The Hit List: January 11, 2019

  1. President Trump visited the country’s southern border at McAllen, Texas Thursday. Washington Post reports Trump has asked the Army Corps of Engineers to determine whether construction could begin within the next 45 days if contracts were appropriately signed.
  2. Google is getting sued for covering up sexual misconduct perpetrated by several senior executives, including the creator of the Android operating system Andy Rubin and former head of search Amit Singhal. Despite finding evidence of misconduct, the lawsuit alleges, the execs were given multi-million dollar payouts to leave.
  3. In a letter from prison, convicted pedophile Gary Oliva confessed to a friend the murder of JonBenet Ramsay in 1996. He’s currently in prison for possession of child pornography. When he was arrested in 2016, police found hundreds of photos of Ramsay in his possession. Murder investigators are pursuing charges.
  4. The birth rate is plummeting in America. Only South Dakota and Utah’s fertility rates hit levels to sustain the population. The 3.85 million babies born last year is the lowest number since 1987.
  5. A former Fox News staffer is suing Showtime for $750 million and an injunction to stop a miniseries about Roger Ailes. Laura Luhn is fictionalized in the series, and her lawsuit says she appears as a “pimp” for Ailes, who was removed from his position in 2016.
  6. R. Kelly’s music is popular, even if he’s under fire in the Lifetime documentary series criticizing his history of alleged sexual abuse. Nielsen said the R&B singer’s streams have increased one million week over week.
  7. Don’t share your Netflix password with friends or family — new Artificial Intelligence software will detect when someone unauthorized to be on the account is accessing the streaming service, and you could automatically be upgraded to a more expensive plan.
  8. The Soprano’s creator David Chase says a young Tony Soprano will appear in the prequel movie “The Many Saints of Newark.” The forthcoming flick will follow Dickie Moltisanti, Christopher’s father, during the ’70s.
  9. Mall-based stores are still struggling in the booming economy. Macy’s and Kohl’s both reported less-than-exciting end-of-year revenue, despite the holiday shopping season. Macy’s finished down 19% on Thursday.
  10. US sanctions against Iran have left a Norwegian Air jet stranded in Tehran. The 737 aircraft left Dubai in December en route to Oslo, but but a technical issue forced the aircraft to land. Norwegian Air has no operations in Iran, and must get permission to import any materials, parts or equipment that are more than 10 percent US-origin goods. There’s no timeline on when the jet will be able to return to its home fleet.
  11. The Los Angeles Teachers Union have received permission to begin a strike on Monday; a Superior Court Judge has ruled they’ve given appropriate notice. LA Public Schools will remain open to support the 640,000 students who would otherwise be affected, having already staffed up and hired hundreds of substitutes to fill in.