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Weiner's Well-Timed Rehab

12 June 2011 4:24 AM, PDT

The embattled New York congressman announced he was taking a leave of absence to deal with his junk mail problem. Eric Alterman on how the move just might save his career.

Will Anthony Weiner become the first politician in American history to be forced out of office in a sex scandal without even getting laid?  This is the question that continues to dominate American politics this weekend-or at least did until Weiner came though with his "Hail Mary" pass on Saturday with his announcement, via spokeswoman Risa Heller, of a short leave of absence from the House of Representatives" in order to   "to seek professional treatment to focus on becoming a better husband and healthier person."

Related story on The Daily Beast: The Media's Selective Sex Scandal Savagery

It was a genius move, given the vice grip of Democrats' panic that was rapidly engulfing Weiner like bad weather in a »

- Eric Alterman

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The Week in Weiner Comedy

11 June 2011 6:09 PM, PDT

This week, comedians and hosts couldn't stop talking about Anthony Weiner's social-media antics. From Jon Stewart and Kathy Lee Gifford to Bill Maher and Jane Lynch, watch video of the week in Weinergate reactions.

Maher and Lynch's Dirty Dramatic Reading

Related story on The Daily Beast: The Media's Selective Sex Scandal Savagery

On Real Time, Bill Maher and Jane Lynch did a dramatic reading of Anthony Weiner's exchange with one of his cybertrysts, and it's not for the prude. If this doesn't teach you not to misuse social media, nothing will.

 

Weiner's Foreplay: Colbert

Nothing like The Daily Show and The Colbert Report to get you in the mood. Anthony Weiner talked dirty to a woman by referencing the two shows during their infamous Facebook conversations. Apparently, Comedy Central gets all the action.

 

Jon Stewart Bleeds for Comedy

Anthony Weiner wasn't the only one in pain after confessing to his social-media hijinks. »

- The Daily Beast Video

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The Quirks in the Sarah Palin Emails

11 June 2011 6:00 PM, PDT

From her "unflippinbelievable" exasperations to requests for Champagne and low-carb foods, the former VP candidate's emails reveal some oddball quirks. By Shushannah Walshe and ABC News' Michael Falcone. Plus, read The Daily Beast's complete coverage of Palin's emails.

Anchorage-For Sarah Palin, it is almost a term of art.

Related story on The Daily Beast: How Palin's Winning the Media War

When something goes wrong, it's not just bad, it's "unflippinbelievable," or alternately, "flippin unbelievable."

Palin's repeated use of the softer version of the coarser expletive is just one of the amusing observations to emerge from the thousands of pages of her email conversations between December 2006 and September 2008 made public Friday.

"Unflippinbelievable. Please have him clarify asap," Palin wrote in an August 4, 2008, missive to several aides in response to a quote in a newspaper article that the governor did not like.

On July 9, 2008, she had a similarly unfavorable reaction to »

- Shushannah Walshe & Michael Falcone

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Why Do Men Flash People on Twitter?

11 June 2011 10:07 AM, PDT

Exhibitionism has been defined since the 19th century, but new innovations in technology have turned flashing into an act that can be performed in an instant-to an audience of millions.

In our age of instant communication and camera availability-whether by Skype or cellphone or whatever-we are now seeing technology's contribution to exhibitionism. Begun several years ago, some adolescents began sending photos of their own genitals-or perhaps of their former girlfriends' genitals-over the Internet. If the adolescent is underage, the sender may inadvertently become involved in so-called child-pornography laws.

Related story on The Daily Beast: The Media's Selective Sex Scandal Savagery

More recently, though, this behavior has surfaced quite inappropriately in adults, with high-profile figures sending sexually explicit photos of themselves shirtless or even actual photos of their own genitals-what I call "Twitter flashing." Targets of this sexually arousing behavior tend to be interchangeable because the "victims" are often objects to the flasher, »

- T. Byram Karasu

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The 9 Juiciest Sarah Palin Emails

11 June 2011 9:19 AM, PDT

Flipping on climate change, joking with Bush, denying that Bristol is pregnant-read the most surprising messages from the Palin email trove.

The state of Alaska has released 24,199 printed pages of emails from Sarah Palin's tenure as governor that range from her inauguration in 2006 up to the 2008 presidential campaign. The documents include messages from Palin's official email account, as well as two private Yahoo accounts. From her flip on climate change to her praise for Obama and her jokes with George W. Bush, read about the juiciest emails. Plus, full coverage here.

