Sunday 10.14.2012 New York Times Digest

1. The Self-Destruction of the 1%

“Extractive states are controlled by ruling elites whose objective is to extract as much wealth as they can from the rest of society. Inclusive states give everyone access to economic opportunity; often, greater inclusiveness creates more prosperity, which creates an incentive for ever greater inclusiveness.”

2. Campaigns Mine Personal Lives to Get Out Vote

“The callers will be guided by scripts and call lists compiled by people – or computers – with access to details like whether voters may have visited pornography Web sites, have homes in foreclosure, are more prone to drink Michelob Ultra than Corona or have gay friends or enjoy expensive vacations.”

3. At the Corner of Hope and Worry

“I’m just going in circles and circles and circles. And not getting anyplace.”

4. Sex Life Was ‘Out of Step,’ Strauss-Kahn Says, but Not Illegal

“A keyhole view into a clandestine practice in certain powerful circles of French society: secret soirees with lawyers, judges, police officials, journalists and musicians that start with a fine meal and end with naked guests and public sex with multiple partners.”

5. A League Outlaw With an Endearing Scowl

“Karras had another admirable characteristic: an abiding disdain for authority.”

6. Romney’s Go-To Economist

“Dean Hubbard is a mercenary.”

7. Do Not Track? Advertisers Say ‘Don’t Tread on Us’

“What is really at stake here is the future of the surveillance economy.”

8. Which Millionaire Are You Voting For?

“Why do so few elections feature candidates who have worked in blue-collar jobs themselves, at least for part of their lives?”

9. Rethinking Affirmative Action

“Americans value diversity. But they value fairness more.”

10. Cracking the Quantum Safe

“Classical computers use ‘bits’ of information that can be either 0 or 1. But quantum-information technologies let scientists consider ‘qubits,’ quantum bits of information that are both 0 and 1 at the same time. Logic circuits, made of qubits directly harnessing the weirdness of superpositions, allow a quantum computer to calculate vastly faster than anything existing today. A quantum machine using no more than 300 qubits would be a million, trillion, trillion, trillion times faster than the most modern supercomputer.”

11. Mondays Aren’t as Blue as We Think

“Why do we believe something that our own immediate experience indicates simply isn’t true?”

12. Female Stars Step Off the Scale

“They don’t go on diets or have liposuction to fit into red-carpet outfits; they let out a seam.”

13. Bending Time, Bending Minds

“They took what is a relatively minor motif in the novel – the idea of eternal recurrence – and turned it into a major one.”

14. Savoring the Rewards of Button Pushing

Purity [about two professors who travel to Ecuador to have sex with a 9-year-old girl, an event depicted onstage] was partly inspired by a newspaper article I read about the North American Man-Boy Love Association.”

15. A Farewell to Celluloid With a Tribute

“You make films for the dead, but they’re seen by the living.”

16. These Comics Will Play the Race Card

“They have created a sketch show that sends up race, class and culture while holding the attention of a young, diverse demographic.”

17. Monastery Hopping in Spain

“You’re surrounded by massive stone walls and soaring roofs that were already 450 years old when the pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock. You can feel the weight of the centuries.”

18. Cooking Isn’t Creative, and It Isn’t Easy

“Kimball has watched the arrival of California nouvelle and Asian fusion, the farm-to-table movement, Whole Foods and the gourmet supermarket, convenience-store sushi, the celebrity chef and the contemporary urban foodie cum blogger, and he has managed to ignore them all.”

19. Coveting Thy Friend’s House

“No matter how lovely and exquisitely decorated your home, there’s always something else out there that elicits a longing, not just for someone else’s things, but for the experience that lives in and around those things, the life that created the place.”

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