Here are some odds and ends that may have escaped you in the 2014 news cycle, as collected by our very own Larry Gross. Each link will lead you to our pick for the best “Larry’s List” of the month for every month this year. Enjoy, and keep an eye out for new lists in 2015.

Religious Violence Runs Rampant as Other Types of Brutalities Decline Although human warfare is supposedly dwindling, atrocities fueled by belief continue to plague the earth; an ancient Antarctic ice shelf collapsed due to lakes draining onto it; and calling Ariel Sharon a “man of peace” is a dire misinterpretation of his actions.

Are Internet Providers Slowing Down Netflix on Purpose? Verizon, Comcast and others claimed slow streaming is due to congestion, but it may be a ploy to get users to pay for faster service; an international charity highlighted Syrian children’s needs with a heartwarming experiment; and Uganda’s president signed a harsh anti-gay bill.

Fukushima: Keeping Children Indoors for Three Years Now Japanese government officials discourage kids from playing outdoors near Fukushima more than a few minutes a day; colleges have trademarked some ridiculous phrases; and sleep troubles could have to do with low brain volume.

No, Greed Is Not Good. So Why Do We Act Like It Is? Avarice has become widely accepted in today’s world; violinists prefer new instruments to old, prized ones in a blind test; and Glenn Greenwald revealed that information similar to the Cuban Twitter scandal appears throughout the Snowden files.

Wall Street’s Buying the World’s Water Supply at an Alarming Pace “Water barons” may soon own every drop of H2O left on earth; techies may be responsible for women getting pushed out of journalism; and no one seemed to want to host the 2022 Winter Olympics.

It’s Time Several Women, Not Just Hillary Clinton, Ran to Run America (Ahem, Elizabeth Warren) There are several strong female contenders, including one Massachusetts senator, who should challenge the former secretary of state for the Democratic presidential nomination; spies are being recruited on college campuses; and the U.S. government planned to financially reward people who support TAFTA.

‘Happy Birthday to You’ Copyright ‘Owners’ Finally Being Sued for Millions The birthday song has been in the public domain for decades, but somehow Warner/Chappell Music has gotten away with collecting hundreds of millions in royalties every time it was performed; the richest Americans are mostly inheriting their wealth; meanwhile, although science will make it possible to cryogenically freeze ourselves “until a future age,” one writer questions whether that’s something we’d actually want.

Are Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren Fooling Us All? A writer warns against “progressives” who support “war and empire” and cower rather than condemn Israel’s actions in Gaza; with Jeff Bezos as its owner, The Washington Post started adding “Buy Now” buttons that link to Amazon; and Hillary Clinton was criticized for her lavish demands at speaking engagements.

Gaza War Inspired a Third of Israelis to Consider Leaving the Country For a variety of reasons, the recent war in the Palestinian territory persuaded an increasing number of Israelis to give serious thought to emigration, according to a poll; in Gambia, the National Assembly passed a law to imprison people for life for “homosexual acts”; and it’s become important for the left to condemn jihad as vehemently as it does Israeli occupation.

Who Poses More of a Threat to the U.S.: Islamic State or Mexican Drug Cartels? An Al-Jazeera contributor argues Americans’ fear of IS is fueled by Islamaphobia while more imminent dangers nearby are ignored; celibate gays are helping change the Catholic Church; and Germany’s apprenticeship model could be good for U.S. workers.

You Can Say Goodbye to Some of Your Favorite Foods Thanks to Climate Change Chocolate, wine, coffee —these are just some of the foods we’ll lose due to climate change; an American expat living in France explains why “Americans are suckers who have themselves to blame for crappy broadband”; and a town in Alaska could become the first place in the U.S. to tax churches.

How an Undercover Cop at a Protest Proved Why We Need to Protest Police Violence An undercover agent encouraged protesters at a demonstration in Oakland, Calif., against recent police killings to commit crimes, then pulled his gun out on them; a group of net neutrality activists interrupted an FCC meeting to demand commissioners “Reclassify Now!”; and a Bible-themed amusement park in Kentucky lost its tax exemptions due to religious discrimination.


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