In the News

Here is some stuff in the news today...

[Content Note: Guns] What in the everloving shit is wrong with the Secret Service?! "A security contractor with a gun and three convictions for assault and battery was allowed on an elevator with President Obama during a Sept. 16 trip to Atlanta, violating Secret Service protocols, according to three people familiar with the incident." Whoooooooooops. Get it together, assholes!

[CN: Class warfare] Yet another Republican-appointed judge has ruled that "much of the Affordable Care Act must be defunded and millions of Americans must lose their health insurance. ...To date, nine federal judges have considered this question of whether much of the law should be defunded. Only three—all of whom are Republicans—have agreed that it should be. ...If [Judge Ronald A. White's opinion] is reviewed by a panel of judges interested in neutrally applying the law, White will be reversed." Fingers crossed.

[CN: Death penalty; torture] After a series of botched executions across the US, Oklahoma has decided that instead of getting rid of the death penalty, it will simply increase the amount of sedative given to inmates by five times the current dosage and reduce the number of media witnesses allowed. Fucking hell.

[CN: Carcerality] Corrections Corporation of America, the US' biggest for-profit prison company, wants to get in on the halfway house business. Sure. If your business model depends on high rates of recidivism, what better way to ensure increasing profits than making sure there's no rehabilitation access for anyone? Reprehensible human misery profiteers.

Big Pharma is basically running our for-profit healthcare system: "US doctors and teaching hospitals received $3.5 billion from pharmaceutical companies and medical device makers in the last five months of 2013, according to the most extensive data trove on such payments ever made public. The payments, disclosed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on Tuesday, include consulting and speaking fees, travel, meals, entertainment, and research grants." Swell!

[CN: Drones; surveillance] Hey, since police forces all over the US are getting other kinds of military equipment, why not surveillance drones? What could possibly go wrong?

I like this habit that married actors Felicity Huffman and William H. Macy have for facilitating active listening as part of their communication: "I'm loathe to talk about this [and] give advice because I happened to luck out in marriage, but once a week we do sit down and make sure we take half an hour, each person gets 15 minutes, just to talk with no crosstalk. I talk, then you talk. ...You kind of just deeply check in with the other person. When you have 15 minutes to talk, which is endless, by the way, and if you want to sit there in silence you can but when you have 15 minutes to talk, you kind of actually see what's going on with the other person without any talk-back."

A Tetris movie is being made, because of course it is. "It's a very big, epic sci-fi movie," Threshold's CEO Larry Kasanoff says. "This isn't a movie with a bunch of lines running around the page. We're not giving feet to the geometric shapes. ...Brands are the new stars of Hollywood. We have a story behind 'Tetris' which makes it a much more imaginative thing… What you [will] see in 'Tetris' is the teeny tip of an iceberg that has intergalactic significance." Sounds perfect!

And finally! Here is a great story about two stray dogs who are BFFs, who were rescued together, and are now looking for a forever home together. ♥

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