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Bullied Bus Monitor’s Vacation Fund, Breivik’s Insanity and Boozing It up in Pregnancy: What You’ll Be Talking About This Weekend

Posted on the 22 June 2012 by Periscope @periscopepost
Bullied bus monitor Karen Klein in one of several videos on YouTube taken by her seventh grade tormenters. Bullied bus monitor Karen Klein in one of several videos on YouTube taken by her seventh grade tormenters.

Bus monitor bullied to tears; video and fundraising campaign go viral

America was stunned this week by video of elderly bus monitor Karen Klein, 68, being mercilessly taunted by a group of seventh grade boys. The video, shot by one of the students on a cellphone camera, went viral on YouTube and prompted a fundraising campaign that earned more than $450,000 to send the senior citizen on a “vacation of a lifetime”. It also prompted a wave of soul-searching, finger-wagging, and blame-issuing amongst American commentators – some of who declared that both the harassment of Klein and the over-zealous fundraising campaign were examples of a mob mentality.

Prosecutors want Breivik declared insane – why?

Prosecutors in the trial of Anders Behring Breivik, the man who admitted to murdering 77 people during a right-wing rampage in Norway, are asking that the court find him insane and send him to a psychiatric facility, rather than prison. Why? In part because they believe he’s mentally ill, and in part because in Norway, the longest sentence possible is 21 years, after which Breivik could be remanded to state custody for the rest of his life. The trial ended Friday, and a verdict on Breivik’s sentence should be due in about a month.

Jimmy Carr apologises for tax avoidance scheme

British comedian Jimmy Carr apologized this week for taking part in what Prime Minister David Cameron shamed as a “morally wrong” tax avoidance scheme. Carr had £3.3 million in the Jersey-based K2 scheme, which had individuals “resign” from their positions, then have their salaries paid into a trust, resulting in an income tax level of 1 percent. Carr’s involvement was particularly distasteful, given that he’d recently castigated Barclays for the bank’s tax avoidance in a sketch for Ten O’Clock Live. But others wondered whether the outrage over Carr’s tax scheme might be misplaced: We’re just trying to blame him for the economic sins of our world.

Study suggests alcohol in early pregnancy may not be harmful

A mum-to-be with a cocktail in hand is the kind of sight that makes most people balk, but according to a recent Danish study, it’s not so bad. Moderate drinking, even in early pregnancy, evidently does not harm the baby’s development, the study concluded, and women can be safely allowed one to eight alcoholic beverages a week. But while the scientists may say it’s ok, society might not.

Microsoft’s Surface tablet launched

Tech giant Microsoft entered the tablet fray this week with its announcement of the imminent arrival of the Surface device, although no release date was forthcoming. Armed with twin cameras, stereo speakers and dual microphones tuned for Skype, the device will run on Windows 8 and features a soft cover that doubles as a pressure-sensitive trackpad and keyboard. The only question remains is whether it can challenge Apple iPad’s stunning 62.5 share of the tablet market.

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