From the New York Times Magazine, a special issue on the Olympics. The ideology of the Olympics: Robert L. Kehoe reviews Power Games: A Political History of the Olympics by Jules Boykoff and The Games: A Global History of the Olympics by David Goldblatt. Is the IOC’s protection of the Olympic brand over the top? The worst predictions about Rio haven’t come true — that tells us a few things about Brazil and the media. Fiji’s rugby team could be the best story of the Rio Olympics. Rooting for your own country in the Olympics is for losers and suckers. Laurel Raymond on the fun, inescapable (and kind of worrisome) psychology of “U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!” Most nations going to the Olympics won’t bring home a medal — here’s why they compete anyway. The introduction to Success and Failure of Countries at the Olympic Games by Danyel Reiche.

What are the worst Olympic sports? Walt Hickey investigates. Clean athletes, and Olympic glory lost in the doping era. Ian Johnson on the new face of Olympic doping. The drugs won: Patrick Hruby on the case for ending the sports war on doping. What does it really mean to be an Olympic alternate? Tim Struby explores the hidden lives of the greatest athletes who might never compete for their country. Jordan Sargent on how a bronze medal is better than silver.

Donald McRae on on the return of Caster Semenya: Olympic favourite and ticking timebomb. The humiliating practice of sex-testing female athletes: For years, international sports organizations have been policing women for “masculine” qualities and turning their Olympic dreams into nightmares — but when Dutee Chand appealed her ban, she may have changed the rules. The media’s Olympics coverage reminds us just how taxing it is to be a female athlete. Allison Stokke is the most popular pole vaulter in the world, and I wish that weren’t so depressing.

The Tumbler Tumblr: Eslpeth Reeve on how hard-core gymnastics fans are revolutionizing the way the sport is covered. The last perfect gymnast: Sarah Marshall reviews The End of the Perfect 10: The Making and Breaking of Gymnastics’ Top Score — from Nadia to Now by Dvora Meyers. Lindsay Gibbs on America’s painful journey from prejudice to greatness in women’s gymnastics.


Jack M. Balkin (Yale): Republicanism and the Constitution of Opportunity. Why shouldn’t the law ignore emotion? If the justice system becomes an assembly line devoid of feelings, reconciliation and social justice will suffer. Inside the Fox News bunker: In the subterranean newsroom, fear is everywhere — “hacking was bad,” says one person familiar with the internal investigation, “this is arguably worse.” Are we reaching the end of world records? As we near the limits of human strength and speed, technology and culture keep moving the finish line. Can a burgeoning Satanic movement effect political change? Riding on the popularity of The Witch, one group hopes to change America’s identity as a “Christian nation”. A text analysis of Trump’s tweets confirms he writes only the (angrier) Android half.


Stephen Morse (Penn): Law and the Sciences of the Brain/Mind. Jairus Grove (Hawaii): Something Darkly This Way Comes: The Horror of Plasticity in an Age of Control. Christof Koch reviews Soul Machine: The Invention of the Modern Mind by George Makari. 2300 years later, Plato’s theory of consciousness is being backed up by neuroscience. Alex Rosenberg on why you don’t know your own mind. Man missing most of his brain challenges everything we thought we knew about consciousness. Michael Graziano on how consciousness is not mysterious — it’s just the brain describing itself to itself. George Johnson on how consciousness is the mind messing with the mind. Do we need an ethics of consciousness? Derek Beres wants to know. Zombies must be dualists: Sean Carroll on what the existence of zombies would do to our philosophy of mind.

Your brain does not process information, retrieve knowledge or store memories; in short, your brain is not a computer. Ray Kurzweil: In the 2030s, nanobots in our brains will make us “Godlike”. Robert Lawrence Kuhn on the Singularity, virtual immortality and the trouble with consciousness.


Dan Moller (Maryland): Dilemmas of Political Correctness. Former NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen: Donald Trump is a global risk. Dozens of Republicans to urge RNC to cut off funds for Trump. GOP donors, fearful of Trump-fueled electoral rout, direct big money down-ballot. Obamacare appears to be making people healthier. This Daily Beast Olympics Grindr stunt is sleazy, dangerous, and wildly unethical. Can the New York Times weddings section be justified? Jesse Hyde on the rise and fall of Warren Jeffs: The largest polygamist community in America is run by a madman in jail — who’s started a civil war. From LARB, the question concerning Heidegger: Richard Polt reviews Heidegger: The Question of Being and History by Jacques Derrida; and Matthew Farish reviews Base Nation: How U.S. Military Bases Abroad Harm America and the World by David Vine.


Benjamin Waddell (Adams State): Migrant Remittances: An Untapped Resource for International Development? Chris Dillow on how immigration is a great way of reducing poverty. You're only an “economic migrant” if you’re poor and brown. Michael Clemens on why today’s migration crisis is an issue of global economic inequality. What are the economic effects of immigration? An interview with Ian Goldin. The surprisingly simple economic case for giving refugees cash, not stuff. There is a trade-off between citizenship and migration: Immigration threatens to diminish the premiums enjoyed in rich countries, writes Branko Milanovic. “Do not come to Europe”, Donald Tusk warns economic migrants.

Sarah Horton (Colorado): Ghost Workers: The Implications of Governing Immigration Through Crime for Migrant Workplaces. Michelle Chen on how undocumented immigrants contribute over $11 billion to our economy each year: The notion that they do nothing but drain public coffers is a myth. Immigration isn’t that bad for native workers. In defense of immigrants: Richard V. Reeves on why America needs them now more than ever.

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