From Erasmus Journal for Philosophy and Economics, an interview with Debra Satz on ethics, economics, and markets; a review of Russell Hardin’s How Do You Know? The Economics of Ordinary Knowledge; and a review of Geoffrey M. Hodgson’s Darwinism and Economics. Primate Economics 101: A review of The Dismal Science: How Thinking Like an Economist Undermines Community by Stephen A. Marglin (and more). An excerpt from The Fearful Rise of Markets by John Authers. Make money by avoiding rules: A time-tested axiom of capitalism is that any financial regulation will be followed quickly by innovation that subverts it. It isn't all that simple to work out how many Americans are out of work (and more). Taking the measure: GDP, CPI, poverty rate — economic gauges don't measure what we think they do. The Rise and Fall of the G.D.P.: Economists and even governments now claim there might be better ways to take measure of a country’s wealth and happiness. Economist John Williams believes the government's major economic indicators are lies; most other economists think he's a crank — but then, most of them also thought the economy was healthy. Uncommonly clever indicators: Stock prices only tell you so much — for deeper insight follow the Champagne, taxi fares and old cellphones. A review of Julian Reiss’s Error in Economics: Towards a More Evidence-based Methodology. Sendhil Mullainathan uses the lens of behavioral economics to study a tricky set of social problems. New ideas about human nature throw into doubt many of the core assumptions of classical economic theory. An interview with Moshe Adler, author of Economics for the Rest of Us. A panel on How the Economy Works: Confidence, Crashes, and Self-Fulfilling Prophecies by Roger E. A. Farmer.
From the Department of State's eJournal USA, a special issue on 21st-century agriculture. The cult of the truly bad film: "Best Worst Movie" celebrates the awesome wretchedness of Troll 2 and the superfans who (unironically) love it. Obama has embraced a decidedly utilitarian, and decidedly nerdy style — where did the cool guy go? When ideas have sex: How free exchange between people increases prosperity and trust. And the enlightened tyrants will lead us: Is freedom getting in the way of progress? From Marx & Philosophy Review of Books, a review of Ethical Marxism: The Categorical Imperative of Liberation by Bill Martin; a review of Rescuing Justice and Equality and Why Not Socialism? by G.A. Cohen; and a review of Jurgen Habermas's Between Naturalism and Religion: Philosophical Essays. A review of Obesity: The Biography by Sander L Gilman. Wilson's War: In search for the human connection — or the witty hauteur of a cynical wiseass. Is "Buy Christian" the new "Buy American"? Democracy in danger: Thais once marched for the right to vote, but greater political freedom has led to bitter divisions between the middle classes and the poor — it’s the same story in much of the developing world. Naomi Oreskes and Erik M. Conway on their book Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming. Is Lady Gaga (the self-proclaimed “fame monster” so well known for her enticing pop music, outrageous fashion, and elaborately-staged spectacles) involved in a pseudo-religious conspiracy of global moment? Live Your Age: David Mekelburg on generational freedom and its subsequent tensions. Liz Brown reviews Role Models by John Waters. Are stars made or are they born? Doesn't matter — reality television killed them off.
From NYRB, David Miliband on how to end the war in Afghanistan. From Foreign Affairs, a review essay on Afghanistan. From VQR, a special section on Afghanistan. From Harper's, the master of Spin Boldak: Undercover with Afghanistan's drug-trafficking border police. The introduction to Afghanistan: A Cultural and Political History by Thomas Barfield. "It's a perfect war. Everybody makes money": Douglas A. Wissing on how US military funds are ending up in the hands of the Taliban. From New American Foundation, a special report on The Battle for Pakistan: Militancy and Conflict in Pakistan's Tribal Regions. An interview with Ramin Jahanbegloo on the Green Movement in Iran. From Al-Ahram, the history of the Arab League since its inception in 1944 suggests that the Arab regimes have long chosen to be weak and irrelevant; and will the Arabs ever rediscover the qualities and the glory that once conquered the world? A review of Political Succession in the Arab World: Constitutions, Family Loyalties and Islam by Anthony Billingsley. More on The Strong Horse: Power, Politics, and the Clash of Arab Civilizations by Lee Smith. Are Saudi women on their way at last? With the king’s permission, the debate is hotting up. With much of the Arab world rattled by the global economic turmoil and stuck in moribund politics, tiny Qatar and its punchy emir are bucking the trend. Hell on Earth: Yemen is crippled by terrorism, drought and civil war. Clemens Hoges goes inside the world's worst hellhole: Somalia, the perfect failed state. From LRB, Adam Shatz on Mubarak’s last breath. Open that border: Will the long stalemate between the Maghreb’s Algeria and Morocco ever end? More powerful than ever: Al-Jazeera, the most-watched television channel in the Arab world, still stirs controversy.
