Hello! Welcome back to the Newsletter Once Known as “Today in Slate.” In its new form, The Angle will share the most interesting ideas about the news each day, highlighting thought-provoking pieces from Slate as well as other fascinating stories from around the Web.
Bernie Sanders’ economic plan can never work, writes Jordan Weissmann. Looking at a recently published analysis of Sanders’ platform, which the campaign is touting as good news, Weissmann finds that this positive assessment rests on a number of improbable assumptions. Given that fact, he writes, it’s upsetting that the campaign is relying on this review of the candidate’s plan so heavily. “If Sanders is surrounding himself on the campaign trail with aides who are willing to indulge in magical thinking, you can’t help but wonder who will be advising him in the White House.”
MSNBC’s “Town Hall” with Donald Trump, which aired on Wednesday night, was a disgrace, Isaac Chotiner writes. “It was completely worthless television, except in one sense: The program highlighted the many ways in which the media’s coverage of Trump has been soft, insufficient, and without substance.”
Amanda Hess doesn’t have to love the candidate to recognize that on Twitter, Trump reigns supreme. How does he manage to pen such effective gems? Age-old methods of persuasion, Hess writes, in a funny essay sure to be assigned in rhet-comp classrooms across the land. “Whether he realizes it or not,” Hess points out, “his most Trump-ian tweets manage to hit upon all three of Aristotle’s modes of persuasion: logos (the appeal to logic), ethos (the appeal to credibility), and pathos (the appeal to emotion).” Examples, neatly dissected, abound.
In refusing to help the FBI break into an iPhone owned by a San Bernardino shooting suspect, Apple is doing the right thing—which also happens to be politically and economically savvy, Will Oremus writes. “Say you see an opportunity to differentiate your company as the one that cares so much about its users’ privacy and security that it’s willing to go to great lengths to defend it,” Oremus posits. “As it happens, you also personally believe that defending users’ privacy and security is the right thing to do. It’s not a hard choice, is it?”
The creepy trailer for the new colonial New England horror movie “The Witch” doesn’t oversell it, David Ehrlich writes. “Few horror movies have ever stared so intently into the darkness, and even fewer have ever found such compelling delights there,” Ehrlich marvels. (MTV News’ Amy Nicholson didn’t get it, so your mileage may vary.)
In the wake of Antonin Scalia’s death, do you have questions for Slate’s legal writers? Tomorrow, Dahlia Lithwick and Mark Joseph Stern will pick their favorite reader-submitted Qs to A, in an exercise we’re calling ... Dear Jurisprudence. (Sorry.) You can submit your questions here.
For fun: How to seal up an open bag of chips, sans any kind of clip or rubber band.
Magic is everywhere,