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Sean Penn:’ Some of my very best laughs have come out of the worst evaluates’


The actor turned author speaks his thinker about pundits, insolent aid design, the mania-led # MeToo movement, and why his ex-wives find him boring

Sean Penn saunters into a low-key restaurant not far from his house and slides undetected into a seat at the back. It is a misty day in Malibu, 15 miles north of LA, and the actor appears in familiar, I-don’t-care semblance: beat-up leather jacket, brushfire “hairs-breadth”( which, in light of the views he will air about female egotism in Hollywood, I feel bound to report may be more vibrant than sort planned ), with the jumpy force of a soul who has stood for too long next to very loud orators. The 57 -year-old reacts me affably, to my amaze: while Penn may be long admired for his acting, he is defamed for almost everything else. He is known to be pugnacious, short-tempered, long-winded, a boy who outcries at photographers and smokes on Tv. And now he has written a lunatic romance.” It’s the most fun I’ve had professionally ,” he croaks and leanings back in his chair.

A few epoches before our join, Bob Honey Who Just Do Stuff was the subject of a full-page newspaper ad in which the publishers, preferably cleverly, moved ways from the book’s worst reviews and questioned readers to make up their own heads. The fiction, which follows the adventures of its eponymous hero as he goes around exchanging septic tank and murdering old parties, is a satire of American shopper culture and the cult of persona, and for weeks its plethoras have been gleefully documented. Penn writes as if every parole has been put through a thesaurus: for “face”, read” dermal concealment “; for “quiet”, ” linger concert of stillnes “; a boy with good hearing has ” astonishing auditory augmentation economy “. So it goes on, until we reach:” Effervescence lived in her every cellular saying, and she had spizzerinctum to spare .”

Cherrypicking these exaggerations provides us with a moderately good laugh, but here’s the curious happening: taken as a whole, there is something quite thrilling about Bob Honey, a hallucinatory effect that establishes the novel at times almost feel like a piece of action art. Linger long enough in the world of Penn’s prose and one starts to lose all purchase on reality, a sort of brain slide that Penn insists was intentional.” It was meant to be challenging ,” he says.” Meant to have you stop-the-rhythm to go and look something up .” If he talks in a word fog, it is because he prefers” to be understood by osmosis. If I’m being summary, I premise[ beings] will fill in, or if I am not being brief”- the far greater likelihood, on the evidence of our chit-chat-” the tangents would be connected by the other person .” He hoped the book might work along similar lines.

Penn in 2003′ s Mystic River, for which he triumphed a best performer Oscar. Photograph: Allstar

The result, while predominantly absurd, does elicit an emotional response in the reader and for that reason alone might be judged a success.” I author the Sean-by-osmosis version in about 30 dates ,” Penn says, after which” I rewrote for two years”, before selling it to Simon& Schuster, where” I were lucky; Peter[ Borland] altogether got the book. I felt I was being supported by a really smart reader .”

Was he revised?

” He wasn’t looking to change anything ,” Penn says cheerfully.” But he did send me great greenbacks which said,’ I don’t understand this. Do you want me to ?'”( In most cases Penn replied “yes”; in some,” not so much better “.) The suggest he was indulged because of his celebrity is one he knows baffling.” No, because I wouldn’t have done it another way. When parties listen to the advice they get, it generally robs the feeling of the article. In the movies, they’re not thinking about whether it has impact on them; they’re thinking about whether it will influence the box office .”

This rather quaint view of writing- as an industry devoid of commercial-grade the rules and certainly not the kind of business that might judge a work by a famed performer to have greater value as a car gate-crash than as something more credible- is the main source of Penn’s enthusiasm for romance creating, which he sees as a less liaised pattern of showing than behaving. But why would he trade in something he is indisputably world class at- Penn has won two Oscars, for Milk and Mystic River– for something he is indisputably not? The refute is burnout, what he announces” my great root of estrangement from my peers, actors who would rather sell a movie than make one “. Where these actors are “brands”, and where even a movie he desires” is the sum of settlements at its best”, Bob Honey, by oppose, is” all mine. It’s been said you never ended a movie, you abandon it, and I didn’t abandon this. I stand by every thread exactly how I created it .”

Has he appreciated the worst reviews?” I have a sense of them. It’s keep-your-day-job shit. A cluster of children, schadenfreude, whatever. And in the end, some of the best chortles I’ve got ought to have the one-liners that have come out of the worst reviews .”

Through long espousal of leftwing politics, including vocal protests against the Iraq war and support of Hugo Chavez and Raul Castro, Penn is used to being unpopular. Does it hurt to be mocked?” Well, lampooned intends the person’s an idiot .” Penn smiles crookedly and shutters his lids.” I’m not susceptible at all .”

Shaking sides with Mexican drug lord El Chapo. Photograph: Sean Penn/ Rolling Stone

There are two portraits of Sean Penn that contender the storage of his greatest screen capacities. Up there with Carlito’s Way, or Dead Man Walking, or his role as Harvey Milk– the 2008 biopic of California’s first gay elected official and a performance for which one could nearly forgive Penn any amount of bad behaviour off-screen- there is the shot of him in a boat rescuing survivors of Hurricane Katrina, and the one of his handshake with Mexican drug lord El Chapo.

The latter, taken 2 years ago when Penn interviewed El Chapo for Rolling Stone, fetched down on his head almost as much opprobrium as Bob Honey, for its recognized amateurism and for the way it seemed to apologise for a follower with so much blood on his hands. Penn remains unrepentant.” Simply because person writes about nonsense doesn’t mean they know about it. I know papas who don’t know their own families. Most of these journalists on this subject know – uh – – nothing and most never speak my patch. They speak the excerpts. Then you get a talking head like a Don Winslow[ on CNN ], I’ve read his works cover to cover and he’s a functioning moron, and parties think he’s something. That’s their tenant expert. It’s like Henry Kissinger is their occupant expert .”

The gung-ho activism is more complicated and, on closer inspection, much more admirable than the caricature proposes. If there is precedent for Penn wading into a activity about which he knows nothing and nailing it through sheer bloody-mindedness, it is here, in his experiences with aid.

