What should the media do when campaigns lie? Plus, the best of the web this week.

How journalists should fact-check politicians. What police officers know that the rest of us don't. How the poor, middle class, and rich spend their money. A super-cool new technology coming in December. And more. Enjoy!


Politics and World Affairs

A Not-Very-Truthful Speech In A Not-Very-Truthful Campaign / Ezra Klein / The Washington Post

Klein tries "to bend over backward to be fair, to see it from Ryan's perspective," but finds it hard to be balanced amid Ryan's, and the campaign's, calculated dishonesty.




Obama Needs 80% Of Minority Vote To Win 2012 Election / Ron Brownstein / National Journal

A look at the demographic equations defining this election. The last paragraph suggests some major changes are in store for the Republican party.




Four More Years? / The Economist

The Economist is underwhelmed. "The defence of Mr Obama's record comes down to one phrase: it could all have been a lot worse."




I Am Barack Obama, President Of The United States—AMA / Barack Obama / Reddit

Obama takes (softball) questions from the horde. Interesting to read his writing style, and there's some really funny stuff in here, including someone who corrects his grammar.




Arts and Culture

What It's Like For A Deaf Person To Hear Music For The First Time / Rebecca Rosen / The Atlantic

A 23-year-old gets a new hearing aid, and with the help of friends and the Internet, discovers everything from Mozart to Sigur Rós.




What Have You Learned As A Police Officer About Life And Society That Most People Don't Know Or Underestimate? / Tim Dees / Quora

A fun list, including this: "Although they may not know it, there are people who find [your] hot buttons instinctively, and they live to push them."




52 Suburbs Around The World / Louise Hawson

A photographer takes a year off to travel the world with her daughter, documenting life in the suburbs of great global cities. (via @nickfraser)




Lance Armstrong's Secret Is Out / Christopher Keyes / Outside

A new book from Armstrong's former teammate "isn't just a game changer for the Lance Armstrong myth. It's the game ender." Also interesting on the weight of carrying a lie.




It's My Life What Ever I Wanna Do / Vennu Mallesh / YouTube

Oh, man. Prepare yourself for this, um, difficult-to-describe Indian music video. Rebecca Black, you have been eclipsed.




Business and Economics

How The Poor, The Middle Class, And The Rich Spend Their Money / Jacob Goldstein and Lam Vo / NPR

A simple graph. "Both the similarities and differences are striking." The rest of the graphs in the series, "Graphing America," look interesting as well.





How Paperbacks Transformed the Way Americans Read / Andrew Shaffer / Mental Floss

In 1939, a movie cost 20 cents, but a hardcover book cost $2.75. And yet, the idea of a cheap paperback was seen by the publishing industry as crazy. Great example of how incumbents can stifle innovation.





Gimme The Loot / Gavin Mueller / Jacobin

Fascinating take on piracy through the ages, from Blackbeard to Kim Dotcom. I had no idea pirates ran their ships so democratically.





A Hyper Cool (And Controversial) Rebranding For American Airlines / Anna Kovecses / CoDesign

I love this redesign.




Teen Titan / Lizzie Widdicombe / The New Yorker

A profile of Scooter Braun, "the man who made Justin Bieber," and who still manages to come across as surprisingly not terrible.




Science and Technology

The Andreessen Horowitz Effect / Erick Schonfeld / Techonomy

Profile of one of the most successful, and aggressive, venture capital shops in Silicon Valley. The list of companies they back is truly impressive.




In Defence Of TED / Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry / The Kernel

"If we resisted the siren call of feeling smugly superior ... we could perhaps see TED for what it actually is: a media company that has been very successful" at popularizing ideas.




The Most Important Technology Since The Smartphone Arrives December 2012 / Christopher Mims / Technology Review

Short article and really cool demo video for a product called Leap Motion, which its founder promises will be even better than the technology in "Minority Report."




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Youtube

Should a man lose his home because the grass in his yard grew higher than 10 inches? The city of Dunedin, Florida seems to think so.

According to the Institute of Justice, which is representing Jim Ficken, he had a very good reason for not mowing his lawn – and tried to rectify the situation as best he could.

In 2014, Jim's mom became ill and he visited her often in South Carolina to help her out. When he was away, his grass grew too long and he was cited by a code office; he cut the grass and wasn't fined.

France has started forcing supermarkets to donate food instead of throwing it away.

But several years later, this one infraction would come back to haunt him after he left to take care of him's mom's affairs after she died. The arrangements he made to have his grass cut fell through (his friend who he asked to help him out passed away unexpectedly) and that set off a chain reaction that may result in him losing his home.

The 69-year-old retiree now faces a $29,833.50 fine plus interest. Watch the video to find out just what Jim is having to deal with.

Mow Your Lawn or Lose Your House! www.youtube.com

Cities

The world officially loves Michelle Obama.

