Donald MacKenzie (Edinburgh): Finding the Ratchet: The Political Economy of Carbon Trading. From Sign and Sight, Leo Tuor has felt the effects of global warming right up to his belly button. Polymers are Forever: Alarming tales of a most prevalent and problematic substance. A review of Oil on The Brain: Adventures from the Pump to the Pipeline. A review of Ecology Without Nature: Rethinking Environmental Aesthetics.

From Satya, an interview with Diane Beers, author of For the Prevention of Cruelty: The History and Legacy of Animal Rights Activism in the United States; and can’t a guy destroy a slaughterhouse without being called a “terrorist”? A review of Last Harvest: How a Cornfield Became New Daleville. From Satya, an interview with Juliette Williams on White Gold: The True Cost of Cotton; and an interview with Pietra Rivoli, author of The Travels of A T-Shirt in the Global Economy: An Economist Examines the Markets, Power and Politics of World Trade.

From National Review, an interview with Peter Schweizer and Wynton C. Hall, editors of Landmark Speeches of the American Conservative Movement. As Giuliani emerges, conservative Catholic organizations are in the process of rolling out potentially broad-reaching “viral” initiatives with the common aim of denying him the Republican nomination. Uniting conservative Catholics, evangelicals and neoconservatives to fight a theoconservative holy war: A review of Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army. Max Blumenthal on the Diary of a Christian Terrorist. P.R. firm for a Christian nation: Christian Newswire serves Jerry Falwell, Operation Rescue, Focus on the Family... and the White House.

From Skeptical Inquirer, an essay on Fighting the Fundamentalists: Chamberlain or Churchill?; a review of The God Delusion; are silent prayers transmissible to, or readable by, a supernatural being?; the ongoing debate between scientists and creationists has ignored the contradictions contained in Genesis; and psychic vibrations: An article on The Incredible Bouncing Cow. From Free Inquiry, Tom Flynn on the seductions of misbelief; a review of Philip Kitcher's Living with Darwin: Evolution, Design, and the Future of Faith; Peter Singer on treating (or not) the tiniest babies; and an essay on religion and child abuse.

Have we raised a generation of narcissists? It's 10 p.m. Do you know how big your child's ego is? The invisible mommies: A spate of new books about opting out adds more fuel to the mommy wars. But will our focus on educated, well-paid women ever trickle down to less fortunate moms? A review of Off-Ramps and On-Ramps: Keeping Talented Women on the Road to Success, by Sylvia Ann Hewlett. And do the cliches about the fortes and failings of men and women stand up to scientific scrutiny?


From Law & History Review, Robert H. Churchill (Hartford): Gun Regulation, the Police Power, and the Right to Keep Arms in Early America: The Legal Context of the Second Amendment; David Thomas Konig (WSLU): Arms and the Man: What Did the Right to "Keep" Arms Mean in the Early Republic; William G. Merkel (Washburn): Mandatory Gun Ownership, the Militia Census of 1806, and Background Assumptions concerning the Early American Right to Arms; Saul Cornell (OSU): Early American Gun Regulation and the Second Amendment: A Closer Look at the Evidence; and a reply by Churchill. To Your Tents, O Israel: David Kopel finds biblical roots for the right to keep and bear arms.

A review of Righteous Anger at the Wicked States: The Meaning of the Founders' Constitution. Did Aaron Burr really try to take over half of America? A review of Fallen Founder: The Life of Aaron Burr. A review of In Passion and Principle: John and Jessie Frémont, the Couple Whose Power, Politics, and Love Shaped Nineteenth-Century America. A review of The Avenger Takes His Place: Andrew Johnson and The Forty-Five Days that Changed the Nation. A purple patch on rationality and social life by Reinhold Niebuhr.

From The University Bookman, a review of Neocon Teocon. Il ruolo della religione nella vita pubblica statunitense [Neocon, Theocon. The role of religion in public life in the United States] by Flavio Felice, and a review of Separation of Church and State by Philip Hamburger. Solomon’s House: An article on the deeper agenda of the new Creation museum in Kentucky. Being honest about ignorance: The temptation to deny scientific truths is timeless—and dangerous.

