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AP / Maya Hitij

Calling All Future-Eaters

We sit passive and dumb as corporations and the leaders of industrialized nations ensure that climate change will accelerate to levels that could mean the extinction of our species. Homo sapiens, as the biologist Tim Flannery points out, are the “future-eaters.”

Posted on Jul 19, 2010 READ MORE


paris

Ruth Scurr on Paris

This is the Paris you never knew: From the Revolution to the present, two new books deliver a series of astonishing stories, all stranger than fiction, of the lives of the great, the near-great, and the forgotten.

Posted on Jul 15, 2010 READ MORE


Dreyfus

Peter Brooks on the Dreyfus Affair

In her rich and nuanced book, Oxford historian Ruth Harris succeeds in restoring a face to a man often seen mainly as a symbol.

Posted on Jul 9, 2010 READ MORE



ESPN

What ESPN’s Bill Simmons Superdeluxe Media Empire Means for Facts, Fans and Sports

Going bonkers, lionizing winners and dumping on losers is fun, even if the cycle is accelerating to absurdity and beyond with modern 24/7 reportage. That’s today’s price of fame. Privileged as they are, today’s starry-eyed young athletes pursue their dream through a driving shitstorm.

Posted on Jul 7, 2010 READ MORE


Hastings
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Rolling Stone’s Hastings Bags Book Deal

Rolling Stone scribe Michael Hastings is still riding high from his big score about “Runaway General” Stanley McChrystal—who has, it should again be noted, been obliged to evacuate the scene of the story since the piece was published—and now ...

Posted on Jul 6, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Reed Saxon

Ailing Journalism in Ailing Times

The L.A. Times executive suite, desperate for company income, shows an ethics-be-damned attitude in breaching the line between ads and news.

Posted on Jul 5, 2010 READ MORE


arctic

Richard Shelton on Arctic Exploitation

Is it too much to hope that a region once revered by its native people will be respected by those who now seek its riches? Three recent books delve into the matter.

Posted on Jul 2, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Susan Walsh

What Kind of Supreme Court?

Although we did not discover much about Elena Kagan, confirmation hearings should remind us of what has been remarkable in our constitutional and judicial history.

Posted on Jul 1, 2010 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force / Tech. Sgt. Francisco V. Govea II

The Land Where Theories of Warfare Go to Die

Afghanistan is the place where theories of warfare go to die, and if the COIN theory isn’t dead yet, it’s utterly failed so far to prove itself.

Posted on Jun 28, 2010 READ MORE



Best Vacation Ever

Secret FCC meetings, what it’s like to be a Canadian doctor, why modern art is in your head, and what science has to say about the best vacation ever—all after the jump.

Posted on Jun 27, 2010 READ MORE



National Geographic Films / Tim Hetherington

Into the Valley of Death Rode the ... 15?

The documentary “Restrepo” paints an empathetic portrait of U.S. soldiers at an Afghanistan outpost, but it keeps its audience at a distance.

Posted on Jun 24, 2010 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force / Staff Sgt. JoAnn S. Makinano

5 Million Iraqis Killed, Maimed, Tortured, Displaced—Think That Bothers War Boosters?

The immensity of Iraqi civilian suffering is incomprehensible. How can war’s cheerleaders like Christopher Hitchens claim to fight on behalf of the people whose lives they helped destroy?

Posted on Jun 23, 2010 READ MORE


Mahmoud Darwish

André Naffis-Sahely on Mahmoud Darwish

André Naffis-Sahely looks at three volumes—“A River Dies of Thirst,” “Mural” and “If I Were Another”—that helped make poet/author Mahmoud Darwish a pillar of Palestinian literature.

Posted on Jun 18, 2010 READ MORE


Historical Lessons Warn Against Modern U.S. Foreign Policy

The lesson of modern European history—the world wars and the great totalitarian convulsions—is that trying to create a utopia invites disaster.

Posted on Jun 16, 2010 READ MORE


Gulf War Syndrome

It’s great that President Obama and his advisers finally seem to understand the atmospherics of responding to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Now if they’d only get the policy right.

Posted on Jun 14, 2010 READ MORE



Ari Mintz

A ‘Prophecy’ Worth Watching

Theater, which at its best makes us more human and humane, has become increasingly mediocre, produced as spectacle or driven by the presence of Hollywood celebrities.

Posted on Jun 13, 2010 READ MORE


capitalism and the jews

Zachary Karabell on ‘Capitalism and the Jews’

Jerry Z. Muller, a leading historian of capitalism, provides in his provocative new book a fresh look at a subject that, to say the least, has been both thoroughly misunderstood and a forbidden, even taboo, topic.

