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Bad Ideas
July 14, 2014

A group attempting to "rehabilitate" the swastika angered people across New York and New Jersey on Saturday after it paid for an airplane to fly a banner featuring the symbol over several beaches.

International Raelian Movement spokesperson Thomas Kaenzig told NBC 4 New York the swastika had been "hijacked by the Nazis," and if it was still upsetting to people, the group's mission wasn't complete. "As long as there are people still offended by it, it means we need to continue our work," he said.

Viewers called NBC 4 New York to voice their unhappiness over the banner, which featured a swastika inside of a Star of David, the message "swastika equals peace and love," and the website address proswastika.org. Councilman Mark Treyger of Brooklyn was among the outraged. "I am deeply offended and hurt," he said. "Try explaining to someone who witnessed their loved ones who were butchered by people under that Nazi symbol that it's anything but a hateful one." Catherine Garcia

nukes
8:40 a.m. ET
Christian Bruner/AFP/Getty Images

Iran has reached a tentative agreement with the U.S. and five other world powers, anonymous diplomats told The Associated Press on Saturday. The deal, which hasn't yet been officially signed, is expected to relieve some international economic sanctions on Iran in exchange for curbing their nuclear program over the next decade

Negotiators face a July 7 deadline, extended from June 30 after more than a year of talks. Iran Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in a YouTube video Friday negotiations had "never been closer to a lasting outcome." Julie Kliegman

terrorism
7:52 a.m. ET
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Governors and law enforcement officials are increasing security Saturday in light of State Department warnings of a heightened risk for a July Fourth terrorist attack, CNN reports. Authorities didn't have one specific threat to highlight, but are especially mindful of any attacks from suspected ISIS supporters in the country.

In particular, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Friday he is upping security statewide for various holiday-related events.

"We are keenly aware that New York State remains a top target for terrorists," he said. Julie Kliegman

Only in America
July 3, 2015
David McNew/Getty Images

A Little Rock, Arkansas, man lodged a complaint with the local NBC affiliate over its peacock logo, charging it included "colors of gays" to show support for the Supreme Court's same-sex marriage ruling. Don Stair said the logo was "a disgrace" and vowed to switch to ABC. The station responded that its multicolored NBC peacock — which dates from 1956 — is the "same logo as always." The Week Staff

This is sad
July 3, 2015

As America continues its slow, miserable climb out of the 2008 recession, wage stagnation is becoming a bigger concern. On Thursday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics' jobs report showed that wage growth effectively remains flat. It's a trend that has actually defined most of the 21st century — and, at least in comparison to one particularly well-off group, the depressingly slow growth of worker compensation goes back further still:

(Economic Policy Institute)

Since 1978, CEO compensation has risen 90 times faster than the average worker's, the liberal Economic Policy Institute shows in the above graph. That's not CEO pay vs. worker pay; that's just rates of growth.

The average CEO made $1.5 million, after adjusting for inflation, in 1978, EPI says. He or she now makes $16.3 million. The salary of the average worker, however, has risen from $48,000 to just $53,200. CEOs at top firms now make over 300 times more than the average worker. Nico Lauricella

Science!
July 3, 2015
Jean Revillard/SI2/Global Newsroom via Getty Images

The Solar Impulse made history on Friday when it landed without incident in Hawaii. Flying about 5,000 miles from Japan and spending 118 hours in the air, the Impulse set records in distance and time for manned, solar-powered flights. The pilots Andre Borschberg and Bertrand Piccard, who switch off flying legs, are on a quest to circumnavigate the globe. Next stop: New York. Read more at BBC News. Nico Lauricella

Greek crisis
July 3, 2015
Milos Bicanski/Getty Images

In a short televised address Friday, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras asked Greece to vote "no" on Sunday's bailout referendum. "I ask you to say no ultimatums, blackmail, and fear-mongering," he said. "No to divisions, no to those who want to spread panic." Polls show both sides neck-and-neck, and many Greeks are reportedly confused by the technical language of the referendum, which is over a bailout deal that is reportedly off the table. Tsipras tried to clear up the confusion, saying the vote is over a bad deal, "not Greece's participation in the euro." Read more at The New York Times. Nico Lauricella

Only in America
July 3, 2015
Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

A Jewish political action committee hired several Mexican day laborers to dress as Orthodox Jews and protest at the Gay Pride parade in New York City. After a reporter noticed that the men in Orthodox garb were clearly Hispanic, the Jewish Political Action Committee admitted it hired substitutes for its members "because of what they would see at the parade." The Week Staff

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