en-US The computers are on fire picking NFL games — here are their picks for Week 12 After a slow start to the season, Cortana and Elo have caught fire in recent weeks. The two models we're tracking have correctly picked 64% of the games this season. Cortana has nailed 78% of the games in the last 5 weeks. The NFL season is now in Week 12, and the two computer models we are tracking have caught fire in recent weeks. We took a look at two popular systems used to pick NFL games: Cortana, Microsoft's digital assistant, and Elo, the modeling system used by Nate Silver's FiveThirtyEight. In both cases, the computers are picking outright winners and not against the spread. However, each gives a likelihood of a team's winning, which, in theory, could help measure the strength of certain lines. Both models have been on fire in recent weeks. Cortana went 9-5 in Week 11 and is now 54-15 (78%) over the last five weeks. It is now 105-55 (66%) overall, five games better than Elo (100-60, 63%). Elo went 8-6 in Week 11. Here are the picks for Week 12, with each model's percent chance of winning in parentheses. Games in bold are where the two models disagree on who has the best chance to win. Point spreads are just for reference, via Vegas Insider as of Thursday morning. Thursday Minnesota Vikings (-3) at Detroit Lions — LIONS (Elo 53%), VIKINGS (Cortana 60%) Los Angeles Chargers (-2) at Dallas Cowboys — COWBOYS (Elo 68%, Cortana 53%) New York Giants at Washington Redskins (-7) — REDSKINS (Elo 68%, Cortana 67%) Sunday Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati Bengals (-8.5) — BENGALS (Elo 84%, Cortana 69%) Chicago Bears at Philadelphia Eagles (-13.5) — EAGLES (Elo 88%, Cortana 75%) Miami Dolphins at New England Patriots (-16.5) — PATRIOTS (Elo 90%, Cortana 77%) Buffalo Bills at Kansas City Chiefs (-10) — CHIEFS (Elo 78%, Cortana 78%) Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Atlanta Falcons (-9.5) — FALCONS (Elo 78%, Cortana 73%) Carolina Panthers (-4.5) at New York Jets — PANTHERS (Elo 57%, Cortana 69%) Tennessee Titans (-3) at Indianapolis Colts — TITANS (Elo 52%, Cortana 73%) Seattle Seahawks (-6.5) at San Francisco 49ers — SEAHAWKS (Elo 78%, Cortana 74%) New Orleans Saints at Los Angeles Rams (-2.5) — SAINTS (Elo 55%, Cortana 53%) Jacksonville Jaguars (-5.5) at Arizona Cardinals — JAGUARS (Elo 55%, Cortana 72%) Denver Broncos at Oakland Raiders (-5) — RAIDERS (Elo 64%, Cortana 64%) Green Bay Packers at Pittsburgh Steelers (-14) — STEELERS (Elo 78%, Cortana 77%) Monday Houston Texans at Baltimore Ravens (-7) — RAVENS (Elo 68%, Cortana 67%) SEE ALSO: NFL POWER RANKINGS: Where all 32 teams stand going into Week 12 Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: I ate exactly like Tom Brady for a week and it made me feel better Wed, 22 2017 21:58:42 GMT What 5 Miss Universe contestants look like without makeup on The 66th Miss Universe pageant will air on Sunday and features 93 women competing for the crown. The pageant shows the ladies in glamorous gowns and more. But ahead of the event, five of the women participated in a "no-makeup" photo shoot at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas for a more natural look.  Fans can watch them in their full pageant glory live on Sunday at 7 p.m. ET on Fox. But right now, see the makeup-free photos below. Sofia del Prado, 22, is Miss Spain. She wants to work with the Red Cross to help with the refugee crisis if she wins the crown. Prissila Howard is a 26-year-old and she represents Peru. See the rest of the story at Business Insider Wed, 22 2017 22:08:58 GMT Samsung allegedly plans to make CES relevant again with new Galaxy S smartphones In many ways, these days it seems the annual CES tradeshow in Las Vegas is where consumer tech goes to die. Vibrating smart jeans? Bizarre wearables? Temporary tattoo printers? Check, check, and check. All the biggest names like Apple, Microsoft, and Google have largely abandoned the event as a place for major product reveals in favor of their own press events.  