Recommended Reads: Politrick-or-Treat Edition

Happy Halloween. Hope everyone out east is safe and sound on solid ground. After gorging myself on Frankenstorm footage for three days, I’ve decided meteorologist Jim Cantore should run for president. He’s got the face for it. Plus, we’d know we’re in for a national crisis when he breaks out his dry suit. You wanna talk ethos? The Weather Channel may be the media’s last bastion of good will, practical wisdom, and virtue. Maps with colors other than red and blue. Storms with no patience for polls. Justified hype. And no faux holograms.

Since there’s no rain delay in politics, it’ll be a hoot watching the campaigns tiptoe to Tuesday’s finish line. But today’s for trick-or-treating, so here are some election-flavored reads for your sweet (sour?) tooth.

Slate looks at one party’s advantage in microtargeting the ever-elusive persuadables.

Libertarian journalist and good-tempered man Julian Sanchez proposes a required university course in basic argumentation to counter the tone of outrage politics.

For data-viz enthusiasts, xkcd draws an illustrated history of partisan and ideological trends in the U.S. Congress.

Playboy interviews political satirist Stephen Colbert. Bonus treat: Kathleen Hall Jamieson on the frailties of fact-checking from this spring’s Truthiness Conference.

Binders full of women, Big Bird, and bayonets: Nathan Jurgenson explores meme-literacy and the lulz-filter’s effects on political narratives.

Four debates, not a single question. Behind the haunting silence.