A new issue of The Quarterly Conversation is out. From VQR, Tom Bissell on the case against Robert D. Kaplan. I am become Death, destroyer of worlds: The story of how the dinosaurs disappeared is getting more and more complicated. The economic argument for never giving another gift: Joel Waldfogel, the author of Scroogenomics, explains why holiday shopping is a drain on the wallet and the holiday spirit (and more and more). A new study may explain why the England soccer team keeps losing in penalty shootout. Brian Sholis reviews American Power by Mitch Epstein. A review of Political Correctness: A History of Semantics and Culture by Geoffrey Hughes Wiley-Blackwell. From TPM, no offence, but you’re a loon, says Wendy M. Grossman; and Mathew Iredale discovers why myth-busting doesn’t work. From Time, a look at the Top 10 Everything of 2009. Let's hear it for hipster beer: Pabst Blue Ribbon has made a comeback during the downturn, becoming the cheap beer of choice among hipsters. A review of The Culture of Knitting by Joanne Turney. The latest thing in grave robbing: Increasingly, what tempts the larcenous isn’t what a grave contains; it’s the grave itself. Just how pro-choice is America, really? (and more) My So-Called Riot: Doing time at the Mock Prison Riot, where 700 prison guards face down rioting inmates played by hardened volunteers — like Dave Gilson. Sally Quinn is back with another column which will certainly be of interest to the 0.01 percent of the population that gives a shit about “the spirit of entertaining”.

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