Hugh Pemberton (Bristol): Macro-economic Crisis and Policy Revolution. The central thesis of Thomas Kuhn’s book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions is that we live by paradigms — so have we just been through a paradigm shift in economics? An interview with James K. Galbraith: “There is no return to self-sustaining growth”. From The Baffler, let them eat dogma: Chris Lehmann on the 1930s and its parallels to our current predicament; and a review essay on the financial crisis. The few regulatory measures introduced since the financial collapse in 2008 are being supervised by the same banking sector that caused it in the first place; governments' delegation of regulatory responsibilities has deeply negative implications for democracy. An excerpt from On the Brink: Inside the Race to Stop the Collapse of the Global Financial System by Henry M. Paulson Jr. (and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more). Elizabeth Warren on Wall Street’s race to the bottom. Michael Grunwald on the case for a Consumer Financial Protection Agency. John H. Cochrane on Lessons from the Financial Crisis: As long as some firms are considered too big to fail, those firms will take outsized risks. From The Economist, a special report on financial risk; a review of The Greatest Trade Ever: The Behind-the-Scenes Story of How John Paulson Defied Wall Street and Made Financial History by Gregory Zuckerman and The Quants: How a New Breed of Math Whizzes Conquered Wall Street and Nearly Destroyed It by Scott Patterson (and more and more); and a review of Don’t Blame the Shorts: Why Short Sellers are Always Blamed for Market Crashes and How History is Repeating Itself by Robert Sloan. Is excessive risk-taking in the financial world a matter of too much testosterone?
From Semiophagy: Journal of Pataphysics and Existential Semiotics, Jeremy Fernando (EGS): Of Oxen and Obama: What Happens After the Orgy?; and Peter Hulm (EGS): Baudrillard's Bastards: Pataphysics After the Orgy — Some Lessons for Journalists. A review of The March of the Patriots: The Struggle for Modern Australia by Paul Kelly. From Saturday Evening Post, Jeff Nilsson on Love and Democracy: A Troubled Romance. God's executioner: How did early modern executioners square their unsavoury occupations with aspirations to social respectability and Christian morality? The Brain Mistrust: Why the newest think tanks in Washington aren’t reimagining the capital. Sew Solidarity Crew: Ed Hall’s protest banners are works of art. How can we get politicians elected on a short-term basis to think about the long-term good of the country? Some ideas from around the world. Real Housewives of Gomorrah!: Never before revealed — the deep history of reality television. New research focuses on the power of physical contact. Tom Kuntz on how it’s getting harder to hate Wal-Mart. The Great Grocery Smackdown: Will Walmart, not Whole Foods, save the small farm and make America healthy? A review of To Serve God and Wal-Mart : The Making of Christian Free Enterprise by Bethany Moreton (and a review by Maud Newton at Bookforum). WalMart and the Civil War: Ta-Nehisi Coates on saving hallowed ground from a Big Box invader. A review of Trucking Country: The Road to America’s Wal-Mart Economy by Shane Hamilton. What do the remote control, lipstick tubes and the slogan “Got Milk” have in common? A look at five myths about the 2010 Census and the U.S. population.
Africa’s eastern promise: What the West can learn from Chinese investment in Africa (and more). A review of The Dragon's Gift: The Real Story of China in Africa by Deborah Brautigam (and more). A review of China in Latin America: The Whats and Wherefores by R. Evan Ellis. The End of the Beijing Consensus: Can China's model of authoritarian growth survive? Eastern bloc rising: China and Japan’s emerging symbiosis could shift the locus of modern power completely away from the West (and more). Recent events and trends within Asia may well portend a stepped up pace for Asian regionalism — and heightened danger that the United States will find itself on the outside looking in. An Asian Century? Not so fast — the first global century is more like it. Why antagonize China?: The revitalization of Asian capitalism is the most important positive event in the world in the last 30 years. Don't panic about China: Why we should embrace — rather than fear — the next superpower. Dazzled by Asia: When will China lead the world? Don’t hold your breath. America on the Rise: Complaints of China's ascent and the US's collapse are overly pessimistic — and misguided. Warren I. Cohen, author of America’s Response to China: A History of Sino-American Relations, on the China we’re stuck with. The biggest threat we face from China and other rivals isn’t a military one: James Fallows goes inside the battle to protect our online infrastructure from hackers, spammers, spies, and corporate thieves. A panel on Superfusion: How China and America Became One Economy and Why the World's Prosperity Depends on It by Zachary Karabell. As China and America square off in the latest round of recriminations, how bad are relations really?