In 2010, Penn went to Haiti in the wake of the devastating earthquake and set up the J/ P Haitian Relief Organization, an agency that has, by all details, been enormously successful and helped thousands of Haitians find shelter and medical succour. In a piece in the New York Times in 2011, by which time Penn had been in Haiti for nearly a year, ex-serviceman assistant works lined up to praise him. The was a matter of what he was doing in Haiti in the first place has beginnings in his inability to find equilibrium at home. The very persuasive passages in Bob Honey are those in which Penn scribbles of his character’s insomnia. When I ask if this comes from experience, he takes a big breath.” So this goes back as far as I, or my mother, can recollect. I was born at 3.45 am and I generally fall asleep at 3.45 am. I’ve been to Zen centres, done sleep investigates, everything. I could never get myself to go to sleep. I’d get up, sometimes, with no sleep at all. And I was getting older, so I wasn’t able to push through this thing mentally .” Eventually a medical doctor prescribed Ambien:” But it doesn’t work like it used to. It doesn’t save me asleep, but I get to sleep and at least get three hours. Then you’re watching the clock for the time you have to get up, and it’s getting closer and closer .”

Some of Penn’s wilder behaviour obligates more gumption, perhaps, when looked at in the context of a husband who has never had more than three unbroken hours’ sleep.

” Yuh. Judgment questions ,” he says, heightening his eyebrows in what is almost certainly a reference to the time, in 2009, when a court represented him attend anger management grades after an altercation with a photographer.

It probably didn’t improve your temper, I suggest.

” No. Nor the envisages that lead to a temperamental response .”

With Al Pacino in Carlito’s Way. Photograph: Allstar

One result of this is that Penn often feels himself to operate best in crisis mode. He repeats a line from Cutter’s Way, a movie from 1981 starring Jeff Bridges and John Heard in which the status of women kills herself to get away from her alcoholic spouse, and the final pipeline of which is:” You know, the number grind drives me to suck. Tragedy, I take straight .”

” There’s been a lot of that in “peoples lives” ,” Penn says and he associates it, obliquely, to how he is able to function effectively in a destabilised situation such as Haiti after the earthquake.” I remember tragedy can also be urgency. I find myself proceeding appease, and being necessitate. I can bring an American arrogance to anywhere in the nations of the world .” He smiles.” Look, in the movie business you tell your crew:’ I need this set done yesterday .’ When I got to Haiti and I saw how NGOs cultivated, it would be like:’ This case needs this , now, and this is the person to get in touch with .’ Then I had six other people asking me six other things. When I clique back half an hour later to the first one and said,’ Did you get onto ?’ they said,’ We’re waiting for a response, we sent an email .’ I said,’ You cast an email? Give me your telephone, I’m going to call .’ And it drove me fucking mad .”

Pretty promptly, Penn’s outfit became known as an bureau that got things done quicker than the NGOs and he announces it” the most wonderful kind of work to do in an emergency, because it’s disaster related “. It was triage. He gestures.” It’s the easiest, commonsense run. There’s a kid in the street, a truck’s going to hit it, do you know that the sidewalk is clear of paedophiles? No. I’ll realize my confessions later .”

It is fascinating that the self-important urgency of a Hollywood movie define can be translated to a disaster zone, but really thought about it, Penn says:” It’s the same business, the stakes are higher .” There’s even overlap with the hygiene logistics of shooting a movie.” You’ve gotta get porta potties for parties .”

Rescuing survivors of Hurricane Katrina. Photograph: Getty Epitome

Was he surprised when allegations were done last year that assistant works, including Roland Van Hauwermeiren, the head of Oxfam in Haiti, applied copulation craftsmen?” I don’t know why it wasn’t a bigger gossip earlier. I was reading about it in the Haitian press when I was in Haiti in the beginning. Roland Van Hauwermeiren was probably the best country director of an organization there. Of direction, you’re not the best anything if you’re looking the other way on that stuff. Or, worse yet, if you’re participating .”

In his own organisation, Penn had a policy of” no indulgence” privilege down to the rule that” if you smoke one joint, you’re fired “. In fact he aimed up loosening the doses regulate for his indigenous laborers, because” how am I holding that when my neighbourhood proletarians went back to their homes at night? I stopped being an idiot with that .” For the imports, principally Americans or Brits, nonetheless,” You don’t come to this country to break its own legislation .”

And when someone in his organisation did disintegrate a general rule? Well, Penn says,” There’s no organisation, including my own, where you don’t have something happen. And you deal with it; you certainly want to take it transparent .” The cover-up, he says, is the biggest problem.” I’ve known of situations where large-scale organisations discovered something and did investigation into the cases, and fuelled mortal- and because they didn’t want a suit from that person, another organisation would hire them; it’s like overtake on pastors. In our organisation, I’d get on the phone to whoever the violator was and say,’ If I hear you are ever trying to get a job in one of these organisations, I’m coming to your home city, and I’m going to rent out the movie theatre and indicate a documentary about you and make sure your mothers are there .'”

Why does he remember an assistant craftsman, who probably starts out with good planneds, gets to the point of manipulating hopeles maidens this course?” I can have beliefs ,” Penn says,” but they’re the same ideologies one would apply to someone who abuses their children. How do you do that ?”

In light of these life-or-death stakes, Penn is unsympathetic to what he seems to regard as more inconsequential abuses closer together, particularly those involving celebrity exposure. A week before we satisfy, he sounded in the gossip columns for dining with Charlie Rose, the humiliation former Tv multitude fuelled from PBS and CBS for inappropriate action around female personnel. Penn is not, it is safe to say, on board with #MeToo, which he describes as” not intellectually honest”,” a push led by mania” and full of” self-aggrandisement and expressing “. At the end of Bob Honey, he scribbles a song defending Charlie Rose and appearing to lament the downfall of Louis CK.

With former spouse Robin Wright, in 2009. Photograph: Getty Epitome

Clearly, I say, Penn reckons his pal was mistreated.

” He says one thing happened; other people said one other thing happened. I wasn’t there. What I do think is we maybe should be very careful; for example, are we now going to say we will never celebrate Thomas Jefferson again: slave incumbent, that’s all you are? Charlie Rose provided one of the only sophisticated exchange programs, and I don’t know what percentages per are, but I know that there are some lies that have been told publicly about beings; I know of some serious omissions. I’m talking about women towards souls .” This is a personal issue for Penn, who in 2016 won a court-appointed apology from the chairman Lee Daniels, who erroneously implied the actor was guilty of domestic violence.

