Conor Clarke (Yale): What Are Tax Havens and Why Are They Bad? Michael Littlewood (Auckland): Using New Zealand as a Tax Haven: How is it Done? Could it Be Stopped? Should it Be Stopped? Max Bearak on how global tax evasion keeps poor countries poor. Allison Christians on evasion, avoidance, and bashing Panama in a world of aggressive tax states. Let me tell you about the very rich: The Panama Papers highlight, with painstaking clarity, that austerity is not a shared sacrifice. Usman W. Chohan (UNSW): The Panama Papers and Tax Morality. Libby Nelson interviews Gabriel Zucman, author of The Hidden Wealth of Nations, on why the Panama Papers barely scratch the surface. Thomas Piketty on the Panama Papers: Act now — don’t wait for another crisis. Slavoj Zizek on the Panama Papers explained: The question of where crime begins is not a legal one, but an eminently political question, a question of power struggle.
Teresa M. Bejan (Oxford): Evangelical Toleration. Cecilea Mun (SMCM): The Rationalities of Emotions. Alparslan Nas (Marmara): Women Chewing Gum: Feminist Critical Analysis of Advertising as Symbolic Violence. Researchers have found a major problem with The Little Mermaid and other Disney movies. Donald Trump is just Paul Ryan on steroids: Donald Trump’s budget doesn’t come anywhere close to adding up, but neither do other Republicans’. Monica Bell reviews The Scholar Denied: W.E.B. Du Bois and the Birth of Modern Sociology by Aldon Morris. Michael Lind on the art of the book review. What is money? John Lanchester on when Bitcoin grows up. Harriet Tubman just bumped Andrew Jackson from the $20 bill — historian Eric Foner approves. “Note to self: to bolster U.S. foreign economic policy, write rap musical on life of David Ricardo”.
From Fusion, Kashmir Hill on how Silicon Valley’s young tech workers are betting that this 1960s technology will let them live forever. Courtney Weaver goes inside the weird world of cryonics: From the US to Russia, companies are freezing people hoping for a second shot at life. Marcattilio McCracken on FM-2030, or Fereidoun M. Esfandiary, the frozen father of modern transhumanism. A dying young woman’s hope in cryonics and a future: Cancer claimed Kim Suozzi at age 23, but she chose to have her brain preserved with the dream that neuroscience might one day revive her mind. If death becomes optional, will only the rich get to live forever? President for Life: Can Zoltan Istvan beat Hillary, Trump, and death itself? A series of experiments in mice has led to what some are calling “one of the more important aging discoveries ever”. Genetic superheroes: A study finds rare individuals resistant to inherited fatal diseases.
From Public Seminar, Michael Weinman on a Weberian lesson concerning the 2016 Democratic presidential primary. Hillary Clinton uttered the most radical truth of the 2016 election. Hillary Clinton’s answer about who should pay for dates explains her entire political philosophy. The conspiracy theory that the Clinton campaign stole votes makes no sense. Most Clinton voters like Bernie Sanders — most Sanders voters don’t like Hillary Clinton. Is there an argument to be made for “Bernie or Bust”? Prominent Bernie supporters Doug Henwood, Rania Khalek, Kathleen Geier and Joshua Holland on whether they’d vote for Hillary in November. Josh Marshall on time to reform Big Sanders. Jamelle Bouie on how there is no Bernie Sanders movement: Almost every modern Democratic primary has had a progressive insurgency — Bernie’s isn’t anything new, but it can be.
Ronald Brownstein on Sanders’s practically unprecedented success. Has Bernie Sanders’s positive campaign doomed him? Laura Reston on how he’s kept his pledge to steer clear of attack ads against Hillary Clinton — and now it’s too late. What should Bernie do now? Inspire less, explain more. Bernie Sanders won’t go quietly into the night: Democrats, including Hillary Clinton, should be grateful that he’s sticking around. Jared Bernstein on how not to squander this anti-establishment moment.
Erik Ringmar (Lund): Lucid Dreams, Perfect Nightmares: Consciousness, Capitalism and Our Sleeping Selves. The Assad files: Ben Taub on capturing the top-secret documents that tie the Syrian regime to mass torture and killings. The Thatcher problem: From Margaret Thatcher to Hillary Clinton, we forget that women do not deserve to exercise power only on the condition that we would do it “better” than men and promote the feminist cause. Chava Gourarie investigates the algorithms that govern our lives. Donald Trump’s role model is an Ayn Rand character. Garry Kasparov on Trump’s vile New York values: How The Donald represents the worst of a great city. Charli Carpenter on Game of Thrones as theory: It’s not as realist as it seems — and that’s good. Ana Swanson on the problem with almost all movies.
Jeff Sharlet on Donald Trump, American Preacher: Building a congregation for his prosperity gospel, one chaotic rally at a time. Brian Connolly on our sovereign father, Donald Trump. Tom Shachtman on Eric Hoffer, the American prophet who predicted Trump. J.D. Vance on why Trump’s antiwar message resonates with white America. Trump’s appeal seems rooted in a distinctive political culture — born in the British borderlands, and still flourishing in America’s southern highlands. Ariel Dorfman on the case for feeling compassion toward Trump supporters. Young Republicans are surprisingly moderate — and they could change American politics. Adam Gopnik on Donald Trump and the stunts that expose the GOP. Is the Republican Party too cowardly to stop Trump? Anti-Trump conservatives are embracing the liberal critique of the Right — and they will disavow every word of it on the first day of the general election.
