Salon Staff

My houseplant garden is a tiny national park Donald Trump can never destroy

I write this from a rented cabin in rural Montana; it is February and the snow falls quietly, constantly. A hope philodendron stands in the window of the loft bedroom, the largest and healthiest I have ever seen in real life, almost five feet tall. The leaves are long, rippled hands grasping at an invisible sun, so enormous that they seem almost alien. The plant is beautiful, but it is more than that: its presence here in Montana, in the middle of winter, feels incongruous, inexplicable, and therefore magical. The hope philodendron, or Philodendron bipinnatifidum, is native to the hot, damp rainforests of South America, not to the cold, dry mountains of Montana. It is warm in the cabin, thanks to the wood-burning stove, but it is far from equatorial and anything but humid. I am reminded of the cliché "bloom where you are planted" that I've seen emblazoned on kitschy wooden signs in garden stores and I can't help but see the philodendron as both a miracle and a metaphor.

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Donald Trump's Despicably Callous Response to Paris Terror Attack

Leave it to blowhard presidential contender Donald Trump to deliver one of the most vile responses to yesterday’s horrific terror attacks in Paris, which killed 129 people and injured hundreds more.

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This Rachel Maddow Interview Is Bernie Sanders' Best Moment in Weeks

It has been a rough couple weeks for Bernie Sanders as Hillary Clinton found her footing and re-established herself as the Democratic front-runner after impressive performances in the first Democratic debate and before a House panel investigating Benghazi.

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The One Perfect Tweet Which Put Megyn Kelly's Duggar Daughter Interview in Context

Top Duggar headlines from Fox's Megyn Kelly.  

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7 Crucial Exchanges from Megyn Kelly’s Fox News Interview with the Duggar Sisters

Two of the Duggar sisters who were molested by brother Josh Duggar told their stories to Megyn Kelly last night, in an interview that was often heartbreaking, but also filled with forgiveness and a strong defense of their brother and the way their parents handled the situation in the home.

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I Also Left My Kid in the Car: Mothers Share Stories of Their Own Public Shamings

In June of last year,  I wrote an essay about my experience of having been filmed by a stranger after I left my four-year-old son in the car to run a brief errand. At the time, I wanted simply to tell the story of what I’d experienced, to process what had seemed a strange and jarring moment in my life as a parent. Last week I wrote about three other mothers who wanted to share similar stories. Since then, many more mothers have contacted me with equally upsetting stories of judgment by strangers for what these mothers saw as rational and reasonable parenting decisions. These episodes have taken place all over the country; some are years old, some very recent. They all raise questions of risk and fear and the burdens of being a mother in this age; they press beneath the surface of many popular philosophies of parenting today. Ultimately, though, these stories are demonstrations of a new or underreported variety of harassment and shaming that, for the women involved, has legal, financial, moral and psychological repercussions. The letters below are being published with their permission. Their names have been omitted. — Kim Brooks

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Jon Stewart Unloads on Fox News in Exclusive: “Watching These Channels All Day is Incredibly Depressing"

Jon Stewart opens up in a terrific new interview with The Guardian, conducted before and after the announcement that he’ll leave “The Daily Show” this year. It’s the most wide-ranging conversation he’s had since then and gets into his mindset about the 2016 election, his “heartbreak” over a tough Barack Obama interview, and what he’s thinking about for his future.

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FBI Had Counterterrorism Agents Investigate Occupy Movement

The New York Times reports that the FBI had counterterrorism agents to investigateOccupy Wall Street, and that “F.B.I. personnel around the country were routinely involved in exchanging information about the movement with businesses, local law-enforcement agencies and universities.”

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Paul Ryan: The Lyin' King -- 10 of His Worst Campaign Fabrications

Mitt Romney pollster Neil Newhouse recently said that the Romney campaign is “not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact checkers.” If the past few weeks are any indication, Paul Ryan is sticking pretty close to that strategy. Here are his most recent lies, going back to his universally fact-checked Republican National Convention speech. Come back: We’ll update throughout the rest of the campaign.

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Mitt's 41 Worst Gaffes of His Political Career

Mitt Romney’s official coronation goes down this week at the Republican National Convention in Tampa. Can he get by without slipping up? Unlikely. From his energetic rendition of “Who Let the Dogs Out” to last week’s tasteless crack about birth certificates, Romney has had more gaffes over the years than your average politician. Sometimes they’re unintentionally revealing (“I have some great friends who are NASCAR team owners”); other times they’re just plain weird (“Lemon. Wet. Good”). Introducing Salon’s running list of Romney-isms, from today all the way back to 1994.

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