congressman Justin Amash's call for President Trump to face impeachment over the obstruction of justice findings of the Mueller report, Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) on Sunday praised the Michigan lawmaker for his "courageous statement" while saying he didn't personally feel it was a time to call for impeachment.

Noting that Romney had said last month that he was "sickened" and "appalled" that the president welcomed help from Russia during the 2016 election, State of the Union anchor Jake Tapper asked Romney if he was surprised that he and Amash are the only two elected Republicans who have condemned the president's behavior.

"My own view is that Justin Amash has reached a different conclusion than I have," the former Republican presidential nominee replied. "I respect him. I think it's a courageous statement. But I believe to make a case for obstruction of justice, you just don't have the elements that are evidenced in this document."

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The Daily Beast
May 19, 2019

Scouted: The Easy Summer Slide from J.Crew Factory is the Only Shoe I Own in Multiple Colors
When my mom first lent me a pair of her Easy Summer Slide Sandals, I told her straight up that she wasn't getting them back, partially because I had stretched them because my feet are slightly bigger than hers, but mostly because I wanted them for myself. Besides, she had two other pairs herself.

These sandals are the perfect balance of casual and fashionable because the thick straps keep your feet secure while still looking trendy. They also come in a ton of colors, of which I now have three (Black, True Tan, and Saddle) and much to my dismay, and my bank account's, they come in trendy patterns like gingham and

The Daily Beast
May 19, 2019

‘Game of Thrones' Series Finale Predictions: Will Jon Snow Kill Daenerys?
HBOThe final hour (and 20 minutes) of Game of Thrones is upon us and, seven hells, what a mess it's got to clean up.

Daenerys Targaryen, breaker of chains, has broken with sanity and razed Euron's fleet, the Golden Company, and the soldiers and civilians of King's Landing to the ground. Cersei, Jaime, and their unborn Lannister baby are dead. That leaves Dany closer than ever to the Iron Throne but, even through fire and blood, she's unlikely to sit pretty for long. Who'll be left standing by the end of Sunday night? Who will rule? Let's examine the odds for what the future of Westeros looks like, both in the series finale and beyond.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 19, 2019

SNL: Hysterical Meghan McCain Defends Alabama Abortion Ban on ‘The View'
NBCSaturday Night Live had so much fun mocking The View a few weeks ago that they came back for more in the Season 44 finale. And once again, Meghan McCain received the brunt of the jokes.

The hot topic of the day was Alabama's "near total" ban on abortion, and the show's co-hosts weighed in one at a time before Aidy Bryant's McCain finally got her turn to defend the all-male Republican senators who voted for the draconian bill.

"OK, can I talk now?" she asked. "OK, I am the only daughter at this table. So I have to say, these senators are actually very good and fun guys." As she continued to plead with her co-hosts to let her speak, Leslie Jones' Whoopi Goldberg said, "No one else is talking."

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The Daily Beast
May 19, 2019

SNL: Drunk Jeanine Pirro Desperately Defends Trump, Terrorizes ‘Weekend Update' Desk
NBCThe last time Cecily Strong's Jeanine Pirro sat down with "Weekend Update" anchor Colin Jost, she had what appeared to be multiple orgasms over the Mueller report. This time, she may have been even more fired up.

"Hello, I'm Judge Jeanine Pirro, and I just want to thank the brave sponsors who stuck with me despite accusations by the radical loony left," the Fox News host began before responding to rumors that the network only kept her on after recent controversies because President Trump made a direct plea on her behalf.

"Yes! That's because Donald Trump is a class act," she said. "He is the Michael Jordan of presidents and the Wesley Snipes of taxes. He's a wiz in the boardroom and sometimes whizzes a little in the bedroom."

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 19, 2019

SNL Season 44 Finale: Alec Baldwin's Trump and Robert De Niro's Mueller Reunite for Epic Queen Duet
NBCHe hadn't been seen on the show for nearly two months, but Alec Baldwin's Donald Trump just had to show up to the Saturday Night Live season finale this week.

