A new issue of Triple Canopy is out. From Mediations, Antonio Negri on The Labor of the Multitude and the Fabric of Biopolitics; Laura Hudson (UC-Davis): The Political Animal: Species-Being and Bare Life; Mathias Nilges (St. Francis Xavier): The Anti-Anti-Oedipus: Representing Post-Fordist Subjectivity; and Peter Hitchcock (Baruch): The Failed State and the State of Failure. What's the most reliable economic indicator? Try the black women's hair index. The Seattle Post-Intelligencer’s erstwhile book critic John Douglas Marshall recalls his years covering our most literate city, including the question he dared ask Martin Amis and the Nobel winner who loved "The Simpsons". More and more and more on The Gamble by Thomas Ricks. From Good, a look at the 10 worst quirks of bottled water culture. Calypso Awakenings: What a pirate festival, and dancing alone to Calypso, can teach us about the here and now. Kansas doctor George Tiller has continued to perform late-term abortions despite being picketed, bombed, and shot in both arms — and then it occurred to his opponents to put him on trial. Dark Roasted Blend dares you to play these scores, although it may be hazardous to your mental health (and part 2). BFFs with COW: Being friends with your boss’ wife is always tricky but in the military it can be even more challenging.
From The Washington Monthly, a little-known policy is turning sleepy central Florida into a green energy hub — could it do the same for America at large?; think government can’t fix the auto industry? Then how did it manage to fix the railroad industry — twice?; and the only thing we have to fear is fear of big government. The Big Takeover: The global economic crisis isn't about money — it's about power: Matt Taibbi on how Wall Street insiders are using the bailout to stage a revolution. The Demise of the Overconfident Jackass: How's this for American resilience? Rahm Emanuel and his tough SOB brethren have officially replaced the douchebag. The Missing Mahatma: Gershom Gorenberg is in search for a Gandhi or a Martin Luther King in the West Bank. Ronald Brownstein on why Obama can't satisfy the Left (and more). Terror begins at home: Will the Obama years see another militia scare? From PopMatters, a review of The Contemporary Comic Book Superhero by Angel Ndalianis; and does video game criticism need a Pauline Kael? More and more on The House of Wittgenstein by Alexander Waugh (and more at Bookforum). An interview with Peter Singer on PETA and the ethics of dog shows (and more and more and more and more and more and more and more on The Life You Can Save).
The inaugural issue of Erasmus Journal for Philosophy and Economics is out. The great American short story is still being written, and awaits its readers: In an age pressed for time, rediscovering the pleasures of compression in the work of masters such as Flannery O’Connor, John Cheever and Donald Barthelme. From The Guardian, why books won't change your life: Publishers love to say a novel is unputdownable, or life-changing, but you can't imagine anything worse; and a look at how Atlas Shrugged is absurd but strangely compelling. From The Nation, a review of True Crime: An American Anthology. RIP, MBA: The economic crisis has exposed the myth of business-school expertise. From TAP, Robert Kuttner on ten radical remedies America needs; Robert H. Frank on post-consumer prosperity: Finding new opportunities amid the economic wreckage; and Bush kept choices about taxes separate from questions of services — Progressives have turned the tables. From Eat the State, Gary E. Locke on why he loves paying taxes; but why do so many of us pay our income taxes? An Idiot's Guide to Square Notes: You can't get too far into Catholic sacred music without running into "neumes," those little square notes on four lines that look beautiful if oddly antiquated.
From Hoover Digest, what sustains the conservative agenda? What makes it distinctive and coherent? In a word, principle; the recent elections crowned a long-rising Democratic dominance — the pattern may hold or crumble; Michael Boskin on how to get back to normal; John Taylor on permanent tax cuts as the best stimulus (and more by Robert Barro); Philip Bobbitt on how an administration ends — the war on terror goes on; Fouad Ajami on how history may yet prove Samuel Huntington’s "clash of civilizations" right; what’s to become of "Chimerica"? Niall Ferguson investigates; and Robert Zelnick, who coached David Frost for his storied broadcast bout with Richard Nixon, shares his glimpse of "the unleashed Nixon". A review of Emergency: This Book Will Save Your Life by Neil Strauss (and an interview and more and more and more). Rupert Murdoch calls Google, Yahoo copyright thieves — is he right? A look at the genius behind Google’s web browser (and a review of Planet Google: One Company’s Audacious Plan to Organize Everything We Know by Randall Stross at Bookforum). An article on the Googlization of small business: The great — and scary — prospect of relying on the search giant. A review of The Wikipedia Revolution: How a Bunch of Nobodies Created the World’s Greatest Encyclopedia by Andrew Lih (and more).