Posted on Jun 10, 2010 READ MORE


Cyberspace Dunderheads

I’ve come down with a bad case of the shallows. That’s technology writer Nicholas Carr’s term—and the title of his new book—for the invisible, invidious impact of computers on the modern brain.

Posted on Jun 8, 2010 READ MORE


Newest National Security Strategy Is an Elaboration of the Old

Even though Barack Obama writes that America cannot allow the burdens of the 21st century to “fall on American shoulders alone,” he similarly cannot accept that the United States deviate from the globalist ambitions emphasized in the published strategies of both the Bush and Obama administrations.

Posted on Jun 8, 2010 READ MORE



Two Mommies Are Better Than One, Apparently

Why researchers say lesbians make the best parents, how the Internet is affecting your brain, and why Americans are no rugged individualists. All this and more on today’s list.

Posted on Jun 8, 2010 READ MORE



Truthdig collage based on a White House photo by Pete Souza

The Christian Fascists Are Growing Stronger

Tens of millions of Americans are creating a theocratic state based on “biblical law,” and shutting out all those they define as the enemy.

Posted on Jun 7, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Hussein Malla

A Warning From Noam Chomsky on the Threat of Elites

Whether in war or finance, the imperial mentality of elites is increasingly threatening the “unpeople” of the world, as Noam Chomsky writes in his latest book.

Posted on Jun 6, 2010 READ MORE


Bright Sided

Carol Tavris on Barbara Ehrenreich’s Crusade

In her recent book, Barbara Ehrenreich takes on the excesses, delusions and unsupported promises of the positive-thinking movement, tracking both its naive and its corrupt manifestations in the worlds of health, business, religion and psychology.

Posted on Jun 4, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Kai Henry (CC-BY)

You Need a Raise

The theories on which we base wages are highly flawed—and so is your paycheck.

Posted on May 31, 2010 READ MORE



AP / J. David Ake

Memorial Day and Our Discontents

Why is it that every Memorial Day we note that a holiday set aside for honoring our war dead has become instead an occasion for beach-going, barbecues and baseball?

Posted on May 30, 2010 READ MORE


book cover

Peter Stothard on Christopher Hitchens

Christopher Hitchens reveals a life in contradictions in “Hitch-22,” a brilliant memoir that is at turns comic, self-deflating and sexually frank.

Posted on May 27, 2010 READ MORE


The Texas Textbook Massacre

Our friends at Brave New Films sent us this update on the Texas Board of Education’s partisan rewriting of American history. If you haven’t been angry enough today, hop past the jump and give it a gander.

Posted on May 27, 2010 READ MORE


There Goes Palin’s Neighborhood

I’m with Sarah Palin on this one. Her new neighbor, it turns out, is author Joe McGinniss. Coincidence? I think not. McGinniss wrote an unflattering profile of Palin for Portfolio magazine last year, and he’s now writing a book about the former Alaska governor.

Posted on May 27, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Jonathan Alter: Health Care Puts Obama in FDR’s League

Newsweek senior editor and columnist Jonathan Alter talks about his new book, “The Promise: President Obama, Year One,” and why “Just by getting health care through ... [Barack Obama is] now standing alone with Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson in terms of domestic achievement.”

Posted on May 26, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Pete Souza

Jonathan Alter: Health Care Puts Obama in FDR’s League

Newsweek senior editor and columnist Jonathan Alter talks about his new book, “The Promise: President Obama, Year One,” and why “Just by getting health care through ... [Barack Obama is] now standing alone with Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson in terms of domestic achievement.”

Posted on May 26, 2010 READ MORE


book cover

Steve Wasserman on the Scourge of Czarist Russia

Lesley Blanch’s “The Sabres of Paradise” tells the illuminating story of Shamyl, the Imam of Daghestan, whose 25-year fight against the Russian empire left a half-million dead, and lessons still to be learned in wars from Chechnya to Afghanistan.

Posted on May 20, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Julie Jacobson

How Baseball Became America vs. the Damn Yankees

Baseball has always proceeded according to the law of the jungle with the Yankees as King Kong, but in the past even they never dominated financially as they do now.

Posted on May 19, 2010 READ MORE



U.S. Navy / MC2 Justin Stumberg

BP and the ‘Little Eichmanns’

These deformed individuals carrying out the global genocide against human life and the natural world lack the capacity for empathy. They possess the peculiar ability to organize vast, destructive bureaucracies and yet remain blind to the ramifications.