From The Huffington Post, a special section on The Empathic Civilization: The Race to Global Consciousness in a World in Crisis by Jeremy Rifkin (and more and more and more and more and more). The Phantom Menace: Republicans push voter ID bill to stamp out nonexistent threat. Psychologists have used an inventive combination of techniques to show that the left half of the brain has more self-esteem than the right half. A finishing school for Marxist ideologues?: Far-fetched as it may sound, it will soon be a reality in New Delhi. Open contempt for generally accepted norms: An interview with Slava Mogutin. The assassination of Hamas functionary Mahmoud al-Mabhouh is widely believed to have been the work of the Mossad — but why would Israel's legendary intelligence service allow the identity of its agents to be compromised? (and more and more and more) Joan Didion once called New York “a city only for the very young” — so why is Clay Risen moving to the city now, at age 33? DNA’s dirty little secret: A forensic tool renowned for exonerating the innocent may actually be putting them in prison. Was Andy Warhol actually a great philosopher — or Norman Rockwell's aesthetic heir? Scott McLemee goes Pop. The War Criminal Next Door: Virginia resident Mohamed Ali Samantar oversaw a reign of terror in Somalia — will the Supreme Court grant him immunity? Attack of the light drizzle!: Robert David Sullivan on how weather was taken over by the hype machine. A panel on Arsenal of Democracy: The Politics of National Security — From World War II to the War on Terrorism by Julian E. Zelizer. The Great Divider: A review of The Cambridge Companion to Jonathan Edwards. A review of Counter-revolution of the Word: The Conservative Attack on Modern Poetry, 1945-1960 by Alan Filreis.
The inaugural issue of AAUP Journal of Academic Freedom is now out. From The Chronicle, James Alan Fox on tenure and the workplace avenger; do the faculty shootings in Alabama say something about academic culture? (and more); and many observers are asking what role the stresses of academic life played in the Huntsville tragedy. From Academe, a review of Professing to Learn: Creating Tenured Lives and Careers in the American Research University by Anna Neumann; a review of The Last Professors: The Corporate University and the Fate of the Humanities by Frank Donoghue; a review of Off-Track Profs: Nontenured Teachers in Higher Education by John Cross and Edie Goldenberg; a review of How Professors Think: Inside the Curious World of Academic Judgment by Michele Lamont; a review of Save the World on Your Own Time by Stanley Fish; and a review of Closed Minds? Politics and Ideology in American Universities by Bruce Smith, Jeremy Mayer, and A. Lee Fritschler. A look at why academe's left-of-center bias isn't so hard to explain. Thomas Benton on the big lie about the "life of the mind". 2 people, 1 job, 36 years: Husband-and-wife historians at Earlham have spent more than three decades sharing a job. A review of A Taste for Language: Literacy, Class, and English Studies by James Ray Watkins. Confessions of an Accidental Literary Scholar: Writers live on one side of the tracks, lit scholars live on the other — one crazed grad student dared to walk the rails. Manners, cigars and egos: Trevor Butterworth on when academics write for the masses. On academic writing: What does it mean to make something sound “Yale Post-Graduate like,” and why do people fetishize it so much? From WSJ, why the fetish about footnotes?: In the world of academe, Web clicking would be too easy.