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 164 years of
Harper’s for only $39.99

United States Canada

CATEGORIES

THE CURRENT ISSUE

March 2015

A Sage in Harlem

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Man Stopped

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

The Spy Who Fired Me

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Giving Up the Ghost

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Invisible and Insidious

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

view Table Content

FEATURED ON HARPERS.ORG

[Browsings]
“The proof of his existence was this brain, and by attaching himself to it, and the power of it, he created a little bit of immortality for himself.”
Illustration by Lou Beach
Article
No Slant to the Sun·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“She didn’t speak the language, beyond “¿cuánto?” and “demasiado,” but that didn’t stop her. She wanted things. She wanted life, new experiences, a change in the routine.”
Photograph © Stuart Franklin/Magnum Photos
[Browsings]
Burn After Reading·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

William Powell published The Anarchist Cookbook in 1971. He spent the next four decades fighting to take it out of print.
“The book has hovered like an awkward question on the rim of my consciousness for years.”
© JP Laffont/Sygma/Corbis
Article
The Spy Who Fired Me·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“In industry after industry, this data collection is part of an expensive, high-tech effort to squeeze every last drop of productivity from corporate workforces.”
Illustration by John Ritter
Article
Invisible and Insidious·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“Wherever we are, radiation finds and damages us, at best imperceptibly.”
Photograph © 2011 Massimo Mastrorillo and Donald Weber/VII

Hours per day that a death-row inmate in China wears hand and ankle restraints:

24

A multidisciplinary team detected cardiac arrhythmia in the works of Beethoven.

There was a run on cases of 5.56mm M855 green-tip rifle bullets, after the White House moved to ban their manufacture and sale because they can pierce police armor.

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

HARPER’S FINEST

Driving Mr. Albert

By

He could be one of a million beach-bound, black-socked Florida retirees, not the man who, by some odd happenstance of life, possesses the brain of Albert Einstein — literally cut it out of the dead scientist's head.

Subscribe Today