From Humanities, Abstract Expressionism’s dueling duo: Clement Greenberg and Harold Rosenberg set the standards for art in the 1950s; Richard Rabinowitz and the art of exhibitry: How a stilted grad student changed the way we look at museums; how two American women changed the standards of style and scooped the Paris prognosticators; and A. J. Liebling’s World War II journalism climbed to great literary heights, even as it stayed close to the ground. That's the ticket: Here are 27 ways to succeed in politics. Protestantism, piety, and professionalism: The first chapter from Trusting Doctors: The Decline of Moral Authority in American Medicine by Jonathan B. Imber. A review of The Duck That Won The Lottery And 99 Other Bad Arguments by Julian Baggini. The introduction to Russian Orthodoxy Resurgent: Faith and Power in the New Russia by John Garrard and Carol Garrard. A review of Zen and Now: On the Trail of Robert Pirsig and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Mark Richardson. A look at why technology doesn’t dumb us down — it frees our minds. Who was Uncle Sam, and why did he want "You"? An interview with Jed Perl, author of Antoine's Alphabet (and more). From Vanity Fair, Jamie Johnson on the "diversity" of wasp clubs. Sex on the Beach: What 80s bikini comedies tell us about gender and class.
From the Journal of Markets & Morality, a review of Trapped: When Acting Ethically Is Against the Law by John Hasnas; an essay on the claim for secularization as a contemporary utopia; an article on ideas, associations, and the making of good cities; and can social justice be achieved? A review of America and the World: Conversations on the Future of American Foreign Policy by Zbigniew Brzezinski and Brent Scowcroft. A review of The Culture of War by Martin van Creveld (and more). Nir Rosen reports from Majd al Anjar, where the rage of young men mixes with the sectarian fervour spilling over Iraq’s borders. Everyone Loves Rachel: How an ultra-liberal Air America host won over the other side. Rebecca Donner reviews In the Land of No Right Angles by Daphne Beal. MC Hammer's "Too Legit to Quit": Here is illustrated the flaw, or danger, of conservatism as a defense of legitimacy. Justin Raimondo on HGTV: If you think that FOX News — with its bleached-out blonde anchorbabes made up to look like mid-price hookers — is the televised voice of conservatism, then think again. An interview with Carmine Sarracino, coauthor of The Porning of America: The Rise of Porn Culture, What It Means, and Where We Go From Here. The corrupter of youth: A review of Richard Rorty: The Making of an American Philosopher by Neil Gross.
From TNR, Alan Wolfe on how education is changing politics; and why honor prevents John McCain from telling the truth. A look at what McCain's books tell us about him. Going beyond fair and balanced: Despite popular accounts, researchers found that Barack Obama got more negative press coverage than John McCain did in the early summer. David Cay Johnston celebrates the bailout bill's failure — and looks ahead. Tayt Harlin reviews Voice Over by Celine Curiol. From Secular Culture and Ideas, Gregory Kaplan on an intellectual history of secularism; an article on Baruch Spinoza, the last medieval heretic or the first secular Jew; an interview with Rebecca Goldstein, author of Betraying Spinoza; an excerpt from The Jewish Century by Yuri Slezkine; an excerpt from The Rise of Modern Yiddish Culture by David Fishman; and why do American Jews cling to traditional simple images of the shtetl? A look at the real danger in over-romanticizing America's small towns. The Pigou Club Goes to Washington: Higher pollution taxes make sense, provided the revenues are used to offset existing taxes that distort incentives. How Sweden and Denmark kicked a nasty fossil fuel habit (using taxes) and got rich in the process, but the diet may not be effective for all political body types. How Adam Smith's theory of moral sentiments could be applied to cap-and-trade greenhouse-gas emissions.
