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demmiblue's Journal
demmiblue's Journal
February 17, 2021

Shia LaBeouf is a monster....

'It's A Miracle I Came Out Alive'

FKA Twigs opens up her abusive relationship with Shia LaBeouf.

"It's a miracle I came out alive," says FKA twigs. The British singer, born Tahliah Debrett Barnett, has spent the last hour painfully recounting the abuse she endured for nearly a year at the hands of her former boyfriend and Honey Boy costar, Shia LaBeouf. Sitting cross-legged on the floor of her London home, where she’s been sequestered due to the COVID-19 Tier 4 lockdown, twigs manages to exude a raw vulnerability her audience has come to expect from her. An oversize hoodie that reads “janet”—an homage to Janet Jackson’s self-titled 1993 dance album—is thrown over her petite frame; her newly bleached blonde curls appear damp, her cheeks flushed. While speaking to me over Zoom, she maintains perfect posture, fidgeting ever so slightly by tapping her long acrylic nails together. She is explaining the “calculated, systematic, tricky, and mazelike” tactics LaBeouf would use to control her—the love bombing, the gaslighting, the social isolation, the sleep deprivation. “If you put a frog in a boiling pot of water, that frog is going to jump out straightaway,” she says, attempting to explain the incremental and insidious nature of the abuse. “Whereas if you put a frog in cool water and heat it up slowly, that frog is going to boil to death. That was my experience being with [LaBeouf].”

The emotional, verbal, and physical violence that twigs experienced during the course of their abusive relationship came to a head over Valentine’s Day weekend in 2019 after she and LaBeouf traveled to a hotel spa. The details of that fateful night are outlined in a shocking civil lawsuit she filed against the actor in December of last year. As she alleges in the complaint, after drifting off to sleep in the hotel, the singer awoke to find LaBeouf atop her, violently squeezing her arms. Putting his hands around her neck and beginning to strangle her, he whispered, “If you don’t stop, you are going to lose me.” The next morning, she claims, the abuse continued when LaBeouf threw her to the ground outside their hotel. Once inside his car and headed back to LaBeouf’s Los Angeles home, she says the actor began driving maniacally, demanding that twigs profess her love for him. As he swerved into traffic at an alarming speed, with cars beeping around them, twigs recalls bracing for the impact of the imminent crash. “I was thinking to myself, ‘I wonder what would happen to my body...if [we] smashed into a wall at 80 miles per hour?’ I was looking for the airbag and I couldn’t see the airbag sign, so I was thinking, ‘If he doesn’t have an airbag, will this car crush my sternum?’?”

As twigs retells the story now, she is physically acting out each scenario, curling her taut dancer’s physique into a ball and covering her head with her hands. “I was thinking, ‘Oh no, if I crouch like that, and the front of the car crashes into my head, will it snap my neck?’?” Her mind raced with terrifying possibilities. At one point, she considered jumping out of the moving vehicle as it barreled down the highway. “Do I jump out of the car at 80 miles an hour?”

LaBeouf eventually pulled over at a gas station, and twigs attempted to remove her bags to escape, but the actor slammed her up against the car and tried to choke her again. Screaming in her face, he forced her back into the car.

February 17, 2021

Promotions for Female Generals Were Delayed Over Fears of Trump's Reaction

Source: NYT

Under a Biden administration, the nominations are expected to go from the Pentagon to the White House within weeks and then to the Senate for approval.

WASHINGTON — Last fall, the Pentagon’s most senior leaders agreed that two top generals should be promoted to elite, four-star commands.

For then-Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper and Gen. Mark A. Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the tricky part was that both of the accomplished officers were women. In 2020 America under President Trump, the two Pentagon leaders feared that any candidates other than white men for jobs mostly held by white men might run into turmoil once their nominations got to the White House.

Mr. Esper and General Milley worried that if they even raised their names — Gen. Jacqueline D. Van Ovost of the Air Force and Lt. Gen. Laura J. Richardson of the Army — the Trump White House would replace them with their own candidates before leaving office.

