Daniel Sutter (Oklahoma) and Daniel J. Smith (Troy): Soviet Sports and the Efficiency of Central Planning. From Fletcher Forum, a photo essay on countries of the former Soviet Union. After being uncovered by Soviet archaeologists, ancient mysteries revealed in Turkmen desert sands. Ethan Pollock reviews Stalin’s Think Tank: The Varga Institute and the Making of the Stalinist Idea of World Economy and Politics, 1927-1953 by Kyung Deok Roh. Derek Mead on Petr Mikhailovich Borisov, the Soviet scientist who dreamed of melting the Arctic with a 55-mile-long dam. A proposed new law has Moldova’s Russian speakers fearing the end of bilingualism, while members of other ethnic groups worry they could lose their languages entirely. Asya Pereltsvaig on Stalin’s ethnic deportations and the gerrymandered ethnic map.
From Study of Changing Societies, a special issue on corruption. Dina Francesca Haynes (New England Law): The Celebritization of Human Trafficking. Lisa Margonelli on how the trailer park could save us all: A healthy, inexpensive, environmentally friendly solution for housing millions of retiring baby boomers is staring us in the face — we just know it by a dirty name. The Left Bank in the Vieux Carre: Charles Jeanfreau reviews Dixie Bohemia: A French Quarter Circle in the 1920s by John Shelton Reed. A bad day for Jason Richwine is a good day for his white nationalist editor, Richard Spencer. Felix Salmon on why Jamie Dimon needs a boss. Rome's Cassandra: Paul Baumann on George Weigel, the neoconservative leading the fight over the legacy of Vatican II in the American Church. Signature required? Technology has made signing our names a farce.
Edward J. Erler (CSU-San Bernardino): The Second Amendment as an Expression of First Principles. Aimee Elizabeth Kaloyares (Southern): Annie Get Your Gun? An Analysis of Reactionary Gun Control Law and Their Utter Failure to Protect Americans from Violent Gun Crimes. Founding Firearms: Pam Karlan argues that Justice Antonin Scalia appears to abandon his originalist views when discussing guns and the Second Amendment. Is the N.R.A. Un-American? One of our traditions — throwing off the shackles of a government that has overstepped its bounds — is at odds with another, the one that accepts the results of elections. The right to bear blades: Daniel Engber on how we regulate Americans' other favorite weapon: the knife. Here are 5 mind-blowing facts nobody told you about guns.
From the latest issue of Dissensus, Sophie Bourgault (Ottawa): Prolegomena to a Rehabilitation of Platonic Moderation. The “Fucking Hipster” Show: Anthony Galluzzo on mocking hipsters in the service of capital. An odd assortment of heroes and villains all claimed to have been humbled in recent times — but how can it be that triumph and disaster both have the capacity to humble those who experience them? From The New Yorker, after Rana: James Surowiecki on Western companies and Bangladesh’s factory fire; and the baby in the well: Paul Bloom on the case against empathy. Boehner accidentally explains why his deficit position is phony. From LRB, is Wagner bad for us? Nicholas Spice wonders. Colin Farrelly on empirical ethics and the duty to extend the "biological warranty period". A look at how the rising sea is already a threat in the Caribbean region.
Peter E. Robertson and Longfeng (Western Australia): On the Existence of a Middle Income Trap. Erkan Goren (Oldenburg): How Ethnic Diversity Affects Economic Development. Todd Mitton (BYU): The Wealth of Subnations: Geography, Institutions, and Within-Country Development. Is there a curse of resources? Daron Acemoglu and James Robinson on the case of Cameroon. James Stewart on growth for low-income countries. Stephan Schmidt interviews Lorenzo Fioramonti, author of Gross Domestic Problem: The Politics Behind the World’s Most Powerful Number. Lorenzo Ferrari reviews The Poorer Nations: A Possible History of the Global South by Vijay Prashad. Three charts show how the world could end extreme poverty by 2030. Charles Kenny on why ending extreme poverty isn't good enough. If poverty ends, then what? Daniel Altman on why aid organizations should focus on making rich people happy, not making poor people less hungry.