The new group comes out of the merger of OutServe-SLDN and the American Military Partner Association.
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4:57 PM 5/11/2019 – The Trump Investigations Report: Facebook Responds to Co-Founder Chris Hughes’ Call for Company to be Broken Up – Newsweek trumpandtrumpism.com/2019/05/11/457…
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Elton John – I Am Your Robot (1982) With Lyrics! youtu.be/VtaNBfzbL1A via @YouTube
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Some millennials, including Buttigieg, ask: Who?
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from Top stories – Google News.
- Donald Trump: Don McGahn refused to say Trump didn’t obstruct justice Vox.com
- WH asked McGahn to say Trump didn’t obstruct justice CNN
- White House Asked McGahn to Declare Trump Never Obstructed Justice The New York Times
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Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time In Hollywood, arriving in July, isn’t the first Manson Family murders / Sharon Tate-related movie hitting theaters during the 50th anniversary year of those abominable crimes.
The first out was The Haunting of Sharon Tate starring Hillary Duff, which was largely dismissed as exploitative. The second, newly arrived in theaters, is Charlie Says (Sharon Tate, played by Grace van Dien, is a very minor character in the film). Tarantino’s film will feature Margot Robbie as the doomed actress. And still a fourth picture is coming, a biographical drama called Tate starring Kate Bosworth, though its focus will not be on the actress’s murder. This true crime story is quite obviously all the rage in Hollywood at the moment.
Whether or not these films are appropriate in their timing and conception will be up to individual viewers to determine. As ever, how creepy or opportunistic true crime stories feel is largely dependent on artistic ambition and execution. But if you’re going to make a picture like this at all, director Mary Harron and Guinevere Turner, the women behind Charlie Says, are the filmmakers to choose…
TheHarron (I Shot Andy Warhol) and screenwriter Turner (who came to fame via the New Queer Cinema of the 90s in Go Fish and The Watermelon Woman), are best known these days for the enduring classic American Psycho (2000) a masterful subversion of a dubious misogynist novel. They’re also no stranger to biographical takes on infamous complex women having made The Notorious Bettie Page together as well.
This unique skillset comes in handy with this drama, which begins at a somewhat clinical remove while it considers three loyal Manson followers: Leslie Van Houten (Hannah Murray), Susan Atkins (Marianne Rendón) and Patricia Krenwinkle (Sosie Bacon — trivia alert: the daughter of Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick). The trio are serving life sentences in prison in side-by-side cels for carrying out some of the murders. An empathetic if not quite sympathetic feminist grad student named Karlene Faith (the ever-watchable Merritt Wever of Godless and Nurse Jackie fame) enters their lives as a prison-appointed teacher and counsellor of sorts and the three young women begin to come to grips (or not) with their complicity in the heinous crimes.
We meet Charles Manson and his cult in flashbacks. In prison the women are always beginning sentences with “Charlie says…,” hence the film’s title, and Karlene soon sees how deep their brainwashing runs. Unfortunately, given the sordid subject matter and the film’s point of view, the scenes at the Manson ranch are more compelling than the prison material. Matt Smith harnesses his amoral screen charisma to play up the seductive confidence of this particular demon but he also underlines his relentless manipulative pettiness. He avoids playing the deep insanity which is for the better since that’s more than apparent once the violence begins.
In one of the movie’s most memorable and most pathetic sequences, we see his weak attempts to become a rock star. He blames his failure on others of course, and the women are the first target. Though Manson humiliatingly instructs one of his second hand men (Chace Crawford) on how to pleasure a woman in front of the whole “family”, female pleasure and empowerment are never the goal despite all the group sex and the instructions to love your own body. The women are consistently claimed as sexual property or used as sexual props (in Manson’s embarrassing “concert”) or bargaining chips, and thinking for yourself risks ridicule and humiliation or gets you banished from ‘the family’.
Harron and Turner wisely don’t absolve these young women of their violent crimes with either their careful framing of the crimes or the dialogue — nor do they judge them for their childish views (they seem baffled, in particular, when wondering if Karlene is a lesbian or meeting a black man who doesn’t match their racist assumptions). But the filmmakers do draw damning lines directly to the ease of male privilege (even in communities like this one ostensibly off the grid and outside the mainstream patriarchal society) and learned female subservience in the face of unmistakable misogyny.
Hannah Murray’s performance, in particular, works hard to thread the needle. We initially see Manson’s family through her eyes, as the newest recruit, and she’s one of only two women in the flashbacks who seem to have their own minds. That she willingly tosses hers away anyway, even after seeing right through him, is the paradox and the tragedy of her own descent into hell.
But that’s a tough needle to thread.
Tasked with the supremely difficult work of portraying naive women who fell for Manson’s self-serving and contradictory preaching enough to lose themselves completely, the actresses struggle on occassion to make sense of their characters. But then, so too, does the film’s audience proxy, Karlene Faith, who is seeking to understand them and wrestling with whether or not she should even continue trying.