Related story on The Daily Beast: How Palin's Winning the Media War

1. Kind Words for Obama

In an email dated August 4, 2008, from her Yahoo account-just three weeks before joining Sen. John McCain's ticket-Palin wrote that Obama had given a "great speech" in Michigan, and praised his mention of Alaska. "We need to take advantage of this a »

- The Daily Beast

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Arizona Fires: Mormons Mobilize to Help

10 June 2011 6:38 PM, PDT

Arizona's historic wildfire is still spreading, and is poised to move into New Mexico. Aside from destroying homes and buildings, the blaze is a growing health threat as well: Particles of soot in the air have reached "astronomical" levels, according to the Arizona Department of Environment Quality.

The fire is hitting Mormon-heavy rural areas hardest. Terry Greene Sterling on the blaze's devastating damage to homes and livelihoods-and those whose helping hand is making a difference.

Related story on The Daily Beast: Giffords' Plea for Brain-Injured Soldiers

As the largest wildfire now blazing through the United States snaked toward his home, Bishop Gary Eagar refused to comply with a mandatory June 8 evacuation of Eagar, Arizona.

Instead, the 56-year-old welder signed a waiver absolving officials of blame should he be burned to a crisp, resigned himself to inhaling headache-inducing smoke, and holed up in his slump-block house with his wife so he »

- Terry Greene Sterling

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This Week's Best Reads

10 June 2011 6:18 PM, PDT

From the quintessential American materialism of Disney to China's burgeoning effort to go green, The Daily Beast picks the best journalism from around the Web this week.

1. "You Blow My Mind. Hey, Mickey!" John Jeremiah Sullivan, New York Times Magazine

Related story on The Daily Beast: Tatum O'Neal on Dating Jacko, Her New Show on Own

A journey to the flip side of Disney.

2. "Can China Go Green?"Bill McKibben, National Geographic

No other country is investing so heavily in clean energy. But no other country burns as much coal to fuel its economy.

3. "Thanks a Lot, Ken Burns" James M. Lundberg, Slate 

"Because of you, my Civil War lecture is always packed-with students raised on your sentimental, romantic, deeply misleading portrait of the conflict."

4. "Darwin's City" Emma Maris, Nature

David Sloan Wilson is using the lens of evolution to understand life in the struggling city of Binghamton, New York. »

- David Sessions

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The Blue Lobster and 8 More Oddly Colored Animals

10 June 2011 6:17 PM, PDT

A blue lobster named Fluffy was caught this week off Prince Edward Island. See eight other unnatural creatures, from a purple polar bear to an orange alligator and a green pig.

Gallery: Oddly Colored Animals

Related story on The Daily Beast: Art of the Oil Spill

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For inquiries, please contact The Daily Beast at editorial@thedailybeast.com. »

- The Daily Beast

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Callista Gingrich Joins Gop's Worst Wives Club

10 June 2011 6:17 PM, PDT

So Callista Gingrich forced Newt's campaign implosion by dragging him on an Aegean cruise? Hardly-she's just joined Marsha Barbour and Cheri Daniels as the latest victim of the Gop's ugly new fad: Blame the wife.

The more I think about it, I'm starting to get a little disappointed in Richard Nixon. Why didn't his team ever figure out that all of his problems, from Watergate to pesky reporters to, well, the Jews, could so easily be dumped on his wife? "It's Pat-she drove us to these reckless decisions. We all tried to stop her." But those were the days when Republican wives were quiet homemakers in their "respectable cloth coats," not all uppity like Jackie Kennedy.

Related story on The Daily Beast: The Gop's Bin Laden Jitters

Those days, apparently, are gone. The latest ugly fad in Gop circles is to blame everything on the Mrs. "The problem was the wife, »

- Matt Latimer

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How to Burn Calories at the Beach

10 June 2011 6:15 PM, PDT

While the sun and surf is a great way to relax, there is a lot of opportunity to burn calories-from snorkeling, to ultimate Frisbee, to just sitting and reading.

Gallery: Burn Calories at the Beach

Related story on The Daily Beast: Personal Trainers for Fat Pets

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For inquiries, please contact The Daily Beast at editorial@thedailybeast.com. »

- The Daily Beast

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The Week's Best Weiner Headlines

10 June 2011 6:14 PM, PDT

Weiner's pickle has been a headline writer's dream. Will he stick it out in Congress? Or fall on his sword? The Daily Beast rounds up the best newspaper front pages from the week.

