FOLLOW THE WEEK ON FACEBOOK
September 7, 2012

The Bang lamp ($299) from Bitplay is "as useful as the Clapper, but much cooler and more fun." Instead of clapping your hands to turn this sleek, modern-looking light on and off, you aim a pistol-shaped remote control toward it and pull the trigger. "Not only does your sharpshootin' shut the lamp off, it knocks the shade to the side as if you've hit the mark." Pull the trigger a second time and the shade goes back into place as the bulb lights. You can also practice your long range: The remote works at distances up to 49 feet. Source: Gizmag.com

  The Week Staff

2:48 p.m. ET
Win McNamee/Getty Images

GOP Rep. Blake Farenthold (Texas) blames the women of the party for Republicans' health-care impasse. In an interview that aired Friday on a local Texas radio station, Farenthold bemoaned the opposition of female senators — like Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Susan Collins (R-Maine), and Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) — to both the party's plans to repeal and replace ObamaCare and the later proposal to repeal ObamaCare without a replacement in hand.

"The fact that the Senate does not have the courage to do some things that every Republican in the Senate promised to do is just absolutely repugnant to me. … Some of the people that are opposed to this, they're some female senators from the Northeast," Farenthold said. He then declared that if it were "a guy from South Texas" instead of a woman opposing the health-care plans, he "might ask him to step outside and settle this Aaron Burr-style."

As a refresher, Burr shot and killed former Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton in an 1804 duel. Becca Stanek

2:40 p.m. ET

The Democrats unveiled a brand new economic plan Monday, one intended to consolidate the party's message as one that favors the middle class. Titled "A Better Deal: Better Jobs, Better Wages, Better Future," the plan is the Democrats' attempt to embrace a progressive agenda in the hopes that it will broaden the party's appeal.

"Democrats will show the country that we're the party on the side of working people," Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) wrote in a New York Times op-ed published Monday. Schumer specifically called out the antitrust laws that "allow huge corporations to merge, padding the pockets of investors but sending costs skyrocketing for everything from cable bills and airline tickets to food and health care."

The Democrats' proposal details several specific sectors in which the party wants to increase competition to fight for the little guy. On the list? Craft breweries:

So much for Bud Light — Schumer is totally cheers-ing this new plan with an ice cold Right Proper Gingifer. Kimberly Alters

1:58 p.m. ET

Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala.) revisited the congressional baseball practice shooting in his new ad for his Senate campaign. The 30-second spot, entitled "Second Amendment," kicks off with the sound of gunshots and people screaming "get down." "June 14: A Bernie Sanders supporter fires on Republican Congressmen," flashes across an otherwise black screen, as audio from the incident plays. "Mo Brooks gives his belt as a tourniquet to help the wounded."

The ad then flips from the incident in which a gunman fired at Republicans gathered for a morning baseball practice to the response of the "liberal media." A clip is played of Brooks, who was at the baseball practice, being asked whether the shooting changes his "views on the gun situation in America." "The second amendment, the right to bear arms, is to help ensure that we always have a republic. So, no, I'm not changing my position on any of the rights that we enjoy as Americans," Brooks says, as patriotic music begins to play.

Four people, including House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.), were injured in the shooting. Scalise remains in serious condition.

Watch Brooks' ad below. Becca Stanek

1:40 p.m. ET

After a closed-door meeting Monday with the Senate Intelligence Committee, Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, delivered a brief statement outside of the White House. "Let me be very clear: I did not collude with Russia, nor do I know of anyone else in the campaign who did so," Kushner said, echoing the contents of an 11-page statement he submitted to the House and Senate intelligence committees that was released earlier Monday. Kushner added that he has had "no improper contacts" and has "not relied on Russian funds."

Kushner also used the opportunity to insist that his father-in-law did not win the election because of a boost from the Russians. "Donald Trump had a better message and ran a smarter campaign, and that is why he won," Kushner said. "Suggesting otherwise ridicules those who voted for him."

Watch Kushner's statement below. Becca Stanek

12:45 p.m. ET

President Trump on Monday ordered Associated Press reporter Catherine Lucey to be "quiet" after she asked him a question about health care. Lucey was shouting out questions to Trump as he posed for a photo with White House interns.

Lucey's first question was whether Attorney General Jeff Sessions — whom Trump deemed "beleaguered" in a tweet earlier Monday — should resign. Trump responded by quite literally rolling his eyes. "They're not supposed to do that," he told the interns. The press had reportedly been "unexpectedly summoned" to observe the photo session.

Then, Lucey asked for an update on Senate Republicans' plan to repeal ObamaCare. "Quiet," Trump said, evoking laughter from the interns.

Watch it below. Becca Stanek

11:51 a.m. ET
FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images

On Monday, newly minted White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci announced the return of televised briefings. "The TV cameras are back on," Scaramucci tweeted.

In his introductory appearance at Friday's press briefing following the news that Sean Spicer was resigning as White House press secretary, to be succeeded by Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Scaramucci said he'd "have to talk to the president" about resuming on-camera briefings. On CNN on Sunday, he said his "personal opinion" was that "we should put the cameras on."

There were no on-camera briefings from the White House from June 29 until July 21, the day Spicer resigned and Scaramucci and Sanders held the briefing addressing the news. Kimberly Alters

10:49 a.m. ET
Andrew Burton/Getty Images

The program that spawned your works of art in elementary school computer lab is getting the ax. Microsoft Paint has been relegated to the "features that are removed or deprecated" list in the upcoming Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, The Guardian reported, meaning that the image-editing application has been tagged by Microsoft as "not in active development and might be removed in future releases."

Microsoft Paint has been around since Windows 1.0, which was released in 1985. The new frontier of Microsoft art is Paint 3D, which was introduced in April. Wired noted that while the apps have a name in common, "the new 3D version works in a very different way and doesn't resemble the original in pretty much any way."

It's been fun, Paint. Becca Stanek

See More Speed Reads