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Wed Feb 27, 2019, 06:00 PM

Top 10 Conservative Idiots #6-8: The Thing From Uranus Edition

Top 10 Conservative Idiots #6-8: The Thing From Uranus Edition

Welcome back to the Top 10 Conservative Idiots! Book now and get triple your frequent flyer miles an double cash back points when you reserve with our new Top 10 Signature Rewards Card! We are back everybody and whew, that was quite the road trip! We had fun but it is good to be back home for a few weeks. And man did we have quite an insane week last week? It’s going to take a lot to break it all down for you. Do we have time for the thing? Good. OK so did everyone watch the Oscars this weekend? I mean yeah it was a complete mess of an award show. There were ups, there were downs. I love that Black Panther got some much needed recognition and that one of my favorite flicks of last year, Spiderman: Into The Spiderverse won Best Animated Movie. That was awesome. And then there was Billy Porter who won the red carpet this year and probably the next five years as well with his huge man gown tuxedo. And I mean really, Green Book? That was the movie you go with? That was the best picture of last year? I mean over Black Panther – one of the best superhero movies of all time and a real milestone for Marvel? Or Blackkklansman? Or A Star Is Born? Just…AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! I will say that this is one of the least memorable groups of Best Picture winners ever. Although everyone has their beefs with the Oscars. I’ve said mine, and it’s good to get that off my chest. I’ve been holding it in the last week. Not a shit joke, sir! OK that’s enough of the intro. But first you know what? Fuck it, I really didn’t find a talk show clip I really liked over the weekend so while on the subject of the Oscars let’s play the Honest Trailer of the Oscars which was better than that entire 5 hour presentation:

Whew, there's so much to unpack from the last week, we don't know where to begin. Well in the top slot this week, is Patriots owner Robert Kraft (1) - yes, he got arrested for soliciting prostitutes so I guess you could say that the Patriots had *TWO* happy endings this year. Hey o!!! For the second slot this week, is Christopher Hasson (2), aka the latest MAGA terrorist, and he might be one of the stupidest attempted murderers alive - really, we can't make this shit up. Taking the third slot this week is Jussie Smollet (3). No, he’s not conservative, but this whole thing with his attack just gets weirder and weirder and weirder and we will break down the most recent developments in this whole mess. In the fourth slot this week, we’ve got of course the guy who we currently call president, Donald J. Trump (4) and hey everyone, do you have your July 4th plans ready? Well your favorite president (sic) has made them for you! For the fifth slot this week, we have a new installment of our weekly investigative piece, Top 10 Investigates, and this week, we’re going to talk some hate crimes. HATE CRIMES!!! Specifically the alarming rate at which they’re rising in the last two years. In the number 6 slot this week is our weekly visit to the Holy Church Of The Top 10 in “Holy Shit”, and Trump did something surprising and announced that his administration is going to work to decriminalize homosexuality around the world, but with Ralph Drollinger and Paula White as his spiritual advisors, our resident pastor suspects something sinister is afoot and looks to get to the bottom of the Christian right blame game. At number 7 this week, we have a new “Beating A Dead Horse” (7) and the early reviews for Captain Marvel are in! Woo!!!! But that’s not the subject of discussion for this topic. No, we’re going to talk about the *OTHER* reviews for Captain Marvel coming from right wing trolls! And really if you’re shocked by this, you’re in the wrong place! For the 8th slot this week, we have a new installment of “How Is This Still A Thing?” and really people, haven’t you learned by now not to talk to Roseanne Barr? Because she is batshit fucking crazy and we will find out why interviewing her is still a thing. In the number 9 (NEIN!!!) slot this week, we have a new installment of "I Need A Drink" and we're going to get drunk and take a look at a story about an unclaimed lottery ticket in South Carolina that could be worth BILLIONS. Yes, that’s right – BILLIONS! Finally this week, sadly, folks, we must say goodbye to our ongoing series that explains how government works to conspiracy theorists, Deep State Diaries. But not before we take one last look at the State Department! Plus we’ve got some live music from the great Cypress Hill! Yes, the world’s foremost stoner band has graced us with their presence! And as always don’t forget the key!

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[font size="8"]Robert Kraft
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Yeah so the New England Patriots… really? You got to woo that? One of the many challenges of doing this in front of a live audience. So, the New England Patriots beat the Los Angeles Rams *AGAIN* to win their 6th Super Bowl in their 10th appearance. Say what you want about Tom Brady and Bill Belichick, but there’s another member of the Patriots squad who’s getting some really happy endings and becoming just another old sex pervert. I’m talking about their owner Robert Kraft, who got caught up in a sex scandal of his own over the weekend.

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is facing charges of misdemeanor solicitation of prostitution after he was twice videotaped paying for a sex act at an illicit massage parlor, police in Florida said Friday.

The 77-year-old Kraft was one of 25 people involved in the alleged solicitation at the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Florida.

Michael Edmondson, spokesman for the state attorney's office in Palm Beach County, told ESPN that the nature of any charges that the 25 people face will not be released until next week.

The potential charges come amid a widespread crackdown on sex trafficking in Florida from Palm Beach to Orlando. Hundreds of arrest warrants have been issued in recent days as result of a six-month investigation, and more are expected. Ten spas have been closed, and several people charged with sex trafficking have been taken into custody.

You know I’m a Rams fan, and I take absolutely no delight in watching an old republican white male get busted for sex crimes, and it’s not in my nature to kick a man when he’s down. But in this case I will make an exception, damn it! Oh and by the way what was Tom Brady doing there when he got arranged? I don’t think I would want to see that.

The quarterback has his owner’s back.

Tom Brady was photographed spending quality time with — and at one point hugging — New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft Monday, just days after Kraft was charged with soliciting sex from prostitutes in Florida.

The snaps were taken on a Boston tarmac after Kraft, 77, and Brady, 41, exited the former’s private jet in from Los Angeles, where they’d been celebrating Oscars weekend, according to TMZ, who obtained the photos. Brady’s wife Gisele Bündchen was also present.

In one photo, the two walk side by side as they appear engaged in conversation, and in another, Brady leans down to pull Kraft in close for a hug.

The intimate moment echoes that of the apparent kiss the quarterback shared with Kraft after their Patriots beat the Los Angeles Rams to win the Super Bowl on Feb. 3.

Seriously, is Tom Brady in love with Robert Kraft or is he in LOVE with Robert Kraft? Not that there’s anything wrong with that! Oh and here’s where it gets weird! Because of course it is going to get weird, why not? Want to know why Robert Kraft wasn’t at the game where the Patriots won the AFC title and went to the Super Bowl? He was in Florida soliciting for sex! Even he’s been there, done that!

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft visited a Florida massage parlor for sex acts the night before and the morning of last month’s AFC Championship Game, authorities said Monday in documents charging him with two misdemeanor counts of soliciting prostitution.

Kraft is one of hundreds of men charged in recent days as part of a crackdown on prostitution allegedly occurring in massage parlors between Palm Beach and Orlando. Ten spas have been closed and several people, most of them women originally from China, have been charged with running the operation.

