Top PolicyMic stories – Todd Akin's 'Legitimate Rape' Comments Prove the Tea Party is a Socially Conservative Movement (David Gray) – The Tea Party is a backdoor movement for social conservatives, who may talk a big game about how important spending, the debt, and taxes are today, but their long game is all about social issues.
Obama and Young Voters: '90 Days, 90 Reasons' Project Renews Hope in 2012 Election (Matty Carville) – The founder of WikiLeaks is currently holed up in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, and claims to be a persecuted dissident. The reality of the situation is very different.
India Barbie Dolls Send Girls Wrong Message About Race and Body Image (Lakshmi Sarah) – As MissRepresentation.org's Margarita Diaz says, “What better way to broaden a little girl’s horizons than to dress up her doll in a stereotyped, hyper-sexualized version of a cultural costume?”
How Teach for America is Missing an Opportunity to Fix Education (Joshua Michaels) – A TFA committed to genuine reform would ask how our schools could prepare students for a success that doesn’t necessarily entail a college education.
News From Across the Web – "Legitimate Rape" – Rep. Todd Akin, the Republican nominee for Senate in Missouri, has ignited a firestorm after his weekend comments justifying his opposition to abortion rights even in the case of rape, with a claim that victims of "legitimate rape" have unnamed biological defenses that prevent pregnancy. "First of all, from what I understand from doctors [pregnancy from rape] is really rare," Akin told KTVI-TV in an interview posted Sunday. "If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down." Akin said that even in the worst-case scenario — when the supposed natural protections against unwanted pregnancy fail — abortion should still not be a legal option for the rape victim. “Let’s assume that maybe that didn’t work, or something,” Akin said. “I think there should be some punishment, but the punishment ought to be on the rapist and not attacking the child.”
Politico's "Exclusive" Non-News – On Sunday, Politico broke an "exclusive" front-page story reporting that the FBI is investigating an incident in the Sea of Galilee from last summer involving numerous GOP lawmakers, heavy drinking, and one nude member of Congress. During a fact-finding congressional trip to Israel, Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.) apparently took off his clothes and jumped into the sea. According to Politico, more than 20 people took part in the late-night swim. Pro-Israel lobby group AIPAC sponsored the trip, which ran from Aug. 13 to 21, and the cost was upwards of $10,000 per person.
What We’re Reading – Shmooze or lose: Obama doesn't like cozying up to billionaires (The New Yorker); Niall Ferguson: Why Barack needs to go (The Daily Beast); Michelle Obama hosts "kid" state dinner (Boston); How WikiLeaks blew it (Foreign Policy); Dream team: 10 best conservative columnists (PJ Media); Binge drinking college students report being happier (ABC News); Who's the smallest government spender since Eisenhower? Would you believe it's Barack Obama? (Forbes).