Emma Short and Isabella McMurray (Bedfordshire): Mobile Phone Harassment: An Exploration of Students’ Perceptions of Intrusive Texting Behavior. From Z Magazine, Laurence H. Shoup on finance capitalists, the CFR, and the Obama administration; Laura Kiesel on the environmental colonialism of Fiji Water and the Vatukoula Dump; and an interview with Helena Norberg-Hodge, director of the International Society for Ecology and Culture. From Cabinet, an interview with Angie Hobbs on the philosophical history of friendship. The pieces of the puzzle are falling into place: Marci Hamilton on Catholic officials, a global web of childhood sexual abuse, and the judgment of history. A look at 6 insane coincidences you won't believe actually happened. Ten years after Elian Gonzalez sparked an international crisis between the US and Cuba, Ed Vulliamy returns to Little Havana to chart the incredible story of a family tug of war that changed the course of history. From NYRB, Tony Judt on identity and "edge people". American Communion: Johnny Cash thought his recording career was over — then he met legendary producer Rick Rubin. Searching for Saddam: Why social network analysis hasn't led us to Osama Bin Laden. From Antiquity, a review of books on roads archaeology. The Bird, the Wave, and the Shaka: Tom Vanderbilt on reading the informal language of road signals. A review of Reinventing the Automobile: Personal Urban Mobility for the 21st Century by William J. Mitchell, Christopher E. Borroni-Bird, and Lawrence D. Burns and Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us) by Tom Vanderbilt (and review by Geoff Nicholson at Bookforum). From Grist, an interview with James Inhofe, Senate’s top skeptic, explains his climate-hoax theory.
From CNN, a special report on Broken Government. From Time, Richard Stengel on fixing our broken government in Washington; and Peter Beinart on why Washington is tied up in knots. From Newsweek, the system’s not to blame, says Jon Meacham — we are. America the Ungovernable? Nonsense, says Charles Krauthammer. The system isn't broken: Partisanship is par for the course. We confront our crisis in a market-driven culture that's suspicious of public sector solutions — and more, of the very idea of the public. A review of I Do Solemnly Swear: The Moral Obligations of Legal Officials by Stephen Sheppard. Mathematicians have made progress in transforming the lazy bureaucrat into a collection of formulas, theorems and proofs. How much should a government employee make? Scott Brown is the latest to mount an attack on "lavish" federal wages — yet another version of the conservative attack on government. A look at how public servants became our masters. Research suggests power corrupts, but it corrupts only those who think they deserve it. Is it corrupt to be grateful? A campaign finance case shows that rationing political activity flies in the face of the Founders' design. Beyond campaign finance: There are ways to ease the two-party stranglehold on our political system, but they require taking a broader approach. How long have politicians wanted to "change the culture of Washington"? What will make people trust government again? Washington’s deficit of trust: Democrats need to counter the narrative of government incompetence. What happens when one party does not see a political upside in solving problems and has the power to keep those problems from being solved? The Nihilist Right: Andrew Sargus Klein on what happens when elected officials stop governing.
The inaugural issue on Dancecult: Journal of Electronic Dance Music Culture is out. New Orleans Bounce: What do sissy rappers, sandwiches and Home Depot have in common? From The Humanist, Clayton Whitt on what we talk about when we talk about torture; an interview with Gore Vidal; an interview with Neil deGrasse Tyson, Director of the Hayden Planetarium at the American Museum of Natural History (and more); an “eco” systems approach: Reproductive rights go green; a look at how Star Trek can make you an atheist; and an article on naked pumpkins, sex offenders, and terrorists. From The Nation, an interview with Martha Nussbaum, author of From Disgust to Humanity: Sexual Orientation and Constitutional Law. Sarah Manguso on writing about not writing, the honest failure, shame, and the sharp self-awareness that comes after failing to write about anything other than failing to write. Statistical time travel helps to answer what-ifs: Researchers devise systems to explore how Supreme Court justices and baseball players compare with their predecessors (and more). From Freedom Daily, Wendy McElroy on the political philosophy of Oscar Wilde. The Kookiest Inventions: Ever had a weird idea for a product? Check out what passes muster with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. A look at why the American service sector is all about servitude. From Vanity Fair, a look at the unlikely life and sudden death of The Exile, Russia’s angriest newspaper. Bruce Ackerman on how to keep future John Yoos under control. From WSJ, Eric Felten writes in praise of inefficiency. An interview with Stephen Wolfram: "I'm an information pack rat". Skateboards now hang in galleries, but are they wheelie art?