The 77-year-old Kraft was chauffeured to the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in a 2014 white Bentley on the evening of Jan. 19, where police say they videotaped him engaging in a sex act and then handing over an undetermined amount of cash, Jupiter, Florida, police said in charging documents released by the Palm Beach State Attorney’s Office.

Investigators said Kraft returned 17 hours later, arriving at the upper-middle class shopping center where the spa was located in a chauffeured 2015 blue Bentley, the documents said. Kraft, who is worth $6 billion, was videotaped engaging in sex acts before paying with a $100 bill and another bill, police said. He then flew to Kansas City to watch his Patriots defeat the Chiefs in overtime hours later.

Holy shit!!! Hundreds??? Is this the mass arrests that the Qanon people have been warning us about all along? Is this the real sex and human trafficking ring? Is this the Thing From Uranus? Yes, I made a poop joke there! Good night everybody! So what kind of charges is Mr. Kraft looking at? Well, he’s a billionaire so he’ll probably avoid any jail sentence… and if you’re expecting that he’ll get nothing more than a slap on the wrist, you’re probably right.

The Florida state attorney's office in Palm Beach says New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft has been charged with two counts of soliciting prostitution, days after police alleged surveillance video had caught Kraft during two visits to the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Fla.

State Attorney Dave Aronberg said at a news conference Monday that Kraft, a resident of Massachusetts who also has a home in Palm Beach, is among 25 people facing first-degree misdemeanor charges of soliciting another to commit prostitution.

As for potential penalties, Aronberg said the charge potentially carries a prison sentence of up to one year, along with "mandatory 100 hours of community service, a mandatory $5,000 fine, and a mandatory class on the dangers of prostitution and human trafficking."

The police investigation into the spa was aimed at stopping human trafficking, which Aronberg equated to "modern day slavery" and called an "evil in our midst."

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[font size="8"]The MAGA Terrorist
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OK let’s lighten things up and talk about some terrorism. Yeah and not the kind of terrorism that you’d come to expect from Osama Bin Laden or Al’Qaeda, rather we’re going to focus on more home grown terrorism. You know think Timothy McVeigh, David Koresh and the Unabomber. That kind of home grown right-wing terrorism. So the latest one comes from where a lot of scary things come from – Baltimore, Maryland. But where did he come from? Oh and if you’re wondering why I keep referring to him as a MAGA terrorist, well, his list of targets looks very much like Trump’s enemies list, and yeah let’s keep it at that. But before we get into it, let’s probe the origin story of the latest MAGA terrorist

A U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant suspected of plotting to kill politicians and journalists as part of a terrorist attack appears to have Arizona ties.

A report from The New York Times indicates Christopher Paul Hasson graduated from Greenway High School in Phoenix in 1987 before joining the Marine Corps the following year.

A representative from the Glendale Union High School District didn't immediately respond Sunday to a request for comment from The Arizona Republic.

Hasson, 49, who worked at Coast Guard headquarters in Washington, D.C., was arrested on Feb. 15 on gun and drug charges.

Yeah so that happened. So he’s originally from Phoenix. That’s Maricopa County. Who else is from Maricopa County? Oh I know! Sherriff Joe!!! Does the embattled MAGA terrorist have ties to the guy who made prison hazing popular again? You betcha! Oh and by the way, he might be one of the single dumbest criminals alive. You don’t use official computers for personal business, never ever!

The U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant spent hours on end planning a wide-scale domestic terrorist attack, even logging in at his work computer on the job at headquarters to study the manifestos and heinous paths of mass shooters, prosecutors say. He researched how to carry out sniper attacks, they contend, and whether rifle scopes were illegal. And all the while, investigators assert, he was amassing a cache of weapons as he ruminated about attacks on politicians and journalists.

But Christopher Hasson was not an isolated figure, according to a contractor who worked with him. The 49-year-old lieutenant with more than two decades in the Coast Guard was part of a project to replace some aging cutters in the fleet, tasks that regularly required interacting with civilians and military officials at meetings and on travel.

“I don’t remember him saying anything that was crazy,” said Adam Stolzberg, a contractor who worked at headquarters and was in meetings with Hasson a couple of times a month. Politics never came up, Stolzberg said.

It was only after Hasson’s arrest last Friday at his workplace that the chilling plans prosecutors assert he was crafting became apparent, detected by an internal Coast Guard program that watches for any “insider threat.”

Yeah so his studies obviously failed. Because, the difference between Hasson and those other mass murderers? He got caught. And did so in a colossally stupid way. But it does shed some light on white supremacism in the military – something that the FBI warned us about way back in 2003. Remember that report that came out during the Bush years? Yeah so this happened. And by the way in case you’re wondering what Trump is saying about this? Well, he’s dead silent.

Former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele on Friday condemned President Trump for declining to speak out against a Coast Guard lieutenant accused of plotting to commit an act of white nationalist terrorism.

“Why would we be surprised that a self-proclaimed nationalist would not speak out against a self-proclaimed white nationalist?” Steele asked during an appearance on MSNBC.

“Why are we acting like this is a space that Donald Trump is going to go in on behalf of the American ideal? No, he’s not,” he continued.

Steele’s comments came after Coast Guard Lt. Christopher Paul Hasson was accused by federal prosecutors of stockpiling weapons and creating a hit list of prominent journalists and left-wing politicians.

The president remarked on the news Friday, calling it a “shame.”

Yeah so Trump just pulled a Seinfeld here. But this whole thing really sheds a light on white supremacists in the United States military. Yes, there are neo Nazis and white supremacists currently active in the US military. So what the fuck is going on here? We might have to keep an eye on this subject.

House Democrats are calling upon the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security to address renewed concern over the incidence of white supremacy and other extremist affiliations among members of the military, following the recent arrest of a Coast Guard lieutenant who, according to federal prosecutors, was actively plotting deadly acts of domestic terrorism.

In a letter sent to Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan and DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen on Monday, Maryland Reps. Elijah Cummings, Anthony Brown and Jamie Raskin, as well as California Rep. Jackie Speier, praised the “swift action taken by federal agencies” to arrest Christopher Hasson before he could carry out his alleged plans, but expressed concern “that an individual that espouses these views could repeatedly serve in the military across multiple services.”

According to court records, Hasson’s military career began in the Marine Corps, where he served from 1998 to approximately 1993, followed by two years of active duty with the Army National Guard. Since 2016, the 49-year-old lieutenant had been working as an acquisitions officer at the Coast Guard’s headquarters in Washington, D.C. It was from his work computer that federal prosecutors say Hasson, a self-described white nationalist who was arrested earlier this month on weapons and drug charges, studied the manifesto of the far-right Norwegian terrorist Anders Breivik and other extremist killers, and wrote of his desire to “kill almost every last person on the earth.”

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[font size="8"]Jussie Smollet
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I’m sure by now that you’re probably sick of hearing about *FORMER* Empire star Jussie Smollet and the ongoing investigation into the attack that he now probably staged on himself. And he got arrested for it. And even crazier – the guys he hired are potentially the stupidest criminals of all time. Well maybe not of all time but they’re definitely hall of fame material. I mean this whole thing just gets weirder and weirder and weirder. So the question remains – did Jussie Smollet order the hit on himself to teach his bosses a lesson or didn’t he?

