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Saturday, October 13

13.Oct.2012 - Paul Ryan's 24 Myths, How NDAA Threatens Average Americans, Fact-checking Impossible, Child Brides = Human Rights Violation, Anti-Blasphemy Laws, ACLU vs. Guantanamo Torture Testimony, Affirmative Action Fight, Mormons Believe God's Married, Anonymous Vows WikiLeaks Revenge, Fight Back to Live Better, Misconceptions About Secularism, Occupy Debt, NYPD's Stop-and-Frisk Inside Look, Burn Your Money

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Paul Ryan Told 24 Myths in 40 Minutes

Paul Ryan and Vice President Joe Biden at last night's debate. (photo: ThinkProgress)aul Ryan spoke for 40 of the 90 minutes during Thursday night's vice presidential debate and managed to tell at least 24 myths during that time:

Free Education and More Jobs in 400 Words

t Hofstra University on Tuesday night, you won't hear either presidential candidate or any of their pre-approved debate moderators talk about why the richest nation in the world ranks #2 in child poverty, why our schools leave so many kids unprepared for the world, or why Afghanistan is falling apart despite our spending more there in one year ($113 billion) than we do for one year of food stamps ($75 billion).

12-Year-Old Girl Has Second Degree Burns From SWAT Flash Grenade Detonated During Wrong-Door Raid

A 12-year-old girl in Billings, Montana, is suffering first and second degree burns on half her body after a SWAT team dropped a flash bang grenade next to her bed during a wrong-door drug raid on Oct. 9. 

10 Conspiracy Theories Hatched by Conservative Fearmongers As Election Day Nears

The frequency and outlandishness of their conspiratorial imaginations grows in sync with their desperation. With Obama ahead in the polls, let's take a look at the absurdities hatched by our conservative fearmongers.

How the NDAA Directly Threatens Average Americans, and How You Can Take Action Now

photoThe NDAA gives the federal government the power to behave like dictators and arrest any American citizen, or anyone for that matter, without warrant and indefinitely detain them in offshore prisons without charge and keep them there until “the end of hostilities.”

Factchecking Impossible, Pointless, Say Factcheckers

While factchecking as an enterprise would seem to inherently accept the idea that, yes, there are facts and they can be checked, in practice the people called factcheckers deny that what they do can be used to meaningfully distinguish between candidates:

Ghulam, age 11, and Faiz, age 40, sit for a portrait in her home prior to their wedding in Afghanistan. According to the women's ministry and women's NGOs, approximately 57 percent of Afghan girls get married before the legal age of 16. Once the girl's father has agreed to the engagement, she is pulled out of school immediately. (Stephanie Sinclair/VII)UN: Child Marriage a Gross Human Rights Violation

International Day of the Girl Child aims to advance girls’ lives

Top 12 Countries Where Girls Are Most Likely to Be Child Brides

Despite international commitments to end child marriage, one in three girls in developing countries (excluding China) will be married before they turn 18 by 2030, according to the latest United Nations report on the issue. In 2010, a total of 67 million women around the world had gotten married while they were still under 18—half in Asia, one-fifth in Africa.

Is the Earth 6,000 Years Old, 9,000 Years Old, or 13,000 Years Old?

Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga., called evolution “lies from the pit of hell” in a speech last month and argued that the Earth is 9,000 years old. Scientists have determined the Earth’s age is 4.5 billion years, based on evidence from meteorites and molecular decay rates. How do biblical literalists come up with their estimates?

Anti Blasphemy Laws – Pakistan, Greece and Australia

We hear a lot of talk lately about the call for Anti-Blasphemy laws to be formalised to make blasphemy a crime internationally. The United Nations are debating this once again, mostly as a knee-jerk reaction against poorly made (and probably divisive) the YouTube video “The Innocence of Muslims”. But we see this call coming from two camps, and for two different reasons. 

