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A Rolling Stone magazine story about rape on campus led the University of Virginia to suspend fraternities.  Since then, the article has become a sensation as much for what it got wrong as for what it reported.  How should “sexual misconduct” be defined by journalists, college administrators and the law?

Also, a spending bill comes down to the wire, and Director John Brennan answers charges against the CIA.

Photo: Valentina Costi

Spending Bill Comes Down to the Wire 6 MIN, 18 SEC

The House is scheduled to vote at this hour on the trillion-dollar omnibus spending bill designed to keep the government from shutting down at midnight tonight.  As often happens, “must pass” legislation has been crammed with controversial provisions.  If the measure passes the Republican-controlled House, it'll go to the Senate, where Democrats are still in the majority.  Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts says she'll vote “no” because the bill relaxes the tough financial restrictions enacted under the Dodd-Frank bill.

Martin Kady, Managing Editor of Politico, has an update.

Martin Kady, Politico (@mkady)

Sexual Assault, Journalism and the Law 31 MIN, 27 SEC

Late last month, Rolling Stone magazine published a 9000-word story alleging a gang rape at the University of Virginia's Phi Kappa Psi house. Campus administrators suspended fraternities and began an investigation.  Then the Washington Post began asking questions — discovering that three crucial witnesses had never been interviewed by Rolling Stone and that the alleged victim herself has told different stories. Rolling Stone magazine first blamed the victim when it learned of the errors. Now it's confessed to bad reporting and worse editing. The incident dramatizes the challenge of getting the story right when it comes to sexual assault on campus.  Some say college officials are failing to deal with an epidemic of violence against women.  Others say they're trampling on the rights of accused men.  Should criminal charges be turned over to the police and government prosecutors?

Erik Wemple, Washington Post (@ErikWemple)
Bruce Shapiro, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism (@DartCenter)
Nancy Chi Cantalupo, Georgetown University Law Center (@NASPAtweets )
Emily Yoffe, The Atlantic (@EmilyYoffe)

Center for Public Integrity on covering campus sexual assault
Yoffe on 'the college rape overcorrection'

Brennan Defends CIA after Senate Torture Report 11 MIN, 29 SEC

On Tuesday, Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee accused the CIA of torturing suspects and lying to Congress and the Bush Administration in the aftermath of the attacks of September 11. Today, the current director, John Brennan, talked to reporters, "Our hope was that it would offer an impartial and authoritative assessment of the program, help us learn from our mistakes and inform how we conduct sensitive activities in the future. Unfortunately the committee could not agree on a bipartisan way forward and no CIA personnel were interviewed by the committee during the course of the investigation. This was unusual."

David Rothkopf is CEO and Editor of the "FP Group," which publishes Foreign Policy magazine. He's the author of National Insecurity: American Leadership in an Age of Fear.

David Rothkopf, FP Group (@djrothkopf)

National Insecurity

David Rothkopf

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