Weekly Review — August 18, 2009, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

[Image: A Tempest, December 1878]

The Obama Administration abandoned its quest for a public, government-run health-care option for the uninsured. Protesters waved signs that read “Death to Obama” and depicted the president with an Adolph Hitler mustache at “town hall” meetings hosted by senators; at one such event, a conservative University of Colorado student challenged President Obama to an “Oxford-style” debate. Obama declined the invitation but did grant an hour-long interview on bullying and school lunches to an 11-year-old named Damon Weaver, ultimately agreeing to be Weaver’s homeboy. Senator Arlen Specter arrived at his town hall meeting with extra security to guard him from irate Pennsylvanians, one of whom compared complicated reform proposals to “a Russian novel”; others said that Specter was inviting God’s wrath and that the health-care plan was a step toward socialism. Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill, faced with a jeering crowd, threatened to use her “mom voice” to settle them down. “Irony,” she said, “seems to be lost on people.”NYTNYTNYTAPNYTBaltimore Sun/APBBCMSNBCUSA TodayNYTNYTWashPostThousands of Californians lined up for as long as two days to receive free physical exams and dental care.NYT

The Federal Reserve said the slumping U.S. economy was “leveling out,”WSJ/DowJoneswhile France and Germany (both of which enjoy some form of national health care) reported growth in the second quarter of 2009.FTStephen Schwarzman, the CEO of the Blackstone Group, whose salary last year was $702 million, was named the highest paid executive in America.Blackstone’s Stephen Schwarzman tops best-paid chiefsU.S. income inequality was at an historic high.HuffPostNew York’s Westchester County agreed to desegregate its overwhelmingly white towns and build 750 units of affordable housing in areas where the population is less than 3 percent black or 7 percent Hispanic. Officials in Harrison, New York, said there was no room for such housing.The Journal NewsNYTThe Journal NewsThe Venezuelan government planned to turn two golf courses into public parks and housing after President Hugo Chavez declared golf to be “bourgeois.”NYTScottish gem dealer Campbell Bridges was murdered near his 1,500-acre mining concession in Kenya by dozens of men carrying spears and machetes.Times of LondonA mob in Gojra, Pakistan, killed six members of a Christian family after Christians in a nearby town were falsely accused of tearing up a Koran;BBCa Muslim woman was banned from a French swimming pool for wearing a full-body “burkini”;Times of Londonand a British water park requested that male visitors not wear Speedos, which the management deemed “more suited to Spain than Staffordshire.”Coventry Telegraph

Mudslides and floods caused by Typhoon Morakot killed 500 people in Taiwan. International aid for the victims was delayed because countries did not want to offend China, which claims dominion over the island, and because Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou initially refused foreign aid (a situation he blamed on a “typing error”).CNNGuardianScientists said that East Asians misinterpret some emotions in Westerners because they typically focus on just the eyes instead of whole faces, which may explain why East Asian emoticons tend to have expressive eyes.BBCIn Afghanistan, where the Taliban threatened to chop off the fingers of anyone who votes in the upcoming elections, the government passed a law allowing men to starve wives who refuse sex.NYTGuardianLes Paul died,Reutersand police in New Jersey admitted that they detained Bob Dylan last month when responding to a call about an eccentric-looking old man wandering alone in sweatpants in the rain.CBSTom DeLay was scheduled to appear on “Dancing with the Stars.”Huffington PostA woman in France drowned her two children “to protect them from mafia threats,”BBCand a man in Australia was sentenced to six years in jail for pouring boiling oil on his roommate’s head as a punishment for buying a whole chicken instead of a quarter chicken.Herald SunA 13-year-old girl in Milwaukee stabbed her grandmother’s boyfriend in the throat over spilled milk.Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

Share
Single Page

More from Rafe Bartholomew:

Weekly Review April 26, 2011, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

Weekly Review March 1, 2011, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

Weekly Review January 4, 2011, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

Get access to 164 years of
Harper’s for only $39.99

United States Canada

CATEGORIES

THE CURRENT ISSUE

September 2014

Israel and Palestine

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Washington Is Burning

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

On Free Will

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

They Were Awake

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

view Table Content

FEATURED ON HARPERS.ORG

Post
Arab artists take up — and look past — regional politics
“When everyday life regularly throws up images of terror and drama and the technological sublime, how can a photographer compete?”
“Qalandia 2087, 2009,” by Wafa Hourani
Post
“There was torture by the previous regime and by the current Iraqi regime,” Dr. Amin said. “Torture by our Kurdish government, torture by Syrians, torture by the U.S.”
Visiting His Own Grave © Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
Article
The Tale of the Tape·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“Heroin isn’t the weakness Art Pepper submits to; it’s the passion he revels in.”
Photograph (detail) © Laurie Pepper
Criticism
The Soft-Kill Solution·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

"Policymakers, recognizing the growing influence of civil disobedience and riots on the direction of the nation, had already begun turning to science for a response."
Illustration by Richard Mia
New Books
New Books·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

 
“Almond insists that watching football does more than feed an appetite for violence. It’s a kind of modern-day human sacrifice, and it makes us more likely to go to war.”
Photograph by Harold Edgerton

Chance that a movie script copyrighted in the U.S. before 1925 was written by a woman:

1 in 2

Engineers funded by the United States military were working on electrical brain implants that will enable the creation of remote-controlled sharks.

Malaysian police were seeking fifteen people who appeared in an online video of the Malaysia-International Nude Sports Games 2014 Extravaganza, and Spanish police fined six Swiss tourists conducting an orgy in the back of a moving van for not wearing their seatbelts.

Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!

HARPER’S FINEST

In Praise of Idleness

By

I hope that after reading the following pages the leaders of the Y. M. C. A. will start a campaign to induce good young men to do nothing. If so, I shall not have lived in vain.

Subscribe Today