Samsung, however, might be about to change all that. According to VentureBeat, the South Korea-based manufacturer is set to unveil the latest iteration in its line of Galaxy S smartphones at next year's CES in just a couple of months. That's right, this January might bring with it a sneak peek at both the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+. Read more...More about Samsung, Ces, Smartphones, Galaxy S9, and Ces 2018 Wed, 22 2017 21:58:51 GMT NFL WEEK 12: Our official predictions for who wins this weekend Happy Thanksgiving! The year's best food-and-football centric holiday also brings a great slate of games to bet on this week. Personally, I am thankful for our picks last week, which went a tidy 8-5-1 against the spread to get us back on the right side of winning. I'm also thankful for home underdogs, double-digit lines, and the Philadelphia Eagles. This week is an interesting one for gamblers, with three of the highest lines of the year on the board, so let's get straight to the bets so we can make some money while we lounge around in a tryptophan haze on Thursday. All lines courtesy of the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook. LAST WEEK: 8-5-1OVERALL: 81-73-6Minnesota Vikings (-3) at Detroit Lions (Thursday, 12:30 p.m. ET) The pick: Lions +3 The logic: This is a trap game for the Vikings if I ever saw one. Coming off a big win against one of the strongest teams in the NFC and traveling on a short week to play Matthew Stafford and a Lions team that plays well on Thanksgiving. Detroit wins this one outright. Los Angeles Chargers (-1) at Dallas Cowboys (Thursday, 4:30 p.m. ET) The pick: Cowboys +1 The logic: This game has gone through an absolutely terrifying amount of line movement over the past few days. After opening with the Cowboys as four-point favorites, the line has moved five points to make Dallas a slight underdog. This shift was driven by two things — a poor performance of the Cowboys on Sunday night, and an influx of money on the Chargers. Scenarios like this leave bettors with a tough choice — you can either follow the money, and lay the point with the Chargers, comfortable in the knowledge that the high-roller bettors thought it to be the right side earlier in the week, or you can take advantage of the five-point swing Vegas is now spotting you on short notice. When this game opened, I was ready to slam the Chargers — they could easily be one of the top teams in the AFC if not for their early season field-goal struggles, and the Cowboys have shown absolutely nothing on offense since the loss of Ezekiel Elliott. But with the swing, I'm going to take the five extra points, and hope for the best. New York Giants (+7.5) at Washington Redskins (Thursday, 8:30 p.m. ET) The pick: Redskins -7.5 The logic: The Giants won in dramatic, last-second fashion last weekend. The Redskins lost in dramatic, last-second fashion last weekend. Judging by the ebb-and-flow nature of NFL football, we'll play the Redskins this week. See the rest of the story at Business Insider Wed, 22 2017 19:54:33 GMT WWE 2018 PPV Schedule Released; Money in the Bank Includes Raw and SmackDown WWE reportedly released its pay-per-view schedule for 2018 on Wednesday, and it includes a significant change regarding Money in the Bank. According to PWInsider (h/t Marc Middleton of, the Money in the Bank pay-per-view will take place on June 17, 2018, in Chicago, and it will be a co-branded event rather than the SmackDown exclusive it was in 2017. Overall, there will reportedly be 14 pay-per-views in 2018. Five will be Raw exclusives, four will be SmackDown exclusives and five will be co-branded, as Money in the Bank joins WrestleMania, Royal Rumble, Survivor Series and SummerSlam in that regard. Here is a full rundown of reported pay-per-view dates and locations for 2018: Jan. 28, Philadelphia: Royal Rumble Feb. 25, Las Vegas: Elimination Chamber (Raw) March 11, Columbus, Ohio: Fastlane (SmackDown) April 8, New Orleans: WrestleMania 34 May 6, Newark, New Jersey: Backlash (Raw) May 27, Baltimore: Payback (SmackDown) June 17, Chicago: Money in the Bank July 15, Pittsburgh: Battleground (Raw) Aug. 19, Brooklyn, New York: SummerSlam Sept. 16, San Antonio: Extreme Rules (Raw) Sept. 30, Nashville, Tennessee: Hell in a Cell (SmackDown) Oct. 21, Boston: TLC (Raw) Nov. 18, Los Angeles: Survivor Series Dec. 16, San Jose, California: Clash of Champions (SmackDown) The Money in the Bank change is significant since it gives both brands a chance to get involved with one of WWE's most unique and important gimmicks. This year, Baron Corbin won the men's Money in the Bank contract, and Carmella won the briefcase for the women. With Raw set to the fray, Money in the Bank 2018 could feature two ladder matches with SmackDown and Raw Superstars mixed together, or perhaps even four ladder matches if the brands remain separate. The 2017 pay-per-view calendar featured 16 events, but the reported 2018 schedule omits No Mercy and Great Balls of Fire to shrink the number to 14. Royal Rumble will be the first pay-per-view of 2018 in Philadelphia, and it will officially mark the start of the road to WrestleMania.   