Increasing calls for New York to regulate sex cults

With the recent arrest of Lawrence Ray, leader of a sex cult that traced its origins back to a dorm at Sarah Lawrence College, parents and officials in the State of New York are calling upon lawmakers to regulate the state’s burgeoning sex cult industry.

“We’ve gotta get our arms around this thing,” said one state senator, “it’s like the wild west out there.  These self-help, sex cults are springing up right and left and hardly anyone’s paying a damn bit of attention.”

The latest revelations come just months after Keith Raniere, leader of the Albany, New York based Nxivm sex cult, was convicted last June on multiple counts of racketeering, forced labor and sex trafficking.

“What you have here with the Cult of Larry is a situation where just about anybody with a smartphone can start a cult these days,” said Det. Jim Gordan of the Westchester Police Department.  “You set up an account on one of these apps like CultFindr or Gulliblr, and within minutes you can find cults in your area, or you can start your own cult and have some highly suggestible submissive doing your laundry, running errands, draining their bank account, or turning tricks.  The app will facilitate all financial transactions, including bypassing the members bank account and depositing all earnings directly into the cult leader’s account.”  

“This isn’t your grandparents hippie free-love cult or utopian back-to-the-earth commune,” said the senator.  “Those guys spent years attracting potential members and grooming them. Now, you just log in and take your pick.  We need training and certification for anyone wanting to start one of these cults, and we need a mandatory 72 hour waiting period for anyone wishing to join, during which the potential member will receive education and counselling.” 

Some question whether the Lawrence Ray example even fits the definition of a cult.  According to Dr. Marion Culpepper of the State University of New York, “Highly persuasive, manipulative people are everywhere.  Pimps have been around for centuries. Only when a group of privileged, east-coast undergrads at one of the most elite colleges in the country gets sucked in by a two-bit hustler does it suddenly become a cult.”

Celebrities of the world unite!

For 364 days a year, the men and women of the Hollywood dream factory toil in isolation and obscurity, producing high quality entertainment and wholesome family fun.  However, for one night only in February, the stars come out to shine at the Oscars, and humbly bask in some long-overdue and well-deserved public adulation. After all, it’s been nearly a month since they gathered and bestowed globes of gold on one another.  So, once again as in years past, the actors, writers, directors, and craftsmen of Hollywood gather to cash in their artistic brilliance for a coveted gold phallic statue.     

Most Hollywood celebs would just as soon shun the limelight, stay at home and polish their craft, or do laundry and darn socks for the homeless.  But the demands of entertainment studios and corporate executives prompt them to don their finery, and for a few short hours permit the rest of us to see them, honor and praise them for their extraordinary contributions to art and culture.

As always, we marvel at their sacrifice and courage.  Acutely aware of how committed many celebrities are to the environment, it was heartening to see so many roll up to the red carpet on  bicycles. Tangled hair and perspiration stains are but a small price to pay when the fate of humanity is at stake. Additionally, the glitterati looked so uncomfortable adorned in their precious metals and gems.  You could tell they would rather have been toiling in sweatshops alongside the meek and downtrodden, rather than withstanding the blinding glare of a thousand camera flashes. Most remarkable of all, though, as if out of a Frank Capra movie, humble movie stars quietly, but firmly, raised their voices in protest against the orange man they once palled around with and promoted as one of their own, but who now forces them to live in his slums.     

This year’s Academy Awards was truly an inspiring spectacle.  Celebrities of the world united, sharing a common humanity with all those ordinary souls sitting out there in the dark.  After the ceremony, most of the nominees skipped the fancy parties and balls and donated their complimentary $200,000 swag bags to the less fortunate.  Soon, many of LA’s inner city youths will enjoy the experience of a $78,000, 12-day vacation on a luxury yacht. Hurray for Hollywood!

Trump eludes congressional oversight, may not escape Amazon oversight

This time Trump may have stepped in it.  Amazon has filed a notice in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims over a $10 billion dollar Pentagon cloud contract awarded to rival Microsoft.

