Las Vegas is out to ruin the sanctity of prostitution, and the Joe Lieberman-shaped health care bill violates the Hippocratic oath to do no harm. These arguments and more in today’s list.

On a regular basis, Truthdig brings you the news items and other odds and ends that 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.

Newer links are on top.

Does Having a Woman in the Top Job (or the No. 2 Slot) Make a Difference?

When it comes to faculty hiring, the answer appears to be “yes.” And having a critical mass of women on boards of trustees also makes a difference.

Joe Lieberman Plays the Scorned Ex So Well It is an odd contrast. Last night, I watched a movie, “Invictus,” that was about reconciliation, trust, hope, forgiveness and bringing out the best in people after a prolonged battle for control of a country.

Joe Lieberman and the Health Care Train Wreck When last we heard from Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut, he was throwing sand into the gears of the Democratic push for health care reform by declaring he would filibuster any legislation containing the so-called public option.

Now Gays Plan to Destroy the Sanctity of Prostitution Men may now join the ranks of Nevada’s brothel prostitutes, after a unanimous decision Dec. 11 that added language to health codes so male sex workers could be tested for infectious diseases.

What Happens When Science Underminds the Drug War Mythology In the long and tortured debate over drug policy, one of the strangest episodes has been playing out this fall in the United Kingdom, where the country’s top drug adviser was recently fired for publicly criticizing his government’s drug laws.

Four Tests for the Senate Health Bill The first rule of medicine is, “Do no harm.” The post-Joe Lieberman version of the Senate health care bill fails that basic criterion.

Obama’s Indecent Interval Despite the U.S. president’s pleas to the contrary, the war in Afghanistan looks more like Vietnam than ever.

How We Invaded Afghanistan Thirty years ago this December, Soviet airborne troops parachuted into Kabul and began a fateful occupation that became Mikhail Gorbachev’s Vietnam. Here’s the inside story of how it happened, as told by the KGB general who planned it.

Mark Yudof and the UC Regents One of the myths about the UC system crisis is the idea that “Sacramento” is the real villain and that protesting the UC administration is a waste of time.

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