Listen to Ring Rust Radio for all of the hot wrestling topics. Catch the latest episode in the player below (warning: some language NSFW). Wed, 22 2017 18:55:21 GMT The #039;Dauminator#039;: Mike Daum Is the Best NBA Prospect You#039;ve Never Heard Of From right wrist to fingertips, no one in college basketball is more gifted than South Dakota State big man Mike Daum. He's the nation's leading returning scorer, the guy who put up 51 points in a single game, scored 30 or more 12 times last season and earned 37 points in the Summit League championship game to send his team to the NCAA Tournament last March. He once made 12 threes in an AAU game in Las Vegas, which is the reason he's at South Dakota State—the SDSU coaches just so happened to be in attendance and offered him a scholarship the next week. That flick of the wrist—which his mom (a former pro and a literal Hall of Famer) taught him—combined with the high release on his jump shot—reminiscent of his idol Dirk Nowitzki—and the freedom he has to work in South Dakota State's offense altogether have put Daum on the NBA's radar. "He's really skilled, nice size, plays the game the right way," an NBA scout told B/R. But there are question marks that line up with stereotypes. He's a 6'9" tweener from Nebraska who plays at a small school in Brookings, South Dakota. Scouts want to know: Is he athletic enough to play in the NBA? Some parents are so teary-eyed over the success of their children that question is not part of the child-rearing process. Not the Daums. Michele Daum knew that a lack of quickness was her son's biggest limitation when he was a high schooler, so she enrolled him in a speed program called Action-X on Oct. 1, 2012. "I knew he needed foot speed; I didn't know how to teach it," Michele says. The speed coaches wrapped a belt around Mike's waist that was attached to the wall in a resistance drill that helped with quick-twitch explosion. The belt slowly slipped up to Mike's stomach, but he didn't think anything of it. He kept coming back for more. Two weeks in and four sessions later, he found himself on the floor in the kitchen at his friend Joshua Fearing's house in Cheyenne, Wyoming, in so much pain he could not stand. Michele was in Oregon visiting her sick father. Mike's father, Mitch, was on the family farm working the corn harvest an hour away from Cheyenne in Kimball, Nebraska. Fearing and his mother, Lorriane Tyler, took Mike to an urgent care facility. Health care workers there were stumped at what was going on, and then Mike started throwing up blood and collapsed on the X-ray table. He had been bleeding internally for two weeks, the belt pushing into his ribs and lacerating his liver and spleen. Mike was rushed by ambulance to the hospital in Cheyenne. He spent eight days there, unable to get out of his bed to walk or take a shower. On the fifth day, doctors planned to remove his spleen, which would not heal, lowering his hemoglobin levels. It was a Tuesday. That morning, Pastor Hod Boltjes from the family church in Kimball visited along with some friends while Mike was prepped for surgery. After Boltjes left, Mike looked at his mother and told her his spleen had closed up. Michele asked the nurses to check his levels again—it turned out that his levels had started to tick up. Instead of missing the entire basketball season—and surgery would have resulted in just that—Mike was on the floor again two-and-a-half months later. "Every time he steps on the court, I thank God," Michele says. "It's like, 'Thank you for letting us have this chance to watch him one more time.'" Mike Daum is blessed. He bled for two weeks and lived to tell about it. And then there's the timing of his arrival to college basketball, the school where he landed, the coach he now plays for, the parents who raised him. All of it. It all came together in a perfect package to allow for Mike to drain jumpers at a record rate.  Psychologists argue nature versus nurture. Mike had both. Michele was the leading scorer and rebounder at the University of Wyoming for four straight seasons and then played professionally overseas for three years before blowing out her knee and breaking both her feet. "Cement courts," she says. "This was before the WNBA." Mike's father, Mitch, was a 6'5" tight end on the Wyoming football team. He played one season for the Houston Oilers in 1987. "I've got good genes," says Mike, who is 6'9" with broad shoulders and a 7'4" wingspan. Michele took charge with the nurturing—but in a way specific to her own talents and interests and, later, those of her son. Starting at three years old, Mike would lay on the living room floor in front of the television next to his mom, and they would flick a basketball back and forth, catching the ball with the opposite hand. If Mom tossed it with the right, Mike had to catch it with the left. Michele