From Seed, are most published research findings actually false? The case for reform. From Wired, a look at The Best Thought Experiments: Schrodinger's Cat, Borel's Monkeys... Loooooooooong Division: Mathematicians factor 307-digit number using only 95 years of computing time. Androids, it seems, have appearance in the bag. But is their intelligence only skin-deep? Peter Spinks finds sharp divisions over the likely future of robotic intellect.

From Symmetry, when physicists marry physicists, the beginning may be a big bang, but issues of life, love, and family gravitate toward the universal. From Salon, an interview with David Weinberger, author of Everything Is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorder. (and another interview). From Inside Higher Ed, Beach Blanket Bingo: Looking for a brief holiday from total seriousness? Scott McLemee checks into some good destinations for a mental vacation. And the office of assertion: John Leo offers some thoughts on writing well


From Prospect, there are worrying signs that the International Criminal Court's approach to justice may be jeopardising peace in Africa. Index on Censorship: Slavery 2007 is a salutary reminder of the presence of slavery. A review of The Door of No return: The History of Cape Coast Castle and the Atlantic Slave Trade.

From National Geographic, the Niger Delta holds some of the world's richest oil deposits, yet Nigerians living there are poorer than ever, violence is rampant, and the land and water are fouled. What went wrong?; as Mumbai booms, the poor of its notorious Dharavi slum find themselves living in some of India's hottest real estate; how one supercharged province in China cranks out lightbulbs, buttons, and bra rings, as well as instant cities for the factory workers; and fences may make good neighbors, but the barriers dividing the U.S. and Mexico are proving much more complicated.

From Vanity Fair, an excerpt from Are We Rome? The Fall of an Empire and the Fate of America. Give me back my legions! Cullen Murphy on Rome's most humiliating defeat — and a lesson for America. From The Potomac, must we become the darkness? Don Thompson reminds us of Cicero's rules of law, and the very foundation of civilization so recently corrupted by Bush; Barry Frye on America's Cult of Simplification; and if one of us were to read "Stupidity Street" to President Bush today, he would first of all apply it to other nations and not to the US.

Why Bush hasn't been impeached: Congress, the media and most of the American people have yet to turn decisively against Bush because to do so would be to turn against some part of themselves. Britain is losing Blair, but America is stuck with Bush, and that's because the British system is much better at getting rid of a discredited chief executive.

From Government Executive, an article on how government's personnel issues are more complicated than they look. From Governing, the disability dilemma: Police officers and firefighters injured in the line of duty receive generous benefits. Can localities afford to keep paying for them? Protect government watchdogs from politics: Washington's in-house inspectors general often fall victim to the officials they investigate. Daniel Gross on the silly effort to stop senators and bureaucrats from trading on their inside knowledge. How can politics recapture the ability to inspire us? Hard action and clear choices? Polling the populace: Citizen surveys are an increasingly popular tool for soliciting feedback on policies, programs and priorities.

From Public Opinion Pros, an excerpt from Questions & Answers in Attitude Surveys: Experiments on Question Form, Wording, and Context, by Howard Schuman and Stanley Presser; the public's lack of confidence in the press appears to be related to a superficial dissatisfaction with current political events, not a deep disaffection; and is the internet a boon for or a bane to democracy? Changes in the internet’s audience indicate that, contrary to the dark murmurings of some, this new technology may be a welcome development. And a political device goes corporate: Political veterans increasingly are taking their mastery of sophisticated new campaign techniques into the corporate world, though not all techniques will translate smoothly


From Kritikos, Senayon Olaoluwa (Ibadan): The Author Never Dies: Roland Barthes and the Postcolonial Project; and Travis English (Stony Brook): Hans Haacke, or the Museum as Degenerate Utopia.

From The Futurist, an article on the intersection of economics and the arts. The art journalist Lindsay Pollock’s The Girl With the Gallery reconstructs the life of a groundbreaking and largely overlooked woman who served as the midwife for the emergence of the modern art market in America. Bruce Cole, chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities, stands up for American exceptionalism in the arts. A review of Best American Magazine Writing 2006, ed. by Graydon Carter. A review of Granta 97: Best of Young American Novelists (and more).

