Decisions more than a century ago explain why the U.S. has failed Puerto Rico in its time of need. Puerto Rico’s hurricane recovery held back by policy decisions to shortchange island. Why the Jones Act is Robin Hood in reverse: The previously obscure law not only slowed delivery of relief supplies to Puerto Rico — it represents a whole category of “rent-seeking” policies that redistribute income upwards. Puerto Rico pays taxes — the US is obligated to help it just as much as Texas and Florida. The race-baiter as kindly monarch: Trumpism in Puerto Rico. A tale of two Puerto Ricos: What Trump saw — and what he didn’t.

Puerto Rico’s debt service payment could be reduced to zero, for now. If you want Puerto Rico to recover, cancel its debt. Trump says Puerto Rico’s debt needs to be “wiped out”, doesn’t explain what he means. White House dials back Trump’s vow to clear Puerto Rico’s debt. We need to know a lot more about who’s advising Trump on the Puerto Rican debt front — what’s Wilbur Ross’s role? We can finally identify one of the largest holders of Puerto Rican debt: The Baupost Group, a Boston-based hedge fund managed by billionaire Seth Klarman. Puerto Rico needs federal relief and financial support, not lectures from “king of debt” Trump.

Puerto Ricans are going to flee if President Trump doesn’t fix hurricane relief. US school districts prepare for influx of Puerto Ricans: Federal law requires immediately enrolling children who have lost their home. How Hurricane Maria could change Puerto Rico’s political future: The storm has caused untold devastation — but it might also be an impetus for long-overdue change. Trump’s Puerto Rico response just might bring the island voting rights.


Should we treat domestic terrorists the way we treat ISIS? Daniel Byman on what works — and what doesn’t. The Las Vegas shooter didn’t just “snap” — they never do. Thoughts and prayers: Patrick Blanchfield on the mass shooting in Las Vegas. Las Vegas is only the deadliest shooting in US history because they don’t count black lives. Why gun violence research has been shut down for 20 years. The research is clear: Gun control saves lives. Maggie Koerth-Baker on how mass shootings are a bad way to understand gun violence. Amid talk of banning bump stocks for guns, retailers are selling out of the devices.


From the Journal of French and Francophone Philosophy, Hrvoje Tutek (Zagreb): Dwelling in the Apocalypse: Capitalist Modernity, Antimodernism, Zombies; and Russell Cobb (Alberta): The Bearded Ones: Dwelling in a History of Radicalism, Authenticity, and Neoliberalism (“Beards are a sort of dwelling. Much like Heidegger’s linguistic play with related etymologies of building and dwelling, beards are in a constant state of becoming, forever changing length, shape, and color”). Scandal widens: Two more in Trump’s Cabinet refuse to repay taxpayers for luxury travel. US votes against UN motion to condemn gay sex death penalty “over fears executions could be banned in the States”. You don’t have to write about Anthony Scaramucci anymore.


Michael S. Kang (Emory): Gerrymandering and the Constitutional Norm Against Government Partisanship. Steven Semeraro (Thomas Jefferson): Partisan Gerrymandering: Is There No Shame in It or Have Politicians Become Shameless? David Wasserman on how the Congressional map has a record-setting bias against Democrats — and it’s not just 2018. Democrats’ 2018 gerrymandering problem is really bad. Take a look at one of the country’s most blatant gerrymanders. The new front in the gerrymandering wars: Democracy vs. Math. Jane Dailey on how gerrymandering is a threat to our republic. Eric Holder: Gerrymandering has broken our democracy — the Supreme Court should help fix it (and more).

Everything you need to know about the Supreme Court’s big gerrymandering case. Will Justice Kennedy sink partisan gerrymandering or save it? The Supreme Court looks poised to strike down gerrymandering — here’s why. The U.S. could be free of gerrymandering — here’s how other countries do redistricting. Andrew Prokop on how Canada ended gerrymandering.


From Foreign Policy, how the Trump administration broke the State Department. Why is Trump hollowing out the State Department? Roger Cohen on the desperation of our diplomats. Trump administration has failed to fill almost a third of all senior posts in State Department. “The lowest-profile State Department in 45 years”, in 2 charts. Laura Rosenberger and Loren DeJonge Schulman on how President Trump’s State Department is sabotaging America’s future leadership. State Department considers scrubbing democracy promotion from its mission. What Trump and Tillerson don’t get about democracy promotion. Diplomats question tactics of Tillerson, the executive turned Secretary of State.

Why has Rex Tillerson belly-flopped as Secretary of State? How Rex Tillerson failed the State Department: Experts believe he’s one of the worst secretaries of state in history. Rex Tillerson is running the State Department into the ground. Should Rex Tillerson resign? Tillerson denies wanting to resign, but doesn’t deny calling Trump a “moron”. Why Tillerson kissed Trump’s ring. Rex Tillerson loves Big Donald. Tillerson, Mattis, Mnuchin forge “suicide pact” in the event Trump wants one of them gone. Should Rex Tillerson not resign as secretary of state? White House aides wanted Rex Tillerson to resign for calling Trump a “fucking moron”. How is there always a tweet?

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