From Cato Journal, Erich Weede (Bonn): Human Rights, Limited Government, and Capitalism; a review of What Democracy Is For: On Freedom and Moral Government by Stein Ringen; and a review of Regulation and Public Interests: The Possibility of Good Regulatory Government by Steven P. Croley (and more); and a special issue on Federal Reserve policy in the face of crises. Regulator in Chief: What a president can — and can’t — do to fix the economy. A review of The Predator State: How Conservatives Abandoned the Free Market and Why Liberals Should Too by James K. Galbraith. Shiny Happy Bankers: As the crisis unfolded, the Web sites of troubled financial institutions seemed oblivious. Recovering the beginnings of conservatism: A review of Flying High: Remembering Barry Goldwater by William F. Buckley, Jr. (and more and more). John McWhorter reconsiders WFB's God and Man at Yale. From Gelf, an interview with Libero Della Piana, a most American of communists. The conspiracy of the anti-war leftists: An exchange between American Prospect writer Robert Farley and the authors of Party of Defeat. The Left Today: An interview with Mitchell Cohen. Punk Manifesto: A review of On the Lower Frequencies: A Secret History of the City by Erick Lyle. More on Susan Neiman's Moral Clarity: A Guide For Grown-Up Idealists.
From Cosmos, Stephen Hawking on the final frontier. A review of No One Sees God: The Dark Night of Atheists and Believers by Michael Novak. From First Things, a review of The Origins of Reasonable Doubt by James Q. Whitman; Roger Kimball on the End of Art; an essay on Zionism for Christians; and a review essay on Martin Amis. David Foster Wallace was not a literary critic in the traditional sense — just in the best one (and more on literary suicides). A new solution to reader's block involves seeing a bibliotherapist; once, people just sought the advice of ordinary bookshop staff. Some authors love them, others think they're nauseating and demeaning; William Leith on how writers get and give gushing quotes for book covers. From Glanta, a matricide or an infantile declaration of passion: How would you bring up a child if you took the lessons from postmodernism literally? An interview with Slavoj Zizek: Did you hear the one about Hegel? From Sens Public, an essay on Jacques Derrida, the perchance of a coming of the otherwoman; and an interview with Antonin J. Liehm, encyclopaedist of the international. Culture11 editors Peter Suderman and James Poulos debate the virtues and vices of the latest technology; and fLyAUzZie8274? A look at how your personality determines your password. An article on "Urban Dictionary", the best place to watch language evolve.
From Rolling Stone, Matt Taibbi on The Lies of Sarah Palin. Charlie Rose interviews Sarah Palin. Fareed Zakaria asks, will someone please put Sarah Palin out of her agony? From The New York Observer, can Todd make a mooseburger? Women's mags scramble on Palin coverage; and an article on the "what Senator Obama does not understand" debate. Richard Milhous McCain: Americans cannot escape from the shadow of Tricky Dick. From Wired, the 2008 Smart List: 15 people the next president should listen to. The New American: Young entrepreneurial Americans are doing something they have not done much before — they are leaving. When judges make foreign policy: In a globalized age, decisions made by the Supreme Court are increasingly shaping America’s international relations. From The Economist, a special report on globalization. Naomi Kelin on why economics is fun (and more on The Shock Doctrine). A review of How the Rich are Destroying the Earth by Herve Kempf. From Scientific American, a special issue on Earth 3.0, including articles on eco-cities and global warming. From Salon, Paul Ehrlich, Matthew Connelly and Robert Engelman debate population control. ; it’s the huge and remorselessly growing number of people who want to eat it. A review of What Next? Surviving the 21st Century by Chris Patten.
From The Wilson Quarterly, an article on the ascent of the administrative state and the demise of mercy; and why can’t we build an affordable house? Smaller houses on smaller lots seems like one possible solution to the housing crisis; here’s what stands in the way. George Dyson on economic dis-equilibrium: Can you have your house and spend it too? From PUP, the introduction to Reforms at Risk: What Happens After Major Policy Changes Are Enacted by Eric M. Patashnik; and the introduction to On the Side of the Angels: An Appreciation of Parties and Partisanship by Nancy L. Rosenblum. A review of The Anti-Intellectual Presidency: The Decline of Presidential Rhetoric from George Washington to George W. Bush by Elvin T. Lim. Timothy Garton Ash on a final report on the 43rd president of the US. The City Manager’s Son and the $2 Trillion Man: George W. Bush is likely to go into history as the $2 trillion man — $1 trillion for the war in Iraq, another $1 trillion for the sub-prime bailout. An interview with Joseph Stiglitz. From Harper's, Thomas Frank on the wrecking crew: How a gang of right-wing con men destroyed Washington and made a killing. Lawrence Summers on how taxpayers can still benefit from a bail-out. An interview with Raghuram G. Rajan, former chief economist at the IMF, on the bailout. Jeffrey Garten on how a global authority can fill financial vacuum.