Was Huck Faulknerian? A review of Jon Clinch’s Finn, a novel about Huck Finn’s father, and decides that it owes a heavy debt to a literary figure apart from Mark Twain. Author at work: When it first strikes you that your book isn't going to be the next Huck Finn, don't wallow in despair. Take a long walk. From The University Bookman, an essay on how small presses rescue classic genre writers from oblivion. Fiction critic Lionel Shriver explains why, for a novelist, reviewing is a dangerous game.

From Sign and Sight, escapology and the endgame: Peter Kümmel reports from this year's Theatertreffen in Berlin, the yearly rendezvous for the ten best plays on the German-language stage. A review of All That Glittered: The Golden Age of Drama on Broadway, 1919-1959 by Ethan Mordden. A review of The Shakespeare Riots: Revenge, Drama, and Death in Nineteenth Century America.

To be or not to be a philosopher did not concern Shakespeare, so far as we know. And we know very little: A review of Shakespeare The Thinker. Academic spitball fights can be tedious and polemical. But the May 31 New York Review of Books brings a refreshingly brief and engaging exchange on, would you believe, William Shakespeare's attitude toward political power (and the exchange between Richard Strier and Stephen Greenblatt). The introduction to Inventing English: A Portable History of the Language.

From Powells.com, a review of The Poems of Georg Trakl by Margitt Lehbert. Absent Friends: That is Not Sad; This is Not Funny: Adam Golaski resurrects the poetry of Paul Hannigan in all its acerbic and ominous brilliance. The unpublished poetry of Bonnie Parker, America's most notorious woman gangster, has emerged in the prison notebook she kept. John Ash's latest collection, The Parthian Stations, suggests that time in Istanbul has transformed the poet's work, writes William Wootten. An exchange of identity crises: A review of The Opposite House by Helen Oyeyemi.

Writing While Arab: The Radius of Arab American Writers (RAWI), with a membership of 215 poets, fiction writers, playwrights, bloggers, filmmakers and others, holds its conference in Dearborn, Mich. The biggest little country in the world: In Search of Kazakhstan explores the vast land where the Soviets dumped their dissidents and tested nuclear bombs. Khaled Hosseini, the author of The Kite Runner, returns with a story about Afghan women in A Thousand Splendid Suns (and more and more and more and more). And a review of The Sleeping Buddha: the story of Afghanistan through the Eyes of One Family by Hamida Ghafour


From Liberty, two reviews of Brian Doherty's Radicals for Capitalism: A Freewheeling History of the Modern American Libertarian Movement (and a reply by Doherty). From Socialist Standard, the US anarcho-capitalist Libertarians are wrong to think that capitalism could exist without a state or that its competitive struggle for profits does not lead to wars. A review of Capitalism. A Very Short Introduction; Socialism: A Very Short Introduction; and Anarchism: A Very Short Introduction. A review of Gabriel Kolko’s After Socialism: Reconstructing Critical Social Thought.

From Quadrant, an essay on The True Genesis of Amnesty International; a review of The Triumph of the Airheads and the Retreat from Commonsense, by Shelley Gare; more on Stefan Collini’s Absent Minds: Intellectuals in Britain; and more on Michael Burleigh's Sacred Causes: Religion and Politics from the European Dictators to Al Qaeda. From Free Inquiry, what time is it: Lights out for belief, or the dawn of a new age of faith? Perhaps neither; Sam Harris on the myth of secular moral chaos; and should we respect religion? Barbara Smoker wants to know. Atheists versus Theists Humans need a "likely tale" to hold on to, to give the chaotic mass of their experiential content some coherence.

From Reason, James Dobson, Drama Queen: Big plans from the small-tent Republican; Spiritual Highs and Legal Blows: The power and peril of religious exemptions from drug prohibition; and Looking for God in All the Wrong Places: How can you have a religion without a church? Hanging baptists: Whence this theocratic oligopoly battling the "secular-humanist homofeminists"?

Al Gore's revenge is to have been right: right about the Internet and global warming, and right about Iraq. A review of The Assault on Reason (and more and more). From Frontline, a look at the politics behind the US government's failure to act on the biggest environmental problem of our time. What Stern got wrong: The Stern review on the economics of climate change completely fails to acknowledge the imminent decline in global oil production. Change the rules, change the future: New energy rules could unleash an economic boom and help quash climate change.

