Newsweek received withering and widespread criticism over its "Hit the Road, Barack" cover story by Niall Ferguson. The magazine had become "an august publication letting itself be used to misinform readers," critics said, "stumbling down the road toward Irrelevance Blvd." The "Hit the Road" piece itself was "a fantasy world of incorrect and tendentious facts" and "completely incoherent" as well as "absurd propaganda, not journalism."

But it turns out the cover may have also been a newsstand hit.

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