From The New York Times Magazine, a special issue on food. The first chapter from Swindled: The Dark History of Food Fraud, from Poisoned Candy to Counterfeit Coffee by Bee Wilson. A review of What the Nose Knows: The Science of Scent in Everyday Life by Avery Gilbert. From PUP, the introduction to Globalizing Capital: A History of the International Monetary System by Barry Eichengreen; and the introduction to The Venturesome Economy: How Innovation Sustains Prosperity in a More Connected World by Amar Bhide. A review of The Rise of Mutual Funds: An insider’s view by Matthew P. Fink. The introduction to Trucking Country: The Road to America's Wal-Mart Economy by Shane Hamilton. Is rational man extinct? Searching for Homo Economicus. What can Cameron do? Ross McKibbin on the Tories and the financial crisis. An interview with Damon Brown, author of Porn & Pong: How ‘Grand Theft Auto,’ ‘Tomb Raider’ and other Sexy Games Changed Our Culture. The first chapter from Thinking of Others: On the Talent for Metaphor by Ted Cohen. From NYRB, Harold Bloom reviews History of the Yiddish Language by Max Weinreich; and who killed Anna Politkovskaya? Amy Knight investigates. It’s no joke, humour is vital for alien understanding: Vicky Allan on messages in outer space.
From the Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, a special issue on the biology of political behavior. Matthew Yglesias on the coming military spending surge: New Pentagon spending estimates for the next five years fly in the face of progressive priorities — the likely incoming majority shouldn't stand for it. A review of Hidden in the Shadow of the Master: The Model Wives of Cezanne, Monet, and Rodin by Ruth Butler. Tim Wu falls in love with Mongolia. Shadows and Fog: After a past denunciation is unearthed from the files, Milan Kundera faces his own trial by media — is the jury rigged against him? (and more). From Rolling Stone, an article on the lost years and last days of David Foster Wallace. Baby, it’s going to be cold outside in book publishing: Fewer books, bigger deals — no room for debuts? A review of Allen Wood's Kantian Ethics. A review of Philosophy and Real Politics by Raymond Geuss. A review of Raymond Williams: A Warrior's Tale by Dai Smith. A review of A Universal History of the Destruction of Books: From Ancient Sumer to Modern Iraq by Fernando Baez and Books: A Memoir by Larry McMurtry. From Splice Today, an article on Wikipedia as the 21st century's Freudian mother. Not dead, just resting: How discredited technologies can be unexpectedly resurrected. More on David Crystal’s Txtng: The Gr8 Db8.
From Radical Notes, an interview with Amiya Kumar Bagchi on capital and capitalists nannied by the states; and perhaps we need a Marxian to sort out the world's financial woes. Who killed Wall Street? Dani Rodrik wants to know. From PhD Comics, a chart on the economic meltdown: Should you be concerned? The responsible thing, right now, is to give the economy the help it needs — now is not the time to worry about the deficit. Joseph Stiglitz on how, in some ways, this is the biggest crisis in 80 years. An article on James Tobin's nice little earner: A levy on currency transactions could raise billions and act to calm markets in turmoil. From Rolling Stone, a cover story on Obama's Moment. From The Washington Monthly, contributing editors to consider the looming challenges that America is likely to face — in the economy, education, the courts, and other areas — during an Obama or McCain presidency. Talking Points Memo presents McCain & the Pundits: Tire swinging as an alternative political lifestyle. Thomas Frank on his friend Bill Ayers: Once wanted by the FBI, he's since become a model citizen. What's the matter with Thomas Frank? Now that the self-appointed clarion of conservative malfeasance has struck punditry gold, the ruling class awaits his next act. A review of The American Future: A History by Simon Schama (and more and more and more).
From The Atlantic Monthly, a map on the Arctic's radically changing geography; China is stunningly bad at managing its own reputation — here's why; Jeffrey Tayler on why France’s religious strife melts away in Marseille; Jeffrey Goldberg on why airport security in America is a sham; and an article on Michelle Rhee's plan to revolutionize D.C. schools (and an interview). From HNN, James Livingston on their Great Depression and ours (and part 2). From WSJ, an interview with Anna Schwartz: "Bernanke is fighting the last war". Here are initial reactions to the bailout plan from some leading economists. From Harper's, an interview with Eric Janszen on the economic collapse. Turning Japanese: Are we reliving Tokyo's economic nightmare? David Runciman on the problem with English football. From National Journal, a cover story on the hidden history of the American electorate. David Corn on the Right's final attack: Obama is a Black Muslim, anti-Christian socialist plotting with an evil Jewish billionaire. More racism, please: Race-baiting and anti-Muslim bigotry on the campaign trail are vile and loathsome — let's hope they never go away. From The New Yorker, Jane Mayer on how John McCain came to pick Sarah Palin. From Discover, a look at why Darwin would have loved botox; and here's 20 things you didn't know about genius.