Speaking from his Oval Office set, President Trump boasted about his many achievements and predicted that he's on "cruise control to a second term and there's nothing the Democrats in Congress can do about it."

And with that, he broke into a full-on parody of Queen's "Don't Stop Me Now" with Melania Trump (Cecily Strong), Mike Pence (Beck Bennett), Sarah Huckabee Sanders (Aidy Bryant), Kanye West (Chris Redd) and more.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

‘Detour' Still Takes the Fast Lane to the Dark Side of Life
PRC PicturesThe Film on the Cutting Room Floor

‘They are literature's cold cases, the Missing and Presumed Dead. They are the unlucky novels and stories that inspired movies so successful that they eclipsed the originals almost completely. Some books weather a subsequent movie's success. Gone With the Wind survives as a classic film and a classic novel. But how many people know that before it was a movie, The Birds was an extraordinary novella by Daphne Du Maurier, or that Forrest Gump is based on the novel Forrest Gump?

Good fiction deserves a better fate. By way of a modest corrective, this series seeks out and showcases those obscured, forgotten novels and stories that gave their lives that movies might live, stories that were always at least as good as the well-known films they inspired and in more than a few instances, a lot better.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

James Madison Played Politics and Gave Us the 2nd Amendment
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily Beast/Getty/WikiCommonsIn 2018, President Donald Trump addressed the NRA's annual conference for the second time as a sitting president. He was only the second sitting president to do so. In 1983, then President Ronald Reagan became the first.

Both Reagan and Trump had at one time supported a ban on military-style assault weapons, a completely rational policy that the gun lobby views as a gun grab. Reagan came out for the reform ten years after he addressed the NRA; Trump endorsed it before he entered national politics. Reagan delivered his remarks with trademark passion and conviction; Trump rattled off a list of platitudes before launching into a recitation of his political conquests.

But both men delivered a similar message 35 years apart, and both distorted history.

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The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

Inside Downtown Los Angeles' Iconic Feminist Hotel Makeover
Courtesy Hotel FigueroaOnce upon a time in a faraway land where women weren't allowed to vote or wear pants or even check into hotels on their own, there was an organization (the YWCA) and a woman (Maude Bouldin, the first female hotel manager in the country) determined to change it all. You see, in order to book a room at a hotel in the 1920s, a woman needed a male counterpart to co-sign her stay. But the YWCA was determined to change that. Their goal was to create a safe haven for solo female travelers — an exclusive women's hostel in Los Angeles — and nearly 100 years later, after a major multi-million dollar renovation by developer Bradley Hall, DTLA's Hotel Figueroa is staying true to its feminist roots.

"Financed, built and operated by and for femininity" in 1926 according to a Los Angeles Times article, the Figueroa — walking distance from Staples Center — was the largest project owned and operated by women at the time and the loan the YWCA took out to finance the project ($1.25 million in 1926), the "largest individual financial transaction ever undertaken by a body of women in the United States." Today, the hotel is a gathering place for creatives and the *woke* traveler, and its feminist origins carry through in all programming, includin

The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

Inside Downtown Los Angeles's Iconic Feminist Hotel Makeover
Courtesy Hotel FigueroaOnce upon a time in a faraway land where women weren't allowed to vote or wear pants or even check into hotels on their own, there was an organization (the YWCA) and a woman (Maude Bouldin, the first female hotel manager in the country) determined to change it all. You see, in order to book a room at a hotel in the 1920s, a woman needed a male counterpart to co-sign her stay. But the YWCA was determined to change that. Their goal was to create a safe haven for solo female travelers — an exclusive women's hostel in Los Angeles — and nearly 100 years later, after a major multi-million dollar renovation by developer Bradley Hall, DTLA's Hotel Figueroa is staying true to its feminist roots.

