Newsweek Jan-24-14

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United States
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English
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The Newsweek/Daily Beast Company LLC
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Weekly
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48
sex and the single tween

You Go, Sexy Mama!” Four best friends pile onto a couch in an attic playroom in a leafy suburb of Boston. It is the fall of 2009, just a few hours after school has let out for Thanksgiving break. The girls wear Uggs and Juicy Couture sweatshirts and are discussing boys, Lady Gaga and blow jobs. Every few minutes, someone screams, “Ewwwwww!” “Wait, you guys – what’s going on at school? Who’s dating who?” asks Madison, then 11, who had recently left the local middle school for a private school. She has long blond hair, arched eyebrows and a gigantic smile. “I’m not dating anyone right now,” says Sarah, 11, who lives across the street and says she wants to be an interior designer. She has an innocent face and wears a pink…

7
kentucky-fried politics

Kentucky’s two Republican senators, who built their political careers railing against unions and government spending, stuck people and businesses in the Pacific Northwest with hundreds of millions of dollars of debts plus higher costs for electricity. They did it to save union jobs by wasting millions in federal dollars. Confused? Hold tight. It gets worse. (Or better, if you live in Kentucky.) The deal crafted by Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader, and Senator Rand Paul, a libertarian, required the federal agency that owns hydroelectric dams in the Pacific Northwest, the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), to pay $700 million for uranium fuel that could have been purchased on the open market for just $450 million. Interesting sidebar: Bonneville didn’t need this fuel. The senators, who favor so-called right-to-work laws that make unions…

15
what i saw at the revolution

Bangkok’s smog is a choking shroud that swallows mornings whole. Depending on weather factors, the grim stuff randomly spreads or recedes. Before the Shutdown -a day the People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) vowed to block major intersections throughout the city - itsresidents woke to gray mornings, as if the city itself was deciding what to do. Tension had been building since November, when the first PDRC anti-government rally filled the streets with more than 100,000 protesters. Then in December, major government offices were besieged by the PDRC, and a bitterly violent bid to seize police headquarters and the prime minister’s office resulted in bloody street chaos. The government dissolved part of parliament, but re-election efforts only resulted in shootings at the registration poll and frantic election commissioners airlifted out by helicopters.…

6
ban’s syrian bungle defriends iran’s mullahs

This week’s near-fiasco about who should be invited to the Syrian peace talks in Montreux, Switzerland, that resulted from a private telephone conversation between the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohamad Javad Zarif, has served a purpose. The embarrassing on-again, off-again invitation helps to understand how to deal with the likely pitfalls that will emerge in future diplomacy with Tehran over its nuclear ambitions. Ban nearly derailed the most important diplomatic initiative of his tenure as U.N. chief when he announced Sunday that Zarif had agreed to terms that would allow Iran to participate in the international conference on Syria designed to bring an end to the civil war there. The U.N. chief announced that Tehran’s representatives would be invited to the talks in Switzerland that opened…

5
snowden’s red dawn

Give the hard-liners credit: After one stunning revelation after another about the National Security Agency’s Orwellian spying operations, they finally managed to land a punch this week on Edward Snowden, the über-leaking fugitive. Not that shrill words haven’t been flung at the former NSA contractor from the get-go, starting with traitor. And Representative Mike Rogers, R-Mich., chairman of the House intelligence committee, and Michael Hayden, who has headed both the NSA and CIA, joshed openly in an open forum about putting Snowden on a kill list. None of those smears seemed to stick, though, as Americans and the rest of the world seethed over Snowden’s revelations that the NSA had crawled inside the furthest crannies of their personal communications - not to mention the cellphones of Washington’s closest allies. But this week, renewed…

8
why adam lanza killed those 20 children

Adam Lanza made news again last week, more than a year after he shot himself after killing 20 students at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn. The tabloid headlines were about a creepy audio recording of Lanza sharing his views on Travis, a chimpanzee who became famous after tearing the face off of a woman in 2009. On December 20, 2011, Lanza posted the audio clip on a mass-killer website, Shocked Beyond Belief, devoted in large part to the Columbine shooters. But lost in the public expressions of horrors at hearing the articulate, deliberate voice of the infamous killer for the first time, are his nearly 300 other postings on that site, which, along with that audio recording, provide the clearest answer yet to the question many have been asking since…