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The boat beneath Ground Zero

Sometimes when you work on a story there’s some great information you stumble on and  you just can’t seem to work it into the piece.  Now we have a place to share it — on the Daily Need. It happened this week, when I was prepping for the WTC shoot. I came across a few articles about the discovery of a 32-foot-long 18th-century ship found during excavation this summer.

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Photo: Massive explosion hits California neighborhood

An explosion and fire fueled by a ruptured natural gas line engulfed a neighborhood in San Bruno, Calif., on Thursday, September 9. Photo: AP/Paul Sakuma

Friday morning roundup


Wikileaks is preparing “biggest leak of military intelligence” ever, Ian Overton of The Bureau of Investigative Journalism told Newsweek. The new documents are primarily “U.S. military field reports related to the Iraq War,” according to Overton, whose London- based non-profit is collaborating with the rogue outlet.


In an interview with The Atlantic’s Jeff Goldberg, Fidel Castro, the steadfast leader of his country’s communist revolution, seems to have admitted that the Cuban economic model isn’t working. The New York Times’ Robert Mackey dug up this 1998 Simpons clip which foretold the scenario:

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Wieseltier on the mosque

The site of the Cordoba controversy. Photo: Flickr/beelaineo

Rising above the depressing din that has characterized much of the debate surrounding the Ground Zero mosque is Leon Wieseltier’s deftly written, clearly reasoned defense of the Cordoba House in Lower Manhattan.

Wieseltier challenges thinkers on both the left and right who would argue that aberrant individual behavior stands outside the “currents of culture,” as well as those who fall back on reductive, ahistorical characterizations of Islam. Read All »

Interview with Phil Davison, the man behind one of the most intense stump speeches ever

Updated | 4:50 p.m. Phil Davison is a councilman in the village of Minerva, Ohio, population 3,934. He has four degrees from the University of Akron — two bachelors degrees, in history and sociology, and two masters degrees, in communication and public administration. He’s worked in factories, at the local Target and, for eight years, as a bailiff at the Stark County Court of Common Pleas. He left that position last year, and has been unable to find work since.

“I’m looking for something right now, to see what turns up,” Davison said in an interview from his home in Minerva. “I’ve been turned down for minimum wage jobs.” He makes a $260-a-month stipend as a village councilman, which adds up to roughly $3,120 a year. “I certainly can’t live on that, but that’s all I’m doing right now.”

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Photo: On this day in 1850, California became a state

Half Dome as seen from Yosemite Valley in California. Photo: Flickr/Aypho

Schnitzel on wheels

Today I am off to interview the Schnitzel King of NYC for a piece for NTK.

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Fairs in 50 states

The Minnesota State Fair. Photo: Tom McNamara

Over Labor Day weekend, I had the chance to attend the Minnesota State Fair for the first time and let me just say — that’s one awesome fair, don’t-chya-know. There was a giant slide, an all-you-can-drink milk bar (be still, my dairy-loving heart), and I happened to be there the night Garrison Keillor brought his hometown Anoka High School Marching Band to the annual Prairie Home Companion show, live from the Grandstand. Read All »

Thursday morning roundup

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. Photo: Agência Brasil


Hugo Chavez becomes the latest Iranian ally to speak out against anti-Semitism. The Venezuelan president follows Fidel Castro’s lead in declaring his “respect and love” for the Jewish people.
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