From Open Democracy, the crisis of the finance sector is vindication of the neglected work of Karl Polanyi, an economic historian of "great transformation" and an anatomist of "casino capitalism". Why small government, loose regulations and an over-reliance on markets eventually cost taxpayers: A review of The Private Abuse of the Public Interest: Market Myths and Policy Muddles by Lawrence Brown and Lawrence Jacobs. It's not just a matter of greed: Greed is a human constant, which begs the question of what it is that changed in the lead-up to this financial crisis. Face it: Marx was partly right about capitalism. The financial crisis gripping the US isn't an anomaly — we just have short memories. Everybody calm down: A government hand in the economy is as old as the republic. Power shifts from NY to DC: After Wall Street's quake, Manhattan braces for financial tsunami. The Lost Tycoons: The death of Wall Street began when the firms moved away from their original reason for being. A review of The Partnership: The Making of Goldman Sachs by Charles Ellis. Daniel Gross on how the financial crisis reveals that Washington bureaucrats can handle an emergency but politicians can't. The end of the big swinging dick: A Wall Street icon falls. Where does this leave the Masters of the Universe now? Tom Wolfe wants to know. A profile of Nassim Nicholas Taleb, the new sage of Wall Street.
From Genders, Kim D. Hester-Williams (Sonoma State): Eminem, Masculine Striving, and the Dangers of Possessive Individualism; Linda Mizejewski (OSU): Queen Latifah, Unruly Women, and the Bodies of Romantic Comedy; and Michael Tavel Clarke (Calgary): Danny DeVito's Body. How the West Was Wired: Two idealistic Taiwanese businessmen happened into the most rural part of China and thought: Let’s bring it from the 15th century to the 21st. Robert Skidelsky on saying farewell to the neo-classical revolution. Let's stop the greatest theft in the history of humankind. Where did the government get $85 billion — was it just lying around somewhere? Why is the US government still pouring billions into missile defence? George Monbiot wants to know. Inequality kills: Politicians take heed — social injustice is, literally, deadly. Lessons from a beleaguered continent: People cannot be left indefinitely to fester in unbearable living conditions, stripped of any hope. More on Complaint by Julian Baggini. From Harper's, an interview with Nate Silver on polls and the election. An interview Dana D. Nelson, author of Bad for Democracy: How the Presidency Undermines the Power of the People. Thomas Israel Hopkins reviews Vacation by Deb Olin Unferth. Paris during Nazi occupation was "one big romp": A review of 1940-1945 Annees Erotiques by Patrick Buisson.
From DataCritica, Ray Thomas (Milton Keynes) and Martin Sewell (UCL): The Qualities of Statistics as Facts about Society; and Karim F. Hirjic (Muhimbili): Numerosis and Numeritis: Twin Pathologies of Contemporary Statistics. "Geography is everywhere": An interview with Denis Cosgrove. From Bitch, an article on Dora the Explorer and the dirty secrets of the global industrial economy. From The Monthly, a review of The Freedom Paradox: Towards a Post-Secular Ethics by Clive Hamilton. Maybe Lumumba never actually said to King Baudouin: "We are no longer your monkeys". Letter from the Gulag: The strange story of a prisoner who complained to Stalin's secret police chief — and got results. What we talk about when we talk about money: Couples and counsellors on what money says about relationships. All you need is love — but if it doesn’t work out, Thomas Hamerlinck is there to help. A review of Contraception: A History by Robert Jutte. From Cultural Survival, a special issue on climate change and indigenous peoples. From Boston Review, our daily bread: Without public investment, the food crisis will only get worse. From Catapult, community is bullshit, but as every good farmer knows, bullshit is beautiful; and "community" isn’t a four-letter word — or is it? A look at how The Rest Is Noise by Alex Ross changes our understanding of 20th-century music.