Posted on May 16, 2010 READ MORE


book cover

Anthony Kenny on ‘Atheist Delusions’

Can traditional Christianity survive the assault of its critics? Has it really been misunderstood and slandered by its cultural despisers?

Posted on May 13, 2010 READ MORE



Worst Popes Edition

Glenn Beck’s Mormon masterpiece theater, why humans sigh, the 10 worst popes (and no, Benedict isn’t among them) and Aaron Sorkin’s response to the Newsweek gay actor saga.

Posted on May 13, 2010 READ MORE



Lingua Franca Edition

Why assassinating U.S. citizens is a bad idea, why Americans are watching fewer foreign films, and how English became the international language of choice.

Posted on May 11, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Olivier Laban-Mattei

After Religion Fizzles, We’re Stuck With Nietzsche

The traditional religious institutions are in irreversible decline. They have nothing left to say. And their aging congregants, who are fleeing the church in droves, know it. But don’t think the world will be a better place for their demise.

Posted on May 9, 2010 READ MORE


bookcover

Fred Branfman on ‘The Big Short’

Author Michael Lewis in his best-selling book takes us inside capitalism’s “doomsday machine,” and it’s your worst nightmare come true.

Posted on May 6, 2010 READ MORE



Boca Edition (Update: Now With More Rent Boy)

Israel faces scrutiny over its nuclear stockpile, Fox responds to disaster by calling for more drilling, and what Boca Raton looked like when it was a Japanese-American kibbutz.

Posted on May 6, 2010 READ MORE



Hava Nagila Edition

Noam Chomsky on “the evil scourge of terrorism,” Glenn Greenwald on White House reporters being afraid of the White House, plus: why you can’t be a cop in Papua, Indonesia, if you’ve had your penis enlarged.

Posted on Apr 29, 2010 READ MORE


book cover

Alexander M. Martin on Dominic Lieven’s ‘Russia Against Napoleon’

Using previously inaccessible material from the Russian archives, historian Dominic Lieven offers the truest picture yet of the war made famous in Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.”

Posted on Apr 29, 2010 READ MORE



White House / Krisanna Johnson

Hotel Calls Bush ‘Poisoning’ a Stunt

Laura Bush’s new memoir reportedly features a scene at a German hotel fit for a Poirot mystery: The president and his entourage suddenly taken ill as the Secret Service frantically searches for poison. The hotel in question says Mrs. Bush is probably just trying to sell books.

Posted on Apr 29, 2010 READ MORE



‘Fake’ Bob Dylan Edition

Joni Mitchell calls Bob Dylan a “plagiarist” and a “fake,” GM sells more cars in China than in the U.S., and the short, bloody history of heaven.

Posted on Apr 28, 2010 READ MORE



The New Secessionists

The difference between the tea party and the secessionist movement bubbling up in some two dozen states is that the tea party believes America can be fixed.

Posted on Apr 26, 2010 READ MORE


book cover

Troy Jollimore on Why Democracy Needs the Humanities

In a short and powerful manifesto, renowned philosopher and critic Martha Nussbaum issues a passionate call to resist persistent efforts to reduce education to a tool of the gross national product.

Posted on Apr 22, 2010 READ MORE



Earth Day Edition

The trouble with “tweet seats,” Andrew Sullivan explains to the president why gays are hollering at him, and why a gutless YouTube is stifling free expression—and comedy.

Posted on Apr 22, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Hussein Malla

Noam Chomsky Has ‘Never Seen Anything Like This’

America’s greatest intellectual says, “The mood of the country is frightening. The level of anger, frustration and hatred of institutions is not organized in a constructive way. It is going off into self-destructive fantasies.”

Posted on Apr 19, 2010 READ MORE


book

Francis Robinson on ‘The Arabs’

What lessons can the West learn by examining the history of the Arab experience through the voices and eyes of Arabs themselves?

Posted on Apr 15, 2010 READ MORE


Journalism’s Parasites

It’s time to shame by name the access traders, double agents and watchdog turncoats destroying journalism for their own personal gain.

Posted on Apr 15, 2010 READ MORE



One Marine’s ‘Liberty Walk’ for the Rest of Us

Ernest Logan Bell, a 25-year-old Marine Corps veteran walking 90 miles to make a point, is the new face of the resistance. He is young, at home in the culture of the military, deeply suspicious of the federal government, disgusted by the liberal elite, unable to find work and angry.

Posted on Apr 11, 2010 READ MORE


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