Dozens of private and city-owned security cameras played a critical role in helping investigators unravel “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett’s alleged hoax attack, police and prosecutors say.

Officials say investigators were suspicious of Smollett from the outset.

Officers were dispatched to investigate a brutal racist, homophobic attack on Smollett early on the morning of Jan. 29. During the attack, he said, two men threw a rope around his neck, in the manner of a noose.


That all changed after police arrested two U.S.-born brothers of Nigerian descent – Abel and Ola Osundairo – as they arrived in Chicago Feb. 13 from a two-week trip overseas.

Abel, 25, was a close friend and personal trainer of Smollett who provided the actor with the club drug Ecstasy, prosecutors say. Both brothers had worked on the set of "Empire."

Smollett was charged this week with disorderly conduct by filing a false police report.

Prosecutors say he falsely told police that the perpetrators flung racial and homophobic slurs as they pummeled him, poured a chemical substance on him, and screamed “This is MAGA Country,” a reference to President Trump’s 2016 campaign slogan.

So that escalated quickly. I mean that really got out of hand fast. This whole thing is certifiably insane and it just keeps getting weirder. What started out as an innocent attack is quickly spiraling out of control and it might get even worse before it’s all over. I mean Jussie’s got some ‘splainin to do. Well at least we have the check!

ABC News has obtained the $3,500 check that was apparently written by "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett to one of the two brothers who Chicago police said helped stage an attack on Smollett last month.

ABC News reports the check's memo line reads "5 week Nutrition/Workout program (Don't Go)." Sources told ABC News Smollett was training for an upcoming music video titled "Don't Go."

The check was dated Jan. 23, six days before Smollett was accused of staging the attack. The music video was scheduled to be filmed Feb. 23, according to a calendar entry of Smollett's obtained by ABC News.

A source close to Smollett told ABC News that the $3,500 check was $600 per-week for the workout plan and $100 per-week for the nutrition plan.

ABC News has also obtained text messages between Smollett and one of the Osundairo brothers.

That seriously is a legendary fail. If someone pays you to commit a crime, maybe at least go watch a crime movie first! Because if you watch crime movies you know not to buy all your shit in one place or they’ll get suspicious! I mean even in Baby Driver they admitted that buying their masks all at once was a pretty stupid idea.

The Jussie Smollett case has not gotten any less messy—or confusing. The $3,500 check that Smollett allegedly used to pay brothers Abel and Ola Osundairo to stage a hate crime against him in January includes a memo line that reads, “5 week Nutrition/Workout program (Don’t Go).” Sources close to Smollett—who has maintained his innocence since formally being arrested for filing a false police report—say the Empire actor did not pay the brothers to attack him, but instead hired them to help him lose weight ahead of a music-video shoot. ABC News obtained a copy of the check that shows that memo line, as well as text messages between Smollett and one of the brothers regarding nutrition and exercise that seem to support that narrative.

Still, during an interview Monday with Good Morning America, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson maintained that during their police interrogation, the brothers indicated that the check was given to them explicitly for the attack—and that police have additional evidence supporting this theory that has not been made public yet.

Smollett has consistently denied staging his attack. In their most recent statement on Smollett’s behalf following an impassioned police briefing—and Smollett’s arrest—the actor’s attorneys wrote, “Today we witnessed an organized law-enforcement spectacle that has no place in the American legal system. The presumption of innocence, a bedrock in the search for justice, was trampled upon at the expense of Mr. Smollett and notably, on the eve of a mayoral election. Mr. Smollett is a young man of impeccable character and integrity who fiercely and solemnly maintains his innocence and feels betrayed by a system that apparently wants to skip due process and proceed directly to sentencing.”

That is a good question, Mr. Harvey! And in case you’re wondering why hate crimes go unreported in this country, well, there’s that whole thing we do where we tend to blame the victims, and Mr. Smollet is one such victim in this case. Yeah… he just made it worse for literally everyone that is the victim of a hate crime.

One of the many moral panics of our time is that of “victimhood culture”. Apparently, we are too indulgent of those who can claim victim status, a state especially rife among students. The story goes that this has turned us all into eternal babies, coddling us, protecting us from “micro aggressions” and signalling an erosion of individual grit and autonomy in favour of mimsy whining.

In an effort to invert unfair power structures, some claim, victimhood culture has only succeeded in replacing them with different unfair power structures, where those who used to be at the bottom now hold the whip hand over those who used to be at the top. Women terrify men, who are forever fearful an offhand remark will become a harassment lawsuit, and racial minorities secure jobs at the expense of white people the moment their unusual names are spotted on a CV. The writer Lionel Shriver called it “privileging the disadvantaged”. Shriver also told BBC Radio 4 that white men in the UK are on the bottom rung of society, because they are considered to be the most powerful demographic (reader, I can reveal they are). Victimhood culture advocates engage in a lot of doublethink.

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[font size="8"]Donald Trump
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Who’s got July 4th plans? Yes, you know July 4th – the holiday where you fight traffic to go to your local high school’s ridiculously poorly planned fireworks show, while your idiot neighbors blow their thumbs off trying it at home. Yeah, you might have lit up the night sky and caused dogs everywhere around you to bark their heads off, and you’ll get a trip to the ER out of it! Woo!!!! ‘MERICA!!! Well if either activity isn’t in your July 4th plans, let’s let your favorite president make them for you! What’s he got planned exactly? A super patriotic Americagasm spectacular on the National Mall. Which of course is already opposite the official government sanctioned July 4th Independence Day Parade celebration in DC. I mean must he *HAVE* to ruin everything? Oh he must!

President Trump asked to Americans to "hold the date" of July 4th—a federal holiday already in most calendars—for the White House's planned "Salute to America." In a Twitter message published Sunday, the president sketched the broad outlines of his new Independence Day celebration, which sounds pretty similar to standard issue July 4th festivities.

According to CNN, the capital has its own Independence Day tradition, and there's no word yet whether the "Salute to America" would augment or replace it:

Trump has expressed his desire to create a major patriotic event for some time. After attending Paris’s Bastille Day military parade with French leader Emmanuel Macron in 2017, the U.S. President said he wanted to stage his own similar event. "To a large extent because of what I witnessed, we may do something like that on July 4 in Washington down Pennsylvania Avenue," he told Reuters at the time. "We’re actually looking into it."

The White House first attempted to mount its parade for Veteran’s Day last year, but later cancelled the event, citing high costs. "The local politicians who run Washington, D.C. (poorly) know a windfall when they see it,” wrote Trump on Twitter at the time. "When asked to give us a price for holding a great celebratory military parade, they wanted a number so ridiculously high that I cancelled it."

If the new 4th of July celebrations aren't similarly thwarted, the president may have some trouble booking entertainment, as his administration has struggled to find popular musicians willing to associate themselves with the Trump White House. Entertainers like Elton John, Andrea Bocelli, and 2 Chainz passed on the chance to perform at Trump's inauguration, an event that finally mustered a tepid billing featuring 3 Doors Down, Toby Keith, and Tony Orlando.

WOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! Aint no party like a Donald Trump party because a Donald Trump party don’t stop! Oh wait, that sounds *EXACTLY* like literally every July 4th celebration ever. I mean come on, Obama could get Bruce Springsteen *AND* U2 to play his events! Trump could barely get a Z-grade Bruce Springsteen cover band. So what’s he got in store?