The former first lady has overtaken the number one spot in a poll of the world's most admired women. Conducted by online research firm YouGov, the study uses international polling tools to survey people in countries around the world about who they most admire.

In the men's category, Bill Gates took the top spot, followed by Barack Obama and Jackie Chan.

In the women's category, Michelle Obama came first, followed by Oprah Winfrey and Angelina Jolie. Obama pushed Jolie out of the number one spot she claimed last year.

Unsurprising, really, because what's not to love about Michelle Obama? She is smart, kind, funny, accomplished, a great dancer, a devoted wife and mother, and an all-around, genuinely good person.

She has remained dignified and strong in the face of rabid masses of so-called Americans who spent eight years and beyond insisting that she's a man disguised as a woman. She's endured non-stop racist memes and terrifying threats to her family. She has received far more than her fair share of cruelty, and always takes the high road. She's the one who coined, "When they go low, we go high," after all.

She came from humble beginnings and remains down to earth despite becoming a familiar face around the world. She's not much older than me, but I still want to be like Michelle Obama when I grow up.

Her memoir, Becoming, may end up being the best-selling memoir of all time, having already sold 10 million copies—a clear sign that people can't get enough Michelle, because there's no such thing as too much Michelle.

Don't like Michelle Obama? Don't care. Those of us who love her will fly our MO flags high and without apology, paying no mind to folks with cold, dead hearts who don't know a gem of a human being when they see one. There is nothing any hater can say or do to make us admire this undeniably admirable woman any less.

When it seems like the world has lost its mind—which is how it feels most days these days—I'm just going to keep coming back to this study as evidence that hope for humanity is not lost.

Here. Enjoy some real-life Michelle on Jimmy Kimmel. (GAH. WHY IS SHE SO CUTE AND AWESOME. I can't even handle it.)

Michelle & Barack Obama are Boring Now www.youtube.com

Most Shared
via EarthFix / Flickr

What will future generations never believe that we tolerated in 2019?

Dolphin and orca captivity, for sure. They'll probably shake their heads at how people died because they couldn't afford healthcare. And, they'll be completely mystified at the amount of food some people waste while others go starving.

According to Biological Diversity, "An estimated 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is wasted every year, costing households, businesses and farms about $218 billion annually."

There are so many things wrong with this.

First of all it's a waste of money for the households who throw out good food. Second, it's a waste of all of the resources that went into growing the food, including the animals who gave their lives for the meal. Third, there's something very wrong with throwing out food when one in eight Americans struggle with hunger.

Supermarkets are just as guilty of this unnecessary waste as consumers. About 10% of all food waste are supermarket products thrown out before they've reached their expiration date.

Three years ago, France took big steps to combat food waste by making a law that bans grocery stores from throwing away edible food.According to the new ordinance, stores can be fined for up to $4,500 for each infraction.

Previously, the French threw out 7.1 million tons of food. Sixty-seven percent of which was tossed by consumers, 15% by restaurants, and 11% by grocery stores.

This has created a network of over 5,000 charities that accept the food from supermarkets and donate them to charity. The law also struck down agreements between supermarkets and manufacturers that prohibited the stores from donating food to charities.

"There was one food manufacturer that was not authorized to donate the sandwiches it made for a particular supermarket brand. But now, we get 30,000 sandwiches a month from them — sandwiches that used to be thrown away," Jacques Bailet, head of the French network of food banks known as Banques Alimentaires, told NPR.

It's expected that similar laws may spread through Europe, but people are a lot less confident at it happening in the United States. The USDA believes that the biggest barrier to such a program would be cost to the charities and or supermarkets.

"The logistics of getting safe, wholesome, edible food from anywhere to people that can use it is really difficult," the organization said according to Gizmodo. "If you're having to set up a really expensive system to recover marginal amounts of food, that's not good for anybody."

Plus, the idea may seem a little too "socialist" for the average American's appetite.

"The French version is quite socialist, but I would say in a great way because you're providing a way where they [supermarkets] have to do the beneficial things not only for the environment, but from an ethical standpoint of getting healthy food to those who need it and minimizing some of the harmful greenhouse gas emissions that come when food ends up in a landfill," Jonathan Bloom, the author of American Wasteland, told NPR.

However, just because something may be socialist doesn't mean it's wrong. The greater wrong is the insane waste of money, damage to the environment, and devastation caused by hunger that can easily be avoided.

Planet

The world is dark and full of terrors, but every once in a while it graces us with something to warm our icy-cold hearts. And that is what we have today, with a single dad who went viral on Twitter after his daughter posted the photos he sent her when trying to pick out and outfit for his date. You love to see it.




After seeing these heartwarming pics, people on Twitter started suggesting this adorable man date their moms. It was essentially a mom and date matchmaking frenzy.

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