From World Policy Journal, Nina L. Khrushcheva (New School): Russia’s Rotting Empire; Mira Kamdar (WPI): India: Richer, Poorer, Hotter, Armed; Francois Heisbourg (IISS): Five Days in December: The Iran Crisis 25 Years Hence; and Mona Eltahawy on The Middle East’s Generation Facebook. The burgeoning field of astrobiology has a less well-known offshoot: The search for a "shadow biosphere", a second, independent form of life unrelated to sort we know (and more and more). Michael Lind reviews Fighting Identity: Sacred War and World Change by Michael Vlahos. A review of Obelisk: A History by Brian A. Curran, Anthony Grafton, Pamela O. Long and Benjamin Weiss. Who's the Divider? Ronald Brownstein investigates. From Air & Space Power Journal, a review of Warheads: Cable News and the Fog of War by Kenneth Allard. Stompin' in my Air Force One: How will Obama's presidency change hip-hop? From Black Commentator, can hip-hop save an illiterate generation? An interview with Joan Wallach Scott, author of The Politics of the Veil (and more). Where to Now: 2008 was a spectacular year for women in politics — but the sober reality is that the race has just begun. A review of Theaters of Madness: Insane Asylums and Nineteenth-Century American Culture by Benjamin Reiss.Clean and Virtuous: When physical purity becomes moral purity. A review of Worlds Made by Words: Scholarship and Community in the Modern West by Anthony Grafton.
Rich Gibson (SDSU): How Shall We Live as Lambs Among Wolves? Reason-Passion-Power and Organization. Is it time to retrain business schools? Anthony Giddens on recession, climate change and the return to planning. Daniel Gross on why Obama should ignore the Dow. Dame-Ren (No Good People): A glimpse into Japan’s embrace of Western-style capitalism. A number of reports on the state of democracy and freedom around the world promote the notion of a "democratic recession" in the 2000s — their own methods and conclusions deserve scrutiny. A review of Tapping the Riches of Science: Universities and the Promise of Economic Growth by Roger L. Geiger and Creso M. Sa. On the one hand society at large relies on moral and theological arguments to ban suicide; on the other our world is plagued with destructive wars and suicidal conflicts. From Wired, here's the untold story of the world's biggest diamond heist. Is it safe? The first company with a plan — and a rocket — to send humans to orbit answers the existential question. Does dark energy really exist, or does Earth occupy a very unusual place in the universe? Suzanne Menghraj on what a pirate festival, and dancing alone to Calypso, can teach us about the here and now. The mysterious ailment called colony collapse disorder has wiped out large numbers of the bees that pollinate a third of our crops; the causes turn out to be surprisingly complex, but solutions are emerging.
Joseph W. Bendersky (VCU): Horkheimer, "Militant Democracy", and War. From The Atlantic Monthly, for some people, spending just doesn’t come naturally, especially in a recession — behavioral economists have a solution; and Christopher Hitchens on Edward Upward, one of the only writers of the ’30s to deal with Britain’s elephant in the room — fascism — but his career was forever warped by his communism. Organised queuing? It's a drastic solution to what can seem to be a mysterious art — getting served at a busy bar. Obama's regulatory czar, Cass Sunstein, has a complex faith in market initiatives — but sometimes a "nudge" is not enough. AskMeFi: When the hive mind works, it's a beautiful thing. Revenge of the Nerd: An interview with Rachel Maddow. All in the Game: Inside the mind of Barack Obama as he sets forth on his first term as President. From American Heritage, of steadycams and skycams: Filmmakers have long sought the means to add a little kinetic energy to their moving images. The other porn addiction: Why are ordinary women exposing themselves online? An article on the legacy of Modernism: Celebrating 90 years of Bauhaus. A review of Max Weber: A Biography by Joachim Radkau. Aren’t there a lot of other people with ostensibly respectable academic credentials who have reason to suspect that they may be uncultured oafs?
