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News Blog

Alternate Realities Roundup 6/7

by Eric S. Peterson
- Posted // 2013-06-07 -

Sources have alleged that the scope of the Naitonal Security Agency’s surveillance is much wider than just Verizon customers.

Top of the Alty World

“NSA Whistleblowers: "All U.S. Citizens" Targeted by Surveillance Program, Not Just Verizon Customers”—Democracy Now!

Days after Gawker identified the home where Toronto Mayor Rob Ford was alleged to have smoked crack, a pipe-wielding assailant stormed the home, trying to find the video reportedly showing Ford smoking crack.--Gawker

Protests against the Prime Minister of Turkey have shaken his rule over the country.—The Economist

A grand jury has rejected indicting a Massachusetts teen for making “terroristic threats” in his rap lyrics.—Rolling Stone

Top of Alty Utah

Salt Lake County passes a mutual-commitment registry—Q Salt Lake

A publisher says former Attorney General Mark Shurtleff sought to line up a bulk purchase of copies of his book. The deal came at the same time the company was facing an investigation by the Federal Trade Commission.—Salt Lake City Weekly

Liberal advocacy group Alliance for a Better Utah has now called for the resignation of Utah Attorney General John Swallow—Alliance for a Better Utah

Conservative think tank the Sutherland Institute has also called for Swallow’s resignation.—Sutherland Institute

House Speaker Beck Lockhart, meanwhile, has sent a third e-mail briefing lawmakers on the impeachment process that may be used on Swallow.—Utah Political Capitol

Rantosphere

Salt Lake City Weekly founder John Saltas calls out Swallow and his predecessor, Mark Shurtleff, and voters for electing them to office.

“Tell me, how is it that Utah—full of morally upright and sinless residents as it is—comes to elect and hold in high regard people like Mark Shurtleff and John Swallow? And, how do we keep doing so, knowing Shurtleff and Swallow are only the latest iterations of the crappy, self-serving Utah politician? Or that Shurtleff and Swallow will someday be afterthoughts, when Utah elects the next batch of even crappier and more self-serving men or women?”—Salt Lake City Weekly

The Long View

Energy companies appear to be targeting Amish farmers in Ohio with questionable land deals, knowing that their faith teaches not to take disputes to court for resolution.

“The Amish are popularly known for their bonnets, buggies, and outdoor laundry lines, but their theology is much more complicated than simply avoiding modern trappings. Their prohibition on the courts derives from the portion of the Sermon on the Mount, where Jesus instructs his followers to turn the other cheek, and if they are sued for their coats, to give up their cloaks, too. The Amish interpret this to mean that the court is no place to right wrongs. In 2011, for example, after the Securities and Exchange Commission charged a local man, Monroe L. Beachy, with running a Ponzi scheme that wiped out nearly $17 million in Amish retirement savings, a committee representing his some 2,500 Amish creditors asked a judge to dismiss his bankruptcy case so that they could resolve his debts amongst themselves.”—The New Republic

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