From Scientific American, drafty buildings, inefficient appliances and mountains of waste will all need to be transformed to control global warming. The Zero-Energy Solution: How a system installed in your own backyard may one day power your house and your car. A look at why working less is better for the globe. Practise what you preach: An article on the uneven advice of green-living guides. A new issue of Geotimes, is out, including an article on The Plague: Could it happen again? And bad bugs: Drug-resistant microbes are evolving into a public health problem too widespread to ignore


From Re-Public, a special issue on Time and Governance, including an essay on democracy in the age of neoliberal speed; an article on Kant, civil war and the folds of meaning; more on the re-engineering of time; an essay on working time flexibility as a socially questionable but politically favoured policy choice; reflections upon the relationship between space, time and governance; an article on real-time and the politics of presence; and what lies behind the notion of progress?; an interview with Bruno Latour on the end of progressivism, the limits of representation, and the irrelevance of parliaments; Richard Dawkins on time; an essay on temporality and Giorgio Agamben’s The Coming Community; and more.

From Open Letters Monthly, can a writer be objective about poverty? John Cotter thinks William T. Vollmann’s striking approach in Poor People is both beautiful and frustratingly distant. From Business Week, an interview with Robert Frank, author of The Economic Naturalist: In Search of Explanations for Everyday Enigmas. The Art of Letting Go: Mark Skousen lauds a Chinese philosopher who drove away a third of the students in a class at Columbia Business School.

Too much of a good thing? Researchers are eager to accept funding from philanthropists. Some universities are better than others: In the competitive world of higher education, the market has spoken. From the latest Phyllis Schlafly Report, a look at what colleges teach — and don't teach. The people's scientist: Kathy Sykes made a microscope from a saucepan on telly and says academics must learn to listen.

Scientists have discovered element 118, the newest block on the periodic table. But  why do scientists work so hard to create new elements that last for such a short time? The man behind the magnitude scale: A review of Richter’s Scale: Measure of an Earthquake, Measure of a Man (and more). Steve Donoghue gently debunks the anthropocentric conceits of Pulitzer Prize-winner Douglas Hofstadter’s newest book, I Am a Strange Loop.

From Natural History, the Cosmic Perspective: Neil deGrasse Tyson explains how embracing cosmic realities can give us a more enlightened view of human life; a review of The Invisible Sex: Uncovering the True Roles of Women in Prehistory; and Faces of the Human Past: Science and art combine to create a new portrait gallery of our hominid heritage. Obituary: Mary Douglas. Anthropology's "Other": A review of The Anthropology of Christianity, ed. by Fenella Cannell and Christian Moderns: Freedom and Fetish in the Mission Encounter by Webb Keane.

And from The University Bookman, a review of Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense by N. T. Wright; a review of Politics and Economics. An Essay on the Genesis of Economic Development by Rocco Pezzimenti; a review of Cattolicesimo, protestantesimo e capitalismo by Paolo Zanotto; a review of Law and Revolution, II: The Impact of the Protestant Reformation on the Western Legal Tradition by Harold J. Berman; and a review of The Fall of Rome and the End of Civilization by Bryan Ward-Perkins and The Fall of the Roman Empire: A New History of Rome and the Barbarians by Peter Heather


From H-Net, a review of The 'War on Terror' and the Framework of International Law. A review of Bad Men: Guantanamo Bay and the secret prisons. A review of Dangerous Nation by Robert Kagan. America, the world's arms pusher: No one is paying much attention to it, but our top export is the deadliest. The world as Shakespearean tragedy: Judging by the body count, modern global politics look headed for the bloody final act of a Bard tragedy.

A review of The Atomic Bazaar: The Rise of the Nuclear Poor by William Langewiesche (and more and more and more and more and more and an excerpt). From Jewcy, should we bomb Iran? Michael Freund and Justin Raimondo hash it out. Across the divide: Iran, in its effort to become a regional and global power, is reaching out across the Sunni-Shi'ite divide, exhorting Muslims worldwide to tolerate their differences — and march under one Islamic banner. David Remnick on why the Six-Day War is still being fought: A review of books. The professed goals of terrorists - - aspirations for equality or justice, for example - - may well be legitimate. However, the fact that terrorists act in isolation may actually set back their cause.

