friday reading list

“Thursday, the House passed a farm bill that stripped out the food stamp program, breaking a pact that for decades has protected the nutrition needs of low-income Americans. It was the first time since 1973 that food stamps haven’t been part of a farm bill, and it reflected the contempt of the far right for anyone desperate enough to rely on the government for help to buy groceries.”

~ New York Times Editorial

Following the death of a Free Syrian Army commander at the hands of al-Qaeda militants, the FSA has declared war on al-Qaeda.

If pesky drought is getting between you and proper nutrition, Solid Water, a powdered water made in Mexico, may be your solution to hydration without so much water.

As fracking increasingly transforms the Earth’s crust into a jigsaw puzzle, heavily fracked areas now risk increased earthquakes.

House Republicans celebrate subsidizing more food that they can keep out of the hands of poor people.

Live long and suffer? Are we so focused on longevity that we have sacrificed quality of life?

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wednesday reading list

“I don’t own a cell phone or a pager. I just hang around everyone I know, all the time. If someone wants to get a hold of me, they just say ‘Mitch,’ and I say ‘what?’ and turn my head slightly.”

~ Mitch Hedberg

Before we let inept and myopic state politicians decide to do with the mountains of money BP must pay for the Gulf oil spill, let’s make some preparations to help prevent another catastrophe.

Got milk? You also might have some rat poison. How drinks we drink increasingly hold toxic chemicals.

In the world of Boston gangsters and their ongoing trials in court, James (Whitney) Bulger combats his old friend, John Martorano, about who’s a snitch and, as Maureen Dowd writes, how everyone is Judas.

Pascal Bruckner in the Chronicle Review likens environmental guilt trips to Marxian condemnation of capitalists and the Third-world’s of the West. Emily Eaken is left to comment on the ideas and the man who espouses them.

It’s a time for political comebacks and redemptions of the fallen self-righteous. Italy forgave Berlusconi (over and over). South Carolina forgave Mark Sanford. Here’s why Canada will quickly be forgiving its fraudulent, corrupt, crack-smoking mayors.

best of the sunday times

Front Page
Get to know Pakistan’s current political and economic situation through the state of its railroads.

International
Hong Kong’s bookstores thrive as Chinese nationals buy mountains of exposés and dirt on the Chinese political elite.

Sunday Review
Thomas Friedman on drought, climate change, and the Syrian Civil War.

Travel
A case for getting away from the city and deep into the heart of nowhere.

Book Review
Ellen Ullman reviews Evgeny Morozov’s tirade against technology and internet centrists who believe that the internet is the answer to an imperfect humanity.

tuesday reading list

“It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education”

~ Albert Einstein

How do you make the already tense relations between Ecuador and Peru worse? How about when the Ecuadorian ambassador to Peru assaults a woman and her daughter in a supermarket in Lima.

Want to feel better about your excessive drinking this summer? Check out Grist’s Guide to Sustainable Ales.

Although Japanese and English seem to have no grammar, sound, or letters in common, linguists now believe that they were once the same language.

What’s in a name? Cash. Money. Quartz shows us how the shorter your first name, the longer the number on your paycheck.

With all of the hoopla about the Gatsby movie coming out, Kathryn Schulz of Vulture lets us know all of the reasons that she hates the book.

monday reading list

Did you forget it was Earth Day? Here’s some news from Earth.

David Herszenhorn of the Times attempts to further bring the life of Tamerlan Tsarnaev into perspective, recounting his troubled, but never militant, life as a youth without a country.

Two things that you probably never associated before: Rupert Murdoch and transcendental meditation. Murdoch joins Russell Simmons, hedge fund managers, and the CEO of Tupperware in the league of business leaders who take part in the practice.

Ana Campoy of the Wall Street Journal discusses Big Marijuana’s stunted growth. Take a walk in the shoes of everyone’s favorite tax-paying semi-criminals.

Mother Jones has published a chart showing that generational views on gay marriage and willingness to try sushi correlate almost perfectly. While correlation does not imply causation, it does not deny it either.

In honor of Earth Day, The Christian Science Monitor has provided us earthlings a report card for how we’re faring on combatting Global Climate change.

thursday reading list.

2 guys reading paper at bar

Made from the finest the internet has to offer.

Chris Wallace of the Paris Review on Christopher Wallace’s (aka Biggie) construction and maintenance of his character. Wallace the writer then interweaves his own story with that of Biggie’s Wallace and hip hop in general to create a chronicle of self-mythology and identity crisis.

Chris Heath of GQ gets a fairly rare glimpse inside the life (and house!) of Robert Downey Jr. The interview covers everything from flopped movies to bestiality to his even brighter future ahead.

Jill Lepore at the New Yorker discusses the troubling gun violence that plagues our nation at present and our inability to stop the bleeding.

SB Nation releases some obscenely early rankings for next year’s NCAA Basketball season. Kentucky should be spooked after this year at being ranked #1 for 2013-14. 

Ryan Koronowski of Climate Progress discusses the State Department’s Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement, its woeful neglect of Keystone XL’s climate impact, and John Kerry’s odd refusal to be involved in the conversation.