Romantic relationships don’t seem to be Penn’s strong point. The worst fragments of Bob Honey are those involving the character’s ex-wife, a harridan announced Helen, about whom he is so ferocious, I had wondered whether Penn’s own ex-wife might have commented on it. Penn gives me a dry examine.” Which ex-wife ?” he says.

Oh. I had momentarily forgotten about Madonna, to whom Penn was married from 1985 to 1989.” The father of your minors ,” I say.( Penn and Robin Wright, who were married for 14 years, have Dylan and Hopper, both in their 20 s .)

” No; these attributes are mergers of a lot of things and she’s not a character in the book .” Penn interrupts.” I don’t think the book would be either one of my ex-wives’ cup of tea. They both are of the view that I talked too much in ways that were too complicated .” He giggles.” I don’t have a lot of a discussion with my most recent ex, but my first ex, we have a close friendship .”

What does he think Madonna would say about the book?” I think if she was reading it, she’d say, ugh, I’ll read this some other time .”

Anyway, Penn says, returning to the subject of # MeToo,” I don’t ever want to be in a change. I don’t trust any move. The anti-war movement did not sustain. We’re back in conflicts .”

But going back to his sidekick Charlie, surely the lesson of this is: don’t stray around naked in front of your faculty if you don’t want to get sacked.” I don’t do not agree with that ,” Penn says.” I go back to my original concept, which is that if that’s what the individual that happened to is asking for, then they have a legal lawsuit to go through, or the company has a decision to clear. But where the corporation is realise that decision under the pressure of … a movement that is led by mania, I get obsessed for both[ backs ].”

There is a libertarian blotch in Penn that is impossible to miss. I recited a wince-making line from Bob Honey, which Penn almost certainly considers to be a liberal statement:” Getting older in America is tough on a woman; insuring what she’ll do to avoid it is tough on a gentleman .” I usurp Penn approved of Frances McDormand‘s unadorned form at the Oscars this year?

With Madonna, in 1986.’ She’s such a good egg ,’ says Penn. Photograph: WireImage

He takes a big breath:” When my teenagers were growing up, there was a thing called the surgery channel and I would watch this thing and get into hysterical laughter. One slice and you’re a human body! We’re the fucking same! But where I truly became a giggling 12 -year-old girl was volunteering for cosmetic surgery: “youve had” someone who’s anaesthetised, and they’re doing the most vile things to them, and I would get so hysterical. You bring up Frances McDormand. What do you do to be more beautiful than that? That fucking female moves into a room and you don’t know if you want to kiss her, ingest her farts or pierce her toes off, you exactly want to be around that vigor .” As resisted, he says, to” the pride that stumbles on the side of violence against oneself, physical violence. It’s crazy .”

But there are market actions at romp. You’re still viable as a leading man at 57; a woman is not.” But isn’t it changing? There’s Meryl out there. Likewise, in the interests of social/ sexual part of it, I conceive more and more- I symbolize my ex-wife only married a 30 -year-old guy she encountered 2 month earlier.[ Wright is reported to have married a French manner PR manager earlier this year .] You see that dynamic shifting. When I would try to console a woman in the business who maybe wasn’t getting the possibilities of I was because they were the status of women, I’d say, well, which components are you not going? Because, follower or female, most sides are shit. Most movies are shit. If you look at the really talented wives- Julianne Moore never has trouble getting a responsibility. The openings are there .”

Does he understand why his countrymen voted for Trump?

” I have a pretty good meaning. We became celebritised ,” he says.” I don’t buy Beings periodical. But when people complain that someone took a picture of them or that their privacy is being invaded, I’m like, yeah? Fuck you. I just invested my entire adult life with you telling me that because I want to express myself as relevant actors, that that comes with the territory. Well, it comes with the territory for you , now, and you bought those fucking People periodicals. You prepared that happen .” He is jabbing his paw at me across the table.” When I go like this, I’m not at my very best ,” he says.” So two sides that are not at their best, it gets very shallow .” Penn has a disdain for the idea of the personal brand.” Branding is being! Branding is being! The algorithm of modern binary existentialism ,” he copies in Bob Honey, a line I read out to him now.

“Yeah,” says Penn, lowering his eyes and looking sage.

What does” the algorithm of modern binary existentialism” mean? He snarls his eyes open.” Well. Binary- two components. When you’re taking an algorithm that’s going to identify the two components, and, there are, I ponder I talk about in the book also … it’s America today .” There complies a long story about how easy it is to buy ingredients for a bombard in the US.

” I’ve just gone off on the word binary. But I think it’s self-explanatory, in there. Huh .”

Anyway, he says, the same reasons beings voted for Trump is” because I think there’s a mental health problem in this country. It’s fury over reason. There’s a lot going on that was going on in Nazi Germany; we’re receive scapegoats, radicals to dislike, whether it be of a race, or so-called lefty Hollywood, so that’s part of why I want to write something- I simply have my sense of humour to offer. I didn’t want to exactly be angry all the time .”

And he isn’t. There is an underlying humour to Penn’s rantings that is often lost in translation and while I find much of what he says moronic, egotistical and sometimes delusional, to my stun, I likewise find him amiable and funny- a sincere American eccentric.

As we get up to leave, I can’t help chuckling.” Sorry. I preserve thinking about the fact that Madonna thought you were boring .”

” I desire her ,” Penn says, and chortles. Is she a good egg?” Such a good egg .”

We go outside to his pick-up truck and he introduces me to Flyboy, his six-month-old golden retriever. After Penn has extended, I call a friend with a degree in logic.” Does’ the algorithm of modern binary existentialism’ mean anything ?” I expect. After the laughter has died down, he says,” I think he intends … in modern life everything is black and white. But existentialism refers to a specific tradition in doctrine; he surely exactly makes life .” No subject; Penn has a lot more to say. Before leaving he told me: he is hard at work on Bob Honey, the sequel.

* Bob Honey Who Just Do Stuff by Sean Penn issued by Simon& Schuster at PS14. 99. To guild a facsimile for PS12. 74, go to guardianbookshop.com or see 0330 333 6846.

Commenting on this slouse? If you would like your comment to be considered for inclusion on Weekend magazine’s notes page in publication, delight email weekend @theguardian. com, including your name and address( not for book ).

