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Afternoon Reading List 10.09.13

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Tough-ass reporter survives desert: In an AP story published in NYP, reporter Cathy Frye and her photographer husband Rick McFarland were stranded in the vast desert of Texas’ remote Big Bend Ranch State Park. They decided to separate to survive, with her staying put and him trekking into desert for help. Two days after McFarland set out, leaving Frye alone with no food or water and only a small tree to protect her from the dry heat of the Texas sun, he returned with a search party and rescued his wife.

Why you should read it: Because everyone likes to read stories about heroes, especially one with a happy ending. Read more here.

images-2Up in the air with Alec Baldwin Politico‘s Patrick Gavin had a hard task in interviewing MSNBC’s newest host, Alec Baldwin, in that Baldwin seems to have little idea what his show will be or how he’ll do at it. Which all might be good, better to keep expectations dangerously low and go up from there. Interestingly, Gavin reports, Baldwin has done away with his earpiece. He also may not be interviewing people everyone expects him to. What’s more, who knows if he’s any good at it? “It’s been a tremendous learning curve for me because it really is very different,” he said in regards to interviews.

Why you should read it: Baldwin is all over the map and doesn’t seem to know his ass from his elbow about his show. How can that not be a fun read? Why should you watch his show? Three words: Alec Baldwin’s temper. If we even get a glimpse of it once, his show will be well worth a watch. Read the story here.

Political ignorance in the age of new media: In a Reuters story about George Mason University Law Professor Ilya Somin and his new book, “Democracy and Political Ignorance,” Jack Shafer highlights facts and figures that Somin uses to illustrate how little change has come out of the expansion of media regarding American political ignorance. Apparently, the pervasiveness of information in the world and in our daily lives has had little to zero impact on the political education of the average American, and Somin explains why.

Why you should read it: Remember that scene in “Good Will Hunting” where Robin Williams‘ character tells Matt Damon’s character, “It’s not your fault. It’s not your fault, Will,” then hugs him, and Will has a breakthrough? Well, this article is like that scene for anyone in the media who wonders why Americans lack so much information on politics when it’s so freely available. Read more here.

Find out which CNN host is swimming against the current.

Erin-Burnett

CNN host ‘lone wolfs’ it, contradicts fellow CNNers: CNN host Erin Burnett recently downplayed the consequences of breaching the debt ceiling, according to MediaMatters blogger Justin Berrier. Burnett reported that it wouldn’t be as catastrophic as the political and economic doomsayers claim, which directly contradicts several of her colleagues reporting at CNN, including anchor Christine Romans and business correspondent Alison Kosik.

Why you should read it: Decide for yourself whether you think she should conform or follow the pack. Read more here.

Betsy Rothstein contributed to this report.

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