From Axess, a special issue on architecture for our time, including Theodore Dalrymple on the Inhumane Le Corbusier: He belongs more to criminal history than to architectural history; and in contrast to an antiquated modernism that clings to large-scale construction, classic town plans have been created that take into account local conditions and traditions. A look at how Daniel Libeskind's new prefab house crosses style with speed. The field of architecture is structured in such a way that it keeps the status quo — white, economically privileged men — firmly in place. From NYRB, a review of Alvar Aalto: Architecture, Modernity, and Geopolitics by Eeva-Liisa Pelkonen; and Martin Filler on House Life in a Koolhaas. An article on Christopher Alexander, an achitectural theorist who has inspired smart-growth advocates, counterculture DIY-ers, and computer programmers. Ian Volner reviews Why Architecture Matters by Paul Goldberger (and more and more). From The New Yorker, Paul Goldberger on Jeanne Gang and architecture’s anti-divas. The case of an avant-garde architect, who defied then assisted the Nazi machine, makes hard and fast judgments difficult. A review of Unpacking My Library: Architects and their Books. An interview with Jeremy Till on books about architecture. Whatever it is, I'm against it: Ian Volner on "Ten Days for Oppositional Architecture". The BBC's Great White Elephant: A look at how new media buildings rapidly become old media. An interview with Tony Candido, architect, painter. A look at hallucinatory architecture of the future. Haiti as architectural wake-up call: A major disaster — and a few success stories — show architecture is the problem and the solution for earthquake-prone cities. What does architecture mean now — like, right now?
Peter Shiu-Hwa Tsu (ANU): How the Ceteris Paribus Principles of Morality Lie. From the Journal of Ethics & Social Philosophy, Bradford Skow (MIT): Preferentism and the Paradox of Desire; Steven Weimer (BGSU): Beyond History: The Ongoing Aspects of Autonomy; David Killoren (Wisconsin): Moral Intuitions, Reliability, and Disagreement; Olivia Bailey (Oxford): What Knowledge is Necessary for Virtue? From Rationality, Markets and Morals, Robert Sugden (Dusseldorf): Can a Humean Be a Contractarian? The fetishism of morality: Jonathan Ree revives the idea of moral progress. Apes and ethics: Margaret Somerville on the origins of ethics — Big Bang or Deity and why it matters. A review of A Very Bad Wizard: Morality Behind the Curtain by Tamler Sommers. The sweet smell of morality: Courtney Humphries on how scent can shape our thinking. An interview with Jonathan Glover on books on moral philosophy. A review of The Ethics of the Lie by Jean-Michel Rabate. Morality is not necessarily good: An interview with Hans-Georg Moeller, author of The Moral Fool: A Case for Amorality (and more). Five words in and you've decided: New research suggests our brains react almost instantaneously to statements that challenge our moral values. A review of Reasonably Vicious by Candace Vogler. A review of Ethics and Experience: Life Beyond Moral Theory by Timothy Chappell. A review of The Retrieval of Ethics by Talbot Brewer. Extreme altruists reap joy from sacrifice; do they tap into something within all of us? If you do not donate to aid agencies, you are doing something wrong. A review of Peter Singer Under Fire: The Moral Iconoclast Faces His Critics. A review of The Moral Significance of Styles of Life by John Kekes.
