Newsweek June 26, 2013

This exciting weekly publication offers a clear combination of news, culture and thought-provoking ideas that challenge the smart and inquisitive. Our promise is to put the reporting back into the news.

United States
The Newsweek/Daily Beast Company LLC
37 号


01 i, google, poet

TYPE A few words into Google’s search bar and you’ll see four predictive suggestions pop up in the space just below. It’s a bit of technology the search giant calls Google Instant: “a search enhancement that shows results as you type.” It was developed with the intent to help users get faster and better search results, because, the company says, people read more quickly than they type. What it wasn’t intended to do was make Google a poet. But it has—and a quite good one, at that. If you were to type “what does it ...” into the search box on a recent Friday afternoon, Google might have suggested the following queries, based on previous search activity by real-life Google users. what does it mean what does it mean when your eye twitches what…

02 bunga bunga justice

IT TOOK 20 months, 32 witnesses, and more than 50 hearings to convict Silvio Berlusconi of paying an underage belly dancer known as Ruby the Heart Stealer for sex, but not everyone agrees that justice was served. On June 24, the former prime minister, now 76, was sentenced to seven years in prison and banned from holding public office for paying Karima El Mahroug for sex on 13 occasions beginning on Valentine’s Day 2010, when she was just 17 years old. He was also convicted of abuse of office for calling a Milan police station to spring El Mahroug from jail on unrelated theft charges when he was prime minister. He is appealing both convictions. The case has been highly divisive, with many Italians taking Berlusconi’s side. This is a man…

03 baby bumponomics

ACCORDING TO a study released last week by U.K. marketresearch firm Centre for Retail Research, the birth of Kate Middleton and Prince William’s baby will infuse nearly $400 million into the British economy between July 1 and the end of August. Joshua Bamfield, director of the center, estimates that the largest piece will come from parties, with $97 million in alcohol and $39 million in food consumed to celebrate the birth of the newest addition in line to the throne, due sometime in July. Sales of baby strollers are expected to rise 13 percent thanks to the desire to “keep up with the Cambridges.” It’s welcome news for the stagnant British economy, which also got a lift from the prince’s wedding, the queen’s Jubilee, and the retail fascination with everything the…

04 a monumental debate

HOW BEST to remember our 34th president? The Eisenhower family wants a green open space on the National Mall with a simple statue in the middle, while the Eisenhower Memorial Commission wants an ambitious design conceived by famed architect Frank Gehry. Last week, the commission voted to push ahead with its preferred plan, marking the latest chapter in a longstanding spat between the two sides—one that raises intriguing questions about what, exactly, makes for a successful presidential memorial. The two camps have been at odds for years. The family’s preference for a plain design was sidelined with the choice of Gehry, whose creations—including the building in New York where Newsweek is headquartered —are anything but simple. Gehry’s original design featured a white fiberglass statue of Dwight Eisenhower as a barefoot boy,…

05 medicating our malaise

ANTIDEPRESSANTS GET no respect. Though they are the third most commonly prescribed class of drugs in the United States (after antipsychotics and medications for acid reflux and heartburn), with annual sales exceeding $11 billion, many studies have questioned their effectiveness. Some experts have even suggested that the entire pill approach to mental health is nothing but a Big Pharma con game. A provocative new study funded by the European Union may silence at least some of the doubters. Using data from 29 European countries collected for an average of 15 years, researchers examined the interplay between two variables— the country’s annual suicide rate and its annual bulk sales of antidepressants—and found two trends during the 15-year period: decreased suicide rates in most countries and increased distribution of antidepressants in all countries.…

06 cookies aren’t cutting it

IT’S A staple of every Girl Scout’s childhood: on the last day of summer camp, you sing “A circle is round, it has no end / That’s how long you’ll be my friend,” and you clasp hands and promise to be friends forever. On and on it went, summer after summer, the camps never changing. Or so it seemed. But the Girl Scouts has fallen on hard times, and the forever promise of camp seems a thing of the past. Girl Scout camps, dealing with declining enrollment and revenue, have been closed or sold across the country. Unlike the Boy Scouts, which enjoys the support of large faith-based groups like the Mormon Church, the Girl Scouts eke out a living mainly from cookie sales, dues (currently $12 a year per girl, but spiking…