- Today's comic by Matt Bors is Spying Is For Everyone:
- Gallup Poll shows Americans' support for death penalty at lowest level since 1972. But it's still at 60 percent. There's a wide divide between Republicans (81 percent in favor), Democrats (47 percent in favor) and independents (60 percent). Despite all the class and race evidence to the contrary, 52 percent believe the death penalty is fairly imposed, and 44 percent believe it should be used more often. Gallup has been asking the same death penalty question since 1936. But it fails to ask people whether they would support the death penalty if life without parole were the alternative. At least some polls have indicated reduced support for the death penalty when respondents are asked if they would favor life-without-parole instead of execution.
- "War of the Worlds" radio program 75 years ago did not cause a panic. Jefferson Pooley and Michael Socolow write:
“The supposed panic was so tiny as to be practically immeasurable on the night of the broadcast,” they write. “Despite repeated assertions to the contrary in the PBS and NPR programs, almost nobody was fooled by Welles’ broadcast.” The show was broadcast on Oct. 30, 1938.
Newspapers, which had something to fear from the emerging power of radio, fanned the story of a panic, they write. The day after the program, CBS commissioned a national survey to see how many people heard the now-famous broadcast, “and network executives were relieved to discover just how few people actually tuned in.”
- Check out these jack o'lanterns.
- Ray guns may soon be mounted on drones:
If a Predator drone were to get shot down, the obvious good side is that a pilot wouldn't go with it. The bad side is that you just lost a $4 million piece of equipment. So, in a bid to keep drones protected, DARPA is funding research into drone-mounted laser weapons. Wait, what?
The project, called Endurance, is referred to in DARPA's 2014 budget request as being tasked with the development of "technology for pod-mounted lasers to protect a variety of airborne platforms from emerging and legacy EO/IR guided surface-to-air missiles." The budget explains that it will be the first application of DARPA's much-discussed Excalibur laser defense system, which developed lasers powerful enough to use as weapons.
- N.C. license plates for forced-birthers, but not for reproductive rights advocates?
- Panel wants Tepco out of the Fukushima business:
Tokyo Electric Power Co should be stripped of the responsibility for shutting down its crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant, according to a draft proposal by a panel of Japan's ruling party. [...]
Tepco has since lost $27 billion at the plant north of Tokyo and faces massive liabilities as it decommissions the facility, compensates evacuees and pays for decontamination of an area nearly the size of Connecticut.
- "Statistics Done Wrong" gets an update.
- On today's Kagro in the Morning show, Reminder: CREDO Mobile's special offer for our listeners ends at the end of the month! Greg Dworkin rounds up the latest on ACA implementation, Sebelius's appearance on the Hill, the Virginia elections, and the retreat from the GOP and Tea Party brands. Ryan Grim's & Jason Linkins's "The Definitive Guide to Decoding Washington's Anonymous Sources." Ryan Cooper's "The Filibuster Must Die." Think Progress' "How Sequestration Gets Even Worse Next Year." And the Center for Public Integrity's shocking series on how coal giants use high-powered lawyers and in-house medical "experts" to keep killing their miners with black lung.