"Financed, built and operated by and for femininity" in 1926 according to a Los Angeles Times article, the Figueroa — walking distance from Staples Center — was the largest project owned and operated by women at the time and the loan the YWCA took out to finance the project ($1.25 million in 1926), the "largest individual financial transaction ever undertaken by a body of women in the United States." Today, the hotel is a gathering place for creatives and the *woke* traveler, and its feminist origins carry through in all programming, including a women-led art collection featured throughout the hotel and lobby, an all-female comedy night, and a monthly series of talks led by LA-based female entrepreneurs and tastemakers, aptly named "Maude Squad." Even the music, which is played in two of the hotel's zones, is made up of playlists curated by local female DJs.

Common areas at Hotel Figuer

The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

America's Schools Are War Zones Now
Joe Raedle/GettyWhen I was growing up, my father believed in preparing his children for possible disasters, so that if one occurred, we wouldn't have to think what to do—we'd already know. He turned it into a sort of game, a what-would-you-do-if game.

"What would you do if there were a fire in your bedroom, right at the door?" he asked me one day.

Having seen way too much unrealistic television, I said I'd put my arm in front of my face and run through the flames. Bluntly, he told me I'd be dead. My second choice was to break out the window and climb out into the yard. "Break it with what?" he asked. "A chair," I answered. Nope - I'd be cut by the jagged shards of glass.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

The Nazis Called Kurt Schwitters a ‘Degenerate' Artist. His ‘Merzbau' Was a Living Work of Art.
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettyIt was the work of a lifetime, an evolving masterpiece created over 10 years.

One can imagine the day in the early 1920s when German artist Kurt Schwitters, maybe while taking a break from crafting his distinctive collages and sculptural assemblages, looked around his home and realized he was living in the biggest canvas of all. And so the work he would dedicate the rest of his life to, the ‘Merzbau,' began.

Then with the high-pierced whistle of an Allied bomb in 1943, his Hanover masterpiece-cum-family home was reduced to rubble.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

OMG I Want This House: Valparaiso, Chile
AirBnBThe Daily Beast presents a look at one of the most insane houses in the world.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

The Slit Dress Is Back, Freeing the Legs of Kate Middleton and Nearly Every Woman at Cannes
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast / Photos Getty At the Cannes Film Festival this week, Selena Gomez, Julianne Moore, Amber Heard, Chloë Sevigny, Carla Bruni, Eva Longoria, Romee Stridj, Alessandra Ambrosio—and their respective legs—heralded the return of cut-to-there slit dresses.

That an army of toned, bare legs would storm the beachfront event this year is somewhat expected. The Cannes dress code has long decried a kind of antiquated Hollywood glamour, where slinkiness is celebrated and stilettos are a requirement.

None of the slits go as high as they did when Bella Hadid took the medium to new, impossible heights in 2016, attending the festival in a silk, red Alexandre Vautheir get-up.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

GOP Congressman Justin Amash's Impeachment Call Boosts Pressure on Pelosi
Kevin Lamarque/ReutersRepublican congressman Justin Amash's support for impeachment proceedings against President Trump ratchets up the pressure on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to call for the same.

Citing "multiple examples of conduct satisfying all the elements of obstruction of justice" uncovered in the Mueller report, the iconoclastic Michigan lawmaker spared no one in a lengthy Twitter thread on Saturday—calling out Trump, Attorney General William Barr, and other lawmakers he says put partisanship above their own allegiance to the Constitution.

Many were quick to wonder aloud why it was a Republican lawmaker making the case for impeachment rather than top Democrat Pelosi, who has called Trump "unfit" for the presidency but come out against impeachment, saying it'd be too "divisive" for the country.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

The Chinese Businessman Who Conned U.S. Defense Contractors
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily Beast/GettyTo his American friends and contacts, Stephen Su was an affable businessman and gregarious guy.