Initially considered a frontrunner for the lucrative contract, Amazon Web Services watched the deal slip away after a presidential directive to ‘screw Amazon’ went out to then Defense Secretary James Mattis and the DoD.  

Suspecting political interference, Amazon would prefer to use traditional means to learn more about the awarding of the contract by deposing current Defense Secretary Mark Esper as well as Mattis and President Trump.

Barring traditional means, Amazon has indicated a willingness to utilize its extensive network of data devices and cloud access to uncover who said what to who and when.

“You don’t think all those Echoes and Dots are out there just sitting idly by waiting for someone to ask what’s on tv tonight, or those Kindles and Fires are waiting to take you on a magical adventure, do you?” asked Amazon’s AWS chief Andy Jassy.  “And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Amazon’s surveillance reach extends well beyond the home and deep into the halls of power. President Trump would shit himself if he knew what we have on him. Actually, we have extensive recordings of the President shitting himself.  It’s really quite disgusting.  

“All this is to say, the president may get away with obstructing Congress, but when it comes to Amazon the truth will out.  Mr. President, you picked the wrong tech giant to fuck with.”

Democrats brainstorm additional ways they can help Trump win in 2020

Riding the success of the Speaker Pelosi speech shredding video, Democrats are working closely with the Trump campaign to generate additional campaign content to help propel Trump to victory in 2020.

“We welcome all the help we can get from Speaker Pelosi and the Democrats,” said Brad Parscale, Trump 2020 campaign manager.  “With impeachment and the Iowa Caucus debacle boosting Trump’s approval rating to the highest level of his presidency, we’re considering just sitting back and letting the Dems drive this bus.”  

“The Democrats have a proven track record of blowing races they should win and snatching defeat from the jaws of victory,” said Drew Hammill, Speaker Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff.  “When the Trump team came to us expressing concern over the president’s declining poll numbers, we had just one question for them: How can we help?” 

The result was a video showing Speaker Pelosi tearing up President Trump’s State of the Union address as he delivers good economic news and honors an American World War II hero.  “I wish I could take credit for that,” said Parscale. “That was a stroke of genius. Someone told me she even had the pages partially pre-torn to ensure maximum dramatic effect.” 

Not everyone is thrilled about the Dems strategizing for Trump.  Appearing on MSNBC’s Panic Room, longtime Democratic strategist from way, way back James Carville flipped out over the Iowa debacle and the prospect of nominating an avowed socialist as the Democratic nominee. 

“Eighteen percent of the population controls 52 Senate seats,” Carville said.  “We’ve got to be a majoritarian party. The urban core is not gonna get it done.  What we need is power! Do you understand? That’s what this is about.”

A few days later, in an interview with Vox, Carville put a fine point on his criticism of Democrats, “We’re losing our damn minds.”

Pelosi deputy chief of staff astonished at video editing technology

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff Drew Hammill expressed his amazement Friday over a video making the rounds on Facebook showing President Trump delivering the State of the Union address interspersed with images of Pelosi ripping up the speech. 

“What these clever young fellows have done is take the entire State of the Union speech, extract a few short video clips, and then somehow piece them back together again, thereby creating a condensed version with only the most noteworthy parts.  I’m at a loss for words,” said Hammill in a statement directed at the popular social networking sites Facebook and Twitter.

“But get this,” Hammill continued, “these ingenious lads pieced it together in such a way that turns the dramatic moment of Pelosi ripping up the speech against her.  How clever is that?”   

Hammill could barely contain his disbelief.  “What is this foul magic they harness to rearrange video and reassemble it for their own nefarious purposes?  Whatever it is, the Democrats need to get their hands on it. Think of the possibilities. We could snip short clips of some of President Trump’s most outrageous and deplorable moments and reassemble them into a montage of disgrace and disrepute.  This could be a political game-changer. No longer would the viewer have to sit through hours and hours of tape just to get to the juicy bits. We could turn the president’s words against him. I am really going to have to work on this,” Hammill concluded.

Pelosi reveals impeachment starting lineup

“An impeachment dream team.”  That’s the language some pundits and lawmakers are using to describe the seven House members named to serve as impeachment managers in the trial of President Donald J. Trump.

