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THE WHITE HOUSE FIGHTS FOR CON­TROL DUR­ING THE BRETT KA­VANAUGH CON­TRO­VERSY

By the time you read this, we may well have a re­sult. But as I type, the White House is fight­ing to re­gain con­trol of the con­fir­ma­tion pro­ceed­ings in­volv­ing Don­ald Trump’s Supreme Court pick, Brett Ka­vanaugh. It’s a hot topic in the US, with ex­ten­sive so­cial me­dia com­men­tary and many first-hand ac­counts of sex­ual abuse, much of it from the per­spec­tive of the vic­tims. And there are also ques­tions about the role of the White House in the FBI in­ves­ti­ga­tion into al­le­ga­tions of sex­ual as­sault and mis­con­duct against the nom­i­nee made by col­lege pro­fes­sor, Chris­tine Blasey Ford.

Charles Lud­ing­ton, a class­mate of Ka­vanaugh at Yale Univer­sity, has said that he will pro­vide in­for­ma­tion to the FBI, “de­tail­ing vi­o­lent drunken be­hav­ior by Ka­vanaugh in col­lege.” In a copy of his state­ment, given to The Wash­ing­ton Post, Lud­ing­ton, a pro­fes­sor at North Carolina State Univer­sity, de­scribed Ka­vanaugh as a “bel­liger­ent and ag­gres­sive” drunk. Dur­ing the Se­nate Ju­di­ciary Com­mit­tee hear­ing last week, Ka­vanaugh was re­peat­edly asked about his drink­ing habits in high school and col­lege and de­nied hav­ing a prob­lem.

In his state­ment Lud­ing­ton wrote: “If he lied about his past ac­tions on na­tional tele­vi­sion, and more es­pe­cially while speak­ing un­der oath in front of the United States Se­nate, I be­lieve those lies should have con­se­quences.”

Mean­while, a mem­ber of Chris­tine Blasey Ford’s le­gal team told NBC News that the FBI had not con­tacted Ford, the first of Ka­vanaugh’s ac­cusers, or her lawyers, since the FBI back­ground in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the sex­ual mis­con­duct al­le­ga­tions against Ka­vanaugh was agreed by the Se­nate com­mit­tee.

SEX SCAN­DALS PROMPT NEW RE­SPONSE

The avalanche of sex­ual ha­rass­ment sto­ries is not just cre­at­ing head­lines. It’s caus­ing change in the world of work gen­er­ally. One af­ter an­other, pow­er­ful men – Hol­ly­wood pro­duc­ers, high-pro­file re­porters, elected of­fi­cials – have been top­pling in what has be­come an up­roar of na­tional sham­ing. Pre­vi­ously un­touch­able men are be­ing held ac­count­able in very pub­lic and hu­mil­i­at­ing ways.

That’s en­cour­ag­ing more women to step for­ward in their places of work, ac­cord­ing to Casie Yoder, spokes­woman for the na­tional ad­vo­cacy group 9to5.

Why is this hap­pen­ing now? Sev­eral fac­tors have con­trib­uted, ad­vo­cates say. Most of all, it is the com­bi­na­tion of a rash of high-pro­file hor­ror sto­ries, with the rise of so­cial me­dia ad­vo­cacy. Women at work are mak­ing it clear that they won’t put up any more with hy­per­mas­cu­line in­tim­i­da­tion, sex­ual power plays, or un­wanted touch­ing.

“They’re not tak­ing any crap,” said Pa­tri­cia Grif­fith, an em­ploy­ment at­tor­ney with the At­lanta firm Ford & Har­ri­son. “They’re more will­ing to talk up for them­selves.” Rip­ple ef­fects are show­ing up lo­cally. Law firms are start­ing to see more cases. Some com­pa­nies are re­view­ing their poli­cies.

The At­lanta law firm Ar­nall Golden Gre­gory re­cently held a panel dis­cus­sion on sex­ual ha­rass­ment, which was at­tended by about 150 At­lanta ex­ec­u­tives, busi­ness own­ers, cor­po­rate lawyers, and hu­man re­sources staff. In the past, com­pa­nies were able to re­solve com­plaints be­hind closed doors. Now one case can be­come a pub­lic re­la­tions night­mare, if a story ap­pears in the news or on so­cial me­dia.

FAS­CI­NAT­ING BITS

The crit­i­cal phrase in BDSM is ‘safe, sane and con­sen­sual’. If you’re plan­ning a gag, try a click of fin­gers or a tap on the bed. Your safe word is a sig­nal that you need to stop. Un­like other eroge­nous zones, the but­tocks are fleshy and fatty. For most, this means that a de­cent amount of pres­sure on the bot­tom is not only tol­er­a­ble but also nec­es­sary to bring on plea­sur­able sen­sa­tions. The old der­rière is an eroge­nous zone; a good spank­ing can be the best way to fire it up!

Brett Ka­vanaugh

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