Gallery: Anthony Weiner Front Pages

Related story on The Daily Beast: The Media's Selective Sex Scandal Savagery

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For inquiries, please contact The Daily Beast at editorial@thedailybeast.com. »

- The Daily Beast

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Karl Rove's Misguided Constitutional Attack on Obama

10 June 2011 12:40 PM, PDT

Karl Rove is accusing President Obama of breaking the law on Libya and Medicare. But as Newsweek/Daily Beast columnist Stephen L. Carter explains, both laws in question are unconstitutional-and the president can and should refuse to comply.

Is President Obama breaking the law? In an essay in The Wall Street Journal, Karl Rove claims that he is. Rove, the former top political adviser to President George W. Bush, actually accuses Obama of violating two statutes: the War Powers Resolution and an obscure provision of the 2003 law that added Medicare Part D, the prescription drug program.

Related story on The Daily Beast: Should We Hit Gaddafi Next?

The War Powers Resolution argument has been fully ventilated, and although it is perfectly obvious that the Libya operation is not in compliance, I have long been numbered among those who consider the statute an unconstitutional interference with the command authority constitutionally vested in the president. »

- Stephen L. Carter

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Chicago Trial's Explosive Revelations

10 June 2011 6:03 AM, PDT

The verdict is in: David Headley's accomplice is found guilty. Sebastian Rotella reports on the unprecedented glimpse into the terrorist mindset the case offered-and the fallout for U.S.-Pakistan relations.

The terrorism trial of Tahawwur Rana, a minor accomplice whose trial ended Thursday in a guilty verdict on two of three counts, offered an extraordinary look into the underworld of terrorism and espionage in South Asia and had repercussions much closer to home.

Related story on The Daily Beast: Pakistan's Spy Agency and Terrorism

The five days of testimony of confessed American terrorist and Pakistani spy David Coleman Headley were unprecedented in a U.S. courtroom. Headley delivered explosive revelations about how officers in Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate (Isi) funded, supported and directed the 2008 Mumbai attacks along with the Lashkar-i-Taiba militant group.

Because of his mix of front-line experience and high-level contacts, Headley's testimony was like a seminar in how terrorists communicate in code, »

- Sebastian Rotella, ProPublica

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Will Weiner's Mentor Abandon Him?

10 June 2011 4:55 AM, PDT

Democratic powerhouse Sen. Chuck Schumer helped pave Anthony Weiner's path to power. Lloyd Grove reports on why he's standing silent as his protégé's career goes up in flames. Plus, the politicians who successfully weathered sex scandals.

Anthony Weiner's former boss and longtime mentor, Sen. Chuck Schumer, is perhaps the only New York politician who could persuade the embattled congressman to resign.

Related story on The Daily Beast: The Media's Selective Sex Scandal Savagery

But even as House and Senate Democrats from around the country are lining up to call for Weiner's head in the wake of revelations that he's been promiscuously lying about his rampant sexting, the seven-term congressman is clinging to his seat in New York's 9th congressional district and Schumer has shown no inclination to give his protégé the push.

Gallery: Who Survived a Sex Scandal?

"The feeling seems to be that the only way Weiner »

- Lloyd Grove

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How Newt Gingrich's Campaign Imploded

9 June 2011 7:54 PM, PDT

The former speaker's top aides bolted en masse Thursday, leaving his campaign in tatters. Peter J. Boyer on staffers' complaints about Gingrich's rogue inclinations, the Greek cruise with wife Callista that was the final straw-and whether the candidate has any chance of recovering.

Newt Gingrich's troubled campaign for the Republican presidential nomination finally imploded Thursday when the core of his political team, vexed by the candidate's own erratic performance, quit en masse. The decisive moment came in a meeting at Gingrich's Washington, D.C. office between the candidate and his top two operatives, campaign manager Rob Johnson and strategist Sam Dawson, who had hoped to convince Gingrich that his approach as a candidate-which one insider described as "appalling" -needed a drastic transformation. When Gingrich did not agree, Johnson and Dawson said they were done.

Related story on The Daily Beast: Why Obama's Still Untouchable in 2012

That began a cascade of defections, »

- Peter J. Boyer

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Who Survived a Political Sex Scandal?