Don’t worry, a no-deal Brexit won’t be allowed to happen | Simon Jenkins


Even if Britain does leave on WTO patterns, life will go on, says Guardian columnist Simon Jenkins

Now they are talking car accidents. From Brussels comes Project Fear Mk II, a “preparedness” template for Europe if there is no deal on Brexit. It is Brussels-speak for a terrorism red alarm. It encompasses such things as passports, air traffic control, financial assigns, armed foundations, data protection, medicines licensing and all the border clutter we have spent half a century removing. Unlike the remainers’ bloodcurdling Project Fear in 2016, this is not an economic phony calculate. It is frontline reality. It is Brexit as Grand Theft Auto.

Britain’s National Audit Office is is engaged in. This week it warned that, as of next March, Britons driving on the continent will need new driving permitsin the event of a no-deal Brexit. There are required to be gargantuan laybys for traffic jam at Folkestone and staff for” huge administrative adjournments “. Airbus and Rolls-Royce are already stockpiling saves against a new tariff government. AstraZeneca is stockpiling medicines. Theresa May is touring the Irish border, like a field-marshal surveying trenches on the Somme.

Do we chuckle or cry? I is and remains chortling, merely. The car-crash option is favoured by some leave ideologues. They are technically right that in March a no-deal UK would” crash out” of the EU and revert to World Trade Organization rules. Such anarchy has disorderly appeal to those careless of other people’s chores, while” taking back ascendancy of margins” would satisfy the leavers’ prime target of stricter in-migration ensure. But the EU allows no new deals with third-party nations, under WTO regulations or whatever, until the UK is out next year. In March, ports would swiftly clog up. The motion of people and tourism would plummet. It “wouldve been” chaos, and even after that “new deals with the rest of the world” is not able to possibly compensate.

In reality, everyone knowledgeable about Brexit agrees on what will really happen if there is no deal in March. Nothing will change. Planes will continue flying. Shuttles will preserve loading. Channel Tunnel officials will brandish vehicles through. Orderings will go out to keep moving, and await further instructions. Parties at the coalface of the European economy cannot yield the posturing, pride and absurdity of the Brexit parliament this past week. They have lives to live and mouths to feed. A shut mete with the EU , not least in Ireland, would be like closing the Berlin Wall after it had reopened. There “wouldve been” riotings. That is why crashing out would not mean hard Brexit, but rather remain in all but reputation. When Brexit fiction touches practical reality, reality will win.

Hard Brexit was surely put to bed by Boris Johnson’s resignation speech in the Commons this week, a confection of negativity and verbosity. He offered no “frictionless” alternative to a customs union with the rest of Europe. The UK may be leaving the EU- for which I believe there is something to be able to say- but it prepares no feel to erect trade barriers between an island and its neighbouring continent. Britain has invested a century moving in the opposite direction. Even in the 1950 s, when it dreamed of a greater imperial grocery, it joined Europe’s free trade zone, forerunner of the present European Economic Area. Hard Brexit is flat-Earthism.

The failure of the House of Commons this week to vote in favour of a customs union, as opposed to May’s botched Chequers plan, was a lost possibility. Johnson might call the plan a” fantastical Heath Robinson arrangement”, but that was because May altered it to acquire his support. It is his omission. She shall not be required to be have vexed. As a decision, the opportunity to negotiate a customs union in Brussels from a married, bipartisan basi with Labour was scuppered.

The public was promised Brexit, which, as May deters saying, means Brexit. That is happening. It was likewise predicted frictionless swap, which intends frictionless. That is achievable merely under a customs union and single market.

As a result of the current shambles, the new Brexit minister, Dominic Raab, must go to Brussels to negotiate “frictionless” according to the principle of Chequers , not a simple customs union. The gap is over agreeing tariff collection and regulatory adjustment on trading touchstones. This is all but inconsequential. Even if the UK were to go for hard-boiled Brexit, trade with the EU would still need some these agreements, as would the much-vaunted, primarily fantasy, deals with the rest of the world. Talk of Chequers as “vassalage” is outlandish. Taking back command of transaction was always making a mountain of a molehill.

The outcome of Raab’s discussions will be messier than were he arbitrating on the basis of remaining in the EEA. But the end has to be the same. There may be more bloodletting ahead but, come the autumn, I am sure we will all be in sight of the Norway option. Whatever may one day be agreed on migration- still Brexit’s hard core and still to be negotiated- a customs union between the nations of Europe cannot be avoided.

Prudent government should always be on guard against car crashes. It is not scaremongering to scrutinize the fenders and check the airbags. But a crash on Brexit will not happen, and even if it did, the outcome would not be” disintegrating out” of Europe but instead disintegrating in. The UK is going to leave the EU next spring. That is statute. But no one was asked if they wanted to leave Europe’s economic community. We were predicted frictionless. If Westminster’s midsummer madness does to be translated into a gondola gate-crash, so be it. In the longer run for your lives will make no change. Keep laughing.

* Simon Jenkins is a Guardian columnist

Beto O’Rourke denies police report on DWI arrest, says he didn’t try to flee the incident


As Twitchy reported, Senate candidates Beto O’Rourke and Ted Cruz had a debate at Southern Methodist University Friday night, at which O’Rouke was goaded by Cruz into saying, ” I fully support the Second Amendment “ several times, despite the fact that O’Rourke told CBS News,” I don’t think we should be exchanging AR-1 5s in its own country .”

There’s another goody from the debate that isn’t getting much play in the media.

The autumn of the Israeli peace movement and why leftists continue to fight


Peacenik is widely used as a slur in Israel. Here four activists explain their demise and why they hold on

It’s a sad-looking protest. A few dozen members of Israel’s beleaguered agreement push mill around on a road in east Jerusalem, impounding clues in Arabic, English and Hebrew declaring:” Stop the occupation .” Older, well-dressed academic leftwingers with gray-headed whisker and round spectacles mingle with a scruffier younger crowd.

One man with a cigarette hanging in his opening hoops a cowbell. A few Israeli police look on with bored express. Traffic meanders by as ordinary. Everyone seems to know each other. Another person sitting on the side of the road gesticulates to a columnist.” Do I have shit on my psyche ?” he asks, gazing up for chicks on power lines overhead.

This is part of what remains of the Israeli peace camp, crippled by a political organisation that has careened wildly to the right. “Leftist” and “peacenik” are widely used as dismissive slurs against an ever-embattled section of society who are increasingly on the fringe and slammed as traitors.

In an upcoming election, the issue of the Palestinians- once the central focus of Israeli politics- is often circumvented. A December poll ascertained while more than half of Jewish Israelis want peace negotiations, almost 75% believed they would fail. The group that guided the results of the investigation, the Israel Democracy Institute, said the peace issue has ” disappeared almost entirely from the Israeli public discourse “.