obsessed over making sure the backspin was perfect. They would argue over who flicked the straighter ball, and Michele found multiple strategies for training Mike in the ways of alignment. They would smash Hot Wheels into each other, and the cars had to collide head-on perfectly straight. "Let's go left hand this time," Michele would tell him. "It was always with basketball in mind," she says in the lobby of the DoubleTree Hotel in Lawrence, Kansas, hours before Mike would score 21 points against fourth-ranked Kansas. "It was weird," Mitch says. "It wasn't weird," Michele says. "It was cool!" Mitch supported the habit from a distance, taking care of the family farm as Mike and Michele traveled the country to chase hoop dreams. Michele coached at the school in town just so she would always have keys and access to the gym, and mother and son spent countless hours together getting shots up. When Mike's high school practices finished, he'd text his mom. The Daums lived five minutes from the high school, and Michele made a beeline to the gym so Mike could get another 30 minutes to an hour of additional shooting with his mom rebounding. Sometimes the entire family would come to the gym—Mom, Dad, Mike and his sister Danika, who plays volleyball at Henderson State in Arkansas. Before they went home, the Daums always finished with an end-on-a-make game. Each member of the family had to shoot a left-handed layup, right-handed layup, a shot from their favorite spot—Mike's is the top of the key, Michele's is a right-elbow jumper, Mitch's a turnaround jumper from the block and Danika's a baseline J—then a free throw. If one person missed a shot, they all had to start over again. "We'd be there for 30 minutes sometimes," Mitch says. "I'd tell him, 'Mike, this is long enough. I've got to get home. I'm tired. I've got to work tomorrow.' "'No, Dad. We have to finish this. Everyone has to make their shots.'" Mike and Michele still play that game whenever she visits campus in Brookings. "It's like my dream game," Michele says. "I'm like a little kid." Michelle coached Mike during his junior high years, making sure he didn't ever get away from the fundamentals. Mike idolized Nowitzki and tried to sneak the fadeaway into his arsenal. One day, he decided to unleash it in a sixth grade game. After a few misses, Michele called timeout. "I played super, super bad," Mike says. "My mom said, 'You're not in the NBA yet. When you make it to the NBA, then you can fade away.' All my friends loved it. They said, 'It's nice having you on the team, Mike. She'll just yell at you and never yell at us.'" That same year, Mike accompanied Michele to a Hall of Fame ceremony at Wyoming—where she is in the Hall as the school's all-time leading rebounder and No. 2 scorer. On the trip, Mike told Michele, "Mom, I want this." Soon after, they were in the gym, and Mike had made close to 60 straight shots from all over the floor. "I was bawling," Michele says. "I was looking at him. I said, 'You've got this. If you want this, you take it to the next level.'" The Daums were willing to do whatever their son wanted to help him with his dream. He joined an AAU program in Fort Collins, Colorado, which was an hour and a half from Kimball. Four times a week they would drive him to Fort Collins—twice for practice and another two times for individual workouts with his AAU coach, Brandon Valdez. Mike was the man in Kimball, but he was the star in a town of 2,000 on a team that had 16 or 17 players come out for basketball. "We had just enough to fill a varsity and a JV," Mike says. "If you went out, you made it." Mike had a handful of Division I offers and even some high-major interest from Oregon and Oregon State—Michele, who is from Prineville, Oregon, was still well-known in the area—but Mike played poorly in an AAU tournament in Anaheim and interest faded from the Oregon schools. The tournament in Las Vegas was the final one of the July evaluation period, his last chance to get noticed in front of college scouts. Michele used to shoot pictures of Mike's AAU games and would always snap a shot of the coaches in attendance. When Mike buried 13 threes against a Florida team that included current Central Florida star Tacko Fall, she noticed then-SDSU assistant coach Brian Cooley was in the shot. The Daums had become fans of South Dakota State and its style when watching current Utah Jazz guard Nate Wolters and the Jackrabbits play Michigan in the 2013 NCAA Tournament. The weekend after his 13 three-pointers, Mike was on his family's red CaseIH 785 tractor working the wheat harvest when then-SDSU coach Scott Nagy called. The Daums visited Brookings, but Mike struggled