Payday loans

It is true that these companies extort money from the needy and get them trapped in a cycle of debt. The problem is that they also serve a need. Many people live paycheck-to-paycheck, just barely getting by, and any sudden emergency (car repair, medical bill, broken furnace) can throw their delicately balanced finances out of whack and they often feel they have nowhere else to turn to at short notice.
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The US roots of Uganda’s anti-gay fervor

John Oliver describes how some US evangelicals, likely frustrated by steadily losing ground in the battle for equal rights for the LGBT community here, have shifted their hate campaign to other countries and have found fertile ground in Uganda which, although it has anti-gay laws dating back to the British colonial period, had not intensified the bigotry until the recent push by people like Scott Lively.
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The Colbert Report takes a look at my district

In his ongoing series interviewing congressional representatives from each of the districts, Stephen Colbert spoke with Marcia Fudge of Ohio’s 11th district which happens to be the one in which I live so it was particularly fun to for me to watch. Colbert made the obligatory jokes disparaging Cleveland such as the river catching fire but that was to be expected.
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John Oliver on net neutrality

Net neutrality is a really important issue that is hard to get people excited about, except for those who are really into internet policy. But John Oliver did an long segment about it that got to the core issue so clearly and understandably that Tim Wu, the Columbia University professor who coined the term ‘net neutrality’, said that it had “rendered every other explanation obsolete.”
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Dr. Oz and dietary supplements

Whenever I go to the dentist, it seems like the Dr. Oz show is on their TV in the waiting room. It is an absolutely nauseating show where the host uses his impressive medical credentials to plug various products with wildly exaggerated claims. And yet apparently people take him seriously, making the dietary supplement industry highly profitable.
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Marcus Brigstocke on the Abrahamic faiths

Once in a while, especially at times when people are fighting and killing over religion more than usual, I like to link to this audio of a rant by British comedian Marcus Brigstocke. The whole thing is worth listening to but especially the part where he talks about how while the violence is committed by a few extremists, the undoubtedly much larger number of religious people who are peaceful cannot completely escape responsibility for what is done.
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