From THES, John D. Brewer reflects on his passion for Alfred Edward Housman and Edward William Elgar, two artists who transcended social convention and produced work redolent of a bygone time and place. A review of Free: Adventures on the Margins of a Wasteful Society by Katharine Hibbert. A review of Road Runner: An Indian Quest in America by Dilip D'Souza. Swan song of the thong: The once-hot garment is falling from favour — blame cold reality. Our grandchildren as political props: What are our real obligations to future generations? From TED, Kevin Kelly tells technology's epic story; and Bill Gates on innovating to zero carbon emissions. Rescued from racism by the love of GK: At 20 the National Front's youth leader was sent to jail; today Joseph Pearce is a leading Catholic writer. The introduction to Nothing Less than Victory: Decisive Wars and the Lessons of History by John David Lewis. From The New Ledger, Paul Cella on Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone’s new moralist. Der Jude is now Der Book: Alan Kaufman on electronic book burning (and part 2). From Politics, a look at how digital ads helped turn CNN’s Lou Dobbs problem into a PR nightmare. The attack of the 13th fairy: An interview with Alexander Kluge on the Internet, dragonfly intelligence and why he likes "gardener" as a job description. From New Matilda, the culture wars are over in Australia — the proof? Nobody cares about Keith Windschuttle's The Fabrication of Aboriginal History; and why are so many of us ready to indulge a myopic francophilia? The New Golden Age: The history of investment and technology suggests that economic recovery is closer than you think, with a new silicon-based global elite at the helm. Seven things about the economy that everyone should be more worried about than they are.
Jeffery Williamson (Harvard): Five Centuries of Latin American Inequality. Laurence Whitehead (Oxford): Fernando Henrique Cardoso: The Astuzia Fortunata of Brazil’s Sociologist-President. Chad Post on how Roberto Bolano finally shattered the magic-realist stereotype that has plagued Spanish writers for the past few decades — great news for the dozens of Latin American novels translated into English. An interview with Alan Angell on books on Pinochet and Chilean politics. A review of The New Latin American Left and Experiments in Radical Social Democracy. Alma Guillermoprieto on Bolivia's parched future. From Americas Quarterly, should presidents be allowed unlimited terms in office? Patricio Navia and Steven Griner debate. Postcard from Quince Mil: How a little town in Peru is becoming a hotspot. An interview with Chris Moss on psychoanalysing Argentina. In Chile, many are optimistic that prosperity is coming. Venezuela's and Colombia's ambassadors to the US tell their sides of a tense story. Adios, Monroe Doctrine: Jorge Castaneda on when the Yanquis go home (and a response). An interview with Hugh Thomson on books on Mexico. For a place with as much common history and culture as Latin America, it is striking how its political landscape is marred by tensions on virtually every border. An interview with Michael Jacobs on books on the Andes. A review of Indians and Leftists in the Making of Ecuador’s Modern Indigenous Movements by Marc Becker. Pablo Piccato, author of The Tyranny of Opinion: Honor in the Construction of the Public Sphere, on honor, violence, and political debate in Mexico. Why is economic liberalism so taboo in socially liberal Brazil? With its glacier-carved peaks and fjords, southern Chile remains one of the wildest places on Earth, but that could soon change.