So the Pentagon officials agreed on an unusual strategy: They held back their recommendations until after the November elections, betting that if Joseph R. Biden Jr. won, he and his aides would be more supportive of the Pentagon picks than Mr. Trump, who had feuded with Mr. Esper and has a history of disparaging women. They stuck to the plan even after Mr. Trump fired Mr. Esper six days after the election.

Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/17/us/politics/trump-biden-promotions-women-generals.html

February 17, 2021

Mrs. Invisible Man

February 16, 2021

17th Century Romanian Salt Mine Gets Converted Into Wild Tourist Attraction

The Romanian salt mine Salina Turda can trace its origins back several centuries, having first begun operations in the 17th century. It was even used as recently as 1932, until its closure that year, and it has since remained abandoned.

That was until recently, as a new tourist destination has been opened in the heart of the old salt mine, with all the number of cool attractions. A museum and walking tours are available, and there is even a large space to hold special events. Visitors can also enjoy fun games and activities such as pool and table tennis, and you can even hire a bot and go for a leisurely paddle in the underground lake found in the mines.



February 16, 2021

Steve Bannon believed Trump had early stage dementia, TV producer claims

Former White House strategist Steve Bannon thought Donald Trump was suffering from early-stage dementia and campaigned covertly to remove him from office via the 25th amendment, according to a veteran TV producer.

Ira Rosen, the author of a new memoir about his work for CBS, Ticking Clock: Behind the Scenes at 60 Minutes, was speaking to Skullduggery, a podcast from Yahoo News.

Rosen told hosts Michael Isikoff and Daniel Klaidman his book was “not a dish on this person or that person”, then gave listeners a taste of the dish inside.

He was asked about his relationship with Bannon, which developed around attempts to set up a 60 Minutes interview. “Steve is a big talker, a big gossiper,” Rosen said. “He became a source for a lot of media people in Washington.”

The former investment banker and failed Hollywood producer who came to run the ultra-rightwing Breitbart News website was Trump’s campaign chairman in his 2016 election victory over Hillary Clinton. But Bannon was fired as a White House strategist in August 2017, amid fallout over Trump’s praise for white supremacist marchers in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Bannon was a source for tell-all books but re-entered Trump’s orbit as the 2020 election approached. After his defeat by Joe Biden, Trump pardoned Bannon on a fraud charge relating to a fundraising effort for a wall on the US border with Mexico. Bannon remains a media gadfly, hosting a hard-right podcast.

In the early days of the Trump administration, Rosen said, he “became kind of a therapist” for Bannon, “loitering in the chief of staff’s office, drinking Diet Cokes … and he would kind of download to me on stories”.

February 16, 2021

Gendered, Racial and Religious Biases Infiltrate Virtual Learning Curriculums

Many schools may still be using materials that teach conservative Christian beliefs as history and social studies and express implicit and explicit gender and race bias.

Across the country, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced school closings and a rush to online learning for many K-12 students. In their haste to facilitate this change, a number of schools and school districts have purchased packaged curriculum materials from providers such as Acellus and Edgenuity. These companies, which often market to home schoolers, offer ready-made materials that have had great appeal to public schools in the sudden shift to virtual classrooms.

While schools likely purchased these materials in good faith based on their companies’ claims to meet state learning standards, no one in public schools seems to have read these materials prior to use with an eye toward explicitly religious content and gender and race bias. Likely unwittingly, public schools have purchased and used materials that violate the First Amendment’s religion clauses.

While watchdog groups like American Atheists have alerted some schools to this unconstitutional content, many schools may still be using materials that teach conservative Christian beliefs as history and social studies and express implicit and explicit gender and race bias. Educators using packaged curricula and parents with children in virtual learning should take note of the curriculum materials, be aware of this possible impermissible content and notify schools and watchdog organizations should they discover issues with students’ learning materials.

In late September, American Atheists announced that, following their intervention, Edgenuity removed unconstitutional religious content from the curriculum materials they offered public schools. American Atheists discovered, for example, that one third grade module taught Bible stories as social studies, advancing a particular religious viewpoint in violation of the First Amendment.


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