The Week: Most Recent Home Page Posts recent posts.en-usWed, 23 Apr 2014 09:50:00 -0400http://theweek.com Recent Home Page Posts from THE WEEKWed, 23 Apr 2014 09:50:00 -0400Today in history: The birth of the bachelor president<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p><strong>April 23, </strong><strong>1791:</strong> James Buchanan was born. He was the 15th president, serving between 1857 and 1861. Buchanan was the only president who never married. He is considered to be one of the worst presidents, largely for his failure to prevent the Civil War.</p><p>In the late 1850s, as the North and South drifted further apart, Buchanan had an opportunity to heal the growing rift. But Buchanan relied on constitutional arguments &mdash; which tended to favor the South and angered the North; he also failed to grasp that other regional divisions were tearing political parties apart as well. The Democratic Party...</p> <a href="">More</a>By West Wing ReportsWed, 23 Apr 2014 09:50:00 -0400Who wants to cut spending the most? The rich</P><p>Larry Bartels points to the fact that &mdash; unlike in other affluent democracies &mdash; in America, the desire to cut government spending is almost much stronger among the rich, and weaker among the poor:</p><p><br /></p><p >[<em>Washington Post</em>]</p><p >Paul Krugman says that "the main point to understand here is that we now know what it means when people urge us to stop talking about class, or denounce class warfare: it is essentially a demand that lower-income Americans and those upper-income Americans who care about them shut up, and stop messing with the elite desire for smaller government."</p><p >Krugman's correct &mdash...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/john-aziz" ><span class="byline">John Aziz</span></a>Wed, 23 Apr 2014 09:50:00 -0400Democrats aren't dead in the South<img src="" /></P><p>A new set of polls from the <em>New York Times</em> and Kaiser Family Foundation have political observers buzzing this morning because they show Democrats still have a fighting chance in four key Southern Senate races. <br /><br /><strong>Arkansas</strong>: Sen. Mark Pryor (D) 46 percent, Tom Cotton (R) 36 percent<br /><br /><strong>Kentucky</strong>: Sen. Mitch McConnell (R) 44 percent, Alison Lundergran Grimes (D) 43 percent<br /><br /><strong>Louisiana</strong>: Sen. Mary Landrieu (D) 42 percent, Bill Cassidy (D) 18 percent<br /><br /><strong>North Carolina</strong>: Sen. Kay Hagan (D) 42 percent, Thom Tillis (R) 40 percent</p><p>These results are a big deal because the battle for control of the Senate will almost certainly...</p> <a href="">More</a>Taegan GoddardWed, 23 Apr 2014 09:46:00 -0400Amazon signs exclusive deal to stream HBO shows</P><p class="p1">In the ongoing streaming wars, Amazon just scored a major coup over rivals like Netflix and Hulu: beginning next month, their Amazon Prime service will begin streaming a wide variety of HBO programming.</p><p class="p3"><span class="s1">A press release reports that Amazon will have the exclusive rights to stream "</span>all seasons of revered classics such as <em>The Sopranos</em>, <em>The Wire</em>, <em>Deadwood</em>, <em>Rome</em> and <em>Six Feet Under</em>, and of recent favorites such as <em>Eastbound &amp; Down</em>, <em>Enlightened</em> and <em>Flight of the Conchords</em>," along with "select seasons" of current shows like <em>Boardwalk Empire</em> and <em>True Blood</em>. The deal also extends to miniseries like...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/scott-meslow" ><span class="byline">Scott Meslow</span></a>Wed, 23 Apr 2014 09:41:00 -0400Let's watch Prince William and Kate awkwardly learn how to DJ</P><p>Prince William and Kate's whirlwind tour with the normals of Australia wouldn't have been complete without at least one embarrassing activity. It came in the form of a DJ lesson at a youth learning center for disadvantaged kids in Adelaide. The royals both knew this wasn't going to turn out in their favor, with each of them insisting that the other to go first before Kate caved.</p><p>Kate's scratching (which led the overexcited announcers to refer to her as the "Dutchess DJ") ended up outshining her husband's &mdash; when William took to the decks, he gingerly poked at the record as if it were an utterly...