Daily Briefing

Deep buzz for the content-deprived

Every weekday, while you get showered and dressed, we pluck these dewy- fresh, breaking stories from the info-clogged byways of the datasphere. Pour yourself a cup of coffee and stoke up on everything you need to know, or at least enough to fake it.

What the New Deal Accomplished
Michael Hiltzik, Slate | What the New Deal Accomplished | October 13, 2011

651,000 miles of highway. 8,000 parks. The Triborough Bridge. Do conservatives who attack the New Deal actually know what America gained from it?...

Mikhail Gorbachev: We Should Have Preserved the Soviet Union
Fred Weir, The Christian Science Monitor | Mikhail Gorbachve: We Should Have Preserved the Soviet Union | October 13, 2011

On the 20th anniversay of the Soviet Union's collapse, former President Mikhail Gorbachev says the U.S. should have backed his promotion of perestroika, or political and economic reforms. He says that Vladimir Putin is dragging Russia backward...

Tea Party Goes After Occupy Wall Street
Robin Bravender and Kenneth P. Vogel, Politico | Tea Party Goes After Occupy Wall Street | October 13, 2011


The tea party isn’t about to make room for the new protesters on the block.

Big tea party groups have launched an attack against the Occupy Wall Street protests, challenging the line that the anti-corporate uprising is the “the tea party of the left.” Tea partiers and their allies are looking to de-legitimize the protests circulating in the anti-Wall Street crowds, hunting for evidence of union ties, fringe rhetoric and bad behavior — ranging from news of arrests, to recordings of incendiary speeches, to tales of littering, drug use and debauchery...

The 10 Manliest Products
The Daily Beast | The 10 Manliest Products | October 12, 2011

The new diet soda Dr. Pepper Ten claims it's "not for women." From Marlboro to Axe to Levi's Ex-Girlfriend Jeans, see other products that are targeted for testosterone...

Senate Republicans Vote to Kill Obama's Jobs Bill
Associated Press | Senate Republicans Vote to Kill Obama's Jobs Bill | October 12, 2011

United against Barack Obama, Senate Republicans voted Tuesday night to kill the jobs package the president had spent weeks campaigning for across the country, a stinging loss at the hands of lawmakers opposed to stimulus-style spending and a tax increase on the very wealthy...

Occupy Wall Street Continues Long Tradition
Alan Brinkley, Politico | Occupy Wall Street Continues Long Tradition | October 12, 2011

Protests are usually messy, noisy and often confused. But they have produced some of the most important changes in American history — the Sons of Liberty, the abolitionists, the populists, the labor movements, the civil rights movements, the anti-war movements and many others. All were first attacked as rabble and mob rule. But our democracy would be far more fragile without them — seldom more so than during economic crises...

A Year Out of the Dark in Chile, But Still Trapped
Alexei Barrionuevo, The New York Times | A Year Outy of the Dark in Chile, But Still Trapped | October 12, 2011

After his dramatic rescue from a mine last year, Jimmy Sánchez traveled the world, cruising the Greek islands, visiting Britain, Israel, Los Angeles, Disney World — all paid for by people who were moved by the Chilean miners’ story of courage and perseverance. But today Mr. Sánchez, like many of the 33 miners who survived 69 days nearly a half-mile underground, is jobless and at wits’ end...

Hollywood's 'Devilish Angel'
Nick Summers, Newsweek | Hollywood's 'Devilish Angel' | October 10, 2011

On Nov. 22, 1995, Toy Story—the world’s first fully computer-animated film—opened to critical acclaim and $29 million in box-office receipts. One week later, Pixar, the studio that created the movie and that many had written off just months before, went public. It was the biggest IPO of the year and meant a billion-dollar windfall for Jobs. More than that, it gave Jobs back his mojo...

Recession Officially Over, U.S. Incomes Kept Falling
Robert Pear, The New York Times | Recession Officially Over, U.S. Incomes Kept Falling | October 10, 2011

In a grim sign of the enduring nature of the economic slump, household income declined more in the two years after the recession ended than it did during the recession itself, new research has found...

A Pig's Life in Sounds
Kiera Butler | A Pig's Life in Sounds | October 10, 2011

Matthew Herbert has devoted a large chunk of his life to listening. Since the '90s, the UK-based electronic musician has been collecting and recording everyday sounds and making them into music. The result is an eclectic list of albums: One is made of sounds from kitchen objects; another from the human body; yet another samples food sounds, from noises inside an industrial poultry factory to thousands of people taking a bite of an apple at the same time.

But his latest effort, One Pig, is different: Over the course of a year, Herbert recorded the life of a pig, from the time it was born till its last hours in a truck on its way to the slaughterhouse...