I’ve noticed that traffic on the Weekly Sift home page increases on Monday mornings, as people wonder when the week’s articles will come out. Some weeks take me longer than others, and I can never guess when some last-minute detail or glitch will hang me up for an hour or so. So I’ve decided to add a new feature for the early arrivers: “The Monday Morning Teaser”, which will go up first thing in the morning and tell you what articles to expect later in the day. (I intend for the Teaser to be brief. This Teaser is unusually long because I’m explaining what it is.)
This week’s Sift will have some other changes, which I’ll explain in the summary post: The usual Short Notes post is renamed “This Week’s Nuggets” and will come out last rather than first, so that when the day’s postings are complete it will sit right under the summary, rather than coming out first and sitting at the opposite end from the summary.
Rather than beginning with its own lead article, I plan for each week’s Nuggets to start with a “What Everybody Was Talking About” segment that will quickly link to the best articles I’ve found about stories you’ve undoubtedly already seen a headline about. (If the story was over-hyped, the best article about it might be a satire or a cartoon.) What was everybody talking about this week? Wisconsin, the death of Ray Bradbury, and the transit of Venus.
In addition to the Nuggets, this week’s Sift will have two longer articles:
- What Happened in Wisconsin? will examine the various spins people are putting on Scott Walker’s victory in Tuesday’s recall election. What does this result say about the strengths and weaknesses of the liberal grass-roots movement that was the prototype for Occupy? What does it mean for the Obama/Romney race in November?
- Demonizing the Girl Scouts. I want to throw a little light on a corner of the culture wars that doesn’t get nearly enough attention: In May the Catholic bishops started an investigation of the Girl Scouts, for the purpose of determining whether Catholic parishes should continue to sponsor troops or otherwise cooperate. The bishops may be joining Protestant right-wingers, who for years have been demonizing the Girl Scouts as a radical-feminist, anti-traditional-values organization.
I still haven’t named the weekly summary or chosen a quote for it.