A Shining Model of Wealth Without Liberty: The Iraq war isn't over, but one thing's already clear: China won. A review of The Occupation to Iraq: Winning the War, Losing the Peace by Ali A. Allawi. Lt. Gen. Douglas E. Lute of the Army will now oversee operations in Iraq and Afghanistan — the so-called war czar. But is it a title worth having? America wants progress reports. What’s lacking in Iraq is good information. Soldiers’ Stories: What fires up the journalists at Military Times is the vulnerability of the community they cover.

Online, GOP is playing catch-up, as Democrats get an edge on the Web (and more by Jeff Jarvis). Hello, I’m a Democrat: Meet the netroots activists who have moved online and into political office. A review of The Thumpin': How Rahm Emanuel and the Democrats Learned to Be Ruthless and Ended the Republican Revolution by Neftali Bendavid. A review of No Retreat, No Surrender by Tom DeLay.

From The Politico, here a user's guide to Gore fever. Another book, another slide show, another global rock concert — another run? Al Gore has big plans. Where are you, Dream Candidate? Dream candidates always look, well, dreamy. Until they decide to run. Nader Redux: Should Dems fear Mike Gravel? Thirty years ago, he put the Pentagon Papers into the Senate record. Now he's back with a presidential campaign—and a bid to end the war before the election.

Should the libertarian Republican Ron Paul be kept out of the presidential debates? What Ron Paul said in this week's debate is utterly uncontroversial and true. If he was "blaming the victim" then he is in the company of many, many conservative pundits and intellectuals. And Land of the Giants: In the race for president, do the little people still matter?


Amis, boozer. Tynan, cold. Beckett, rubbish: A review of The Angry Years: the Rise and Fall of the Angry Young Men by Colin Wilson. A review of Rant: An Oral Biography of Buster Casey by Chuck Palahniuk (and more). Dave Eggers's What Is the What shows he has recovered from irony overload to tell a truly heartbreaking tale of a young man's journey from Africa to America.

A review of books by doctors who wield the pen to heal the profession. A thriller suggests Isaac Newton was murderously ambitious: A review of Ghostwalk by Rebecca Stott. A geoscientific page-turner: German thriller Der Schwarm plants one foot firmly in real science, the other gets chewed by clairvoyant, needle-toothed methane worms. The (Other) Secret: The inverse square law trumps the law of attraction. The Secret's Success Micki McGee puts a progressive spin on the self-help bestseller. Think Negative!: Oprah, it's time to come clean about The Secret.

Safety and love first: An article on the politics of children’s literature and Barbara McClintock. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer was Education Secretary Alan Johnson's favourite book at the age of 11. And it's on a list of the top 160 books for teenage boys. But is Mark Twain's tale relevant today? How his down-and-out Central Valley days gave Mark Twain his voice—and made him famous. The invention of America: Two books, Walt Disney: The Biography by Neal Gabler and The Animated Man: A Life of Walt Disney, illustrate how scenes from the life of Walt Disney have shaped how we all see Main Street, USA (and more).

Rhett, Scarlett and friends prepare for yet another encore: The second sequel to Gone With the Wind will be published this fall after years of setbacks. The Southernness of the South: An interview with Roy Blount, Jr., author of Long Time Leaving: Dispatches From Up South.

From The Nation, over eighteen seasons and three presidential eras, The Simpsons has paid badly animated homage to all that sucks in America. Simon Maxwell Apter measures their impact; and Calvin Trillin pays tribute to Studs Terkel, a Chicago icon whose curiosity and generosity of spirit embraces everyone, without regard to rank or station. From PopMatters, an article on America's Most Policed Art Form: The rise of the informal mixtape economy. Roll Over, iPod: There's nothing like a genuine jukebox.

