As France’s towns wither, fears of a decline in “Frenchness”. Will France sound the death knell for social democracy? As a presidential election approaches this spring, even workers in the country’s rust belt are embracing right-wing populism. These are the five main contenders to be the next French president (and more). Madame Presidente? The far-right candidate Marine Le Pen leads in French polls, but her challenges may prove insurmountable. French literary boy wonder Edouard Louis on saving the working class from Marine Le Pen. France’s National Front scandal has exposed the dirty little secret of Europe’s far Right. Candidate Macron: Jeremy Harding writes about the French elections.

Fabian Freyenhagen (Essex): What is Orthodox Critical Theory? Samuel Salzborn (Giessen): Critical Theory in Germany: On the Way into the Twenty-First Century. Michael J. Thompson (William Paterson): Axel Honneth and Critical Theory. The headquarters of neo-Marxism: Samuel Freeman reviews Grand Hotel Abyss: The Lives of the Frankfurt School by Stuart Jeffries (and more); Habermas: A Biography by Stefan Muller-Doohm (and more); and Adorno and Existence by Peter E. Gordon. Nicola Marcucci on Durkheim's enduring relevance: Sociology offers a solution to the problems raised by Critical Theory.

From Time, can President Trump handle the truth? Michael Scherer interviews Donald Trump on truth and falsehoods (and more). Trump's credibility crisis arrives: Warnings that the president's cavalier disregard for truth would have real-world consequences were vindicated. The Trump presidency is already a joke — but it's no laughing matter. The Donald Trump Show is flopping: His unorthodox antics helped him win the presidency, but they have only hampered his cruel agenda — that doesn't mean he won't still succeed. Donald Trump is winning where it matters most: His political power lies in court appointments — Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch will be the first of many victories to come.

Erin M. Kearns, Allison Betus, and Anthony Lemieux (Georgia State): Why Do Some Terrorist Attacks Receive More Media Attention Than Others? Yes, the media do underreport some terrorist attacks — just not the ones most people think of. Jared Kushner struck out in his first foray into Middle East diplomacy. The most expensive weapon ever built: The business of the arms industry is to build and spend, build and spend — it’s all part of the weaponry system. Mary Beard on women in power: From Medusa to Merkel. Scott McLemee on the new publication The Journal of Interrupted Studies. Jill Filipovic on 9 reasons constitutional originalism is bullshit: Donald Trump's Supreme Court pick Neil Gorsuch describes himself as an originalist — but no one is actually an originalist. “Earth is a planet in upheaval”: World Meteorological Organization issues dire climate warning.

These senators can kill Trumpcare, and McConnell can’t do much to stop them. Jonathan Chait on how 7 charts explain the horrors of Trumpcare. “I swear to God, the sight of people with deadly diseases crowdfunding their health care is the most dystopian thing about America right now”.

From the Congressional Research Service, a report on the Dark Web. Shaojing Sun (Fudan) and Xitao Fan and Jianxia Du (Macau): Cyberbullying Perpetration: A Meta-Analysis of Gender Differences. How the trolls stole Washington: The terror of anonymous online harassment has been around for decades — now the worst side of the web is at the center of national politics. The owner of 8chan has created a news source for Internet trolls: Jim Watkins wants to make The Goldwater the pre-eminent news source for the trolls of 8chan. How YouTube serves as the content engine of the Internet's dark side: Everyone knows that Twitter and Facebook spread bad information and hate speech — but YouTube, which pays for conspiracy theories seen by millions, may be even worse.

Ex-Microsoft worker says policing toxic images led to PTSD. Adrian Chen on the human toll of protecting the Internet from the worst of humanity.

Adam S. Chilton and Eric A. Posner (Chicago): Why Countries Sign Bilateral Labor Agreements. Why the Trump administration hates multilateral trade agreements the most. Jon R Johnson (C.D. Howe): The Art of Breaking the Deal: What President Trump Can and Can't Do About NAFTA. The trade deal we just threw overboard: Donald Trump wants to rewrite NAFTA, but someone else already did — here’s how it went down. Trump has singled out Mexico — but some say NAFTA’s real challenge is to the north. One tiny widget's dizzying journey shows just how critical Nafta has become. Larry Summers on how revoking trade deals will not help American middle classes.

Trump scorns the IMF's globalism, and now he gets to vote on it. Trump suggests ignoring World Trade Organization in major policy shift. Richard Baldwin on Trump’s anachronistic trade strategy. Ana Swanson on a contradiction at the heart of President Trump’s economic policy. Don’t let his trade policy fool you: Trump is a neoliberal. White House civil war breaks out over trade: “Fiery meeting” in Oval Office between economic nationalists and pro-trade moderates. Why most conservative free-traders have thrown in the towel: It would have seemed astonishing a year ago, but inside the conservative movement and the GOP, Trump has won on trade, leaving the free-traders to rationalize away.

Allison Carnegie (Columbia) and Nikhar Gaikwad (Yale): Public Opinion on Geopolitics and Trade: Theory and Evidence. Is America enriching the world at its own expense? That’s globaloney — the world is far less globalized than people tend to think. Noah Smith on David Autor, the man who made us see that trade isn't always free. Joseph Stiglitz on Trump’s most chilling economic lie: A so-called trade war with China would be an absolute disaster for the United States and its citizens. World prepares to move on without U.S. on trade. Killing free trade will rob the world of a highly effective deterrent to war.

House Intelligence chair discloses classified intel in clumsy effort to validate Trump. What the heck is Devin Nunes talking about? A guide for the perplexed. The latest Trump wiretapping news, explained in plain English (and more). Thread: “Some more thoughts on Nunes today, who really exposed himself today”. We’re learning a lot more about the Trump team’s financial ties to Russia. The White House is filled with smoke: Paul Manafort is just the latest guy to fall — there will be more. Manafort who? With Trump’s former campaign chairman catching heat for his Russia ties, the White House is scrambling to distance itself. Congress must act: Trump’s Russia ties a full-blown crisis for U.S. democracy.