How to blow the whistle safely

The US government lets torturers, people who lie to get the public to support illegal wars, and the top executives of big banks whose greed, deception, and recklessness led to a global recession that hurt so many people go scot free. What the government really cares about and prosecutes vigorously are those who expose its wrongdoings by leaking information.
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What happened to Rapa Nui?

The story of Rapa Nui (better known as Easter Island), consisting of 63 square miles located 2,300 miles west of Chile, is one of enduring interest. How a lush island became a wasteland denuded of its trees, bereft of most of its population, and finally ended up primarily as a home for gigantic stone statues, is a mystery that has intrigued scientists for years.
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Who is not vaccinating, why, and who is suffering because of it

At the risk of sounding like broken record, I want to return to a topic that I feel very strongly about, and that is this issue of people not vaccinating their children. In the US at least, the opposition to vaccinations of children seems to be something affecting the affluent. These are the people who seem to have latched onto scary tales on the internet and the media that are warning about the dangers of the vaccines, though those claims have been thoroughly debunked.
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A hilarious sendup of the Iowa presidential cattle call

The Daily Show had a field day making fun of the Iowa ‘summit’ hosted by congressman Steve King (R-Crazy) and the Koch brothers, finding much that was eminently mockable in those proceedings. Jon Stewart also alluded obliquely to something that I have been wondering about but hesitated to say out loud, and that is whether Sarah Palin’s greater than usual incoherence (a high bar that she easily surpassed on this occasion) was due possibly to her having been drinking before her speech.
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Fear is the key to belief in god

As someone who was a very religious (but not fundamentalist) Christian before becoming an atheist, I am drawn to other similar conversion stories. Daniel C. Maguire, a professor of theology at the Jesuit Marquette University has written a book Christianity without God: Moving beyond the Dogmas and Retrieving the Epic Moral Narrative describing his own similar journey.
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The strange and strong US-Saudi Arabia alliance

On the surface, there is something quite mystifying about the relationship between the US and Saudi Arabia. That nation acts like it can do anything at all and the US will not say a word against it. Their human rights record along practically any axis you choose (gender, ethnicity, religion, sexuality, freedom of speech, you name it) can only be described as appalling, with harsh punishments routinely meted out for people exercising what we would consider to be the most basic of rights. There is not even a pretense of democracy, with an autocratic monarchic system ruling the country. Even the fact that 15 of the 19 people who carried out the 9/11 attacks were from Saudi Arabia did nothing to shake this relationship and instead the US attacked Iraq on wholly trumped up charges.
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Le Petit Journal has more fun with Fox News

The claims by so-called ‘terrorism experts’ on Fox News that there were no-go zones for non-Muslims in Paris provoked both amusement and anger. Amusement took the form of a French satirical news show Le Petit Journal poking fun at Fox News while the anger took the form of the mayor of Paris threatening to sue the TV channel. I am not sure how serious she was. Such a suit would be unlikely to win in the US but I am not sure of French laws.
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