Four members of Israel’s beleaguered leftwing explain how this happened and why the issue is viewing on 😛 TAGEND

The protester

Pepe Goldman:’ We exclusively live once. I could not forgive myself if I let this happen .’ Photograph: Quique Kierszenbaum/ The Guardian

One demonstrator at the revival, Pepe Goldman, an Argentinian Jew who emigrated to Israel in 1976, has asserted ever since.” There is a process of burning out ,” he says on the sidelines.” Unfortunately, we are a small minority. Israelis are very, extremely …” he says, before restarting the sentence:” I would say they don’t give a fuck about what is going on .”

After years of neglected assaults, many Israelis are asking themselves whether armistice , not to mention a Palestinian state, is necessary when Gaza is entirely blocked off, the West Bank occupation is tightly oversaw, and the economy is booming.

The 67 -year-old no longer declarations to convince his fellow citizens. He comes for very limited but concrete grounds- as an Israeli, with the extra rights under the law that entails, he was able to stand as a human shield for Palestinians who are facing forced evictions or onrushes from settlers.

Despite lashes by pioneers and decreasing quantities, he sustains his activism every Friday.” We simply live once. I could not forgive myself if I tell all this happen .”

The repentant soldier

Yehuda Shaul:’ Remember McCarthy? He’s alive and kicking and here in Israel .’ Photograph: Quique Kierszenbaum/ The Guardian

Yehuda Shaul is 37, but his whitened beard, broad-spectrum shoulders and weatherbeaten face paint an image of a much older man. On numerous dates, the Israeli ex-combat soldier is at the figurehead of a bus, touring the West Bank to show Israelis and foreign visitors what the occupation looks like. The organisation he founded, Breaking the Silence, is made up of veterans who want to expose the reality of Israel’s grip over Palestinian life.

Shaul’s knowledge is encyclopaedic. He appears to know the date of every colonization- and there are more than 140 with nearly 600,000 tenants- was established and how each one feigns the Palestinians living around it.

When Breaking the Silence firstly started after the violent second intifada, Shaul says his group was ” mainstream”- critical singers, but one that come back here the respected institution of the armed forces.” We had deserved the right to speak out .”

But after Benjamin Netanyahu made deals with hard-line religious patriots in 2015 to form the most rightwing coalition government in the country’s history, pro-settler violences flourished in power.

That is when the attacks on Breaking the Silence ramped up. Shaul reels off some from recollection: an arson attempt on their powers; parties working undercover to infiltrate the organisation; a rule that was dubbed the” Breaking the Silence” greenback to ban them from speaking in schools; and a bloody nose last summertime when a settler perforated him during a tour. Netanyahu even cancelled a convene with the German foreign minister after he told you he would speak to the former troops.

One specially bitter escapade followed after phone numbers of his colleague’s family members were posted online by a troll. Someone called her grandparents at 3am pretending to be a hospital worker to say she had died in a automobile clang. Shaul was outraged but unsurprised.” When the defence minister announces you a sleuth, and the prime minister says you swept a red wrinkle, and the tourism official says you’re a traitor. People answer the call ,” he says.” Remember McCarthy? He’s alive and kicking and here in Israel .”

The columnist

Amira Hass in 1999 … a new generation has come’ to regard this reality as normal’. Photograph: Don Mcphee/ The Guardian

Amira Hass liquors a small whiskey in a saloon in Ramallah to fend off a cold. Behind her the famed 1936″ Visit Palestine” poster hangs on the wall. Since 1993, she has lived in the territories, first in Gaza and now in the West Bank. As an Israeli writer, she says you should reside in the place you be talking about. But she cannot think of a single other Jewish Israeli journalist who lives here.

Ending 51 -years of Israeli military ruler is not an issue in this election, she says, because a new generation “re coming”” to regard this reality as normal “.

There used to be an ” malaise” in civilization,” because there was still an understanding that there was a contradiction between our self-image as instructed, progressive, radical, democratic, and the occupying forces. You had had a generation who knew what life was like before[ the occupation began in] 1967.”

As the settler crusade has succeeded in becoming a significant sector of society, the idea of annexing the huge swaths of ground they have taken is rapidly becoming a mainstream idea, she says.” They are high middle class, they are savvy, they are in the military, they find themselves in hi-tech .”

There is no longer pro- or anti-peace camps in Israel, Hass includes, precisely” the win camp “.

The politician

Dr Yosef’ Yossi’ Beilin:’ Sometimes it[ serenity] is the elephant in the area[ but] this is the real story of Israel .’ Photograph: Quique Kierszenbaum/ The Guardian

Yossi Beilin, the only one of the four to have harboured a position in authority, is also the most optimistic. Much of his three decades of political life was in the pro two-state Labour party but also in Meretz, which is firmly anti-occupation. Both parties are now in decline. In the 1990 s, he was part of secret talks in Norway that led to the Oslo accords, a framework to make a peace deal that ultimately stalled.

” There is a general feeling that there is nothing to do ,” he says.

Few doves like him remain in the Israeli parliament. The former Israeli foreign minister Tzipi Livni, one of the country’s most prominent peace counsels, left politics this month after polls indicated her tiny party would not make it into parliament again. In her depart addres, Livni said conciliation had become a ” dirty word “.

Beilin , now 70, says he promised to leave politics at 60 to allow a younger audience to raise new ideas. But would he have retired if his pro-peace ideology had been more successful?” It’s a good question. Maybe not .”

Still, he repudiates conciliation is off the agenda. It is a primary part of the Israeli psyche, he indicates.” Sometimes it is the elephant in the chamber( but) this is the real story of Israel .”

Asked to explain his steadfast confidence, he replies:” Because we need it badly .”

Elon Musk drafts in humans after robots slow down Tesla Model 3 yield


Humans are underrated, says CEO after companionship is inadequate to thumped weekly production target in firstly quarter of 2018

Elon Musk has acknowledged that automation has been holding back Tesla’s Model 3 yield and that humans, rather than machines, were the answer.

The electric car maker’s chief executive said that one of the reasons Tesla has struggled to reach promised yield magnitudes was because of the company’s” excessive automation “.

