Bent Flyvbjerg, Allison Stewart, and Alexander Budzier (Oxford): The Oxford Olympics Study 2016: Cost and Cost Overrun at the Games. Let the games begin: The Rio Olympics are taking to the extreme the overblown promises and neoliberal development now typical of the games. A radical case for reinventing the Olympics: Paul Christensen on how the Olympics have become too big, too costly and too complicated to be hosted by a single city. Olympic executives cash in on a “Movement” that keeps athletes poor. Since ancient Greece, the Olympics and bribery have gone hand in hand. The strange rites of the ancient Olympics: Naked runners, deadly competitions and banquets to honor the gods — the original Olympics were far different from the modern Games. Mary Pilon reviews The Games: A Global History of the Olympics by David Goldblatt.

The Rio Olympics will be a failure — but not for the reasons you think. People have always hated the Olympics: Protests against Rio’s Games aren’t the first — nor will they be the last. The sustainable Olympics: Nell Zink has a modest proposal for the next generation of global sport. You’re complaining about the Olympics wrong: Vincent Bevins on how to criticize The Games without sounding stupid.


Nicholas Vrousalis (Leiden): Imperialism, Globalization, and Resistance. C. Heike Schotten (UMass): Against Totalitarianism: Agamben, Foucault, and the Politics of Critique. “Time is nothing other than intervention”: Jacques Ranciere on Alain Badiou’s Being and Event. Besieged Aleppo ranks alongside Rwanda and Srebrenica as a symbol of international shame. Homeland Security chief concerned hackers could infiltrate voting system. Get ready for the Trump campaign’s black outreach effort. Can mythbusters like Snopes.com keep up in a post-truth era? “The bilge is rising faster than you can pump”. Meet the husbands who always fly business class while their wives travel in economy. Scott McLemee highlights more new books due out from university presses this fall. Facebook built an algorithm to fight clickbait — will it save you the right click? (and more) Why do older people love Facebook?


From National Review, Ian Tuttle on why the Supreme Court is not a sufficient reason to vote for Trump: Weighed in balance, Donald Trump could be more of a threat to the Constitution than a Hillary Clinton-appointed Supreme Court liberal majority. Trump’s “rigged election” argument comes straight from the GOP playbook: He’s maximizing the number of voters who’ll reject the results of the election, with potentially calamitous consequences. The political process isn’t rigged — it has much bigger problems (and more). Tanya Luhrmann on the paradox of Donald Trump’s appeal: How can a political candidate as offensive and outrageous as Trump be so popular? Trump proves Republican Obama hate was never about Obama’s ideas: “Trump’s racism demonstrated to most Republican voters that he stood with them on the essential divide that ordered their political world — one defined by identity more than ideology”.

Matthew Sheffield on how the conservative media echo chamber is making the Right intellectually deaf. Conservative talk radio host Sean Hannity is fed up with the Republican leadership criticizing Donald Trump and said he plans to blame the GOP establishment if the party’s nominee loses on Election Day. Trump may start dragging GOP Senate candidates down with him. Insiders to Trump: Drop out — “I’d rather take our chances with nearly anyone else than continue with this certain loser who will likely cost the Senate and much more”. Could Donald Trump drop out? Some bettors seem to think so.

Democrats, looking past mere victory, hope to end the Trump movement. The Democrats are surprisingly unified — that should help Hillary Clinton. How Hillary Clinton created her plan for America — behind-the-scenes. The Clinton presidency is already taking shape — will the Left have a voice? Bernie Sanders is fundraising for a new organization “to take the next steps for our political revolution”. James Gregory on radicals in the Democratic Party, from Upton Sinclair to Bernie Sanders.


Jamie R. Abrams (Louisville): The Feminist Case for Acknowledging Women’s Acts of Violence. “Follow your passion”: Why Harvard’s career advice for its students is totally wrong. Was Michel Foucault a nihilist? Dominika Partyga on Foucault, truth and the death of God. Donald Trump, perhaps unwittingly, exposes paradox of nuclear arms. Nervous about nukes again? Here’s what you need to know about The Button. Graham Allison and Niall Ferguson on why the president needs a Council of Historians: It isn’t enough for a commander in chief to invite friendly academics to dinner — the U.S. could avoid future disaster if policy makers started looking more to the past. If the world is getting better, why do we all feel so much worse? Nothing in the world is getting worse, you’re just feeling nostalgic for a time that never existed.


Michael Szalay (UC-Irvine): New Left Melancholia, or Paul Potter Swallows Television. The first pop philosopher: Ray Monk looks at the life of Walter Benjamin, and discovers how he found his calling. Garth Montgomery reviews Walter Benjamin and the Media: The Spectacle of Modernity by Jaeho Kang. Radio and child: Brian Hanrahan on Walter Benjamin as broadcaster. Walter Benjamin’s genius for surreal visions: Adam Kirsch reviews The Storyteller: Short Stories by Walter Benjamin (and more). From The Nation, the odd couple: Through their editorial work on the writings of Walter Benjamin, Theodor Adorno and Gershom Scholem forged an unlikely friendship; and with his worries about the gigantic power of technology and the minuscule moral illumination it can afford, Walter Benjamin remains our contemporary. John Dugdale on Walter Benjamin’s legacy, 75 years on.

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