"People liked him," Bob Anderson, the FBI's former head of counterintelligence, told me. "They didn't think he was an asshole and I know that sounds stupid, but people are people and that's how it started."

Stephen Su, who also went by his Chinese name Su Bin, lived in his native China but traveled frequently to the United States and Canada, to build a business in the aviation and aerospace sectors. His company, Lode-Tech, was a small player in a field of giants. It focused on manufacturing aircraft cable harnesses, a product safely at the low-tech end of the military aircraft sector. However, over the course of some five years, from 2009 to 2014, Su steadily and deliberately built a network of close business contacts inside far bigger U.S. and Canadian defense contractors with some of the most sensitive U.S. military contracts. As Anderson explained, Su made it a point to get to know the people who had access to those technologies, or people who knew the people who had such access, and "getting them to trust him."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

Is This the Future of Aquariums?
Frederic J. Brown/GettySome of my fondest memories as a child were family trips from home in Rhode Island down to Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut. A fan of fantasy fiction, beluga whales always seemed to be more out of a fairy tale than real life. Over the years, I've made my way to world-class aquariums in Osaka, Baltimore, Monterey, Atlanta, and Medellin. And while I often feel conflicted about the creatures trapped behind the glass, I also always appreciate the educational value that comes along with the wonder they inspire.

That love of aquariums is why I was excited to experience the massive multi-million dollar expansion of the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, California, which will open to the public on May 24, 2019. Promising to be a game-changer in how aquariums operate in an era in which aquatic life around the planet is under assault, the new wing of this already-popular destination seeks to use technology, not tanks filled with exotic creatures, to inspire.

It's "not about bigger tanks for bigger animals," the aquarium's president and CEO, Dr. Jerry R Schubel, declared in his opening remarks. Instead, the $53 million, 29,000-square-feet new wing is full of social media-friendly oceanic art, a cinema with a 130-feet curved screen, and a large exhibitions gallery that also houses technological interactives. The exterior dramatically changes the aesthetic of the aquarium (previously a pleasant but unremarkable and very 90s complex) with a Warheads-blue-raspberry undulating bit of blobitecture (from the same firm, EHDD, from San Francisco). I didn't fully appreciate its effect on the man-made inner harbor of Long Beach (also home to the Queen Mary) until returning from a harbor cruise and seeing its shiny blue curves givi

The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

How Donald Trump Helped a ‘Brown Wave' of South Asian Comics to Crash Stand-Up
CBS Photo Archive/GettyComedian Aparna Nancherla tells a gag about getting trapped behind a pack of finance bros on a Manhattan sidewalk—white, good-looking, and moving at what she coins "the speed of privilege."

"That is just to say, they were not creating any gaps for anyone to join them or advance past them," she said in a stand-up appearance on The Late Late Show with James Corden last year. "Yeah, I know," she added. "Sometimes you're like, Is it a joke? Is it a think piece? I'm sad, but I smiled."

It's an apt metaphor for the world of stand-up, historically flush with the same demographic.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

Scouted: Snowe's New Towel is 100% Cotton and Uniquely Textured With ‘Honeycomb-Like' Pockets To Dry Faster
The best-selling Honeycomb Bathrobe from Snowe just got a sister. The Honeycomb Towel is the newest iteration of ultra-absorbent, lightweight drying process that Snowe has perfected.

This towel reminds me of the aftermath of one of those magic grow towels that you dunk in water to make them full size, except it already comes full size. The unique honeycomb texture gives this towel a slight elasticity, which allows you to be comfortable while moving around with it, and extra absorbency to help dry off faster. It's lightweight and made from 100% cotton (the texture comes from a unique washing technique).

The towel comes in three different colors: Essential White, Charcoal Grey, and Slate Blue, and you can get it in both a

The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

Shooting at Ball State University Party House Leaves 7 Wounded
Scott OlsonA shooting at a house Muncie, Indiana near Ball State University, left at least seven people wounded, three of them in "life threatening condition," authorities told reporters Saturday morning. One of the victims was transported by air ambulance to a hospital in Indianapolis.