ACLU to Argue Next Week at Guantánamo Tribunal Against Censorship of Torture Testimony

Early next week, a military commission judge at Guantánamo Bay will hear oral argument on the American Civil Liberties Union’s challenge to censorship of torture testimony at the trial of the 9/11 defendants. This will be the ACLU’s first appearance arguing before the tribunal.

What Does the Church Think? Women's Rights Framed as Religious Question In VP Debate

Two debates into a four debate format, we have now seen all four members of the opposing campaigns debate the issues most important to the American voters.  In that total 180 minutes of debate time, topics traditionally considered to be "women's issues" have been discussed for exactly six minutes.

Five Simple Realities Missing from the Campaign

The campaign lurches on, the adds stream endlessly into our living rooms, the robo-calls clamor incessantly for our dollars, candidates get bought and sold, the press obediently acts as if there’s substantive stuff going on, and the real issues of our times go unaddressed.  This is what passes for an election, these days.

4 Right-Wing Sex Panics Debunked by Reality

Conservatives and the media are obsessed with the idea that everything will lead to more sex. They're wrong.

Who Will Fight for Affirmative Action?

Will there be public pressure to protect diversity?

Mormons Believe God is Married and Maybe Polygamous

The belief that God is married isn't discussed directly in Mormon scripture, but it does follow necessarily from most Mormon teachings about God and a few Mormon leaders have discussed it directly over the years. It's noteworthy that God's wife, the Heavenly Mother, is not herself a god — apparently, only men can become gods.

Anonymous vows revenge after WikiLeaks launches ‘filthy’ paywall
A man wearing an "Anonymous" mask in Austin, Texas. Photo: Flickr user Stephen C. Webster, creative commons licensed.Nameless hackers with the online protest movement “Anonymous” have turned on longtime ally WikiLeaks for deploying a paywall on its website that blocks access to the site’s trove of formerly secret files unless users donate or tell their friends about WikiLeaks via social media.

What Psychopaths Teach Us about How to Succeed [Excerpt]
We can learn a lot from psychopaths. Certain aspects of their personalities and intellect are often hallmarks of success

Fight back, live better
Alan Maass reports on the surge of struggles around the U.S. against Wal-Mart, including the outcome of a strike at the company's giant distribution center in Illinois.

Government's Fault That Espionage Act Cases Risk Press Freedom
The latest unsealed court pleadings in the Espionage Act case against Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) whistleblower John Kiriakou reveal that Kiriakou's defense team has sought to subpoena journalists.

The Enemy of My Enemy Is My President

Maybe I have been too harsh in judging Barack Obama's economic performance. Instead of following George W. Bush's lead in bailing out the bankers first, I wanted Obama to do more for beleaguered homeowners and less for the Wall Street swindlers who trafficked in toxic mortgages. But the president must have done something right, or the hucksters at Goldman Sachs wouldn't hate him so. 

Is Anarchism a Political Philosophy Whose Time Has Come?

It seems that everywhere, these days, people are talking about anarchism.  Now Dmitry Orlov joins the discussion with a 3-part series, "In Praise of Anarchy."  Utilizing primarily the work of the 19th century Russian anarchist, Peter Kropotkin, Orlov argues that anarchy, rather than hierarchy, is the dominant pattern in nature, that hierarchical organizations ultimately end in collapse, and that the impending collapse of the capitalist industrial system presents an opportunity for the emergence of anarchism.

As far as the Republicans are concerned, President Barack Obama is secularism’s go-to guy in Washington. Newt Gingrich refers to him as a “secular-socialist.” Mitt Romney charges that his opponent advocates a “secular agenda.” And Rick Santorum frets that Obama is imposing “secular values” on “people of faith.”

Is this what we're fighting for?

Pam Brown: Occupy Debt

The Hunted and the Hated: An Inside Look at the NYPD's Stop-and-Frisk Policy

Burn Your Money... Or Maybe Just Put It Away

Expanding the VP Debate: Third-Party Candidates Challenge Biden & Ryan on War, Economy, Healthcare

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