In line with Donald Trump’s ridiculous habit of taking credit for everyone else’s efforts, he is now claiming ownership of Fourth of July celebrations that are held every year in the nation’s capital (and across the country, of course).

“HOLD THE DATE!” Trump yelled on Twitter Sunday morning. “We will be having one of the biggest gatherings in the history of Washington, D.C., on July 4th. It will be called ‘A Salute To America’ and will be held at the Lincoln Memorial. Major fireworks display, entertainment and an address by your favorite President, me!”

In addition to exaggerating his relevance overall to the human species, what Trump did here is to stake a claim to a national holiday by seeking to turn it into another hate-filled, political lie-fest, otherwise known as a MAGA rally funded by taxpayers. It’s also a way to inflate his crowd size. Such a grifter.

Whiny Trump didn’t get his $92 million boondoggle of a military parade, so apparently, he had to think of another way to pay homage to himself before he winds up in jail. He probably stole the idea from one of his dictatorial idols, North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, whom Trump is scheduled to meet with this week in Vietnam. Maybe Trump will invite “little Rocket Man” to the party.

Hold the date? Seriously Trump’s never got a “Save The Date” card in the mail? He can’t even get that right! So how’s he going to throw this most patriotic Americagasm orgy of all patriotic displays? And has he really thought this through? Oh who am I kidding! Of course he hasn’t. I mean there’s all kinds of operating costs associated with an event like this.

It’s about four months away, but President Donald Trump has some pretty big plans for the Fourth of July in the District this summer. He announced on Sunday that he’s hosting a July 4th celebration at the Lincoln Memorial.

However, Mayor Muriel Bowser told FOX 5 Monday that not only have D.C. officials not heard from the White House, there is also already planning underway for the city’s traditional July 4th celebration. There’s a parade down Constitution Avenue, the annual “Capitol Fourth” concert at the U.S. Capitol and the fireworks over The Mall.

Sunday, the President tweeted: “We will be having one of the biggest gatherings in the history of Washington, D.C., on July 4th. It will be called ‘A Salute to America’ and will be held at the Lincoln Memorial.” He also said he’d make an address during the celebration.

But Bowser made it clear — she has concerns about planning, costs and security.

“Planning for that to make sure that all the participants are safe down on The Mall is not something that you can wing, it has to be planned and planned well, and moving the President during that could be a very considerable undertaking for our MPD, which would pull them off the already large crowds that we have,” said Bowser.

I love that movie! So yeah he obviously didn’t think this through and will need to do some extensive planning which is great because Washington DC will be using most of its’ resources to cover the other main July 4th attraction! Ha ha!!! Maybe Blackwater and the III%ers are available? Although this is why I love Twitter because there were some hilarious responses to Trump’s madness:

People on Twitter had a blast Sunday coming up with images for President Donald Trump’s planned “one of the biggest gatherings in the history of Washington, D.C.” at the Lincoln Memorial this year to mark Independence Day.

Visions ranged from chilling images of the kind of military event that might occur in Moscow to old photos of the 1970 “Honor America” Independence Day celebration on the National Mall organized by wealthy supporters of Richard Nixon. The 1970 event was aimed at shoring up support for Nixon amid antiwar protests and the fatal shooting that year of four Kent State University students by the Ohio National Guard.

The event instead blossomed into a free-for-all involving furious neo-Nazis and other conservatives and a “smoke-in” by antiwar hippies. (“Before this is over, I may need some of that stuff myself,” quipped master of ceremonies Bob Hope.) Nixon was not on the scene.

Trump on Sunday urged Americans to “HOLD THE DATE” of July 4 for a “Salute To America” celebration featuring a speech by “your favorite President, me!”

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[font size="8"]Top 10 Investigates
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It’s time to investigate beyond the headlines. This is Top 10 Investigates!

There’s no mistake that since the 2016 election that saw America take an absolutely hard right turn that hate crimes have been reported in alarming numbers, not just in the United States, but all over the world. What’s to blame for this? Many people blame social media for the rise in what’s fueling this worrisome trend. But just how bad are things? It’s not just in America this is happening but in countries like Poland, Hungary, France, England, Turkey, the Philippines, and Russia, where arguably this can all be traced back to. But just how bad have things got in the world of hate? Well there’s a lot.

One video showed a 51-year-old Jewish man being beaten to the ground by three young men, who seemed to select him at random. Another showed an Orthodox Jewish man being chased across the street by a man wielding a tree branch. A third showed an Orthodox Jewish man hanging on to a fence as an assailant jumped and choked him.

The three incidents, all of which took place in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, in the past year, have raised alarms in the neighborhood and in the city’s large Orthodox Jewish community as a whole. Hate crimes are up citywide, but in Crown Heights, they have taken a particularly violent turn.

There were 55 hate crimes reported in New York City this year as of Feb. 17, an increase of 72 percent over the same period last year, the police said. Anti-Semitic crimes made up almost two-thirds of that, for a total of 36 crimes reported so far this year, compared with 21 last year.

The steep rise comes after a year when hate crimes were already increasing. Anti-Semitic crimes in 2018 were up 22 percent compared with 2017.

And that’s just in New York alone. What about the rest of the country? It’s getting very scary out there, as you can already see. While the Jussie Smollett hate crime is FUBAR, there’s no mistake that it shed light on just how many hate crimes go unreported. And why is that? Well there’s many reasons why hate crimes go unreported.

A Minnesota legislator said Wednesday that he would introduce a proposal to toughen the penalty for falsely reporting hate crimes, citing a high-profile reported attack on a gay black actor in Chicago that was recently called into question.

Rep. Nick Zerwas, R-Elk River, described the measure, expected later this session, as "a reasonable step to help deter individuals from filing false police reports and to make sure that we devote law enforcement's limited resources to investigating and prosecuting legitimate bias-motivated crimes."

Zerwas said he was motivated to bring the issue forward after recent reports that police believed "Empire" actor Jussie Smollett may have staged a January attack by two masked men shouting racial and anti-gay slurs. Smollett has denied that claim through his lawyers.

In recent days, Zerwas has written about the case in multiple posts on Twitter, describing it as part of a "recent rise in fake victimization" and a symptom of media bias.

Is it any surprise that a republican is leading the charge to stiffen penalties on reporting false hate crimes? We’re shocked, but not that shocked. Because hate crimes almost always tend to be caused by conservatives. And who are they targeting? We’ve seen time and time again that the LGBT community and Jewish synagogues and cemeteries are targets. But what else?

For the fourth year in a row, the Southern Poverty Law Center, a civil rights organization that tracks hate groups, reports that hate and domestic extremism are rising in an unabated trend. The center found a 30 percent increase in U.S. hate groups over the past four years and a 7 percent increase in hate groups in 2018 alone, according to the center's annual "Year in Hate and Extremism" report. The group designated 1,020 organizations as hate groups in 2018, a high of at least 20 years.

The watchdog group blames President Trump, his administration, right-wing media outlets and the ease of spreading hate on social media platforms for the alarming increase. The growth, it says, is largely driven by "hysteria over losing a white-majority nation to demographic change."

