COVER: THE (mostly) BIG THOUGHTS EDITION (p. 26). In this second annualdouble issue, Newsweek poses questions, collects factoids and writes essays ontopics ranging from whether politicians should pander, whether having childrenmakes you happier and whether this year's wild weather really is because ofglobal warming. Readers can also test their Global IQ by taking quizzes onNewsweek.com on topics covered in the issue. Try these:
1. How many presidents achieved the rank of general or higher? A. 2 B. 3C. 5 D. 7
2. Which country has the cheapest gas in the world? A. Iran B. Russia C.The United States D. Venezuela.
3. Which of the following contains the most calories? A. Alcohol B.Carbohydrates C. Protein D. Fat. (Answers on p. 6) Assistant Managing EditorMark Miller is available for interviews on the issue.
(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080629/NYSU002 )
NEWSWEEK POLL on Global Literacy. What Do Americans Know? The NEWSWEEKPoll gauges what U.S. citizens know on a broad range of topics, from the priceof oil to the works of Shakespeare.
HISTORY: "Who Was More Important: Lincoln or Darwin?" (p. 30). Newsweekposes the question about who was more influential: Abraham Lincoln or CharlesDarwin? They were both revolutionaries-two men who upended realities thatprevailed when they were born. Everybody knows Darwin and Lincoln werenear-mythic figures in the 19th century. So, considering the joint magnitudeof their contributions, it is hard not to wonder: who was the greater man? Butif you limit the question to influence, it bears pondering, all the more ifyou turn the question around and ask, what might have happened if one of thesemen had not been born?
POLITICS: "True or False? Candidates Should Never Flip-Flop" (p. 39).Senior Writer and Political Correspondent Jonathan Darman writes that beforetrue believers start getting glum about Barack Obama and John McCainflip-flopping on some issues, it is worth remembering that flip-flopping has anoble history in this country. Lincoln, Lyndon B. Johnson and Bobby Kennedyall switched positions on significant issues. Those were conversions ofcourage, but changing one's mind in politics is more often lambasted thanlionized. The muddle of our modern political coalitions has made it virtuallyimpossible for ambitious politicians not to change their position on someissue as they rise from local to national prominence. Answer: False.
ENVIRONMENT: "True or False? Global Warming Is a Cause Of This Year'sExtreme Weather" (p. 52). Begley writes that whenever someplace is hit withextreme weather, scientists trip over themselves to absolve global warming.This pretense has worn thin. The frequency of downpours and heat waves, aswell as the power of hurricanes, has increased so dramatically that "100-yearstorms" are striking some areas once every 15 years, and other once rareevents keep returning like a bad penny. As a result, some climatologists nowsay global warming is to blame. Answer: True.
TECHNOLOGY: "True or False: The Internet Is The New Sweatshop" (p. 54).Senior Writer N'Gai Croal reports that thanks to the growth of user-generatedcontent on the Internet, today's most valuable employees will most likelynever set foot inside the building-or collect a paycheck. They may beteenagers posting videos of themselves dancing or programmers messing aroundwith Twitter's tools to create cool new applications. But what they have incommon is a willingness to work for little more than peer recognition and along shot at 15 seconds of fame. Answer: True.
ECONOMY: "True or False? The Power to Fix the Econom