"At about 12:45 a.m. last evening, we received a call of shots fired at an address just off of campus at Ball state University," Muncie Chief of Police Joe Winkle told the Daily Beast. There was a house party included a DJ. It had attracted some Ball State students but also local kids from Muncie."

At some point in the evening, there was a confrontation. Several shots were fired inside the house. The home, which sits on the 2400 block of Euclid Avenue in Muncie, had been rented or leased by several Ball State students, authorities said. There were between 50 and 75 people at the party.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

Bernie Sanders Calls for Ban on For-Profit Charter Schools, $60K Minimum Salary for Teachers
Alex WongSen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) unveiled his education plan in a speech Saturday in South Carolina, calling for a ban on for-profit charter schools, an increase in teacher pay to no less than $60,000, and universal school meals.

The release of the policy proposal, which the campaign refers to as the "Thurgood Marshall Plan for Public Education & Educators," is pegged to the 65th anniversary weekend of the Supreme Court's landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision, which desegregated public schools.

In addition to calling for a ban on for-profit charters, Sanders became the first 2020 presidential candidate to pledge support for the NAACP's call for a moratorium on public funding for charter-school expansion until a national audit can be done to ascertain the impact of charter growth. The original intent of charters was positive, especially to serve students with unique needs, but, according to Sanders, they have negatively impacted communities of color by taking away money from public schools.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

Scouted: Tevas Sandals Will Survive Anything You Put Them Through And Look Good Doing It
In two weeks, I'm traveling to Africa for the first time. When I step off that plane I'll be stepping onto my third continent in roughly a year. When I step off that plane, I'll be stepping out wearing my trusty Tevas. Africa will be their third continent in a year, too. I paired my Tevas with a silk jumpsuit while wedding dress shopping in L.A. I wore my Tevas on assignment in the Florida Everglades, crouched down in the hull of a swamp boat, hoping an alligator wouldn't chomp on my exposed toes. I protected said toes' modesty by wearing socks with my Tevas in Oman's Grand Mosque. I was wearing my Tevas a few nights ago when, slightly drunk on mezcal in Mexico, I fell into an open sewer.

The fact that my Tevas seemed like the appropriate footwear for all of these scenarios is what makes them the perfect travel companion, and it's this low-key adaptability that makes me so obsessed with the brand. Now listen, I was (as perhaps you are now) skeptical at first. The last time I owned Tevas I was still wearing polar-fleece half-zip pullovers and eating raisins in the backseat of a neighbor's Volkswagen as they carpooled me to mandatory recreational sports practice.

Developed in the 80s by a geophysicist/whitewater rafting guide, the brand (whose name translates to "nature" in Hebrew) has always represented a certain crunchy outdoorsiness that angsty kids who grew into East Coast city-goths like me shun out of habit. Tevas were for kids whose parents took them hiking and taught them the proper pronunciation of the wor

The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

Inside the Hilarious ‘Game of Thrones' Porn Parody ‘Game of Bones 2: Winter Is Coming Everywhere'
WoodRocket/PornhubA wildling mans his post at the wall, as a light snow begins to fall and the wind howls at his back. A petite redhead joins him, gazing out into the winter tundra, plotting her next move. "The ice wall looks strange this close up redhead Lady Crow. It looks…sticky," offers the wildling. Sucksa then casually explains why: the wall is made of semen. "[From] all the lonely men standing here for years at a time with nothing to do but polish their swords," she says without even a hint of a giggle.

From the semen-covered wall to references of white wankers and a white dragon of their own, this WoodRocket/Pornhub collaboration turned Game of Thrones into a raunchier but far less incestuous XXX parody, Game of Bones 2: Winter is Coming Everywhere.

