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News Week in Review | Ryan, Assange, Heroin and a Dog

Romney Ryan

Paul Ryan named Romney Running Mate

Paul Ryan brings a youthfulness to the Romney campaign. Beyond that, Ryan’s entrance into the presidential race has created additional polarity—on both fiscal and social issues—in an already nasty race. There have been accusations flying back and forth across the political board, but for now, let’s focus on where this VP-hopeful sits on a couple of the issues.

Ryan has proposed his own budget plan which taxes the rich less, the poor more, cuts Medicaid by about a third, shakes up the current Medicare system. (To read more of the nitty gritty, check out The Las Vegas Sun. They break it all down.)

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office states that Ryan’s plan would bring the federal budget “nearly in balance in 2050” (CNN). However, others worry that Ryan’s extreme program cuts do not do enough in comparison with his proposed tax cuts for the wealthy. While Ryan’s plan is not Romney’s plan de facto, they’re very similar; most differences center around the exact percentage to reduce tax rates. Ryan is chairman of the House Budget Committee and similar plans have passed twice in the Republican-controlled House—a good sign for those in favor of Ryan’s proposal.

Perhaps more talked about by members of the Millennial Generation, Gen X, the Me Generation (can’t we just settle on one name?), is Ryan’s stance on women’s reproductive rights. Ryan states he is just about as pro-life as a person can be. It’s easy to see that from his record; Ryan voted to defund Planned Parenthood, proposed a “personhood” amendment to define life as beginning at the moment of fertilization, and supports a bill requiring women to get an ultrasound before they can have an abortion. The Obama campaign is making sure to include Ryan’s stance in their strategy, tweeting, “Make sure the women in your life know: Paul Ryan supports banning all abortions, even in cases of rape or incest.” Ryan does not, however, oppose abortions in cases when the mother’s life is at risk.

Assange Speaks Out

We got a glimpse of Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, this morning as he stepped onto the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. In a speech to about 200 of his supporters, Assange asked President Obama to call off the WikiLeaks “witch hunt” and end the FBI investigation of the organization. Assange believes the case Sweden is trying to extradite him for—in which he’s accused of having inappropriate sexual relations with two women— is just a way to get things moving so he can eventually be brought to the US to stand trial for his role in WikiLeaks. Swedish authorities deny these allegations and White House spokesman Josh Earnest says the President considers this an issue for Britain, Sweden and Ecuador to resolve.

Heroin Addiction-Blocking Drug Discovered

Researchers at University of Colorado and the University of Adelaide in Australia have engineered a drug that could help heroin addicts kick the habit, and prevent those needing pain relief form becoming addicted to drugs like morphine. Plus-naloxone blocks addiction via the immune response, downgrading the satisfaction gained from giving in to a craving to a level similar to getting a hug. Clinical trials could start in just 18 months.

Tender moment between man & dog (© Hannah Stonehouse Hudson/Stonehouse Photo, Dog and Owner Photo

The image of a Wisconsin man lulling his arthritic dog to sleep in Lake Michigan has gotten a lot of attention. Watch this video from CBS on the story, then give the closest animal a hug.


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