Donald Trump’s avenging angels: Rick Perlstein on how the orange-haired monster has rewritten the history of American conservatism. Donald Trump is sloppy about policy details, but precise at managing party factions: He is carefully trying to remove libertarians and neoconservatives from the Republican coalition. Could the GOP be facing an intellectual exodus? Forty years ago, neoconservatives started migrating toward the Republican Party — a reverse migration is possible. Can the American Right renounce utopianism? The Republican masses are more conservative, in the traditional sense, than the so-called conservative intellectuals. What happens when the partnership that created the modern Republican Party shatters? Tevi Troy on how GOP intellectuals’ feud with the base is remaking U.S. politics. One part of the Republican establishment actually loves Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.
Jonathan Bernstein writes in defense of the Republicans’ nomination rules. Trump on ice: He probably won’t be the nominee — so how will the GOP get rid of him? Republicans have a candidate who could take back the White House — they’re just not voting for him. Is the GOP risking suicide? Pat Buchanan wonders. Can Republicans recover from convention chaos? Democrats did in 1968. Ed Kilgore on how the GOP will probably bounce back quickly if Trump wins the nomination and crashes and burns in November. Yuval Levin on the next conservative movement: After Trump’s demagoguery, Republicans can revitalize their party by offering bottom-up solutions suited to the diverse, dynamic society America has become. Can Donald Trump lead a political movement? After he loses, his supporters may beg him to keep up the fight — and he just might have no better option.
Steffen Roth (ESC Rennes): Serious Gamification: On the Redesign of a Popular Paradox. Arden Rowell (Illinois) and Dan Bacon (Harvard): Gamifying Risk Communication: The Game of Mortality. The secret life: Gabriel Winslow-Yost reviews Gamelife: A Memoir by Michael W. Clune (and more) and God in the Machine: Video Games as Spiritual Pursuit by Liel Leibovitz. Beyond video games: Lauren C. Williams on how virtual reality is having a major moment. The man who created Second Life thinks we can make an Earth-sized virtual world. Patricia Hernandez on 10 big myths about video games, debunked by the people who make them. Gamergate may have just won its most disgraceful scalp yet. Jesse Singal on the strange tale of Social Autopsy, the anti-harassment start-up that descended into Gamergate trutherism.
Amy Muise and Emily A. Impett (Toronto): Good, Giving, and Game: The Relationship Benefits of Communal Sexual Motivation. I have no idea what this startup does and nobody will tell me. A New York Times analysis finds immigrants, the poor and minorities gain sharply under Obamacare. The Supreme Court might be headed for a 4-4 split on immigration — and judicial chaos (and more). Jonathan Chait on how the Trumpian Right and the illiberal Left feed off each other. This one line sums up the big Clinton-Sanders policy argument. Here is the foreword of an issue of the Touro Law Review on the conference “Billy Joel and the Law”. It is with great excitement and a certain amount of pride that we introduce the Sherman Oaks Review of Books (SORB), but readers can be forgiven for wondering: Does the world actually need another literary review?
Tsilly Dagan (Bar-Ilan): International Tax and Global Justice. Why are some nations’ citizens more likely to cheat on their taxes? John D’Attoma and Sven Steinmo investigate. Adrienne LeBas on how research from Nigeria shows us how a government can build a tax base. Are tax rates primarily determined by war? Torsten Bell reviews Taxing the Rich: A History of Fiscal Fairness in the United States and Europe by Kenneth Scheve and David Stasavage. Donald B. Marron (Urban Institute): Should We Tax Internalities Like Externalities? Jonathan S. Masur and Eric A. Posner (Chicago): Toward a Pigovian State. Yehonatan Givati (HUJI): Googling a Free Lunch: The Taxation of Fringe Benefits. Shu-Yi Oei (Tulane) and Diane M. Ring (BC): The Tax Lives of Uber Drivers: Evidence from Internet Discussion Forums.
Bret N. Bogenschneider and Matthias Kasper (Vienna): The Human Subconscious and Taxation. Tsilly Dagan (Bar-Ilan): The Currency of Taxation (“a systemic phenomenon through which the powerful social instrument of income taxation contributes to the construction of our identities as well as our interactions with one another”).
Donald Rumsfeld seems confused about the purpose of the IRS. One reason tax returns are so complicated? Because H&R Block and other preparers like it that way. Christopher Faricy on how the U.S. tax system disadvantages racial minorities. Undeserving capital: This Tax Day, make the wealthy pay — you made them rich to begin with. Happy Tax Day — now, let’s get to work on that messy tax code of ours.
Daryl J. Wennemann (Fontbonne): What World Do We Want? Michael Morrison (Oxford): STS and Enhancement Technologies: A Program for Future Research. Could a drug make us nicer people? Jonathon Keats reviews The Myth of the Moral Brain: The Limits of Moral Enhancement by Harris Wiseman. Genetically modified mice reveal the secret to a painless life: Researchers have discovered the pharmaceutical recipe for painlessness. How could we make life on earth a utopia? David Roden (Open): Post-Singularity Entities in Film and TV. The Singularity and the neural code: John Horgan on how bionic convergence and psychic uploading won’t be possible unless we crack the neural code, science’s hardest problem. Woody Evans (TWU): Posthuman Rights: Dimensions of Transhuman Worlds. Are cyborgs real? Frieda Klotz visits the world’s first cyborg fair.
Andrew Aghapour interviews Zoltan Istvan, the first transhumanist candidate. You can download Envisaging Politics 2.0: How AIs, Cyborgs, and Transhumanism Can Enhance Democracy and Improve Society, ed. David W. Wood and Alexander J. Karran.