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Ear to the Ground

Higher Education Comes at a High Cost

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Posted on Sep 10, 2012

Students all over America are defaulting on their student loans, especially those who attended private, profit-making institutions; Democrats’ chants about Osama bin Laden’s death take us back to George W. Bush’s boasts about Saddam Hussein; meanwhile, new scientific studies prove organic produce contains fewer pesticides and bacteria. These discoveries and more below.

On a regular basis, Truthdig brings you the news items and odds and ends that have found their way to Larry Gross, director of the USC Annenberg School for Communication. A specialist in media and culture, art and communication, visual communication and media portrayals of minorities, Gross helped found the field of gay and lesbian studies.

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United States of student debt
In order to afford purchases of the higher education commodity, students and their families are going further and further into debt—and having more and more difficulty paying off their student loans.

How Do You Make a Building Invisible to an Earthquake?
An inventive mathematician has a new idea for protecting buildings from earthquake damage:?hide them.

Amazing Memory
At last count, at least 33 people in the world could tell you what they ate for breakfast, lunch and dinner, on February 20, 1998.

Democrats parade Osama bin Laden’s corpse as their proudest achievement
It’s one thing for Democrats to fete Obama’s tougher-than-thou national security credentials, but this ghoulish jingoism is warped.

Organic Produce Reduces Exposure to Pesticides, Research Confirms
Consumers can markedly reduce their intake of pesticide residues and their exposure to antibiotic-resistant bacteria by choosing organic produce and meat, according to researchers at Stanford University who reviewed a massive body of scientific studies on the much-debated issue.

Earth’s richest 1,000 individuals now control as much wealth as the poorest 2.5 billion
America is currently engaged in the most expensive presidential contest in world history.

Emily Dickinson gets a new look in recovered photograph
A photograph believed to be an extremely rare image of Emily Dickinson has surfaced in her home town of Amherst, Massachusetts, showing a young woman in old-fashioned clothes, a tiny smile on her lips and a hand extended solicitously towards her friend.

Evolution could explain the placebo effect
On the face of it, the placebo effect makes no sense.

LGBT coverage worth a shout-out
The mainstream media much improved its coverage in recent years.

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