The Friday follies: USA Today’s non-endorsement endorsement; AOL wants to you to hear again that ‘you’ve got mail’
Morning Brief: Philippines President likens himself to Adolf Hitler, says he would be ‘happy to slaughter’ the nation’s 3 million drug addicts
It is finally Friday, and frankly I’d rather crawl back into bed than face the prospect of accessing the USA Today website. You see, I know that the paper founded in 1982 by Al Neuharth has made a bit of news with their sort of endorsement, but I also know that it is a Gannett website so that means auto-play video, pop-up ads, and everything that is possibly annoying in today’s web world. Then there will be the comments on the editorial which will be both plentiful and often coming from the bowels of some troll farm in Mother Russia.
The weekend cannot come fast enough.
In the 34-year history of USA TODAY, the Editorial Board has never taken sides in the presidential race. Instead, we’ve expressed opinions about the major issues and haven’t presumed to tell our readers, who have a variety of priorities and values, which choice is best for them. Because every presidential race is different, we revisit our no-endorsement policy every four years. We’ve never seen reason to alter our approach. Until now.
This year, the choice isn’t between two capable major party nominees who happen to have significant ideological differences. This year, one of the candidates — Republican nominee Donald Trump — is, by unanimous consensus of the Editorial Board, unfit for the presidency…
…Where does that leave us? Our bottom-line advice for voters is this: Stay true to your convictions. That might mean a vote for Clinton, the most plausible alternative to keep Trump out of the White House. Or it might mean a third-party candidate. Or a write-in. Or a focus on down-ballot candidates who will serve the nation honestly, try to heal its divisions, and work to solve its problems.
Whatever you do, however, resist the siren song of a dangerous demagogue. By all means vote, just not for Donald Trump.
Clearly Gannett has freed up their newspapers to make their own endorsements as both the Arizona Republic and the Cincinnati Enquirer, both of which normally endorse Republicans, have come out for Hillary Clinton. But this non-endorsement endorsement is unique in that it is issue-free.
What does USA Today want the next president to do? Are they for lowing taxes across the board? raising taxes on the wealthy? spending more on infrastructure? tightening the budget? Who knows. In the end, Trump is unfit because he is unfit – but apparently so is Clinton because they failed to endorse her either. All that matters is the personal traits of the candidates, issue are too complicated to be considered, so USA Today reduces the election down to some sound bites, kind of like the way it does journalism, in general.
Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday likened himself to the Nazi leader, saying he wants to kill millions of drug addicts, just as Hitler killed Jews during the Holocaust.
“Hitler massacred three million Jews. Now there is three million, what is it, three million drug addicts (in the Philippines), there are,” he said in a speech in his hometown of Davao City.
“I’d be happy to slaughter them. At least if Germany had Hitler, the Philippines would have (me). You know my victims, I would like (them) to be all criminals, to finish the problem of my country and save the next generation from perdition.”
Duterte made news just a few weeks ago when he warned President Barack Obama to not ask him about his government’s recent extrajudicial killings, saying “son of a bitch, I will swear at you.” Obama responded by simply deciding not to meet with him at all, which is meant Duterte couldn’t get the photo op he desired.
If you want a preview of a Trump presidency, the Philippines may be the place to look.
Today, Alto, a proprietary email intelligence engine built to analyze and restructure the mountain of valuable data buried across multiple inboxes, announced its newest feature Alto Dashboard. Alto Dashboard lets users do more with email than reply, archive, delete or forward; it closes the loop between email, smart devices and apps.
“Email is a collection of rich and complex data about ourselves and our lives, shoved into a simplistic system called the ‘inbox’ that has barely changed since the late 90’s,” said Arlo Rose, General Manager of Alto. “Email is the lowest common denominator for communication today, with nearly every action we take online resulting in an email – these are meaningful data points of what is important in your life. Alto Dashboard treats your email like a database of you; intelligently analyzing, extracting and surfacing just the information you need, right when you need it.”
Alto Dashboard is a single, user-friendly guide of the information users need at that moment, presented as actionable “cards” which make the information both easier to consume and easier to pull into other apps. These cards are formulated based on internal algorithms that weigh a variety of factors including calendar data, GPS location, shipping information, frequency of communication, and the relative “importance” of an email. For instance, an email with flight information is likely more relevant and useful to a user in the moment than an email about whether a Facebook post was Liked, and therefore deserves more weight.
But email could certainly use a re-do, so if AOL can lead the way I will drop whatever skepticism I have and check it out.
On the other hand, handing over my email to AOL, and Verizon, its new owner, seems rather a risky move. Kind of like handing it over to Google, right?