From Smithsonian, Blues Alley: How Chicago became the blues capital of the world. Billy Taylor has made a career of trying to prove that jazz still has an audience. But does it? An interview with T. Denean Sharpley-Whiting, author of Pimps Up, Ho's Down: Hip Hop's Hold on Young Black Women. A review of Third Coast: Outkast, Timbaland & How Hip-Hop Became a Southern Thing. When the sounds were a-changin': A review of White Bicycles: Making Music in the 1960s by Joe Boyd. The life and loves of a he-devil: Marilyn Manson talks sex, death and make-up. And Sex, Drugs and Updating Your Blog: How the rock ‘n’ roll life became a desk job


From The New Yorker, Angels and Ages: Adam Gopnik on Lincoln’s language and its legacy; and O Lucky Man! Nicholas Lemann reviews The Reagan Diaries. A review of Presidential Courage: Brave Leaders and How They Changed America, 1789-1989 by Michael Beschloss (and an excerpt). Gay in D.C. during the height of McCarthyism: A review of Fellow Travelers by Thomas Mallon (and more). Alan Brinkley reviews Brothers: The Hidden History of the Kennedy Years by David Talbot (and more). A review of Vincent Bugliosi's Reclaiming History: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy. An interview with R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr., author of The Clinton Crack-Up: The Boy President's Life After the White House.

From The Texas Observer, Being Warren Chisum: Inside the mind of the state's most powerful fundamentalist. The death of the Rev. Jerry Falwell highlighted the evangelical Christian movement’s recent evolution. Down, but Maybe Not Out: Seeing the persistence of the conservative movement through two of its most recent fallen — Paul Wolfowitz and Jerry Falwell. Church and State: Frances FitzGerald on how Jerry Falwell shaped American society. Frank Rich on the Reverend Falwell's heavenly timing. A review of Esalen: America and the Religion of No Religion.

A review of On Conscience and more and more on Jesus of Nazareth by Pope Benedict XVI. A review of The Power and the Glory: Inside the Dark Heart of John Paul II's Vatican. What does a girl have to do to get excommunicated? Catholic officials keep threatening to excommunicate pro-choice politicians and activists like Frances Kissling. She thinks they're bluffing, and canon law is on her side.


From Post-Autistic Economics Review, Arjo Klamer (Erasums), Deirdre McCloskey (UIC), and and Stephen Ziliak (Roosevelt): Is There Life after Samuelson’s Economics? Changing the Textbooks; Edward Fullbrook (UWE): Narrative Pluralism; and should countries aspire to a high score for “economic freedom”? pdf.

A review of The Origin of the History of Science in Classical Antiquity. A review of Eriugena, Berkeley, and the Idealist Tradition. From Kritika & Kontext, no translator can translate equally well. A lot gets lost in translation. Some languages don't translate well. These are just some of the translator's dirty secrets.

From Sign and Sight, the press is a public resource: Philosopher Jürgen Habermas argues for state support for quality newspapers. The intellectual ties that bind: Lisa Jardine on the history of shared intellectual activity between the US and Europe. A tale of scholarly pugilists: An Oxford Blue recognises the pleasure of thumping Cambridge boys in Blue Blood, a film about boxing at Oxford University.

Christian law schools springing up: With an explicitly Christian worldview, these students want to leave their mark on the law. Don’t Be Afraid of Committees: Graduate students have much to learn by getting involved in academic governance. The Closing of the University Commons: Lewis F. Powell and his followers knew that tightening the financial screws on the universities would serve to make the higher education fall into line. Battling Term-Paper Cheats: As more students turn to online paper mills for help, schools are fighting back with their own high-tech methods of detecting cheats. Are they overreacting?

From HNN, an article on rediscovering American conservatism again. From Wired, why famous counterfactual historian Niall Ferguson loves making history with games. A gentlemanly game that became a monster: A review of Why Beauty Is Truth by Ian Stewart.

From Scientific American, Going beyond X and Y: Babies born with mixed sex organs often get immediate surgery. New genetic studies should force a rethinking about sex assignment and gender identity; The Traveler's Dilemma When playing this simple game, people consistently reject the rational choice. In fact, by acting illogically, they end up reaping a larger reward—an outcome that demands a new kind of formal reasoning; a look at 10 animals that may go extinct in the next 10 years; and so what do you make of an idea like Pleistocene rewilding? The man who lost himself: Jeff Ingram rebuilt his life after suffering total amnesia. Then it happened again. The no-frills thrill: How value engineering governs your life more than you know

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