From World Politics Review, reporting the Georgian war: Is Bernard-Henri Levy a fabulist? A review of BHL's Left in Dark Times: A Stand Against the New Barbarism (and more and more and more). Timothy Garton Ash on friends of liberal international order facing a new global disorder; and not a new order: Parag Khanna on the new middle ages. From The New Yorker, a look at the complicated death of a 9/11 hero. From Esquire, an article on the photograph of 9/11's Falling Man, the story behind it, and the search for the man pictured in it; and what's taking so damn long to build the Freedom Tower, and what will it mean when we're all dead? Foreign Policy asks experts to tell how to catch Osama Bin Laden. Have we ever faced an enemy more stupid than Muslim terrorists? "Follow God, work and provoke no one": That’s the philosophy of a unique Muslim sect. No we can't: A review of Party of Defeat: How Democrats and Radicals Undermined America’s War on Terror Before and After 9-11 by David Horowitz and Ben Johnson. A look at how the Satanic Verses episode changed the landscape of Muslim society in Britain. From Intelligent Life, Tariq Ramadan on freedoms lost and gained. From Jewcy, an article on Richard Wagner, an anti-Semite to love. Niall Ferguson reviews books on the Nazi empire, the least successful piece of colonisation ever seen.
From New York, have we reached the end of book publishing as we know it? Attack of the Megalisters: These days, the used-book business seems to be less about connoisseurship than about database management. "Why Real Estate Won't Go Bust", and other book-title bloopers. From The Independent, can intelligent literature survive in the digital age? Prospero's Island: Shakespeare's classic set two hours from Boston? Scott McLemee scours the books to find out. After more than a decade as Czech president, Vaclav Havel has returned to writing plays; has his artistic vision survived the compromises of power? Guru Papers: An article on the rise and fall of a Swedish little magazine in the 1970s. LOL, OIC, and WTF at ROFLThing: Meet the latest academic discipline and realm for cultural criticism: Internet culture studies. The guys behind social trendcasting site Edopter want to know how, exactly, something becomes popular, but they need you to do it; can they build the Wikipedia of trends? From Edge, Nassim Nicholas Taleb on The Fourth Quadrant: A map of the limits of statistics. From THES, a review of Between Naturalism and Religion: Philosophical Essays by Jurgen Habermas; and Raymond Geuss foresees a future of strict controls or war over resources. From ResetDOC, a look at when soccer divides people. Cities are being swept up in a wave of inane pranks.
People whose resumes overlap with the presidential candidates’ explain how their jobs would come in handy in the White House. From Democracy, why it matters whom the president hires: A review of The Politics of Presidential Appointments: Political Control and Bureaucratic Performance by David Lewis; and is the golden age of political consulting over? A review of Alpha Dogs: The Americans Who Turned Political Spin into a Global Business by James Harding. In search of rational voters: Do such creatures exist, and how can we mint more of them? In an information-saturated era that has supposedly made us ever more sophisticated, why does blatant and manipulative political imagery continue to work? Shankar Vedantam on the power of political misinformation. Thomas Friedman on making America stupid. Lee Siegel on the triumph of culture over politics. Letters from Wasilla: Anne Kilkennyn on the Sarah Palin she knew. Femocracy ’08: Sisterhood is powerful, but Palin has fried the circuits of post-Clinton feminists. Why McCain should put Palin on the Supreme Court. What's the difference between Palin and Muslim fundamentalists? Lipstick — a theocrat is a theocrat, whether Muslim or Christian. What it would be like if all women lived in Sarah Palin's America. Conor Clarke writes in defense of elitism: Palin emphasizes her credentials as "just your average hockey mom".