It seems young people are more interested in buying iPhones than automobiles these days; Central American families with links to death squads helped Mitt Romney fund Bain Capital; and Jill Stein, the presidential nominee for the Green Party, went to jail for protesting home foreclosures. 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.

Young People Aren’t Buying Cars Because They’re Buying Smart Phones Instead Youth culture was once car culture.

Mitt Romney Started Bain Capital With Money From Families Tied To Death Squads In 1983, Bill Bain asked Mitt Romney to launch Bain Capital, a private equity offshoot of the successful consulting firm Bain & Company.

Has Twitter made book reviewers too nice? Jacob Silverman wrote an essay for Slate decrying “the epidemic of niceness in online book culture.”

Twitter Goes to the Movies Hollywood is digging deep into new ways of using social media.

Frackers Fund University Research That Proves Their Case Pennsylvania remains the largest U.S. state without a tax on natural gas production, thanks in part to a study released under the banner of the Pennsylvania State University.

Why do Republicans fear the Arab Spring? Mitt Romney’s gaffe-laden tour of Europe and the Middle East made for compelling viewing in the same way a car crash does.

A Bizarre Bug of the Human Mind Emerges in Computers Humans have a tendency to see faces where there are none. So do computers. Are they more like us in their flaws?

Trees vs. Power Lines: Will We Have to Choose? Is it really necessary to get out the chainsaw? According to NStar and many other utilities around the country, it is.

Can Anyone Replace Ralph Nader in the Green Party Race for the White House? Jill Stein, the presidential nominee for the Greens, walked into a bank in Philadelphia this week—and walked out in handcuffs.

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