In the end the film sadly can’t reach its rather lofty psychological goals. Perhaps you’d need to write a whole book — Karlene Faith did with “The Long Prison Journey of Leslie Van Houten” on which the film is partially based — to even begin to make sense of these willfully brainwashed lost souls. While Charlie Says doesn’t measure up to Harron’s best work (American Psycho, I Shot Andy Warhol, and The Notorious Bettie Page), it’s nevertheless an intermittently absorbing and unexpected angle from which to try (in vain) to comprehend this incomprehensibly tragic chapter in American history.
Economists, reports Politico, are fleeing the Agriculture Department’s Economic Research *Service*. Six of them resigned on a single day last month. The reason?
“Trumpism” – Google News
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from 1. Trump from Michael_Novakhov (197 sites).
The senator from Vermont’s poll numbers have dipped, and he now finds himself challenged from several directions.
Never say never, but upgrading this Rockets team is going to be a major challenge given its age and salaries.
For the fourth time in five seasons, the Rockets suffered a disappointing playoff exit at the hands of the Golden State Warriors. Last season, they blew a 3-2 series lead, missing 27 consecutive threes in Game 7 of the Western Conference Finals — one of two games that series Chris Paul missed with a hamstring injury. This time, they somehow one-upped themselves, losing a win-or-go-home elimination game on their own home floor to a diet Warriors team missing both Kevin Durant and DeMarcus Cousins to leg injuries.
So what now? Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta hinted toward possible changes coming to the roster.
“I can promise you, we are going to win some championships with James Harden.”
Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) May 11, 2019
“I have five great starters, and they’re all great,” Fertitta said, applauding their achievements of the past two seasons. “But if we can make this team better, we’re gonna make this team better. And that’s just a fact. … It’s my job to make sure we put the best team we can put on the court next year.
“I can promise you, we’re gonna win some championships with James Harden. OK?” he continued. “Because we’re not gonna sit here. We’re gonna go to battle every year. We’re gonna have a strong offseason, and we’re gonna do whatever we can do to be a better team. OK? We are not gonna sit on our hands. I can promise you that.”
Harden himself also suggested the Rockets would make moves.
Asked what specifically that is, he said, “We’ll talk about it.” https://t.co/loHsRiqBBo
— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) May 11, 2019
How will they do that? Good question
The only promise of Houston’s upcoming offseason is that the Rockets are capped out.
Houston has $115 million in guaranteed salaries committed to just five players on the roster: Harden, Paul, Clint Capella, Eric Gordon, and P.J. Tucker. Houston had one of the best starting 5s in all of basketball, so you can understand its collective price tag. The Rockets are set to be a good team next year at the very least.
But NBA has projected its salary cap for the 2019-20 season at $109 million, which means the Rockets won’t be able to sign free agents outside of their mid-level exception and minimum contracts. The Rockets also don’t have a pick in this year’s NBA Draft, and they will likely lose key role players like Gerald Green, Austin Rivers and Iman Shumpert to other teams with deeper pockets. Houston also risks losing restricted free agent Danuel House, who gave the team a boost during the season, if another team makes a large enough offer for his services.
If there’s a silver lining, it’s that all those players were acquired with limited resources this season to replace outgoing vets from the 2017-18 team, like Trevor Ariza, Ryan Anderson, and Luc Richard Mbah a Moute. Rivers was acquired well below market value after the Suns bought his contract out. Shumpert was acquired in a three-team trade with Sacramento and made $11 million last season. Green could return on another minimum contract and proved he can still catch fire from the perimeter when given the opportunity. House signed a two-way G-League deal with the Rockets, who then converted his contract for the remainder of the year.
Houston is certainly used to filling out its roster on a budget. It must do so again.
But Houston also faces another harsh reality: The stars aren’t getting any younger.
James Harden will be 30 this offseason and has a four-year, $169 million extension that kicks in next season. Chris Paul just turned 34 and has three years and $124 million left on his deal. The final season of that contract will pay him $44 million the same year he turns 37. The Rockets will need to be creative to find them help, and quick.
Daryl Morey is as creative a general manager as you’ll find in the NBA. He acquired Paul in 2017 despite not having cap space to do so, and nearly nabbed Jimmy Butler back in November. But the Rockets’ only real trade chips this time around are Gordon, Tucker, and Capela, who had a nightmare series against Golden State. They would never deal Harden, and Paul’s contract is ghastly. It doesn’t seem like the Rockets have close to the assets necessary to land a third star. Does Morey have another trick up his sleeve?
Barring a seismic trade, Houston will have Fertitta’s “five great starters,” plus whoever else they can get to fill out the roster. In that case, Fertitta said he hopes some of his culture rubs off on the team he’s owned for only one season.