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Jordan ValinskyWed, 23 Apr 2014 09:25:00 -0400Why China's Communist Party is headed for collapse<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>Nothing lasts forever, not even the Chinese Communist Party. Whether it will perish in a few years, or last for decades to come, there are a series of worrying indicators. Beijing has been slow to implement reforms that will orient the economy on a sustainable path. President Xi Jinping is knee-deep in an anti-corruption campaign against senior Chinese Communist Party (CCP) members unprecedented in its reach and scope in modern China, raising concerns about the party's ability to police itself. Meanwhile, outside the corridors of power, China's increasingly sophisticated populace is concerned...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Isaac Stone FishWed, 23 Apr 2014 09:14:00 -0400Watch Albert Pujols join the 500 home run club with this bomb</P><p class="p1">Heading into Tuesday night's game against the Washington Nationals, Angels slugger Albert Pujols needed just two home runs to join the 500 homer club. He picked up number 499 in the first inning, setting him up to do this in the fifth:<br /><br /></p><center><iframe width="600" height="360" src=";topic_id=70087564&amp;width=600&amp;height=360&amp;property=mlb" frameborder="0"></iframe></center><p class="p1">With that shot, Pujols became the 26th member of the 500 club. And at 34 years and 96 days old, he was the third-youngest player to reach the milestone.</p><p class="p1">After a handful of years in decline, Pujols is crushing the ball once again. His eight home runs lead the majors.</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/jon-terbush" ><span class="byline">Jon Terbush</span></a>Wed, 23 Apr 2014 09:11:00 -0400Lupita Nyong'o named People's Most Beautiful Woman</P><p class="p1">It's been a big month for Lupita Nyong'o. In the wake her Oscar-winning performance in <em>12 Years a Slave</em>, Nyong'o has signed a contract with CAA and stepped up as one of the faces of Lancome. Today, <em>People</em> announced that Nyong'o is this year's Most Beautiful Woman, joining a group of previous recipients that includes Gwyneth Paltrow, Beyonce Knowles, and Jennifer Lopez.</p><p class="p1">"It was exciting and just a major, major compliment," said Nyong'o in <em>People</em>. "And especially, I was happy for all the girls who would see me on [it] and feel a little more seen."</p><p class="p3">"There was really no contest this year. She seemed...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/scott-meslow" ><span class="byline">Scott Meslow</span></a>Wed, 23 Apr 2014 09:11:00 -0400Watch this driving pro balance a car on two wheels</P><p>One would think you'd need to reinforce your car's struts to be able to do this. --<em>Ryan Cooper</em></p><p><iframe width="600" height="360" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/ryan-cooper" ><span class="byline">Ryan Cooper</span></a>Wed, 23 Apr 2014 08:46:00 -0400Pictures reveal stowaway teen's footprints on plane's wheel well</P><p>New pictures from the wheel well of a plane where a stowaway teen survived wicked conditions for more than five hours have been released. According to Hawaii News Now, the teen wasn't detected during the flight's three pre-flight inspections and might have hid on San Jose International Airport's tarmac for up to six hours before take-off.</p><p>The photos show the 16-year-old's footprints on the Boeing 767's wheels in the place where he stepped on to climb into the well. There were also several smudged black markings from the teen's shoes. Hawaiian Airlines couldn't confirm to the NBC/CBS affiliate...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Jordan ValinskyWed, 23 Apr 2014 08:40:00 -0400How to make perfect fried rice in 6 easy steps<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p class="p1">Fried rice is a wildly popular takeout choice, often served with lunch specials and always ordered by a friend of mine, who shall go unnamed. But fried rice is the last thing on the menu I'd order when dining out, for one reason: It's so very simple to make at home. After a quick dig in the fridge for cooked rice, last night's leftovers, and whatever treasures lurk in back, everything comes together in less than 20 minutes.</p><p class="p1">Just about anything can go into fried rice: leftover roast chicken, grilled steak, ham, and fresh or frozen vegetables. Just don't use super "wet" leftovers, like a curry...