Weekly Review — October 15, 2013, 8:00 am

Weekly Review

“Little boys” negotiate the U.S. government shutdown and debt ceiling, Bashar al-Assad wants his Nobel Peace Prize, and the Vatican tells the world about Lesus

Babylonian LionWith the U.S. government shutdown in its second week, members of Congress and White House representatives worked to negotiate an agreement to raise the country’s $16.7 trillion debt ceiling, which it is set to surpass sometime after October 17, triggering a default on its debt obligations. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) reportedly offered Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) a deal that would fund the government until December, while Speaker of the House John Boehner gathered Republican lawmakers to eat Chinese food and smoke cigarettes. “The speaker is very upbeat,” said John Kline (R., Minn.). Senate Republicans indicated that any compromise on the debt ceiling must incorporate the Vitter amendment to the Affordable Care Act, which would prohibit congressional staff and administrators from receiving government-subsidized health insurance, and James Lankford (R., Okla.) proposed a bill that would, in the event that Congress again failed to pass an appropriations bill by October 1, fund the government while reducing the total expenditure by one percent every 90 days. The FDA confirmed that it had suspended routine inspections of the nation’s food, and a shortage of federal funding led several states to discontinue food benefits to poor women and children. “A bunch of little boys arguing that they want their way,” said a North Carolina mother of four.[1][2][3][4][5][6] The Swedish Academy awarded the 2013 Nobel Prize in Literature to Canadian author Alice Munro and the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. “If you just remove the jury, I have won it,” said Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani teenager shot by Taliban gunmen in 2012 for her advocacy of girls’ education. “That prize should have been given to me,” said Syrian president Bashar al-Assad.[7][8][9]

Six aid workers from the International Red Cross and one from the Syrian Red Crescent were kidnapped in northern Syria, and a Human Rights Watch report revealed that Syrian antigovernment forces were systematically targeting civilians.[10][11] The day before ballots in Azerbaijan’s presidential election were cast, the country’s Central Election Commission announced that incumbent Iham Aliyev had won with 72.76 percent of the vote.[12][13] The Vatican recalled 6,000 medals recounting a story about Lesus.[14] A Chinese man diagnosed with an arterial embolism who claimed he had lost three teeth biting on a piece of wood while amputating his leg with a hacksaw and a fruit knife because he couldn’t afford hospital fees was reportedly offered free amputation services for his other leg, which had also developed an embolism.[15] A Swedish skeleton collector was acquitted of disturbing the peace of the dead, and Norwegian officials were accelerating the decomposition of buried and plastic-wrapped corpses by injecting them with a lime-based solution. “I’m interested in necrophilia, but I’m not sexually interested in necrophilia,” said the Swedish defendant. “One has to assume they don’t feel any of it,” said a Norwegian widow.[16][17] Australian career criminal Mark “Chopper” Read died at 58. “I haven’t killed that many people,” Read once told reporters. “Probably about four or seven, depending on how you look at it.”[18][19]

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

In France, four Seventh Day Adventists were arrested for kidnapping a 19-year-old woman, crucifying her, and starving her, in order to exorcise evil spirits, and in Brooklyn, where a resident sought damages for shrapnel injuries sustained when his toilet bowl exploded, two rabbis were arrested for facilitating the kidnapping and torture of Jewish husbands reluctant to provide their wives with “gets” (permission to divorce). “I guarantee you that if you’re in the van, you’d give a get to your wife,” one of the rabbis told undercover FBI agents. “You probably love your wife, but you’d give a get when they finish you.”[20][21][22] Amazon removed the self-published e-books Taking My Drunk Daughter and Taking My Stepdaughter’s Virginity from its U.K. website.[23][24] Robert Leatherman of Clackamas, Oregon, was arrested for masturbating in the parking lot of the Beaverton City Library; an Edison, New Jersey, police officer was suspended for returning to the scene of an emergency call in order to proposition the woman who had dialed 911; and a New York City judge told a former television-company intern whose supervisor had squeezed her buttocks and propositioned her in a hotel room that she couldn’t file a sexual-harassment lawsuit because she hadn’t been a paid employee.[25][26][27] An 11-year-old boy from Colville, Washington, was convicted of conspiring to murder one of his classmates. “She was really annoying,” he said.[28] At a homecoming dance in Fort Dodge, Iowa, one teenage boy stabbed another in the back.[29]


Sign up and get the Weekly Review delivered to your inbox every Tuesday morning.

Share
Single Page

More from Jesse Barron:

Weekly Review November 18, 2014, 10:43 am

Weekly Review

World leaders plan to boost GDP, the E.S.A. lands on a comet, and an artist looks for a needle in a haystack

Weekly Review September 30, 2014, 8:00 am

Weekly Review

Student protests in Hong Kong, two sex-scandal resignations, and the CIA’s lust for lemon pound cake.

Weekly Review August 12, 2014, 8:00 am

Weekly Review

Police in Missouri kill an unarmed teenager, the U.S. government expands its terrorist database, and Justin Bieber saves a Russian fisherman

Get access to 165 years of
Harper’s for only $45.99

United States Canada

CATEGORIES

THE CURRENT ISSUE

July 2016

American Idle

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

My Holy Land Vacation

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The City That Bleeds

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

El Bloqueo

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Vladivostok Station

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Ideology of Isolation

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

view Table Content

FEATURED ON HARPERS.ORG

Post
"We all know in France that as soon as a politician starts saying that some problem will be solved at the European level, that means no one is going to do anything."
Photograph (detail) by Stefan Boness
Post
Tom Bissell on touring Israel with Christian Zionists, Joy Gordon on the Cuban embargo, Lawrence Jackson on Freddie Gray and the makings of an American uprising, a story by Paul Yoon, and more

Freddie Gray’s relatives arrived for the trial in the afternoon, after the prep-school kids had left. By their dress, they seemed to have just gotten off work in the medical and clerical fields. The family did not appear at ease in the courtroom. They winced and dropped their heads as William Porter and his fellow officer Zachary Novak testified to opening the doors of their police van last April and finding Freddie paralyzed, unresponsive, with mucus pooling at his mouth and nose. Four women and one man mournfully listened as the officers described needing to get gloves before they could touch him.

The first of six Baltimore police officers to be brought before the court for their treatment of Freddie Gray, a black twenty-five-year-old whose death in their custody was the immediate cause of the city’s uprising last spring, William Porter is young, black, and on trial. Here in this courtroom, in this city, in this nation, race and the future seem so intertwined as to be the same thing.

Artwork: Camels, Jerusalem (detail) copyright Martin Parr/Magnum Photos
[Report]
How to Make Your Own AR-15·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Even if federal gun-control advocates got everything they wanted, they couldn’t prevent America’s most popular rifle from being made, sold, and used. Understanding why this is true requires an examination of how the firearm is made.
Illustration by Jeremy Traum
Article
My Holy Land Vacation·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

"I wanted to more fully understand why conservative politics had become synonymous with no-questions-asked support of Israel."
Illustration (detail) by Matthew Richardson
Article
The City That Bleeds·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

"Here in this courtroom, in this city, in this nation, race and the future seem so intertwined as to be the same thing."
Photograph (detail) © Wil Sands/Fractures Collective

Average speed of Heinz ketchup, from the mouth of an upended bottle, in miles per year:

25

After studying the fall of 64,000 individual raindrops, scientists found that some small raindrops fall faster than they ought to.

The Playboy mansion in California was bought by the heir to the Twinkie fortune, and a New Mexico man set fire to his apartment to protest his neighbors’ loud lovemaking.

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

HARPER’S FINEST

Mississippi Drift

By

Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'

Subscribe Today