Newsweek Nov-07-14

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United States
The Newsweek/Daily Beast Company LLC
37 号



On a May morning in 2008, a team of biologists doing some fieldwork in Borneo sat down to eat their lunch, only to notice a visitor in their midst. An odd lizard, partially concealed in some leaf litter, blinked back at them from a shallow creek bed. It had the worm-like body of a Chinese dragon and the face of a character from The Land Before Time. One person in the group picked up the lizard and the researchers snapped a few photos, but they soon lost interest, put the strange creature back where they found it and resumed their lunch. “No effort was made to collect the animal, in part because the scientific import of the discovery was not fully appreciated,” they later wrote. “As the team resumed their…

from utah, with love

Mia Love is staring out at a sea of white faces. Just as she did the night before, and the night before that. It’s the same story here in Lehi, Utah, at the Lehi Legacy Recreation Center, where kids are learning karate in the room next door; the same story at the South Jordan Library, 14 miles away; the same story at a rally in the shadow of the Juab County Fairgrounds, “Home of the Ute Stampede,” where banner ads promote an upcoming demolition derby and a group of teenagers are huddled around a picnic table, agreeing that they don’t have a problem with gay marriage, as long as nobody tries to turn them gay. White, white, white. In nearly every room Love enters as she stumps her way across Utah’s…

midterms: trouble in conservative paradise

On a stormy Friday night last month, the local Democratic headquarters in High Point, North Carolina was overflowing. As rain pounded outside, more than a hundred packed into a small industrial-park office space for a chance to shake hands and take their picture with Democratic Senator Kay Hagan. A freshman Senator, Hagan is in the fight of her life this year against Republican challenger Thom Tillis, the speaker of the state House. Her race was supposed to be a prime chance for Republicans to pick up a seat on their way to gaining control of the U.S. Senate. But it’s not going as well as Republicans had hoped. Hagan’s remarks were half pep talk, half stump speech, with her supporters murmuring approval when she urged them to vote early and booing when she…

too big to tax: settlements are tax write-offs for banks

At the Justice Department, senior officials like to congratulate themselves on the headline-making, big bucks settlements they have imposed upon banks and lenders for their part in causing the 2008 mortgage meltdown that sparked the biggest American financial crisis since the Great Depression. But wait a moment. Those settlement figures are not quite what they seem. Buried deep in the announcements of the astronomical sums that Wall Street banks are being forced to pay is a dirty secret: A big chunk of the hundreds of billions of dollars banks have paid in settlements to various federal agencies and regulators since 2010 is deductible from the taxes banks and lenders pay. When is a fine not a fine? When it can be put against your tax bill. Because settlements can be deducted from tax…

two numbers: did stocks just stumble or start to crash?

Reading his own obituary 13 years before his actual death, Mark Twain observed, “The report of my death was an exaggeration.” Sixty-six months into the current bull market on Wall Street, a growing number of stock market analysts have trumpeted the end of its long run. Fears that global economic growth is slowing and some parts of the world, like Europe, could be heading back into recession have fueled recent speculation about the death of the bull market. Yet so far, despite a sell-off in October, the bulls are holding on. If this keeps up, November would mark the 67th month of the current long run, which happens to be equal to the average duration of a bull market in U.S. stocks. Recall that a bull market is a long-term climb in…

beau geste’s back

The funeral of French Foreign Legion Sergeant Marcel Kalafut was held in May at Camp Raffalli, his regimental headquarters in Calvi, Corsica. The 26-year-old was killed when his vehicle hit a land mine during a covert operation in northern Mali. France’s minister of defense, Jean-Yves Le Drian, paid tribute to the young noncommissioned officer, saying he had “died for France,” and posthumously awarded him France’s most valued medal, the Légion d’Honneur. Kalafut was the eighth French soldier killed in combat in Mali since French forces intervened in January last year. The ninth, also a Legionnaire, was killed in July. At Kalafut’s funeral, Le Drian said 1,000 French soldiers would remain in Mali and 3,000 in the Sahel-Sahara zone “for as long as necessary.” More than 50 years after granting its colonial empire independence,…