In the News

Here is some stuff in the news today!

[Content Note: War] The South Sudan peace talks have stalled: "Even as several dozen people held a peace march in Juba, South Sudan's capital, on Wednesday, there was little evidence that the conflict is moving toward resolution, more than three weeks after spiralling violence broke out. Two officials in Ethiopia [where the peace talks are being held] said the peace talks had stalled over the issue of political prisoners. The special envoy of Igad, a bloc of East African countries, has flown to Juba to speak about political detainees."

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates, a holdover from the Bush administration, has written a new memoir in which he "unleashes harsh judgments about President Obama's leadership and his commitment to the Afghanistan war. ...It is rare for a former Cabinet member, let alone a defense secretary occupying a central position in the chain of command, to publish such an antagonistic portrait of a sitting president." Huh.

The Republican Party continues its bid to look less garbagey while not actually changing its garbage policies: "First, Republicans were given lessons on how to talk to women while denying them reproductive services. Now, they're learning how to talk to the long-term unemployed and their families while denying them benefits. As members of the Republican Party fight against extending unemployment insurance to those who have been out of work for more than 26 weeks, the party's leadership is circulating talking points on the best language to use when discussing such opposition, the Washington Post reports. The goal is to show compassion." The goal is to show compassion, while not actually having any.

[CN: Gun violence] A beautiful, moving essay from former Congressional representative Gabby Giffords: "The Lessons of Physical Therapy."

[CN: Transphobia] Laverne Cox and Carmen Carrera Enlighten Katie Couric on Gender Identity: "By focusing on bodies we don't focus on the lived realities of that oppression and that discrimination."

Congratulations to Lily Tomlin and Jane Wagner, who were married in Los Angeles on New Year's Eve after 42 years together.

Terrific news for lovers of fat hatred: The Paul Blart: Mall Cop sequel has its director!

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