The Slatest

Sept. 26: Why Autoworkers Are Worried About the Electric Car

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A close-up image of the chest of the worker on the UAW picket line, focused on a pin that reads: "I DON'T WANT TO STRIKE! BUT I WILL!" The person is wearing a silver chain necklace, and a front-zipped blue sweatshirt with emblems that read: "DEARBORN DIVERSIFIED, UAW, FORD, LOCAL 600." A black T-shirt with a pink Ford logo can be seen peeking out underneath.
Matthew Hatcher/Getty Images

Joe Biden showed up on the United Auto Workers’ picket line today—but even with the president’s historic gesture of union support, a specter is looming. The shift to electric vehicles is coming, and “this future is not guaranteed to offer the same kinds of middle-class jobs and robust benefits that unionized autoworkers enjoy in many states,” Nitish Pahwa writes. He takes a close look at what the EV transition is going to mean for organized labor.

Interview with the LLaMA

A pixelated llama speaks into a microphone.
Photo illustration by Slate. Images via Getty Images Plus.

Fred Kaplan noticed three of his own books among the list of titles that Meta used to train its new large language model, LLaMA (basically its answer to ChatGPT). So he decided to ask it some questions—what did it think of his books? How does it rank him compared to the other author who happens to be named Fred Kaplan? His conversation with the LLaMA chatbot produced some baffling—and deeply troubling—results.

Mock weddings and stink bombs

Back in the 1980s, as the anti-abortion movement increasingly terrorized clinics, pro-choice activists had to get creative. Angela Hume takes a look back at what happened when they let their imaginations lead.

An epic challenge

Men in Greek armor with shields and spears fight over a naked man's body.
Public Domain/Wikipedia

As we head into an incredibly bizarre election year, perhaps it’s a good time to read an ancient tale about combatants locked together in a grinding stalemate. Johanna Hanink unpacks how celebrated translator Emily Wilson brings us closer to a familiar, difficult story.

Look what you made us do

So Swifties have to learn about … sports, now??

For those who never watch football, Nadira Goffe has you covered with a quick guide to everything you need to know about Taylor Swift’s alleged new boyfriend, Travis Kelce. Yes, she explains what a “tight end” is.

Communist-hunting housewives

A photo illustration with an old-fashioned black-and-white image of a fridge with a hammer and sickle superimposed on it, and a woman in a dress and heels with her arms crossed, standing off to the side.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photos by Getty Images Plus.

When Alaskans wanted their own mental health facility, a rumor took hold all over America. Come along with Evan Chung as he traces the origins of a rumor that took hold all over America in 1955—a strange tale that involves a brainwashing manual, Scientology, and a vast network of Communist-hunting housewives.


… much like a group of eight sites in southern Ohio featuring earthen mounds and walls that may be as vital to human history as the pyramids. Wait, what?! Dan Kois went to check it out.