Asked whether robots had slowed down production, rather than speeding it up, during a tour around Tesla’s factory by CBS, Musk replied:” Yes, they did … We had this crazy, complex system of conveyor belts … And it was not working, so we got rid of that whole stuff .”

” Yes, excess automation at Tesla was a mistake. To be specific, my misstep. Humen are underrated ,” Musk contributed later.


Elon Musk

Taylor Swift Fights For LGBT Privileges With Powerful Letter To Senator! – Perez Hilton


Taylor Swift is taking a stand.

On Friday on Instagram , the Shake It Off vocalist posted a letter to Tennessee Senator, Lamar Alexander , exhorting him to vote for the Equality Act, which protects the LGBT community from discrimination.

Video: Taylor Swift Crashed Her Car TWICE With’ Rolling Stone’ Reporter ! While recognizing that June is” LGBT Pride Month ,” the 29 -year-old made 😛 TAGEND

” While “were having” so much better to celebrate, we also have a great distance to go before everyone in this country is truly treated equally. In excellent recent report, the House has passed the Equality Act, which would protect LGBTQ beings of all forms of discrimination in their neighbourhoods of job, homes, academies, and other public accommodations. The next gradation is that the bill will go before the Senate. I’ve decided to kick off Pride Month by writing a letter to one of my senators to explain how strongly I feel that the Equality Act should be transferred. I urge you to write to your senators more. I’ll be looking for your letters by searching the hashtag #lettertomysenator .”

She sustained 😛 TAGEND

” While there’s no message yet as to when the Equality Act will go before the Senate for a poll, we do know this: Politician need elections to stay in office. Referendum come from the people. Pressure from massive amounts of parties is a major way to push legislators towards positive change. That’s why I’ve made a application at change.org to recommend the Senate to substantiate its Equality Act. Our country’s lack of protection for its own citizens ensures that LGBTQ people must live in fear that their lives could be turned upside down by an employer or landlord who is homophobic or transphobic. The fact that, legally, some people are completely at the blessing of the hatred and bigotry of others is disgusting and undesirable .”

Overall, the songstress recommends everyone to” demonstrate[ their] pride by involve that, on a national level, our laws absolutely treat all of our citizens evenly .”

As we reported, Swift’s upcoming seventh book will have” political undertones .”

While speaking with German outlet RTL , the songwriter exposed 😛 TAGEND

“I certainly think there are political undertones in the new music I formed. I’m not planning to stop encouraging young people to vote and to try to get them to talk about what’s going on in our country. I think that’s one of the most important things I could do.”

Read her full letter to Senator Alexander( below ):

Taylor Swift’s letter to Senator Lamar Alexander/( c) Taylor Swift/ Instagram
” Prohibit this harsh and unfair discrimination .”/( c) Taylor Swift/ Instagram

[ Image via John Rainford/ WENN .]

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Toni Braxton: ‘I tried marijuana once and got actually paranoid’


The R& amp; B superstar has survived insolvency( twice !), the rage of Oprah and Whitneys dating tips-off. As she returns with a new album, she talks about her stormy life and career

Ask Toni Braxton for a remembrance that encapsulates her 90 s imperial period and she’ll ignore that decade’s five Grammys, 25 m albums exchanged( 10 m for 1993′ s self-titled introduction, 15 m for 1996′ s Secret) and the 11 -week US No 1 predominate of windswept mega-ballad Un-Break My Heart. She’ll neglect to mention the friendships with Prince and Whitney Houston, or the facts of the case that her influence means she recently performed at Rihanna’s 30 th birthday party( slow jam-pack Breathe Again is a RiRi favourite ). No, the narration that persists in her foreman is a little less glitzy. One nighttime, she tells me over the phone from New York, she was followed to a eatery bathroom by groupings of female devotees who, while she was having a quick sit down, tapped on the cubicle wall.” Excuse me, are you Toni Braxton ?” they asked.” Can we get your autograph ?”” I was like:’ Can you gives people two seconds ?!'” Braxton titters, her low, husky expression lending the legend unwarranted gravitas.

In the grandiose scheme of Toni Braxton’s life, nonetheless, an interrupted number one is fairly small fry. In 1998, despite being one of the world’s biggest-selling masters, she filed for bankruptcy. In 2010, shortly before confirming she was suffering from the autoimmune sicknes lupus, she registered for insolvency again, the result of cancelling a 2008 Las Vegas residency due to microvascular angina. In addition, there has been a divorce, squabbles with administrators, testy description changes and, in 2013, a short-lived retirement. If you’re thinking:” Wow, this would make a great memoir or Lifetime movie ,” you’re in luck: the book came out in 2014, while the straight-to-TV film followed in 2016. It sees this month’s brand-new book, Sex& Cigarettes, even more of an surprising exultation.” Beings say Toni Braxton is over, but I’m not over ,” she says.” The bitch is back. Again .”

Toni Braxton should never have been a star. Raised by religious mothers in Maryland( her father was a Methodist rector, her baby a pastor ), her upbringing was strict.” My life was very clothed ,” she says.” I couldn’t wear breathes[ she signifies trousers] until I was 14. We were very’ Old Testament ‘, where a woman couldn’t wear anything pertaining to a man and throbs were considered masculine .” While non-secular music was strictly forbidden at home, Braxton would sing in high-school strips, but never the result, often accompanying on the keyboard. She lost count of the times beings told her she would make an excellent approval singer.” My voice was really low-toned and deep and that wasn’t really in style then ,” she says.

In the late 1980 s, as her mothers’ traction loosened, Braxton and her four younger sisters( Traci, Towanda, Trina and Tamar) started performing as the Braxtons. While their 1990 debut single Good Life flopped, it terminated up catching the attention of makes Antonio ” LA ” Reid and Kenneth ” Babyface” Edmonds, who liked some of what they heard; the pair would sign Toni to their LaFace label as a solo artist. The news didn’t go down well at home. “[ My mum] felt like the devil was feelings and separating our clas ,” she says. What should have been a cause for celebration- Braxton cut two hymns for the hugely successful soundtrack to the 1992 Eddie Murphy vehicle Boomerang– was adulterated.” It was everlasting shame ,” she says.” Looking back, there were situations where I go:’ You should have lived louder .'”