"The numbers tell a striking story — that this president is not simply a polarizing figure but a radicalizing one," Heidi Beirich, director of the SPLC's Intelligence Project, said in a statement. "Rather than trying to tamp down hate, as presidents of both parties have done, President Trump elevates it — with both his rhetoric and his policies. In doing so, he's given people across America the go-ahead to to act on their worst instincts."

The Southern Poverty Law Center is a revered civil rights watchdog group that has been around since 1971. It is credited with dealing the final blows to the Ku Klux Klan through legal battles.

Yes, haters gonna hate. So… shake it off. But before you do that, you should realize just how many hate groups operate in the United States and they get away with it. And when you live in a divided nation in a world that’s becoming increasingly divided on social media. Or you could say that it’s because of an alarming increase in an increasingly far right conservative presence around the globe. But whatever it is, we currently live in troubled times, and it’s going to get worse before it gets better.

The number of hate groups in the United States rose for the fourth year in a row in 2018, pushed to a record high by a toxic combination of political polarization, anti-immigrant sentiment and technologies that help spread propaganda online, the Southern Poverty Law Center said Wednesday.

The law center said the number of hate groups rose by 7 percent last year to 1,020, a 30 percent jump from 2014. That broadly echoes other worrying developments, including a 30 percent increase in the number of hate crimes reported to the F.B.I. from 2015 through 2017 and a surge of right-wing violence that the Anti-Defamation League said had killed at least 50 people in 2018.

“We’re seeing a lot of bad trends,” Heidi Beirich, the director of the intelligence project at the Southern Poverty Law Center, said in an interview on Wednesday. “There are more hate groups, more hate crimes and more domestic terrorism in that same vein. It is a troubling set of circumstances.”

Ms. Beirich said the increase in extremist activity tracked by her team began in earnest in the early days of the 2016 presidential election, when anxieties over immigration helped propel President Trump to the White House. Before that, she said, the number of hate groups had fallen for three straight years.

That’s it for Top 10 Investigates. Good day.

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[font size="8"]Holy Shit
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Gather around, my fair brothers and sisters, it’s time to take a seat in the pew and pass the collection plate! For the Holy Church of the Top 10 has convened and it’s our weekly duty to remind you why the holiest among us are also the most full of:

My fair congregation! You know the unholy, ungodly Dark One, whose name shall not be spoken in my church, is somehow trying to make things right by going against the religion that sees him as some sort of higher power, even though we all know damn well that he isn’t! Now… in case you’re wondering what I am referring to, exactly, is that the Dark One’s administration plans to decriminalize homosexuality around the world. Yes, he is going against his own, supposed, religion. But… only thing is he doesn’t even really know about it!

US President Donald Trump seemed unaware of his own administration's plans to end the criminalization of homosexuality around the world when asked about it on Wednesday.

Following reports that the Trump administration will launch a global campaign to end the criminalization of homosexuality, a reporter asked Trump in the Oval Office: "Mr. President, on your push to decriminalize homosexuality, are you doing that? And why?"

Trump asked the reporter to repeat the question, and then said: "I don't know which report you're talking about. We have many reports."

NBC News r eported on Tuesday that the Trump White House would campaign for a change in laws in dozens of countries where it is illegal to be gay, citing administration officials.

The campaign is aimed in part at denouncing Iran's human rights record, NBC News said.

Richard Grenell, the US ambassador to Germany, who is openly gay, plans to lead the campaign and discussed the effort with a dozen LGBTQ activists from around Europe at a dinner in Berlin on Tuesday night, The New York Times reported.

Yes… WTF indeed! I mean they could have just given Iran the finger and it would have been much easier, and not have demonized an entire people at that! For the good book says “Cast a light unto others that you would have cast unto yourself!”. Yeah it does say that, sir! Now of course our brothers and sisters on the Christian right have steered the wrong course. I mean really, they can’t possibly get any crazier can they?

Right-wing preacher Lance Wallnau posted a video on his Facebook page last night in which he prayed against the Trump administration’s plan to launch a global effort aimed at decriminalizing homosexuality, saying that the United States has no right to impose “our craziness” on other nations.

Wallnau blamed the plan on a “State Department Trump swamp bureaucracy,” saying that decriminalizing homosexuality “is not the most important agenda” because white evangelical Christians wearing MAGA hats are actually the real targets of discrimination and hate crimes in America.

“You want to hear the truth?” he said. “Gays are celebrated everywhere, from ‘Hamilton’ on Broadway to the Tony Awards to the Academy Awards. There is no group that is more lifted up and celebrated and promoted than the LGBT movement. It’s the opposite of persecution. You want to know persecution is? Be a white evangelical conservative and … put a MAGA hat on; you might as well put a cross on and go to Saudi Arabia.”

“I pray that the State Department’s progress with their LGBT agenda—their zeal for the gay agenda and their politics—and the State Department’s funding, break that in Jesus’ name,” Wallnau added. “We have no right to impose on other nations our craziness in terms of our cultural definition of liberty. We don’t have a right to mess with other countries’ sovereignty and their religious beliefs. Oh my God, in Jesus’ name, I would like America to be saved, but for America to be saved, it’s got to not be an evil influence in the world.”

See? Even JAYSUS thinks your fail is unbelievable! And by the way if you think this is targeting all countries, you’re wrong! In fact it’s targeting just one country and it’s meant to be an insult, because that’s just how he rolls! Well, they could have said “fuck you” and got it over with, but then again that’s not how he rolls!

For a brief moment during the past week, it looked like the Trump administration may have actually done something good. In a surprise move, Trump’s ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell announced that he was leading an initiative to decriminalize homosexuality around the world. About 70 countries have laws on the books that make being LGBTQ or having same-sex sexual relations illegal.

The idea sounds as great as it is out of character. It’s also never going to happen. Here are five reasons why the proposed policy initiative is dead in the water before it even starts.

It’s only about Iran. Tellingly, Grenell bolstered his argument for the plan by citing Iran.

“Barbaric public executions are all too common in a country where consensual homosexual relationships are criminalized and punishable by flogging and death,” Grenell wrote in an op-ed. Trump and the right are fixated on Iran and will use every available means to attack it. Attacking Iran is also plays well with Israel’s right-wing government.

But what about other Muslim nations? The administration’s beloved Saudia Arabia regularly arrests people for being gay or even flying a rainbow flag. Or Chechnya, which is under the thumb of Trump’s buddy Putin, and where gay men live in fear of their lives?

Well now the good LAWRD JAYSUS sees right through his lies, and LYING IS A SIN!!! It is one of the most egregious of sins in our church!!! Can I get an amen???? And in case you’re wondering if their motives couldn’t be any more sinister, just look at what the Dark One’s son, Dark One Jr, said after he found out about the news:

President Trump's eldest son took aim at Out Magazine on Wednesday after an op-ed in the magazine slammed the Trump administration's push to decriminalize homosexuality around the world as a "racist" distraction.

In a tweet, Donald Trump Jr. wrote that no matter what his father's administration pursued, his critics would always "find a way to somehow make it bad."

"Yup, no matter what he does they find a way to somehow make it bad. You can’t make this stuff up anymore," he wrote.