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Pat TanumihardjaWed, 23 Apr 2014 08:20:00 -040010 things you need to know today: April 23, 2014<img src="" /></P><p><strong>1. Justices uphold Michigan's affirmative action ban in college admissions</strong><br />The Supreme Court, in a 6-2 ruling, upheld a Michigan constitutional amendment banning affirmative action policies in public university admissions. Michigan and other states, such as Florida and California, that have outlawed taking race into consideration in higher education have seen sharp drops in enrollment of black and Hispanic students, but the court's majority said voters, not courts, should decide what policies to use. [<em>The New York Times</em>]</p><p >&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/harold-maass" ><span class="byline">Harold Maass</span></a>Wed, 23 Apr 2014 07:53:00 -0400South Sudan is turning into an ethnic bloodbath</P><p>Last week, hundreds of residents of Benitiu, the capital of oil-rich South Sudan state Unity, gathered in a mosque for safety as rebel troops took the town from government forces. Instead, United Nations peacekeepers say, thieves were waiting to rob the people of their money and cellphones, then gunmen entered and opened fire, indiscriminately slaying hundreds of civilians, including children and the elderly.</p><p>"Piles and piles" of bodies were left in the mosque, town hospital, and along the roadside, Toby Lanzer, the top U.N. aid official in South Sudan, tells <em>The Associated Press</em>. The hundreds...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/peter-weber" ><span class="byline">Peter Weber</span></a>Wed, 23 Apr 2014 07:53:00 -0400Chuck Hagel meets-and-greets with 6-foot-tall, 330-pound Terminator-like robot</P><p>U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel spent his Tuesday at the Pentagon looking at new products from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) &mdash; including a life-sized robot that resembles something from the <em>Terminator </em>movie.</p><p>The 6-foot-2-inch hulking piece of steel, wires, and computers peered ominously at Hagel while he watched videos of what the 330-pound bot is capable of. But unlike the movies where robots are portrayed as deadly warriors, this one is used for good, such as rescuing natural disaster victims from rubble, insisted DARPA official Brad Tousley.</p><p>The Atlas robot...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Jordan ValinskyWed, 23 Apr 2014 07:43:00 -0400How to be a zen master at your next performance review<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p class="entry-title">Nothing can improve your performance like solid feedback can. However, none of us likes being criticized, judged, or told what to do. And our first instinct is usually to ignore feedback or even do the opposite. I never said life was simple, folks.</p><p class="entry-title">Dan Coyle, author of <em>The Talent Code</em>, and Cal Newport, author of <em>So Good They Can't Ignore You</em>, both consider feedback essential to peak performance. Merely being the kind of person who seeks out feedback is linked to many good things like higher job satisfaction and creativity. And people who specifically seek out <em>negative</em> feedback do better on performance...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Eric BarkerWed, 23 Apr 2014 07:12:00 -0400Why the poor's investment of choice is so alarming<img src="" /></P><p class="p1"><span class="s1">Gallup's poll</span><span class="s2"> on Americans' favorite investments always makes fascinating reading. </span></p><p class="p1"><span class="s2">Every year, Gallup asks Americans to choose the best investment from the following choices: real estate; stocks and mutual funds; gold; savings accounts and certificates of deposit; or bonds. </span>In the years since the 2008 financial crisis and housing bust &mdash; after which, Americans as a group briefly ranked gold as their favorite investment &mdash; real estate has once again swung back into favor:</p><p class="p2"><br /></p><p ><span class="s2">[Gallup]</span></p><p class="p2">But <span class="s1">as Barry Ritholtz</span> notes over at <em>Bloomberg View</em>, the most interesting thing is that there are some...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/john-aziz" ><span class="byline">John Aziz</span></a>Wed, 23 Apr 2014 06:27:00 -0400