paper trail

Philip Pullman announces new trilogy; Gizmodo looks for leaks from federal employees

Philip Pullman

Philip Pullman announced a new trilogy, “The Book of Dust.” The still-untitled first installment follows Lyra Belacqua, the heroine of his first series, “His Dark Materials,” and will be published in October.

Jessica Jones actress Krysten Ritter has written a novel. Her psychological thriller, Bonfire, will be published in November by Crown Archetype.

In the wake of Michael Flynn’s resignation, President Trump, as well as his main right-wing media supporters, have avoided discussing the administration’s ties to Russia and focused instead on the leaks themselves. Trump took to Twitter to say that “the real scandal here is that classified information is illegally given out by ‘intelligence’ like candy.” On multiple Fox News shows, guests reiterated the president’s statement—Laura Ingraham described the situation as “death by a thousand leaks.” At Breitbart, an article said that the controversy “raises troubling questions about the role of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the intelligence services.”

After vehement denials from the Trump administration that Sean Spicer will be replaced, CNN investigates where the rumors are coming from. Although Steve Bannon and Reince Priebus call the leaks “scuttlebutt from lower level staff,” numerous unnamed sources say that Kellyanne Conway is the source. "She's clearly guiding a press narrative that he's not up for the job,” said one anonymous source. "It's becoming abundantly clear that Kellyanne is making Sean's job impossible."

At The Intercept, Glenn Greenwald acknowledges that the intelligence agents who released information about Flynn’s conversations broke the law, but that their crimes were justified because the information needed to be known to the public. “The mere fact that an act is illegal does not mean it is unjust or even deserving of punishment,” Greenwald writes. “Oftentimes, the most just acts are precisely the ones that the law prohibits.”

Gizmodo Media Group has started buying Facebook ads that target government employees in an effort to encourage them to leak information to their new website, John Cook, Gizmodo’s head of investigations, told the Wall Street Journal that the site wants federal employees “to know that if they see or know about something they think is newsworthy, we are here for them.” Gizmodo also plans “to purchase bus shelter ads near certain government agencies in Washington, D.C.”

Tonight at the 92nd Street Y, Colson Whitehead and George Saunders on their most recent books, The Underground Railroad and Lincoln in the Bardo.