From The American Scholar, purpose-driven life: Evolution does not rob life of meaning, but creates meaning — it also makes possible our own capacity for creativity; the Terminator comes to Wall Street: How computer modeling worsened the financial crisis and what we ought to do about it. A review of Meltdown: A Free Market Look at Why the Stock Market Collapsed, the Economy Tanked, and Government Bailouts Will Make Things Worse by Thomas E. Woods Jr. Bankers vs. Economists: Who deserves more blame for the global economic collapse? One of America’s most-read bloggers is Catholic, conservative, gay, pro-Obama — and from East Grinstead; Johann Hari profiles Andrew Sullivan, a writer with an extraordinary tale to tell. Here are 20 things you didn't know about money. Songs for the Deaf: Benjamin Bartlett Sigerson goes inside the music industry's "loudness wars", including the leading opposition movement that may be our only hope. Frederick Seidel has been called crass, disturbing, a name-dropping, upmarket sinner — and that’s what may make him America’s greatest living poet. Some well-meaning but overpriced utopian futurology: A review of Politics of Fear, Practices of Hope by Stefan Skrimshire. A review of Stealing MySpace: The Battle To Control the Most Popular Website in America by Julia Angwin (and more).
From The New Yorker, Nicholas Lemann reviews The Uncrowned King: The Sensational Rise of William Randolph Hearst by Kenneth Whyte; Restless Genius: Barney Kilgore, The Wall Street Journal, and the Invention of Modern Journalism by Richard J. Tofel; and The Man Who Owns the News: Inside the Secret World of Rupert Murdoch by Michael Wolff; guy walks into a bar car: David Sedaris on lost loves and lost years; and Barack Obama has inherited a less visible crisis, which may, in time, trump the others: the deterioration of the global nuclear-nonproliferation regime (and more). "Spinal Tap" made mockumentaries the art form of our time; it also made life hell for every struggling hair-metal band — just ask Anvil. A review of The Philosophy of Literature by Peter Lamarque. Why is it that writers who can’t recall their Social Security numbers can recite a rival’s advance to the penny? How the Internet got its rules: Forty years ago, Requests for Comments were born; the humble documents shaped the Internet’s inner workings and played a significant role in its success. Propaganda.com: Many governments have stepped up their attacks on the Internet, harassing bloggers and making it harder to express dissenting opinions online. Missionaries from African churches are evangelizing around the globe — can a Nigerian Pentecostal movement take root in American soil?
From The Chronicle, David Barash on the Roar of the Crowd: Sports fans' primal behavior. A brief inquiry into the nature of sports fandom: Why the home team doesn't deserve your loyalty. From Vox, a look at how sports fans’ demand for “suspense” drives design of reward schemes for players; and an article on why globalisation promotes peace. Richly undeserved: The well off are not the wealthy, so why tax them as if they are? From The Science Creative Quarterly, an article on the evolution of gravity in the Mario video game series as video game hardware increases. How to predict what you'll like? Ask a stranger. The Taming of the Tween: Shakespeare and texters do have something in common. Introducing the Flat Earth Society: Climate skeptics, there is a club for you (and more). From Time, a profile of Arianna Huffington, the Web's new oracle; and what happens when a town loses its newspaper? After the Newspaper: As urban dailies die, a search for other sources of local information. It's a victory for political commentary in general if Ross Douthat becomes a more prominent conservative voice while at the Times. The internet has already profoundly changed British politics, with the left finally waking up to challenge the right. A review of Terminator and Philosophy: I'll Be Back, Therefore I Am. Eat, drink, and stage a new play: 10 things theaters must do to save themselves.