The latest issue on UN Police Magazine is out. From EnterText, a special issue on Liminal London. From Slate, what's happening under the Gulf of Mexico? Your gushing oil well questions, answered; Daniel Gross on the best way to punish BP for the oil spill (and more); and why aren't Democrats emotionally exploiting the oil spill? Madison Smartt Bell reviews Kissing the Mask by William T. Vollmann (and more). Rand Paul is just the latest in a line of physician-pols who are embarrassing the profession; Kent Sepkowitz on why medicine and politics don’t mix. A review of In Time of War: Understanding American Public Opinion from World War II to Iraq by Adam Berinsky. More on W. Joseph Campbell's Getting It Wrong: Ten of the Greatest Misreported Stories in American Journalism. A review of Bad Ideas? An Arresting History of Our Inventions by Robert Winston. A review of The Making of African America: The Four Great Migrations by Ira Berlin (and more and more). All the cool kids are wearing them, now the keffiyeh enters the Guinness World Record book. Michael Lewis on Shorting Reform: A plan to shape financial reform to your advantage. Elena Kagan could have been a superb historian: Two history professors read the nominee's undergraduate thesis. Karan Mahajan reviews American Taliban by Pearl Abraham. Deborah Rhode on why looks are the last bastion of discrimination. From the Vatican's Zenith, how a strategy of "silence" saved thousands of Jews: Documents and testimonies point to Pius XII's efforts; and apologetics for the Facebook Generation: Christianity has a lot more to offer the world than atheists give it credit for, says Mary Eberstadt, author of The Loser Letters. Martin Gardner on Oprah Winfrey: Bright (but gullible) billionaire (and more).
From The New York Review of Books, Michael Pollan on the rise of the Food Movement: a review essay. From The New Yorker, is Le Fooding, the French culinary movement, more than a feeling? When KFC comes out a chicken sandwich on a chicken bun, we're outraged; when a mom-and-pop diner does the same thing, we say, "What a quaint slice of Americana". Beeline to Extinction: Saving our threatened pollinators is key to global food security. Why is nutritional math so muddled? If you want to fight global warming, it’s time to consider a different diet (and more). How school gardens are cheating our most vulnerable students: A review of Alice Waters and Chez Panisse by Thomas McNamee. A Christian diet: David Grumett on the case for food rules. An interview with Carolyn Steel on books on food and the city. Brett Anderson on his top five favorite books about the New Orleans's cuisine. From FT, a review of Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer; The End of Overeating: Taking Control of our Insatiable Appetite by David A Kessler; and An Edible History of Humanity by Tom Standage (and more). A review of Sugar: A Bittersweet History by Elizabeth Abbott. When it comes to legitimate restaurant reviewing, many journalists have dropped the ball; a code of ethics for Australia’s restaurant critics and food journalists needs to be written and adhered to. From LRB, Jeremy Harding on the future of food and its supply. A review of The Italian Way: Food and Social Life by Douglas Harper and Patrizia Faccioli. The Femivore’s Dilemma: Can chickens save the desperate housewife? Better Farmers Markets: Farmers markets need to do more to tackle the convenience problem. Everyone eats — but that doesn’t make you a restaurant critic.
