Many East Germans are choosing credit cards with an image of a Karl Marx bust staring at the MasterCard logo; Urban Outfitters, owned by a right-wing conservative, is selling Mitt Romney merchandise to irony-thirsty hipsters; meanwhile, the political pressure Latinos placed on Obama is finally paying off. 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.

The links below open in a new window. Newer ones are on top.

Karl Marx Credit Cards Prove a Hit in Eastern Germany Two decades after the fall of the Berlin Wall, some eastern Germans are once again carrying round images of Karl Marx — if only in their pockets.

It Couldn’t Happen Here, It Does Happen There It was almost closing time when the siege began at a small Wells Fargo Bank branch in a suburb of San Diego, and it was a nightmare.

The Library of Utopia Google’s ambitious book-scanning program is foundering in the courts. Now a Harvard-led group is launching its own sweeping effort to put our literary heritage online. Will the Ivy League succeed where Silicon Valley failed?

The rise of the gay superhero The rise of the gay superhero is raising questions about whether their liberation is a cynical marketing ploy.

How Urban Outfitters Peddles Ironic Conservatism, Hipster Racism and Other Terrible Values Urban Outfitters is the kind of place where you see a lot of young, idealistic progressive types both browsing the racks and standing behind the cash register.

You for Sale: Mapping, and Sharing, the Consumer Genome IT knows who you are. It knows where you live. It knows what you do.

The imperatives of political pressure Like LGBT activists, Latinos continously pressured Obama, and now have an important victory to show for it.

‘Officials say’ journalism Yet again, the American media misleads by uncritically printing unverified, false claims from the U.S. military.

Does Reading Really Set Women Free? A new book by an Oxford professor claims it does—but her argument is shaky.

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