during pickup games, which made the coaches wonder if they should have made the offer. "I don't think Coach Nagy was sold," Michele says. "My heart tells me if we would not have taken the offer right there on the recruiting trip, we would have lost that offer." Mike committed and arrived on campus overweight at 265 pounds and glued to the three-point line. "I honestly was just this chubby farm kid with long hair, and I could shoot the ball, but that was it," Mike says. "I wasn't physical at all, and I think that's one thing the coaching staff saw." The Jackrabbits did not know they had potentially one of the greatest scorers in college basketball history. They knew they had a guy who needed to redshirt, and so he did, the only one in his three-man recruiting class to sit out the 2014-15 season. Mike lost 30 pounds. On the floor, he tried just to blend in, but he was mostly getting worked by Cody Larson, a transfer from Florida who won Summit League Defensive Player of the Year and was an all-league selection that season. "He kicked my butt every single day," Mike says. After winning the Summit League regular-season title and then getting beat in the conference tourney finals by North Dakota State, the Jackrabbits received an automatic bid to the NIT. They were paired to play Colorado State, which was led by J.J. Avila, one of the most skilled big men in college basketball that season. All season Mike had been mostly stuck to the block on scout team, mimicking opposing big men whose roles were typically to pass the ball out to the guards. He played Avila in practice that week and got a green light to attack. "The Avila kid could do everything," SDSU assistant coach Rob Klinkefus says. "He could shoot it, drive it, and Mike had the full display going that week. That's kind of when we're like, 'Oh, man. OK, we've got something here.'"   As a redshirt freshman, Mike blew away expectations by averaging 15.2 points and 6.1 rebounds off the bench in only 20.8 minutes per game. He shot 44.6 percent from behind the three-point line but only attempted 65 shots from deep. When Nagy left for Wright State after the season in April, the locals worried Mike might soon leave too. But SDSU's administration found the perfect coach to unleash the Dauminator. At Iowa State, T.J. Otzelberger witnessed Fred Hoiberg start the wave of positionless basketball in college hoops. He allowed his big men like Royce White and Georges Niang to play like guards. "I watched a lot of film from the year before and thought he really had unbelievable touch and knack for scoring the basketball," Otzelberger says. "His redshirt freshman year it was a lot more in the post, and they had some veteran guards that really got him the ball in the right spot." Otzelberger told Mike they were going to play "mismatch basketball," and he would be at the center of it all. "I don't think he wants to be just an around-the-basket and post-up kind of guy," Otzelberger says. "We'd be foolish if we weren't using his strengths and how good he is." From a young age, Michele told Mike that not that many people have the mental capacity to be a scorer. "Yes, defense is huge," Michele says. "My motto was you don't get your name in the paper for defense. You want to score." Otzelberger put him in the newspaper, on the internet and on SportsCenter by moving him all over the court and increasing his usage. Mike shot 187 threes, making 145 (41.8 percent), and he led the nation in free throws made (7.2 per game). His 25.1 points per game ranked second nationally. He also had the third-best offensive rating among players who used at least 28 percent of their team's possessions, per "It's almost a blessing in disguise, Coach Otz coming in here, because he really just gave me that offensive freedom," Mike says. Mike made such a name for himself that he was invited this past summer to the Under Armour All-America Camp in Philadelphia and Adidas Nations camp in Houston—two showcase events that featured the best college players and the chance to play in front of NBA scouts. "It took him a little bit of time to warm up, but he definitely held his own when all was said and done," the scout, who was at the Under Armour camp, told B/R. "I think his confidence grew as the camp progressed. He was one of the best shooters there." The worry for some SDSU fans is that Mike could leave for another school next year as a grad transfer. "It's more noise I've been blocking out," Mike says. SDSU is a school that can get to the NCAA Tournament—he’s already been to two and SDSU is the favorite to win the Summit League this year—and scouts will find him. Last year, Valparaiso's Alec Peters, who has a similar