The tweet came in response to an op-ed by Out writer Matthew Rodriguez, who wrote that the administration's announcement this week that it would seek to decriminalize homosexuality in countries around the world was a "racist tactic."

Rodriguez wrote that "rather than actually being about helping queer people around the world, the campaign looks more like another instance of the right using queer people as a pawn to amass power and enact its own agenda."

The author uses as an example of his argument the push to center the decriminalization efforts on Iran, a country president Trump has often verbally attacked.

So you can’t make up that a racist motive isn’t racist? I mean Dark One, Jr, for shame!!! And if you think it’s not a racist problem, well, then you’re also a racist! There you go. Mass has ended, may you go in peace!!! That’s it this week for:

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[font size="8"]Beating A Dead Horse: Captain Marvel
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Hey everyone, guess what? Early reviews for Captain Marvel are in! Woooooooooo!!! And the reviews for the movie are glowing. I particularly loved the one reviewer who said that “Thanos is fucked”. But those aren’t the reviews that we’re going to talk about here. No, instead we’re going to talk about the *OTHER* reviews for Captain Marvel. Only these reviews are coming from right wing losers who haven’t seen the movie yet. Yes, the same dipshits who took down Ghostbusters and Star Wars Episode VIII because they’re racist and sexist losers who have nothing better to do than troll, they are coming for the latest Marvel superhero. Yes, nothing is safe from these keyboard warriors! And can anyone guess why? OOH!!! OOH!!! I think I know the answer!

In depressingly – and bafflingly – predictable fashion, trolls are already flooding sites like Rotten Tomatoes with fake reviews for forthcoming MCU feature Captain Marvel.

The movie, which hinges on a pivotal female hero (played by Brie Larson) in the Marvel Cinematic Universe – not to mention one that’s going to be key to Avengers: Endgame – it’s now subject to misogynist trolling in the same vein as that seen for movies like the all-female Ghostbusters reboot.

So far, there are 8,617 (at the time of writing) ‘user ratings’ for the movie, astonishing for a film that hasn’t been released yet, and only seen by a small pool of critics as of last night.

Though some are fighting back, the majority of the ‘ratings’ come with tediously transparent remarks about the film’s so-called ‘agenda’, which has clearly upset more than a few chaps who are finding their masculinity in jeopardy.

Remember the good old days when people used to go to movies and I don’t know, enjoy them? Well guess what? Those days are long gone! Because of these people who have to ruin it for everybody else, and they’re not going away any time soon! In fact, think of this as Troll Hard 2: Troll Harder. Well the sad thing is their brand of trolling, actually kind of works. But this time around, we’re onto them!

If you’ve been keeping up with “Captain Marvel” news the past couple of days, you might’ve read some headlines claiming trolls are already “bombing” the Brie Larson movie’s Rotten Tomatoes score and “flooding” the film’s page with sexist comments.

Since the news hit, it appears several (around 15 or so) of those trolling comments have been removed, according to screenshots HuffPost took on Tuesday. But there might be an entirely new onslaught of people now downvoting the film.

It’s dizzying. It’s exhausting. And, yes, it’s all happening pre-release. So with time on our hands before the movie debuts on March 8, we decided to take a look at what’s really going on.

HuffPost first noticed the troll attacks on “Captain Marvel” earlier this week thanks to stories from a few fandom blogs and Screen Rant, which pointed out, “Most of the trolls’ comments are about Larson being a vocal feminist and how this movie pushes feminism to the forefront of the [Marvel Cinematic Universe].”

Yes, so trollers gonna troll. And you know what? We fall for it every single time because they know how to hit us and how to hit us where it hurts! in fact their brand of trolling works so well because it’s designed to. They know our weaknesses – racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, and all the other fears and phobias that make us human. And they exploit them!

As Disney and Marvel Studios gear up for the March 8 release of Captain Marvel, the first female-led solo film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, some fans aren't celebrating but are instead attempting to poison the well, and presumably damage its opening-weekend box office. Trolls are bombing Captain Marvel's Rotten Tomatoes entry with negative reviews intended to sabotage its audience score.

It's important to note that no public screenings have been held for the film.

Most of the negative comments littering Captain Marvel's audience review section of the aggregator site aren't so much concerned with the film as with its star, Academy Award winner Brie Larson. Left by predominately male users, the remarks are primarily focused on what they claim are her "racist and sexist" views.

The outrage, such that it is, stems from a recent interview in which Larson called for inclusivity after she noticed that journalists attending press events and reviewing films were "overwhelmingly white male."

But have no fear, Marvel fans! Rotten Tomatoes is here! Yes, the review site that compiles critical reviews and gives them an overall score is getting tough on review trolling this time around. Yes, they may have got away with it for Ghostbusters, and the Last Jedi, because those were both terrible movies, but they’re not getting away with it for Captain Marvel! No sir!

Rotten Tomatoes is fighting back against trolls.

The powerful movie review aggregation website announced Monday it would ban user comments before a film premieres in theaters. The move is in part a bid to crack down on what it called "non-constructive input, sometimes bordering on trolling, which we believe is a disservice to our general readership." The service is also tweaking the system it uses to poll moviegoers about their interest in upcoming releases.

The move comes after some users apparently tried to torpedo the moviegoer interest percentage score for the not-yet-released "Captain Marvel," Marvel Studio's first female-led superhero movie. Rotten Tomatoes' webpage for the film, starring Brie Larson in the title role, had been swamped with negative comments, some of them misogynistic.

"Captain Marvel," slated to debut March 8 and expected to open with some $100 million in ticket sales, was just the latest high-profile movie to come under attack by trolls. In recent years, a crush of users tried to sink audience scores for Marvel's "Black Panther," "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" and the female-led "Ghostbusters" reboot, deluging the site with comments that were sometimes racist or sexist.

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[font size="8"]How Is This Still A Thing?
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It’s time once again to ask:

This week: TV shows who insist on interviewing Roseanne Barr. How is this still a thing? You know just like we think Twitter should have an “are you sure?” button before pressing send, we really need to have an intervention on reporters who still insist on interviewing the former TV star who has well, struggled to grasp reality. While we can’t fault Roseanne for that, we can certainly fault her for whatever batshit crazy thing is about to come out of her mouth. And this week, she certainly did not disappoint in the slightest.

Roseanne Barr is at it again. The actress/comedienne who lost her job and her hit ABC show after her racist Twitter rant against Valerie Jarrett just took some shots at Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and it looks like some folks will never learn to keep their mouths shut.

Over the weekend, Barr posted a video to YouTube calling AOC a “bug-eyed bi*ch” and a “Farrakhan loving bi*ch” over her proposed Green New Deal; a plan intended to “achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions and create economic prosperity for all.”

This isn’t the first time Roseanne Barr has made offensive statements against women who deserve respect.

In deranged new video, Roseanne Barr says of Valerie Jarrett, ‘I thought the bitch was white’

Back in May, Roseanne Barr was abruptly fired from her own show after she tweeted racist remarks about former Barack Obama adviser, Valerie Jarrett.

“muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj,” Barr tweeted in response to a post about Jarrett.

ABC quickly fired her once they caught wind of the offensive tweets.