Noah Isenberg reviews Germania: In Wayward Pursuit of the Germans and Their History by Simon Winder (and more and more and more and more and more and more and more). Germans, secret inventors or hot air? An article on the great "scareship" wave of 1909. Hitler needs a woman: An excerpt from Travels in the Reich, 1933-45: Foreign Authors Report from Germany. Semiotext(e)'s The German Issue provides us with a time capsule from a very different era, but so much of its content remains pertinent. From The Nation, a review of Baader-Meinhof: The Inside Story of the RAF by Stefan Aust and Everybody Talks About the Weather, We Don't: The Writings of Ulrike Meinhof. Victor Grossman on Oskar Lafontaine and the troubled German Left. Auf Wiedersehen Macho: A new manifesto from the German Green Party aims to banish macho men for good. An article on Germany’s far-right: Style and tea party shakeup. The Melting Centre: Eckhard Jesse on Germany’s changing political map. Teuton the Introvert: Germany was once the most powerful nation on the Continent — now it is spiraling toward mediocrity. A shifting Weltanschauung: With its resistance to an instant Greek bail-out, Germany, a nation long seen as unfailingly committed to European cohesion, appears increasingly prepared to put its own interests first. Germany is tired of paying Europe's bills: If Germans feel less guilty about the war, they won't make sacrifices to help feckless Greeks. Frau Germania: How Angela Merkel's selfishness is killing Europe. From The Economist, a special report on Germany, older and wiser; and a look at why Germany needs to change, both for its own sake and for others. From CJR, journalism criticism in German: How Germany approaches the media beat.
From Ethics & Global Politics, Kenneth Baynes (Syracuse): Discourse Ethics and the Political Conception of Human Rights; Fred Dallmayr (Notre Dame): Hermeneutics and Inter-cultural Dialog: Linking Theory and Practice; and William E. Scheuerman (Indiana): Postnational Democracies without Postnational States? Some Skeptical Reflections (and a reply by Hauke Brunkhorst). The death of a civil servant: Two of the twentieth century’s dominant literary traditions — modernism and fantasy — met as mismatched roommates in colonial Ceylon. A review of Necessary Secrets: National Security, the Media, and the Rule of Law by Gabriel Schoenfeld. Sheila Heti on "secret self-help" books, though, really, that phrase can describe almost all literature. From The Caribbean Review of Books, a review of Exhibiting Slavery: The Caribbean Postmodern Novel as Museum by Vivian Nun Halloran; and Vahni Capildeo begins her first visit to India. The father of big government? The federal government doubled during the Lincoln administration — but after the Civil War it dropped back down again. New insights into the science of emotion unravel the seeming neurological magic that turns emotions into social expressions. More on The Age of Wonder by Richard Holmes. A review of "Broad Bills of Particularistic Policy? Historical Patterns in American State Legislatures" by Gerald Gamm and Thad Kousser. From The Rumpus, Monica Shores compares Masterclass: Blow-Jobs vs. Sex Tips for Straight Women From a Gay Man. The jig is up: On the remote west coast of Ireland, Doolin — the epicenter of traditional Irish music — sings the economic blues away. Headbangers Unite! An article on the international cultural power that is heavy metal.
From Ethics in Science and Environmental Politics, a special issue on science communication in a changing world. The first chapter from Nanotechnology for Dummies by Richard D. Booker and Earl Boysen. From Fermilab, a new clue to explain human existence? Stephen Hawking on how to build a time machine: All you need is a wormhole, the Large Hadron Collider or a rocket that goes really, really fast. Yes, but why do it? Figuring out a reason for the world's longest-running scientific experiment. Hello, Dolly: A conversation in a Dublin bar in 1987 proved crucial to Sir Ian Wilmut's research and led ultimately to the first clone of an adult animal. Mark Kingwell reviews The Ego Tunnel: The Science of the Mind and the Myth of the Self by Thomas Metzinger and Why Us? How Science Rediscovered the Mystery of Ourselves by James Le Fanu. Why does it take so long to add new elements to the periodic table? Shing-Tung Yau explains how he discovered the hidden dimensions of string theory. Aids denialism is estimated to have killed many thousands; Jon Cartwright asks if scientists should be held accountable, while Bruce Charlton defends his decision to publish the work of an Aids sceptic. Accommodationist scientists are afraid of antagonizing a religious mainstream America: That’s silly — in the end, the truth will out. Ben Goldacre tells Julian Baggini why he expects rigour in the reporting of science. Science 2.0 Pioneers: From open-access journals to research-review blogs, networked knowledge has made science more accessible to more people around the globe than we could have imagined 20 years ago.
