Morning Advantage: Three Ways the U.S. Election Could Get Ugly

Finally — after years of campaigning, the U.S. presidential election will be decided today. Unless, of course... it isn’t. With pollsters predicting a squeaker, today's election could get ugly in any number of ways ("dangling chad," anyone?). Brian Montopoli at CBS News outlines three: 1.) An electoral vote tie — which could actually produce a Romney presidency and a Biden vice presidency (talk about reaching across the aisle); 2.) A split between the electoral vote and the popular vote (which could add steam to efforts to ditch the Electoral College); or 3.) An effective tie in a key state (where the courts would ultimately determine the outcome). And who knows what other unexpected issues could arise, prompting people to cry foul and lawyer up.

If that doesn’t make you want to head over to your local polling place, maybe the words of Bob Schieffer’s mother will: “Go vote. It will make you feel big and strong.”

WHAT WOULD TIGER MOM SAY?

How the Chinese Deal With Failure (Christian Science Monitor)

The city of Wuxi in Eastern China has launched a high-profile, high-tech business incubator to lure back Chinese brainiacs who’ve gone abroad to study and work in science and engineering. But there’s one snag: the business climate in China is not exactly conducive to supporting the relatively high failure-rates of new ventures. “If there’s one thing Chinese officials hate to acknowledge, it’s failure,” writes Peter Ford. In China, it implies a shameful loss of face; only in rare circumstances will an official risk it.

THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR

Holiday Albums: A Gift for the Record Labels (Bloomberg Businessweek)

Is this what it’s come to for the major record labels? Holiday albums have become the closest thing to a sure bet, says Andy Fixmer at Bloomberg. The formula of using vintage standards in the public domain (think Jingle Bells) combined with a few copyrighted hits (like Let It Snow) and a few new songs (oh, those) keeps costs low and the likelihood of success high. Holiday CDs continue to make up a bigger and bigger slice of the recording industry’s annual sales. And, they’re not very popular on file-sharing sites, which makes them less prone to pirating.

BONUS BITS:

Look at Things From Another Perspective

Honda Made a Car Just for Dumb-Dumb Lady Drivers (Jezebel)
What Does The U.S. Look Like To Political Ad Buyers? (POPSCI)
Abstract Thinking Can Make You More Politically Moderate (Science Daily)

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