Judge: Draft registration for men only is “unconstitutional and must end.”
Times of San Diego
— U.S. District Judge Gray H. Miller in Houston agreed with the San Diego-based National Coalition for Men and granted its request for summary judgment in a class action suit.
— “While historical restrictions on women in the military may have justified past discrimination, men and women are now ‘similarly situated for purposes of a draft or registration for a draft.’ … If there ever was a time to discuss ‘the place of women in the Armed Services,’ that time has passed.”
… the ruling came in the form of a declaratory judgment and not an injunction, meaning that the court didn’t specifically order the government how to change Selective Service to make it constitutional.
THIS IS YOUR PILOT WATCHING
Three of the world’s biggest airlines have admitted some of their planes have cameras installed on the backs of passenger seats. American Airlines, United Airlines and Singapore Airlines have new seat-back entertainment systems that include cameras. They swear their purpose not to spy on passengers….
Kraft’s challenge now: to keep up the facade
— Patriot’s owner Robert Kraft faces one of his greatest personal challenges as he tries to protect his image as one of the most prominent business leaders in Boston, and a civic philanthropist with a long record of supporting causes to help downtrodden and disenfranchised even as he has amassed great wealth and fame.
— In the years before he was identified by the Jupiter police as one of 25 men they had allegedly videotaped receiving sex from the exploited spa workers, Kraft contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars through his charitable foundations to projects aimed at curbing the sexual exploitation of children and supporting immigrants, low-income women, and needy children from Asia.
TODAY’S DOG & PONY SHOW
Pope calls for ‘all-out battle’ against sexual abuse …
but is short on specifics about next steps
— VATICAN CITY: At a Mass marking the end of an unprecedented Vatican summit, Pope Francis on Sunday called for an “all-out battle” against clerical sexual abuse, saying the church needed to take “every necessary measure” to end the scourge.
— But his remarks were short on specifics and roundly criticized by victims of abuse, who said the four-day summit amounted to a training seminar that concluded with few concrete steps and raised points that should have been obvious years ago.
….. But larger questions, including how the church will handle the investigation and discipline of bishops accused of misconduct, remain unresolved.
….. “I don’t think we can rely on the institution to clean up its act,” said Peter Saunders, a sex abuse survivor and former member of the pope’s commission on the protection of minors. He said the pontiff’s speech was “lukewarm” and made points “he has been talking about for years.”
“There hasn’t been any firm commitment to eject from the church the perpetrators of this crime,” Saunders said.
Colorado, N. Mexico move to give Electoral College votes to whoever wins popular vote
— The plan only goes into effect if the law passes in states representing an electoral majority. That threshold is 270 votes, which is the same number needed to win the presidency.
— So far, 11 states — including New York, California and New Jersey — have joined the effort along with the District of Columbia, putting the effort 98 votes short of its goal.
GOP plan: Deduct student loan payments from paychecks
<> Senate bill clearly written by the thieving student loan industry.
You Give Apps Sensitive Personal Information. Then They Tell Facebook.
Wall Street Journal
<> Wall Street Journal testing reveals how the social-media giant collects a wide range of private data from developers; ‘This is a big mess’<>
— Millions of smartphone users confess their most intimate secrets to apps, including when they want to work on their belly fat or the price of the house they checked out last weekend. Other apps know users’ body weight, blood pressure, menstrual cycles or pregnancy status.
— Unbeknown to most people, in many cases that data is being shared with Facebook.
— The social-media giant collects intensely personal information from many popular smartphone apps just seconds after users enter it, even if the user has no connection to Facebook, according to testing done by The Wall Street Journal. The apps often send the data without any prominent or specific disclosure, the testing showed.
— At least 11 popular apps, totaling tens of millions of downloads, have been sharing sensitive data entered by users. The findings alarmed some privacy experts who reviewed the Journal’s testing.
— In the Journal’s testing, Instant Heart Rate: HR Monitor, the most popular heart-rate app on Apple’s iOS, made by California-based Azumio Inc., sent a user’s heart rate to Facebook immediately after it was recorded.