game, went in the second round of the NBA draft. SDSU has also scheduled Power Five programs to allow Mike the opportunity to perform on bigger stages. He played at Kansas last Friday, and the Jackrabbits are currently at the Cayman Islands Classic, where they beat Iowa on Tuesday. They also have upcoming trips to Mississippi, Wichita State and Colorado. Meanwhile, it would also be difficult for Mike to leave a place where he's adored and gets to play how he wants with not a hint of jealousy. When he scored 51 points last season at Fort Wayne, his teammates on the bench were all holding up five fingers with their right hands next to a fist. "I didn’t know what this meant," Mike says, reenacting the scene. "I thought they were calling out a play or something." "He's humble, humble, humble," Klinkefus says. "It's not always easy for a guy who is going to get as many shots as he is to be loved by everybody. It bothers him to disappoint people, and he's very, very loyal. He's loyal to his teammates, and his teammates are very loyal to him." At SDSU, Mike also has a chance to place his name in the record book. If he repeats his scoring average from his redshirt sophomore season this year and next, he'll be on pace to finish fifth on the NCAA's all-time scoring list. He'd also pass Doug McDermott as the top scorer since the turn of the century.  The Daums are loving every minute of it, crisscrossing the country to watch their son get buckets. Michele, who made the trip to the Caymans, texted on Tuesday to inform she had won a free-throw contest against two Iowa guys. "Hehe," she texted. "It was fun." Mike, who scored only 10 points, is in a bit of an early-season slump. He's averaging 17.5 points and shooting 38.2 percent from the field. But his team won on Tuesday. And he got to play basketball and ended on a make. So, it was a good day.   C.J. Moore covers college basketball at the national level for Bleacher Report. You can find him on Twitter @CJMooreHoops. Wed, 22 2017 14:20:10 GMT NFL Picks Week 12: Opening Odds And Expert Predictions Against The Spread Week 12 of the 2017 NFL season is just around the corner, making this the ideal time to get your bets in. Get ready to pick some winners with this preview that includes the complete schedule, start times and TV info for every game, plus can't-miss predictions from a pro Las Vegas handicapper. Wed, 22 2017 12:45:00 GMT #039;I came down here to be forgotten#039;: life in the tunnels beneath Las Vegas – video An estimated 300 people live in the flood tunnels underneath Las Vegas, and many of them struggle with substance abuse and addiction. Paul Vautrinot was one of them. Vautrinot visits the tunnels regularly to try and help residents there find a way out, and into transitional housing Continue reading... Wed, 22 2017 12:00:19 GMT Pornography is incompatible with consent The recent allegations made against the grotesque wire-haired bulk of the popular exhibitionist Ronald Jeremy Hyatt — "Ron Jeremy" to his fans — are the least surprising news to have come in the middle of our national reckoning with sexual assault. To describe all the crimes of which Jeremy has been accused in an article recently published in Rolling Stone would exhaust the space of a single column, and any detailed account of them would be emetic. One actress claims that she was invited to meet Jeremy at his home, where he proceeded to lock her in a bathroom and sodomize her. "I need to look at your ass so I can get hard for the photo shoot," he is said to have explained. Another recounted an incident in the back room of a Las Vegas convention center for a private photo shoot. "I was saying, ‘I'm not comfortable with this.' And before I know it I feel the tip of his penis inside me," she said. In a vaguely worded statement submitted to the magazine, Jeremy appeared both to deny and corroborate the claims of his accusers. "I have never and would never rape anyone," he said. He did not deny what he referred to as "the charges of groping": I say yes, I AM A GROPER. And by groper, I mean I get paid to show up to these shows, events, and photo shoots and touch the people and they touch me. I'm not the young stud I was, but I still draw a crowd. And we are talking about things that are within reason, in front of police officers and security that are always there as well as the tons of cameras. And the general public. But seriously, if you were going to be around Ron Jeremy, wouldn't you assume that I'd be a little bit touchy feely? [Ron Jeremy] It is inevitable that more women who have worked in the porn "industry" will come forward with similar stories. The question is whether we are going to draw any