Lee Roy Myers wrote an imaginative script packed with enough pop-culture references that even those who've never seen Game of Thrones will get it. "Game of Bones: Winter Came Everywhere was written before Season 8, Episode 1 aired. So it was based on the last episode of Season 7, with a splash of ‘which direction would Season 8 go if they could show penetration?'" says Myers, adding, "Also, I really wanted to show Dany and Jon humping on the back of a dragon."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 18, 2019

Please Kill Me 2020: Swag for A Bipartisan Dystopia
Sarah Rogers/The Daily BeastAre you exhausted by the seemingly endless stream of presidential candidates throwing their hats in the race? Does the thought of another year and a half of town halls, debates, rallies and fundraisers make you want to scream into the void?

Now you can celebrate your existential dread with these Please Kill Me 2020 pins and t-shirts! Designed by your favorite nihilistic Photo Director, moi, this swag will carry you through the next 17 months of political peacocking.

The tees are super soft and made in America, and the pins are quickly becoming a D.C. collector's item. And at only $10-$20 with free domestic shipping, they make great gifts for anyone paying attention to the White House circus.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 17, 2019

Herman Wouk, a Legend of Historical Fiction, Dies at 103
AFP/GettyNo one claimed Herman Wouk was a great prose stylist. One reviewer described his first two books as "wobbly and unimpressive," and later critics were sometimes even less kind.  Norman Podhoretz likened Wouk's writing to "a blind man trying to locate an object in an unfamiliar room." But after winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1952 for The Caine Mutiny, Wouk reached a global audience in the millions with books, movies, plays and a pair of TV miniseries produced over an astonishing seven-decade career which came to an end with his death on Friday at the age of 103.

Wouk (pronounced woke) regarded The Caine Mutiny as his "signature work," and indeed it incorporated what would become his trademarks—serviceable if unspectacular prose, a cast of vividly drawn characters, and intricate plotting that led to a touch of sprawl and a murky moral resolution. The novel's ringing plausibility springs from its author's personal experience.  Set aboard a U.S. Navy destroyer-minesweeper in the Pacific during World War II—"a pile of junk" modeled on ships Wouk served on—the novel tells the story of a crew that rebels against its psychotic skipper, Philip F. Queeg. Like many of Wouk's novels, this one contained a novelist, Tom Keefer, a villain in no small part because he reads Joyce, Eliot and other high modernists who Wouk disdained. Wouk was a Don Quixote man.

Herman Wouk was born on May 27, 1915 in the Bronx, where his Jewish parents, Abraham Isaac Wouk and Esther Levine, had settled after emigrating from Russia. Wouk's maternal grandfather, the Hasidic rabbi Mendel Leib Levin, was such a traditionalist that he refused to learn English. Young Herman, who would become an ardent student of the Talmud, learned English, as well as Heb

The Daily Beast
May 17, 2019

What ‘Game of Thrones' Taught Us About Nuclear Devastation
Courtesy HBO

Famed physicist Leo Szilard wrote those words in 1945, entreating President Harry Truman to give Japan a chance to surrender before using the nuclear weapons Szilard had been instrumental in developing. His words rang in my head as Tyrion tried and failed to convince Daenerys to spare the surrendering King's Landing from her dragon's fire in the latest Game of Thrones episode, "The Bells."

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 17, 2019

A Chinese Saga of Swine, Surveillance, and Sanctions
Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast / Photos GettyHONG KONG—In China, even the pigs are under surveillance.

There's good reason for that. The country's hog-raising industry is cleaning up the pigsty, with companies like Alibaba, JD, and NetEase—all major technology companies that shape how Chinese citizens interact with the internet—developing systems to monitor hogs and sows using facial recognition technology.

