From n+1, Ian McCougall on Providence, Rhode Island; and John Davison on Austin at large. Nancy Scola on the rise of the New Baltimoreans. The Chicago Way: The “Blago” scandal may have set new lows for reality TV-abetted shamelessness, but the ex-Illinois governor was just one in a long, storied line of corrupt Chicago politicos. Dennis Romero on Koreatown, America's hippest neighborhood. Driving across California is like going from Mississippi to Massachusetts without ever crossing a state line. Robert Atkinson on how states and localities can get off the economic development treadmill. Robert A. Margo reviews The Evolution of a Nation: How Geography and Law Shaped the American States by Daniel Berkowitz and Karen B. Clay. Why are Americans so: A map of American state stereotypes, generated by Google autocomplete. After the oil rush: In Alaska, dwindling reserves forecast a statewide identity crisis. Natalie Wolchover on how America's state borders not set in stone. Why not let all the states secede from the US? Harry Cheadle wonders. Who would win a war between all the United States? Martin W. Lewis on diagramming the “Greater U.S. Realm”.

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