The inaugural issue of Miranda is out. From The Millions, J.C. Hallman on Ayn Rand, Rand Paul and utopian schemes. Is the mystery of Easter Island solved? From n+1, a review of Experimental Philosophy and Kwame Anthony Appiah's Experiments in Ethics. Why did the folk at The New Yorker and the distinguished artist, Daniel Clowes, decide that creating "The Boomerang Generation" would be a humorous and relevant depiction of contemporary PhD life? An interview with Jean Yu-wen Shen, editor of Asian American Studies Now: A Critical Reader. An interview with Joel Olson, author of The Abolition of White Democracy, on fanaticism and extremism. Philosophy in the boudoir and the streets: An interview with Simon Critchley. Jeffrey Wasserstrom on 5 parallels between author tours and rock concerts. Howard Kurtz profiles Chuck Todd, White House correspondent, anchor, blogger, twitterer. A review of In Hock: Pawning in America from Independence through the Great Depression by Wendy A. Woloson. Erin Aubry Kaplan reviews Midnight at the Barrelhouse: The Johnny Otis Story by George Lipsitz. Gawker's Max Read on the idiots responsible for the BP oil leak disaster (and 9 strange facts of the spill). A review of Starting Today: 100 Poems for Obama's First 100 Days. A review of Should You Judge This Book by Its Cover? 100 Fresh Takes on Familiar Sayings and Quotations by Julian Baggini. The Library of Congress holds conference on origins of portolan charts. It worked for Betty White: Academics are a force behind a new Facebook campaign to have Slavoj Zizek named as a guest host of SNL. Towards a new ethics of nature: Our obligation to the future is not to preserve purity but to pass on equivalent value for the natural assets we deplete. Belgium Waffles: Two nations, after all?
From The New Ledger, Paul Cella on American Exceptionalism (and part 2 and part 3 and part 4). Altered states: The strange history of efforts to redraw the New England map. An interview with Michael Kammen, author of Digging Up the Dead: A History of Notable American Reburials (and more and more and more). A look at 5 lesser known (completely ridiculous) American civil wars. Illegal immigrants are breaking the law of the land; Joseph Carens makes the moral case for waiving it. Chris Hedges on the New Secessionists. The United States is a jury-rigged country put together following the outlines of a myth suggested in the Declaration of Independence, which Americans think is part of the Old Testament. A review of American History Revised: 200 Startling Facts That Never Made It Into the Textbooks by Seymour Morris. A review of Jeremiah’s Prophecies: The End of the United States by Charles Brannan. A review of The Last Empty Places: A Past and Present Journey Through the Blank Spots on the American Map by Peter Stark. Should California be its own country? Charlie Rose interviews Joel Kotkin, author of The Next Hundred Million. Mark Twain’s life and stories revolved around the Mississippi; Laura Barton follows the river across ten states to see it through his eyes. A review of Rebound: Why America Will Emerge Stronger From the Financial Crisis by Stephen Rose. A review of Made in America: A Social History of American Culture and Character by Claude Fischer (and more and more). Greil Marcus on the making of A New Literary History of America (and part 2 and part 3 and part 4 and part 5). An interview with Kirkpatrick Sale on the Vermont secession movement. A review of The Taming of the American Crowd: From Stamp Riots to Shopping Sprees by Al Sandine.