Now really, Roseanne. Did you learn anything? Apparently not. And now this gets even weirder with former confidant and the voice of Sideshow Bob himself, Kelsey Grammar, who not even 3 days before, called for Roseanne to be forgiven. Now really, Kelsey, what did you expect?

“Frasier” actor Kelsey Grammer said over the weekend that he thinks that “people should be forgiven” in regards to Roseanne Barr’s departure from her eponymous show last year.

Grammer said he was encouraged by the success of the reboot of “Roseanne,” adding that a reboot of “Frasier” is in the works, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Last year, Barr was fired by ABC after she made a joke about Valerie Jarrett, who worked s an adviser to former President Obama.

After cries of racism, Barr’s show was canceled. ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey said her comments were “abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values.”

“I have no idea. I think people should be forgiven for their sins. Our life is so challenging. How do you ever make amends?” Grammer said of the incident.

And really, you really had to go there? When you interview Roseanne you are almost guaranteed anymore that she will say something batshit crazy. Because Roseanne suffers from a condition where the rectum recycles matter that goes straight to the cranial cavity. And you probably know this disease better as “shit for brains”. Well, her reasons for being fired are almost as crazy as the reason why she was fired in the first place.

Roseanne Barr, who offered a plethora of reasons why she was fired from her hit rebooted sitcom following a racist tweet last year, told The Jerusalem Post that "antisemitism" at ABC and her support for Israel helped do her in.

In an interview published Friday in the Jerusalem-based English-language newspaper ahead of her visit to address Israel's parliament, Barr expanded on one of the multiple theories she's offered to explain why she was kicked off her revived show, "Roseanne," last summer.

"I feel that what happened to me, a large part of it is antisemitism," Barr told the Post in a phone interview on Thursday from her home in Hawaii. "I think it played a part – the fact that I was never allowed to explain what I meant – and what I meant was a commentary on Iran – so they purposely mischaracterized what I said and wouldn't let me explain."

She said ABC acted in haste and did something "unprecedented that they've never done to any other artist" because she is "the most vocal person about Israel and (against) BDS," the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement to pressure Israel over its treatment of Palestinians.

Anti-semitism is to blame? Really, are you Walter Sobchak from the Big Lebowski, Roseanne? Look, we support free speech here, nobody is going to come and take your free speech rights away. But after one crazy thing after another, we really need a sanity check before you go out in public and start saying crazy shit. Because she said this about Natalie Portman in January.

The comedian also said in an interview published Friday in the daily newspaper Israel Hayom that John Goodman should have "fought harder" for her.

Roseanne Barr criticized Natalie Portman and defended Kevin Hart ahead of her visit to Israel.

In an interview published Friday in the daily newspaper Israel Hayom, the comedian took on Portman, who last April outraged many upon declining to take part in an award ceremony as the recipient of the Genesis Prize Laureate, explaining she "did not want to appear as endorsing Benjamin Netanyahu, who was to be giving a speech at the ceremony."

"It was really sickening, I find her repulsive," said Barr of Portman in the interview. "She was raised in incredible privilege of safety in the Jewish state and knows nothing about anti-Semitism."

Portman was born in Jerusalem and moved to the U.S. with her parents at the age of 3.

Added Barr, "She's the darling of the left here, the Jewish left in Hollywood, she is a complete hypocrite who grew up in safety and privilege, like I said before, and knows nothing about what she speaks of."

You’re going to attack Natalie Portman for being Jewish when you’re trying to claim anti-semitism is the reason why you got fired? That is what one might call “hypocrisy”. That’s enough to make you ask – interviewing Roseanne:

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[font size="8"]I Need A Drink
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Whew, Roseanne is crazy. I need a drink!

So of course you know by now that the idea behind this is that we cocktail, and while we’re cocktailing, we get drunk and discuss literally anything in the news as long as it doesn’t involve politics. And what involves politics less than the lottery? No, not like that, sir. Ah, don’t you love it when someone in the audience is making wise cracks at your expense? So tell me, bartender, what goes well with a story about the lottery? A glass of Dom Perignon rose? What are you trying to make me go broke? Ah fuck it, I’ll just have a glass of Jack Daniels mixed with Jack Daniels. So let’s go to South Carolina for this story.

Nearly everyone in this small South Carolina town has a theory for the city’s billion-dollar mystery: Who won the $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot announced last October?

Maybe the winner was so overwhelmed upon seeing the winning numbers that she or he died on the spot? Maybe the winner is on the run from police and fears a background check? Maybe that winning ticket fell from a car visor, ended up in a trash can and is forever buried at the Twin Chimneys Landfill. Or maybe, the winner is still going on with life as usual, before quietly taking the $878 million lump sum.

With less than two months to go, the clock is ticking. Whoever won the second largest lottery in U.S. history has until 5 p.m. on April 19 to walk into the South Carolina Lottery office in Columbia with the signed ticket and claim the jackpot.

The winning ticket was sold at the KC Mart in Simpsonville sometime between Oct. 20 and the drawing at 11 p.m. on Oct. 23. Store employee Jee Patel said State Law Enforcement Division agents were waiting in the parking lot when workers came to open at 6 a.m. the next day.

Yeah it’s kind of like that. So somewhere there’s an unclaimed lottery ticket that’s worth $1.5 BILLION dollars. Yes, it’s the kind of money that would make even Dr. Evil blush. So why is it such a mystery? Is it because of the size of the jackpot? Is it because we don’t know about the winner or haven’t even heard so much as a peep from them? Is it because they live in a small town where everyone knows each other? Or something else?

Four months after South Carolina's first Mega Millions jackpot win, the staggering $1.5 billion prize remains unclaimed.

That leaves two months until the six-month deadline to cash in the winning lottery ticket — and more time to speculate on what's taking the person so long to collect their winnings.

The winning ticket for the Oct. 23 drawing was sold at Simpsonville's KC Mart #7, and signs in the store window proclaim, "We sold a Mega Millions ticket worth ... $1.5 billion."

Still, mystery surrounds the unclaimed jackpot as the convenience store and state officials wait for the winner to come forward.

"It wasn't me," Ray Black said with a laugh as he checked the numbers on a lottery ticket recently at the KC Mart #7.

So, like the Muse song, time is running out. And the rules state that if you don’t claim your ticket soon, your jackpot is toast. And hey you know we could all use some money. But it also affects the winning state big time, and let’s face it - $1.5 billion is a *HUGE* chunk of change. I mean shit, it’s more than I have under my mattress! Which means that if you don’t come forward, your state is a huge loser, too!

The winner of a $1.54 billion lottery jackpot in South Carolina has yet to come forward. That means the state of South Carolina might be a big loser too.

Economic officials on Thursday removed the estimated $61 million windfall the winner was expected to pay in state income taxes from tax and other estimates.

That extra money had been included as the governor and lawmakers prepared their spending priorities at the beginning of the year. An extra $61 million could buy new voting machines for the entire state, give a nearly 2 percent raise to all South Carolina teachers or put a police officer in every public school in the state. It is about 0.5 percent of the money lawmakers have control over in the state budget.

One winning ticket in the Oct. 23 Mega Millions drawing was sold at the KC Mart convenience store in Simpsonville, a suburb of Greenville. The winner has 180 days to come forward and claim the $1.54 billion prize paid over 30 years, or a $878 million lump sum.