Running point will be House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff with House Judiciary sharpshooter Jerry Nadler rounding out the backcourt.  

Hakeem Jeffries and Zoe Lofgren will highlight a formidable frontcourt, while Jason Crow, Val Demings and Sylvia Garcia will all see a lot of playing time.  Lofgren comes in with the most experience as this will mark her third impeachment go-around. 

“This will be an impeachment for the ages,” boasted House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as she made the announcement.  “A stain on the president’s legacy for all eternity!”  

Somewhere, in the midst of his revelry, Bill Clinton winced as Pelosi drove home the historical permanence that bearing the mark of impeachment has on a presidency.

Analysts were quick to weigh in on the announcement.  “The president’s team will have it’s hand’s full. I look down this roster and I see all kinds of match-up problems for Team Trump,” offered Jeffrey Toobin, appearing on CNN.  “Who can guard Nadler? When Jerry Nadler gets out in open space, improvising and creating, who’s gonna stop him?”

Indeed, that will be the challenge Team Trump faces when it takes the court next week.  Although no official announcement has been made, The White House is expected to name Pat Cipollone, Jay Sekulow, Michael Purpura and Patrick Philbin along with others.

“I just don’t see how the president’s team gets it done,” continued Toobin.  “I mean, if you double-team Jeffries, then Zoe Lofgren is going to eat you alive.”

Internal documents reveal ice cream industry lobby behind Illinois weed legalization

If residents thought the effort to legalize weed in the state of Illinois was an entirely grass-roots organized movement, then it might come as something of a buzzkill to learn that powerful ice cream industry lobbying actually spearheaded the push.

Secret internal documents and private communications among industry insiders shows a highly orchestrated effort by Big Ice Cream to bring legal pot to the people of Illinois.

“Who stood to benefit? Who had the power?  These are the questions we asked ourselves as we began looking into this matter,” says Alex Downer of the ineffectual government watchdog group Responsibility and Integrity in Government, or RIG for short.  “You must remember, the cannabis industry is still relatively new and as yet has no politically connected corporate structure powerful enough to influence Illinois politics. If you want to be a political player in Illinois in general, and Chicago in particular, then you had better be sitting on top of a mountain of cash.”

The Chicagoland Ice Cream Manufacturers and Retailers Association seemed to be just such an organization.  “These guys figured out years ago that if they could bring legal pot to Illinois, the industry stood to reap the benefits of a 50 to 70 percent increase in ice cream sales,” added Downer.  “The leaked documents prove a conspiracy was afoot. In fact, the CICMRA even shook down their dairy suppliers in Wisconsin to help fund the lobbying effort.”

‘Lobbying’ is a term Downer uses loosely as it appears many Illinois legislators were rewarded handsomely for their vote.  “It should have been evident who was in the pocket of Big Ice Cream interests. At the time the legislation was under consideration, there was an ice cream van circling the capitol building everyday handing out treats and playing that infernal nursery rhyme:  ‘The more we work together, together, together. The more we work together, the happier we’ll be. Cause your friends are my friends and my friends are your friends….’ I mean, come on!  

“And that wasn’t the half of it.  We obtained one email where a very powerful government official, capable of delivering a lot of votes, detailed plans for his eight year old’s birthday party.  He wanted a dump truck load each of chocolate, vanilla, and mint chip ice cream dumped on his lawn for the kids to play on. Obviously, they called on the State Highway Department to provide the trucks.  He had his pool filled with soft serve, and witnesses say kids were running around squirting each other with super soakers filled with chocolate syrup and ready whip topping. The decadence is mind-blowing, man!”

However, don’t expect anyone in state government to be held accountable for a potential conflict of interest.  “RIG considered filing an ethics complaint until we were visited by a couple of goons going by the names Mr. Peppermint and Mr. Butter Brickle,” Downer explained.  “They encouraged us to drop the matter so we complied. I mean, what can you do? This is Chicago and this is Big Ice Cream. They don’t play.”