“I’m a fighter, and that’s my culture,” he said. “And I think the longer that I own this team, they’re gonna pick up more of my culture. We had ‘em. We should have stepped on their throats [in Game 4], and cut their throat. It’s not let’s make a few shots and win. It’s step on their throat, and let’s take it back to Houston and end it in six.
“We’ll pick up a few Tilman-isms along the way next year.”
If Houston’s sole goal is to finally beat the Warriors, they’ll have some help. Durant could leave the Warriors in free agency, and Golden State won’t be able to replace him. Then again, the Rockets did just blow a chance to defeat a Durant-less Warriors team on their home floor.
Worse, the West isn’t just the Warriors’ show, either. The young Nuggets will only get better. The Trail Blazers are a team no one wants to see in the playoffs. The Thunder will have a chip on their shoulder after a first-round exit. LeBron James isn’t missing the playoffs two seasons in a row. The Clippers are the right max player (or two) away from becoming the West favorite. If the Jazz ever get Donovan Mitchell some help, they’ll be a tough opponent as well. You never bet against Gregg Popovich’s Spurs, and the Kings, Timberwolves and Mavericks are each wild cards next season.
Then there are the Rockets, who may very well bring back the same starting five, only a year older, with a bench not nearly as deep as this year’s.
The Rockets have an MVP in Harden and one of the league’s best general managers in Morey, so you can never say the window is fully shut. But if this version of the fully-healthy Rockets wasn’t enough to beat the short-handed Warriors, will they ever be?
Pentagon deploys warship, Patriot missile battery to Middle East youtu.be/M0sgin8TXPw via @YouTube
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from The FBI News Review.
The FBI News Review: Mustai Karim fbinewsreview.blogspot.com/2019/05/mustai…
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Fuck Facebook!!! fbinewsreview.blogspot.com/2019/05/mustai…
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If Durant leaves in free agency, it looks like we’ll get the most fun team of the century back.
Let’s all hope Kevin Durant gets healthy in the next week or so and continues what had been an incredible postseason run, one that would have received more deserved acclaim if two contemporaries, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Kawhi Leonard, weren’t also on historic playoff marches of their own. Durant is one of the most electric athletes in all of American sports, and the NBA is at its best when the best players are playing, no matter the circumstances.
That said, if the Warriors’ incredible Game 6 comeback to eliminate the Rockets on Friday was a preview of what a Warriors team without Kevin Durant may look like in the years to come, let’s hope for that scenario.
We know what a team led by Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green is capable of doing. We watched it from 2014-16, until Golden State gave up a 3-1 lead to lose the NBA Finals after a 73-win season. (Had you forgotten?) Durant joined the team that summer, so we only got two real magical seasons with the dynastic Warriors before creating the hegemonic Warriors. But only hardcore Golden State fans — and perhaps not even them — would argue that the last three seasons with Durant have been more entertaining than the previous two seasons without him.
Friday night reminded us why. Stephen Curry went scoreless in the first half, but the Warriors kept up with the Rockets, owing to Klay Thompson’s chocolate milk swag and some key contributions from Kevon Looney and Shaun Livingston. This was an important ingredient in early dynastic Warriors history: huge contributions from the non-stars, whether it be David Lee helping win a playoff series or Andre Iguodala winning a dang Finals MVP. Since Durant (and more recently, DeMarcus Cousins) arrived and the roster got expensive, the Warriors’ bench has been depleted, so these heroic side contributions have diminished. (Livingston had scored at least 10 points only four times this season prior to Game 6, when he scored 11.)
The strength in numbers mentality is just part of it. That classic Curry explosion in the second half — including multiple daggers to plunge Houston into a long, dark summer — was such a breath of fresh air for all who have watched Steph struggle through this postseason, catching criticism and doubt from every direction.
Curry is one of the best teammates in the league, it would appear, and has been remarkably gentle about the ongoing drama involving Durant’s future. It’s easy to imagine his second half performance, amid a frustrating series and after a highly frustrating first half, as a bit of personal catharsis. It’s in Steph’s nature to speak with actions, not words. (This sometimes includes speaking with thrown mouthpieces and demonstrative ref taunting. Sainthood is overrated anyway.)
If Durant does decamp in July for New York or Los Angeles or Washington, D.C. (ha ha ha ha sorry couldn’t resist) or anywhere else, the Warriors’ hegemony will end. But the dynasty could continue, if Curry is as up to the task as he appeared to be in the second half, and if Thompson re-ups his contract, and if Draymond Green recommits to being his best self, and if gneral manager Bob Myers can find paths to rebuilding the rotation around them, whether through keeping DeMarcus Cousins or dealing some of the older reserves for young blood.
And even if the dynasty ends and the Warriors don’t win any more titles after Durant departs, Friday’s Game 6 showed that it should still be a helluva time.