Daniel Drezner (Tufts): The Future of US Foreign Policy. Waving Goodbye to Hegemony: Just a few years ago, America’s hold on global power seemed unshakable — but a lot has changed while we’ve been in Iraq. How Bush stacks up: Like Rorschach tests, a growing stack of Bush books reveals very different presidents—Evangelical Bush, Frat-Boy Bush, Weepy Bush—as authors try to explain his failure and his "success". William Saletan on the tragic stubbornness of George W. Bush. Jay Rosen on why campaign coverage sucks: Horse-race journalism works for journalists and fails the public. A review of It's so French! Hollywood, Paris and the Making of the Cosmopolitan Film Culture by Vanessa B Schwartz. From TED, an interview with Frank Gehry.†An article on the network of thought leaders, donors and corporations behind the TED conference's audacious projects. More and more on The Mind of the Market by Michael Shermer (and an interview). How green is their growth: A new argument that economic progress can help to ease environmental woes, just so long as the governance is good too. Benjamin Franklin plays Sudoku: Founding father entertained himself devising beautiful mathematical puzzles. From LRB, Eric Hobsbawm on life during the Weimar Republic. An article on piecing together the dark legacy of East Germany's secret police. An article on ten extraordinary literary suicides.
From NYRB, Tony Judt on the "problem of evil" in postwar Europe; and a review of books on Israel. Most likely to secede: When it comes to the Union, a small but growing cadre of Vermonters want out. A review of The Genius of America by Eric Lane and Michael Oreskes; A More Perfect Constitution by Larry J. Sabato; and Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution by Woody Holton. The black box economy: Behind the recent bad news lurks a much deeper concern: The world economy is now being driven by a vast, secretive web of investments that might be out of anyone's control. The boiling frog syndrome is a grisly metaphor, but it's apt. A review of The Christian World: A Global History by Martin E. Marty. What are historians doing when they explain things? Rachel Leow investigates. From TLS, a review of Graham Greene: A Life in Letters; and a review of Germaine Greer's Shakespeare's Wife.†From Electronic Book Review, what was postmodernism? Brian McHale investigates. An excerpt from The Race Card: How Bluffing About Bias Makes Race Relations Worse by Richard Thompson Ford (and more). Slate introduces The Root, an online magazine on black politics, culture and history. From Good, an article on Joel Osteen and God, without the fuss. Religion within reason: An article on Pope Benedict’s critique of Islam.
From The Wilson Quarterly, the curse of generosity: The outpouring of tens of billions to improve global health seems like the most hopeful event of the 21st century, but the largess could make things worse. Unity isn't all it's cracked up to be: Even a consensus-building, problem-solving president can't solve political gridlock. What font says "Change"? Type designers decode the presidential candidate. 1968 riots: Should we grab the young ones and start over?†Free Bob Avakian! Oh, he's already free? Never mind. Greatest stories never told: Ten famous writers reveal their works that never made it into print; and he wrote Money, but is Martin Amis really worth £3,000 an hour? (and a review of The Second Plane). From NYRB, a review of books on blogs. A look at why sci-fi is the last bastion of philosophical writing. A review of A History of the Modern Fact: Problems of Knowledge in the Sciences of Wealth and Society by Mary Poovey. Math + Religion = Trouble: Actually, since Pythagoras the relationship between men of numbers and the Deity has been more along the lines of love-hate, but it's a rich vein. From Wired, an article on mapping the most complex structure in the universe: Your brain.†A review of Sex, Science & Profits: How People Evolved to Make Money by Terence Kealey (and more and more). Economists let some light in on the shady market for paid sex.