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Bringing new meaning to the phrase "nail biter of a story," Sarah Nir at the New York Times is collecting well deserved accolades for her in-depth investigation of the exploitation and abuse of manicurists "The Price of Nice Nails" (which has garnered 11,000 shares so far, and let's hope it keeps going up). "I encountered terror, lies & squalid living conditions. Who would've thought I was investigating a beauty industry?" Nir tweets, adding, "Ever thought: 'that manicure is too cheap!' It is. I spent the last year learning the human price of those nice nails." NYT's Michael Barbaro bills it, "A JOB AS HARD AS NAILS: the shameful, subhuman practices of NYCs nail salon industry, revealed by @SarahMaslinNir" then asks, "Did you know your manicurist PAYS $100 to get her job, survives on tips and may be fired at will?" At the Texas Tribune, Emily Ramshaw realizes, "Ugh, ladies (and some gents) — we are complicit." Another NYT colleague Katie Thomas admits, "Feeling queasy about my purple toenails as I read @SarahMaslinNir on the exploitation of nail-salon workers." Lauren Kirchner with Pacific Standard marvels, "Great story, long overdue. I wonder about the impact. A temporary guilty decline in business?" We hope it leads to more than that. Another unique element of this story: "Nice touch on @SarahMaslinNir's harrowing nail salon expose: Korean/Mandarin/Spanish versions so workers can read," notes NYT's Jodi Kantor.
With #manicuregate well on its way, we turn our attention back to #deflategate, where a new report indicates the Patriots probably deflated footballs on purpose and that Tom Brady likely was aware of it. "Tom Brady's least favorite Tumblr? Equipment Assistant and Locker Room Attendant Texts," predicts Jeffrey Furticella. Also, an appeals court has ruled that, contrary to previous claims by the Obama and Bush administrations, the NSA bulk phone data collection program actually isn't authorized by the Patriot Act. Meanwhile, a former Bush official with ties to its CIA torture program is now also advising Obama's interrogators.
And checking in on the United Kingdom again, voting is entering its final hours for the "closest election for decades," according to the Guardian. Labour boasts a one-point lead over Tories in a final Guardian/ICM poll but "all polls point to hung parliament." Get alerts for all 650 UK constituencies as each result is called.