Morning Reads

Good morning — and a happy 62nd birthday to David Hasselhoff! Here are some of the stories we’re reading this am…

Visceral” –> Four young boys on a beach in Gaza were killed by an Israeli missile strike just yards from a number of foreign correspondents. The New York Times rounds up some of their reactions. AND: The Guardian’s Peter Beaumont was there, and his perspective is jarring. ALSO: Reuters’ Joel Greenberg reports that a lasting ceasefire may be imminent, but Jodi Rudoren reports for The New York Times that Israeli military sources say a ground invasion is “likely.”

Hostilities –> Officials in Kiev say Russia shot down a Ukrainian warplane, and the US is imposing new sanctions on Moscow, accusing it of failing to de-escalate the hostilities. Steve Holland and Elizabeth Piper have the story for Reuters.

Indoctrination –> Charles Koch is funding a program that offers poor kids in public high schools anti-government and anti-worker “business instruction,” according to The Huffington Post’s Christina Wilkie and Joy Resmovits.

Anything can be a religious belief –> At MSNBC, Ned Resnikoff reports that Hobby Lobby may have handed businesses “a new tool for crushing workplace unionization drives.” AND: Unsurprisingly, Senate Republicans filibustered that bill we mentioned last week that would have reversed the Supreme Court’s decision.

So much for counterterrorism –> Marcy Wheeler reports for Salon that the government’s data sweeps are being used to detect common crimes.

Cruel and unusual –> A federal judge struck down California’s death penalty, ruling that it’s plagued by “long delays and uncertainty for inmates, most of whom will never be executed.” Maura Dolan has the details at the Los Angeles Times.

Outrage du jour –> Steve M. at No More Mister Nice Blog says conservatives are up in arms over a report that refugee children were to be housed in a “luxurious resort” that ultimately turned out to be a rundown motel. In any event, the outrage worked and a private charity abandoned its plan to give the children sanctuary at the location. AND: Honduras has called on the US to offer a “mini Marshall Plan” to attack the underlying problems behind the flow of refugees.

Americans love Jews” –> A new Pew poll of Americans’ perceptions of various religious adherents finds that we tend to have the warmest feelings toward Jews, and the coolest toward Muslims and atheists. Josh Kovensky has a write-up at The New Republic.

Pity the billionaire –> TAP’s Paul Waldman calls for a little compassion for billionaires who are being forced to tolerate people criticizing them. It’s persecution! “Imagine driving your Porsche out the Goldman Sachs garage, intent on a relaxing weekend at your Hamptons retreat, only to find some wretched Occupy sympathizer giving you a dirty look through the haze of patchouli and resentment that surrounds him. Who could endure it?”

Partisan games –>  At Salon, Simon Maloy writes that “it’s getting more and more difficult… to view John Boehner’s long-shot lawsuit against Barack Obama as anything but a ridiculous political stunt.”

Profiles in courage –> Paul Lewis reports for The Guardian that New Hampshire Senate candidate Scott Brown keeps his schedule a secret to avoid reporters, and “took shelter in the bathroom” of a restaurant to avoid offering his view of the Hobby Lobby decision when Lewis, acting on a tip, found him.

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