9 June 2011 7:41 PM, PDT

With Anthony Weiner's political fate twisting in the wind, The Daily Beast looks at which politicians have managed to escape with their careers intact-and who has surrendered to infamy, from Barney Frank to Newt Gingrich. Plus, which party has more sex scandals?

Gallery: Political Scandals

Related story on The Daily Beast: Weinergate: The Movie

David Graham is a reporter for Newsweek covering politics, national affairs, and business. His writing has also appeared in The Wall Street Journal and The National in Abu Dhabi.

Like The Daily Beast on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for updates all day long.

For inquiries, please contact The Daily Beast at editorial@thedailybeast.com. »

- David A. Graham

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More Trouble for Greg Mortenson

9 June 2011 3:39 PM, PDT

The author of Three Cups of Tea faces another lawsuit over his bestselling book. Mike Giglio reports.

Greg Mortenson is facing another lawsuit filed over his bestselling memoir, Three Cups of Tea.

Related story on The Daily Beast: In Greg Mortenson's Silence, His Neighbors Defend Him, or Vilify Him

The suit, which was filed yesterday in federal court in Chicago and first reported by Courthouse News Service, names Mortenson, his coauthor, David Oliver Relin, and Penguin, publisher of the book. The suit claims that Mortenson "captured the hearts and minds of Plaintiff and book lovers nationwide, duping them into buying Three Cups of Tea."

Mortenson, a celebrated philanthropist who had earned millions on a book about his own derring-do and good works in Pakistan, lost his status as a national humanitarian hero when author Jon Krakauer and 60 Minutes challenged the veracity of key anecdotes in the book. Mortenson has been in seclusion since, »

- Mike Giglio

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Anthony Weiner Would Face a Frosty Ethics Panel

8 June 2011 9:26 PM, PDT

Rapidly running out of goodwill among his Democratic peers as more X-rated details emerge, Rep. Anthony Weiner faces an ethics investigation led by a committee stacked with Southern conservatives and liberal Democrats fighting for women's rights. Patricia Murphy reports. Plus, Democrats abandon Weiner and more news updates.

If Rep. Anthony Weiner is hoping a get sympathetic hearing from his peers by "welcoming" a House Ethics Committee investigation into his bizarre email escapades with women, he will probably be sorely disappointed with the results-if he hangs on that long.

Related story on The Daily Beast: The Media's Selective Sex Scandal Savagery

The panel that would investigate Weiner's sexually charged online relationships is stacked with Southern, swift-justice Christian conservatives unlikely to relate to a sexting, swearing New Yorker, and liberal Democrats who have dedicated their careers to protecting the rights of women, both in the workplace and online. If Weiner wants to save his hide, »

- Patricia Murphy

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Michelle Obama's State-Dinner Hair, and More Celebrity Bed Heads

8 June 2011 9:15 PM, PDT

At the state dinner Tuesday night, the first lady styled her hair into deliberately messy curls to greet German Chancellor Angela Merkel. From Blake Lively to Robert Pattinson, The Daily Beast rates which stars pulled off the tousled look-and who should have stayed in bed.

At the state dinner for German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday night, Michelle Obama exuded her usual polish: a white glittering Naeem Khan gown, a wrist full of Alexis Bittar bangles, and her signature toned arms. But throwing off her first-lady polish was a head of curls, carefully styled to look nonchalant. Merkel, herself in a signature bob, was greeted by a good-old American bed head. It's a hairstyle many attempt, but few successfully pull off. It's a favorite, year in and year out, of off-duty models, European fashion editors, and Hollywood actresses who have overstayed their welcome at a party-or event spent the night in a co-star's bed. »

- The Daily Beast

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Anthony Weiner's Ex: He Lied to Me

8 June 2011 12:53 PM, PDT

Anthony Weiner's former girlfriend, Kirsten Powers, defended him on TV to millions of people after he insisted to her that he didn't send lewd photos on Twitter. Now she takes him to task for his rampant misogyny-and says he must resign immediately.

Anthony Weiner lied to the country about his sexual misconduct online. He also lied to me.

Related story on The Daily Beast: The Media's Selective Sex Scandal Savagery

I had been defending him, based on what he told me, but no more. Weiner must resign from Congress immediately.

This has not been my previous position during the scandal, but as I have recovered from the shock of seeing an old friend's life unravel and have had time to get my mind around the extensive and sociopathic lying in which he engaged, there seems to be no other choice than for him to step aside and stop hurting his family, »

- Kirsten Powers

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