Dram queen: Toni Braxton acts in 2001. Photograph: Mick Hutson/ Redferns

The success of the soundtrack led to LaFace fast-tracking periods for what would become Braxton’s entry album. Exploited to having what she wore and sang dictated to her, Braxton started along with the plan to constitute her seem much older than her 25 years.” I was so green ,” she says.” Just happy to be there. I ever felt this need to do my best immediately. The first book was done on purpose, you know, forming me a little more adult contemporary. By the time the second album came around I wanted to be my age. I didn’t want to wear all these long nightgowns; I wanted to wear jeans or a catsuit .”

The campaign reflected Whitney Houston’s early years for the purposes of the watchful eye of name front Clive Davis, with the main aim being not to alienate the lucrative white, adult contemporary audience. Davis once referred to Braxton as” more black to be white and extremely white-hot to be black “. Did she agree?” Yes, perfectly. In regards to my music. I’m an African-American artist, the colour of my spokesperson gives itself to being a soul singer, but my music is daddy as well as R& B. So you have to straddle that fraction carefully. Like Whitney must be given to .”

Did Whitney ever present her any admonition?” She gave me enormous advice on dating ,” says Braxton, somewhat surprisingly.” She was the leader of the pack for me .” For a while, Braxton’s sales reached Whitney statures. The 1996 book Secrets yielded her two massive thumps in the form of the honeyed sex jam-pack You’re Makin’ Me High and the medically ambitious Un-Break My Heart. The former was inspired by Braxton’s brief dalliance with pharmaceuticals.” I tried marijuana formerly and get really paranoid .” In information, it manufactured her anticipate she could understand Chinese.” That part of it was quite exciting ,” she reasons.

Less than two years after Secret, however, Braxton saw herself registering for insolvency. Despite being unable to go into details about the example, it was decided Braxton should go on Oprah Winfrey’s chatshow. The interrogation was a car crash, with Oprah reprimanding what “shes seen” as Braxton’s lavish lifestyle. The truth is a little more complicated. Braxton wound up with big obligations after being forced to self-fund her tour with corkscrew-permed saxophonist Kenny G and presumed the royalty cheques she was owed would clear its external debt. The cheque she’d been waiting for amounted to precisely $2,000 after name deductions, while her debts totalled roughly$ 4m. In late 1997 she sued LaFace and Arista, before filing for bankruptcy in January 1998.

Sax plead: Toni Braxton on tour with Kenny G in 1996. Photograph: REX/ Shutterstock

In a 2012 interrogation, Braxton alleged Oprah of being” so frickin’ mean to me, I was in shock”, but today she’s a little more sanguine:” I recollect I didn’t want to do it, and I was admonished we should. I thought it amplified it. It was a bad call; it realized it an enormous situation .” One person offering better advice, nonetheless, was Prince.” He was always there, even during my second insolvency …” She pauses, before suddenly roaring,” which rackets so crazy to say!’ My second bankruptcy !'” She retrieves her coolnes.” I feel like he’s still watching me. There ought to have experiences where I’ve been thinking about him and his song will come on the radio .” Only as her financial positions was stabilising( she reached an agreement with Arista and LaFace in early 1999, signing a $20 m record cope ), Braxton found out she was pregnant. Being three months into a prescription for Accutane- an acne treatment who is able to have serious side-effects for unborn children- she decided to have a termination.” I dislike to even think about that decision I made ,” she says.” I believe in pro-choice. It was just a moment in my life that, with all the success I was anointed with, I guess that came with it .” She would later have two sons: Denim and Diezel.

While she had further success with 2000′ s classic kiss-off He Wasn’t Man Enough, she says there was a ” heaviness ” to the albums that followed. In 2013, she announced her retirement, have contributed to contents of support from the likes of Missy Elliott and Barbra Streisand. Babyface- with whom she hadn’t worked for more than a decade- presented up at her live intimating they collaborate. The ensuing seam book, 2014′ s Love, Marriage& Divorce, deserved her another Grammy and a fresh start. As our interrogation winds down, we touch on TV( she enjoys The Crown ), swear words( her favourite is “wanker”) and Rihanna.” I adoration how much she experiences her career. She won’t be hushed or censored. To be that brave …” A sigh.” But for my generation we weren’t allowed to do that. The followers were allowed to express themselves but the status of women weren’t .” She is keen to make sure this next chapter of her busines is both loud and long. “My goal is to be a centennial,” she titters.” By the time I get my word from the president- who will probably be Justin Bieber by then- I would like to be proud of myself .”

Sex& Cigarettes is out now

Is Tesla’s Autopilot Safe? Finding Out Demands Better Data


When Venetian shopkeepers hauled the first shipments of a popular Ottoman drink announced coffee into 17 th century Europe, leads in the Catholic Church did not exult at the prospect of increased productivity at the bottom of a warm cuppa. So they questioned Pope Clement VIII to show coffee “the bitter invention of Satan.” The pontiff , not one to rush to conclusions, had coffee brought forward him, sipped, and acquired the entitle. “This Satan’s drink is so luscious that it would be a pity to let the gentiles have exclusive use of it, ” he affirmed, the( perhaps apocryphal) story goes.

Which is all to say: Sometimes beings are so scared of change that they get concepts very wrong.

Today that metathesiophobia has detected a new target in cars that occasionally drive themselves. And the frightening whispering only got louder this week, when the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened investigation into the cases after a motorist in Utah disintegrated into a stopped firetruck at 60 mph, reportedly while Tesla’s Autopilot feature was engaged. Each time a Tesla with its semiautonomous Autopilot feature crashes–one hit a stopped firetruck in Southern California in January, another struck a highway barrier in Mountain View, California, in March, killing its driver–it stimulates headlines.( One could imagine the same thing happening with a car using Cadillac’s Super Cruise or Nissan’s Pro Pilot, but those newer, least popular peculiarities have had no reported clangs .)

So, numerous are fearful. The National Transportation Safety Board and the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration have launched investigations into these crashes, while purchaser proponents fling criticisms at Tesla.

Human factors operators who analyse the interactions between humans and machines question the sagacity of peculiarities that allow drivers to take their hands off the rotation, but compel they remain alert and ready to retake control at any moment. Humans are so bad at that sort of thing, many robocar developers, including Waymo, Ford, and Volvo, are avoiding this kind of feature altogether.


The WIRED Guide to Self-Driving Cars

Elon Musk, a ruler who stimulates quasi-religious devotion in his own claim, spurns this hand-wringing. “It’s actually incredibly irresponsible of any correspondent with unity to write an article that they are able to lead-in parties to believe that sovereignty is less safe, ” he said here on an earnings call earlier this month. “People might turn it off and die.”

