American news media outlets such as Time and Newsweek are keeping the U.S. in the dark about world issues; a Silicon Valley startup has dreamed up a ship for international techies to avoid immigration problems; and Wi-Fi and cellphones are making us sick—or are they? 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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American Vs. International News: Time and Newsweek Americans are notorious for their ignorance of global issues and international news.

Why Is Art So Damned Expensive? The global economy’s in a tailspin, but among the world’s elite collectors, works are selling for record prices.

Christmas Carols: Why do we keep singing them? Why have Christmas carols stuck around so long—and not just boldly, puzzlingly, recording-career-of-Tom Jones long but centuries, epochs, eons? Consider the bizarreness of the product at hand. …

Occupy D.C. distances from Democrats. Or does it? The more than 100 D.C. Occupiers who marched from McPherson Square on Wednesday night to protest outside two high-dollar fundraisers for 15 House Democrats, including Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, carried what seemed an especially clear message for a movement so often criticized for lacking focus.

Occupy Our Homes: Shining A Light On Our Great Failure The housing crisis is America’s most urgent economic problem, but until now, it’s been the farthest from policymakers’ minds.

Which Side Are We On? NYT, U.S. and Cluster Bombs International efforts to ban cluster bombs fell apart late last week. If you were reading about this in The New York Times, you might have been led to believe that the United States was pushing to get rid of the weapons–instead of the opposite.

How Politicians’ Sex Lives Changed America’s History A review of pornographer Larry Flynt and Columbia American history professor David Eisenbach’s book “One Nation Under Sex: How the Private Lives of Presidents, First Ladies and Their Lovers Changed the Course of American History.”

Radiation From Cellphones and Wi-Fi Is Making People Sick With millions of cell towers dotting the planet and billions of cellphones placed next to billions of heads every day, why aren’t we all getting sick?

Securing Nebulous Privacy Rights in the Cloud The cloud may be a blessing to global business, but it remains a major headache for sovereign states determined to protect their citizens’ privacy.

The Personal Computer Is Dead Power is fast shifting from end users and software developers to operating system vendors.

A Floating Silicon Valley for Techies Without Green Cards Since Sept. 11, America’s increased concern with security has threatened to undermine its ability to attract global talent.