worthwhile conclusions from their painful testimony or dismiss their anguish by imagining that they are talking about isolated incidents. The only prudent response is to question the legal availability of pornography. It is impossible to observe the shaky ethics of consent in a world in which women are expected to appear in a state of undress and make themselves subject to groping, sodomy, and other indescribably disgusting acts at the whim of directors who are also frequently performers and random "fans" who have paid for the privilege of doing exactly those things at so-called "conventions" — one in which, indeed, they are often paid (negligible) wages to have sexual intercourse with men who are "pretending" to rape them. All of this is undertaken in an atmosphere in which drug use and the abuse of alcohol are ubiquitous. Pornography cannot be tolerated in a society in which women are legally protected against rape and harassment. Pornography is incompatible with "consent," that bandage word we use to cover up so many other crimes. Pornography is violence. It is an act of aggression against the bodies and the souls of the women who are photographed. That women in pornography have been routinely assaulted by their male counterparts on and off camera is a fact at which we have been shrugging for decades. More than a decade and a half ago, Martin Amis reported on the industry for The Guardian; one female performer described her experience working with a producer whose moniker is John Dough on a series called Rough Sex: "I got the shit kicked out of me," she said. "I was told before the video — and they said this very proudly, mind you — that in this line most of the girls start crying because they're hurting so bad. I couldn't breathe. I was being hit and choked. I was really upset, and they didn't stop. They kept filming. You can hear me say, 'Turn the fucking camera off,' and they kept going." [The Guardian] In 2010 the feminist researcher Gail Dines found that the most popular acts in internet pornography are "vaginal, oral, and anal penetration by three or more men at the same time; double anal; double vaginal; a female gagging from having a penis thrust into her throat; and ejaculation in a woman's face, eyes, and mouth." It is not possible to "consent" to such disgusting acts, whether they are photographed or videotaped or done in a dark room in a highway motel, any more than it is for a child to consent to working 80 hours a week in a sweatshop in Southeast Asia or a teenaged girl to sell herself into slavery. Meanwhile the political economy of porn should be enough to make any person of left-wing sensibilities blanche. Women in pornography are recruited almost uniformly from impoverished backgrounds, sold dreams of glamor and stardom that quickly give way to the sordid reality of entreaties from Jeremy and his cohorts to make themselves available to perform the most repulsive acts for the benefit of spectators or otherwise. By their mid-20s, they find themselves washed up, frequently broke, often addicted to drugs, and incapable of finding other work. Many drift into prostitution. Stripped, degraded, their lives ruined for the enjoyment of hundreds of millions of men hunched over screens in the hope of generating online advertising revenue, they undergo a systematic exploitation without counterpart in any other industry. It is organized cruelty for profit. Why do we allow it? The most telling part of Jeremy's statement to Rolling Stone was his rehearsal of his legal record. "I was only arrested 20 years ago when I was fighting for freedom of speech with Hal Freeman," he explained. For half a century now, men like Jeremy have traded on the base currency of "freedom of speech" in order to justify their exploitation of women. Maybe Jeremy's vast filmography spanning from The Good Girls of Godiva High (1980) and Homo Erectus (2008) is your idea of contributing to a thriving public discourse about art and ideas necessary to the flourishing of a democracy. Sure. Maybe child labor is "the economy." Pornography is not cool or titillating or okay if there is "consent." It is not "free speech" or somebody's "right." It is slavery. Wed, 22 2017 10:40:02 GMT TV News Roundup: Fox Sets Midseason Premiere Dates for ‘LA to Vegas,’ ‘The Resident’ In today’s roundup, Fox’s new shows “LA to Vegas” and “The Resident” get premiere dates and Scottie Pippen will guest star on “Lethal Weapon.” DATES Fox  announced that its new series “LA To Vegas” will premiere Jan. 2 at 9 p.m. ET/PT and “The Resident“will premiere on  Jan. 21 at 10 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT, following NFC […] Wed, 22 2017 00:12:00 GMT