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Sunday, January 6, 2013

Good Morning, News!

Posted by Denis C. Theriault on Sun, Jan 6, 2013 at 10:18 AM

An ex-CIA officer who pissed off the brass with his outspoken statements against waterboarding—AKA "torture"—is going to jail in a leaks case. Because feeding a reporter the name of a potential source is a far more terrible breach, and far more deserving of the full investigative weight of the national security apparatus, than actually torturing someone.

Healthcare reform was supposed to add some checks to insurers' penchant for cripplingly high rate increases. But because it left that job to the states, and because many states aren't bothering to hold up their end of the arrangement, insurers are doing whatever they want. And probably laughing at us.

The White House answer to Newtown is expected to reach far beyond reinstating a ban on assault weapons. The plan would add background checks, mental health checks, a database of sales, among other provisions—including sweeteners for major retailers like Walmart, in a bid to circumvent the lobbying might of the NRA.

The father of the Indian woman whose death in a brutal gang-rape attack wound up sparking days of protests against a culture that's historically tolerated such ugliness insists his daughter's name should be revealed. She was Jyoti Singh Pandey. “I am proud of her," her father said. "Revealing her name will give courage to other women who have survived these attacks."

Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad emerged from the bunker where he plots the death of civilians to give a rare public speech in the capital city's opera house. Assad, mired in a two-year civil war, did offer some tepid reforms. So there's that. But mostly he offered a vigorous defense of his policy of massacre.

In Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu is hardly as right-wing as it gets. And even Netanyahu is a little bit worried about that uncomfortable fact.

Spain's locksmiths have an answer when banks and law enforcement ask for help in changing the locks in a foreclosed home following an eviction: "Piss off."

Enshrining Chuck Hagel as America's newest defense secretary won't be a cakewalk. People should care more about his bigoted remarks about a gay would-be ambassador, but mostly everyone will moan about his controversial semi-embrace of Palestine.

The National Hockey League, a somewhat relevant professional sports organization, will have a tiny season after all.

Beware the killer flu! Panic! Pandemic! Phlegm! Death! AHHHH! Or, y'know... get a vaccine and wash your hands and wear gloves on TriMet.

TriMet conceivably allows
its bus drivers to work as many as 22 hours in a 24-hour period. Comforting thought, no? The Oregonian looks at TriMet's entwined culture of exhaustion and overtime.

EFF A KETTLE! I BOIL MY WATER WITH SCIENCE!

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