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Celebrate Fifty Years of Horrible Teevee Politics

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  • Fifty years ago yesterday, Americans gathered around the boob tube to watch John Kennedy debate Richard Nixon. Richard Nixon was sweaty and forgot to powder his nose, so he lost for being so ugly -- if he was handsome he probably would have won, which he eventually did, in 1968, "when it mattered." Point is: This historic teevee moment was the beginning of the end for the old saw "politics is Hollywood for ugly people." (Politics actually is still Hollywood for ugly people, but now we have "the Photoshop" and also "boob jobs.") Many would argue that over the years teevee has made politics exponentially less substantive and infinitely more superficial and silly. This is why Americans love the so-called Visual Age, because it gave us Dana Perino. America is tired of looking at Robert Gibbs. [Fortune/YouTube/Kansas City Star]

  • The shadowy U.S. government wants to wiretap the entire Internets, because apparently tweens are using their Facebook pages to plot terrorist attacks against Farmville. Leave our series of tubes alone! [NYT]


  • A 120-year-old sand levee on the Wisconsin River has more or less failed, endangering at least one hundred homes. Infrastructure? [CNN]

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