Editors’ Picks for Oct 7

We’re pleased to introduce PICKS — stories selected by our editors because they are important, surprising, troubling, enlightening, inspiring, or amusing. They will appear on our site and in our daily newsletter. And we invite you to recommend articles, videos, podcasts, etc. Please send them to picks@whowhatwhy.org.


Boehner May Stay on As Speaker (Klaus)

John Boehner may stick around as House Speaker if Republicans don’t get their act together in their closed-door meeting Thursday that is supposed to pick his successor. If the recent squabbles among the GOP’s Tea Party wing and the rest of the party are any indication, then “getting their act together” is not currently a core competency of House Republicans and things could get interesting tomorrow.

The New Yorker Profiles Bernie Sanders (Russ)

Everything you wanted to know about the man. Well, plenty, in any case.

Oregon Shooter’s Mother Sounds a Lot Like Many Gun Advocates (Russ)

She worried about the authorities confiscating weapons, was pleased with her son’s prowess, and boasted about her own arsenal. America, check thine mirror.

Claims About the Postal Service Losing Money Are Misleading (Russ)

Just about all the losses are attributable to one change in the law — which was pushed through by the GOP congressional majority in 2006. Did you know that? We didn’t.

Some 13-year-olds check social media more than 100 times a day, finds first-of-its kind CNN study on teens and social media. (Russ)

That’s nuthinUm … oh, sorry, just checking my social media…

Sweden Goes Full Green (Klaus)

Sweden aims to become the first western country that will kick its fossil-fuel addiction. While the Scandinavian country did not set a timeline for achieving the goal, it earmarked funds for things like an electric bus fleet, subsidies for “green” cars and renewable energy storage technology.

Columbus Day on the Way Out in Parts of the US (Klaus)

It stands to reason that Columbus Day is not the favorite holiday of Native Americans. In some parts of the country, however, they will no longer have to “celebrate” the man whose arrival ultimately resulted in death and devastation for them. There is a small but growing movement to rename the day to Indigenous Peoples Day. This year, a county in Texas and the University of Oklahoma, among others, have adopted the name. The most prominent places that have made the switch are the cities of Seattle and Minneapolis.

My Brother’s Bomber (Trevin)

Last night, Frontline ran Part 2 of a three-part investigative series on the Lockerbie Bombing, conducted by filmmaker Ken Dornstein, who was 19 years old when his older brother David was one of 270 killed in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103.


We don’t know what Dornstein’s final conclusions will be, but so far the possibility of U.S. involvement seems to be off the table as Part 1 drops the topic of a CIA contractor who helped smuggle “massive amounts of plastic explosives into Libya” as quickly as it is brought up.


Dornstein later goes on to say that “it took just one pound of Semtex plastic explosive to reduce one of the world’s most sophisticated passenger jets to hundreds of thousands of pieces.”


We can only hope Dornstein heeds Scottish lead investigator Stuart Henderson’s words on the topic: “We got part of the conspiracy, but only a small part. You’ll only get the answer to your final story with the rest of them. I think until none of them can be found at all, then you can’t stop.” (WhoWhatWhy wrote several years ago about doubts concerning the official narrative, here.)



Obama Returns From Trade Summit With Five Stout Ships Full of Cardamom, Silk, and Indigo (Russ)

Funny faux news report takeoff on the not-so-funny Trans-Pacific Partnership as if it were from the not-so-gentle good old days of exciting world trade in centuries past.