Max Albert (JLU): Why Bayesian Rationality Is Empty, Perfect Rationality Doesn't Exist, Ecological Rationality Is Too Simple, and Critical Rationality Does the Job. From The Berlin Review of Books, a review of Jan Tschichold: Master Typographer: His Life, Work, and Legacy by Cees W. de Jong; and a review essay on handwriting and technology. Cheney’s Tortured World: An article on terrorism, torture and preemption. Laura Brodie on Becoming Jane Austen: Here are some of the best sellers that had the greatest influence on Austen’s early novels. A review of A Brilliant Darkness: The Extraordinary Life and Mysterious Disappearance of Ettore Majorana, the Troubled Genius of the Nuclear Age by Joao Magueijo. From FT, a review of books on media and politics. From Irish Left Review, an article on Kraft and the state of advanced capitalism. From First Things, Michael P. Orsi on the drama of the Christian funeral. Why do all national anthems sound the same? Shouldn't the one for Iraq sound a little more "Arab-y"? Manhattan's Diva of Dirt: An interview with Michael Musto, author of Fork on the Left, Knife in the Back. Math, from basic to baffling: Steven Strogatz on division and its discontents. Populist retribution and financial services regulation: Adam C. Pritchard compares the current effort to reform financial services regulation with the regulatory initiatives that come out of the Great Depression. Life Among the "Yakkity Yaks": An interview with renowned inventor Temple Grandin on how the insights she gained from her own autism fueled her career. Christopher Sabatini on the 7 things President Hugo Chavez has taught him. The Godfather of Extreme Skiing: Meet Yuichiro Miura, the man who skied down Mt. Everest 40 years ago. A review of Have I Reasons by Robert Morris.
The Wagnerian Method: Physicists investigate the grand artistic vision of one of the most influential artists of the last two centuries. Abstract Science: Abstraction, not just mathematics, has its place in science as it does in art. A review of Seeing Further: The Story of Science and the Royal Society: 350 Years of the Royal Society and Scientific Endeavour (and more and more and more and more). The end of an institution: Hard times for the Royal Institution and its former director, Lady Greenfield. Does the US produce too many scientists? Using new mathematical tools, researchers reveal major shifts in the structure of scientific research in order to uncover structural changes in large, interconnected systems. Corporate money to pay for scientific research? Get over it. Feynman and the Futurists: A dispute over the importance of a 50-year-old speech by Richard Feynman has implications for the multibillion-dollar National Nanotechnology Initiative. Five reasons science [hearts] Google: The company that tamed the Web is now helping researchers see the world with fresh eyes. A review of The Essential Engineer: Why Science Alone Will Not Solve Our Global Problems by Henry Petroski (and more and more). A review of The Oxford Book of Modern Science Writing, ed. Richard Dawkins. Let's face it, science is boring: Mouse urine, pureed goldfish brains and human computers — sound interesting? Well, it's not. Longitudinal teaching of the history of science, running from primary to tertiary level, is the key to producing creative scientists. A test of patience: A look at the world’s longest, most elusive science experiment. Discover takes a look at the hottest science experiment on the planet. An article on the world's scariest science: What could possibly go wrong? Physicists re-create conditions of the Big Bang.
Hugh Pemberton (Bristol): Macro-economic Crisis and Policy Revolution. The central thesis of Thomas Kuhn’s book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions is that we live by paradigms — so have we just been through a paradigm shift in economics? An interview with James K. Galbraith: “There is no return to self-sustaining growth”. From The Baffler, let them eat dogma: Chris Lehmann on the 1930s and its parallels to our current predicament; and a review essay on the financial crisis. The few regulatory measures introduced since the financial collapse in 2008 are being supervised by the same banking sector that caused it in the first place; governments' delegation of regulatory responsibilities has deeply negative implications for democracy. An excerpt from On the Brink: Inside the Race to Stop the Collapse of the Global Financial System by Henry M. Paulson Jr. (and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more). Elizabeth Warren on Wall Street’s race to the bottom. Michael Grunwald on the case for a Consumer Financial Protection Agency. John H. Cochrane on Lessons from the Financial Crisis: As long as some firms are considered too big to fail, those firms will take outsized risks. From The Economist, a special report on financial risk; a review of The Greatest Trade Ever: The Behind-the-Scenes Story of How John Paulson Defied Wall Street and Made Financial History by Gregory Zuckerman and The Quants: How a New Breed of Math Whizzes Conquered Wall Street and Nearly Destroyed It by Scott Patterson (and more and more); and a review of Don’t Blame the Shorts: Why Short Sellers are Always Blamed for Market Crashes and How History is Repeating Itself by Robert Sloan. Is excessive risk-taking in the financial world a matter of too much testosterone?