So that one ticket alone can throw off the entire state’s budget for an entire year while its’ fate hangs in the balance. If you live in Greenville, SC, better check all your tickets because you could be this very person!

Nearly everyone in this small South Carolina town has a theory for the city's billion-dollar mystery: Who won the $1.5 billion Mega Millions jackpot announced last October?

Maybe the winner was so overwhelmed upon seeing the winning numbers that she or he died on the spot? Maybe the winner is on the run from police and fears a background check? Maybe that winning ticket fell from a car visor, ended up in a trash can and is forever buried at the Twin Chimneys Landfill. Or maybe, the winner is still going on with life as usual, before quietly taking the $878 million lump sum.

With less than two months to go, the clock is ticking. Whoever won the second largest lottery in U.S. history has until 5 p.m. on April 19 to walk into the South Carolina Lottery office in Columbia with the signed ticket and claim the jackpot.

The winning ticket was sold at the KC Mart in Simpsonville sometime between Oct. 20 and the drawing at 11 p.m. on Oct. 23. Store employee Jee Patel said State Law Enforcement Division agents were waiting in the parking lot when workers came to open at 6 a.m. the next day.

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[font size="8"]Deep State Diaries Episode 2: The United States State Department
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It’s time for the very last and final edition of Deep State Diaries. It’s time to say goodbye, everyone, it’s been fun. We toured everything from the FBI to the IRS to the Pentagon to the CIA to the DPW to the DVA to parks and recreation and all branches and services in between. Of course if you’re here you probably already know more about our government and how it works than your average Fox News loving Trump supporter does. So that’s what this segment is going to address. We are going to do a deep dive into all that makes the United States the United States. Because we here at the Top 10 love to educate as well as entertain. Because we care.

[font size="6"]The United States State Department[/font]

So for our very last and final edition of our ongoing series that explains how government works to conspiracy theorists, Deep State Diaries, we are going to tour one of the US government’s oldest and most prominent institutions – the United States State Department. The USSD is an institution as old as the United States itself. Yes, it’s the branch of the US government that was formerly headed by Rex Tillerson and is currently headed by guy who makes torture great again, Mike Pompeo. The USSD is similar to a ministry of foreign affairs in that it helps shape international and also domestic policies that define the United States. So what are some things that the USSD actually does? Well we all know how bad Huawei is, and we think Europe might be finally getting the message that you shouldn’t do business with the embattled cell phone manufacturer.

European governments are proving receptive to the idea that China’s Huawei poses security risks to telecoms networks, a senior U.S. cyber official said on Tuesday.

“We are highlighting inherent risks... in particular with Huawei,” Robert L. Strayer, the U.S. State Department’s ambassador for cyber and international communications told reporters at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Strayer said people in Europe were getting the message, but: “At the end of the day, each government and operator has to make its own decisions.”

A U.S. delegation is attending the wireless trade fair to persuade Europeans to follow the U.S. lead in shunning Huawei, the world’s biggest maker of telecoms equipment, which is competing for next-generation 5G mobile network contracts. (Reporting by Jack Stubbs and Isla Binnie Writing by Georgina Prodhan Editing by Keith Weir)

Well hopefully they won’t have to come to that. Another thing that the US department does is they issue travel warnings. Yes, they tell the citizens of the US that maybe they shouldn’t go to certain countries because reasons. Like maybe don’t go to the Bahamas right now because if you haven’t noticed the Gulf Of Mexico has these things called hurricanes, and they’ve been quite active lately.

The United States State Department issued another travel warning for the Bahamas today.

The U.S. State Department reissued a “Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution Due to Crime” for the Bahamas, stating:

“Violent crime, such as burglaries, armed robberies, and sexual assault, is common, even during the day and in tourist areas. Although the family islands are not crime-free, the vast majority of crime occurs on New Providence and Grand Bahama islands . . . Activities involving commercial recreational watercraft, including water tours, are not consistently regulated. Watercraft are often not maintained, and many companies do not have safety certifications to operate in The Bahamas. Jet-ski operators have been known to commit sexual assaults against tourists . . .”

There were three travel warnings issued by the U.S. last year for the Bahamas, by the U.S. Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) in the Bahamas 2018 Crime & Safety Report, the U.S. State Department, and the U.S. Embassy in Nassau as well as one warning by Canada.

Another thing that the US State Department does is that they determine what the United States can and cannot import and export. Remember how James Bond’s cover was that he was an importer – exporter of good? Even though it’s never implied what, exactly. But that’s really the job of the US State Department.

The US continues to pursue a zero-tolerance policy for its Iran oil sanctions and is urging importers to eliminate all purchases from the Middle East country, Francis Fannon, assistant secretary at the US State Department’s Bureau of Energy Resources, said Monday during a visit to Japan.

“The US policy is to drive Iranian exports to zero,” Fannon said during a media briefing in Tokyo. “That policy has not changed. We are unwavering in our policy.”

Fannon was asked whether Washington would consider extending Iran sanctions waivers when they expire in May, given falling supplies from Saudi Arabia as a result of the production cut agreement by OPEC and allies, and the ongoing crisis in sanctions-hit Venezuela.

He said it was premature to say whether the State Department would grant new waivers in May to the eight countries that were allowed to continue importing Iranian oil in return for promising to significantly cut their dependence on the supplies.

And in case you can’t guess, under the Trump administration, the US state department has become well, less than flattering. So much in fact that nobody wants to work for a horrible boss like Mike Pompeo, or even worse – his boss, Donald J. Trump. Yes, the guy who we currently call president has made it completely miserable for anyone involved with the government. And well, it’s going to be a revolving door for the foreseeable future.

The number of Americans seeking a career in the U.S. diplomatic corps has declined in the first two years of the Trump administration, reaching the lowest level since 2008, according to State Department numbers obtained exclusively by NBC News.

Although President Donald Trump's unpredictable, go-it-alone foreign policy has caused apprehension among some prospective applicants, and led some senior diplomats to resign, the cause of the drop remains unclear.

But coupled with budget pressures and a survey showing declining morale at the State Department, veterans of the diplomatic corps worry that the long-term health of the institution charged with safeguarding America's interests abroad could be at risk if current trends continue.

The competitive process to join the ranks of U.S. diplomats starts with the Foreign Service Officer Test, a demanding exam given three times a year. Between October 2017 and October 2018, only 8,685 people chose to take the test, a 22 percent decline compared to the same period a year earlier, according to the State Department's numbers.

[font size="6"]Score Card [/font]

Overall importance: A+
How Things Are Going: C-
Likely hood To Survive: B

Overall: B-

[font size="6"]Next Week [/font]

There is no next week! This is it, we are done. Thanks for taking us down the government wormhole everybody, and see you on the other side!

[font size="8"]And Now This:[/font]
[font size="8”]Cypress Hill[/font]

Ladies and gentlemen, my next guest is America’s foremost premiere stoner band. Their latest album is called “Elephants On Acid”. You can see them on tour through March and April including a stop March 23rd at the Wiltern. Playing their song “Band Of Gypsies”, give it up for the one, the only Cypress Hill!

See you next week for Stupidest State Selection Sunday!


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