The 80 Most Powerful Octogenarians Are a Spry Bunch

The 80 most influential people over 80 are pioneers, personalities, or living tributes to perseverance and self-preservation. Especially Wesley Brown.

Slate has completed their exhaustive hunt for influential octogenarians for their 2010 edition of the 80 over 80.

Topping the list again is the head of the Mormon Church, Thomas S. Monson at 83. Falling off sharply is now-former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens—lose the robe, lose the ranking it seems. Either way, the 80 over 80 is an impressive collage of wrinkled faces: newsmakers, creative leaders, and corporate raiders who have remained relevant into their ninth decade, more often through some kind of unique personal achievement, though several listees still hold official seats of societal status.

While a 60 under 60 (or 60 over 60 for that matter) might read more like a list of the heads of iconic American institutions—CEOs, senators and billionaires—this list is more pioneers, personalities, or tributes to perseverance and self-preservation.

The very top of the list, though, is dominated by young octogenarians, with several new additions just passing the age requirement. Warren Buffet, George Soros, and Clint Eastwood all a spry 80. Barbara Walters, Noam Chomsky, E.O. Wilson, and Gordon Moore are all just 81. Nine of the top ten are 83 or under. Take note: Power takes a steep plunge after age 84.

Despite living longer on average, women don't do so well on this list, just 12 make the cut.

Special kudos to Wesley E. Brown, 103, who with the aid of oxygen tanks is the oldest sitting Federal Court judge. He no longer takes on civil cases that could lead to civil trials.

Image: (CC) wikimedia user Dr Blofeld.

via Real Time with Bill Maher / YouTube and The Late Late Show with James Corden / YouTube

A controversial editorial on America's obesity epidemic and healthcare by comedian Bill Maher on his HBO show "Real Time" inspired a thoughtful, and funny, response by James Cordon. It also made for a great debate about healthcare that Americans are avoiding.

At the end of the September 6th episode of "Real Time, " Maher turned to the camera for his usual editorial and discussed how obesity is a huge part of the healthcare debate that no one is having.

"At Next Thursday's debate, one of the candidates has to say, 'The problem with our healthcare system is Americans eat shit and too much of it.' All the candidates will mention their health plans but no one will bring up the key factor: the citizens don't lift a finger to help," Maher said sternly.

Keep Reading Show less

There is no shortage of proposals from the, um, what's the word for it… huge, group of Democratic presidential candidates this year. But one may stand out from the pack as being not just bold but also necessary; during a CNN town hall about climate change Andrew Yang proposed a "green amendment" to the constitution.

Keep Reading Show less
Me Too Kit

The creator of the Me Too kit — an at home rape kit that has yet to hit the market — has come under fire as sexual assault advocates argue the kit is dangerous and misleading for women.

The kit is marketed as "the first ever at home kit for commercial use," according to the company's website. "Your experience. Your kit. Your story. Your life. Your choice. Every survivor has a story, every survivor has a voice." Customers will soon be able order one of the DIY kits in order to collect evidence "within the confines of the survivor's chosen place of safety" after an assault.

"With MeToo Kit, we are able to collect DNA samples and other tissues, which upon testing can provide the necessary time-sensitive evidence required in a court of law to identify a sexual predator's involvement with sexual assault," according to the website.

Keep Reading Show less

Villagers rejoice as they receive the first vaccines ever delivered via drone in the Congo

The area's topography makes transporting medicines a treacherous task.

Photo by Henry Sempangi Senyule

When we discuss barriers to healthcare in the developed world, affordability is commonly the biggest concern. But for some in the developing world, physical distance and topography can be the difference between life and death.

Widjifake, a hard-to-reach village in northwestern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) with a population of 6,500, struggles with having consistent access to healthcare supplies due to the Congo River and its winding tributaries.

It can take up to three hours for vehicles carrying supplies to reach the village.

Keep Reading Show less
via Keith Boykin / Twitter

Fox News and President Trump seem like they may be headed for a breakup. "Fox is a lot different than it used to be," Trump told reporters in August after one of the network's polls found him trailing for Democrats in the 2020 election.

"There's something going on at Fox, I'll tell you right now. And I'm not happy with it," he continued.

Some Fox anchors have hit back at the president over his criticisms. "Well, first of all, Mr. President, we don't work for you," Neil Cavuto said on the air. "I don't work for you. My job is to cover you, not fawn over you or rip you, just report on you."

Keep Reading Show less