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News Blog

Alternate Realities Roundup 12/13

by Eric S. Peterson
- Posted // 2013-12-13 -

ProPublica looks at how court systems tip in favor of high-interest lenders who sue their clients for defaulting on high-interest loans.

Top of the Alty World

“Into a Lifetime of Debt”--ProPublica

A look at why the Christian right is rooting for the apocalypse.--Salon

The $2.46 billion settlement in a major securities-fraud case also bolsters the argument that it was Wall Street that caused the financial crisis of 2008 and not the government.Rolling Stone

Slate has created a map to show which states actually passed new gun-control laws since the shooting deaths at Newtown.--Slate

Top of Alty Utah

Tim Lawson, a “fixer” for Attorney Generals Mark Shurtleff and John Swallow, has been arrested for his involvement in the scandals.--Salt Lake City Weekly

Weber State University finally approves funding for a student LGBT center.--Salt Lake City Weekly

An education task force calls for more assistance for at-risk students.--Utah Political Capitol

Marcia White made history to become the first elected openly gay candidate on Ogden's city council.--Q Salt Lake

Rantosphere

City Weekly's Scott Renshaw questions why Utah is one of few states to teach two classes on state history in public education.

“But there’s always a trade-off. While Utah’s seventh-graders are spending their year on the diversity, economy and government of this one 85,000-square-mile chunk of land, their counterparts in the rest of the country are likely learning about the foundations of democracy in ancient Greece, or the Enlightenment in Europe, or an in-depth exploration of early American history. It’s an intellectual parochialism that turns Utah into the center of the universe, cheating students out of a broader perspective on the world’s cultures and their place in a more expansive picture of human social and cultural development.” --Salt Lake City Weekly

The Long View

Rolling Stone sends dispatches from Camden, New Jersey, America's “most desperate town.”

“It's a major metropolitan area run by armed teenagers with no access to jobs or healthy food, and not long ago, while the rest of America was ranting about debt ceilings and Obamacares, Camden quietly got pushed off the map. That was three years ago, when new governor and presumptive future presidential candidate Chris Christie abruptly cut back on the state subsidies that kept Camden on life support. The move left the city almost completely ungoverned – a graphic preview of what might lie ahead for communities that don't generate enough of their own tax revenue to keep their lights on. Over three years, fires raged, violent crime spiked and the murder rate soared so high that on a per-capita basis, it "put us somewhere between Honduras and Somalia," says Police Chief J. Scott Thomson.”--Rolling Stone

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