Musk and Tesla spokespeople have repeatedly said the feature can reduce gate-crashes by 40 percentage. But a recent clarification from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and a closer look at the digit uncovers that it doesn’t hold out.

Still, it’s conceivable that Autopilot and its ilk save lives. More computer self-restraint should decrease the fallout when human motorists get disconcerted, sleepy, or drunkard. “Elon’s probably right in that the number of disintegrates caused by this is going to be less than the ones that are going to be avoided, ” says Costa Samaras, a civil engineer who investigates electric and autonomous vehicles at Carnegie Mellon University. 1 “But that doesn’t change how we interact with, regulate, and buy this technology right now.” In other paroles: It’s never too early to ask questions.

So how can carmakers like Musk’s prove that their tech obliges streets safe enough to balance out the downsides? How can Autopilot follow in the path of the airbag, which killed some people, but saved many more, and is now ubiquitous?

Experts say it would take some statistics, facilitated along by a heavy dose of transparency.

Data Gap

“The first thing to keep in mind is, while it seems like a straightforward difficulty to compare the safety of one type of vehicle to another, it’s in fact a complicated process, ” says David Zuby, who heads up vehicle research at the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety.

The natural starting point is looking at how many parties die driving a established gondola as a function of miles driven, then equating that frequency to other frameworks. Just a few cases troubles. First, it’s hard to separate out semi-autonomous aspects from other advanced safe boasts. Is it Super Cruise doing the saving, or Cadillac’s automated disaster braking, which steps to avoid disintegrates, even when the driver’s in full control of the car?

Second, we don’t have enough fatality data to draw statistically sound judgments. While the lack of death and harm is nice, it means that independent researchers can’t definitively demonstrate, based on police reports, if gondolas with these specific features are actually killing fewer people.

“When any firm or entity that’s trying to sell something publishes data, you have to worry at the back of your head.”

Then, you have to make sure you’re comparing your apple to another apple. This week, Musk tweeted that Tesla only assured one death per 320 million miles, compared against one extinction per 86 million miles for the average car. The problem is that latter figure is includes all superhighway deaths involving all vehicles–those killed in motorcycles( which are way more dangerous than gondolas ), clunkers built in the late’ 80 s, and tractor trailers, as well as those killed while biking or walking.

“A Tesla is not an average car–it’s a indulgence vehicle, ” says David Friedman, a former NHTSA official who now targets auto at Buyer Union. It’s heavier than the average car, and so safer in a gate-crash.( Again, a good thing–but not helping for assessing Autopilot .) Tesla owneds are likely richer, older, and waste little time on rural roads than the average motorists. That’s important, because study marks middle-aged beings are the best motorists, and urban superhighways are the most dangerous kind, accounting for more than half of this country’s vehicle fatalities.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has tried to track Autopilot safety through insurance claims. According to its very preliminary study, Teslas produced in the years after the company propelled Autopilot were no more or less likely to see claims registered for owned injury and bodily injury liability than Teslas raised before. But IIHS did find a 13 percent reduction in crash allegation frequency, which could indicate that autoes equipped with Autopilot are getting into fewer gate-crashes. Still, IIHS doesn’t actually know if Autopilot was engaged during any of those incidents.

Which is all to say: It’s very, very difficult to separate out the effects of Autopilot from other variables. At least for kinfolks who don’t work at Tesla.

Wish List

Earlier this month, Musk announced that Tesla would begin to publish quarterly reports on Autopilot safety. That could be great for clarity, experts say, catered Tesla coughs up the right sorts of data.( Tesla did not respond a request for comment .)

For one, it would be great if any and all safety data could be verified by a third-party source. “When any busines or entity that’s trying to sell something writes data about their make, you have to worry at the back of your chief that they may have taken data out of what they’re publishing, ” says Zuby, the IIHS researcher. “So you’d like to have an independent party say,’ Yeah, we’ve looked at all the data, and Tesla is putting out all the data.’”

Beyond that, researchers and regulators would like to get really specific. The model would be a GPS-pinned list of all crashes, down to the date and meter of the accidents. That space, investigates could separate out occurrences by weather, lighting ailments, and street character.( Crashes are room less likely on highways, so even the most effective Autopilot-like function would not be able to prevent all road deaths .) Were there other vehicles or pedestrians involved? Maybe semi-autonomous facets are great at protecting their own operators and not great at protecting others.

Friedman, with the Purchasers Union, says he’d like to see reports of “disengagements”–when motorists see that Autopilot is doing something wrong, like merging into a trail when it shouldn’t, and take over control. This info could return refuge researchers valuable evidences about how real people are using this tech.

Whatever the truth of its tech, Tesla doesn’t have the kind of papal power or persuasion that gave us macchiatos and coffeehouses creme. Neither does General Motors, or Nissan, or any other automaker move this sort of feature. But they do have more access to how people are using their nascent engineering than your standard public health official–and nothing promotions turn doubters into believers like a few texts of truth.

1Post modernized, 5/17/ 18, 1:45 PM EDT: This fib has been updated to clarify the context of Samaras’s comments.

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Sovereign Philip ‘voluntarily’ hands up driving espousing automobile clang


London( CNN) The Duke of Edinburgh has ceded his driving license, Buckingham Palace announced Saturday, weeks after the 97 -year-old was involved in a car crash that left a female motorist injured.

UK police sent their investigations conducted by the disintegrate to the Crown Prosecution Service( CPS ), which is considering whether to bring charges against Prince Philip over the accident last-place month. A CPS spokesman said they would “review each file carefully before a decision is made” and will take into account that Philip ceded his license.

A Land Rover driven by Philip, the husband of Queen Elizabeth II, collided with another car on a public superhighway near the Queen’s Sandringham estate in Norfolk, England, last-place month.

YouTube star reasons vehicle crash that kills himself, a woman and her daughter


( CNN) A YouTube sun known as “McSkillet” made a wrong-way car crash that killed himself, a woman and her 12 -year-old daughter in San Diego this week, CNN affiliate KUSI reported .~ ATAGEND

Sanchez said Heitmann was speeding on the road when the crash happened.

The San Diego Coroner confirmed that Heitmann was killed after crashing his automobile while driving in the wrong direction, along with two others. It said the two other preys in the SUV were a 43 -year-old woman and a 12 -year-old girl, but it did not release their identities.