Artificial intelligence determines how fast each pig is growing and whether it is healthy. Automated systems interpret that data to adjust environmental controls and feed rations. In some cases, sound sensors pick up coughs, and raise flags about potential sickness for the farms' operators. Blockchain tech is used to keep track of each pig from birth, through growth, to slaughter, and finally in retail.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 17, 2019

Much More Than a Blow-Dry: Women Reveal How They Really Feel About Their Hair
Courtesy Rohina HoffmanNeurologist-turned-photographer Rohina Hoffman knows the power of a hairdo.

At 7, her hair was chopped to a short "boy's haircut," and she was devastated. "The trauma of losing control of my identity has stayed with me my entire life," Hoffman writes in the introduction to her book, Hair Stories.

In photographing and interviewing dozens of women about their own experiences with their hair, Hoffman discovered the seemingly endless roles hair plays—as a cloak of comfort, a statement of creativity, a link to faith, or a badge of honor.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



The Daily Beast
May 17, 2019

Michael Bennet Might Not Win in 2020 but He Has All the Right Ideas
Zach Gibson/GettyAs frightening as this historical moment is in so many ways, it's hopeful in one respect. We may finally be at a point when a majority of people are ready to ditch supply-side economics. The economy is doing very well right now, so it seems in one sense a counterintuitive argument. But Americans are increasingly recognizing that even this good economy is mostly good for the top 10 percent, especially the top 1 and .1 percent; and that if you live in one of these 50 counties or hundreds others like them where the unemployment rates are more than twice the national average and the poverty rates are above 25 percent, the economy doesn't feel that great at all.

There's a story for the Democrats to tell here. A story of a country where prosperity was once broadly shared, because politicians of both parties in those days agreed that investments in ourselves and our future were good, and that there was an inextricable link between democracy and broadly shared prosperity. I wrote about this link recently in the Times, and they tell me it did gangbusters traffic, not because it was Shakespeare but because it's a subject people care about devoutly and want to hear public figures address.

Enter Colorado Senator Michael Bennet. One morning a while back I'd dropped the kid off at school and I tuned in to Morning Joe. I heard a voice s

The Daily Beast
May 17, 2019

Michael Bennet Understands Exactly What's Gone Wrong in America
Zach Gibson/GettyAs frightening as this historical moment is in so many ways, it's hopeful in one respect. We may finally be at a point when a majority of people are ready to ditch supply-side economics. The economy is doing very well right now, so it seems in one sense a counterintuitive argument. But Americans are increasingly recognizing that even this good economy is mostly good for the top 10 percent, especially the top 1 and .1 percent; and that if you live in one of these 50 counties or hundreds of others like them where the unemployment rates are more than twice the national average and the poverty rates are above 25 percent, the economy doesn't feel that great at all.

There's a story for the Democrats to tell here. A story of a country where prosperity was once broadly shared, because politicians of both parties in those days agreed that investments in ourselves and our future were good, and that there was an inextricable link between democracy and broadly shared prosperity. I wrote about this link recently in the Times, and they tell me it did gangbusters traffic, not because it was Shakespeare but because it's a subject people care about devoutly and want to hear public figures address.

Enter Colorado Senator Michael Bennet. One morning a while back I'd dropped the kid off at school and I tuned in to Morning Joe

The Daily Beast
May 17, 2019

DCCC Wants to Save a Pro-Life Dem. Dems Ask: at What Cost?
Tom WilliamsThe day after Alabama lawmakers passed a law to ban nearly all abortions in the state, House Democrats confronted some tricky optics: a Chicago Business report revealed that the chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee was scheduled to headline a June fundraiser for the most staunchly pro-life Democrat left in Congress.

The move raised howls of protest from progressives, who have sought to make that Democrat, Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL), the next moderate to be unseated by a challenger to their left. The passage of the Alabama law and restrictive abortion laws in other states has only intensified that push.

"It's hypocritical for the Democratic Party leadership to continue to protect Lipinski while claiming to fight against the attacks on reproductive rights in states like Georgia and Alabama." said Waleed Shahid, communications director for Justice Democrats.

Read more at The Daily Beast.



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