Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Beto O'Rourke. Photo: Loren Elliott/Getty Images

Beto O'Rourke, current presidential candidate, was once "Psychedelic Warlord," member of the Cult of the Dead Cow hacker group in the late 1980s, according to Joseph Menn in Reuters.

Why it matters: This is the kind of jagged edge that sticks out on a presidential candidate's resume. For instance, now-Rep. Antonio Delgado (D-N.Y.) received more attention for having been a rapper during his 2018 campaign than for being a Harvard Law grad or a Rhodes Scholar.

Details: O'Rourke was a member of the Lubbock, Texas-based Cult of the Dead Cow before heading to college.

  • He acknowledges using cracked software and tricks to obtain free long distance phone calls.
  • O'Rourke's writings as Psychic Warlord are still visible online.
  • He credits Cult of the Dead Cow for his understanding of technological issues and his desire to see a free and open internet, including his stance in favor of net neutrality.

Our thought bubble: It's easy to look at membership in a hacker group as a signal O'Rourke is some kind of secret anarchist, but the hacker groups of the '80s and '90s have produced people with civic bone fides.

  • Peiter Zatko, aka Mudge, a member of both the Cult of the Dead Cow and The L0pht, a Boston group with significant overlap, advised then-President Clinton on DDoS attacks and worked at DARPA.
  • Katie Moussouris, once associated with the L0pht, helped negotiate a cybersecurity trade pact for the State Department and played a major role in the Department of Defense's bug bounty program
  • The grownup versions of late 1980s hackers ultimately founded several influential cybersecurity firms, and the L0pht testified before congress en masse on securing the internet in 1998.

Hacking in the late 1980s and early 1990s didn't just appeal to people who actively wanted to rob, steal and tear the system down. It was both a countercultural movement and, before universities started cybersecurity programs in bulk, an information sharing community many computer security enthusiasts went to in order to learn the field.

Go deeper

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

What's really going on with the labor market

Source: YCharts

The labor market is showing some signs of improvement: Jobless claims fell to 730,000 — a dramatic drop from 841,000 the previous week. And the latest jobs report showed a pandemic-era low unemployment rate of 6.3%

But, but, but: That's not the full story, experts say.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

Markets see rare convergence milestone

Expand chart
Data: YCharts; Chart: Axios Visuals

A milestone was reached in the markets Thursday: The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to match the dividend yield on the S&P 500

Why it matters: The two yields have been inverted since the beginning of last year, which is historically unusual.

Mike Allen, author of AM
3 hours ago - Economy & Business

First look: Business puts muscle behind Biden

Business Roundtable, the voice of America's top CEOs, today launched "Move the Needle," a campaign to support President Biden in rolling out COVID vaccines, increasing vaccine uptake and encouraging masks.

What they're saying: "Masks and vaccines are working. Now is the time to keep at it, overcome pandemic fatigue, and double down on the measures that will end this public health and economic crisis, said Business Roundtable president and CEO Josh Bolten.

You’ve caught up. Now what?

Sign up for Mike Allen’s daily Axios AM and PM newsletters to get smarter, faster on the news that matters.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!