— Flo Health Inc.’s Flo Period & Ovulation Tracker, which claims 25 million active users, told Facebook when a user was having her period or informed the app of an intention to get pregnant, the tests showed.
— Real-estate app Realtor.com, owned by Move Inc., a subsidiary of Wall Street Journal parent News Corp , sent the social network the location and price of listings that a user viewed, noting which ones were marked as favorites, the tests showed.
— None of those apps provided users any apparent way to stop that information from being sent to Facebook.
Charges against Patriot owner reveal sleazy world of Florid sex slavery
— “These women are being treated like cattle,” Sheriff Snyder said. He said of the arrested men: “Any thoughts that they didn’t know they were trafficked women were hogwash.”
There goes another one…
Pillar of the community tumbles into sex slave muck
— The president of the John’s Island Foundation and a former board member of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Indian River County is one of 173 people arrested or wanted in Indian River County on prostitution charges connected to a human trafficking sting.
— Kenneth Wessel, 75, of Indian River Shores, was charged with soliciting prostitution. He was arrested Wednesday and has since been released on $1,000 bail.
— Wessel resigned Thursday, said a representative of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Indian River County.
R. Kelly is “doing down hard” criminal defense attorney predicts
— When R. Kelly was arrested on child-pornography charges in 2002, after a videotape emerged that purported to show him having sex with an underage girl, he managed to have the case dismissed through a combination of skillful lawyering, repeated delays (the verdict did not come down for six years), and the fact that the girl chose not to testify against him.
— The end result was that he had at least 11 more years to record, tour, and according to charges leveled against the singer by a Cook County judge today, sexually abuse more underage girls.
— He will not get away so easily this time, according to criminal defense attorney Anthony Salerno, who has handled numerous sex-crime cases over the past 25 years: “He may end up in prison for 15-to-20-plus years.”
… “we can assume that multiple victims testified already at the grand jury [this week], and it’s been reported there is at least one video. It’s going to be tough to pay his way out of this.”
An Arizona cop threatened to arrest a 12-year-old journalist.
She wasn’t backing down.
— When a small-town Arizona cop stopped a 12-year-old reporter who was chasing down a story tip on Monday, he probably had no idea what he was getting himself into.
— Hilde Kate Lysiak, the preteen journalist whose exploits have inspired a Scholastic book series and an upcoming TV show, made a name for herself in 2016 by being the first to report on a grisly murder in her hometown, then firing back at the haters who suggested that a 9-year-old girl shouldn’t be hanging around crime scenes. Since then, she has continued to break news about bank robberies, alleged rapes and other lurid crimes in the Orange Street News, the paper that she publishes out of her parents’ home in Selinsgrove, Pa.
Booze sellers officially worried about legal pot
“Consumers will continue to look to cannabis products over alcohol for occasions when they are feeling creative, need to get motivated, or seeking health, medical or wellness benefits.”
The well-armed militia keeps mowing ’em down
14 shooting victims in one day in Baltimore
NY ready with charges against Manafort if he gets Trump pardon
— New York County District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. is ready to file an array of tax and other charges against Paul Manafort, according to two people familiar with the matter, something seen as an insurance policy should the president exercise his power to free the former aide. Skirting laws that protect defendants from being charged twice for the same offense has been one of Vance’s challenges.
— Robert Kraft’s arrest occurred during a sweeping and expansive sting launched by multiple departments, aimed at breaking up a prostitution and sex-trafficking ring in several counties in central Florida. The sting centered on multiple massage parlors and at least two women identified as co-conspirators in the operation.
— It also involved the execution of at least eight search warrants and the seizure of cash and property assets valued in the millions. Kraft’s arrest in Jupiter, Florida, according to authorities, was centered on simple solicitation.
