[Weekly Review] | November 11, 2014, by Joe Kloc | Harper's Magazine

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[Weekly Review]

Weekly Review

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Republicans win the Senate, President Obama doubles the number of troops in Iraq, and Ted Cruz calls Net Neutrality "Obamacare for the Internet"

ElephantWalk350Members of a Mexican drug gang confessed to killing 43 college students and burning their bodies on the orders of Iguala’s mayor, who allegedly wanted to prevent the students from interrupting an event at which his wife was speaking. Mexico’s attorney general, Jesus Murillo Karam, held a press conference about the confessions, which he abruptly ended by declaring,  “I’ve had enough.” He later defended the statement, which had sparked protests in Mexico, by telling reporters that he was tired. “I, too, am tired,” said filmmaker Natalia Beristain in a video on YouTube. “I’m tired of vanished Mexicans, of the killing of women, of the dead, of the decapitated, of the bodies handing from bridges.” Seventy-five people gathered outside the Mexican Consulate in Los Angeles to protest the government’s handling of the case, calling for the resignation of Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto, who had campaigned on a platform of ending corruption. “For the government to say that it wasn’t them, that it was organized crime, they are pointing the finger at themselves,” one protestor said. “Because these are the same exact people.”[1][2][3][4][5] An independent investigation into the death of a fifteen-year-old boy who was shot by Liberian security forces while protesting an Ebola quarantine determined that officers in the American-trained Liberian Army acted with “complete disregard for human life.”[6] Stores in Ferguson, Missouri, said they have yet to recover since protests erupted in August after an unarmed African American teenager was shot and killed by a white police officer. “Everyone knows there won’t be an indictment,” said an insurance salesman. “This time around will be a lot more violent.”[7]

In the 2014 midterm elections, Republicans took control of the Senate and won 246 seats in the House, giving them their biggest majority since World War II. Senator Mitch McConnell, who will become the Senate majority leader next year, pledged that Republicans would make an effort to cooperate with the president; former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice criticized Obama for pulling troops out of Iraq; and Obama announced he would send 1,500 additional troops to the country. “The ball is entirely in the president’s court,” a former G.O.P. aide said. “If he responds… with executive orders on immigration or any number of issues outside of fighting ISIS or Ebola, he will be setting a tone of confrontation and inviting two years of gridlock.”[8][9][10][11][12][13] A nurse in Maine who was put under quarantine after returning from Sierra Leone said she and her boyfriend plan to move as soon as her 21-day monitoring period ends; it was reported that a 60 Minutes journalist put herself in quarantine after traveling to West Africa to film a story on Ebola, which, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has now killed at least 4,960 people in Africa; and the first person in New York City to test positive for Ebola was released from the hospital after being treated with blood plasma from another recovered Ebola survivor. “There appears to be more concern over one Ebola patient—in a country of 316 million people—than the news that your administration is invading Iraq all over again,” the Norwegian Nobel Committee wrote in a letter to Obama in which they called themselves “delusional dupes” for giving Nobel Peace Prizes to him and to Henry Kissinger, who is a former Secretary of State and World War II veteran. “That is all,” the committee added. “Now, back to ‘Lilyhammer.’”*[14][15][16][17][18]

The adult entertainment industry demanded that Google tweak its search engine to promote legitimate pornography over pirated works.[19] President Obama announced his support for legislation that would keep the telecommunications industry from selling faster Internet speeds to companies that could afford them. Senator Ted Cruz, a likely Republican presidential candidate in 2016, responded to the president on Twitter. “’Net Neutrality is Obamacare for the Internet,” Cruz wrote. “The Internet should not operate at the speed of government.”[20][21] In a Canadian Senate hearing, the Ontario Provincial Police recommended legally ending anonymity on the Internet.[22] Aaron Swartz, the Internet activist who killed himself in 2013 after the U.S. Justice Department charged him with wire fraud under the 1989 Computer Fraud and Abuse Act for downloading journal articles at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, would have turned 28. The founder of Pirate Bay, a website that facilitates the pirating of media, was released from prison after serving five months. “My body,” he tweeted, “just got re-united with my soul and mind.”[23][24]

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*Correction: This letter was a parody written by Juan Thompson for The Intercept. We apologize for being delusional dupes.

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