Tax cuts hand banks a $28 billion windfall
<> Says who? Lefty think tank? Nope. FDIC
Your Google searches can be used to predict when you’re about to go to the emergency room, researchers find
— That’s according to a new study published in the journal BMJ Open from researchers at Penn Medicine, which found that in the week before an emergency room visit, patients conduct nearly three times as many health-related searches, or 16 percent of their total. Google has previously disclosed that about 1 in 20 searches, or 5 percent, are for health information.
Court error revealed witness’s identity
then mom-son robbery team executed him
— Local court officials mistakenly released secret court documents identifying David Henderson’s occupation and other important clues to a mother-and-son robbery team that he had informed on to police detectives, according to an Arapahoe County, Colorado criminal affidavit released Thursday.
— On Oct. 12, 2016, Henderson, a car mechanic, was shot 10 times and killed in front of the Denver home where he lived with his mother. Prosecutors say the motive for the killing was Henderson’s cooperation with detectives in describing details surrounding a marijuana shop robbery two months earlier.
— The robbers who court documents say orchestrated the execution-style hit, Terance Black, 26, and his mother, Tina Black, 51, were both sentenced to life without parole Thursday.
Sackler Embraced Plan to Conceal OxyContin’s Strength From Doctors
— As OxyContin addiction spurred a national nightmare, a member of the family that has reaped billions of dollars from the painkiller boasted that sales exceeded his “fondest dreams,” according to a secret court document.
Cohen’s appearance at House hearing …
The ultimate Dog & Pony show?
By Stanley M. Baird, Penn. State U.
In The Conversation
— Convicted perjurer Michael Cohen’s testimony next week at a congressional hearing promises to be a political spectacle.
— But Cohen’s appearance may not actually be legitimate under congressional rules.
— In Cohen’s case, the Government Oversight and Reform Committee’s description of the issues it will explore in his hearing include “the President’s debts and payments relating to efforts to influence the 2016 election … the President’s compliance with campaign finance laws…the President’s business practices …” even the “accuracy of the President’s public statements.”
— These subjects have nothing to do with the committee’s jurisdiction.
* Baird is a former counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives
Botswana mulls hunting elephants for pet food
— After months of public meetings and consultations, the report by ministers also recommends the “establishment of elephant meat canning” for pet food.
— The number of elephants in Botswana is estimated to be about 130,000, which some argue is too many for the ecosystem – there is increasing conflict between wildlife and people.
— But others say the country’s tourism has grown dramatically since the ban came into place and that lifting it would affect the country’s international reputation for conservation.
YouTube axes comments on tens of millions of videos in crackdown on child sexual exploitation
— A video blogger this week published a report on YouTube documenting how comments and recommendations on the platform direct users to potentially sexual videos of children, allowing them to participate in a “soft-core pedophile ring,” according to the report. YouTube also terminated more than 400 channels on Thursday that posted the comments on videos featuring children.
Net-connected cell phones come to Cuba
— In the 2 1/2 months since Cuba allowed its citizens internet access via cellphones, fast-moving changes are subtle but palpable as Cubans challenge government officials online, post photos of filthy school bathrooms and drag what was one of the world’s least-connected countries into the digital age. Communist authorities, in turn, are having to learn how to deal with more visible pressure coming from outside of party-controlled popular and neighborhood committees.
Half-million saw her post saying she was being sex-trafficked by Uber driver … but it wasn’t true
— “The person that posted it got into the wrong car and there was a language barrier,” police told the Orlando Sentinel. “It’s as simple as that. This had nothing to do with sex trafficking.”
Florida mayor, accused of medical malpractice, gets in shootout with cops
Fox News local
— It started early Thursday morning when Pasco County Sheriff’s Office SWAT officers showed up at the home. They were there to serve a warrant related to allegations Dale Massad was still practicing medicine despite having his medical license revoked in 1992.
<> Sheriff: “He’s lucky he’s not dead”
<> Cops were called dozens of times to gun-nut mayor’s home
— “I shot one of my smoke detectors because I couldn’t get up there to get it and it wouldn’t go off and it was 3 a.m.,” Massad said. “I have a gun all the time,” he said. “I have three guns.”